My goodness! That is quite the pot-stirring provocative article. Thanks for posting it.
For me it illustrates how many ways of viewing the world exist. I value what opens my eyes. This article may keep me from "throwing the first stone" at those who make decisions that I consider environmentally or socially irresponsible.
I'll also point out that the theory (mentioned in Temple Grandin's book "Animals in Translation") that dogs and humans co-evolved. According to the theory without dogs our primate ancestors would not have evolved into the humans we are. Thanks to dogs goes the theory we could hunt larger game and we could evolve in a ways that emphasized intellect over other senses and brawn.
I am sure that a society without companion animals would be different in some ways that would be perceived as positive. But I am equally sure that in some ways it would be less emotionally full and human.
But, since I prefer cats over dogs I will be sure to use the argument in my discussions with my DW when it comes time to replace our aging doggies.
If x number of dogs consume y amount of resources, and it is felt that y is a high ecological price to pay, the conclusion that dogs might not be worth having - at least at current levels - is a direct and plausible conclusion not a mistaken one. To raise another angle here, I once lived on an island where domestic pets were forbidden (because it was a quarantine station). So, no cats, dogs, caged birds, hamsters, etc. No one in fact died of loneliness and the human relationships were better than anywhere I ever lived. Almost everyone commented on it.
The articles seems, to me, to use valid data for a mistaken conclusion. So dogs are eco-villains? Before dogs I think it would be much more logical to stop having kids, for instance. We already have 7 billion people in the world. We could work on reducing that number.
Whatever the mind can conceive and believe you will achieve. Salt-N-Pepa
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