Pandemic Pets & Their Petrifying Parallel 

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Animal Care at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home in London

Mikaela T., Sports Writer and Editorialist

I watch lazily as the evening news runs through the typical political and CDC updates. About 20 minutes later it finally catches my attention; a story on puppies. Yet, it wasn’t the “feel good” story at the end of each broadcast. We were hardly halfway through.  

Pets adopted during the height of the pandemic were being returned to shelters. Peter Laurie, who is chief executive of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home in London told the New York Post “I think that’s going to happen as people gradually return to offices, [and] start thinking about taking holidays as well.” The tabloid additionally reports that it’s only expected to get worse. 

Oddly enough, the story reminded me of a sport; horse racing. The sport is infamously unethical, posing as a heightened risk of catastrophic injury and death for the horses. Yet no big changes have taken place.  

Unfortunately, culling is a call for concern within the industry. Breeding is a big component of the race; some horses not making the cut, and those that do, disappear once retired. ABC News investigation highlights widespread slaughter despite the industry’s alleged commitment to animal welfare. 

The similarity is undeniable; Humans using domesticated animals for entertainment only when it’s conventional. No longer willing to provide for the animal once deemed useless. Whether that cause be the lifting of restrictions or declining athletic performance. 

Ways to help are limited but not insubstantial. Volunteer at your local animal shelter! A pair of helping hands would be appreciated during such a stressful time. As for racing, spread the word. Encourage others to avoid attending and supporting the sport. There’s a variety of petitions to sign as well. We as a society need to take a hand in preventing these abuses, so start here.