US, Humane Treatment of Animals Stamps, 1966

imageToday I am sharing a stamp that I like both for its design and its message. I love animals and I appreciate that countries sometimes issue stamps that validate this simple but sometimes neglected value—that of kindness to animals. 

Several months ago, while walking my own dog Russell, I saw a man dragging a little poodle, who was clearly injured, across the street. The man was exasperated and the dog—tethered by a leash—could not keep up with his fury; he was limping and falling, falling and limping, scrambling to get back on his feet. This continued down the street as far as I could see. This image haunts me and I regret not running after them. I don’t know what I could have done… perhaps, at a minimum, by stopping them, the dog could have had a moment’s respite.  

This stamp reminds me of that moment and that little dog. And of course, of the countess other animals who endure far worse treatment at the hands of their people. It reminds me that I am not the only person appalled by that kind of treatment. Even in 1966, when this stamp was issued, Americans valued their animal companions and efforts to ensure their welfare. Nearly fifty years later, the message is still relevant and this stamp’s charming design is a legacy to that.