I’ve heard that “Be Kind to Animals” week is coming up. What does that mean and can you give me some ideas of ways that I can be kind to animals?
Working on Kindness in Woodland Heights
Dear Working on Kindness,
You are indeed correct! The first full week of May every year (May 6 through 12 this year) has been designated as, “Be Kind to Animals” week by the American Humane Society. The initiative was started in 1915 and has inspired millions of people to come together for a week every year to look for new and different ways to enhance the lives of our furry, feathered, scaled and even exoskeletoned friends.
During this week of kindness, The Humane Society has several good ideas for ways that we can be especially kind of animals.
There are pledges that you can participate in on their website, (www.kindness100.org) such as pledges to buy humanely raised products, protect all of Earth’s animals and even protect animal actors.
You Can Be Kind Any Time: However, the good news is that we don’t need a special week once a year to be kind to animals. While, “Be Kind to Animals” week serves as a good reminder that we should respect and care for animals, there are things you can do every day to make sure that you’re spreading kindness throughout the animal kingdom. The Humane Society recommends these 4 ways to be kind to animals every day:
Adopt Don’t Shop: There are millions of pets (many of them purebred and absolutely wonderful) waiting for forever homes in our nation’s shelters and in rescue organizations. If you’ve been wanting to add a pet to your family, please consider adoption first.
There’s no better way to spread kindness than to save a life at an animal shelter.
Take Good Care of Your Pet: Sometimes, dragging Fido to the vet for his annual exam doesn’t feel like an act of kindness, but making sure that your pet is up to date on vaccinations and getting screened for diseases on a regular basis will protect him in the long run, keeping him healthy and happy for many years to come.
Appreciate the Critters Outside Your Home: Even here in the bustling city, we have incredible wildlife that we share our space with.
If you don’t already, use this week to think about your impact on the wildlife and by creating an inviting space for birds, butterflies and other animals that visit your yard.
Report Animal Abuse: If you suspect that an animal is being abused or neglected, report it to the proper authorities (contact the Houston SPCA at 713-869-7722). Unfortunately, animal abuse is a very real problem and, without neighbors looking out for animals, horrific animal abuse can go unreported and the needless suffering continues. Also, keep in mind that those who abuse animals often abuse children and other folks as well, so letting animal abuse go unreported can put the lives of humans in danger as well.
Use this week ahead to think of ways that you can spread some love to the animal kingdom. If you’re already practicing some of these tips, consider also visiting an animal shelter to interact with the animals there, or organize a supply drive to help the shelters and rescue groups who work every day to bring kindness to animals in need. A little kindness toward animals goes a long way!
Do you have a question for Tabby? Email her at deartabby email@example.com
Pet of the Week
Meet Maggie. Sweet Maggie was recently rescued during a large “shelter sweep.” She had been living with a horrific foot injury and two of her toes had to be amputated. Maggie is recovering in a foster home where her foster parent declares that she is a total “love bug” and that her tail never stops wagging. Despite her rough past, Maggie is ready for a bright future–could that be with you? If so, contact Scout’s Honor at: www.scoutshonor.org.