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The Truth about Cats and Dogs – The Unspeakable Truth

October 23, 2010

This post is difficult for me to write as I am an animal lover.  I am so flabbergasted by the endless killing that is taking place in our country.  The numbers are staggering of the unnecessary euthanization that is going on with pets.  I can no longer turn a blind eye to this and neither can you.  How did we let it get so bad?  When did we start thinking that animals are so expendable? 

An unbelievable 3 to 4 MILLION pets get put down each year in Canada.  This means that the number of euthanizations are higher than all of Greater Vancouver’s human population.  That makes me sick to my stomach but it’s the reality of irresponsibility and ignorance on our part.  An unspeakable 6 to 8 MILLION pets get put down in Unites States per year.  That’s double the massacre in Canada (3 to4M).  At it’s highest, that amounts to 913 animals euthanized per hour….15 pets per second.  An average of 50% of all dogs and cats that enter shelters are euthanized.  Doesn’t that sound ridiculous to you?

The brutal reality of pet population control. If we do not control the population, the shelters will, sadly.

I am so tired of hearing pets being killed because of our lack of respect for life.  They are not things that we decide to get and then decide they’re not suitable for our lifestyle.  They are not our entertainment or feel good objects.  They are life-long companions.  Living, breathing, feeling, conscious animals.  They give us unconditional, eternally forgiving love and in turn, many of us give them up because they just don’t fit our lifestyle: whether it’s because they shed too much, or they’re too much work (yes everyone, there is effort required to take care of a pet), or too noisy.  News flash: they are not merchandise that we can buy, then decide that we don’t like them and then bring them back for refund or resale. 

But let’s face it, there will always be an abundance of pets in shelters.  But what I would love to see is for there to be far fewer pets in the shelter and more people adopting so that there will never be any unnecessary euthanization.  And by the way, not all shelters control population with ethical means euthanization.  ….Some use the gas chamber and some use heart sticks (a painful injection through the pet’s chest walls, going through bone or muscle tissue and potentially puncturing the lung which inflicts major pain to the pet).

 The question is what can we all do to help?  Key word: All.  Whether you’re an animal lover or not, it should be everyone’s humanitarian duty to help. 

For Pet Owners:  The most important thing a pet owner should do is spay or neuter your pet.  If a neighbourhood has 5 un-spayed female cats roaming outdoors, they can potentially have 25 kittens in total by spring.  That’s one neighbourhood.  Dogs as well.  This is such an important step to take in controlling the pet population.  It is not cruel.  They will not miss their reproductive organs or wish that they could have babies.  They are not human beings.  Spaying and Neutering controls a lot of cancers and diseases.  Also, when you neuter/spay one pet, you are saving the lives of at least five other pets.  And please…. don’t abandon your pet. 

For Pet seekers:  If you are looking for a pet, always, always adopt.  There are so many pets that need good homes and there is literally every breed available: mixed and purebred (and really who gives a rat’s behind whether the pet has a certificate or not unless we’re breeders or entering our purebred into a contest).  I went on Petfinder searching for a Chihuahua and there were over 13,000 available across Canada and U.S.  There were 16,000 pitbulls available.  By adopting a pet, you save a life.  If you buy a pet, especially from a pet store, not only have you sacrificed another pet’s life but there’s always a chance the pet maybe from a puppy mill or kitten mill (one of the most inhumane ways to breed pets). 

So many puppy and adult pitbull in the shelters waiting to be adopted or euthanized. Explain it to them why some people rather but than adopt.

Also, please remember that before you adopt, do some research on the breed of pet that is most suitable for your lifestyle (where you live, the size of your home, the time you can allocate to having a pet, how active you are, how docile/energetic you want your pet to be).  And please remember all pets require time and effort to train.  Dogs need to be walked everyday.  And all pets need attention.  Also very important is know that dogs and cats can live way over a decade, so be committed to having them for their whole lives.  They would never abandon you so please return the favour.  Oh yeah, I also recommend watching as many episodes of Dog Whisperer (Cesar Millan) as you can.  He’s awesome. He does a fantastic job in helping you understand dog behaviour.

 For the government: selling of dogs & cats (and large birds) should be prohibited in pet stores.  No pet sales in pet stores = no puppy/kitten mills.  Anybody who sells pets should be a certified pet breeder and certified by the Humane Society.  And everyone should have a brief introduction to owning a pet (how long they live, what they need, how to keep their pet balanced).  They should also ban the breeding of certain types if the number of that breed is too high in the shelters.  This will encourage people to adopt instead.  And the ban can be lifted once the population of that breed is under control.  The number of pitbulls that are in shelters and are being euthanized is ridiculous.  What’s even more ridiculous is that so many more people are still buying pitbulls instead of adopting.

 For breeders, I’m sorry, but unless there is a really, really rare type of dog that you are trying to breed – and that’s still debatable – then I suggest you stop breeding dogs/cats.  I understand for many breeders, this profession is your bread and butter.  But why not instead rescue dogs from shelters, – breeds that you specialize in – rehab them and then adopt them out for a fee.  I don’t think there is anything wrong with making some profit out of rescuing animals.  Why not?  Win/Win: You profit – Fido survives.

 For every compassionate human being out there, whether you like pets or not, there is something that you can do.  Yes, donate.  Most rescuers do not receive government assistance and so they completely rely on donations and volunteers to help the animals.  There are hundreds of rescues out there and you can donate any amount you want.  Every bit of help counts.

 Remember, there are no bad pets, there are only bad owners.  And nowadays, a man is not a dog’s best friend.  In fact, it’s starting to look like man is a dog’s worst enemy. 

Let’s turn that around.  Please, do your part. 

Click icons below for some help on finding pets or info on how to help.  Also, please view the left bar of my home page to view a rescue pet that I’ve chosen to post.  There will be adoption info below the photo. 

Also please visit Part 2 of this post.

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One Comment
  1. Sam permalink

    wow… the numbers you posted are astonishing. I had no idea this is happening. Something must be done.

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