By Robert Morales —
Last week, someone drove up to my 84-year-old aunt's house and dropped off two dogs that apparently the owner no longer wanted.
The small dogs barked loudly and my aunt was upset that the dogs wouldn't stop barking. The dogs found a way to escape out of the fence and who knows what happened to them.
It's examples like these that infuriate me and those persons who truly care about the welfare of pets. There is simply no excuse for the mistreatment of animals, and furthermore, there is no excuse for people to willingly accept a pet just to keep them chained outside, usually with a short leash, and no access to water.
All one has to do is drive around town and see the number of wandering dogs that may or may not have an owner. I know of at least one instance of an owner who has a large dog chained to a tree.
It's a female dog, and the dog has had several litters. I've spoken to this owner, and he insists that the dog is well-taken care of, but I know that's not true. I've seen his children kick and otherwise mistreat the smaller dogs.
Council member Cheri Friday has been a strong advocate on behalf of abandoned and mistreated animals. If asked, she will volunteer to take an abandoned pet to a no-kill animal shelter in El Paso.
This problem, like others plaguing our town, is one of those where if you don't talk about it, it doesn't exist. Well, the problem does exist, and I've heard visitors to our town complain about the number of stray dogs running around neighborhoods.
In the case of mistreated animals, those persons who have actual knowledge of the situations should step up and make a complaint to Animal Control. Those same people should also take photos as proof of the mistreatment. If they don't have a camera, they should call someone with a camera to take the photos.
Fortunately, Van Horn has a large number of very caring pet owners, and that helps to counter the owners who have no business owning a pet. Either these people are stupid, or they are willing participants in the cruelty that is inflicted on these poor animals. Yes, a small puppy, depending on the breed, is going to grow larger. If it's a large breed, the small puppy will not remain a puppy.
We should all do our part in helping to place animals in good homes. We should help educate owners that female pets should be spayed and male pets should be neutered.