Letters to the Editor

Animals: Pets are a lifetime responsibility

Having a pet is a lifelong commitment, and that is something one should think about before taking on such a responsibility.

I have three dogs and two cats (all of my animals are strays in one form or another) and the animal population at my house was just what we could handle. However, this all changed on April 12 when my boys discovered that a cat was under our house. The cat was coaxed out and fed, and after looking at her we realized that she was pregnant. We took her to the veterinarian the following day and found that she was going to have five kittens. That following morning in our laundry room she had her five kittens.

Once the kittens were born, I turned to a non-profit agency for advice on care. I received the much-needed information and I am so grateful that there are private citizens out there who take the time to rescue and nurture these poor forgotten friends. We have several private agencies throughout Whatcom, Island, San Juan, Snohomish and Skagit County who have dedicated their lives and their own paychecks helping pets and picking up the pieces of irresponsible pet owners. The Humane Societies in these counties also do a wonderful job, but they are running on a very limited amount of money.

What am I getting at? Well for one thing it is time that people who decide to take on the responsibility to have an animal act responsible. If one makes the choice to have an animal or pet of any kind they should realize that it is a life long commitment. Bob Barker has been spreading the word for 50 of his 70-year life to have your dog or cat spayed or neutered and it is time we pay attention.

It is easy to assist in stopping domestic animal over population, get your pet spayed or neutered and be a responsible pet owner; do not get a rabbit for your child on Easter if your not going to care for it, or a puppy just because it is cute, only to later dump it off somewhere (like my backyard) because it is pregnant.

If cost is a problem, there are plenty of places that will perform this service at a lesser cost or get an animal that is already spayed or neutered. But remember, animal ownership it is a life long commitment; animals are not something to be thrown out with yesterdays trash or to drop off somewhere because of inconvenience. Animals depend on us humans. So be humane, and help start slowing down our already over populated domestic animal kingdom by taking care of the animal you may already have.

And to all the responsible pet owners out there, thank you.

Catherine Wheeler


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