Tuesday, August 22, 2017

August 22. Day 234. Hair-raising

There was a story on an online news site about three weeks ago that continues to haunt me. Considering all the truly dreadful things that are happening in the world at the moment, the nature of this story surely seems rather inane. But to me it was deeply shocking. Ethicists in growing numbers think it is wrong to keep pets. The issue stems down to treating living things as property; choosing where they live, what the eat, when they exercise and in many cases how and where they die. The article went on that just as we now frown on animals in circuses, the tide will turn on animals as pets. I follow the argument but I reject it out of hand. I reject it because I think the treatment of the animal, the motives of the owner and the feeling of the pets must surely count for something. Yes, Rumple and Winkle make my life a whole lot better, every single day. But it's not all about me. They make life better because of the enormous amount of love they radiate every single time I walk into a room. They love me as much as I love them. They do have choice. They can be anywhere in the house or garden and day or night they will be curled up by a human member of the family, generally with each other. They choose where we go for a walk. they choose when we play ball. They choose where they sleep. There are times when I lay down the law - such as haircut day today - but it is only for their comfort and well being. So ethicists, I challenge to come meet my dogs and look us all in the eyes and tell us there is a moral problem with our relationship. These are not the faces of abuse or neglect. These are the faces of my family. I rest my case.

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