Kindness to Animals Day has been observed on October 4 every year for over 60 years, beginning with a proclamation issued by then-president of the Philippines, Carlos Polestico Garcia. The fact that a president of a country made that part of his life’s work shows that no matter who you are, what you do, or where you come from, being compassionate towards animals is and will always be a worthy cause.
History of Kindness to Animal Day
Pets, particularly dogs and cats, have been scientifically proven to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, alleviate loneliness, and promote exercise and playfulness. Caring for an animal can help children become more secure and active as they grow older. Pets can also be a valuable source of companionship for the elderly. But, it doesn’t just end with pets. Being kind to animals is a great way to get connected with them on a deeper level out of respect and understanding. Being kind to animals is good for you, those around you, and the animals themselves.
In the Philippines, Carlos Polestico Garcia, a lawyer by profession, entered politics when he was elected to the House of Representatives to represent the third district of Bohol. He later became the eighth President of the Philippines. He was known for being a teacher, poet, orator, lawyer, and political economist who was passionate about animals and wildlife. So much so that on September 30, 1958, in the City of Manila, Garcia issued Proclamation No. 537 declaring the fourth day of October each year as Kindness to Animals Day.
The proclamation emphasized the importance of instilling the virtues of kindness, justice, and mercy in all living creatures and condemned all forms of cruelty to both men and animals. Garcia called upon all citizens and residents of the Philippines, government officials and employees, public and private schools, churches, and civic organizations, to observe this special day with programs and ceremonies so that all people can get involved to showcase their compassion for animals.
Kindness to Animal Day timeline
Carlos Polestico Garcia, a lawyer and former senator, becomes the fourth president of the Philippines.
Garcia issues Proclamation No. 537 declaring October 4 as Kindness to Animals Day.
Ingrid Newkirk and Alex Pacheco establish People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).
On the annual observance of Kindness to Animals Day in the Philippines, a nationwide call for donations is launched to benefit animal shelters.
Kindness to Animal Day FAQs
Why is being kind to animals important?
Helping animals goes beyond our personal experience. You give freely, expecting nothing in return. If animals teach us anything, it’s unconditional, selfless love. Animals provide us with solace, and they wait for us even when we are gone for hours or days.
What is animal kindness?
Animals deserve human kindness, whether they are house pets like cats, domesticated animals like horses, or wild animals like owls or alligators. You can show kindness to any animal by caring for pets and domesticated animals and respecting wild animals.
How do you show respect to animals?
Petting an animal should always be done gently, without pulling or tugging, and never from behind. Young children should never be left alone with an animal. Even the most trustworthy children and pets can have accidents. When an animal, even your own, is eating, sleeping, chewing on a toy, or caring for its young, never approach it.
How to Observe Kindness to Animal Day
Donate to an animal shelter
There are thousands, if not millions, of animal shelters worldwide that need support to help feed and protect the animals. These shelters rely on public donations and can quickly become overcrowded when there is an influx of unfortunate animals being dumped by their owners. You can help by volunteering or donating money, which will go towards purchasing food and paying the water bill to keep the animals happy and healthy.
Adopt a cat or a dog
The world is changing positively, and adopting animals as pets is no longer frowned upon. People used to only buy purebred cats and dogs, but nowadays, adopting a stray animal is the norm, not to mention the immense amount of kindness and compassion that goes into such an act. These animals need homes, and if you can provide one, you should do so.
Volunteer at a wildlife sanctuary
It’s not just domestic animals that need help; volunteering at a wildlife sanctuary is equally important and popular among animal lovers of all ages. You can learn a lot while helping with farm maintenance, feeding the animals, and assisting with animal medical care. This will be very rewarding as your kindness towards animals is being put into action.
5 Facts About The Philippines
There are too many nurses
The Philippines is the world's largest supplier of nurses, with many citizens seeking work abroad, in part because of the country's limited job opportunities.
It’s the home of ‘jeepneys’
Jeepneys are colorfully painted buses with roots dating back to World War II, and the U.S. military's jeeps are an iconic symbol of the country.
Many Filipinos are Christian
The Philippines is the only predominantly Christian Asian country, while many of its Southeast Asia neighbors practice Buddhism.
It’s highly populated
With a population of over 108 million people, this Southeast Asia country ranks 13th in the world.
The world’s largest pearl was discovered there
A Filipino diver found the world's largest pearl in the Palawan Sea, weighing 75 pounds and worth $100 million.
Why Kindness to Animal Day is Important
It promotes equal treatment for all living things
It is widely known and believed that all living things, from humans right through to animals of all shapes and sizes, are equal. By observing Kindness to Animals Day, we reinforce that belief and ensure that future generations carry it on after we are gone. Animals should be treated with kindness and respect.
It honors a political figure’s legacy
Garcia’s legacy lives on over 60 years after he established Kindness to Animals Day on October 4, 1958. He was a compassionate and caring man who advocated for animal rights and encouraged the entire nation to treat all animals with respect. He may no longer be with us, but we will continue to honor him every year on October 4.
It inspires people to adopt pets
Pet adoption has skyrocketed in recent years, with more people turning to it to expand their families. Visiting an animal shelter is an excellent way to find the perfect pet for you and your family or friends. You can also return if you want to make future donations or volunteer. We love how Kindness to Animals Day inspires people to adopt.
Kindness to Animal Day dates