Abandoned animals
THAT DOES IT - Korina Sanchez (The Freeman) - January 20, 2020 - 12:00am

How can one say that an animal's life is worthless? Livestock is used to feed us. They are born as beasts of burden working for us in the fields, hauling heavy equipment, providing transportation for tourism and other means for us to make a living. They live with us giving us comfort and love. They also know they are loved. They respond when called. Everyone who owns a dog or a cat in the house will testify that they also have feelings. When you look into a horse's eyes, you will be convinced that it understands you.

Can you watch while an animal writhes in pain? Can you watch while a pig is slaughtered? Or can you ignore the cries of a hungry dog? I doubt it. But you will walk away so you don't have to see or hear it again. We do not want the responsibility. We don't want the burden. An animal cannot speak or complain so we just ignore them.

In many countries, people and governments are aware of the value of animal life. They also enjoy rights. And in times of disaster, there are established ways for their rescue and survival. In the Philippines, there is a law for animal rights. It is against the law that they are mistreated. Even livestock is slaughtered in a humane way. It is unlawful to eat dogs and cats. Unfortunately, the killing of dogs for food continues. The law is poorly enforced. Why even provide a law if it is not enforced?

At the time of the heartbreaking Taal disaster, there were no contingencies in place for the animals. Horses used for tourism were left on the island. Wasn't it possible to provide an accompanying animal evacuation as people were evacuated? The government is not without disaster and calamity funds. The horses suffer from inhaling toxic air. Pets left behind are stressed and barking for food. My heart goes out to them as they are helpless in times like these.

I support animal rescue. I'm an advocate of animal rights. There are volunteer groups helping rescue abandoned animals in affected areas but are overwhelmed by the sheer number. Our small group is going to a barangay to retrieve animals covered in ash in order to take them to a shelter, wash them, have a veterinarian look at them then feed them back to health. Our resources are limited but we will keep on trying.

If you have a concern for these abandoned animals and would like to help just email me at adoptapetfromk@gmail.com.

"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated" -Mahatma Gandhi

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