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Lots of concern over impulse buys of Chihuahuas

By Gary Bogue
Monday, September 22nd, 2008 at 8:04 am in Chihuahua, dogs.

Looks like I’m not the only one who’s concerned about what’s going to happen with Chihuahua sales after the new movie “Beverly Hills Chihuahua” comes out.

I just received this press release from best friends Animal Society in Utah:
Like the movies “101 Dalmatians” and “Beethoven” before it, the Hollywood premier of “Beverly Hills Chihuahua” has animal welfare organizations concerned that once again little dogs will be victims of our “fashion statement” culture.

Their anxiety is based on past tendencies of dog movies to spark popularity in a specific breed, which prompts impulse buys from pet shops, which in turn leads to a glut in shelters where thousands of animals eventually are euthanized.

“Everyone loves dogs in movies and people seem to quickly fall in love with the smaller breeds,” says Julie Castle, director of community programs for Best Friends Animal Society, which operates the nation’s largest companion animal sanctuary. “It will be no different with ‘Beverly Hills Chihuahua.’ People will be so entertained and captivated by the Chihuahuas that they may feel compelled to run out to buy one for themselves or a loved one.”

That might seem harmless enough until one learns that just a few miles from the El Capitan Theater, site of the Walt Disney film’s premier, hundreds of Chihuahuas are cooped up in city-county shelters waiting to be rescued from euthanasia.

Many Chihuahuas that are purchased on impulse from pet shops and through the Internet eventually find their way to the shelters when their owners come to the realization that they cannot care properly for the animal. This sad reality is played out in many places across the country.

“We just want to remind folks to think carefully before the run out to get a Chihuahua,” Castle added. “And if they decide to get one, we hope they will choose to adopt from a shelter instead of purchase from a pet shop or on-line.”

Please give the above some careful thought, folks, and don’t run out and buy a Chihuahua. Thanks for caring. /Gary

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No Responses to “Lots of concern over impulse buys of Chihuahuas”

  1. Nancy Frensley, CPDT, CAP2 Says:

    The recent Chihuahua movie is almost one of those chicken and egg puzzles. Chihuahuas have been already greatly popularized by Legally Blonde movies, Paris Hilton and other superstars so it’s no surprise that now a new movie featuring them is opening. So what came first, Chihuahua popularity or the move popularizing Chihuahuas?

    Chihuahuas are terribly cute and appealing little dogs. They are hardy and resilient in many ways and are often a lot of dog in a little bitty package. Like all toy dogs, however, they are subject to poor handling practices.When handled badly, they can become defensive and aggressive. When spoiled they are prone to guarding from the lap and can become very unpleasant to live with. Handled well, most are delightful pets that enjoy being with people and fit in well with families.

    Here’s the problem. They are already so popular that thousands, even in our local area, are in shelters and have no homes. Many of these have suffered from neglect in their previous homes-which happens when a breed or type of dog becomes popular and people get them without thinking about the reality of keeping a dog.

    We hope that people who consider a Chihuahua as a companion will do their research into the proper management, care and training of small dogs and understand that they are getting a dog, not a toy, and that a small dog requires all the care and effort that that a big dog does.

    We further encourage anyone wanting a Chihuahua to visit local animal shelters and select a dog from the many available that need good homes.

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