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How much is that puppy in the window ... per month?

A full-service pet leasing business claims to make keeping and caring for a pet easier than ever.

By Vetstreet Jan 15, 2013 4:13PM

By Dr. Patty Khuly

Yes, that’s right. If you’re so inclined, you can say goodbye to the old days when you owned a pet and took care of his needs yourself. Instead, you can now elect to “adopt” a pet for a monthly fee and live comfortably with the knowledge that your adored family member gets all the meals, supplies and healthcare he needs — except that he’s not really your pet.

Hannah the Pet Society is a new company that’s taking the concept of pet placement and animal healthcare to what its founder believes is the next level: a full-service pet leasing business that claims to make keeping and caring for a pet easier than ever.

Photo: ThinkstockHow it works
You pick out a pet in one of two Portland, Ore., storefronts (the first of their kind) and agree to pay a set monthly fee to cover the cost of his lease, food, basic supplies and veterinary care. Prospective pet keepers can choose a dog, cat, rabbit or guinea pig knowing that if it doesn’t work out, they can always return him.

The sales pitch
Offering you everything that your pet needs in a convenient, one-payment-a-month approach means more people can budget appropriately for their pets and feel secure in the knowledge that they will not want for anything. The service gets more animals into more homes, with fewer reasons for relinquishment to shelters — or so the sales pitch claims.

Bing: Find out where to adopt a pet

The catch
The downside is that you don’t actually have any legal control over your pet. Not only does the company reserve the right to repossess your pet — say, if you should fail to make timely payments — but it's in charge of all of your pet's nutrition, wellness care and medical decisions, too.

This veterinarian's concerns
This latter point is largely why veterinarians like me are uncomfortable with pet services like Hannah’s. The fact that the person most invested in the life of the pet isn’t responsible for major medical decisions is somewhat unsettling. And knowing that a for-profit company with actuarial tables to consult and books to balance is in charge of someone you love should send shivers down your spine.

Read the rest of the story here.

Photo: Thinkstock

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151Comments
Jan 15, 2013 8:30PM
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Worst biz idea, pets have feelings and they don't want to be temporary.  So you let your kids thrash the pet because you feel like it's a rental ( like a rental car and don't give a sh* t about it)
Jan 15, 2013 8:29PM
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As with animals in all for-profit business...horse racing, dog racing.....

 

I see the potential for animal abuse on a grand level.....Are the leasors going to give the animals a comfortable old age?  Are the leasors going to provide medical care for the animals for chronic conditions when it cuts into the bottom line.

 

I could go on, but won't.  Suffice it to say, I know of Greyhound breeders (racing) that shoot all but the best of the litter.

 

PETA, keep a close eye on this one.

Jan 15, 2013 8:28PM
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Fing ****s. Disrespectful to the poor animals. If there is not a commitment to the pet, the person should never get one. This is not an inanimate object. Pets have feelings and emotions. This is terribly disrespectful
Jan 15, 2013 8:25PM
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this absolutely makes me want to puke.  what's next, i don't have the social skills to meet a girl and become a daddy so i'm just gonna go rent a kid for a summer? 

 

what about the pet?  pets gets attached to people just as much as people do to their pets!  you're a bunch of heartless dirtbags who don't give a dam# about anything but your freaking profit.  go fall down a deep hole!

Jan 15, 2013 8:17PM
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There is already something similar to this.  It's called being a foster parent for animals that have been neglected, abused, abandoned, lost , or are sick through your local Animal Shelter / PAWS or any other animal orginization.  You provide shelter, food, love, socializaiton, etc.  They pay for medical bills.  You return the animal when it is ready to be adopted.  I have done this for four years.  Countless dogs and cats.  Only one bad experience.  Nobody profits, but everybody benefits ~ you and your family, the animal, the animal's future "forever familiy", and society as a whole.  They always need more volunteer foster parents.  Call them today! :)
Jan 15, 2013 8:17PM
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H#ll no! This is about the stupidest idea I've ever heard. Why not just lease children while you are at it. My pets are not just cats, dogs and a horse, they are members of our family and great companions.  I will take full responsibility for my pets, the same as I do my children. Humanity needs to take a reality check, for they have certainly lost their way.
Jan 15, 2013 8:16PM
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Stupid idea, bad for the pet.  So a pet can get yo-yo'd in and out of various homes during its lifespan?   What kind of personality and bonding mindset is that pet going to end up with?   This business model will fail miserably.  And it should.
Jan 15, 2013 8:09PM
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Horrible idea.  These pets will likely be poorly behaved and neglected.  If you can't commit to an animal then don't get one.  A sad, yet unsurprising reflection on our society's attitude toward the feelings of others (animals included).  We'll get PITA in an uproar over my eating a chicken sandwich,  but people can rent animals and send them back?

I'm just glad they are smart enough (so far) to not offer parrots through such a service.  That would destroy those poor birds.  At least dogs and cats can be more resilient being re-homed and not suffer lifelong distrust unless physically abused.  THIS IS SAD.  PERIOD.

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