Pet industry association (PIAA) tactics to ‘gain respectability’…

We know that the Pet Industry Association is desperate to increase their membership dollars from pet shops (note: only a relatively small proportion of pet shops across the country are members, and yet the government of NSW still takes “advice” from PIAA).

 We know that they have engaged the services of one of Australia’s top PR agencies to advance their cause and ‘fight” the publicity gained by Clover Moore’s proposed Animal regulation of Sale Bill.

 We know that PIAA have joined in a collaborative program with the well known magazine “Dogs Life” (does anyone know of a similar initiative with cats?).

 Dogs Life Magazine and PIAA have embarked upon an annual publicity competition to recognise and reward winners in a number of categories. There are a number of pet shop specific categories, but it also includes:

 “The Dogs Life Pet People’s Award for Best Local Pet Rescue Service/Animal Shelter” 

 We were staggered to see “animal rescue” as one of the categories of this competition!!! PIAA (who stimulate and support the marketing and push of huge numbers of puppies and kittens into the market via pet shops) recognising animal rescue groups (who have to sweat 24/7 to rescue from deathrows across the country).

 Is this for real?

 Sadly it is. And sadly, many uninformed readers of Dogs Life Magazine will unwittingly associate PIAA with animal rescue efforts.

We expect that all animal rescue groups would  be disgusted.

One well known Victorian Rescue group who were asked if they could be nominated replied publically:

“Rescued With Love nominated for award but says “no thanks”

Rescued With Love has been nominated for an award which is always an honor.  This time it is for The Dogs Life Pet People’s Award for Best Local Pet Rescue Service/Animal Shelter. 

While Rescued With Love is happy with the recognition we are receiving, the Award is with Dogs Life Magazine in conjunction with the Pet Industry Association of Australia (PIAA). 

The PIAA represents Petshops throughout Australia and  they have been extremely vocal in their stance of protecting  the practice of selling puppies in petshops (they were the main opposition to Clover Moore’s Bill to cease the sale of animals in Petshops last year). 

These puppies are of course provided by puppy millers who keeps scores of dogs in cages to breed for their babies.  Rescued With Love is against all forms of puppy milling, backyard or indiscriminate breeding while hundreds of thousands of dogs die every year in our pounds and shelters. 

It would be hypocritical to accept this nomination on ethical grounds from the PIAA, and so we will not be taking up the offer. 

While we are not the biggest nor the most financial animal welfare group we certainly will stand up for what we believe Rescue should be about and that is the plight of companion animals at every level in society.” 

DRP Comment:

 We will take a guess at which Rescue organisation will win this year’s prize – we anticipate the same as last year, (….. the only Rescue group that is actively a PIAA member…….)

Actions you can take:

 Write to the Publishers of Dogs Life Magazine, expressing your dissatisfaction with the arrangement of Dogs Life supporting the puppy and kitten trade in this way.

Janice Williams, Associate Publisher, Universal Magazines

 Janice’s email address is jwilliams@universalmagazines.com.au, or you can post any letters to Locked Bag 154 North Ryde NSW 1670.

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37 thoughts on “Pet industry association (PIAA) tactics to ‘gain respectability’…

  1. Sally October 20, 2009 / 3:57 pm

    Rescued with Love is listed on the Dogs Life magazine links page, Paws for a Cause as are other splendid rescue organisations.
    Bravo Dogs Life and the Pet Industry for supporting rescue.

  2. Tracey October 20, 2009 / 4:36 pm

    More rescues should become members of the PIAA in my humble opinion – we are all trading in pets, are we not?

    If change is what people want, sitting and whining about it isn’t going to change anything – actively joining and making changes from within (if they need changing) is the only way to progress on this issue.

    NSWAR operates under a very strict code of ethics, and regardless of membership to the PIAA, is doing what is right for the animals in their care – so good on them for at least being proactive, and being recognised for their awesome achievements in rescue.

    I volunteer at NSWAR’s property, and also do foster care for them. I have never seen anything that even slightly wavers from their strict code of ethics.

  3. deathrowpets October 22, 2009 / 9:12 pm

    Are Rescue “trading in pets”??? My understanding is that they are working to rehome orphaned or homeless animals? Or have I got it wrong.

    Why would you want to support an organisation/association that actively promotes increasing sales of live animals through the pet shop medium (a major part of the problem) AND works agressively to BLOCK all efforts to create regulation. Why?

    Secondly, can you advise please what specic recommendations to make change through PIAA your group has made, or is making? What is happening by being on the inside as you out it. Many would wlecome the opportunity to hear that.

    I do acknowledge the very good work that NSWAR do – they have an excellent reputation, and that is not at all under debate. Theyd probably do just as good a job outside of PIAA.

    Thanks for your comment.

  4. deathrowpets October 22, 2009 / 9:21 pm

    There are many splendid rehoming groups like those you mention. The point made in the post is no reflection whatsoever of them. You read Rescued with Love’s response to a nomination?

    The point we are making is the gross hypocrisy of PIAA who actively promote and support increased sales of live animals through pet shops and who have worked HARD at blocking all attempts to create regulation in an industry that badly needs regulating. Otherwise why are 250,000 healthy cats and dogs killed each year?? Are you saying that the pet shops have nothing to do with that?

    What specifically have PIAA done that has resulted in a reduction of numbers killed in pounds and shelters? We are all ears!! (By the way, if they did, people might be less critical)

    No, Sally, sorry, this is just a media stunt designed to paint over their objectives and create a public perception of “aren’t we the good guys!!”.

    But we are not falling for that, as I believe that a very respected magazine group have. We have written to the publisher on this matter and have had no reply.

  5. Diana S October 29, 2009 / 5:12 pm

    If NSWAR are doing what is right for the animals why then have they had several complaints to the RSPCA and a visit from them?? A well run operation would require neither.

  6. Janet October 30, 2009 / 10:06 pm

    I have been a long-term employee of NSWAR and I have never seen the RSPCA on the property, so I don’t know where you have got your info. from. Could you please let me know where you have heard this hearsay?

  7. Tracey D November 1, 2009 / 9:39 pm

    Yes DRP – Rescue are “trading in pets” – we ARE selling animals to people after all. We may dress it up any way we wish by calling our transactions “adoptions”, but it doesn’t change the fact that we are still selling pets to people.

    I’m sorry DRP, but it is not my place as a non-member of the PIAA to make any comment about what it’s members may or may not put forward at their meetings. I am not privy to that information first hand, so it would be foolhardy of me to speculate or to postulate about such matters on an public internet blog…

    As for complaints to or visits from the RSPCA to NSWAR’s premises, Diana S, that is also not something I would be happy to make any comment on – as I have not been present if there ever were any visits – and I certainly didn’t make any of the alleged “complaints”… *grin*

    Sally – I think you may be reading more into the perception given by the blog you refer to than is actually there in fact.

    Personally, I have seen very few animals in the pounds I have visited that I could 100% for certain say were sourced from pet shops – and I do visit a few pounds on a regular basis.

    I may be stepping out on a ledge here, but I also have to say that I really do not have a major issue with the selling of livestock in pet stores. But I will qualify that with the statement that I also firmly believe that the health and welfare of all animals in the cycle that leads to a pet shop animal needs to be considered first and foremost – if only to ensure the “quality” of the “goods” being sold…

  8. Diana S November 3, 2009 / 3:02 am

    “If only to ensure the quality of the goods being sold”. Animals are NOT goods and if you really cared about them you would not refer to them as such. They should NOT be sold in pet shops either. You are a disgrace and so is the place you volunteer at if that is the way you think animals should be treated. Thankfully you are in the minority. I can’t see them surviving very long in the rescue industry with attitudes like that.

    As for the complaints to the RSPCA feel free to ask them if they have received any and made a visit to NSWAR. Sounds like you are not just a volunteer there, but are actually on their payroll!

    How can you know where an animal is sourced from in the pounds you visit?

  9. Diana S November 3, 2009 / 3:20 am

    And another thing, I fully support DRP and other GENUINE rescue groups in ridding pet shops of animals. It is already happening because the public are realising that animals should not be sold as “goods”. Petstock and Petbarn run successful businesses and don’t sell animals. The few who remain are supporting puppy farms and backyard breeders as well as impulse buying, but then they have a vested interest in doing so don’t they, because where there is a buck to be made you will always find leeches like that.

  10. Tracey November 3, 2009 / 1:06 pm

    Diana S – I think if you go back and re-read my previous comment regarding “goods”, you may just note the tone in which that sentence was phrased. I certainly do NOT regard any animal as “goods” myself – nor does the rescue I volunteer at AND foster care for (note: volunteer = NOT on payroll)

    You may also note that I stated that I do very much care about the welfare of all animals involved in where pet shop pets come from – mass production of any pet “stock” is appalling. I certainly won’t say that I support puppy farming where the “stock” is not treated well – or any other sort of livestock enterprise such as chickens, pigs, cattle, etc…

    As for knowing for sure where a pound animal is sourced from – well, petshop animals are microchipped at the point of sale, and it’s not really difficult to trace that once you have an animal in rescue. Also, the majority of animals in the pounds (if you’d actually care to go and visit a few yourself) are not necessarily the breed mixes that one sees frequently in pet stores. I’d be way more inclined to think that many animals found in the pounds I visit right now are more likely to be from BYB’s or “accidental” litters than from pet shops.

    It is not my place as a volunteer to ask the people running NSWAR whether they have received any complaints via the RSPCA, or whether the RSPCA has visited their premises. I’m sure if either were occurring on a frequent basis that I’d more than likely have heard about it by now though… I’m there at least 2 days a week, and give daily updates about my foster pups to the coordinator… *grin*

  11. Diana S November 3, 2009 / 3:21 pm

    You may not know about the RSPCA complaints and visits at NSWAR . It is indeed true. If it wasn’t then I would not have posted the information. I encourage anyone reading these posts to call the RSPCA and confirm what I have written is true.

    If NSWAR is denying it then they are lying. Why would they lie? Because the RSPCA being called out would be highly embarrassing I would imagine. If someone called the RSPCA on me then I would be mortified, but that would never happen because I don’t mistreat my pets.

    Any rescue who is being financially supported by the PIAA is a joke and the only one I know of is NSWAR. They are not a genuine rescue group.

    The PIAA has a vested interest in wanting pet shops to sell puppies, as do the AVA. Animals should NOT simply be sold to anyone who walks in off the street. How many vets out there are laughing all the way to the bank because of the rescue vet work they are getting. There would be no need for rescue groups if the pounds could cope with the amount of animals constantly dumped on them year after year.

    Why don’t the PIAA support mandatory desexing? Because that would mean less animals and less money for their greedy supporters. They would much prefer to have healthy rehomeable dogs and cats slaughtered in their thousands.

  12. Tracey November 3, 2009 / 4:20 pm

    Diana S – please point out where I stated that NSWAR management has actually discussed anything relating to RSPCA complaints or visits with me personally? Whether or not there have or haven’t been complaints or visits is not my concern… and if the animals in NSWAR’s care were being mistreated, I would be leading the charge to the RSPCA (and/or AWL) myself. Quite frankly I think someone is leading you up the garden path as to how NSWAR operates…

    I also don’t know where you have gotten the idea that the PIAA is financially supporting NSWAR – as far as I can see, the PIAA is nothing more than an industry body (or club if you will) that happens to have a reasonable media machine – and they collect membership fees and such from members, not hand out financial support to all and sundry…

    I am being as open and honest as I can in answering your various questions and allegations regarding NSWAR, Diana S – especially as I am not the person that makes the daily decisions there (I’m just a volunteer after all) – maybe you could possibly answer the questions I posed to you in my previous comment (Are you actually involved with Rescue in any way?)

  13. Diana S November 3, 2009 / 5:33 pm

    I am saying that there have been several complaints to the RSPCA about the conduct of that rescue group and they have been out to inspect the property. If it is not true then why doesn’t a rep. from NSWAR post a message here officially denying that the RSPCA have been out to see them.

    Yes I do foster. I currently have 1 litter of kittens and 1 litter of puppies at the moment. That is 10 babies that should never have been born that people like me have to save from death row because of irresponsible people who support the PIAA. I also have 2 dogs and 2 cats that I have rescued from pounds. I have never and will never buy an animal or my pet supplies from a pet shops who sell animals. There days are numbered anyway.

    It states quite clearly on the NSWAR website under ‘SPONSORS’ that the PIAA contribute financially to them.

    I am not happy with people who continue to support an organisation who refuses to acknowledge that there is a pet overpopulation problem in this country, but won’t do anything about trying to fix it.

  14. Janet November 3, 2009 / 5:46 pm

    When does the handbags at 10 paces start ladies?

  15. Janet November 3, 2009 / 6:16 pm

    Seriously folks I volunteer at NSWAR also. I was there on Sunday and so was the vet. He checked out every little critter on the property – even the goat!! Sadly, he had to euthanase a very old and sick dog who had been rescued from the pound. RIP Boss, we love you! If they didn’t care about the animals then they wouldn’t have called the vet out – especially on a Sunday!

  16. Tracey D November 3, 2009 / 6:48 pm

    I don’t carry a handbag Janet… *grin*

    If the RSPCA have been out to NSWAR’s property and inspected the premises, or even just asked them to answer whatever complaints you allude to, then they must not have found all that much wrong with how the animals are being treated – because as far as I can see, the animals are all happy and healthy, walked and played with regularly, well fed, and catered to in many other ways… if they weren’t, wouldn’t you expect that the RSPCA would have seized the animals from NSWAR, slapped them with hefty fines, and possibly taken them to court for neglect or cruelty?

    As for the PIAA being “sponsors” of NSWAR – maybe the membership allows for discounts on animal feed and the like? Just because someone may have put a link or a note on their website regarding a club or other entity, doesn’t necessarily mean that that entity is financially supporting them at every turn… let’s at least be realistic about that particular point, OK?

    As for the “pet overpopulation” issue… well… again, statistics are all very well and good if you are asking the right questions of the right target groups to get the answers that you need to prove a point, aren’t they? (Guess who did a bit of study in gathering statistical data at Uni? *grin*).

    Personally, I’m actually seeing the problem lying more with the average citizen’s attitude towards pets as a commodity or a possession, as opposed to a lifetime commitment to another living being – and until that attitude is changed (through education), we are going to continue to see animals dumped in pounds, euthed, or just taken for a one way drive to somewhere they can’t find their way home from…

    DRP (and their followers/supporters) are obviously attempting to make some impact towards lowering the numbers of healthy animals that die every year because they have “outlived their usefulness” to their original owners (NOT MY opinion by the way) – but if the responses I have been getting here so far (when I pose an alternate opinion or state something that people don’t like to hear) is indicative of the way that DRP chooses to let it’s supporters approach the general public – then, honestly, I think it’s going to be a very long and tough road to change general public opinion on a large scale.

    Really – the old saying IS true – you catch more flies with honey…

  17. Mark November 3, 2009 / 10:09 pm

    I might be a bit naive but doesn’t the legislation state clearly in NSW that all pets sold from pet shops are to be sold with microchips? and doesnt the statistics clearly show that the vast majority of pets presented to pounds for euthanasia do not have a microchip? So to my mind pet shops are being overplayed here as the source of all the dumped animals.
    And I agree with Janet, the problem lies with the people’s attitudes and not the source of the pets. Change the populations attitude towards pet care and you will see the biggest changes

  18. Tracey D November 3, 2009 / 10:30 pm

    Good points Mark… although there are a great many dogs and cats euthed in pounds every year who DO have microchips also. Many of these have details that are out of date or incomplete, which makes it hard for pound staff to contact an owner (or breeder) to come collect their pet.

    I must say though – for the large number of “Labradoodles” and other DD “breeds” that are being pumped out to supply pet shops with cute fluffy pups, I can’t say that I’ve seen that many of those “breeds” in the pounds that I have visted… very strange…

  19. Diana S November 4, 2009 / 12:04 am

    Try looking at real rescue groups like Paws and Doggie Rescue who are inundated with the fluffies. The majority of those would come from pet shops because that is all they seem to sell because that is what the public want because they are cute. Note that they have the puppies at the front of the shop to entice impulse buyers. If not why not move the animals to the back of the shop??

    As for trying to educate some members of the public good luck with that one. That would be impossible because there are people out there who don’t even look after their kids properly so their pets wouldn’t stand a chance. We need to legislate so these fools aren’t influenced by greedy pet shop owners who are just out to make money and have no regard for the animals they sell.

    Perhaps NSWAR should take the PIAA’s name off their sponsors page if they aren’t receiving anything financial from them – donations, discounts or whatever. According to them it is a sponsor’s page not a links page. I assume the other sponsors donate money, like the Indian restaurant for example, or maybe the dogs receive a free Indian meal on a regular basis. All that curry can’t be good for them.

    Regardless of whether the RSPCA have found anything untoward at NSWAR they still made a visit after several complaints. Not one complaint, but several. Why would they even receive one complaint if NSWAR are running a proper operation. I say again why doesn’t a rep. from NSWAR state on this site that they have not been visited by the RSPCA. You are very vocal for someone who is merely a volunteer, but let’s hear from management please because as you say you are not privy to that kind of information.

    Yes, the more rescuers the better so we can clean up the mess left by pet shops who sell animals, and the PIAA.

  20. Diana S November 4, 2009 / 12:57 am

    Actually Janet after the RSPCA have made a visit, because of complaints, they require a vet report so NSWAR would have had to have had a vet out to look at the animals on the property. They would not have been able to duck out of that one.

  21. Tracey D November 4, 2009 / 7:03 am

    Diana S – I can already see that you have your own opinion firmly set in your mind.

    Believe it or not, I actually understand where you are coming from here (anyone involved with rescuing animals would).

    You seem to know a great deal about the alleged complaints to the RSPCA about NSWAR – would you care to enlighten us as to the nature of some of those complaints? I can honestly say that I’ve not seen any neglect or poor treatment of any of the animals in NSWAR’s care – so it would be interesting to know what the alleged complaints were actually about.

    While we are at it, I wouldn’t be mortified or embarrassed if the RSPCA lobbed up on MY doorstep and asked to see how I kept my furkids because they received a vexatious complaint from a “rival” – and I’m sure that NSWAR feel exactly the same way about that as I do.

  22. Diana S November 4, 2009 / 5:30 pm

    The PIAA and rescue groups don’t mix, hence the reason that none of them, except NSWAR, is a member. All the genuine rescue groups that I know of want animals banned in pet shops, the banning of puppy farmers and BYB’s and the introduction of mandatory desexing. By supporting the PIAA, NSWAR wants none of the above. Why? Could it be that there would be less animals around and they would then be out of a job??

    I am a rescuer and foster carer, but I don’t depend on it for my living. The same is true with other rescues and carer’s. We all spend large amounts of our own income on preparing these animals for rehoming.

  23. Tracey D November 4, 2009 / 8:35 pm

    Actually – now I think about it – didn’t the one of the AWL branches win the Dog’s Life Best Rescue Award last year? I’m sure they happily accepted the award in the spirit it was given too…

  24. Tracey D November 4, 2009 / 8:36 pm

    Ooops – I also forgot to add that NSWAR is NOT the only rescue organisation that is a member of the PIAA…

  25. deathrowpets November 4, 2009 / 10:39 pm

    I want to thank people for their comments on this post, but I’m closing the debate now. I’m concerned that the debate has moved on to NSWAR which was not the point of the original posting.

    How do we stop the number of animals entering the market into an over-supply situation is what we need to keep a focus on.

    Thank you all

  26. Diana S November 4, 2009 / 10:49 pm

    Good move DRP!

  27. Tracey D November 5, 2009 / 6:43 am

    For the record – I do not necessarily support the PIAA’s stance on the sale of live animals in petshops if those animals are sourced from places that mass produce them for lucrative profit.

    However, I am not against the sale of pets in petshops IF they are sourced from places that put the health and wellbeing of their animals first, AND the petshops selling them also do the same (and also vet their prospective new owners properly).

    BUT the PIAA’s stance regarding this issue is but the tip of the iceberg in the complete picture of the problem of pets ending up in pounds. Sure, they are an easy target for our ire, but I firmly believe that the general public’s opinions regarding pets is a much larger part of the problem that needs more focus and action to “fix”…

    I’m a firm believer in EDUCATION being used to affect change – it may not be the “quick fix” we so sorely need here – but I’m positive that it will be the most effective tool in our arsenal in the long run – would you not agree?

  28. Janet November 5, 2009 / 3:59 pm

    I actually think that mandatory desexing at point of sale, whether it be in a pet shop or pound, is the answer. When I say pet shop I mean a pet shop who has rescue animals for adoption. Backyard breeders and puppy farmers should be banned outright.

    Some people either don’t want their animals desexed or they don’t get around to having it done and before they know it they have an unwanted litter on their hands…doh! If someone is firmly against desexing, for religious reasons or whatever, then they can pay not to have their pet desexed, something like the registration set-up where it costs more to register an undesexed pet.

    If people can’t or refuse to be responsible pet owners then it needs the law to step in to save these beautiful creatures. (The animals I means not their inane owners.)

    Just my 2 cents worth.

  29. Tracey D November 5, 2009 / 7:15 pm

    Good points there Janet – but what about the poor mugs like me who really don’t want to be forced into buying a purebred or pedigreed pet? I like my mutts…

    You’ve seen my babies Janet – are they in the slightest bit less precious just because they are each the product of two (or more) dogs of different breeds? Do they not have distinctive personalities of their own that bear no resemblance to the public perception of their breed makeup? When I was looking for the pup that would become my Zeddy, I especially WANTED a crossbreed dog – and she is just perfect in my opinion…

    (I’ve met your gorgeous girl too – and I think she’s pretty darned close to perfect also!)

    I suppose that what I’m trying to say here is that not everyone that selects a pup from a FTGH or BYB litter (or even from a petshop) is inclined to love or care for them any less than a pup sourced from a reputable breeder (and exactly WHAT is that anyways?)

    We already have many laws and regulations with regard to pet ownership – and they aren’t being policed effectively. What makes any of us think that MORE legislation will be policed effectively? Mandatory microchipping of cats and dogs is NOT done – council registration is NOT done – and neither is being followed up on by the authorities with the power to do so. Why add more legislation before we make sure the current legislation is acted upon?

    I suppose that adding more legislation is a way to attempt to show the general public that the authorities are doing something – but without followthrough on it, what is the point? Let’s call for the CURRENT legislation to be POLICED EFFECTIVELY first, and see if that slows some of the tide, huh?

    Secondly – how about calling for an EDUCATION program to be instigated – aimed at schools – where animal care and welfare becomes a part of the syllabus… that is a much nobler (and more effective) way to affect the longterm changes to society’s treatment of our pets… well, in MY opinion anyways…

  30. Janet November 5, 2009 / 9:08 pm

    I agree totally about mixed breeds. I would much prefer to have one of those than a pedigree. My girl is one and yes she is gorgeous. Your dogs are great too! I am by no means wanting to wipe them out. However, at present there are way too many of them being put down in pounds and shelters, as you already know. This appalling situation has to stop – and now! It breaks my heart to think of how close Charley became to being one of those poor dogs. She was one of the lucky ones.

    Sure, education is good, educate away, but unfortunately the message is falling on deaf ears, especially in the less affluent areas of NSW. That is more than evident in the pound stats. These people have a tough time just surviving themselves. Where are they to find the money to have their pets desexed? If the animal was desexed when they bought it then – no unwanted litters! Sure the animal will cost a little more, but if they really want it then they wouldn’t have a problem paying the extra money. Personally I think if one can’t afford an animal, which means a chipped, registered, vaccinated, desexed animal then they shouldn’t have one. That’s what being a responsible pet owner is all about.

    Also, I can never understand why people want to be lumbered with unwanted litters all the time. It is just a pain in trying to rehome them. Haven’t people got better things to do with their time? It is also going to cost more to feed the litter until they can be weaned.

    I very much believe in rescue groups because they don’t sell to just anyone who walks in off the street. The rescue group I got my girl from vetted me and I had no problem with that whatsoever. In fact, I was really pleased they took the time to do so. When I adopted her in 2006 she cost $220 – now I think they are $250. That included chipping, desexing and 1st vacc. All I had to do was have her registered with the council. That is cheaper than buying a dog in a pet shop. I am also very pleased that she will never have to endure another unwanted pregnancy.

  31. Tracey D November 5, 2009 / 9:38 pm

    I have a confession to make…

    Up until about 2 years ago, I was one of “those people” who had the opinion that a female dog should have one litter before she was desexed…

    However – what changed MY mind about this rather silly practice wasn’t someone browbeating me into feeling guilty about allowing my girls to have litters – rather it was my neighbour introducing me to her latest foster dog, and becoming involved with rescue myself in due course. Actually SEEING the animals lined up in the pound cages is a REAL eye-opener, isn’t it? Especially when you know that some of those lovely animals are going to die soon for no other reason but no-one wanting them in time…

    The moral of this confession is that browbeating and guilt tripping people about the subject more often than not will make them ignore you or write you off as a ranting fool… but a gentler approach where you can get the person involved with an animal that was once “unwanted” (and in many cases, maltreated), and talk calmly and rationally to them about how THEY can HELP be PART of the SOLUTION, will most likely see a “conversion” from the “dark side”… *grin*

    I think I said this before, but it’s a good one…

    You will ALWAYS catch more flies with honey…

  32. Janet November 6, 2009 / 11:25 am

    Sure, that’s the ideal way to go and rescue’s do a good job with that, but still the pounds are overflowing and there are too many cats and dogs for even rescue to cope with and the animals are dying now.

    Besides how long is it going to take to educate the whole country into being responsible pet owners and is that even possible? There is always going to be a section of society who don’t give a toss about being a responsible pet owner and will allow their pets to breed year after year, thus dumping a never ending supply of unwanted litters at the pound, especially during breeding season.

    There will always be people who don’t believe that a pet is for life and people who impulse buy and once again it ends up in the pound. It’s those types of people who are causing the problem, so that’s why I feel it should be harder for people to purchase a dog or a cat. Get the animals out of pet shops, which is already being achieved (out of 5 pet shops in my suburb only one sells puppies and kittens) I am very pleased to say, and ban the mongrels who are continually flooding an already overcrowded market – the PF’s and BYB’s. As I mentioned before if people don’t want their pets desexed then they can pay extra for that. That way they still have the choice – to desex or not to desex.

    Sometimes in life tough decisions have to be made to fix a problem.. China, for example, made the decision many years ago to only have a one child per family policy, so as to control their population. Not a popular decision with some I would image, but that was what was needed to keep the population under control and they have been successful in doing so.

  33. Janet November 6, 2009 / 11:37 am

    I have never contemplated the idea of letting my pets breed. They have always been desexed. That was just second nature to me.

    However, I was one of those who refused to have my male dog desexed because I didn’t want him to lose his ‘bits’. However, after I got sick of him continually humping my leg and in consultation with the vet I saw the light and off they came! I know that he and my leg were all the better for the decision. Unfortunately there are still people around like that, especially some men.

    But educate away and maybe just maybe in 10 years time the message will sink in. In the interim how many animals will have died because they happened to have the misfortune of having irresponsible owners.

  34. Tracey November 6, 2009 / 4:59 pm

    I understand the frustration of wanting a quick fix for the problem that is occurring NOW… but really, I don’t think that more legislation is the answer.

    It is all well and good to campaign to put laws into place regarding pet ownership, etc… but seriously – who is policing the CURRENT laws and regulations that are ALREADY in place?

    We already have some good animal welfare laws in place – but no-one seems to be able to enforce them. Why is that? Can we fix the problems with policing the current laws please… before asking for new ones to be added?

    As for education taking a long time to see the full results from… I still firmly believe that education is going to be our most EFFECTIVE long term tool to reduce the numbers of animals being dumped when they have “outlived their usefulness” (not my opinion, OK?)

    But then again – education programs for this sort of thing will require more of us getting off our backsides and actually doing something rewardingly constructive by being a part of that education process…

    Oh – and I’ve never had any of my male dogs desexed (prior to becoming involved in rescue), and I never had the humping problem – or any of the other problems that some people have with their males. Maybe I was just lucky that my boys were more concerned about getting the best spot on the couch than doing “boy things”… *grin*

  35. Janet November 9, 2009 / 3:32 pm

    I am a firm believer in every industry being regulated as should the pet industry, so I will continue to campaign for such. That is just the way I feel when I look at the pound websites, especially now at this time of year, and nothing will ever change that. As long as some time soon there is a drastic reduction of dogs and cats in the pound I will be happy.

  36. Tracey November 11, 2009 / 12:05 pm

    Do we really want so much legislation that it is impossible for even responsible pet owners to have a dog or cat (or any other pet)?

    Kneejerk reactions calling for “immediate” solutions to problems that have taken years to grow to their current proportions may “fix” the problem to such an extent that even responsible pet owners cannot have a pet. Do we really want that?

    I’ll keep shouting EDUCATION at the top of my lungs – because that will be the only way to see long term change for the better. No, it won’t happen overnight, and yes, in the meantime the situation will stay the same – but over time we should see a reduction in the problem of pets being regularly dumped when they have “outlived their usefulness” – and hopefully see an increased notion that a pet is for life…

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