Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Renaming Dogs

(Originally posted on Tuesday, August 10, 2004 by Tim)

I have decided that we need to rename dogs. I think that Modi, TY, and Sam are not descriptive enough names. They need something more along the lines of American Indian names. They need names that tell us something about them.

Actually, I know nothing about American Indian names beyond what I have seen in popular culture. Did American Indians generally have names like, ?He who always steps in bear poop in the woods? or ?He who is a couple arrows short of a quiver?? Being an academic and a liberal, I feel a little bad just assuming that this is how traditional American Indian names work without doing a little research. This whole stereotype could have started with one smart ass Indian joking around with the pilgrims at the first Thanksgiving.

Indian: (well, they?re not going to be able to pronounce my name anyway) ?Hi, I am ?Guy who always brings the store bought potato salad? and this is my friend ?Eats only protein and fat.?

If I had a better internet connection (DSL at the end of the week we hope), I?d research this stereotype, but for now I?ll just have to console myself by saying, ?Hey, I?m mostly vegetarian so there must be enough good karma in that to balance out.?

Regardless of where the naming convention comes from, dogs need more descriptive names. With these names, anyone who meets them will instantly receive insight into their personalities.

Chicken Dog: Sam earned this name when he began refusing to go outside after dark without a chaperone. This behavior actually began when we were still in the Seattle area. When he first did it, I was worried that there might be coyotes behind the house somewhere (I had seen one once). When it began to happen night after night, I realized that we had something else going on. Keep in mind that this dog, who refuses to go out before bed, gets us up at 7am by pacing and wining because he needs to go out.

Money Pit: Modi has been earning this one for quite some time, but it stuck with his second trip to the vet this month. It seems that we had a small thorn bush/branch on the fence line where Modi likes to run up and down barking at the dogs next door. It would slow him down to run around it, so he came in with a reasonably torn up nose yesterday. Add to this his ACL surgery and his eating the carpet, the moulding, the kitchen cabinets, and thus my damage deposit in my Bay Area apartment and he is by far the most expensive dog of the three.

When I feel like it: There were lots of nominations for TY. He used to be ?Mr. Fat Pad? due his being a bit overweight, but all of our dogs have slimmed way down with the big yard. We?ve actually had to substantially increase rations. Another possibility was ?He who barks at the neighbors in their house hoping that they will come out and throw the ball.? Can you spell bark collar? There was a stint in Seattle when ?Mr. Poopy Paws? was appropriate, but I won?t go into that one. In the end, ?When I feel like it? has always fit TY reasonably well. Currently, the main manifestation is trying to get TY to come in from the yard. If you yell for him and you can see him, he does come in, but very slowly. It?s not like he doesn?t know how to run, you should see him dash for the house when he knows breakfast is waiting. You can?t even get a fast walk out of him if there isn?t food in the house.

And there you are. Much more descriptive. I bet you feel as if you know the dogs much better now. By they way, did you want one of them? I can make you a really good deal.

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