By Gina Spadafori
December 10, 2006
Last week the New York Times had a piece about how the fashion-forward woman these days is carrying “a handbag with a heart,” as one of the purse-dog women put it. Another story was about how women are having more back and shoulder pain because fashionable bags are getting ever bigger and heavier, probably because there are dogs in more of those things.
You can breed the dogs smaller — and heaven known the puppy mills are working in it! — but they’re still too heavy. Not to mention: The smaller the dogs, the more likely they are to have health problems. How bloody inconvenient! And then there’s the naggy little problem (if you have a conscience, that is) that a lot of these teeny-tiny dogs are coming from hideously cruel puppy mills, through notorious pet stores like this one.
I was thinking about these problems last night and came up with the perfect solution:
Yep! Don’t get a tiny purse dog, get a purse rat! Consider the advantages:
- Unlike dogs, rats are supposed to be tiny. No problem fitting into smaller, lighter bags that won’t cause back and shoulder problems. Even the tiniest dog is heavier than a rat.
- Like dogs, rats enjoy hanging out with people and can be very friendly and social.
- Like dogs, rats can learn tricks.
- The lifespan of a rat is less than three years. Considering how short any fashion trend is, having a purse pet with a three-year life span is much better than having one who can live to be 15.
- Rats are plentiful, and relatively inexpensive. Pet stores have them. Shelters have them. Rats rescues have them. Heck, in Manhattan, the fashion-forward could pick one up in any alley — free!
- Rats are easy to feed. They’ll eat the same crap their owners do. Those alley rats can even be fed from any nearby dumpster. Easy!
- You want variety? Domesticated rats come in dozens of colors, markings and even a few different fur types. Street rats come in a glossy brown-black, like sable! Gor-geous!
- Rats are just as happy to wear coats, hats and boots as dogs are.
- A rat would be even more of a conversation-starter than a little dog. Let’s face it: Purse dogs are practically passe! Why follow the trend when you can start one?
So there you have it! Instead of getting a tiny, sick dog from a puppy mill who’ll far outlive your interest in purse-dog fashion, get a rat! Save your back! It’s the perfect solution!