The OFFICIALunOFFICIAL English Bulldog Mascot

Everybody Knows Your Name

In Animal Health, Animals and Pets, bulldogs, Children's Literacy, K-12 Education, Popular Culture, Popular Music, Television, Tv Show Theme Songs on March 3, 2010 at 7:56 PM

Meet Cleatus. He’s this dude I met at the dog park. A couple days ago Cleatus’ Person/Wife sent Her this photo.

The day this photo was taken was the first time we had ever seen Cleatus and his People/Couple at the dog park. Everyone. Was. STUNNED.

You see Cleatus has his name tattooed across the whole of his chest from one shoulder to the other. The name is flanked by giant spades, like this: ♠CLEATUS♠. See?  You can see them in the picture.

Cleatus is fun. He likes to jump and play hard just like I do. His People/Couple are nice, too. All the dog park Regulars had neither seen nor heard of a dog, a cat, or any household pet for that matter, being tattooed.

Now She’s seen livestock with ranch brands and sheep with letters or numbers spray painted on them at 4-H  and Cattleman’s Club events and horses with hot brands on their necks.  But Cleatus’ appearance that day was.  A.  Shocker (can’t you just hear Kathy Griffin here–   ♫♪♫♪SHOCK–errrr♫♪♫♪).

Now here’s where I have to tell you one interesting thing about Her.  Although She never does it in a way that hurts People’s feelings, She never edits or censors herself.

“Is That a real tattoo or a stencil?”  She asked. *She knew it was a real tattoo.*

“Oh, it’s a tattoo!” Husband replied almost boastfully. Person/Wife, however, lowered her eyes. “It was his idea,” she quietly continued.

“I have never seen an animal tatted up like that.”  She said sounding all loud like Jackée Harry in 227. “Was it painful for him?”

“Oh, no,” Husband said. “That’s why we don’t come here that much anymore because everybody’s so judgmental.”

“Well you branded your dog with a huge tattoo and now you’re surprised it’s generating even a little bit of attention? People are gonna ask questions. And now you’re gonna get all Michael Jackson/Leave Me Alone up in here?”

The couple laughed.  They talked a little more about the tattoo. He said there was little discomfort for Cleatus, healing time was very short and the tattoo certainly is a conversation starter as if just being a bulldog isn’t conversation starter enough as it is. And that was the end of the conversation about the tattoo. They’re all still friendly.  They’re even Facebook friends.  That’s how we got this picture of Cleatus and me at the dog park this past summer.

I wanted to find out if other people out there have tattooed their dogs so I posted this Question of the Day on Twitter this morning:

#bulldognation You say what..? #bulldog Controversial QOTD: Tattooing your dog… Cool Or Cruel? http://twitpic.com/16dzof

Sentiments ran hot on this issue and ranged from characterizing the practice as “animal cruelty” to emotional expressions like this one:

“tattooed dogs for humans?? I am very very disappointed and saddened. In fact the more I think of it actually outraged and  angry… Perhaps owner should have appropriate tattoo on the forehead” to more balanced responses like this one:

“I’m all about doing it to myself, not sure if I’d do it to my baby though…I find the tattoo process more annoying pain than ouch pain; healing’s itchy; & bullies are so tough I’d never know if it hurt!” and one bit of  uncertain vacillation perhaps..?

“…cool if your #bulldog wants to make a statement.  No it’s cruel.” This one made me smile, actually. Yes, bulldogs do smile.  A lot!

But now here’s the kicker, though.  Did you know tattooing your dog is not an unusual or uncommon practice at all?

“A very unconventional method that can be used to help reunite dogs and owners is tattooing. Yes, this procedure may sound a little cruel but it is a great way to mark your dog in the event you should get separated from them. In case you are wondering, tattooing a dog is done just like it is done for a human.

The tattooing itself doesn’t really hurt the dog as much as it does a human because they have more layers of skin, but it is still uncomfortable to them. The dog is more likely to be more afraid of the sound of the tattoo gun rather than the actually tattooing.

The best place to get your dog tattooed is on the inside of their leg or on their stomach. A lot of dog owner’ do get their dogs ears and lips tattooed. But sadly, these can be removed if the dog’s ears are clipped and their lips are clipped.

It is also a good idea to keep this area shaved so that if the dog gets separated from you, whomever finds it will be able to see the tattoo clearly. It is a common practice for owners to have their social security number tattooed on the dog but if you are uncomfortable with that you can pick out a series of numbers. Also if you get your dog tattooed you need to be sure to register your pet with The National Dog Registry or Tatoo-A-Pet at 800-TATTOOS.”

Two organizations I respect Endorse the NDR System: Dogs For The Deaf and the Doris Day Animal League. With that said however, ThatOne | EBD neither endorses, recommends, condones or even validates this practice. There are so many other ways to protect your pet.  Micro-chipping is one of them.

Conversely, I make no judgement regarding the personal decisions of  responsible pet owners who make this considered choice thoughtfully and intelligently based on information they believe best serves the needs of their family, their pet and their circumstance.  The caveat to that, though, is this:  Tatting up your pet should not be a vanity project or worse, engineered attention seeking masquerading as “the best interest” of the dog.

That’s my thinking on That.  Umma bulldog after all.  And there you have it.  You really do learn something new every day.

Goodwill Energies I direct
Toward each and every one of you
Each and every day

❝And there came to be evening and there came to be morning❞

Making your way in the world today takes everything you’ve got.
Taking a break from all your worries, sure would help a lot.
Wouldn’t you like to get away?

Sometimes you want to go
Where everybody knows your name,
and they’re always glad you came.
You wanna be where you can see,
our troubles are all the same
You wanna be where everybody knows
Your name.

You wanna go where people know,
people are all the same,
You wanna go where everybody knows
your name.

That’s life today.

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  1. As a person, I have no issues with tattoos. As a dog owner, I can see the need to identify & at one time tattooing was probably the main way of doing this, but I’m guessing it was never across the chest! As a dog owner I am appauled that anyone would think decorating a dog’s body for sake of “identification” is a good idea. Where did they find a tattoo artist to agree to this?

    Tattoos scab over, are itchy & are uncomfortable. In order for this “identification” to be relevant you’d have to continue to shave this poor dog’s CHEST otherwise you won’t be able to see it…and clearly that was the point of this tattoo right…to be able to identify Cleatus w/the spades compared to Cleatus w/the diamonds?

    Seriously. It’s called a microchip. It’s a very easy & effective way to identify your dog w/little…errr, NO shock value.

  2. I like your style, recognizing that individuals are different and sometimes things that appear wrong have a story behind them!

    Was thinking when I saw the dog with a tatted ear, pigs get tattoos…when I gave the pooches pig ears, I used to see the numbers. It had to be ‘splained to me a couple times as I refused to understand what was really happening. I’m not like the pooches, I prefer not to eat the meats.

    Anyway, great post, and like I said, I like your style bully!

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