I recently rewatched the Disney classic, 101 Dalmatians, with my family. It was the first time I've watched it through the eyes of a new puppy owner. The experience was not only entertaining but eye-opening as well. Keep in mind, this is meant to provide a humorous analysis of the movie, and none of this should be taken literally.
If you're unfamiliar with the film, here's a very brief recap: Roger and Anita (both Dalmatian owners) live in London in the '60s. It's love at first sight between the pair, and they're soon married. Their dogs, Pongo and Perdita, also in love, end up having a litter of 15 puppies (which is already a lot of puppies). The Dalmatians' unusual coats quickly catch the attention of the "eccentric" and wealthy Cruella De Vil (this is when I first became skeptical of the movie). I'm as into fashion as the next person, but never in my life have I thought "this animal has unusual fur, I'll go ahead and slaughter the lot of them for a coat." Also, why specifically puppies? I know puppies have softer fur, but wouldn't adult dogs be easier to maintain and provide more fur? They just had to give her an extra layer of evil.
Through various shenanigans, the pups are captured by two of Cruella's lackeys and housed with 84 other puppy prisoners in an abandoned mansion owned by Cruella (you know, that old story). This implies that the lackeys had already been responsible for the maintenance of 84 active, hyper puppies even before obtaining the remaining 15. Doesn't 84 puppies seem like enough? How does one even find that many puppies, and of such a specific breed? I can't even recall the last time I've seen a single Dalmatian in the wild.
Spoiler alert! With the help of various dogs around the country, Pongo and Perdita rescue their original pups, as well as the additional 84 others and guide them safely back to Roger and Anita's flat. It took me a good hour to realize that Pongo and Perdita counted as the final 2 for "101 dalmatians" and this is where the logistics really began to puzzle me.
Understandably, the couple is elated to have their 17 dogs back, but they then immediately decide to adopt the additional 84 puppies. I can't tell you how long of a discussion it was with my spouse to even adopt one puppy, but 84 on a whim, in the midst of their elation? While virtuous and compassionate, a smart choice, it is not. The record for most dogs is held by Kublai Khan, who is said to have owned around 5,000 Mastiffs in the 13th century. Roger and Anita apparently took this statistic as a challenge. Fortunately, Roger has recently written his hit song "Cruella De Vil" because puppies are not cheap.
I recently got a labrador puppy, and whew, are they a lot of work. I'm going to begin by breaking down some of the initial costs of owning puppies.
YOU ARE READING
101 Dalmatians: A Comedic AnalysisHumor
In this humorous article, I break down the costs and logistics of actually owning 101 Dalmatians, based on the animated Disney film. As a recent puppy owner, I can't help but relate to their plight on some level.