A little thought will go a long way toward improving the lot of animals

When children Do Not measure up to adult criteria, are they thrown into the street to survive on their own? No. Are racers tossed to the side to eventually be murdered if they do not win? No. Are heavy humans kept in a tiny dark rooms for cannibalism? Certainly not. Yet all of these behaviors describe the ways that animals are treated.

Animals are still technically viewed as “property” under the law. However, they are far from inanimate objects. They are able to feel pain and form emotional bonds with other animals, as well as human beings, making them extraordinarily unique from other forms of property. Public opinion agrees. In an Associated Press poll, two-thirds of Americans acknowledged that an animal’s right to live free of suffering should be as important as a person’s right to the same, and 50 percent regarded animals to essentially be just like humans. Yet cruelty remains.

In one year, over 65 billion animals are slaughtered for food, meaning over 1,680 each second with most farmed animals being killed when they are barely adolescents or even younger. Plant workers have described slaughterhouse events of skinning and dismembering animals while the animals were conscious.

Six to 8 million dogs and cats alone are killed after living their lives in a shelter, if they even make it that far.

I am not suggesting that all people must become vegan mass pet adopters, but there are small ways to help.

It is important to be conscious as to what you are eating. There is a reason that E. Coli has drastically increased over the years given the unregulated way the livestock is killed within the major slaughter industries. There are local farms with naturally raised animals that get to see the light of day, eat natural feed and are appropriately slaughtered.

Another easy way to help animals is to know who to contact in your area to report any animal cruelty. Do a Google search on any local Animal Welfare League who can help or point you in the right direction. You can volunteer even a fraction of time at a local animal shelter. Giving animals some love and attention will forever enlighten their lives and yours.

Perhaps if you are thinking about taking on the care of an animal, first visit animal shelters and go through Petfinder.com, as there are plenty of animals out there in need of new loving families. If enough people fight to help the animals, something can be changed.

Kari Crawford, Warren