The Chihuahua glut goes beyond L.A.
Chihuahuas are becoming the most common dog in California’s animal shelters, replacing the pit bull as the breed most often forsaken by owners.
The “101 Dalmatians” effect that many predicted the movie “Beverly Hills Chihuahua” would lead to seems to have come to pass, exacerbated further by the Paris Hilton effect and, maybe even moreso, the yukky economy effect.
About a third of the dogs in San Francisco’s animal shelter are Chihuahuas or Chihuahua mixes, Kat Brown, deputy director of City and County of San Francisco Animal Care & Control, told Robert Siegel on NPR’s “All Things Considered” Wednesday.
About 60 percent of the Chihuahuas coming into the shelter are owner-surrendered, she said.
“I think it’s because a number of things. Some movies featured Chihuahuas. Also, a pocket pet kind of thing, from some of the movie stars, Paris Hilton. Also, the economy. I think we’re seeing more owner-surrendered animals generally across the board,” she said.
“But Chihuahuas unlike other dogs are more difficult to handle sometimes. People think of them as something, they’re like stuffed animals or whatever. But in fact they’re like a little dog, and they need all of the things that a big dog needs.”
Brown said the phenomenon seems to be California-wide:
“We have shelters from the Bay Area who also have the same sort of problem. Oakland, Contra Costa, Peninsula Humane Society. Silicon Valley. San Jose. LASPCA (in Los Angeles) said to us we don’t have time to count, there are so many of them.”
You can listen to the interview here.
Posted by John Woestendiek December 10th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 101 dalmatians, adopt, all things considered, animal care & control, beverly hills chihuahua, california, chihuahua, chihuahuas, forsaken, glut, homes, kat brown, los angeles, movie, movies, npr, overpopulation, paris hilton, pit bulls, popular culture, san francisco, shelters, surplus, surrendered