All I Want for Christmas is Two Talking Dog Stories




A guy is driving around the back woods of Montana and he sees a sign in front of a broken down shanty-style house: “Talking Dog For Sale” reads the sign. Curiosity is too great. The guy gets out of his car and walks over to knock on weather-worn front door. The owner comes to the door to hear of his interest and, without saying much, he motions for the guy to walk around the house to see the dog for himself in the backyard.

The guy opens a rickety old wooden gate and goes into the backyard from the left side of the house, where he is greeted by a very nice looking Labrador Retriever. The dog is just sitting there, apparently staring into the Montana big sky with one of those dogs-only panting smiles on his face, lulling away another quiet afternoon in God’s Country .

“You talk?” the visitor asks as he calmly and quietly approaches the handsome chocolate-haired Lab.

“Yep,” the Lab replies, and my name’s ‘Cocoa’. Please don’t laugh at the moniker. Creativity is in short supply in this valley.

“Who the heck are you?” Cocoa asks.

After he recovers from the brief shock of hearing a dog talk, he answers: “I’m just a guy named Joe who was passing through here. I only stopped when I saw the sign out front that said your owner had a talking dog for sale. How in the world did you ever learn to speak?”

The Lab looks up and says, ‘Well, putting aside the whole question of whether any hick rancher from Montana has a right to sell a talking dog, or any dog, for that matter, I
 discovered that I could talk when I was pretty young. I wanted to help the government, so I told the CIA. In no time at all, they had me jetting from country to country, sitting in rooms with spies and world leaders, because no one figured a dog would be eavesdropping.

“I was one of their most valuable spies for
 eight years running … but the jetting around really tired me out. I knew I wasn’t getting any younger so I decided to settle down. I signed up for a job at the airport to do some undercover security, wandering near suspicious characters and listening in. I uncovered some incredible dealings and was awarded a batch of medals.

“I got married, had a mess of puppies, and now I’m just retired.”

 Joe is amazed. He goes in the house through back screen door and asks the owner what he wants for the dog.

 ‘Ten dollars,” the dog owner says.

‘Ten dollars? Are you kidding? This dog is amazing! Why on earth are you selling him so cheap?”

“Because he’s nothing but a liberally educated BS talker, who, other than four collegiate years at UC Berkley, Cocoa, otherwise, has never been out of the backyard.”


Editorial Note: Thanks again to Father Gerald Beirne for the basic storyline. The Pecan Park Eagle takes complete responsibility for certain storyline embellishments.



Egbert Souse (pronounced Sue-SAY and portrayed by the inimitable W.C. Fields) is a man of the 1930s who likes his drinks. He simply isn’t always flushed with the moolah he needs to pay for them.  As things go, however, the man is blessed with certain compensatory skills that often make up for the absence of honestly earned cash. In a way, “Buyer’s Regret” is little more than the story of a poor carnival ventriloquist who learned to rely hard upon his natural talents in balancing his own accounts in a way that did not vary one inch from the low shelf position of his personal integrity as an infrequently sober member of the community. 

On one of those common summer nights in which Souse is attacked by an alcohol thirst that is inversely proportionate to his available pocket cash, the broke, but always optimistic man starts out on the two block walk from his cold water flat to his favorite saloon, “The Pink Pussycat.” On his way, he finds a small and docile dog on the street. He picks it up and takes it with him into the bar. 

“Oh, Ted,” Souse shouts to the bartender as he sidles up to the drinking rail and deposits the little dog on the bar. “Did I spend a twenty-dollar bill in here last night?” 

“You sure did, Mr. Souse!” Ted answers. 

“Thank God,” Souse exclaims. “I was afraid I’d lost it!” 

“What’s you got there, Mr. Souse?” 

“Oh,” Souse utters casually, “are you talking about Fido?” 

“Yes, exactly, Mr. Souse, Ted exclaims. “What’s the idea of bringing a dog into the saloon?” 

“Oh, Fido,” Souse asks, “would you care for a drink too when I order?” 

“No thanks,” Fido seems to answer in a voice much deeper than Souse’s. “I’m good for now.” 

“Holy Moley!” Ted exclaims. “Did that dog just talk?” 

“Of course, he did,” Souse says. “You heard him speak, didn’t you? Now pour me a shot of Jack D and I’ll have him talk some more for you.” 

Excited to hear Fido speak again, Ted the bartender pours the drink for Mr. Souse – and even leaves the bottle out in Souse’s comfortable reach. 

For about ten minutes, Fido and Ted get into a big discussion about how the Giants blew a game, 5-4, to the Pirates earlier that day at the Polo Grounds.Souse hardly seems to speak at all during this time, but his hands and mouth are still quite busy regardless.

“How much do you want for this dog?” Ted suddenly explodes. “I’ll give you twenty-five bucks for him right now!” 

“Couldn’t sell him,” Souse says. “It would be like selling family to me – and I could never do that.” 

“How about fifty bucks?” the bartender counters. 

“Well, OK, since you want him that badly,” Souse says, “I will let you have Fido for fifty bucks – even though it breaks my heart to part with him.” 

Ted quickly retrieves a fifty from his register and places it in Souse’s eager hand. Souse picks up the bottle of JD with the money and turns to leave with a goodbye tip of the cap to Fido. 

“Just for selling me,” Fido seems to say to Souse, “I’ll never speak another word for as long as I live. 


Editor’s Note: The Pecan Park Eagle apologizes for certain liberties we’ve taken with the WC Fields character Edgar Souse. We do know that Edgar Souse was the henpecked drinking husband from “The Bank Dick” and not the man we’ve described in this story. The purpose here was not history, but for our chance to take a quick look at the humor of Fields from another film segment that we were unable to place by its actual movie appearance from memory. Fields was magnificent.




One Response to “All I Want for Christmas is Two Talking Dog Stories”

  1. Sumner Hunnewell Says:

    I get a lot of mileage out of the first story. The second I heard on an excerpt on a Bergen & McCarthy show. W.C. Fields was a genius.

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