Caring for the creatures in our life

Published October 21, 2023
Illustration by Faraz Ahmed
Illustration by Faraz Ahmed

Animals hold a special place in our lives as beloved pets, bringing us joy and companionship, and often teaching us valuable lessons about care and compassion. However, in the bustling streets of many cities, including ours, there exists another, more sombre reality. Stray animals, whether abandoned pets or born into the wild, these cats and dogs roam carelessly, facing a life of uncertainty and hardship.

But there’s more, in the less privileged areas within every city, a heart-wrenching scene unfolds. Here, camels, horses and donkeys bear the weight of human survival, serving as essential working animals for those struggling to make ends meet.

The sight of these animals is distressing for anyone with a deep affection for animals. These creatures endure heavy workloads, receive insufficient care, and often face harsh treatment, as shown by their poor health. Many of them bear injuries, illnesses and extreme frailty, to the extent that their skeletal frames become painfully apparent. While it’s the responsibility of the owners to care for their animals since they are vital to their own livelihood, we must not forget that when we encounter such cruelty, we should promptly report it to animal welfare.

Caring for animals, whether they are our pets, local wildlife or stray animals, is our shared responsibility as humans. It teaches us to be responsible and respectful, not only to them but also to other people. When we help a hungry cat or an injured bird, it makes us better humans. Our actions towards animals also affect how we treat each other, making our communities more peaceful.

Responsible pet ownership

Pets are an integral part of countless households. It’s so important to be a kind and responsible pet owner. This means taking care of your furry or feathered friends just like you take care of yourself. For instance, make sure your pets have yummy food that’s right for them, whether they’re puppies, rabbits, kittens, turtles, parrots or chicks. They also need fresh, clean water all the time to stay healthy.

Secondly, you must take them for routine checkups at the vet and ensure your pets have been vaccinated to protect them from getting sick. Remember, being a responsible pet owner means taking good care of your furry or feathered family members. They depend on you for love, food, health and safety.

Keep a watchful heart: compassion for stray animals

Compassion begins with recognising that these stray animals are a part of our shared community, and it extends to taking action to help them. Whether it’s offering a meal, providing shelter or connecting with local animal rescue organisations, keeping a watchful heart lead to the kind of actions that can make a real difference in the lives of these often-overlooked creatures, especially dogs and cats. While they may not have homes, these animals still deserve care, respect, and protection from harm.

You and your friends can volunteer and make your own teams to support and contribute to the well-being of stray animals by providing food, water and shelter, all the time, especially during harsh weather conditions.

A world without animal abuse

Animal cruelty is a deeply troubling and universal issue that knows no boundaries. It includes a wide range of harmful behaviours and neglects inflicted upon animals, whether domesticated or wild, resulting in physical and emotional suffering of an animal. Animal cruelty takes various forms, including abandonment, abuse, exploitation and neglect. For instance, the sight of a dog being severely injured due to accidents, or a lethargic cat searching for something edible is very common in our streets. We may never pass a second glance at these little creatures, but remember, all they need is our attention and care in terms of providing them some food.

The animals employed as labour such as camels, horses and donkeys endure far more than we can imagine. These larger animals require additional water and food to sustain the heavy loads they are required to pull on their carts. These loads, typically exceeding their capacity, often result in injuries to these hardworking creatures.

And as far as our pets are concerned, many kids may not realise that they are mistreating their own pets. Sometimes they make their pets run so much that the animals become exhausted or often play in ways that unintentionally hurt these little creatures. At other times, they might forget to feed their pets for hours. It’s important to remember that pets need attention and care as much as humans without which they can’t have a healthy life.

Spreading awareness

It’s encouraging to see many schools implementing workshops and activities to raise environmental awareness in recent years, a similar approach can be adopted to raise awareness and knowledge about animal welfare.

Schools can play a crucial role in encouraging more compassionate and ethical treatment of animals. This not only benefits the animals themselves, but also fosters a sense of empathy and responsibility among children, contributing to a more humane and caring society.

Taking to social media

On a personal level, we can take the power of social media to draw attention to the matter and prompt government bodies to take notice. By using online platforms, we can post pictures of cruelty against animals, post messages and spread awareness regarding how one can take care of stray animals. Gradually, this approach can foster a sense of collective responsibility and encourage positive change in taking care of animals.

Remember kids, taking care of the animals around us is not just a noble idea; it’s a responsibility that lies at the core of a compassionate and ethical society, just play your part and spread the word.

Published in Dawn, Young World, October 21st, 2023

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