A Final Hoo-Ray

Thursday, April 7th, 2011

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Animal euthanasia is wrong and I believe that it is one hundred percent preventable. Most of society feels the same way I do; that is that euthanasia is only acceptable when the animal is suffering due to illness or old age. This blog has given me the opportunity to share my opinions, as well as write about other’s.

When told to pick a topic and create a blog about it I instantly dreaded the process. The first hard decision would be picking a topic. There are literally thousands of things out there that could be blogged about, how could I narrow it down to just one? This lead me to think about things that I’m passionate about and one of these was animals. Animals are and always have been a huge part of my life. At home I have to Beagles, Macie and Simba, who I adore and wouldn’t give up for the world. Once I had decided to learn about animals the next issue arose as trying to narrow down that topic. Despite how much fun it would be, I wouldn’t be able to post cute pictures and tell funny stories about my dogs. I began researcing animal shelters, vets, and animal rights. The narrow topic came easy-animal euthanasia. As I read articles on all of those topics euthanasia was always discussed and angered me greatly.

I was shocked with the facts that I found about euthansia. If you have been following my bl0g you will have read about the millions of animals murdered every year in the United States alone. As appauling as this is, for people working with animals this has become accepted. However, there are many organizations working to fight against the murder of innocent animals. During this blog the Humane Society of the United States and the ASPCA’s websites taught me all sorts of things about how unfairly animals are treated. These are two non-profit organizations that work to stop cruelty against animals.

The majority of people view animal euthanasia as cruel and horrible, but there are some that view it as the means for population control and punishment of debt (see interview with pastor in previous post). This amazed me because I don’t understand how anyone could openly say that innocent animals should be murdered simply because shelters don’t have enough space.

I have enjoyed writing this blog because it has given me the chance to spread the word about the real truth of euthanasia and I hope that those reading my blog will step up and do their part to help end animal euthanasia. While researching I learned that one of the most important parts to ending the murders is to talk about the problem and publicize the truth. I hope that I have done that here, and that by doing so I have made a few more people aware who will in turn tell a few other people. This project has inspired me to not only write about the topic, but also to become involved by working at shelters. I hope you have enjoyed my blog, check out my blog roll to find more interesting blogs and articles!

See ya,

Samantha

Not Just the Animals

Sunday, April 3rd, 2011

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It has been proved many times that the Euthanasia technicians have higher levels of stress than the every day workers. It is so bad there have been many articles published on ways to help relieve some of this work related stress. The idea that the people who actually have to murder the animals have high levels of stress isn’t really that far fetched. It would be odd in my opinion if they didn’t have stress. Who can murder animals on a daily basis and go on about their lives as if they don’t kill for a living.

However, I do understand that someone has to step-up and do the job. I also realize that it must take a toll on that person’s body and mind to be in that position. Personally, I could never do that. Every time I see a dog or cat I coo over it and think it’s just the cutest thing (next to my own puppies of course). The idea of willing and knowingly murdering animals with absolutely nothing wrong with them could never work for me. My heart would literally ache for them and I could never go through with.

When I first began researching the topic of euthanasia I never viewed it in the perspective of the technicians or vets, I always had the “animal” mindset. My mind was one-tracked into thinking that anyone who could do that was a cruel and unworthy human being. However, after days of research I began stumbling across articles about how to deal with euthanasia related stress if you were a tech. This literally stopped me in my searches because I had never ever considered what the killings would do to those administering the drugs. This put a whole me on a whole different research track and I began to read the articles.

After reading a dozen of these articles I came to an unfourtuanate conclusion. The techs and vets that are euthanizing these animals are not spawns of satan, they aren’t heartless humans; they are simply following orders. Someone always has to do the job that others don’t want and this one of those jobs. No one wants to pick up the trash, no one wants to clean toilets, and no one wants to kill animals, but these people are stuck with that crappy job. It hurts them to do it more than it hurts me to read about it and these people are greatly stressed because of it. These people are good people stuck doing a bad thing for money.

Back to the Question: To Kill or Not To Kill?

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011
Save a life. Take one home.
Save a life. Take one home.

There are debates all over on animal euthanasia; debates on the humanity, on the pros and cons, and if it is actually necessary. Different sources of course have differing opinions on the matter. Most of the information I came across came to the conclusion that the only time animal euthanasia should be necessary is when an animal is old and frail or ill and will experience greater suffering living.

However, I found a radio interview with a pastor who believes that if a person has unpaid veterinarian bills, the vet should give the owners a deadline (his suggestion of three weeks) and if the owner has not paid by the end of that time, he believes the animal should be put to sleep. It is people like this that I don’t understand. A Christian man, a pastor, believes that a life should be taken because someone can’t afford medical bills. He says many times that animals are nothing more than “a rock, they aren’t people and they don’t have souls.” The fact that this man places such little emphasis on animal life shocks me. He is a walking contradiction because he says that animals are not human and have no soul, yet when a listener calls in and says that to some people animals are their children and by euthanizing those animals it would be like taking a child away he says, “how? It’s a cat. I have two award winning Dobermans at home and their my children, but their still animals without a soul.” I don’t understand how a person could be so cruel and people like him don’t deserve to own “award winning Dobermans.”

However, there is hope for an end to animal euthanasia because there are many more people out there that are against the act than people like the pastor. I found an article that says that as humans we “need to own up to what we are doing. By using words like “put to sleep” and “euthanize” we are desensitizing and hiding the real truth.” I respect people like this because they are right. We are cruelly murdering innocent animals for no better reason than the fact that there isn’t enough staff to care for them or because they are not fixed or spayed. The article gives many suggestions as to ways euthanasia can be reduced and I think that more people need to become aware of these, especially people like the pastor.

Overpopulation is the number one reason for animal euthanasia and can be easily fixed. People should start adopting from no kill shelters, breeders for profit need to stop and realize that they strongly contribute to the killing of innocent animals, and the cruelty of euthanasia needs to be publicized so that more people become aware of the harsh reality that is happening right under our noses every single day.

Proof of the Cruelty

Sunday, March 27th, 2011

ABC Investigates Euthanasia in New York

This video interviews city officials and their views on euthanasia in New York animal shelters. Owners of animals adopted from these very shelters are also interviewed and it is made clear that the euthanasia is cruel and very unnecessary.

The Beginnings

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

 

 
Henry Bergh

Henry BerghAs I’ve researched and learned more about the topic of euthanasia I’ve often wondered when, how, and where it all began. The findings were quite interesting and unexpected.  

The idea that animals had rights all began with a man named Henry Bergh, born 1813 in Russia. He spent his adult life trying to stop the cruelty of animals, even founding the first anti-cruelty organization, England’s Royal Society for the Prevention of the Cruelty to Animals (1840). After arriving in American he continued his quest to stop cruelty by bringing forth the “Declaration of the Rights of Animals” which was signed in New York. The ASPCA took this declaration and went with it, trying to protect animals from that point on. Early efforts of the ASPCA focused on protecting horses and livestock; it was not until later that they began helping dogs and cats. 

Euthanasia comes from Greek, meaning good death. However, early euthanasia could hardly be called good. In the late nineteenth century animal control workers would round up stray animals, lock them in cages, and throw these cages into rivers for the animals to drown. This was their version of animal control. The workers were very inhumane because they were not payed by the hour, but by the dog. Eventually workers were so desperate they began to steal pets out of owners yards and drown them just to make money. The ASPCA stepped in and took action against their cruel acts.

The first animal hospital was at Harvard university and opened in 1884. Anesthesia for animals was first created in 1918 to be used to operate on animals, but specifically horses. However, this medicine turned into the drug used for euthanasia. As people began to care for animals like dogs and cats, and have family pets, animal reproduction grew as well. The good intentions of thousands of people had turned into more troubles. Reproduction rates grew out of control and by the 1960s animals began to be euthanized for disease and for lack of space.

It amazes me that even as far back as the 1800s people were trying to look out for the safety and rights of animals. Henry Bergh had few ways to advertise his goals, but all because of his actions and ideas, there are thousands of organizations all over the world the fight every day to protect and take care of animals of all types.

Humans and Animals

Thursday, March 10th, 2011

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The drug pentobarbital is the drug most commonly used to euthanize animals. Pentobrarbital is a barbiturate that slows the functions of the brain and nervous system. The drug is also often used in humans for treatment of seizures or as anesthesia. It can cause serious side effects in humans. For example, because this drug is a barbiturate it can easily become addictive. The drug can cause vomiting, dizziness, insomnia, sleep apnea, and many more side effects ranging in seriousness.

A new trend  is to use this drug on death row. The switch has been made because the drug commonly used is manufactured in Italy. The European nations have banned the death penalty and refuse to allow America to use the drug for such. A new drug was needed-Pentobrarbital. The first state do so as of January 2011 is Ohio.

Ohio’s prison system is switching to a high dose of pentobarbital, a drug used to euthanize animals and as a sedative during major surgery, as the lethal drug it will use to execute condemned killers, officials announced Tuesday. The switch is due to a national shortage of sodium thiopental, which is currently used in Ohio executions.

The cruelty of the drug is clearly displayed here. Why is America using the same drug to kill convicted killers and innocent animals? How is that fair?

Animals are killed every single day because shelters don’t have a place to keep them, not because they committed a horrible crime or murder. Those on death row made the choice to kill, rape, and steal; animals don’t get the choice when their owners give them up. They don’t get the choice to be born to a mother who wasn’t fixed. They don’t get the choice to live in a home or on the streets or in a shelter. Animals don’t get a choice. Humans do.

As humans, we should stand up for the rights of animals. We need to be the voice that they don’t have. Organizations like the Humane Society and the ASPCA work everyday to help give a voice to animals, so that there will be laws created to stop acts of cruelty such as euthanasia. As awareness gross people should become more willing and wanting to help save lives of innocent animals all over.

The Cold Hard Facts

Monday, March 7th, 2011

Shelters don’t advertise that they euthanize the animals within their walls, so many people don’t know the truth about how it’s done or how often it actually happens. The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) continues to make attemptsto help stop euthanization by publishing statistics and facts about euthanasia. To show the horrors of euthanasia the HSUS published facts stating that three percent of cats and dogs in America are euthanized every year; that’s about 4 million animals.  

However, leaps have been made to help the animals in shelters. The HSUS also stated that, “in the 1970s twenty-five percent or around 20 million animals were eunthanized every year.”  There is also hope in minimizing euthanasia because many cities have made laws that require at least one no-kill  shelter within the city. This shows that there are many people out there that are pulling for the animals and fighting for their rights since they are unable to fight for themselves.

Another common mistake people make is taking animals to shelters who falsely work under the name “Humane” or “SPCA” because many of these are actually generic shelters, and not a branch of the Humane Society or The American Society of the Prevention of Cruelty of Animals. This is advertised as a warning on the ASPCA’s website.

People need to become more cognizant about the truths of animals fates once placed inside of shelters. They need to realize that the people that work in these shelters do the best they can, but also that they aren’t always looking out for the animal’s best interests. They are working off of tight budgets, usually from donations, and usually have limited space. However, this doesn’t excuse the fact that many animals are die at their hands. I feel that awareness needs to be raised so that people will adopt more of these animals or give more donations to help support the animals within these shelters.

Animal Euthanasia

Friday, March 4th, 2011
Every year three to four million animals are euthanized because of disease or lack of space in shelters. Euthanasia provides a painless and “humane” way to kill the animals. There is such a high demand at animal shelters they feel they need to kill the animals that are not neutered or spayed and many animals loose the chance to be adopted into a good home.

Is euthanasia humane? I believe not. There are millions of animal lovers out there that would be willing to foster and adopt animals, but shelters don’t take the time to advertise thier need for help. This problem was brought to my attention when I was visiting a local animal shelter. I was simply waiting in line for help and the woman in front of me was crying as she spoke to the receptionist behind the desk.

The receptionist had no trouble with telling the woman, “Ma’am if we take your dogs there is a high chance that they will be euthanized witihin two weeks because we are renovating and don’t have space for two more dogs.”

I was horrified by this thought becuase this woman was asking for help from a shelter claiming to be “Humane”, in fact the shelter itself was a branch of the Human Society, and here they were telling her that because she couldn’t afford to feed her dogs they were going to be killed.

It’s instances like this that make me sick to my stomach. The poor woman was struggling in times when the economy was weak and realized that she wouldn’t be able to take care of her dogs. She did the right thing by asking for help from people claiming to want to help animals and was faced with the realization that she must leave her animals with someone who promises to kill them or take them with her and risk not being able to feed them or herself.

The injustice of the situation is clear to anyone. Why should animals suffer because people simply can’t afford them or don’t want to deal with them?