Animals are the Stars at Humane Education Program

Registration is limited due to the hand’s on nature of the program. Learn about the compassionate treatment of horses as well as companion and farm animals.  Our popular program is almost filled!

Twenty- five eager students, ages 9 through 13, participated in the Kaeli Kramer Foundation’s week- long Humane Education Program at the Holtsville Ecology Site. The focus of the fourth annual Humane Education Program was an exploration of the similarities which we share with our animal friends and how we are all are wonderfully unique. The students learned about the compassionate treatment of farm animals and the responsible care of companion animals. All want to live happily and live free of pain and deprivation.

Presenters talked about service animals, such as therapy dogs, cats, rabbits, seeing eye ponies, and therapeutic riding horses who help those with physical, mental or emotional challenges. Students came to the realization that all animals, from specially trained animals to our beloved pets to wildlife, perform tremendous acts of service and are an example to us of how we should live our own lives.

Many amazing guest speakers shared their commitment to animal welfare and their professional expertise with the students.

Kellei Burke, the wonderfully dedicated Director of Animal Care at the Ecology Site, took the students on behind the scene tours every day where they met many of the resident animals including a Emily, the binturong and Callie and Valor our wild mustangs. She shared their stories of rescue and healing.

Dr. Robert Perry, an equine veterinarian showed students how sonograms and digital X-rays are used to diagnose lameness. He also brought a skull, leg bone and hoof from a deceased horse for the children to study. Each student had the opportunity to listen to a horse’s heartbeat and gut sounds with a stethoscope. Each learned how to calculate a horse’s rate of respiration.

Bob and Cathy Horvath, certified wildlife rehabilitators, spoke passionately about protecting wildlife habitats. They brought many beautiful animals including owls, hawks, fox, porcupine, and skunk- all not releasable due to injury.

Terri Yezzi, founder of Save A Tail, brought two shelter rescues. Giddian is a sweet pit bull and Milinka, a lively mixed breed. She trained both as agility dogs. She taught the students training techniques and spoke of the plight of the American pit bull.

Dorothy Luik and Mary, her pit bull, represented the League for Animal Protection. Dorothy discussed the importance choosing the right shelter dog to join your family and the need to “adopt not shop.”

Many topics were discussed : puppy mills, therapy animals, Premarin mares and their foals. the carriage horse industry, factory farming, animal testing, humane euthanasia, animal intelligence and compassion. Alternatives and solutions were shared so that so that we can make informed and kind choices.

At the end of the week all participants were awarded Kaeli Kramer Foundation Animal Ambassador certificates. Each recipient pledged to encourage kindness, harmony and trust between humans and animals as well as amongst humans. Each promised to develop compassion to protect the lives of people, animals , plants and our earth.

A special thanks to Brookhaven Highway Superintendent Dan Losquadro and Director of the Holtsville Ecology Site April Perry for their generosity and hard work which made this program possible.

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