Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Amores perros

Pedaling through Recoleta, I saw a man move his way slowly down the street, surrounded by a pack of domesticated dogs.

Immediately I hopped off my bike and snapped a couple of pictures. Finally I had captured on film a sight that is as much a part of everyday life in Buenos Aires as dodging dogshit: a paseador de perros.

I asked Mario if he ever had problems with the dogs. No, he said.

“But don’t they ever get scared?”

“Sometimes,” he said vaguely, eyeing the rigging to which no fewer than fifteen leashes were attached.

We crossed the street. A brutish-looking mastiff stopped to urinate against a utilities box. Mario smacked his head against the metal box, and the group went on its way.

“And do they all get along?”

“Some of them make friends, others no.”

Mario charges 100 pesos a month, per dog for this service.

New York dog owners pay far more to have a dog walker, or even a dog runner, take their pet out, never in the company of more than a few other dogs.

Think of all the money they would save on Zoloft prescriptions, canine psychologists, and acupuncturists if their dogs could socialize in large groups on a leisurely, daily stroll.


Blogger TangoSpam said...

This is because American dogs are as neurotic as their owners. After being here 18 months I finally found a great dogwalker for Roxie. He told me that she was the only American dog he has walked that was sociable...maybe now she is an Argentine pitbull terrier instead of an American pitbull...

8:25 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

jajajaja, I still don't dare to send our dogs out with the neighborhood dogwalkers. I have visions of bloody flying pooches and our dogs with legs hanging out of their jaws!!!


11:34 AM  

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