Now we know…the wild things lived, and died..in Zanesville, Ohio. And now we also know what happens when wild things are tried to be kept as domestic, privately held animals.
I struggle enough with keeping my one domestic little house cat adequately content. I have recently delegated litter duty to my 9 year old and feeding duty to 4 year old, which now and then inevitably still falls on my own shoulders (more often than I would like to admit).
But there are bigger things – like his health. To keep things interesting, he has come down with a severe allergy to fleas. So, even one or two little bites makes him itch and tear at himself until he bleeds. I have to watch him closely, keep him on allergy and anti flea medications and stuff. It doesn’t sound like that big of a deal, but I also have two other little wild things to care for…my daughters – who stay front and center.
At one time I had two cats, and a dog – all of which I had obtained/rescued because they were abandoned and helpless and somehow found me. All was great for several years. Then, in the midst of a grueling divorce, as a working single mom of two very young daughters, I had to make a very, very hard, choice to let my parents have my sweet boy – Zeke, the best dog in the world. I had always been able to stay at home with him and when I went back to work, he became very depressed and it was apparent that he needed more human interaction then I could physically give him.
It was a win-win, however – despite my selfish pain of missing him terribly. My parents love Zeke so very much and he is very happy. He is where he should be. I had to face the hard reality…that I couldn’t do it all. I can’t save the whole world. I have to focus on the small corner of the world that I can actually make a difference in and try to do it to the best of my ability – and then get help with the things I can’t do well.
Later, one of the cats fell ill with feline diabetes and had to be put down. So I am now left with only one allergic cat needing regular vet visits and medication for life.
But sometimes people don’t make the right decision. So – when I hear about this man who kept almost 50 wild animals in captivity on his private property…I think…wow! I’m not saying I’m so great and he is so bad…I am just saying – we all make choices and our choices have consequences. Did he mean well? Did he consider them pets, or was he an obsessive compulsive collector of things…which in this case just happened to be live animals?
Was he trying to make a difference and save the world one animal at time or did he just have Dilusions of Grandeor? And how come I don’t even know how to spell that last reference – even with the help of Webster.com? Judy A – help me out here…I know you will.
I think sometimes we humans get very mixed up. When I think about the huge task of caring for them…I mean REALLY caring for them…and THEN add on any possible health issues…it is overwhelming! And how did he even feed them all on a daily basis…I am sure it cost a small fortune. And the time it must have taken – did he have help? Or worse yet – did he even do it on a daily basis?
Maybe he realized he couldn’t do it all, but was in over his head and didn’t know what to do. He freed all the animals and then took his own life. He was definitely under some major stress. Doing a little research I was able to find out he had been cited for animal abuse before. Who failed here? Him? The government? It sucks that the government should have to step in to save us and our animals from ourselves. But what else do we have here?
Whatever his motives and intentions were – even if they were noble in the beginning…he clearly needed help. Mental help, emotional help, something. Some people are against government interference claiming it to be a violation of rights, but it sure could have prevented a tragedy on the scale we witnessed today.
I just don’t know.
I DO hope it raises enough awareness so that in the future, obtaining permits to own wild animals is drastically changed and made more stringent so that people like this guy won’t even have the choice to get in over their heads. Then the wild things can stay, roam and LIVE…where the wild things are meant to be.