Even in Britain, a nation of animal lovers, some people treat their pet like a piece of rubbish – trash. Going away on holiday? Can’t afford a cat or dog sitter or boarding cattery fees? Just throw your dog away in the nearest skip. That has happened. In 2012 the RSPCA were called out 37,000 times to rescue abandoned animals¹.
Irresponsible and heartless people are abandoning cats and dogs but they are not taking them to a shelter. They just throw them away. In one example, a cat and her kittens were found dumped in a wheelie bin (a trash cat with wheels). Astonished? No, not me, to be honest. It is not the first time.
There are thousands of people in Britain who don’t care about their pets. That is not say that millions, the vast majority, care a lot. It is a minority but a decent sized minority nonetheless who act irresponsibly and cruelly towards their companion animals.
The truth is that if a person abandons a pet because they prefer to buy a television or go on holiday to taking their cat to the vet, then they should never have adopted the pet in the first place. Never. These people are unsuitable. It can be a tough decision and I am being critical but it is the truth. People must be in a position of financial stability and live in a stable environment before taking on the responsibility of looking after a companion animal. They must also have the commitment. That comes from a real love of animals.
To adapt a cat or a dog because “I want one” without working through the financial cost and caretaking required (for the life of the animal) is a very irresponsible and selfish way to behave. There are a lot of people who think that way, mind you.
You have to guarantee that you can afford to care for a cat companion for 15 years. It is not about affording the expense for the next year, maybe. There has to be long term planning and certainties. Once again that is tough talk but it is the only way. There are too many people who would certainly benefit from a companion animal but who are not suitable because they cannot afford it.
The financial crisis is a major reason for the current crisis but it is not the reason. The reason is people who act in a self-indulgent way satisfying their desire to have a pet without thinking things through. Also it is not always about money. It is about choices. TV -v- cat caretaking expenses.
I will finish with a quote from Ben Strangwood the RSPCA’s deputy chief inspector:
“..now people are deliberately dumping animals in out-of-the-way places, like bins, skips or on waste ground, and leaving them to die…”
Source: RSPCA via Times newspaper.