Saturday, January 31, 2009

Is Desexing and Neutering Your Pets Inhumane?

Given that we universally value life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, is the veterinary procedure of desexing and neutering your cat, dog or other pets in order to stop reproducing inhumane?

By: Vanessa Uy

This idea probably dawned on a number of people when the world’s best-loved smut peddler Larry “Barely Legal” Flynt was featured on every major news network asking Uncle Sam for a 5 billion dollar “sex stimulus” bailout package during the start of 2009. But seriously, is the practice of desexing and neutering your quadropedal air-breathing pets – with the help of your friendly neighborhood veterinarian – so that they won’t be able to reproduce inhumane?

Even though the keyword here is “reproduction”, given that here in the somewhat liberal Christian West we consider the joy of experiencing sexual pleasure as a “God-given right”. Shouldn’t we extend that right to our fellow animals, given that for all intents and purposes our concept of “animal rights” is nothing more than an anthropomorphic-based one-to-one congruence to Human Rights?

Even though PETA – people for the ethical treatment of animals – though busy in reminding all of humanity the “evils” of excessive meat consumption and ostentatious wearing of mammalian fur as a fashion item, are “mysteriously” silent when it comes to the issue of depriving domesticated animals from experiencing the “joys of sex”. Sometimes I wonder if this particular argument conveniently devolves into that “if it has never been born, it won’t experience pain and suffering” kind of reasoning.

No matter whatever side you take on this particular issue, it is usually the prevailing local ordinance that takes legal precedence. If your locality has a mandatory well-enforced pet ownership quota law, pet owners usually have no choice but to comply with prevailing desexing and neutering laws as a means of keeping their pet population down. But lest we forget there is this global financial crisis that deserves immediate action, the issue whether pet desexing and neutering is inhumane will have to take a back seat-for now.