Posts Tagged ‘cats’

A great PSA illustrating the importance of spaying & neutering your pets!

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About 7 years ago, a girlfriend of mine surprised me with a 1 year old cat she had adopted from the Humane Society as a gift for my birthday. While in general I think giving pet as gifts is a terrible idea, in this case it actually worked out. I was thrilled to have my new kitty.  I had always been a cat person and had loved having cats on our farm growing up, but this cat, who I named Kisa, was my first pet as an adult.  She is now 8 years old and has been a near perfect little companion.  (I say “near” because I have never met a cat who talks as much or as loudly as she does – it’s kind of insane. But hey, I guess she has a lot to say!)

Anyway, a few years later, I got my little doggy, Otis.  He was about 15 months old, and looked so pathetic on the Humane Society’s website that I had to go look at him – “just to look”. I wasn’t going to adopt him, obviously, but I had to go LOOK at him. Because that’s always a good idea, right?  Well, upon arrival I knew I was a goner.  He looked at me with these sad, sad eyes, head slightly bowed, and back rounded, and I just knew I couldn’t leave him there.  So I took him home, and he won his way into my heart by pooping in the house, chewing on my shoes, and waking me up several times a night.  He has since learned his manners (for the most part).

So what does this have to do with veganism?  Well, it’s funny, but I think it took living with these 2 furballs for a while for me to realize that they were really no different from other animals–namely, “food” animals.  Someone said to me one day, “For how much you love animals, I’m surprised you eat them.”  That really kind of hit home.  How could I know with all my heart that Otis & Kisa had these big personalities, desires to do things like get treats, go for walks, spend time outside, and so forth, but deny that pigs and cows and chickens have those same desires?  It didn’t make sense anymore.

In some countries, humans eat dogs and cats. Americans find that to be repulsive, and yet what makes cats and dogs so different from other animals?  Something to think about….

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Many of you have probably seen the news story about the woman who recently cloned her pet Pitbull, Booger, who passed away from cancer in 2006. The cloning procedure resulted in 5 miniature copies of Booger and cost the woman $50,000.

Yes, $50,000.

Look, if there is anyone who understands what it’s like to love a dog, it’s me. My dog Otis is like my baby. I cannot imagine my life without him, and I dread the day when I will have to. He is a sweet, kind, loving, stubborn little guy who makes my life so much more enjoyable – I would do anything for him.

Well, almost anything. I would NOT clone him so that I could have him again and again and again. Why? Because it wouldn’t be fair. This country alone is wildly overpopulated with unwanted pets. The Humane Society of the United States estimates that between 3 and 4 million dogs and cats are euthanized each year due to overpopulation. These are often times healthy, young animals that shelters just can’t house—they aren’t vicious or sick or old. They are simply victims of overpopulation.

How, then, can someone justify spending $50,000 to CLONE their dog? How can you look the other way while millions of other animals will die, knowing that you could have saved at least one more had you not decided to do something so irresponsible? What’s more – think of how that $50,000 could have been better used to benefit homeless animals if it had been donated to her local shelter or to some other animal advocacy organization!

I think when you look at it from that perspective, there’s just really no way to justify cloning – no matter how much you love your pet. I hope that my dog Otis lives a long and happy life, and that when he passes, I know I did the very best for him that I could. Then, when the time is right, I will go to a shelter and find a new dog to love and will start that incredibly rewarding (though eventually sad) process all over again.

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