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From across the room I watched the woman’s face go wide with shock. “I don’t understand,” she said. “Mitzi always lunches with me. You have to let her in—you have to!” Before you shout discrimination, I should probably point out that Mitzi isn’t the typical eating companion. In fact, Mitzi’s snarling head just happened to be poking out of the woman’s purse.
Yap, yap, yap! said the tiny Pomeranian. “She goes with me everywhere,” the woman pleaded.
Yap, yap, yap! “She’s such a sweet dog.”
Yap, yap, yap! “And really well-behaved.”
Yap! Snarl! Yap!
The manager was clearly uncomfortable, but seemed to fear that he might have a blonde tornado on his hands. The woman’s stance, her manicured hands firmly on her low rise jean-wearing hips, was poised for confrontation.
The manager’s head slumped in defeat. “Fine, lady. Just…keep the dog quiet. Discreet. Alright?” The woman squealed and blew him an air kiss. Then he sat her in the table next to me. As soon as the manager walked away Mitzi popped out of the purse like a Popple from Hell. Her barks dissipated into whiny noises as she pranced around the table.
Mitzi’s owner laughed at her pet’s adorability and grabbed the pint-sized creature, placing her on a nearby chair. Mitzi was not happy with this and made her displeasure known by switching her whining back to yapping. I was eating dinner with my family, so my attention drifted between the indignant Pomeranian and a conversation about college football. But every so often I would glance at the table next to us and observe the following: Mitzi throwing a rebellion by leaping on the table and running around like a chicken with its head cut off, Mitzi attempting to dismember a passing child that had made the fatal mistake of trying to pet her, and Mitzi being handfed by her owner. Because it was an Italian restaurant, you should attempt to imagine the delightful imagery of a dog choking down spaghetti for full effect.
Despite what many obsessed dog owners seem to insist, dogs are not their children. Keeping a Chihuahua from piddling on a rug is not the same as keeping a 15-year-old from impregnating his schoolmate. And although carrying your toy poodle around in your Kate Spade bag may be great fun for you (and I’m guessing it’s only fun for one of you), there needs to be a limit when it comes to sharing Puppykins with the world. Dogs are affectionate, fun, and often intelligent. But they are not people. Taking them to movie theaters, malls, and restaurants means that you’ve cartwheeled off the path of reality—a reality where dogs are animals. My friend once remarked that he was tempted to get a purse just so that he could carry an adorable puppy with him everywhere. His boyfriend, a blessedly sane individual, quickly said, “Before we do that, why don’t I wheel you around in a suitcase all day? You can pop your head out and sample your future pet’s life.”
He didn’t get a purse dog.
Courtney Bee's articles on sex and relationships have appeared in Hustler, Playgirl, and numerous adult books. On ellorascave.com she's the bestselling author of Athima, an erotic novella, and a contributor to the new X-rated anthology Flavors of Ecstasy III. She's also a top-ranked sex columnist on examiner.com, where she betrays her prim Catholic upbringing on a daily basis.