Sadly last night on Nightline, they reported that lottery ticket sales have been one of the few things that have actually increased in this current economy. They had one family who spends hundreds of dollars a week to purchase tickets, including driving across state lines to buy different tickets. They have had to make cuts to their family's spending, yet will not forgo the lottery tickets. Ironically, the guy just lost his job as a financial planner. Yet, they are not alone, if ticket sales are increasing like they are. Some people are just stupid, spending money they don't have on things they don't need. (I did however learn on the program my odds are better of dating a supermodel than winning the lottery, so I got that going for me.)
I passed this sign several times when I was out in California. It pretty much sums up part of the problem with the mindset of many Americans.
Really, if you can not afford to buy a pet with the cash in hand, I doubt a payment plan on a pet is your best option. Not only are you going to have a monthly payment for that pet, but you will also have extra expenses like food, shots, and the pet sitter. Sure, no money down on a dog sounds like a great deal, but in the end, it will probably just bite you in the butt.
So to sum up, if you can not afford it, go without it. It reminds me of this SNL skit.
Song to go with this rant: Pink Floyd - Money