Animal Awareness Day 2013
Animal Awareness Day was celebrated at our school on Friday 4th October. This day was chosen since it is the feast of Saint Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals and the environment. For this particular occasion the Hon. Roderick Galdes MP (Parliamentary Secretary for Agriculture, Fisheries and Animal Rights), Mr Joseph John Vella (Director Animal Welfare), Ms Lorna Schembri (Assistant Director Animal Welfare), her pet dogs Ruby, Crystal, Jade and Minnie and three officers from The Animal Welfare Department were invited to our school.
First, Ms Schembri talked about the work done by the Animal Welfare Department. She explained to the children that the Department collects injured, sick or stray animals that are a danger to themselves or to others. These animals are then taken to a veterinary hospital.Once on the road to recovery, these stray animals are taken to Għammieri. Then, animal welfare officers try to find a suitable new home for them.
Next, she introduced her four dogs. Most of the children were very excited when they saw Ms Schembri’s Yorkshire terriers. Ruby, Crystal, Jade and Minnie were very active and curious and they revelled in the attention given by the children.
Ms Schembri said that dogs are man’s best friends. She explained that owning and caring for a dog could be great fun and immensely rewarding. Ms Schembri also explained to the children that dogs have very complex needs so looking after them can be quite challenging. During her talk Ms Schembri also gave the children some simple tips on how to look after their pet dog. She highlighted the fact that a dog needs a suitable environment to live in; must have a healthy diet; must be taught to behave in an appropriate manner and must be protected from pain, suffering, injury and disease.
As part of the school’s commitment to the EkoSkola programme the school donated old Santa Klara uniforms and tracksuits to the Animal Welfare Department. These uniforms and tracksuits will be recycled and will be used to clean up messes, to dry off wet dogs and to provide warm bedding. The children also brought a tin of cat or dog food as a donation to the Animal Welfare Department.
It was indeed a very fruitful and enjoyable experience for all those who were present. Zabbar Primary A will do its utmost to retain Animal Awareness Day in the School Calendar.