Valdosta Daily Times

June 12, 2013

A responsible fix for pets

The Valdosta Daily Times

VALDOSTA — The photo and story in Sunday’s paper about the dog whose owners had left him tied up with an electrical cord elicited a tremendous response from readers, outraged at the dog’s treatment.

Whether the owners knowingly were trying to harm the dog or were simply ignorant to the effect that the cord would have on the animal, individuals who own pets need to learn how to care for them properly. One of the ways that many so-called animal lovers do harm to their pets is by not having them spayed or neutered.

It’s generally well meaning but misinformed pet owners who are largely to blame for the severe overpopulation currently at the Lowndes County Animal Shelter. When you refuse to spay or neuter your pet, you are creating a chain of events with repercussions far beyond your own backyard. Animals can get loose and cats particularly don’t understand boundaries if let outside.

Taking care of your pets involves ensuring that they are prevented from producing animals which you cannot care for, and which the shelter doesn’t always have room for.

If you are a responsible individual who loves animals and would like to take home a cat or a dog, the shelter is a wonderful place to find a rescued animal. But before taking on the ownership and caretaker responsibilities, remember that what is cute and small today may be large and not nearly as cute tomorrow. And if you don’t understand how to care for a pet, please educate yourself before taking one home.