It’s going to be 2 months since most countries went under lockdown as a strategy to flatten the COVID-19 curve. While this lockdown has been of major help in controlling the spread of infection, it has also brought with it issues galore. Today, I’m going to focus on one issue that might seem minute, but, to those concerned, it is a big problem.
As we know, the lockdown has restricted us and confined us to our homes. Offices, schools, malls and businesses have closed, and social life as we know it has come to a standstill. Most of us are not able to do the activities which we did on a regular basis before the pandemic struck. Something as simple as going out to feed stray animals who reside near our houses has also become a task most of us have to give thought to, because ultimately, it involves GOING OUT right?
Before the lockdown, most stray animals survived on leftovers from restaurants, dhabas, roadside eating joints etc. They have now been left to fend for themselves since their regular sources of food are shut. Their last resort is garbage cans which might not guarantee any leftovers. During the lockdown, many animals have been going for days without food, a basic need for all living beings to survive. Humans still have the privilege to express what they’re going through verbally, but these strays don’t. As a result, they suffer in silence. A lot of these animals-like cats, dogs, cows, birds- are even showing aggressive behaviour as a result of scarcity of food.
Most animal welfare centres have taken the responsibility of feeding these strays regularly during this lockdown period. However, our country is home to a huge number of stray animals, and it is realistically not possible for these animal welfare centres to reach out to and help each animal in need.
I know the next thought that may pop up in your mind is: if there are so many stray animals that animal welfare centres cannot reach them, it wouldn’t be possible for us, as individuals, to reach out to so many animals in need. Yes, we won’t be able to reach all of them. But we definitely can take the responsibility of regularly feeding even one stray animal that resides near our house. That might not seem like a big deal to us, but for that animal, it means a lot.
While I’m typing this, I also realize that the good news is this lockdown is eventually coming to an end, and most of us will be able to resume our outdoor activities and work. Hence, leaving your house while you go down to feed that stray animal should not be much of an issue any more. Even a couple of biscuits, if nothing else, will be relished by them these days.
The same goes for birds too. I see my dad keeping a bowl of water for birds every morning and it does not even take 20 minutes for the water in the bowl to finish. Funny thing is that, because of the heat, my dad has started to put in some ice cubes in the bowl of water that he places for them, and the birds quietly watch and wait for him to finish putting those ice cubes. After that, it doesn’t even take them 10 minutes to finish of this water. Seems like they too prefer their water chilled in this weather!
The point of this article isn’t to give a long moral lecture, but to bring into our awareness a fact that most of us probably know but don’t think about.
When you put food and water out for animals in need, you may feel like you aren’t doing much, but for that one life that you’re helping it means the world.
Let’s help out our furry and winged friends!
For more information on the animal welfare centres helping animals during the lockdown, you could check out the following links:
- People for Animals: https://www.peopleforanimalsindia.org/
- Speak for Animals: https://www.anuraktaprusty.com/speak-for-animals/
- Oneness: https://onenessforall.in/
- Karma Foundation: https://www.karmafoundation.ngo/
- Bark India Charitable Trust: https://barkindia.org/
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I am a practicing psychologist. I’m interested in art and design. Mandala art is my stress buster. I’m also into the upcoming field of fashion psychology. Binge watching on Netflix is one of my current pastimes!
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I am a feminist and an artist with a keen interest in mental health. I have always found peace and the power of expression, in art and music, since a very early age. Empathy is my mantra and goal for life. The rest of me is essentially my love for dogs, swimming and food!
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