The Pitfalls Of Public Dog Petting Etiquette

To cuddle or not to cuddle, that is the question.

It’s a soul-crushing moment when you encounter an utterly adorable good boy on the street, or anywhere out in public for that matter, and you’re suddenly struck with the moral dilemma: this isn’t my dog – am I entitled to crouch down, give it all the cuddles and let it lick my face off?

Positive reinforcement. Credit: Giphy

It’s a legitimate question. Some dog owners appreciate strangers asking them before they become fur buddies with their four-legged pal, while others are fine and dandy with their doggo making friends with everyone they meet. 

There are so many pitfalls of public dog petting etiquette. Here are some to look out for next time you find yourself face-to-face with an irresistible pup. 

How could you say no to this face? Credit: Giphy

Sadly, not every cute canine wants to be showered in your attention. In fact, there are plenty of dogs who get freaked out by busy, loud and crowded locations and your temptation to shake paws may only make that worse. 

It’s good to avoid this. Credit: Giphy

According to the Best Friends Animal Society, it’s all about body language. “If a dog becomes very still, his body stiffens, or he seems to want to avoid the interaction, he’s probably not comfortable in that particular situation.” 

Let’s not forget there are dogs who have disabilities like blindness, or loss of hearing, and approaching them for a cuddle may cause a fright. Other dogs are actually ‘working’ and will usually wear a ‘service dog’ harness that warns passersby not to pat the pupper and distract it from the task at hand.

Good work. Credit: Giphy

According to Dogs Trust, there are a few simple steps to public dog petting. The organisation states that you should only stroke a dog if the owner says yes.

This is the goal. Credit: Giphy

Once you have approval, allow the dog to sniff your hand first, then proceed with a gentle stroke. They also state that if a strange dog approaches you – you should stand still, look away and cross your arms. This is far easier said than done. 

While it’s tempting to show every dog in the world how much we appreciate them, perhaps it’s better to be safe than sorry and always ask before launching into cuddle mode. 

This Perth Vegan Demanding Her Neighbour Stop BBQing Is Next Level Petty

The beef is sizzling hot.

If you’re not a carnivore, there’s a good chance the smell of sizzling meat won’t be to your liking. But would you cancel barbecues because of it like this Perth vegan?

Annnd one for the vegans. Credit: Giphy

Cilla Carden made headlines this week after she demanded her neighbours stop smoking, bouncing balls and cooking barbecues in their backyard because she’s fed up with the smell of meat. 

According to 9News, she’s so sick of the stink, she’s taking her neighbours all the way to the State Administrative Tribunal and Supreme Court. 

“They’ve put it there so I smell fish, all I can smell is fish. I can’t enjoy my backyard, I can’t go out there,” the Perth vegan said. “It’s been devastating, it’s been turmoil, it’s been unrest, I haven’t been able to sleep.”

Ron Swanson is quaking. Credit: Giphy

When 9News visited the neighbour, they’d removed the barbecue and even told their kids to stop playing basketball. “It’s deliberate, that’s what I told the courts, it’s deliberate,” the neighbour said.

Turns out the Supreme Court wasn’t having any of Carden’s claims, and dismissed her case. 

Social media users have weighed in on the issue, with some siding with Carden’s complaints and others calling it “a neighbour nightmare.”

Unreasonable or? Credit: Giphy

“This is the only time I’d call for compulsory national service,” one Facebook user commented. “It’s called communal living. Respecting your neighbours. It requires you to give up certain expectations. If you want that much freedom move to where there are no other people.”

Credit: Facebook

It’s not the first time a vegan vs. meat eater beef has made headlines. In 2016, singer-songwriter and staunch vegan Morrissey forced food vendors at Chicago’s Riot Festival to stop cooking and selling meat during his set. 

Morrissey’s assistant be like. Credit: Giphy

The request didn’t go down well, and food vendor Puffs of Doom responded by selling a sandwich named the ‘Pork Morrissey Grilled Cheese,’ which was filled with four kinds of cheese, barbecue pulled pork, and bacon ranch mac and cheese. AKA a vegan’s worst nightmare.

Morrissey released an album in 1985 called Meat Is Murder, so his hatred towards those who eat meat isn’t totally surprising.

Morrissey’s had beef for a while. Credit: Rough Trade Records

Are these demands to cancel all meat-related activities fair enough? Or insanely unreasonable? Either way, it sounds like way too much effort being put into complaining about day-to-day activities that were never intended to offend.

The Ultra-Rich Need To Stop Buying 'Pet' Cheetahs Or They'll Soon Be Wiped Out

Is this even a question!?

It doesn’t take rocket science to know that cheetahs most definitely do not make good pets. However, for some people with money burning a hole in their pocket, it’s well worth the risk of extinction. 

Sorry, what? Credit: Giphy

A new report from CNN has found that some 300 cheetahs are being trafficked out of Somaliland, a breakaway state from Somalia, every year. According to the Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF), that’s equivalent to “the entire population of adult and adolescent cheetahs in unprotected areas in the Horn of Africa.”

“If you do the math, the math kind of shows that it’s only going to be a matter of a couple of years [before] we are not going to have any cheetahs,” CCF founder and conservation biologist Laurie Marker told CNN.

Apparently, the animals are being smuggled across the border and stowed away on boats headed towards the Arabian Peninsula to become pets for the rich. According to the CCF, “only one in six cubs survives the journey to buyers.”

Credit: Andreas Arnold/picture alliance via Getty Images

The CCF states that cheetahs have been seen as ‘status symbols’ since Ancient Egyptian times. Today, it’s illegal to remove wild animals like cheetahs from the wild, but that hasn’t stopped an illegal trade estimated to be worth billions. 

Apart from the obvious risks associated with owning a pet cheetah, like being mauled to death by one, they are extremely difficult to care for. CNN reports that “as the world’s fastest land mammal, cheetahs need space to run and a special diet.”

Credit: Giphy

“Most Gulf owners do not know how to care for the cats, and the majority of captive cheetahs die within a year or two,” experts told CNN.

After being questioned by CNN, the UAE’s Ministry of Climate Change and Environment “denied there were pet cheetahs in the country’s private houses” but dozens of disturbing social media posts featuring the animal beg to differ. 

Credit: Twitter

People are even selling their pet cheetahs via platforms like Instagram and YouTube. A CCF study found 1,367 cheetahs for sale on social media between January 2012 and January 2018, primarily from Arab Gulf States. 

CCF is attempting to end the illegal pet trade by facilitating confiscations, and by working with NGOs to address “issues such as law enforcement, demand reduction, procedures for the placement of confiscated cheetahs, and cyber-crime.” 

Credit: Andreas Arnold/picture alliance via Getty Images

Marker told CNN, “we really need influencers, we need the governments, the kings, the princes, or the queens to actually say this is not right.”

“If we can save them, we are going to give them the best life that they can have, but they shouldn’t be in our care. They should be in the wild.”

You can help by reporting illegal activities involving pet cheetahs or cheetah products to the CCF, by spreading the word and engaging in responsible tourism. 

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