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Want a dog? Adopt one from a shelter

To the editor: All animal and pet lovers should applaud David Lazarus' efforts to expose not only the continued efforts of unscrupulous opportunists who promote bogus opportunities to sell specific breeds online but also the often well-meaning but ultimately wrong-headed individuals who support such activities. ("Online puppy scam leaves San Clemente couple $500 poorer," Jan. 1)

We are living in a time when the popularity of pets seems to be skyrocketing. However, it is deeply disturbing to read that animal-loving people continue to pursue the purchase of pets from breeders when millions of wonderful cats and dogs continue to be put to death in the U.S. each year. Only half of all dogs and even less of all cats that are placed in shelters are lucky enough to find homes.

I understand that the couple in Lazarus' column had their minds set on owning another Dalmatian, but their decision not only cost them money, it cost the future of another four-legger who would have made them a great friend. More than ever it is so easy to adopt pets in need instead of helping to sustain a cruel industry.

Jim Pierson, Toluca Lake

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To the editor: I appreciate Lazarus' enlightening column.

I've been a "Dalmatian aficionado" since childhood. Several years ago I was going through a total Dalmatian withdrawal since our last one had to be euthanized. I began to learn of Dalmatian adoption places in California and was about to schedule a visit when I learned DAWG (Dog Adoption Welfare Group) in Santa Barbara had acquired a male.

To make a long story a bit shorter, Jameson became my eighth Dalmatian, and he is a real joy.

Sadly, too many people think they'd love to own a Dalmatian pup. I hope readers will check adoption places first.

Pamela Boehr, Montecito

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