Pets & Animals in the News

Things are hard enough for disaster victims. Read this story regarding the custody battle over pets who were fostered out after suffering from separation from their people during and after Hurricane Katrina.

Dating scene really has gone to the dogs, cats and other pets.

Same old problem twenty years later. You would think people would treat former members of their family better but here is the reality as stated by a shelter society worker…people dump their animals all the time. In Canada the problem is pretty bad just before summer and officials estimate the average household life of a pet is only two years before dumping.

Old school thought about wolf behavior still exists. This report inaccurately leads one to believe that they negatively impact wildlife and domestic animals. First, the _absence_ of wolves has been reported by experts to negatively impact the environment for a variety of reasons including overgrazing and diseases affecting herd (prey) animals. (This is over simplified).

Regarding the domestic animal prey issues: Some wolves do bother livestock but more domestic dogs tend to torment them and the recovery program has implemented funds to PAY ranchers for loss. Wolf-dogs (animals that are wolf and dog mixed) have been irresponsibly bred and released by people who cannot handle them and are responsible for many incidents.

The columnist also alludes to adding “pet owners” to the list of those who are losing their romantic notion of wolves…however he cites a HUNTER’S opinion and alleged experience. I never saw the news report so maybe I missed it but hunter’s only like wolves for their pelts and consider them a competitor over game. Suspect in my book.

Finally, it was not conclusively determined if the man in Canada was attacked by wolves. The animals in that area were habituated to humans through feeding and attracted by discarded garbage. We almost wiped out the wolf once and are harming the environment in multiple ways. Emminent domain does not mean we need to launch a battle against wildlife, rather we need to learn to live with them and use strategies that support them when trespassing into their world and terrain.

In other news a woman reported that she was attacked by a lone wolf. What did she do when she saw the creature? The worst thing, she turned around and ran.

Experts believe it may have been a wolf but probably a yearling or young animal. It was probably habituated to humans or maybe even sick. She did have to get a rabies series just in case. If the wolf had truly wanted to attack her he wouldn’t have just bit her a couple of times on the back of the leg. Just for your information, wolves can run at amazing speeds and humans would not be able to outrun most wild predators.

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