To the Editor,
Re: Animal protection far from adequate, April 16.
Toby Gorman makes some excellent points in his column.
Indeed, under the law, animals are property, with essentially the same status as a chair or a plate.
And he is absolutely correct when he says the changes to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act will be useless in stopping abuse in the dog sled industry.
However, I disagree a ban on sled dog racing would have been as controversial as Gorman thinks, by opening the door to banning other activities such as rodeos, horse racing and other businesses that use animals for profit.
The reality is that banning the use of sled dogs for profit is the only way to prevent another atrocity like the slaughter of 100 sled dogs last April from happening.
This is the case for many very good reasons, the primary one being that once the public is gone, the industry operates in remote locations out of the public consciousness. This provides them with immunity from any moral oversight.
Besides, change happens incrementally, not all at once. Just as we have higher standards for the way dogs are treated compared to the way we treat farm animals (most of whom suffer horribly from birth to death), we might have higher standards for one industry compared to another.
This is the way society evolves and better to start there than uphold the status quo by implementing laws that will not protect the animals they were meant to.
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