Cruelty to animals?
The boys and I have been staying at my mum’s house and it has been mostly peaceful, if awkward at times. My wee dog had an accident on the floor. He is 14 and these things happen sometimes when we get older. My mother was quite upset about it and demanded I keep him kenneled for the remainder of our stay. I told her under no circumstances would I do that. This is a 14-year-old dog who has only been in a kennel when ill. He is a dog that is used to being by my side most of every day and every night for the past 14 years. I am not kennelling him.
Now, Dewie, is another story. She is on heat right now so she is gated behind a door, but she keeps jumping over the gate much to my amusement and my mother’s consternation. Speaking of my mother, however…
She has four dogs and two cats. She keeps them kennelled all day long with the exception of going to the toilet. That’s about 15 minutes out of the kennel in every 24-hour period. Her dogs bark all the time. All the time and all day long. Of course they bark. They are bored. They have no enrichment, no toys, no playtime with the owner who is supposed to love and protect them. They need a way to expend their energy. So they bark, and how, and bark some more.
These dogs do not seem to bring my mother joy, either. She is constantly yelling at them, which does no good. The dogs of course, don’t mind the yelling, because they are getting attention which they desperately crave. She asked me to train them. Even offered to pay me. I told her I’d be happy to do it, but I am concerned that nothing will change once I am gone. I ask her why they are never allowed out of the kennel. She claims that she will not let them have the run of the house because they do not listen. They are dogs, not mind readers. How are they to listen if they don’t know what her expectations are? How are they to follow the rules if the rules are never made known to them?
Last night, I kind of lost it. I told her frankly that I did not think she was a bad person. She is elderly and has too much on her plate. I told her she should rehome two of the dogs at least and rehome the horses she does not ride and spends thousands of pounds a month on, only for them to sit in pasture and eat their heads off. I told her that what she was doing to her dogs was cruel. It was heartbreaking to me. I explained that is why I never came to visit. It makes me so sad to see these dogs, so starved for attention and love, being kept in cages with no positive things in their world. She has been rather frigid to me ever since. I don’t care. I’m sorry if I hurt her feelings, but she doesn’t see that her situation, her clutter, her almost hoarding and the way she cares, or doesn’t, for her animals, is out of control.
I didn’t say these things to hurt her, but to try and wake her up. I am bound and determined to report her to the dog warden for the barking once I am gone. I can report it anonymously. I’ll say I’m the neighbour, because, quite frankly, I’m surprised the neighbour hasn’t complained. Besides, she has more pets than is allowed by Oma Council. You are only allowed 4 pets, a combination of dogs and cats. Maybe if the dog wardens force her to address the barking, she’ll be forced to rehome a couple of the dogs and will have a much more peaceful life. Aside from keeping them in kennels, when she lets them out to toilet, she takes them on lead. Because they are untrained, they often pull her down. Taking a fall at any age is not good, but in your ‘70’s, you are risking a broken hip or worse. I am concerned about her safety. The boys, all teenagers, cry when they talk to me about it, because it is just so wrong. So heartbreaking. I am at a loss.