And sure enough, social media did not disappoint. Waves of people posted responses, most of them taking issue with Reed and his point of view:

“This crazy dog love keeps getting more and more costly,” Reed wrote, then noted that the amount of money Americans spent on their pets had more than quadrupled, from $17 billion in 1994 to $69.5 billion in 2017. 

“Is that love in your dog’s eyes — or is that the look of a con man sizing up his mark?” Reed wrote.

One animal shelter, the Morris Avenue Refuge in Philadelphia, took a more proactive approach in response to the column: 





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