Pet Peeves

Daily Foglifter:  In 2009, Americans spent $45.4 BILLION on their pets. 

Photographer: dr_XeNo

Animal Abuse

There is a major pet problem in the United States. It’s a problem that threatens the dignity and rights of every four-legged creature.  I’m talking, of course, about clothes for pets.  When I see these perfectly cute little cats and dogs wearing sweaters and  Halloween pet-costumes, I feel kind of sick.  I definitely feel sorry for the animal.  They have no say in what their “pet parents” are doing to them.  Treating dogs like dress-up dolls is truly sick.   Just look at this poor dog’s face.  The only thing he would consider doing with a pink bunny rabbit is to chase it down, maul it, and eat it.  He’s a dog, not a three-year-old girl. Unfortunately, the absurdity does not end with the designer sweater or the pink nightmare pictured above. 

When going out of town, pet owners sometimes have to board their animals.  In a traditional kennel, this service is generally provided at a very reasonable rate, somewhere in the neighborhood of $20-$25 per night, which includes food, exercise, and maybe even a bath.  This, however, is not good enough for some “pet parents.”  They opt for a Pet Spa or Pet Hotel.  Yes, it is as bad as it sounds.  A Pet Hotel has several different options available for the pampered pet.  The top-tier at the particular Pet Resort I looked into is the Concept Suite. The amenities (for a dog, mind you) include 48 square feet of space, TV, DVD player, satellite, and a toddler bed all for the low, low base price of $44.25 per night.  This does not include food.  If the dog stays over 7 days, it is given a free body scrub in the Pet Day Spa.  If, however, you want to pay for the Spa Treatments, the Body Scrub and Blowout (a la Jersey Shore?) start at $40/hour.  This is crazy enough, but this particular spa was in an average city, not like anything you’re likely to find in LA or Beverly Hills, where celebrity pet parents have WAY more money than sense. Even pet food is ridiculous.  I saw a commercial the other day with a mom pouring dry dog food on her kids’ plates with the voice over saying, “You would never feed your family dry food from a box, why would you serve it to your pet?”  Um, because it’s a freakin’ dog!  My dog prefers toilet water to fresh.  He also can’t resist the savoring aroma of a discarded poopy diaper.  Many a time I’ve come home to find a diaper with the poopy parts completely eaten away.  Needless to say, filet mignon is too sophisticated for such a palate as that. I could go on and talk about health insurance, hip replacement surgery, or chemotherapy for pets, but I honestly fear for my safety for even suggesting that these aren’t logical, sane measures to take .  Believe me, I know some crazy people with very skewed views about the importance of animals.  I actually know a woman who said that if she was driving down the road, and there was a dog and a person in the road and it was apparent that she would have to hit one of them, she would aim for the person.  Think about that the next time you start to cross a busy street at the same time as a dog.  Your life could be in serious jeopardy.


4 thoughts on “Pet Peeves

  1. You are right-on with the pet thing. My home decor shop used to be next to a pet grooming/supply shop; when the market crashed, my business was hurting, but their’s wasn’t. Go figure!

  2. I have to kindly disagree with some aspects of your post.

    Yes, I agree that people who treat dogs as fashion accessories are wrong. Some dogs do wear clothes for function (NOT fashion) though. I am fully aware that my dog hates the cold. He appears to have a lot of hair, but it is not a thick double coat and it does not keep him warm when temperatures are below freezing. He gladly wears his jacket for the warmth it provides him and it is only worn on days that I know that the temperature is not pleasant for him. With that said, he does wear a Halloween costume ONCE a year though, and I have pictures where he is downright grinning in them 😉

    I agree about the ridiculousness of pet spas and luxury pet “hotels”. But I am also someone who refuses to kennel my dog as I could never leave my dog with someone who I didn’t know and trust and who he wasn’t familiar with.

    I feed my dog dry dog food, but you better believe that he gets the highest quality pet food that I can buy for him. No crap in a bag filled with byproducts and filler.

    As for the brief mention of health insurance for dogs, there are many people (myself included) who view their pets as members of their family. I personally don’t have health coverage for my dog but I understand why many people do. You get health insurance to cover your children, why not your pets? If my dog gets sick or injured, you better believe that I am going to do whatever possible to help him. I do believe that there is a line when they are truly suffering and you can’t do anything but prolong it, however if it is fixable, I’m going to have it fixed.

    I’ll be the first to admit that my dog is spoiled. I don’t have kids yet so a lot of that attention that would go to my children, goes to my dog. I see nothing wrong with spoling your dog and treating it like a loved member of your family, as long as you are meeting the needs of him as an animal and truly realize that they are not a human baby/child. Dogs need training and discipline and boundaries and exercise and consistency. They also need love, and there is nothing wrong with giving them a little too much of it if the rest of those canine needs are met.

    This entry hit home for me and I understand where you are coming from. This reply isn’t meant as an “argument”, just rather a viewpoint of the other side as to why some of us “fanatic dog owners” do what we do for our dogs.

    • I knew when I posted on the forum, I might rub you the wrong way if you happened to read today’s post. 🙂 I completely understand that dogs are part of the family. Before I had children, my dog was like my child and I took him everywhere. And he wore a red bandana all the time. Now I have 5 children, 1 dog, and 2 cats. It’s hard to muster the energy to spend as much time with the pets as I should and really I feel guilty about it. Fortunately, we live in the country and our neighebor’ dogs keep the dog and cats company. And, I might as well confess, the dog will not eat dry dog food unless there’s a can of alpo meat slices on top of it, and I oblige him because I feel guilty. I’m just frustrated by the amount of money that is spent on things like pet spas and hotels when there are so many people that are hurting. I have an issue with the pet insurance primarily because it doesn’t cover much (pre-existing conditions, hip replacement surgeries, etc) that would merit having it in the first place. And the deductibles are relatively high. I didn’t go into it too much because I was trying to keep a lighter tone. And I wasn’t joking about the woman who said she’d rather hit a human than a dog with her car. THAT is a lot crazy!

      I’m glad you commented and you sound like a perfectly reasonable pet parent. You sound like the kind of pet owner I would be if I didn’t have the demands of five children weighing on me. I’ve already decided that once these pets have passed on, I won’t be getting any more. At least until the kids are out of the house. I have a feeling that when that happens I’m going to want a cute, loyal dog or cat to love and care for. And maybe, just maybe, to dress up for Halloween. 🙂

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