I would like for you to play a role. I want you to get into this role with all your heart. I want you to imagine that you have been kidnapped and are being held captive in a cage; a cage just big enough to allow the slightest bit of motion.
However, it is not big enough to stretch your legs or arms, or to move your body into a comfortable position; even to perform natural bodily functions. You sit in your own waste. You are fed and provided water but the food is the same thing every day and the water is old and nasty.
The area around the cage does not differ in the least from day to day. You can't tell if it is night or day. There is no window to see the outside world.
You never see another human being like yourself. You are completely and utterly alone.
After a very short while you become very lonely. How would you feel in a week? How about a month? A year? Would you feel fear, depression, and anger? Would you act out by screaming, clawing or pulling at the cage? Would you even perhaps pull your hair?
How would you react or behave if you were in this situation for a length of time? How would you react Be honest with yourself. Would you scream, cry, or tear your hair out? WHAT would you do?
Humans are very social beings and so are many animals including birds, ferrets, skunks, and many many other animals, pets and exotic pets. How do you think these caged animals would feel in the same predicament? You are alone, in a cage not big enough to move around in, sitting in our own excrement. You only have stinky foul water to drink. There is nothing different to see, to touch, or to feel. No one at all to talk to, to laugh with, to hug, no interaction with no one. Some species of animal that is non-human comes in and puts food in the cage but never interacts with you.
Do you realize how many animals are sitting in cages, right now, going through exactly what I described? Animals have pretty much the same needs that we as human beings do. We need the basics, food, water, cleanliness, and socialization. If it is socialization with an animal of its own kind, or you as its caregiver, that animal needs socialization. April is Prevention Animal Cruelty Prevention Month.
The results would be no different if it were a dog on a short leash stuck in a corner of a shed or yard somewhere.
Thankfully the decent and good pet owners far outweigh the bad pet owners. But please don't turn a blind eye when you see these acts of cruelty. Don't put yourself in danger, contact the proper authorities.
However, some people donít realize they are being cruel. They donít understand the social needs of the pet they have housed in their home. Each and every animal has different needs but we all need some form of socialization. If these pets lived among their own kind they would have the same ideals and understood social roles two simple examples would be a pack of wolves or a flock of birds.
There is more to keeping a pet than keeping a cage clean, and giving the animal food and water, much more. It is up to you to learn what this animalís social needs are and for you to provide this animal those needs.
For that matter, should the animal even be caged? Caging is detrimental to many animals. One example of such an animal would be a domestic skunk.
Wild animals have a lot to do each day that keeps them busy. Think of the boredom of being stuck in a cage day and night. Please make sure your pet is healthy and happy. Unhappiness directly affects the health of any human or animal.
Please be aware of the animals around you...April is Prevention Animal Cruelty Prevention Month.
ďThe greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.Ē Ghandi
Diana Geiger Exotic Pets Editoron
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