Last year we launched a scholarship program for pet owners, and the response was tremendous. Hundreds of essays came in from across the country and students shared their stories of how owning a pet has changed their life.
Because of the success of the last contest, we decided to hold another one this year. This year we asked students "Do pets deserve the same rights as people?" and we again received hundreds of heartfelt responses from across the country.
It was difficult selecting the winners, but our team at EntirelyPets read over all the essays and selected the top three that we felt were the best. The 3 finalists are below. We hope you enjoy reading them as much as we did!
Thanks again to everyone who participated in the competition, and stay tuned for new scholarship opportunities!
1st Place - Smythe Mullikin
She stares longingly as I walk out the door. Her jet black fur glistens in the sunlight as I venture forth into my life at school and leave hers for the day. The feline companion that has been inseparable from me during utter defeat and spectacular success is one of my best friends in the world, and to think, she almost never was.
Midnight, a name derived from her dark coat, was born in my grandfather's boat several years ago in a litter of four kittens. Her mother had abandoned them when my grandmother discovered them. She brought them inside and spent her next several weeks in attending to those kittens. She fed them milk and began to slowly wean them as they developed personalities.
Being the sister to three brothers, Midnight was a much more reserved and lovable cat. As I looked at her the first time, she clung to me and has not let go, many times in a very literal sense. She sees me not as others categorize me but for who I am, a person.
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2nd Place - Joshua Milligan
They woof, they meow, they tweet (not on twitter), oink, moo, and cock-a-doodle-doo. They’re our pets and it doesn't matter what sound they make, because they don’t care what sound we make and we know that they love us unconditionally.
Somehow though, our adored little beloveds, who love us no matter what, are totally missing out on some luxurious privileges that we as people have chosen to enjoy exclusively by ourselves called rights. Rights, which essentially grant us the natural moralistic freedom that were entitled to, allowing us to be the sole possessors of our own lives, while preventing us from being unlawfully confined and protecting us from any unnecessary physical restraints.
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3rd Place - Sara Sparks
"If having a soul means being able to feel love and loyalty and gratitude, then animals are better off than a lot of humans." This quote by James Herriot perfectly frames the argument against people who say, "animals are just animals" or that "animals don’t have souls".
But if you have ever looked into the eyes of an animal, you may have felt what I have felt, and that is the warmth, innocence, and pure love they have for humans, and their fellow creatures. Perhaps people feel as though an animal’s lack of opposable thumbs, or inability to speak means that they might be a less important creature on this earth, but I couldn't disagree more.
We are all animals on this planet, we all have different roles, different abilities, and there is no reason that one animal should have precedence over another in regards to their rights to live protected lives.
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What did you think of the stories? Which was your favorite one? Let us know in the comments!