Surely you’ve heard of PETA and seen their infamous commercials that are sad enough to rip your heart out. The People for Ethical Treatment of Animals claims to be true to their title however, they have a history of treating the animals they take in horribly.
At surface level PETA appears the way they want people to see them; as a loving organization that takes abandoned and abused dogs and cats under its wing to provide them with a better life. In reality, PETA is an inhumane, violent, and hypocritical group of pathetic liars.
For starters, they kill off the majority of animals they bring into their shelters, which have some of the highest kill rates. Given their name, the organization should be fighting to keep these pets alive and finding them forever homes. On average, PETA euthanizes 97.3% of animals they bring into their shelters. Their reasoning? Those animals were too sick to continue living, and they were simply mercy killings. If they really do believe in ethical treatment of all animals then, every pet should be given the chance to recover and find a loving home.
They also target younger audiences using literature with titles such as “Your Mommy Kills Animals”. PETA Kids encourages veganism and acting against animal cruelty. The target audience is far too young to understand the harms of the circus and aquarium. As for a vegan diet, it can be detrimental to the child’s health. Doctors have found that children following a plant-based or vegan diet lead to stunted growth, deficiency in vitamins such as B12, malnutrition, and even death if a proper and healthy diet is not maintained. Teaching kids compassion for animals is not a bad thing, but the approach PETA is taking is much too rigorous and incomprehensible for them.
The organization acts in illegal ways such as abducting family pets that one Virginia family learned in 2014. PETA employees came to the Zarate residence and abducted their dog, Maya. After the incident was reported, the same workers returned with a fruit basket and the news that Maya had been killed. Legally, one must wait five days before choosing to euthanize any animal, though Maya was killed within 24 hours of the dognapping.
PETA believes that animals are not for humans to eat, wear, abuse, or use in any sort of way. They stand for complete animal liberation and rights. Given their mission statement, it is absurd that PETA continues to kill innocent animals instead of allowing them to have rights and live happily and freely. In addition, the organization would rather eliminate stray cats than feral animals that actually pose threats to human safety.
I am a firm believer in animal rights and giving them a permanent home with people who will love them unconditionally, which is why hearing about PETA’s ulterior motives makes me sick to my stomach. My family has two dogs, both rescued from high kill shelters, who may have faced an unimaginable fate if they had not been adopted. Whenever I see photos or videos of abandoned dogs in horrific conditions it breaks my heart. Although I cannot adopt every stray dog out there like I wish I could, I want to believe that there are good people out there saving these animals and giving them the lives they deserve. Clearly, PETA is not an organization I or anyone else should be putting their trust in.
Fortunately, there are trustworthy non-profit organizations out there that are much better to support. Many are directed towards a specific species or category though, Best Friends Animal Society, Animal Welfare Institute, Friends of Animals, and PetSmart Charities are preferable alternatives to PETA.
Ultimately, what you choose to do or not do to help protect animals is entirely up to you. Adopting a pet is more beneficial than getting one from a breeder because it eliminates the amount of animals in high kill shelters, and gives abandoned animals the only thing they want: a forever family. Trust me, rescues are not bad, and they will never forget what you did for them. I also suggest avoiding entertainment activities fueled by the pain of animals. Circuses, SeaWorld, and animal rides are prime examples. Despite most of us being guilty of engaging in touristy activities like swimming with dolphins, riding camels and elephants, or visiting the zoo, we can cut down or stop completely in the interest of these innocent animals. Simple changes like these can have just as big an impact in the long run as going vegan or refraining from wearing leather and fur products.