If the image of a cute dog in a green wig on the cover of Rabid: Are You Crazy About Your Dog or Just Crazy? (Bloomsbury, $18) doesn’t make you smile, then certainly the mirror New York Times bestselling author Pamela Redmond Satran holds up to today’s dog-obsessed society will have you laughing when you read this delightful, new book on how over-the-top we pet parents have become with our fur babies.
Whether you purchase Rabid for yourself or a dog-crazy friend — you know, the one who totes her well-dressed, purse-size pooch with her to Starbucks, lunch with the girls and the movies — you won’t be barking up the wrong tree. Satran’s book reminds us that we’ve become a society of dog worshipers, showering our four-legged friends with pawdicures and blueberry facials, doghouses better than some people’s homes, raw and organic food, Halloween costumes for Howl-o-Ween, weddings, doggie daycare and more.
As Satran writes in the introduction of Rabid:
Is it reasonable to bake your pooch those sweet potato muffins she loves, but crazy to turn her vegetarian? Is it normal to have your pet professionally photographed, but crazy to buy her dogcentric music — played via special dog-sensitive speakers — that you can’t even hear.
To help you judge, we’ve laid out the range of possibilities — from endearingly loopy to scarily nuts — on topics from hairstyles to health treatments, celebrities to death. Where do you put yourself? And what about all those other dog people? I guarantee that no matter how crazy you may have gotten about your dog, there’s somebody crazier out there. Much, much crazier.
I can’t ever remember a time growing up when our family didn’t have at least one dog. Sometimes three. But those dogs never slept inside the house unless there was a torrential rainstorm in Los Angeles. And forget about regular grooming! Our French poodle went once a year and was unrecognizable when she returned home all coiffed and ready for her close up. As for their food, well, no way did they eat what I purchased yesterday for my Chihuahua Lucy – Primal’s Canine Lamb Formula with lamb hearts, lamb livers, ground lamb bones, organic kale, organic carrots, organic yams, organic pumpkin seeds, organic broccoli, organic apples. Uh, I don’t think I need to go on. You get the picture.
Naming my pooch Lucy is addressed in Rabid too. Satran writes that we don’t call our dogs Rover anymore. Now that our pooches are sleeping in our beds, more of us are giving them people’s names as well.
Naturally, I was quite curious about the chapter in Rabid titled “How Much is That Doggie” since the sub-chapters include “The World’s Most Expensive Dog Products” and “Luxury Services for Dogs,” subjects right up The Jet Set Pets’ alley. Rabid was spot on with the Amour, Amour necklace from i Love Dog Diamonds that goes for $3.2 million. Now that’s a lot of kibble. But Rabid lists a Louis Vuitton monogrammed carrier for $1,920 and a vintage Hermes Le Chien Birkin bag for $1,250 as the world’s most expensive carriers. Not hardly! Rabid should have featured Ralph Lauren’s African crocodile carrier that retails for $18,000. And instead of using Balenciaga’s $295 fluorescent calfskin dog leash as the most expensive leash, a $30,000 chain from Weizhi would have been the better choice for in Rabid. Rabid also commits a huge faux paw by including Pet Airways under “Luxury Services for Dogs.” The pet-only airline that was once the darling of the industry hasn’t operated since fall 2011 and is officially out of business.
Despite the omissions and goof, I still give Rabid a paws up. There are quizzes (What’s Your Celebrity-Dog IQ), How-tos (create a sweater from dog hair instead of wear a sweater covered in dog hair), fun charts (dogs vs. kids) and adorable photos to complement the topics that make for good dinner conversation. Assuming you’re dining with pet parents.
On a scale of 1 to 10, where do you rank yourself on the dog-crazy scale and why? Please share your comment with The Jet Set Pets community in the box below.