Friday, March 30, 2007

Solved: The Mystery of Pappy Dog

For a long time now I have been getting a lot of Google hits on the term "Pappy Dog", particularly from South American countries. It seemed like a pretty remote possibility that anyone in Chile had developed an attachment to our terrier hero, but what was going on here? I finally took the five seconds required to conduct a web search, and found a Spanish language music video of "Pappy Dog" by the Reggaeton Boys.

Feeling it was pretty important to understand what they were saying about my dog, I settled down to creating a translation of the lyrics to English. My wife applied her college Spanish and I applied Google Translate to the task. In the end, I'm not sure it really explains as much as it should.

tranquilo tranquilo boby
ja ja ja ja
tranquilo chiquitin,enanin
ja ja ja ja
oye oye oye
no lloren no lloren
ya les dije tu sabes quien mas
reggaeton boys

soy tu pappy dog
tu eres mi sexy doll
te doy mi fotolog
manmi agrega mi flog
si queri un hot dog
enchufate con mi plug
tu eres mi sexy doll
y yo soy tu pappy dog.(2x)

soy tu pappy doga
tu perro de siempre
tu sabes tu casanova
pide lo que quieras
tu sabes que vamos a toda
me gusta mas bien
cuando te vistes a la moda
my sexy lova
cometela toda
como que tu quieras
y tambien con salsa soya
suavecito despacito
que ya no andas sola
bailotea y aulla como una loba
mi regalona.

manmi relaxy
cuando tu te mueves shorty
tu te ves bien sexy
bailame ese dembow
que viene de dj dac(xy)
dale hasta bajo hasta que se vea el coxy
entre en catarsis(2x)


eh eh
guayame guayame guaya
tocame tocame toca
gritame gritame grita
eh eh eh eh(2x)

soy tu bullterry
el perro guardian
del castillo del doctor larry
aqui no se permite
el juego de tom and jerry
correte escondete escapate
llego el papurry
eres mi mamurry(2x)


ja ja ja ja
mas chiquito que un chiguagua
oye chiguawini
ja ja ja ja tu saaaabes
oye dj dac los bullterry.
nos fuimos pa

Calm, calm Boby
Ya ya ya ya
Calm little one, dwarf
Ya ya ya ya
Listen listen listen
Don't you cry, don't you cry
Anyone will tell you who are the
Reggaeton Boys

I am your Pappy Dog
You are my sexy doll
I give you my photo album
Manmi adding my flog
If you want a hot dog
Plug into me
You are my sexy doll
And I am your Pappy Dog.(2x)

I am your Pappy Dog
Your dog forever
You know I'm your Casanova
Ask me what you want
You know we vamoose to everything
I like a lot
When you see yourself with ice cream
My sexy love
All of you is eaten
Just like you like it
Also with soy sauce
Soft and slow
You know you don't walk alone
Dance and howl like a wolf
My regal one.

Manmi relax
When you move my shorty
You look very sexy
Dance to undergound music
DJ Dac will be there(xy)
Get low until your coccyx is seen
Inbetween cathartic releases(2x)

Repeat CHORUS twice

eh eh
Grind me, grind me, grind me
Touch me, Touch me, Touch me
Scream me, Scream me, Scream me
eh eh eh eh(2x)

I am a bull terrier
Your guard dog
In the castle of Dr. Larry
Here you are not permitted
The game of Tom and Jerry
Run to the escape hatch
I arrive all papery
You are my mammary(2x)

Repeat CHORUS twice

Ya ya ya ya
Smaller than a Chihuahua
Listen palm plant
Ya ya ya ya you know
David, Pierre, Guyvens
Listen to the bull terriers, DJ Dac.
Ya ya ya ya ya
We're not your Daddy

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Flour Children

20070224Last weekend Pappy and I were walking through Rock Creek Park when we heard a lot of shouting up ahead. We came upon about fifteen people from one of those running clubs calling back and forth. They were wandering in all directions like ants when their path back to the nest has been rubbed out. I guess the club leader had been dropping handfuls of flour to mark the route, and they had lost the way. A man walking a Boxer asked me whether I had seen any flour along my path, but I told him I hadn't. Pappy and I passed them and headed up the path from whence they'd come. When we came across one of their flour markers, I looked down to see Pappy gobbling it up. When he looked up at me, he looked like he'd been eating powdered doughnuts. Oops.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Ground Control to Major Dog

I've recently been poking around the old newsreels on, and a lot of them reflect the amazement and urgency of the early days of spaceflight. I'm too young for Sputnik and Mercury, but the words "Pegasus", "Telstar", and "Gemini" still spark a sense of wonder in me forty years later.

Laika, First Animal in OrbitOne of the early casualties of the frantic space race between the US and USSR was Laika the dog. There had been fruit flies and monkeys in suborbital space, but Laika, a stray off the streets of Moscow, was the first animal to circle the globe. At that time, each space milestone was a critical game of one-upsmanship in the ongoing cold war. Laika's berth aboard Sputnik 2 was designed in less than four weeks at Chairman Krushchev's urging, and with that little preparation none of the scientists had any illusions about her returning from the trip.

Though that sounds callous, one of the lead scientists has expressed his growing regret over the years about Laika's being sent on the mission. But they didn't just stuff a dog in a capsule-- they did a great deal to adapt the dog to the G-forces and confined living space. They provided a poison food packet to euthanize the dog after several days rather than let her suffocate when the air ran out. However they stopped getting life signs by seven hours into the flight, and they believe she died from stress and overheating.

I'm not normally very sentimental, but the whole story strikes a melancholy chord with me. But I hear that there are bands named after her, and novels speculating how she was rescued by aliens... or was discovered by a Norse divinity to become his companion... or circles the Earth watching over us and feeding off of radio waves... and this gives me warm cockles.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Heavy Petting at the Dog Park

Pappy Liplocked with MollyThe normal drill at the dog park is that Pappy will fixate on a tennis ball after about fifteen minutes, and then neighbor dog Molly will fixate on swiping it. Once she succeeds, Pappy will moon around after her. Eventually she lets him try and take the ball from her, resulting in a minute of hot and heavy liplocking.

It's pretty ridiculous when you see it-- Molly loves Pappy, and Pappy loves the ball.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Independence or Despair?

Of late Pappy has developed a new habit. Up until a couple of months ago he would follow us around and flop down wherever we happened to be. When we were watching TV, he'd bring out a string of toys and play fetch in the house.

More recently he comes to check on us a couple of times, and then takes himself off to his bed. We'll be wondering where he's gone, and he's upstairs snoozing away. It makes us feel kind of guilty, that we are that boring. It seems like an ad for antidepressants: "Do you sleep all the time? Do you lie alone in the dark? No longer enjoy your favorite pastimes? Ask your vet about puppy uppers."

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


I've been doing an inordinate amount of number crunching at work the past few weeks. So I've decided to break out the spreadsheet at home and reapply my mad skills to the task of assessing Pappy in pure mathematic terms.

So we've had Pappy for 390 days. He has always eaten about 2 cups of food a day, weighing in at about 6.8 ounces for a total of 166 pounds-- plus another 50 pounds of treats. His food adds up to about 774 calories a day, and in the 556 to 834 miles we have walked together I am sure we have burned about a third of that. When we first got him he weighed about 32 pounds, but he has put on about seven pounds. In total, I have probably picked up about 98 pounds of poo, or a little more than two and a half times Pappy's body weight.

So, when all my tabulating is done, I figure on about 216 pounds of "input", but can only account for about 177 pounds of "output". There's 39 pounds missing. I'm a little worried I'm going to check behind the garden shed or sofa one of these days and discover a secret stockpile of poo.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Pappy Idol

Though the whole story is not yet written, many people wonder how Pappy got his start in music videos and the superstar business. It was a long road, and few recollect this rare early clip of our pooch in competition. In the end he missed his flight to Hollywood, but found his own road to celebrity on the Internet.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Topsy Turvy

Pappy in Snow, 20070317Would someone care to tell me what the flipping heck* is going on? Since last weekend we have glorious weather in the 70s and 80s (20s to you Centigrade buffs), and suddenly it starts freakin'* sleeting yesterday afternoon. If this keeps up all summer I'm going to be peeved*.

* Rated PG-13 for graphic language.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

A Morning Mutt

I'm a morning person, and I'm pleased to say that Pappy follows in my footsteps. After I hop up to turn off the alarm is one of the few times in a day he lobbies for a belly rub. He lies on his back waggling his tail until I give him a good rubdown, during which he can barely restrain himself from gnawing my hand. He then hops up, does a little yoga (the downward dog pose), has a full-body shakeoff, and prances over to my wife's side of the bed-- juiced over the new day.

Meanwhile, my wife is moaning like someone hit her with a weary stick, and the way she blinks her eyes brings to mind The Mole People. She's definitely not a morning person.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

American Ingenuity Lives On

It's a shame Pappy's birthday is past, because he'd really enjoy one of these dizzy squirrel dispensers. Hours of fun for everydog.

Monday, March 12, 2007

The Other March Madness

Patio, 20070311Pappy is in the running for this year's Mutt Madness tournament on a local radio station's web site. He's been placed in the Southeastern region. In the first round is bracketed against Roxy, a German Shepherd with palm trees in her back yard. Pappy's photo doesn't look great, but I'm confident he can take Roxy to reach the round of 32.

Pappy and I would appreciate your votes in the competition. You can vote here, and it doesn't require any registration. The site suggests people vote early and often. Pappy's fondest goal for this year is to reach the Sweet 16.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

The Magic of Hollywood

GreenScreen, 20070311We had decent weather this weekend, and in spring a dog owner's thoughts turn to making films. I broke out the equipment and set to work.

My special effects equipment consists mainly of an inexpensive Canon digital video camera and a painted bulletin board as a "green screen". The Christmas video uses animation made on the computer, but most live action special effects in Pappy movies involve the simple layering of still and moving images where I have made the backgrounds transparent. Making a film sequence have a transparent background is done by filming against a background of some uniform color that isn't in your subject-- most commonly pure blue or green, but it could be any color. Then you use your computer and a video editing program like Adobe Premiere Elements to process this video to remove the background color. The area you want to render transparent is called the "key". Thus, the process of using a specific color to create your transparency key is called Chroma Keying.

Your digital photos can be opened in Adobe Photoshop Elements or a similar photo editing program to select and delete portions of the image, leaving these areas "transparent". Since you can manually draw a mask around the subject in a still photo, you don't have to use a green screen. Saving these to PNG format allows you to retain this transparency information (called the "alpha channel") so that you can use that image in front of your video-- this is called a matte shot.

Finally, you superimpose all these images and videos together against a solid background in your video editing program. It's very much like creating a moving collage. Now, don't all of you go racing out to make your green screen movies. Somebody has to sit back and watch them.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Rough Day at the Dog Park

I took Pappy and neighbor dog Molly to the dog park this morning, and events turned very disturbing. Dog park regular, Jack, snapped up a ball that was being used by a big dog I didn't recognize. The stranger dog had played well with other dogs, but had snarled when they had shown an interest in his ball. In this case he locked onto the scruff of Jack's neck and three full grown men couldn't get him to release. I ran and got my bottle of water to dump on them, but he was completely unphased. It seemed like forever, but I guess after a minute or two we got them separated.

Jack wasn't wounded, and seemed fine in a couple of minutes. His owner was extremely upset, but was very conciliatory with the other dog's owners. She said that she thought it was just a case that the stranger dog had gotten caught on Jack's collar, but this was putting it kindly. She was going to take Jack to the vet just to make sure he was well.

That takes me back to the time that Pappy was injured in the dog park. I still tell myself that it was a play accident rather than an act of aggression. But the truth is I really don't know what happened. Even with my dog being the victim, I was pretty desperate to rationalize the whole situation as something that wasn't going to implicate the safety of the dog park. Because if the dog park isn't safe, what am I doing taking my dog there?

Of course this rationalization is less dangerous than the one that an erratically aggressive dog can be trusted at a dog park, no matter how much someone loves him. I hope I don't see the stranger dog again, because neighbor dog Molly plays keepaway just like Jack was doing. When you think about it, it's a pretty thin fabric of faith and good sense that holds the dog park situation together.

Friday, March 09, 2007

See, I'm sitting nicely... so come out and throw the ball already

See, I'm sitting nicelyAfter our morning walk, Pappy has always raced to the back door to go outside and poke around in the back yard. More recently he has taken to sitting squarely on the patio and staring at me eating breakfast, boring a hole in the back of my head with his eyes. I think he just wants me to come out and play fetch, but it's more than a little disconcerting. I've always seen a bit of serial killer in him.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Captain Cruncher

Last weekend at the dog park, I had the great good fortune to be present for Cruncher's coming out party. Cruncher is the six month old black pug that Crusher's family got following his sad demise. We miss Crusher at the park, but Cruncher is pretty adorable-- though he's still kind of skinny to fit my mental image of a pug. He was instigating with Molly Basset Hound by pulling on her huge ears; I've never really seen that Molly playing before.

I forgot to bring my camera to the park this weekend, so here's a mug shot of my best recollection of the pug perp. I expect we'll be seeing more of him.

Cruncher (Artist's Rendering)

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Feel-Good Story, But Dog Not Feeling So Good

I came across this on PetPeeves, which is an interesting blog covering the beat at a Veterinary ER. It is a great human interest story, where terrier mutts, corn dogs, and induced vomiting combine to give you broader perspective into the canine condition. And what a happy ending-- I got chills when everybody started cheering after the dog barfed.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Let There Be More Light

Sunshine, longer days, Daylight Savings Time... spring is fast approaching in these parts. The first signs last Saturday at the dog park was Pappy flopped down panting in the midst of a session of fetch. That hasn't happened for months. Later in the afternoon people were showing up in short sleeves and thongs (sandals, not bathing suits).

WeatherThen Sunday, bam, it was suddenly back down in the 30s (Fahrenheit, not Centigrade). Then this morning we had a wind chill approaching zero, and tomorrow we are supposed to have a snowstorm.

Hey, I'm all for moving up Daylight Savings Time. I love long days, and I like leaving work and seeing daylight. But this weather is all supposed to be past before DST rolls around. I've had the better part of five decades experience, and this is just plain unnatural. I thought those greenhouse gases were supposed to take care of this.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Cleanliness Is Next to Lunacy

To get over my video director's block, I did a quicky of Pappy's post-bath antics. It may not be of the magnitude of a Pappy spectacle, but it's nice to be done with a movie in a day.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Petfinder Widget

I added a little search widget to the blog as a plug for, the pet adoption search engine, after seeing it on The Blog Pound. That's where I heard about Nablopomo, so I'm always ripping her off for something. I don't think she'd mind.

Anyway, the source URL for the specific widget is at, but for some reason my version was missing the little search box and wasn't working quite right. I looked at the source on The Blog Pound and got the code below if you want to use it on your site. If you look closely, you can tweak which states are included for the featured pet.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Gremlin on the Stairs

Pappy on Stairs, 20070303I suppose it is my own fault. I mean if I didn't keep changing my mind before heading downstairs, Pappy wouldn't constantly be checking to make sure I am following him. Trouble is he gets ahead of me and looks back every fourth step all the way down. Normally he's an avoidable obstacle, but one of these days he's going to send me ass over teakettle when I am carrying the laundry basket. An eternal optimist, he's always persuaded we're headed outside to play fetch.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

The Lurker

    "Pappy is a benevolent despot who rules with a velvet paw" -- My Wife

A couple of times in the last week my wife subtly mentioned I ought to use the above as a theme in a blog posting. When I offered to make her a contributor on the blog so that she could post (in a tone best described as "goading" or "needling"), she demurred. On the way home this evening she again suggested that perhaps I ought to use it as a theme.

Family Portrait
For the first five months of its existence, the blog was basically just an exchange between me and my wife. I'd post something without mentioning it, then she'd go and read it the next day. A good day consisted of about four visitors on the site, almost entirely divided between the two of us. She's a lurker, so you'll notice as recently as September an ACPP (average comments per post) of nada. Then came the fateful October day when I came out of the dog blogging closet, and the comments and visitors went up.

Despite her lurker status, my wife is a bigger booster for the blog than I. She's always the first to mention Pappy's blog and movies to new friends while I'm still trying to feign normalcy. Despite that, concerning her suggested theme, I think Pappy is "Our Lord and Master" rather than a "benevolent despot". And I'm the blog's sole contributor. La, la, la.