A very special patient is getting intense medical attention this week at the Mannuthy Veterinary College Hospital in Kerala, India: A 4-year-old giant male flying squirrel. An Express News Service article, dated Sept. 30, described how the squirrel, part of an endangered species, had been found injured near a power line in Silent Valley National Park, and was suspected of having suffered spinal trauma.
There is a photo of him with the article. He is wide-eyed, beautiful - and very likely frightened at the prospect of being surrounded by would-be predators who are, in reality, kind humans trying to help him. There is also a story in The Hindu, another news outlet, and it indicates the squirrel is rare - and thus, much-treasured.
Knowing that this kind of gentle spirit and caring exists for this Indian national treasure is an affirmation at a time when much of what we hear includes news that squirrel hunting season is in full swing or we read stories of animal abuse and torture. It tells me the world is in balance, that there is some good that helps wipe out the horror.
Let us wish this squirrel a speedy recovery. There is an awful lot riding on it - for the injured male squirrel and for the rest of us, too.