Since it’s finally nice out in Montana, people have been spending a lot of time outside. That means there are more people to stop and meet Mauja and Atka. The extra interaction leads to a lot of interesting questions/comments.
There’s one that gets me every time.
“How much does a dog like that cost?”
This has been asked more times than I can count. I really don’t think it’s anyone’s business and I get really flustered every time someone asks. I typically reply with, “Oh, it’s been so long I can’t remember”.
And really, what does it matter?
Do people ever ask you uncomfortable questions about your dogs? Do you think there is a better way for me to respond to this question?
It used to bother me, but having been asked for more personal and uncomfortable questions by people who should know better I’ve come to take it as a part of the culture. People don’t have the social bounderies they once had. That understanding of polite conversation is gone.
That being said, I’ve learned to do two things. If I’m really not in the mood to handle something I walk away. I don’t owe people a conversation. If I sense people just have lousy social skills and I have the time I will stop and educate them a bit about how we rescued Bailey and Katy. Many people have never heard of breed rescues and it never hurts to educate people that yes you can find breed specific animals, sometimes even puppies if you look hard enough for a breed rescue.
If someone is particurally obnoxious and needs a correction, hey I grew up with 4 brothers, the art of a verbal put down is not beyond me.
That being said the majority of people I have met that have asked the awkward questions are looking for information and just don’t know how to ask it appropriatly. How we approach those questions can have an impact on the life of a dog that person might decide to bring home or realize is not a good fit for the family. I always try to keep that in mind.
I definitely need to take your approach and take the time to educate them. There are a ton of pyrs in rescues and shelters needing home. It’s so obvious to me, but others probably don’t know that.
Amy and Toby says
In a weird way maybe it’s meant as kind of a compliment. They probably ask because they assume a dog as beautiful as yours must be very very costly. They don’t understand that a dog’s value has nothing to do with its price tag. (My daughter, adoptive mom of 2, says she hates being asked how much it cost her to get her kids. I don’t blame her!)
Oh, wow. That would really bother me! I tend to forget that others might not know that there pyrs in rescues and shelters. I should probably take the time to educate more people. I love talking about the breed, but I never talk about all the options you have for getting one.
SlimDoggy (@MySlimDoggy) says
Yeah, nosey people should just be brushed off…say “Priceless”
Now that is a good one!
I would just consider it a compliment. They are obviously saying that the dogs are beautiful and expensive looking, but lack the social skills to say that. It’s like they might ask how much a Ferrari cost, but they wouldn’t ask about a Chevrolet.
Very true. Most people probably don’t realize there are beautiful pyrs in shelters and rescues too.
Chewy the Golden says
Now that Chewy is not so puppy-looking anymore, it has been a long time since I’ve been asked that kind of question. Mostly it’s just “Oh, he’s so sweet!” “Boy or girl?” or “How old?” Hopefully it will be the same for you, as well!
Let’s hope! No one seems to realize Atka is a puppy. When I say he’s 9 months I get, “holy crap is he going to grow any more?!” haha
Jenna,Mark “HuskyCrazed” Drady says
Oh yea, I get asked uncomfortable questions all of the time. I hate it too!
One thing I hate is when i’m at a dog park, and people know NOTHING about huskies and always say, oh that one of your can’t be a pure bred husky right? (because she is a sable color) and I always reply with, yep, she sure is, and if she wasn’t it wouldn’t matter to me! Then they go on to say, but a husky is suppose to be black and white, or grey. That couldn’t be less true! Huskies come in so many different colors, people just don’t realize, but why argue with someone who owns 3 huskies, when you are sitting there with your chihuahua! hahaha!!!! Have a great day!
ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!
Oh my gosh, I know exactly what you mean! I hate when people that have never heard of a Great Pyrenees try to educate me about them. I looove talking to people about pyrs and could do it all day, but I hate when people try to lecture me about a topic they don’t know anything about. Are you referring to Lexus? Her coloring is so cool! It almost gives her a wolf like quality!
Lauren Miller says
People can be so intrusive. Most of the time I get told (not asked) that my dogs are twins and then they want to know what breed and where to find them. When I say podenco or lurcher I get the deer in the headlights look.. It’s really hilarious because most people have never heard of either of those and they will go “Oh yeah!! I see it!!” and you can tell they are totally bs’ing. 😀
I’ll be honest, I had no idea the breed of your dogs until I did some reading through your blog. I have never heard of that breed before! Pyrs certainly are not as rare, but people try to educate me on the breed when two seconds ago they asked if I had “white Newfoundlands”.
Diane Silver (@ToDogWithLove) says
Ugh. I hate getting that question too. I either say I don’t remember or it depends, and what you really need to consider is making sure you have the time and resources to care for a dog for what could be upwards of 15 years. Or… like Slimdoggy says, “Priceless!”
That’s such a good point. Most people just think of the initial cost of the dog and not what they cost in the long run. So many people jump on the free puppies on Craigslist only to spend thousands of dollars their first year on vet bills.
Susan C. Willett says
I have three dogs who are all mixed breed rescues; each looks completely different from the other. The comments that I dislike the most are the ones where people feel the need to tell me which one they like best. Why do they have to choose? And why do they feel the need to tell me? I’m always thankful my pups don’t understand a word, because I keep thinking the would feel bad.
I think, for the most part, people don’t realize that what they’re saying can be offensive. They just don’t know. Maybe I’m an optimist, but I believe that most people who take the time to comment on my dogs are trying to be friendly, even if it comes off tilted.
My response when I get the, “I like that one best” remark is to say, “I love them all. Each one is special to me.”
–Wags (and purrs) from Life with Dogs and Cats
I completely understand what you’re saying. Our first dog, Kaeto, was a lab/husky mix (we think). When we’d take him for walks with Mauja people would comment on how much they like Mauja over Kaeto. Kaeto was so unique! He had half up, half floppy ears, freckles on his nose, one brown eye, one blue eye, and different colored toes. He always got ignored and it broke my heart.
we have been asked several bizarre questions. i think the worst was when a total stranger walked up to my husband and asked him if he wanted to breed bailey because she had a male we could use. that caught him completely off guard.
btw, chihuahuas are one of the most commonly surrendered/abandoned breeds and here in california, the shelters are overflowing with them. anyone that would want to add more chihuahuas to this already overpopulated breed is just ignorant. ugh.
wags, bailey unleashed
Jan K says
I thought the same as SlimDoggy….just say they’re “priceless”….all of our dogs are, correct? You could also take the time to educate them, if you want to get into it, but many people are just nosy and aren’t really asking because they need to know. If they were, they’d approach it far more tactfully! You could take it as a compliment too, though I don’t know what’s wrong with “what beautiful dogs!” 🙂 I guess a lot of people speak without really thinking. I have a bad habit of trying to guess what breed someone’s dog is, and most of the time I’m wrong! I don’t know why I don’t just ask, instead of trying to think I know….LOL.
Andrea @ This Pug Life says
That’s so bizarre. I’ve never been asked that before, I don’t know what I would say. Well, I guess I could say free since despite being a full-blooded pug, I found Pug on the street! I have no idea what a pug from a breeder goes for.
Maybe because of their size they think big dog = big price? Idk…odd question for sure!
Well bred dogs are expensive. It’s a fact. If I purchase a dog, I am going to do my research, and happily pay a quality breeder 10x more than what I would pay a BYB.
Some people may ask because they are nosy, and they need to mind their own business.
It is a crappy question but I would try to turn it around to be a good thing. I would tell them that a well-breed dog is expensive but then offer them the names of some good Great Pyrenees rescues and encourage them to save one.
You cannot stop people from asking stupid questions but you can have a standard and hopefully, helpful answer. Promoting rescue is always a good way to answer crappy questions 🙂
we hate that question too
Yes! “what do you feed your dog?” and I answer “the Raw Diet” and then they promptly reply “ew! What is that? Isn’t that dangerous?” Ughhhhhhh. *eyeroll* Judgement before any sort of research prior to asking such a probing question!