As I tuned into my first dog show last week, I was met with a bunch of filthy animals pretentiously prancing around the center ring, each one pompously groomed and basking in the national spotlight.
Their dogs, on the other hand, were great. Most displayed remarkable discipline and profound poise under pressure. It’s especially impressive considering they are forced to remain at the side of their insufferable handlers/owners throughout the event.
I don’t hate all dog owners—only the ones that can’t discern dogs from human children. I mean the type of owners that bring their dogs with them everywhere they go, including places where only humans belong, such as restaurants, grocery stores, and airplanes. These same people are likely to refer to their dogs as “children” or “kids” when speaking about them to other people.
I peg most of the people who participate in dog shows as exactly this type of people.
But they are not the most insane people that show up at these dog shows. That right belongs to PETA. And it is PETA’s persistent pestering of these eccentric dog lovers that has prompted me to come to their unlikely defense.
PETA is basically a wannabe government, telling people—especially pet owners—how to live their lives. While I don’t own a pet myself, I do have a pet peeve—when people make other people’s business their business and tell them how to live their lives. So when I saw PETA telling people not to watch the 138th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show last Tuesday night, it was strictly out of spite, rather than interest, that I tuned in.
Unlike the government, PETA is capable of setting up a working website, and they have no authority. And since they have no authority, they do the only other thing they can do when nobody listens to them—they bug the shit out of them.
This past week, as they do every year at America’s most prestigious dog show, PETA protesters stood outside of the show as patrons arrived at Madison Square Garden where it was being held. It’s also common for some protesters to go inside the show and walk into the center ring during the event before subsequently getting escorted out by security.
The crux of PETA’s problem with the Westminster Kennel Club is that it promotes the breeding of purebreds, which they say will “kill shelter dogs’ chances of finding a loving home.”
I am no veterinarian, but my intuition tells me that shelter dogs losing their chance at finding a loving home has less to do with the Westminster Kennel Club promoting purebreds and more to do with the overdose of barbiturates that PETA injects into the dogs’ bloodstreams.
In 2013 for instance, PETA killed 82 percent of the animals in its care (1,792 cats and dogs in all, about five per day). And as efficient of a kill rate as that may sound, it’s actually down from the 89 percent of animals that they killed in their care in 2012.
In its defense, PETA claims that most of the animals they kill are unadoptable due to injury or abuse. However, this article proves that’s bullshit. They don’t even really try that hard to save the animals.
In 2010, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services reported that 84 percent of the animals that PETA took in were killed within the first 24 hours.
One might think that a group that goes by the name “People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals” would feel behooved not to execute them before even spending a day trying to find a home for them. But no, the self-appointed voice for the well-being of animals opts to kill them instead. Then they have the audacity to turn around and blame the dogs’ death on breeders instead of their own half-assed effort and hasty execution.
Perhaps if they didn’t hate zoos so much they could use some of the $30 million they rake in annually and set a zoo up for the animals they wind up euthanizing. They could use the money they used to pay Khloe Kardashian for their “I’d Rather Go Naked than Wear Fur” campaign. Badly airbrushed or not, the rest of us would rather see Khloe wear fur than go naked anyway. Then again, it’s probably unrealistic to expect such a long-term commitment from a group can’t go a full day before giving animals the axe.
As absurd as all this is, it’s also irrelevant as far as I’m concerned. PETA may be a bunch of hypocritical, self-righteous, power-tripping nutjobs who may or may not get off on euthanizing helpless animals, but when it comes to owners choosing what kind of dog they want to buy, they have the right to buy any fucking dog they please.
After all, it is the owner, not PETA that is going to be the one that has to take care of it…well, I suppose PETA would be happy to take care of it for them—but not in the taking it for a walk, feeding it, and cleaning up its shit kind of way.
Good thing for the dog.