“Cruelty cannot stand the spotlight.” That was the tagline for The Ark Trust, an organization which awarded the media for reporting on animal issues. I have been thinking about those words a lot lately. I am buoyed by recent events bringing so much injustice to light — while deeply saddened that these injustices exist. I feel optimistic that a powerful awakening is coming.

MUTTS readers have an abundance of empathy and a deep sense of justice. We are all in this together to make a stronger, more peaceful world for all.


MUTTS NEWS SPOILER ALERT: If you’d rather be surprised with a new twist in the world of MUTTS, please don’t read the following two paragraphs until after June 16.

Friends, I’ve made two longstanding promises with my MUTTS strip. The first: someday Guard Dog will be freed. (Yes, this will happen before too long.) The second: Butchie and his Fatty Snax Deli would go veggie. With a two-week storyline starting Sunday, Butchie will finally see the light.

As a vegetarian for over 30 years and a vegan since 2012, I’ve always felt a little strange drawing the cheeses and salamis that hang over Butchie’s head. I’m feeling better because they will now be plant-based and cruelty-free.

With the pandemic, and understanding the cruelties of raising and processing “meat,” it’s more important than ever to rethink how we treat the animals — and people — on this planet. Going plant-based is a win-win. It’s good for your own health, the health of the planet, and obviously the billions of suffering, factory farmed animals.

Going veggie gets easier and easier. (Millions have already discovered new, delicious meat substitutes.) I ask everyone to do what you can. Even observing Meatless Mondays can save a billion animals each year in the United States alone. If Butchie can do it, so can you.


Last month we posted two comic strips that I drew for the MUTTS blog, which were pandemic-themed and written by my friend, author Glen David Gold. Glen suggested that we auction off one of the strips for charity, and I am happy that we can, and will, make this happen. I’ve watercolored the original artwork for this purpose and Heritage Auctions has agreed to host the auction. We’ll keep you updated as this process unfolds.

Stay safe. Stay well. Stay kind.

— Patrick

Comments (208)

Yesh, Hexe! The entire universe is or was once alive.


So you imagine that the cattle, chickens, turkeys, pigs, sheep and goats will all begin working in the manufacturing plants that will produce all this meatless protein? That’s silly, of course. But how do you believe the thousands of herds of livestock and flocks of poultry will survive when they no longer earn their keep?

Be careful what you wish for…there are not enough sanctuaries, rescues and foster homes in the world who are going to feed and care for all the animals traditionally raised for food if all consumption of animal-origin products were to cease.

I fully support the efforts to ensure that animals raised to become food for other species are provided with a good quality of life while they are being raised, that they be treated and handled humanely and kindly, and shown respect throughout the arc of their timeline and ultimately become food for us and for other animals as well. In a completely vegan world, there will eventually be no animals, because they will no longer provide any benefits for humankind—and as a species, we do not preserve things from which we receive no tangible benefits.


Thank you for your thoughtful response, Tammy. However, your assertion is untrue. As omnivores, humans do need nutrients that come from animal sources, one of which is vitamin B12 which the human body does not manufacture. Also, what are your thoughts about your pet animals requiring meat from livestock? Should you be forcing your carnivorous pets to eats plants because of your personal beliefs? Would that be another form of animal cruelty? Thanks.


Jacob, c’mon up here to NH, we’re being overrun by chipmunks!!!

Dave C

Wait—plants “were never alive”? So do you only consider things that have been shown to be sentient to be alive?

It’s been established that plants communicate with each other via a network formed by their root systems, that a tree that’s being attacked by a disease, fungus or insect sends warning to the other trees within its network, and will share nutrients with other plants when resources are scarce.

I have no problem with people choosing to be vegan, or pescatarian, ovo-lacto vegetarians, or any other form of eschewing meat as their mean of sustenance. But make no mistake, if you eat food and drink any type of liquid, you are consuming something that was once alive, and which lost its life to nourish and hydrate you.


Fatty Snax Deli is a place for humans to get their food and Earl and Mooch just hang out their to get free food. Butchie isn’t their owner to feed them. Patrick isn’t saying feed your dogs and cats a vegan or vegetarian diet, he’s suggesting you contemplate it for yourself since you have the mind to decide what you can and will eat. Humans don’t need meat to get a healthy and balanced diet.


Hi Kim, cats are carnivores but dogs are omnivores. That means that dogs can thrive on a vegan diet.

Vegans with cats have been researching options to feed their cats a diet that is as close to being free of animal products as possible. Personally, I’m not convinced yet that a supplemented vegan diet for cats has been adequately proven to be healthy for all cats, but my it’s a subject I follow with interest.


Stacy, I agree with you. Factory farming is a horror. When I say “local” I mean LOCAL. I can & have visited the farms where the animals are raised. They live simply, both the people and animals. And, yes, slaughter is killing, but it is done quickly, in situ by people with respect. I completely understand that this is unacceptable to you and I honor your desire to live as you do. I don’t expect the same from you, but I would ask that don’t make assumptions about my choices.


Michael – have you read MALLARD FILLMORE? It’s so far RIGHT that my paper puts it on the Opinion page instead of with the other comics. As long as there have been comics, some have been solely used for social and political comment. It’s not a new thing – just like every other art form.

And, Buddhists are vegetarians. They seem to have done just fine for quite a while. Our continuing evolution doesn’t mean we can’t change for the better.


Lisa, thanks.