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Born Free USA Blog

Born Free USA Blog

Left Behind — Hearts and Minds

Published 01/28/09
By Susan Trout, Program Assistant

Foreclosure — the “buzz” word of 2008. With it came misery and suffering for thousands of people all over the nation. It’s hard to imagine losing one’s home — all the hard work, effort and money invested — only to see it disappear overnight.

But beyond the misery of human suffering is the horrific reality of animals left behind — “pets” once cared for. News articles and TV stories painted a ghastly picture of animals abandoned to starve to death in empty homes or backyards.

Picture yourself trapped in a vacant building with no way to escape and no access to food and water. Visualize each of those pitiful creatures, patiently waiting at the door or in the back yard for their “people” to return. I am repulsed and disturbed when I think of the brutal way they died.

No, I’ve not experienced losing my home. I don’t know the fear, the panic it must bring. I do know that no matter what terrible situation may befall me, if I have my faculties, I will never abandon the animals that share my life. Better I go without food and water before they suffer such misery. There are so many options today — shelters, rescue groups, organizations that provide temporary help to those down on their luck. To simply leave behind a living being with a beating heart just like ours is blatant cruelty. Many people took their material belongings — big screen TVs, furniture. Thankfully, caring people responded to this crisis and now foreclosed homes are checked to make sure that no animal is left behind.

Caring for animals is a responsibility. Whether they be companion animals or livestock, you have an ethical obligation to provide for that animal’s basic needs. To abandon that obligation relegates you to the level of a barbarian.

Foreclosure is difficult but to abandon a helpless animal — an animal you once called your “pet” — is a criminal act. What does that say about us as a people?

Don’t leave your heart and mind behind!

Blogging off,

Susan

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