Sunday, July 12, 2009

Killing with 'kindness'

Editorial from The Kings County Advertiser

Sometimes it isn’t deliberate cruelty that harms companion animals. The kindest intentions can also put pets in danger. 

Animals are a huge part of many people’s lives. That cherished animal is not “just a pet,” but a member of the family. Others are working animals: cats charged with rodent control or dogs assisting vision or hearing impaired people, for example. All are living creatures, capable of feeling pain and fear.

Last week, Montreal SPCA seized 93 rats and three rabbits found in an apartment, along with many hundreds of other small animals. 

In June, the new Kings County SPCA facility had to open early to house 16 cats seized from a home in Port Williams, as well as 20 of 89 animals rescued from Port Felix, Guysborough County. 

This type of hoarding is a crime of animal lovers, not haters. Gary Patronek, a Boston-area veterinarian, told The Montreal Gazette, "with animal hoarding, there is by definition no intent to harm." 

Negligence? Ignorance? Good intentions gone awry? Perhaps it’s the inability to pay for proper veterinary care, including spaying or neutering, that turns one healthy pet into a houseful of ill animals in a short period of time. Patronek stated the behaviour might fill a psychological need for some. Whatever the reason, these ‘collectors’ are not doing their pets any favours..."