Ways to become an Animal Advocate
National Animal Advocacy Day is on April 30th! It is a day to recognize animal advocates who give a voice to animals to save them from abuse, cruelty, mistreatment and neglect. The work of animal advocates is to protect and rescue animals. It is important to animal rights and why we need YOU.
What does an animal advocate mean to you?
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To me, an animal advocate is someone who loves animals first and foremost and then has the courage to speak up for them. It is someone that believes that animals should live free from suffering and be treated with kindness.
An Animal advocate can be an individual like you and me or a group of people within an organization. The belief is that animals are individuals with feelings and emotions –they suffer, feel pain, joy, sadness and happiness, and the recognition that animals are sentient beings. We speak up for animal rights and fight for the humane treatment of animals.
Animal advocates can be almost any age from children, teens, adults, and elderly. Basically anyone that cares about the well-being of animals can be considered an animal advocate. We speak up on a variety of animal issues from their mistreatment to advocating for stronger protection in the laws, to simply encouraging people to adopt homeless animals, not purchase pets from puppy mills or operations that profit from them which include breeders, and other issues affecting companion, farm animals, and wildlife such as illegal animal trade. We campaign, lobby, speak out against animal abuse, convince others to listen, persuade politicians, and even talk to neighbours, friends and colleagues (willing to listen) to join us in defending animal rights!
Animal advocates address issues such as animal cruelty that includes the use of animals in research and product testing, euthanasia, zoos, circuses, breeders, shelter animals, farm animals, horse slaughter, horse racing, breeding, and other issues that affect wildlife species and climate change.
I know so many people care about animals and want to protect them. Sometimes the topic of animal rights can seem overwhelming and they don’t know where to start. I get asked “how can I help animals?” I suggest you focus on a topic that captures your heart and animal issues you care about.
Here are ways to get involved in animal advocacy:
Become informed on animal issues important to you.
Follow your passion and find your cause. There are organizations and groups that can align with your values. Reach out to them and join them if you wish.
Research, educate yourself, and become informed.
Volunteer at an animal rescue, shelter, sanctuary.
Join an animal advocacy organization or group.
Become a politician or educate others through animal advocacy awareness, talks, speaking engagements or share information on social media blogs.
Choose a career path. You can become an animal rights lawyer, leader, professor, veterinarian, shelter manager, or a leader of an organization.
You can start small and stay there and that is fine too! You can simply choose to adopt an animal from a shelter or tell your friends to, go vegan for animals, health, or the planet! Every individual choice that you make that aligns with animal rights is important and leads to a better, more just, and humane world.
Animals cannot speak for themselves. They rely on humans to be their voice! Choose compassion over cruelty and kindness to animals and you can be part of the social movement to help animals get the rights they deserve.
Thank you for caring about animals and taking the time to read this article.
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Check out Lobbyists 4 Good for more info on becoming an animal advocate!