Sunday, November 8, 2009

Man's Best Friend

I pretty much live at the library. I see a lot of the same people everyday and I wonder, sometimes, if they see me. As of late, considering the number of people pointing me out (I'm known to store owners as the girl with the bike), probably.

Lately I've been seeing this one women. She never actually comes in the library. She hangs around it. Everyday she wears a jacket, red hat, blue sweat pants cut at the bottom and white sneakers. Every singe time, she ties her black and white dog to the bike rack and he (or she) waits patiently as its master searches through the trash cans. After observing this for a few days I thought about the homeless person I saw with his dog in Time Square. What I would like to know is: are homeless people better off with pets?

For some people the easy answer would be yes. They serve as companions, ease loneliness and perhaps give you something to live for. Depending on the kind of dog, they might be good at hunting squirrels, rabbits and other animals. Not to mention I'm sure they'd probably make great personal heaters.

On the other hand, you'd have to share your food with them so you might go hungry longer. Plus, I'm sure most homeless shelters don't take in animals so you'd have to make the difficult decision to leave your friend out in the freezing cold alone or staying out in the cold, yourself. To some people that decision might not be hard but most pet owners know you develop some type of a bond with your animal that is hard to break. Imagine if not only you have a pet but it's the only thing you have. The only thing that's there for you when the world kicks your butt. I'm 99 percent sure that bond is ridiculously huge. Now think back to that decision at the homeless shelter. Would you abandon them?

It's hard to determine if you are better off or not. Personally, I would want a dog if I had a choice and I was homeless. What about you?


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