Kirby: Dogs do the darndest things

Published May 3, 2009 6:00 pm
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2009, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Did you hear about the flying dog? Last week in Michigan, a Chihuahua suddenly lifted off and disappeared into thin air.

Actually, it was more like solid air. Dorothy and Lavern Utley were setting up a stand at a flea market when a 70-mph wind gust sucked their 8-month-old Chihuahua Tinker Bell into the wild blue yonder.

Tinker Bell was eventually found shaken but unhurt in a wooded area more than a mile from the point of her departure. When interviewed by the local media, Tinker Bell confined her remarks to, "Yap-Yap-Yap-Yap-Yap-Yap-Yap-Yap! Yap-Yap! Yap!"

It has not been confirmed that Tinker Bell flew the entire mile, or that she is even actually a dog. Chihuahuas are, many argue, really just a theory of a dog. Various sciences have classified them as reptiles and even Happy Meal toys.

What the Utleys are adamant about is that a "pet psychic" guided them to where Tinker Bell was found. I have no comment here beyond, "What?"

It took science to find our next dog in the news. As it turns out, flying is nothing. This next dog time-traveled.

While conducting a CT scan on an Egyptian mummy, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archeology and Anthropology discovered a mummy dog preserved for the afterlife along with its owner.

The lovingly preserved "Jack Russell terrier-type" has been dubbed "Hapi-Puppy" by researchers, in reference to the term "Hapi-Men" found on its owner's tomb.

The phrase "Hapi-Men" translates (very roughly) as, "dog lover." Hapi-Men apparently really loved "Hapi-Puppy," because it cost a pretty penny even back then to have your dog mummified for the trip into the hereafter.

Since it's doubtful that dog and master died at the same time, Hapi-Puppy was almost certainly euthanized in order to be gift-wrapped. I bet he wasn't very "hapi" about that.

We'll never know. More than 2,300 years hereafter, dog and owner are still dead.

NOTE: I made up the "Hapi-Men" translation. The actual translation is, "Stay off the damn furniture!"

Finally, South Korean scientists recently announced the perfect solution for a lost dog -- and it's not a psychic. Rather, they claim to have genetically engineered dogs that glow red.

Four beagles, all named "Ruppy," were engineered by the scientists who, despite their expensive educations, weren't smart enough to think up individual names for them.

In regular daylight, the Ruppys look like normal beagles. Under ultraviolet light, however, they glow red. Parts of them are noticeably red even to the naked eye.

The science still needs perfecting. It won't be long, though, until we have a dog that is impossible to lose no matter how far it flies.

And if it doesn't survive the landing, you can ask a psychic whether to invest in afterlife preparation.

Robert Kirby can be reached at rkirby@sltrib.com" Target="_BLANK">rkirby@sltrib.com.

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