After nearly two months of allowing life’s various distractions to take priority over my blog, I must finally break my silence. The controversy over the Obama family’s new pooch is just too much for me to hold my tongue.
Although not at all surprised, I was as disappointed as anyone that the President and Mrs. Obama went back on repeated intentions to rescue a shelter dog. Bo, a male Portuguese water dog, was a gift (produced from a breeder) from Senator and Mrs. Kennedy to the President’s two young daughters.
But, when did his highness allegedly make such a lofty promise? Malia has allergies. Mom needs a dog that compliments her J. Crew sweater sets. Such a pompous pooch could not be found in all the shelters of America. (Actually, about 30 percent of homeless dogs in shelters are purebreds.)
Obama initially made this promise to Dr. Jana Kohl, who authored the book about a puppy named “Baby” that was tortured in a puppy mill. Obama even poses with “baby" for the cover of the Winter 2009 issue of American Dog. Do you think she was a little miffed? Judging by her statements in this press release , I would say so.
Another broken promise, so what? Demand for the breed has skyrocketed and so have prices. But much more concerning is the unintended consequences for the equally deserving potential pets who suffer in shelters and face certain death. Two million dogs are euthanized every year in shelters across America. As sad as I think it is, Obama-loving lemmings the world over are crawling over themselves to emulate everything he does. Imagine the statement it could have made if he made good on his promise and actually rescued a dog. Adopt-a-Pet.com states pet relinquishment is up 20 to 30 percent due to the economy. Not everyone can afford a pet, especially not on par with the President's variety.
Just for old times sake, watch President Elect Obama relay his two criteria for dog adoption. The Obamas are all about appearances. I wouldn't be surprised if a second dog is brought in to quell the concerns of pet adoption advocates.