Along with your poppy, this Remembrance Day you can also wear a horse, dog, pigeon or cat pin. The Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Humane Society is honouring Remembrance Day by selling these four Animals in War commemorative pins.
The first Animals in War pin debuted in 2017. This year's choices each cost $12, or get all four for $40, for purchase here.
Funds from the sale of the pins help provide care for animals in need, and a dollar from each one sold is donated to Royal Canadian Legion branches across Ontario to support veterans.
Those ordering Animals in War pins are asked to do it by Nov. 3 in order to receive them in time for Remembrance Day. The pins are designed to be worn alongside the traditional Remembrance Day poppy in order to simultaneously remember veterans and the animals that served by their side.
“On November 11, we remember all those who served, including the animals who stood bravely alongside our veterans,” Ontario SPCA and Humane Society chief executive officer Doug Brooks said in a media release. “By wearing the Animals in War pin alongside your poppy this Remembrance Day, you are remembering the courage and sacrifice of our veterans and the animals who gave everything for us.”
A variety of animals have served in wartime. Mules carried artillery, horses transported troops and hauled field guns, pigeons delivered crucial messages, cats served as companions and kept ships free of vermin, and dogs have served as messengers, medical assistants, bomb detectors, and search and rescue workers.
The Ontario SPCA and Humane Society is a registered charity that was established in 1873. The Society and its network of communities facilitate and provide province-wide leadership on matters relating to the prevention of cruelty to animals and the promotion of animal well-being.
The organization offers a variety of mission-based programs, including: community-based sheltering; animal wellness services; provincial animal transfers; shelter health and wellness; high-volume spaying and neutering services; animal rescue; animal advocacy; Indigenous partnership programs; and humane education.
The Royal Canadian Legion’s mission is to serve veterans, including serving military and Royal Canadian Mounted Police members and their families. It was founded in 1925 and has close to 250,000 members in 1,350 branches across the country.
The Royal Canadian Legion and its members are also responsible for the annual poppy campaign, in which replica poppy lapel pins are given away from the last Friday of October until Remembrance Day. While they’re distributed freely, donations are appreciated as a means of raising funds in support of veterans and their families.