Stray Dogs by Cole Malkoff

| October 30, 2014

Stray Dogs

One of the first things that I noticed after arrived in Santa Fe was the number of stray dogs roaming the streets. Upon getting out of the car at Lucho`s house, I encountered a beautiful German Shephard with white eyes, who I named Hopson. But when I reached my hand out to pet it, Lucho grabbed my arm and told me that I should never touch the “perros callejeros.” This is the name that Argentine word for strays.
Throughout my stay here I have seen hundreds of dogs roaming the streets. Many of them good looking dogs that would be picked up and adopted in a heartbeat if they were in the US. It is unsettling to see such large numbers of strays for me due to the fact that, in the US, I rarely ever see dogs roaming the streets alone. In contrast to the way I feel, Lucho heeds no attention to the strays whenever he passes them on the sidewalk. When I asked him about what his people are doing to fix this problem, he got somewhat offended. He sarcastically apologized to me saying that he is  very sorry that Argentina can’t be as perfect as America. I could not tell if he felt guilty about this problem in Argentine society, or if he was just mad because he thought I was trying to undermine his culture. Either way, I decided to drop the subject at that.
I am sure that Argentine people do feel something for the massive population of strays roaming their streets but are unable to do much about it. I have noticed that a few of the strays have jackets that people have put on them in order to keep them warm during these cold winter nights. This tells me that though many ignore the strays, a select few show compassion towards these poor animals.

Category: 2013

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