Before I get started, let me say to please continue to check back with the blog. I have about 5 posts that I’ve started that are sitting in draft mode, and even more intended posts, but things have been so hectic that they’ve not made it here to the blog yet. Oops. However, I am going to make sure they get on here quickly since there’s so much to share! 😀
Back to the topic at hand.
This weekend Miss Alli’s Rescue participated in a great event to promote awareness about chaining dogs. Presented by PAWSitive Effects, a nonprofit organization assisting dogs living on chains, several local rescue groups and animal related businesses attended to support their cause. It was great weather, and we really enjoyed ourselves! It was in downtown Greenville’s lovely Piazza Bergamo and as people flowed to and fro, our animals received lots of pets, “oohs!” and “ahhs!”
Before I bombard you with pictures (because you know I must!), let me talk briefly about why educating people about dogs living their lives on chains is so terribly important. People need to be aware of the negative aspects of chaining, the fact that it’s cruel, and they need to realize that it’s irresponsible and lazy.
Behavioral issues: The Pet Owner’s Fault
As a result of having a limited area and lack of exercise, animals are unable to release their energy. Therefore, they become hyper, often jumping up on people excessively. They also run in circles, wrapping themselves around the tree and then get stuck and unable to move…this can also cause them to get intertwined and choke themselves. In addition, they try to run, yet can’t and hit a hard, jerky halt, therefore pulling repeatedly at their collar as they continue to try to get to someone or somewhere. In turn, this only causes more excitement, anxiety and hyperactivity because they can’t get anywhere…pent up energy that they are unable to release. Then they are punished when the owner hits or kicks them, doesn’t spend any time with them, and in the end, doesn’t want the dog.
If the dog is in tact, especially a male, this can drive them to insanity. In addition to not having the ability to release energy, they have the hormonal drive that takes over. These two things combined lead to aggression. Aggression also develops due to the animal feeling that they are placed in that spot to protect. Add this to the mix and you have a dangerous situation. Unfortunately, the dog is the one that is punished for this vs. the owner, when in reality the dog has no control, has never been taught differently, and is doing what he/she thinks is asked. In many cases, people have stated they WANT the dog to be protective of the property…yet, again, the dog is at fault because of the owner’s wishes.
Dogs on chains are not socialized, and therefore do not know how to handle themselves properly around other animals and people. They can easily become protective of their food or their territory, resulting in aggressive behavior toward any animal or human that approaches or even tries to play with them. A large portion of dog bites and attacks are dogs on chains. The bites occur due to the dog going into protective mode, the build up of hormones from being in tact, and the owner not allowing the dog to be socialized.
NOTE: Not all dogs become aggressive on chains. There are an abundance very sweet dogs that have to endure a life on a chain. However, if the dog is neglected, aggression is possible…and NOT the dog’s fault.
Neglect: The Pet Owner’s Fault
Dogs on chains are always neglected. They are put on the chain, receive no attention, and most often are not fed and watered properly. They most often lack in a safe shelter, such as a dog igloo or sturdy dog house. They rarely have any vaccinations. What happens in the end? The dogs are emaciated, covered in fleas and ticks, full of intestinal parasites, most often have heartworms, they’re often dehydrated, not socialized, and either overly happy to see people or overly shy because they’ve never known a kind person. They get cold or hot with no relief. Many die of heat stroke or freeze to death.
Simply put, owners who expect their dogs to live on a chain do not care about the animal’s well being. Why they got the dog, outside of expecting it to be a guard dog, is beyond comprehension (and asking a dog to “guard” and go after people at any time is unacceptable). They don’t remotely regard that the dog exists and expect it to survive on it’s own. Those that do sometimes feed the dog still do not provide any attention.
Other negative results: The Pet Owner’s Fault
Dogs often will end up with an embedded collar because the owners are negligent and do not loosen or replace the collar. They often have other sores and scratches. Dogs that live their life on a chain end up needing extensive medical care.
Predators, such as other dogs, can come onto the property of a chained animal and attack the dog. A dog on a chain has no way to properly defend itself and will suffer or even be killed. It’s basically being fed to the wolves.
There is no excuse for putting a dog on a chain to live it’s life with only ten or twenty feet allowed to move around. It’s unacceptable, it’s inhumane, and it’s irresponsible and selfish on the part of the human.
If you know someone that has their animal on a chain, consider educating them nicely and encouraging them to understand the negatives. Help them consider what life on a chain is really like. If they don’t care, encourage them to get rid of the dog, even if it’s taking it to an attentive metro shelter. At least the dog has a chance at a happy life that way and will not starve to death, get killed, or die from the heat or cold.
If you see a dog without the proper shelter, food and water, report it to the authorities. Be a nag, if you must. Help that dog get off of a chain. If you’re not sure what to do, find a group such as “PAWSitive Effects” that can assist you. Life on a chain is no way to live.
Event photos below!
We had a very nice time at the event and look forward to attending next year. Toffee, Preston and Poppy were big hits, as you can see in the pictures. I’m not too proud to say that they were show stoppers! 😀 I’m also not too proud to admit that I was a gloating mama. They were wonderful breed ambassadors, Toffee and Preston, and Poppy was also a great example for the seniors. She has so much life and wore that grin all day long!
If you didn’t make it this year and live in the area, make sure to stop by in 2011! If you’re not in the Greenville, SC vicinity, check for a group in your area that focuses on ending chaining and stop by for their next event. You’ll be glad you did!