Whether it’s a stuffed toy for your dog or a new laser pointer for your cat, many people like to buy their companion animals gifts during the holiday season. According to a 2017–2018 survey by American Pet Products Association, 50 percent of people with dogs and 38 percent of people with cats in the United States buy their animals gifts for Christmas or Hanukkah.
Cows, pigs, chickens, and other farmed animals are just as sensitive and intelligent as the dogs and cats we consider family. Did you know that chickens can recognize more than 100 individual birds, cows form close friendships, and pigs are thought to have the intelligence of a three-year-old child?
Even sweeter? Like cats, chickens purr and turkeys like to perch in high places. And just like dogs, pigs enjoy belly rubs and cows respond to their names when called.
In all the ways that matter, farmed animals are no different from our companion animals. Yet millions are killed each year for our holiday dinners.
Unbelievably, not a single federal law protects animals during their lives at factory farms. And the law that is supposed to protect animals at the slaughterhouse, the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act, excludes birds and rabbits, leaving them with virtually no protection from abuse.
With delicious plant-based roasts, pies, cakes, and more, having an animal-friendly holiday season is easy. And plant-based foods are not only better for animals; they’re better for the planet and your health. Cardiologist Dr. Kim A. Williams said:
The more fatty foods that we eat and the more animal products that we consume with high cholesterol, high sodium… processed meats—this is what’s leading to the increase in heart disease that we’re seeing.