1. sfr
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    sfr Contributing Member

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    PETA and pets

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by sfr, Jul 18, 2008.

    I heard somewhere that PETA doesn't think people should own pets. I have a dog and I think he does well, I try to walk him regularly and he seems happy. Plus we can't really have boarder collies running the streets. However, I also have an aquarium, when I started it I didn't really think it was a problem, my question is: do you think keeping fish and other live animals in an aquarium is right? Should I support their captivity? I do enjoy looking at them, but do you think it's fair to them.
     
  2. LibbyAnn
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    LibbyAnn Contributing Member

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    I think PETA has good intentions, but I think they're a little bit off their rocker.

    If you take good care of your animals, then, no, I don't think there is any harm. Your fish and dogs were bred in captivity to be owned by humans. It's one thing to take a wild monkey out of the rain forest and force it into captivity; it's a whole different element owning a dog or an aquarium full of fish.

    I think you're doing nothing wrong by owning fish (or other animals) in an aquarium.
     
  3. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    PETA is the lunatic fringe of animal rights. Their antics do more to hurt the cause than aid it.

    Yes, that's an opinion. But I stand by it.
     
  4. Chazen
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    Chazen Member

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    I guess they have good intentions, but as an example, my cat is afraid of grass. (No joke.) It would be cruel of me to put her outside, and surely PETA doesn't intend that? About goldfish...I've never had one, but are they even smart enough to realize where they are...?
     
  5. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    no, no, and NO!... would you like to be put in a cage and watched?... would you want your children to be born just to be treated like that?...

    read these and see what it would be like:

    http://saysmom.com/maia/content.asp?Writing=220 ["Life (Without) Parole]

    http://saysmom.com/maia/content.asp?Writing=132 ["Top Dogs and Bottom Feeders"]
     
  6. Shadow Dragon
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    Shadow Dragon Contributing Member Contributor

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    I have no problem with the idea of keeping fish or other animals in an aquarium. With those kind of animals, as long as they're feed and healthy, they are content. Plus, they are safer in the aquarium as oppose to being in the wild with predators after them.
     
  7. SonnehLee
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    SonnehLee Contributing Member Contributor

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    Can I just point out that goldfish have three second memory spans...so anything you ever did to them would be forgotten three seconds after it happened.

    And if you ask me, animals thrive just fine in captivity. My animals enjoy their lives. But it'd be different if I took an animal who spent it's life in the wild and then tried to keep it as a housepet.
     
  8. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    Goldfish have been shown capable of remembering for longer periods; namely in identifying the easiest route to food sources.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goldfish#Memory
     
  9. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Memory and habituation are not the same thing, strictly speaking.

    It's a mistake to anthropmorphise animal behavior.
     
  10. SonnehLee
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    SonnehLee Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hmm...well...adamant was right.
     
  11. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    Whatever. They will respond like any other creature, and are capable of surviving.
     
  12. sfr
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    sfr Contributing Member

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    Why is that Cogito? We are related to animals.
     
  13. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Related, yes. But our minds operate on a different level than most species. Some higher species exhibit signs of self awareness beyond stimulus/response/instinct, but most species' minds don't operate at that level of complexity.

    Anthropomorphism attributes human characteristics to non-human entities. Ironically, it is our unique ability to generalize that saddles us with that bias. It also is the basis of some of our less noble charactersitics, such as bigotry.
     
  14. NaCl
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    NaCl Contributing Member Contributor

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    Feral cat = life expectancy, approx 3-5 years. Tough life. Often painful death by higher carnivore, truck tires or sickness.

    Common house cat = life expectancy, 12-14 years (except for my wife's DAMN cat...it will live forever just to spite me!) Quality of life, usually quite easy. Plenty of food. Clean cat boxes. Vet care when sick. Immunizations.

    Which life would you pick if you were a sentient cat? Being "free" is not always "better". I support wise environmentalism and ethical/beneficial animal protections, but I consider PETA to be domestic terrorists.
     
  15. sfr
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    sfr Contributing Member

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    What about the idea that rights should be based not on intelligence but the ability to feel pain. I agree intelligence can be a double edged sword but that doesn't mean it has to be.
     
  16. SonnehLee
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    SonnehLee Contributing Member Contributor

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    Alright, so what do you think? Who do you think suffers more pain? Feral cat or house cat? Goldfish who gets fed every day or goldfish in pond that gets eaten? Wild horse than is attacked by predator or a racehorse?
     
  17. sfr
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    sfr Contributing Member

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    I don't know, I guess I've decided not to buy any more animals for my fish tank and just keep the ones I have. I might be open to getting some coral, because I think they would be just about as happy in a healthy aquarium as in the ocean, but I'm not sure yet. Emily as to the question I think your asking as to what animals would suffer more pain in the examples you gave of the cat, fish and horse, I would say I don't know, I think it would depend. In most cases freedom while not always more pleasurable would be desirable. However, I think many feel that there is a hierarchy of life, for example rocks have less rights than living creatures. Therefore, it might be okay to have a pet rock, haha.
     
  18. SonnehLee
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    SonnehLee Contributing Member Contributor

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    You're fish will be fine in a tank. They will be perfectly happy living in their tank.
     
  19. sfr
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    sfr Contributing Member

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    Thanks for the input, I apericate it.
     
  20. SonnehLee
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    SonnehLee Contributing Member Contributor

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    of course. Always happy to help. Feel free to come back if you want to get a dog. Ha.
     
  21. DrJoe
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    DrJoe Member

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    Quite right. They've done experiments on people with certain types of amnesiacs who don't remember what they did the day before; for example, if you developed this disorder on April 12, every day you woke up after then you would assume to be April 13. The experiment performed had a subject suffering from this disorder to do a certain type of puzzle every day. Even though it seemed new to him every day, he would actually improve at solving it overtime, until it became a sort of habit he couldn't remember developing. By the end of the experiment he could solve the puzzle much faster than the beginning!

    If you can find the records of this experiment somewhere, please post them, it's very cool.
     
  22. PipeandPen
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    PipeandPen Senior Member

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    I have to agree with Cogito on this one.
     
  23. Siegfried
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    Siegfried Member

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    Hmm, my cat would last a life outdoors, she basically lives outdoors anyway. But really, some animals domesticated themselves in a way. But when you have pets like Cobra or even a chimp then that's cruel, except if it was born in captivity. It knows no other alternative then.

    In a way you could say Peta argue that keeping zoo animals is inhuman? Just a thought.
     
  24. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    ok, salty... let's give you to someone to keep as their pet... you'll have a clean box to do your business in, out where everyone can watch you, instead of a private bathroom with a toilet; you'll have plenty of food your owners choose for you to eat, left in dishes on the floor for you eat from, instead of being able to go to the store, buy and prepare your own; you'll be taken to the 'vet' whenever your owner thinks you don't look up to speed or are injured, as well as given whatever shots they think you should have; and you will be neutered, so you can't indiscriminately breed more of your kind...

    after a few years of that, will you still think being free isn't better?
     
  25. Rink85
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    Rink85 Member

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    Well, I can't really speak for a fish, since fish's brains are so tiny anyway. It's hard to say whether a fish really longs for freedom or if it's just too stupid to even know or care what's happening.

    As for other animals, I think that there is nothing wrong with captivity - and believe me, I am one of those people who believes strongly in fighting for animal rights. But I think animals such as cats and dogs are very happy living with humans (I know my dog loves his family and his life), and I see nothing wrong with owning them just as long as they are being treated decently...with food, water, love, and fun. Mammamaia, I'd say it's more like having children than locking someone up in a prison.

    Umm, last time I checked that didn't bother the animals at all. If they were living in the wild, they wouldn't care to do their business in front of anyone anyway. It's the way they are, because they're animals. Humans need privacy; animals don't. They don't want to use a toilet, and they don't want the privacy (believe me, if my dog wanted to use the toilet, I'd be all for it, and not scooping poop). Sorry, but it sounds to me like you've never really owned a pet and don't quite understand the way they are. I don't mean this in an offensive way, but I have a dog, and he's very happy to poop in public (especially in a neighbor's yard or right in the middle of the street - lol - where I have to pick it up afterwards).

    About the food - it's probably better than the wild. In the wild he'd have to fight and possibly die for his food, whereas here it just shows up in his dish. Plus, I spoil him a lot. :D And about the vet - here again, it's like children. They have to have shots in order to stay healthy. It's a matter of health, not cruelty.

    I wrote a persuasive essay on protecting animal rights - but it was for the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of CRUELTY to Animals), not PETA. I care about animals, but we can't think of them as humans. We have to think of them as they actually are.
     

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