Jun
25
2008

The pet of the future—today! Cyborg dog.

Night vision eyeballs: one of the many new features of Pets 2.0
Night vision eyeballs: one of the many new features of Pets 2.0Courtesy *robert
You know, I’ve said it before, but it’s about time we get rid of some of our old pets to make way for the new generation.

Think about it: your old pets—they stink, nobody’s impressed by them anymore, they’re always coming home drunk or not at all, they’ve got bad attitudes and ridiculous sense of entitlement. Why keep them around? Especially when there’s a whole new brand of pet on the horizon: cyberpooches*.

When a cooler new cell phone comes out, you don’t think much of discarding your old one for it, do you? And your pets can’t play streaming video, or mp3s, or send emails. Your pets can’t even make calls, can they?

Not…not really. Not as such. So dump the suckers and upgrade. Invest in a little rollermutt, like Hope McRollydog here.

Hope is a Maltese puppy. The Maltese is a toy/poodle breed, puffy, white, and weighing about as much as my phone, stapler, and mug put together. So they’ve already got some problems. This particular Maltese has the additional challenge of being born with no front legs.

Well, that’s not totally fair—I guess she had two wiggly little nubs, but not full legs by most standards.

Anyway, little Rollerderby Von Madmax has gotten pretty good at squirming around, and even at hopping around on her hind legs, but apparently that’s no good for dog backs—the backs of dogs—so someone had the clever idea of creating little wheely arms for her. Now Robo del Driver has a custom-cast body harness with two independent legs ending in model airplane wheels.

At first the pooch had a little trouble with the contraption, and kept falling over sideways (unfortunately, no video exists of this that I’m aware of), but now she’s zooming around at a “surprisingly break-neck pace.”

So that’s a happy story. Maybe not for you old pets, V1.0, but whatev.

Oh, a little genetic side note—sometimes when you boil down a gene pool to get certain traits to consistently express themselves, like you might when breeding, say, tiny show dogs, you end up running a risk of cultivating other, less cute traits. Like if you keep breeding little doggies with the puffiest, fluffiest white hair together, you’d probably get some puppies with the puffiest, fluffiest white hair. But if some of those very puffy, fluffy haired dogs happen to have a recessive gene for something like bad hips (which won’t affect the beautiful hair, and so is never bred out) eventually those recessive genes are going to meet, and you’re going to get a puffy, fluffy puppy with bad hips. Look at monarchies around the world—blood lines get twisted enough, and kings have royal relatives all over the place, but the also have hemophilia and sailboat ears.

This isn’t to say that little Dunebuggy Fuzzybutt’s condition came from irresponsible breeding. Even if it did, I’d say breed that little sucker again. The more Universal Soldier dogs, the better.

*I’m in the process of trademarking “cyberpooch,” “cyberpooches,” and “cyberpoochz,” so hands off, greedyguts.

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Thanks to Gene, by the way, for pointing out Rollydog to me. Yesterday was a brighter day for it.

posted on Thu, 06/26/2008 - 3:12pm
darrie's picture
darrie says:

I think you spent too much time on you PC or playing with electronic gadgets. I'll never see my pet as a machine and I would never trade it with a "new generation" pet. I rather invest in my dog health instead of getting a new one.

posted on Fri, 09/18/2009 - 9:08am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Yes, I'm afraid there really is a gap in understanding between us.

Once my cat starts contributing more to the household, we can talk about preventative medicine. But until then, I have no qualms about reading the robo-pet catalog out loud in front of her.

posted on Fri, 09/18/2009 - 9:31am
Eugene general contractors's picture

I just cannot understand how can those people be so cruel and play with some poor dogs life? Why are you making experiments on them, saying that they are cyborgs and other fictional beings? All I'm asking you is to think before you actually act and take a decision.

posted on Fri, 09/25/2009 - 7:23pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I hear what you're saying... But there are no dog experiments actually happening in this story. The dog in question was born with only two legs, so they built a little harness with wheels, so it could move itself around without getting hurt. That's good, right?

I did reference some cyborg dog stuff, but it's okay—that was all in my imagination. Like you say, fictional.

posted on Sun, 10/04/2009 - 5:56pm
Jessica P's picture
Jessica P says:

I don't feel that anyone has been cruel here. This article was written with the intent of getting a laugh. It may be dark humor, but it's humor nonetheless. I think dog training itself shows the love that an owner has for their pet, even if it involves teaching them to scoot around on little skateboard.

posted on Sat, 04/09/2011 - 2:29pm
Josie's picture
Josie says:

I must agree with Jessica, I don't feel that this article was written with the intent of being cruel. I found it humorous and quirky. I for one would love a cyborg dog. Even better, a cyborg eclectus parrot. I am a lover of dogs and birds and genuinely enjoy reading your blogs JGordon. Cryptozoology was one of my favorites.

posted on Fri, 04/22/2011 - 1:04pm
Sherwin123's picture
Sherwin123 says:

I was apprehensive when I first read the article but found it to be hilarious towards the end. My dog has a tumour on her leg, and it was amputed shortly after. This gave me the idea to turn her into a cyborg too.

posted on Sun, 09/11/2011 - 7:30pm

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