"I Hate My Dogs"
Back in my Oprah-watching days (I know, I know…) I saw a show where a woman in the audience said, “I hate my dogs. I keep them in the garage all the time - they’re never allowed out. I feed them every day and clean up after them. That’s all I do for them, and I begrudge them every moment.”
Both the audience and Oprah were (audibly) aghast at hearing these words. In defence of herself, the dog-hating woman followed up quickly with, “But I’m a good person. I’m a good mother.”
Amazingly, no one responded to that! No one pointed out what I thought was glaringly obvious.
I often (probably too often) remember this woman’s words, and wish I could have been there to say the glaringly obvious to her, which is: “How can you possibly be a good person when you're treating the dogs in your family so badly? And how can you possibly be a good mother when you’re teaching your children to treat dogs so poorly?”
For The Parents
I guess this Dog Blog is a reminder for the parents out there: your children are watching the way you treat the dogs in your family. They’re learning from what they see you do. So, for goodness sake, do the right thing. Treat your dogs with respect, show them lots of love, and give them the very best of care.
SAY NO TO PUPPY MILLS! SAY NO TO ANIMALS IN PETSHOPS! SAY NO TO BREEDERS!
Adopt a homeless animal instead - they all deserve a second chance
It's estimated that 130,000 dogs and 60,000 cats are killed every year in Australia because there are not enough homes for them all. And the global numbers amount to millions upon millions every single year.
Puppy mills are a major contributor to the terrible problem of overpopulation. Puppy mills are essentially 'dog factories' where dogs are forced to churn out litter after litter, with no thought for the welfare of the dogs and all thought for profit. The dogs live in appallingly dirty, cramped conditions all their lives, and when they no longer serve their purpose they're killed, dumped or sold to vivisection laboratories.
Petshops fit into the picture because puppy mills are generally where petshops get their animals from. Furthermore, having animals in shop windows encourages impulse purchases, and adding an animal to your family should be a conscious, careful decision - NOT one to be made while shoe shopping.
Breeders contribute enormously to the tragic statistics above too. And it doesn't matter whether they're professional breeders or backyard breeders, and whether they breed for profit or not, because while there are homeless animals sitting on death row in shelters, any and all animal breeding is utterly irresponsible.
Now, here's where you come in. You can either be part of the problem or part of the solution. You can either buy animals from puppy mills, petshops or breeders and be part of the problem. Or you can adopt from a shelter or rescue organisation and be part of the solution.
If I haven't convinced you, visit your local shelter to see the homeless animals. Let their innocent faces convince you that adopting is the only responsible choice to make.
All information and photos are copyright © Despina Rosales.