I have loved animals since I was a kid. Over the course of my 32 years on this earth, I’ve had dogs, turtles, iguanas, a cat, a hamster, a rabbit, and various hermit crabs, fish, and frogs. I currently have two dogs, which you can see above (in a rare, photogenic moment). My first pup, Cooper, had been surrendered to a local shelter and was scheduled for euthanasia until a rescue group saved the day. My other pup, Kenzie, had been rescued by the local SPCA from a poorly run, in-home breeding operation. I’m happy to report that while both pups have their quirks, they have both become well-adjusted members of our family.
The experience of adopting these adorable muts really made me think more about animal welfare issues. I started to become more concerned with not only the treatment of pets, but other domesticated animals, especially in the food industry. I became more selective about the meat, eggs, and dairy I purchased, striving to seek out brands that were committed to humane treatment…but I have often wondered how reliable this information is. I became vegetarian for a period of time, and have recently flirted with the idea of returning to a meat-free lifestyle. I’ve always been finicky when it comes to eating meat, and my newfound ethical concerns make it even less desirable. Continue reading