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TUESDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2005
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EDITORIAL

Too many people own pets who shouldn't

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals makes a good point about not chaining dogs. PETA says chaining them causes animal aggression.

But Limestone County Commission Chairman David Seibert's not about to comply with PETA's request to stop the practice.

"It would be a nightmare to try and police that," he said last week.

PETA's Limestone concern is that an 11-year-old boy suffered bites from a chained pit bull. PETA says chained dogs killed more American children between ages 1 and 9 in 2002 than falls from playground equipment or trees and fireworks accidents combined.

Some people chain dogs because the animals are mean and to protect the public, some chain them because of ordinances against dogs running loose, and some do so out of fear for the animals' lives.

The truth is that many people are not suited to be pet owners, or don't have the proper environment in which to keep them, or they tire of the responsibility of having a pet.

PETA might do more good in this area if it promoted a screening program for prospective pet owners.

On the surface it sounds silly to interview for adoption of a pet but that might save government, the public and prospective owners a lot of trouble when a puppy grows up. And most of them do.

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