I read an article this evening about how people give up their dogs to a shelter before they go on vacation so they don’t have to pay for boarding. “It’s fine. We’ll get another dog when we get back.” Pardon? I’m pretty sure that there should be a law against this. But, yeah, I live in my head where there should be laws against a lot of things that people do that are ethically bad but concern things most people never think about. And, strangely, most of these things have to do with animals.
Recently a woman on Nextdoor offered up her dog because he was too much trouble because now her toddlers were active. A neighbor, who I have respected, told everyone: “don’t judge.” I tried to be good. I never commented. But, yes, I judged and oddly I don’t really feel bad about it at all. Despite what everyone says, I feel like there are times when others should be judged because their actions are thoughtless or just selfish.
We human beings are completely beguiled by our self-worth. We treasure what we deem to be our higher intelligence at the cost of everything around us. If we fear something, we kill it. If a dog doesn’t match our décor, we take it to the shelter. If a dog is no longer cute, we get rid of it. Somehow, we’ve come to the conclusion that dogs are disposable.
In a materialistic society, is this surprising?
We are completely out-of-touch with nature and the world around us. I seriously, evidently naively, thought that the lockdowns brought about by covid-19 might make us more aware of the natural world, that we might take notice, stop and smell the roses or the hyacinths, listen to birdsong, notice all of the truly magnificent natural beings this world has to offer, but I was wrong. (Yup, it happens, isn’t that weird? 😉 ) People binged on Netflix instead, grew attached to their cell phones, as if they hadn’t been already, and brought home pandemic puppies as company.
I have been happy to see that a lot of new puppy owners who have found themselves in over their heads have consulted trainers. This shows promise. But there still remains those people who never view their dogs as part of their family. How is this possible? Who are these people who bring dogs into their lives and then treat them as if they are disposable? I know a few and these people surprised me.
They are not horrible people. One brought home a rescue beagle who was a handful and then adopted a cuddly shih tzu. The wife decided that the beagle was too much trouble so he went back to the shelter while they adored their little, non-troubling shih tzu–until? I lost track of them. I have no idea if the cute dog ever became a problem. Another had two lovely golden puppies before the babies came. After the babies? The dogs were too much trouble and had to be rehomed. When her kids were older, they adopted another dog. Dogs are disposable, interchangeable, after all.
As a person who is still mourning the loss of her beloved Scout almost a year ago, I don’t understand how anyone can bring a creature as lovely and intelligent and emotional as a dog into their lives and then not understand the complete gift they have been given. As an adult, I’ve owned five dogs now. Each one has been different and wonderful and captivating, and I have loved each one to bits, mourned their passing as a member of the family. They have an emotional intelligence that I believe we human beings are starting to lose, if this past year has been any example. They love unconditionally. Another thing we humans seem to have lost. They are the best of the best.
Dogs teach us so much about life, if we are able to listen and learn. If we aren’t, I suppose it’s possible to view them as disposable. And, if we view them as disposable, how do we view every person we meet, our children, and the world around us?
Do you have a beloved pup? I’d love to hear about him/her. Hugs to them and you.
Dogs rule…well, I wish they would. Can you imagine that world? Greenies and balls and happy kisses. Sigh. Yeah, that world I could get behind…or in front of or beside…or something. 😀