I've often felt a sense of moral disquiet around the subject of pets.
I've seen too many animals suffer at the hands of their loving 'owners'. There is often times, a complete absence of the required empathy needed to keep an animal happy and healthy. I find dog owners who leave their dogs alone at home all day to be the worst. That is not love. That is emotional abuse.
There is something wrong about a human taking ownership of another living creature simply to satisfy their wants and needs.
I posit that every reason for choosing to have a pet is a selfish reason.
I expect my post will be unpopular. But I don't care. My first thoughts always go to the animal.
This topic is part of the basic ethical question of individual sovereignty and personal freedom. By Ellatynemouth reasoning above, zero people should birth children to be circumcized, brainwashed and fed un-natural foods....I am Cherokee denied my more natural lifestyle by assimilationists. A hybridized formerly feral human. I have 2 Service Cats. They keep me alive and I feed them meat and fish keeping them out of dumpsters or under the wheels of nearly 2 billion motor vehicles poisoning our shared air soil and water....... Again to the point, the wolf has been captured instead of killed midst our herds of sheep. The dog or cat or plastic doll has replaced the infant in our arms to be held next to our breasts. In so doing, our hard wired mammalian nurturing response reduces our hypertension and thus the reduce stress lengthens both lives of comforted of held and beholden.
I think that once we domesticated them, they became our responsibility, for better or worse. I think thst designer breeds are stupid and irresponsible, but im proud that my pets have all been from the shelter. As long as there are pets needing homes, i will likely have one. It would be great if we could reduce the unwanted ones, but what do you suggest, turning them out into the street?
I agree most animals are not cared for properly in homes, yards or "shelters" while my Service Cats are safe, eating their favorite foods, drinking fresh cool water and using clean natural litter not dirt from Dick Cheney Halliburton dry lake bed of Wyoming....4 years 6 months 14 days they have been saving my life and I've been their provider 39 thousand miles, 18 states and Ontario they see out our windows without the dangers of red tail hawks or heart worms or squished under the wheels of ruthless vehicle operators