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I’ve struggled with this post. People are pretty passionate about animals. Be it as pets, companions, food, work, sport or protection of those in the wild. Everyone’s got some sort of opinion.

The issue I have is the animal RIGHTS movement, posing as animal WELFARE advocates. Some may be nodding emphatically right now. Others may be shrugging while others may be rolling their eyes. Is there a difference? You bet.

informed decision

Animal Welfare

Animal welfare is the physical and psychological well-being of animals. Seems simple enough. If you have an animal under your care, you are fully responsible for every aspect of their well-being. Food, water and shelter aren’t enough. You’re also responsible for grooming, socialization, exercise and emotional needs. An animal that would associate with other animals in the wild, requires the humans to care for them to provide that association either by providing interaction themselves or providing additional animals to socialize with. Their happiness matters.

If you love animals, you want their welfare to be ensured. I think that’s a fair statement.

Animal Rights

Animal rights is about granting RIGHTS to the animals themselves, to not be influenced by humans. An animal with rights would not choose to be behind fences, on a leash, in a home or in a pen. An animal with rights would not choose run for human sports or to to have veterinary care. Sure, your pet may choose to be with you NOW. However you wouldn’t be able to take a young animal and raise it. You wouldn’t be allowed to feed an animal. No interaction or influence would be allowed, at all.

Think about what that means. No pets. No animals in your home. No animals on your property that aren’t wild with complete freedom of movement. No animals for food. No animals to work with or play with. Of course no beasts of burden or service animals either.

While animal rights activists are against animal cruelty, their approach is to remove all animals from all aspects of our lives.  So while they pull at your heartstrings, they’re pulling a quick one behind your back.  Treat all animals with respect and care – by having no animals at all.  If we were to follow their line of thought, the only way to ensure that no animals would ever be harmed by humans, would be to remove any and all interaction with them.

Ownership Vs. Guardianship

I’ve seen a disturbing trend of animal lovers saying that they don’t own their animals, that they are their guardians. I hear what they’re saying, what they’re hoping to convey. They want to imply that it is more of a partnership, that their pets are not simply objects to be owned. However those two terms have MASSIVE legal ramifications.

An owner can make decisions for an animal under their care. What foods to feed, what medical treatment to give (or not for that matter), how to raise and train their animals and making end of life decisions, when that time comes.

A guardian is only a ‘watcher’ or ‘protector’ of the being in their care. They are held to outside standards and evaluations. They have no rights to make decisions regarding the care they provide. Rather, it is dictated to them, evaluated outside of them and the relationship may be terminated by outside forces.

I’m hoping that last paragraph has some of you raising your eyebrows. Do you want some pencil pusher telling you how to train your horse? Or how to feed your dog? Or how to medically support your cat? Or when you can or can’t provide medical care or what kinds for that matter? Of course not!

But THAT is what is at stake when you remove ownership from the equation.

I own my animals. I am fully responsible for their care. I decide what I feel is best for them.

Animal Rights activists WANT you to think that being a guardian is okay. If you accept it, you release any rights you had to your animals and decision making rights regarding them. They want you call yourself a guardian so that one day, they can be removed from you. Achieving their final goal of no human interference on animals. Please don’t take the bait!

Who Is Who?

WSPA is the World Society for the Protection of Animals. By their own description their ultimate goal is:

Our vision: a world where animal welfare matters and animal cruelty has ended.

The World Society for the Protection of Animals exists to tackle animal cruelty across the globe. We work directly with animals and with the people and organizations that can ensure animals are treated with respect and compassion.

This is animal welfare at it’s finest. If you read the above statement and agree, then you are for animal welfare.

Then you have those who claim to be for animal welfare, but are actually for animal rights. Or even more confusingly, claim welfare but fight for rights, as if they are the same thing, which they are not.

PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) states is mission statement as:

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is the largest animal rights organization in the world, with more than 3 million members and supporters.

PETA focuses its attention on the four areas in which the largest numbers of animals suffer the most intensely for the longest periods of time: on factory farms, in the clothing trade, in laboratories, and in the entertainment industry. We also work on a variety of other issues, including the cruel killing of beavers, birds, and other “pests” as well as cruelty to domesticated animals.

PETA works through public education, cruelty investigations, research, animal rescue, legislation, special events, celebrity involvement, and protest campaigns.

While it sounds all warm and fuzzy, it doesn’t STATE anything. It says they’re a group. It says what they focus on. It says where they work. But if you really look, there is no mission statement at all.

mis·sion state·ment
A summary of the aims and values of a company, organization, or individual.

What values do they hold? What is their aim? What are their ultimate goals?  How do they intend to achieve them?

In order to find this information, you have to leave the PETA site, which is written by brilliant marketers, who have PURPOSELY omitted this information.

Animals With Rights Of Their Own

Animal rights groups will take whatever steps necessary to meet their ultimate goal of giving animals rights. Even if that means killing animals currently under the care of humans. Their long term goal of no ownership or human influence would be achieved. An animal under the influence of humans in their eyes, is better off dead. Yes. Your cat currently purring on your lap. Your dog currently dropping a ball at your feet. Your horse nickering to you as you walk into the barn. All of them are better off DEAD than to be with you.

Do I believe that? Of course not. But animal rights activists do. That is why PETA actually KILLS animals. Don’t believe me? Look it up. PETA encourages pet sterilization. Not because of claims of pet overpopulation, but because a sterile animal cannot produce more pets for humans to own. They support breed bans. Not because of claims of safety, but because fewer breeds owned means fewer animals in our homes.

Ingrid E. Newkirk

You may not know her name, but she is the President of PETA. If you want to know how she feels, you need to leave the PETA site and search for quotes of her statements.

There is no hidden agenda. If anybody wonders about — what’s this with all these reforms — you can hear us clearly. Our goal is total animal liberation.
“Animal Rights 2002” convention

Total animal liberation. It sounds fantastic doesn’t it? But what does that mean?

Liberation – The act of liberating or the state of being liberated. The act or process of trying to achieve equal rights and status.
Lib·er·at·ed, Lib·er·at·ing, Lib·er·ates. To set free, as from oppression, confinement, or foreign control.

Yes, liberated; from YOU, YOUR home, YOUR care. Don’t think your pet or animals need to be liberated from you? Neither do I.

So if Ingrid and PETA have their way – you’ll have to open your doors, shove your pet outside and abandon it. Open your pens and pastures, set all animals free. If you don’t think they’d survive outside on their own, you can’t put them down. They’re liberated! Too late.

Always Consider The Bottom Line

When choosing an association or cause to support, you have to consider their bottom line; their ultimate goal. If you don’t support their ultimate goal, you cannot support them. You have to agree with their methods, practices and goals and everything in between.

Can you support with some of what they do while ignoring their ultimate goal? No. If you want to keep your animals in your life, you can’t.

If you don’t agree with ALL animals being “liberated”, you cannot support PETA on their path to that goal. If you don’t agree with horse slaughter, you cannot support organizations like the AQHA that support slaughter.

Be an informed supporter. Know what adding your name to a membership roster means in the big picture. Be aware of where your money is being invested. Your support is not only acceptance, it’s encouragement. Make sure you are lending your name and money to something that speaks to both your mind and your heart.