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The Life and Mind of DamnBlackHeart
This is to help keep me actively writing. So expect to see poems, rants, tips on writing, thoughts on subjects, lyrics, me complaining of boredom, reviews, anime, movies, video games, conventions, tv shows and whatever life throws at me.
Is Having Pets In A Zombie Apocalypse A Good Idea?
This might be a sensitive topic for some people but it’s just a hypothetical question that I wonder about, especially since I am a pet owner.

I admit, it was difficult for me to be unbiased because I do have a cat that I love like she was my child. I couldn’t imagine how devastating it would be to have to abandon her. It would be even worst if something were to ever happen to her, such as watching her being eaten alive.

You see, people can watch humans die in the most horrific ways without blinking. But if an animal dies it is gut-wrenching and brings out a waterfall of tears. It was painful for many to watch the dog, Samantha in I Am Legend die. The same can be said for a lot of films and television shows that have animals wounded or are killed in them, such as the horses in The Walking Dead and so on.

So, is having pets in a zombie apocalypse a good idea?

No, it’s definitely not a good idea. It will eventually lead to their death or your own death (especially if you become like Nicole from the Dawn of the Dead, a 2004 horror film remake of George A. Romero’s 1978 film of the same name). When you really think about it, you will need to leave them behind. They will be a burden. Small cage animals such as hamsters, lizards and snakes obviously aren’t going to be practical to take along. They will be not only an extra thing to carry, they will also be an extra mouth to feed.

In a zombie apocalypse, you will be too busy taking care of yourself. You will spend nearly all your time looking for food and water and when you find it, the last thing you’ll want to do is share it. More so if there’s not much of it. And as much as I hate to say it, when a person is desperate and starving they will look to any animal as a food source, including their beloved companions.

Not only does it happen in actual life, but it will most likely to happen if there’s an apocalypse or a situation where it is life-threatening for a person. When you think about it there are many examples, both fictional and real life in which people had to resort to cannibalism in order to survival. People would eat whatever was available first, such as dogs, candles, leather, shoes and blankets. All before cannibalism becomes the only recourse for survival.

At some point the characters in The Walking Dead were so desperate for food that they had to eat the rabid dogs that attacked them. Other characters resorted to eating their own kind because animals became scarce when the zombies also ate the animals too.

So in a way, depending on your situation and the type of zombie you’re dealing with, your pet may or may not be a good idea to bring along. In the Dawn of the Dead, the zombies had no interest in the animals. But in The Walking Dead, they will eat anything that was alive.

Now, most people will say that their dogs will help them to survive in the apocalypse. That the dog can help them hunt, warn them when there are zombies or other people are around, and be good companions.

That’s not exactly true. Most normal dogs won’t be much use as hunters. They can find and kill for food if they are desperate, but it will not be likely that a normal dog will be able to chase down and bring you back a rabbit or squirrel. Especially if they are not trained to do this, they will be of no use when it comes to hunting.

As far as being a good companion goes, that may be true. However, you come back to the issue of taking care of an animal and having another mouth to feed and another life to worry about. If a dog is desperate, it would find it’s own food but it wouldn’t be the dogs first instinct though. They would rely firstly on the owner to provide for them and resort to begging and whining before they finally decide to give up and take finding food upon themselves.

This could cause problems for the owner. First, of course, the noise of a begging and whining could attract the attention of the undead as well as other predators (like bears, cougars, etc.). The noise factor of having a dog around is probably the biggest problem. Unless the dog is highly trained, it will be unpredictable. If it’s not whining for food, it may get excited about something and bark.

Barking echoes and can be heard from far distances. Anyone who has dogs or neighbors with dogs knows this. It’s loud and will be like an alarm announcing your position to anyone, or anything, that is listening.

Now if you are the owner of a very well trained dog, one that’s been trained for hunting, police assistance, or assisting a disabled owner, these problems may be less. These dogs are generally trained to be resourceful, incredibly obedient, and quiet unless promoted. If you have one of these dogs, you can decide for yourself whether the animal would be enough help to make them worth keeping around.

As for cat owners, they’ll be much more difficult to bring along. Most cats don’t have any training and would never be able to sit still in a bag or follow besides their owner. Indoor cats would be quite terrified of everything and they would want to return to what they’re familiar with. But they are curious creatures and eventually they’ll adjust and want to explore the outdoors. However, there’s not much one can do with a cat. They are very quiet, quieter than dogs and independent (but not always, some are quite attach to their owners).

It’s probably best to leave them behind. They’ll be safer if they were left at home, in an environment that they know well. Fill any and all buckets, pans, sinks, and cups with water and leave them lying around. Grab all the bowls and fill them with bags of cat food and make sure to leave the windows slightly open so that they may leave if they need to.

It would be cruel to leave them trap in the house or building, more so if it’s summer (even worst when it becomes full of urine and feces matter). It would also help to store all the food and water in a room and create another room for them to go to do their business. So grab a bunch of litter and a giant box or boxes and fill them with litter so that it would last them a while.

Or if you have a backyard (with dirt/garden/grass) and it’s surround by a fence, leave the door slightly opened (with concrete blocks keeping it from being left wide opened or a chain lock). In doing so, it would help to keep out the harsh elements like snow, rain and freezing wind from entering the house and hopefully any random zombie that manages to get into the yard. If not a door, keep an open window that they can use to leave and return inside when they want. Just make sure they have easy access to it, like steps or boxes that they can jump or climb on in order to get out and get back in. It should at least help to give them a chance to survive and it’ll give you a peace of mind that you tried to make them comfortable and safe.

Overall, what I’ve learned from this hypothetical question is that pet owners definitely need to consider what they’ll do with their pets. Many people make plans for what they’ll do to survive in an apocalypse, but if they love their pets, they should also make a plan for them.

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