Dogtuse: A New Word
By Jim Gibbons
Obtuse (ob-toos) adj. 1. Not sharp or quick of wit.
2. Lacking astuteness; slow to apprehend or perceive.
See synonyms – blunt, dull, stupid.
I hereby submit a new—and long overdue—word into the English lexicon: Dogtuse.
A dogtuse person is obtuse when it comes to dogs. Most owners of untrained dogs tend to be dogtuse.
A dogtuse person may be quite able in many areas, but if this person, as a dog owner, lets his/her untrained dog run loose, bother other animals and people, and thinks that’s okay, then this person is categorically dogtuse.
Examples of dogtuse behavior are many and include walking your unleashed and untrained dog in public, to pretend not to notice your dog defecate in your neighbor’s yard.
Probably the worst dog behavior, if you don’t count biting, barking, snapping, and slobbering, is jumping up on someone.
What might a dogtuse person say when his/her dog jumps up on someone?
“He likes you,” a dogtuse person might say, and then reward the dog by giving it attention with a fake scolding, and heavy petting.
Once a huge St. Bernard mix came up and slobbered all over my hands, so I said to the smiling female in her clean white blouse, while holding up my hands, “Do you mind if I wipe my hands off on your shirt?”
Her smile evaporated.
Another time I was jogging around the Brooktrails Par Course when I spotted a huge dog turd that wasn’t there 10 minutes earlier, so as I came into the parking lot and saw a couple walking their rather large dog from the turd direction. I almost couldn’t stop myself from asking them if they’d sign my petition to change the name of the Par Course to Dog Shit Park. (This was before free doggie bags were installed.)
By the way, most people don’t walk their dogs, they shit their dogs. Nobody wants dog shit in their yard, so they “walk” them…for the exercise…yeah, whatever, as long as the dog shits somewhere else!
So how did people get so doggone dogtuse?
The real perpetrators are those who give puppies away because they don’t take the time to neuter or castrate their dogs, expecting thanks for the gift, as if it was from the heart…but really, giving someone a dog who didn’t ask for one is not doing them a favor--it’s blatant dogtuse behavior!
Eric, my long-time running partner, accuses me of hating dogs, to which I disagree and tell him over and over, “No! I don’t hate dogs. I hate dog OWNERS!”
But of course, whomever I say that to I make sure to also tell them--if they have a dog--that they are indeed the exception. Most agree, if you don’t train your dog, it will train you. And here’s where I will avoid an I.Q. comparison between untrained dogs and their owners.
Speaking of Eric, he’s on his third “wild” dog. Seriously, Eric only gets seemingly untrainable dogs. His first was a hybrid wolf. I wish I was making this up! When we ran, he would tell me not to run ahead, or on the alpha wolf’s left side, but stay on the right, behind him. It was like not only did the wolf control Eric, but me too! He said after it bit him the second time, he had to have him put down. He was only two years old. So sad.
I remember thinking how nice it was not to run with a wild animal anymore! Just a couple running buddies meeting on a Sunday morning for an easy, longish run.
Then Eric got Bruno. Bruno was a Rottweiler-Lab mix. He weighed 85 pounds and was more Rottweiler than Lab. I don’t know what eventually happened to Bruno, but I know the time Eric spent running without a dog constantly tugging on the leash was good for the healing of his increasingly sore right shoulder.
He currently has an American Dingo. When we run, the 75-pound dog pulls him along, robotically moving his head back and forth, constantly looking for game. On the occasion he sees anything moving, he lunges forward, almost pulling Eric’s shoulder out of its socket.
I’ve asked him more than once, “Why? Why did you get another wild dog?” I don’t recall his answer making any sense, yet I’m not sure I consider him just dogtuse. I mean, he’s gone beyond dogtuse. In fact, I’m working on a new word to describe his behavior, which seems the total opposite of the Dog Whisperer, who is in total control of the dog. Eric is like the Dog Yeller. And Eric’s yelling and yanking on the leash only makes Dingo pull harder! Eric has twice the weight, but only half the muscle. And neither will submit to an I.Q. Test.
Eric also hates the fact that I never remember the dog’s name (I seem to have forgotten it again) or gender (Oops, I better go back and change male to female). The first time he told me she was a female I found it hard to believe?
“With all that muscle? Are you sure? What the f...you got her on steroids? Jesus, if she’s female she’s definitely, ah… does she like fetching softballs?”
Eric ends every conversation with, “You asshole!”
Yes, I do have friends with dogs and they know how I feel. There’s Louis and his dog Bob. Bob is a Jack Russell Terrier with mucho energy! But Louis is NOT dogtuse. When I come over unannounced, Bob does get excited and barks like crazy, but Louis quickly lets him outside to chase the squirrels until he calms down. Then Louis lets him back in the house, where he watches the squirrels from the living room window.
Funny thing is, during my visits with Louis and his lovely wife Sally, I seem to spend most of the time watching Bob watch the squirrels, always wondering when, once again, his growing agitation will erupt into loud, sharp barking.
Then there’s Ed and his three female Chihuahuas—and I don’t mean his wife and daughters! (ha ha) Ring the doorbell and its yap yap yap for five minutes, with all three dogs running around, bumping into each other, bouncing on and off the couch, as if it were a trampoline. Totally excited, like when you’ve had too much coffee and just won the lottery!
When I asked him how he got stuck with three of the highest strung animals outside of maybe hummingbirds, he told me one belongs to the wife, and one was dropped off by a daughter, and, well, I couldn’t hear what he was saying, with all that yapping, I only recall trying to read his lips as he talked, while the dogs bounced in and out of my view.
I finally figured it out. Ed would rather not be visited. Yet, if I have to stop by, I ring the doorbell and run back out to hide behind my truck. This way Ed comes outside and recognizes my truck, but to the dogs, nobody’s there, so they soon settle down. How come I didn’t think of that before?
I sincerely hope my new word helps to expand the English language and further the understanding between Man and Dog.
Sincerely, Shamus Fitzgibbons aka James Gibbons, Amateur Dogtuse Identifier (ADI) and Part-time Lexicographer.
P.S. Other new obtuse words for consideration include: godtuse, tatootuse, sexabusetuse, sharkfinsouptuse, and for those contemplating suicide—whatstheusetuse.
Oh, and one more, which I realize does not apply to very many people, but if you are a slutty, stuttering ballerina, then chances are you may be tututooloolooloosetuse.