The world's a crazy place today.
The US has reported the death of their greatest enemy.
Canada's casting their votes in hopes of developing the country they want.
But it's also Be Kind to Animals Week!
As you know, I've been looking at getting some guest posts in, now that we're getting closer to the date of my wedding and honeymoon. When I thought of people to reach out to, one was my friend and former co-worker Helen Gourley. I always remembered her passion for animals and helping others learn about the importance of treating them with respect. When I was younger, I remember avoiding stepping on snails and worms because I thought they were icky. Now I don't do it because I think they deserve to live as well.
So with today's message on how to be kinder to animals, I'll let Helen take it away!
BE KIND TO ANIMALS
Be Kind to Animals Week was first observed in the United States in 1915, and thanks to a generous $20,000 sponsorship from Iams and the Canadian Federation of Human Societies, Canada has also been observing it since 2004.
The oldest week of its kind in the United States is Be Kind to Animals Week. Established by Dr. William O. Stillman, the leader of the American Humane Association at the time, the week is dedicated to helping animals, publicizing the achievements of humane societies, and educating kids and adults about responsible pet ownership and respect for all animals. Thousands of animal shelters across Canada host special media events, promote education on the humane treatment of animals and try to remind people of the debt humankind owes to both wild and domestic animals.
The following are ways to be kinder to animals. And remember to not only observe this kindness the first week of May, but all year round!
- Instill compassion in your children by demonstrating kindness and using positive training methods for your pets.
- Spend quality time with your pet every day.
- NEVER kick, hit or spank a pet.
- Provide nutritious food and constant fresh water for your pets.
- Provide pets with plenty of exercise.
- Be alert when driving to avoid hitting animals. Be especially observant out in the countryside.
- Buy from companies that don’t use animals in testing.
- Become a vegetarian.
- Never tolerate animal cruelty; report suspected cruelty to the authorities.
- Adopt a shelter pet. Never by from Pet Stores or breeders that are not reputable. Pet Stores promote Puppy Mills.
- Spay or neuter your pets and encourage friends, family members, neighbours, coworkers and acquaintances to do the same.
- Keep pets’ vaccinations current and visit your veterinarian regularly.
- Identify your pets with visible ID tags on their collars.
- Appreciate wildlife and learn more about it.
- Invite a humane educator to your child’s classroom.
- Leave room for wildlife habitats in your own yard by providing birds with feeders and a bird bath; put out appropriate squirrel food.
- Recycle anything that you can to create a clean environment for people and animals.
- Donate to your local shelter. You can donate cash, an item or your time.
- Cut apart the plastic rings from six-packs so they cannot be a danger to wildlife.
- Clean up spills of anti-freeze or other toxins.
- Always use animal- and environmentally friendly products on your lawn
It is also very important to teach your children how to treat animals properly and with kindness. Children learn how to treat animals by watching others. Even if you are setting a good example for your children, there may be some people in their lives that aren't. Teaching respect for animals is necessary at every stage of your child’s life, and stressing the importance of kindness to your pets is essential. There are a few easy ways to show kindness to your pets. For example:
- Gently remove your cat from the table instead of swatting her down
- Find out why the dog is barking instead of yelling at him to quiet down
- Correct your children if they are too rough with animals
- Reward your children with hugs when they treat animals kindly and point out why the cat purrs or the dog rolls on his back for a belly rub
- Include your children in the daily feeding and grooming activities and bring them to the veterinarian’s office when you visit
You can explain how animals need checkups just like they do. Let your children know that animal cruelty is not acceptable and that it is alright to come to you if they witness animal abuse or cruelty.
One of the ultimate ways to be kinder to animals is to go vegan. Not only is it a compassionate choice but it’s a healthy choice and better for the environment.
The world is slowly realizing just how important animals are in our daily lives, and that we share an unbreakable emotional bond with members of other species. We are all one with this earth so all should receive the same respect. Animals are our friends, companions and even family members. Those who live with animals know that they are special individuals, each with unique personalities.
Though it is rarely acknowledged in our society, the animals people eat have the same capacity for feeling and relationships as dogs and cats do. Mother chickens, pigs and cows are known to care lovingly for their young, just as a dog and cat would. All animals have the capacity to feel pain, feel emotion, form bonds and friendships with their fellow sentient.
As the great Mahatma Gandhi said “the greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated”.
Please always be kind to animals.