A Lesson Taught By Animals

They Aren’t Useless

I’ve always been an animal lover. When I was younger, I’d go so far as to say it was my identity. I spent all my spare time playing with my pets and studying any animal, ranging from exotic to domesticated.

I had a really hard time socializing because of my anxiety, so most of my time was spent with, and revolved around, the animals in my life. Sure, call it unhealthy, even idolization! But I absolutely loved the companionship and friendship they offered me. Animals are good friends, most of the time. They’re fun to play with, and a worthy responsibility. Most importantly, they’re here as a symbol.

A Symbolic Life They Live

I’m a workaholic. And I struggle with depression, at times. I’m pretty bad about feeling useless when I’m not being productive or fruitful. Yet, in my research, I’ve learned something. Animals are symbolic of contentment. I learned this through the study of lions.


Because of the heat, lions, when they aren’t hunting, actually lie around a lot. They’re life revolves around resting and staying cool, and hunting to feed their family. They aren’t pacing, wondering what they should do next, or if they aren’t working hard enough. They just chill together in prides, when they aren’t taking care of the responsibility of finding and serving food, however. Now, dogs show us a bit different form of peace and a different lifestyle.


I have two dogs: Gizmo and Oso. I’ll give a brief rundown of their lives before going into detail about how it relates to us.


Gizmo is my dog. He’s an over-sized Yorkie who barks a lot. He will even bark at nothing, sometimes. But he sure is faithful with his own job. Gizzy is often very happy. When he sees me, he wags his tail and “smiles” before spinning in circles. He is definitely grateful for the people in his life and soaks up (and offers) the love that goes around. Of course, his favorites past-times are eating and sleeping, and he has no problem keeping up with these hobbies, when he isn’t simply playing with Oso and enjoying his company.

Gizmo has good qualities. Let’s look at them. He knows his responsibility is to protect us, and he’s faithful about it (sometimes too faithful, unfortunately). He is grateful for and happy to see the people in his life, soaking in the love and offering some himself. He has no problem just relaxing with the bare necessities of life, like eating and sleeping. Lastly, Gizmo enjoys playing or having fun in the company of his friend (Oso).


Oso is the puppy. His all-time favorite thing is actually food. He goes over-the-top with begging, sadly, but he has a firm appreciation for the bare necessities (food, not sleep). He is incredibly hyper and filled with joy. He jumps around and is sure to greet every single person as he sees them, making us each feel special. But his favorite thing is playing with Gizmo. He will often tackle our poor yorkie and just prance all over the place like a deer.

Oso’s best quality, in my opinion, is that he leaves the barking to Gizmo. He knows it’s Gizmo’s job and takes a step back to, one, let Gizmo do it, and two, not bother us with more barking. He is absolutely grateful for the basics of life and appreciates it wholeheartedly, resulting in a joyful and considerate puppy who just wants to play.


Animals can easily show us what it means to lead a life of contentment. From hard-working ants to resting lions, they show us a balance in life. It’s okay to take a moment to breathe and relax, but responsibilities, such as putting food on the table and showing others love should definitely be priority. Other animals, such as dogs, show us what it means to be truly loyal, faithful, and joyful through their everyday actions. I hope you can look at animals through a new pair of lens, now, because nothing God does lacks worth or value.

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"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. Behold, the new has come!" (2 Corinthians 5:17)

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