Pets should not be considered property under the law. They are lives.

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As a pet parent and a graduate of the B.Sc. in Applied Animal Biology from UBC, I strongly believe that pets should not be considered as property, but as life. Many couples are now choosing to have pets as children than to have kids themselves. An article from Global reported on a case in Saskatoon and all the arguments for pets as property can be refuted. The article can be found here.

These are the rebuttals against Justice Richard Danyliuk's arguments.

  • Parents do not purchase children from breeders in Canada. --> This is true, however, parents often choose and plan to have children, as pet parents choose and plan to have pets.
  • We tend not to breed our children with other humans to secure the best bloodlines (nor do we charge for these services). --> Humans may not breed children to secure the best bloodline, but humans choose the partner that they wish to have children with. By choosing their partner, humans are choosing traits in which they believe are the best to pass onto their offspring.
  • When kids are sick, we tend not to weigh the economic cost/benefit to decide if kids get medical care, nor do we end kids’ lives to prevent suffering. --> When my pet bunny was sick, my family and I did not weigh the economic cost/benefit to decide if our bunny received the medical care and attention that it needed. The bottom-line is that our pet is part of the family and we will do everything in our means to save our pet's life. Not all pet parents may do this as not all kids receive the medical care they require. Humans may not end kids' lives to prevent suffering, but humans do pull the plug on other humans' if they want to prevent and end suffering if it is legal.
  • When kids misbehave, we don’t muzzle them or put them to death should they act violently. --> Misbehaving in a violent manner needs to be defined here. Kids do not receive this kind of treatment when they misbehave violently, however, both kids and pets are taught favorable and unfavorable behaviors through conditioning and reinforcement. A failure to be well-mannered should not fall onto the onus of the kids nor the pets, but the parents themselves for not teaching their kids and pets.

Pets are not property; pets are not children; pets are domesticated animals living symbiotically with humans. Human beings are a kind of live animal, just as pets are. If humans are not considered as property, pets should not be as well.



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