Friday, July 04, 2008

The inhumanity of humanity

Man, I'm pissed off at my species right about now.
We just got a call here in the A-Channel Ottawa newsroom from the Ottawa Humane Society, hoping we can do a story this weekend about its shelter being overcrowded with dogs and cats, so that adoptive families will come forward.
It's not unusual for a lot of cats to be in the shelter this time of year. What makes it different this year is the number of dogs. Apparently, there have been a few cases of people dropping off their pets and giving them up for adoption or euthanasia, simply because they're going on vacation and don't want to be bothered with the animal anymore. CAN YOU FREAKIN' IMAGINE?
I'm having an obsessive near-breakdown, because on Tuesday, I'm leaving Coffee The Prettiest Cat Ever for two weeks -- the longest I've ever left her. And I know that my young neighbour, Philippe, takes great care of her. He feeds her twice a day, and spends up to an hour just playing with her, so that she's not alone 24/7.
By the way, as soon as we have a camera operator available, we're headed over to the Humane Society to do a story for our 11pm news tonight, and 6pm tomorrow. Anything I can do to help, short of tracking down the former owners and swatting them upside the head with a bat.


JB said...

Don't suffer angst over Coffee. You know cats. Coffee will be fine. Left alone for two weeks, she'll probably have started her own consulting business by the time you get home.
However, for the deadbeat former pet owners? - and I say 'owners', because these people obviously aren't 'caregivers', 'animal lovers', or 'pet family members'...I've got no words to express my contempt for such people. This practice, as our society becomes more self-centered and isolating, has become far to common EVERYwhere.
Most people don't deserve the non-judgemental love they receive from an animal. Do your best to make them all feel really f*cking guilty about their lack of responsibility toward living, loving animals.

Newsguy Bob said...

Consulting business? She'd better not run up my phone bill!

Hey, that explains why she gets so antsy whenever I'm on the phone. I'm tying up the line, and she's afraid she'll miss a business call!

XUP said...

I've been on a list for a OHS dog for months now. Like I mentioned in my blog a while ago, it would be nice if more people who really wanted pets could afford to have them. Yes, there are plenty of creeps out there abusing and abandoning animals, but there are also lots of animal loving people out there who simply don't have the money that's demanded to keep a pet these days. The adoption fees the OHS charges are certainly not cheap. Not to mention everything that comes afterwards. When they do a media sob story about all the pets in shelters maybe they could also do a bit of investigating as to why it's suddenly so freakin' expensive to have an animal in your family. I think that's part of the whole pet surplus story.

XUP said...

Oh, and don't believe a word JB says. Coffee will be okay but will miss you and will certainly let you know all about it when you get home.

Newsguy Bob said...

I gladly paid the $150 adoption fee for Coffee, plus a similar amount for toys, litterbox, scratching post(which she has never used), bed (which she just started using in the past few days)and food to get started.
She was already spayed and had all her shots. I paid $74 three months later for a rabies shot.
It has all been money well spent. I've gotten a priceless amount of unconditional love and a lot of laughs for my investment.
Nothing is free.
The adoption fee also discourages people who aren't really that interested in being pet owners, or are considering it for all the wrong reasons.

Maria said...

Coffee will be just fine. Cats are very independant - no? I am sure she has provided you with much laughter since you've had her.

Good Luck on the story. By the way, where you going??

Newsguy Bob said...

Welcome back, Maria, my little baklava. Glad you're back safe and sound.
I'm heading to Ma Horton Territory, to spend some quality time at the cottage, and at Little Bro Dan and The Pretty One's new house (helping them paint), among other visity things. And oh, yeah, a wedding in Timmins next Saturday. My best friend's son is getting hitched. Funny, though: his Dad and I are still very young.

Ma Horton said...

Why do people just never "get it " ? A pet is a life long and expensive responsibility .Whether it is a rescue or a pure bred it all costs moolah and time . Nothing ever comes easy in life . That amazing well trained dog you see took hours and hours of special training ,obedience class , patience and time . If you can't do it , go feed a chipmunk somewhere ...

A. & J. said...

I just emailed the OHS asking for information on being a foster parent. A. is very allergic to dogs, so it would have to be hypoallergnic. Hopefully we'll be able to help in our own way.

XUP said...

My only objection to the $$$$ of pet ownership is that it has become a luxury a lot of lovely people can't afford. Having a pet teaches kids responsibility, gives them something outside of themselves to care for and love. A lot of kids will have to grow up now never knowing the joys and lessons of being a pet owner. Kids that are already deprived of so much. Many lonely seniors would thrive with a wee dog or cat in the house, but their pensions won't stretch that far. Why should only the well-off be allowed this experience? Why should Paris Hilton be allowed to have a pet, but not the woman next door who's on disability?

Newsguy Bob said...

All good points, Zoop. Maybe we should start a charity to help cover the expense of the elderly on fixed incomes and/or low-income families having pets. Seriously.

A&J: Adopting Coffee was a bit of an experiment for me, having been allergic to cats in the past. That's why I was careful to choose a short-haired cat (she still sheds, mind you) and thankfully, I'm not allergic to her.
She, on the other hand, is allergic to clay-based litter, which I figured out in the first few days, when she would have sneezing fits right after using the litter box. So I switched to "Yesterday's News", which is litter made of pellets of recycled newspaper. Now it's all good, and environmentally friendly, too.

Newsguy Bob said...

This evening, some idiot from Alberta left a dog (looks like a shepherd mix) in a minivan outside our TV station. The Humidex at the time was about 35C. Police were called, and we got video of some officers popping open the door and saving the dog. Our weather specialist, Bill Welychka, brought the pooch some water and bought him a hot dog. A police officer stayed until an animal control agent arrived. He waited for the owner to return. I'm hoping there's a nice fine waiting for him. I'd personally like to see him cooped up in a pound for a few days.

By the way, on a lighter note, if you ever need to break into a car, find a cop to do it for you.