The thing about watching Christmas TV in a turkeyed-out haze is that you can easily miss things. For instance, if it weren’t for Mrs Bison’s careful attention to meaningless ads I would have completely missed the commercial for the Rescue Pets Train & Play Puppy. Let’s gloss over for the moment the fact that, in the interest of cuteness, this monstrosity has the kind of massively oversized eyes that make you wonder if it shouldn’t have been humanely destroyed, or at least renamed “Rescue Pets Genetic Freak Aberration Puppy”. No, the “fun” thing about this particular toy is that you can feed it a plastic biscuit (included) and it will then walk off and deposit said biscuit as “poop”, to the apparent delight of the kids in the commercial.
I believe that this toy is supposed to introduce kids to the reality of owning a pet, prior to them heading off to the pound with mum and dad, and picking up the real thing. However I believe I have spotted the minor flaw in this plan. You see, when the Rescue Pets Puppy drops its guts, you just pick up the plastic biscuit; you can stick it right back in the little bastard’s mouth, or, if you are so inclined, in your own mouth, with no ill effects whatsoever. (Unless you happen to be one of Darwin’s “special” children, and swallow the plastic biscuit.)
In the real world of dogs they don’t deposit a small plastic toy right where you expect it. They leave you a massive pile of foul-smelling, sometimes worm-infested ordure, and often where you least expect it. Yeah, let’s replay the commercial and see how the three little girls react when the dog leaves a steaming pile of logs on the table. Who’s going to be laughing and rushing to pick it up then? Ready for your trip to pick out a REAL rescue puppy girls? Just grab a hold of that festering heap of warm, recycled kanga chunks and feel it ooze through your fingers as you scurry to the toilet / trash can / back door.
Herein lies the beauty of electronic toy pets. For a start they have an OFF switch, so you won’t be awakened in the night by scratching and whining. They can be thrown away when they break, with no vet bills, and your running costs are limited to a couple of sets of AA batteries, before the kids get bored with watching the biscuit fall out of its synthetic fur arse. They need no feeding, worming, inoculating, exercising, grooming or attention, and as such are completely useless as a means of preparing for the reality of caring for a dog.
What’s more, I’ve been to the rescue dog place, and let me assure you that it’s not full of puppies. It is, however, extremely well-stocked with pit-bulls. And excrement. And more pit-bulls. There’s an assortment of sad older dogs which part of you wants to bring home so they can be loved again, but you can’t help wondering if the reason they’re there in the first place is that they snapped one day and ripped a little boy’s arm off. I mean, if you were shopping for an adopted grandpa you probably wouldn’t start at the local Salvation Army hostel, would you. Sure, there’s some good guys down there, but the odds are high that you’d end up with a meth-addled serial masturbator with klepto tendencies.
Plus, adopting an old dog is like buying an old car – the nice smell is gone, and you’re on the hook for the expensive maintenance as it breaks down all the time. And there’s always shit coming out the back end.
Maybe, for added realism, there should be a Rescue Pets Savage Pit Bull Puppy. Abused since birth, forced to mate with it’s own mother and repeatedly fight in order avoid having its skull crushed by a black NFL player, it is now ready to come home with you and join your family. Only, WATCH OUT, as it randomly attacks a child and bites their finger in a “plastic biscuit poop” synthetic version of real canine violence. That should get the kiddies ready for the joy of being savaged by a seventy pound Chinese Shar Pei rescue dog like that kid in Wolverhampton.
Or just take a big shit on the floor, then have the kids pick it up and take it for a two-mile walk in a bag. Every day for three months. Then they’ll be ready for a dog…
Copyright © 2010 Edward Bison