Pet names: good. Calling animals pets: bad.
The Journal of Animal Ethics has released a report from three top universities that confirms what PETA has been saying for three decades: The way people talk about animals directly affects how we think about and treat them. Researchers determined that words like “critter,” “beast,” and “pet” are derogatory and suggests using the much more respectful “companion.”
The journal goes on to recommend dropping “owner” from our vernacular and instead calling ourselves “human carers” (we like “guardians” too).
You may have noticed that we are always careful about our language usage here at PETA. Making the kind and easy choice to stop calling animals pets is just one small way that you can start influencing people around you to be more mindful of animals’ unique personalities, needs, and desires.
Want to do even more for animal companions?
Be sure to always adopt from a reputable, socially-conscious animal shelter.