From afar, it was hard to determine if the stroller an older man was pushing was one of human consumption. As he grew closer, navigating the hilly terrain, It was quite obvious the occupant being tossed haphazardly from one end of the stroller to the next was his “pet.” As I peered into the zippered compartment, the man’s “Schmoodle,” a new accidental designer breed I have yet to hear about, stood shaking from head to toe. ” This guy is a mess!” the man remarked. ” I don’t know what to do with him. ” He doesn’t like to go for walks. he doesn’t want to be held, he only likes my wife and she’s out of town.” Apparently the stroller was the “only” way this dog got from one place to another. I couldn’t help but feel sorry for the dog, especially as I watched my friends puppy run and jump at the end of it’s leash, taking in all the sights, smells, and quite a few new friends that had stopped for a pat.
More often than not, our furry friends are just trying to appease our wishes with the cute outfits, bows, and yes even strollers. It is estimated that we spend 66 billion annually on our pets. That is Billion with a capital B. When designer food wasn’t enough, the industry moved onto toys and beds and collars, and now methods of transportation. Just when you think they couldn’t possibly come up with anything new, pet spas have become the biggest rage. From blue berry facials to massages, money is no object for man’s best friend. And if that’s not enough, stop by your local coffee shop to treat your pet to a “Puppucccino.”
But does it really make our pets happy or does it make us happy? Believe it or not, there IS a difference. Your pet is content to be your companion, to receive love and reciprocate it. Placing your dog in a stroller and taking away it’s natural instincts of wanting to smell seems almost cruel. Sure a bow placed by the groomer may look “cute,” but ask yourself how often do you walk around with bows in your own hair? Does your dog walk into it’s own closet and ask to be dressed ? You get the picture.
If your pet could talk … ahem, they DO … this is what they would say. Put away the accoutrements and spend time with them. Because in the end, its all we want more of anyway.