Thursday, June 20, 2013

Pets are more than simply animals

Some new neighbors moved in beside us a few days ago. The last few days, I kept hearing this sad, low, moaning sound for many hours. Yesterday, I got tired of it, and asked Mark...

Me: "What is that awful sound?"

Husband: "The neighbor's dog."

Me: "What's wrong with it? It sounds so sad and pathetic."

Husband: "It's probably because they have its dog house so far away."

I didn't really know what he meant by that, until we were driving out to run some errands, and I saw this dog house way at the bottom of their yard. It was maybe 50 yards away from their house, totally secluded at the bottom of a hill that's in their backyard.

Could they get it any further away from them? It's like they were saying, "get away from us." It just made me sad to see that, and having to hear their poor dog whimper all day from loneliness.

I see things like this all the time, people basically neglecting their dogs like they're unwanted nuisances. When you have a pet, you need to pay attention to it. Take it for walks, play with it, spend time with it in the yard and take it with you to parks and such. Don't just chain it up in the backyard, give it some food and water, and occasionally throw it a bone or toy, and leave it alone the rest of the time. Pets are supposed to be companions. Dogs especially are social creatures - they want more than anything to be with their owners.

Honestly, leaving a dog alone 23 hours a day isn't beneficial to you, or your pet. Dogs can bring such happiness and joy if you spend time with them. They want nothing more than to simply be a part of your life and to please you.

I know that people have things they have to do during their day, we all do - being with your pet 24/7 just isn't feasible. That's not what I'm saying... I know people have lives to live. But I see this all the time, animals chained up and never socialized or interacted with.

I was never a dog person, mind you, because I was always used to having cats in my life. When my dad passed away, the sense of loneliness and emptiness I had was unbearable. My husband and I decided to adopt two puppies a few months ago so that I would have some companionship when I was at home; my opinion of dogs has totally changed, and now I love them to pieces.

They aren't just my dogs, they are my friends. I wish those people who banish their pets away to a life of seclusion felt the same way.

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