92 Best Quotes About Animal Rights — To Help Fight Cruelty

Animal Rights Quotes Graphics: It’s not enough to love animals; we must actively protect and preserve them. It’s our duty and responsibility as custodians of this planet. — Daphne Sheldrick

Animals hold a mirror to our humanity, reflecting our capacity for empathy, compassion, and coexistence. And because of that, the topic of animal rights isn’t merely about animals — but also about us — about the kind of world we wish to inhabit. 

It’s a conversation about respect for all life and the recognition that animals, like humans, are entitled to live free from harm and exploitation.

Countless animal lovers, conservationists, veterinarians, and activists have offered their words about the ethical treatment of animals and the urgency of this cause. These voices inspire us to reconsider our actions, encouraging us to foster a world that respects and values animal life.

We’ve worked to curate the best quotes about animal rights and from people on the frontlines of the fight. These quotes provide insights into the fundamental rights of animals, urging us to be kinder, more compassionate stewards of the planet.

Whether you’re an avid supporter of animal rights, a pet owner, or someone simply exploring the topic, these quotes will offer a fresh perspective on our relationship with animals and our responsibilities towards them.

Read on to be inspired by these thought-provoking and powerful quotes on animal rights:

The Best Animal Rights Quotes

Famous Quotes

“If we can teach people about wildlife, they will be touched. Share my wildlife with me. Because humans want to save things that they love.”
— Steve Irwin

“If we can teach people about wildlife, they will be touched. Share my wildlife with me. Because humans want to save things that they love.” — Steve Irwin

“He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.”
— Emmanuel Kant

“He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.” — Emmanuel Kant

“To my mind, the life of a lamb is no less precious than that of a human being. I should be unwilling to take the life of a lamb for the sake of the human body. I hold that, the more helpless a creature, the more entitled it is to the protection by man from the cruelty of man.”
— Mahatma Gandhi

“To my mind, the life of a lamb is no less precious than that of a human being. I should be unwilling to take the life of a lamb for the sake of the human body. I hold that, the more helpless a creature, the more entitled it is to the protection by man from the cruelty of man.” — Mahatma Gandhi

“It’s not enough to love animals; we must actively protect and preserve them. It’s our duty and responsibility as custodians of this planet.”
— Daphne Sheldrick

“It’s not enough to love animals; we must actively protect and preserve them. It’s our duty and responsibility as custodians of this planet.” — Daphne Sheldrick

“It takes nothing away from a human to be kind to an animal.”
— Joaquin Phoenix

“It takes nothing away from a human to be kind to an animal.” — Joaquin Phoenix

“Every individual can make a positive impact on the lives of elephants and all animals. It starts with education, empathy, and taking action.”
— Sangdeun “Lek” Chailert

“Every individual can make a positive impact on the lives of elephants and all animals. It starts with education, empathy, and taking action.” — Sangdeun “Lek” Chailert

“Animals don’t have a voice. But I do. A loud one. I’m a fucking big mouth. My voice is for them. And I’ll never shut up while they suffer.”
— Ricky Gervais

“Animals don’t have a voice. But I do. A loud one. I’m a fucking big mouth. My voice is for them. And I’ll never shut up while they suffer.” — Ricky Gervais

“You cannot share your life with a dog… or a cat, and not know perfectly well that animals have personalities and minds and feelings.”
Jane Goodall

“You cannot share your life with a dog… or a cat, and not know perfectly well that animals have personalities and minds and feelings.” — Jane Goodall

“There is no fundamental difference between man and the higher animals in their mental faculties. The lower animals, like man, manifestly feel pleasure and pain, happiness and misery.”
— Charles Darwin

“There is no fundamental difference between man and the higher animals in their mental faculties. The lower animals, like man, manifestly feel pleasure and pain, happiness and misery.” — Charles Darwin

“The animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with the extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear.”
— Caroline Earle White

“The animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with the extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear.” — Caroline Earle White

On Caring for Animals

“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.”
— Anatole France

“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.” — Anatole France

“When it comes to the last hour of your life, it will be a great consolation to feel that you always protect the poor, the helpless, and the unfortunate; and that you exercised a particular care towards animals.”
— Caroline Earle White

“Pets are humanizing. They remind us we have an obligation and responsibility to preserve and nurture and care for all life.”
— James Cromwell

“I could discern clearly, even at that early age, the essential difference between people who are kind to dogs and people who really love them.”
— Frances Power Cobbe

“Animals need people, too. They need our care and kindness.”
— Mary Lindeen

“Animals need people, too. They need our care and kindness.” — Mary Lindeen

“People who care about animals tend to care about people. They don’t care about animals to the exclusion of people. Caring is not a finite resource and, even more than that, it’s like a muscle: the more you exercise it, the stronger it gets.”
— Jonathan Foer

“My mother and dad were big animal lovers, too. I just don’t know how I would have lived without animals around me. I’m fascinated by them — both domestic pets and the wild community. They just are the most interesting things in the world to me, and it’s made such a difference in my lifetime.”
Betty White

“True compassion is showing kindness towards animals, without expecting anything in return”
— Paul Oxton

“You have to love animals for what they are or leave them alone. The best thing you can do if you love them is leave them alone and see that other people do too.”
— Pat Derby

“Love of animals is a universal impulse, a common ground on which all of us may meet. By loving and understanding animals, perhaps we humans shall come to understand each other.”
— Louis J. Camuti

“We must remember that our actions towards animals reflect our humanity. It is our responsibility to be compassionate and kind.”
— Velma Bronn Johnston

“We need, in a special way, to work twice as hard to help people understand that the animals are fellow creatures, that we must protect them and love them as we love ourselves.”
— Cesar Chavez

“We need, in a special way, to work twice as hard to help people understand that the animals are fellow creatures, that we must protect them and love them as we love ourselves.” — Cesar Chavez

Stop Animal Abuse Quotes

“I cannot, nor will I, stand still and see these animals mistreated, neglected, and abused by those who have no understanding of their needs and nature.”
— Velma Bronn Johnston

“I cannot, nor will I, stand still and see these animals mistreated, neglected, and abused by those who have no understanding of their needs and nature.” — Velma Bronn Johnston

“It is up to the public to stop attending these theatrical, and aquatic shows, and circuses with wild animals. The rhetoric about how the animals are happy and well cared for are lies. Don’t be swayed by them. The money behind these shows is huge; there is nothing good about them.”
— Tippi Hedren

“Animals do not exist for our entertainment. They deserve to live their lives free from exploitation and abuse.”
— Pat Derby

“It made me feel particularly sickened to know that this kind of callous attitude toward animals is repeated again and again in laboratories around this country. Animals, whether they’re dogs, cats, monkeys, or any other sentient beings, should not be subjected to cruel and unnecessary experimentation.”
Jane Goodall

“Animal abuse is an international problem, which has been part of human civilization for millennia.”
— Catherine Tiplady

“Animal abuse makes my blood boil, but that also fuels me into action. I don’t stay in the anger, as that just eats up my energy and my soul — I let it galvanize me. When I see something horrible I think, ‘What can I do? Who can I alert?’ I let that lead the way, rather than the bad feelings.”
— Jo-Anne McArthur

“We must break the cycle of violence by standing up against all forms of animal abuse.”
— Jane Velez-Mitchell

“Every act of animal abuse diminishes our collective humanity. We must work together to create a world free from cruelty and violence.”
— Sangdeun “Lek” Chailert

“Every act of animal abuse diminishes our collective humanity. We must work together to create a world free from cruelty and violence.” — Sangdeun “Lek” Chailert

About Saving Animals

“Conservation is not just about saving species; it’s about saving ecosystems and the delicate balance of nature.”
— Biruté Galdikas

“Conservation is not just about saving species; it’s about saving ecosystems and the delicate balance of nature.” — Biruté Galdikas

“The work to protect one species benefits us all.”
— Jennifer Skiff, Rescuing Ladybugs: Inspirational Encounters with Animals That Changed the World

“The only way to save a rhinoceros is to save the environment in which it lives, because there’s a mutual dependency between it and millions of other species of both animals and plants.”
David Attenborough

“Only if we understand... can we care. Only if we care… will we help them. Only if we help... shall they be saved.”
Jane Goodall

“Only if we understand... can we care. Only if we care… will we help them. Only if we help... shall they be saved.” — Jane Goodall‍

“Saving animals is as simple as choosing synthetic alternatives instead of real fur”
— Natalie Imbruglia

“Gorilla tourism is not an intrusion into their world but a key to their survival.”
— Dian Fossey

“It’s not whether animals will survive, it’s whether man has the will to save them.”
— Anthony D. Williams

“Our ultimate goal should be to leave a world where all creatures can live freely, in harmony with nature, and without fear of human exploitation.”
— Daphne Sheldrick

“Our ultimate goal should be to leave a world where all creatures can live freely, in harmony with nature, and without fear of human exploitation.” — Daphne Sheldrick

About Adopting Pets

“Our goal: to convince people to rescue and adopt instead of buying or selling animals, to disavow the language and concept of animal ownership.”
— Eliot Katz

“Our goal: to convince people to rescue and adopt instead of buying or selling animals, to disavow the language and concept of animal ownership.” — Eliot Katz

“Adopted pets are the best pets you can have. Most adoptable pets come from loving homes that simply cannot care for them anymore. Or they are strays who’ve been on their own without the loving care they deserve.”
— Josh Duhamel

“Saving one dog will not change the world, but surely for that one dog, the world will change forever.”
— Karen Davison

“Saving one dog will not change the world, but surely for that one dog, the world will change forever.” — Karen Davison

About Animal Cruelty

“Cruelty to animals is one of the most significant vices of a low and ignoble people. Wherever one notices them, they constitute a sign of ignorance and brutality which cannot be painted over even by all the evidence of wealth and luxury.”
— Alexander von Humboldt

“Cruelty to animals is one of the most significant vices of a low and ignoble people. Wherever one notices them, they constitute a sign of ignorance and brutality which cannot be painted over even by all the evidence of wealth and luxury.” — Alexander von Humboldt‍

“Until we have the courage to recognize cruelty for what it is, whether its victim is human or animal, we cannot expect things to be much better in this world. There can be no double standard. We cannot have peace among men whose hearts find delight in killing any living creature. By every act that glorifies or even tolerates such moronic delight in killing, we set back the progress of humanity.”
— Rachel Carson

“The reason that animals are being confined in this way, the reason that factory farms exist, is because of consumer demand for these products. The best thing that we can do as individuals to prevent animal cruelty is to stop supporting these industries.”
— Adam Durand

“As custodians of the planet, it is our responsibility to deal with all species with kindness, love, and compassion. That these animals suffer through human cruelty is beyond understanding. Please help to stop this madness.”
— Richard Gere

“Together, we can make a difference. By joining forces and working collaboratively, we can create a world where animals are no longer subjected to cruelty.”
— Jill Robinson

“Together, we can make a difference. By joining forces and working collaboratively, we can create a world where animals are no longer subjected to cruelty.” — Jill Robinson

“The time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look on the murder of men.”
— Leonardo da Vinci

“People speak sometimes about the bestial cruelty of man, but that is terribly unjust and offensive to beasts, no animal could ever be so cruel as a man, so artfully, so artistically cruel.”
— Fyodor Dostoyevsky

“Show me the enforced laws of a state for the prevention of cruelty to animals and I in turn will give you a correct estimate of the refinement, enlightenment, integrity, and equity of that commonwealth’s people.”
— L.T. Danshiell

“We must fight against the spirit of unconscious cruelty with which we treat the animals. Animals suffer as much as we do. True humanity does not allow us to impose such sufferings on them. It is our duty to make the whole world recognize it. Until we extend our circle of compassion to all living things, humanity will not find peace.”
— Albert Schweitzer

“When humans act with cruelty, we characterize them as ‘animals’, yet the only animal that displays cruelty is humanity.”
— Anthony Douglas Williams

“When humans act with cruelty, we characterize them as ‘animals’, yet the only animal that displays cruelty is humanity.” — Anthony Douglas Williams‍

On Respecting Animals

“I have developed a deep respect for animals. I consider them fellow living creatures with certain rights that should not be violated any more than those of humans.”
— James Stewart

“I have developed a deep respect for animals. I consider them fellow living creatures with certain rights that should not be violated any more than those of humans.” — James Stewart

“Animals are indeed more ancient, more complex and in many ways more sophisticated than us. They are more perfect because they remain within Nature’s fearful symmetry just as Nature intended. They should be respected and revered…”
— Daphne Sheldrick

“To be ‘for animals’ is not to be ‘against humanity.’ To require others to treat animals justly, as their rights require, is not to ask for anything more nor less in their case than in the case of any human to whom just treatment is due. The animal rights movement is a part of, not opposed to, the human rights movement. Attempts to dismiss it as anti-human are mere rhetoric.”
— Tom Regan

“Nothing living should ever be treated with contempt. Whatever it is that lives, a man, a tree, or a bird, should be touched gently, because the time is short. Civilization is another word for respect for life…”
— Elizabeth Goudge

“Animals are not property or ‘things’ but rather living organisms, subjects of a life, who are worthy of our compassion, respect, friendship, and support.”
— Marc Bekoff

“Animals are not property or ‘things’ but rather living organisms, subjects of a life, who are worthy of our compassion, respect, friendship, and support.” — Marc Bekoff‍

“This is what an animal rights philosophy is really about. Understanding the importance of recognizing that all animals have an inherent right not to be abused by us and then following the ethical path this understanding leads us to is special indeed.”
— John F. Kullberg

“Animals have certain rights, as inalienable as those of man to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”
— Caroline Earle White

“Never believe that animals suffer less than humans. Pain is the same for them that it is for us. Even worse, because they cannot help themselves.”
— Louis J. Camuti

“Life is as dear to mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures.”
— The Dalai Lama

“If you look into their [chimpanzees’] eyes, you know you’re looking into a thinking mind. They teach us that we are not the only beings with personalities, minds capable of rational thought, altruism and a sense of humor. That leads to new respect for other animals, respect for the environment and respect for all life.”
Jane Goodall

“I believe animals should be respected as citizens of this earth. They should have the right to their own freedom, their own families, and their own life.”
— John Feldmann

“I believe animals should be respected as citizens of this earth. They should have the right to their own freedom, their own families, and their own life.” — John Feldmann

Quotes About How You Treat Animals

“How you treat animals will tell me what kind of person you are.”
— Karen Becker

“How you treat animals will tell me what kind of person you are.” — Karen Becker

“You can always tell about somebody by the way they put their hands on an animal.”
— Betty White

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
— Mahatma Gandhi

“I call my horses ‘divine mirrors’ — they reflect back the emotions you put in. If you put in love and respect and kindness and curiosity, the horse will return that.”
— Allan Hamilton

“I have always felt that the way we treat animals is a pretty good indicator of the compassion we are capable of for the human race.”
— Ali MacGraw

“Our treatment of animals is important to our own internal state. If we are to expand our horizons, to grow to understand what the relatedness of each and every thing means, then our love and appreciation of all life is essential. Our respect and reverence for all living things will be reflected in our own living.”
— Bill Schul

“It always matters how you treat other people, how you treat animals, and how you treat yourself. It always matters what you do. It always matters what you say. And it always matters what you eat.”
— John Robbins

“The basis of all animal rights should be the Golden Rule: we should treat them as we would wish them to treat us, were any other species in our dominant position.”
— Christine Stevens

“The basis of all animal rights should be the Golden Rule: we should treat them as we would wish them to treat us, were any other species in our dominant position.” — Christine Stevens

On Eating Meat & Being Vegan / Vegetarian

“Being vegan is not about perfection; it’s about progress. It’s about continuously learning and growing to reduce our impact on animals and the environment.”
— Genesis Butler

“Being vegan is not about perfection; it’s about progress. It’s about continuously learning and growing to reduce our impact on animals and the environment.” — Genesis Butler

“Thousands of people who say they ‘love’ animals sit down once or twice a day to enjoy the flesh of creatures who have been utterly deprived of everything that could make their lives worth living and who endured the awful suffering and the terror of the abattoirs…”
Jane Goodall

“There’s a tremendous amount of pain in the world. Every day, I do the best I can do to mitigate that. The easiest thing I can do every single day is to be vegan. I can additionally help animals through my work as a documentary photographer. Some days I can do quite a bit, and other days not so much. But I continue to do my best.”
— Jo-Anne McArthur 

“I’m a vegetarian and very much active in regards to how I feel about animal rights and protecting animals and giving animals a voice. But at the same time, I appreciate and respect other people’s decisions to eat meat. The only thing that I hope is that people are educated, that they’re aware, that they’re living a conscious lifestyle.”
— Abbie Cornish

“Choosing a plant-based lifestyle is an act of empowerment, where we take control of our health and contribute to a more compassionate world.”
— Jane Velez-Mitchell

“Choosing a plant-based lifestyle is an act of empowerment, where we take control of our health and contribute to a more compassionate world.” — Jane Velez-Mitchell

“‘Never again’ is not about what others shouldn’t do to us. It’s about what we shouldn’t do to others. ‘Never again’ means that we must never again perpetrate mass atrocities against other living beings. That we must never again raise animals for food or any other form of exploitation.”
— Alex Hershaft

“Some people express abhorrence at eating meat, yet make an exception for fish and other ‘seafood’ to remain a part of their diet. Fish, it seems to them, ‘don’t count.’ Nor, it turns out, do they count when it comes to compiling the daily toll of animals slaughtered: cows, chickens, pigs and sheep are counted individually — fish — on the other hand, have their lives measured by the tonne. But even by weight, theirs is a colossal number — over 150million tonnes killed for human consumption every year in the first decades of the 21st century.”
— Jo-Anne McArthur, Hidden: Animals in the Anthropocene

“If you are not vegan, please consider going vegan. It’s a matter of nonviolence. Being vegan is your statement that you reject violence to other sentient beings, to yourself, and to the environment, on which all sentient beings depend.”
— Gary L. Francione

“Make a heart connection when speaking with people about veganism. Speak with the intent to listen so you can connect with them on their level. Then what you say will count and have a true effect.”
— Gwenna Hunter

“Make a heart connection when speaking with people about veganism. Speak with the intent to listen so you can connect with them on their level. Then what you say will count and have a true effect.” — Gwenna Hunter

More Animal Rights Quotes

“If having a soul means being able to feel love and loyalty and gratitude, then animals are better off than a lot of humans.”
— James Herriot

“If having a soul means being able to feel love and loyalty and gratitude, then animals are better off than a lot of humans.” — James Herriot

“To survive today, other animals must endure global warming, pollution, and fewer habitats. More tragically, they must endure the silence of human hearts.”
Anthony Douglas Williams, Inside the Divine Pattern

“But are we not working for human beings? Are we not constantly striving to make men and women more humane and disposed to all kindly feelings and to teach children to become gentle and merciful? Is not everything which tends to elevate man in the mortal scale a benefit to him, and is it not rendering him incalculable service to teach him to control his passions, as we do when we prevent him from weakening his anger upon his horses?”
— Caroline Earle White

“Such short little lives our pets have to spend with us, and they spend most of it waiting for us to come home each day. It is amazing how much love and laughter they bring into our lives and even how much closer we become with each other because of them.”
— John Grogan

“Dogs do speak, but only to those who know how to listen.”
— Orhan Pamuk

“People must have renounced, it seems to me, all natural intelligence to dare to advance that animals are but animated machines… It appears to me, besides, that such people can never have observed with attention the character of animals, not to have distinguished among them the different voices of need, of suffering, of joy, of pain, of love, of anger, and of all their affections. It would be very strange that they should express so well what they could not feel.”
— Voltaire

“We do not have the right to use animals for any real or perceived need, whether it be food, clothing, entertainment, medical issues.”
— Janine Motta

“We do not have the right to use animals for any real or perceived need, whether it be food, clothing, entertainment, medical issues.” — Janine Motta‍

“Like it or not, we humans are bound up with our fellows, and with the other plants and animals all over the world. Our lives are intertwined.”
— Carl Sagan

“Species other than man have rights, too. Having finished all the requisites of our proud, materialistic civilization, our neon-lit society, does nature, which is the basis for our existence, have the right to live on? Do we have enough reverence for life to concede to wilderness this right?”
— Margaret Murie

“If you really care about animals, then stop trying to figure out how to exploit them ‘compassionately’. Just stop exploiting them.”
― Gary L Francione

“Non-violence leads to the highest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages.”
— Thomas Edison

“I re-trained myself to focus on the good in the world. To focus on hope, and happiness, and optimism, rather than the bad I was seeing. My being depressed wasn’t going to help the animals, and it was going to lead to burnout. Animal advocacy is a hard thing because it’s a long, uphill battle, so we really all need to look after ourselves.”
— Jo-Anne McArthur

“We are not superior. There are no clear distinctions between us and animals.”
— Michael W. Fox

“We are not superior. There are no clear distinctions between us and animals.” — Michael W. Fox

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