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Funny Dog Story: Here's Your Sign, Comebacks From A Malamute Owner

Updated on May 7, 2011

Funny Dog Story: Here's Your Sign - Comebacks From a Malamute Owner

I have always loved the Here's Your Sign stand-up routine that Bill Engvall does. I have equally enjoyed the other parts of Blue Collar Comedy jumping on the bandwagon and adding their ideas for Here's Your Sign .

However, I've discovered that lately, I'm having a rash of Here's Your Sign conversations with folks as I traverse the community and public places in the effort to socialize my malamute puppy, Griffin. I am a conversationalist by nature and hope that my little trip down sarcasm lane comes across in the flavor that it is intended - merely a humorous look at the crazy things people say to me while I'm valiantly trying to train my dogs, keep them under control at all times, and enjoy the day!

I know that these 3 elements are possible because I've had many great days. I actually have had very few bad days - for this I am most grateful! I have had some days though where I literally walk back to the car shaking my head or say to Bob - 'Did he really ask me that ?' ' Did she really SAY that ?' And my answer is always Here's Your Sign . I only wish I could bring myself to saying these out loud at the time!

Do I look anything like the American Eskimo Dog?
Do I look anything like the American Eskimo Dog?
The famous American Eskimo Dog
The famous American Eskimo Dog

Photo Credit: WikiCommons Muu-Karhu

Here's Your Sign

Are you sure he's a malamute?

Ya know - I never thought of that! You're right - I got him from a well known malamute breeder and by gosh - it says right on that there AKC thinga-ma-jig that he IS a malamute...but perhaps you're right!  He does look kinda like a cross between a Shetland pony and a dawg....Here's your sign

Aren't malamutes part wolf?

You betcha - and he just got done chowing down on a couple of little piglets just before you walked up to me.  For dessert, he had a couple of little kids!  Don't feel like you need to stand here and wait for him to attack....and by the way, if I HAD a part wolf or he was an aggressive breed of dog, do you THINK I'd be prancing around with TWO of them in an extremely crowded place with lots of kids and dogs?  Here's your sign

Man - don't you get a LOT of hair off of those dogs?

Of course not!  What you're looking at is basically their 'coat'.  When we get home, much like us humans - I just unzip it and hang it up on the hanger until the next time we go out...what do you THINK?  Do you see hair?  Of course I get lots of hair but are you folks cleaning my house?  Do you really need to point out the obvious?  Okay - so he's got lots of hair - I think that's why he's called a WOOLY!  Here's your sign

Does he bite?

Heck - why don't we find out!  Of course he bites - just last week, he bit off some guy's 2 fingers in a flash.  That's why again I bring him to public places where there are tons of people and LOTS of dogs - just for the heck of it.  I love bloodshed and I love to see him bite people.  Here's your sign

I had a champion malamute once - he killed 2 of the neighbor's cats

Well, gee guy - that is SO special that you are sharing that with me!  What the heck?  Did you not have any better control over your dog than to put him in that kind of situation?  Did you not like notice after he killed the FIRST one?  Or was it 'okay' because he was a show dog?  You know what they say about show dogs!  Seriously - why are you telling me this?  Do I look like I'm interested in hearing this?  And better yet, now I'm a little steamed because you have put this idea into Griffin's head.  I gotta say thanks and....Here's your sign


More Here's Your Sign

I have a wolf/malamute mix and I keep her in the car because I never know WHAT she's going to do

Brilliant! Good for you! Does she drive the car? Is she happy being in the car all the time while you figure out how to give her a life? And what does that have to do with me and my dogs here? Do they look like they don't know what to do? Okay so Griffin is working on socializing but that is all part of the process. I kinda sorta think that by the end of all this training, I'm going to know what I can and cannot expect from him and I think that is the whole purpose of the exercise - but again - hey - thanks for pointing that out. Do I look like a counselor for the Dogs Out Of Control Support Group? 'Beautiful dog' would have been sufficient but...Here's your sign

Do those dogs need a lot of exercise?

Well, actually no - Griffin especially is more of the sedate kind of dog - more of an intellectual. He really is quite the couch potato and usually likes to curl up with a good book on the sofa or play video games - that is when he's not playing all just depends on his mood for the day. Of course they need exercise! What kind of a stupid question is that? Don't most dogs need exercise and lots of it? And especially really, really big dogs? I think I need to carry pamphlets on dog ownership and pass them out as I go....Here's your sign

Why is he howling like that? Is he in pain or something or is he going to attack?

Yes, that howling means that he is in terrific pain - his brain is exploding because he can't believe all these stupid questions! Seriously though, yes - he is about to attack - this is his battle cry when he simply can't take being around humans that ask too many questions and can't seem to think through the answers. He figures you either like him or you don't - so if you don't, keep on walking and don't stand there all indecisive about whether he's okay or not. Now see what you've done? He's definitely gonna blow - there he is howling again and he's singing your song! Here's your sign

What is he crossed with? That can't be a purebred malamute!

Again, see above. You're totally right! What kind of an idiot pays for a purebred dog that isn't? How did you guess? What we have here is a cross between a wolf and a bear - it took some clever impregnation techniques but by gosh - the breeder nailed this one so to speak! What do you think? Do you think he looks ferocious? Why by golly, you couldn't GET a more ferocious animal! Ah bummer - there he goes with the howling again - that means he's gonna blow! Best get on your way and in the meantime....Here's your sign


He's not a malamute - he's an American Eskimo Dog

Okay folks - and this is aimed directly at the lady who I keep running into who says this EVERY time to me.....look at the pictures! Night and day sweetheart - American Eskimo dogs weigh between 10 and 35 pounds depending on toy or not toy. My dog already weighs 80 pounds - do the MATH! Also pointing out the obvious here....does he LOOK white to you? Are you ever going to believe me that he is actually NOT an American Eskimo Dog? I doubt it - so let's get it over with....Here's your sign!

My Two Malamutes - Photo by Audrey Kirchner
My Two Malamutes - Photo by Audrey Kirchner

Summing It Up

For those of you out there who actually know what a malamute is - thank you!!! No signs for you! Thank you for all the wonderful people who actually understand dogs, especially dogs with very big teeth but who are gentle giants. Thank you for the people who come up and talk to me and pet my babies.

I enjoy even the whackiest of comments though - it is just part of human nature to say what comes to mind and I have no doubt that these folks think they are truly being 'helpful' on some level or trying to point out the obvious to me. After all, I am blonde!

Rest assured world, I do know what kind of dogs we have and even though they are a bloody handful some days, they are the greatest dogs in the world. And even if I look like I'm not at all sure of what I'm doing, that obviously longer arm I'm now sporting on the left side by about 5 inches should testify to the fact that I TOTALLY have my dog under control at all times. Those gritted teeth aren't meant for you, either - they are just a reaction that I find hard to control when faced with abject stupidity.

You will notice if you see me out and about with my pups that I give my biggest and brightest smiles to folks who actually know a malamute when they see him or her, and who actually know that the howling is simply 'conversation'. And the folks who actually know how to approach my dogs, fearlessly and cordially, with exuberance and joyfully engage in socialization with them have my undying gratitude. You folks make me look good!

And for those of you who got the signs....well, all I can say is you gotta take the bad with the good and I know you really don't mean to come off so stupid or insulting - but that's why we need the signs!


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    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Thank YOU for the laugh - I know - it's like open mouth, insert STUPID....but I love people and I love all the 'attention' so to speak. I just love the lady who keeps running into me and accusing me of having an American Eskimo dog when he is obviously NOT that dog! I told Bob next time I'm just going to say 'ya know - I checked the AKC papers and you are right! He's an American Eskimo dog' and be done with it. And Griffin really wants piano lessons but I told him not until he gets his glasses fit properly!

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 

      10 years ago from England

      Hi, Audrey, how did I miss this one? That's really funny! I had never heard of the saying before, so I took a look at the video, and now I got it. I usually just call it 'Duh, what a dumb ass!' but it's amazing how many people say the stupidest obvious things. like 'Oh, your back from your holiday then? Uh, no, I am still there, or taking the dog for a walk then? er, no, I am taking him for piano lessons!! it drives me mad!!! ha ha thanks again for the laugh. Nell

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Don't we all though for real? I love people and I do truly love the insane things they say sometimes - it just gives me more 'material'....thanks so much for pedaling by!

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 

      10 years ago

      Funny, funny stuff! Thank you Akirchner! Yeah- I've got my sign!

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Exactly - I didn't even go to 'how much food do they eat' - oh we feed them a TV dinner every now and again and let them chow down on the critters they find here and there...they get ice cream on Sundays! Or 'don't they poop an awful lot' - okay - that is ridiculous. Look at their body, look at what they must eat - if you were expecting rabbit pellets, I think you are seriously brain dead! Thanks so much for stopping in!

    • lorlie6 profile image

      Laurel Rogers 

      10 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      What a great collection, akirchner! Do those dogs need lots of exercise? That reminds me of a Simpson's episode where Homer tells his daughter that 'Yes, this is the kind of dog you have to feed EVERY day.'

      Lordy, lordy!

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      How true, how true! I literally was sitting down and holding Griffin and Denaya when I got swarmed but my left arm was being pulled at a very unusual angle. You could HEAR my shoulder pop and these 2 stupid women just kept on with the questions, all the while in their high squeaking voices. They were coming at Griff and then backing off - totally frustrating him! He thought they were messing with him no doubt. Bob's in the bakery just chatting it up - wish I'd had a stone to throw at the window to get his attention but oh well....he said later 'I could tell you were talking to those people but it LOOKED like you had everything under control....' I am a great smiler even when the chips are down. Ah well - the older guy (probably our age or Bob's at least - ha ha) saved my day though when he just rounded the corner, took one look at us and came bounding towards us with no hesitation. I wanted to just yell 'see - someone who actually KNOWS the breed - ha ha'. Ah well, it's all good - great training for Griffin - I just hope I don't have to have my left arm revamped one of these days. I'm actually having to go to PT again because of my back - my physical therapist just shakes his head at me. When he found out I was riding on canyon roads with the mountain bike, he told me I had to cut it out - and then when I told him I was training Griff, he shook his head some more. I got the lecture - I told him though I'll give up the mountain bike (for now) but I'm not giving up the training.

    • theherbivorehippi profile image


      10 years ago from Holly, MI

      Lmao...I may have kissed the guy anyway. Isn't it funny Griffin just knew that the guy was a "good" guy. Oh...I like the "Do they pull a lot?" question as the person can see my arms stretched out of their sockets and my feet trailing behind. No no...they don't pull...I walk this way naturally. I love your comment above about that Bob can hear your eyes roll. lol. I mean, it just cannot be helped.

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Funny thing was I was thinking of you when I was writing it! People just say the 'darndest' things don't they? Good lord! If I had a dime for the stupid comments, I'd be rich I suppose. I love though how so many of them come towards the dogs, then hesitate, then do something totally stupid like start talking in shrill voices - and then they wonder why they set off the 'howl' meter....on the other hand, I had this older gentleman in the middle of the busy square the other day just come bowling towards us with a purpose. I thought 'oh no - here we go' - he yells out 'wooly' to Griffin and proceeds to just grab him about the neck and start hugging. Funny thing about that - NO howling - just pure delight from Griffin. The guy was so cute. He proceeded to tell everyone who was gathered around what wonderful dogs the breed is in general and 'look - aren't they well trained?' If I wasn't married and to such a wonderful dog person, I'd have grabbed the guy and kissed him square on the lips! I try and remember those kinds of great moments as opposed to the 'stupid factor'....but thanks as always for sharing my malamute times!

    • theherbivorehippi profile image


      10 years ago from Holly, MI

      LMAO...Hellz yes!! OMG...i have been there with all of these!! I especially love the "Do they shed?" question...oh and the wolf thing...ya know I've actually had ignorant mothers threaten to call the police on me at the park that I shouldn't bring a Hybrid to a park with children. People are IDIOTS! lol I LOVE this hub! I had to read it twice!

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Crewman6 - thanks for commenting and I think about it from time to time but then I cuddle up with my big stuffed animal and I can't bear to not have them anymore. One of these days, maybe I'll downsize to a smaller dog but just not sure I can do it! I love all dogs though - it's just these mals have stolen my heart.

      Oh Alek - you are hilarious...please ask me any questions! Seriously, I don't mind questions - it is just some of them are so just STUPID! But at least it is entertainment, eh? Thanks for commenting!

    • alekhouse profile image

      Nancy Hinchliff 

      10 years ago from Essex Junction, Vermont

      Loved your funny. This is one of my favorite kinds of humor...I watch these guys on TV all the time.

      I think Malamutes are gorgeous. Their markings and beautiful eyes always get me. But I just want to ask you one question........Just kidding :=)

    • Crewman6 profile image


      10 years ago

      I enjoy your writing. You make me smile... and laugh... even when I'm more in the mood for growling. I love malamutes, admire you for your courage in partnering with them - but I'll stick with my Chihuahua, Schnauzer, and mutt. At least my arms still match!

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Actually though, malamutes are one of the 'true' or oldest, purest breeds of dog there is - people just have so many misconceptions about dogs in general. Wish they'd just live by the old saying 'if you can't say anything NICE....' shut up! Thanks for commenting, Darlene - glad I could give you a giggle.

    • Darlene Sabella profile image

      Darlene Sabella 

      10 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

      LOL, I needed that today, thanks for your grand humor, levity is the way to deal with it. I feel the same way about stupid questions, grrrrrrrr....great writing, funny, and witty. Love this hub my dear friend. And, next time anyone might say is your dog part wolf, every dog in the world comes from a wolf...with not exception. Even my tiny tiny poodle is from the wolf family, Hello LOL

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Thanks for commenting, Austinstar - and yes, the dogs have all the brains I'm convinced!

    • Austinstar profile image


      10 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

      Love the dogs! It's the people who are idiots! LOL.

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      True enough! I'm sure I haven't heard the last of it yet - thanks so much for commenting swanofwar.

    • SwanofWar profile image


      10 years ago from In My Imagination

      I love 'Here's your sign' jokes! It's true, people say the most ignorant things sometimes. Especially when it comes to animals.

    • akirchner profile imageAUTHOR

      Audrey Kirchner 

      10 years ago from Washington

      Katie - I have seriously thought about making up a few signs and having them at the ready - I also have been toying with the idea of making up scarves with signs on them and tying them decoratively around Griffin's neck! Denaya is pretty sedate, so she doesn't get quite the attention little Griffin does. Thanks so much for commenting.

      Sandyspider - thank you for commenting - just beware of the stupidity of the masses if you do get one!

      Holle - I was thinking of you when I wrote it yesterday and wondering if you get similarly stupid comments - it is truly insulting sometimes and as Bob would say - he can HEAR my eyes rolling! Thanks for commenting as always.

      DeGreek - what can I say? My life provides the opportunities - therefore I write. Thanks so much for commenting.

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 

      10 years ago from UK

      You are such a FUNNY girl :-)

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 

      10 years ago from Georgia

      This is freakin' hilarious! I get similar comments about my Danes. I get so tired of hearing: do they eat a lot? Where's the saddle? Is that a dog or a pony?

    • Sandyspider profile image

      Sandy Mertens 

      10 years ago from Wisconsin, USA

      Malamutes are beautiful dogs. I wouldn't mind owning one.

    • katiem2 profile image

      Katie McMurray 

      10 years ago from Westerville

      Oh I'm so honored to be the first to comment, I'm laughing my bum off, YOU'VE got to be kidding, people really say this stuff or are you working on a comedy fiction piece? Still laughing, I'd be so tempted to have a sign on the ready for such dummies. I feel a bit of your pain, I have a beautiful CHOW who's a baby, a love, a dear and people rave about what beast they are...I fear a linch mob at times...Silly people, Thanks and Peace :)


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