It’s possible this post should be alternatively titled, “My Most Unpopular Post Yet.” Only time will tell. I just know that pets are a touchy subject. Sometimes even touchier than children. It seems most parents can relate to a shared desire for some off-duty time and have a sense of humour when it comes to their children. Their pets, however, are not a laughing matter.
Some people are cat people, some people are dog people, some people like birds, some people like…. You get the point. Me? I’m a people person. I once had a dog that I loved like a child – a Doberman, the sweetest rescue dog EVER – but then reality hit with the birth of a real, live, human baby and he was demoted to dog. I still cared about him, but that huge love swelling in my chest was gone. In hindsight, it was misplaced maternal love. Obviously.
And we have a dog now for the kids. And he’s sweet and well-behaved and at times I think he’s alright. I do not love him more than other humans or our planet, however. This month has been downright eye-opening in many ways with regard to the environment – the unspeakable damage already done, the programs and policies enacted, the greening up of the average home, the crazy, cool, futuristic designs for sustainable living, as well as odd bits of trivia. “Hey, did you know…
… Canadians spend more money on their pets than they give to charity??” True story. The pet industry (just in Canada) accounts for $8.9 billion dollars a year vs. $8.3 billion in charitable donations.
… pets are more damaging to the environment than SUVs?” Again, true. According to “Time to Eat the Dog, the Real Guide to Sustainable Living”, a medium dog has a carbon footprint more than double that of a standard SUV. A cat’s footprint is similar to a small VW. You can read the article here. Craziness.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying we need to give up our pets, but maybe we need to think about not replacing them. Or, at the very least, think about the numbers expressed above. How is it possible that we as a nation care more about our pets than humans living on the streets or starving in other countries? Why is Fido more of a priority than the extinction of entire species of wildlife?? How about cancer research?
When and how did it become more comforting to have a pet than help each other? I’m just curious… Until Monday, have a great weekend (with Fido!)!! Sarah.