An estimated 10 million pets pass away from animal abuse annually in the US, but millions more fall victim to animal cruelty in cases that are not reported. Some forms of animal cruelty are entirely legal in the US, including animal testing on body care, household, food, medical products, and the slaughter of livestock for food. There are a few ways you can help prevent animal cruelty, though. Here are some things you can do to help stop animal abuse and cruelty on a small and large scale.
Most animal lovers want to do their part in stopping animal cruelty, but don't know where to start. Here are some measures you can take to stop animal cruelty:
There are a few different lifestyle changes you can make to help stop animal cruelty. First, try to buy only cruelty-free products. Search online for cruelty-free products that haven’t been tested on animals and look for the Leaping Bunny cruelty-free logo on products when shopping in stores. Keep in mind that vegan products aren't always cruelty-free since these products can still be tested on animals.
You may also want to adopt a vegetarian or vegan diet. Going plant-based is often the most challenging lifestyle change for people since animal products are so ingrained in our diets. A simple way to do this is to start slowly, cutting out different types of meat and animal products until you're eating an entirely plant-based diet.
If you don’t want to cut meat and dairy out completely, you can shop at ethical grocery stores like Whole Foods and Earth Fare. These stores have strict ethical guidelines and sourcing practices for their animal products.
One of the best ways you can help stop animal cruelty is to support animal rescue groups and charities, "pawticularly" local organizations. Donate if you can or volunteer your services. Donations don’t have to be monetary — animal rescue groups will equally appreciate old blankets, dog food, and toys. Volunteering at animal shelters and rescue groups is a free way you can help stop animal cruelty and give rescue animals the love they deserve.
If you happen to witness animal cruelty, make sure you report it to the appropriate authorities. Call the police and report it to the local Humane Society as well. Take pictures if you can — this will help the police prosecute the offender and prevent them from slipping through the cracks.
Set a good example to others by showing people the correct way to treat animals. Show your kids how to give love and respect to animals by demonstrating the proper way to handle and care for them. It's equally important that you teach your children to advocate for helpless animals by advocating for them yourself.
Here are some other steps to take to stop animal cruelty on a local level.
Fostering rescues is a free and rewarding step you can take to help stop animal cruelty. Most animal rescues will even provide you with supplies to take care of the animal while they search for their forever home.
Write to your state representatives to encourage them to push for harsher punishments for those who harm animals. Signing petitions is another great way to get the attention of lawmakers regarding animal cruelty. Change.org has tons of animal cruelty prevention petitions that you can sign online.
Spay and neuter your pets
Spaying and neutering your pets is crucial for preventing unwanted animals. Unwanted animals may end up falling victim to animal abuse and may end up in shelters.
We hope this article gives you the courage to take legal and moral steps to help stop animal cruelty. Remember to report animal abuse when you see it, set a good example for others, and raise your children to advocate for voiceless animals. These small steps can make a huge difference for animals in need.