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Caring for Lost Dogs and Cats Should Be a Priority

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I was so angry when the boys walked away. As their laughter grew distant, I continued to stare in disbelief at the place they had been standing only a second before. I couldn’t believe what I had heard.


The boys were probably business majors since I was in the business building on campus. They were also dressed in suits and ties. How impressive. They had just exited a class, talking intently about how horribly government spends our money. I was reading a book when some interesting words from their conversation grabbed my attention.

“I couldn’t believe it.” The boy with the giant, Jansport backpack, filled with boring business textbooks, was laughing with the other boy. “Why would we spend any money on that?” 

“I know. Spending money for a new animal shelter is a waste.”

My gaze suddenly lifted up at the dorky kid with slicked-back black hair and thick-rimmed, Harry Potter glasses. “We should be spending our money to build people shelters.”

The backpack hunchback laughed hysterically at this and continued to walk down the hallway with the Harry Potter wannabe. I missed the joke.

My attention finally wandered down to the book in my hands. The book talked about canine behavior and on the page was a puppy. I couldn’t tell the breed, but he looked overwhelmingly happy. My anger slowly turned to extreme sadness.

The boys were discussing a bill to build a new animal shelter in the City of Norman. Citizens can vote yes for the new sanctuary on November eighth. I didn’t understand the boys’ agitation by this and thought that maybe they believed the bill was asking for a lot of money.

But according to the Norman Transcript, it takes approximately eleven dollars and twenty-one cents per taxpayer, a year, for five years, to build the shelter. That seems a small price to pay for the protection of many lost animals. The current shelter is outdated. It was built in 1973.

However, the boys’ anger toward the new bill was not why I was upset, although I believe this bill is beneficial, necessary, and understandable.

I was upset about the boys’ attitudes towards animals. Ever since I was little I always believed animals should be treated as kindly as we would treat other humans. They trust us to take care of them. They have no voice, so if something is wrong, or they feel uncomfortable, they cannot tell us. We have an obligation to protect these kind creatures that are our closest and truest companions.

There are still numerous stray cats and dogs not only in Norman, Oklahoma, but also all over this country. There need to more shelters to care for these animals. They cannot fix their situations like humans can. They have to depend on us.

Either way, the boys talked as if it comes down to the idea of choosing between humans and animals. Why do we have to choose?

Helping make this world a better place for all its inhabitants should be a priority for everyone. People shouldn’t have to choose which right thing to do. We should try to help the homeless people and the homeless animals.

The bill for the new shelter in Norman is just an example of people trying to change the norm. The shelter will provide much-needed bigger space and a cleaner atmosphere for the animals of Norman.

I closed the book in my hands. It addressed the need to communicate to our canine companions. Understanding their language would help make these amazing creatures comfortable and happy. I learned tons of information that I thought would be beneficial to all people wanting to bring home a dog.

I feel people need to learn the same when it comes to helping stray animals. The more people understand the intricate behaviors of lost cats and dogs, the more people will want to care for these poor creatures.

The problem isn’t money, as the boys think. It is the attitude towards animals to begin with. The more that people understand that the care given to animals’ safety and quality of life should equal that given to humans, the less we will have to deal with incompetent shelters and breeding situations. These “incompetent shelters and breeding situations” include puppy mills.

The United States still is home to thousands of puppy mills. These breeding facilities make tons of money by breeding dogs in horrible and disgusting conditions, then selling them to oblivious owners. Most of these animals become sick and have many physical problems. Also, since these breeders see these animals as potential profits, they do not care whom they sell to as long as they get cash. This leads to more animals lost in the streets, abused and uncared for.

The government needs to increase its control of these mills and protect the animals and potential owners. Breeders selling pets in an unsafe way, like on street corners and without proper paperwork, should be fined. This will prevent improper “breeding for profit,” and the money can be used to help build more shelters for these abandoned and ignored animals.

Citizens who care about pets and want to change the idea that “animals” are not as important in political matters can always donate their money to important causes, such as the bill for the new shelter in Norman. Donating money or creating fundraisers for this shelter will help offset the small needed money that will come from citizens’ taxes.

Pets play a very important role in humans’ lives. We don’t realize that animals share this big and hectic world with us, and without them this world would be very pathetic and non-majestic. We would be very unhappy creatures without them. People who own dogs and cats tend to live longer and happier lives than those who don’t. This is a proven fact. According to Animal Planet, cat and dog owners are 30 percent less likely to suffer from a heart attack. Pets can also lower blood pressure and cholesterol, and pets help reduce great amounts of stress in a person.

Animals in general help better the lives of everyone around them. The cost of building shelters to protect these creatures is a small price to pay for what is received in turn. The boys that made fun of the idea of protecting the animals are immature and do not understand the value of these amazing creatures.

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