Good News for Animals

Good News for Animals

How Humans Are Waking Up to Creaturely Needs

Getty/Dmitry Belyaev

The world often seems like a bleak place for animal rights. Here are some of the good things happening to our more-than-human neighbors on this planet.

As an animal advocate, I sometimes find the world bleak. It’s hard to live in a world that doesn’t seem to see the many atrocities being launched upon the more-than-human world. I struggle to find the right ways to help others know what is going on when it comes to the state of our oceans, the deforestation of orangutan habitats for palm oil, or industrialized agriculture’s toll on farmed animals.

Oh no. There I go again. Did I lose you? I hope not! Because there’s plenty of good news for animals too.

Good news is critical for sustaining activism. While it doesn’t take away all the bad stuff, it can give us a sense of accomplishment toward goals and—most importantly—hope for the future. This balance is crucial. As long-time animal advocate Jane Goodall observes in her book Reason for Hope: A Spiritual Journey, “It is these undeniable qualities of human love and compassion and self-sacrifice that give me hope for the future. We are, indeed, often cruel and evil. Nobody can deny this. We gang up on one another, we torture each other, with words as well as deeds, we fight, we kill. But we are also capable of the most noble, generous, and heroic behavior.”

Here are some of my favorite recent actions for the protection of animals around the world.

5 Inspiring Changes for Animals

  • South Korea Passes Bill Banning Production and Sale of Dog Meat: After years of pressure to end the breeding and slaughter of dogs for human consumption, the practice is now prohibited in South Korea, with strict enforcement beginning in 2027. Learn more.

  • New York State Bans Wildlife-Killing Contests: New York became the 10th state in the United States to end contests that offer prizes for who can kill the most (or largest, or smallest, etc.) animals. Learn more.
    Canadian Conservation Group Buys Out Hunting Rights in Rainforest: In order to protect wildlife in the Great Bear Rainforest, the Raincoast Conservation Foundation raised funds to cancel out hunting in the area in hopes of promoting ecotourism instead, which is “not dependent on killing and extracting things.” Learn more.

  • Largest Wildlife Crossing in U.S. Under Construction: Inspired by the heroic journey of mountain lion P-22, a public-private partnership of dozens of organizations and institutions is helping protect and restore wildlife in Southern California by building a massive freeway overpass to reconnect fragmented habitats and decrease animals killed on the 101 freeway. Learn more.

  • USDA Approves Sale of Cultivated Meat: Following in Singapore’s footsteps, the U.S. is now poised to enter the lab-grown meat trend, which could eliminate harm to animals in modern farming systems fraught with animal cruelty and reduce the significant environmental impact of deforestation for grazing and the increasing issues of animal waste. Learn more.

How You Can Help Animals

For many people, becoming an animal advocate can seem daunting. In a sea of actions needed, it can be hard to know where to start. Further, you may be reticent about being vocal about these issues based on negative images of what an animal activist is. But anyone can become an advocate for animals right from home. Here are some ideas for getting started:

  • For inspiration on getting started, watch the 2020 documentary Jane Goodall: The Hope wherever you stream movies.

  • Help animals who live around you with these easy tips for your backyard.

  • Join Voters for Animal Rights to keep up to date on how you can help elect people who are focused on laws to stop animal cruelty.

  • Read The Case for the Legal Protection of Animals: Humanity’s Shared Destiny with the Animal Kingdom by Kimberly Moore to learn why legal protection for animals matters.

  • Read Survival at Stake: How Our Treatment of Animals Is Key to Human Existence by Poorva Joshipura to learn how the things that harm animals often harm humans, and how improving conditions for animals often helps improve lives for humans, too.

  • Check out In Defense of Animals’ Action Alerts which can help you act on local and nationwide issues by sending petitions right from your computer.

  • Get tips for sustaining your activism throughout the year with the help of others.

For more inspiring good news about animals, read "Roosters Rule: Finding Purpose Through Animal Rescue."

Good News for Animals

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