Let me start off by saying that I love dogs. I don’t currently have a dog because my current life doesn’t have room for one, but putting it as poetically as possible, if I could I would.
I not only love dogs, I love big dogs, labradors being my favorite. But, I have to admit that I really don’t get very small dogs. They’re usually neurotic, can’t stop moving and/or barking if their life depended on it, and most are pretty ugly. If you’re a small dog lover, please don’t take it personally. It’s just my thing. I mean, I’d rather have a cat than a small dog. Come to think of it I have two (cats), and yet, I have seen some small dogs that could very easily change my anti-small dog stance.
But, anyway, all this to tell you that I’m a dog lover. I consider dogs to be a [hu]man’s best friend, and I’m all for treating them (as well as other animals) with the utmost care and respect. In fact, I’m 100% in agreement with the late Mahatma Gandhi who said, “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” However, even though I’m not a gambler, I’d be willing to bet some serious money that when Gandhi was thinking about the good treatment of animals, he wasn’t envisioning dogs “taking walks” in strollers.
The first time I saw this phenomenon, I was walking behind a young woman pushing a stroller. Since I was walking at a faster pace, I was looking forward to passing her and looking at her baby (I love babies too).
Her “baby” turned out to be four-legged, covered in fur, and with its tongue hanging out a la Miley Cirus. It took all the strength I had not to fall apart (I don’t know why I feel that some Gloria Gaynor is the way to go here), kept trying hard not to stare or burst out laughing. I thought this particular dog owner to be one-of-a-kind, someone who likes attention and found a novel way to get it. But, since that first time, I’ve seen one too many examples of this dog-in-stroller craze.
It hasn’t gotten any easier for me, this desire to stare. My need to laugh has been replaced by my need to ask why. But since I’m a firm believer in “to each his own,” I keep going. I’ve kept going in disbelief and amazement straight to this moment when I can no longer stop myself from saying: Seriously? WTF? (even if it’s only in “print”).
What’s next, pacifiers? How about diapers? Wait, I have a vague memory in my mind of a small dog in diapers, but I may have dreamed it, the logical PTSD manifestation after seeing a dog in a stroller.
What’s next next? I mean beyond the ridiculousness factor. Will it be dogs suffering from obesity and diabetes because they’re not getting the physical exercise that their four legs intended them to have? I mean, we have two legs and we walk. Isn’t it doubly obvious that Mother Nature gave dogs four legs to do more than sit in a stroller?
I hope that this is just a fad, because if, as Gandhi said, the greatness of a nation can be judged by the way it treats its animals, what does putting dogs in strollers say about our nation? Great. I hope I don’t have to explain that I’m being sarcastic.