We are animal lovers. Every single one of our staff members and volunteer board of directors share their home with at least one pet. When we read about the loss of pets through any circumstance, we truly mourn.
But we also know that more killing will not bring back these lost friends, or prevent future loss.
The Winnipeg Free Press has reported on the “problem” wolves in Victoria Beach and surrounding communities. But these wolves are not “intruding” on the areas, as written by Bruce Owen in the September 23 edition. They are quite simply being wolves.
The cruel deaths that will be brought about by trapping – which by its very nature cannot identify or remove the appropriate species, let alone individual of a species – will also not resolve any of the issues facing residents.
Ending the feeding of deer, which has artificially bolstered the population of both the prey and predator species in the area, will remove a significant attractant keeping animals who normally avoid people in the area. Municipal by-laws can be introduced to act as an enforcement measure when necessary.
Keeping pets inside (and monitored when outside) is proper safety whenever other animals are around – bears, wolves, coyotes, or even large birds of prey. Chaining dogs also greatly diminishes their ability to present appropriate body language, defend themselves, or get to safety when needed.
Our hearts ache for those who have lost a loved one in recent weeks. We also know that more deaths will occur – both wild and domestic – unless a whole ecosystem investigation and response plan is conducted, not just media fearmongering and reactive policy.
We at The Association for the Protection of Fur-Bearing Animals will gladly offer our services – at no cost – to help residents learn to live with wildlife of all kinds through education, policy recommendations, and appropriate enforcement practices.
The Association for the Protection of Fur-Bearing Animals
This letter was sent to the Winnipeg Free Press on September 28, 2015.
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