• I Tried Not To Cry, But Failed

    The noose of our coronavirus-imposed isolation was tightening and I skipped my usual errands this past Saturday.  Yet, a pleasant tranquility had settled into our home, as I went about chores and meal preparation for the week.  Our cats were watching the birds at the feeder and friends were calling to check in, when I

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  • Mission Impossible

    I received a call last week from Peggy, my surrogate mother and childhood ballet teacher, moments after Governor Hogan issued a sweeping executive order temporarily closing restaurants, bars, and gyms to contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus.  As it turned out, Peggy’s 94-year old friend Shirley had died of an aneurysm, leaving 2 adult

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  • Catching A Killer

    After the first year of doing Show Your Soft Side’s social media, I learned to turn off notifications. If not, life would just be one long series of dings.  Fortunately, I had forgotten to do that for Twitter so, on March 30, 2018 while lying on a beach in the Turks & Caicos, the dreaded

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  • A Soft Side Christmas Story

    His eyes were constantly sore and irritated, because his fur scratched his corneas each time he blinked.  His eyelids curved unnaturally inward and he needed surgery to correct the condition.  There is little hope for injured street cats and those with medical conditions.  Yet, “Big Daddy” was one of the lucky ones, for a kind

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  • Prison Cats

    The brochure caught our attention.  “Help! Rescued Cats Sent to Prison.  What are you in for?”  We immediately set out to learn what the cats needed at the Maryland Correctional Institution for Women (MCIW) in Jessup. As it turns out, the prison’s 3-year old Rescue Cat Program has been a lifesaver for older and less

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  • The Road To Oxford & Back

    I recently returned from a humane education conference at the Oxford Centre on Animal Ethics with our colleagues from the Institute for Human-Animal Connection (IHAC), who crafted a humane education curriculum specifically for our campaign.  We presented to an international audience of educators and scholars about Soft Side’s efforts to stop animal cruelty and IHAC’s

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  • Another Throw Away Cat

    The message from Dawn popped up on my phone at 5:19 PM.  “I was just feeding one of my colonies and I came across a cat that has apparently been hit by a car.  It was under a parked vehicle and the poor thing was crying and can barely move.  There is an injury to

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  • Sweating Bullets

    Anybody who knows me, knows I’m a worrier. It’s a tendency that usually reaches a fevered pitch at around 3 am.  Anytime we’re coming up an on event, I bolt awake right around that time and immediately start going down the list of all the things that could possibly go wrong.  No problematic stone goes

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  • Soft Side Goes International

    We all have a love/hate relationship with social media, but it has made the world smaller for people and better for animals.  In fact, animals may just be benefiting more than any other sector in the non-profit world. Take, for example, Lainey Charter, a Canadian graphic artist who helps several animal organizations in Ottowa, where

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  • This Cat’s Legacy: Helping Others

    We all know that Sande Riesett, co-founder of Show Your Soft Side, is the first person to cheer on others’ good and generous works — especially when those people are good and generous to animals. Sande is a little quieter when it comes to tooting her own horn — but that horn deserves a whole

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