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The many, the not-so-proud: the Kickdogs of Polanco

My husband long ago added the term “kickdog” to our daily vocabulary to refer to any dog who might be more efficiently moved across a room by kicking it rather than waiting for its 400 mincing steps to get it there on its own. (For the record, I have never seen John kick a dog. A pigeon? Yes. But a dog? No.)
In our fancy-pants neighborhood of Polanco, there is an interesting mix of kickdogs and dogs that could probably bite off your arm in 3 seconds flat. For every overdressed chihuahua, there is its antithesis. Someone like the guard dog a few doors down from us that we have named “Cujo“, whose vicious barking often leads us to believe he may well penetrate the house wall + the iron fence in one fell swoop.
I believe that in neighborhoods like this, heavily armed with watchdog weaponery, the kickdogs have a better sense of their own weakness…their daintiness…their inability to escape the wearing of doggie booties. To that end, I was struck by this image of Mexico’s favorite kickdog, the chihuahua, being embarrassed by its owner outside Eno restaurant in Polanco.
"You don't even understand *my* needs"

"You don't even consider *my* needs"

Why is this dog hanging his head in shame?
  1. He is small enough to be set atop a carry-on suitcase…with room to spare.
  2. He doesn’t even have a collar/tags, because he is too much of a wuss to remotely be considered a flight risk.
  3. Although he sees the sidewalk with its easy path to freedom, the thought of jumping from a 2-foot-high perch has him frozen in terror.
  4. He has a secret longing to be carried inside his owner’s oversized purse, where he spent most of his formative years.
Perhaps somewhere in the middle of the kickdog<–>guard dog spectrum are the Fountain Dwellers.
Shortly after this photo was taken, we saw a young boy drinking from this fountain. They take the old "hair of the dog" sentiment to heart at a young age around here.

Shortly after this photo was taken, we saw a young boy drinking from this fountain. They take the old "hair of the dog" sentiment to heart at a young age around here.

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  1. American Mommy in Mexico says:

    Very funny. Love reading your blog – always entertaining!

  2. Dave from Hingham says:

    If there’s such an animal as a “kickdog,”

    . . . can a “Kickkat” be far behind? Whereas kickdog refers, apparently, to some but not all dogs (i.e. to dogs “who might be more efficiently moved across a room by kicking [see Julieblog of 3/28/2009]), a kickkat refers to all cats (aka “kats/katz”), period. Which breed among them can be transported across great distances (even distances greatly exceeding those of a standard room [aka “sala”]) more efficiently than by that method employed to move common-garden-variety kickdogs? Of course, it goes without saying, even though it is now being said, that the term “kickkat” does not extend to lions, tigers, pumas, panthers, bobcats and other species that some misguided zoologists might argue should otherwise be included. The term also does not include “cougars,” given the ambiguities that arise in connection with present-day usage.

    NB: Kickkats should not be confused with KitKats (TM the Nestle Company). While both are edible (the former, at least, in some cultures), there is seldom, if ever, a rationale for kicking a KitKat across the room.

    Scientific Note: There continues to be much disagreement within the scientific community regarding whether kickdogs can be kicked farther and higher than kickkats, all other circumstances (subject body weight, kicker body mass, relative humidity, Dow Jones Index, etc.) being equal. To date, field test results have been inconclusive as measured by the Ehrenzandt Dog:Kat Arc:Distance Continuum Ratio.

  3. Marcie says:

    Have you seen “Beverly Hills Chihuahua”? I don’t really know whether to recommend it to you or not. It was on at my nail salon, and I was pretty mesmerized, but am still unsure if that was because of the can’t-look-away-from-a-train-wreck effect or if I was actually, shamefully entertained by digitally animated mouths on video footage of real dogs and Disney’s ability to pull off offensive racial stereotypes so… adorably. One of life’s great mysteries.

  4. Julie says:

    Dave– I love it!! You need to leave more comments on here. :) Additionally, you raise some excellent points re. kickkats, which arguably due to their lower ranking on the Value to Society Scale, should be the higher priority of any kicking that were to occur.

    Marcie– Though I have not yet viewed BHC, ironically my parents just gave it to us as a gift during their visit the other week at the suggestion of my brother. I will be sure to advise regarding my newfound “Mexican resident” persepctive on Disney’s racism.

  5. Amanda says:

    Hola! I just discovered your blog and love it! I was cracking up outloud at a cafe in Polanco … so un-fresa-like! Very insightful, funny, informative and entertaining!
    Hope you dont mind if I link to yours from mine … http://culturvista.wordpress.com

    Your fellow Gringa-Expat-in-Mexico City,


  6. Lori says:


  7. KickKat says:

    As the original KickKat regarding all things internet related, I find “Dave from Hingham”‘s inquiry amusing. I am here to tell you, yes, kickdogs can, and should, be kicked farther than KickKats, which should not be kicked at all.

    Oh, Google, you have a search result for almost everything.

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