Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Dog dumping in South Texas

Fellow Valley resident Noemi Martinez (She runs a kool Web site called Hermana Resist) brought a series animal abuse articles printed in The (McAllen) Monitor to my attention. It looks as though the city of Edcouch was picking up living stray dogs and then dumping their dead carcasses in ditches around Hidalgo County, apparently to save money, according to a city worker. I presume the dogs were being killed somehow, either by starvation or other methods. Either way, this is grossly despicable behavior. "It's revolting and disgusting," Noemi said. I think this shows how mean humans can be, but thank goodness at least one person had a conscience and shed some light on this tragic story and may prevent further abuses. I can't help but think how odd our culture is when it is OK to treat some animals (cows, chickens, pigs) in the torturous conditions of factory farms, but others, such as dogs, cats and horses, draw gasps from most in society when they are treated cruelly. The only reason why The Monitor pursued these stories is because it fit in that weird category where the line is drawn on animal cruelty. The problem is that the ethics of animal cruelty are not consistent, and so it obvious why some can't understand what the rules of decency are. It is equally strange to me why some think it is OK to eat cows, chickens and pigs and odd that someone would consider consuming a horse, dog or cat. We don't need to consume any animal to survive, and if had a culture of treating other animals with dignity and respect as fellow living creatures, we would never fall into the trap of what's ethical or not. Being cruel to any animal would not be ethical, and no one would confuse that. Here are the links to the stories from The Monitor on the dog abuses: No. 1, No. 2, No. 3, No. 4

Here is a little bit from the first story that Noemi sent me.

EDCOUCH — Nestled in a ditch less than two-tenths of a mile east of the city maintenance shop here rests a lumpy, gray, plastic garbage bag.
Inside it is the fly-ridden, decomposing carcass of what was a black, medium-sized dog.
Municipal workers here have been starving dogs to death and irresponsibly tossing their carcasses in ditches inside and around the city limits for months, as ordered by the city manager, according to former city worker Abel Escovedo and Mayor Jose Calin Guzman.
Along with other city maintenance workers, Escovedo said he was ordered by City Manager Ernesto Ayala Jr. to pick up stray dogs in town and keep them at the maintenance shop for a week.
"We've been dumping dogs," he said. "(Workers) went at least 10 times in the last two months."
After talking with The Monitor Wednesday afternoon, Guzman said he had heard from various city workers that "a lot of dead dogs" had been dumped outside the Edcouch city limits.
"That's enough to fire that guy or have him quit," Guzman said. "I'm so discontented by this."
Escovedo said he was told by his supervisor that the dogs were dumped to avoid the costs of turning them over to area animal shelters.
"I said, 'Isn't (dumping dogs) against the law?' but Ayala told me they didn't have no money for the city to drop them off at the dog pound," Escovedo said.

To read more, click here.

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