Pets enrich our lives in so many ways, that it seems strange to criticize a company that helps people who can’t have a pet full-time feel the joy of pet companionship. Yet when I look at Flex Petz critically, I can’t help but think the company’s product isn’t one that I support.
The company, which operates out of New York, L.A., and London, rents pets to people who want the joy of spending time with a dog, without the commitment (and hassle) of actually taking the dog home. According to the company’s website, many of the dogs are rescued from shelters; without Flex Petz, one could logically conclude, these animals may have faced far worse plights.
Except… I find myself thinking that these pets aren’t getting the loving homes they deserve; they are getting passed around from person to person. While I’m sure Flex Petz members have the best interests of the pets at heart, I can’t help but think that at the end of the day, pets aren’t like a video game or a Frisbee, something to be played with and then set aside. As the MSPCA in Boston so eloquently put it, “The practice of renting pets treats dogs and cats as commodities and is not something that is consistent with society’s views toward our ‘best friends.'”
The MSPCA isn’t the only organization in MA that doesn’t like the idea of renting pets. A proposed house bill would prohibit the renting of pets in the commonwealth (Flex Petz has plans to open a Boston branch this year). Supporters of House Bill 4753 can visit the MSPCA’s website to find more info on how to make their voices heard.