Sitting in my warm house watching television with my dogs at my feet and my cats running around chasing one another I come across an ASPCA commercial. Within moments my heart is breaking because these animals are sitting in shelters with no one to love them or care for them. Many have been found in the streets. Some badly hurt because of living in the outdoor elements for sometime, trying to survive. Some picked up badly beaten or neglected by their owners.
I find it difficult to understand why people decide to get animals but not seem to care for them! Based on www.animal-rights-action.com/pet-abandonment.com about 4 million dogs are abandoned each year in the US alone. According to http://www.aspca.org/blog/animal-abandonment-faq the definition of animal abandonment is when an animal is left in a public or private place. They are in or outside of these places and the owner doesn’t intend to return for their care. These owners have multiple excuses for abandoning their animals. They have allergies to the animal, their life becomes too busy to care for the animal, the animal is too much work, or there is a sudden change in the household where the animal isn’t able to fit into the picture. Although these excuses seem to be reasonable, an animal is brought into a household as a family member. They are not to be thrown to the curb when life gets difficult or inconvenienced.
Looking further into animal abandonment I found an interesting article regarding the Harry Potter series and White Snow Owls. According to a website out of the UK, http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/hundreds-of-pet-owls-abandoned-after-840299, bird sanctuaries are being overran by White Snow Owls shortly after the Harry Potter series came out. Owners took on these beautiful birds not knowing the work and the expectation involved as keeping them as pets. Their solution is to either drop them off at a bird sanctuary or illegally releasing them to the wild.
Digging deeper into abandonment I find a number of websites where different holidays spur animal purchases. One such website, http://www.veterinarypartner.com/Content.plx?P=A&C=218&A=1025&S=0, shows how Easter is real common for the high volume purchases of rabbits. These are animals’ parents and kids seem to find to be warm, fuzzy, and cute but extremely hard to care for on a daily basis. After time they find they don’t fit into their lifestyle. These random purchases are not thought through in what it takes to care for an animal and maintain them over the animal’s lifespan. The veterinarian costs can grow depending on the species of animal you get. All this can sometimes lead to the abandonment of the animal because it was never thought through.
Although there are many states prosecuting people that choose to abandon their pets, it is still happening worldwide. Luckily the US has organizations and groups in place to care for these abandoned animals but as a society we need to stop and think more about what we are doing and less about what makes us happy in that moment.
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