Only days after Michael Vick came to Capitol Hill to speak out against cruelty to dogs, Sunday brought a report on a series of acts against dogs that is arguably just as heinous as the dog fighting ring that landed the NFL quarterback in jail.
ESPN's Outside The Lines aired an investigation Sunday into the killing of 100 sled dogs in British Columbia last year after a post-Olympics drop in tourism.
According to prior reports done by Canadian outlets, the killing of the dogs was done for business reasons, and it was not carried out humanely.
"In most cases," reported CKNW radio, "dogs were shot more than once, or had their throats slashed before they were pitched into what is described in the documents as a mass grave. Some were still alive."
But in contrast to Vick's dog fighting ring, which was for sport, the tour company manager who killed these animals apparently did so for purely financial reasons.
"To put down even a single animal is heart-wrenching," a friend of the man told ESPN, "and he didn't want to subject anyone -- he didn't want anybody else to have to go through it."
Most North Americans consider dogs as companions, but there are still communities and even cultures where dogs are thought of as tools -- for fun, for business, and even for food.
Vick has done an admirable job of raising awareness of cruelty towards animals, but to chip away at perceptions built up over centuries, he and others will need to keep speaking out for decades to come.
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