Rude Dog Owners

rudeowner.jpgSometimes, I wonder if being a dog owner automatically makes a person a dog lover. I’m really starting to believe not…and this is why.

This weekend, I was waiting in line at my favorite local pet boutique behind a lady with a Yorkie puppy. This tiny puppy was running and jumping amuck, all around her owner’s legs, while her owner just chatted up the store cashier and ignored her dog. Of course, the puppy was very cute and I was silently aww-ing to myself.

It was only a matter of time before the puppy made her way to me and began jumping on my legs– my natural reaction was to bend down and pet the dog. Unspoken pet etiquette (as I think we all know) is to acknowledge the pet owner and tell her how cute her puppy is. Another unspoken etiquette is to thank the person who has just complimented your dog.

Well, apparently some dog owners out there don’t know about this etiquette, or don’t care, whichever, because this lady just looked at me and completely ignored my comments, and stared at her dog until the puppy got distracted by something new, at which point she continued her conversation with the cashier.

Now, I understand some people in this world are just rude, but seriously, somebody tells you your puppy is adorable and you don’t even crack a smile? It’s not as if I ran up to her puppy and feaked out over her cuteness – I was just minding my own business. If she didn’t want people to touch her dog, then she’s got to make sure that she’s keeping an eye on her dog (short leash, pick her up, whatever) so that her dog doesn’t run up to strangers!

The worst part was, this particular lady was having a conversation about how she likes to call her puppy “stinky” even though she’s fully aware that the puppy just smells like a dog. Hmmm…maybe because she IS a dog? She used the word stinky so many times in her conversation, you would think she had a huge outdoor dog who likes to roll in mud. Meanwhile, she completely ignored her dog until the last moment, when she was about to leave and put a sweater on her before going out the door.

I have NO problem with people who like to dress up their dog – in fact, I’m totally guilty of that behavior myself. And I also understand that every once in awhile people will come up to my dogs and that compliments and comments will be given, at which point I will always give a “thank you” regardless if I’m in a chatty mood or not. I DO have a problem with people who think dogs are only for accessorizing and don’t take care of all the other aspects of being a responsible pet owner.

This particular instance just got me thinking about other dog owners. I would think that if you love your dog, you would feel good if someone complimented her, even if you’re not super friendly yourself. You certainly wouldn’t ignore the puppy, or let her run up to different people if that’s not what you want her to do.

If you’re a dog owner, you should be a dog lover. And once you become a dog owner, there’s really no need to disrespect another dog owner…that’s just rude!

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