are making headlines. Johnny Depp's dogs are making headlines around the world. A couple of "cute little pooches" are in trouble - or the humans who believe they own them are in trouble. Should we be worried?
The problem is that they were brought on a trip to Downunder. They came in a private jet belonging to an actor. These globe-trotting pooches were not quarantined as is required by law.
I have two things to say about this. The first is that the dogs should not be travelling like this. No, I am sorry but you don't drag dogs around like this. The exception would be a guide dog for a visually impaired person. Those dogs are trained to travel. They are working dogs. Other working dogs may also need to travel from time to time but household pets, unless you are moving house, should remain at home or be boarded out in reputable kennels if you are travelling.
I know there are people who will disagree with me but do "cute little pooches" really need to endure plane travel just so that they can be doted on by humans?
The second thing I have to say is that, while Depp's dogs may well be healthy, Downunder has very good reasons for its quarantine laws. As a country it is, aside from a couple of scares, rabies free. It is also free of some other nasty diseases which could potentially kill the cattle and dairy industries and - perhaps even worse - decimate the unique wild life. There is also the possibility that something unique to Downunder might get transported elsewhere. As a responsible global citizen Downunder does not want that to happen.
The question of whether Depp knew about the quarantine laws or not is immaterial. Someone in his party should have checked. That is the sort of thing he would have "aides" for and it means someone did not do the job they were being paid to do.
It also means that someone in Customs Downunder was not doing their job - or did they also think "couple of cute little pooches belonging to well known actor let's not make a fuss"?
Whatever the story the pooches must go back to where they came from. Depp has to be fined - and heavily fined.
It has been marvellous publicity for Depp - publicity he didn't have to pay for. Most people are going to say "oh, he didn't know" and "all he wanted to do was have his dogs with him" but those things are no excuse.
So, pay up Mr Depp - and a substantial donation to an animal charity at the same time perhaps?