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Warm and fuzzy

Love stamps debut at Texas shelter

This year’s Love stamps show a puppy and a kitten, each resting their front paws on a big red heart.

The Postal Service dedicated the latest in its Love series of stamps — this year’s installment celebrating our deep bond with pets — at the Austin Pets Alive! rescue shelter in Texas on Jan. 19.

“The kitten and puppy each rest their front paws on a big red heart, which captures perfectly the love we have for these special creatures — and their love for us in return,” said Judy de Torok, the Postal Service’s corporate affairs vice president, who served as dedicating official.

De Torok shared her own love stories with pets, including how she and her husband came to be adopted by her sister’s mail-loving cat, Claudius, and the “profound experience” she had as a 13-year-old helping the family’s kuvasz, a traditional Hungarian flock guard dog, give birth.

“I have a feeling these may be some of our most popular stamps ever,” she said.

Joining de Torok were Dr. Ellen Jefferson, president and CEO of Austin Pets Alive!; Kelly Holt, senior manager of its cat program; Richard Scott, a volunteer canine behavior specialist with the shelter; and Matt Beisner, host of National Geographic’s “Dog: Impossible” television show.

Diaz Dixon, the shelter’s adviser for external partnerships, served as master of ceremonies.

Beisner spoke movingly of the dog who changed his life, Kingston, and animals’ amazing capacity to heal humans.

“In time they will triage our traumas, temper our trials and touch us with tenderness,” he said.