Animal Awareness Date

Animal Awareness Date is a rubric of the Institute of Animal Law of Asia (IALA) where we celebrate animal holidays throughout the year to highlight the importance of animals in humans' lives and to remind ourselves to appreciate and care for all creatures of the Earth.

Pit Bull Awareness Day

It's Pit Bull Awareness Day in the U.S.!


This day was created in 2007 to raise awareness about the truth about pit bulls and promote legal protection for them.


Pit bulls are commonly known to be used in dogfighting, a cruel practice involving dogs in the blood sport by pitting them against one another in a ring. After the fight, dogs usually have serious injuries, broken bones, bleedings, etc. Upon the end of the match, dogs are not euthanized with humane methods, rather they are tortured or beaten.


There have been lots of myths about pit bulls over the decades, as being ferocious, malicious, and dangerous dogs. An image far from the truth and based on the actions of maligned humans, not the animals themselves. All animals are individuals with unique personalities, being capable of feeling joy and pain. There are no "bad" dogs - there are only dogs who have been abused or neglected upon which they become aggressive and fearful.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more facts about the pit bulls, not myths;

  • Raise awareness about the abusive practices of dogfighting;

  • Consider volunteering with and donating to the shelters;

  • Adopt a pit bull instead of buying them from pet stores and breeders;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #PitBullAwarenessDayUS.

Reptile Awareness Day

It's Reptile Awareness Day in the U.S.!


This day was created to promote education, conservation, and appreciation for reptiles. This day is also another opportunity to learn about the reptiles' natural habitats and the ecological threats that they are facing.


Currently, there are over 10 000 species and an additional 2700 subspecies of reptiles in the world. Habitat loss and degradation is one of the greatest threats to the reptile populations and occurs from a variety of sources, including urban/suburban development, aquatic habitat alteration from water withdrawals and stream diversions, water pollution, and off-road vehicle use in terrestrial habitats. Other threats include introduced invasive species, environmental pollution, disease, and unsustainable use.


Reptiles play a fundamental role in the entire ecosystem. As one part of the greater food chain, they prevent overpopulation and provide food for hungry predators, especially when they are young. Some of the most venomous snakes in the world such as the Indian cobra prevent the spread of disease-carrying rodents, even in urban centers, so their usefulness often outweighs their danger. Crocodiles and alligators prevent the overpopulation of fish species in coastal regions and wetlands, which is pivotal in keeping these aquatic ecosystems healthy and balanced.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the reptiles and threats that they face;

  • Learn more about how we can reduce our impact on the environment and the animals' habitat;

  • Go vegan for the animals and the planet;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #ReptileAwarenessDayUS.

International Sloth Day

It's International Sloth Day!


This day was created by the foundation AIUNAU, a program dedicated to the conservation and rehabilitation of wildlife in Columbia. Per AIUNAU: “There is a lot that sloths can teach us — respect, tenderness, joy.”


Sloths are a group of arboreal Neotropical xenarthran mammals, constituting the suborder Folivora, and there are two types, which are the two-toed and three-toed sloths.


There are six subspecies of sloths that can be found in Central America and South America, all of which are threatened by deforestation and degradation of their habitat (tropical forests), and by illegal trafficking. Unfortunately, these factors often result in fatal outcomes for these animals. Organizations responsible for the protection of the species in Central America and Colombia estimate that between 80% - 90% of trafficked sloths die in the process.


Of all the species, the pygmy sloth is the only one that is classified as endangered. Over the last decade, the population of the pygmy sloth has decreased by 80%. There are less than 100 pygmy sloths left in the world, and this makes them one of the most endangered mammals in the world. Due to shrinking habitats, pygmy sloths are expected to become extinct by 2022.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the sloths and threats that they face;

  • Educate the public about the urgent need to protect wildlife animals and plants;

  • Learn more about how we can reduce our impact on the environment and the animals' habitat;

  • Go vegan for the animals and the planet;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #InternationalSlothDay.

It's World Migratory Bird Day!


This day was created to increase the level of awareness about the threats – both general and specific – that birds are facing. In 2021, this day is observed twice, on May 8th and October 9th. The theme of this year is "Sing, Fly, Soar - Like a Bird!" By comparing their experiences and concerns, sharing their stories and activities, people around the world will make their voices and actions reach out even further, throughout the flyways, underlying the fact that bird conservation is, indeed, a global issue.


Migratory birds all across the globe are threatened by habitat loss and illegal hunting as well as from poisoning, pollution and collision with man-made objects, such as glass-covered buildings and powerlines. Climate change is additional pressure on migratory birds by adversely affecting habitats they need for breeding, resting, and refueling along the way. The changing climate is also impacting the annual cycles of birds, affecting the timing of migration and reproduction and causing mismatches in food availability.


Migratory birds are also threatened by light pollution, which disorients birds who are flying at night, leading them to collide with buildings. Approximately 2000 of the world’s 11 000 species of birds do migrate, some covering enormous distances, like the Arctic Tern or the Bar-tailed Godwit.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the migratory birds and threats that they face;

  • Educate the public about the urgent need to protect birds;

  • Go vegan for the animals and the planet;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #WorldMigratoryBirdDay.


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It's World Animal Day!


This day was created to raise the status of animals in the legal system and raising awareness about the need to protect them. This day unites the animal protection movement, mobilizing it into a global force to make the world a better place for all animals.


Trillions of animals are suffering every hour from human practices and climate crisis consequences caused by human activities. In many countries around the world, even though the Animal Welfare Act is enacted, it is not enforced, while in other parts of the Earth, animal law does not exist. The animal protection movement is gradually expanding, however, there is an urgent need to educate as many individuals as possible about the harm we inflict on animals, the consequences of not stopping to exploit animals, and the necessity to recognize them as legal persons. Through increased awareness and education we can create a world where animals are always recognized as sentient beings.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the pain and suffering of animals across the globe and ways how we can protect them;

  • Urge the government to enact effective legislation to protect animals and enforce the laws;

  • Educate the public about the urgent need to protect animals;

  • Go vegan for the animals and the planet;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #WorldAnimalDay.

World Farm Animal Day

It's World Farm Animal Day!


This day was created in 1983 by the international campaign of the Farm Animal Rights Movement to raise awareness about the cruel practices done to farmed animals in factory farms, local farms, and generally for consumption purposes.


In every country across the globe, billions of farmed animals are being killed for meat, eggs, and dairy in factory farms and slaughterhouses every day. Even animals raised on small family farms are enduring many of these abuses. Irrespective of the place they were raised, every farm animal raised for food is facing a gruesome slaughter.


Agricultural activity involving animals is also the main driver of climate change that affects other animals and, generally, the planet entirely. Human activities increase the concentrations of some of the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, in particular, CO2, methane, nitrous oxide, fluorinated gases, etc. Agriculture is directly responsible for 14% of total greenhouse gas emissions. There is an urgent need to put this business to an end.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the pain and suffering of farmed animals for satisfying human needs;

  • Urge the public to enact effective legislation to protect farmed animals and not exclude them from legal protection;

  • Educate the public about the detrimental effects of factory farms;

  • Go vegan not to contribute to this brutal practice;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #WorldFarmAnimalDay.

World Rabies Day

It's World Rabies Day!


This day was created to raise awareness about the issue of rabies around the world and the necessity to vaccinate animals. The pandemic has raised many doubts and misconceptions about diseases, their spread, and about vaccination, in general. As for rabies, the theme of this year is focused on sharing facts about rabies and not spreading fear about the disease by relying on misinformation and myths.


In the United States, for instance, more than 90% of reported cases of rabies in animals occur in wildlife. The wild animals that most commonly carry rabies in the United States are raccoons, skunks, bats, and foxes. Cats and dogs, cattle, and horses)can also get rabies. Nearly all the pets and livestock that get rabies had not received a vaccination or were not up to date on rabies vaccination.


While rabies is a 100% preventable disease, more than 59 000 people die from the disease around the world each year. This day is another opportunity to reflect on our efforts to control this deadly disease and remind ourselves that the fight is not yet over.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about rabies and the need to vaccinate animals;

  • Urge the public to educate themselves about this issue;

  • Vaccinate your companion animals;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #WorldRabiesDay.

Sea Otter Awareness Week

It's Sea Otter Awareness Week in the U.S.!


This day is celebrated on the last week of September and was created to promote and encourage the protection of sea otters.


Sea otters are one of the species of marine mammals that are currently threatened by a lot of factors, including climate change, water pollution, fishing and overfishing activities, etc. Many sea otters are becoming victims of fishing nets that eventually kill the aquatic species of animals. Sea otters are important for the entire marine ecosystem, and there is an urgent need to protect them and educate about the detrimental effect of fishing.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the sea otters, threats that they face, and means through which we can protect them;

  • Urge the public to educate themselves about the necessity to stop fishing;

  • Urge the government to enact effective legislation on the protection of aquatic animals;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #SeaOtterAwarenessWeekUS.

Fish Amnesty Day

It's Fish Amnesty Day in the U.S.!


This day was created by PETA in 1997 to recognize fish as living animals with rights and the necessity to protect them as other vertebrates.


Fish also have advanced nervous systems that process and respond to pain. With no laws protecting them from cruelty, they can be impaled on hooks, yanked out of the water, and suffocated. Their mouths are ripped open as hooks are pried out, they’re hit in the head with blunt objects, and they’re sliced open and disemboweled while still alive. Moreover, fish have been proven by science to feel fear, pain, and suffering. However, fish, among other aquatic animals, receive less consideration than marine mammals, for instance.


Fish are important for the entire ecosystem as being part of the food chain, they help maintain healthy oceans at the same level as other species of aquatic animals. Instead, billions of them are killed every year for food consumption and caught for the development of aquaculture. Not only fish suffer from fishing activities but other animals too who become victims of the nets, hooks, etc. Because of overfishing, we could have fishless oceans by 2050.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the fish, threats that they face, and means through which we can protect them;

  • Urge the public to educate themselves about the importance of fish in our waters;

  • Urge the government to enact effective legislation on fish protection;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #FishAmnestyDayUS.

International Rabbit Day

It's International Rabbit Day!


This day was created to promote the protection and care of rabbits, both domestic and wild. On this day, we should consider thinking about how rabbits are threatened by hunting, food consumption, medical experimentation, product testing, fur-farming.


According to the mission of the House Rabbit Society, "ALL rabbits are valuable as individuals, regardless of breed purity, temperament, state of health, or relationship to humans. The welfare of all rabbits is our primary consideration. In line with our mission, we are against the exploitation of rabbits... Domestic rabbits are companion animals and should be afforded at least the same individual rights, level of care, and opportunity for longevity as commonly afforded to dogs and cats who live as human companions."


So many rabbits are victims of animal experimentation, testing, hunting for food consumption, fur trade, etc. Wild rabbits play an important role in the planet’s ecosystem - they help to keep invasive plants under control, and so rabbits encourage other plants, insects, and birds to thrive.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the rabbits, threats that they face, and means through which we can protect them;

  • Shift to cruelty-free cosmetics, household products, etc;

  • Refrain from using fur clothes;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #InternationalRabbitDay.

It's World Rhino Day!


This day was created in 2010 by the WWF South Africa to raise awareness about the threats of all five rhino species distributed across the globe and to remind the public of ways how to conserve and protect these animals.


Rhinos are magnificent, massive, and powerful creatures, classified as one of the Big Five game animals. There are now five different types of rhinos, each with specific characteristics that distinguish them. These are the Javan Rhino, the Sumatran Rhino, the Greater One-Horned Rhino, the Black Rhino, and the White Rhino distributed across Africa and Asia. Rhinos are referred to as ‘Umbrella species’ or keystone species.


Most rhino species are dangerously close to extinction. The major threats to them include poaching, illegal horn trade, loss of habitat due to climate change, and low population density. These animals have roamed the earth for millions of years, playing an important role in the ecosystem. They feed on green leafy matter, including grass, consuming heavy amounts of vegetation, so they help shape the landscape. It is important to urge the public and the government to protect these animals that play a significant role in our lives.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the rhinos, threats that they face, and means through which we can save them;

  • Urge the government to enact effective legislation on the protection of these animals;

  • Urge the public to educate themselves about the importance of rhinos on our Earth;

  • Consider volunteering with and donating to organizations that work on the conservation of rhinoceros and saving their populations;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #WorldRhinoDay.

Puppy Mill Awareness Day in the U.S.

It's Puppy Mill Awareness Day in the U.S.!


This day was created to spread the word about the barbaric practice of puppy mills and to improve the lives of all dogs across the globe.


The term “puppy mill” refers to a large-scale commercial dog-breeding facility, where the major goal set is receiving profits over the welfare of the dogs. The aim of puppy mills is to produce the largest number of puppies as quickly as possible, without consideration of genetic quality or the care of the animals. A puppy mill is a cruel practice where dogs are kept in outdoor kennels or caged in darkness, without adequate food, water, or veterinary care, in crowded and unsanitary conditions.


Many dogs that are victims of puppy mills oftentimes suffer from genetic/hereditary conditions and deadly diseases. Also, many puppy mill dogs experience behavioral and psychological problems. There is a need to raise public awareness about the detrimental effect of puppy mills and encourage everybody to adopt instead of buying a companion animal from breeders. By adopting, one could give the entire life to an animal, help the shelter, and help thousands of homeless, abused, and abandoned animals get a chance to be adopted.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the puppy mills practice and why you should adopt, not shop;

  • Educate your surroundings about this abusive practice;

  • Consider volunteering with and donating to shelters that save a lot of homeless, abandoned, and abused animals;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #PuppyMillAwarenessDayUS.

International Red Panda Day

It's International Red Panda Day!


This day was created by the Red Panda Network in 2010 to raise public awareness about these animals and support the promotion of the red panda conservation.


Red pandas are mammal species that can be found in China, Bhutan, Nepal, Myanmar, and India. According to the last assessment by the IUCN Red List, these animals are classified as Endangered. On the national level, they are legally protected in the range countries. The major threats to these animals include habitat loss and degradation, human interference, and poaching.


Studies and research show that the total population of red pandas has declined by 40% for the last two decades, and there is a potential decrease in their population in the future. As habitat loss is the primary threat to the red pandas, this is caused by logging, grazing livestock, demand for firewood, human encroachment, and farming. The decrease also coincided with the increase in human populations throughout Asia, thus, with the increase of livestock, agriculture development, which produce various threats to this species.


A lot of wildlife species of animals are now mostly threatened by the effect of climate change, which is caused by the enormous amount of greenhouse emissions. There is an urgent need to raise awareness and take action to change the lifestyle for the protection of many living beings.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the red pandas, threats that they face, and ways how we can protect them;

  • Report any illegal activity related to these animals, including illegal pet trade;

  • Urge the government to enforce the regulations that would protect the red pandas in the range countries;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #InternationalRedPandaDay.

National Wildlife Day in the U.S.

It's National Wildlife Day in the U.S.!


This day was created to improve awareness of the species around the world. This day also focuses on endangered species, preservation, and conservation efforts around the world.


Our nature, including wildlife animals, relies on a stable habitat, so understanding conservation and preservation plays an important role in our lives. Recently especially wildlife animals have suffered plenty of events, such as ice storms, wildfires, ice melting. Animals are now experiencing loss of habitat because of human activities. Developing strategies is crucial to help maintain existing habitats and repair/replace those that have been destroyed.


Since the hit of the recent pandemic, wildlife animals have drawn a lot of attention. There is an urgent need for humans to raise awareness about illegal trade, poaching, and the consequences of climate change.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the wildlife animals, threats that they face, and ways how we can protect them;

  • Report any illegal activity that concerns wildlife;

  • Consider volunteering with and donating to organizations that work on the conservation of wildlife species;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #NationalWildlifeDayUS.

International Whale Shark Day

It's International Whale Shark Day!


This day was created to raise awareness about these amazing sea-dwelling creatures and encourage marine conservation efforts aimed at this shark species.


Whale sharks differ from other shark species because of their wide flat heads, large mouths, and spotted bodies. They are the biggest shark species and among the biggest fish in the ocean. Whale sharks have no natural predators, and they are considered top-level predators, so in a case when top-level predators can become extinct, the population numbers of the creatures that they prey on may swell dramatically.


Whale sharks need legal protection as they are becoming endangered. They are also one of the most vulnerable marine animals, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature. There is an urgent need to take action towards protecting these and other aquatic animals that play a significant role in the entire ecosystem by taking simple steps, such as going vegan and reducing plastic waste.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the whale sharks, what threats they face, and how we can protect them;

  • Reduce plastic waste use;

  • Consider going plant-based to save these animals;

  • Consider making a donation to the organizations that work on the conservation of whale sharks;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #InternationalWhaleSharkDay.

International Homeless Animals Day

It's International Homeless Animals Day!


This day was created to recognize and remember all the animals that are wandering on the streets looking for any home and human companion. This day is also another reminder to raise awareness about the overpopulation of animals. The theme for this year is “Become part of the solution.”


Companion-animal overpopulation is a major issue in almost every country of the world, and there are numerous ways humans can help reduce the companion-animal overpopulation crisis. The first and major way to reduce overpopulation is to spay/neuter your animal and adopt them from the shelter rather than buying them from breeders or pet stores. Fostering dogs or cats is another way to help shelters that could continue saving other homeless animals from the streets.


There is a necessity to raise awareness in your community about the problem of companion-animal overpopulation and to educate the public about how we can eliminate the problem. The international community needs to take an interest in animal homelessness, and we all should help these communities and companion animals who cannot help themselves.


How to celebrate?

  • Learn more about the homeless animals and how we can protect them;

  • Spay/neuter your companion animal;

  • Consider fostering animals from the shelter, so they could have more space to save other homeless animals;

  • Adopt - don't shop;

  • Spread the word by sharing on social media using the hashtag #InternationalHomelessAnimalsDay.

View our past Animal Awareness Dates here.