Monday, March 17, 2008

Would You Like to Buy a Puppy?

I took a lovely day trip to Healdsburg with the boys on Sunday. This was a day where we were not going to think about work, at all. The problem is, work follows you, whether you like it or not. At least, it follows me.

We walked Mac all around the square and we bumped into a few dogs. Mostly, we kept seeing the same people with a tiny long haired dachsund on a leash and two merle dachsund puppies in their arms. We were browsing a bookstore (Mac sound asleep on the floor) when a man came in carrying one of these puppies and asked loudly to everyone present (there weren't many of us) if we'd like to buy a puppy.

I. Just. Couldn't. Resist.

themacinator: "Why are you selling them?"
man with puppy: "Because we have 8 dogs at home, not counting their mom and dad."
themacinator: "Oh. Are you going to spay and neuter them now?"
man with puppy: "No, why would we do that? We'll have another litter after this."
themacinator: "Maybe because you're having to sell them on the street?"
man with puppy: "Is there another way to do it? Do you want to buy one?"
themacinator: "Yes, prescreened homes, you know? No, I don't want to buy one. I have a dog here who would eat him (point to Mac) and I'm an animal welfare professional (not exactly what I said- details have been changed to protect my anonymity). I'm probably the wrong person to talk to."
man with puppy: "I guess you are. Anyone want to buy a puppy?"

At this point, our conversation ended. I was left shaking my head, and a bookstore browser next to me expressed some disgust to me: "That guy should be ashamed." We agreed, discussed how bizarre and disgusting it was to peddle puppies in the street, and the browser paid and left. As I continued to browse, however, the puppy seller continued to peddle his puppy at the entrance to the bookstore. People gathered around and I learned that the puppies were for sale at $500 for a male and $600 for a female (let the cycle continue!) and people were seriously discussing buying one from him. The man's wife and son were also selling puppies in the town square. I was left feeling more than a little weirded out.

In the wake of all those dogs being seized from Arizona and the publicity surrounding it, you would think people would have some sense. I guess I am an eternal optimist.