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Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way.

People Who Shouldn’t Get Dogs

Written by Joel Bartlett | September 8, 2010

 

Last week, my girlfriend, Meghan, and I fostered a li’l buggy-eyed pup. Meghan found Emily, as we eventually named her, dodging traffic in downtown Norfolk and at serious risk of being hit by a car, injured or killed by another animal, or nabbed by the wrong person. Little Emily barely weighed 3 pounds, and she was frightened, collarless, and without a microchip. We contacted our coworkers at PETA for advice on helping to locate the puppy’s guardian.

A couple days later, there was a line of people begging to adopt the puppy if the owner didn’t come forward. Something about Emily’s buggy eyes and a tongue too big to fit into her mouth grabbed people. Meghan could barely walk 2 feet with Emily without being assaulted by puppy lovers. If only people clamored this way for a fraction of the millions of unwanted dogs dying for a home in shelters each year, we’d be much closer to beating the animal homelessness crisis.

Eventually Emily’s “owner” called PETA. However, what should have been bittersweet (we had grown attached to Emily) was instead just bitter. Emily hadn’t just run away—she had escaped through the cracked window of the car she had been left in while her owner was at work. And then he didn’t even try to find her. He just “accepted the fact that she was gone.” Only later did he realize that his kids might miss her so then gave PETA a ring. Outrageous!

At first we were just annoyed that Emily wasn’t spayed (with the owner’s permission, we did that before returning her), not to mention (again) collarless and without a microchip and all of maybe 3 pounds! Unfortunately, some people just don’t know why spaying and neutering is so critical. But people who leave their dogs in (deadly hot) cars while they are at work—and who don’t care if their animal gets away—those are people who should never have animals in the first place. It broke Meghan’s heart to have to send Emily back to owners who clearly didn’t appreciate her or the danger they had put her in. That she was still alive was nothing short of a miracle.

So please, if you know people who are thinking about getting an animal but aren’t willing to make him or her a top priority in their lives—tell them to think again. And then think once more. And if they decide that they have the time and resources to make an animal part of their family, please tell them to go to their local animal shelter and save a life.

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  • Patti Brower says:

    WELL WHEN THE DOG ESCAPE AGAIN AND IT PROBABLY WILL, I WOULDN’T EVEN LET THE IDIOT KNOW THAT THAT DOG HAS BEEN FOUND AND JUST FIND A GOOD HOME FOR IT THAT COULD LOVE AND APPRECIATE HER. SHE COULD CARE LESS ABOUT THIS DOG AND WILL PROBABLY DIE IN HER CARELESS HOME. AND WHEN IT HAPPENS SHE SHOULD BE FINED FOR WHAT SHE DID.

  • Roxy says:

    I hope Emily gets better care from now on, and that her owner at least got a much-needed talking-to. Once I get the chance, I’m adopting an animal :)

  • Renate says:

    absolutely disgusting…….

  • Ashley-P says:

    Hey Regan,

    Thanks for commenting! I understand you’re concerned for your friend’s dogs. Can you please send your questions and concerns to to info@peta.org? Someone will get back to you shortly with advice on this situation. Thanks for your support and have a great day!

    Ashley Palmer
    Marketing Coordinator
    PETA

  • regan says:

    idk what to do. im 17 and my best friend adores aniamls. as do i. only shes a bit lazy and she has a super hyper dog a english bulldog and he is full of energy and every time im over i bring him for a walk. i try to encourage her and her sister to walk him every day but they quit after a while. they also have a mini maltese thats like 9 years old and has anxiety issues. she brings him everywhere she goes. and now she wants another dog. a big dog. wich of course is gonna need lots of play time and space to run. ive been trying to get her to go adopt this 7 year old yorkiepoo at the shelter nearby. but she has her eyes et on this german shepherd pup. i have 2 large dogs but have a huge bacl yard and ove to walk and run and go to the park with em. grr its so frustrating when i see someone so loving and with good intentions heading towards a bad decision. any advice about what i could do?

  • kim says:

    why did they give the dog back to the bad owner? do not understand

  • Tucker says:

    P.S.
    THOSE PEOPLE SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN GIVEN THE DOG BACK!!!!!!!!!!
    LEAVING HER IN THE CAR WHILE THAT PERSON WAS AT WORK!?!?!?!?!?
    PUTTING THE DOG IN DANGER!!!!!!

  • Tucker says:

    I ALWAYS AND TELLING PEOPLE NOT TO GET ANY KIND OF PET UNLESS YOU ARE 100000000% COMMITED TO IT!!!!!! THAT THIS ANIMAL IS #1 ALWAYS,
    NO MATTER WHAT IS HAPPENING OR GOING TO HAPPEN IN YOUR LIFE!!!!!!!!
    IF NOT THEN DO NOT,DO NOT GET A PET, PALIN AND SIMPLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • candy says:

    i agree, there should be strickter laws against animal cruelty!!! if that was a child, it would be safe ina new home, but because it is a dog it isnt. it was great that they rescued emily form the side of the road!!!

  • Debra says:

    I definately would have found a way to keep this person from getting the puppy back. I believe legally this could have been
    done since he admitted to leaving the dog in the hot vehicle.
    There are laws against this happening to children and pets.
    Heat builds up in vehicles to extremes even with cracks in the
    windows. One should NEVER take a pet to work and leave it in a
    vehicle hot or cold or even in between. This is NEGLECT, ABUSE,
    and stupid on the owners part. It seems like the young people growing up have had too much, the parents took care of their pets
    for them and they just expect the pets to be like stuffed animals
    and throw them around any way they please. Well, these are real, live, breathing animals and must be cherished and cared for.
    I was deputized to help animals like this where I used to live and
    I would not have returned this pet to the owner. That happened to me with another pet one time, and they never got it back. It went to a good caring enviroment.

  • constance says:

    If he left his child in the care it could have died, why would he think less of a pet. When I adopted my new baby from our local shelter 2 months ago, who is a 3 pound yorkie, a family with 3 kids under the age of 5 wanted her! I waited until my youngest was almost 10 before adopting such a small dog because they are not toys for children! It is not just people who leave dogs in hot cars, it is people adopting dogs that they have no idea how to care for! There should be manditory classes on how to care for your specific size dog before you can get one! Sorry, this is now my soap box!

  • Carol says:

    This article upset me so much. I wish that little dog the best. Some people just shouldn’t own an animal and this little dog’s owners fall into that catagory.

  • catherine wohlrab says:

    Some people are just too stupid to have animals. Those people who leave their pets in hot cars are among those stupid people. I think it is time that pet owners guilty of deplorable practices when it comes to their pets should be legally barred from owning animals.

  • Denise says:

    There should have been a law already in place to save Emily from a second time around with the same owner.
    How sad to think what could be next for poor Emily, but God bless you for doing what you did when you had her.
    God bless the animals!

  • Ornella says:

    Stupid, just stupid.
    Why are people so careless?
    I wish Emily was taken away from them. In some states it’s illegal to leave a dog in a car alone.

  • Ashley Whitzell says:

    Amen!! It’s sickening how many superficial, under-educated, “would-be” pet owners buy cute, little, cuddly pets from breeders without even considering for a moment the notorious quote that is too too true…”why buy when shelter pets will die?”. This disgusted me that little Emily was left in a car all day. These people buy pets like their buying a new Coach bag or leather pair of stiletto’s. It’s disgusting.

  • cammy says:

    I shouldn’t get a dog

  • Amanda says:

    I’m sure that if PETA had any legal options they would at least try, unfortunately animals are pretty much property and the few laws protecting them are quite limited. Way to look out, Meghan and Joel!

  • Audrey says:

    I wouldn’t have given her back. If they didn’t care enough to look for her, they wouldn’t have cared enough to go to court to get her back…now would they? Hmmmm?

  • nancytd says:

    If I found out on the phone the circumstances, I would have said I lost the god before he came to pick her up. In person I would have refused too. They would have had to take more legal action to get her back. I doubt he would have gone to that much trouble.

  • michelle says:

    I’m just speechless. I just prayed for Emily and I’ll pray when I remember in times. I found out that so many callous, abusive inhuman beasts are out there. I thought people do take care of their pets at least basic things(I’m not talking about love them) I was too naive or expected too much something about 2 legged living creatures. Look at her eyes! How could you mistreat baby like that? I get so emotional and become so furious every time I see or read about animal abuse. They better realize what’s gonna happen to end of their life ” comes around goes around” That’s what they gonna get! Exactly same the way they treat their furry babies! Poor Emily!

  • Rebecca says:

    I wish there were stricter laws for pets. If you left a baby in a hot car, you would probably lose custody. It should be the same way for pets too. I agree with Meg. We need Pet Protective Custody!

  • Rev. Meg Schramm says:

    I would have said to the owner: “Based on how careless you were with this puppy, we have called Child Protective Services and voiced our concern on the welfare of your children. You are now on their radar.”

  • Jennifer says:

    God, I certainly wouldn’t have given Emily back to a neglectful owner.

    I do understand what you’re saying about the cuteness factor. I’m sure a lot of animals are purchased as babies, and then neglected/abused when they grow larger.

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