Back in business! Well, sort of. I apologize to all of my regular readers and subscribers, as I have not posted a blog entry for five months! If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you probably know that I have been dealing with some personal issues and have been quite busy with school, work, and helping run the newly formed nonprofit, Peace Advocacy Network. So, this blog is not going anywhere, it’s just been stuck on the back burner for a bit longer than anticipated.
That being said, I will do my best to keep up with more regular posts now that my schedule has lighted up a bit, but I can’t make any promises as to frequency. What I will say though, is that I’d like to begin incorporating other pertinent issues surrounding veganism, animal rights, and other pressing concerns. So far, this blog has been mostly recipes, but I think you’ll enjoy diving a bit more into some other topics as well.
I thought that to start, I could announce something to you that will segue nicely into the first topic on the list. As many of my Facebook and Twitter friends and followers are aware, I recently brought a new member into my home. I adopted of dog named, Fern. Fern is one of the most friendly and playful dogs I’ve ever met, she’s perfect in every way, yet she was a lucky one because I was able to rescue her from doggie prison, otherwise know as the animal shelter.
Sadly, there are many dogs just like Fern that don’t get adopted and end up being euthanized for no better reason than because there are just too many unwanted “pets” and not enough people able and willing to take them. Even sadder, many people continue to ensure the pet industry survives and thrives by buying animals from breeders. I’ll say two things right off the bat 1) there’s no such thing as a “responsible” breeder, all breeding is wrong and hideous and 2) “pets” should not exist at all and eventually won’t once we stop supporting breeders.
This is usually about the point when many people start to think I’m totally off my rocker, but we all agree that it’s wrong to unnecessarily use animals to our own advantage, right? On the surface, it might seem that we share a mutually beneficial relationship with our pets, they love us, and we love them. The sad truth is that this relationship is far from equal. Just like animals in zoos or circuses, pets don’t really have any control over even the most mundane aspects of their lives.
Our pets rely on us for even the most basic care like going to the bathroom, going outside, getting a drink of water, eating food, and having shelter. The list goes on and on and the fact is we manipulate each and every part of their life and for what? So, we can have a dog or a cat to amuse us when we want? Many pet owners love their pets and take good care of them, but many don’t, and no matter how excellent the care, the bottom line is that this is just one more example of speciesism.
We have bred and manipulated dogs into existence just to fulfill our own selfish desire for animal companionship. If you think about it, the entire process is really pretty sad. Picture a responsible breeder, who just had a “purebred” dog give birth to puppies. Within days an ad goes into the paper and within weeks the puppies are taken from their mother and siblings, whom they’ll never see again, and be plopped into a house full of unknown people and things. Hopefully it’s a good house and hopefully the puppy doesn’t end up at the shelter one day or worse.
How barbaric is it to breed a dog and remove it from its family? What if we did that with people? Bred the most attractive people and then forced them to give birth and then took their baby away without their consent and sold it to those willing to pay the most money? The only way we will ever break the cycle is if we stop buying animals from breeders, start adopting the ones that already exist in shelters, and never breed animals.
This issue is a touchy one indeed and a bit complex to grasp at first. Pets are such a social norm; it’s hard to see through to the exploitation that’s really taking place. If you’re interested, here's a good piece about why pets should not exist and why we should support that position if we are truly advocating the end of all unnecessary use of animals.
Abolitionist Approach: Pets
Here’s a pretty compelling clip form Earthlings, on the topic of pets:
I’ll leave you with some pictures of Fern, to show you just what an awesome pup she turned out to be. If you’re thinking of getting a dog, or know someone who is, please do not even consider buying a dog from a breeder of any kind. Save a life, break the cycle, adopt!
So, what are your thoughts on this issue? How do you feel about pet ownership and how do people react when you tell them you don’t think pets should exist? Do you have any awesome adoption stories? Leave comments below, this should be an interesting discussion, as this topic often seems to be an emotionally charged one.
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