LITTLE KNOWN CANINE AILMENTS
Having triumphed over tapeworm and fought fleas to a standstill, it is time for owners to turn their attention to those oft-observed but rarely documented afflictions plaguing pet pooches.
The dog does not merely wag its tail in a conventional happy manner, it rotates it at high speed causing bruising to human legs, knocking over small children and sending flying any nearby object not bolted down. In severe cases, the rotating tail apparently propels the dog forward. In an undocumented quirk of physics, rotating the tail in the other direction does not cause put the dog into reverse gear. Symptoms are more obvious in long-tailed breeds, the tail of a docked dog may move so fast it becomes a blur.
Do not attempt to stop tail with your hand! At best you will sustain bruising and a sever licking; with a Pit Bull you may lose your hand (with a Tosa you will lose whole arm up to shoulder height). Apply damage limitation strategies to surrounding objects. Move all breakables out of dog-tail height. Wear Kevlar-reinforced trousers.
Everyone knows the vacant expression a mutt can adopt. In fact with Red Setters, this look has been genetically fixed by careful selective breeding techniques. The eyes are blank and unfocussed, the head may be slightly tilted to one side suggesting an inner ear infection, the tongue is likely to be hanging out of the mouth. The dog may remain this way for several minutes, hours or even days.
The dog has gone into "idle" mode while its brain is processing recently received information. Application of food or a thrown stick may alleviate symptoms. Alternatively, a thrown stick will cause your dog to adopt an only marginally different facial expression called "You want me to fetch that?" i.e. "Canine Disbelief Syndrome"
Liquid leaks from the dog's mouth to form a puddle on the floor or furnishings. Pungent leakage from the dog's rear end is an entirely unrelated condition. Leaking attacks often occur before feeding time or when the dog smells something it wishes to eat, roll in or mate with.
In general this is a persistent problem which generations of selective breeding have failed to alleviate. An absorbent pad should be placed directly below the dog's mouth, or affixed to the dog's lower jaw. This should be regularly removed and replaced with a dry pad (or wrung out).
The dog's tongue hangs out of its mouth as though it has forgotten to put it away. The process of "leaking" usually ensures the tongue does not dry out due to exposure to the elements. Having realised that dogs have a tendency to forget their tongues, evolution has ensured that dogs are capable of sleeping, sitting and even running about with their tongue in the forgotten position.
Attempting to manually replace the tongue in the dog's mouth may result in unfortunate injuries to the owner. In addition, the tongue will probably just fall out again. Wiring the tongue into position is generally frowned upon by humane societies. Feeding will provide temporary respite from the condition, but will cause an attack of leaking.
The dog's nose seeks out and attaches itself to the groin area of newly met humans.
This is the canine version of a handshake. While teaching the dog to shake paws may temporarily distract it, all instincts are telling it to stick its nose in your friends' groin area. The most effective treatment is therefore to render the groin inaccessible or uninviting by a combination of spiked chain mail (incidentally the origin of chain mail is "chien maille" meaning "dog-deflecting armour") and eye-wateringly strong scents (this may also ensure you are never invited to meet people, regardless of whether they own a dog).