Lindsay Pollard-Post, Norfolk, VA The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals Foundation
Be kind; here's how
Be Kind to Animals Week is May 6-12, and it's the perfect time to encourage the children in your life to treat all beings with compassion. Teaching kids to have empathy for animals not only helps prevent cruelty, it also helps kids grow into responsible, caring citizens.
Here are some ways to teach kids kindness:
Model compassion. Speak kindly to your animal companions; walk your dog and play with your cat daily; ensure your animals have plenty of fresh water and nutritious food; and let them live indoors with the family.
Enjoy animal-friendly movies such as "Bambi," "Free Willy," "Babe," and "Finding Nemo," and books such as "Lassie Come Home," "Black Beauty," "Charlotte's Web" and "Make Way for Ducklings."
Volunteer with your child at your local animal shelter to help care for homeless animals.
If mice or other "uninvited guests" turn up in your home, help them find their way out nonviolently.
Plant flowers and bushes for butterflies, bees and other wildlife.
For more ideas, check out "50 Awesome Ways Kids Can Help Animals: Fun and Easy Ways to Be a Kind Kid" by Ingrid Newkirk (available at Amazon.com or your local library) and visit www.PETAKids.com.