Like most pet owners, Upper West Side resident Gary Rintel wanted to remember his beloved Astro, a short-haired collie/Great Pyrenees, after the mutt passed away. However, instead of holding a nice funeral, or naming his next pet Astro Jr., Rintel took the unusual step of making a hat out of the dog's fur. Weird and sort of creepy, right? Well, Rintel wasn't quite finished; he also spent $140,000 to have Astro cloned twice. The results, as you might expect, are like something out of a horror movie.
Cosmo and Retro, the cloned sons of Astro, have terrorized the Upper West Side since their birth almost four years ago. Rintel allows them to roam freely through his neighborhood and Central Park without a leash, often staying a block ahead or behind the hell beasts as they wreak havoc.
Neighbors and park goers are terrified of the gentically-modified monsters, who have attacked other dogs and cyclists in the area.
"The second I see that guy, I make sure to cross the street," on neighbor told the New York Post. An Upper West Side building's superintendent said the dogs "look like lions" and "roam free."
"We call them ‘the clones,' " said a dog owner who claims the two pooches came out of nowhere and attacked his black Lab puppy in Central Park. When the man tried to intervene, one of the clones bit his hand, he said.
This year alone, Rintel has paid over $2,000 in fines for leash violations, a fact which doesn't seem to faze the "writer" and "self-described trust-fund layabout."
"If you were a dog, would you want to live with a rope around your neck?" [Rintel] told The Post. "I don't think most people care about their dogs' happiness. Sometimes I'm guilty of breaking that law."
He went on to add: "They're not threatening or dangerous dogs. They're playful and they're under check," he said. "The idea that two dogs are savaging the Upper West Side isn't true."
The question is: would you trust a man with a hat made out of his dead dog's fur? Regardless, I'd stay away from the Upper West Side. There's nothing worthwhile up there, anyway.