Karma Critters

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By now, pretty much everyone has heard that buying pets from breeders instead of adopting from shelters contributes to cruelty. Here’s why: there are many millions of homeless dogs and cats in the world. By and large, they make better pets than many purebreds because their genetic lineage is already a combination of qualities from animals who have won the natural selection game and are smart enough, strong enough, healthy enough, etc. to survive. Purebreds come from a gene pool of animals that were pampered and bred to look a certain way, often at the expense of their health. If you take one of those home, in addition to risking getting one that is stupid, neurotic, prone to illness or disease, mean, or just plain no fun to have in the family, you’re also condemning to death (or life in an enclosure) a dog or cat that is already in a shelter cage somewhere waiting to be rescued. That’s just one way that buying pets from breeders contributes to cruelty. There are more.

Additionally, people who make money from animals are often more concerned with profit than with the welfare of the animals. Many purebred cats and dogs come from a female who is made to reproduce constantly and repeatedly until she is worn out and discarded. This type typically spends its entirety of its life in a cage or pen, never knowing what it is like to be a “pet”. The puppies and kittens escape when sold, but the parents never do. This is where the term “puppy mill” comes from.

And finally, a financial consideration: purebreds cost from several hundred to several thousand dollars. Adoptions currently average $35 to $50 and these animals are likely to have fewer vet bills. This is not to say that your purebred does not deserve a terrific life. Of course it does. But buying them in the first place encourages the breeder to make more, condemning more animals to shelters or euthanasia.

I’ve adopted many pets in the course of my lifetime and have been very happy with the results. I don’t think someone with just-the-right-looking dog or cat could possibly be any happier than we’ve been with our mutts. Whatever your worldview tells you is the reason non-human animals are here, it’s hard for me to believe they are meant to be our fashion accessories at the expense of others who happen not to go as well with your designer sofa.

And with the bags of money you’ll save by not buying a purebred fashion accessory, perhaps you’d like to treat yourself to something fun that will remind you of your compassion and thrift. If so, I hope you’ll consider browsing our Bizarro Shop! We have a handful of different things on offer, but today I’m featuring this one because it’s one of my faves: The Lucky Luchador Guitar Player enamel pin! So fun, I can barely keep from soiling myself. Click here to nab one for yourself or some other lucky galoot.

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Now it’s time to see what kind of karma Wayno was piling up last week…

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I don’t want this entire post to be about one topic but I have to say this about pet birds: keeping a bird in a cage is like keeping a cat in a straightjacket or a dog chained to a post. It’s cruel. Imagine yourself tied to a tree for the majority of your life because the local birds and squirrels enjoy the sound of your snoring. I find that it isn’t much more difficult to be a decent person than it is to be a selfish creep. It’s more rewarding, too.

And, based on comments about this cartoon from other social media this week, some folks don’t see a difference between keeping cats or dogs as pets and keeping birds. The difference is that domesticated cats and dogs chose to live with humans because it benefitted their species. If this were the case with birds, they wouldn’t need a cage to keep them from leaving.

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This is why I carry a container of ipecac on me at all times. Better safe than sorry.

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Now that same-sex marriage is legal in the U.S., insect marriage can’t be far behind! (Am I right, Fox News viewers?)

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I can easily imagine a time a few hundred years from now when someone finds an old Magic Eight Ball and successfully builds a worldwide religion around it. Of course, that’s contingent upon there still being humans living on earth in a few hundred years, which at this point is actually somewhat more difficult to imagine than the 8-Ball religion thing.

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Wayno loves him some clown cartoons; probably more than anyone I’ve ever known. Each time he comes up with one, I wonder if it will be his last, but in Wayno’s weekly blog post, he says he’ll never run out and announces when the next one will be published. Point your peepers at his post about this batch and hurry back for the rest of this one!

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If this kid isn’t careful, she’s going to be sent to her yoga mat for a child’s-pose time out.

And with that, the final curtain drops on our cartoon variety show, Jazz Pickles. Thanks for not throwing any rotten tomatoes. If you like what we do and that we do it without ads, perhaps you’ll consider patronizing some of the links below. Now that the newspaper industry is shrinking and we’re giving our work away for free on the Interwebs, every little bit helps to keep the campfire burning at Rancho Bizarro!

Until next week, be happy, be smart, be nice, and resist ignorance and fascism.

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Dan Piraro26 Comments