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    Former MSE Lawrence
    MONEY MORAL DILEMMA: Should Anne put the animals down?
    • #1
    • 6th Apr 10, 7:24 PM
    MONEY MORAL DILEMMA: Should Anne put the animals down? 6th Apr 10 at 7:24 PM
    Here's this week's hypothetical situation for you to cogitate on:

    Should Anne put the animals down?

    Anne's always been an animal lover and over the years has acquired many strays. She's got a pony, two goats, four dogs, three cats and a hamster - many getting on in years and with medical problems. A year ago she lost her job - her savings have gone, and she's struggling to keep her home. Her biggest cost is the animals' welfare & food. Nobody wants to take them.

    Click reply to have your say

    Previous MMDs: View All



    Update Note From Martin

    A quick response on the "this shouldn't be discussed its not appropriate" notes a few have listed.

    This is a more common situation than you think it originates from a similar (though no identical) question posed to me about what the options were for pets when the money had run out.

    In the past I once did a money makeover on a woman who's was massively overspending due to her animals and causing financial problems. As some in the thread have said they have been put in severe debt due to animal costs.

    Just because the consequences of this aren't nice - doesn't mean we don't need think how to deal with it.

    Being open to debate is important

    This is a pure money moral dilemma - putting animals down is not illegal. Financially not having the animals adds up, yet is it morally acceptible. It's a moral v a money situation - exactly the type of MMD many people need face.

    We live in a meat eating society - animals are killed for food all the time - the moral difference between that and putting an animal down so someone can afford to eat - is a relatively fine line. Different people draw conclusions on both sides of it. It's also worth noting at some point if she loses her home and is declared bankrupt the animals may be homesless and without food too.

    Of course its to be hoped sancturies and animal welfare charities would take the animals - indeed she is very obviously an animal lover as are many - and no one wants to think of animals suffering - and it will cause great emotion to get rid of them. Yet I've heard reports that especially old and sick animals can't always be catered for (though have no empirical evidence).

    Would it be different if it were a farmer who had livestock that couldn't sell and thus his choice was to cull them in order to cut costs?

    Why debate it?

    The point of the MMD is to make people think - to come up with a situation where different people will have opposing views and learn from each other.

    Hopefully anyone in a similar position will be able to learn from the tips, solutions and options given above.

    Please lets try and have a sensible rational debate about what some people face as a real economic and ethical reality.

    Martin

    PS Some animal shelters to help anyone in this position provided by people in this thread.

    DOGS

    Founded in 1891, Dogs Trust (formerly the National Canine Defence League) is the largest dog welfare charity in the UK. Our mission is to bring about the day when all dogs can enjoy a happy life, free from the threat of unnecessary destruction.
    http://www.dogstrust.org.uk/rehoming...s/default.aspx

    CATS

    Helping the Harder to Home Cats ('Top Cats' section) - Most rescues find they have a few cats that always seem to be overlooked, and often stay in care for months or even years. They may be elderly, have a medical condition, be very shy, or are simply passed by in favour of prettier or younger cats. Rescues can feature any 'harder to home' cats on our Top Cats section. This section has been very successful in finding new homes for many cats, some of whom had almost given up hope.
    http://www.catchat.org/adoption/index.html

    RODENTS

    Special notice should be given to Paws Here in Edinburgh - I support and regularly donate to this shelter and I take in their elderly rats when I can.
    http://www.animalrescuers.co.uk/html/rabferr.html

    FARM ANIMALS

    I am less familiar with farm animals but I have these links which may help:

    http://www.farmanimalrescue.org.uk/f...ry-history.htm
    Middlesex

    http://www.thefarmanimalsanctuary.co.uk/
    Worcestershire

    http://www.animalrescuers.co.uk/html/farm.html
    UK

    This site in general is really good for around the country shelters:
    http://www.animalrescuers.co.uk/





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    Last edited by MSE Martin; 08-04-2010 at 9:22 PM.
Page 9
    • RuthnJasper
    • By RuthnJasper 7th Apr 10, 7:22 PM
    • 3,649 Posts
    • 8,698 Thanks
    RuthnJasper
    You say you will try to bypass the moral aspect of this debate, then base your whole argument on people's consciences. I am not quite sure how the logic of this works?

    Originally posted by Clive Woody
    Yes, well, I said I'd TRY to bypass the moral argument - I didn't say I'd succeed...! But some people are such slaves to conscience (whether rightly or wrongly) that pure logic is irrelevant in their ultimate decision. I suppose that's what I was getting at, in a round-about sort of way.

    Please don't have a go at me anyway - I'm firmly impaled on the fence on this particular MMD!!! (Plus, I got distracted when my dog threw up on my office floor, bless him).

    As I mentioned; I don't think this is a straight 'yes or no' problem for a lot of people. The psychological make-up of the individual is an overwhelming factor in the original MMD and, therefore, the impartiality of a logical conclusion is compromised because of the (potentially heart-breaking) finality of the ultimate decision.

    Good debate, though...
    • lemontart
    • By lemontart 7th Apr 10, 7:38 PM
    • 5,831 Posts
    • 7,416 Thanks
    lemontart
    no no no - fine a sanctuary or other organisation than can help www.anihome.co.uk for just some listed by county if they cannot help they many know of others who can.
    • RuthnJasper
    • By RuthnJasper 7th Apr 10, 7:47 PM
    • 3,649 Posts
    • 8,698 Thanks
    RuthnJasper
    If you can post links of shelters which will take animals in regardless of health - i'll happily link to them in the first post - then hopefully some will gain from it.
    Originally posted by MSE Martin
    Dear Martin,

    http://www.stokenchurchdogrescue.co.uk/ is where Jasper (and his two late predecessors) came from. To my knowledge, they don't euthanise (unless, obviously, it is in the best interests of the dog). The story of Jasper's time in the shelter is currently ongoing on his blog (link when clicking my username).

    Thanks for all you do for Moneysavers.

    Ruth (and Jasper) x
    Last edited by RuthnJasper; 07-04-2010 at 7:57 PM.
    • tallgirld
    • By tallgirld 7th Apr 10, 8:17 PM
    • 483 Posts
    • 322 Thanks
    tallgirld
    YES they should be put down.

    The dilemma is no one will take them in. The woman is skint and she is
    struggling to keep her home. Put the animals down. Some of them already have medical issues. The issues will get worse as she is not in a position to care for them. Get real people!!!
    • Clive Woody
    • By Clive Woody 7th Apr 10, 8:22 PM
    • 4,936 Posts
    • 5,516 Thanks
    Clive Woody
    I do not thing the term 'chop them up' is particularly a nice term, and I am sure could have been put in a more sympathetic manner. I agree there a two sides to this discussion. You are are obviously passionate about your Rugby, I am passionate about animals. As for getting a grip, dont patronise me.
    Originally posted by cindyted
    A post in response to those comparing animal euthanasia to child murder.

    I was posting an equally ridiculous emotive response, but from the other side of the argument. Hopefully that is now clear.

    "We act as though comfort and luxury are the chief requirements of life, when all that we need to make us happy is something to be enthusiastic about” – Albert Einstein
  • David_Q-T
    Deeply Offended
    Martin,

    I am so deeply offended by this item that I am unsubscribing from your newsletter and will no longer visit your website.

    Very disappointed.
    • Clive Woody
    • By Clive Woody 7th Apr 10, 8:31 PM
    • 4,936 Posts
    • 5,516 Thanks
    Clive Woody
    DOGS

    Founded in 1891, Dogs Trust (formerly the National Canine Defence League) is the largest dog welfare charity in the UK. Our mission is to bring about the day when all dogs can enjoy a happy life, free from the threat of unnecessary destruction.
    http://www.dogstrust.org.uk/rehoming/searchcentres/default.aspx
    Originally posted by Enchantica
    From their website "We never destroy a healthy dog"

    So dogs with medical conditions as mentioned in the first post on this discussion would most likely be for the chop.

    "We act as though comfort and luxury are the chief requirements of life, when all that we need to make us happy is something to be enthusiastic about” – Albert Einstein
    • Clive Woody
    • By Clive Woody 7th Apr 10, 8:36 PM
    • 4,936 Posts
    • 5,516 Thanks
    Clive Woody
    See ya
    Martin,

    I am so deeply offended by this item that I am unsubscribing from your newsletter and will no longer visit your website.

    Very disappointed.
    Originally posted by David_Q-T
    Your loss, bye then.



    I guess the great art of debating has descended to throwing toys out of the pram and having a bit of a sulk.

    "We act as though comfort and luxury are the chief requirements of life, when all that we need to make us happy is something to be enthusiastic about” – Albert Einstein
  • katehesk
    There is obviously two sides to the debate, and there is a lot of sentimentality when it comes to animals, especially pet animals.

    Those who suggest that having the animals put to sleep is a viable solution I would postulate that they are simply not animal lovers (and that is not said in criticism, it is just my opinion).

    Any one who has had pets AND loved them could simply not consider having their animals put to sleep and would go to any length to find an alternative solution.

    To those people who simply own an animal, but do not particularly value animals or find value in owning animals (and these people do exist, my grandma was a little like this and my mum once told me a story that when she saw a dog run over and killed - quite horrifically so - and was hysterically upset, she was told by my grandmother to shut up, get over it and that it was only a dog - yet my mum always had pets growing up) then maybe they could consider this.

    I am in the first camp, and could not consider having a healthy animal put to sleep, especially if it was one I had lived ALONGSIDE and LOVED for any period of time.

    I stated in the first post I made on this thread that I thought this dilemma was pretty disgusting. I have not read every post but have noticed that Martin has tried to defend the question, and I do appreciate people have different opinions, but at the very least this thread seems to promote irresponsible pet ownership i.e. If you lose your job and can't afford to keep your animals, just have them put to sleep, problem solved. Imo, that is simply not a moral solution.
    Last edited by katehesk; 07-04-2010 at 9:16 PM.
  • st2000
    I don't know why people are getting so offended by this very real dilemma.

    Surely euthanasia is a better end for a loved but elderly and sick pet than being dumped in a shelter?

    Katehesk, I would postulate that euthanasia is a very responsible thing to do if an animal is unlikely to be rehomed due to age/infirmity and cannot realistically be kept, and I don't think that is any reflection of how much you love animals.
    Last edited by st2000; 07-04-2010 at 9:03 PM.
  • katehesk
    All I can say in response is that I whole heartedly disagree.

    I must admit I struggle to truly empathise with the situation (and that is from a position of having, in the past, lived in relative poverty and kept animals). But I simply cannot imagine having my animals put to sleep, regardless of my financial circumstances, and nor can I understand how anyone could do that.
  • perplexed.com
    I think this is a dilemma that a lot of people face though perhaps in less extreme circumstances/ with less extreme choices. For example do you get into debt to provide healthcare for pets? It also raises the issue of how I think we, in the rich West, relatively value human and animal life. There are a lot of animals living much better, even pampered, lives in our homes whilst children (and animals ) elsewhere starve. This does trouble me sometimes and I speak as someone who truly loves my cats and treats them like family.

    It is also a bit unrealistic to think that no rescue centre ever euthanises animals who are too sick or old if there is no-one who can take them in. The numbers available to adopt them must be very limited in proportion to the number of animals in this situation.
    My favourite subliminal message is;
  • cindyted
    I think this is a dilemma that a lot of people face though perhaps in less extreme circumstances/ with less extreme choices. For example do you get into debt to provide healthcare for pets? It also raises the issue of how I think we, in the rich West, relatively value human and animal life. There are a lot of animals living much better, even pampered, lives in our homes whilst children (and animals ) elsewhere starve. This does trouble me sometimes and I speak as someone who truly loves my cats and treats them like family.

    It is also a bit unrealistic to think that no rescue centre ever euthanises animals who are too sick or old if there is no-one who can take them in. The numbers available to adopt them must be very limited in proportion to the number of animals in this situation.
    Originally posted by perplexed.com
    I do not know if you are aware that not all rescue dogs awaiting rehoming are in rescue centres, in fact a lot are in foster homes awaiting rehoming. This is where a lot of the elderly dogs go. It is kinder for them to be in a home environment, and also most of the fosterers are of the opinion that if they dont get rehomed then they will stay with them. If fact there is a dogs 'oldies' site on the internet which lists a lot of the older dogs needing rehoming. Also Many Tears Rehoming centre in Wales, will accept any dog regardless of its condition. They take in dogs from the puppy farms and the pound, to save them being put to sleep.
    • Munkee2
    • By Munkee2 7th Apr 10, 10:15 PM
    • 114 Posts
    • 35 Thanks
    Munkee2
    But someone else also pointed out that you can get free medical care here in the UK. That's a luxury you don't get in the US. Anyone who puts their pet to sleep because they don't want it anymore is heartless. That's all there is to it. There are options out there, even if it is rehoming or a sanctuary.
    Originally posted by Hokie97
    Unfortunately that's incorrect also. There's no such thing as free healthcare for animals in the UK.
    • Munkee2
    • By Munkee2 7th Apr 10, 10:18 PM
    • 114 Posts
    • 35 Thanks
    Munkee2
    Before people over-ran this planet with technology, nature cared for itself! Please think more about about caring for some of the more endangered creatures that are being destroyed by people as a consequence of their wanton destruction of their habitat. Just because an organism is cuddly does not mean that it is important in the greater scheme of things. In the UK, frogs, toads, newts, red squirrels, bats, hedgehogs, many bird species and other animals are far more important than a few commonplace pets; and they all survive in the countryside despite our "help", or more directly, in spite of man's collective ignorance. Where are the butterflies, moths and other insects that I used to wonder at in the '60s as a kid? Pesticides, monocultural agriculture, hedgerow destruction, herbicides, concrete, tarmac, deforestation (half of this is health and safety rubbish in urban areas) etc. have all played their part in the death of our rich and diverse plantlife and wildlife.

    Have the cuddly animals put to sleep -and do something useful instead - their ancestors might thank you for it --- after the human population has outgrown its time and polished itself off the planet.....
    Originally posted by globularcluster
    I just want to say that you're completely and utterly barking. And not in a good way either.
    • reluctantworkingmum
    • By reluctantworkingmum 7th Apr 10, 10:34 PM
    • 126 Posts
    • 115 Thanks
    reluctantworkingmum
    Lol, I offer my post count as a defence. I talk a lot under my one and only guise.

    You don't chat much in 3 years, do you?

    Edit: Or 2 and a half.
    Originally posted by aliasojo
    no i'm the quiet one (... read them all tho)

    joking aside - having seen your post count ....how the heck do you find so much time for all your posts???
  • perplexed.com
    I do not know if you are aware that not all rescue dogs awaiting rehoming are in rescue centres, in fact a lot are in foster homes awaiting rehoming. This is where a lot of the elderly dogs go. It is kinder for them to be in a home environment, and also most of the fosterers are of the opinion that if they dont get rehomed then they will stay with them. If fact there is a dogs 'oldies' site on the internet which lists a lot of the older dogs needing rehoming. Also Many Tears Rehoming centre in Wales, will accept any dog regardless of its condition. They take in dogs from the puppy farms and the pound, to save them being put to sleep.
    Originally posted by cindyted
    It's good to know that at least some oldies are able to be so well looked after but I fear this is probably still not the majority.
    My favourite subliminal message is;
  • lucycaspar
    So here's a solution in part anyway. There are plenty of people out there who would happily allow Anne to keep her pony and goats on their land in return for doing chores, etc. Immediately saving money. May not solve the problem long term but will allow her a bit more time to find homes for these animals. The hamster has a short life span anyway and cost very little to keep so why put it down? What about approaching her local schools to see if they would like to take it on? I remember having a class hamster at school.
    As for the dogs and cats I'd suggest an open an honest conversation with her vet about quality of life and potential future complications before deciding to put any of them down. Some may be nearing the end of what could be considered a good quality of life.
    I know all about this as I have had to have my cat put down for what ultimately were financial reasons, having been made redundant last year. Before any animal lovers have a go. Believe me when I say it was not an easy decision to make and followed many tearful conversations with my long suffering vet! Having spent over £2000 trying to give him a decent quality of life when he developed an secondary complication, the money just wasn't there to try and manage both conditions with only a small chance of sucessfully stabilizing him and I had to decide between further debt or my cat suffering. I chose the third option, one I never thought I would or could take.
    As for my four ponies that I can't afford to keep and are what most people would consider not re-homable due to their age/behaviour/health issues? Guess what, with a little bit of help (a local rescue centre and my lovely vet again!) and they've found new homes...
    There are plenty of people out there who can help, if you know where to look. Your local vet practice is always a good place to start.

    On a separate note, euthanasia is bloomin' expensive especially for that number of animals not mention having them disposed of correctly, is it really financially more viable to put them down would be a question I'd ask myself.
  • petraandcedismum
    Also please note from Martin's opening post

    She's got a pony, two goats, four dogs, three cats and a hamster - many getting on in years and with medical problems

    where in the opening post did it say the animals were healthy?
    Originally posted by lorne57
    Medical problems can be controlled.

    If you cannot keep them yourself, which I know sometimes you can't, you can always find homes (although it is hard), or someone could simply foster them.

    The PDSA are helpful in some situations.
    2 daughters:
    Cedi (9) and Petra (12)
    • aliasojo
    • By aliasojo 8th Apr 10, 8:58 AM
    • 22,264 Posts
    • 48,387 Thanks
    aliasojo
    no i'm the quiet one (... read them all tho)

    joking aside - having seen your post count ....how the heck do you find so much time for all your posts???
    Originally posted by reluctantworkingmum
    I have no life. Literally, unfortunately.
    Herman - MP for all!
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