Stray dogs have long ceased to be creatures trembling for their lives, who were glad of leftovers, shying away from random passers-by. Today, the mongrels have disappeared from any fear of man, they have become equal masters of the city, often dictating their terms, defending their territory with fangs and claws.
Today the problem of stray animals is mainly reduced to their protection, while dog handlers see it much more broadly. There are strong myths about stray dogs in society, which we will try to debunk.
If dogs are spayed, then their numbers can be regulated in this way. On the one hand, such a myth has a healthy grain - a sterilized animal, be it a cat, dog or hamster, really cannot reproduce. But such a remedy will work well if the animal remains in a confined space. In the case of a metropolis, the picture is completely different. The point is that a dog is a pack animal. A group of dogs will quickly gather around the spayed bitch. But it is expected that after the operation, the sterile animal will avoid the person in every possible way, taking the whole flock with it. It is not surprising that in a year around a seemingly safe animal there will be several bitches and a couple of dozen puppies, and even males. Thus, surgery will by no means solve the problem.
Sterilized dogs are not harmful to humans. First of all, let's figure out what sterilization itself is - in females during the operation, the pipes are tied, and in males, the testes are cut. But the glands themselves, which produce hormones, remain, so the aggressiveness will not go anywhere. If everything that is possible is cut out from the animal, together with the glands, then this will already be castration, after such an operation the animal will really become a frightened fur creature. But as in the previous case, the dog will soon join the pack, preferring a lower place in a community of similar ones than loneliness. Castration will not rid the animal of instinct. So the operation will not reduce the hormones, which means the dog will be just as aggressive. If we assume that sterilization will really calm the animal, at least by fear of a person, then it is worth remembering that in the event of a mass fight, the dog will attack the dominant male and will tear the person on a par with everyone else.
Stray dogs are part of the city's ecosystem. This statement is actually just a set of words. What is an ecosystem? This is a self-sufficient, closed community, in which the functions of the organisms living in it are clearly distributed. If you remove one of the links, then the rest will not be able to exist. They are engaged in building such connections at school. This is what happens on Earth, one of the chains is interrupted for climatic, say, reasons - another is formed. Since a city can be an ecological chain, because it is, in principle, an anti-natural formation, it is unacceptable to compare it with, say, an anthill. After all, the city, which generalizes human activity, gives nothing to nature but harm. All living things that exist around megacities are gradually being destroyed or dying out. Will the death of the city or the rejection of one of the inventions of mankind lead to the irreversible extinction of some kind? Rather, on the contrary, it will only benefit nature. So, in principle, there is no ecosystem in the city. Certain species of animals try to adapt to life in the built environment, mainly birds, but this is an exception that only emphasizes the rule. Life shows that a full-fledged ecosystem arises precisely in deserted, abandoned cities. Urban ecology usually refers to rats, cats, crows and stray dogs. Urban evolution theorists see a relentless struggle for existence. So, rats are the owners of garbage dumps, they are eaten by cats, those are devoured by dogs. Or another chain - pigeons become victims of crows, those - cats, and cats - dogs. It would seem - take away the cats, so the rats will fill everything around, and the sky will be covered with pigeons. In fact, any ecological chain is based on the development from the simple and numerous to the more complex and rare. If we imagine, for example, that all animals feed only on plankton, it turns out that the weak species give way to the strong. In the city, such a situation occurs - all animal populations are fed at the expense of humans, being the main consumers of garbage, while they manage not to intersect. So the main dish in the diet of cats, rats and dogs is not themselves, but human scraps. Yes, there is a hunt for competitors, but this is not the main food of stray animals. Moreover, dogs are quite loyal to rats, so they are quite smart, and small, which allows them to eat scraps near flocks.
The mongrels are suffering. They need human warmth and affection. In fact, who gave us the right to judge what is best for the animal? What can we offer the dog in return? How is a human greeting better than the one exchanged between pack members? We can offer the dog to walk a couple of hours a day on a leash instead of a free life. With us, dogs eat the same food, while vagabonds have a varied table. Is it better for a dog to happen once a year at the request of the owner than to fight for the female when he wants it? And isn't it better to die free in a fight than to slowly fade away from cancer. Even after death, a stray dog ends up in the stomachs of its fellows, and not in a mound with a clumsy cross. Nobody gave a person the right to decide what is better for a dog, all the more why we do not spare the same hares, wolves, sables and other representatives of the fauna? Paradoxically, wherever a person intervenes in the wild world, conflicts occur. In American national parks, bears are fed in garbage dumps, but at the same time they regularly attack tourists, and dogs also attack passers-by. So dogs, like any wild animals, live according to their own laws, which do not change much from the environment, the person's attention to them will not change their essence.
A dog will not just bite a person, or will attack from a bad life. I remember a nursery rhyme: "A dog is a bite, only from the life of a dog." Surprisingly, many people adopted it, considering it the main motive for the aggressive actions of stray dogs. Maybe a well-fed dog won't bite anyone? First of all, let's look at the types of aggression, what causes dog bites? First of all, it is worth remembering food aggression, which consists in the fact that the dog is protecting his food. There is sexual aggression, when females fight females, and males - males, building their own hierarchical ladder. There is interspecific aggression when a flock will attack any animal, protecting itself from the encroachments of strangers, for example, puppies. Territorial aggression is about defending your territory from another pack. The reason for the attack can be defensive - the dog protects his life, deciding that the distance between you is too close. In the course of hunting aggression, the dog naturally pursues the victim, while it must be borne in mind that it can simply be a fleeing or helpless object, which the dog accurately calculates. It remains only to understand what kind of aggression was the reason for the attack on a person. Only now a person does not usually have time to find out. Perhaps he approached the puppies too quickly, or maybe he was mistaken for the dominant male of the neighboring flock? A tasty smell or unsteady walking could be the cause. Maybe the lone dog attacked for his own reasons, and the rest of the pack just hooked up out of interest. This, by the way, happens often. Well-fed puppies fight among themselves, and adults are looking for other sources to throw out energy. It is important that a full stomach enhances all types of aggression, except for food. A person may not understand the reason for the attack on him, but the pack will be well aware of it. So the mongrels researchers are right when they say that these dogs don't attack for no reason.
Stray dogs on our streets once had a master. Actually it is not. It is necessary to learn - wild flocks living on the streets have never had a master and do not need human care at all. They want scraps, not our attention. A wagging tail is a sign of high professionalism in achieving a goal. Those animals that really need a person, usually sooner or later achieve their goal. To do this, it is enough to snuggle up to your feet, look into your eyes, and be on duty near houses. These animals do not need flocks, since the weak are killed there. There is no need to talk about purebred dogs, they usually do not live long in freedom - they are either hit by a car, or they become a victim of their wild brothers, or they find a new owner. Wild dogs that stray into violent packs are the result of natural selection, creating a new species - the wild city dog.
Dogs once persecuted by people direct their fellows to attack people. Those who spread this myth know nothing about training or the life of wild dogs. Firstly, dogs do not know how to give a command, like the human "face". So, even after becoming a leader, the dog will not be able to lead attacks. Secondly, during training, a certain pressure is exerted on the dog, so an attack against a person will be a rebellion against a grown dominant. Therefore, a normally trained dog will keep aloof without supporting the attack on the person.
Mongrels do not bite at all, only domestic dogs, once persecuted by humans, bite. This is especially true for fighting breeds. This myth is closely related to the previous one. Indeed, there was a time when the mongrels did not bite, since the fear of man was in their blood. And this feeling was instilled by the catchers of stray animals. But today the situation has changed. Usually, the policy of city authorities is aimed at improving the lives of stray dogs, while limiting the freedom of the master's dogs. So those who were afraid of man died out. Purebred dogs rarely bite a person, this is not necessary, because they often receive exercises to realize their energy. But for the mongrels, we have become an endless source of food, therefore, their behavior is aimed at putting us in our deserved place in their understanding. A person must give food and be punished for violating canine laws. We humanize predators, pitying them and feeding them.
In the West, mongrels are treated much more humanely than ours. In fact, the complete absence of mongrels on the streets should become true humanism, in order to save people so that they stop carrying gas cans in their pockets, fearfully looking around at the bushes. For the owner's dogs, the right to a normal walk in the parks should be given, provided that this does not interfere with the rest, to build the required number of dog grounds. Speaking about Western practice, one should consider it in detail. First of all, all mongrels have been caught long ago and are kept in special receivers. They are treated there and they are looking for an owner. Those who are unlucky enough to find a new refuge are allowed to eat canned food and dry food. Such is the humanism. Are we ready for such a civilized attitude towards mongrels, worshiping everything western?
Stray dogs can only be destroyed by shooting or castration. These options are the simplest, but there is another, much more effective one. Each district should have a full-time dog handler who will be responsible for the packs located on its territory. It is this specialist who decides who to shoot (the most aggressive) and who to sterilize (the most harmless). At the same time, it is necessary to competently shoot, so that this does not happen in front of children or compassionate citizens. Such a dog handler will be able to give advice to anyone who has decided to get a dog, conduct training, providing dogs with protective skills. Who, if not a dog handler, can find the reasons for bites, fights and howling at night? The next step is to equip yard dogs with a collar and attach them to a specific person. If the dog lives near the store, then they should be under the tutelage of the management of the point, which will be responsible for the bites of its sponsors. The absence of collars in dogs will mean its wandering status, such animals should be removed from the streets. Such measures would make it possible to reduce the number of wild dogs at times, but no one is in a hurry to adopt such laws - after all, it is so nice to be kind, albeit at someone else's expense, without bearing responsibility for the mongrels. The solution to this serious problem in any case will be accompanied by difficulties, however, in the proposed version, the attitude towards animals will be understandable and humane. I would like the authorities to listen not to compassionate grandmothers or environmentalists who have no idea what exactly they are protecting, but to professionals who really want to solve this problem.