Switzerland drops St Bernards, may replace with people in costume instead

Discussion in 'Bizarre and Off-Beat News' started by zwiebel, Apr 25, 2015.

  1. zwiebel

    zwiebel New Member

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    Tourists visiting the Matterhorn mountain in Switzerland will no longer be able to get their photo snapped, standing alongside one of the famed St Bernard rescue dogs. Authorities in the local town of Zermatt say two businesses have agreed to stop the trade, after years of complaints about the dogs' welfare. Ideas being mooted as a substitute include having people dressed as St Bernards pose with the tourists instead. :)

    The St Bernards currently being used are not rescue dogs at all but models. The Barry Foundation there says it will rehome the dogs if required.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-32445228

    Photo link.
    http://calgarycostume.ca/product/saint-bernard/
     

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  3. wendybtn

    wendybtn Well-Known Member

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    If I want to have my picture taken with a dog-costumed human, I'll go to a Disney park!
     
  4. LinasK

    LinasK Verified insider- Mark Dribin case

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    Why can't they just treat the dogs better? How is it harmful to have a dog pose for pictures??? Silly to pose with a person in costume.
     
  5. Morag

    Morag Well-Known Member

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    Last summer, while in Zermatt, I saw this happening. DH and I had taken a trip on the Gornergrat, a cog railway which takes you way up high to the face of the Matterhorn. I was gasping for air at such an altitude, but DH continued up to a higher viewpoint.

    As I sat there (gasping!) for about two hours, I saw one of the dogs being photographed with several different tour groups, one person at a time. There were at least 150 people, and each photo required several takes while the dog was encouraged/ordered to pose and look straight ahead. At last, the weary dog was taken indoors for a few minutes.

    When we finished eating lunch, there was the poor dog, again with the little brandy flask hanging around his neck, submitting to forced embraces from grinning tourists, all having their pictures made for CHF5 ($5USD+/-). Later on, as we walked through Zermatt, there was the same poor dog, looking weary and bored, still being photographed. And although this is high in the Alps, it is HOT- especially for a big furry dog.
     
  6. zwiebel

    zwiebel New Member

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    Thanks for that info Morag, I've never seen that, thank goodness, as I avoid mountains despite having lived near several.

    I was thinking about what Berlin does near the site of the old border crossing of the Berlin Wall. A handsome young man in uniform costume stands there now, and tourists stand in long, long lines to pay a Euro - bit more than a dollar - to get a photo taken. My elderly (female) relative was so thrilled, she pushed in!

    I think if someone set up a business with, say, a handsome Swiss mountain shepherd and a pretty Swiss milkmaid, and a couple of gnarled old yodellers with Alpenhorns for luck, tourists would be just as happy to have their photos taken with them. And at least if it's people, there are employment laws to protect them.

    Although you'd think with the Matterhorn as a backdrop, props for tourist photos are hardly needed.
     
  7. zwiebel

    zwiebel New Member

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