Some People Impulsively Buy Shoes; I Wrecklessly Purchase Life Jackets for My Bulldog

“Did you call?” my husband asked.

“Yes, but it’s too late now.”

I could hear the alarm in his response, even though it was only one syllable – “Oh?”

“Well, yes.  We’re already home.  I was calling to see if you thought we should get Wonderbutt a life jacket because we were at Petsmart.”

“Well, how much are they?”

“Oh, you don’t understand.  I already bought him the life jacket.  You didn’t answer so I just made an executive decision.”

“Umm.  Okay.”

“But it doesn’t fit.  It was a medium.  So, we’re going back.  We’re going to take him with us this time so he can try it on.”

“Uh huh.”

I could tell that my husband was extremely thankful that I was taking care of all of this without his involvement.  Because:  A)  The thought of buying a life jacket for our bulldog seems about as logical as buying a kayak for a T-Rex, and Dos) trying to get Wonderbutt to try on different sized life jackets in the middle of a store registers about a 9.5 on his Ways-That-I-Refuse-To-Humiliate-Myself Scale.

So, well aware that my husband thought that we might as well build our dog a float out of crisp dollar bills for all of the good a life jacket would do, I toted Wonderbutt and my daughter to Petsmart for our bright orange fashion show.

Predictably, we immediately gained an admiring audience of Petsmart customers as I struggled to fit Wonderbutt into the next size up.  It had to be explained to everyone that he likes to swim, but tires pretty quickly – usually when he has just made it to the deepest part of the pond.

Wonderbutt is short.  But what he lacks in height, he definitely makes up for in rotundity.  So, even the Large jacket was no match for his girth.  We had to purchase the X-Large for him – the one with a very fit looking labrador on its packaging.  I found this slightly embarrassing, but Wonderbutt did not seem disturbed by this in the least.  Perhaps this was because he had absolutely no intention of keeping the thing on for more than 5 seconds.

“This isn’t going to work, is it?” my daughter asked, as we stood in line to check out, and Wonderbutt managed to wrestle the life jacket off his back and on to the ground.

“Sure it will,” I replied confidently.  Okay, maybe not exactly confidently.

Back in the car, I watched as Wonderbutt got in the back and proceeded to attack the life jacket with the zest he usually reserves for eating carpets or sofa cushions.

I looked at my daughter, whose eyebrows were raised.

I closed the door and got in the front seat.  Already, the buyer’s remorse was beginning to sink in.  I pondered my possibly expensive mistake, then turned around to speak to my daughter.

“Uh, just make sure he doesn’t eat the receipt, okay?” I said.

And so Wonderbutt’s next adventure began…


He looks like a 4-legged suitcase.

Posted on March 17, 2013, in Cap'n Firepants, Dimples, Dogs, Family, Humor, Wonderbutt and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 35 Comments.

  1. I have a bully that I wrap up backwards in a Hannah Montana life jacket. He loves it

    • We bought a sweater for Wonderbutt one really cold winter, and he had it off and a hole chewed in it in about 15 minutes. But maybe if it had had Hannah Montana on it, he might have reconsidered.

  2. A seriously cute yet at the same time hugely expensive 4 legged suitcase…

  3. Now I know where to hang out in Petsmart the next time my kids drag me in there to look at fish.

  4. ha! if you read my last comment you might think we are stalking you! we were at petsmart today and i saw those life jackets. i thought “who in the world?” but, i did not think of WB because that makes perfect sense. although, he looks kinda like he hates it. but i think the photo is worth all the money you spent and more!

  5. Lance was next to me when I got to the picture and thought it was hysterical! It never occurred to him that a dog may need a life jacket. 🙂

    • To be honest, I’d never thought of it before. Then one of my friends suggested it, and I doubtfully cruised the aisles in Petsmart looking for one. Even Dimples was shocked that they had them.

  6. he is seriously cute in that life jacket! : D

  7. He definitely does not look happy…or maybe if I look closely and turn the screen upside down I can get a glimpse of a grin…oh yes, WB has a grin on his face I think he is fantasizing of being a very fit labrador… Can’t wait for the adventures to begin 🙂 read you soon, take care, Alexandra

  8. Don’t ever return it!
    Seriously, you should have him wear it all the time. Or at least until you can have the handle surgically implanted in his back.

  9. You should go throw him in a river to see if it works. I mean that in a nice way.

  10. A model is born! I am waiting for my folk’s terrier to stop growing before we try the public fitting. I will make a note to get him tired before we go. 8)

  11. Can never be too prepared. Sure, let’s go with that.

    • My choices were: to buy him the life jacket, not let him swim, or stand there while he drowned (because the pond water is kind of icky.) So, the life jacket seemed the least of the three evils.

  12. He DOES look like a suitcase. Only I would NOT want to be the person carrying it! Such a big, handsome boy. And did I say big…? I love him.

    • I actually tried to pick him up, but the velcro ripped under his stomach, and the straps probably would have been the next to go. Hopefully he’s easier to lift in the water!

  13. southerndreamer

    I’ve contemplated getting one of those backpack things for my collie mix, but Zeke, much like WB, would likely decide it was there for his chewing entertainment. I hate buyers remorse, so I’ve put it off.
    😀 I took my four-legged crew to the local pet place for baths- the DIY kind. Another couple had a large terrier mix they were bathing for there for the first time. At the end of his bath they wanted to blow dry him. He would have none of that. 3x he got back in the tub rather than go anywhere near the blow dryer. Couple opted for drip-dry. 😀

  14. Why is there a handle on it?

  15. Can he fly with it?

  16. That’s a great photo of WB! If you can get him to keep it on for long enough to toss him into a pool or other large body of water, I’m sure he’ll come around to seeing the light and appreciating this life-saving vest for what it is. 😉

  17. You know what they say about hope…it floats.

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