the smell of my desperation has become a stench

Even I can’t believe I’m allowed to have a dog

One late evening last October Jon and I finished the last few scoops of a carton of Cookies ‘N Cream ice cream. Chuck was practicing Opus Dei rituals in the basement when he heard us walking toward the freezer in the kitchen and before we knew it he had drooled a path up the stairs. Jon and I sat on the couch in the living room with the carton of ice cream between us as Chuck pressed his wet nose into my knee. Whenever we sit down to have a meal he walks over to my leg and presses his snout firmly into my flesh. It’s his way of saying, “Remember me? I’m cute.”

After we finished off the ice cream that night I made Chuck perform a few tricks and then I held the carton at an angle so he could get at the melted goo at the bottom of the carton. By that point he was so ravenous that the force of his tongue pulled the ice cream carton out of my hands and lodged it firmly on his face. He didn’t make any indication that he was in discomfort so instead of pulling it off his snout we grabbed the cameras. I posted the digital photos of this circus act here, and today I found the video which you can see here. In it you can actually hear the sound of his lapping tongue suctioning the cardboard to his face.

(For those of you who don’t have Quicktime installed on your computer you should be able to see this video if you have the Flash player, the latest version of which you can find here. If you have any other problems viewing the video leave the details in the comments along with the Anti-Ice Cream Carton on the Dog Snout Activists who will yell at me for attempting to suffocate my dog. It should be good times!)

  • DottyDi

    2006/04/06 at 9:23 am

    I knew the “chocolate kills dogs” thing would come out eventually. Lucy (RIP), my doberman, got into a bag of hershey’s kisses and ate almost the entire thing (as well as the tin foil wrappers). She was happier than a pig in shit and did NOT die from the chocolate, rather from old age.

  • Jennifer Schutz

    2006/04/06 at 9:25 am

    My cat does a similar thing with any glass of water left unattended. Sometimes I’m worried that he will get his head stuck in there and drown or something.

    But of course, instead of stopping him, I take pictures of it instead:

  • Mimimom

    2006/04/06 at 9:20 am

    Just the type of dog-parent I’m afraid I will become . ..which is why I wrote my post just today, funny timing!

  • Melissa

    2006/04/06 at 9:10 am

    I love that picture. And I don’t think it’s harmful when they love it so much. I’ve never given my dog ice cream. We try not to give her anything. But she loves to stel shit out of the kids hands. She once also jumped up on the counter and grabbed a tray full of cookies and ate them all.

  • Teri

    2006/04/06 at 9:08 am

    I have done all the suggested items and I still can’t see the video…

    *sniff sniff*

    Any other suggestions out there?

    I really need the visual to go with the giggling.

  • Tib39

    2006/04/06 at 9:10 am

    Never mind the video, your line about the opus dei rituals CRACKED ME UP. I’ve been searching for years for the proper way to describe what my 85 lb lab mix does to herself on a daily basis. Somehow “chasing and catching and punishing her tail” didn’t quite cut it. Thanks for capturing the essence of crazy dog behavior so succinctly.

  • Laura

    2006/04/06 at 9:03 am

    Chuck is adorable. A little ice-cream is good for for the soul, right? As long as it doesn’t contain baking chocolate, apparently.

    I had a cat – Not the sharpest knife in the drawer, I confess, but I loved him – that used to get his head stuck in the little ice-cream container (a pint, maybe?) and would try to back out of the carton after finishing his treat. Sometimes, I would let him back all the way across the room before I’d take it off of his head. I never could understand why he didn’t just use his paw to knock the thing off, like Chuck does in his video. But I had a good time with it.

    I’m sure I shouldn’t own a cat or a dog either, but I do. Both.

    Love the blog.

  • Cowgirl

    2006/04/06 at 9:01 am

    Dooce, I LOVE your site! I think it’s excellent, and I’ve gotten several people at work hooked.
    As for the ice cream on Chuck’s face, I think it’s adorable! I have a terrier and a doberman and two words for you: pop rocks! Also, masking tape on the bottom of their feet makes them walk funny.
    My dogs may or may not wear outfits and have their photos taken from time to time, but they love it. And 2 pounds of stolen easter chocolate later, they’re both fine.
    Thank you so much for blogging. It makes my day!

  • Kassi

    2006/04/06 at 9:04 am

    Very cute…Chuck is such a card.

  • Holly

    2006/04/06 at 9:02 am

    Aw that is the cutest video!

    I once had a cat get his head stuck in a mason jar glass after trying to lick the remains of a milkshake. We had to break the glass to free his head.

  • erinrae

    2006/04/06 at 7:47 am


    Now I feel like an ass. Sure enough, Flash resolved the OSX/Firefox/no video problem… and here I was thinking that since my quicktime was good, it would all work.


  • stinky12345

    2006/04/06 at 7:48 am

    “Chuck was practicing Opus Dei rituals in the basement… ”

    LOL, that is the funniest thing I’ve read in a long time….

  • Littlehoney

    2006/04/06 at 8:12 am

    I think the “chocolate kills dogs” thing is really pure chocolate…milk chocolate is okay, I’ve heard. Probably off the internet, so, don’t listen to me.

    One year for Easter my mom hid little foil covered chocolate eggs ALL OVER the backyard. By the time she came and got me and brought me out there – there were little peices of colored foil on the patio. Lolly had found the eggs and sucked all the chocolate out of them and then spit them onto the concrete.

    As for ice cream, back when we used to go and buy ice cream like at baskin robbins….we’ll get a kids scoop of vanilla in a cup for my dog, Shasta. 🙂 She’d chase that tiny cup all over the kitchen eating that ice cream.

    I think an ice cream on the snout is probably Chuck’s idea of heaven. 🙂

  • AshleyRose

    2006/04/06 at 8:17 am

    Also funny: put a glob of peanut butter on the top of your dog’s nose… it’s fun for you and for him!!

  • the niffer

    2006/04/06 at 8:24 am

    The sound of Chuck’s tongue licking the gooey stuff at the bottom – that’s how I imagine the sound of him licking his empty package in the middle of the night.

    No need to confirm with audio/video. No doubt you’d be flamed for promoting dog porn — and it’s an image we probably couldn’t shake for a long time.

  • Rachel Wilder

    2006/04/06 at 7:39 am

    I also have an ice cream loving dog. This dog, who is barely trained and not good in crowds or around certain men, especially those wearing a beard or a baseball hat will sit patiently at our local ice cream stand, let children pet him and sniff the balls of other dogs without trying to kill them. And as a reward he gets one baby-sized vanilla soft serve.

    Which he eats in one bite. It’s almost as fun as sharing McDonalds cheeseburgers.

  • Mindy

    2006/04/06 at 7:40 am

    I can only get sound…I’m on a PC and downloaded Quicktime 8.0 just to be sure I had the newest version but still only got sound…I wanna see me some Chuck!!! 🙂

  • SurprisingWoman

    2006/04/06 at 8:29 am

    Oh my goodness, I used to have a dog that was so much a part of the family, his birthstone (peridot, aug 21) is in my mother’s ring. My mother thinks I am a freak, but I don’t care.

    We would give him a scoop of ice cream and he would eat the whole thing at once and give himself a brain freeze. If you had yogurt, you had to give a couple of spoonfulls on the lid or he would torment you.

    I was really poor when I was a single mom. There was about a month where all I could afford was ramen soup. I would put different frozen veggies in it to change the taste, make it a bit more nutritional and change things up. After we would finish eating we would put the bowl on the floor for Regny (my baby) and he would roll his tongue into a curl and suck all the noodles and juice from the bowl, leaving just the veggies. I would tell him to eat his veggies and he would look at me and groan. I would tell him again and he would delicately pick the veggies from the bowl, one at a time and chew them with his mouth open like he was eating poo. It was so funny.

    My kids and I really miss him. He and I played hide and seek and other games. He was really sweet. We talk about him all the time.

    I loved those pictures of Chuck showing the progression of the smile. They reminded me of Regny. 🙂


    BTW All chocolate is bad for dogs. The website is a good one to check. The worse chocolate is cooking/baking chocolate. Milk chocolate is really diluted so it is the least dangerous. They put out a list periodically.

  • superfizz

    2006/04/06 at 7:37 am

    I love how dogs are so easily pleased. I’ve actually never given my dog ice cream, I just might have to give her a treat this weekend! Thanks for sharing such a cute movie and picture. Thanks for also sharing your view on life with everyone. You rock.

  • Darlin'

    2006/04/06 at 6:57 am

    As a representative of the National Coalition for Limited Edition Girl Scouts’ Thin Mint Cookie Ice Cream, I am highly offended that you chose to snub this perennial favorite for the grammatically incorrect Cookies ‘N Cream. The NCLEGSTMC will be boycotting your heathen site. And may God have mercy upon your soul.

  • Lizard

    2006/04/06 at 7:08 am

    One of my friends had an ice-cream loving dog, but the dog had a much shorter snout than Chuck. So when the almost-empty carton got put on his nose, he would lick and lick and lick until he couldn’t reach any more, and then he’d start walking forward (blindly, the carton still covering his face), thinking this would let him reach more ice cream. Silly dog! Only — wait for it — he was right, because eventually he’d hit a wall and the carton would collapse around his nose and then ice cream nirvana was his!

  • William

    2006/04/06 at 6:35 am

    Aren’t you afraid of offending Ice Cream Activist’s like myself?

  • iamchanelle

    2006/04/06 at 6:40 am

    ummm…that’s how i always eat ice cream…

    is that unusual?

    and horaaaayyy! people are being nice today!

  • iamchanelle

    2006/04/06 at 6:41 am

    PS – today’s pic of Leta is beautiful. what a cutie.

  • greenthumb

    2006/04/06 at 6:43 am

    I’m afraid I must join ranks with William, as an avid consumer of Ice Cream, I’m offended by the complete recklessness being displayed here. This is soooo disturbing. Where’s my Ben&Jerry’s New York Super Fudge Chunk??? I must go and regain my serenity now.

  • thelma

    2006/04/06 at 6:56 am

    I got the sound, but no picture. I DO have the latest flash thingy.

  • cil

    2006/04/06 at 6:32 am

    I’m being driven to distraction…did you change the name of the ice cream?? Please tell me you did!! OK…please be honest!!

  • mathew

    2006/04/06 at 6:33 am

    i have to admit that i did a ctrl+f on the comments to see how many times chocolate and dogs were mentioned in the same sentence. i was surprised at how few there were, to tell the truth.

    anywho, i have a small dog and thus i am worried about him getting chocolate, garlic, or anything else that will shorten his life, but really you could give the average medium-large dog a piece of chocolate every day and he’d probably never die for it.

    do you still give chuck pizza once in a while? haven’t read about that in ages…

  • Molicious

    2006/04/06 at 5:35 am

    That was awesome. Just too awesome.

    The only other person in my house that likes ice cream is one of my cats. My husband hates it when I sit on the couch with the damn cat and share a bowl with her. I’m sure it’s kinda gross but I can’t help myself.

  • Scott Murdoch

    2006/04/06 at 5:52 am

    Funniest thing EVER!!! You guys are so funny and Chuck is the best!

  • Vikki

    2006/04/06 at 5:57 am

    Cleaning food from the floor and licking containers clean is the important work of dogs. We had to put our dog down a couple years ago and we miss her for many reasons but we do really miss her eating all the food the children drop on the floor. We have to sweep a lot more these days…

  • 6degrees

    2006/04/06 at 6:18 am

    I!WANT!A!CHUCK! the screaming screamer screamed incessantly with the screaming.

  • kalisah

    2006/04/06 at 5:31 am

    you are cruel and heartless people….there is a special place in hell reserved for people like you who torture animals….

    Oh who am I kidding? I’d put an ice cream carton on my own kid’s face if his nose were longer.

  • anivyl

    2006/04/06 at 6:20 am

    hi heather,

    first time commentor here, and i must say, i had ALWAYS loved chuck from the first time i saw his pict (which was some where last year.)

    this post just made him my new hero… (maybe)

  • brandy

    2006/04/06 at 5:43 am

    Im pretty sure that is why dog tongues were invented.
    Whenever were out of peanut butter(we eat natural just nuts kind) we give the container to our dog to “clean” we find great joy in seeing her tongue smoosh at the bottom of the container and the look in her eyes tells us she has died and gone to heaven.

  • LikeALurker

    2006/04/06 at 5:23 am

    OK – for all of you that have followed the directions and STILL can’t see the video – REBOOT your computer.

    At least that’s what it took for me to see it!!

    Love’d It.

  • Cindy

    2006/04/06 at 5:24 am

    So fun! Chuck seems so adorable in pics (Chuck Fridays Rule!) but to see him on video – with an ice cream container no less – is priceless.
    Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  • Toyfoto

    2006/04/06 at 5:25 am

    You better be careful, Branjolina might want to adopt him away from you. (And my dogs can’t believe your dog’s luck).

  • marian

    2006/04/06 at 4:53 am

    Hey Heather, great photos but ditto. Two macs, one panther, one tiger, firefox, safari, latest quicktimes, no video, but did get nice audio!

  • LeafGirl77

    2006/04/06 at 4:58 am

    I think my favorite part of that video is listening to the stifled giggles in the background.

    Poor Chuck. Oh so tortured.

    Doesn’t really look like he was complaining though, now does it?

  • LoRi~fLoWer

    2006/04/06 at 5:12 am

    OK, I admit, I just scrolled through all 178 comments trying to find a rant about how cruel this stunt was. I was kind of disappointed not to find any. Glad for you, but disappointed…cos it’s so much fun to read about people who take things way too seriously.

  • elemem

    2006/04/06 at 4:45 am

    You mean, awful people…. I can’t see the video! I’ve done everything a good little blog reader should do. I only use mac, safari, quicktime and all I get is sound with no video. And to top it all off, I can hear you and Jon laughing. Help me Dooce!

  • Tracey

    2006/04/06 at 4:46 am

    RS – try a tube sock over the cat’s head. It’s not quite as fun as the ice cream carton/dog combo, but it’ll do in a pinch. Not that I’ve ever tried it or anything…

  • Nora

    2006/04/06 at 4:49 am

    I’m also on a Mac, using firefox, and all I get is sound sans images for the video. And with all that slurping and giggling, it sounds mighty interesting.

  • Jennifer in Kansas City

    2006/04/06 at 4:31 am

    Our big dog can’t get her face in the carton, but the little one can! And boy howdy, if it didn’t mean destruction & the knocking over of things, we’d do it every night. She loves it – after all, it’s like a feedbag on her face, but WITH ICE CREAM. We also do the noodle thing, put peanut butter on the roofs of their mouths and – you have got to try this – give ’em black licorice. All animals are ape for anise. (that would be a good learning sentence for the letter “A”.) And when they have black licorice for the first time? They lick the air around them in a desire to find some more. But… that would mean Jon would have to share the black licorice…..

  • RS

    2006/04/06 at 4:32 am

    It’s not fair! All my cat does when she eats human food, like tomato sauce, …is vomit. Dogs rule!

  • Gretchie

    2006/04/06 at 3:51 am

    Cruel? My dog would die a happy death with a carton of ice cream on his head. Next time you think you’re mean, consider this: Has your husband ever woken your dog with smelling salts, you know, for fun? Has your husband ever donned a full gorilla costume for the sole purpose of chasing Chuck around? Has he ever snuck up on the dog with an air duster can and sprayed his tail. Lord knows Spike can’t practice his Opus Dei rituals in peace.

    Chuck lives the life.

  • CartwheelsAtMidnight

    2006/04/06 at 4:05 am

    Dog? What dog? I don’t see a dog…

  • Pocket Cathy

    2006/04/06 at 4:15 am

    I love the ice cream carton, but you’ve never really “tortured” a dog until you put orange soda in his water bowl. Priceless facial expressions. You should give it a try sometime!

  • thrusher

    2006/04/06 at 3:51 am

    My favorite part is you two giggling about it 🙂

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Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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