I feel the same way. we adopted animals from rescue homes, because my family helped me learn that all animals have feelings just like us. to me, personally,
I think some animals are a damn sight smarter than people.
cats never wage war. they fight, sure, but they have never fought in huge numbers between themselves over disagreements....
so I think humans are nowhere near the advanced "sentient, special non-animal" that science still claims us to be...
animals are no different to us, we just give ourselves airs and graces and lord it over everything else.
that said, im a pagan, so to me mother earth deserves the same respect as my birth mother, and the creator, the universe around us, deserves the same love. so I treat everything unconditionally with love and respect. its trying to get others to see that view that is my problem. because I always loved the world (hug a tree, there's nothing wrong with it!) as a kid the local kids would bully me- so it was probably because im so loving that they hurt my cat.
love your pets every moment you can, but try not to fear losing them.
again, such a beautiful image. truly.