Make a Difference

Written by Ivette Ocampo

make a difference 2Seems like a pretty simple concept, make a difference. In a world where we are taught that successes is a big house, a nice car and money in the bank we can make such a simple concept into something that we have to do rather than something we want to do. Our mission at Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary is to rescue, rehabilitate and release. Beyond our four walls, beyond the sanctuaries mission to rehab injured animals we also care about the world around us and we want to spread the word!

A couple years ago, I enjoyed eating anything I wanted without a second thought of where it came from and furthermore the conditions in which that particular piece of food came from. Then one day I came across a horrific video of how the animals that I was so thoroughly enjoying without giving it a second thought were being raised and treated. The absolute filth they eat themselves which in turn goes into my own body, the horrendous life they endure on a daily basis until they go to slaughter. I am embarrassed to admit I really did not know. Animal torture is not exactly a topic you learn about in school and unless you dig, you won’t know. It is not something the industry wants you to see because they know you too will be disgusted if not from a sanitary position but also a humanitarian one. You would not be able to watch a video and think, wow those animals have such a healthy and happy life before they are slaughtered. I really believe even the most meat loving person out there would want the meat they eat to come from sanitary conditions. I would encourage you to see for yourself the reality of what our high demand for meat as a society is doing to these animals welfare and the environment. It’s all connected. I came across this quote from a well-known producer, “ This may surprise you, because it surprised me when I found out, but the single biggest thing an individual can do to combat climate change is to stop eating animals.” James Cameron

make a difference 8You don’t need to take my word or a famous producers word for it, the information is out there for you to decide what the evidence means. I realize that becoming a vegetarian or even vegan is not right for everyone. What about just buying more responsibly? What about buying meat that is not raised on hormones, antibiotics, and extremely unsanitary conditions? Some people may not be touched by animal welfare, fair enough. We can’t all care about the same issues but do you care about what your child consumes? Your husband or wife? I am not advocating to become a vegan or vegetarian if you don’t believe that’s the right thing to do. I believe you can eat meat , dairy and other animal products responsibly and sustainably. That makes a difference. Personally I am a vegetarian, I do not feel the need to eat meat and to be perfectly honest I have never been healthier or looked better in my life! Even as a teenager I was never in this good of shape. Aside from the health benefits of eating no or less meat, there are huge implications for the environment. Imagine acres and acres of land filled with cows and other animals we consume, the amount of resources it takes to maintain not only the land but the animals is immense.

If we all did our part, even if that was just buying from a local farmer or buying organic which is another topic entirely can you imagine the benefits? You can make a difference and it starts with a choice. Choose humane, organic and antibiotic free products, buy local and perhaps start to eliminate some meat from your diet. If becoming vegetarian is too extreme how about buying cruelty free products including make-up, lotions, household cleaners ect. You can make a difference. What you buy is what will drive the industry one way or the other. There are so many products that are sustainable and cruelty free why would we buy anything else? You can make a difference.

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