I decided to resurrect an essay from last year. If we don’t figh this bill this is what some extremists in the Animal Rights movement would actually want to see. Do you?

The Last Dog
By Lidia Seebeck

The report came in slowly from Muddy Gap, Wyoming.
Someone had spotted a dog sniffing around his house in the bitter cold of a
Wyoming winter. The person was quite sure that this was a dog, not a wolf.
No, of course he didnt secretly own the dog. That had been banned long
ago, of course. This dog seemed to appear out of the blizzard itself one
cold night, scaring his daughter silly.

Of course the animal was transferred to the authorities. It was determined
that yes, indeed, this person really had found a dog,
and only its somewhat feral behavior kept the land-dweller from being
prosecuted for animal slavery. This dog had clearly been in the wild for
some time. Everyone knew that for the last five years only the police, search
and rescue, and a few charitable hospices and the like were allowed dogs,
and the last one, a Yorkshire Terrier, had died last year. There was a
funeral and everything, and many experts from the animal rights movement
hailed the end of canine slavery.

***
It hadn’t always been that way, of course. Long ago,
around the millennium, people often owned and bred dogs, and sometimes they
ended up in shelters.
Unfortunately the dogs that ended up in shelters were
sometimes euthanized.
Well, some people didnt like this. So they began to
change the laws. First they banned dogs that were considered dangerous like
Bull Terriers and Dobermans. Unfortunately sometimes docile breeds got
mixed up into this, like the Greyhound, who was eventually maligned due to
the muzzle it once wore while racing around a track. Predictably, the
whole practice of racing the dogs was banned as being too cruel and the dogs
were executed wholesale, being unadoptable due to the laws. Greyhound lovers,
or Greyters, were broken hearted and tried to tell the authorities that
the Greyhounds were good dogs, gentle with kids and loving even to
strangers. But they were soon locked up, having been prosecuted for animal slavery.

Another one of the milestones had to have been the passage of Californias
Healthy Pets Law, which mandated spaying and neutering
for nearly all dogs except the most pampered of show animals. People were
outraged but the law passed anyways, in an effort to reduce the shelter
population. Many Californians were aghast that people were doing
backyard breeding, and others were just mad that animals were still getting
killed. Eventually this became the American Spay and Neuter Law, which
mandated spaying and neutering for all animals not involved in police or
search and rescue. The next ten years or so saw the canine population growing
old, and more breeds being executed wholesale as they were deemed
dangerous. Too late, people realized that very docile breeds were getting
declared, and they began to question the wisdom of breed-specific legislation. By
then even the young dogs were eight or so, and many were rapidly dying of
old age, at least in the larger breeds,

***
The dog in Muddy Gap had been transferred to a facility in Laramie where a
police dog academy still stood, unused. The dog was soon deluged with
donations from around the country of old kibble and soft blankets that had
cushioned their canine seniors. Animal lovers came in from around the
country to the chance to see and cuddle with the dog.
Lucky soon responded to the attention, which everyone insisted on.

This dog was clearly quite old, having a very gray muzzle and face.
Surprisingly, this dog was also clearly part Mastiff,
which was one of the breeds to be Declared rather early on. Some dogs had
been preserved as police dogs, however, so this dog was probably the
offspring of one of those dogs. It had numerous abrasions and bite marks, and it
was theorized that the dog had probably had to fight and hunt a lot to
stay alive. No one really knew of course.

***
As the War on Dogs continued, canine slavery became quite the hot topic, and
there were two distinct camps of dog owners and former
owners. The first was that dogs were nice to have around, but utterly
miserable and it was good that they had mostly been euthanized. The other camp
believed something quite different, They honestly believed that dogs were
pack animals and honestly didn’t mind the direction of a dog owner,
rather relishing the leadership the owner provided and basking in the love
the owner gave. As such they felt that canine ownership (and they were
very unhappy with the term “slavery”) was an ethical thing, and well worth
the trouble of pursuing. Unfortunately this viewpoint was rapidly
becoming illegal, and there were numerous people in prison for canine
slavery. There were also a number of people who lived in the back of beyond who
were breeding dogs beyond the reach of authorities. In the days when
breeding was more common, these people such as coyote-dog breeders, were
relatively few and far between. The shift in laws had increased their
numbers, and now even responsible breeders were hiding out, hoping to save
the last of their lines until the political storm broke. While some of these
people persisted for a few years, it was rather easy to find a kennel full of
barking dogs when all the other registered dogs were gone. Soon even these
people fell to the insatiable sweep of the War on Dogs.

The number of dogs in America had been rapidly dropping and was now at
5,673. Mostly these were police and rescue dogs, with
a precious 10 or 15 dogs who served as roving servants, transported from
hospice to nursing home to hospital to comfort the ailing. Still, the
occasional dog would show up and be pressed into one of the allowed professions, or
else euthanized. (For some reason, euthanasia was now viewed as the greatest
gift ever, when it was euthanasia which had started the legal avalanche
in the first place)

***
Lucky was not doing well in captivity. He had suddenly developed a fever,
and there was no legal veterinarian anymore, since
they had all been out of practice for years. Former vets clustered around him
and tried to remember what to do. They gave him all manner of potions and
antibiotics but these only gave Lucky a really nasty attitude and equally
nasty gastric disturbances. With every hour it was clear the poor
old fella was dying.

The nation turned in their televisions to watch, hourly updates, and the
debate on dog keeping began to be opened once again.
People reminisced about their dogs when they were young, and remembered good
times at the dog beach or at the dog park. The talk of allowing dogs once
again raged just as badly as poor Luckys fever. His health declined quickly, and
within a few days he was on the brink of death. Some news stations had
completely stopped reporting on anything other than Lucky and the dog
debate.. As his last sputtering breaths were captured live and transmitted
around the world, people started to call their Legislators, asking to
please, please not let Lucky be the last American dog. Unfortunately, things
had gone too far, this was too little and too late.

Lucky truly became the last American dog..

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