I've seen this around the Civic Center BART station several times but today's observation triggered me to write this post. I've seen this at least 5 or 6 times now while waiting for the company shuttle at Market/8th a few homeless folks who have dog(s). These dogs are in horrible conditions. I saw one pit bull who have open cuts and sores on his body. In the past year, I've seen this other German shepherd that is so darn skinny that I can see his rib cage and rib definitions clearly. I've also seen a pair of dogs owned by a homeless man who not only have very dirty fur in poor condition but are muzzled everytime I see them (I know that doesn't mean they are always muzzled but the muzzle looks home-made and is way too tight!)
I am certain they love their dogs and really appreciate their companionship while everything else seems to go against them. I definitely understand the bond between humans and dogs-- I can't imagine life without mine.
However, if it is already so difficult for the homeless to feed themselves, wash themselves, keep themselves warm and healthy, I think it would be much better for both if they give up their pets to animal shelters or SPCA so the animals can receive regular meals, shots, flea control, baths, vet checkups and just a warm loving home.
I'm not sure if homeless shelters allow pets, my guess is no. I just feel that in this case, it would be better for the homeless to seek help in shelters or programs, and let the dogs heal in animal shelters and adoptive homes.