I am the FiendMaster. I write stories about mentally deranged killers, psychotic but sympathetic people, dark gods, and doomed people. But these are fiction. And while this little essay might damage my rep, as it were, I need to rant.
Because my wife made the mistake of seeing the picture of a doomed dog, we visited the Montgomery County Animal Shelter back in May. This is a KILL shelter. It's a place where pets either get adopted, or are ultimately put to death. I really can't put it more plainly than that.
The people there work hard to find adoptive parents, foster parents, and other places to send cats and dogs. However, with the economic downturn and people generally being irresponsible, the animal shelter is overcrowded. Dangerously so.
Most of the dogs are two to a pen. Sometimes three. This isn't intentional. This is less than optimal. And the people who work at the shelter are miserable about the choices they have to make.
While we were waiting to see Luna (a moon-colored pit bull mix), ten puppies (yes TEN!) were brought in. All from the same litter. All very cute, quiet, and desperate for attention.
I watched the following occur. The shelter director picked up each puppy and examined it. "No," she said and put it aside. Next. "Yes," she said with a glimmer of a smile. Then the word "no" was rapidly repeated.
The volunteers have to look at each animal, and based on its coloring, face, and breed, decide whether or not it even has a chance of being adopted. Yes, that's right. Nothing about their temperament. Nothing about whether or not they'll be a great companion for someone. It's all about looks. Cute dogs get adopted. Ugly dogs or those with any kind of deformity are doomed. Their corpses will end up in a crematorium and turned to smoke and ash.
The dog we ended up adopting is sweet, beautiful, and desperate to please us. No one would adopt her because she's a pit-bull mix. No one wanted to take the chance on her. It's only due to the fact that I'm a pushover and my wife is too that we ended up taking this dog into our home.
We don't know who the fuck abused her or ended up bringing her to the shelter or why. We only know this dog was slated for the kill floor. And all because some dipshit motherfucking worthless piece of so-called human garbage didn't spay/neuter her parents.
That's right. I'm not blaming the shelter. I'm not blaming the fine volunteers there who PLEAD for people to take these wonderful animals. They care. They care more than you can imagine and I know every one of them must cry in their dreams for the things they have to do. Imagine being in that position, knowing that every animal you feed and give love to could be slated for death the next day. I can't really imagine a more thankless and terrible vocation.
The shelter used to pass off animals they could save to the SPCA non-kill shelter. But guess what? Because of dip-shit worthless pieces of human garbage that won't be responsible with their pets, those shelters are full. Period.
If an animal doesn't get fostered, or adopted, it will be destroyed. Montgomery County is so full that the shelters won't even TALK to vets about animals that get dropped off at their offices. There is simply no fucking room. Anywhere.
So what's my point? You. You! My Fiendlings, be responsible. Get your goddamned cat or dog neutered/spayed. Don't breed 'em. Don't sell puppies/kitties by the side of the road. When you don't sell 'em, where do they end up? As strays destined to either be roadkill or end up in a kill-shelter. Do they deserve it? What if your parents put you up for adoption and after a short period of time, you were to be killed through no fault of your own because no one wanted you?
It's absolutely inhuman. There are so many worthy pets out there waiting for you. Don't buy 'em. Don't seek out puppy mills or those assholes at the pet stores. Go to a shelter. Choose a friend. (S)he might be older than a puppy. (S)he might not be as cute as that pure-bred you saw the other day. But you know what? I bet (S)he'll be a better dog.
We have rescued two cats and two dogs now. It's too early for me to tell you what Luna will be like in the long-run, but thus far, she is my friend. She is my new baby. And no one is taking her back to a shelter. No one is going to hurt her. We'll save her, reclaim her, and give her the future and love she deserved.
Do the same for your pets. Be responsible or don't get a pet at all because you obviously don't want one. If you're not willing to put in the time, find a home for them, not the shelter. I understand people get pets, develop allergies, have to move, etc. But do your absolute best to ensure they don't end up in the doggie/kittie concentration camp. Otherwise, a fiend may come knocking on your door.