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An Ideal Solution to Animal Overpopulation: Human Accountability

February 5, 2010

Did you all hear that horrible noise yesterday? It was an intense banging sound mixed with a side-order of grumbling and a dash of whining. This intense display of human communication was coming out of my certified professional dog trainer mom. It seems she came across yet one more article on the issue of the overpopulation of animals in our country.

The focus of the Santa Barbara Independent pet related article was actually on the “Chihuahua Explosion” in California – being part Chihuahua myself, it kinda hit home for me.It obviously hit home for my Ventura dog trainer mom because of how she was behaving: eyes rolling towards ceiling, speaking loudly at the computer asking it questions like it had an answer, grunting a few times and burying her head in her hand – if it wasn’t in her hand, her head was against the wall – not a good thing. Being an inquisitive canine I have learned that these cues my mom is exhibiting predicts yours truly needs to take charge. It’s all about great teamwork ya know!

Anyway, the “straw” in the article was about “blaming Hollywood” for our increase in Chihuahua’s in California. Okay, I agree with the fact that anytime a specific species or breed of animal is popularized via the media then yes, there seems to be an increase in the general population of that animal. So yes, “Hollywood” does have some influence. But to place the blame directly on “Hollywood” is a complete cop-out on the main issue: irresponsible breeding! Now hold up, before all of the comments on the right to breed dogs come flowing in, allow this inquisitive canine to elaborate.

Let’s look at this from a more schematic approach: Flowcharts! (Mom and I love flowcharts – they’re so handy!) But we’re going to work backwards.

  • End result: Millions of shelter animals killed every year!
  • How did the animals end up in the shelter?: Humans didn’t want them, humans can’t afford them, humans didn’t mean for their dogs or cats to procreate, humans weren’t paying attention to what their pets were doing. (Hmm, see the “human” trend?) And the “humans fault” list goes on and on…
  • How did the animals end up on the planet?: Humans breeding willy-nilly, humans leaving dogs and cats intact giving him or her the ability to make more of themselves. (Uh, not spaying and neutering!)

Yes, spaying and neutering animals is beyond important. Us non-human animals don’t consider the long term consequences, like where are our offspring going to live and how are we going to support our kids? Nope, we just go for it whenever we can – because that’s what our DNA says to do. BTW, you humans aren’t much different. It’s just us dogs and cats aren’t able to don a condom before the dreaded act – darn the lack of opposable thumbs!

To me and my dog training mom, we believe folks need to go beyond spaying and neutering – there needs to be a complete crackdown on the world of breeding! Yes, there are responsible breeders out there, but unfortunately the irresponsible ones have ruined it for everyone else.

If pets are considered property then we should be treated as such. Meaning, if a human is going to run a legitimate business selling items to the public (ones that can cause harm to others) then these people need to jump through hoops to make it legal: permits, business license, insurance, written procedures and guidelines, quality assurance etc.

It’s not legal for mom to sell the baked goods she makes here at home, so why are humans allowed to make animals and sell them? I mean, if running a prostitution ring or meth lab isn’t legal, then breeding animals to make money or because the dog or cat “is cute” shouldn’t be legal either.

As for which animals society should be allowed to breed? How about breeding for functional behaviors all of you humans seem to want, as opposed to “jobs” that we’re no longer needed for! (Talk about being outsourced!)

Hmm, I wonder if you humans will ever learn from your own behavior? I wonder if humans will ever hold themselves accountable or if they will continue to place blame on others? Something for this inquisitive canine to ponder…


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