published Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

Assure good care for animals

Most of us, the young especially but many of us who are older, too, love animals. We enjoy our pets and want to take good care of them.

We like nature programs on TV, on which we see the wonders of live animals roaming in free ranges, in our own country, in the wilds of Africa or elsewhere.

Many of us also like to visit a zoo, to see exotic animals that typically are well cared for. Some people lament the animals' lack of freedom, even though they are well fed and medicated, and get loving attention.

We are upset, however, if we hear stories of neglect or mistreatment of animals, or even when unfortunate but natural events occur.

Hank, a chimpanzee popular at the Chattanooga Zoo at Warner Park, was found dead at the age of 42 recently. Heart problems may have been to blame. Whatever the cause, it was reported that 200 people attended Hank's memorial last Saturday! He was clearly popular.

Several other animals have also died at the zoo in a relatively short period of time, and a federal inspection found some problems at the zoo that might have contributed to a few of the deaths. Zoo officials have acknowledged some problems and challenged some of the other findings.

We should strive to ensure that all animals under human care get the proper, humane attention they need.

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fairmon said...

Those desiring to own and that love animals should be required to provide good care and protection. They should bear any expense in doing so and should be required to be sure their animals are not a nuisance, bother or expense to other people.

With so many people being "friends of the zoo" they should be able to solicit funding by private donations and entry fee charges to fund it. Money should not be confiscated from those that are not like minded to fund incarceration of innocent animals for others to gawk at. The "friends" could establish a B.O.D. and manage the zoo, hire a qualified manager of their liking and develop their own policies and procedures for incarceration and care.

Animal lovers insist on long term care and placement programs for dogs and cats and other animals without owners. Tax payers should not be required to support those efforts. The governments role is to protect citizens, including protection from stray and roaming animals. The use of tax money should only be to capture and provide care for 14 days before euthanizing. Any expense beyond that should be funded by private sources and donations.

This will make animal lovers irate but no more irate than cat tracks on my garaged car, dog dump in my yard, barking at night that disturbs sleep and confiscating money from me for long term animal care makes me.

I have friends and family with very lovable pets that go to great length and expense to care for them and prevent their being a bother to anyone. They have never asked me to help them care for or pay for their animal related expenses but know I would if they needed me to. They don't advocate the use of tax money to care for their animals or those owned by others.

February 8, 2011 at 7:53 a.m.
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