On the subject of whether PETA is justified in their stance that all and feral cats should be rounded up and killed instead of using T/N/R (Trap-Neuter-Return) and all pitbulls should be killed:
I’m 44 years old and have been rescuing nonhuman animals for over 30 years now. For the past 7 years I’ve been “officially” rescuing, socializing, and re-homing stray and feral cats (I’ve been Vegan for 4 years btw). I currently have 14 in my rescue (my 2-room apt.) and my family has 6 more in the other section of our house (15 rooms in a broken down 130-year-old home in Ct.).
I don’t hate any one person or any group of people. I try not to hate at all. I try to focus on love, respect, justice, and kindness, for all sentient beings.
However, there are some things I dislike very much about PETA.
PETA kills 85% of the healthy animals that are surrendered to them (not euthanizes, that is a term that means killing only in the circumstances of catastrophic illness or injury). PETA’s stance on “pitbulls” (as stated publicly by Ingrid Newkirk herself) is that they should all be killed, simply because they are “dangerous.” Despite the fact that smaller dogs account for a larger proportion of the attacks on humans each year.
Newkirk also believes that all healthy feral and stray cats should be rounded up and killed, “to prevent their future suffering.”
In my work, I’ve had to release some cats back to the outdoor areas from which I trapped them. Believe me, it was not my first choice. If I could have found homes for every single animal, I would have gladly done whatever I could to see them safe and sound indoors for the rest of their lives. However, there are just not enough safe homes for animals around here as one would want. A small percentage of cats, even with socialization (and I’m an expert on that) will not tolerate staying inside for the rest of their lives, especially when they’ve lived most of it outside. It’s a hell of a job trying to get most feral cats to even tolerate being touched, let alone being kept indoors 24/7. I’m not saying it’s impossible, just difficult.
Still, I managed to get at least 45 kittens and quite a few adult cats adopted out in the time I was most active in rescue. I T/N/Red many, many more.
Would it be better to put all the stray cats in homes? Of course. Are there some strays who we can’t find homes for right this minute and whom we have no choice but to return to the outdoors, who will die a painful, slow or pointless death? That would be yes as well. But the truth is, many of those cats can live perfectly long, healthy lives if they are taken care of in feral colonies by responsible, loving people. What we really need is many, many more of those people, and they need to be Vegans.
Killing healthy animals by the thousands is not only not going to help the problem of the millions of homeless domesticated nonhumans who currently exist, but it will actually make it worse. Taking strays and feral cats out of their neighborhoods and killing them actually increases the number of cats in those neighborhoods, since the ones left behind will ramp up their reproductive cycle to fill the niche left by the missing cats. TNR actually halts that process and decreases the number of cats overall. I’ve personally seen this happen many times.
And killing them is incredibly immoral. Killing healthy animals is not the answer, no matter how you dress it up as “humane” or “painless.” The truth is, nonhuman animals have a fundamental right to live out their lives free from the threat of being killed simply because we don’t want to be responsible for their suffering. Guess what? We are responsible. We got them into this mess, and killing them is NOT the way to get them out. It makes much more sense to observe their moral rights and be compassionate at the same time.
True justice means choosing to let any healthy animals who we can’t find homes for live their lives and face their end on their own terms, not arbitrarily choosing to end the lives of some because we can’t find a better solution than to just destroy who we can’t control. We can never know for sure which cats will live long, happy lives outdoors and which ones will suffer. Justice is not always about reducing suffering. There is a moral reason to allow nonhumans to remain outdoors, if your only other option is to just kill them outright.
“TNR has been going on for many years and apparently it does not work, otherwise there would eventually be no more feral cats.”
1. Killing healthy animals is immoral. It does not matter if it “works” or not (it doesn’t, it makes more cats, not less). If you think it’s not immoral, then why not just kill homeless humans too? Because you think humans matter more than nonhumans? We don’t. Each nonhuman values their lives just as much as each human does. Might as well kill millions of humans to reduce their population too.
In addition, each life of each individual “prey” animal is not more important or valuable than each life of each cat. Killing is not the answer. It never is.
2. TNR has never been done on a large enough scale to effect the entire population of cats in each country. There are still huge numbers of cats in large numbers of areas in many countries where TNR has never even been considered… those people either just ignore cats or kill them in a misguided attempt to curb their populations. And cats travel when they need new food sources or territories. So unless enough people stop supporting the killing of healthy animals and start contributing to the TNR efforts, we’re going to keep having these problems.
Plus, it’s not a case of “we TNR cats for ____ years and then we’re done.” It needs to be mandatory until domesticated cats don’t exist anymore. If we stop TNRing while there are still cats extant, the problem will just resurface. We don’t need more people thinking that it’s morally justifiable to violate nonhuman rights through thinly disguised violence, no matter how well-intentioned. What we need is for more people to go Vegan and educate others on Veganism, which will eliminate the problem of domestication entirely. Ending the problem of speciesism, and hence, domestication, will automatically end the currently unending problem of homeless nonhumans. And in the meantime, the only morally justifiable stopgap measure is T/N/R, combined with nonhuman rescue and feeding our nonhuman family Vegan wherever and whenever possible.
3. Human breeding of cats is still ongoing. Even if we T/N/R almost all the feral and stray cats, we’re still going to have more intact cats getting out into the wild and adding to the homeless cat population. Breeding for fun and profit needs to end.
Newkirk and PETA also regularly praise the people who institutionally exploit animals so they can sell flesh, dairy, eggs and honey for their “Happy Meat” and “Humane Slaughter” programs.
All of the big “Animal Organizations” are corrupt and useless when it really comes to helping animals in any significant way. If you want to understand why, I have some info here:
“Deconstructing PETA’s Thinking”:
“PETA: A Corporate Tangle Of Contradictions”:
“When Sex Doesn’t Sell: Using Sexualized Images of Women Reduces Support for Ethical Campaigns”:
“PETA fat-shames in ‘Save the Whales’ campaign”:
“PETA Names Part-Time Animal Abuser and Misogynist Ricky Gervais Person of the Year”:
“PETA cool with lobster death – if at the White House”:
“PETA employees’ prosecution exposed a shocking (and deadly) practice”:
“PETA’s Death Cult, Part 1: Celebrities Getting Naked in the Name of Euthanasia”:
“PETA’s Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad History of Killing Animals”:
“Controlling an animal as deadly as a weapon” or how PETA advocates killing all pitbulls:
“Don’t turn your back on feral cats” or how PETA advocates killing all feral cats:
“Strange but True… PETA’s stance on Feral Cats…”:
We don’t need PETA, HSUS, ASPCA, and all these huge, bloated, “Animal Charities” to save all the homeless cats and dogs, completely put an end to domestication, and help all the animals of the world. What we need is for me and you and everyone else to go Vegan, rescue, volunteer, adopt, foster, spay, and neuter the nonhuman refugees of domestication and educate others about these issues.
If you’re not already Vegan, and you think animals matter morally, then please go Vegan. It’s easy and great for you, incredible for the animals, and wonderful for the planet. If you’re already Vegan, please educate non-Vegans about why they should go Vegan. Please rescue, volunteer, adopt, foster, spay, and neuter the nonhuman refugees of domestication whenever you can. Please feed your nonhuman family Vegan where you can. These things are the most important, morally responsible things to do and are desperately needed by everyone.
To learn more about Abolitionist Veganism and the issues I’ve outlined in this post, check out The Master List Of Vegan Info:
Disclaimer: My only goal with this list is to produce as comprehensive a resource for Vegan information as possible. I am 100% Abolitionist Vegan and 100% against exploitation of nonhuman or human animals, any type of violence against human or nonhuman persons or property, welfare regulation, any form of speciesism, ethnic bigotry, genderism, ableism, heterosexism, etc., any of the large governmental or non-governmental nonhuman animal organizations, “happy meat,” vegetarianism, veg*nism, Meat-Free Mondays, or other forms of reductionism and anything else that makes it seem like any form of violence or exploitation of animals is ok. If any of those positions are endorsed on any site in this list, or any language is used to imply that, it’s not that I included that link because I agree, but simply because I don’t control every bit of information on all of these sites.