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Letter: No way to treat canine heroes

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), right, Marine Corps veteran

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), right, Marine Corps veteran Corporal Megan Leavey and “Sgt. Rex,” a military working dog that Leavey partnered with to locate improvised explosive devices during her tour in Iraq, arrive at a news conference in New York. (April 15, 2012) Credit: AP/Sen. Charles Schumer's Office

The article "Semper Fido" [News, April 16], which reveals Sen. Chuck Schumer's (D-N.Y.) efforts to support adoptions of combat dogs that are being abandoned in war zones when troops return home, made me feel that things never really change.

My children's-literature class has just finished studying "War Horse" by Michael Morpurgo, which is set in World War I and explores the treatment of animals in combat. The estimated loss of horses that were hopelessly pitted against artillery was 5 million, yet the English chose to leave the surviving combat horses in France when troops returned home.

They were sold at auction to farmers, if they were lucky, or to butchers. What a way to reward the heroes! Today, we are obviously rewarding our canine heroes the same way. It seems that one way of judging a civilization is observing the way its members treat their animals.

Lorraine Mund, Hicksville

Editor's note: The writer is an adjunct professor at Nassau Community College.