Why is Humane Education Important?
Several issues demonstrate the need for a concerted humane education effort: exotic animals as pets, habitat destruction, lack of spending time in nature to understand and appreciate it, the pet overpopulation crisis and the cycle of animal abuse and domestic violence. We are able to make a positive difference for people, animals and the environment when we are provided with accurate information about the following issues:
Exotic Animals as Pets
Domestic animals – such as dogs and cats – are the best pets. Unfortunately, millions of exotic animals become victims of the pet trade each year. Well-meaning individuals often purchase exotic animals with good intentions. Tragically, they do not understand the specialized physical and psychological needs of these creatures. Animals suffer and many stories are reported about the dangers when people keep exotic animals as pets.
As the Earth’s population grows, the loss of native habitats for animals becomes increasingly greater. Many animals and their habitats are affected by the choices we make. Understanding our impact on the Earth can result in the lessening of our ecological footprint and healthier habitats for all.
Lack of Spending Time in Nature
In a world of ever-evolving technology, today’s children are increasingly disconnected from the natural world. Spending time in nature helps to instill respect, responsibility and compassion for the Earth’s creatures.
The Pet Overpopulation Crisis
Many people share a very special bond with their pets. Sadly, not all people develop and maintain these bonds. Animals are lost, stolen, surrendered to animal shelters, neglected, abandoned or abused. Lack of spaying and neutering is also of great concern. Each year an estimated 3-4 million cats and dogs are euthanized in animal shelters. Pet overpopulation is a significant and serious problem.
Cycle of Animal Abuse and Domestic Violence
Studies have demonstrated a correlation between animal cruelty and domestic violence. For a number of reasons, individuals may act out frustrations or anger toward animals as a means to demonstrate power or as a way to hurt someone by abusing an animal they care about. These individuals develop a pattern of behavior that sometimes transfers to their interactions with other people.
Promote a sense of responsibility on a personal, local and global level to help instill a culture that recognizes what we do as an individual has consequences for others.