Ruby’s Story—And Why You Should Never Buy Dogs

·AR Hemant

Meet Ruby.


Ruby, a female boxer, was rescued off the Bangalore streets by CUPA.


It’s not clear how many days Ruby had gone without food, water or shelter.


Ruby’s past is unclear. But as is often the case, she may have been thrown out by a puppy mill.


Puppy mills are unscrupulous breeding centres where dogs endure untold abuse and cruelty. Females often spend entire lifetimes caged, producing many litters that help unethical breeders earn a quick buck.


Dogs are repeatedly—and often incestuously—bred causing crippling health problems in both parents and offspring. The great market demand for the so-called “pure bred” dogs also fuels this rampant inbreeding.


These dogs know no love or friendship or warmth. They don’t get walked. They are not bathed. There’s nobody to pat them. They are poorly fed. And once they can breed no more, they are mercilessly put down or abandoned on the streets where every day is a challenge in survival.


Ruby had distemper—a canine viral disease whose symptoms include high fever, eye inflammation, troubled breathing, dysentery, loss of appetite and lethargy. In short, it’s a slow, painful walk to death. From distemper, she had a lockjaw condition which damaged her tongue.


Recovery from her ailments would be a big challenge for Ruby. But she was trying her best.


Fellow travellers helped mitigate her many pains.


But after years of abuse and cruelty, her ailments had become extremely serious.


Was she resentful of the cruel humans who drove her to despair?


In truth, all she was is a gentle soul, hungry for a bit of love and care.


Will she get better?


Unfortunately, Ruby's story doesn’t have a happy ending.


Lesson No. 1 from Ruby’s tragic story?

Don’t. Buy. Dogs. Ever.

Says Vasudev Murthy,  who represents the Animal Welfare Board of India, and himself a dog rescuer:

"People simply see it as a tool for making money and have absolutely no compassion for the mother or the pups who are snatched away almost immediately. The business is unregulated and horrendously cruel and thrives on the ignorance of people who want a cute dog, not realizing where the dog came from and what its future will be. The police is unaware of the Prevention of Cruelty Act and, in general, rate animal cruelty problems at the bottom of the priority list. Breeding is simply one more on the insanely cruel list of exploitation of animals for many purposes. Even chaining a dog for extensive periods and not providing it with sunshine and comfort is a crime but we are apathatic. The mother is kept pregnant again and again and the breeder makes a pile from each pup. He is least bothered about the health of anyone. Once they are done and can breed no more, females are thrown on to the streets."

Are you looking to bring home a pet? This is for you:

Murthy again:

"Buying a dog is an emotionally reckless act. The large number of abandoned dogs testifies to that. Once the novelty is gone, the dog goes. There is a high probability that a so called pure breed dog will suffer serious health problems through its life. Factor those things in. Please adopt, and neuter/spay as soon as possible. When you buy a dog, you create demand, and some very shady and detestable people take advantage of your need. Meanwhile, a lonely mother keeps producing pups in utter squalor. Dogs should not be taken away from their mothers for at least 75 days, if not 90. But in our madness, it has been reduced to 2-3 weeks. Do not buy. That’s my advice"

When you buy pets, you support a cruel, murderous industry that thrives in its singular pursuit of profiting from the endangerment of helpless, voiceless animals.

Flippant pet owners worsen this terrible situation by abandoning pets, often for whimsical reasons. The animals end up in shelters, or die on the streets for lack of care.  


Still in doubt? Watch this.


Rest in peace, Ruby, and the countless other animals who've shared her pain.

Want to help? Visit your local animal shelter. Adopt. Volunteer. Donate. But most of all, be compassionate.

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