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Environmental campaigner says ‘selfish and cruel’ pet owners should NOT replace animals when they pass away because their carbon footprint is too high and they live ‘horrendous lives’ in urban homes
- Donnachadh McCarthy appeared on GMB with Countryfile host Julia Bradbury
- Environmental auditor says behind owning pets is a ‘massive amount of cruelty’
- Claimed that ‘most people should not have pets’ unless essential for their health
- Said owning pets is ‘not essential need’ amid current environmental emergency
An environmentalist who believes that owning pets is ‘selfish and cruel’ has urged Brits not to replace their animals when they pass away because of their carbon footprint.
Appearing on Good Morning Britain today, environmental auditor Donnachadh McCarthy debated Countryfile host Julia Bradbury about whether we should stop owning pets all together, because of the detrimental impact they have on the environment.
McCarthy argued that ‘most people do not need pets’ amid a climate emergency, and that those who keep cats and dogs in urban homes are giving them a ‘horrendous life’, because they’re not naturally domestic animals.
Viewers were not convinced by his arguments, with one saying that their animal is a ‘loved and part of my family’ while another said they often look for ways to be kinder to the environment, but wouldn’t consider giving up their pet.
Appearing on Good Morning Britain today, environmental auditor Donnachadh McCarthy urged Brits not to replace their animals when they pass away because of their carbon footprint
Host Susanna Reid (pictured top) interjected, asking how to compare a pet, which are often like beloved members of the family, to a car or plane emitting carbon emissions
‘We have to accept that our selfishness involved in keeping these pets locked up, cooped up, is involved in a massive amount of cruelty,’ said Donnachadh.
Citing a 2019 study, Donnachadh said that emissions from the average dog is equivalent to two households of electricity in a year.
‘Like everything else, cars are convenient, flights are convenient, pets are nice to have – but we have to think of the consequences behind them,’ he said.
‘It’s about love, isnt it. Behind that love we have for cats and dogs there is a whole ocean of cruelty, whether it’s the destruction of rainforests for the meat, the destruction of the seas for fish to feed our cats.’
Host Susanna Reid interjected, asking how to compare pets, which are often beloved members of the family, to a car or plane emitting carbon emissions.
‘If we love members of our family, if we love our kids, do you not accept we have to look out for the climate crisis?’ McCarthy asked.
He went on: ‘I’m saying to look after and love your children, you have to look out for your carbon emissions because we are in an emergency.’
Julia went on to argue that while the impact pets have on the environment is an important issue to consider, there are several ways to mitigate the effects they have.
‘I’m grateful Donnachadh has raised an important issue,’ she said. ‘What impact are our pets having on the planet, and there are things we can do to mitigate that.’
She went on: ‘I think something that Donnachadh is missing here when he’s talking about the bond we have with cats and dogs, they aren’t just about being an extension for us, it’s not that we want to just look after something.
Countryfile host Julia Bradbury said while the impact pets have on the environment is an important issue to consider, there are several ways to mitigate the effects they have
Donnachadh went on to argue that unless your pet is essential for your health, you should ‘consider not replacing them when they pass away
‘Sometimes they hav a very important value in our lives. Do we get rid of guide dogs? Special medical assistance dogs?’
Donnachadh went on to argue that unless your pet is essential for your health, you should ‘consider not replacing them when they pass away.’
‘What we need to do is think in an emergency. We have to look at essential needs and essential requirements.
When asked whether he’d had a pet of his own, he went on: ‘My partner had a pet for three years and I noticed when my partner was out the dog slept all day .
‘When we visited his parents in the country he was mad with energy running round the other dogs all day long and what I realised was millions of dogs are cooped up urban homes, living a horrendous life. I would argue that most people do not need pets.’
Viewers weren’t impressed with Donnachadh’s argument, with one writing: ‘Never heard as much garbage in my entire life. Some peoples pets have literally saved their lives this last year. They are our family!’
Viewers weren’t impressed with Donnachadh’s argument, with one writing: ‘I have never heard so much rubbish! People rely on pets for mental health and to aid loneliness! By all means mitigate with carbon offset – this man’s an idiot.’
Another said: ‘I drive an electric vehicle. I recycle. I continually look for new ways to be kind to the environment, including sourcing eco-friendly dog toys and food. This berk can kiss my recycle bin if he thinks I’m giving up my dogs. Someone get him a pet.’
A third agreed: ‘Who is this stupid person saying that we should not have pets, my dog is loved and part of my family not just a thing that this guy is making out. He really needs to live in the real world.’
‘OMG I’ve heard it all now some bloke on @GMB saying we should give up our pets to save the environment! The world has gone mad!!’, wrote a fourth.
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