Dr. Conrad Murray has a bit of a PR problem these days -- and since people don't just let you walk up and kiss their baby anymore, he did the next best thing ... he bought a little girl a balloon.
A TMZ photog was out in Santa Monica on his night off when he caught a glimpse of Murray on the Third Street Promenade. Murray was walking along when he spotted the cute kid and the balloon animal practitioner ... and made his way over.
Murray ponied up the few bucks for the little girl's balloon and one for himself -- it looked like he took the SpongeBob one.
If things don't go Murray's way next week, he may want to move into a pineapple under the sea.