Classroom Resources

Freedom from Pain, Injury & Disease

Background Information to Share with Students

The Freedom from pain, injury, and disease is all about preventing health issues in domestic animals, and rapidly diagnosing and treating them when they do occur.

If you fell down and hurt your arm would happen? You’d likely tell an adult and they may recommend seeing a doctor to make sure your arm isn’t broken. When our pets or farm animals get hurt, they need medical treatment just as you would, except they would see a specialized doctor for animals, a veterinarian.

Veterinarians have special training that helps them determine what is causing pain in animals, which is a pretty tough job since animals can’t tell them what hurts! Once they know what is causing the pain, they can treat the animal, helping them to feel better.

Since animals are unable to communicate with us using English, it is important to pay special attention to them to make sure they are not in pain or unwell.

Prevention is a key aspect of this freedom! Do you go to the doctor’s office every year for a checkup? What about an eye doctor or dentist? Just like people need to visit doctors, animals require checkups from their veterinarian! Going to the veterinarian on a regular basis will keep your pet healthy as it allows the veterinarian to find problems before they become troublesome. By catching problems before they start, your pet has a better chance to stay healthy.

Have you ever gone to the doctors and gotten a vaccination? Just like humans, animals also need to get vaccines to prevent future potential illnesses! In fact, taking your pet to the veterinarian to get vaccinated is a very important part of being a responsible pet owner. Certain diseases, like rabies are quite contagious and can make animals very sick.

That concludes our discussion on the third of the Five Freedoms: the freedom from pain, injury, and disease! As responsible pet owners, it is our duty to try our best to keep our animals healthy and pain free. Always remember to contact your veterinarian if you have any concerns about your animal’s health. 

Discussion Questions:

  • Do you think it would be more difficult to be a veterinarian for animals or a doctor for people? Explain.
  • What does prevention mean? What are things we do on a daily basis that prevent us from experiencing injury or illness?
    • Wearing a seat belt, washing our hands, looking both ways before crossing the street, practicing fire drills, wearing a bike helmet, eating healthy foods, etc.
  • What are things we do for our pets/farm animals that help them stay safe (by preventing injury and disease)?
    • Keepings dogs on a leash or in a fenced yard, keeping farm animals in a fences property, keeping cats indoors, using safe toys, having livestock guard dogs, etc.
  • There are lots of different careers you can do working with animals or helping them. Brainstorm a list of careers!


1. Career Research

Have students find a job working with animals that they think is interesting. Have students research the career to discover the answers to the following questions. Students can create a poster or presentation to share with the class.

Research Questions

  • What does this person do?
  • What kinds of animals do they work with?
  • What special training do they need?

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