My Feelings on Irresponsible Pet Ownership



This post comes about after going through a week of stress, disappointment and sadness over the welfare of pets. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure a lot of pet owners are responsible, do things by the book and give their pets the care that they need. However, I'm seeing an increase of owners that are less than stellar, and fail to meet even the basic needs that the animal requires. Not only that, I am also seeing a lot of pets abandoned or disposed of and it breaks my heart to think about them. I hate, hate, seeing pets stranded at pounds because their owners no longer consider them worthy of a part in their lives. My heart shatters into a million pieces when I think about how scared, lonely or sad they are, as they're kept in a cage wondering what's happening.

This post comes about after I took in two kittens for the weekend and gave them all the love and affection that they deserve. I tried so hard and did everything I could think to do, to find them a new home without having to go through the pound as required of me by the council. We called local vets, RSPCA and the local council to see if there were any other options, because we had a potential home for them with a friend of ours. This friend showed the integrity we were looking for, to give them the life that they needed. They were willing to put in the time and effort to ensure that they were desexed, chipped, registered and vaccinated as soon as possible. Unfortunately, our hands were tied, and we had to surrender them to the local pound on Wednesday.

I cried on the way home. I was furious, I was upset, and I was full of hate towards the people that caused it.

I'm incredibly sensitive about matters like this, and it affects me on a very deep level when these things happen and I can never understand people when they are the opposite. You don't have to like them, but you should be able to empathise, to show compassion and care when needed. Not to disregard them as if they're insignificant specks of dirt.

These kittens weren't strays, they were pets. They belonged to my neighbours, and I knew this for a fact because I would inconspicuously peer through the fence to check on them, as well as the dog that also lived on the property. The kid played with them often, and they were always fed a pile of biscuits scattered onto the cement.

It was approaching midnight a week ago when they were on my roof crying for food. We had trouble bringing them down, but we managed it by luring them with food. They were starving and showed signs of being thin and underfed. We brought them inside where they would be safe, warm and content with full stomachs, and they inhaled everything we fed them within minutes. It was clear that they hadn't eaten anything for the entire day.


They were affectionate, friendly and desperate for attention. We made the decision to report the neighbours that night.

Why?

Because they're irresponsible pet owners. The family that lives in the unit next door is a mother, her son no older than 7, and the grandmother. Soon after we moved in here, we noticed that they had a constant stream of kittens on their property that disappeared as soon as they showed signs of adulthood and the kid got bored of them. In the one and a half years we lived here, we've seen at least 6 - 8 kittens come and go. They also had a dog that was of the short and stocky build, much like a staffy, before they replaced it with a new puppy that's been there for about nine months now.

They didn't desex their pets, nor did they register or microchip them. They kept the dog chained up at all hours of the day because he was prone to escaping and terrorising the other neighbours otherwise. They kept the kittens outside all day and all night from the moment they were brought home. They could have easily been attacked or even picked up by an owl mistaking them for rats.

Enough was enough. They had to stop, and the best way to do that was through tougher means aka the council, where it would strike sense into them best - financially. They would be fined for owning pets without registering them to the council and not getting them chipped. As soon as I filed my report on them to the council on Monday, a representative of the council went to see them that same day to ask questions. We were kept anonymous, as we didn't want more trouble from them.

We know it's a bit of a dick move to withhold a pet from a child, but considering how this kid was a pest and replaced the pets with new ones as soon as they stopped being cute, we didn't feel bad about it. He is an awful child, and before we caught him in the act and told him off, he'd ring our doorbell and then run off, even when his mother half-heartedly told him not to do it. His mother has no control over her son, and it's no wonder why she enables him so easily.

We were told by the council that the neighbours denied having any kittens and that they were "babysitting the dog for a friend". Because of it we were forced to hand the kittens over to the pound as there was no way to prove they weren't owned by anyone else and that the kittens needed an opportunity to be picked up by "their family" before they can be adopted out. Because they lied to the council, the complain was rendered invalid and they couldn't prove anything.

Luckily, the council representative spoke to other neighbours in this unit complex and some of them have corroborated on our claims, so hopefully the neighbours get hit with a massive fine. In the meantime, we're keeping an eye out for Houdini Dog so we can catch him, have the ranger pick him up, because then the neighbours will be forced to admit that the dog belongs to them. In which case, it'll come back to bite them in the arse.


It's irresponsible owners that cause the kitten population to increase every year because they don't desex their pets. It's irresponsible owners like these that cats and dogs end up at the pound, lost and confused because they weren't ever chipped or registered. It's irresponsible owners like these that realise they don't have the capability to care for a pet. It's irresponsible owners like these that teach their kids that treating animals like toys is okay, when it is very clearly not the case. It's irresponsible owners like these that get pets as Christmas gifts, which is the case with the kittens we took in last weekend. It's irresponsible owners like these that shelters are up to their eyeballs with more cats and dogs than they can handle, and thousands of them are euthanised every year.

It's sickening, is what it is.

In the meantime, I'm stuck here worried about the kittens, whether they are safe, warm and comfortable. Whether they're on their way to a new home that cares for them properly. I know the pound aims to rehome animals after the 8-day mark, either through the pound, by handing them over to an adoption agency or letting them stay with a foster carer until they're ready. Nonetheless, I'm anxious and I really wish to go over there and comfort them, to check up on them and make sure they're okay. Sean reckons I shouldn't do that because it'll make it all the harder for me to leave them behind when I had such a hard time on Wednesday.

Pets are for life, they are family. They love like us, they fear like us, they feel joy like us and they grieve like us. It is people like my neighbours that reinforces my way of living, that animals matter more to me than humans. My cats are my family, and anyone who hurts them or threatens them in any way gets the eviction notice out of my life. I have no room nor any respect for anyone that that do not value animals.

If you were in my shoes, was there anything you could have done differently? I'm open to constructive criticism.

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