The other day I walked my dogs with a respected animal lover. He is older than me; he has all the experience we younger people do not yet. He can handle questions that would drive me up the wall very calmly. We shape stones with picks, while he finds the most effective ways with the wisdom and tranquility of a river.
We met my ex-classmate from middle school. She also walked her dogs. Dogs mean a cardinal point in my everyday life. It always clutches my stomach… I am afraid of what I will be told. And it always proves to be true somehow.
She told us happily that her cute white dogs were her children, she loved them so much. She also told us that they had no herd book but they must be pure-bred as she bought them from a rural „raiser” who kept dogs under miserable conditions. They originally wanted only one dog but felt sorry for the others, so took two. They cost a fortune but they worth it as they are the cutest dogs ever. They have had puppies two times so far. 5 puppies were born each time. The whole family adored them so it was very hard for them to see them leave but they could not keep all of them. The best thing was that they managed to find perfect new owners for the puppies.
I also told her about my dog as I always have dozens of stories. I tried to be friendly and not to preach. Usually when I tell about my dogs and it turns out that one of them is a male and the other is female, everyone asks about puppies. When I tell them that they have been neutered, they become speechless and do not know what to answer. It was the very same situation this time. All she could ask was: „But why?”
I was about to tell her all our points regarding the positive effects of neutering, depicting the huge global problem of overpopulation, when my friend took the word:
„Let me ask you to call all the owners to whom you gave the puppies. Just like that. Ring them up to ask them how the puppies are.”
We said goodbye light-heartedly. I did not expect her to call me a few days later. Her voice was very sad. She had that discomfort and curiosity after we took a leave that she decided to actually call the owners. She kept on telling what she experienced and I felt that her voice clutches my stomach again…
Out of 10 adoptive parents 2 were gone missing. Their number has changed since then so it was impossible to reach them.
Puppy No. 8: The owner asked her two times which puppy she meant. „Oh yeah, you mean that one! We gave him to one of our acquaintances with whom we are no longer in contact.”
Puppy No. 6 and 7: They suffer from a kind of genetic disorder. They are allergic to everything and the owners complained a lot about the expensive special diet they are on, expensive medicines and also the bathing gel they must use. Based on their opinion, they are very good owners, they take good care of their dogs and also love them a lot.
Yet it was obvious that they were a bit disappointed and blamed her for not giving them perfectly healthy dogs.
(An animal expert immediately found it out that the dogs purchased from the „raiser” were from the same litter, thus the mother and the father were in fact siblings!!)
Puppy No. 5 lives with the adoptive parents. They admitted that the puppy chewed everything in their house so they put him out to the garden. He is very happy out there, does not want to come back to the house.
Puppy No. 4 was taken to the Grandma because of the arrival of a new born baby. They told her that the dog loves to be there, she grew very big as she adores her stomach.
Puppy No 3: The wife became allergic to dog hair so they called the breed rescuers who adopted the dog. They also managed to find new owners for the dog; they often see them in Városliget park.
Puppy No 2 got lost. They tried to find him but they could not. Since then they already had two other dogs.
Puppy No 1: His adoptive parents really became loving owners. They talked about their dog as we do. The dog was not „just a dog”, but a family member. They told her cheerfully that they also adopted a black male dog and they are so happy that there are newborn puppies.
These answers were sooooo general. We animal lovers and protectors hear it very often. We are not even surprised anymore.
But it was a huge shock for my ex-classmate. She is not as happy as she used to be. Her conscious is not that clean anymore. What else could have been done? She could not keep them all.
It would be great to finish this story with „and after neutering, they lived happily ever after”. But we cannot and can only hope that it will be so.
With this story my older friend taught me a lot about people. I admire him for being who he is but I also know that sometimes a pick is needed to change people’s attitude.
|The points which make an animal rights activist scream are: