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I am opposed to the notion of “rescue” pets and “shelters” that animal rights extremists have put forward lately. While I believe there should be a market for “used” and “salvage” pets like dogs and cats, I think the reason we should be “saving” unwanted or “stray” pets is not because they are cute or lovable, but because a “bred” pet involves a significant amount of labor and food to raise to become something that can be sold as a pet by the breeder.

So called “rescue” pets are usually a lot more affordable then “bred” pets. Not everybody can afford an expensive “bred” pet from a pet breeder. The “used” or “rescue” pet should be an affordable alternative, one that often comes house-broken or trained with skills not available on the “bred” market. Salvaging a used or stray dog and cat, should not be seen as a noble act, but one done to recover all the value and investment in that dog or cat. Shelters should not be seen as a shelters, but as salvage yards, there to recover useful value in the stock, rather then an entity to “save” a pet, for which there is an inexhaustible supply.

Dogs and cats are inherently reproducible. Dogs and cats not neutered have puppies and kittens. They can have lots of them. After all, they are livestock, they can be indefinitely bred to produce to future stock. There is skill in raising them, there are materials consumed to produce future generations of pets, but for all practical purposes, the supply of dogs and cats will never be used up. If anything, there is an over-supply of pets in parts of the country, with undesirable and unwanted pets in need of disposal.

Disposal of unwanted pets can be done in an environmentally sustainable fashion. In a landfill, they are organic material which is unlikely to release hazardous materials, except the normal organics like methane and organic leachate into the environment. The same is true with incineration of unwanted pets – they are made up almost entirely of water and carbon-based organics like fat, muscle, and hair – and incinerated a proper temperatures are unlikely to produce much besides carbon dioxide and water vapor. Most pets are carnivores, which poses more problems with composting, but most industrial composting facilities reach temperatures to kill off pathogens. Obviously, with our carbon constrained future, industrial composting of waste pets is the best solution for disposal.

Salvaging “waste” pets like dogs and cats, through so-called rescues makes sense, in so far as the pet has value. It saves resources to put a well-behaved, house broken but “unadopted” dog or a cat in a loving home, saving resources compared to raising a new dog or cat. It makes pet ownership more affordable for the working man. Salvage efforts through rescues, save energy, save human labor, save food, medicine, and other resources. But the disposal of unwanted pets with behavioral problems or injuries, that offer little value in resale, often makes sense as unwanted pets pose little ecological hazard in their disposal.

Dogs Use Deception to Get Treats, Study Shows

"Researchers observed the pooches leading the cooperative partner to the box containing the sausage more often than expected by chance. They led the competitive partner to the sausage less often than expected by chance. And here’s where things get really interesting: the dogs took the competitive partner to the empty box more frequently than the cooperative partner, suggesting that they were working through their options and engaging in deliberate deception to maximize their chances of getting both treats."