New Year of the Animals

According to the Talmud—the ancient body of Jewish law—the 1st of Elul was the date upon which farm and other domesticated animals were counted a year older for tax purposes. This date was thus known as the New Year of the Animals. While this tradition is long gone, on this day we have the opportunity to honor our beloved animal companions, as well as to be mindful of our own interrelationship to, and impact upon, animal species worldwide.  

One simple way to celebrate the New Year of the Animals is to give gratitude for the animals in many of our lives, our pets. 

Blessing for Pets

We give thanks for your animal sensibility

And for the joy you have brought us

Since becoming part of our lives

Whether you are the fruit of the cat tree

Or a beloved companion on long walks

Or yet another kind of creature entirely

Your presence is a blessing

Your every vocalization and need

A reminder of our interconnectedness

Our lives and animal natures coexisting in harmony

Booklet Section: Elul Blessings
Source: Turn & Return Holiday Booklet