Friday, March 2, 2012

Prairie dogs - the killing continues

When I moved to Colorado in 1998 from Virginia, I had never seen a prairie dog. I'm sure I had heard of them but honestly knew nothing about them. After a few weeks in Colorado I started seeing them as we took trips up to Boulder. They are indeed cute. And so much more.

One of my favorite colonies was one that I could watch from the highway between Denver and Boulder. I loved watching them. There is now a parking lot where they used to play, roam, nuzzle, and squeak.

One of my biggest memories of being a voice for prairie dogs was when a church north of Denver decided to kill the prairie dogs on their property. That week I stood in the middle of their property amongst beautiful creatures that, because of poisoning, had died bleeding from the inside out. It was a horrible sight. We held protests at the church and had conversations with them as we talked about animal cruelty and they talked about Jesus.

Tomorrow there is another protest against the upcoming slaughter of prairie dogs in Frederick, Colorado. Their death warrants are sealed and no doubt their fate. People will gather to protest the upcoming slaughter.

I realize this is not an easy issue. Towns and cities have concerns. There are huge environmental issues here. The bottom line for me is that we as a culture cannot continue to kill just because animals are in our way. This is a conversation that happens all of the time throughout the west. Some say that prairie dogs are pests, just rodents in the way that spread disease. They are vital part of our eco-system. To me, they are living beings that go through extreme torture and pain when being poisoned just because they live in an area that is inconvenient to humans.

This is a great example of the importance of knowing one's elected officials. People who live in Frederick and know who represents them on city council can be a great voice for the voiceless. I know that I write about this a lot, and any activist who knows who represents them, and connects with those people about issues important to them, have a stronger voice when issues like these arise. My experience is that it might not change the result, but it definitely makes people realize that there are other opinions and perhaps other ways of doing things.

For more information on prairie dogs:

Thank you for reading!


  1. I hear you. When we discovered we had a family of woodchucks under our shed, everyone wanted us to kill them, saying they'd spread through our neighborhood. But I love them and could never do such a thing. (I'll admit, I got all worried when one of the babies tried to get into my garden and eat my peas, but after I planted some veggies just for them outside the garden, we lived peacefully side by side. :)

  2. The Prairie Dogs were here first! They are protected in our area, and every year people try to get the protection revoked. So far it continues to fail.

  3. Thank you for taking a stand! I'm a wildlife rehabber in Rural Illinois (oringinally from Chicago) and I battle folks often on the senseless killing of wildlife. I had 23 orphan baby raccoons last year - all because folks killed the moms. Thank thank thank. PS - I'm a veg-head too!

  4. Maybe someone can explain to that church who organizes the killing of these amazing children of God (yes they are) that the good Lord created them for a reason too. That we have to respect all of God's creation. The Good and the ones we PERCEIVE as less good. Live and let live. If we require protection from what harms us then protect....BUT THAT DOES NOT MEAN GO OUT AND KILL!!!

  5. I feel your pain...same all over the globe, people killing animals and plants who dare to live/grow where humans do not want them.

    Even protected species, people destroying swallow nests with eggs and babies because they say the birds 'destroy their home' with the itsy, bitsy shit on the wall.

    A wooden board under the nesting area would keep everything tidy, but they rather destroy lifes than do that..oh what good christian folks they are, going to the church sunday and all the shmoo about beeing good, christian folks.

    The work never ends