Almost everyone claims to be an animal lover.
Whether they ride horses of they just have a dog at home, people cherish animals closely to their hearts and as if they’re a member of their own families.
How much do you truly love animals?
It’s at this point where I get confused. Watching someone cry over the death of a dog, yet eating animals with almost every meal? Don’t get me wrong, this is something that I did for over 18 years, yet I still don’t understand myself why I viewed some animals as beloved friends, to be cherished and loved, but others as those which purely serve a purpose to me.
I was the kid who once cried when I had to take my cat face paint off, as I thought that the ‘cat’ on my face was dead. I adopted snow leopards in Siberia and would spend half of my time pretending to be a dog, yet it never once came into my head that I was being hypocritical or cruel when I ate pigs, cows and chickens. I remember trying to convince my friend not to go vegetarian when we were about 10, purely because it was something that I knew nothing about, and because sausages were ‘yummy’.
Even when I started dating a vegan, my diet hardly ever crossed my mind. I felt awkward when faced with questions about loving yet eating animals, but always just pushed it aside. It took me 6 months before I even went vegetarian.
Literally days into not eating meat, I felt ashamed that I had been putting this off for so long. My mum recently said that she wasn’t surprised I went vegan, and that she thought it would have happened years ago. She has seen me growing up adoring every single kind of animal, and knew before me that this is something I would do. I never made the connection that meat was once a living breathing animal, just like those that we keep in our homes and that would mourn if they passed away. All I could think of was why didn’t I realise earlier?
So what’s the difference?
There’s a difference between being an animal lover, and just being a pet lover. Animal lovers embrace all animals, big, small, furry, feathered or hoofed, killing one is just as bad as killing the other.
Pet lovers, love a very small selection of animals. They love cats, dogs, rabbits, horses etc. The animals which we have been taught to love. The animals that we would never dream of eating or harming in any way. They exclaim anger and hatred when a lion is killed in the wild, but will go to the zoo to watch a very similar lion face a future almost worse than death. They also eat meat.
They love furry animals, ‘cute’ animals, but forget about how smart pigs and chickens are, and how cows are loving, affectionate animals. If you abuse a dog, it’s a crime, but killing and slaughtering animals?? How can that be fine?
You cannot love animals and still eat meat. There is no ‘ethical way’ to kill an animal. Death is death. Could you kill an animal yourself? Don’t do it. Would you eat your dog? Don’t do it. Could you watch how these animals are killed and then carry on eating it? So many people are like me, pushing the reality to the back of their heads and pretending that they’re good people because they like cats and dogs. With so many claiming to be animal lovers, why aren’t there more vegans and vegetarians?
How to become a true animal lover
It comes down to one thing, not being educated. If you can sincerely watch earthlings then continue to consume meat, then I do not understand. At least inform yourself, educate yourself and teach yourself where your food really comes from, then I am certain that you will become a true animal lover.