Can pets be part of a sustainable future?
The short, if unpopular, answer is probably not. Two German Shepherds use more resources just for their annual food needs than the average Bangladeshi uses each year in total. And while pet owners may disagree that Bangladeshis have more right to exist than their precious Schnookums, the truth is that pets serve little more societal purpose than keeping us company in an increasingly individualistic and socially isolated consumer society.
And this isn’t an isolated Guardian whackjob making this argument. A UCLA study reached essentially the same conclusion.
And the answer to this “problem” is… spoiler alert… Big Socialist Government.
Governments could facilitate this by strengthening the pet licensing system, for example, creating a very steep tax on pets (along with pet products and pet food) and tripling that tax for pets that aren’t spayed or neutered (so that only breeders would choose not to fix their pets).
At the same time, marketing of pets and pet products should be tightly regulated (or banned outright), and polluting veterinarian services like chemotherapy should be reserved only for service animals.
And then, outlaw pet ownership entirely. Make cats and dogs community property, to be shared by everyone and allocated by the Government according to fairness and sustainability.
Reserving a play date with your favorite Golden Retriever once a week would reduce pet ownership – and the resulting economic and environmental costs – dramatically as people felt comfortable occasionally playing with a shared pet instead of owning one.