A third horse has died during “training” at Santa Anita racetrack since it was closed by the Health Department a few weeks ago due to the pandemic. Chicago has banned horse-drawn carriages. Many local pounds are abandoning their missions and the animals by closing. Other shelters and rescuers are open and seeing a surge in adoptions. Emergency legislation in New York will be introduced to stop pound killing during the pandemic. And finally, a dog in North Carolina is the first in the U.S. to reportedly test positive for COVID-19. Should we be overtly worried about our dogs? And should we fear dogs? The answer to both questions remains, “no.”
In case you missed it:
- Another horse has died at Santa Anita in California, despite the fact that the Los Angeles County Health Department shut the track down weeks ago due to the pandemic. Last Renegade, a 2-year old, is the third horse to die since the closure during “training”.
- Chicago has banned horse-drawn carriages, putting an end to an anachronistic industry that has long been a heartbreaking spectacle of cruelty.
- Local pounds across the country, like the one in Albuquerque, NM, are telling residents who find lost dogs on the side of the road to handle it themselves or let them loose, abandoning their mission and increasing the burden on individuals and rescue groups who are trying to pick up the slack.
- A New York State Assemblymember said he will introduce emergency legislation to stop New York pounds from killing animals during the current pandemic.
- “Almost every animal at the Guilford County Animal Services shelter has been adopted.” And while that is good news for those animals, and we applaud that success, the agency is not taking in many, needy animals, including underaged kittens.
- The same is true in Texas, where every available animal at the Montgomery County shelter has “been adopted or put into foster care“.
That is unfortunate as communities across the country are proving that with creativity, ingenuity, and technology, they can take reasonable precautions to protect the public, shelter workers, and the animals. For example:
- At Rosenberg Animal Control and Shelter in Texas, all the cats, and then all the dogs, were adopted. It marked the first time it has been completely empty. Rosenberg remains open for rescue and lifesaving.
Rescue groups are also seeing a surge in adoptions:
- An Illinois non-profit says, “The demand to adopt or temporarily foster a cat or dog is so great these days that the organization doesn’t have near the number of animals for everyone interested in bringing one home”.
- Says another: “We’ll put the videos up at noon, and within five minutes we will have more than 10 applications for each dog… It’s been incredible. It’s the most demand we’ve ever seen. We almost don’t have enough dogs for the number of people who want them. The first day we had an unprecedented 500 applications…”.
And finally, a dog in North Carolina is the first in the U.S. to reportedly test positive for COVID-19. Should we be overtly worried about our dogs? And should we fear dogs? The answer to both questions remains, “no.” Not only is there no evidence that dogs can pass the virus to either other animals or people, there is reason for healthy skepticism about his results. Here’s a look at the evidence.
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