A Small Dog Phenomenon | Teen Ink

A Small Dog Phenomenon

November 4, 2009
By olivsn BRONZE, Cambridge, Massachusetts
olivsn BRONZE, Cambridge, Massachusetts
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

A few weeks ago, my father and I were driving home from the store. As I looked out the window, I saw a woman walking in the park, carrying a bag. Now at first, I couldn't see what was in that bag, until a small head popped out. It was a dog, a Chihuahua to be precise, with perfectly combed fur. Its collar matched the bag, bright blue with sparkles that reflected off the sun. I could also see that its ears were tied back with pink ribbons.
As I drove back home, it made me wonder why people would treat little dogs like accessories or babies. I strongly feel that all dogs, big or small should be treated with respect. Dressing little dogs in sweaters, pants, shoes, etc. is truly disturbing. Animals should not be treated like people. I mean how would you feel if you were treated like an animal?
There are lots of reasons why I think the small dog trend is wrong. One reason is that I personally prefer bigger dogs, and think that they are better companions. This is because bigger dogs are stronger compared to small dogs that are puny and fragile. You are able to have more freedom with a big dog because you do not have to spend every second worrying about how delicate it is, or giving the dog everything it wants in order to feel like the dog is satisfied. What is good about large dogs is that you are able to do a little of everything with them; you can cuddle them, or be strict while not giving them any mercy based on their size. Also, you know that they are capable of taking care of themselves to a certain extent; therefore you don't look like a fool giving them everything you think they need, like raincoats and boots. I respect that others might think otherwise or have different opinions; however this is what I strongly believe.
Another reason why I don’t like this small canine trend is because it is cruel. Dogs shouldn’t be treated like dolls or accessories. From what I see, almost every celebrity actress owns a little dog. Celebrities like Vanessa Anne Hudgens and Ashley Tisdale probably think that by carrying their little puppy around wherever they go will attract the media. It does. The photos that people take of them are posted online where millions will see a puppy probably wearing some type of clothing, in the arms of some actress. People, especially teenage girls, will see those pictures. This is absurd because it sends a message to people, not only teens, that it is okay to dress up their pooch, and carry it around like it’s a fashion accessory. No it is not! A dog, small or big, is a living thing that should be treated with respect.
This small dog phenomenon encourages small dog owners to spend large sums of money on items that they think their dog needs. For instance, it is common to walk down the streets of a city and see a small canine being carried in an expensive carrying case, dressed up in a cashmere coat with a diamond studded collar, on their way home from a doggy day spa. Owners even buy gourmet food for them, which can cost more than a meal at an expensive restaurant. Also, household objects that are usually meant for people, like beds, and treadmills, are routinely bought for these little dogs. Owners are wasting so much money on their dogs, when there are more important ways to use their money. For example, if they really wanted to help care for animals, these small puppy owners could support animal shelters.

Whenever I see someone carrying their small pooch I wonder whether they are doing it to please the dog or to please themselves. Dogs have four legs because they are meant to walk, not to be carried. When I think about this, I realize that maybe the reason people carry their small dogs is because they want to feel as though they’re nurturing a baby. People that have yet to care for a baby, but own a little dog, often act as though it is their baby. A large amount of people who own small dogs want to have the feeling of raising a baby, so therefore they over nurture their puppy. These people forget that a baby and dog are two very different beings. It is true they both need love, and protection, but there are two separate ways to do so. A baby needs to be cared for, and probably have more attention. Where as a dog also needs attention, but is able to fill its needs on its own once in a while.

Again I respect that others prefer small dogs, but I do not respect that people treat them like accessories. If you adopt or own a small dog, treat it with the respect it deserves.

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This article has 1 comment.

CP3bigplay said...
on Jan. 7 2010 at 5:05 pm
CP3bigplay, Lyndhurst, Ohio
0 articles 0 photos 7 comments

Favorite Quote:
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

Invictus, by William Ernest Henley

if you have a dog, you should at least walk it on a leash, not in a bag. dogs are our friends to play with and train to do what we want. treating a little dog like that isn't right. just because it's little doesn't mean that it doesn't want to be walked on a leash. we don't know the dog's personality. so by doing that, we could be taking something important away from a dog that would much rather love to be on the ground sniffing all the...well..whatever, you name it! food crumbs, other dogs, etc. i have a medium sized dog, and we train him. he was found downtown in the streets. we've trained him. he's come to trust us. he guards us. whenever someone approaches the door, he howls. who's to say a chihuahua doesn't want to do that? i believe some people pamper their dogs too much, so i have to agree with you. (i just hope that doesn't happen to dachshund because they were bred to hunt. it would be demoralizing to the dog to be pampered like that when he wants to hunt_