The naming of a dog round here is a dangerous business. Because, firstly, the Oundle community takes a very active interest in new local dogs. Secondly, our puppy (hereafter known as 'Dogface') isn't even a proper dog yet. How are we to know what will suit? Over the last few days I've heard endless dog names. Plenty are catastrophic. Turns out many monstrous beasts are called things like 'Snuggles', because the proud puppy-owners spoke too soon.
A trivial issue, you'd think.
One day, pre-puppy, MD popped round to see Dogface's original family and take him to visit his future home and meet our cat Spikey. On MD's return, Mrs Dog-Owner asked MD what she was thinking of calling young Dogface. MD, poor fool, flippantly told Mrs Dog-Owner some of our thoughts. The puppy is an Irish Terrier, so most of our ideas were names like 'Paddy', 'Seamus' and … 'Beckett'. But of course. Mrs Dog-Owner nodded vaguely:
'It's very important to have a name early, you know - vital for training.'
'Oh yes, well we'll think of something soon,' laughed dogless MD, 'but at the moment he's just little Dogface.'
Mrs Dog-Owner (instantly insane): 'How can you insult him like that? I knew you weren't dog people! He doesn't deserve it - it's just appalling. I've a good mind not to let you have our little baby now.'
MD (sheltering from spit and clods of dog-poo that Mrs Dog-Owner secretes in her jeans to throw at the inept dogless): 'Ah, OK. Sorry, er. Bye. Bye Dogface.'
MD Flees, as motherdog of Dogface chomps her ankles vengefully.
Happily, Mr Dog-Owner later tranquillised Mrs Dog-Owner, and we took young Dogface while she slept.
|Poor Nameless Dogface|
As we trotted through the Market Place yesterday, Dogface and I, he was the most admired chap in the village. Top Dog. Little old couples stopped us to enquire after his health. We were nearly home when we were stopped by a Smiling Elderly Lady.
SEL: Oh what a beautiful little chap. Ahh. What's he called then?
SEL: Sorry dear?
SEL (loudly): What?? (Angrily, to Dogface - who is, recall, a dog) What are they doing to you? How could they call you that? You're a beautiful dog.
SEL (to me again, voice raised): What a horrible thing to say. He's a nice dog - how could you do that to him? What a disgusting thing to call him. (Lunging forward grabbing me hard by the wrist) Don't you dare call him that. (To Dogface again) If I were you I'd run away.
KitC: OK, sorry. Have a nice day. Bye then.
We managed to outrun her, but it was a close thing. So that's the end of Baldrick. Poor Nameless Dogface. How long until schizophrenia sets in?