Monday, June 7, 2010

Truth about cats and dogs: 250,000 killed every year


MORE than a quarter of a million healthy cats and dogs are destroyed in Australia every year because there are not enough homes for them.

Behind the numbers there is a vicious debate about the oversupply of animals and what can be done to tackle the problem.

On one side, animal welfare groups backed by Sydney lord mayor and NSW independent MP Clover Moore blame commercial breeders for breeding too many animals and pet shops for supplying them to an unsuspecting public.

On the other side, pet shops say they are operating within ethical guidelines and buy their animals from reputable breeders rather than so-called puppy and kitten farmers....

...Australian Veterinary Association president Mark Lawrie agrees the lack of regulation on breeding makes it problematic to enforce legislation. ''It's hard to know the extent of the problem of indiscriminate breeding. It's hard to get any reliable statistics.''

Dr Lawrie claims that animal lovers who accumulate large numbers of pets contribute more to over-population than farmers. ''I actually think animal hoarding is a bigger problem in terms of indiscriminate breeding. That's a complex issue because it involves mental health.''

But welfare groups maintain there are hundreds of puppy and kitten farms in Australia, and groups such as the RSPCA and local councils are not doing enough to stamp it out...." More

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