Friday, November 20, 2009

Blue Light Special on Shelter Pets

In OH, infamous dog killer Tom Skeldon has resigned as Lucas Co dog warden. A PETA representative wrote a Letter to the Editor at the Toledo Blade praising Skeldon's killing:
No one wants to end the need for euthanasia more than the brave people who hold the syringe, but pushing dogs out the door like clearance merchandise or releasing vulnerable breeds into a world that holds only suffering and death for so many of them isn't the way to do that.

If we overlook the fact that PETA is among the "bravest" of us, killing tens of thousands of pets without even trying to adopt them out, we might focus on the thinly veiled slam on poor people. Yes poor people (and others) love clearance merchandise. It means getting a bargain, a good deal on some desired product. What's wrong with that?

In fact, would it be so awful to get dogs off the killing table and "out the door" by marketing them as "clearance merchandise"? As long as homes are adequately (and not overly) screened, I certainly don't have a problem with it. Everyone loves a good deal and many people are willing to buy last year's model, as it were, or slightly irregular products if it means added value overall.

Maybe some people consider shelter pets to be clearance rack type pets as opposed to new-in-the-box, bright and shiny puppies and kittens. So what? The fact is that retail stores manage to attract a good number of shoppers to their clearance racks and move merchandise. Isn't that what we're trying to do for shelter pets - attract buyers with the prospect of a good deal and get pets into homes?

Once again, PETA has it all wrong in my opinion. Pushing dogs out the shelter doors and into homes is the goal. Of course potential owners must be screened and no one wants to guilt anyone into taking a pet they're not prepared to accept responsibility for or a pet who would be a mismatch for the owner's lifestyle. But aside from the screening process, "pushing dogs out the door" is exactly what we want to do for shelter pets. If it takes a clever marketing ploy such as a blue light special to help achieve that, I say go for it. Obviously PETA chooses the blue needle special for the unfortunate pets who fall into their hands. But they are fast becoming dinosaurs in the world of homeless pets. We are a no kill nation of people who care about pets. Join us.


Susan said...

This letter was one of the nicest things PeTA could do for animal welfare groups. They took off their animal saving mask and proudly put on their executioner's hood. They admitted what they believe in.
I understand running with the "clearance" analogy, but I think what separates us and them is that we DON'T see the animals as merchandise. We think they deserve to be saved. Even the ones who humans have hurt and neglected, we have hope that love and time can heal. PeTA sees them as damaged merchandise that should be recalled and destroyed.

This letter should be distributed far and wide as proof that PeTA is not in the business of saving animals, and that people who want to save animals don't send money to PeTA.

EmilyS said...

I really struggle with my sense that the letter is a parody, it's so far over the top... except for the fact that it's exactly the kind of thing PETA believes. They are beyond parody.

Anyway, I think a "BLUE LIGHT SPECIAL" is a GREAT idea for shelter to adopt out animals.. In the no kill vision, using creative ideas like that is the way to find more homes!

Pai said...

It doesn't sound so bizarre if you understand that the premise of PETA's entire worldview on pets is that 'Death is kinder than forcing and animal to live in slavery as a human's pet'.

If you believe that, killing them is the most responsible thing a shelter can possibly do.

Psychotic? Yes... which is par for the course for PETA.

-thepaisleyfox said...

I still think one of the best advertisements I ever saw was in the paper showcasing "Pre-owned cats". It was cute, witty, and made me want to support a group who could lovingly compare cats to gently used cars.