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Belgian Airhead

Bob the Dog - A rare breed of Belgian Airhead occasionally featured on the NBC & CBS talk shows LATE NIGHT / LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN during the 1980s & 1990s.

The personal pet of comedian David Letterman, Bob the Dog (who was never seen) had a video-camera strapped to his body so that when he moved about, the TV viewers could see a "dog's eye" view of the world.

Bob ran up and down stairs, jumped on and off objects and otherwise created a whirlwind of canine acrobatics for the late night TV audience.

On David Letterman's final appearance on THE TONIGHT SHOW with Johnny Carson on May 15, 1992, Dave told the below story about his beloved pet, Bob.


Carson: ...When you came on here in the early years, you used to talk about -- I hate to bring this up, because the same thing might have happened to your dog that happened to Condoli's cat -- your dog Bob.
Letterman: No. My dog is 40 now.
Carson: You talked about that dog a lot, Bob.
Letterman: Yeah. Bob passed away.
Carson: I didn't know that. I'm sorry.
Letterman: Well, it's a long time ago. That's what happens with pets. They bring you a lot of joy and a lot of happiness while they're around.
Carson: Yes, they do.
Letterman:: But, yeah, I used to talk a lot about Bob, because I loved the animal the way pet owners love their animals. He was a -- I remember I told you on the show he was a rare breed. He was a Belgian airhead.
Carson:  Belgian airhead. I do remember that. But lovable.
Letterman: And I was thinking about that the other day, and there was one summer about five or six years ago in Connecticut, and it was hotter than hell, just unbelievably hot, and when it gets hot back east and in the Midwest there's also that oppressive humidity.

So I get up early, and I don't know what to do, so I think I better clean out the refrigerator, get rid of the perishables, you know, and I come across a two-pound load of ground beef, and you could tell that -- you know, if I was a doctor I'd want to run tests on it. It had gone.

So I just, okay, let's get rid of that. And I go out and I run some errands, and I come home, and there's Bob kind of sitting around the house, and I see the wrapper for the two pounds of ground beef there on the kitchen floor, and I think, oh, my God.

The damn dog has ingested two pounds of rotten beef. And so right away I called the vet, and I tell him what has happened, and the vet says, "Well, you know, dogs have cast iron constitutions," and, oh, I'm breathing a sigh of relief now.

But then he says what vets will always say to you, he says, "Yeah, but, you know, if it was my dog, I'd want to get that beef out of him." And I said, "Great, I'll bring him right over," you know, and he says, "Well, sorry. We're closed. But you can do something. You can get it out yourself."

And I think, oh, what is this, surgery in the garage? He says, "Give him some hydrogen peroxide and it will bring it all up." He said, "Give him two tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide and everything will be fine."

So me and Bob go out into the yard, and I got the hydrogen peroxide and I got the tablespoons right here, I got Bob in a headlock, and I'm ready to pour the hydrogen peroxide, and for the next 90 minutes it's collegiate wrestling. Oh, it's almost a pin, there's an escape, there's a take-down.

The dog won't drink the hydrogen peroxide, so I go back inside and I pour out the contents of a bottle of Windex with the big pump sprayer on it, I pour the hydrogen peroxide in the bottle, and I get a good one on him, and I squirt about a quart of that stuff down Bob.

So now I'm like a tourist at Old Faithful, you know, I'm thinking, do I have time to go to the car to get the camera? I don't know. It's gonna blow any second here. I don't want to miss this.

And finally, it works, unbelievably, and there it is, there's the ground beef, and it looks just almost like it did earlier in the day, except now it's got quite a head on it now.
Carson: That's a great story. We'll be right back. Stay where you are.

TRIVIA NOTE: On Letterman's inaugural "Stupid Pet Tricks" segment in 1982, a dog named Mugsy sneezed and answered a phone. Former Letterman writer Merrill Markoe created the Stupid Pet Tricks back in 1980 for Letterman's short-lived NBC morning show. Dial 1-888-PET-TRIK or (212) 975-5950 if you have a stupid animal act or write "Stupid Pet/Human Tricks" Late Show with David Letterman, 1697 Broadway, New York, NY 10019.


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