Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Puppy Love

Two days ago, one of the dogs that are owned by my parents gave birth to six puppies. My mother, a small-yield breeder, is an old hat at taking care of puppies. Yesterday, I stopped by my folks' home to see the puppies and I took a few pictures to post on Facebook so I could share the cuteness that is cute puppies! Everything was going well. Then, late yesterday afternoon, a "friend" on my Facebook emailed me asking about the puppies and if I was a breeder. I told her that my mum breeds dogs and thus why there are puppies. I figured she was just an interested party and wanted to know about the puppies. I was wrong.

This morning I receive a reply from this person. Basically, she asked me to consider having the mother of these puppies spayed. She said that it would be better to not breed dogs because there's a serious overpopulation of pets (dogs, cats, etc.) and breeders are part of the problem. She continued that a breeder sells puppies to homes that could have otherwise taken in rescue dogs or other animals that are not currently well off.

Despite her attempt to maintain a friendly tone in the email, I was quite bothered by her suggestion. Who the hell is this person to suggest that my mum indirectly contributes to the abuse, neglect, and abandonment of animals? When my mum breeds a dog, she cares greatly for the puppies until they are old enough to be sold. My mum then carefully screens potential buyers to separate the serious from the "fad" buyers and to ensure that the future owners are responsible and caring. Once owners have been established, my mum then keeps in contact with these owners to ensure the puppies she has sold remain in good health both mentally and physically. And as for my personally...I love animals a great deal (not in some creepy way you perverts are thinking right now) to the point that I will not kill ANYTHING unless it's in self defense. That means I live-catch spiders and release them outdoors and set humane traps for mice instead of killing them. So you can understand my frustration with being called a contributor to the breech of animal rights.

My response was an honest deconstruction of her argument. While I told her that I understood her point of view and do admire what she does (this woman rescues animals and is a foster parent for animals until they are placed), her tact was completely out of line. I explained that my mum takes great care about the health and safety of these puppies before, during, and after their birth. I also responded to this woman by saying that her logic wasn't sound. After all, if my mum didn't bread puppies, those potential buyers wouldn't take in rescue dogs as, they would simply go to a different breeder. A breeder who was perhaps far less concerned about the welfare of her animals than the profit.

That really should have been it. She attacked me without warrant and I explained my point of view and that it was not cool to come out swinging at me. But nope, this woman proved herself to be a lot like the stereotypical "animal hugger" person who seems as unstable as they are crazy. Her response was essentially that she was not sorry for what she said, all breeders are evil because they allow more "souls" to enter the world when there are too many as it is, and that I am blind to it all. She clearly follows the philosophy that you catch more flies with big, scary, loud movements and then swat at them viciously with a giant swatter. Moron.

I replied yet again, explaining that her misanthropic black-and-white views weren't doing her any favours, because it's a grey world. I said that her assumptions were making enemies of her allies and thus everything was hurting her cause. I told her that assuming that puppies my mum breeds don't come into this world at the expense of other animals, and that instead of attacking the breeders she should be attacking those people who have proven themselves to be the villain. I mentioned that she shouldn't chastise people until she knows something about them. I said I did not want to continue the conversation because she was unreasonable and unwilling to listen, just as she was incapable of seeing the issue on a scale rather than all-or-nothing. She replied yet again, but I didn't bother to read her reply. It's like talking to a brick wall, and I've already read enough on that particular wall.

Sure, I probably come off as harsh. I swung down the hammer on a person who admittedly does mean well. But, to me, there's absolutely no excuse for blindly attacking another person the way she did to me. Ignorance is not a defense for her behaviour. She doesn't know my mother at all and doesn't know me on a deep enough level to know my feelings about the matter. She doesn't know a damn thing except that a dog my mother owns had puppies. So how dare she make any assumptions, let alone the ridiculous ones that framed me and my family as twisted, evil animal abusers?

What she is trying to do is admirable, but her extremist nature completely negates any respect I have for her. If she had politely laid her argument on the table and bothered to take into consideration what I had to say, then she would have had a lot more luck and also kept a friend. Instead, she decided to kick the door in with guns blazing, and now yet another person thinks she's psychotic. Are extremists blind to the fact that they don't help their causes by behaving in this way, and actually can make things worse? We are a social species, and people have to understand that when interacting with others. This shoot first and ask questions never approach is foolish, juvenile, and pointless.

So in the end, all she succeeded in doing was making me realize how crazy she is and how I don't want her in my life. And gave me something interesting to write about.
What do you think, dear reader? Was I also out of line? I do tend to become bull-headed when responding to harsh criticism.
Was I perhaps the only one who was out of line in the first place? Should I overlook the fact that she accused me of contributing to injustices to animals, when I'm not even the one who does the breeding? Should I be okay with her attacking my mum through me without knowing anything about the situation? Or should I tell her that with every step she takes, she murders millions of organisms too small to see, and therefore she is a hypocrite (after all, the extreme nature of her thinking must be applied to all living beings, no)?

By the way, the mother of those puppies was spayed. My mum only ever breeds a female two to three times because any more pregnancies than that may cause complications. My mother would rather ensure the health and welfare of a dog than make thousands of dollars on the puppies that dog could produce with further pregnancies. That's just how a monstrous animal hater works, don't you think?

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