How long will it take for everybody to realize that releasing domesticated animals into the wild is cruel? These creatures have lost the edge that being born in the wild would have given them. Consequently, many once-loved pets end up as coyote food or die gruesome deaths. The few who do survive breed rapidly and become agricultural or civic nuisances.
A variety of animal welfare agencies have striven to educate the public regarding the dumping of animals. Though progress has been made, many thoughtless individuals continue to discard pets like beer cans. They have no interest or inclination to honour their commitment to their animal companions. Worse yet, this attitude is often passed down to the children.
I was fortunate that Mom taught us to care about animals. We frequently had stray cats visit our home. She wasn’t a perfect example , letting one of her own cats become pregnant and giving away the kittens, but she did inculcate the basic concept in our heads.
Though I had to give my cat away because I couldn’t afford to feed her, I’ve been responsible for caring for quite a few rabbits. Many of them were cast-offs from homes where they weren’t wanted. I adopted bunnies, such as Gideon, from the animal shelter as well. Gideon was a stray that somebody found. We had seven and a half years of good times together. Had Gideon not been rescued, he might have been killed.
As with litterers, pet dumpers don’t care about the inconvenience they cause others. In the past decade, news stories have repeatedly told about the damage feral dogs, cats, and rabbits have done to parks and neighbourhoods. Such people figure it’s somebody else’s problem. Because of this, many beautiful animals have been euthanized or destroyed by other means.
In my Debut book, When a Man Loves a Rabbit: Learning and Living With Bunnies, I wrote about the surprising things I learned about house rabbits. For example, they can be litter trained. Bunnies are social creatures who enjoy petting. They love to shred newspapers inside cardboard box houses and they even toss plastic rings. Gideon loved to dig rolled-up socks from behind a bookcase and hurl them between his legs. I also saw bunny after bunny change from a frightened fur ball to a confident companion because I related to them on their terms.
For more information on my first two paperbacks, visit the Bruce Atchison’s books page. My newly published memoir, How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity, is available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Virtual Bookworm Publishers.