LETTERS: Suffering met with silence

Editor:

Re: Animals suffer from our apathy, March 17 letters.

Editor:

Re: Animals suffer from our apathy, March 17 letters.

We moved to White Rock last October and were not aware of the estimated 34,000 homeless cats in Surrey until I read Frank Sterle Jr.’s letter to the editor.

He writes, “In my opinion, humanity’s overall apathetic, if not callous, inhumane streak is to blame for this totally avoidable suffering of fellow sentient mammals.”

I expected a deluge of letters to the editor supporting his obvious great concern for these cats who suffer through no fault of their own and his recommendations to prevent the unimaginable suffering these cats go through before they die.

To my surprise, I haven’t seen one letter to Peace Arch News since March 17 regarding it. There was one letter regarding animal abuse, leghold traps on March 24, but it was not directed to the stray-cat situation.

I started wondering why people in general – including some mayors and councils – appear to be apathetic. Do some simply not care about the inhumane suffering of these cats because they have become so hardened or insular as a society that they just care about me and mine resulting, in my opinion, in the eventual breakdown of society?

Is it because some are so overwhelmed by the problem that they can’t get a handle on it and a corresponding plan of action? Or is it because they can’t put a face to the problem, as the cats are out of sight as they roam around looking for someone to care for them, for food, and shelter and in hiding out of fear?

I must admit I feel overwhelmed by the numbers (34,000 cats ‘given free rein’ in Surrey, March 5). Other municipalities in the Lower Mainland and the rest of B.C. have stray-cat issues, although perhaps not as large as Surrey.

I know from experience after dealings with four stray cats that they are capable of great love, courage, and have feelings of love, pain and suffering and fear just like we do.

I had moved into an apartment in 1985 with my dog. One day, very soon after moving in, I saw this extremely thin, scraggy black cat running across the parking lot with a limp. It looked half dead. I asked a neighbour about the poor thing. She had heard that it had been abandoned a few months ago when the owners moved. It had been hit by a car, which was why it limped.

We took him to the vet’s, but there was nothing he could do; he mercifully put the cat down.

Please don’t be a part of the stray problem by abandoning pets instead of taking them to a shelter, and by not getting them spayed or neutered.

I hope you will do whatever you can to be a part of the solution.

Roberta Tench, White Rock

 

 

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