Friday, May 1, 2009

doggy stroller

I saw this doggy stroller advertised in a Walmart flyer a while back, and I couldn't believe my eyes. Actually it says "pet stroller," so I guess it is meant for dogs, cats, pigs (I had a friend once who had a pet pig inside her home, and carried its photo in her wallet), ferrets (I saw someone walking a ferret on a leash not that long ago and the ferret was acting like a ferret, that is, acting wild!) and other animals, even wild animals that we in North America decide we want as pets. I admit, our family has had a pet dog, a gecko, a series of cats, birds, 2 rabbits, pigeons, fish, and 3 turtles. And one of my sons had an ant farm at some point.

We in North America are the ultimate consumers of ridiculous, wasteful stuff that has caused environmental and species destruction. Our homes are full of the stuff that we buy which we no sooner get it, then it's out of style, so in "our generosity" we give to the Sally Ann or March of Dimes, or throw it in the garbage. The pet industry is huge. The pet box store in our city is huge. No lack of stuff to buy for your pet no matter what it is.

Sometimes out on my walk at the waterfront I see a big golden lab that has only 3 legs. It seems to be hopping along fine and is not bothered by its missing leg.

Why on earth would a dog need a stroller? Or a cat? Or is it for the owner?


Augie Ray said...

"Why on earth would a dog need a stroller? Or a cat?"

There are many reasons people or pets may want strollers. It's important to remember that not all pets or people are alike!

My wife and I own a site that sells pet strollers (, and we find that customers' reasons for wanting a pet stroller are varied.

They're great for older or injured dogs. (You mention seeing a 3-legged dog getting around fine, but that same dog might have issues going longer distances.)

People who live in big cities sometimes find they don't like walking their pets on busy sidewalks and streets, so they'll roll their dog to the park where he or she can then enjoy exercise.

Pet strollers are also great for cats. Too many people let their cats roam outside, which is very dangerous for them (and often illegal in many cities.) A cat stroller is an excellent way to permit felines to get fresh air without letting them wander.

People with small dogs who want to jog or walk for longer distances sometimes find their dogs poop out, which limits their distance. So, many will walk their dogs until the dog gets tired and then stroll them the rest of the way.

I could go on, but the point is that the product has many purposes for people! The product certainly is NOT right for ALL pet owners, but for some pet owners, it helps improve their pet's quality of life or increases quality time with their pets.

Just wanted to share my two cents.


northshorewoman said...

thank you, Augie, to clarify some of the reasons some folks would buy a pet stroller. It is true that it could be a convenience and a help depending on the person and/or dog or cat. I have to admit, I once thought of buying a bird carrier so that I could take my lovebird with me when I went out grocery shopping. But then, after second thoughts, I thought maybe I was anthropomorphizing my bird, that is, treating it like a person.

My intention was not to criticize an individual who finds a pet stroller a necessity (such as a disabled or elderly dog) but to point out the collective consumer markets that we create that are unlimited in our imagining our necessities at the expense of the planet.

As a mother, I had gone through 4 strollers for 3 children (now grown). THey all ended up at the dump. I don't think my 4 strollers was an exception. They kept breaking and I was an avid walker and runner with my kids in strollers.

And I've been to the landfill dump in my city of 100,000 people. THe numbers of strollers being bulldozed into the earth is shocking.

So, this is where I come from with my question of doggie strollers. How do we make this a sustainable practice to guarantee a clean world for our grandchildren?