Kodi would like to introduce you to his new pet, Anna! Anna is one of 24 baby turkeys left at Farm Sanctuary’s gates recently who desperately needed care. It’s believed she was rescued from a factory farm because she and the others had the tips of their beaks cut off which is a common yet painful practice done to reduce injuries to each other from fighting due to the stress of living in cramped conditions.
It’s important to recognize that we can’t feed our cats without having to kill animals to feed them, and feeding the 74-96 million cats owned in the United States alone adds to the billions of animals raised and killed in horrible conditions. The farm industry has done an insidiously good job of lobbying legislation in the form of “Ag-gag” laws which “typically refers to state laws that forbid the act of undercover filming or photography of activity” going so far as to prosecute those who expose animal cruelty as terrorists and placed on a “terrorist registry.”
The biggest lesson that can come from being an animal guardian is that all animals are worthy of our utmost respect and compassion for they are all individuals with souls and identities and personal interests. Pigs, chickens, turkeys, cows and every other domesticated animal deserves such better treatment than they are currently getting.
I personally haven’t eaten an animal in over 20 years, yet I understand the irony of supporting the meat industry just to feed my companion animals. Of course, if Shorty and Kodi had not been abandoned at a shelter and needed a home, I would not have adopted them. But there are many cats and dogs and other animals who do need homes. So what do we do to lessen the impact of our human footprint? How can it be ethically congruent to save one animal while killing countless others just so s/he can live a full life?
It’s a question I’ve battled with for years, and one that I battle with every day. What I do know is that we humans have allowed the cat and dog population to get out of control through high regard of breeding and not spaying/neutering. We must take accountability for our actions and recognize that our inactions have resulted in the mass suffering of billions of animals. The problem is complex and the world can’t be changed with saving one turkey named Anna, but it has absolutely changed Anna’s world and that is a good start.
If you would like to adopt an animal at Farm Sanctuary, go to http://www.farmsanctuary.org/giving/adopt-a-farm-animal/#. Please #adoptdontshop, and have your pets spayed or neutered.