*Atlanta — Celebrated gospel artist DeWayne Woods sings a message of mercy and love to congregations of thousands every week—and now, in a brand-new PETA campaign, he’s encouraging everyone to show that mercy to all of God’s creatures, particularly during the cold winter months. The new campaign, which features Woods and his two dogs, Bailey and Brach, quotes Proverbs 12:10—”The righteous care for the needs of their animals”—and urges, “Make your dogs a part of the family. Let them live indoors where it’s safe and warm, and never keep them chained.” A high-resolution version of the ad is available here.
In an exclusive PETA interview (below), Woods explains his interpretation of what it means for humanity to have “dominion” over animals: “I think it’s just showing them the way, showing them that you love them and that you’re concerned about them—you want to watch them grow up and be the best animals that they could possibly be.” He also stresses the importance of spaying and neutering and of choosing kind forms of family entertainment—which means staying away from circuses that use animals.
Dogs who spend their lives at the end of a chain ache for companionship and suffer from all weather extremes—including frightening thunderstorms, bitter cold, and summer heat—and are often deprived of basic veterinary care. Living day after day in isolation causes these highly social pack animals to become lonely and distressed. Dogs on chains easily become agitated, are perpetually frustrated when they realize that they are unable to flee from perceived threats, and grow aggressively protective of their tiny territories. Hundreds of people—mostly children—have been mauled and even killed after wandering within reach of chained dogs or encountering dogs who had broken free from chains.
A stage actor and gospel singer, DeWayne Woods is the recipient of four Stellar Awards. He joins a long list of musicians and other celebrities—including Simon Cowell, Taraji P. Henson, Paul McCartney, Angela Simmons, Russell Simmons, Wendy Williams, and many more—who have teamed up with PETA to promote compassion for animals.
DeWayne Woods is available for in-studio and remote interviews. For more information, please visit PETA.org.
Kaitlynn Kelly / PETA