Dogs' family status depends on family's locale

Aug 15, 2010

Man's best friend might just be treated like any other animal depending on where the owners live. A study by David Blouin, assistant professor of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Indiana University South Bend, found that people who think of animals as children tend to have a city background.

"To think of pets as just another animal is not uncommon in rural areas," Blouin said, "which makes sense given the utilitarian relationships people in are more likely to have with a range of different animals -- from farm to ."

But no matter where someone lives, having children often changes the owners' thoughts on their pets.

"If you have kids, you have less time to spend with your pets," said Blouin, who discussed his study on Sunday at the American Sociological Association 2010 Annual Meeting. "That's part of it, but not the whole story. People who think of their pets as their children often re-evaluate this thought when they have human children of their own."

Here are some of the findings of Blouin's study, which involved owners in Indiana:

People often have very intense attachments to their pets and pets are often an integral part of their daily routines.

Ninety-three percent of dog owners and 77 percent of cat owners took their pets to the veterinarian at least one time a year.

Eighty-one percent of and 67.5 percent of cat owners spent two or more hours daily with their respective pets, while only 2 percent of dog and cat owners spent time with their pets less than every day.

In interviews many of the pet owners confided that their pet's health was a major concern, especially as their animals got older. Some admitted that they spent significant sums of money on their pet's health, addressing routine care, such as vaccinations, as well more serious conditions such as skin allergies, Crohn's disease and diabetes.

The frequency of interactions owners had with their pets, as well as how often they took them to the veterinarian, were closely tied to how viewed their pets -- whether as a child, a companion, or just another, albeit, useful animal, Blouin said.

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jsa09
1.8 / 5 (5) Aug 16, 2010
Exactly. What gets me is that country people know this and City people don't. To some people a dog works for its living - failure to work means failure to live.

Like my uncle and his Greyhounds. He had also had an orchard where he planted all the dogs that did not win.

I grew up with cattle dogs that helped round up cattle and chase away vermin. If they got too sick for home remedies they were replaced.

I have no problems with people keeping them in cages or putting them on the menu in restaurants.
KBK
3 / 5 (2) Aug 16, 2010
Perhaps we will evaluate your existence in the same light.
~~~~~~~~~~~
Low empathy physiology and psychology have been shown to the the point at which social and cultural structure breaks down into a faulted mess where mankind fails to advance. Ie, it devolves into war, tribalism, and mayhem.

Culture, society and mankind, in general, advance where people develop a real and solid, naturally derived empathy to and with the world round them.

So keep your animalistic and devolved self out of the gene pool, please...you'll be doing mankind a huge favor.

Some of you might be interested in understanding where the break comes or lies at. One point is to look at a interesting book called 'snakes in suits', which speaks on low empathy people getting involved in the Babylonian derived and originated 'fiat currency system', the one where money becomes a substitute for connective human relations, thus relieving society of the natural aspect of people relating to people.
gideon
1 / 5 (1) Aug 16, 2010
Exactly. What gets me is that country people know this and City people don't. To some people a slave works for its living - failure to work means failure to live.

Like my uncle and his slaves. He had also had an orchard where he planted all the slaves that did not win.

I grew up with slaves that helped round up cattle and chase away vermin. If they got too sick for home remedies they were replaced.

I have no problems with people keeping them in cages or putting them on the menu in restaurants.


fixed that for you.
Phideaux
1 / 5 (1) Aug 16, 2010
Well said KBK.
jsa09
5 / 5 (1) Aug 17, 2010
The trouble with pet lovers as expressed above is not a difference in empathy which BTW I have in abundance. It is anthropomorphism. You think because you treat a particular animal in one way that everyone else must do the same.

Your bigoted unrealistic attitude is the problem - not the solution. WHy should a dog be allowed to sit on the lounge while a sheep or cow is o.k. to be treated as livestock?

I know there are some groups that have gone much further and advocate that we are all created equal and that only some are more equal than others.

I have a different view. None of us are equal and if the keeper can keep a pet then good for them and if someone else wants it as livestock then good for them too.
Phideaux
Aug 25, 2010
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