22 November 2011

'Scuse me miss, how much is that...?

I have never been a dog person, not even as a kid. In fact, I can not recall ever wanting a dog. Don't get me wrong I have nothing against dogs, it's just that like cars, I have never had the desire to own one.

Yesterday however, I was walking through a shopping mall and passed a pet shop. There in a glass "cage" in the window were several small puppies. I have no idea what breed they were other than "Cute".

I paused briefly and watched them busily digging away at the shredded paper that lined the floor. I was about to walk off when I saw a puppy in the corner of the cage. He was dividing his time between frantically digging and engaging in combat with a plastic water bottle lying flat on the cage floor. The puppy would never win any "Cute Doggie" contests as he had one of the weirdest faces I have seen on a dog. He may not have been, "Aaaw isn't he gorgeous" material, but his face proclaimed, "I'm an individual". I liked him.

Inside the shop two young women wanted to have a closer look at the puppies. An assistant walked towards the cage and the puppies went mad. They rushed to the front waiting for the upper hatch to be opened. For some reason the assistant had difficulty opening the hatch and getting out the puppy the potential buyer was interested in While this was happening, the dogs were frantically trying to get their paws to grip the ledge at the bottom of the partly opened hatch.

I became aware of someone standing next to me and turned slightly to see a stockily built man, covered in tattoos. He turned to me and said solemnly, "I can't watch this any more mate" and I agreed - neither could I.

The whole thing just somehow seemed sad and wrong. Every time the cage is opened for a potential buyer, do the dogs know what is happening and hope they will be chosen?

The thought of buying the puppy suddenly crossed my mind, but it would not have been fair on the puppy. As I walked away, I took one last look. There he was, busily digging away at the shredded paper. I thought of, "The Great Escape" and had a vision of this puppy digging his way out, making his way to the toy shop on the next level and making his dash for freedom on a toy motorbike, ala Steve McQueen,

Hopefully someone who knows about dogs will have snapped him up by now and given him a good, loving home.

I went on my way thinking to myself, even if I could give it the time and care it needs, how could I have walked into the shop and asked how much it was, without bursting into song!



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