The Madison County Journal
July 21, 1999
Pet dumping: who's
Well, once again a "dog's life" in Madison County has
lived up to its name and reputation. A "dog's life"
in our county can become a very dangerous and violent existence.
Two weeks ago, pet ownership took on new meaning in our fair
county. On Thursday, July 2, a chow-dog mother and her four puppies
were dumped near my home. Nothing new to us long-time residents,
you say? Well, this was new.
Responsible pet owners recognize pet dumping as one of the lowest
forms of human behavior. Over the years, in the remote area where
I live, my few neighbors and I have become the adoptive families
to scores of innocent dumpees left at our doorsteps.
But, last week's pet-dump was different. It was violent. It displayed
a new kind of cruelty to animals that we've never witnessed.
I was horrified when my neighbor informed me that he had discovered
the mother and her pups, and that it had been necessary for him
to cut the mother dog from a tree to which she was tied, her
pups nursing at her side.
Five dogs left without any food or water.
Some person or persons, (a term used loosely here, as I don't
believe a person is capable of such abominable behavior) had
not only abandoned the dogs, but by leaving the mother tied to
a tree, had planned for all five dogs to die a slow, agonizing
death of thirst and starvation.
This was premeditated. This had been planned. This was a crime
of violence against those dogs. This was something horribly new.
O.K. Right about now I can hear the sighs of all those pet owners
out there thinking "Oh no, another one of those animal activists
who thinks that pets are people too!" Not so! I'm beginning
to think pets are much better than people! After all, in the
face of death, that mother dog had not a scintilla of thought
to abandon her babies. She would have stayed tied to that tree,
nursing those babies to her dying breath.
Those five dogs displayed much more courage and a much higher
sense of morality than the diabolical moron who perpetrated their
After five days of desperately trying to find homes for the canine
family, my only recourse was to deliver the mother and two of
her pups to the Northeast Georgia Animal Shelter. The remaining
two puppies have become, not surprisingly, too fearful of humans
for handling. They remain in their original dumping place, hoping
for their family's return. I continue to feed and water them,
wondering if I will be able to earn their trust.
As all responsible pet owners in Madison County are aware, pet
dumping has become a huge problem. To address the low-lifes that
practice pet dumping would be a waste of time.
Pleading with them to stop abandoning their pets, offering them
free spaying and neutering falls on deaf ears. Let's face it,
anyone who considers dumping their pet as a solution is beyond
These irresponsible toadies don't have the capacity to understand
the joy and unconditional love our pets bestow upon us. In appreciation
for a simple, warm, dry place to sleep, a good meal and, from
time to time, a trip to the vet, our pets display much more kindness
to us than we show to them, or to one another.
Responsible pet owners understand the ever-increasing need to
sterilize our pets. We want to prevent the cruelty and abuse
suffered by the millions of unwanted animals abandoned each year
and put to death in animal shelters all across the country.
These innocent creatures have not been asked to come into a world
where, from day one, they are hit, kicked, yelled at, starved
and abused by the only creature on the planet that is supposed
to know better. The long-term effects of abuse are devastating
and well documented. Yet, there will always be those whose behavior
is lower than any animal.
"Madison County needs an animal shelter," seems to
be the answer to our pet dumping problem. An animal shelter simply
provides the community with a pet detention center, where after
a few days, if not adopted, the animals are put to death by lethal
injection. This doesn't offer an acceptable solution for those
caring souls who find themselves delivering abandoned animals
to what is, more than likely, their untimely deaths.
No, Madison County needs something more than an animal shelter.
We desperately need more responsible pet owners. And that goes
for all of us. If you have a friend whose pet is not breeding
stock, ask them why they refuse to have their pet spayed or neutered.
If you find an abandoned animal or animals, call your neighbors
and the sheriff to see if you can track down the dumper. Now,
this might sound like some radical stuff, but we need to get
serious about a seriously growing problem.
And ask yourself, when you envision someone dumping their pet
by the side of the road, who's the animal?