Later today we're getting a puppy. I haven't had one since I was a kid. Things have changed since then, according to the puppy experts. For one, we found the puppy over the Internet. That's different. But it's only the tip of the iceberg.

The experts say we are not supposed to pick up the puppy and hold it. If the puppy pushes itself out of our arms, it will try to brace its fall with its front legs, and they will break. Apparently this happens a lot.

Instead, we are advised to keep the puppy on a leash if we pick it up. That way, if the dog jumps out of our arms, we can save it by holding the leash, in much the same way the Iraqis saved Saddam Hussein when he fell through the trap door. Sounds safe to me.

We have been advised to get a special type of sugary foodlike product to give the puppy when it arrives on the plane, to prevent it from getting hypoglycemic. This has something to do with the stress of the trip and not eating for several hours. In the old days, when dogs got hungry they would eat something called dog food. But to be fair, our old family dog hardly ever used an airplane for interstate travel, at least not while we were watching.

Our first attempt at buying a little gated fence for the puppy was a failure. The puppy expert said it wasn't high enough. If the dog successfully climbs the fence, it will learn it can climb anything. Before you know it, the dog is on the roof, all hypoglycemic, with the wind ripping off its feeble limbs.

House training has changed too. You no longer whack the puppy with a rolled up newspaper when it relieves itself in the house. Now you do something more humane, called cage training. You put the puppy in a cage so small it can barely turn around. Dogs instinctively won't poop where they have to stand, so it learns to hold it until it poops on your terms.

I ask myself if I would prefer to be whacked with a rolled up newspaper when I pooped on the carpet or be forced to stay in a coffin-sized cage for several hours while desperately squeezing my butt cheeks together to keep the turtle in the shell. Which is more humane? I'm thinking it doesn't make any difference because my parents used both of those methods on me, and I turned out okay.

The dog is an Aussie Toy. According to our research, this is the very best dog in the entire world for us. It is a "working dog," meaning it was bred to be useful, presumably herding very small cows. I plan to train it to fetch tennis balls. I want it to kneel by the net like a ball girl and bring me the loose balls after each point. Maybe it could even keep score.  I haven't consulted with the puppy expert about this idea because I know she will say the dog can't participate in sports unless it is wearing a Kevlar body suit has an asthma inhaler nearby.

I'm just saying dogs are different now.

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Nov 8, 2013
I had to strain mightily to keep from laughing out loud at work (maybe that's my cue to actually get back to work)! I apologize that this comment is not related to the content of the post, but the "Thumbs Up" just didn't do justice to the physical pain I experienced trying to laugh quietly. Probably still laughed loud enough to disturb my cubicle neighbors though . . . Hilarious post!
Jan 20, 2009
North American Shepards seem to be the name used in most descriptions. What disturbed me is that the first response I got on a google search led me to a Kennel that seems to bread Sheep, French Bulldogs and "TOY" Aussie Shepards. I am not using the phrase Puppy Mill here but it is easy to come to the conclusion.
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Jan 20, 2009
North American Shepards seem to be the name used in most descriptions. What disturbed me is that the first response I got on a google search led me to a Kennel that seems to bread Sheep, French Bulldogs and "TOY" Aussie Shepards. I am not using the phrase Puppy Mill here but it is easy to come to the conclusion.
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Jul 22, 2008
My brother has an Australian Cattle Hound (which is a similar breed) and it's a remarkable dog.

Scott, on a completely unrelated topic, I stumbled across a reference to <a href="https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=1932214040062195180&postID=7250669532237955356" target="_blank">Basic Instructions</a> on <a href="http://cakewrecks.blogspot.com" target="_blank">Cake Wrecks</a> and I thought you'd be interested to see it.
Jul 22, 2008
Enjoy your puppy Scott. I have nothing but joy in your new found happiness. Buying a puppy is the only way a person can actually buy happiness! I have an Aussie, they are wonderful pets, but need to have a lot of attention, then they are almost like having a child.
Jul 15, 2008
Thanks to those who've pointed out that an "Aussie Shephard" is not an Australian breed at all, and that the "toy" is just some kind of manipulation to create yet another munchkin mutt for people who like dogs in the house.

Scott, you want a dog to chase tennis Balls, get your hands on a kelpie. All the loyalty and appetite of a labrador with the metabolism and work rate of a marathon runner on amphetamines.
Jul 14, 2008
As a business traveller who's been treated like a dog by the airlines, I can assure you that the sugary foodlike substance isn't to reduce the risk of hypoglycemia...it's to remove the taste of airline food. But i agree, the rules to owning something that will bite your ankle when you least expect it are becoming kinda extreme. Evolution tells us that someday these pets will become smart enough to laugh their asses off at the silly things we do for them.

And lets get one thing straight right now...yer not gonna pull a Leona Helmsley on us and leave your estate to the dog when you pass away are you??? : ) I still hate that little !$%*!$
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Jul 14, 2008
wow, I thought you were supposed to be smart.

A "toy" aussie is a dog that has been selected for generations by size. Not by health, or temperment, or the way it looks, just size. Unfortunately, a lot of small aussies turned out to have nasty temperments and as a result, toy aussies are almost universally bad tempered, nervous, hyper, biters -- and a very poor choice for a family with young kids -- actually a poor choice period. They are not considered purebreds, but are really the example of how bad things can get with too much in-breeding. And you had to have one flown to you... oh my.

I know that if you did a little independent research, you will find out what I am saying is true. Go to any reputable Aussie breeder (look up the ASCA on the web and find a local breeder) and they can tell you exactly what a toy aussie is and is not. If you want a small, compact herding dog find a well bred sheltie.
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Jul 14, 2008
I am sure it is a nice dog. I recently rescued a dog and there was more paperwork and verifications done for a new dog than when I bought a car. If such verifications on income and background were performed on home morgages we in the US would not be in such a slump. It sound like you must have gotten some presure as from my reading you seem to be more scientific about most things. By the was there is no such thing as a Toy Aussie Shepard. North American Shepards seem to be the name used in most descriptions. What disturbed me is that the first response I got on a google search led me to a Kennel that seems to bread Sheep, French Bulldogs and "TOY" Aussie Shepards. I am not using the phrase Puppy Mill here but it is easy to come to the conclusion.
Crate Training works but some dogs get very reclusive and tend to think they are only trully alowed in their cage as soon as you come home. Try to take the dog out every hour for a lap arround the yard. Reward the dog when it goes, they come to the conclusion that it is better to go outside. The downside is they wait for a walk rather than going in the yard.
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Jul 14, 2008
>> What part of "very best dog in the entire world for us" is confusing you? -- Scott

i think people are confused because you seem to imply that the dog's breed is more relevant to picking it out rather than its individual personnality. Dogs are not cars: their capabilities are inadequately described in the spec sheet.
Jul 14, 2008
Maybe this is how the rich keep the economy up by spending their money on frivolaties. In this case it is the international economy that is being boosted.
Jul 14, 2008
My wife (of slightly over a year) is an animal fanatic. Since marriage, my household has expanded from myself and a 9-year old stray cat to myself, my wife, two daughters (6 & 7 years), two cats, and 3 large-breed dogs. And 17 goldfish. The dogs definitely get a lot of special treatment.

I have been informed that the spazzy unpopular dog who jumps on people all the time, barks, and rips things apart is "mine." I have spent a lot of effort trying to calm this dog down and reduce it's anxiety -- it is somewhat better behaved, today. Nonetheless, she is so happy to see me when I get home that she frequently leaps at my crotch with sharp claws propelled by the momentum of a muscular 48 pound body. This results in excruciating pain for the one man in the house and an eruption of laughter from three females.

On a more relevent note, our dogs must eat -- for reasons that I have yet to understand -- $70 dog food made from wheat-gluten free, non-imported, highly digestible, gourmet dogfood. While our cats get generic kibble from the dollar store. Curiously, the dogs seem much less discriminate about what they eat.
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Jul 14, 2008
branson... idol... puppy....



Jul 14, 2008
I'm sorry, but I have to respond to the ranting "go to the pound, Scott you're the antichrist" people.

Firstly, where has this assumption that Scott & family have not been to the breeder come from? You can find the breeder on the Internet sure, but I don't know of any reputable breeder that will allow anyone to purchase without a visit first. Also, the assumption that this place is a puppy farm - please don't label all breeders with that brush. Most are people who have a real love for the breed, and treat their breeding animals with great care and respect.

Secondly - why NOT but a pedigree dog / cat / whatever? Yes, there are lots of dogs who need homes. And I'm sure that once Scott realises the amount of time that one dog (singular) takes up, the children's pleas to get another one to keep it company will fall on very receptive ears and a trip to the pound will follow shortly....

Enjoy the puppy Scott, your life will not be the same ever again!
Jul 14, 2008
Dogs are great. But you will soon find that retrieved tennis balls will be soaked in saliva. Don't worry though, it is a natural antibiotic and skin conditioner at the same time, but the serves and returns will produce a mist of dog spit and make the ball react differently.

I speak from experience.
Jul 14, 2008
Hi, you're a funny guy, but your new Page Design sucks!

It's terrible slow, searches don't work. !$%*! I just want to see your comics without these crappy Flash Things, which make this Site unusable
Jul 13, 2008
Weasel Time. Don't say sorry.
Jul 13, 2008
One of PETAs tactics for increasing awareness of their cause is to post hot, naked chicks in places. If you publicize enough that you bought a designer puppy from a breeding mill instead of "rescuing" a puppy from a shelter, you might get lucky and be able to stare at a hot, naked chick for a while, wife presence permitting... Maybe somebody like this: http://www.peta.org/feat/stateoftheunion08/index.asp

I'm pretty conservative on most things, but PETA does have a point. This video had me going from wood to almost crying-which of course is the point. This is a collation of the worst of the worst, and although I won't stop buying leather shoes or eating meat, I might give free range a second look. At least they get to be animals before the food chain takes over. But I digress.

Jul 13, 2008
Good thing you got that dog poop picking-up training in earlier this year so you don't embarrass yourself picking up the lawn ornaments your puppy will be making every time you go both go out for walkies. Or do dogs not walk anymore? I keep seeing their heads poking out of purses everywhere I go. Do they balance checkbooks now instead? It's been a while since I had a dog too.

Good luck! :)
Jul 13, 2008
Dear Random Thunking and others

Lets come to terms with Scott's ingenuity, guys.

His target audience on the blog is:

1. The Reader's Digest buyer

2. The naturalised American

3. The too-lazy-to-vote philosopher

4. The street-smart heterosexual

5. The high school drop-out

and similar types. Thats quite a population to feed his daily bytes. Show some mercy if his mind drifts at times due to the sheer lopsided stress on the bearings.

It is quite natural for cubicle dwellers to compare notes as they shift from the Daily Strip Tease to the Blog and find something that could give even Wally an indigestion. The mind boggles for a moment a la-jeeves-pick-me-ups...

But hey, its all right. Scott is not a Wodehouse. So lets try to be English.

Good day, Mr. Scott. See you soon, mate. Bye for now.
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