-America’s Pets Deserve Far Better From All Of Us-

Inspired By a Very Long, Hot, Extremely Sad Night, 
Attempting To Humanely Trap a Terrified Cast-A-Way; 
And, By a Recent Sad Statement, From a Shelter Worker,
That Will Now Remain With Me, Until My Own Dying Day.

 “When I'm walking them down the hallway,
I tell them that everything will be OK;
I tell them that I won't hurt them.
You talk to them for four or five minutes,
And you get to know them a little bit.
You become friends, and they soon start wagging their tails.
Then, you euthanize them, and, man, I just killed an animal
That I told everything would be OK. . . . that animal trusted Me.”

A Shelter Euthanasia Technician


 The longer I’m involved in pet rescue efforts 
The sadder, and more discouraged, that I get 
America’s many abandoned and abused animals 
Deserve far better; they should all be ‘treasured pets’ 

But these horrific days, we now routinely abandon, and we abuse them
We leave them in foreclosed homes and, we dump them, on our streets 
We pass them by, without a single glance, as they now scavenge for food 
If they don’t perish on their own, a euthanasia tech, they’ll now soon meet 

And the number of these forlorn American pets now taking ‘The Last Walk’ 
Has been horridly rising in our abysmal economy, over the past several years 
Our animal shelters and pounds used to euthanize about 6 million pets, annually 
Today, the number is now approaching 10 million, and very few, even shed a tear


Why do so many of America’s pets end up walking their very last walk, and breathing their very last breath, on the cold, hard, euthanasia area floors of America’s animal shelters and municipal pounds?

The short answer is simply because their tiny, cramped, quickly needed for yet one more discarded animal, shelter cage number, is now on an ever increasing ‘To Be Put Down List.’ A shelter employee recently told me that they now routinely take in nearly 100 discarded and abused animals each day; and perhaps, if they’re lucky, one or two pets a day, are now being adopted out. You do the math.

The long hard answer, the horrid answer, the far more accurate answer that so many people today won’t even acknowledge, is that more and more of America’s pets are now being forced to take this last walk because of our ever increasing carelessness, stupidity, cruelty, greed, and callousness.

People continue to let their dogs and cats run loose; and many of these people don’t bother with collar identification tags or micro-chips. Many of these roaming, untraceable pets soon become lost. The ‘lucky’ ones end up at an extremely overcrowded and woefully underfunded animal shelter; the ‘unlucky’ ones are eventually run over, or they starve to death.  

People continue to refuse to get their own animals spayed or neutered, despite the ever increasing number of ‘low-cost’ spay and neuter clinics available all across America, today. This, of course, consistently adds to America’s immense, and now ever increasing, pet overpopulation problem.

People continue to purchase expensive (and often ill) pets from atrociously abysmal puppy mills, and pet shops, and dog and cat breeders, while there are thousands and thousands of discarded and unwanted animals now filling each and every one of America’s shelters. And, when many of these extremely pricey purchased pets soon turn out to be sick, or even imperfect in some small way, they, too, now end up on our mean city streets or in an overcrowded shelter.

People, including many young adults and even young children today, continue to stage, and attend, and perpetuate illegal, and barbaric, and immensely cruel, dog fighting operations. And, the dogs who refuse to fight, or aren’t aggressive enough to suit our society’s ever increasing blood lust, are now also quickly dumped somewhere, to fend for themselves. They used to be shot in the head, but America’s growing number of greed-filled dog fighters today won’t even spend the price of a bullet on these unwanted dogs.

And, far too many people today in this country refuse to get involved in local community efforts to make our cities, and towns, and rural areas better places for America’s pets to live. It’s always, “I don’t have the time;” or, “I’d really like to help, but…,” or, “I’m sure someone else will take care of the problem.”

We human beings continue to do unspeakable, and atrocious, and absolutely inhumane things to America’s once treasured pets, and many others among us today simply ignore their dire plight; and I now so very sadly see absolutely no end in sight to their misery. And, absolutely none of these things, are the fault of these innocent creatures.

My heart broke once again, just last night, when the emaciated, starving, totally forlorn, totally forgotten, and now totally terrified little dog that we were attempting to catch, soon rushed off down the dark dirty alley, and vanished from sight, once more.

And I couldn’t even count the number of desperately hungry, homeless, and completely forgotten cats and their tiny emaciated offspring, now so very timidly peeking out from behind alley garbage cans, hoping that we might at least be compassionate enough to leave them just one tiny morsel of food, or even a few drops of fresh water, so they could somehow survive, just one more day.

Ed Kostro

©The Abysmal Summer of 2010,



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