Don’t Shop! Adopt!
It’s not fair to say, nor is it true, that Mexicans don’t love their dogs. Most dog owners in Puerto Vallarta treat their dogs just the same as their northern counterparts. Like anything else, it’s the few bad apples that seem to put a rotten tinge on the entire barrel and that is simply not right. Veterinarians abound in Puerto Vallarta and they aren’t all here just for expats. As a matter of fact, when you pass through any of the small villages you will see their signs that prove it’s a competitive business. It’s not unusual at all to hear our Mexican friends discuss their preference for one vet over another, just like we do.
The problem of stray dogs in Puerto Vallarta has gotten better over the years; this in thanks to expat groups working with locals to set up spay and neuter clinics, promoting adoption of puppies and kittens and aging pets. There are reasons an older pet is surrendered; sometimes the owner has died or been incapacitated, and new homing is needed. These little critters need love and reassurance, but it’s not a tough job. It’s a great idea for someone living alone and seeking companionship.
There are, indeed, neglected animals in Puerto Vallarta. Not all Mexicans, just like anywhere else, agree that pets should be kept in homes, fed properly and groomed. An owner might stake a dog in front of their house, chained and starving, to ward off intruders. (How this works when a dog can’t run is anybody’s guess.) Cats that are kept simply to catch rats often have a very short life and painful death, when eating a poisoned rodent. These animals are sometimes rescued by local groups, intent on adopting them to local homes or new lives north of the border.
It’s illegal to sell puppies in Puerto Vallarta. Last month we encountered a man with two tiny pups on the streets in Zona Romantica. He began to answer our questions unsuspectingly, thinking we were interested in a purchase. He knew he was breaking the law; we took his photo with our phone while he was fleeing. If you encounter one of these rogues, locate a police officer and arrange a rendezvous. There are police officers everywhere so it won’t be a difficult task and the police are glad to apprehend these petty criminals, as they cause problems that distract from graver duties.
If you’re interested in owning a dog in Puerto Vallarta or bringing one back home, adopt; don’t shop.
Thanks to our Guest Blogger Adam Garcia for this great article! (Opinions expressed are his own…)
About Vacation Villas of Mexico Founder, Vanessa Cole
The founder of the company, Vanessa Cole, lived in Puerto Vallarta for 10 years and in Cancun for 2 years. She has worked in Luxury Vacation Villa Rentals since 2001.
Originally from San Antonio, Texas, Vanessa earned a degree from the University of Texas in Austin, majoring in International Business and Latin American Studies. Fluent in Spanish, she has worked and traveled all over Mexico and South America.