Friday, August 03, 2007

Pets

I've been left to mind a dog for a few days. How this happened is quite beyond me but I hope to get an explanation. What I also would like to know are the following things about domestic animals (and, incidentally, people who can stand them):

Why do they chew up everything on your veranda?
Why would anyone want to have a creature that chews up everything on a veranda?
Why would a creature try very hard to bite you when, out of the sheer goodness of your heart and at considerable inconvenience, you untie them to take them for a walk?
Why, when you take them for a walk, do they entangle themselves around poles and snarl when you try to free them?
Why doesn't this drive pet owners totally nuts? Or are they already nuts, as I suspect?
Why do they (the dogs, not the owners, I hope) then shit on your neighbour's lawn?
How unconscionable is it for pet owners to let their animals shit on your own lawn?
Why is it that it's never people like me, but dog and cat lovers who are the ones to end up in court for keeping 87 festering, starving animals in degraded conditions?
Why do dog owners, when their pet has nearly ripped your flesh off, always say "He's really very friendly"?
Why is it acceptable for people to host an organism that puts mud all over their visitors' trousers?
Why are domestic animal non-owners held in the contempt that should be reserved for those who allow their pets to ravage others?
Why are some people not terrified of dogs? Are these people who have not yet been savaged?
Are there any dogs and cats who get very sick from allergies to humans?
What can explain the human attraction to a beast that is smelly and disagreeable at both ends and allergenic in the middle?
Why do some people prefer vicious, non-indigenous animals to gentle, endangered native wildlife, such as the koalas, skinks and parrots that their animals relentlessly attack and decimate?

I don't get it. Never have, and doubt I ever will.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK, I've been a dog lover since I was a very small child, and have trained dogs for about 35 years. My 2 (well trained and very healthy) dogs provide me with love, companionship, comfort, protection, and 'grounding' without which I would probably end up on heavy medication. My 10yr old dog is my best friend - he is the one who truly gives me unconditional love. If I am sad, he comes and presses his head into me in a 'hug'. His positive attitude helps pick me up when I'm down. I am sure he would protect me with his life, as many dogs do.

I get very angry at people who are not responsible dog owners, because it makes things very difficult for those of us who are.

So... altho I suspect that rather than actually wanting answers to these questions, you're just remonstrating to vent your frustration, I've got a few answers for you just in case:

Q1: Why do they chew up everything on your veranda?
A: Generally because they are teething and/or bored.

Q2: Why would anyone want to have a creature that chews up everything on a veranda?
A: Because, like children who destroy things when they are toddlers, they grow out of it.
SOLUTION: Keep him/her out of reach of valued possessions, and provide things that they can chew on and play with.


Q3: Why would a creature try very hard to bite you...
A: There is only one answer to this: because s/he feels threatened by you. This may be because it can pick up that you feel threatened by it, or it may feel nervous of strangers in general, especially if the owners aren't around.
SOLUTION: First calm youself if you are feeling nervous, try to evoke feeling of compassion and love to conquer any fear you may have. Moving slowly, talking quietly & gently without looking it directly in the eye, crouch down to the same level as the animal, give it a titbit of something tasty, tell it that it's a good girl/boy, then try handling it. If you can have another titbit handy, dogs respond well to bribery...

Q4: Why, when you take them for a walk, do they entangle themselves around poles and snarl when you try to free them?
A: As the supposedly more intelligent, and generally stronger of the 2 creatures, the human leading the dog needs to be aware of where the dog is in relation to oncoming poles etc. Again, any snarling is a sign that it feels threatened by you, and may need a more gentle approach.

Q5: Why doesn't this drive pet owners totally nuts? Or are they already nuts, as I suspect?
A: As my dogs are trained to "heel", I can walk them both with the 2 leads in one hand without a problem, unless another (unleashed) dog approaches them, in which case they get a bit territorial. And yes, I'm a bit nutty but not in a bad way. The stupidity of humans drives me nuts a lot more than animals.

Q6: Why do they... then shit on your neighbour's lawn?
A: Partly to establish their presence around the periphery of their territory, like humans putting up fences around their property. Also, animals generally prefer to shit away from their own 'nest', so that's where they do it if they have a choice.
SOLUTION: Keep the dog off the neighbour's lawn, or put a fence around your own if that is the problem. I believe you can buy sprays & things that deter animals... maybe there's even herbal stuff you can use... otherwise, appreciate the free fertilizer?

Q7: How unconscionable is it for pet owners to let their animals shit on your own lawn?
A: Not at all - most dog owners are used to cleaning up dogshit from their own yards.

Q8: Why is it that it's never people like me, but dog and cat lovers who are the ones to end up in court for keeping 87 festering, starving animals in degraded conditions?
A: Because people like you don't generally have even one pet let alone 87?

Q9: Why do dog owners, when their pet has nearly ripped your flesh off, always say "He's really very friendly"?
A: Probably because the dog doesn't usually have a problem with people, but for some reason it doesn't trust you - quite possibly because it can sense your fear or aversion to it.

Q10: Why is it acceptable for people to host an organism that puts mud all over their visitors' trousers?
A: Yeh I can't understand why people have kids either (shrug).
Again, it's a matter of training.

Q11: Why are domestic animal non-owners held in the contempt that should be reserved for those who allow their pets to ravage others?
A: I didn't realise they were... I do have an aversion to species-ists, but I wouldn't call it contempt, just sadness. I do however hold in contempt those who don't take responsibility for their pets' impact on others & the environment.

Q12: Why are some people not terrified of dogs? Are these people who have not yet been savaged?
A: No, not necessarily. I have a friend who was savaged in the face when he was a child (he still has scars) - he loves dogs, and my dogs really like him. Most animals are capable of aggression, and if you are afraid of it, it is more likely to attack - it knows damn well that a frightened animal is dangerous. I learned that one handling snakes, as well as the lesson that love can overcome fear.

Q13: Are there any dogs and cats who get very sick from allergies to humans?
A: Yes, they often suffer from conditions such as neglect and abuse. But as far as skin allergies go, being fed crap by humans is a major cause of that.

Q14: What can explain the human attraction to a beast that is smelly and disagreeable at both ends and allergenic in the middle?
A: Dunno - best ask the wives of the blokes down the pub! Humans are beasts as well, and not all that far removed from the rest of the animal kingdom.

Q14: Why do some people prefer vicious, non-indigenous animals to gentle, endangered native wildlife, such as the koalas, skinks and parrots that their animals relentlessly attack and decimate?

Hehehe... you've never picked up a frightened injured native animal/bird/reptile? I have a fondness for dingos, snakes, spiders, eagles, quolls etc. Wolf or deer? I go the wolf. We are all different, and have affinities with different animals. The Wedge-Tailed Eagle kills native animals, reptiles and birds as well as my chooks. If we were allowed to keep native animals that provided the same level of companionship, comfort, love and loyalty as my dogs do, I'd be all for it. But even pure dingos are difficult to keep as pets in western society, as their needs don't fit in with our lifestyles. Dogs have been our companions and protectors for a long, long time, as cats have protected us from rodent-carrying diseases and damage. In my opinion, the real ferals in this country are the non-indigenous humans. The introduction of feral animals, insects, diseases & weeds; the destruction of our forests, the poisoning and degradation of our water courses, the polluting of our atmosphere, the reduction of wetlands and wild lands - the common denominator is "civilisation", where humankind sets itself apart from and 'above' the natural world.
SOLUTION: I think Mother Nature will sort that one out in the long run.

Sorry, I'm ranting now - told you I was a nutter! LOL

1:29 AM  
Blogger Pip said...

Great reply, thanks. Yes, I was venting, with some cause, and I like to stir people up, particularly as cat and dog owners cause the rest of such a hard time yet look on us with disdain as though we were the ones doing the wrong thing, and not them and their horrible critters.

Seems you still put the onus on the rest of us not to be bitten by the bloody things, or have them jump up on us with their scratchy, muddy feet while their owners look on with beatific smiles. They rarely if ever call their demons off you. I've even had guests walk into my home with their mutts running in ahead of them. And if you go to a house with a cat and the thing jumps on you with its scratchy feet and sickening fur, you get that beatific smile of ownership again.

I do hope for the day when in Australia, people get rid of dogs and cats and if they must have pets, have native ones. It seems to me that plenty of animals are nowehere near as horrible as as these imported ones. I'm not anti-pet -- I had some Gouldian finches flying free in my house ... but it seems seems most Australians would see things like that as cat food. I live in a town where if you drive around on any night you can see cats roaming the streets, no doubt killing wildlife if they can find any not already exterminated by cats and dogs. I don't swerve at them, but I sure wouldn't brake for them.

You make some reasoned points, but I think I do as well -- and I think that my mob are the ones who have been too cowed by the majority petocracy for us to speak up.

8:56 AM  

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