Cosmetic Surgery For Prettier Pets

This is the fifth and final segment of a CBS Evening News series on cosmetic surgery trends worldwide.


To Ralph Liberatore, the thought of having his miniature pinscher Butch neutered was painful.

Was it concern for his vanity?

"Well, probably ... sure," says Liberatore. "How is he going to be looked at by the other dogs in the dog world?"

Then he heard about Neuticles - testicular implants made of silicone that would make Butch look like Butch again.

"And I did get him the right size," says Liberatore.

Since Neuticles hit the market, nearly 150,000 pairs have been sold.

support for the gems are split right down the middle.

"Women's ... two reactions would be 'eeeew,' or, 'He doesn't know any different,'" says Liberatore. "Guys are like, 'Really? Awesome! You gotta do it.'"

This is one case in television where less is more and here they are, and that's all you get.

And it's not just Neuticles. Like their owners, pets are getting all types of cosmetic surgery - breast reductions, eyelifts, and even fat removal. Most of these procedures are medically necessary; a more attractive look is simply a fringe benefit.

Pumpkin could hardly walk until she had 5 pounds of fat surgically removed.

"She's much thinner," says Pumpkin's owner Jessie Schultz. "There are days she looks like she's half her size."

Marjorie Dye's pooch Bode had a facelift. A hanging lip - prone to infection - was nipped and tucked for cosmetic and medical reasons.

"Cosmetically it just looks so much better so a little bit of each, and it's no big deal," says Dye. "You know, I've had my nip and tucks."

Liberatore admits neuticles are more about him than Butch.

What is it about you guys that think you need to replace these things on an animal?

"It's just a guy thing," says Liberatore. "A guy that has them, knows what they are and what they mean, and taking them away is very bad.

"People project certain things on their pets," says Dr. Alan Schulman, a veterinary surgeon.

Schulman is not surprised. He says pet owners are taking America's obsession with perfection too far.

"I think the money would be better spent if the person who wanted these implants went to therapy," says Schulman.

But Liberatore says he's pleased that Butch looks like a complete "package" again.

"I'm happy I did it - 100 percent," he says.

It leaves us to wonder if there are any limits to the cosmetic surgery phenomenon, or have we all simply gone nuts?


  • Jaime Holguin

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