Opinion: Pets should not be discarded

KELLY GIULIANO/STAFF

I have been involved in animal rescue for most of my life. Our organization receives many calls to surrender pets. Reasons given are: a new infant, a new pet, a divorce, pet is too old, pet no longer matches the sofa … you get the idea.

A couple of weeks ago a caller wanted to “donate” two cats. The reason given was that the family just adopted a puppy. When I suggested the puppy would love to have two new playmates, the caller hung up.

Pets are not inanimate objects to be tossed out like old furniture.

Do these callers realize the trauma pets feel when they are replaced and lose their home and family? Subsequent trust issues often prevail when an animal is betrayed. Some humans don’t realize that animals are also thinking, feeling, sentient beings.

A puppy has a small bladder. They need to relieve themselves often. Too many times we hear of the abuse they are forced to endure because they peed on the floor.

Cats may miss the litter box if they don’t have access. A cat needs multiple clean litter boxes in the house. Toxoplasmosis can be transmitted to humans and pets from dirty litter boxes; they need to be scooped every day.

Please, before bringing a pet into your home and family, research what it means to provide love and care for that animal for their lifetime. Animals should not be discarded because they are a responsibility or have a behavioral issue. Issues can be resolved. Before planning to adopt or surrender consider the emotional well-being of that animal and his/her fate.

Rose Reina-Rosenbaum

Hillsborough