Yesterday, the Internet was on fire with reports that Michael Vick was seen taking his new dog, a Belgian Malinois aptly named “Angel,” to PetSmart for training classes. Apparently Vick, along with his family and a bodyguard, are signed up to take six classes at the store.
Look, the words “Vick”and “dog” just don’t even belong together in the same sentence. But what annoyed me further was a facebook comment I saw that was encouraging people to start boycotting PetSmart. The PetSmart facebook page is on fire with angry comments.
You’ve got to be kidding me. Really?
Why in the world is PetSmart to blame in all of this? Now, I don’t even like PetSmart – and I even work for a competitor. But this is really taking consumer advocacy a bit too far. PetSmart is a business. They offer training services. Vick is a customer, who has a need for those services. What should PetSmart have done – refused to show him how to properly and humanely train a dog? Are they supposed to start turning away any pet owner who has a history of abusing animals and refuse to show them the correct way in handling one?
So why penalize PetSmart? They aren’t selling dogs or supporting puppy mills. They hold adoption events at their stores and allow people to post notices for animals up for adoption. How is PetSmart the villain here? Why should they be punished? If you want to boycott PetSmart, do it because they don’t allow any bully breeds in their daycare!
The facebook comment is just another example of consumer advocacy gone awry. And, frankly, I’m getting really tired of it. And why do I feel like the animal welfare community is always at the front of the line, with displaced rage, advocating for these kind of absurd actions? It’s like people stop thinking rationally when animals are involved.
What do you think?