Anyone who has read either this blog or the old one knows how much I think of the cat cottages that are maintained with such love and energy by CAPS . They are immaculately kept and anyone going into the peaceful purring rooms would be hard pressed to leave without adopting one of the wonderful residents.
And now there is live entertainment for the kitties while they bide their time waiting to be adopted: )))
Living where I do, I am rarely in the 'market' for a cat. In fact my little mighty mini Morgan is the sole exception .... because I was so touched by her bravery when she was featured in the weekly S.H.A.I.D newsletter.
Sadly, this is such a popular dumping ground ... the most recent one to find his way here was Oscar. He was loved enough to be neutered ... but by the time he made his way to my door he was thin and limping and all scratched up.
When Oscar had his exam, my vet estimated his age at four years old. What kind of person would raise a kitten, get him neutered ... and then throw him away like trash when he was four?
My eldercat Bear has been here for fourteen years and was about Oscar's age when she came here.... and she was already spayed when she came here too.
People were dumping cats long before Bear was born and they will keep on dumping them. Why? They do it because they can ... because its cheaper than getting the cat spayed .... and of course they do it because they don't have to look anyone in the eye at a shelter or pound when they abandon a healthy loving pet.
It doesn't take any balls to abandon a good pet ... in fact I would say its the exact opposite. How can this kind of cowardice be stopped? What will it take to turn off the tap?
We already know the answers .... what we need is politicians who don't flinch or fret about upsetting their constituents. When I suggested to my MLA that we need legislation to ban the sale of animals in free online ad sites, I could hear his breath catch and his collar got two sizes too small.
At the end of the day, voter feedback is the most important communication tool in your arsenal. For instance, I recently emailed my (Liberal) MLA about my concerns when I read in the paper that Lloyd Hines would be seeking the Liberal nomination for his riding.
In my email I made it quite clear that I couldn't possibly vote for a party that would bring Mr Hines into their fold. Granted my MLA did call me, but he clearly did not read the email or coming out of the gate he would have understood that BSL in Guysborough wasn't demanded by the voters .... it was instigated by the new Liberal hopeful.
Voter feedback is a little like dog training. You would never expect your dog to get everything down pat the first time. Good trainers understand that good dogs are created with patience, repetition and of course practice.
Its the same with politicians. One email can easily be filed away and forgotten. If we are going to ask our MLA's to pass the laws that will help curb the homeless pet problem .... if we are going to ask them to go out on a limb ... then we have to provide them with the motivation to do so.
Good pets will continue to be dumped as long as it is legal to:
- peddle living breathing sentient beings in free online ad sites
- sell pets in pet stores
- breed pets in "substandard breeding operations", and of course
- breed any pets without a mandatory breeding license.
Good dog trainers set their dogs up for success. If we expect our MLA's to go to bat for us, we have to set them up for success too. Its not reasonable to expect our MLA's to be educated about all the issues. Its not enough to email our MLA's and complain.... it is our job as voters to inform our MLA's about the issues that concern us.
Martin Luther King Jr may have said "Cowardice asks the question: is it safe? Expediency asks the question: is it politic? Vanity asks the question: is it popular? But conscience asks the question: is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular- but one must take it simply because it is right." ..... but here in the real world, if we want our politicians to do what is right for the animals we have to provide them with enough voter feedback to make them comfortable doing so.