Posted by: Linda Trunell | February 23, 2014

Poor Little Rich Dog

Poor Little Rich Dog

Ernie is healthy, wealthy, and abused.


…….Nobody is likely to talk much about Ernie, the kind of dog I saw frequently while researching several books. His abusers aren’t lowlifes who mercilessly beat, starve, or tether animals. Quite the opposite: His owners are affluent, educated people who consider themselves humanistic and moral. But they’ve been cruel nonetheless, through their lack of responsibility, their neglect, their poor training, and their inattention.

Please read this article here 


This article was published on Slate on July 19, 2004. I was struck by the truth that many dogs are still living their lives like Ernie. They get the best food, shelter and medical care but they are abused emotionally.

As we study and understand more about how dogs think, feel and learn, we see that they need much more than just food, shelter and medical care.  They need our guidance, time and attention.  Most dog lovers already know that but many people don’t, which is why I think that every dog should have a home, but not every home should have a dog.

Here’s to being our dog’s best friend,



  1. yes, that’s true. not every home should have a dog. Sadly there are to many dogs what have a life like Ernie.


    • So true, Easy. You are one of the lucky ones!


  2. Unfortunately the truth Linda and it’s sad. I see a lot of dogs like that. Some people think because they’re ‘animals’ they don’t have any feelings. I just hate people like that, really! I believe that animals have more ‘soul’ than humans. Thanks for sharing hon. 😀 *hugs*


    • I agree, Sonel! Dogs give unconditional love. Even dogs who have been abused by humans can still forgive and love people. 🙂


  3. It’s horrible. I know of a golden retriever mix that spends most of her time in a crate. Even when her owners are home sick from work, they leave her crated, and rely on a dog walker to let her out for 30 minutes once a day. Then there are 2 other dogs I know of, part of a family of 6 people, that are left crated even when there are people home… because the new puppy is crazy and they think it’s unfair to crate one and not the other. It’s one reason I quit my job (dog walking.) Even if I cry “abuse” no one will believe me – they live with financially well off families, they have toys and good food, they see the vet, they have dog walkers. But they don’t have the emotional care they need.


    • Sadly, we probably all know of dogs living like Ernie. As a dog walker you’ve probably seen more than most people. I know of 5 dogs in my own neighborhood who never even get walks!


  4. Very sad. But I can see how it can happen.


    • Yes, it happens because people do not understand how much time and energy a dog needs and deserves. I would like to see mandatory education before anyone could take a dog into their home, but I’m sure that won’t happen in my lifetime.


  5. I think there are all too many dogs living a life like Ernie. It’s very sad.


    • Too many indeed. They should all be as fortunate as you, Easy, Donna,Simba and Max!



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