By: Preeti Kumari
“Until we consider animal life to be worthy of the consideration and reverence we bestow upon old books and pictures and historic monuments, there will always be the animal refugee living a precarious life on the edge of extermination, dependent for existence on the charity of a few human beings.” ― Gerald Durrell
In the human world, animals are equally important as any other living beings. The assumption that animals are without rights and the illusion that our treatment of them has no moral significance is wrong in so many different levels. Kindness and compassion for all living things are a hallmark of a civilized society. Cruelty, on the other hand, whether directed toward humans or animals, is not a specialty of any human culture or society.
World Animal Welfare Day is celebrated annually on 4 October. It focuses on the importance of animal health and shows how important animals are in the world. Every year this day is commemorated with a theme, it is a step taken to spread awareness about animal care, love and protection.
How it began
The day was originally commemorated by Francis of Assisi, who was a patron saint of ecology. He was highly regarded for his kindness to animals. It was only in 1931 that ‘World Animal Day’ was celebrated worldwide at a conference in Florence, Italy, hosted by the World Animal Protection Organization. However, the first World Animal Day took place on March 24, 1925, in the Sport Palace in Berlin, Germany. Where more than 5,000 people were present for the event. It was founded by writer and animal activist Heinrich Zimmermann.
Why is it important?
World Animal Welfare Day not only promotes animal development but also exacerbates the need to end animal cruelty. A clear understanding of how animals contribute to environmental tolerance is conveyed through a variety of systems. Veterinary and social programs at the international level are intertwined on this day. Indeed, it brings people together and shows love for animals. The extinct species have already led to the loss of the sever, which people may not understand now, but this world can’t afford the mankind to be ignorant to this issue anymore. Therefore, World Animal Welfare Day is held every year with an alarm going off about our important role in humanity.
The day even focuses on creating awareness about the effects of individuals, businesses and other human behaviours on these speechless organisms. An International Day of Action for animal rights and welfare, this day is also known as ‘Animal Lovers Day’ as it encourages love, care, affection and protection for animals through the support and involvement of individuals and organizations who work for the rights of animals.
The staggering number of animal abuse cases reported daily is just the beginning of the ice — many cases go unreported. Unlike violent crimes against humanity, cases of animal cruelty are not covered by state or federal institutions, making it difficult to quantify the prevalence. However, we can use the day for animal welfare to try to understand and protect cases of abuse.
World Animal Welfare Day is slowly evolving into a global event that unites and promotes movement for animal protection by opening animal rescue centres, launching animal welfare campaigns and more.
Theme for the year 2021
Animal Welfare Day will be celebrated in 2021 under the theme “Forests and Livelihoods: Sustaining People and Planet”, as a way of highlighting the important role of forests, forest species and ecosystem services in supporting the lives of hundreds of millions of people around the world and particularly of Indigenous and local communities with historic ties to forested and forest-adjacent areas.
Animal Welfare Day Celebration
There are no fixed ways of celebration the day, as animal welfare day throws open a huge theme for the entire globe. Here are some ways how the day is celebrated:
· Event organizers can be hired to create an animal-based theme to inform the public about various aspects of animal protection, animal cruelty prevention, harassment, etc.
· Many animal welfare organizations are committed to organizing events, including animal awareness centres, marathons, sponsored runs, etc.
· Conducting pet events with their owners to show the benefits of having pets at home.
· Raising money on the day to set up unrestricted areas and provide shelter for homeless animals is another important step that is taken.
· The adoption of pets forms an integral part of the day’s activities.
· Animal welfare organizations organize conferences and seminars to hold discussions and discussions on various aspects of animal protection under the law.
· Nearly all newspapers and magazines cover animal-related issues on the day, making it a popular event.
· School children can bring a variety of programs to their educational institutions and make the community aware.
In conclusion, it is important to address that Cruelty to animals is the most inhumane thing we see today, right from pelting stones to beating and caning, using them for wrong things, etc. We need to understand that Life is as dear to a silent creature as it is to a human. Animals are nothing but living beings, worthy of our compassion, respect, friendship and support. To maintain balance on the earth, it is necessary to maintain balance with animals and plants.
“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.” ―Anatole France