When we think about animals, most of us think of them as interesting and amazing creatures that are either wild or something we can possess. Seeing an adorable or clever animal at the zoo elicits pleas of "I want one!", as if this living, breathing being was a doll or stuffed animal. If we are honest with ourselves, we have all said it at one point. "I want a horse", " I want a little monkey", "I want a beautiful parrot", " I want that dog". Saying these things and desiring to get a horse/dog/cat/bird/etc, is the human experience of ownership. Humans are the only species that desires possession over another.
Some may say that this is because we are superior, but I would argue that point as well. That is a topic for another blog post as there are many facets that can be discussed.
When we view animals as possessions, we want to own them and use them to fit our needs. When that need is no longer met, we dispose of them without guilt because we have not considered them as equal beings. Let me put it another way. If you are blessed to have a child, you would not abandon that child because you had to move, or because that child got sick, or that child grew up, or because you had another child. You would find a way to support your child, care for your child, and love your child no matter what. Take a moment to think about that. Reflect on how many animals are dropped off at shelters (if they are lucky) because their humans no longer wanted them. As an animal communicator, I can tell you with 100% confidence that it hurts their feelings. They are sad, confused, hurt, scared, and lost. They have been cast out of their pack and they don't know why or how to change their situation. They lose the trust that humans instilled in them.
Another point to consider is breeding. People want a certain look or type of dog and breeders start over-breeding to satisfy the demand. Animals are treated as commodities, and the rules of supply and demand are in effect. Humans are fickle beings though. Tastes change and what is popular changes. Then all those animals bred are now surplus and must be disposed of. In the case of horses, they are bred for specific reasons. Horse racing, for example, is a huge money industry. Except it is cruel and harsh for the horses. Imagine being forced to train before your body was fully developed. Forced to live a life of physical work until you sustain an injury or die, both resulting in your broken body disposed of without care. Racehorses, like Greyhounds, are seldom given love and affection. They may be groomed and fed and have their basic needs met, but they are not socialized. Their job is to run and that is that. The animals, however, miss socialization and comfort, and companionship.
There is no quick and easy solution, but we can change our perception which will change our behaviors. If we consider animals as beautiful living beings sharing this great big earth with us, we can respect their place and honor their space. We can stop horse racing as we have stopped greyhound races in most states. We can end the breeding of dogs, cats, and other "domesticated" animals. We can stop the capture of wild animals for entertainment and possession. We can refuse to contribute to the enslavement of any and all animals. This would not be the end of it though. Wny? Because there would be a lot of animals displaced and needing care. You cannot just release them into the wild. Birds for example are mostly tropical and would not survive in cold weather. They were not taught by their bird parents how to forage, where to go, etc. You cannot release horses where they are, much like zoo animals. Sanctuaries and rehabilitation centers are needed. (This fact alone is proof that dominion over animals is not good).
Meanwhile, while humans work on laws to protect animals from other humans, adopt from shelters and only do so if you are committed to adding them to your family for their entire life. Consider getting a 2nd of their species. I cannot imagine what it would be like to be the only human being amongst another species. Donate to sanctuaries to help with the care of larger breeds. Speak out and share information with friends and family to spread the knowledge. Schedule an Animal Communication session to check in on your companions. Giving them the opportunity to express themselves is priceless.
Be Kind to All Kinds.