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Pet People

Sunday, January 14, 2007

WHY?

I live in the country, 20 miles outside of town. When I drive to work or to go shopping, I usually drive a back road and enjoy the beautiful, Tennessee countryside.

However, no matter which of the several routes I take, the natural beauty is marred, and I don’t enjoy the ride as much as I could because of what I can’t avoid seeing: A poor dog tied to a dog house living its life alone 24/7.

On one route I see a young dog tied to a clothes line, an old wooden dog house nearby. I often see him playing with an old blanket, his only companion.

Another route takes me past a similar situation, this one somehow even sadder because the breed chained to his prison is a herding breed, a dog meant to work, herd, run and play. The other day his field of dirt was a muddy mess from the rain, as he huddled inside.

It’s almost more than I can bear, because I know a dog’s nature and know that tying them out 24/7 with no companionship is cruel. Dogs are pack animals that need and want to interact with humans or other dogs. They need something to do. Tied out dogs often become aggressive and territorial. Wouldn’t you if you had to live that way?

I almost cry every day having to see these poor dogs live the way they do. I will never, ever understand why a person would want a dog and then never bother with it other than to feed it as if it were a plant or something. I will never understand why these people don’t at least get a fence for the dog so it can run and explore. How can any human with a heart see their dog tied that way day after day and not understand how horrible it is for the poor, lonely dog? Why do they even want a dog?

Our community is way behind the times when it comes to animal issues. Some communities now have laws against tying a dog 24/7. Locally, there is no law that says you must love your dog, of course. All you must do is provide it food, water and shelter. The dogs I must see every day have that, but they don’t have freedom, companionship, fun or love. They are prisoners, and lonely prisoners at that.

posted by Sandy at 1/14/2007 10:54:00 AM

17 Comments:

Blogger Alice said...

I share your concern and wonder about people. Dogs are mostly companion animals and companion means they want and need companionship. Our three dogs are our children. We don't have human children but if we did we couldn't love them more than we love our three four-legged children. Sadly, is it any wonder that people treat "animals" poorly when human children and the disadvantaged are treated just as poorly? People who litter, illegally park in handicapped parking spaces and those who drive recklessly all fit into the same category, people who don't care about anything other than themselves. Is it any wonder then that they treat their dogs the way they do?

Sunday, January 14, 2007 8:22:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

I agree 100% Alice. But what I don't understand is why they even want a dog or have one in the first place. That is a choice--to go out and get a dog. Why, if only to ignore it? It breaks my heart to see it. You are right though, there are people who treat everyone in their life badly. I do believe in karma, and what goes around, comes around. It's the only way to find some comfort.

Sunday, January 14, 2007 8:43:00 PM  
Blogger Stacey said...

I know this is probably a silly question, as active in the rescue community as you are, but have you taken the step of following the recommendations of the Humane Society's Anti-Tethering and Chaining Program (ATCP)? Perhaps getting the information into the pet owner's hands can make a difference. Maybe the Humane Society can include these homes on their next Anti-Tether education walk.

http://clarksvillehumanesociety.org/anti-tetheringprogram.htm

I know it's hard to believe, but some people don't know any different. If they were raised in an environment that treated pets as property and not companions, it may never have occurred to them what they are doing is cruel.

Sunday, January 14, 2007 9:14:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

The one home I noticed the address on the mailbox and mailed them the information myself. Twice. I included a nice letter. The Humane Society used to go on walks around neighborhoods to talk to people and hand out information; I'll have to check with them and see if they are able to address the issue.

Sunday, January 14, 2007 11:16:00 PM  
Blogger Shannon said...

I wonder if some people who do this get the dog as a cute cuddly puppy and once it grows-they aren't educated in how to handle the dog or just aren't interested anymore. It breaks my heart too. This is so awful to say-but I have almost gone out at night and released a dog in a similar situation(to bring home with me-not to just let go) BUT-I knew it was illegal and was also afraid of getting shot. So I did not. I just continued to feel helpless, sad & angry everytime I saw this poor doggie. I too wish there was more that could be done.

Monday, January 15, 2007 7:53:00 AM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

I think you are right when it comes to some people, Shannon. But the one dog I see was put there as a puppy. He does get to move a little because his rope is on a clothes line, but it's not that big of one. I am a big believer in people keeping their pets safe and confined when they are out, but I'll tell you, I'd rather see a dog loose without a fence than tied up. And yes, the helpless feeing is what is the worst. I like to "fix" things, and that's one that I can't fix.

Monday, January 15, 2007 10:42:00 AM  
Blogger Pam said...

I know you wrote this a couple of days ago but had to comment. In Oct. I started seeing the neighbor's dog tied to a tree in their back yard and it looked so sad. Finally on Thursday before Halloween it was very cold and the dog was outside all day with no shelter of any kind to go to. When it got dark I called animal control and had to use the after hours # for the police. Someone came and checked it out so I hoped that would be the end of that or at least they would get a shelter. Not to happen and the dog was out there every day. Finally on Halloween morning it was pouring the rain, it was thundering and lightening and the poor dog was getting soaked. It was hunkering down and had no place to go. I did n't dare go onto thier property but after two hours I called animal control agin. 30 minutes after I called they got there. I had to leave at that time but when I got home the dog was not in the yard. Now animal control is supposed to keep things confident when you call so when I was told that but asked for my name for a contact I trustingly gave it. Well that afternoon my neighbor came over and raked me through the coals for calling animal control. When I explained I was only trying to help her dog because it was so scared and soaking wet She accused me of putting a a animal above a human. Then she said It's just a animal!!!!!!!!!!! I was so upset to hear that. Then she went on to say how it was a pure bred they paid $450.00 for and that they take care of thier animals. I don't think so. She said they were worried about her husbands job because he works for the city. She then said they way she knew I called was taht they have a "IN" with a dispatcher at animal control and they told her it was me. I will never give my name again no matter what. She was so mad I was almost afraid she was going to slug me but another neighbor who is her friend drove up in front of my house to see what was going on and she went to tell her. I closed the door and that was that but now it' very unconfortable to be living across the street from her. The dog was back out there the next day and many days after. Lately I ahven't seen it so don't know if they ahve it or not. The last two times I saw it they had it tied to a tree in the front yard. It just broke my heart for the poor dog. They had a cat she said they paid $350.00 for and wanted to get rid of. She was asking me last year if I knew of anyone who would want it. I think they wanted to sell it not give it to a good home. People like that should never never be alllowed to have animals in my opinion! Ok I've voiced my opinion enough for about a week I think between this writing and my comments earlier.
Pam

Tuesday, January 16, 2007 3:13:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

I would call David Selby at Animal Control and tell them that story! That is outrageous! I would rather see a dog put to sleep than live like that. I know a guy here at work who feeds and takes care of his neighbors dog in a similar situation. But please, always call animal control if you have to. They are overwhelmed, but they need to know!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007 11:46:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Good Morning Sandy,
I was so mad after that incident that I called David Selby the first thing the next morning and talked to him. He wasn not happy about it at all. He said of course the people working there are supposed to keep it confidential but there are slips ups with certain people. He apoligized and said he'd try to find out who gave my name out but I haven't heard back from him. I know he is very busy taking care of so much. I may have to call him back later. I told him taht situations like that make people think before reporting these things. And people like our neighbors only care about the status of having a "Pure Bred" animal not the animal. I wonder if they still even ahve that cat. The kids would be out playing in the yard and the poor dog watching all the while and they ignored it,it hurt my heart! The other neighbors had a little dog they did the same way for a long time but it had a dog house. They ahd it for a couple of years I think. In all that time they let it off the chain to play with thier two little boys two times! It barked all the time. One day it was gone and we don't know what happened to it. They are christian people but they don't value animal lives at all. The ones that I called animal control on had a run in with another neighbor of ours over thier kids shooting off fire works unsupervised. I don't know how these people think! And this guy is a city engineer!!!! Ok, I need to shut up cause I'm getting mad all over again. Talk to you later.
Pam

Wednesday, January 17, 2007 7:03:00 AM  
Blogger Jodi's Posse said...

I agree with the poster who said she was tempted to go and release the dog. I frankly have no qualms about doing so. If people leave their dog unattended outside, then they deserve to have it taken from them because they haven't got the brains or the honor to take care of their pet. As for having an animal as a status symbol, that's a symptom of insecurity and stupidity. If you have a living creature, its there to be cared for; it's your responsibility. And that comment about putting an animal above people, well people like her deserve no consideration and anyone would be a fool to put someone like her above an animal.

Thursday, January 18, 2007 4:25:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

Yes, I agree we should do what we can to help any dog based what we can and are willing to do. Anything we are willing to do. I would rather see a dog loose, even with those dangers, than tied up 24/7. My heart breaks because I KNOW there are thousands of dogs like that (and cats not cared for) living that kind of life RIGHT NOW. I would rather see them put to sleep, because I believe all spirits live on in the next stage.

I often get accused of loving aniamls more than people. Well, some animals deserve to be loved more than some people. If a building was burning and there was a loser dog abuser in there with the dog he abused, I wouldn't waste one second thinking "Who shall I save?" You and I know who would burn, there and where he'll go when he's gone. Dante's Inferno! LOL. Seriously, I believe all living things have spirits and man is rather arrogant in his lofty opinion of himself!

Thursday, January 18, 2007 9:57:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Sandy, I agree 100% with you on who I'd leave in a burning building!!!!! I too have been acused of caring more about animals than people but it's just that people can take care of themselves ( well grown people ) and animals need our help. That is what my neighbor accused me of ( the one I called animal control on ) when she said I put a animal above a human life. She doesn't deserve any animals and I sure hope they did sell or give away thier dog and cat!!!!!!!!!
I am such a animal lover that I can't even sstand it when one is hurt or killed or dies however even in a movie I know isn't real! My husband thinks I'm a little out there on that one but I can't help it. There was a story on a couple of weeks ago about a serial killer that had a dog in his garage and he was torturing it and it killed me even though I knew it was not real. I could never watch the movie Old Yeller!

Friday, January 19, 2007 12:46:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Sandy, I agree 100% with you on who I'd leave in a burning building!!!!! I too have been acused of caring more about animals than people but it's just that people can take care of themselves ( well grown people ) and animals need our help. That is what my neighbor accused me of ( the one I called animal control on ) when she said I put a animal above a human life. She doesn't deserve any animals and I sure hope they did sell or give away thier dog and cat!!!!!!!!!
I am such a animal lover that I can't even sstand it when one is hurt or killed or dies however even in a movie I know isn't real! My husband thinks I'm a little out there on that one but I can't help it. There was a story on a couple of weeks ago about a serial killer that had a dog in his garage and he was torturing it and it killed me even though I knew it was not real. I could never watch the movie Old Yeller!

Friday, January 19, 2007 12:46:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Sandy, I agree 100% with you on who I'd leave in a burning building!!!!! I too have been acused of caring more about animals than people but it's just that people can take care of themselves ( well grown people ) and animals need our help. That is what my neighbor accused me of ( the one I called animal control on ) when she said I put a animal above a human life. She doesn't deserve any animals and I sure hope they did sell or give away thier dog and cat!!!!!!!!!
I am such a animal lover that I can't even sstand it when one is hurt or killed or dies however even in a movie I know isn't real! My husband thinks I'm a little out there on that one but I can't help it. There was a story on a couple of weeks ago about a serial killer that had a dog in his garage and he was torturing it and it killed me even though I knew it was not real. I could never watch the movie Old Yeller!

Friday, January 19, 2007 12:46:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Sandy, I agree 100% with you on who I'd leave in a burning building!!!!! I too have been acused of caring more about animals than people but it's just that people can take care of themselves ( well grown people ) and animals need our help. That is what my neighbor accused me of ( the one I called animal control on ) when she said I put a animal above a human life. She doesn't deserve any animals and I sure hope they did sell or give away thier dog and cat!!!!!!!!!
I am such a animal lover that I can't even sstand it when one is hurt or killed or dies however even in a movie I know isn't real! My husband thinks I'm a little out there on that one but I can't help it. There was a story on a couple of weeks ago about a serial killer that had a dog in his garage and he was torturing it and it killed me even though I knew it was not real. I could never watch the movie Old Yeller!

Friday, January 19, 2007 12:46:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

Pam, we are exactly alike in that regard. Old Yeller, NEVER. I can't watch Animal Precinct or any of those shows. I read a Stephen King book once that mentioned a dog that was dumped on the road and what was going on in his head, about how used to be the "Prince" cared for by a littler girl, but when he got older and had no time. I swear, I was upset for weeks and still think about it, even though it was fiction, becuase I KNOW there are millions like him out there. And when I think of dogs in poor countries that live in dumps and are hated, I can't bear it.

I will never understand how people could be like that..NEVER. I have absolutely no compassion for anyone like the people you speak of. I hate it when they say you put animals "ahead" of people AS IF it were an either/or situation. And the older I get the more vocal I get with people who don't care for there animals. I've had several talks with my neighbor about situations, not bad ones, but just basic stupidity and laziness.

Friday, January 19, 2007 1:06:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Me too Sandy, On not being able to watch the animal shows. the only ones I can watch is one I've heard is about how a animal was rescued and has a happy ending or a happy story of some kind, like animal miracles and them saving people's lives or another animal. Remember the story about the Mama cat that kept going back into the burning building till she rescured every on eof her kittens? Just one of many good ones but the poor kitty was so burned. Last I heard she was doing fantastic and Adopted by Whoopie Goldberg. I guess God had to give some us the tender hearts for animals to try to make up for the ones who don't care but it breaks my heart that there aren't enough of us. I pray more people will become animals lovers every day!
I too am upset over the Animal Control deal. If people would wake up and see how much benefit it would be to be prepared for down the road. And it is much more important than some of the other crap they worry about like beautification. I'm all for that too but not untill the animals are taken care of. Plus I pray taht it will become a no kill world for animals someday. That is my prayer along with no more homeless animals everr but all having good and loving homes!

Friday, January 19, 2007 2:35:00 PM  

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Pet People

Sandy Britt, an animal welfare advocate and volunteer with Clarksville rescue organizations, takes care of three dogs: Zoe, Scooter and Peanut; two cats: Catfish and Tarzan; and one husband, Glen, and according to him she takes care of them in that order.
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