Animal Care

The Season Of Goodwill To All

By Judy Morley- Hall
20th November 2008


Sometimes in the rush towards Christmas and holidays,  the welfare of animals, both those close and dear to us, and animals in the wider world, can be overlooked.

The following are some ideas on how we can “do our bit” by making considered decisions.

  • When making arrangements for the feeding/walking etc of pets, should you go on holiday, remember that not everyone will take the same care as you, so the choice of caregiver is important.
  • If you spot animals in cars without sufficient air, a note or word with the owner might save the animal suffering dehydration and possible death.   Hot cars can be lethal for animals.
  • Be vigilant.  If you witness an animal being mistreated (even by its owner) a word or offer of help may save the animal from further harm. Personally, I find the caging and chaining up of farm dogs disturbing, so if the occasion arises, a discussion can be had on perhaps letting them run free in an allotted area. Some farmers believe that townies don`t understand these practices, but I know of farmers who believe these hard working animals deserve a better deal.
  • If purchasing meat of any sort it is helpful (to animals) if you ask how the animals were farmed.   We can be fairly confident that all pork products are from crated pigs.   Enquiries at organic food outlets will direct you to organically -raised produce.   These items will be more expensive but if one chooses to have a few meatless meals over the holiday period it could work out financially.   The Mediterranean diet, acclaimed for its health benefits (low heart disease etc.) comprises delicious vegetable dishes, salads, cheeses, breads, wine, olive oil etc.  The supermarkets all stock vegetarian cheeses by the way. There is no sense of denial when eating these meals and they are so much more appropriate for warm summer days.
  • The same questioning of shop assistants about the origins of eggs helps drive home the message that consumers are questioning whether or not eggs are “free-range”.  If we repeat these questions to different assistants (even when we  know the answer!) they will eventually  get the message.
  • Lastly, if reading or seeing instances of cruelty in the media, a letter to the editor, or  T.V. station,  helps create an ethos of caring. A quick telephone call applauding the paper, T.V. station etc. for bringing these stories to our attention,  can also be helpful.

We can improve life for all animals at Christmas time. What could be more appropriate in the Season of Goodwill.

And change is in the wind. People are looking after their animals better.

Just recently I have seen several young men showing great care and affection for their dogs when on the beach.   Long may this last!