Why kindness matters is a topic that doesn’t often come up in conversations. And yet, everyone deserves kindness, especially your pets.
As animal lovers, we know better than anyone that a lot of animals out there, aside from your four-legged companions, still need help to live a better life.
Although they become our companions through thick and thin, they cannot speak for themselves to tell us when something feels wrong to them.
So, as human beings, it is our responsibility to care for and be kind to our animal companions.
But, in general, what are the ways to be kind to animals?
10 easy tips on how to be kind to animals
1) Approach animals slowly.
When meeting animals for the first time, you don’t want them to see you as a threat or trigger their fear and anxiety. Animals are more sensitive than humans regarding smell and behaviors, so you have to be careful.
One way to be kind to animals is to let them sniff you first.
For instance, you can offer them your hand for them to sniff so that you will know if it’s possible to approach them closely.
Just remember to wash your hands every time you pet an animal since some of them dislike other animals’ smell.
Aside from that, you should also avoid approaching an animal from their blind spots.
Moreover, if you want them to be comfortable with you, you can also wait for them to approach you instead of the other way around. Some animals need more time to get used to you.
2) Hold the animal calmly.
When picking up an animal, one thing you need to remember is to pick them up calmly.
You must also already know the correct methods of picking up a particular animal, especially if you want to hold them.
In holding them, be at ease and stable to reassure the animal that they are in safe hands. The trick here is to make yourself relax so that the animal can relax and enjoy your bonding.
You may want to balance the animal’s position without flipping them. You can also sit down and let them snuggle with you.
3) Foster an animal.
One of the kindest acts you can do for an animal is by joining a foster program.
This is a great opportunity for you if you’ve got no resources to live with an animal companion in the long run but have the resources to take care of one temporarily.
You can go to a local shelter and help them allocate free spaces for another homeless animal by taking care of one rescued animal until someone adopts your chosen foster.
Why this kindness matters is because it helps animals move forward, both mentally and physically.
This act makes you a beacon of light, as it encourages them to trust other humans. This way, you can contribute to their wellness by becoming a foster parent who can provide them with the social skills they need so that dog parents would adopt them.
4) Respect wildlife animals.
Kindness is not only for domestic animals. On the contrary, it also applies to animals in the wild.
One thing you have to be aware of is that domestic animals are a lot different from a wild one.
Wild animals may exhibit behaviors that you may not be comfortable with. Some of them may also be difficult to tame or are even untamable at all.
For this reason, aside from showing kindness, you also need to treat wildlife animals with respect.
Respecting the lives of animals living in the wild may come in a number of forms. For one, if you want to keep a wide animal in your home, you need to secure a special permit first.
You should also avoid feeding them in the wild because it may disturb their natural behaviors or damage their health.
5) Choose cruelty-free products.
When making a product that caters to human needs, conducting experiments to prove its effectiveness or toxicity is inevitable. Unfortunately, people usually evaluate the potential hazards of these products on our four-legged companions.
To encourage everyone to be kind to animals, we recommend opting for animal cruelty-free products instead.
Just this simple act can already support the lives of thousands of guinea pigs, bunnies, rats, and many more. So, do your research well on which products you should buy and use.
6) Avoid single-use plastic.
An indirect act of kindness that you may never know has a significant impact on animals is not using single-use plastic.
Why this kindness matters is because it helps animals, especially strays, to avoid accidentally eating plastics and choking on them.
If using plastic is hard to let go of, then make sure to dispose of the plastic responsibly.
Having no proper waste disposal system would be a waste in the end because stray animals don’t tend to choose as long as there is a portion of food they can take.
7) Adopt an animal.
If you think you can do more than fostering an animal and are confident that you can offer one a permanent home, why not adopt one?
The animal you choose will be lucky to have a parent like you.
To adopt an animal, you can go to nearby shelters or any adoption events and talk to the volunteers about your plan.
Choose the dog you feel you want to take care of or you feel you’d be comfortable being with at your home.
8) Report injured or abandoned animals.
When you encounter an injured or abandoned animal, never ignore them.
In fact, and better yet, report to the shelters you know that you encountered an animal with injuries or that has found itself without a home.
Contacting the proper authorities immediately will ensure that animal welfare organizations can quickly check on their conditions.
Your local humane society may have the contact information you need if you see animals that needs rescue.
You can also contact the police department, a wildlife rehabilitator, local rescue shelters, or park rangers (if you are in a park).
Acknowledging animals’ suffering and taking action to address them is one of the easy ways you can take to be kind to animals.
To make these animals live long is why kindness matters.
9) Support animal charities or any animal shelters.
Another way you can make a direct impact on the lives of animals is to help the people who take care of animals hands-on.
To be specific, you can be kind to animals by making donations to shelters and rescue groups so that they have enough budget for all the animals they will rescue.
If you don’t want to stop at donations, you can also volunteer at your local shelter and adequately train yourself to handle the animals they have.
10) Teach children to be kind to animals.
Keeping animals safe and healthy doesn’t stop with you. In fact, we even suggest that you educate your kids about why kindness matters to animals and the appropriate actions to be kind to animals.
Change always starts from the beginning, so teaching children how to show kindness to animals and spreading the love for them leaves a legacy and hope for the future.
After all, as with other life lessons, teaching youngsters about being kind to animals early on means that that they can also pass it on.