I've been reading a great book entitled "Animals as Guides for the Soul - Stories of Life Changing Encounters" by Susan Chernak McElroy Red is my ramblings.
Here is an excerpt
"Those of us who care about animals often carry painful mental images of suffering animals we have seen or even read about. ( I can cry at an instant if I picture a few photos in my head that will forever haunt me) I have often asked myself why I remain tortured by images of suffering I saw decades ago. What good does this pain do me? What good does it do the animals , who are long dead and gone? (I tell myself no matter what the animal is now dead, it is impossible to be tortured FOREVER) I believe I've found the answer that makes the pain of these mental images my honor rather than my burden. That honor is found in bearing witness. In holding the pain of another beings suffering, I honor that being's soul." (I also feel this because I believe my thinking of the animal is the only kindness this animal has ever received in their short life of torture).
Another quote she has written is " Your pain is the breaking away of the shell of your understanding."
The book is full of many interesting thoughts so I highly recommend it.