World Animal Day – 4 October
World Animal Day is observed on 4th October every year to protect and celebrate animal life in all its shapes and sizes, from mice to elephants, and recognize the positive influence they have on our lives. It is a worldwide day of awareness and action that transcends the boundaries of nationality, religion, and ideology. It celebrates protecting all animals, from companion animals and wildlife to those in captivity in places like labs, zoos, and factory farms. World Animal Day unites the global animal welfare movement to raise the status of animals, and improve animal welfare standards around the world.
Cynologist Heinrich Zimmermann first organized World Animal Day on 24th March 1925 at Sports Palace in Berlin, Germany. 4th October was chosen as it was the feast day of Saint Francis of Assisi, patron saint of ecology or animals. The event was celebrated on 4th October first time in 1929. Every year he used to work tirelessly on the promotion of World Animal Day. Finally, in May 1931 at a congress of the International Animal Protection Congress in Florence Italy, his proposal to make 4 October World Animal Day universal was unanimously accepted and adopted as a resolution.
World Animal Day, however, has now gone beyond being the celebration of a Christian saint and is today observed by animal lovers of all beliefs, nationalities, and backgrounds. Animal blessings are held in churches, synagogues, and by independent animal chaplains in parks and fields. Animal rescue shelters hold fundraising events and open days, wildlife groups organize information displays, schools undertake animal-related project work and individuals and groups of friends or co-workers donate to animal charities or pledge to sponsor a shelter animal.
World Animal Day is designed to benefit animals and the people who strive to improve their welfare. Having a central platform for promoting animal welfare issues facilitates and greatly improves progress being made. Animal welfare organizations, community groups, youth, and children’s clubs, businesses, and individuals should organize events in celebration of World Animal Day. Involvement is growing at an astonishing rate and it’s now widely accepted and celebrated in a variety of different ways in many countries, with no regard to nationality, religion, faith, or political ideology.
World Animal Day is not just a day of service to protect animals, it is a reminder of the bond we share with animals. So many people spend their lives with a dog or cat and devote their time and love to their care. All animals deserve that same dedication, and raising awareness will help set humane standards for their welfare. Helping animals not only combat cruelty and keeps our planet thriving with diverse life, it connects us together as human beings. No matter where we are, we all have animals who have touched our lives. The purpose of this day is for people to “use this special day to commemorate their love and respect for animals by doing something special to highlight their importance in the world. Increased awareness will lead the way to improved standards of animal welfare throughout the world.”
Suggested Read: World Elephant Day
How you can celebrate World Animal Day
1. Be kind to animals – Think about your own animal, do you treat your dog, cat, bird, or reptile like it deserves to be treated?
2. Volunteer in your community – one person can’t do everything but everyone can do something!
3. Adopt don’t shop – When adopting an animal you are saving the life of that animal. Also, by making room in the shelter you give other animals the chance to be saved and find a loving home.
4. Donate to conservation programs – To be able to carry out vital conservation work funds are a necessity. Any amount helps and is very much appreciated.
Today is the day to do something positive for the animal kingdom!
Suggested Read: World Nature Conservation Day