1 mother has 8 competitors

When dealing with free-roaming dogs, it is heartbreaking to see a lactating female hiding away from her weaning aged pups.

The pups, unable to find food and water, try to get milk from an exhausted mother who has given her best to keep them alive.

So why is their mom now hiding from them? Because their dirty long nails are starting to inflame her sagging mammary glands, ie she is getting mastitis and it plainly hurts.

A mom with her pups, now competitors

However the worse is not over, the fight for survival is only starting for all of them: the 8 hungry pups directly compete with their debilitated mother for food.

So every free-roaming female who is sexually neutralized is spared misery within the next 10 months (reason #3), so why not target females first and foremost in managing a population of unwanted dogs ?

Dr. Judith Samson-French

Winter pups…we need to help mom!

Female wolves give birth only in the spring when food is plentiful and water is in the liquid form (not ice or snow). They can also rely on the pack to provide for the pups.

So much milk to produce for her pups

Contrast that with free-roaming dogs. Females, through our work of domestication, have lost the ability to conceive only once a year in the spring. In our northern climates, they give birth in the snow at sub-zero temperatures when all is frozen around them, including drinking water.

More than ever, a lactating bitch needs water for her own maintenance and milk production. She will need to eat roughly 10 cups of snow to convert it into 1 cup of water while staying warm in the process. As for finding unfrozen food…

This is reason #2 why targeting females first and foremost in managing a population of unwanted dogs is the right thing to do. If you are not targeting females, why not?

If you are still unconvinced, there is reason #3 coming next.

Dr. Judith Samson-French

 

 

 

 

1 female, 1 year, 44 pups

To reduce the number of free-roaming dogs, there is only ONE way to get there fast: target all females first for sexual neutralization.

fearful pups

Here’s is an example:

A female has a litter of 8 pups, half of which are females.

A year later, her 4 female pups will have been bred, likely by their brothers, father or uncles, to each produce another 8 pups. Add to those 32 dogs,  the mom’s second litter of 8 pups and her previous litter’s 4 males,  and we now have a total of 44 unwanted free-roaming, under-socialized fearful dogs running around.

Of course, there will be mortality but still..

1 female left intact has the potential to produce 44 offsprings within a year, many of which will be  inbred and living a life not worth living.

Target ALL FEMALES first, if not why not?

Dr. Judith Samson-French

 

 

How many stray dogs in the world?

How many stray dogs in the world?

Apparently the answer could be as high as 600,000,000 but we don’t care and here’s why: that number is incomprehensibly too large.

We can reason this situation is intolerable. We are morally aware we have an obligation to help, yet we remain strangely unmoved because this number is much too large to connect with. Even beyond empathy.

So let’s look at the numbers closer to home.

In 2013, nearly 4 millions pets were euthanized in the USA, 2.7 millions of which are healthy or with easily treatable issues. During that time, over 300,000 dogs were imported from developing countries. Incomprehensible!

Let’s look at our own numbers, in Canada.

Numbers are difficult to come by in Canada due to the lack of governing agencies and standards. Canada is the wild west of rescues and pet imports. The best estimates report over 600,000 dogs are euthanized every year, most of which are in Quebec.

This translates to likely well over 1,000,000 dogs needing a name and a home in Canada.

How can we sanely live in a country where so many dogs are homeless and gas chambers are still in use?

How can we participate in worldwide efforts to help others manage their populations of unwanted dogs when our own house is not in order?

It is time we focus on making social changes in Canada that prove successful. Only once we have humanely dealt with our surplus dog problems will we be in a position to efficiently help others.

Dr. Judith Samson-French