October 23, 2014

Teaching Children Kindness towards Animals

Teaching kids to be kind to animals is as imperative as teaching them empathy, manners and sharing. While loving animals can come naturally to most children, they do not, in most situations know how to behave around them. Children can be cruel to animals which is why it is important to show and teach them on how to respect and be kind towards these four legged creatures.

How many of us have seen children pelting stones at stray dogs or cats? Is that innate behavior? No. They are only doing what they are told by their superiors or by what they have seen them do. Countless times I have seen parents hitting an animal or encouraging their kids to throw stones at strays. Why? Because they were taught to do the same themselves or because they don't consider animals having any feelings at all.

One of the essentials of teaching kids manners should include teaching them kindness towards animals. Any parent or grownup failing to teach their child a simple basic lesson of kindness towards animals fails as a parent. You cannot expect a child to love animals if you do not show them how.

Why teach your child compassion towards animals?

The answer is simple. Because you want them to be good humans. It's a known fact that children who are taught to show compassion and empathy towards animals early in their life learn the valuable lesson of kindness towards fellow human beings as well. In teaching your child to be kind towards these voiceless creatures, you are helping them become better people in the long run. Decades of research has proved that a child's attitude towards animals can predict his/her future behavior.

What you can do?

  • Teach by example. Show your kids how to treat animals with kindness. Teach them how to pet and feed animals.
  • Don't abuse an animal. Don't hit a stray or call them stupid names just to vent your anger.
  • Adopt or rescue a pet. Adopting a pet not only helps teach children the important lesson of responsibility but also help you show them how to be nice to animals.
  • Avoid labeling animals. Having a breed pet doesn't make the rest of the animals 'stupid' or 'worthless'. Teach your child to love all animals equally.
  • Be nice to stray animals. If you can't adopt or rescue a pet, you can still teach your kids how to be kind towards animals by showing compassion towards strays. 
  • Take your child to an animal shelter and help them volunteer or take food and necessary stuff required for the welfare of the shelter animals,
  • Motivate your kids in activities that can help animals. For instance, helping them rescue and leaving food or water regularly for strays.
  • Don't allow kids to play video games that involves killing animals or let them indulge in any activity that includes hurting animals.
There are so many things that we can do to teach our children compassion and empathy towards animals. Its a few small steps that can show them what the right thing to do is and help end animal cruelty.

May 25, 2013

7 Myths about Spaying and Neutering – BUSTED!

Phote credits: www.gwdhumanesociety.org

Spaying and neutering can save the lives of millions of animals who otherwise end up homeless and on the streets of our cities where they are mistreated.

1. Spaying/ Neutering is Wrong
Anyone who thinks that spaying/ neutering an animal is wrong, is ignorant. It is not wrong to neuter/spay but it is wrong to allow animals to breed more unwanted animals that will eventually be killed because they were homeless. Spaying and neutering helps save the lives of thousands of animals who will never find good homes and will instead end up on the streets. It prevents animals from being born accidently. Read more on the benefits of spaying or neutering your pets.

2. Spaying/Neutering will cost a lot
Generally the cost depends on the animal’s age and gender. However, spaying or neutering does not cost a lot. Most vets in Karachi charge approximately *Rs. 2000 to 3000 for strays and *Rs. 5000 to 6000 for domestic pets.

3. Pure breed pets should not be spayed
Many times even pure breed animals end up on the streets and in shelters. Your cat or dog, if not spayed/neutered will contribute to the over population of stray animals.

4. I want my pet to breed. I will get all the kittens or puppies adopted in good homes
There is no guarantee of that. And even if you are able to find good homes for your pets, it would be unfair for all the stray animals in the shelters, waiting to be adopted into good homes. If every good home adopts at least one cat or dog from the shelter instead of adopting one from the pure breed litter that you are giving away, they will be saving lives and giving homes to deserving animals.

5. Neutering will alter my pet's personality
If anything, neutering will make your pet more healthy and active. They will not be distracted by their instinctive need to mate which means no heat realted aggressive behavior and mess.

6. Neutering/ spaying will make my pet over weight
Overfeeding and no exercise will make your pet fat, not spaying or neutering. With proper diet and exercise your pet will remain healthy and fit.

7. Can't shelters take care of strays
In Pakistan we do not have proper animal shelters. The few that exist are non-profit and cannot take in thousands of stray animals. Some times the animals left for long in shelters also end up sick or with a disease. We cannot expect a few people to take care of thousands of stray animals.

* Charges may vary