"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way
its animals are treated."
"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened."
"Lots of people talk to animals . . . . Not very many listen, though . . . .
That's the problem."
Benjamin Hoff, "The Tao of Pooh"
"The reason a dog has so many friends is that he wags his tail instead of
"The more I see of man, the more I like dogs."
Madame de Staël
"Thousands of years ago, cats were worshiped as Gods. Cats have never
"Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and
get used to the idea."
"Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole."
"Dogs come when they're called; cats take a message and get back to you
"You enter into a certain amount of madness when you marry a person with
"I like pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as
"Animals are my friends, and I don't eat my friends."
George Bernard Shaw
"The cat will mew, and dog will have his day."
"Don't approach a goat from the front, a horse from the back, or a fool
from any side."
"If you have men who will exclude any of God's creatures from the shelter
of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their
St. Francis of Assisi
"And the wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with
the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a
little child shall lead them."
"What is man without the beasts? If all the beasts were gone, men would
die from great loneliness of spirit, for whatever happens to the beasts also
happens to man. All things are connected. Whatever befalls the earth
befalls the children of the earth."
Attributed to Chief Seattle
"I've always said that the best wolf habitat resides in the human heart.
You have to leave a little space for them to live."
"I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights. That is the way of
a whole human being."
"Our task must be to free ourselves . . . by widening our circle of
compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its
"Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried
from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy:
animals. And in this respect mankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a
debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it."
Milan Kundera, "The Unbearable Lightness of Being"
“We need another and a wiser and perhaps a more mystical concept of
animals. Remote from universal nature, and living by complicated artifice,
man in civilization surveys the creature through the glass of his knowledge
and sees thereby a feather magnified and the whole image in distortion. We
patronize them for their incompleteness, for their tragic fate of having
taken form so far below ourselves. And therein we err, and greatly err. For
the animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more
complete than ours they move finished and complete, gifted with extensions
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 splendour and travail of the earth.”
"Presumption is our natural and original disease. The most wretched and
frail of all creatures is man, and withal the proudest. He feels and sees
himself lodged here in the dirt and filth of the world, nailed and rivetted to
the worst and deadest part of the universe, in the lowest story of the
house, the most remote from the heavenly arch, with animals of the worst
condition of the three; and yet in his imagination will be placing himself
above the circle of the moon, and bringing the heavens under his feet. 'Tis
by the same vanity of imagination that he equals himself to God, attributes
to himself divine qualities, withdraws and separates himself from the crowd
of other creatures, cuts out the shares of the animals, his fellows and
companions, and distributes to them portions of faculties and force, as
himself thinks fit. How does he know, by the strength of his understanding,
the secret and internal motions of animals?—from what comparison betwixt
them and us does he conclude the stupidity he attributes to them? When I
play with my cat, who knows whether I do not make her more sport than she
makes me? We mutually divert one another with our play. If I have my hour
to begin or to refuse, she also has hers. Plato, in his picture of the golden
age under Saturn, reckons, among the chief advantages that a man then
had, his communication with beasts, of whom, inquiring and informing himself,
he knew the true qualities and differences of them all, by which he acquired
a very perfect intelligence and prudence, and led his life more happily than
we could do. Need we a better proof to condemn human impudence in the
concern of beasts? This great author was of opinion that nature, for the
most part, in the corporal form she gave them, had only regard to the use
of prognostics that were derived thence in his time. The defect that hinders
communication betwixt them and us, why may it not be in our part as well as
theirs? 'Tis yet to determine where the fault lies that we understand not
one another—for we understand them no more than they do us; and by the
same reason they may think us to be beasts as we think them."
An excerpt from Michel de Montaigne's "The Language of Animals"
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