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[[quoteright:350:[[Disney/{{Mulan}} http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/mulan_dog_5065.png]]]]

A character dangles some kind of treat on a stick in front of an animal, or even in front of another character, similar to fishing with a rod, line, and bait. This is usually done in order to trick the subject into going somewhere at a fast pace (or sometimes, to run on a treadmill). The classic example is "carrot and stick" dangled before a horse, mule, or donkey to get it to pull a cart.

Related to FoodAsBribe and XOnAStick. Will often involve a TrademarkFavoriteFood, or something from the StockAnimalDiet.

The problem of the bait swinging on the string, so that the target can simply grab it, is never mentioned.

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!!Examples

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[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* In ''Anime/SasamiMagicalGirlsClub'', while riding on a cart pulled by an ox-like creature, Anri complains about how slow it is, so Washu pulls out an "Acceleration Device" that turns out to be a bundle of hay hanging from a stick. The ox takes off like a rocket and catches the hay once they reach their destination, with the quick stop flinging everyone out of the cart.
* The ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'' anime episode "Pokemon Food Fight": Ash and his friends plan to lure a sleepy Snorlax into moving up and over a mountain by luring it with an apple attached to the end of a pole with a string. [[SubvertedTrope It wakes up just enough to eat the apple, then goes back to sleep before they could get it to move.]]
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[[folder:Comic Books]]
* How the FlyingDutchman is moved in ''DeCapeEtDeCrocs''. It involves a giant octopus and a really, ''really'', '''really''' big fish.
* ''ArchieComics''
** Jughead Jones was convinced to ride a stationary bike (using a bag of potato chips) this way in one story.
** In another story, a variant is used to motivate to run faster for the track team. Jughead is outfitted with a special harness with a mirror in front that's positioned to let him see the photo mounted in back, so it looks like his AbhorrentAdmirer is always right behind him.
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[[folder:Comic Strips]]
* A very common PoliticalCartoon metaphor, for whatever the artist wants to lampoon.
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[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* In ''Disney/{{Mulan}}'', the title character uses a dog and bone to feed the chickens. The bone-on-a-stick is tied to the dog's back so the bone is always in front of the dog, and the dog runs around with a feedbag leaking grain behind him.
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[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* Used in the Tropfest short film ''Cargo'' which can be watched [[http://youtu.be/gryenlQKTbE here]]. A man is [[ZombieInfectee bitten by zombie and knows that he will turn]] but he is alone with his baby (mommie was the one who bit him). He has to get the baby to an area that he thinks may safe, and he doesn't want to kill his baby when he turns. So he gathers [[spoiler:some organs, suspending them in front of him, and ties his hands together so his zombie self will trudge along till he reaches the safe area, unknowingly carrying the baby on his back. He even puts a balloon on his back to keep the baby quiet and not alert his zombie self.]] The film manages to play this to a devastatingly tearjerking effect.
* One of the ''MadMax'' films used this with the hero being sent into exile on a donkey with a small jar of water hanging in front of its head.
* ''Film/HoneyIShrunkTheKids'' did this with an ant and a piece of the discarded food the kids found.
* In ''TheBoondockSaints'', Detective Greenley humorously suggests that the only way they're going to catch the [=MacManus=] brothers is by "...dangling a potato on a string" -- of course, they walk in just as he's saying this.
-->'''Connor:''' You'd have better luck with beer.
* In one short in ''TheLittleRascals'' series, the boys had a "taxi" that was powered by a mule/donkey pushing from the back and a carrot on a stick in front of it was used to make it push.
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[[folder:Literature]]
* In Creator/JackVance's novel ''[[Literature/DyingEarth Cugel's Saga]]'', ships are powered by large worm-like sea creatures bound to either side of the vessel. Bait is hung in front of the ship to make them move.
* ''Discworld/UnseenAcademicals'' features a scene with the wizards riding on the backs of the university porters and motivating them with a bottle of beer on the end of a stick.
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[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/TheBennyHillShow'': In a sketch, Benny is at a weight-loss camp and is jogging. Three girls show up in front of him and flash their breasts at him, so he speed up. He gets tired and slows down; they flash him again and he speed up again, etc.
* How the characters of ''Series/FatherTed'' get [[TheAlcoholic Father Jack]] out on his [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OChmy2oAH7c walks.]]
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[[folder:Video Games]]
* The "Chow-Man Motor" in ''The Incredible Toon Machine''. Drop some food, usually an egg, in front of him, and he'll start walking on his treadmill.
* This appears as a trinket in ''WorldOfWarcraft''. It increases mount speed by 3%. ''AwkwardZombie'' even points out some FridgeLogic with [[http://www.awkwardzombie.com/comic1-092407.php that particular item]].
* ''VideoGame/{{Scribblenauts}}'' allows you to set this up using a "plank", "glue" and something the character wants.
* In ''VideoGame/ZettaiHeroProject'', the Appetite Engine accessory is a carrot on a stick worn on the player's head. It reduces EN consumption by 50% while equipped, and can be eaten to restore EN in a pinch.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Minecraft}}'', you can put a saddle on a pig and ride it, but it wasn't until the game introduced carrots that you got a method to steer the pig: by combining a carrot and a fishing pole, you can make a "carrot on a stick" item that lets you steer a saddled pig you're riding.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIV'': The collector's edition of the game came with a custom mount: the Fat Chocobo. Your character dangles [[TrademarkFavoriteFood Gysahl Greens]] in front of it when riding.
* ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' has the Sammy Cap, a hat for the Heavy that attaches one of these to his head, with a whole [[SatiatingSandwich Sandvich]] somehow attached to the string. Unfortunately, it doesn't make him run any faster.
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[[folder:Web Comics]]
* In one strip of ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'', Roy does this with a spice-infused Belkar to [[http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0689.html use a sandworm as transport]].
* A variation with a treadmill and a sign which read "plot" was used to keep Karn occupied in one strip of ''Webcomic/{{Adventurers}}''.
* The Devil does this to several characters at once in ''Webcomic/{{Sinfest}}'', tempting each of them with their most precious vice.
* Sam, the {{Cthulhumanoid}} protagonist of ''Webcomic/{{Freefall}}'', has [[http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff1500/fc01490.htm done this]] with one of his own tentacles in order to ride an emu. ([[ImpossiblyDeliciousFood He's edible to most Earth species, including herbivores.]])
* Used in [[http://equestria.fadri.org/017-screw-aerodynamics this]] strip of ''And That's How Equestria Was Made!!''
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[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''[[Franchise/DisneyFairies TinkerBell and the Lost Treasure]]'': Used in the dust mill to make a millipede run on a wheel to help with the dust sifting process.
* ''Yogi's Gang'' and ''Yogi's Ark Lark'': The Ark was powered by WesternAnimation/MagillaGorilla pursuing a banana while running on a treadmill, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1S4f03j-VQg as seen here at 2:25]]. Note that he occasionally ate the banana.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy'' episode "He's Too Sexy for His Fat", Peter gets Chris to run on a treadmill by sticking a plumber's helper to his forehead with a Twinkie hanging from it. Chris eventually figures out how to get the Twinkie.
-->'''Chris:''' I'm turning you into poo!
** In "Road to the North Pole", Brian and Stewie use a mutant elf's torn off arm to make the mutant reindeer fly pulling Santa's sleigh.
* ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'' does this on the episode "The Great Divide", where the heroes use it to ride fearsome creatures up a cliff.
* In ''WesternAnimation/KickButtowski'', Gunther's backside is used as the carrot on the stick to get Oscar the dog to chase him and thereby pull the sled to rescue the school bus full of kids from a snow-filled gully.
* In Hanna-Barbera's version of ''WesternAnimation/TheLittleRascals'', the Rascals have a wooden vehicle which Pete pulls while pursuing a bone.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}''
** ''The Beast With a Billion Backs'' opens with a pastiche of 1930s cartoons, and has Zoidberg powering the Planet Express ship by chasing a fish on a stick.
** At the end of ''Bender's Game'', [[spoiler:with dark matter rendered useless as a fuel]], Professor Farnsworth proposes an alternative fuel: Nibbler power! Which turns out to be a fair number of Nibblonians motivated to pull a ship by a single chicken hanging from a stick.
* In an episode of ''WesternAnimation/{{Trollkins}}'' where most of the cast take part in a road race, the Sheriff modifies his car for the race. His idea of tuning? By having a male rabbit, in a treadmill that powers the car, run like crazy when he's shown a caged female.
* ''ComicStrip/{{Popeye}}'' had one episode where he and Brutus are in a joust, only Popeye's mount is a stubborn mule. He finally gets it to run with a carrot dangling from his lance.
* ExtremeOmnivore Toot Braunstein from ''WesternAnimation/DrawnTogether'' does this to herself by giving Ling-Ling a stick with a Hostess treat attached to the end so he can use it to make her move while carrying him on her back. She even encourages him to move it a little as her vision is based on movement.
* In an episode of ''WesternAnimation/GarfieldAndFriends,'' Garfield is ordered to plow the backyard for Jon's garden. He ties Odie to the plow and puts a harness on him with a bone that Odie chases after to plow up the yard.
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