Does size really matter?

It is always a joy to go out to the woods with my good dogs when the weather warms up!    For us it is as normal as getting out of bed in the morning … yet for some folks the sight of  such different sizes tethered to the same human still gives them pause!

Lets face it, small dogs are often viewed as a breed apart!       If they cannot pull a child off his or her feet, why would one need obedience training?    Even worse, they are often viewed as the best option for busy folks who do not have time for a ‘real’ … ie big … dog!

Saddest of all of course is the common perception that good small dog husbandry only requires cute outfits and regular grooming sessions!    They are so cute and so little, eh?    Really, what more would they need, eh?

There is no denying that small dogs are popular!   Kijiji is full of pricey ads for small puppies!   Indeed, a dear friend running a long time rescue has told me that there are generally ten good apps for every cute little dog for every one app for a beautiful big dog!

Does that mean that there are NO differences between small and large dogs?   Of course not!   From a purely personal perspective, over the years I have learned a thing or two from every dog I have shared space with!

Big Dogs can do this

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Big dogs also like to do this  …. but …

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So do little dogs … even if they cannot reach the cookies on the counter!

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The little dogs go to my fabulous groomer …. while the big dogs get brushed and bits tidied up at home!

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Do little dogs cost more in vet bills?   It would be churlish of me to suggest that!    However, it has been my experience that those breeding dogs of any size from backyard breeders / pet stores / mills / etc  do not cut into their bottom line with any health screening .

Now before the keyboards catch on fire, yes I know that there are many, many sensible kind hearts who love their little dogs for life!    Who take their new pals to puppy classes!    Who love them and walk them and teach their children how to respect them!    Who appreciate their little breed quirks and have a ball playing Mr Dressup!

But I am actually wandering afield, as I am wont to do in my meandering way.   The point I am trying to make is that for a wide variety of reasons, there seem to be more small dogs available through rescue these days!

Why?   Is it that social networking groups like the Ready, Set Rescue Network provide more interactive opportunities to offer rescue options to the ‘free to a good home’ s?    Is it that there are more lifesaving rescue relationships with animal clinics?

Who knows?     But I do know that the idea that there are no cute little local dogs available in rescue is starting to seem like more of a fallacy every day!      Does that mean that folks should not be bringing cute little dogs in from away?

Not necessarily!    If that is what moves them then more power to them!   After all, where would the rescue world be in this province if GPAC had not worked so hard to raise everyone’s consciousness!

All I am saying is that it is time to stop saying that we need to import cute little dogs for adoption … when clearly there is no shortage here!

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PS … for those of you who do not know me well, these two little dogs live here 🙂   Mandy was a foster failure … er adopted … from The Animal Rescue Coaltions and Rascal was adopted from ASDR back in their heyday!

 

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