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A Sign of the Times

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January 25, 2010 – Comments (4)

As the number of job losses and foreclosures has mounted over the past two years, some people have chosen to surrender their animals, unable to afford pet food let alone veterinary care.

The above came from an article entitled:  Pets in the Recession: Howls for Help, and given the state of the overall economy, I guess I should have expected it.  I'm not quite so sure why this particular article seemed to stick with me so much... though, then again, maybe I do.

Sure, tales of foreclosures, unemployment, and general financial hardship abound.  Certainly, when people are faced with losing their homes, or worse, I can understand why vet bills might be too much of a financial strain and why people might turn their pets in to shelters.  I understand it intellectually, but it's a little hard to grasp on a personal, emotional level.

In our household, we have two dogs, one bird, and one fish -- and all of them (well, except for maybe the fish, he just swims around and looks pretty) are very much members of the family.  It's hard to imagine a morning when, after waking up, we aren't greeted by our cockatiel's (sometimes very loud) chirping and whistling.  He even knows, or at least knew, how to wolf whistle and whistle 'pop goes the weasel' (I haven't been whistling to him as much lately, so he might have forgotten them).  It's also hard to imagine going for a family walk without the two dogs, or being excitedly greeted by them upon returning home, or, just having them there, in their dog beds, as we watch television in the evening.

I know how hard it would be for us to turn any of our pets over to a shelter, and it's hard to imagine just how difficult things would have to be, financially, before I could even consider making a decision like that.

A sign of the times?  Perhaps.

A reminder of just how fortunate I am?  Absolutely.

Regards,

Russell (a.k.a. TMFEldrehad)

4 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On January 25, 2010 at 4:42 PM, lemoneater (71.92) wrote:

I'm going to go home and clutch my kitty and think how thankful I am that I can afford him.

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#2) On January 25, 2010 at 5:28 PM, zzlangerhans (99.84) wrote:

I hate to think of life without my tapeworm.

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#3) On January 25, 2010 at 7:03 PM, OneLegged (< 20) wrote:

zz,  LOL!!!!!!!!!!!

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#4) On March 23, 2010 at 5:31 PM, CubsBearsBulls43 (96.84) wrote:

Russell:

 Sorry it took me so long to finally getting around to reading some older blogs.

You brought up an interesting point and I completely agree with you. My take on it is that I believe that when you commit to caring for a dog, cat, bird, rabbit, etc., you are making a lifetime commitment to them. If I was so affected by the recession that I lost my home and had to live on the street, my dog would go with me. Would you give up a child because you couldn't afford your doctor bills? The commitment should be the same. That is why we have such a horrible over-population of dogs and cats. People treat them like objects instead of feeling, caring, living animals. Over 10,000 dogs are put down every day in this country and puppy mills and breeders continue to churn out more than the system can handle.

People of Motley Fool: Please think long and hard before having a child or adopting a pet. If you take on that responsibility it is for life (yours or theirs).  

If you do decide to have a dog or cat, please adopt from a shelter. Do not buy a dog or cat from a store or a breeder. Remember, all dogs in all stores came from puppy mills. There are no exceptions.

 

For those of you who think this is a silly, boring, ridiculous topic; grow up and get some compassion! You'll lead a better life.

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