The Plight And Problem Of Feral Animals Everywhere.

Discussion in 'Science & Nature' started by Yvonne Smith, Nov 28, 2016.

  1. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    For thousands of years mankind and animals have existed together, sometimes to the benefit of both species, and sometimes not. We have domesticated animals both for food and for protection, and hunted wild animals for the same reasons.
    Now, we have a problem that is maybe unique in all of history, at least in its dimensions. While the wild animals are disappearing, as @Honey Gee pointed out in another thread, the domesticated animals have been becoming feral , in greater and greater numbers, until some cities have them in epidemic proportions.
    Detroit is a fine example of this.
    As the automobile industry there floundered, people lost their jobs and their homes, and moved away, sometimes leaving behind the family pets, both dogs and cats. These former house pets had to learn to survive on their own, and began to roam and hunt in packs in the city.
    As they had offspring, these dogs and cats were born and lived, never knowing the kindness of having a domesticated life, and each generation has become more feral than the last.

    Even in places where this is not an epidemic like it is in Detroit, it is still a serious problem, because there are more and more abandoned animals struggling to survive everywhere.
    One way of dealing with this problem is feeding and trapping the feral strays, and then neutering them as they are trapped.
    Often, they are then marked, usually by a notch on the ear, so that the ones which have already been neutered are not trapped again, and those poor creatures live a semi-wild existence where they are sometimes fed and sometimes not.
    We have lived in places where there were feral cats around, and even though we could not catch them, they would sneak in and eat the food that we put out for them.

    Because of pit bull attacks on innocent people, many places do not allow tenants to have any kind of dog that looks like it has bulldog in the ancestry, and this seems to be both the kind of dog that more people are breeding for protection, and also the kinds that are being left behind when people move
    I belong to the local Facebook group for lost dogs, and people are always finding emaciated starving pit bulls who have been left when their owners moved to a new house that didn't allow pets.
    In the places where there are large packs of feral dogs, it is not even safe to live there anymore, which only adds to the problem. Before these areas can be reclaimed for housing again, the packs of dogs will have to be trapped or more likely, killed in some way.

    This whole situation of abandoned pets seems to have gotten so far out of hand that there does not appear to be any good solution for the problem at this point.

    http://www.rollingstone.com/culture...etroits-epidemic-of-50-000-wild-dogs-20120320
     
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  2. Honey Gee

    Honey Gee Well-Known Member
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    I totally agree with your sentiment Yvonne. The Spanish are notoriously cruel (not all) to their domestic pets, merely used as guards for their homes, sometimes left in appalling conditions or worse chained up for 24 hours a day.

    We also have another problem. The hunting dogs known as Podenco. The Canarian hunters will adopt a dog for the season, take it up into the mountains to shoot it,beat it to death or abandon it as they do not want the cost of the up keep.

    A well known veterinary surgeon Jane Burke originally from England has been a massive campaigner for these faithful dogs. Sadly not a rose coloured view. She thinks mass euthanasia will solve overpopulation and bills are already flying through parliament as we speak. I agree. If responsibility affords and the hunters in turn become responsible then by all means allow them to keep their dogs as we do have an over abundance of rabbits.


    The other problrm is trying to control the cat population with a neutering programme, currently successful. The cats tend to live mostly on small lizards and food left by volunteers then I am all in favour. At last the sterilisation message has got through.

    We do have a responsibility to preserve our wild birds as well.

    Thank you Yvonne for a very interesting article.
     

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  3. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    Another interesting side to this is that not only are the domesticated animals becoming feral, but we also have wild animals moving into towns and cities to live because they can find plenty of food there.
    Coyotes roam city streets here in America, and in other countries, it is apparently foxes that are moving into urban areas. This is not just a matter of suburban sprawl pushing the animals out of their natural habitat, it is that the coyotes are moving into the inner cities and surviving there, with basically NO natural enemies like they have in the wild. Except for being hit by a car, the coyotes have no real dangers. Out in the country, farmers will shoot a coyote if they start killing the chickens or baby livestock; but in town, no one shoots at them, and they are no longer even afraid of people like they once were.
    Some areas estimate that there are more raccoons and opossums living in the urban areas than in the surrounding countryside. Even large animals like elk and moose are learning to live inside urban areas of smaller towns.
    In northern Idaho, where I grew up, the moose now wander through the town, and not just in winter when the snow is deep, they also come in the summer.
    The reason for this is because the federal government has released wolves into north Idaho, and the wolves and coyotes are killing the deer, elk and moose. My friend who still lives there said that they see coyote packs attacking and killing deer right at the edge of town along the main highway.
     
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