This ad for Trifexis depicts a dog living in a bubble — albeit it one that’s outside and has plenty of tubes to run around in.
It serves to protect him from heartworms, hookworms, roundworms, whipworms, flea infestations and all those other frightening hazards that exist in that place where dogs, for centuries, managed to survive:
What we find most interesting about it, though, are the disclaimers, which seem to have risen with doggie prescription drugs to the same level they have with human ones, where three-fourths of the advertisement are devoted to a listing of potential scary side effects, quickly recited in monotone, in hopes you — or your dog — won’t really hear them.
With Trifexis, it goes like this: “Treatment with fewer than three monthly doses after the last exposure to mosoquitoes may not provide complete heartworm prevention. The most common adverse reactions were vomiting, itching and lethargy. Serious adverse reactions have been reported following concomitant extra-label use of ivermectin with spinosad alone, one of the components of Trifexis.”
On top of the warnings recited, more appear in small print during the ad:
“To ensure parasite protection, observe your dog for one hour after administration.”
“If vomiting occurs within an hour of administration, give another full dose.”
“Puppies less than 14 weeks of age may experience a higher rate of vomiting.”
In their print ads, the makers of Trifexis additionally advise the drug be used with caution in breeding females, and in dogs with epilepsy. Its use in breeding males has not been evaluated. Print ads also list lethargy, depression, decreased appetite and diarrhea as possible side effects.
The chewable, beef-flavored tablets — administered once a month – are a combination of spinosad and milbemycin oxime, and they serve to prevent heartworm disease, kill fleas and prevent infestations and treat hookworm, roundworm and whipworm infections.
The tagline for the ad is “You don’t have to go to extremes to protect your dog from parasites.”
Apparently you do, though, if you’re selling prescription drugs — for canines or humans — to protect your ass from lawsuits.
To see all our “Woof in Advertising” posts, click here.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 21st, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, appetite, bubble, canine, caution, chewable, depression, diarrhea, disclaimers, disease, dog, dogs, drugs, environment, fleas, health, heartworm, hookworm, human, infections, itching, lethargy, loss, mosquitoes, parasites, pets, prescription, prevention, protection, roundworm, safety, side effects, tablets, trifexis, tube, veterinarians, veterinary, vomiting, warning, whipworm
A poodle-shih tzu mix whose face, from some angles, bears a striking resemblance to that of a human, is gaining fame far beyond Mishawaka, Indiana.
Tonik, 2 years old, is one of over 100 dogs waiting to be adopted at the Homeward Bound Shelter in Mishawaka. Rescued from a kill shelter, he has been there since 2011.
But since posting a photo of Tonik — taken by Renny Mills, who photographs adoptable animals for the shelter’s website — the shelter says inquiries about the dog have been pouring in.
You can see him and the shelters other animals at the Homeward Bound’s website.
(Photo: Renny Mills)
Posted by jwoestendiek February 8th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, adoption, animals, dog, dogs, face, homeward bound, human, human face, indiana, mishawaka, mix, pets, photo, photogaphy, poodle, rescued, shelter, shih-tzu, tonik
The Oct. 20th U.K. edition of Closer features an interview with Terri Graham, a mother of two human children.
Breastfeeding her pug Spider, she says, makes her feel like a better mom.
“Having Spider suckle on my boob means I finally feel complete and a better mother,” said Graham, who was unable to breastfeed her children for reasons unexplained.
Graham said she has been breastfeeding Spider for two years — ever since the dog licked a bottle of breast milk she had pumped for her newborn son. Apparently, Spider liked it so much, she decided to let him start drinking directly from the source.
There’s definitely a boundary line between what’s acceptable and what’s not when it comes to how close we get to our dogs, and how humanly we treate them — and we meant humanly there, not humanely. I don’t assume to be the one who defines that line, but, in my humble view, this crosses it.
Even though we “ooh” and “aww” when we see a female dog take on the feeding responsibilities to newborn animals of other species, most of us will probably “euuwwww” at this example.
The significant difference between those cases and this, of course, is that a nine-year-old pug doesn’t require breast milk to grow, and the surrogate mama dogs in those cases don’t generally seek headlines.
This, in my view, is fairly outrageous, which accounts for the story’s popularity. We seem to have an appetite for the outrageous, and no shortage of media happy to serve it up and let us suckle. A photo of the article about Graham was posted to a Reddit forum devoted to strange news, and it quickly rose to the site’s front page. It was subsequently regurgitated by The Huffington Post, and given good play by Doghatersunite.com, a website that says it serves “people who hate dog-loving idiots and their Darwin-defying fleabags.”
One has to wonder how the original publication got onto this story: A phoned-in tip? Peering through a window? Logging into breastfeedingyourdog.com? (Just kidding, there’s no such website.) Or did the subject of the story, sensing the magazine’s zeal for boob coverage, volunteer the information?
All said, while the case of the breastfeeding pug raises some interesting questions, one should probably consider the source — not just tabloid readers, but especially Spider — and perhaps seek their nourishment elsewhere.
Posted by jwoestendiek October 19th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, behavior, bond, breastfeed, breastfeeding, breasts, california, closer, dog, dogs, human, humans, interspecies, magazine, milk, nourishment, pets, photo, pug, spider, tabloids, woman
One of the advantages of being a fiercely independent website that makes no money is that we don’t have to hold back in fear of upsetting advertisers, or potential advertisers.
Our ads are clearly marked as ads. We don’t sneak any in between the lines, we don’t use pop-ups, or blind links, or otherwise use our editorial space to sell anyone’s stuff. Thus, we are beholden to no one, except the Internet, and maybe Google.
That allows us, from time to time, to poke a little fun at what we see as new pet products that — while not totally useless and silly – maybe aren’t the innovation, breakthrough or revolutionary cure-all they are being ballyhooed as.
Last week, for instance, we, in a mostly humorous vein, wrote about a new product called Dog Flags, banners for dogs or their leashes that, while you could easily make one at home, are being marketed in five colors with five labels, from “Friendly” to “Please Don’t Approach” – not that we found them to be an entirely bad idea.
Here’s an entirely bad idea.
Just in time for next Halloween, PetPaint will hit the market — non-toxic paints in a variety colors that you can use to paint your dog so that he looks like another kind of animal, or anything else you want.
I’m not saying they pose a clear health hazard, or that it’s the end of the world, just that pet painting is the kind of behavior – annoying to and disrespectful of canines — that humans, being a far more peculiar species, will likely be prone to go overboard with.
I learned of the new product in an email from the company, announcing their presence at the upcoming Global Pet Expo, which is underway through Friday in Orlando.
“From decking your dog out in your favorite sports teams colors to dressing them up for the holidays, it’s always fun for pet owners to interact with their pets,” read the email. “But let’s be honest — most dogs don’t like wearing clothes, and while they might let you dress them up, they will spend the rest of the day trying to shake it off. Enter PetPaint, the first ever clinically tested colored furspray for dogs. PetPaint is changing the way people celebrate occasions with their furry friends.”
The founder of PetPaint is Abe Geary, who says he was inspired to create the product by his two furry companions – Billie and Monkey, one a Giant Schnauzer and the other a rescue terrier.
“With PetPaint, safety comes first, followed by top quality as a close second. PetPaint is specially formulated, non-toxic, and veterinarian approved. It has undergone rigorous clinical testing to ensure complete safety. Available in a wide range of colors, PetPaint is made with the highest quality color pigment, so that it can show up even on dogs with dark coats.”
Harmless fun? Maybe. But at the risk of being labeled a party pooper — as happens when I speak ill of dressing your dog excessively — I’ve got to ask again: Why not let your dog be a dog?
Is he (or she) not already a priceless work of art? What’s to be gained by turning them plaid, making them polka-dotted or transforming them into skunks, tigers or zebras?
I’d guess most painted dogs would spend the rest of the day trying to lick the paint off. And I’d guess most people who paint their dogs, because their dogs are tolerating it, because it’s attention, will jump to the conclusion their dogs “like it.” There will be those who see it as the coolest thing ever.
And they’ll be wrong. Their dog is.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 1st, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: 2012, animals, behavior, cats, decorate, dogs, fur, furspray, global pet expo, human, non toxic, paint, paint your dog, pet products, petpaint, pets, products, spray, spray on
It was 50 years ago today that this classic episode of The Twilight Zone, called “The Hunt,” originally aired.
The clip above shows the last third of the episode.
Hyder Simpson has just about realized, by then, that he is dead.
Him and his dog, Rip, had left the house long about supper time, and the dog, he picked up a coon trail, you see. Rip plunged into a creek in pursuit of the raccoon. When Rip didn’t come up, Hyder went in after him, and he didn’t come up neither.
When next we see them, they are awakening in a meadow. It slowly dawns on Hyder that no one can detect his presence, or Rip’s for that matter. After seeing his grieving widow, and the casket holding his earthly remains, Hyder sets off for the great beyond — not sure what that’s going to be, seein’ as as he never went in much for hymns or scripture.
He and Rip start walking, first coming across what bills itself as heaven.
He’s told he’s welcome there, but that dogs aren’t allowed.
Needless to say — Rip and Hyder havin’ them a right powerful bond — Hyder declines to enter, and he utters the following lines, all of which you can use next time a motel, restaurant, park, shop or other establishment devilishly declines entry to your dog:
“I don’t reckon in there is any place for me … any place that’s too high falutin’ for Rip is too fancy for me.”
“What kind of outfit you runnin’ don’t allow no dogs?”
“A dog’s got a right to have a man around just like a man’s got a right to have a dog around.”
Hyder and Rip hear out the man who describes himself as St. Peter, but (and note how Rip detects something isn’t right) they decide not to go through the gate. Instead, they press on.
Eventually they come across an angel who offers to usher them into the real heaven.
“Ain’t gonna set foot in heaven without Rip.” Hyder tells him.
But in heaven, of course, dogs are welcome. And what of that first place they stopped? Well, as Rip’s discomfort there might have attested, that was hell.
It’s the angel who utters this classic line:
“You see, Mr. Simpson, a man, well he’ll walk right into hell with both eyes open, but even the devil can’t fool a dog.”
The episode was the first of eight that Earl Hamner wrote for The Twilight Zone — and 50 years later, we tip our hat to him.
Hamner went on to create ”The Waltons” (That’s his voice you hear narrating the episodes, should you happen to stumble across John Boy and family in a repeat.)
Should you happen to stumble across Hyder or Rip, well, you’ll know you’re in the right place.
Posted by jwoestendiek January 26th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, bond, coon dogs, coons, death, dog, dogs, dogs in heaven, dying, earl hamner, heaven, hell, hereafter, human, hyder simpson, life after death, pearly gates, pets, raccoons, rip, st peter, television, the hunt, the twilight zone, twilight zone
I’m as absorbed with taxidermy and its variations as the next guy (unless that next guy is Charles “Speedy” Atkins), especially when it comes to using it to preserve our pets.
I was fascinated enough to make it a chapter in my book, and curious enough to take a peek at “American Stuffers,” Animal Planet’s new series that each week follows people who are getting their pets, to use the common but erroneous nomenclature, “stuffed.”
But do I want to watch it every week? No.
“Stuffers,” I think, falls into the ever-expanding category of shows we watch to see humans behaving bizarrely — so strangely that we, by comparison, feel normal. You know the ones I’m talking about, those that focus on dysfunctional, obsessive, extreme behavior, like hoarding, kiddie beauty pageants, excessive tattooing, or just the travails of being a punk on the shore of New Jersey.
Flipping the remote these days, it sometimes seem as if Jerry Springer is choreographing what’s on every channel.
The Learning Channel, despite its name, has become one of the worst offenders — offering nearly a steady diet of human dysfunction. Animal Planet, despite its name, is getting more that way too.
I’ll admit that I’ve always been drawn to the bizarre behavers among us, but what makes them interesting to me is why they’ve become that way and the ramifications of it. Those aspects, and any context at all, are almost always missing from these shows, be they weekly series or pseudo-documentaries. Rather than advancing knowledge, they simply gawk. They just put the camera on the oddballs, and we learn nothing except what we already knew: People are weird.
Net gain: Zero.
“American Stuffers” centers on a taxidermy shop in Romance, Arkansas — one the show incorrectly describes as the only one of its type — where Daniel Ross freeze dries dead pets for bereaved owners.
Ross is founder and owner of Xtreme Taxidermy, which he operates with assistance from his wife LaDawn and his three sons. There seems a steady, sideshow-like stream of customers, and a steady stream of drama — real and manufactured — as he freeze dries pets and unveils them in their finished poses to their owners.
The show airs Thursdays at 10 p.m.
“While nothing can bring back these animals, Daniel and his artistic team attempt to come as close as science and art can allow,” Animal Planet says on the show’s website. “They recreate the illusion of life, and clients return home with their pets for eternity.”
That science these days allows much more than freeze-drying is shown in my book, “DOG, INC.: How a Collection of Visionaries, Rebels, Eccentrics and Their Pets Launched the Commercial Dog Cloning Industry.”
But the book also looks at how, through history, our inability to part with our pets has led us down some other strange roads, including stuffing them.
“Stuffing,” in the 1800s, was an apt name for the process. Almost every town had a tanner, who would cater to hunters seeking to memorialize their kills. They would remove the innards and sew up the carcasses, filling them with rags, straw, paper and cotton, then use sticks and brooms to beat the animal into something resembling its original shape.
By the early 20th century, taxidermy had become far more sophisticated. Mounts of the original animal were made of wood, wire and later plastic, and the animals pelt was stretched over it.
Freeze drying, an invention of the 1970s, began being used by some taxidermists by the late 1990s, including one in West Virginia, Perpetual Pet, who was featured in my book. The process involves removing the animal’s organs, posing it in the desired position, freezing it and then putting it in a vacuum chamber that removes all the moisture.
The point, as with Victorian-era pet portraiture (sometimes painted after an animal was deceased), as with modern day “digital photo urns,” and as with the most technologically advanced method of all, cloning, is the same — to keep at least a semblance of a departed animal around.
It was while researching “DOG, INC.” that I came across the story of Charles “Speedy” Atkins, who, though he died in 1928 in Paducah, Kentucky, remained above earth, intact and upright (when leaned against a wall) well into the 1990s.
Atkins was an active 50-year-old bachelor. His nickname was said by some to have stemmed from his work habits at a local tobacco factory, but others maintain it described his way with the ladies. He drowned one day while fishing on the Ohio River.
His body was taken to the black-owned funeral home in Paducah operated by A.Z. Hamock, who, inspired by methods the Egyptians used on mummies, had been experimenting with ways to preserve bodies for longer periods.
Speedy wasn’t stuffed, but he was pumped full of Hamock’s secret long-lasting embalming fluid. Hamock’s motivations were practical: Preserving a body with the fluid would allow him to wait for the families of his clients, usually poor, to raise enough money for the funeral.
No family ever came for Speedy, though. And time didn’t reclaim him either. Hamock died in 1949, taking his secret formula with him. But Speedy Atkins stayed above the ground, pickled and preserved, for the next 66 years, most of which he spent stashed in a closet, though funeral home operators would sometimes put him on display for tourists.
He was finally buried in 1994. It was time, Hamock’s widow, Velma, decided. “Sixty-six years is a long time to be with somebody,” she said in an interview with Jet magazine, which covered the funeral.
“It was all an experiment, but it was a success,” she said. “Speedy’s never been duplicated, he’s the only one that we know of. He’s not stinking, nothing. The amazing thing is he hasn’t lost all of his features. He doesn’t look like a corpse laying up in the casket for 66 years.
“I never saw a dead man bring so much happiness to people.”
(Freeze dried pet photos of Tiny and Cisco, courtesy of Perpetual Pet.)
Posted by jwoestendiek January 25th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: american stuffers, animal planet, animals, arkansas, behavior, bereavement, bizarre, bodies, cadavers, charles atkins, cloning, corpses, customes, daniel ross, death, dog death, dogs, dysfunction, grief, human, kentucky, loss, memorials, memory, paducah, perpetual pet, pet death, pet preservation, pets, preservation, preserving, semblance, speedy, stuffed, stuffers, stuffing, taxidermist, taxidermy, television, xtreme taxidermy
It’s “National Dress Up Your Pet Day.”
And — with apologies to any advertisers or potential advertisers we might offend, to the founder of the day, and to dog dresser-uppers everywhere — we hate it.
We abide it, when it’s just done once in a while; when it’s done for purposes of warmth with dogs of the tiny, short coated, shivering variety; and, to some extent, on Halloween.
But overall, we’re every bit as tired of it as most of the dogs who get dressed up probably are.
For all those who will respond saying how much their dogs love being dressed up, I’d submit that it’s the attention, not the attire, that they are appreciating. (Though I will admit Ace does seem to love it when I change his bandana — generally when it gets crusty and/or stinky, or about every three months.)
While we’re at it, we’re tired, too, of all these “national days” being proclaimed — at least those that aren’t for a good cause, but are instead marketing gimmicks.
It’s got to stop somewhere. What’s next? National Clone Your Dog Day?
And one more note of concern: If we keep humanizing dogs, through dressing them up and such, might the day come that they get so like us that they start proclaiming “national days?”
National Rawhide Chew Day, National Pet Your Dog All Day Long Day, National Don’t Forget the Belly Day, National Double Up The Dinner Serving Day, National Dig A Hole Day, National Fetch And Then Fetch Some More And Perhaps A Little More Fetch Day.
It could get totally out of control.
I’m pretty sure President Obama didn’t declare Jan. 14 “National Dress Up Your Pet Day,” I’m pretty sure it wasn’t an act of Congress. Instead, it seems National Dress Up Your Pet Day was founded in 2009 by Colleen Paige, a “celebrity pet lifestyle expert and animal behaviorist,” who has proclaimed several dog-related national days (though I don’t begin to understand what gives her the authority to proclaim days).
It is sponsored by the Animal Miracle Network “as a fun way to celebrate our beloved pets and to support the pet fashion community.”
“It’s important to remember though,” notes Paige, “that it’s not … a day to disrespect our pets with uncomfortable, vulgar and/or seasonally inappropriate costumes for the sake of a laugh or photo shoot.”
“Have fun with your pets by dressing them in cute outfits and safe costumes – but keep your pet’s comfort level in mind when involving him/her in this fun novelty day. Make sure that your pet can see and hear properly and that they aren’t wearing something that might overheat them or incorporate any parts that they may chew off and swallow.”
Dogs are too smart to fall for “National Dress Up Your Pet Day,” but at least some of us humans seem to buy into it.
Here’s a snippet from a recent article that appeared on Petstyle.com:
“With the big day just around the corner, now is the time to coordinate some fabulous outfits so your pet can celebrate in style! This is your chance to make Fido fit for the runway. But remember, there is more involved than just pulling your pet’s favorite frock out of her wardrobe. As a pet owner, there are a few things to consider as you prepare for the main event …
“Think about your pet’s personality. Your regal Doberman will not appreciate being dressed in a pink sweater with maribou trim. He is more likely to appreciate a fashionable camo fleece or a suitable biker hat … Then again, your Bichon Frise might love the pink sweater. Or put some prep in your pet with this yuppie puppy attire …
“If rain is expected in your location, opt for a totally ‘in’ rain coat and possibly even a matching set of boots. After all, being hip doesn’t mean being impractical. And you don’t want your pet to catch a cold as he shows off his fabulous fashion sense.”
Geesh. We’ve made this point before, unpopular as it may be with a large segment of dog people. If a dog requires protection from the elements, fine. If once a year, on Halloween, you want to decorate your dog, safely and comfortably, fine.
But if dressing your dog, merely for decoration’s sake, is a daily, or even weekly diversion, if you’re constantly putting him or her in outfits, if you have more than, say, two dozen of them, perhaps you might want to consider a doll instead.
Even on National Dress Up Your Dog Day, which, come to think of it, might be a good time to change Ace’s bandana.
Posted by jwoestendiek January 14th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ace, animal miracle network, animals, anthropomorphic, bandana, behavior, clothing, colleen paige, costumes, days, decorating, decoration, dog, dogs, dress, dress up, fashion, gimmicks, halloween, human, humanizing, marketing, national days, national dress up your pet day, outfits, owners, pet fashion, pets, proclaimed, proclamation
We won’t speculate that dogs are evolving into humans, but we will point out this happened in a town named Darwin, in Australia’s Northern Territory, where, to the amazement of onlookers, a dog took a double-decker bus for a drive.
Witnesses told the Northern Territory News that the dog was was sitting in the driver’s seat with its paws on the steering wheel when they saw it rolling down the road.
“It ran for a couple of hundred meters, swerved across the road, went up on the footpath and was just about to run into a parked car when I stopped it,” said Phil Newton, a sales associate who ran after the bus, jumped in through a window and pulled on the handbrake.
Behind the heal was Woodley, a two-year-old koolie, a breed similar to the kelpie and heeler.
His owner, Richard McCormack, 62, said he’d parked the motor home on a slight hill, and was only gone a couple of minutes. Apparently, the dog was just copying what he’d seen his human do.
“The handbrake is on the dashboard and he’s seen me release it many times,” said McCormack.
“I came out and saw the bus going down the road. I couldn’t believe it,” said McCormack, adding that he plans to make some modifications to the handbrake to keep Woodley from doing it again.
“He’s still my best mate,” he said.
(Photo: NTNews.com / by Patrina Malone)
Posted by jwoestendiek November 23rd, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, australia, behavior, copying, darwin, dog, dogs, double decker bus, driving, evolution, human, humans, koolie, mimicking, motor home, northern territory, pets, richard mccormack, woodley
The sixth annual Surf Dog Surf-A-Thon in San Diego was supposed to be held Sunday — but human waste got in the way.
The event, scheduled at Dog Beach in Del Mar, was postponed because of a county-wide blackout that led to a sewage spill, dumping 3.2 million gallons of sewage into Los Penasquitos Lagoon.
Not a single dog complained, made a scene, put up nasty signs or wrote their city council representative about it. Reports that one older dog was heard muttering “damn humans” could not be confirmed
The Surf-A-Thon is held annually to raise funds for the Helen Woodward Animal Center in Rancho Santa Fe.
Billed as the largest such event in the U.S., the Surf-A-Thon was to feature such well-known surf dogs as Ricochet (pictured above), Nany, Dozer and Buddy, along with the ever-popular Beach Bum Bikini Babe Canine Costume Contest, according to the Los Angeles Times.
The Surf Dog Surf-A-Thon will now be held on Sunday, Sept. 25, 2011 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
“We are really disappointed to have to postpone the Surf-A-Thon,” said Nedra Abramson, the event organizer. “The safety of both the pets and the people participating in this event is our biggest concern and there is no way the beach will be safe by Sunday.”
Once it is held, the event will feature a ceremony to induct its first inductee into the Surf dog Hall of Fame – Buddy, a 13-year-old Jack Russell Terrier from Ventura.
For more information about the Surf Dog Surf-A-Thon, visit www.surfdog.kintera.org or call 858-756-4117 ext. 312.
Posted by jwoestendiek September 12th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: beach, blackout, buddy, canine, closes, contest, costume, del man, dog beach, dogs, dozer, event, fundraiser, helen woodward animal center, human, poop, postponed, rescheduled, richochet, san diego, sewage, spill, surf dog, surf dog surf-a-thon, surfing, waste
Ace and I will be appearing at the Aperture Cinema in Winston-Salem this week for a group discussion following the showing of the animated movie, “My Dog Tulip,” based on J.R. Ackerley’s memoir of his relationship with his dog.
I’ll also be talking about, selling and signing my new book, “DOG, INC.: The Uncanny Inside Story of Cloning Man’s Best Friend.”
If you’re wondering what the human-dog bond, or a memoir about that, have in common with cloning, the answer is:
For, in addition to the profits foreseen by entrepreneurs, it was that bond – tighter-than-ever as the 21st Century arrived– that sparked the attempt to clone dogs, prompted customers to sign up for it and led to the emergence of a fledgling, and highly questionable, pet cloning industry.
And what, after all, is a dog clone but a living, breathing, laboratory re-creation of the past — a memoir you can pet?
The first dog whose cloning was attempted by U.S. scientists, in fact, was a border collie mix who belonged to — you guessed it — a memoir writer. Missy, as it turned out, wasn’t the first dog cloned. South Korean scientists accomplished that first with an Afghan hound, whose clone would be named Snuppy. But Missy was eventually cloned — more than five times.
Cloning wasn’t available in J.R. Ackerley’s day (the British writer died in 1967), but given the love he expressed for his German shepherd, given his many unsuccesful attempts to breed her to another purebred “Alsatian,” given the void she filled in his life and the one her passing left in it, he might have considered it, if it had been.
“Tulip,” whose real name was Queenie — publishers opted to change it, fearing its gay connotations might be too titillating for stuffy old 1950′s England – spent 14 years with Ackerley, and according to some accounts he never quite got over her death.
“She offered me what I had never found in my life with humans: constant, single-hearted, incorruptible, uncritical devotion, which it is in the nature of dogs to offer,” he says in the book, written while she was still alive.
The movie — though, like the book, it doesn’t shy away from dogs’ bodily functions — is charming and charmingly animated, drawn and directed by Paul and Sandra Fierlinger, and narrated by Christopher Plummer, in the role of Ackerley. It also features the voices of Isabella Rossellini and Lynn Redgrave.
It tells the story of a man who, having all but given up on finding an “ideal friend” in the human world, finds one in a canine — the first dog he’s had in his life.
I’ll be leaving my ideal friend home tonight, but Ace, if he feels up to it, is scheduled to join me at the theater Wednesday night.
The movie starts at 8 p.m., both nights, with the discussion following. The Aperture Cinema is at 311 W. 4th St. in downtown Winston-Salem.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 22nd, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ace, alsatian, animals, aperture, bond, book, book signing, cinema, cloning, dog, dog inc., dogs, friends, german shepherd, human, ideal friend, jr ackerley, loss, love, man's best friend, memoirs, missy, my dog tulip, north carolina, pets, queenie, snuppy, tulip, unconditional, void, winston-salem