World Animal Day is upon us and we’ve certainly been celebrating in a way only we can, but aside from having an excuse to “mouth trumpet” like an elephant, what is the deal with ‘World Animal Day’ and why should anyone care about it?

In short: World Animal Day is a day in which we focus our attention on the furry, scaly, clawed and pawed living things that inhabit this globe with us. To put it more formally, the “World Animal Foundation” states its mission as one where “[we recognise animals] as sentient beings and [that] full regard is always paid to their welfare.”

Before we get eye-rolls from the meat eaters and leather wearers, it’s important to state that it’s not a day created to shame those who wear or eat animal products. This day is not about pointing to all that we’ve done to damage the the natural world; rather, it’s about honouring all the living, breathing critters and beasts that sleep under the same skies as us; most importantly, it’s about deciding that we want them in our future.

The origins of World Animal Day date back to 1920’s Berlin when Heinrich Zimmermann, publisher and editor of “Mensch und Hund” (Man and Dog), organised a day’s celebration in recognition of animal welfare and the need to eradicate animal cruelty. The day of the 4th of October was chosen, as it is the day of the patron Saint of ecology and animals, Francis of Assisi (who is also the namesake of current Pope Francis).

He recognised that there was a huge gap in how animals are perceived the world over: they’re respected and revered in some nations while misused and abused in others. One does not have to venture too far down any news feed to see just how much animals have had to endure just this year alone. Headlines this year have included, the extinction of the northern white rhino, melting ice caps having disastrous effects on arctic animals and in the last month alone, over 90 elephants and 10 rhinos getting poached in Botswana.

Then there’s the other side of the coin, which has seen millions of people going out of their way to help, protect and love wild and domesticated animals alike. Some of our favourites include animal blessing ceremonies in Italy, a sanctuary opened especially for abandoned baby kangaroos and a video of little baby bats being swaddled. There are countless organisations, foundations and sanctuaries that tirelessly fight to preserve wildlife in all its glory.

Naturally animals mean everything to us at WildEarth and we simply wouldn’t exist without them. We have dedicated all our time and effort to documenting the lives of all the living things in the wild, from big to small to tracking their movement, their successes , their failures and even their often unusual sleeping habits.
Wildearth, much like Zimmermann on that first 4th of October, believes there should be a future for them on our globe and it’s that goal which fuels all that we do here.

We raise a toast to all the animals today! From the smallest fruit fly to the largest elephant- why not celebrate alongside us and join us on one or both of our live safaris? Click here to tune in.