Monday, March 22, 2010

Conspiracy unmasked

I've always been dubious about the Humane Society of the United States. Here's some interesting evidence that I've been right to be suspicious of them - but for reasons that are somewhat different than I had imagined. Consider the following excerpts of descriptions of the nominees for the HSUS Dog of Valor award - italics added:

Benson: Barked and alerted his owners to a fire across the street...

Calamity Jane: Scared away intruders by ferociously barking ...

Max: Barked incessantly, leading his owner to investigate...

Porkchop: Bayed and barked until he got a neighbor’s attention...

RaeLee: Barked and ran down the hall...

Prozac: Barked and alerted family...

The remaining nominees are described - obviously by a web copywriter desperate to avoid repeating the same word in every description - as having "run through the house and howled," "Cried and ran through the house," and finally "awakened owner."

And if you think you can guess how that last dog awakened its owner, you are right: here's the start of the full story of the grand prize winner:

It was 4 a.m. when Kenai, a 14-year-old Bernese mountain dog mix, started to whine and bark.

So: Am I the only one who thinks we've finally unmasked HSUS as a front group for incessantly barking dogs? I've got someone who lives across the street who's obviously a member, and I'll bet you do too. Let's make it clear to all these peace-disturbing canines: the nominees for this award may indeed have saved lives, but that does NOT give all the rest of you a free pass!

Poster from unpleasant-sounding play, by Flickr user Phil Gyford.


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  2. Here's the royalty of the Incessantly Barking Dog. A neighbor of my parents had one until the neighborhood demanded it go elsewhere:

    Only breed of dog more likely to be treated like a human child molester than a Pit Bull.


    Here's one with a low voice. The neighbor's dog would escalate his barks into higher and higher pitches for hours at a time. Squirrels and birds were his trigger, though he'd continue barking long after they had departed.

  4. Listen up, dogs: This is the point. Those dogs were barking at LIFE THREATENING EMERGENCIES. A squirrel, bird, or rubber ball is NOT a life threatening emergency!

  5. And listen up, humans: When they say "do your breed research," they mean,PAY ATTENTION to sentences from that link about the Finnish Spitz like this one:

    They are "bark pointers," meaning they indicate where the game is by barking to attract the hunter's attention.

    And this:

    In Scandinavia, barking competitions are held for the King of the Barkers. Finnish Spitz have been recorded as barking 160 times per minute in competitions.


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