A recent story noted that pigeons in Venice, Italy, were dyed red, blue, and green as part of an International Architecture Biennale. They were lured to feeding stations where they were spray painted with food dye.
In April of this year, Rick Scott, governor of Florida, approved an agricultural bill that would allow the dyeing of animals neon green and dayglo pink. There had been a ban on dyeing animals for 45 years in Florida before it was overturned this year.
In China, the latest craze is to dye companion animals to look like wild animals. So a chow chow dog might be made to look like a panda or a retriever dyed to look like a tiger.
Let’s, for a moment, set aside the issue that the ingredients in some dyes might be harmful to companion animals. Let’s instead look at what it means for us to alter so dramatically the appearance of our companion that he or she no longer looks like the dog or a cat nature produced. What gives us the right to alter nature in such a way that our animal may actually be unrecognizable?
Nature did a pretty awesome job creating the various colors we find in our cats and dogs. Why would we want them to be pink, purple, blue, or green? If we cannot appreciate them for who they are in their natural state, what will changing their fur color do? When you think about it…nature creates the best colors for animals…not chemists.