Puppy therapy lifts your mood, but is it good for the puppy?
Puppy therapy, in which a puppy is delivered to your doorstep for you to hold and feel better, is being offered by a company based in Gurgaon. The idea is that if you don’t have a pet, you can destress with a cuddly animal without actually committing to all the work that keeping a pet requires.
Sounds amazing. But though it’s doubtlessly good for the human, is it good for the puppy? What does it mean for the animal being used as a commodity?
“You destress by stressing [out] the puppies, it sounds selfish to me,” says Dr RT Sharma, veterinarian. “Moving around in cabs [during puppy therapy delivery], traffic sounds and the pollution are unsettling for dogs, especially puppies. It’s a better idea for animal lovers to visit shelters and play with the puppies.”
However Animesh Katiyar, who provides this service, says, “These dogs have undergone training from a professional and they don’t get scared while interacting with new people. We do two sessions in a day because we want the dogs to take proper rest.”
Animal rights activist Amritika Phool doesn’t think it’s a great idea. “If a child throws a tantrum, we just hand them puppies and everything becomes alright? Constant changes in environment are stressful for puppies. The whole thing sounds just selfish.”
Poorva Joshipura, CEO, PETA India, has similar thoughts. She says, “A puppy isn’t a toy to be played [with] for just 15 minutes.”
If a child throws a tantrum, we just hand them puppies and everything becomes alright? AMRITIKA PHOOL, ANIMAL RIGHTS ACTIVIST