Posted By Dawn Kairns, Author of MAGGIE the dog who changed my life A Story of Love
My niece who is living in Santiago, Chile, warned me before we arrived in Chile. She knew I would ache when I saw the homeless street dogs of Chile. She was right.
If I can find good news about this it is that many of the dogs are at least fed (both by tourists and locals) and not emaciated compared to street dogs in other countries I have seen. Of course that is not true for all of them. The sad news is they don't have the magic of the human-animal bond, someone to love and care for them.
People do have family dogs who are loved like we all love our dogs. The Chilean family my niece is staying with served us a delicious lunch one Sunday. We watched them spoil and dote on their dog as we do ours. And the family we stayed with in the Cochamo Valley had a black lab, Puff, who is very loved. He has a great life going up the valley with the horses to La Junta with the guests. (He accompanied us).
One day I walked into the market in Puerta Varas to buy "meaty" treats. Since pesos seem a little like "play money," I didn't realize until later I had spent $12.00 on one round of dog treats! For future feedings, I bought hot dogs, which were cheaper than dog treats.