December 19, 2006

This Week In Dog-Baby-Bad Parenting Insanity

Am I the only one who's ready to call BS on recent coverage of bad parent-and-pet stories?

I mean, if Gardenia Johansson had better publicists, maybe her story would be that she was just trying to protect her baby's toes by taking the dog into Nieman Marcus.

And Hodson Jewelry Gallery

And Starbucks

And Houston's Restaurant.

After all, it's not like she left her kid parked in a stroller on the sidewalk while she went into a restaurant. Or went down to lunch while the kid slept in her room at the Waldorf-Astoria. Because that'd be crazy.

On the less trivial subject of the Hansches, the young Louisiana parents who have been locked in a maximum security prison for eight days on a misdemeanor charge because 22-year-olds who drag mattresses into the living room to watch TV sometimes have trouble posting $100,000 bond...

It seems that for every call of concern about the 1-month-old baby whose toes got chewed off, officials have been fielding 10 calls about the puppy suspected of doing the chewing. The hospital has received no calls about the kid.

"[They say], 'Oh, we feel so sorry for this dog,' [Bossier City police chief Mike] Halphen said today. 'Why don't they feel sorry for the child? Why don't they send get-well letters to the child and quit worrying about this freakin' dog?'"

CNN harpy Nancy Grace devoted most of her show to the dog's fate, too, but it's to be expected; so far, the only available video footage for the story has been of the shivering puppy.

And anyway, it was probably the full-grown ferret, not the puppy, who did it, which would explain the reports of variations in the parents' stories.

What's the point here? I'm not ready to go to the mat for either European ditzes who drive around upscale suburbs [sic] all day shopping, or hillbillies and their weird, child-unfriendly, hillbilly pets. But I can tell a self-righteous, self-serving dogpile when I see it. It just may take a few days.

Shopper had pattern of leaving child unattended [eastvalleytribune]
Woman says mom left child at restaurant, too [evtrib]
Previously: Pinhead takes the dog shopping
08/2004: Swiss Family 'bandons Son

Couple whose baby injured by animal seeks bond reduction []
'Why don't they send get-well letters to the child?' []
Some wonder if ferret, not puppy, gnawed off baby's toes []
Previously: Who gets a puppy right after having a baby??


Man, that's sick. I hate it when people defend the animals when they eat humans

I don't think it's so odd that people are asking after the puppy . . . the poor kid is doomed, but the puppy may not be. The baby's got parents who put her to sleep in a car seat or baby carrier, who managed to be so drugged up or callous that they ignored her screams as her foot was being eaten, and who bought a puppy who was two weeks old, two weeks before the baby was born.

One thing you can be sure of is that whatever the official response to the baby is -- which may well be returning her to those loving parents -- life is not going to be good for her, and there's NOTHING anyone outside this scenario can do for the baby.

However, the puppy, and any future family he might have, will not have to deal with either the justice system or social services. In the right hands, he's got a chance . . . because he may actually end up in the right hands. The one thing we can all be sure of is that the baby won't. Why would people ask about her? The answers can't be anything but depressing . . .

The baby's got parents who put her to sleep in a car seat or baby carrier, who managed to be so drugged up or callous that they ignored her screams as her foot was being eaten, and who bought a puppy who was two weeks old, two weeks before the baby was born.

Okay, long time lurker, but must comment on this.

Putting a child to sleep in a car seat or baby carrier? When my daughter was one month old (and, in fact, sometimes even now that she's 6 months old) we were so grateful for her to be asleep, be it car seat, bouncy chair, swing, what have you, that we wouldn't dare move her.

And on your second point, one hardly needs to imagine the parents being drugged up or callous to sleep through the baby crying. For one, I was mildly shocked to note my newborn didn't cry very loud, certainly not loud enough to be heard in the next room without the baby monitor. Also, I didn't understand the meaning of sleep deprived before those first few weeks. I didn't sleep for more that 2 or three hours at a time for like 3 months. I was literally doing things like putting the cereal in the refrigerator and the milk in the cabinet.

Now, on your last point, on who buys a puppy that young right before they have a baby, I agree wholeheartedly. Not to mention the fact that the dog (if I read correctly) is a pure-bred (probably from some puppy mill, I know just the type of person, who thinks dogs are like plants or something), when there are kijillions of dogs in shelters waiting to be adopted before they get put to sleep, is particularly maddening.

While I don't necessarily agree that the kid is totally doomed, I was startled to learn that the couple already had a toddler. I figured maybe they were just sort of young and inexperienced and now it seems like they are plain old morons. The kid is probably lucky to have been taken away from them at such a young age. Hopefully she will have more responsible, loving parents in her future.

Forget the puppy AND the baby... I think it's high time we all start lobbying to get Nancy 'dis'Grace permanently removed from our television sets!

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