I am a huge fan of shelter adoption for dogs. Growing up, we NEVER had a pure-bred dog and never even considered it. There was ALWAYS a neighbor somewhere trying to get rid of a litter of puppies. My parents even had a theory that each female dog needed (deserved?) to have one litter of puppies before she was "fixed". I have grown up with dogs of every type and flavor (always multiple flavors in every dog) sleeping at my feet (and everywhere else.)
My parents still operate their home as almost a shelter. Anyone who needs to get rid of a small dog seems to find them and they take on another. (I'm not talking hundreds or even dozens, but they seem to aquire a new one ever year or so. That can add up.)
I, on the other hand, have become a hobby breeder of Maltese. I love the little white dogs and have made MANY people happy by selling them a perky little pure-bred Malty. I believe that responsible breeding is important for the preservation of helath breeds. Mixed-breeds are wonderful, but I don't believe a world of ONLY mixed-breeds is what we really want. The same people who fret over the loss of a sub-species of some obscure fish have no trouble with the loss of pure-bred Poodles, Bassets or Collies.
Many people now castigate people for buying any pure-bred puppy (see Zuckerberg story here). Insisting that people ONLY adopt shelter dogs is heavy-handed. Taking on an older dog is not for everyone. Many people want the thrill and experience of raising a dog from a puppy. Many people simply want the choice to live their lives as they see fit.
The idea that the purchase of any puppy is a direct cause of some other homeless animal's suffering is silly. See here. for this line,
"Although Beast is plenty adorable, Zuckerberg’s purchase from a breeder means that somewhere in the world, a homeless puppy will go another day without being adopted. Dislike!"
Really? If you think about it, both puppies had no owner on the day Mark aquired Beast. It is frightening that these same people would love to extend this same logic to people. Many of the people who are against purchasing a puppy while other dogs are in shelters are against couples having their own children as long as there are children needing adoption. These people are annoying when they lecture us, they are downright frightening when they have political power.
I am convinced that many people get a lot of satisfaction not from "saving the world", as they maintain, but from acting "holier-than-thou" and forcing their personal convictions on everyone else. If the Obamas and the Bidens have the right to have a dog of their own choosing, it would seem that the rest of us should have that right too.
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