Animal Cruelty- From a Non-Animal Lover’s Perspective

Today, I came across a change.org petition regarding a man who physically kicked a cat out of his yard.  There is a video accompanying the petition.  It’s pretty cruel, and hopefully we can all agree disgusting.

The idea of animal cruelty, especially the kind that seems devoid of any reasoning other than sick fantasy or entertainment, got me thinking.  My wife and I often disagree when it comes to animals.  She is an animal lover, and I am not.  She wants dogs, and prior to finding out that I have a relatively severe allergy wanted a cat, she used to own a horse, and currently has a hamster.  I had a dog growing up, he was a great dog, but I also realized that I just didn’t do much with him, and it was probably not fair to have a dog and not do anything with them.  So I decided I didn’t want another dog until I was in a place in my life where I can give a dog the attention he or she deserves.

One thing that my wife and I often disagree on is whether or not I am an animal lover.  I state that I am not, and she thinks I am.  This stems from the fact that when she used to barn-sit, I would help her with the horses (I will admit that I started to like the horses, they’re very different than house pets) and her hamster.  She hasn’t barn-sat in a few years, but I still help feed and get water for the hamster, and while she was pregnant, I would change the cage stuffing out for her.

This is when she began to tell me that I must love the hamster.  I don’t.  I have never actually touched the hamster, because rodents creep me out.  But she could not understand how I could help and take care of the hamster if I didn’t love it.  So, I explained to her a very simple idea that is in my head.  Just because I don’t love or even like something, doesn’t mean I think it deserves to starve, or suffer, or die.  I think now she understands, even though she pretends not too, just to give me shit.

This philosophy about animals that I have, it really shouldn’t be that out of the norm, but we see pretty often incidents of dog-fighting, and things like this cat-kicking.  I understand that, I am a meat-eater, and to many that may seem cruel, but how can anyone watch in entertainment as someone pointlessly tortures a defenseless animal, is beyond me.

I should also mention, when it comes to defenseless animals, that I include sports like bull-fighting, because the human has weapons and an unfair advantage.  I would be totally cool, if a human got into the ring—do they call the arena a ring?— without any weapons or advantage.  If they were just to wrestle the bull with their bare hands.  Unfortunately people are significantly less ‘brave’ when it comes to bareknuckle boxing a bull.

I suspect this cat-kicker wouldn’t have been so ‘brave’ as to kick a bobcat, or tiger, or other larger cat, but again, I’d have less of a problem with it.

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