"in and about the house and environs, as opposed to cooped up in a cage."

This is a huge deal among people who are "in to" dogs. People often decide to get a dog for reasons other than a love of the dog. They get it for the image perhaps - think Paris Hilton and her chihuahua or your local gang-banger and his pitbull or your neighbor's 8 year old daughter who doesn't understand that a living creature requires more attention than a dolly; that is, one can't just put it in the closet when one is tired of it. Many people who get them end up returning them when they are tired of them, a few of them at a HUGE loss of money.

I'm not familiar with the term, but I feel like the intent is obvious. "Raised underfoot" is not a slur, or derogatory in any way. It means the dog was loved like a child, and socialized with people, at least, if not with other animals (dogs, cats, etc.) as opposed (as you say) to being raised in a kennel by someone just out to make a buck. There's a term for this sort of kennel: they call them "puppy mills." A common opinion is that dogs from these kinds of kennels often have personality disorders, some of them irremediable. I don't have any idea how much truth there is in that opinion.

Edited by TheFallibleFiend (11/20/07 08:08 AM)