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Humaniacs, Part 4: Activist Slammed for Criticizing Guide Dogs

On a morning show in the UK, an animal rights activist railed against the use of seeing-eye dogs. Activist Wendy Turner Webster, who has been affiliated with PETA, told Good Morning Britain’s Piers Morgan that she was uncomfortable with the dogs not being able to consent to their work.

Technically, pets never “consented” to be adopted by their owners—but they’re all happy for a warm home, free care, and a bowl of food. The idea of “consent” is something uniquely human.

Host Piers Morgan quickly took her to task:

‘You know what Wendy,’ Piers said. ‘Why don’t we just let guide dogs do their fabulous work for people who are blind and rely on them and can then get out and about because of their guide dogs.

‘The guide dogs always look happy to me and the people they’re helping look happy to me. Why don’t you just continue riding your horse without its consent, telling your dog what to do without its consent and lead people who are blind to have the dogs who help them.’

Users on Twitter were also not buying Webster’s argument.

One Twitter user named Jess, the owner of 2018 Guide Dog of the Year Stanley, found this shocking.

She said: “I completely disagree with this woman that technology could replace our dogs. Stanley is a life changer and gave me the ability to go back to work as a maths teacher.”

Webster isn’t alone—PETA is against guide dogs, too. In a New Yorker profile of Ingrid Newkirk, the publication noted, “[Newkirk] regards the use of Seeing Eye dogs as an abdication of human responsibility and, because they live as ‘servants’ and are denied the companionship of other dogs, she is wholly opposed to their use.”

Who the heck views working dogs as slaves?

Guide dogs are treasured by their owners, not just as pets but as companions. These animals serve a vital role that technology will never be able to replace. Most people understand this, but radical activists seem to have drank too much of PETA’s Kool-Aid.

For more stories in our “Humaniacs” series, click here.