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June 3, 2009

Poor Big Girl

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(CAUTION: this post is accompanied by a very disturbing image - don't scroll further if you don't want to see it - I've placed it right at the bottom!)

There is apparently a lot of debate surrounding the issue of euthanasia and the "No Kill" view of life.

This is in particular reference to mankind's companions, pets, who are sometimes the first to be neglected once a recession hits.

Euthanasia is often used to put down animals when they are otherwise perfectly healthy, but cannot find anyone to care for them. This is in direct opposition to some animal rights activists' belief in "No Kill", and they do get quite upset when it comes to organisations putting animals down.

However, very often, it is in the best interest of the animals themselves to be put down. I recently read a tragic article about Big Girl.
Big Girl was so still, cold to the touch and thin that those who found her thought that she was already dead. The six-month old pitbull was still alive, and the only evidence of this was the groan she released when the field workers picked her up.

She had been through agony as no normal person could imagine: she weighed less than the chain to which she was attached, had starved almost to death, had raw, exposed skin with no body fat at all...
She never had the love that all dogs deserve, because that is all they have to offer, and all they ask of us.

When her stomach was examined, she had nothing in it but dirt, leaves and other items that would never have provided her with any nourishment. She had started to decompose - this is how long she was lying there - four different generations of maggots were already feeding off her.

Poor Big Girl could not see or hear her rescuers, who could do nothing but euthanise her and send her on her way with as much love as she had probably ever felt.

Although it is no consolation, for the damage has already been done, Big Girl's owner was charged and convicted for her, and another dog's condition, and he will never be allowed to own an animal again.

Clearly euthanasia was the only option in this case, but I wonder if the debate should lie elsewhere. Why are some communities so uncaring, and what are they learning about respect for life when they are growing up? Why do things have to get so bad before people stand up and take notice?

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