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Why you should care about ending domestication, even if you love your pets

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Whilst sitting watching a game of Aussie Rules footy on this sunny winter afternoon, I had one of my two canine companions snuggled up beside me. We have two Kelpies (Australian sheepdogs) who were rescued from a life of servitude on farms. Mack, the five year old kelpie cross, is very affectionate. He loves to have his head tucked up beside my leg as I sit on the couch, or when I’m lying in bed. I could feel his heart beating under my hand, and could hear his half-snore as he snoozed beside me. I thought about how much joy and love I receive from having both dogs in my life, and how very protective I feel when thinking about them getting sick, being in harm’s way, getting old, and eventually dying. Anyone who has ever shared their home with a dog or cat, guinea pig, rabbit, bird or other “pet” can understand how sad we can feel at the thought of losing our non-human kids or companions.

This deep sorrow and dread, I believe, is at the heart of the difficulty some non-vegans and vegans have in considering a world without domestication, particularly a world without “pets.” Many of us see our companion and rescue animals as family, and treat them accordingly. We draw comfort from their presence, we feel affection and joy when we watch them play or do something cute, and we get anxious and feel grief when they become sick, injured or die. We remember childhood pets fondly, we mark special occasions with them in our lives, and even take them to work or with us on holidays.

The Abolitionist Approach to Animal Rights as developed by Gary L Francione & Anna Charlton, states that “Abolitionists maintain that all sentient beings, human or nonhuman, have one right—the basic right not to be treated as the property of others.”(1) This, of course, includes our fur, feathered, scaled, and reptilian “pets.” Pets are property, and however well we treat them, and regardless of how much love and time we give them, they are still our possessions. This is not just a matter of legality, it is a sad moral reality. The companions we bring into our homes and lives are at our mercy, as their “owners”, whether they are fortunate to have a loving, engaging home to live in, or are treated with abuse and/or abandoned. We, as the guardians of these animals, decide every single aspect of their daily lives from their diet, activity, and socialisation to where they sleep, when they go to the toilet, and often when and how they die.

“Domestic animals are neither a real nor full part of our world or of the nonhuman world. They exist forever in a netherworld of vulnerability, dependent on us for everything and at risk of harm from an environment that they do not really understand. We have bred them to be compliant and servile, or to have characteristics that are actually harmful to them but are pleasing to us. We may make them happy in one sense, but the relationship can never be “natural” or “normal.” They do not belong stuck in our world irrespective of how well we treat them.” (2)

When we domesticate animals we remove them from their families and communities. We strip them of their autonomy, and their rights as individuals. The counter argument we hear frequently is that having animals as pets, particularly infant animals, teaches human children about the cycle of life & death, a sense of responsibility, and compassion for all beings. But there are other ways to teach children about nature, responsibility, and compassion. One way would be *not* to remove animals from their families/communities. For while we continue to domesticate animals, and acquire them as “pets”, then we deny them the rights to have family, be self determined, and live free of imposition and expectation. The other way we can be respectful to the rights of animals is not bring them into existence purely for reasons of companionship, entertainment, servitude or as mere possessions. In other words, shut down the practice of domestication completely, for every reason including “pet ownership”.

“…if there were two dogs left in the universe and it were up to us as to whether they were allowed to breed so that we could continue to live with dogs, and even if we could guarantee that all dogs would have homes as loving as the one that we provide, we would not hesitate for a second to bring the whole institution of “pet” ownership to an end. We regard the dogs who live with us as refugees of sorts, and although we enjoy caring for them, it is clear that humans have no business continuing to bring these creatures into a world in which they simply do not fit.” (3)

When I initially read this statement, in the early days of educating myself about the Abolitionist Approach, my heart was filled with sadness and grief. I thought about the seven canine companions who have enriched and shared my life. I turned to my two current fur-kids, Sammi and Mack, and felt hollow. I couldn’t imagine my life without dogs; a life in which they have been the loves of my life, often my reason for getting up in the morning, or even saving me in the depths of depression. I searched my heart and felt the cutting blow of the death of a loved one, as if ending domestication and the institution of “pet” ownership meant someone was going to physically snatch away the companions who currently live with me, right now, forcibly.

But my sadness and grief were misplaced. The Abolitionist Approach talks about ending domestication of non-humans, it does not suggest our “kids” will or should be taken away from us. We, as humans, got domesticated animals into this mess in the first place, so it’s our responsibility to look after the ones who are already in existence. There are millions upon millions of abandoned animals all over the world in shelters, pounds, or living on the streets, who desperately need our help. That is why it’s so important to adopt or rescue companion animals of any kind — dog, cat, rabbit, goldfish, budgie, lizard, or mouse — who need loving homes — particularly those with medical issues, disabilities or senior animals; and why we should not bring more “pets” into existence.

Finally, and most importantly, we must remember that the non-human animals that we share our lives with are morally not ours to “own.” All individuals — both human and non-human — have the basic right not to be treated as the property of others. When we become vegan and adopt the principles of the Abolitionist Approach, we bring the world closer to being a place where all beings are valued, not for what they contribute to human existence, but as individuals in their own right.

(1) The Six Principles of the Abolitionist Approach to Animal Rights

(2) “Pets”: The inherent problems of domestication

(3) Animal Rights and Domesticated Nonhumans

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0 Comments
  • Donwanna Behere

    I love how the abolitionist’s approach to helping domesticated animals to reclaim their lives is to wish them all dead. Your kind of “help” they don’t need. SMH

    • Denise Wilson

      Another person who hasn’t learnt to read yet.

      • Time4Dogs

        Still looking in the mirror, eh?

        • Denise Wilson

          Obviously you enjoy sarcasm and abuse more than discussing serious issues.

    • Denise Wilson

      Please read the posts. tell me where I have said I wish they are all dead.

  • kasualobserver

    I liked the ‘refugee’ comparison, yet our country wants to bring in millions of refugees and give them free comforts for life, yet to want to give that same thing to a beloved animal is wrong.

    • Denise Wilson

      Ben believes in caring for unwanted and alienated fogs. Please read the post before you make any more of a fool of yourself.

      • Flashdog

        I agree, Denise. Ben is obviously passionate about remaining in an alienated fog. My dogs and I pity him.

  • gypsyrose1

    Only a radical would think of extinction of a species as being a kindness.

  • Flashdog

    This is one of the sickest things I have ever read. Your poor dogs! I suppose this is where the “adopt don’t shop” crap takes people. Dogs are not “refugees” nor are they “vulnerable”. I own (read it again — OWN) three wonderful dogs. They are my working partners. Rather than loafing around the house and yard wallowing in twisted philosophies, we DO things. Because I love my dogs and they respect me, we have an excellent working relationship. I am not some kind of pseudo parent with a bunch of pathetic canine dependents. I am a pack leader. I provide food, shelter, and fun for a strong pack of healthy, energetic, thinking animals. We run agility together. We go to assisted living homes and visit with the people there because research has shown that interaction with a friendly animal promotes a human’s physical well being and improves quality of life. My dogs are herding breeds and we sometimes do sheep herding. When I quietly say the words, “Let’s go work”, I have 3 dogs racing eagerly to the door for our next adventure. They live in my house, sleep on or near my bed, and go everywhere I go — yes, that includes banks, stores, hardware stores, etc. My dogs are well trained and have nice manners and they are welcome most everywhere.

    My heart goes out to your poor kelpies. I have known kelpies. The greatest joy of their lives is WORKING. If you really love them, let them go back to the farm they came from so they can run and work the woolies and live the joy again. In all 3 of the working scenarios I have mentioned, agility, therapy work, and herding, dogs are respected for who they are and what they do. People greet my dogs respectfully by name. They have made their place in the world. This is why it is SO important to dump the precious rescue dog fantasy.

    Someone who is looking for the poor, helpless mutt in the sick ASPCA commercial should probably not embark on dog ownership. Occasionally, a dog has been harmed to the point where he becomes that victim dog, but in the normal, real world, dogs are not victims. They think very clearly. They have a sense of humor. Many dogs are sufficiently capable to be caretakers for their humans. Service dogs, police dogs, bomb sniffing dogs — not a victim among them. Anyone who read this poor man’s twisted maunderings and thought, “that’s true”, needs to IMMEDIATELY get out and meet some dogs. Go to dog shows. Go to agility trials. Go to herding trials. Go to police K9 officer demonstrations. Learn about REAL dogs who are a vitally important part of our world.

    • Time4Dogs

      If you have to “rescue” or “adopt” an animal to feel good about yourself as this writer does, you don’t need a pet. You need a therapist!

      • Denise Wilson

        And he is advocating that there should be no need for rescue and adoption if you would only read his article.

        • Flashdog

          Well, true. If dogs become completely extinct, there will be no need to rescue any. As long as there ARE dogs, however, there will be some in rescue. Sometimes owners die unexpectedly and the family doesn’t know what to do with the dog. Sometimes people purchase a dog from a shelter and find they have more than they can handle. Sometimes people lose everything financially or have a serious illness or end up in a terrible divorce. All those things can land a dog in a shelter. That is the way it will always be. However, it is a very small piece of the big picture of dog ownership. By focusing on that tiny aspect, Mr. MacEllen has created a distorted view and then proposed an unacceptable remedy.

          • Denise Wilson

            Once you have become guardian of an animal it is a lifelong committment. No excuses are valid.

          • Flashdog

            Once you become guardian of an animal you are continually in danger of having your guardianship revoked and that animal taken from you by sick animal rights people. If you are talking to guardians then there is no point in my continuing this discussion. Animal OWNERS are what we are talking about here. I am not a guardian of anything.

            I am a DOG OWNER. My dogs are mine. No one has anything to say about decisions affecting their lives except me. The law says they are my property which, though it may not be complimentary to the dogs, it provides them with safety. It means that a hopelessly dog ignorant person like yourself cannot decide they would be “happier” living with someone else. No nutritionally confused person can wreck their digestive systems by deciding they should eat some kind of vegan mess instead of the meat their bodies must have. No ignorant nut can break their hearts by deciding that there is something wrong with training them or allowing them to participate in the dog sports they love. Perhaps you have noticed, Denise, that even though you are posting in a comment thread following an article that attempts to promote the reality free views you hold, you are receiving no “likes” after your wild comments? Your comments have made it completely clear that you know nothing about dogs and have never had any sort of experience with them.

            I don’t know what “guardians” think or do, but dog ownership IS a commitment for the lifetime of the dog. HOWEVER, in the real world, people make decisions for the good of the dog. Animal rights people endlessly shrill about how “It’s a SENTIENT being!” —- and then write stuff like this as if the dog didn’t have a thought in his head or a single emotion of any kind. There are many reasons why it is sometimes better for a dog to change owners. Those are not “excuses”. Those are realities. For example, I know a lady with multiple dogs who was smart enough to realize that one of her dogs was always shoved out of the way by the others and he suffered because of it. She was wise, kind, and unselfish enough to find him a home where he would be the only dog and receive ALL the attention without competition. In my previous post, I named several circumstances that could cause a dog to end up in a shelter. “No excuses”? You regard being permanently bed ridden with a terminal illness as an “excuse” for letting your dog go to another home? Let me adjust that slightly — in the dog community I belong to, dog owners make arrangements in case of possible disaster. All of us have plans in place regarding who will take our dogs in the event of a terminal illness or untimely death.

            Perhaps you should take a break from sending out instructions to dog owners and learn about the needs and habits of dogs. It is very obvious from your comments that you don’t know anything about dogs or their behavior, so it is likely that you don’t know any dog owners, either. Research, Denise, research. Get on the internet and find out where and when there are agility trials, herding trials, dog shows, etc. happening in your area. Meet some dog owners. Meet some dogs. Learn about the wonderful world you are completely missing out on.

          • Denise Wilson

            so a dog is your property. an animal is a commodity for humans. Humans have a right to do anything they wish to their property.Chain it up all day, set it alight? eat it ? skin it alive ? you dont believe in being their guardian? you dont believe in animal welfare law?

            i have always had dogs…and horses, sheep, goats etc .I have lived on a farm. I have studied animal behaviour at iniversty. i have worked at a free range zoo. I am an activist to improve the laws to protect domesticated..and wild .. animals. your view of animals as commodities of OWNING them makes me hugely sad.

          • gypsyrose1

            We believe in animal welfare, not animal rights. There is a big difference between the two. Animal welfare makes mistreating an animal a legal offense. Animal rights gives activists control over someone else’s property.

          • Denise Wilson

            Considering the widespread incidence of mass cruelty Animal welfare doesnt seem to be working does it? And how can it work when the law recognises animals only as commodities .

          • gypsyrose1

            Is it really widespread or does it just seem like it because of all the PETA porn on line? If you go looking for abuse (especially in third world countries that will laugh at your ideas), then you will find it. News always focuses on what is wrong, not what is right.

          • Denise Wilson

            Pasting this again for you Gypsyrose

            Approximately 7.6 million companion animals enter animal shelters nationwide every year. Of those, approximately 3.9 million are dogs and 3.4 million are cats. Each year, approximately 2.7 million animals are euthanized (1.2 million dogs and 1.4 million cats).

            Pet Statistics | ASPCA

          • gypsyrose1

            Facts about Pet Ownership in the U.S.: It’s estimated that 70-80 million dogs and 74-96 million cats are owned in the United States. Approximately 37-47% of all households in the United States have a dog, and 30-37% have a cat. (Source: APPA)

            Pet Statistics | ASPCA

            By comparing your stats to mine, less than 2% of pets are euthanized each year. Of those animals, some are unadoptable due to temperament or disease. I realize you aren’t happy with anything less than 100% happy homes, but that’s not realistic.

          • Denise Wilson

            In the case of animals the media focuses on what is wrong IS right.

          • Denise Wilson

            “we believe animal welfare, not animal rights” . There is a big difference between the two” . I agree. Believers in animal welfare believe its Ok to inflict cruelty and murder on other species for human benefit. in law Animals are classed as property and have the most minimal of protection. It is legal to cage, control, rape, , steal and murder their babies, breed untill bodily exhaustion, dehorn, debeak, brand, remove teeth, castrate ,torture in science laboratories, and kill prematurely. That is why I do not believe in animal welfare . It is a policy based on human superiority and greed. I am a proud believer in Animal Rights.

            “Animal rights gives activists control over someone else’s PROPERTY” . simply Reiforces my claim. You believe other animals have no more rights than a bag of cement.

          • gypsyrose1

            I believe that animals don’t have rights, humans have responsibilities.
            What you describe as cruel often has practical reasons for it. I’m not personally familiar with livestock other than horses, but at least some of the procedures you describe are necessary to protect the animals from other animals. Rape, steal and murder are legal terms that apply to only to humans, but I understand your desire to use inflammatory language. Castration is essential since intact males can’t be kept in with other animals unless you want rampant breeding. Modern science laboratories follow strict standards of care. Premature death happens in nature all the time. Wild animals never die of old age.
            The difference between us is that I respect your right to believe whatever you want, even when it’s wrong, but that respect stops when you interfere with my rights. Animal rights is a radical philosophy that flies in the face of evolution and reality. You insist there is no longer any need for animal products, but that just isn’t true. Veganism relies on field crops. Animals that live in those fields are killed to grow those crops. I guess you feel it is better to kill wild animals you don’t know, than domestic animals you can see. What’s the difference? You are still killing animals.

          • Denise Wilson

            Its hard to believe that you believe that drivel. Yes i sometimes rub my eye and kill the millions of microbes there. Each of us has the right to survive.

            Wild animals in fact do die of old age. When teeth go and wounds become infected they die of starvation caused by old age.

            How am I interfering with your rights any more than you are interfering with mine?

            Rape, steal and murder are legal terms that apply to only to humans,

            I havent used the word steal anywhwere here. Rape Rack is the term farmers use to describe a device which enables female animals to be force impreganted or RAPED.It is a painful procedure https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/88be179bc5b2ca877b35929e2e05bf404de7ac435cacf9abbdb69d4682ae5ea9.jpg

          • Denise Wilson
          • Denise Wilson

            Your words. “Animal welfare makes mistreating an animal a legal offense. Animal rights gives activists control over someone else’s property.”
            there are laws in Australia and in America to prevent the public investigating suspected cruelty on puppy farms and other factory farms in order to protect profiteering industries.Activists are ridiculed and hated just like you do and how the civil rights advocates and the likes of ghandi were. . In the name of the law as I stated earlier here there is little if any legal protection for pets other than providing food and shelter. If a dog so much as bares its teeth it is confiscated and probably euthanased. Farmed animals have even less protection. It is legal to torture them in a myriad of ways. Animals can be castrated, dehorned, force impregnated, tails cut off, ear tagged, branded, mulesed, debeaked, gassed to death, teeth removed etc all without anaesthetic.. and it is all legal.

          • Time4Dogs

            Bwa ha ha ha a free range zoo…..where the animals are free to kill and eat each other. You are nuts.

          • okaminoyume

            I believe “crazier than a shithouse rat” is applicable here.

          • Denise Wilson

            resorting to spiteful abuse ok moron. The defense when there is none.

          • Denise Wilson

            philosophically I no longer think that zoos are ethical. and you are are ignorant and misinformed. Animals in a free range zoo do not have access to each other unless they are herbivores.

          • gypsyrose1

            And what do you feed the carnivores in your “free range” zoo?

          • Denise Wilson

            Road kill and old farm animals that are donated. What would you suggest?

          • Denise Wilson

            Unlike you Flashydog I am not only concerned with my own wellbeing.

          • gypsyrose1

            There’s that typical AR nonsense that animal owners only care about themselves. That must be why animal owners go to such great expense for their pets and livestock.

          • Time4Dogs

            Try living in a world in color. You;ll find black and white is very myopic as well as ignorant.

          • gypsyrose1

            Ownership makes a person legally responsible to care for an animal. Guardianship is a way to duck legal responsibility, because you don’t really own it.
            Lifelong commitments are a goal, but not always possible. It may be necessary to sell or give away an animal that you can no longer afford or physically care for.

          • Denise Wilson

            Myself and other animal advocates i know set aside money to be given to a family member or friend if anything happens the guardian of their rescue dog. . there is NO excuse for not giving a dog lifelong care. If you cannot make such arrangements then you have no right to have a dog.

          • gypsyrose1

            So, people with no family or friends capable of taking in YOUR pet on short notice, don’t deserve to own an animal. Money is not the only thing needed to take in an animal. Any more ridiculous statements? I suppose we could just kill the animal when it’s owner dies or becomes incapacitated. That would be lifelong care.

          • okaminoyume

            Just because SOME people unfortunately abuse and mistreat animals, does not mean the solution should be that “nobody should ever have them.” That’s the same logic as forbidding people from having children because some children are unfortunately abused. I acknowledge that there are people in the world who should be responsible for NEITHER children or animals. But the animal rights activists like our friend Denise here want to punish all humans by taking away our beloved animals all based on the actions of a few. Which isn’t right or fair. And if there is abuse going on, then animals and children should be seized and removed by the appropriate authorities-but ONLY if it is truly, objectively abuse and neglect, and not abuse as defined by the animal rights lobby. (Sadly, animals are all too often seized on the flimsiest of grounds.) To them, no matter how responsible or caring the owner is, it’s still all “abuse.”

          • Denise Wilson

            Approximately 7.6 million companion animals enter animal shelters nationwide every year. Of those, approximately 3.9 million are dogs and 3.4 million are cats. Each year, approximately 2.7 million animals are euthanized (1.2 million dogs and 1.4 million cats).

            Pet Statistics | ASPCA

      • Denise Wilson

        some people are so smug and self satisfied that they experience no joy in helping others. This recognised and documented psychological condition is called narcissism . The joy normal humans feel from helping others is the reason humans have evolved to be social empathetic creatures. Bad luck Time4dogs. It must be lonely . Hope you get better some day.

        • Time4Dogs

          I can see by your obsessive opining on every comment on the thread that you are indeed pathologically narcissistic.You actually believe that only your loud voice and sainted opinion matters. Sick. Thank goodness we have rights and freedoms in the US to protect us from kooks like you.

          • Denise Wilson

            Sad that you can only talk about yourself Time4 dogs instead of having an intelligent objective discussion. Join the other hopelessly desperately defensive lot here. Dont let your mind wander into thinking what life must be like for some non human species on the planet.

          • Time4Dogs

            I can see reading comprehension is not your strong suit. I didn’t write one word about myself…..only about you. Typical brain-addled Animal Wrongist nut job you are.

          • Denise Wilson

            Perhaps I am referring then to comments here collectively. I see You can only resort to sarcasm, derision and abuse though as others also do here. . At least I guess”Typical brain addled Animal Wrongist” isnt quite as bad as MASSIVE CUNT( not my capitals)..or Go fuck yourselF .just two of along list of names i have been called by your pal Oxymoron. I guess when no valid arguments can be found and people are unable or refuse to answer any questions I put hereabuse is their only resort to defend an outdated speciesist attitude.

          • Denise Wilson

            and..? Any actual facts to offer?

        • gypsyrose1

          You obviously don’t know what narcissism is. Try looking up the textbook definition.
          As for you, you obviously have no empathy for your own species, since you want to take away what helps us and gives us joy.

          • Denise Wilson

            I have spent years advocating for underprivileged humans . i fought for aboriginal land rights and suffrage, health and Safety laws in workplaces, equal pay for women , now I devote my time to advocating for animals.As part of that I lead a vegan lifestyle. More unfounded assumptions gypsy rose. Yes i do know what narcissism is. I wonder What do you do for the common good other than make animals do what YOU want them to do and kid yourself that you have that right? Perhaps you parts of animals..If so .. So much for your love of animals.

          • gypsyrose1

            Common good, huh. I work full time in a hospital laboratory. The testing I do helps doctors make decisions about what is wrong, and how treatment is progressing. Many of the reagents used in testing have animal products in them. Without domestic animals, health care wouldn’t be as advanced as it is.
            As far as “making animals do what I want”, I had the vet out today to check on one of my horses who went blind and developed Cushings disease. It was suggested we also test him for EPM. All of this is going to cost a lot of money. It would be cheaper to just have him put down, but my husband and I agreed to spend what we need to, to try and help him. That’s because we care about what happens to him. He is not a “commodity” which is what so many ARAs accuse those of us who care about the welfare of our animals. That’s one reason why I have little patience with people who throw out accusations of abuse and not caring to those of us who actually have our time and money involved in our animals.

          • Denise Wilson

            Where have I said any where on this thread that I wish to take animals from you. defensiveness belies your guilt perhaps. I talk in future terms of not breeding domestic animals with the approval and compassion of society as I have said a dozen times here. But If the exploitation of animals is your only source of joy. ..how sad.

      • Denise Wilson

        I believe you rescue many dogs Time. what does that make you then?

    • sthrngal

      Great post.

    • Denise Wilson

      Flashdog. its great that the dogs that you “OWN” get to do so many activities during their day. There are many dogs less fortunate. I can also see that you are very proud of the fact that that your dogs are well “well trained” …no doubt according to human cultural norms rather than canine ones.
      Many other “OWNED” dogs also get much pleasure from daily romps on the beach or in bush parks or dog parks and also sleep on their “OWNERS” beds and go shopping with their “OWNER” . Many also go to dog “training” to be conditioned into behaviour …..that is acceptable to humans.
      Your jibe regarding Benjamin MacEllen’s “poor Kelpies” does nothing but reinforce his claim that we should not own pets.
      Your final paragraph is an astonishing conglomeration of self contradiction, ignorant ramblings and narcissistic arrogance. You make it clear that a domestic animal’s worth is judged only by its capability to serve humans. Millions of dogs annually are euthanased because of the perceived shortcomings to fulfill these services…. Greyhounds not fast enough, family dog not docile enough, too many vet. fees, barks too much, owner going overseas, too much dog hair in the house, , junior no longer interested, untrainable for being a guide dog, cant find buyers for the puppies, untrainable for police or military dog, not aggressive enough for a guard dog or dog fighting etc etc etc .Unlike you, a calimed dog lover, Benjamin MacEllen is SUPPORTIVE of caring and adopting these rejected dogs until such time as selfish non compassionate humans such as yourself will wake up to the cruel and arrogant concept that breeding animals for profit and pleasure is immoral.

      • Flashdog

        So, Denise, since you hate contradictions, ignorance, and arrogance, I will help you clean up the problems in your second paragraph. A dog is a complex being who relates to other complex beings (humans). Thus there are many factors that determine his “worth” and that worthiness varies according to the human he relates to. For example, a high powered young dog with a passion for herding sheep will not bring joy to the heart of a senior citizen who needs a calm companion, but he will cause the heart of a shepherd to sing. Yes, that is judging his “worth” by how he relates to the human in question. That underlines what I said about dogs being working partners, not victims. Choosing a dog is much like choosing a human who will work with you. If you are an NFL coach, you choose someone strong, fast, and tough. If you need a nanny for your children, you choose someone calm, fair, and compassionate — and, of course, there is nothing wrong with that. Neither is there anything wrong with choosing the right dog for you. Both you AND the dog will be happier.

        “Millions of dogs” are not euthanized annually. The most recent statistic I’m aware of is that one and a quarter million dogs are euthanized annually in this country. Before anyone dissolves into swooning hysteria, consider that this number includes dogs that come into shelters horribly injured or incurably sick or dangerously vicious. Some shelters will humanely euthanize sick, elderly dogs for dog owners who cannot afford a vet to do that — and that is added to the euthanization number. The only healthy, re-homable dogs that are euthanized these days are in areas without a good sheltering system. I.e. where animal control simply picks up strays, holds them a few days, and then kills them instead of making an effort to re-home.

        If you ACTUALLY care about dogs, you will be happy to learn the truth about what happens to:
        Greyhounds not fast enough — are no longer killed, but re-homed as pets.

        Family dog not docile enough — sadly behavior problems are the #1 reason dogs are dumped at shelters. This is due to false expectations (see: get a dog from a shelter and he will be so thankful he will love you forever) and the many foolish training fads that abound on television and internet. Often that dog goes to a new owner who can undo the messed up training and that dog will achieve great things. Some law enforcement agencies get their bomb and drug sniffing dogs by going to shelters and getting the edgy, “untrainable” dogs. I know a lady who bought a supposedly untrainable Australian shepherd from a shelter and they went on to win a competition obedience championship together. I also know a man and his dog who won big in national agility championships one year — the dog was a border collie from a local breed rescue. Going to a shelter and being re-homed is often the gateway to a better life.

        Vet fees, barking, owner moving, dog hair, child not interested — all of these ARE reasons that dogs are dumped in shelters, but that is a lucky break for the dog. He will not be euthanized, but rather re-homed to someone who appreciates him. See “family dog not docile enough”, above.

        Untrainable as a guide dog — “untrainable” is an erroneous term. Being a guide dog requires a special skill set. Some dogs don’t have it. A dog that “washes out” of the guide dog program is never euthanized. He invariably goes to a family that deeply loves him — often the family that provided his basic training. (I know people who train guide dogs and your assertion that dogs who do not complete the training program are euthanized is beyond offensive.)

        Can’t find buyers for puppies —- ????! Is this some kind of ham handed slap at people who breed good dogs? Here is news that should make a DOG LOVER happy — People who breed good dogs have waiting lists before they ever breed a litter. It is difficult to buy a well bred puppy. I know people who have waited as much as 2 years to purchase a purebred dog. (And no, a mentally damaged dog from a shelter with who knows what health and behavior problems is NOT the same thing. If you have never experienced the absolute joy of a relationship with a purebred dog, you cannot comment.) Perhaps your “can’t find buyers” remark refers to irresponsible dog owners who allow their dogs to run loose and breed randomly, resulting in unwanted puppies? If so, any shelter can tell you that puppies FLY out of shelters. It is extremely unusual for any shelter to euthanize a puppy.

        Untrainable for police or military dog — I have actually never heard of that. Probably because the police and military carefully temperament test dogs before they buy them. If a dog doesn’t have the necessary skills and temperament, he never enters their program. IF a dog did wash out of a police or military training program, he would certainly not be euthanized. I mean, THINK — the necessary training for that kind of work costs thousands of dollars. They are not going to say, “Oh, this one won’t work” and just kill the dog. That dog, just like a human candidate, goes into some other branch of law enforcement or military work — such as drug sniffing.

        Not aggressive enough — if someone is deliberately looking for an aggressive dog or seeking to make a non-aggressive dog vicious, it is for something illegal (like dog fighting). Trust me, they will not be dumping that dog in a shelter where it will be evidence of their illegal activities. They will simply kill it.

        Apparently you need to re-read this awful article. Benjamin MacEllen is supportive of all dogs being dead. Breeding good dogs is a wonderful and important thing to do. It insures that Benjamin MacEllen’s sick vision of canine extinction will never become reality. It brings joy to every person who owns one of those dogs and it hugely improves the world we live in. Dogs participate in sports, entertain, provide priceless assistance for disabled people, keep people safe by working in law enforcement, help to raise food (with their herding skills), and provide companionship for millions of people — and all of those are GOOD things Focusing on damaged, mistreated dogs in shelters helps to prop up Mr. MacEllen’s narrow, perverted view that all dogs are better off dead, but looking at the much larger picture of who dogs are and what they do is an amazing and glorious revelation.

        • Denise Wilson

          “Choosing a dog is much like choosing a human who will work with you” Except as in the times of legalised black slavery and child labour the dog has no say in the matter. It is the arrogant master who calls the shots.

  • tom neese

    what a horrible bleak world these people want. Those poor kelpies would be much happier back working on the farm

    • al smith

      animal abuse keeping those kelpies from their natural work those poor “fur babies” what decent kelpie would ask for a life like that?

      • Denise Wilson

        And of course you intimately know the kelpie brain. And Elephants enjoy hauling logs and bears enjoy dancing.

  • Hstallion

    Seriously? What a fucking crock.

  • okaminoyume

    Oh, where to even begin with this. Well, at least you’ve finally presented your agenda for all to see. Your true end goal: the extinction of all domestic pets, and a total elimination of the human and animal bond. I had thought as much, but I was waiting for you to actually come out and say it.

    I will say this. I absolutely, unequivocally love and adore animals. I treasure their company. I have many, many fond memories of them. However….I do not view them as equal to humans, because simply put…they are not. You say that the enslavement of another species is wrong and morally objectionable. If animals had the SAME level of consciousness as humans did, then you would have a valid point. The thing is…animals have zero concept of what slavery or servitude means. They have no grasp of what it means even in the abstract. All that matters to them is what’s happening in the moment. Whether they’re hot, cold, thirsty, hungry, comfortable, or uncomfortable. And the people that care for them see to their needs and their comfort. The debate of animal rights versus animal welfare is a strictly human construct, and neither label means a single whit to them. Any human traits you project onto animals is anthropomorphism, and you’ve clearly taken it to a dangerous and unhinged level. I’m sure you fancy yourself some kind of Harriet Tubman for animal liberation.

    The definition of slavery is as follows:
    slav·er·y 1. The condition in which one person is owned as property by another and is under the owner’s control, especially in involuntary servitude.
    2.
    a. The practice of owning slaves.
    b. A mode of production in which slaves constitute the principal work force.
    3. The condition of being subject or addicted to a specified influence.
    4. A condition of hard work and subjection: wage slavery.

    Now…the above definition as we humans understand it, by and large, does not apply to animals because again, they have no concept of what slavery means. They are utterly oblivious to it. Yes, there are still working animals such as carriage horses, plow horses, and dogs doing police work or guiding the blind to list a few examples. All of those animals have been bred to do certain jobs, or have been adapted into new lines of work. For example, Labs weren’t originally used as guide or service dogs, but their eager to please nature and willing temperament made them nearly ideal for those jobs. And you know what? Those animals don’t see it as slavery. They LOVE working. They love to please their people. They love having their minds challenged and stimulated. You mention that you have two Kelpies, one which you rescued from a cruel sheep farm. Uhh…you know Kelpies were bred to be working livestock dogs, right? When they’re driving sheep or cattle, they’re in their element. They’re happy. They feel fully alive when they’re doing it because it was literally what they were born and bred to do. So instead of those two dogs doing the work that they love, they’re condemned to a boring, sedentary, couch potato lifestyle with you, possibly bored out of their little doggy skulls. Yes, you’re such a noble animal rescue hero. Because heaven forbid a working dog well…work. Because that’s cruel “enslavement.”

    But I digress. Back to my initial point. A lot of us have fond memories of growing up around animals, and forming profound bonds with them. A childhood dog, a childhood cat, a beloved horse….those memories are priceless. And it’s because of animals that we humans, as a species, have been able to evolve, flourish, and thrive. We humans owe our collective success as a species to animals. I’m sure even you can acknowledge that fact, though you might be loathe to do so considering your rather shall I say…extremist position.

    If you get your way and all domestic animals are eradicated, then future generations will never know the joy of having animals in their life. A child will never experience caring for a guinea pig, or have their face light up when they get their first kitten, or giggle when a new, wiggly puppy licks their face and forms a bond that last for the next decade or longer. I myself cannot imagine a world without pets. That wouldn’t be a world worth living in for me. And if we didn’t have animals in our lives, then life would be all the poorer. I guess the idea that those who might suffer from mental illness, PTSD, or depression, who have a beloved pet that gives them a reason to get up when nothing else can or will, means NOTHING to you. No, animals should all be “liberated.” Even if liberation means total extinction. And if animals are gone from our world, then we humans would eventually cease to be. But you’d just love that, wouldn’t you? Us evil humans all going extinct.

    Oh and finally, a little off topic but: speaking of eliminating all animal/human interaction…of course, I know you wish to eliminate zoos, circuses, and aquariums, water parks, and wildlife parks. What about the people that rescue stranded and wounded animals, or participate in endangered species conservation where individuals are bred in captivity to be released into the wild. Oh, I guess you’re fine with the extinction of vulnerable and endangered animals, as long as they didn’t have any of that filthy human intervention, because keeping them confined and nursing them back to health is “slavery” by your twisted, warped logic.

    In closing, I will say this. I vow that I will do my part to make sure that your vision never comes to pass. Because the very thought sends a chill through my soul.

    • Denise Wilson

      You have missed the entire point of the original article. Your entire reply is based on the false assumption that humans are a superior species; an unfounded self centred arrogant view. Your assumptions about the capabilities, understandings and emotions of animals are not only unfounded but largely scientifically incorrect. Benjamin’s article does not argue against rescuing sick or suffering animals, nor does he argue against the right of wild animals to exist. Do you seriously think for a moment that elephants enjoy the cruelty yhat is used to make them submissive? In spite of what some horse owners will say horses dislike like jumping and will always prefer, when not under a rider, to go around a barrier. Do primates enjoy having their skulls drilled open in the name of medical research? Do cows, sheep and pigs enjoy being castrated, forcefully impregnated, dehorned muelsed and give themselves willingly to be slaughtered for human food. ? Do puppies enjoy baing taken from their mother and siblings while still suckling ? Animals are not ” born” to serve humans in these ways. Yes , the breeding and exploitaion of other species ..even other humans..have helped humans improve standards of living over millenia but it is no longer necessary and is philosophically wrong. Their lives and right to express natural behavours and their right to freedom is as valid as that of humans.

      • okaminoyume

        Oh, go suck on a free ranged egg, you psycho.

        • Denise Wilson

          Abuse is the defence when there is none . What a pompous spiteful article and no real logic or defence. cheers.

          • Denise Wilson

            Animals not “moral equals” ? thank goodness they are not. The human race is rarely guided by morals. which is why animals as you admit yourself do not think like us or act like us in the devious manipulative ways humans do. Other species do not gather and stockpile there resources so their herd or clan members starve. The fact that You claim that animals are not as intelligent as humans is further evidence of your self obsessed niave outlook. Our fellow species have a different KIND of intelligence to humans but equally valid and functional for survival in their niche on the planet. Humans do not have the necessary intelligence to survive living in trees, or rivers, or deserts, to know which plants are safe to eat, which animal in the herd will be easy to catch, when to hibernate to survive the winter. I suggest you go away and do some reading and thinking. That way next time you try to defend your selfish desire to own members of other species you wont make such a fool of yourself .

          • okaminoyume

            I’m the one making a fool of myself? Oh, that’s rich. You animal “rights” activists are some of the most obnoxious, self-righteous people I’ve ever met. Okay, I will acknowledge that animals have a certain degree of intelligence from humans, and survive in places and ways that we can’t. But to imply that dogs or cats are EQUAL to humans and should be extinct rather than us keeping them in our lives…it’s sick. And it’s your anthropomorphising taken to its extreme conclusion. Let’s face it, you’re not going to win, and no one’s going to listen to you and your fanciful delusions. I guess the fact that a lot of people would be driven to suicide or find life not worth living if they didn’t have animals as a part of their lives means NOTHING to you. Plenty of empathy for animals, but zero for your own species because of your own deeply embedded self-loathing for being human and misanthropy towards your fellow man. Typical of an animal rights fanatic.

            A world without pets is not one I would want to live in. And most everyone on this thread would agree with me.

          • Denise Wilson

            so we put animals before humans but ALSO want to drive them to extinction. ??!!! What a very logical observation.! That YOU wouldnt like to be without your slaves and prisoners is as far you self -obsessed critics of animal justice can stretch your brain and (lack of ) compassion. Ben makes it clear here that he adores living with his pets and would hate to be without them, but being an intelligent and open minded thinker has come to realize that having slaves and prisoners is immoral.

          • okaminoyume

            Well. You want the extinction of certain animals.

            Just admit it. Liberation of all pets would mean extinction for ALL of them. And no, I am not talking about their wild cousins, you unhinged twit. Jesus Christ.

          • gypsyrose1

            Christians haven’t had that mentality for hundreds of years. The current holders of that mentality are radical Muslims. Otherwise, I completely agree with you.

          • okaminoyume

            Okay, so that wasn’t the best example…but my point still stands, at least. Out of respect, I edited my initial comment. ^^

          • Denise Wilson

            You still havent read or understood the original post. Animal activists DO NOT advocate the extermination of ANY …CURRENTLY “OWNED” ..pets. We spend much time exposing cruelty to all animals and agree they should be loved and cared for. What we DO advocate is that no more animals for pets should be bred. THAT will do no harm to any animal. Their genes will carry on in wild dogs and wolves.

          • okaminoyume

            *sighs* Okay Denise let me say a few things here. It’s clear none on either side are going to budge on this issue. You view us as a bunch of knuckle dragging neanderthals and you’ve taken it upon yourself to enlighten us evil, pet owning, meat eating savages.

            Despite my snarking at you, I will say that I agree with you on the human overpopulation issue. But I only agree with you up to a very fine point.

            See, we humans have this wonderful, beautiful thing called “freedom of choice.” You are entitled to hold your own views. You are free to not own pets, not eat meat, and avoid using animal byproducts at all costs. That’s YOUR prerogative. However, trying to strong arm people into seeing things your way very seldom, if ever works. You cannot force people to become vegan or give up their pets. THAT is wrong. Our views are deeply held, and yours are deeply held. I know, it’s maddening for you that we might make the “choice” to have pets in our lives or eat meat, but that’s just how it is, because we’re not completely out of touch with reality. We understand how nature works. All you learned about nature clearly came from Disney movies. Nearly all of your arguments have been based on nothing more than emotion. You have given no legitimate facts to back up your views. Just vegan propaganda from the likes of PETA which can easily be dismissed out of hand. (Oh, and did you know that PETA kills nearly all of the animals it takes in? Look it up.) But then, you’re no better than the wingnut that founded PETA, Ingrid Newkirk.

            And I know exactly what you’re going to say: we take away choices from animals every day. Well, there’s a good reason for that. Animals are not capable of making the same kind of wise, rational choices we HUMANS are. We have to be their guardians-not in the LEGAL definition, but in the sense that we have to look out for their best interests so that they do not harm or kill themselves. We, as their human owners, know what’s best for them much better than they do. We generally can’t trust animals (ie our pets) to make their own decisions. Because if they do make their own decisions, it’s often one that we’re not going to like. A dog will choose to drink anti-freeze if it gets access to it.

            You’ve received many, many excellent counter-arguments and a lot of enlightening comments from the likes of Flashdog, gypsyrose, and Megan O. Yet you’re still bound and determined to believe that animal use or pet ownership is some kind of wicked, evil, mortal sin that must be abolished even though the human race would suffer greatly if all our animals were taken away from us via slow, eventual extinction. Like I said in a previous comment, you have plenty of misguided “empathy” for animals but zero for humans. It’s crystal clear that there’s no reasoning with you….but again I ask, why are you here? You’re not going to convince anybody, and you certainly haven’t won anybody over. At some point, you’ve got to give it up. You may not be backing down, but neither are we. And when you quote PETA or HSUS, no one here is going to take you seriously.

            And I find it insulting and repulsive that you compare animal ownership to human slavery. Like I said in my FIRST comment unlike humans, animals don’t even have a concept of what slavery means. They can’t grasp nor fathom such a thing. And I believe that if animals were able to choose for themselves, they wouldn’t want to be liberated. People like you have decided to make that choice for them. And what you’ve chosen for them is total annihilation rather than to be loved and cared for by humans.

            Don’t you dare try to tell me otherwise.

          • gypsyrose1

            Bravo! Well said.

          • okaminoyume

            Thanks! I admit, it’s been fun to put my debating skills to the test. Denise makes for good practice! :p

          • Denise Wilson

            Debating skills.? You might win a slanging match but your first post would have you deleted from the competition. .

          • Denise Wilson

            your words: ” See, we humans have this wonderful, beautiful thing called “freedom of choice.” You are entitled to hold your own views. You are free to not own pets, not eat meat, and avoid using animal byproducts at all costs. That’s YOUR prerogative. However, trying to strong arm people into seeing things your way very seldom, if ever works. You cannot force people to become vegan or give up their pets. THAT is wrong.”

            So you dont believe animals have any rights? That we can do anything we like with them? that they are merely commodities for humans?

            In what way am i ” FORCING” people to become vegan? ..how would that be possible.

            How am I FORCING people to give up their pets?

          • gypsyrose1

            Animals don’t have rights. Humans have responsibilities.
            You want to force veganism by getting rid of domestic livestock. Will you succeed? No. But, that hasn’t stopped you from evangelizing.

          • Denise Wilson

            Thats exactly right. This earth and all species on it including homo sapiens will not survive unless there is a turn around on human domination of other animlas. We are qell on the way to the extermination of all life on this planet. It is our human, hierarchical , profit driven self focussed culture that is causing it.

          • gypsyrose1

            I have a more optimistic viewpoint than you. You’ve been listening to too much doomsday nonsense.

          • Denise Wilson

            So you dont agree with the UN and 98 percent of the worlds scientists?

          • Denise Wilson

            You want to force cruelty to millions of sentient beings by supporting the breeding of domestic animals.

          • okaminoyume

            Oh no, no, no Denise. Don’t give me that BS. You cannot walk this back. YOU are the one that came into this thread with guns blazing hell bent on proselytizing that veganism and a pet free existence is the one true path that we should all follow whether we want to or not. Otherwise, why else would you be here? We’ve heard you out. We’ve listened to your side of the argument, and it’s no different from all the extremist animal rights propaganda that we’ve heard before from the likes of you, and thus we’ve summarily dismissed your viewpoint because we know how you people operate. We’ve heard all the same tired arguments.

            You know damn well that you want to FORCE your way of thinking onto the world rather than minding your own damn business by legislating pets and farm animals out of existence. Oh, and you still own animals and have them in your life, and yet want to take them away from future generations. Figures that you’d be nothing more than a giant hypocrite.

            And no, I do not believe animals are mere “commodities.” Don’t put words in my mouth. I have love, care, and empathy towards animals. I abhor abuse and mistreatment of them. Everyone here does. I believe in animal WELFARE, not animal rights, because to give them equal rights would mean eliminating them from our lives entirely. We welfarists know better, and that’s why we fight tooth and nail against the animal rights lobby.

            And there’s another thing I’d like to point out in your comparison of animal ownership to slavery. When human beings were slaves in American history, slavery was thankfully abolished and ended. Abolishing slavery did not involve advocating the extinction of African Americans but in giving them the human rights that they were entitled to. Barring extremist racist groups like the KKK and Neo-Nazis, no one advocates for the extinction of other races of humans. You on the other hand advocate for the extinction of all domestic animals, so your argument of animal ownership being slavery doesn’t hold up there. Dogs and cats are unique species that are highly distinct from their wild brethren. To lose them would be absolutely devastating.

          • Denise Wilson

            Your words. “You on the other hand advocate for the extinction of all domestic animals, so your argument of animal ownership being slavery doesn’t hold up there. Dogs and cats are unique species that are highly distinct from their wild brethren. To lose them would be absolutely devastating.”

            Yes I do advocate the eventual cessation of breeding captive animals. Meanwhile I advocate the care and respect of the existing ones. I believe my way the the only way to stop billions of animals being tortured, deprived of basic needs and their right to contentment and pleasure every day, often being slaughtered or euthanased well before their natural life span. .Animal ownership is indeed the same sort of slavery as black human slavery . Unlike other animals however, humans ..even black ones… have a voice.. to plea for their freedom and advocate for justice. Animals do not for the simple reason I explained earlier. …they have no voice in human society because they are not recognised in our human made law as beings having their own needs and desires. Other animals in our society are classified in law as commodities or property. Look at your ownership laws in USA no doubt the same as here in australia. Some of us humans think this is immoral, that other beings should have more rights than a bag of cement, and so we speak out for them. Its not a question of sinister
            reprisals or conspiracy against the humans who love and care for their pets. It is promoting a means by which the suffering of billions of animals daily can be stopped,

            And By the way Domesticated dogs and cats are not a distinct species at all as i have demonstrated in an earlier reply. . Look up a standard book of evolutionary biology under Taxonomy of dogs or Cats . They are a subspecies, They have not changed genetically hardly at all over ,millenia. .Some biologists argue that they are not even a subspecies but genetically identical.To explain their willingness to be close to humans I guess it the same question we often ask about human behaviour ..nature over nurture or vice versa.

            We no longer require to exploit animals in the 21 st century,. We now have modern technology, communications, Transportation and plenty of available cruelty free food. No thanks to humans a few members of the original species remain in the wild for us to visit ,enjoy and observe with the respect of their natural and unique behaviours .

          • gypsyrose1

            I guess you weren’t paying attention to my previous message. Domestic cats are a distinct SPECIES. Domestic dogs are indeed a subspecies, but that doesn’t make them genetically identical to other canids. It just means they can cross breed. It also doesn’t make it OK to exterminate a subspecies which is even further divided into breeds. Each breed has distinct genetic characteristics. That’s why you can tell the difference between a Great Dane and a chihuahua.

          • Denise Wilson

            Domestic cats are also a subspecies. Some evolutionary biologists claim they are in fact the same species as their ancient ancestors.

          • gypsyrose1

            You don’t seem to understand the difference between genus and species and subspecies. Domestic cats are listed as a distinct species, not a subspecies.

            THE WORLD’S FELIDAE SPECIES

            African-Asian Wildcat – Felis silvestris ornata
            African Golden Cat – Profelis aurata
            Andean Mountain Cat – Leopardus jacobita
            Asiatic Golden Cat – Catopuma temminckii
            Bay Cat – Catopuma badia
            Black-footed Cat – Felis nigripes
            Bobcat – Lynx rufus
            Bornean Clouded Leopard – Neofelis diardi
            Canadian Lynx – Lynx canadensis
            Caracal – Caracal caracal
            Cheetah – Acinonyx jubatus
            Chinese Desert Cat – Felis bieti
            Clouded Leopard – Neofelis nebulosa
            Domestic Cat – Felis catus
            Eurasian Lynx – Lynx lynx
            European Wildcat – Felis silvestris
            Fishing Cat – Prionailurus viverrinus
            Flat-headed Cat – Prionailurus planiceps
            Geoffroy’s Cat – Leopardus geoffroyi
            Iberian Lynx – Lynx pardinus
            Iriomote Cat – Prionailurus iriomotensis
            Jaguar – Panthera onca
            Jaguarundi – Herpailurus yagouarundi
            Jungle Cat – Felis chaus
            Kodkod – Leopardus guigna
            Leopard Cat – Prionailurus bengalensis
            Leopard – Panthera pardus
            Lion – Panthera leo
            Marbled Cat – Pardofelis marmorata
            Margay – Leopardus wiedii
            Mountain Lion – Puma concolor
            Ocelot – Leopardus pardalis
            Oncilla – Leopardus tigrinus
            Pallas’s Cat – Otocolobus manul
            Pampas Cat – Leopardus colocolo
            Rusty-spotted Cat – Prionailurus rubiginosus
            Sand Cat – Felis margarita
            Serval – Leptailurus serval
            Snow Leopard – Uncia uncia
            Tiger – Panthera tigris

          • Denise Wilson

            . Good wiki copying. How is that relevant ?

          • gypsyrose1

            If you got rid of all domestic animals, we’d also have to find a way to travel without tires. Animal by-products are found in many items that wouldn’t occur to you.

          • Denise Wilson

            Substitutes for almost all animal derivatives already exist. Animal free tyres ( i presume thats what you are referring to ) are available as are Food items.

          • Denise Wilson

            “Oh no, no, no Denise. Don’t give me that BS. You cannot walk this back. YOU are the one that came into this thread with guns blazing hell bent on proselytizing that veganism and a pet free existence is the one true path that we should all follow whether we want to or not. Otherwise, why else would you be here? We’ve heard you out. ”

            I am here because I saw the article on facebook from advocate friends.It is a subject close to my heart. More pertinent is the question why are you here? I have been wondering why you are so defensive and abusive.

          • okaminoyume

            Well, on the other side of the coin, animal welfare and preserving the RIGHTS of people to own pets and livestock is an issue that’s close to my heart. I and others came here to offer rebuttals to this article because animal welfare and opposing animal RIGHTS extremists is something we all feel strongly about. That’s the reason why I’m here. We could not let this go unchallenged. Clearly, you couldn’t either. And so, here we are.

            And to be honest…ever since you first came on here, you’ve been rude, aggressive, pushy, and condescending. By acting as such, you haven’t done any favors for your side. You have not engaged in polite, civil, respectful discourse with us. You came in here in full attack mode. So if I or others come off as “defensive and abusive” know that we’re only responding in kind to how we’ve been treated by you.

            You’re like the unwanted Jehovah’s Witness that keeps showing up at people’s doors to evangelize for your religion even if no one wants what you’re selling.

          • Denise Wilson

            So you advocate the RIGHTS of people to own slaves as well? I can patently see you dont want what I am selling. Even though it will reduce suffering. by the way I see you dont believe in climate change as most of the worlds scientistsdo. Do you als believe the earth is flat?

          • Denise Wilson

            I have been rude and pushy. Perhaps you should re reD some of. your posts rspecially the first one.

          • Denise Wilson

            Fortunately white humans didnt generally breed black slaves and genetically engineer them to suit white human needs. Therefore there was no necessity in the civil rights movement to advocate for the cessation of breeding human slaves as far as i know. the breeding of animals to suit human need and greed is very unfortunately legal. Which is why animal Activists want it stopped.

          • Denise Wilson

            re. your first paragraph. Wrong. Incorrect. YOU were the FIRST to comment on this thread. Albeit with sarcastic and spiteful abuse directed to the writer of the article.revisit your article if you dare.

          • Denise Wilson

            ” Animals are not capable of making the same kind of wise, rational choices we HUMANS are. We have to be their guardians-not in the LEGAL definition, but in the sense that we have to look out for their best interests so that they do not harm or kill themselves. We, as their human owners, know what’s best for them much better than they do. We generally can’t trust animals (ie our pets) to make their own decisions. Because if they do make their own decisions, it’s often one that we’re not going to like. ”

            what an arrogant load of unfounded ..excuse me..BULLSHIT. What percentage of animal owners have their animals best intersts at heart. Farmers dont ..and that incudes their so called best canine friends who are chained up in the cold, circus owners dont, Bird owners dont, goldfish owners dont , dog breeders dont, dog show competitors dont, dog and cock fighters dont, bile bear farmers dont,laboratory researchers dont, bullfighters dont, dog meat sellers dont, guard dog owners dont, elephant trainers dont,snake charmers dont , horse riders dont, camel trekkers dont, and none of the dog owners in my street do. Most dogs in my street never see outside their garden gates, they spend their days outside in hot and cold weather, bought as toys for children then forgotten.Yes humans make the best decisions in the interest of our domesticated animals. we put their needs first. … as i said..what a load of deluded , arrogant bullshit.

          • okaminoyume

            Oh, what’s the matter Denise? Slipping there, are we?

            Funny that you call me deluded….projection is such an ugly thing.

            Seriously, when are you going to give it a rest? One of us has got to cry “uncle” at some point.

          • Denise Wilson

            As usual factless sarcasm is the only defence you can conjure up.

          • Denise Wilson

            Waiting..hopefully.. for you to give me some actual facts or a rational reply Oxymoron. So far just a tirade of personal assumptions and childish sarcasm.

          • gypsyrose1

            Thanks for spelling out your problem for all to see. You can’t see any difference between a dog or cock fighter and a responsible pet owner.

          • okaminoyume

            Hah. What personally amuses me is that if other people own dogs or other animals, their slaveholders or jailers.

            But if Denise owns a dog…no, that label doesn’t apply to her. No, not at all. Only all those other pet owners are evil, she’s good and better than the rest of us. Funny how that works, no?

            So…I guess you and I are the devil incarnate in her eyes, regardless of how much we love and care about our animals, lol. Ah, well. Time for us to move on I suppose.

          • Denise Wilson

            My dog is a rescue dog. I disagree with the breeding of dogs for human pleasure, food, entertainment and exploitation.

          • Denise Wilson

            I agree I am a jailer. I agree i call the shots. Untill the law stops classing animals as property and untill domesticated animals cease to exist then this is how it has to be. Untill that time then we have a moral responsibility to care for those that are rejected and abused.

          • Denise Wilson

            Pretty obvious. Re your stallion ( or gelding which hah been castrated by arrogant power obsessed humans) He was attempting to exercise his natural herding and dominating intincts .The difference between a dog owner ( and that does not include the guardian of a rescue dog) and a fighting cock owner is Nilch. they both own animals for their own pleasure.

          • gypsyrose1

            The stallion we gelded has been much happier since the procedure was done (in a surgical suite under anesthesia. He never felt a thing.) After the surgery, when the hormones subsided in his system, we were able to turn him out with a herd, and the anxiety he expressed, when we had to keep him separate, went away. He preferred having other horses near him over keeping his “manhood”. Stallions don’t think like human males.
            If you knew anything about wild horses, you would know that each band has only one mature stallion. The bachelors get run off to survive on their own until they are able to challenge a herd stallion. Horses that have been gelded are spared leading lonely, frustrated lives. They get to be with the herd and don’t care that they have been gelded.
            Don’t you espouse neutering dogs and cats? Why would you be opposed to gelding a horse?

            So, owning a dog that’s been abused previously is OK, but owning a dog that’s never been abused isn’t. You’re helping to create a market for abused dogs. How dumb is that?

          • Denise Wilson

            Castration of horses is a more concrete example of human arrogance and domination . it is no different to the castration of bulls, pigs and sheep. It is all for human pleasure and profit. Humans given labotomies probably dont care about much either. Just like the poor old gelding Its a case of ignorance is bliss.

          • Denise Wilson

            “So, owning a dog that’st been abused previously is OK, but owning a dog that’s never been abused isn’t. You’re helping create a market for abused dogs. ”

            You got this one right gypsy rose! . Exactly.! It is immoral to be breeding more dogs whilst millions are homeless and being euthanased annually.

            Approximately 7.6 million companion animals enter animal shelters nationwide every year. Of those, approximately 3.9 million are dogs and 3.4 million are cats. Each year, approximately 2.7 million animals are euthanized (1.2 million dogs and 1.4 million cats).
            Pet Statistics | ASPCA

          • Denise Wilson

            I wonder what your idea of a “responsible dog owner” is exactly ?

          • gypsyrose1

            If you can’t figure that out, why should I even bother to tell you. What word don’t you comprehend?

          • Denise Wilson

            Sorry i cant see into your mind. I did ask ..”what is YOUR idea of a responsible dog owner. ” Perhaps you havent decided yet?

          • Denise Wilson

            Gypsy . please could you take a step back and explain the moral difference between a dog owner and a fighting cock owner. I dont see any difference. Please would you explain it to me. Thanks.

          • Denise Wilson

            Which are the counter arguments to the point of view present by myself and Benjamin. i am completely unaware of them. That is apart from your unfounded claims such as . ” i know” or “it is a fact” ( without any backing or reference) Thanks Okmoron.

          • Denise Wilson

            ” And I find it insulting and repulsive that you compare animal ownership to human slavery. Like I said in my FIRST comment unlike humans, animals don’t even have a concept of what slavery means. People like you have decided to make that choice for them. And what you’ve chosen for them is total annihilation rather than to be loved and cared for by humans.”
            xxx
            Don’t you dare try to tell me otherwise.

            ” People like you have decided to make that choice for them”

            …but you say in the very same post ” We have to be their guardians …..we have to look out for their best interests so that they do not harm or kill themselves. We, as their human owners, know what’s best for them much better than they do. We generally can’t trust animals (ie our pets) to make their own decisions. Because if they do make their own decisions, it’s often one that WE’RE ( my caps) not going to like. ”

            ” … animals don’t even have a concept of what slavery means. ” Are you saying they do not have the desire not to be confined, unable to run

          • Denise Wilson

            Please could you list the counter arguments I have received ? Thanks.

            your words: ” I believe that if animals were able to choose for themselves, they wouldn’t want to be liberated. People like you have decided to make that choice for them. And what you’ve chosen for them”

            what an exraordinary upside down statement. Have you ever watched sheep , pigs or cows go crazy with terror when faced with murder in a slaughter house? . Do you seriously think they like the prospect of death? Do you seriosly think they would not like to be free? This is a choice the likes of YOU have made for these poor defenseless short lived beings. Its not a choice Animal Rights advocates make for them. Have you ever seen primates strapped into devices having their eyelids stitched together and holes drilled in their skulls screaming and fighting to escape? Do you seriosly think they want to be there? . Many of the dogs in my street are imprisoned in a small yard and never see the outside world.Do you really think they do not hunger for freedom? i really am concerned about the possibility of you being a psychopathic sadist. I do not eat the dead bodies of tortured animals, or their excretions such as milk and cheese and I use cruelty free products. What do you do for the billions of animals murdered annually.?

          • Denise Wilson

            Dogs are especially popular for use in toxicology tests, which determine safe levels of an unknown substance for humans. They are also popular for cancer studies because dogs and humans have similar immune systems, making dogs a good model for cancer immunotherapies, in the eyes of the National Cancer Institute. The dogs used in these and other experiments are routinely euthanized at the end of experiments.

            These dogs suffer in labs while dogs seen as pets cuddle up in fluffy beds, get gourmet food and are treated as family members. Many people simply are not aware of lab testing on dogs, and if they are they do not realize how terrible it is for the animals. If they knew the shocking facts listed below they would think twice about their purchases.

            1. Dogs are Bred for Labs
            Shockingly, beagles and other dogs are bred specifically for labs. Research institutions often purchase they animals from “Class A” licensed animal breeders who produce animals for the sole purpose of selling them for experimentation. Depending on the type of research that’s being conducted, breeders produce different types of dogs with certain characteristics, for example, dogs can even be bought with or without working vocal cords for the price of $700 for a 33-pound dog.

            10 Shocking Facts About the Lives of Dogs Used In the Testing Industry

            2. Shelter Dogs are Used for Experiments
            An investigation into the University of Utah revealed they were buying homeless dogs and cats from shelters for experiments. Luckily, the exposure of this fact stopped this practice at the university, however, according to the Humane Society of the United States this practice continues across the U.S. “Class B” dealers, as they are known, often pose as adopters in shelters and then sell their animals to testing facilities.

            3. Dogs are Kept in Small Cages for Years
            Thirty-three pound dogs are only required by law to have eight square feet of kennel space, and these dogs often never go outside or see sunlight. Some dogs go crazy after years of being contained in a cage.

            Dogs are especially popular for use in toxicology tests, which determine safe levels of an unknown substance for humans. They are also popular for cancer studies because dogs and humans have similar immune systems, making dogs a good model for cancer immunotherapies, in the eyes of the National Cancer Institute. The dogs used in these and other experiments are routinely euthanized at the end of experiments.
            Dogs are especially popular for use in toxicology tests, which determine safe levels of an unknown substance for humans. They are also popular for cancer studies because dogs and humans have similar immune systems, making dogs a good model for cancer immunotherapies, in the eyes of the National Cancer Institute. The dogs used in these and other experiments are routinely euthanized at the end of experiments.

            These dogs suffer in labs while dogs seen as pets cuddle up in fluffy beds, get gourmet food and are treated as family members. Many people simply are not aware of lab testing on dogs, and if they are they do not realize how terrible it is for the animals. If they knew the shocking facts listed below they would think twice about their purchases.

            1. Dogs are Bred for Labs
            Shockingly, beagles and other dogs are bred specifically for labs. Research institutions often purchase they animals from “Class A” licensed animal breeders who produce animals for the sole purpose of selling them for experimentation. Depending on the type of research that’s being conducted, breeders produce different types of dogs with certain characteristics, for example, dogs can even be bought with or without working vocal cords for the price of $700 for a 33-pound dog.

            10 Shocking Facts About the Lives of Dogs Used In the Testing Industry

            2. Shelter Dogs are Used for Experiments
            An investigation into the University of Utah revealed they were buying homeless dogs and cats from shelters for experiments. Luckily, the exposure of this fact stopped this practice at the university, however, according to the Humane Society of the United States this practice continues across the U.S. “Class B” dealers, as they are known, often pose as adopters in shelters and then sell their animals to testing facilities.

            3. Dogs are Kept in Small Cages for Years
            Thirty-three pound dogs are only required by law to have eight square feet of kennel space, and these dogs often never go outside or see sunlight. Some dogs go crazy after years of being contained in a cage.
            These dogs suffer in labs while dogs seen as pets cuddle up in fluffy beds, get gourmet food and are treated as family members. Many people simply are not aware of lab testing on dogs, and if they are they do not realize how terrible it is for the animals. If they knew the shocking facts listed below they would think twice about their purchases.

            1. Dogs are Bred for Labs
            Shockingly, beagles and other dogs are bred specifically for labs. Research institutions often purchase they animals from “Class A” licensed animal breeders who produce animals for the sole purpose of selling them for experimentation. Depending on the type of research that’s being conducted, breeders produce different types of dogs with certain characteristics, for example, dogs can even be bought with or without working vocal cords for the price of $700 for a 33-pound dog.

            10 Shocking Facts About the Lives of Dogs Used In the Testing Industry

            2. Shelter Dogs are Used for Experiments
            An investigation into the University of Utah revealed they were buying homeless dogs and cats from shelters for experiments. Luckily, the exposure of this fact stopped this practice at the university, however, according to the Humane Society of the United

          • Denise Wilson

            To the web master here. the above posts will not edit or delete.

          • Denise Wilson

            Dogs are especially popular for use in toxicology tests, which determine safe levels of an unknown substance for humans. They are also popular for cancer studies because dogs and humans have similar immune systems, making dogs a good model for cancer immunotherapies, in the eyes of the National Cancer Institute. The dogs used in these and other experiments are routinely euthanized at the end of experiments.

            These dogs suffer in labs while dogs seen as pets cuddle up in fluffy beds, get gourmet food and are treated as family members. Many people simply are not aware of lab testing on dogs, and if they are they do not realize how terrible it is for the animals. If they knew the shocking facts listed below they would think twice about their purchases.

            1. Dogs are Bred for Labs
            Shockingly, beagles and other dogs are bred specifically for labs. Research institutions often purchase they animals from “Class A” licensed animal breeders who produce animals for the sole purpose of selling them for experimentation. Depending on the type of research that’s being conducted, breeders produce different types of dogs with certain characteristics, for example, dogs can even be bought with or without working vocal cords for the price of $700 for a 33-pound dog.

            10 Shocking Facts About the Lives of Dogs Used In the Testing Industry

            2. Shelter Dogs are Used for Experiments
            An investigation into the University of Utah revealed they were buying homeless dogs and cats from shelters for experiments. Luckily, the exposure of this fact stopped this practice at the university, however, according to the Humane Society of the United States this practice continues across the U.S. “Class B” dealers, as they are known, often pose as adopters in shelters and then sell their animals to testing facilities.

            3. Dogs are Kept in Small Cages for Years
            Thirty-three pound dogs are only required by law to have eight square feet of kennel space, and these dogs often never go outside or see sunlight. Some dogs go crazy after years of being contained in a cage.

            Dogs are especially popular for use in toxicology tests, which determine safe levels of an unknown substance for humans. They are also popular for cancer studies because dogs and humans have similar immune systems, making dogs a good model for cancer immunotherapies, in the eyes of the National Cancer Institute. The dogs used in these and other experiments are routinely euthanized at the end of experiments.
            Dogs are especially popular for use in toxicology tests, which determine safe levels of an unknown substance for humans. They are also popular for cancer studies because dogs and humans have similar immune systems, making dogs a good model for cancer immunotherapies, in the eyes of the National Cancer Institute. The dogs used in these and other experiments are routinely euthanized at the end of experiments.

            These dogs suffer in labs while dogs seen as pets cuddle up in fluffy beds, get gourmet food and are treated as family members. Many people simply are not aware of lab testing on dogs, and if they are they do not realize how terrible it is for the animals. If they knew the shocking facts listed below they would think twice about their purchases.

            1. Dogs are Bred for Labs
            Shockingly, beagles and other dogs are bred specifically for labs. Research institutions often purchase they animals from “Class A” licensed animal breeders who produce animals for the sole purpose of selling them for experimentation. Depending on the type of research that’s being conducted, breeders produce different types of dogs with certain characteristics, for example, dogs can even be bought with or without working vocal cords for the price of $700 for a 33-pound dog.

            10 Shocking Facts About the Lives of Dogs Used In the Testing Industry

            2. Shelter Dogs are Used for Experiments
            An investigation into the University of Utah revealed they were buying homeless dogs and cats from shelters for experiments. Luckily, the exposure of this fact stopped this practice at the university, however, according to the Humane Society of the United States this practice continues across the U.S. “Class B” dealers, as they are known, often pose as adopters in shelters and then sell their animals to testing facilities.

            3. Dogs are Kept in Small Cages for Years
            Thirty-three pound dogs are only required by law to have eight square feet of kennel space, and these dogs often never go outside or see sunlight. Some dogs go crazy after years of being contained in a cage.
            These dogs suffer in labs while dogs seen as pets cuddle up in fluffy beds, get gourmet food and are treated as family members. Many people simply are not aware of lab testing on dogs, and if they are they do not realize how terrible it is for the animals. If they knew the shocking facts listed below they would think twice about their purchases.

            1. Dogs are Bred for Labs
            Shockingly, beagles and other dogs are bred specifically for labs. Research institutions often purchase they animals from “Class A” licensed animal breeders who produce animals for the sole purpose of selling them for experimentation. Depending on the type of research that’s being conducted, breeders produce different types of dogs with certain characteristics, for example, dogs can even be bought with or without working vocal cords for the price of $700 for a 33-pound dog.

            10 Shocking Facts About the Lives of Dogs Used In the Testing Industry

            2. Shelter Dogs are Used for Experiments
            An investigation into the University of Utah revealed they were buying homeless dogs and cats from shelters for experiments. Luckily, the exposure of this fact stopped this practice at the university, however, according to the Humane Society of the

          • gypsyrose1

            Slaves & prisoners escape when they think they have the opportunity. Slaves and prisoners dream for a better life.
            Animals that are treated humanely will return to the home they know, if lost. They don’t want to escape. They are content with their lives.
            It is an affront to actual slaves for you to compare animal ownership to what they live with.
            You are not at the forefront of a civil rights movement. You are at the forefront of a misguided philosophy.

          • Denise Wilson

            Animals have either been conditioned to be dependent or else tortured into submission . Where else but with his owners would a dog go to be certain of food and shelter. Many slaves also did just that. As for cats they frquently return to the house where they first lived ..their territory…. and not to the owners. Many slaves were ” content” with their lives as slaves. That doesnt make slavery morally correct. Fortunately many including myself advocated for Australian aborigines for many years. People like you regarded them as inferior and would not grant them the vote or being included in the census. Animals too will be granted respect and justice befor long., Research shows it takes about 7% of a population to start a rapid change of values ( such as civil rights) . Already there are 3 and a half Percent of the population who are vegan. As Ghandi said ” First they laugh at you, then they ignore you, then the agree with you”

          • Denise Wilson

            “It is an affront to actual slaves for you to compare animal ownership to what they live with” ..so are you saying captive animals are worse off or better off than “actual” slaves. This is illogical and a contradiction in terms.

        • Denise Wilson

          where has MacEllen said
          * he wants an end to the human animal bond
          * animals are our moral equals
          * he disagrees with rescuing animals
          * he wants all animals to be extinct
          * he doesnt care about humans.

        • Denise Wilson

          where does Benjamin say he wants toend the human- animal bond. ?

      • larkinvonalt

        The level of ignorance in your supposed examples is stunning. You may be right about one thing– you certainly are not “superior” to the lowliest farm cow.

        • Denise Wilson

          Give reasons and information or retreat and put you head back in the sand.

      • gypsyrose1

        ” In spite of what some horse owners will say horses dislike like jumping and will always prefer, when not under a rider, to go around a barrier. ”

        Then you need to have a word with the horse in this video. No one told him.
        http: // www. horsecollaborative. com/rider-falls-horse-keeps-jumping/

        (Remove the spaces in the link to make it work. Otherwise it gets held for moderation.)

        • Denise Wilson

          Have you heard of operative conditioning?

    • Denise Wilson

      just a PS . in relation to your intial reply. So bewildered by the contradictions and lack of understanding whe i first read it i was unable to address some of the false claims and niave statements.
      1. How does the extinction of all pets eliminate the human bond with all animals? I am a wildlife photographer and feel a close bond with all animals.
      2. Animal farmers also claim they “unequivocally love their animals” ..in spite of assaulting and torturing them with a variety of painful procedures with the intention of murdering them for profit.You claim is a tired old defence for exploiting animals and clearly untrue.
      3.”LEVEL of consciousness” . ” ??! The stAte of being aware.Many animals have a far sharper awareness of their environment than humans. Their superior hearing, smell and unfettered instincts also enhance their state of awareness Science now knows that most animals are self aware. They possess sentience just as humans do. Do you include humans with severe mental disability or Aspergers in your category of animals that can be exploited. .
      4.Anthropomorphism.The fact that humans and most other animals have a similar nervous system, that we all feel pain, hunger, grief, is not to anthropomorphise other species. It is to accept a scientific fact that enables us to empathise with them and understand their needs. Furthermore i see no relevance in the fact that
      5. Slavery. Definitions. yes ..they all apply to animals. If you want to invent a new word for a captive sentient being caged and chained then forced to fulfill the wishes of his owner, thats fine . however the meaning of the word “slave ” is a word most of us understand.
      6. The fact that a slave may not understand the construction of a foreign language does not make the ACTIONS of the speaker any less relevant to the victim.
      7.Your third paragraph is based on the false assumption that animals are here for humans and not in their own right. We have done to dogs what hitler did to humans…genetically engineer them for our own purposes. I and others find that egomaniacal and highly unethical . You seem only to be able to set the value of other beings according to your needs and desires..or those of some other humans.
      Its also interesting how you not only KNOW how they feel but dont see this as anthropomorphising them. Your spiteful sarcasm in that paragraph is so obviously a result of anger because others are questioning your delusions of human superiority and obsession with how pets make YOU feel and create happy memories for YOU.
      You actually say ” I MYSELF cannot imagine a world without pets”
      8.Human society has developed on the back of exploited animals. I agree. But now we are aware of their equal capacity for pain and suffering, now we have transport and technology their exploitation is no longer necessary or ethical.
      9.Your final paragraph of spiteful and sarcastic remarks is not only childish but an obviously incorrect accusation.
      10. Must go …..my little dog wants me to take him for a walk and being his slave i must comply. !! cheers.

      • gypsyrose1

        Watching animals from afar and not getting to know them is hardly the same thing as living with and knowing an animal. I love all horses, but my personal horses are like family. I know their “horse”analities. THAT is the human/animal bond we are talking about.
        Sometimes, I need to use “painful” methods to ensure the health or safety of the horse and humans near it. My horse doesn’t like vaccinations, but he gets them anyway.
        Yes, they are self aware in that they know they have physical and basic emotional needs. Are they aware of themselves as part of a larger universe? I doubt it.
        Anthropomorphism is not about acknowledging they also feel pain and develop friendships, it’s about people who know NOTHING about an animal and assuming that it feels like they do. I can’t tell you how often I’ve seen carriage horse protesters complain about “depressed” or “lame” horses because their head is hanging down and a hind leg is cocked. It does no good to tell them that that is a sign of a relaxed animal.
        Slavery. Once again, you persist in applying a word that describes a human condition to animals. It’s only slavery if the slave thinks it is. Animals don’t think like that. They are only concerned with their comfort level at any given time. They don’t give a damn if they are in a cage as long as they are comfortable in it. Is your “little dog ” a slave? Why not just free him?
        Eugenics for animals has always been morally acceptable. If you don’t like it, then please be sure not to own any domestic animal. They’ve all been engineered to meet a human need. If not for that, they wouldn’t even exist and the world would be poorer for that. Humans have been endowed by nature with the ability to alter our world to meet our needs. Humans have superior brains. To deny that, is to deny nature.
        Modern technology still uses animal products. You can google “animal products in everything” to get an idea how many products require animal by-products.
        Your last sentence shows you don’t even live by your own ethics. He’s not YOUR little dog, you are HIS human slave that must feed, water and walk him when he demands it. Obviously, you are only partly trained.

        • Denise Wilson

          yes he is still training me

          • gypsyrose1

            She has a lot of work ahead of her. She better call for help.

          • Denise Wilson

            more name caling. Abuse. Irrelevance . desperation.

        • Denise Wilson

          for someone who belittles those who anthropomorphisize it seems it is you and your friend Oxymoron who JUST KNOWS how animals feel and think and what they care and dont care about! As for Animal advocates..they accept the scientific explanation of sentience as being “self aware” and the differences between species and their needs.

          • gypsyrose1

            Sentience is the capacity to feel, perceive, or experience subjectively.
            Sapience is the ability to apply knowledge or experience or understanding or common sense and insight

            By these definitions, even a worm is sentient. Do you equate worms to humans?

          • Denise Wilson

            You are incoreect. sentience is being Self Aware and that is how the word is used in Animal Behavioural studies and amongst evolutionary biologists and zooologists. It is only recently that scientists have discovered mammals and some birds and sea creatures are self aware. Worms and many other creatures level of awareness is still unknown

            Obviously you know better.

        • Denise Wilson

          At the risk of repeating myself.. it is now hard to find anything on this thread…and to again counter some of your many mindless assumptions…I was a horse rider, eventer, qualified pony club instructor and owner of nine horses,my daughters rode competitively, I also had milking- goats, sheep and chickens for many years. I have always had dogs and cats. I have studied Animal Behaviour as a subjeect at university as part of a science degree, I have worked in zoos and wildlife Parks. I do not believe that we should anthropomorphise other species. I believe they have rights according to their own specific biology and needs.I am not a speciesist just as I am not a racist, .

          • laurelladesborough

            Denise Wilson. For someone who has been personally involved with aniamls, horses and dogs, goats and sheep, and chickens, WHEN and HOW did you get so misdirected by the animal rights propaganda? In one of your posts you wrote about animals being skinned alive for their fur. This is not reality. It is a propaganda video to influence people. If you know anything about the fur industry, you would know that no one skins animals alive, except animal rights ideologues making propaganda films. Why not? Because to do so would make a total mess of an otherwise good clean pelt. A squirming biting animal is going to get blood and excrement all over the pelt. No serious person skinning an animal is going to do that while the animal is alive. Now, if you “bought” that video and idea, then perhaps you have “bought” other animal rights nonsense. It seems to me that the real goal of animal rights radicals is to remove all animals from humans. Not to free the animals, just to remove them. Because IF many kinds of animals were removed from our lives, their lives would be much shorter. Feral cats and dogs for instance do not live as long as our household pet cats and dogs. Same with birds. Studies on wild parrots indicate that half the young ones coming out of the nest do not live one year! Half!! Now, for those we raise, they survive for many years. You imagine that dogs, cats, horses, cattle, and other animals want to “be free.” They do not have that concept. They want to eat, to mate, to be comfortable, etc. NOT to be “free.” And as for the zoo and circus animals, the wild they used to roam is now clear cut for palm oil plantations, sugar beet plantations and SOY FARMS, (to raise soybeans for vegans). Note: when land is cleared for crops, for vegetables, many creatures die during the clear cutting and afterwards because their shelter and food supply is gone. I note that few if any vegan animal rights advocates will take note of the facts re clearcutting for their vegan foods. What is curious to me is that there must be some underlying reason for individuals to take up the animal rights ideology. I have to imagine that it must be something in their past experience that has so affected them that they take up this cult belief about animals when the AR belief system does not provide any improvement for domestic animals or for wild animals. IMO this animal rights cult movement is dangerous for humans. At least six US couples have tried to raise their newborn babies on a “vegan” diet, ending up with starved underweight babies and in some cases, dead babies. So, if you don’t mind, could you please explain how an animal loving person with multiple experiences with real animals end up as an animal rights true believer? I do not understand it and I would like to understand it.

          • Denise Wilson

            Laurel “So, if you don’t mind, could you please explain how an animal loving person with multiple experiences with real animals end up as an animal rights true believer? I do not understand it and I would like to understand it.”

            Because I am open minded and compassionate because i read a great deal, because I have studied animal behaviour, because I have seen the sadness of animals iin zoos, because i know the statistics of the millions no trillions of animals that are expoited and destroyed as “waste” and because I reflect on it. i am not trapped in an archaic view of the superiority of human kind as you lot are here. You have NOT EVEN READ my previous posts. If you had done so you would see that I have not said ANYWHERE HERE that CURRENTLY owned dogs and cats should be set free. But that we should STOP BREEDING domestic animals. Other animals such as circus animals should be allowed to live their lives in rescue parks AND SUCH AS ZOOS AND ANIMAL CIRCUSES should be banned as they indeed they already are in some countries. And I can assure you that animals are indeed skinned alive If I could post videos here I would. .
            Why do people here not read previous posts before rushing in with the same misunderstandings and false arguments that others have already said,?. Why do you believe that there is some sort of sinister conspiracy within NON PROFIT animal Rights organisations when the meat industry have profit motives worth billions of dollars to annually to flood the media with false claims and propaganda to protect their profits? Why do you think its OK to allow 40000 people EVERY DAY to starve to death ( UN figures)because their countrY’s crops and grain are used to feed farm animals so the rich can eat flesh?….It takes 16kg crops to produce 1 kg flesh. 16 kg plant and grain food would feed two families for a week! Why do you think that the racing industry, the grey hound industry hate animal rights people? For the same reasons as the meat industry. These are powerful wealthy industries that have friends in government. Why do you go along with them and believe what they say? There is no profit or personal gain in working for animals rights. It is hard, WE see much heartbreaking cruelty, we are laughed at by those who are not prepared to consider the morality of speciesism and will not question old values, we go without many foods that we have previously enjoyed, many of us give most of our money and time to the cause. WE ARE NOT ATTACKING INDIVIDUALS WHO ARE PET OWNERS. We very much believe in caring and loving existing domestic animals that are already on this planet. We are trying to spread the idea of the morality and logic of not breeding any more domesticated animals ito the future. There is no cruelty in such an idea. It is about saving the suffering of trillions of animals in the future. Why wouldnt anyone believe the 98 percent worlds scientists and the United nations that animal farming cannot continue because the planet has almost run out of arable land and that the human race cannot sustain itself on meat. That animal farming contributes more than 55 percent of the worlds greenhouse gases thus largely contributing towards climate change.Preventing the destruction of the small remaininig pieces of natural wilderness is THE ONLY WAY to preserve wild species. ? Like other social issues and eventual changes in history it will not happen overnight. But thtat doesnt mean we should not work to make the future world a more humane world. please open your mind and heart and think about it.

          • laurelladesborough

            Denise Wilson. First. I read the material. Second. When you state that you have seen the SADNESS of animals in zoos, I think you are imagining what those animals feel. It is not possible to know if an animal is sad unless it TELLS you it is sad. Third, you state that animals are skinned alive. I don’t believe you IF those skins are to be used as fur. It is simply not done that way for the reasons I stated. Fourth, PETA and HSUS and SPCA are known to be collecting $$$ and not to be spending it for the animals. In the case of HSUS, only 1 penny from each dollar goes to the animals…according to their IRS filings. As for pets and breeding animals being removed from owners, perhaps you might not feel that way personally, but it is clear that the animal rights agenda has that as their basic goal: NO ANIMALS! As for animals in zoos going to sanctuaries…well, there are sanctuaries and there are sanctuaries. Some may have excellent staffing and good vetting. Some do not. Like PAWS in California where they burned an elephant to death. Yep. Stupidity caused the elephant’s death. You see, it is not enough to love animals. In order to do what is best for an animal, you need to have a darn lot more information about the animal’s behavior, needs and care. Meanwhile, back at the sanctuary…many think…”all you need is love” …and recently that kind of stupidity is causing the death of primates moved from their long term home to a “wonderful sanctuary.” There is a lot more to saving animals than love, or even owning pets, or even being an educated behaviorist, etc. It helps not to have an agenda but to maintain an open mind.

          • Denise Wilson

            This site will not allow links to be inserted. Please go to Support Vegan Legion and click on animals skinned alive . A video… hard to photoshop.

          • Denise Wilson

            ” I think you are imagining what those animals feel. It is not possible to know if an animal is sad unless it TELLS you it is sad.” then lets say depressed which is a description used by biologists and vets. And widely attributable to the inability to express natural behaviours.

          • Denise Wilson

            A lot of assumptions there Laurel. I was a foundation member of the OrangUtan Project here in Australia and have two adopted rescue Orang babies. I do not eat palm oil. I put togethter our first list of palm oil containing products. Yes clearing habitat is responsible for the extinction and death of many animals . However if humans ate only plant crops we would only need one sixteenth of the land to feed us all. It takes 16 kilograms of plant crop to produce one kilogram of animal flesh. People like myself become vegan for that very reason. And incidentalyl, collectiveyl eata billions of tons of meat. dogs and cats eat. As I have said in earlier posts which you obviously have not bothered to read animal farming produces oveer 50 percent of the world greenhouse gases and uses and pollutes our water way. Look at FAO statistics from the United Nations.

          • Denise Wilson
          • Denise Wilson

            IS TH IS LITTLE CHIMP HAPPY OR SAD?

          • Denise Wilson

            “It seems to me that the real goal of animal rights radicals is to remove all animals from humans”
            What possible motive could people have for doing so than compassion?

          • Denise Wilson

            Same with birds. Studies on wild parrots indicate that half the young ones coming out of the nest do not live one year! Half!! This is common with most birds and ensures that the fittest only survive. 50 Billion chickens are killed every year for food.

          • Denise Wilson

            ” Now, if you “bought” that video and idea, then perhaps you have “bought” other animal rights nonsense”
            Do you think it might just be possible that you have bought the “animals are inferior and we have the right to do anything we like to them because they dont feel pain like us or have our sort of intelligence nonsense” propagated by culture, parents, religion, the meat industry and their media and government puppets. since birth? ? .

          • Denise Wilson

            “I note that few if any vegan animal rights advocates will take note of the facts re clear cutting for their vegan foods. ” where do you take “note ” from I wonder., You give little indication that you have ever had a conversation with a vegan before. Vegans generally will not eat palm oil, use crulty derived products where possible and are vegan not only for animal rights but for the planet and for their health.

          • Denise Wilson

            “What is curious to me is that there must be some underlying reason for individuals to take up the animal rights ideology”
            Answer. Compassion. Environment/climate change, health, knowledge of animal behaviour and sentience.

          • Denise Wilson

            ‘AR belief system does not provide any improvement for domestic animals or for wild animals”.
            Most vegans work in animal rescue organisations, many have sold their houses to buy land to set up rescue parks, we advocate against the continual breeding of dogs and puppy farms to reduce the numbers of euthanased dogs and advocate for the rehabilitation of dog shelter dogs.We are aware of the unspeakable cruelty that animals suffer so that humans can eat them, wear their skin or be entertained by them, We are against the massacre of whales and sharks and many things besides.We are against the unnecessary and horrific experimenting on our fellow creatures, We believe the earth blongs to other species besides humans. I think you and others here like 90 percent of the population are suffering from a view established by out culture and parents in your formative years ..as I was.. and cleverly reinforced by by the propaganda of big- corp owned media who are frightened of the effect the growing veganism and the animal rights movement will have on their multi billio dollar industry.

          • Denise Wilson

            “At least six US couples have tried to raise their newborn babies on a “vegan” diet, ending up with starved underweight babies and in some cases, dead babies.” Starved underwight babies can happen for any number of reasons. No doubt people may be allergic or cannot metabolize certain food sources. considering thousands of humans die from cancer, stroke an heart disease which are now known to be attributable in large part to meat eating, six babies is not a convincing statistic to present a case against the vegan diet. I also know many people who are raising very healthy children on a vegan diet. Also considering that over 10 000 sentientmammals (that is excluding chickens and fish) are murdered every single minute in the US alone adds some perspective. those animals want to live just as we do.

        • Denise Wilson

          *Where have i said or even suggested that Homeless and abused dogs should not be “adopted” and cared for?
          *There are cruelty free substitutes for almost everthing now even meat.
          *Human Slavery also has been morally acceptable untill recently. A civil rights movement grew untill society generally came to understand that it was in fact not morally acceptable.This is also the future of animal justice.

        • Denise Wilson

          ” Humans have superior brains” . On what do you base that conclusion . Human IQ tests or Animal IQ tests. ?

        • Denise Wilson

          You hae not answered any of my questions. It seems you are only capable of sarcasm and derision.

        • Denise Wilson

          ” Is your “little dog ” a slave? Why not just free him?”
          Yes my dog is a slave . thats what domesticated animals are.He has to wait untill I have answered these ridiculous questions to go for a walk when i choose to take him.,He has to wait for his lunch untill I say he can have it, he has to stay in the car and wait for me when he would much rather get out, he is not allowed in shops and most public places, He has to stay on a lead when we walk and walk at MY walking pace.

          “Why not free him” . To use the words of yourself or someone else here if you dont know the answer to that i’m not going to bother answering.

          And yes I will continue to use the word slave. It is my choice.

          If you really think birds are happy in cages when they watch their buddies flying freely overhead you have no empathy.
          You say yourself that “animals are aware and know their physical an d basic emotional needs” . Your arguments are all over the place.

      • okaminoyume

        Call me spiteful…like I said. That has only been in response to how YOU’VE treated me and everyone else here. If you had come in and acted civilly and rationally, then you would have received any venom. Surely you’re self aware enough to realize that this subject would get people’s hackles up.

        And I happen to have Asperger’s so number three..wow. Just, wow. I find that hurtful, ugly, and DEEPLY offensive. I am seriously struggling to control my temper. You have left me SHAKING with anger. I won’t say what I really want to say to you, because that would mean you “win” in provoking my ire and rage.

        So called animal “rights” activists are terrible, pompous, horrible people who are impossible to reason with. I know, you probably are inclined to say the same about me. But you have done nothing to alter that perception. You have only served to reinforce my feelings in despising so called animal rights activists. You want to rob future generations of having animals in their lives. That makes you completely, unequivocally insane. Just flat out insane. Delusional. Crazy. Certifiable. Call it what you will.

        It’s ironic that you compare dog and other selective animal breeding to Hitler, since your end goal for domestic animals is the exact same one he had for the Jews, homosexuals, gypsies, and other groups of people. What does that make you other than a spiteful hypocrite?

        So, hope you’re proud of yourself for that.

        Oh, and you’ve also slung inaccurate accusations and assumptions about ME. So…it’s a two way street, sweetie.

        • Denise Wilson

          Have a re read of your first response to me Ok moron. And i was defending the rights of those with Asbergers if you actually read the post. however your Aspergers perhaps explains why you dont actually see what people have said. And i will now unsubscribe to this site.

          • okaminoyume

            Yeah. Right. I’m the moron when I’m not the one that can barely string together a coherent sentence. Your grammar leaves a lot to be desired. You’ve given nothing but barely coherent half baked arguments. But it’s much like playing chess with a pigeon. The pigeon will crap all over the board and act like it won.

            Three guess who the pigeon is here Denise, and the first two don’t count.

            As for my sarcasm being the only defense…I think I’ve held my own pretty well against the likes of you. I’ve been running circles around you in this debate, but you’re too butthurt to admit it.

            And that’s the last time I’ll respond to you. So would you kindly go fuck yourself?

          • Denise Wilson

            As usual just personal abuse. No facts.

          • Denise Wilson

            Do you have anything to add to the discussion regarding domestic pets?

          • Denise Wilson

            “You want to rob future generations of having animals in their lives”
            Nowhere have I said this. another false accusation ..or should I say lie. Quite the contrary . I very much want people to have animals and the environment in their lives which is why I am an animal Advocate and an Environmental activist.

          • gypsyrose1

            You only want future generations to see animals from far away or in pictures. That is not how you get to know and learn about animals.

          • Denise Wilson

            Do I . On what do you base this claim?

        • Denise Wilson

          Personal abuse the only defense here again.And yes I have never read in all my life such a nasty spiteful sarcastic baseless diatribe as your first post here. As for your believed prowess in debating… you would be removed from the debating venue for abuse after your first couple of paragraphs.

  • Megan O

    Spoken like a true hypocrite. So you couldn’t imagine YOUR life without dogs, which you lovingly refer to as “a life in which they have been the loves of my life, often my reason for getting up in the morning, or even saving me in the depths of depression”. But you would deprive future generations of that relationship?

    Your statement that “while we continue to domesticate animals, and acquire them as “pets”, we deny them the rights to have family, be self determined, and live free of imposition and expectation” is just plain false and shows an incredible ignorance of the relationship between ALL animals and humans.

    You may be surprised to learn that even if there were no domestication, animals would still be subject to the will of man (think about endangered WILD animals and WHY they are endangered). Even were there no pets, even if the whole world turned Vegan, even if we respected and cherished all animals as the core value of our civilization, this would not change the fact that ALL animals, their population levels, their freedoms, and their levels of “self-determination” would be subject to human control, simply because ANIMALS DO NOT RETURN THE FAVOR.

    Animals do not care whether human children starve because they eat our crops. Animals will not hesitate to hunt us if we stray into their territory, or attack us if there is no easier prey nearby. Animals do not make decisions based on guilt, or ideals, or moral quandaries. All animals care about, whether they are wild or domestic or loved or abused, is SURVIVING.

    As a result, we literally, physically CANNOT live in peace and harmony alongside animals without exercising SOME control over their lives. If we want animals not to eat food that would feed our children, we MUST claim certain lands for human use, and we MUST build fences to keep animals out. There is no other way, because animals will not stop eating our food as a courtesy. If we want animals to avoid hunting or attacking us and our children, we MUST defend ourselves, because a predator will not stop in the middle of an attack and think, “Gosh, wait a minute, maybe this isn’t the right thing to do!” (I suppose if a bear attacked you or your children, you would just shrug and do nothing because defending yourself would be “imposing on the animal’s freedom”?). The alternative to letting apex predators roam free is to confine them. Even a vast sanctuary is a control, a cage.

    If all animals were freed tomorrow to go wherever they will, breed howevermuch they like, eat whatever they want, how do you suppose that would realistically turn out? How many animals would be dead on the side of highways or on train tracks? How many more times would you hear on the evening news that a bear had mauled a child? How many times would you fear for your life just taking the trash out, because a pack of HUNDREDS of wild dogs might surround you and choose you for their meal, and there’d be nothing you could do to stop them?

    Fact is, unless animals become as intelligent as us, there is no realistic way to avoid human/animal conflict under any circumstances without CONTROLLING ANIMALS. I’m sorry to break it to you but that’s the planet you live on, and until every last animal is dead (which seems to be what you want anyway), that’s reality.

    • Denise Wilson

      Flashdog. its great that the dogs that you “OWN” get to do so many activities during their day. There are many dogs less fortunate. I can also see that you are very proud of the fact that that your dogs are well “well trained” …no doubt according to human cultural norms rather than canine ones.
      Many other “OWNED” dogs also get much pleasure from daily romps on the beach or in bush parks or dog parks and also sleep on their “OWNERS” beds and go shopping with their “OWNER” . Many also go to dog “training” to be conditioned into behaviour …..that is acceptable to humans.
      Your jibe regarding Benjamin MacEllen’s “poor Kelpies” does nothing but reinforce his claim that we should not own pets.
      Your final paragraph is an astonishing conglomeration of self contradiction, ignorant ramblings and narcissistic arrogance. You make it clear that a domestic animal’s worth is judged only by its capability to serve humans. Millions of dogs annually are euthanased because of the perceived shortcomings to fulfill these services…. Greyhounds not fast enough, family dog not docile enough, too many vet. fees, barks too much, owner going overseas, too much dog hair in the house, , junior no longer interested, untrainable for being a guide dog, cant find buyers for the puppies, untrainable for police or military dog, not aggressive enough for a guard dog or dog fighting etc etc etc .Unlike you, a calimed dog lover, Benjamin MacEllen is SUPPORTIVE of caring and adopting these rejected dogs until such time as selfish non compassionate humans such as yourself will wake up to the cruel and arrogant concept that breeding animals for profit and pleasure is immoral.

    • Denise Wilson

      So much ignorance and self contradiction here I am giddy.

      • Time4Dogs

        Yeah, you’re giddy alright. That’s quite obvious.

        • okaminoyume

          She’s the kind of giddy that requires life long institutionalization in a padded room with a fashionable jacket with lots of buckles that lets you hug yourself.

          • Denise Wilson

            You are the one with Aspergers. …sorry but I couldnt resist. I have put up with continued abuse from you OxyMORON. At least I havent called YOU certifiable or a MASSIVE CUNT . or go fuck yourself … or fully blown lunatic as you have me ..amongst many other vile and toxic names an A4 pageful to be precise.. I have written them all down and intend to report them. . I realize you get a buzz out of abuse. If you have nothing to add to the conversation why not go visit your therapist.You obviously must have one if you have been diagnosed with Aspergers. He may find you are also phsychopathic. I suppose you are unable to hold down a job because of your condition..and abusing people is how you fill in your time. before you return the compliment I am retired and I use most of my time volunteering for Animal rights and rescue. Yes I have at last lost my cool and I think you are the nastiest most toxic and unrelentingly spiteful and nasty person I have ever come across in my 73 years..

    • Denise Wilson

      Your words and quote :Your statement that “while we continue to domesticate animals, and acquire them as “pets”, we deny them the rights to have family, be self determined, and live free of imposition and expectation” is just plain false ..” Please can you outline how this is NOT true. Thanks.

    • Denise Wilson

      Frankly YES! To save the lives of millions of sentient beings for the sake of millions of dogs annually being murdered because their small owners no longer find them an amusing toy. Yes!. And begger still stop breeding them to save the suffering.

      • gypsyrose1

        Do you also support the same goal for humans? Shall we all stop breeding because some humans are evil? Destroy everything to save the abused is an interesting, but bad, idea.

        • Denise Wilson

          I am certainly in favour of humans having less children. The human population has doubled in my lifetime. We have already stolen most of the wild habitat from other species, have almost run out of arable land and are poisoning the planet. We are expected to number 10 billion by the end of this century. But maybe that discussion is for another day.

          • gypsyrose1

            So, you only want to limit human reproduction (which I have no problem with voluntary birth control methods), but you want to eliminate domestic animals entirely. Sounds like you hate domestic animals.

          • Denise Wilson

            REad my posts Gypsy.

          • okaminoyume

            Oh no, no, no gypsy. See, Denise LOVES animals. In fact, she wants to love all (domestic) animals right into (albeit, slow) extinction. And she clearly can’t see that’s a sick, twisted, messed up kind of “love” that animals really don’t need.

      • Megan O

        Denise, I was addressing the person who wrote this article, not you. Also good job only bothering to read the first few sentences of what I said. I’m sure since it was over 150 words it’s outside the realm of what you’d consider fact.

        If this is how you feel then stop having pets and volunteer to euthanize pets at PETA. Fortunately for the rest of us, Denise Wilson’s Personal Preferences don’t apply to all of society. Hooray!

    • okaminoyume

      “So much ignorance and self contradiction here I am giddy.”

      Good lord. She really is a full blown lunatic. Does she seriously think that she’s going to convert us all and make us “see the light?”

      Ahahahahaha. And she calls us ignorant. She’s the definition of “batshit.”

      • Denise Wilson

        You mean like those who fought for civil rights and womens equality. you would have called them batshit and ignorant and obviously would have fought to maintain the rights to own slaves and exploit women.

        • okaminoyume

          Good grief. Well, I guess I can say that you certainly stick to your guns.

          But really, just give it up. Seriously. Why are you even here? You’re not going to get any new converts and you’re not going to convince anybody to your side. You come off as psychotic and frighteningly deranged.

      • Denise Wilson

        As an animal species ourselves i agree we have a right to protect ourselves when under threat. But by breeding animals we are actually destroying our own future. We have already stolen most of the wild habitats from other species and their is little arable land left. The human population has double in my life time and is forecast to double again in a few decades( UN stats). . . Much of current available land is used to grow animals for flesh. It takes 16kg plant crop to produce one kg of meat.( UN figures) about 4000 people die from starvation every day.. mostly children (UN figures.) 16 kg plant crop could feed several families for a week whilst the rich use those staraving peoples’ crops to fatten animals in the west. Animal agriculture produces over 50 percent of the worlds greenhouse gases ( UN figures) and thousands of times of the planets precious water than plant crops. How will humans fare when the water wars start and the land is used up with animal farming.To go vegan is our only chance of survival as a species.

      • Denise Wilson

        As usual personal abuse is your only means of defense.

  • al smith

    You are an animal abuser.. sorry you just are.. Kelpies are born to work and your “rescue ” of them from a”life of servitude” has actually taken them into the prison of your own sick idea of what pleases them.. how sad you are.. and your poor dogs..lazy, couch potatoes that are natural cattle workers and sheep dogs.. they must hate you for that.. animal abuse abounds and you participate in it

    • gypsyrose1

      From the beginning of time, the ancestors of today’s dogs hung around human camps looking for scraps of food because it was easier than hunting. Dogs chose to be with humans.

      • Denise Wilson

        Yep wild dogs… wolves . which are still being massacred by humans.

        • gypsyrose1

          You missed the key word. ANCESTORS of today’s dogs. Probably not the same species as wolves which would have killed early humans rather than hang around for scraps.
          Wolves were “massacred” by humans because they are vicious and destructive. Anyone living in the same neighborhood as a wild wolf is not safe. Would you kill a wolf to save your livestock or your family? Is the wolf’s life more valuable than your family or food supply?
          Wolves are marvelous animals, but they are dangerous and IMO should be managed carefully in the wild.

          • Denise Wilson

            Yes. Wolves almost became extinct in the US. IN fact like the American Bison have had to be reintroduced into National Parks. the reason for that was so called “sport shooting” and to displace American Indians who relied on wolves and Bison( buffalo to you) them for their survival.. and yes to supposedly protect livestock on land stolen from American Indians. Yes The American Bison can spread bovine diseases to livestock. Ironically the diseases were introduced by domesticated imported “livestock”. And no I would not kill a wolf to protect livestock because I would not have livestock and dont agree with the farming of animals as commodities. . A wolf will only attack if you are in his or her hunting range and are not threatening unless you intrude on what is theirs.

          • gypsyrose1

            So, if you had your dog or a child in your yard and a wolf thought that was part of his territory, what would you do?

          • Denise Wilson

            This remark is just another red herring and irrelevant to any point I have made here. However If there were any wolves left after the human massacre of wolves, and if there was any wild territory left where wolves lived I would have a fence around my property. If a wolf attacked my child and i had a means of defence of course I would use it. Humans like animals have a moral right to fight for their survival.

          • gypsyrose1

            Wolves can easily go over or under a fence. Glad to hear you would kill an endangered wolf to save your un-endangered self. The way you talk makes it sound like the wolf’s life is more important than a human’s life.
            You should be glad that there are no wolves in most parts of the country, or you would have to be on the watch for them all the time. Humans are easy prey.

          • Denise Wilson

            We have dingoes here which are all but extinct.Those remaining are not pure because they have interbred with domestic dogs.
            Where did I say a wolf’s life is more important than a humans.? JUst another of your many assumptions. A wolf’s life is as important as a human’s not more, not less. Humans like wolves and other species have a right to protect themselves. Can you actually tell me without using some irrelevant sarcasm, without wiping the question aside with derision or attack, can you give some rational objective argument why a human,s life is more important than any other animals? Because this is the crux of the whole discussion here. So far no rational reason has been given. I have simply been told that I am a CUNT, sick certifiable or horrible.

          • Denise Wilson

            yet another irrelevant diversion. How then are captive wolves restrained?

    • Denise Wilson

      Ignorance is astounding. Please read the article and my comments and use you brain. Black slaves were born to be slaves too? Women were born to be in the kitchen and submit to marital rape? Some of us think about morality.

      • Flashdog

        You’re becoming hysterical, Denise. Your analogies are wild and irrelevant. Obviously you have never met a kelpie. They are OBSESSIVE about working. Let even an untrained kelpie see a flock of sheep and he becomes INTENT on putting them in a nice, neat group.

        • Denise Wilson

          and….. ? How does that justify your view of a kelpie as a commodity ? Do captive bears love dancing? Your desperate resort to derision is an indication of your lack of facts and rational arguments. you have none.

          • Flashdog

            Sigh. As I have explained over and over again in lengthy posts, I view those kelpies as intelligent animals who love to work sheep in partnership with a human. I don’t know how bears feel about dancing. I have never talked to any. However, I have met and talked to several kelpies. I KNOW what they think. How many kelpies have you talked to lately, Denise?

          • Denise Wilson

            So the many Kelpies and others who spend hours on my local beach swimming. chasing balls and chasing each other are deprived and abused?

    • Denise Wilson

      Good rational counter argument Al. ” sorry you just are.” Good scientific knowledge Al. “. Kelpies are born to work”
      INteresting too that you know what kelpies like and think but no one else does.
      I guess your dogs are chained up or left outside at night. But YOU know thats what they enjoy dont you Al.
      I wonder how many young kelpies are shot in the head because they show no potential for herding .

  • laurelladesborough

    Frankly, I have to say this is the sickest proposal I have read in a long long time. Something very wrong going on in the minds of those who want to remove animals from humans. Our relationship to animals goes back to the earliest of human history…and these (I will say it…mentally unstable) people want to remove animals from humans. Without animals, we would still be living in caves and fighting off tigers and wolves. For god’s sake…educate yourself about the history of the human race! Otherwise, some of us are going to believe that the vegan animal haters are alien spawn from outer space! I think this whole agenda is about controlling humans, not animal welfare.

    • Denise Wilson

      To all here.
      to save my valuable time would you and others here please read my replies above.
      Gypsy rose. The cessation of breeding dogs and cats would not mean the extinction of a species. they belong the same species as wolves and wild cats. Canis Lupus (dogs ) and Felis Catus (cats)

      • gypsyrose1

        Since my lengthy response to you is being held for approval, I’ll give you a short version of it.
        You are WRONG. Domestic cats and dogs are distinct species from their wild relatives. Just go to Wikipedia and look for Canis and Felidae species. It is a very long list.

        • Denise Wilson

          Gypsy Rose. Your words: Domestic cats and dogs are distinct species from their wild relatives.” The cessation of breeding dogs and cats would not mean the extinction of a species. they belong the same species as wolves and wild cats. Canis Lupus (dogs ) and Felis Catus (cats). Look at the Taxonomy in any book on evolution.

          • gypsyrose1

            You don’t understand biological classifications. Genus is Canis or Felis. Species is lupus or catus. Subspecies for domestic dogs is familiaris.
            I’m a Bio major. I know what I’m talking about. You don’t.

        • Denise Wilson

          Gypsy rose. I will remind you again of your use of the word “species”. Here is what you said. I have copied and pasted. Please look at your reply above to verify.

          “Since my lengthy response to you is being held for approval, I’ll give you a short version of it.
          You are WRONG. Domestic cats and dogs are distinct species from their wild relatives. Just go to Wikipedia and look for Canis and Felidae species. It is a very long list.”

          Please also see a table showing the taxonomy. Unfortunately this site for some reason will not let me insert academic links.

          • gypsyrose1

            My mistake on genus Canis, species lupus. You are trying to exterminate the subspecies familiaris.
            However, domestic cats Felis catus is a distinct species listed on Wikipedia under Felidae.

            The US makes a big deal about saving endangered species and subspecies on all type of life forms. You want to eliminate all the domesticated life forms, and have deluded yourself into believing that would be a good thing. That is a sick, radical philosophy.
            When will you start proposing human breeding restrictions that you obviously want? Would you volunteer yourself to help reduce the human population, or are you someone who “deserves” to live while the non-vegans don’t? Are you a believer in eugenics?

    • Denise Wilson

      Yes humans have advanced (in some dubious ways) on the back of animals. However we now live in the 21st century and it is no longer necessary. Just like child labour and slave labour contributed to ( the white mans) economic growth and comfort, society now accepts these things as immoral. We also now know that other species have a similar nervous system to us, feel pain, fear and even love so that modern moral philosophy argues that harming and enslaving our fellow species for human profit and greed is immoral. In a couple of countries ( portugal, being one I think) Great Apes have now been legally granted “personhood”.

      • laurelladesborough

        Denise Wilson. There is one clear fact in all this talk about having animals be free and not property. Once they are not property, there is NO protection for them. Do you not understand that the wild wolves, deer, elk, bison or whatever are simply disposed of when there are perceived to be too many? Being wild is not protection. Being property IS protection. But, that is the point of the animal rights agenda…when animals aren’t owned, then the animal rights can watch as they disappear, which is their main point. They just use all that emotional stuff to convince their followers that they are correct. As long as my animals belong to me, they will recieve good care and be safe. When they belong to no one, their lives are up for grabs. That is the point.

        • Denise Wilson

          When there are no longer any domestic animals and when trophy hunting is banned and wild places are set aside for wild animals they will not need to be owned Laurel. I think you need to read earlier posts in this discussion so that you are not repeating the same old stuff .

          • gypsyrose1

            And, I think you need to reread our posts about our opposition to the extinction of domestic animals because you don’t approve of it.
            Trophy hunting helps to pay for those wild places you want to save. It also helps to pay for protection from poachers.

          • Denise Wilson

            Trophy Hunting is very often poaching itself. Or do you mean canned hunting where animals are bred and drugged for rich Americans like Borsak to bravely shoot them. 2% of the thousands that they pay to this stay in south Africa.

          • laurelladesborough

            Denise, you are living in a fantasy world if you think that birds and animals will be living happily ever after in the wild. Here is why…the wild is disappearing rapidly. Indonesia, Borneo, Sumatra, Brazil, Amazon jungle, African forests, New Guinea, many islands, all being clear cut for Palm oil plantations, sugar can plantations, cleared for mineral resources, rivers polluted with toxic chemicals, even our oceans with “island” of plastic debris as large as the state of Texas causing marine animals and birds to die when they consume pieces of plastic. I dare you to google images of deforestation or bush meat and see what the realities are for many species of birds and animals around the world. Even tiny birds are caught and cooked in a stew or on a skewer. Entire sections of jungles which were rich with the sounds of wildlife are now silent. This will only increase as the animal rights radicals separate more people from the personal experience of orcas, elephants and birds. What man does not know, he does not care about. IMO that is the real agenda of the animal rights radicals…to eliminate all creatures from the earth.

      • okaminoyume

        Exactly. Exactly what laurelladesborough has said. She hit the nail on the head. I’d like to add something else to this.

        When animals are owned or kept in captivity, we make sure they have enough to eat. We make sure their environment is clean. They’re protected from the elements. When we breed them, we ensure the survival of their young. When they’re sick or injured, we’re able to seek medical treatment and care for them to ease their pain or cure their ailments. Meaning, a veterinarian. Plus, domesticated animals often have much longer lifespans than they would out in the wilds, where their lives would be far more brutal and short. And even when slaughtered for meat, we have the capacity to make sure that their deaths are as quick and painless as possible. When wolves hunt buffaloes, for example, they’ll start eating the animal while it’s still alive. Same with lions when they bring down prey. They’ll start feasting and tearing it apart when an unfortunate antelope or zebra is still struggling and kicking. I’m becoming increasingly convinced that you don’t understand how nature works, and that she is far from the warm and fuzzy image you have built up in your delusional brain.

        You have this romanticized, out of touch idea of animals being “wild and free, able to pursue their natural instincts.” Have you not seen a nature documentary? The wild is HARSH. It is not gentle, it is not kind, animals do not all peacefully frolic and sing cutesy forest songs. Even if all animal use was eradicated, then animals would still be at the mercy of all that the wild has to throw at them: predators, fights for territory, horrendous injuries incurred while hunting or while being hunted. Illnesses like rabies and distemper which they’ve had NO vaccination against, death by slow starvation because they’ve been unable to acquire food.

        So when one compares captivity to the magical wild that you animal rightists so love to idealize, then captivity doesn’t start to look so bad.

        • Denise Wilson

          If there are no domestic animals there would be none to own would there. And yes life is hard for wild animals. Are you advocating the capture of wild animals as well oxymoron?

          • gypsyrose1

            We don’t need to capture wild animals (except to rescue them from harm), because we have domesticated ones. You are intent on destroying thousands of years of domestication because you don’t believe in it. Well, the vast majority of people prefer to keep their animals. The fact that some animals are abused is not an excuse to exterminate all of them. Some children and spouses also get abused. What’s your cure for that? Go rescue the truly abused animals, and leave those that get proper care alone.
            The whole slavery comparison is utter nonsense. Animals may not choose their owners, but children don’t get to choose their parents, either. Life is like that.

          • Denise Wilson

            Human slaves do not get to choose their owners either. Yes unfortunately , you are probably right that “the vast majority of people prefer to keep their animals.” because they like to exploit or eat their bodies. But very soon People will move on both morally …as they did with human slavery.. and also realise that factory farming is destroying the panet that humans require for their own survival.
            By supporting the idea of domestic animal ownership and domination you are perpetuating a cultural attitude that exploitation is normal and OK and supporting also many industries that are responsible for literally Billions of animals being tortured and murdered.

          • Denise Wilson

            Yes the vast number of people do because the vast number of people are self centred and speciesist.

        • Denise Wilson

          So much for your debating skills oxymoron. So you are saying that because some animals have a hard life in the wild that justifies breeding defenseless domestic animals most of which are tortured throughout their short lives and then murdered for humans to eat their body parts.. or put to work or have unspeakable tests performed on them. All of which are unnecessary. 10 000 mammals alone EVERY SINGLE MINUTE in AMERICA ALONE.are murdered for food plus billions of chickens and trillions of fish annually. Thousands ..including dogs.. have unspeakable things done to them in laboratories. And you have the affronery to accuse those who fight for animals rights sick and twisted.

  • Time4Dogs

    Only the shrunken, Vitamin B12-deficient brain of a vegan could have so twisted the biological realities of life in such a sick manner. This is life, toots. Life involves a food chain. It involves man domesticating animals. It involves hunting, farming, fishing and all other normal, natural activities of life. Man is not alone here, other animals also hunt, eat, and choose others to establish meaningful relationships with, whether that be same species or other species as pets. It’s all part of the natural biological order. If you think it’s wrong, better notify Darwin that you have come up with an alternative to evolution.

    • Denise Wilson

      I think its you who should read the Orgin Of The Species, a little of human history and especially moral philosophy.

      • Time4Dogs

        Read it, babe. And moral philosophy has nothing to do with evolution.

        • Denise Wilson

          So Humans are still living like neanderthals ?

          • Time4Dogs

            You’re a troll and an idiot. Neanderthals went extinct. And how would you know anything about their “moral philosophy”, IF it had anything to do with evolution….which it doesn’t. Just STFU, every time you open your mouth you display greater ignorance.

  • TLL

    There really are no words to adequately describe how loathesome I find this essay. I haven’t noticed much in the way of positive commentary at all. I can’t help but wonder if this whole thing isn’t some stupid fake composition just to get people fired up. Seriously. What a huge stinking pile of crap.

    • Denise Wilson

      Perhaps go back to your Bingo game or your beer and dont worry about anything of serious consequence.

      • okaminoyume

        Perhaps you should take your own advice there, lady. You sound like someone that forgot to take their B12 supplement.

  • gypsyrose1

    Denise Wilson is obviously a hard core animal rights activist who thinks we should put an end to domestic animals because in her world view, everything interaction humans have with them is immoral. It must be nice to live in a world in which one is certain they have superior logic and morality. She doesn’t consider the immorality of destroying mutually beneficial human/animal relationships. She also doesn’t accept natural order. She thinks humans are somehow separate from other life forms on the planet.

    • Denise Wilson

      it is you who think humans are so superior they have a right to use other species as slaves.

      • gypsyrose1

        As long as you persist in assigning new definitions to words, there is no common language to discuss anything. You are part of a tiny number of humans with a radical idea that you are trying to impose on everyone else. It won’t happen when the sleeping masses learn what you are trying to do.

        • Denise Wilson

          Read my report from PETA below. . and which definitions are your referring to?
          If you look at a modern book on evolutionary biology instead of the non peer – reviewed blogs in Wikipedia you will see that cats are also a subspecies.

          • gypsyrose1

            PETA is a group that likes to kill defenseless animals rather than find homes for them. Nothing they say is worth listening to.
            In case you weren’t paying attention, you have redefined slavery, abuse, rape, etc. in your attempt to equate non-human animals to humans.

          • Denise Wilson

            I think you need to use your dictionary.

          • gypsyrose1

            I think you should stop applying human terminology to animals, and learn the difference between use and abuse.

          • Denise Wilson

            Do you believe animals are commodities? No different to cabbages or cement blocks?

            Do you believe that black slaves were believed to be commodities?.

          • gypsyrose1

            Only you are calling animals a commodity. I believe animals are animals. I can own a commodity and I can own an animal. I can’t own a human. Three different categories.

          • Denise Wilson

            I know the meaning gypsy. and I think its immoral to use animals for either reason!

          • Denise Wilson

            Which of these terms are not applicable to all sentient beings Gypsy…. Pain? Suffering? fear? Loneliness? Hunger ? Love of offspring and herd siblings? Language? abillity to communicate? Literacy? Abstract reasoniing? Belief in god? Musical notation?

          • gypsyrose1

            Pain, suffering and hunger have physical manifestations. An animal alone may be distressed if it was previously not alone, but some animals prefer solitude. Maternal instinct is strong, but that isn’t necessarily love. Herd siblings or grown “babies” are not treated differently than other members of a group. I’ve seen my mare chase away one of her grown foals. Animals can communicate basic needs. Literacy, religion, abstract reasoning, and music ?? You’ve got to be kidding.
            All of this proves nothing. Sentience is not sapience.

          • gypsyrose1

            http://www.wnd. com/2015/11/peta-sued-for-kidnapping-dog-off-porch-killing-it/
            PETA volunteers stole a pet dog from its owner’s porch and killed it. The only thing unusual is that this time they were caught in the act.

        • Denise Wilson

          Not trying to impose trying to expose and explain and discuss. And yes “the sleeping massses” is righton the nail. But 10 percent are already enlightened through the work of groups like PETA and the writer of this article. a

    • Denise Wilson

      You have completely reversed everything i have said here. i have articulated a number of times that we indeed have a moral committment to care for our pets . I and the writer of the original post here are saying we should no longer bring more domesticated animals into the world going forward into the future. If you think that the millions of domesticated animals tortured, neglected and euthanased by humans justifies a relatively few conscientious and caring humans owning some of them for their own personal pleasure than you are either unable to use your brain, have absolutely no sense of morality or are unconcionably selfish.Further , i have worked with animals most of my life, i have studied evolutionary biology at university and i have had the joy of ” owniing’ many horses, goats and have always “owned” a dog. However being an open minded person and believing that we should all be striving for a kinder more moral world I have only five or six years gained the insight to changed my view about Human dominance over other species. If you seriously think that human relationships with domestic animals is mutually beneficial again you are grossly deluded. Humans are the only ones except for the lucky few who gain from it. do you seriously believe that domesticated animals enjoy being dehorned, branded, castrated, teeth and beaks clipped off ..all without pain killers… yes ..and raped ..the barbaric forced impregnation of cows usuallyinvoles restraining the cow in a device actually called a Rape Rack by the industry.Do you really believe that female dogs enjoy spending their llives locked up giving birth to litter after litter after litter and never see the light of day dying prematurely due to their bodies simply braking down from physical exhaustion. Please do not repeatedly accuse me of something i have not said or believe. This is the last time I will try to explain my position. You can keep calling me ignorant or extreme. It is not easy taking a stance that many do not understand or even willing to consider. It is not easy becoming vegan after 65 years of habitual meat eating. You continual derision of me as a person rather than actually addressing the argument bears out the absence of any willingness on your part to consider the actual issue. I hope you understand that 10 percent of the population already are vegetarians or vegans. Thos statistics are the result of a Morgan Gallop Poll and not something that PETA plucked out of the air.

      • gypsyrose1

        We completely understand what you are saying. We are saying that we disagree with you, and are sick of a bunch of radicals with deep pockets (due to misleading advertising), trying to destroy the human/animal relationship that dates back to the dawn of man. Most activists won’t tell people that their goal is to change their diet and get rid of their pets, also.
        You’ve enjoyed animal ownership before you “saw the light”, and now you want to take that joy away from responsible people, because of the actions of a few.

        • Denise Wilson

          We did lots of thngs a long time ago that we know is wrong now.
          I still have my 15 year old Jack Russell. He is the love of my life.
          Actions of a few???? Here are more dogs being bred wmost of which ( about 80 percent) will end up on the streets or in a shelter. Wouldnt it have been better if they had not been born? there is no cruelty in that.

          • gypsyrose1

            Where do you get your statistics from? PETA?

        • Denise Wilson

          What dont you understand bout my claim that I dont want to kill peoples pets?

          What dont you understand about the concept of not breeding animals for pets. ?… Would you you plant carrot seeds when you know they will all be eaten by snails or chucked over the fence by the kid next door?

          If I am FORCING you to change against your will why do you persist in reading my posts?

          • gypsyrose1

            I never said you want to kill the current pet population, but you willingly admit you want them to become extinct so that people who lose a pet and future generations will never have the joy of owning an animal.
            Stop spending all your time looking for abuse and maybe you’ll see how many people love and care for animals.

  • Denise Wilson

    Dog rescue in China.

  • Denise Wilson

    Why dog breeding should stop.

    • Flashdog

      (Struggling to control laughter) No, Denise, I don’t know 67,000 people who need dogs. However, I know dozens of people (including myself) who understand how much harm radical spay surgery does to a dog. All of those people (including myself) own unspayed (that means healthy and happy) female dogs who are somehow failing to produce those 2 litters of 6 to 10 puppies per year. That would be because we simply keep our female dogs away from male dogs when they are in season. (That would be for about 3 weeks every six months.) Incidentally, a fact that dog hating animal rightsers like yourself keep carefully shoved into the background is that in Europe most people regard spay surgery as exactly what it is — an unnecessary, harmful practice that makes a dog susceptible to a LIST of medical problems and shortens her life by years. In Europe, dogs are generally never spayed and they do not have an “over population” problem. Actually, there is no over population problem in this country, either. The 67,000 imaginary dogs in this silly meme never exist or end up in shelters, let alone have 80% of their numbers euthanized.

      • Denise Wilson

        I hate the idea of spaying also. I admire you in that you contribute to the overpopulation of dogs with dilligent caring management. But i dispute your claim that there is not an overpopulation of dogs in Europe..or anywhere else. Read about the terrible neglect of dogs in Serbia for example and in Asia. Thousands of stray, abused and rejected dogs need to be euthanased annually in the US. But this is a subsidiary issue of the conversation about the moral rights of ownimg another being for our own pleasure, entertainment or profit. Do you have statistics to dispute the figures presented by PETA or do you simply reject it to defend a baseless viewpoint.

      • Denise Wilson

        Incidentally , My Jack Russell and I see, know and socialise with many kelpies and their owners on our regular morning beachwalks. I make a wild guess that these kelpies enjoy racing each other in the shallows and chasing the seagulls as much as herding. Kelpies are very popular pets in Australia.

        • gypsyrose1

          So, why deny them the joy of herding? Just because it benefits someone?

      • Denise Wilson

        And by the way. i urge you to share your telepathic knowledge of kelpie thinking to academic animal behavioursts. they have been researching this subject for decades.

  • Denise Wilson

    Stray dogs in Asia rounded up for the dog meat market. they are usually torched alive believing torture makes them tastier.

  • Denise Wilson

    August 2016. From PETA.” Have you noticed that more and more people you know have stopped eating meat?”

    The official results are in: during the past four years, there has been a boom in the number of people going vegetarian in Australia.

    In a poll released this week by Roy Morgan Research, it was revealed that between 2012 and 2016, the number of Australian adults who are eating all or almost all vegetarian rose from 1.7 million people (9.7 per cent of the population) to almost 2.1 million (11.2 per cent).

    Where Are All the Vegetarians?

    It might come as a surprise to many that Tasmania leads the nation with the highest proportion of residents who embrace meat-free eating, at 12.7 per cent.

    New South Wales has experienced the biggest jump since 2012 – with a whopping 30 per cent increase in vegetarian eating!

  • Denise Wilson

    Ghandi. Is he an extremist “batshit” also ?

  • Denise Wilson

    This a pet owned by a human.

  • Denise Wilson

    Puppy breeding.

  • Denise Wilson

    Life out at the farm!

  • Denise Wilson

    Animals are not ours.
    I suspect some here would be amongst the crowd.And haven’t moved on since.

  • Denise Wilson

    Time to move on. time to embrace vegan values. 10 percent of the population already does so.

  • Denise Wilson

    The wise and famous Jane Goodall.

  • Denise Wilson

    No difference between them.

  • Denise Wilson

    But Greyhound owners say they love their dogs and that the dogs ( the ones fast enough to avoid being euthanased) love racing. Even though their are horrific injuries from racing. Even though live rabbits and possums are used to train them. Oh but they are happy to contribute to human entertainment as well.

  • Denise Wilson

    This horrific torture is to “bring the horses head in” so that he wins prizes for his owner ( who loves him of course).

  • Denise Wilson

    If there is anyone here who is open minded and has interest in morality you might like to read the next two articles listed below this thread on the ecorazzi site. Otherwise I guess you will spend the rest of your self absorbed life with your head in the sand. Enjoy the view.

    • andrey biryukov

      It is what it is. Living self-absorbed lives is what we do best. Our morality and ethical worldviews are predicated on our emotional responses and attachments. It is easy to expand one’s moral universe when we are attuned to pain and suffering of others. In absence of that empathetic connection there is little to compel us to forgo our interests no matter how trivial they may look to the others. Rational argument is an inadequate tool to use against entrenched dispositions and beliefs. Love is blind. We are all “crippled” here, some of us are just more than the others.

      • Denise Wilson

        Andrey. I like and understand your comment. Particularly your final sentence. However do you not think that a civilised and moral society must agree on and exercise rules for the common good… To do so we must think rationally and empathetically. We have decided on certain speed limits on our cities’ roads. I agree to abide by them for the common good even if i am late for work. I may not wish to have my precious child vaccinated but for the common good i will do so. I am a widow and a pet dog is a great comfort to me. But for the common good of millions of other dogs I would refrain from supporting a cruel industry by not aquiring another.. unless from a shelter. A civilised and moral society is not possible if some members of it are excused from antisocial behaviour on the grounds of certain beliefs or “blind love”.

        • andrey biryukov

          Forgive me but I somewhat cynical regarding our ability to stop our brutal lording over the natural world. Unless our numbers significantly drop and we curtail our consumption habits, industrial-size conflicts of competing wants and needs would never abate, with outcomes neatly following the distribution of power. In spite of all our dreams and aspirations, the only ethics we have used with any consistency has been “might has right”.

          “Might” can dispense mercy and benevolence, as well as violence and abuse, all flowing freely from the strength and volatility of emotional states and dispositions, likes and dislikes. As one or another emotional sentiment collectively reaches some critical level, it may get codified into societal moral propositions and rules. All along the way, “rational” arguments are invoked to buttress underlying emotional causes and to “objectively” justify held positions and views.

          We may be “obliged to confront and question our entrenched beliefs in order to move forward morally as a society”, but our ability to do so is predicated on who, and how amenable, we are to the outside influences and changes.

          Of course, there is a “rational” argument can be made, e.g, that reaching for a “peaceable kingdom” and striving to develop and nourish more inclusive ethical relationships with nonhuman world could lead to more fulfilling and enjoyable lives. That not framing our worldviews in adversarial and resource management terms could be more enlightening and beneficial. But for that argument to fall on receptive ears, emotional attitudes of the listeners must be attended to, needs and wants understood, fears alleviated. And then, interests could be aligned.

          Forgoing using animals or “owning” a pet may be obvious ethical choices for some, but could be dramatic tsunami-size changes for others. Some just have that much higher barriers to jump. Douse the fire of fear, feed the flames of love. Oh boy. Am I onto something, or what?

          • gypsyrose1

            Why don’t you start with ISIS.

          • andrey biryukov

            If you refer to my mentioning reducing our population numbers, please don’t mistake my desire to see us cooling down our procreational zeal for the top-down population policing or a call for mass culling. I might have preferred to live in the less populated world, but I don’t find coercion either terribly productive or ethically appealing. Good luck with ISIS.

  • Denise Wilson

    Gypsy Rose.mAnimal welfare laws allow this.

  • The cats we adopted are not ‘pets’ and are not here for fun. They needed a home and we enjoy giving them that home. I don’t use the word ‘pets’. I don’t believe anyone should ‘own pets’, but I do believe we should all, if we want to, adopt family members who are not human.x

  • Denise Wilson

    I have made many replies during this discussion.Although I concede that my arguments could have been better explained perhaps by some of my colleagues I am saddened that others on this thread have failed to read with genuine attention and an open mind both Benjamin MacEllen”s initial article and my replies. This fact is made obvious by the repeated misunderstanding of the major argument being put… that only the cessation of the genetic engineering and breeding of other species for the pleasure profit and food for an exploding human population will the unspeakable cruelty to domestic animals cease. Replies have largely been empirical at best and narcissistic and aggressive at worst. For the record of this website and for the enlightenment of those on the thread, here is a list of just some of the the abuse sprinkled amongst the sarcastic and poisonous if less flamboyant abuse i have received from but one of the contributors:
    Brainwashed unhinged psycho, go suck on a free range egg, obnoxious and self righteous, unhinged twit, terrible, pompous, obnoxious (2), unequivocally insane, delusional, certifiable, crazy, You’re a cunt, YOU ARE A MASSIVE CUNT (writer’s capitals) ,spiteful hypocrite, typical idiot animal activist, go fuck yourself, crazier than a shithouse rat,rude, aggressive and more. All this from one person but more also from others.

  • gypsyrose1

    Denise, I could respond to all your comments (many of which now seem to be deleted), but this is a waste of my time. You own a dog, yet you feel superior to other humans who own dogs that weren’t abused before they got them. You think someone who uses animals for fighting each other is the same as someone who uses a therapy animal. You apply language to describe human conditions to animals, as if the animal would have the same comprehension of it as a human.
    We understand you don’t want to kill animals already alive, but you want to prevent any more from being born. That’s where we disagree and it isn’t because we are arrogant, aggressive or narcissistic. It’s because we love animals and they enrich our lives, and in turn we can give them a good life. Some animals do suffer abuse, but some humans are also abused. Humans aren’t perfect, but that’s a reality we all have to deal with. Animals in nature also suffer from accidents, disaster, starvation, disease, etc. Shall we also prevent them from being born so they don’t have to suffer?
    I’m done with you. Go preach your compassion of extinction somewhere else

  • laurelladesborough

    I find it quite interesting that one person who had a lot of comments in support of this article has had all her comments deleted. I imagine she did it herself for her own comments, and I have to wonder why. Denise Wilson was her name.

  • Ariana Kylie

    This is the stupidest article ever! Good luck with that! FYI other countries will still breed, so this Utopia AR world will never be a reality. Shut down breeding in America, people will buy dogs from third world countries.

    This is also unrealistic. How are you going to make everyone become vegan, and not own pets!? Idiot we have civil rights, and the right to pursue happiness. If that is a pet you are infringing on my rights, and my pursuit of happiness. Most people are not psychotic weirdos that bully their beliefs on others. AR topia is a no go.

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