[[quoteright:270:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/TheDog_1714.gif]]
''Footrot Flats'' is a comic strip from New Zealand, by Murray Ball, about the life and times of a farmer's dog, known simply as The Dog, his owner and his friends, and the various animals that live in and around the farm. The comic itself does not exist on-line, but more detail can be found at [[http://www.oneil.com.au/footrot/index.html an unofficial site]].

The characters include:
* [[EveryoneCallsHimBarkeep 'The Dog']]: The main protagonist and mascot of the strip, a border collie [[WithholdingTheirName whose name he never lets anyone reveal]]. Much like ''ComicStrip/{{Garfield}}'''s titular character, he seems as intelligent as a person but can only talk through thought bubbles. Has shades of LovableCoward and SmallNameBigEgo, but generally good at his job and devoted to his master.
* Wallace 'Wal' Footrot: The Dog's owner, a no-nonsense farmer, amateur rugby player and more or less TheEveryman (at least for farmers). Runs a large farm on his own with a large variety of animals, including sheep, cattle, pigs, chickens, ducks and geese. And at least one goat and one turkey, which is more than enough.
* Cooch Windgrass: Wal's neighbour, [[TheLancer best friend and right hand man]]. A FriendToAllLivingThings whose farm is rather overgrown, and his house has a large tree growing through the middle. He farms goats, which are the perpetual bane of Wal and the dog, and owns Jess, the dog's girlfriend.
* Aunt Dolly: Wal's aunt, the dog's original owner, who runs a home for cats and owns a Welsh Corgi named Prince Charles. Something of a [[MyBelovedSmother overbearing mother figure]] for Wallace, though she often helps him out on the farm, and the dog has a grudge against her for giving him his name.
* Horse: A [[KillerRabbit tough]], [[CatsAreMean mean]], [[MadeOfIron near-indestructible]] stray cat that acts as an enemy, sometimes ally and sometimes point of interest to the dog. [[WriteWhoYouKnow Based on a real cat]].

In 1986 there was a feature-length animated film adaptation, ''Footrot Flats: The Dog's Tale''.
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!!The tropes the comic uses include:
* TheAce: Wal's brother.
* ActionGirl: Nonhuman example: Dolores the sow, who could loosely be described as a battering ram with teats.
* AfraidOfDoctors: The Dog is terrified of going to the vet. Major does not have the same problem, which the Dog puts down to him being too stupid to be scared.
* AlienLunch: Happens as Wal is scoffing down the lunch Cooch made him in the back country. Wal remarks that he loves freshwater crayfish only for Cooch to remark "Yeah, but how do you feel about them [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cave_weta cave wetas?"]]
* AllBikersAreHellsAngels: Horse's girlfriend belongs to a bikie gang, and his ferocity endears him to them.
* AllGirlsLikePonies: The Dog hopes that Pongo will ''grow into'' the pony stage soon, so she will leave him alone.
* AlwaysSomeoneBetter: Wal's little brother Rex, who beats him in every game and sport they compete at.
* AngryGuardDog:
** The three Murphy dogs.
** Major on occasion.
** The Dog wishes he was this, but can only build up the courage when burglars touch his food.
* AnimalsLackAttributes: ZigZagged. The trope applies to most of the animal characters, except for Cecil the ram, who has very prominent testicles. Jess the dog and Dolores the sow also have mammaries when nursing.
* BerserkButton: The Dog will go to amazing lengths to make sure his name remains secret. At a dog show, he sticks himself halfway into a loud speaker trying to get the mouthy beggar inside. Once, to stop Aunt Dolly from saying it, he actually [[{{Squick}} sticks his tongue inside her mouth]], [[CrowningMomentofFunny much to their mutual disgust and horror]].
* BrattyHalfPint: Pongo.
* BridgeLogic: In one strip, the Dog attempts to avoid one of the Murphy's crocopigs by pushing over a tree to allow him to cross the river. However, the dead sapling he pushes over is both far too short to reach the over bank and far too spindly to support his weight.
* BringTheAnchorAlong: When Jess the bitch is in heat, the Dog will often take off while still chained to his water tank/kennel; taking the water tank with him.
* TheBully: Lex Murphy is this to Rangi and Pongo. His uncles Spit and Hunk Murphy are more or less this to Wal and Cooch.
* CaninesPrimaryFelinesSecondary: The Dog is the main character, and other significant dogs include Jess, Prince Charles the corgi, Major the pig-dog, and occasionally the Murphys' dogs. There is only one prominent cat, Horse, with the possible exception of occasional appearances from his biker-gang girlfriend and a couple of female kittens.
* CarnivoreConfusion: Sometimes the Dog doesn't have a full understanding on the fate of the animals he helps raise. At least once, however, he agonised over the fate of an animal being slaughtered and dressed, before walking up with food bowl in hand.
* CasanovaWannabe: 'Spit' Murphy
* CatsAreMean: Horse.
* ChainedToARailway: PlayedForLaughs. After the Dog misses the game-winning catch in a cricket match because he falls asleep, Wal ties him the track for the sight screen and attempts to run the screen over the top of him.
* ClingyJealousGirl: At times, the Dog is [[TastesLikeDiabetes positively saccharine]] in his love and devotion to Wal, at the same time the amount of effort he invests in his {{Zany Scheme}}s to drive away [[LoveInterest Cheeky Hobson]] at times rivals what he goes through to keep his name secret.
* CorruptHick: The Murphys, Wal's neighbors.
* CutPhoneLines: In one strip, the Dog climbs the telephone pole and cuts the wires while Cheeky is on the phone attempting to invite Wal to a home cooked meal at her place.
* ADarkerMe: The Grey Ghost or the Iron Paw; the Dog's invincible alter egos (he wishes).
* DidNotGetTheGirl: [[spoiler:Despite proposing to Cheeky (and her accepting) near the end of the strip, the relationship between her and Wal finally ended when she left him to go to LA with a hunky male stripper she met at her hens' night party.]]
* DinosaurDoggieBone: An early strip has the Dog dragging off a moa bone bigger than he is.
* ADogNamedDog: As noted above, he actually has a real name, but he will die before he lets anyone so much as utter it.
* DoItYourselfPlumbingProject: Wal is fixing the drain from the sink when Aunt Dolly pulls the plug out before he has the pipe reconnected. Seeing the Dog, Wal tells him he is just who he needs. He then blocks the pipe by stuffing the Dog's nose into it. The Dog admits he had been hoping his role would be something more like dashing to Aunt Dolly and desperately tugging on her apron strings.
* TheDreadedPretendTeaParty: Pongo often forces the Dog to be a participant in tea parties with her stuffed toys, usually dressing him as a baby. The Dog hates it (apart from the raspberry drop tea).
* EditorialSynaesthesia: Whenever Jess is in heat (read nearly all the time) she gives off little hearts.
* EmbarrassingFirstName: 'The Dog' is so embarrassed by the name given to him by Aunt Dolly, that [[WithholdingTheirName he actively prevents anyone from learning it]], and holds a grudge against her for giving him that name.
* EveryoneCallsHimBarkeep: The Dog is "The Dog" because he won't let anyone know his real name.
* EverythingIsMessierWithPigs: Wal's many farm animals include pigs. His neighbors the Murphys have [[strike:slightly]] ''completely'' feral ones, known and feared as 'Croco Pigs'.
* ExtremeOmniGoat: Wal got a goat to eat the grass. It eats everything ''except'' the grass, and hates Wal. When it gets angry it usually takes Horse to bring it under control. Cooch's neighboring goat farm also causes difficulties.
* TheFaceless: Cooch's cousin Kathy never has her full face appear.
* [[ABoyAndHisX A Farmer And His Dog]] (went to mow a meadow...)
* FeatheredFiend: The turkey is a recurring enemy of the Dog, and the Goose isn't keen on Wal either.
* FormallyNamedPet: Aunt Dolly's corgi, Prince Charles, and Wal's other dog, Major.
* FriendToAllLivingThings: Cooch. Unlike most examples though, he's not vegetarian and will kill to eat. [[ForeignQueasine Not always the most conventional animals, mind you.]]
** Best exemplified in one strip, where he collects a bee swarm for Wal by ''tugging on the branch and dropping it into a cardboard box''. There's no smoke, he's clad in his usual clothes, and he gets off unscathed.
* FullBoarAction: Major, Wal's other dog, is bred and trained to help hunt feral pigs.
* FurryConfusion: The Dog seems to sometimes forget that he is a dog.
* GagBoobs: Dolores 'Cheeky' Hobson.
* GoneSwimmingClothesStolen: Wal goes SkinnyDipping at the beach and Hunk and Spit Murphy come along and steal his clothes. He has to be rescued (after a fashion) by Cousin Kathy.
* GoodNewsBadNews: Used when the Dog has just found a stoat.
-->'''Dog:''' Wal, good news: there's rabbits in the veges. Bad news: It's not going to matter...
* AHandfulForAnEye: Rangi does this to Lex Murphy in one strip. Not having any sand available, he improvises by using a handful of dried sheep droppings.
* HelloNurse:
** Cousin Kathy. Being [[PuritySue the sweetest thing alive]] doesn't hurt.
** Jess is this for dogs when she's in heat, [[JustifiedTrope naturally]].
* IntellectualAnimal: The Dog seems to be one of these in a world otherwise populated by mostly normal animals, and even he can't actually speak.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Wal has plenty of rough edges, but he cares deeply for his pets.
* KilroyWasHere: Wal makes a moving speech about how insignificant it makes one feel knowing that an ancient tree will still be standing centuries after he's dead. He then carves "Wal Footrot Was Here" into the trunk.
* KindlyVet: The vet is usually depicted as being kind and good at his job, if a little rough around the edges (as country vets are wont to be).
* KissingCousins: Cooch has a pretty poorly hidden attraction to his cousin Kathy ([[HelloNurse and it's hard to blame him]]). In a surprising twist, [[spoiler:they actually get together near the end of the strip]].
* KnowWhenToFoldEm: The Dog is trying to watch the farm while his owner is away, leading to many WhatWouldXDo questions. When a situation involving many, many stinging insects arises, it turns out Wal would...hide in the outhouse with the newspaper until they go away.
-->''What would Wal do, what would Wal do...Wal's no fool.''
* TheLadysFavour: While competing against the Murphys in an athletics meet, Wal ask Cheeky for a handkerchief to tie on the end of his pole vaulting pole. Not having a hanky, Cheeky sticks a box of tissues on the end of the pole.
* LargeHam: The Dog.
--> '''Dog''': ''Curse this accursed rain!'' Forty days and forty nights adrift! Well, a day and a half anyway...
* LovableCoward: The Dog. He wants to be brave, but...
* MisterMuffykins: Prince Charles
* NotAllowedToGrowUp: Thoroughly [[AvertedTrope averted]] with the kids; over the course of the strip Rangi and Pongo grow from spotty brats to hormonal teenagers.
* TheNotCatch: The Dog notices Wal slipping off the hayshed roof and desperately runs underneath him to catch him. Then at the last second he realizes that [[OhCrap he's just a little dog and Wal is a beefy adult man weighing at least 90kg]] and leaps out of the way just in time to avoid being crushed with the sheepish excuse "Missed...".
* OddNameOut: 'Irish' Murphy's three dogs are named Tiger, Wolf and Creampuff.
* PetTheDog: Horse when with lost kittens - not to mention his ''own'' children.
* PorkyPigPronunciation: The Dog, within the introductory sections of each issue, due to uncertainty about spelling. Rather good handwriting for a dog though.
* ThePowerOfLove: Used once to let the dog ''walk on water''. It failed ten seconds later, because it's not called "The Power of Lust", now is it?
* ProperlyParanoid: When Wal hears that Cheeky has arranged for a male stripper to appear at her hens' night party, he [[GreenEyedMonster storms over there to insist she leave]], but ultimately is too embarrassed to go in and get her. [[spoiler:At the end of the night, she confesses to him that she can't marry him after all because she's decided to run off to LA with the stripper.]]
** Ironically, this also means that [[spoiler:[[TheExtremistWasRight the Dog and Aunt Dolly were right all along about Cheeky being all wrong for Wal]]]].
* RealMenWearPink: At one point Wal pauses in the middle of yelling at the Dog to sniff some flowers.
-->'''Dog:''' [[DeadpanSnarker He's incurably romantic.]]
* RugbyIsSlaughter: Wal's dreams of rugby glory always end with him a bloodied heap being trampled into the mud. Even that one time he scored a Try after being on the field for 10 seconds.
* [[ScaryBlackMan Scary Black Men]]: The Maori bikers are probably the New Zealandic equivalent of this trope.
* SensitiveGuyAndManlyMan: The Dog and Horse whenever they team up. Likewise the Dog and Major.
** Among humans, gentle, animal-loving Cooch is the Sensitive Guy, tough-guy Wal the Manly Man.
* SirSwearsALot: We don't get to experience much of it because it's censored, but Wal's speech is peppered with obscenities when he's at work.
* SoapPunishment: Aunt Dolly does this to Wal after she hears him swearing at the livestock in an early strip. She runs across several paddocks to reach him.
** One flashback sequence in the books has the Dog respond to receiving his much-hated name by cramming a cake of soap into Aunt Dolly's mouth.
* SophisticatedAsHell: The Dog alternates between poetic, flowery language and New Zealand slang at the drop of a hat.
* SmallNameBigEgo: Wal is not the great sportsman he thinks he is.
** He has nothing on the Dog at times.
* SuspectIsHatless: The Dog's attempt to describe Cousin Kathy includes that she only has hair on the top of her head and she walks on her hind legs, because all humans look alike to him. Fortunately, Wal can't understand him anyway.
* TerribleTrio: The Murphies, and their dogs.
* ThoughtBubbleSpeech
* TinyGuyHugeGirl: Applies to Dolores the sow and poor Horace the boar. She's about twice his size and a bit overbearing.
* UncattyResemblance: Most noticeable when the Dog goes to a dog show and sees heaps of dogs who resemble their owners. Although the Dog doesn't resemble Wal at all, there ''is'' a degree of resemblance between Wal and Major the pig dog (possibly coincidental) and also between the 3 Murphys and their dogs Tiger, Wolf and Cream Puff.
* UpperClassTwit: Townies fill a similar role.
* VisibleOdor: When Jess is in heat, she exudes little hearts.
* WeaponTombstone: In a strip about erosion, the Dog finds a chainsaw washed down from the hill country in the recent floods. He plants it blade down in the silt and scratches 'R.I.P.' beneath it (with much better penmanship than the Dog usually manages).
* WhatTheFuAreYouDoing: Rangi Jones learned all of his fighting moves from watching kung fu movies and, consequently, is shown as really bad at fighting, especially compared to Lex Murphy, who takes boxing lessons and presumably has picked up some street-brawling skills from his uncles.
* WhatWouldXDo:
** In a couple of strips, the Dog is trying to take care of the farm while Wal is away and whenever something goes wrong he asks himself what Wal would do.
--->'''The Dog:''' Oh no! A weta snatched a baby duckling! Wal's not here. What would he do?" '''''"YA &#^%@& WETA!!!"'''''
** Another one, involving large numbers of stinging insects, had him conclude that Wal would... hide in the outhouse with the newspaper.
--->''[[KnowWhenToFoldEm Wal's no fool]].''
* WidgetSeries: It's very... New Zealandy.
* WillTheyOrWontThey: Wal and Cheeky, and to a lesser extent [[KissingCousins Cooch and his Cousin Cathy]]. [[spoiler:Surprisingly, by the end of the series Wal and Cheeky break up forever, but [[TheyDo Cooch and Cathy actually get together]].]]
* WithholdingTheirName: 'The Dog' has such an EmbarrassingFirstName that he never allows it to be said or revealed in any way in the comic, and holds a grudge against Aunt Dolly for giving him the name.

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!!''Footrot Flats: The Dog's Tale'' provides examples of:
* BigGame: A rugby game with an All Blacks selector present.
* ConveyorBeltODoom: The Dog ends up on a conveyor belt that is moving towards a swinging circular sawblade, three very vicious, very evil dogs surrounding the sides, ensuring he doesn't escape. He does, of course.
* HoistByHisOwnPetard: During the rugby game, Wal throws an uppercut in the scrum... and punches himself. To add insult to injury, the referee tells him that next time he punches himself, he'll be sent off.
* LumberMillMayhem: The Dog gets chased through the Murphys' sawmill by the Murphys' dog, narrowly avoiding the whirring buzzsaws.
* MyLifeFlashedBeforeMyEyes: Early in the film, the Dog starts drowning, prompting a flashback to his first day on the farm and his first encounters with Wal, Major, the Murphys, Jess, Cooch, and Pew.
* NotNowWereTooBusyCryingOverYou: In the Dog's flashback, Wal's reaction to the new puppy going missing. He's too busy telling Cooch what a great little fellow the Dog was to notice that the reason for Cooch's visit is that he's found the Dog and brought him back.
* RawEggsMakeYouStronger: Wal begins his rugby training by smashing two handfuls of eggs together into a glass, drinks them down... and rushes off to the toilet to [[VomitDiscretionShot vomit them back up]].
* ThirdPersonFlashback: The Dog's flashback is in third-person -- and includes Wal waking up, getting dressed, spotting Aunt Dolly's car approaching, and rushing around clearing up... none of which the Dog (who was in the car with Aunt Dolly) was there for.
* YesNoAnswerInterpretation:
-->'''Cooch:''' You wouldn't happen to have seen my stag, would you?\\
'''Irish Murphy:''' Ah, piss off!\\
'''Cooch:''' Is that a yes or a no?\\
'''Irish Murphy:''' That's a formal recommendation.
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