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Do Animal Control Centers Have Too Many Rights?

Animal abuse is a very real problem.  Domestic animals are completely dependent on humans for food, care and shelter, and when those needs are not being met, something needs to be done.  I don’t think anyone can dispute that we all must shoulder the burden of caring for the animals that provide us with so much love, life and even food.  The problem is, the organizations that are given the power to enforce those basic animal rights seem to be overstepping their bounds, and we keep letting them.

It seems as though animal keepers are being demonized as abusive, neglectful owners when perhaps the whole story is not given consideration.  I remember years ago, a local man was frequently turned in to animal control because his animals were starving.  It was infuriating to many that he continued to keep animals, despite their horrible appearance.  As it turns out, he was rescuing sick and starving animals and returning them to health, so of course his animals would all look unhealthy.

These days, it seems as though animals are being confiscated without due process.  I recently read of a story from western Washington where animals were taken away and then sold or sterilized before the owners were able to have their day in court.  As it turns out, the animals shouldn’t have been removed and were not being mistreated, but the likelihood of that family getting their animals back is almost nonexistent since they were immediately placed in new homes.

We need groups to look out for animals, but who is looking out for the people who own animals?  There must be some kind of oversight to make sure that the rules are being followed and that neither the animals nor their humans are being mistreated in the legal system.