To be fair, the Washington Post isn’t alone in arguing that dogs are bad for the planet. VICE says your dog is ruining the environment. HuffPost reported last fall that your dog is terrible for the environment. Just how bad is your dog for the environment? The Los Angeles Times did some digging and found out.The dog is one of the world’s most destructive mammals. Brazil proves it.
But WaPo’s take is pretty hot:
High above this Brazilian city, in a jungle blanketing a mountain, the turtles were out, and the scene was hopeful.
Scientists were reintroducing 15 mud-caked tortoises to this urban forest where they had once been plentiful. Children were running around. People were oohing and aahing. A stern-looking security guard appeared to briefly smile.
But not government biologist Katyucha Silva. She was thinking about dogs.
What would they do to these turtles? What were they doing to Brazil?And Coyotes outnumber Pumas in the US. Yes, some predators out number others. Get used to it. Time to reintroduce Wolves, Bears and Pumas to New York City and Washington D.C.
It’s a question more researchers are beginning to ask in a country where there are more dogs than children — and where dogs are quickly becoming the most destructive predator. They’re invading nature preserves and national parks. They’re forming packs, some 15 dogs strong, and are hunting wild prey. They’ve muscled out native predators such as foxes and big cats in nature preserves, outnumbering pumas 25 to 1 and ocelots 85 to 1.
Every year, they become still more plentiful, spreading diseases, disrupting natural environments, goosing scientists who set up elaborate camera systems to photograph wild animals, only to come away with pictures of curious canines.
“It’s a difficult thing for people to hear,” said Isadora Lessa, a Rio de Janeiro biologist who wrote her doctoral dissertation on domestic dogs causing environmental mayhem. “They love dogs too much.”
How the dog became one of the world’s most harmful invasive mammalian predators is as much a global story as a Brazilian one. Over the last century, as the human population exploded, so did the dog population, growing to an estimated 1 billion.
That has been great for people — and even better for dogs — but less so for nature, according to a growing body of academic research implicating canines, particularly the free-roaming ones, in environmental destruction.Yes, dogs can become a local problem. But they're not killing the planet.
“The global impacts of domestic dogs on wildlife are grossly underestimated,” researchers concluded in a 2017 study published in the journal Biological Conservation. The researchers, based in Australia, convicted dogs in the extinction of 11 species and declared them the third-most-damaging mammal, behind only cats and rodents.
We are days away from— Bridget Phetasy (@BridgetPhetasy) August 24, 2019
OPINION: If you really cared about the planet, you’d kill yourselves.
The Wombat has Rule 5 Sunday: Labor Day With Jayne Mansfield up on time and within budget at The Other McCain.