Thursday, August 02, 2007 at 3:37:57 PM by Edward Knittel
Three years ago we reported that Tokyo, Japan's rent a puppy businesses were doing very well. Now comes news that this same practice is becoming more popular in Southern California.
The service offers all of the benefits of having a pet companion without all the hassle of actually having to care for a living creature. You don't have to take them to the vet for their shots or deal with them when they're sick.
Marlena Cervantes, founder of FlexPetz, bristles when people refer to her 5-month-old business as a rent-a-pet service. She prefers "shared pet ownership," explaining the concept is more akin to a vacation time share or a gym membership.
If I sound a little cynical it's because I probably am. Pets are a responsibility and they teach you a lot about yourself.
Shari was wise to realize that owning a pet was not the best idea, but does that make the adjustment for the dog any better? How is a "small, two-bedroom apartment" and a "full-time schedule" helpful to a rented animal any more than actually owning a pet?
Shari Gonzalez, 22, never doubted there was room for a dog in her heart. The issue was her life, which included a small, two-bedroom apartment and a full-time schedule of college classes in San Diego.
With that said, I don't think that this service is a fad that's going to go away any time soon. Hiking, running, playing fetch and cuddling on a couch with a dog are all great things that bring about relaxation and comfort. So many people have busy schedules and prior responsibilities that owning a pet just isn't in the cards for them. This also gives them a chance to "try before they buy" by spending time with different breeds.
Have you heard about renting a pet and what do you think about it? Am I right to think it's a little unfair or am I completely wrong?
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