Sunday, April 28, 2013

Be Kind to Animals Week, 2013

I just received a letter from the American Humane Association (AHA), one of the oldest animal protection organizations in the United States (and one that I am particularly fond of because it recognizes the connection between animal abuse and domestic violence).

The letter tells the story of an 11-year-old girl named Hannah’s visit to her local animal shelter and her immediate awareness that the cats there seemed to be miserable housed right next to barking dogs. Hannah took it upon herself to speak up and ask for something to be done, and the next thing you know the shelter was receiving a much-needed makeover. The cats and other animals are now much happier, more people come to the shelter and the adoption rates are up.

Hannah’s story reminded me of the power one person can make in our big wide world. One girl, one woman, one boy, one man – anyone! The purpose of the letter was to remind me of “Be Kind to Animals Week,” which is coming up May 5 through May 12 this year, and has been observed since 1915.

What comes to mind for you when you think of being kind to animals? It might be easy to blow it off – to say to yourself, “I’m always kind to animals – this reminder is for someone else.” I beg to challenge that today: ask yourself and honestly answer these three questions:

Do I report animal neglect or cruelty when I see it?
Do I think about the animals raised for the food I eat?
Do I think I have a responsibility to the animals in our society? Why/why not?

I believe we all have a responsibility to participate in a more humane nation, and that every single day we can thoughtfully consider the choices we make and ask ourselves if we’re doing our part. Animals are unique in that they have no voice; they rely solely on us to be their saviors.

The AHA reminds us to adopt our pets from shelters or rescues, to take care of our pets, to make sure to spay and neuter, to speak up and report animal abuse, and to appreciate wildlife. Be Kind to Animals Week is a perfect time to teach children about animals.

Are you doing anything special to commemorate Be Kind to Animals Week?

A note about animals raised for food in the United States: a tough battle rages on between the corporations that operate meat and dairy production in our nation - a huge conglomerate of stockholders concerned with their bottom lines and not about the welfare of their live commodity - and the animal activists of our nation. These factory farming institutions have been persuading our generation to consume products from overfed, unnatural, antibiotic-laced and hormone-injected animals, which is terribly unhealthy for humans and horrific for the animals. Please learn more about our nation’s food production – what better time then during "Be Kind to Animals Week?”

This writing was also posted by the author at


  1. Beautifully written. And thought provoking. Thank you. And thanks for all you do for the animals.

  2. Thnk you anonymous - I appreciate that very much.