February 28, 2012 in Hot Topics
I read this post by Silently Free, written a long time ago about adoption versus purchase. In a nutshell, Silently Free was questioning whether or not she should be ashamed for buying Kip, her Australian Terrier, rather than adopting.
There are millions of dogs in need at shelters, and the brutal fact is that millions more die, and will continue dying, all for lack of a home. Rescue groups ask owners to spay and neuter their current animals, and to adopt when the time comes for a new addition. Billions of dollars are being spent on ad campaigns such as, “until there are none adopt one” and free or low cost spay and neuter clinics.
It works, but as I said on Silently Free’s blog, it’s a bit like giving someone an aspirin to treat a broken leg. Sure it might treat one symptom to a degree, but it’s not helping the root problem any at all.
So what is the root problem? Why do dogs end up in the shelter in the first place? Many reasons, but here are a few:
- Behavioral Problems
- Having a baby
- Unwanted litter
- Got Lost
Every one of these issues can present as totally selfish, or a valid, depending on the details. The problem isn’t how the dog ended up in the shelter. The problem is that every dog that ended up in the shelter got there because someone did not take responsibility for their dog. We are a (global) nation of people who shirk responsibility, and there in lies the problem.
You can force people to spay and neuter, you can make tests and handbooks and required learning material, but those are just more attempts to treat the superficial problems.
The only way to treat the whole problem is to somehow nudge the entire global populous toward becoming a culture of people who take responsibility for all the creatures in their lives.
I know all of you I’ve met in blog land are responsible people, who care about their dogs. What are your suggestions for curing the root cause of pet abandonment?
So what is t