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Born Free?

Born Free?

Born Free?

Such a strange thing when you think about it: Sharing your life with another species, namely a cat or dog. And yet we think nothing of it. Mundane as a Montreal street festooned with orange cones and potholes. 

Imagine other creatures doing the same. Like chimpanzees keeping pet sloths; feeding, grooming  - training them to do tricks upside down. Sounds fantastical, but in the animal world a different species is either lunch or the jaws of death.

As much I love dogs and find them endlessly fascinating, there's something sad about our legendary "arrangement". We've selectively bred them, we own them for our own purposes and they, well, they just have to be lucky. A dog's fate is out of their control and it makes me sad.

Get a good owner (like us) and he's lucked out, get some jerk and it's a heartbreaking SPCA commercial. The life of a dog, a cat, or for that matter, any domesticated animal is not fair.

Man takes "human exceptionalism" as a given, as if all other species are chattel. What arrogance - we're not even good with our own species. Instead of using animals to suit our own purposes, we should learn from them. Think of the bee hive, the ant colony where each individual works selflessly to perpetuate existence for the collective. A flock of birds, a school of fish, a herd of caribou, a pack of wolves - strength in numbers, true socialism. 

I love animals, I love pets and I'm absolutely crazy about dogs, but I'd give up the whole notion of pets in a heartbeat if man's only relationship with animals was peaceful coexistence. In lieu of pet ownership, we'd observe them in the wild without interfering with their lives.

I'd miss having a dog, but I think the world be a better place.