Jan 18 2013

Doggy disciples

The name “Islam” means “submission” or “obedience,” but move over, Mohammed, the Christians are about to take obedience to a whole new level with their program to raise up ministers of the Gospel—on four legs.

A program offered at one Wyoming church gives dogs with their owners the opportunity to spread comfort and the message of Christ.

The eight-week Canines for Christ session will be at Ascension and Holy Trinity Church, at 334 Burns Ave., beginning Jan. 19, from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Canines for Christ is a Christian-based, animal-assisted therapy ministry. Dogs and their owners work together to train the pets to visit places that include hospitals, nursing homes, hospice facilities, special-needs facilities and cancer centers.

Yeah, friendly, well-trained dogs are a great way to overcome people’s natural wariness around strangers, and make them more vulnerable to your attempts to exploit them in their weakness. Still, believers are always preying on the young and/or the helpless, so this program doesn’t change much. I can’t help wondering, though, what will happen when the revival comes to town, and the minister lays his hands on the sick and shouts, “Heal!”


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  1. 1

    Shouldn’t that be ‘roll over, Mohammed’? I think I feel a song coming on.

  2. 2

    “Why hello little boy, would you like to see my puppy?”

    I guess we shouldn’t be surprised if that’s the way the church is heading … seems like a natural extension of previous activities …

  3. 3

    Didja hear about the Christian who named his dog “Repent” so whenever the dog ran off, he could roam the sidewalks calling his dog?

  4. 4

    I note the pastor has his dog, Grace, wearing one of those spiked collars that cause the dog so much pain. For shame, for shame. Is that xtian? Or maybe he thinks the dog is dangerous – in which case she isn’t suitable for such a program anyway. But you’re right Duncan, the real problem here is unprincipled exploitation of animals in order to gain an invasive foothold to preach bullshit! I am ever more amazed at the slimy tricks these people will try.

  5. 5

    I was disturbed by the collar too, as well as the few people commenting to the source article. This dog will be a serious impediment to CfC if they are foolish enough to take it on the road to their missions. Their callous treatment of pets is the only message that would stick in the minds of those they visit.

  6. 6

    Looks like a more appropriate “Dog Collar” for holy men than dumb animals. Since animals don’t have “souls” what is the point of punishment with tools worthy of the Inquisition.

  7. 7

    Er… just to clarify something here: when used properly, those collars are NOT cruel. Used properly, they don’t put pressure on the esophagus as a flat collar or a normal (slip) chain does. Used properly, the dog is the one who controls how much pressure they feel; you should never ‘pop’ these collars in the way that people use a slip-chain (“choke chain”) collar. Used properly, the rounded ‘spikes’ make the dog uncomfortable if they pull at the lead, they don’t cause pain or injury.

    Note the ‘used properly’, though. The collar on that dog in the photo does NOT fit properly – it is FAR too loose (it should be sitting snug just behind the ears and up under the jawline). And using one of those collars improperly is cruel.

    1. 7.1

      According to this trainer, the collars are used to instil fear in the dog. http://www.dogbehaviouradvice.com/dba/readarticle.php?id=255. I don’t train dogs, in fact I’ve never seen a collar like that, so my opinion is exactly that deep. However, training with fear is definitely the christian way to do things.

  8. 8

    I’ve always trained my dogs using their eagerness to please and never by coercion through fear. That said, I would opt for such a collar if I felt it was needed to prevent some tragedy, as it’s not horrifically cruel.

    The hospital I worked at used dogs for therapy. It’s a terrific way to get more than half of the patients to wake up a little and get their blood flowing. Hospitals are exceedingly depressing no matter how big they make the windows, and a big dopey dog just has a way of relieving this. I even took part in a heart warming 3am “break-in” to get a dog to its dying owner for one last snuggle. Since dog bacteria is generally benign, it’s safer than most other animals, too. But what sucks is this very real psychological effect will be used as “proof” of an entirely fictitious zombie Jew. It will hurt the fields of medicine, psychology, and skepticism in general by the exploitation of the sick and helpless.

  9. 9

    Besides, not everyone is any more thrilled to see a dog than a preacher.

  10. 10

    I am pretty sure that my dogs are atheists. So I guess I cannot sign them up for this program.

    1. 10.1

      My atheist cousin was planning to marry a Catholic boy in predominantly Catholic Quebec. The couple was having trouble finding a priest who would agree to marry them and most refused to even speak to them. Eventually they found a priest who agreed to an interview because he was unaware of my cousin’s beliefs. The interview began with questions about my cousin’s fiancee and his devotion to the church. Then the priest asked about my cousin and was a bit taken aback to discover she was an atheist. Then he asked, in turn, about my cousin’s father, mother, and sisters, who are all atheists. Before he could ask anything further she told the priest “I have a dog, and he’s an atheist too.”

  11. 11

    As a one-time victim of the deceitful emotional predators who call themselves “evangelicals”, it angers (but does not surprise) me that they’re stooping to such a cheap trick to get converts. I’m sure as hell not letting any fundies near my dog.

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