It's been encouraging to note so much recent shelter success and so many areas where “No Kill” status has been achieved in recent years. Maddie's Fund believes that the entire country can easily achieve No Kill status NOW.*
We have more households owning dogs than ever before, fewer shelter deaths than any time in history, and more people looking to welcome dogs into their homes and treat them as valued clan members.
Hooray, right? Well, maybe not so much.
I've blogged at great length here about the shortage of adoptable dogs and how many shelters and rescues have turned to the importation of dogs from other countries to fill the void.
Despite shelter shortages, despite the importation of hundred of thousands of dogs from outside the US each and every year, despite people who want to adopt puppies being unable to easily find any, today I sit here and feel horribly pessimistic about the future of pets in America.
The general public has been brainwashed over at least four decades to believe that dog breeding is a nefarious activity. Breeding in order to have puppies, maybe even to have some puppies to sell, is an Extremely Politically Incorrect Activity.
The general zeitgeist in this country is a perverse and strong opposition to dog breeding and selling. In fact, if you tell most people you want to breed your dog, he or she will look at you like you have two heads. Planning a litter must surely be some sort of evil plot to produce animals destined for torture and abuse. In fact, some believe that a bitch having a litter is abuse in and of itself.
We continue to see strong forces at work who wish to ban breeding, who insist that there be laws to require sterilization of all pets.
This seems contradictory, because It's clear there is a demand for dogs that grows stronger every day. Where will the dogs of the future come from? Who will fill the market for family pets?
I read a blog named “Out The Front Door” which is No Kill-focused. In a recent post, the author openly admits that a shelter dog shortage is coming. He (or she?) rejoices at the coming shortage of shelter dogs. However, he is worried. Very worried.
People who want dogs might decide to...hold on to your hat.....BUY one from a breeder. Good heavens! We can't have that! Why, OTFD hopes that we will continue to import street dogs from other countries, and even step up the numbers of street dogs brought into the US.
OTFD prays that breeders in America will go the way of the dinosaur.
OTFD and indeed, many many of those involved in shelter and/or rescue would rather force you to get your next dog from the streets of a third world country rather than buy a happy, healthy dog purposely bred by a breeder right here in the USA.
Never mind the risk of RABIES which is still rampant in other countries. Never mind that these street dogs, seemingly destined to be your only option in the pet stores of the future, are bred under unknown welfare conditions and the absence of any standards. Never mind that our own American breeders have good health and temperament uppermost on their priority list and are ready, willing and able to supply the market.
Nope, OTFD and others like them don't care about any of that one whit. They just want you to stop.
I ask you, is this not the quintessence of cognitive dissonance?
It's all well and good to get dogs Out the Front Door of the animal shelter, but who is going to provide the dogs that come In the Front Door of your home?
What sort of dog lover doesn't like puppies to be born? There can only be one conclusion when this mindset has become so prevalent. These shelter and rescue folks don't actually like dogs. In point of fact, much like Wayne Pacelle, the President of the Humane Society of the US, they would prefer that another dog or cat would never, ever be born!
The rescue brigade love dogs so much that they hope they will all be sterilized and that no one on the planet will ever breed them. Ever. That's their real goal! Pet extinction. They would rather no dogs exist than man breed them.
The mind boggles. I hope the day never arrives when the animal rights fanatics succeed in removing dogs from our lives completely.