What Erik forgot to mention (and maybe this is because he blocked it out) is a hypothetical situation that I dreamed up while we were at Carne Vale – staring at food we didn’t want and watching entertainment that wasn’t really entertaining. It’s a bit of a conundrum but, kind of a fun one – and possibly useful as well.
What if you had a dog and that dog lost half of one of its limbs? Then, after taking him to the vet, the vet informs you that amputing the limb isn’t an option and the dog must be fitted with a prosthetic. He then takes you to a back room where there is a modern day smith, able to construct any type of prosthetic limb you’d like. What would you choose to put on your dog’s foot?
Here are some of my favorite answers:
1. The reverse shovel – this would basically look like a narrow bulldozer scoop, only on a much smaller scale, and with the scoop facing backwards. This way the dog could continue to dig as normal, if not much easier. Also you could potentially train the dog to scoop it’s own poop.
2. The Hook – This old standard would be good as your dog would be able to grab onto stuff and hoist itself with a pretty good grip, however it could end in catastrophe as it tries to stratch itself or jumps up on your guests upon being excited at their arrival.
3. The Wooden Peg – Fairly boring and useless…that is until Halloween rolls around each year. Excellent for making tasty mojitos.
4. The Pincer – An interesting alternative and sort of hook-like upgrade. Not only could the dog hook things, but it would have moveable pincers with which it could grasp stuff. However, this would probably prove a pain as you’d have to clean it out after each walk. Handily though, you could blame your drunken ass-pinchings on the dog.
5. Springs – This option is rather extreme as it would cause you to have to half-amputate the other three of the dog’s legs – however, the dog would then be fixed onto springs and be able to bound around with little to no effort. I think this one would provide the pooch with the happiest lifestyle.
6. The Human/Gorilla Hand – This would be a fully working gorilla or human hand (perhaps not so much a transplanted real one as a fully operable robotic one). This way, the dog could participate in all kinds of great activities – frisbee, swash-buckling, and sign language just to name a few.
7. The Retractable Grappling Hook – Last but not least – what about an attachment that had a grappling hook to which was attached 50 feet of industrial strength repelling cable? Your dog could fire his grappling hook and then retract it, allowing him to lift himself to upper balconies, extract himself (or others) from wells, and even retrieve stuff that’s far away from where he is.
The most interesting thing about all this is what the dog would learn to do that we haven’t even thought of. They’re always scheming about ways to get into food and trash, and some of these would go a long way towards achieving that goal. What would you choose?
I’d have a chairwheel attached to the dog’s leg. Not only would the dog effectively be able to skateboard around, but until it learned how to walk, it would be hi-larious watching the dog slip and fall.