A couple miles south of my house, is a high-priced pet shop that sells cashmere sweaters and designer collars for dogs. I don’t shop there. PetVet is a mile or two north of my house, in Richmond. They offer discounted food, medicine and vet services and draw a much less affluent clientele.
I shop there because they sell the prescription cat food Busby needs, but I usually try to avoid going during their weekend low-cost vet clinic. I don’t like seeing pets with people who seem unlikely to be responsible pet owners such as this group of young men and their pit bull puppies with cropped ears (a style from dogs used in fighting.)
When I arrived, the parking lot was full and people were waiting inside and outside for the first-come, first-served vet visits. After I stocked up on cat food I was intrigued by all of the interesting characters and dogs and wanted to stay and sketch. But I couldn’t find a way to do it surreptitiously.
I decided to be brave and ask if I could take photos of pe0ple with their dogs; surprisingly everyone was happy to pose. The dudes above dropped their tough guy stance and smiled nicely for me. I’d much rather be drawing from life, but it was still fun sketching from my photos.
I’d like to work on my dog drawing skills so that I’d have enough confidence to go back there and sketch the waiting dogs and owners directly.
This young lady was quite a character. As she walked past me, she turned to a guy with a really wide pitbull and said to him “Your dog is FAT!” Then she told me her puppy wasn’t a pit bull, it was a brindle and would be bigger than a pitbull. [Except brindle is a mixture of color in a dog's coat, not a breed.]
There were so many people there with puppies, and many of those puppies were pit bulls or pit mixes. It breaks my heart to think about how that will turn out. I know how much work it is to responsibly raise a good, healthy dog and that the shelters are full of pit bulls surrendered when the cute little puppy grew up and got to be too much trouble.
I will just try to hope that all of those people and their pets have what they need for happy, healthy lives. Meanwhile, I still have another half dozen pictures to make from the day.