Who, Us?

gambit with pipBack in the days when she rescued rabbits, my wife and I used to joke that we had a Prey Floor (where we lived with the cats and dog) and the Predator Floor (where the bunnies lived on their way through or to better pastures).

Perhaps Gambit, right, would like to chow with his “brother” Pip, the guinea pig. It would be his instinct. His natural law. The way he was created by God.

I see the domestic cat is not having a good day on the internet, accused of billions of deaths. I would like to point out that it’s the

… free-ranging domestic cats (that) kill 1.4–3.7 billion birds and 6.9–20.7 billion mammals annually. Un-owned cats, as opposed to owned pets, cause the majority of this mortality.

Cats are, after all, predators. They have not been domesticated for as long as, say, the wolf/dog. While human beings are indirectly responsible for Africa’s cats–their granary guard–killing birds and rodents worldwide, we are also responsible for the removal of many other predators from the environment. The overall human footprint on the neck of the planet is bad enough. We are stewards (for better or worse) of the environment, and we are responsible for our misuse of animals, including feral and neighborhood cats.

And the majority of small animal kill? Cats outnumber dogs by a two-to-one margin worldwide. They are the main two predators we humans keep as pets. Except for tropical fish. Of course cats are number one to blame for small animal kill. Do you think the family guinea pig, if let loose, will be able to expertly patrol our basement for the mice that sneak in through the dryer vent?



About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in Pets, Science. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Who, Us?

  1. Jen says:

    I’m feeling somewhat vindicated. I was getting into an argument with someone who thought it was cruel to keep a cat indoors. Yeah, we might have to work a little harder to keep Ozzie happy, but he isn’t out killing native species.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s