Animal welfare

It astounds me that in this day and age, despite the knowledge we have of the brilliance of the domestic animals such as cats and dogs, that thousands of them are put to sleep yearly, despite being perfectly healthy, because the animal charities could not find them a new home.

I find it atrocious that all these charities, who campaign for our donations to help support them, often with a tagline of just how many pets they save, will often put them to sleep if they are not rehoused within a small period of time. Surely the welfare of these animals to them cannot be paramount if they are put to sleep despite being perfectly healthy?

The sad thing is though, that there are many pet owners that do the same, the moment a pet becomes an inconvenience, off it goes to a charity, or it is abandoned, or put to sleep. It seems tragic, that despite all the knowledge and understanding we have of these animals, and indeed the companionship that they have given us over aeons, that our loyalty is not returned.

Do not get me wrong, I understand that some pets will have health or severe behavioural reasons to be put down or taken to a animal shelter, but that in my eyes, does not excuse the number of people that seem to buy a pet at haste, and get rid of them just as quickly. Nor indeed does it excuse these charities having a finite time scale before putting the pet to sleep.

Today, I have decided to taken upon me, a family pet that unfortunately, its elderly owners, are unable to take care for. This will come as quite the expense to me, since I have to bring it over from abroad, and get it used to living with my pet cat. who I’ve had for three years now.

My pet cat was one that I had rescued from a animal shelter. It is the most docile, and wonderful little cat I have known, and has given us years of joy. It saddens me to think that had we not lucked upon him and adopted him ourselves, then there would have been a chance that he could have been put down.

Animal welfare is something that has been close to my heart since I was a child. It is impossible for me to fathom a time in my life wherein I will not have a pet, it just would not feel like home if I did not have a pet. My cat and guinea pig have been God sends, such wonderfully loyal and loving companions, both of them are a dream with my children.

I believe animals are perfect for the development of children in terms of the grasping of responsibility as well as social interaction.  I cannot count the number of times, for so vast were they, that my pet dogs growing up gave me comfort, and I was able to share a deep connection to them both, so much that the death of them sent me into a depressive spiral.

Whilst I commend the numerous animal charities for the good work that they do, and for the efforts they put in, I feel that as a society we should be aghast whenever a healthy animal is put down for anything other than medical or extreme behavioural reasons.  Education is vital for prospective pet owners to be able to understand just the dedication it takes to become a pet owner, and that pets are indeed for life, not just the spur of the moment. Otherwise we end up in a viscous circle that we are now, where perfectly healthy animals, are put to sleep by charities because they are unable to find them a new home, and need the space for other rescued pets.

Until next time,
The Raven

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