What You Can Do for Wildlife

Be an Educated Consumer

Each animal has an inherent value and each species plays a vital role in the ecosystem in which he/she lives. We must conserve these species and protect their habitats. Forests and other wild places must be preserved as homes for wild animals. Think about what you can do to ensure that wildlife habitats are protected for wildlife. As a consumer, be aware of what goes into the products you purchase, and make choices that have less harmful impact on animals and their habitats.

Here are a few ways to help wildlife by being an educated consumer:

  • Avoid any cosmetics, medicines or foods which are based on endangered or threatened animal species.
  • Never buy exotic pets caught in the wild.
  • Avoid purchasing exotic animals, particularly those who were wild-caught.
  • For information on species at risk, see the CITES database at www.cites.org, or the more inclusive and cautionary IUCN Red List at www.iucnredlist.org.
  • As a consumer, be wary of products made from listed wildlife species.
  • Remember it is illegal to import a CITES listed species without a permit.
  • Be part of the solution: support genuine efforts that keep wildlife in the wild, such as photo safaris or community-based humane education programs.

Check out our publications about Wildlife, and share the publications with others.

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Call, Write & Email

Here are a few actions you can take to inform others about your concern for wildlife:

Endangered Species

  • Urge your elected officials to support projects overseas that help conserve endangered animals.


  • The Animal Welfare Institute is working with legislators, veterinarians, inventors, biologists, trappers and the public to fulfill its commitment to ending the long-drawn out pain and fear caused to animals caught in leghold traps. Support proposed federal, state or local legislation against the use of steel jaw leghold traps. Let your legislators, as well as your state wildlife agency, know that you support a prohibition on the use of steel-jaw leghold traps in your state and across the country.
  • If you see a non-target species (such as a dog, cat, bird or threatened/endangered species) caught in a trap, seek veterinary care for the animal. Next, document and report your findings to your local humane society and AWI. Such information will aid our efforts to pass laws that ban inhumane traps.
  • If you or someone you know hires a nuisance wildlife control business to address a wildlife conflict situation, do not allow them to use leghold traps and other cruel and non-selective trapping devices. Ask for their trapping policies in writing before you hire them.

Wild Horses

  • Send an email to the President and Interior Secretary calling for a moratorium on all roundups until the wild horse program has been evaluated from top to bottom.
  • Contact your US Senators and US Representative urging them to help clean up the BLM’s wild horse program.
  • Write the Secretary of Interior opposing the Bureau of Land Management's overzealous wild horse roundup policy. Again this year, the BLM plans to round up far more horses than they admit are adoptable. Urge them to act responsibly and stop rounding up our national treasures.
    The Honorable Ryan Zinke
    Secretary of the Interior
    US Department of the Interior
    1849 C. Street N.W.
    Washington, DC 20240
  • For children: you can send a message to Washington, DC that the horses should be respected and protected. Print out 2 copies of this drawing, color them in however you want, sign your name, and mail one to each of your US Senators in Washington, DC.

Check out our publications about Wildlife, and share the publications with others.

Sign up for AWI eAlerts to stay informed!