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Is pet ownership a sign of insanity?

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posted on Jan, 21 2009 @ 08:54 AM

Let me prephase this theory by letting you all know that I have never owned any sort of animal, nor do I think I ever will. I honestly can't understand what the attraction is to the idea, especially during supposedly trying economic times. You'd think the sheer cost of pet ownership would drive people away, but the stereotypes of the poor old "cat lady" with no job or much money living in a house teeming with felines and that of the homeless man and a big, mangy dog at his side don't back that up. I can't believe how much some people I know are willing to pay for medical care for their animals - I've even heard of people buying insurance for them!

You're ignoring the benefits of pet ownership, such as purchasable, unconditional love and attention. Not to mention, many studies show that pets reduce stress and lead to longer lifespans.

Also, pets are inherently filthy and smelly. If you don't want them dragging dirt and other gunk into your home, defecating, urinating and vomiting on your carpet and tearing up your possessions, you have to spend a lot of money on obedience training.

Or just fastidious cleaning. If you bathe your pets, clean up after their accidents, and just do some rudimentary training, it's fine. Carpet is a pretty big no no...stick to tile or wood floors.

Don't forget to add that the bestial nature of these creatures puts their owners, their families, their visitors and their neighbors at risk. You don't have to look far to find news of yet another dog mauling or even killing someone. Everyone knows that cats will eat their deceased owners corpses without hesitation. Don't even get me started on the more exotic animals some people feel compelled to own. Remember that monkey in California or some place that literally tore its owner to shreds a few years ago, even ripping off his testicles?

I don't think I have anything to worry about with my chihuahuas or cats. As for larger animals, dogs and cats have been domesticated over thousands of years... Other animals...are kept at the owner's own risk, most assuredly... The dogs that maul are typically a certain breed bred for such behavior, so shouldn't come as a big shock.

I see people talking to their animals, treating them like children or loved ones. These same people shamelessly dine on other animals and kill them every day. Do they not realize that animals are not on our level? It's impossible to communicate with them and I feel that to think otherwise is a clear sign of insanity.

Untrue, pets understand many vocal cues and behaviors. For example, if I say the word "treats" in any voice or inflection, they know EXACTLY what that word meand. In addition, when we turn off the tv at night, they know it's bedtime, etc. and head upstairs. We humans like to think that animals have no cognitive ability whatsoever, but it isn't so... As far as dining on animals...there are some plants people cultivate just for beauty, and yet others we devour. Just depends on how you categorize everything. For me, there are pet animals (care for, don't eat), there are food animals (eat), and there are wild animals (avoid). Fairly simple really.

I know there is a small minority block of pet owners who are closeted beastophiles. Besides those who need trained animals to perform some tangible service - guide dogs for the blind, helper monkeys, riding horses, hunting dogs, et cetera - these perverts are just about the only segment of the pet ownership community that I feel have a justifiable reason for keeping an animal.

Eew... That's really all I can say about that...

Can anyone explain this insanity to me?

It's simple really. I could either come home to an empty house (as I get home earlier than my wife), or I could come home to 4 little gals who have been waiting all day to see me, shower me with affection, and then curl up around me as I sit down to watch some tv, making me feel loved and appreciated.

posted on Jan, 21 2009 @ 09:20 AM
I haven't read the entire thread yet (half-way through), but it is an interesting read so far. I just want to contribute my two cents:

To start off, I don't entirely disagree with the OP.

Pets are sold in pet stores. Until they are bought, they are trapped in confined spaces on display in cages. Would you want to be trapped in a cage? Obviously, this is a marketing strategy to arouse pathos, encouraging people to buy pets, encouraging sales. This is an example of animals being used as a commodity, which is somewhat a form of slavery.

A side note: I hear my friends always say things like "oh, I like the such-and-such breed of dog because it has such-and-such features." Does this mean a pet owner will for instance, buy a dog because it is pretty and not buy another dog because it is ugly? That is absolutely ridiculous. If one wants a pet solely for companionship, he will not choose the pet based on physical attractiveness.

When a pet is bought and brought into its new home, it may be treated like family. But what family member isn't allowed to leave the house on his own will? Excluding fish and other marine animals, pets like dogs and cats can only leave the house if its "owner" opens the door for them.

Obedience training is the same as forcing an animal into submission. When a pet owner says to a dog "sit" he is commanding it to sit and not asking it to sit. If the dog does not obey his orders, it is being "bad" and he will discipline it. Why does the dog have to listen to his "owner" in the first place?

(Please understand that I use the word "discipline" in the most general sense to simply mean the idea of discipline and not necessarily violence.)

On the other hand, if a child disobeys his parent, the parent disciplining the child I find is more plausible. Firstly, the child was conceived by his parents (he was conceived from the sperm of his father and the egg of his mother), so the slightest idea of ownership actually has some relevance. Secondly, the child is of the same species of his parents, so it is sensible to communicate using human language. It is also sensible to to say that the child understands his parents (mental disabilities aside).

A pet however is not a human, so it is impossible to communicate 100% clearly.

Having typed all this, I hope I won't get flamed for slightly agreeing with the OP (though I think calling pet owners "insane" might be a bit harsh). I also notice that there are lots of posts that simply say "this is dumb" without using a series of quote-response replies. While I understand why you may be upset about the OP's views, it would be more beneficial to all of our readers to understand why you disagree.

Hope my post was relevant and shed some light on this topic. Thanks for reading. I will continue to read the rest of this thread.

(I posted anonymously before, so this may be a double post, please delete the previous one if that is the case. I accidentally navigated to another page after posting so I didn't see what the confirmation message was saying.)

posted on Jan, 21 2009 @ 10:55 AM
OP's opinion would lead me rationally down the following route:

Pet owner = insane, dumb, dirty...


Looking at other threads:

Woman hater, control junkie, neat freak is how the OP is coming across. Would say perhaps that some of those characteristics would be shared by some of the more famous inhabitants of a good few establishments' death rows...

Let me guess...profile is male between the ages of 25 and 35. Over-inflated sense of worth and self. Solitary. Enjoys privacy. Likes to think of other humans as herd animals. The prey and the predator...

Becomes easily defensive and angry. Exhibits obsessional behaviour.

What do I know? I am just a fat, old chick with two dogs and zero conversation. My partner is equally fat and old and he has chosen me as I dont threaten his masculinity and esteem as he is also one of the many global losers...

Hey ho..glad we have "top of the foodchain" types like the OP to keep us in our place.

posted on Jan, 21 2009 @ 11:02 AM
Hey Op!

Thought you might get a kick out of this questionnaire.

Happy times


posted on Jan, 21 2009 @ 12:17 PM
It's natural to want companionship, a pet will be filthy if you neglect it or leave it in it's cage/hutch. If you look after your pet properly it will be very clean and very little smell(not including ferrets). Rabbits are very sociable and loving peoples who need your attention and time for both the rabbit and human to understand each others personalities. My rabbit saved me on numerous occasions, he warned me that my Aunty was coming down the road to the house, giving me enough time to stub it out, chew some gum and put on perfume. His reward was a huge pile of dandilions and petting.

posted on Jan, 21 2009 @ 01:48 PM

When a pet is bought and brought into its new home, it may be treated like family. But what family member isn't allowed to leave the house on his own will? Excluding fish and other marine animals, pets like dogs and cats can only leave the house if its "owner" opens the door for them.

In my case, it's for their own safety... My dogs used to stay in the yard, and only a sharp word from me was needed to keep them from wandering. Then, one day, a couple of them decided they wanted to run far and wide to chase a bird, and one ran right into an oncoming car. I still, to this day, can replay that moment in my head, and I'm still absolutely amazed and in wonder as to how all she got was a scratch on the nose, when she was literally under that car as it sped by... She was in shock for a couple of hours (myself...even longer, hehe...). These days I use long leashes, for their own safety.

Other than fish (due to their need of water, and I have a big tank for them), I'm not into keeping animals in confined spaces (so no birds or rabbits, etc.). My dogs have the run of the house, but will CHOOSE to always be near us, whenever we are home.

posted on Jan, 21 2009 @ 08:26 PM

Originally posted by EverythingYouDespise

Do they not realize that animals are not on our level? It's impossible to communicate with them and I feel that to think otherwise is a clear sign of insanity.

Just because other animals such as dogs and cats are not at the same intelligence level does NOT mean they cant communicate.

I point you in the direction of Koko the gorilla

koko was capable of communicating using american sign language. Koko was able to talk with people and tell them when she was hungry or sad or happy , was able to identify correctly, different items and was probably one of the most intelligent non human animals ever known.

She even had a pet cat. When her cat died she showed the ability to understand the concept of death. She held her dead cat close for a few minutes said "koko sad" set the cat down and moved on.

other animals are capable of communication as well.

Have you never seen a dog understand commands such as sit, speak lie down etc? That is a form of communication.

There is scientific evidence that having pets is good for your health both physically and mentally. Ever heard of therapy dogs?

There is also scientific evidence that when people are sad or angry your pets sense that and will move in close to you in an attempt to make you feel better.

On top of all that, pets bring love companionship, loyalty, patience and understanding to us and it is for that reason that I would be more inclined to believe that people who dont like animals are the "insane one".

After all, human beings are infact, animals as well.


posted on Jan, 22 2009 @ 03:20 AM
Our love for domestic animals helps us to understand that animals feel pain, and are emotionally more complex than we could imagine.

That experience - hopefully - will improve our culture's attitude towards animal husbandry overall, and we can eat meat without intense cruelty.

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