Czechs and dogs

Discussion in 'Culture' started by wissy, Oct 3, 2005.

  1. wissy

    wissy Well-Known Member

    Hello everyone.
    When I was in Prague I noticed that there were alot of locals with dogs with many travelling on the trams. More than I would have expected in a city. All the dogs without exception were impeccably behaved. Is there a special relationship between Czechs and their dogs or animals in general.

    Thanks Wissy. :D
  2. SMZ

    SMZ Well-Known Member

    I noticed this, too, and was amazed to see dogs in places such as bakeries! I'm a "dog mom" :D so it didn't bother me a bit, and I really enjoyed seeing so many dogs travelling happily on trams and the metro.

  3. Dana

    Dana Well-Known Member


    Even though I'm Czech, I don't really have an answer as far as why Czechs seem to be particularly attached to animals. In my case, I grew up with my grandparents' cat and, from age 10, my own cats and dogs. Almost every household in our village and basically any Czech village has at least one dog and/or cat. Maybe it's like a circle - you grow up in the presence of animals, so you end up getting one yourself because it seems so natural.

    I live in Prague now and take my dog virtually everywhere - trams, the metro, banks, restaurants... I carry him into stores (he's tiny). I travel long distances with him by train. Since my dog is small and can be carried, it happens extremely rarely that I'm not allowed to enter a place with him. I never get annoyed or disapproving glances from other people. Quite the opposite.

    There's a fun article on this site about Czechs and their dogs called It's a Dog's Life.

    I hope someone else tries to post an explanation to this phenomenon. :)

  4. evian

    evian Well-Known Member

    I was also surprised by the abundance of canine pets in public areas. However, in my opinion this was much more profound in Switzerland than what I had witnessed in CR. You see, in Australia, tolerance of pet dogs of all sizes in enclosed public areas is virtually non-existant. So I was amazed to see such acceptance in these European nations. I agree with the comment regarding the exceptional behaviour of the majority of these publicly exposed dogs. But like any dogs, if you give them direct attention, you're likely to get some in return - just as I had awkwardly experienced in a café in Neuchatel. :lol:
    As a side note, how do Czechs feel about the process of castration and desexing of household pets?
  5. brigitte

    brigitte Well-Known Member

    Dogs in the UK aren't normally allowed in shops, unless they are guide dogs for the blind. This isn't just food shops. Dogs can be carried on public transport, but you find if they are large dogs, people tend to be wary. Especially if thy are a breed reputed to be aggressive. I had a large German Shepherd, he was soft as anything, but people were very wary of him simply because of the image the breed has here. Toy dogs that can be carried are normally cooed at. We hve a guy in this town who has 9, yes 9 Leonbergers. They are absolutely massive, and he regularly walks through the town with at least 5! you can see them all spread out in the mall, as he sits in the open air cafe. They get plenty of attention!

    The biggest problem in the UK with dogs is the, putting it politely, is what come out their rear ends. There are heavy fines for not cleaning up after your dog. Only yesterday I was cleaning up dog poop in our communal garden as someone who recenty moved out had a dog, and let it poop everywhere, and I was always treading in it. As we have the autumn now it is covered by leaves and you cannot see where you are walking! I got fed up with tracking it in my flat, so spent the entire Sunday clearing the whole garden.

    Rented properties in the UK rarely allow pets, in my place the tenancy agreement doesn't allow dogs, the people downstairs just got one anyway, and they got evicted as the dog was loose in the communal hall barking all night! They wouldn't take any notice of me or anyone else who complained about the noise. Shame really, as it is the careful, responsible owners who suffer!!
  6. Dana

    Dana Well-Known Member

    Here's an update and a little clarification on the dog situation in the Czech Republic. It is not allowed to take your dog everywhere. Some public gardens, such as the Franciscan Garden in Prague or the gardens at the Prague Castle, don't allow dogs at all, not even on a leash. Some stores, such as Marks & Spencer, don't let you enter with a dog either, and it doesn't matter if he's tiny and you carry him in your arms. I never see dogs walk around in stores except for guide dogs. It is typically not allowed to enter museums, castles and churches with a dog, although there are exceptions if the dog is carried in a bag. Dogs of any size and breed are allowed on public transport but must either be wearing a muzzle (and you have to buy them a ticket), or the dog must be kept in an enclosed case.

    People not cleaning up after their dogs is a problem here too. It is annoying and rude and I only wish heavy fines were applied for it.

    It is somewhat of a problem finding a rental that will allow dogs. We've had better luck finding hotels that allow pets.

    To answer evian's question about castration. It still isn't a common practice in the Czech Republic. Which is a shame really, especially in the case of cats, which offen have kittens at least twice a year and many of the kittens either die of cold and starvation or are killed by the owners of the cat. That's cruel to the kittens and the cat but for some reason many Czechs don't even consider castration as an option. They think it's unnatural, takes away "joy" from the animal's life, makes the animal lazy and fat, etc. I wish there was more education about the benefits of spaying and neutering so that people could make an informed decision.
  7. brigitte

    brigitte Well-Known Member

    Regarding castration, the attitude is the same over here in the UK. People do think it makes the animal fat and lazy. Castration stops male cats spraying their territory and makes them less aggressive (if they are aggressive cats) With dogs they are less likely to fight, and male dogs can be quite dominant in the house over the owner, the dog thinking it is 'boss' Castration normally sorts this out.

    I saw an unusual altercation in a coffee shop a few days ago regarding a group of elderly people and a small toy poodle. Although the dog wasn't a guide dog for the blind, it was wearing a jacket signifying it was an assistance dog of some kind. Not sure which, but the non English waitresses were trying to work out why this dog had some kind of special function, and should be allowed in the shop. Obviously it wasn't a guide dog. These elderly women were arguing that their dog had a job and that is why he couldn't be left outside. Because the dog was wearing a jacket stating it had a purpose it was difficult.
  8. Viktor

    Viktor Well-Known Member

    At least, the Prague city officials are trying to cope with dog droppings. I noticed paper bag dispensing staions at several parks in Prague , so people can scoop up the dog stuff and dispose of it in a trash container in a reinforced paper bag.

    However, all good things at times are abused. As I was passing two elderly ladies were at the "bag disposal station" , having a conversation (a green elevated metal box, similar to a postal drop box ) -- I was trying to mail a letter, that is why the green contained got my attention, but I could not find the drop slot, so I read the instructions --

    Anyway, I overheard the reply one old lady gave the other:

    Q. What do you need all these bags for?
    A. I'm getting these bags, for my husband to carry his lunch to work.

    "That is a good idea"! Replied the other:"I think I'll get some for my husband too"!

    By the time they left, the dispenser was empty, and the next dog walker would probably have a dillemma to deal with:" What to do with the dog poop? His/her dog bags were all gone?"

    I assume, since I did not stay to see the conclusion of this drama, but am certain that the city officials will get the balme for not maintaining the sanitary station ( I even brough one bag home as a souvenir from CZ. How civilized I tought)...

    Seems that here are some progressive, positive thinkers in the bunch. But it will take a long time, if ever to move the public into the so called civil normalcy!

  9. wissy

    wissy Well-Known Member

    Great story Victor. :lol:
  10. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Viktor, I think this is an example of the communist influence: public property = my property (everything belongs to the people, after all :wink: ). I see the same thing with Russians and Ukrainians as well. Funny story! (or perhaps, not)
  11. Dana

    Dana Well-Known Member

    Good news from Prague 10: The town hall recently hired two companies to clean each and every sidewalk in the district. All sidewalks are swept on a regular basis (once a day to once a week as needed). I can confirm that the sidewalks in our neighborhood have been spotlessly clean lately. All litter, leaves, dog poop and even weeds are gone. I still believe that picking up dog poop is the dog owner's job, but if they're not doing it, at least someone is...

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