Pet shop cruelty

I was picking up some cat food from one of the many pet shops near tonghua st. night market and stopped into the biggest one. I went inside and looked at their kittens since I am thinking of getting one for my cat (so I can stop being bitten by him for attention) and called a few over by rubbing my fingers together like I do for my cat to see how they responded to it for their personalities. All of them were reluctant to come, not because they were afraid, but because their cages had metal wire bars as the bottom which must not be nice for their sensitive paws. Then the nasty, dirty store owner yelled at me for bothering his kittens. These poor things had crusted eyes and slept in their litter boxes because there was no other place in their cage that wasn’t on those evil bars. They wanted 12,000-18,000 for these things and you weren’t even allowed to play with them or pet them. There was a pregnant cat ready to birth who was put in the front store window in a cage that had the same metal barred floor and was pacing to find a safe place to have them with everyone’s eyes on her and no place to hide them, let alone nest. Needless to say, I walked two doors down to a place that lets its bigger cats roam free in the store for people to pet and had plastic floors in the cages with bedding for the cats.
It’s outrageous, though, how neglective even pet stores are about their charges.[/i]

which, brings us to the question of why we should want to purchase a kitten or any animal from one of these stores (or any "pet store:) in the first place. Especially since they’re are so many abandoned and homeless animals to be had for “free” all over this city. It seems every week some cat is having a litter of kittens in the alley behind my work. You wanna kitten? I’ll get you a kitten and it won’t cost you any more than some vet bills. That’s how I got my cat. And besides him being mildly psychotic, he’s very healthy and quite cute.

Yeah, I got my kitty from the middle of a busy intersection about a year and a half ago. He had me when he wrapped his thick little short kitten tail around my wrist when I picked him up out of the median bushes. I almost got him a friend, a little black kitten with a voice that reminded me of a weathered, jaded roadside diner waitress. I’d get a stray kitten probably, but I was just window shopping anyways. I know what happens when you get an animal from a pet store. They tend to die a lot sooner than the ones you get from an animal shelter or from people who rescue them (like our two dogs back home, a golden retriever and a black lab) or off the street like my cat and the three cats we had when I was growing up, and my little sister’s cat.
My cat was sitting next to me while I read your post, fascinated by your animated avatar of Felix the Cat.

Actually, there’s a good reason for not being allowed to touch the animals. People carry viruses, and kittens and puppies do not have strong immune systems (especially if they are no longer drinking their mother’s milk.) I wouldn’t allow anyone to touch a young kitten or puppy without first washing their hands thoroughly.

You’re right to be concerned about the way pet stores treat their animals, though. :frowning: