Get a feel for fur: Slam your fingers in a car door.
Anonymous, on the use of steel traps to capture fur-bearing animals, cited in Audubon, November 1990
I believe in animal rights, and high among them is the right to the gentle stroke of a human hand.
Whether hunting is right or wrong, a spiritual experience, or an outlet for the killer instinct, one thing it is not is a sport. Sport is when individuals or teams compete against each other under equal circumstances to determine who is better at a given game or endeavor. Hunting will be a sport when deer, elk, bears, and ducks are… given 12-gauge shotguns. Bet we’d see a lot fewer drunk yahoos (live ones, anyway) in the woods if that happened.
R. Lerner, letter, Sierra, March-April 199
Heaven is by favor; if it were by merit your dog would go in and you would stay out. Of all the creatures ever made [man] is the most detestable. Of the entire brood, he is the only one… that possesses malice. He is the only creature that inflicts pain for sport, knowing it to be pain.
Evolutionary biology is now uttering and seeking those forces that link us with all those that have being. If we can discover the meaning in the trilling of a frog, perhaps we may understand why it is for us not merely noise but a song of poetry and emotion.
Adrian Forsyth, A Natural History of Sex, 1986
I am not interested to know whether vivisection produces results that are profitable to the human race or doesn’t…. The pain which it inflicts upon unconsenting animals is the basis of my enmity toward it, and it is to me sufficient justification of the enmity without looking further.
The basis of all animal rights should be the Golden Rule: we should treat them as we would wish them to treat us, were any other species in our dominant position.
If a rabbit defined intelligence the way man does, then the most intelligent animal would be a rabbit, followed by the animal most willing to obey the commands of a rabbit.
If a group of beings from another planet were to land on Earth – beings who considered themselves as superior to you as you feel yourself to be to other animals – would you concede them the rights over you that you assume over other animals?
Attributed to George Bernard Shaw
When a man wants to murder a tiger he calls it sport; when the tiger wants to murder him he calls it ferocity.
George Bernard Shaw
The animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren; they are not underlings; they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendor and travail of the earth.
Henry Beston, The Outermost House, 1928
I had bought two male chimps from a primate colony in Holland. They lived next to each other in separate cages for several months before I used one as a [heart] donor. When we put him to sleep in his cage in preparation for the operation, he chattered and cried incessantly. We attached no significance to this, but it must have made a great impression on his companion, for when we removed the body to the operating room, the other chimp wept bitterly and was inconsolable for days. The incident made a deep impression on me. I vowed never again to experiment with such sensitive creatures.
Christian Barnard, surgeon
Terms like that, “Humane Society,” are devised with people like me in mind, who don’t care to dwell on what happens to the innocent.
Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams
I think animal testing is a terrible idea; they get all nervous and give the wrong answers.
Teaching a child not to step on a caterpillar is as valuable to the child as it is to the caterpillar.
A Robin Redbreast in a cage
Puts all Heaven in a Rage.
William Blake, Auguries of Innocence
If a ferret bites you it is nearly always your own fault.