Animal Abandonment in Hard Times

cats-and-dogs— One impact of the current economic recession has been increasing abandonment of domestic animal pets by their former owners, simply for the reason that their masters can no longer afford them.  In some cases, renters or owners have moved and intentionally left their pets behind. Such animals are at least usually discovered by a landlord or new tenant before they starve to death, and are taken to shelters where they will, dependent on the shelter, have at least a chance of acquiring a new family. In worse scenarios, the former pets are dumped outdoors in the mistaken belief that they will fend for themselves.  Pets abandoned in this fashion too often face a slow, painful, and/or violent death from predation, starvation, or motor vehicles.

Responsible pet ownership is a serious personal and financial obligation that should not be entered into lightly.  Buying cheaper or off-brand pet food in bulk may enable financially-strapped families to hang onto animal members longer, and if necessary every effort should be made to place an animal into a new home environment rather than abandon them; other family members or friends may be willing to offer  temporary  housing.   Community “shopper” type newspapers laden with advertising often offer free listings for pet adoptions.  If all else fails, placement of an animal into a shelter is far preferable to abandonment as they will at least be fed and treated humanely…

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