Unwanted animals should not be condemned to a life of pain and suffering

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To the Editor:

(Re: “Few options in Creston Valley for unwanted animals”, Sept. 3)

“The list will continue as long as their irresponsible owners aren’t stopped.”

That statement by the letter writer, Ms. Wright, is true. Whether all the statements she made are true or not I cannot say. This is what I do know to be true about the Pet Adoption and Welfare Society: It can only take stray cats in if it has the room to shelter them. When there is no space available, it simply cannot take them. Often, strays have been refused by PAWS on that basis.

I also know that a partial solution to this problem was suggested by the regional district two years ago when it asked that five per cent of residential taxes be set aside each year to help PAWS shelter and feed more animals. That suggestion was met with anger and a resounding no, by the majority of taxpayers. How many of those taxpayers have since complained about PAWS’ lack of shelter for strays?

Ms. Wright’s story is far from the only one regarding starving domestic cats and their broods of kittens. It happens continually. Irresponsible owners cannot be stopped from abandoning animals; it is an impossibility, so there is no point even discussing that as an option.

My option, when faced with suffering animals who cannot be helped by me or anyone else, would be to end their suffering. I believe the Town of Creston will pick up stray animals within the town limits and they will be euthanized. The Creston Veterinary Hospital will euthanize for a fee.

The bottom line for me is that I could far sooner end their lives than see them starving, diseased, freezing in winter or hear them screaming at night when under attack. There is no mercy in allowing their lives to go on under such conditions — condemned to a life of pain and suffering — only to die in a short time and quite likely, in dreadful circumstances. If you cannot offer food and shelter, at least free them from a cruel world and offer them your mercy. When dealing with unwanted animals, we must face reality — they will always be a part of most of our lives at one time or another — but they need not suffer.

“The quality of mercy is not strain’d, it droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven upon the place beneath. It is twice blest; it blesseth him that gives and him that takes.” —William Shakespeare

Gail Bosgra