The Internets is Pissing Me Off Again

From MSN Money, an article titled “Why You Can’t Afford a Dog”:

In short, if you can’t find at least an extra $800 to $1,000 in your budget every year, don’t get a pet.

I have six pets which means apparently I have an “extra” $6000 a year in my budget for basic pet expenses. Newsflash: I work my pets into the budget – they are not “extra”. With the occasional “extra” money I have, I go to a movie or get a sandwich. Although it’s hard to believe that a card carrying poor person such as myself would ever be able to go to a movie given that I’ve got to spend six grand a year on my dogs.

More advice:

If you get laid off, start looking for foster care for your pets until times are better — and if the job market is particularly bleak (think “unemployed in Michigan”), you may have to give them away outright.

Sure because pets are “extra” and if you get laid off, they should be the first things kicked to the curb. Yes, I see your reasoning. Please take me to the next logical step:

When people say “I’d never give up my pet,” they’re usually speaking from a position of privilege. Sure, they may feel broke right now, but they’re still in a place where they can say what they would “never” do. If you were ever truly destitute, you’d know better than to make that kind of claim.

Or maybe I’m wrong. Maybe you lived in your sedan with four cats or out in a culvert with a husky-shepherd mix. Maybe all of you survived. But most of us aren’t cut out to take that kind of risk — and frankly, we shouldn’t. It’s too dangerous. A human life is worth more than the chance to nurture a corgi or a ferret for a few more years.

Besides, Fido deserves better than car camping and eating old Wonder bread from the food bank. Or suppose you got sick and had to leave your shelter in the woods. Would you want your kitten to slowly starve while trying to stay ahead of predators?

Dude. When did this train get rerouted to CrazyTown? We started out as too poor to own a dog, then we got laid off, suddenly we’re being stalked by bear at our thicket tent in the forest and I need to decide what kind of death is best for my Hello Kitty.

Here’s the thing: Pet ownership is for everyone, not just the wealthy or the middle class. Pets love poor people who take care of them responsibly just as much as they love rich people. That’s one of the great things about pets. And about being a pet owner.

I’m absolutely in favor of making smart, informed decisions regarding pet ownership and finances. But to my mind, these decisions should be based in reality. (I’m sort of a stickler for that kinda thing.) In real life, poor people have pets. They may need to sacrifice more than an owner with a higher income, but that’s what people do when it comes to family.

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  1. I like to start of by saying I am poor. I live below the poverty level. I have 4 dogs A German Shepard Samantha. A 1/2 German Shepard BabyGirl, A Boxer /pit mix Athena and a Pocket Pit Bull Midnight (Middy). I have a African Grey Parrot Sasha, and a 15 year old cat Mary Jane. My 1/2 German Shepard will be 12 in May and sees her vet regularly She is in excellent health. My Pocket Pit is also a elderbelle and she see her vet regularly . She is in good health except she has allergies. The German Shepard and Boxer mix just started living with me in June from a death in my family. They came unfixed. I have had the boxer mix Athena spay. The German Shepard had fluid in her lungs , a ear infection and was 30lbs overweight. She has completed her medicines for lungs and ears and only has about 5 more lbs to lose then she can be spay. A very good friend paid for their spay. I paid for everything else.I have family support and am very blessed in this regard.I do plan and go with out on not important things. Being so poor I have manage to become really good at moving stuff around, planing and prioritizing the money I have. All my bills get paid. I stay at home . I don’t go out much and I am ok with that. With the bird chasing cat around the kitchen and the bird telling the dogs to knock it off or sit or bad dog I get plenty of laughs at home. I have had 4 deaths in my family in a little over a year.Samantha and Athena were also grieving from the loss of their human Dad and Mom My brother and his wife. I really needed my fur and feather family and they knew I needed them. I know they need me. It is a lot of work but so worth it. You get loads unconditional love back.

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