Dog inflation: Animal shelters charging people big bucks to adopt "Very Important Pets"

Recently Gene Shue went looking for a new dog, a companion for the chihuahua he adopted three years ago -- and got a bad case of sticker shock. He found the perfect buddy dog at Golden's Foothills Animal Shelter, only to learn that the adoption fee was double what he'd paid for the same type of dog at Foothills in 2010. And Shue was even more dismayed to discover the price hike applied to some dogs more than others.

"One guy told me they could get a lot more for the cuter ones," Shue says.

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Alan Prendergast has been writing for Westword for over thirty years. He teaches journalism at Colorado College; his stories about the justice system, historic crimes, high-security prisons and death by misadventure have won numerous awards and appeared in a wide range of magazines and anthologies.
Contact: Alan Prendergast