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24 February 2015

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Cee

Walrus,

I can't stand PETA. I didn't like them even before one member said she was going to throw some red paint or blood on me. I let her know if she did it, the next red she would see would be her own.

Because of the high number of unwanted companion animals and the lack of good homes, sometimes the most humane thing that a shelter worker can do is give an animal a peaceful release

EXACTLY! I tell the same thing to my friends who are giving their pets insulin and chemo when they could save another animal that will be euthanized.

I have a beautiful rescue dog (Coonhound mix) that was saved from a kill shelter in Alabama. Even though she was a pup, she was sad and withdrawn which is why I chose her. I'm grateful and so is she. She wouldn't have wanted to linger in a cage in misery.

HDL

We live in the country near a busy road that allows people to drop off their unwanted animals, hoping I guess for that fabled "good home". We've accumulated 8 (count 'em) including a shelter dog and I expect we'll keep them til their death. Not everyone has that luxury. The method in your state seems reasonable. PETA seems not. As for their (the dog's) gratitude, I like to think so but there is a dissenting opinion. Herewith poet Billy Collins on dogs:
http://www.ted.com/talks/billy_collins_two_poems_about_what_dogs_think_probably?language=en
Hope that link works.

BabelFish

For some things there are no good solutions.

VT90

My best buddy, a Shepherd mutt, came from a kill shelter in West Virginia. He was on death row. Some do-gooder dog-nut family member rescued him from the shelter and I ended up taking care of him for a while. We became inseparable and somehow he became mine. While he died from cancer a couple years ago, I couldn't imagine those many years of never having had him around. In fact, I went through a very deep, dark few months of depression a number of years ago and I hate to think about what would've happened had he not been there with me. I know for certain this guy never forgot where he came from. He was the best dog anyone could ever hope for. I miss him every day. Then I think of other dogs on death row who could change someone's life but will never get the chance. It saddens me.

different clue

Cee,

If I were more diligent than I am, I might have some bumper stickers made up to see if they would sell. They would say: Humans have Animal Rights too.

Medicine Man

PETA has a pretty horrible reputation, particularly for the habit of destroying animals that come into their care. Some of their positions seem pretty radical to me, as if they are more upset about the concept of Animal Husbandry than compassionate about the treatment of working and companion animals.

While I think groups like PETA could use some oversight, I also think it is a mistake to outlaw animal euthanasia. I certainly wouldn't want legislators breathing down my vet's neck as we discuss palliative care for my own animals.

turcopolier

Walrus et al

I have owned mutts and I have owned breed dogs. They all were equally lovable and deserving of love. If I were braver I would be over at the local shelter to adopt but I know I am not capable of leaving some there on death row. We recently experienced the deaths of two of our Norwich Terriers from old age. One had a brain tumor and was in a lot of pain at the end. Our vet, who is a loving woman, has been with us for 29 years and took it as hard as we did. This left us with Lola our 11 year old bitch. We found a show bitch six years old who the breeder wanted to retire. Her name is Ginger. She is an AKC champion but please don't hold it against her. She does not seem to know. She seems quite happy here with all us old folks. I feel about euthanasia for dogs as I do about hunting, and about war. A regrettable necessity. pl

nick b

I think the bill is a good one. It defines an animal shelter as just that, a shelter, and not a cover for some Orwellian doublespeak euthanization center. If, as it seems, PETA is in the habit of destroying animals rather than placing them with new homes, that should be disclosed. They should not be able to call themselves a 'shelter' as they do now.

They sell PETA steak sauce at my local butcher. PETA = People Eating Tasty Animals.

Mario Batali once told me of his stock answer for PETA members and aggressive vegetarians: "some of my favorite things to eat are vegetarians."

optimax

The local Humane Society puts a lot of effort into not euthanizing dogs. They have foster programs and volunteer trainers to make the dogs more adoptable. They have reduced the number yearly kills significantly. They still euthanize the extremely aggressive and sickly.

I had a chocolate lab, Victor, my neighbor and I rescued from some junkies down the street. He was a great dog and friendly to everyone except his old junkie owner. When Victor saw him he strained at the leash, growled and bared his teeth. I was tempted to let the dog go and loose his revenge.

Rescue dogs appreciate a good home because the know the alternative and all dogs respond 10 times in kind to love.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EubuphQ79z4

Medicine Man

nick b: I like to make comments about how they are effectively below me on the food chain.

The Twisted Genius

This bill was introduced by Virginia Senator Bill Stanley. He has introduced a number of bills supporting animal welfare including state support for sterilization programs, efforts to monitor those convicted of animal cruelty and measures to stop the sale of animals in parking lots and by the side of roads. His concern appears genuine and not just a vendetta against PETA. Good on him.

https://www.richmondsunlight.com/legislator/wmstanley/

confusedponderer

I for my part am more of a cat person, but they are facing the same situation in shelters.

I would prefer sterilisation over euthanasia for shelter animals any day, but there it is - sadly it is sometimes a regrettable necessity, in particular when the animal is sick. But to kill them off after a while as policy as PETA does? I'd be against that. Shelter animals deserve second and third chances.

My mother has a 20 year old tomcat that we got from a shelter when he was 6 or so. He was a foundling, had been treated miserably, and had been returned twice for being such a hard case. When we were to pick a cat, I didn't trust him but was overvoted. Maybe it is true that a cat chooses you and not the other way around? Anyway, my suspicious were well founded. It took us a few years and a lot of persistence and patience to get him to come around, as nutty as he was initially. It was well worth it.

He was diagnosed with a brain tumor two years ago but since he didn't show any signs of pain or disability, we decided to just give him a good time for as long as it lasts. He is coming near the end now and is in frail health. It'll be sad when the day comes.

I held my cat when she was put down at 16 for kidney failure. I owed her that much. That was hard. She was born in our kitchen when I was a boy and I first held her in my hand when she was 10 minutes old. With her I had unconditional trust and love, which is rare with cats.

The bond with the tomcat is different, rather like the result of a lot of mutually appreciated work.

The Moar You Know

A few observations, if I may:

1. Nobody, save some crazy people, are FOR pet euthanasia just for the heck of it. But sometimes it is needed. I recently had to return a adoptee to a shelter for an uncontrollable biting problem. I think we got him a few weeks too late in his puppyhood, and he was separated from his mother too early. They'll probably, in the end, put him down. The guilt is enormous. I feel like I personally failed him, and I don't think those feelings are unjustified. But they'd put him down for the same reason I had to give him back - I've got kids on my street and this guy, sooner or later, would bite one or all of them. Yeah, if I lived out in the woods it would be fine, but I don't, and nowadays most people don't. Some animals can't adapt to our modern suburban environment. It's not their fault but they can't live with us. Therefore, euthanasia. Better than being eaten alive, I think everyone could agree on that at least.

2. Medical: I've now put down two pets, holding them both as I did so. Yeah, that leaves a scar on your heart, and it doesn't go away. But the alternative? Suffering for weeks and months, unable to move or do anything you love? I could not do that to either one of my four-legged friends. Frankly, and most of you would probably disagree, when the time comes I'll choose the same if I am allowed to.

3. PETA: back in the day, when I was attending a college that Colonel Lang would probably order shelled to the foundations due to their rather over-the-top liberal bent, I got to meet a couple of PETA folks, including the jackass who is in de facto charge of it today. These were people of no true political bent - i.e. they paid lip service to many beliefs and actually adhered to none. What they were, plain and simple, were power-hungry thugs. Fortunately, they have chosen a field of work and approach to that work that leaves them an annoying presence in the press and not much more.

4. Lastly. Adoption. It's a good thing. A better thing is to adopt an elder pet. My last two have been. I only had them each for three years before they succumbed to the inevitable ravages of time. But what years! What happy pets they were! Others here have commented that animals know that they've been saved from death. This is assuredly true for both cats and dogs. So adopt an old gentleman or lady from your local shelter, if you can. You will be amply rewarded.

Had to take a moment. I miss my old girls very much to this day.

turcopolier

TMYK

"Colonel Lang would probably order shelled to the foundations due to their rather over-the-top liberal bent..."

The Citadel? Texas A&M? pl

The Moar You Know

lol. Hey, we can come to a meeting of the minds across our ideological divide and agree that those would be worth the effort.

No, the alma mater is UC Santa Cruz, a hell of a fine school, but I don't see much about it save for the forest and woods that would be to your liking.

FND

When I lived in rural SC for a time, we had the same problem. People from towns and cities would drop unwanted pets off in the country thinking us good country folk would take care of them. We shot them dead, except one friend of mine collected them and put them in a pen. Once he would get 15 or 20 dogs, he would take them into a city in the middle of the night and release them. Maybe that's what you should do.

Cee

The Moar You Know,

I love your post.

They'll probably, in the end, put him down. The guilt is enormous.

You shouldn't feel guilt about this. You did your best.
I had to return two adopted cats at different times.

One was trying to tear out the achilles tendons of anyone who passed.
The other elderly cat was so traumatized after the death of his former owner that he wouldn't stop spraying all over my home to claim ownership. I couldn't live with the thought of either of them living in a cage or going to a bad home where they would be abused or thrown into the street in frustration. I had them sent to kitty heaven.

My dog rescue prior to my girl now was an older abused Pitt Bull. I was scared but determined to save him and he was WONDERFUL for the years I had him before I had to euthanize him because of all of his medical problems....broken leg that was never set properly, allergies...
No such thing as bad dogs, only bad owners. I'll always miss gentle, but protective Samson. Sniff.

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