Want To Rent A Pet For $39.95 A Weekend Day Plus $49.95 A Month, Plus $150 Initiation Fee…

ABC News has profiled a new sort of business—pet rental. After a $150 initiation fee, and $49.95 in monthly membership fees, and $99.95 in annual maintenance fees—you can rent a dog for $39.95 a day on weekends and $24.95 per day on weekdays.

The service caters to people who like dogs but just don’t have the time to take care of them. The customers ABC interviewed seemed happy, but the ASPCA thinks it’s not healthy for the dogs.

Buchwald [senior vice president of the ASPCA Pet Adoption Center and Mobile Clinic Program] said it’s not healthy for dogs to live transient lifestyles and bounce between owners. She said dogs that don’t form a strong bond with one family often end up becoming aloof and self destructive.

“I think it’s great that they understand marketing, and I think it’s great that they try to fulfill that need, but it’s not good for the dog,” Buchwald said.

A FlexPetz customer countered that it was unfair to deprive some people of the pleasures of owning a pet.

“It’s a little unfair for people to not have the opportunity to own a pet, and this is a nice way of doing it,” she said, “I feel like I’m being a more responsible pet owner by doing this and not leaving a dog at home alone.”

“I was a bit leery at first, and I had my questions,” she added, “But I’m definitely going to stay a member.”

And it’s such a deal, too. (Cough.)

Love on a Lease: Renting Man’s Best Friend [ABC News]

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