Friday, 12 September 2014

The good that men do... oft interred with their bones. But the evil that men do lives on and on
 - Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden) sort of paraphrasing Marcus Antonius in Shakespeare's Julius Caesar

Last night showed off the best and the worse of our treatment of animals. Manchester Dog's Home, a charity that cares for over 7,000 stray dogs each year burned to the ground, in what's believed to have been an arson attack. As of this morning over 60 dogs have died, having burned to death or due to the after effects. More than 150 were rescued from the flames. many people turned up to volunteer help and support, and to bring blankets and food that individuals wanting to help were eventually asked to stay away because the rescue and firefighting effort needed more space. Collection points for donations of things - food, bedding, crates, bowls, leads - have been set up round the country. Two men scaled the fence and rescued more than 20 dogs. Hundreds of people have volunteered to foster dogs. And a fundraising page put up by the local paper has, at the time of writing, raised more that half a million pounds for the home, with more pouring in.

It's tragic that these dogs were unwanted enough to end up in the rescue system, and that the actions of an individual have deprived them of security and stability again. But it's also a reminder that most people care very deeply about the welfare of animals - something it's all to easy to forget in the face of constant tales of cruelty, ignorance and neglect that we hear about all too often.

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