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Eat the Dog
Menchi's two least favorite words? "Emergency Rations."

Billings: I say we drink the wine, eat the dogs, and use the papers for musket wadding.
Reverend: Eat the dogs?!
Benjamin: Aye, dog is a fine meal.
Billings: *enthusiastic nod*
Reverend: ...Good heavens.

Sometimes the Ridiculously Cute Critter in the series isn't the Team Pet. Sometimes the characters are just keeping this poor animal around as emergency rations. Humor is often obtained when the creature is aware of their fate. There may even be a minor subplot about it trying to escape. There's rarely any humor when people who do love their dog are forced to think about it eating it because, you know, the world has ended.

Can cross over with Let's Meet the Meat and What Measure Is A Nonhuman. May involve Meat-O-Vision. More convenient than Reduced to Ratburgers, as edible pets are easier to catch (they may even come when you call...). See also No Party Like a Donner Party.

It is not related to Kick the Dog or Shoot the Dog. So stop linking it here, if you are looking for food the eating of which demonstrates a villain's evilness you are probably looking at Exotic Entree. Please refrain from eating Tropey the Wonder Dog. He's our Team Pet, and we need him alive.

Examples:

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    Anime and Manga 
  • The trope is named for Excel's thought process right after she first found Menchi in Excel♥Saga (the manga even goes so far as to literally translate her name as "Mince"), where Excel boiled down Menchi's existence to the simple equation of "Dog = Creature = FOOD". The anime's Ending Theme is sung by Menchi, and bemoans the poor creature's fate while a hand - presumably Excel's - periodically enters with a salt shaker to make sure she's properly seasoned. Except in the extremely bizarre final episode, in which the ending theme is sung by the usual theme's translator (with Menchi translating it to dog), and a paw can be seen periodically entering with the salt shaker.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann plays with this. The Team Pet Boota actually uses his tail and hindquarters as emergency rations for Simon and Kamina, so they can stop being hungry and kick ass. Boota really was supposed to be a meal for Kamina during his time in prison at the first episode, that they just never got around to eating.
    Kamina: *talking in his sleep* "Grow into a big juicy steak for me to eat..."
  • In One Piece, Sanji sometimes jokes that Chopper (a reindeer who also happens to be the ship's doctor) would act as emergency rations if the going gets rough. Now, consider the fact that Chopper is an anthropomorphic deer...
    • When Sanji first met Chopper (before he knew that Chopper possessed human intelligence, much less was his doctor) he really WAS going to eat him. The first thing he did upon meeting the little guy was recite venison recipes to his face.
    • It might not even be a joke, given that he first told this "joke" after expressing surprise at the information that Chopper had medical skills.
    • Also, the Team Pets of the Franky Family, Sodomu and Gomorra had an origin similar to Chopper. The Franky Family found them inside a Sea King they were eating, and Franky decided to save them for later, as he and his men were full. Then Franky got all protective when some pirates hurt the pair.
  • In Desert Punk, Kosuna cooks and eats a dog she is walking to get revenge on her boss Kanta for getting her crappy jobs. In the anime this was Bowdlerised as the dog is replaced with a rare giant bug. According to her, dogs as food is incredibly common and actually keeping a dog as a pet in this setting is considered an extremely strange thing only done by rich people.
    • The manga also has Kanta responding to a story about a stray dog attacking him when he took a crap in a bush by saying he also killed and ate the thing (thus, he "won").
  • On Cowboy Bebop, Spike speculated on eating the crew's pet super-intelligent Welsh Corgi Ein when he first met him.
  • Inverted in Ginga Nagareboshi Gin, where a hunter actually amputates his own foot to feed his dog, Riki (father of the protagonist) in order to give the dog enough strength to get help. In the original manga, this scene is also preceded by a Dream Sequence, where the hunter in question kills and eats his dog, which offers some interesting comparison.
    • The scene from the anime adaptation can be watched here. (From 2:15 to 4:20)
  • The horror manga Uzumaki plays this gruesomely straight in a scene which (fortunately) does not appear in the film adaptation. To make a long story sort, a curse has turned several people into giant snails. It doesn't seem like they have any human intelligence left, either, which is a small comfort as, desperate for food, the survivors turn to the snails... and this trope comes into effect as a group of explorers lead a cursed man around on a noose as their emergency food supply, just waiting for him to fully transform so they can chow down.
  • Pokémon. In one episode, just after escaping a sunken ship, they nearly eat James's new Pokemon, a Magikarp, as they were starving on their makeshift raft. This fails only because Magikarp's scales are too hard for Meowth to bite through.
  • In Letter Bee, the appropriately named Steak, while not a dog, definitely counts. Cute Monster Girl Niche has made it very clear from day one that he's only there in case she gets hungry, and she's even gone so far as to start cooking him a few times... which he is oddly accepting of. In fact, he's extremely violent toward pretty much everyone except the only person who has literally tried to kill and eat him.
  • When Kain Fuery of the 2003 anime adaptation of Fullmetal Alchemist finds a dog he can't keep, Jean Havoc jokes that he'll take the dog. After all, these are raised for food in other countries. He was kidding, but Fuery still won't let him have the pup.
  • One of Ryoga's chief motivations to rid himself of his curse in Ranma 1/2 is so that he can stop being on someone's menu. Instants after first falling into the Spring of Drowned Piglet, he was picked up and nearly boiled (who boils a pig alive anyway?) Then Shampoo, who hadn't met him yet, ran into him and prepared him as a meal for Ranma (but he was still alive and whole, to Akane's relief.) Then Cologne, Shampoo's great-grandmother, nearly sliced him up for dinner before Shampoo (who knew better now) stopped her.
  • In one episode of GUN×SWORD, Wendy puts her pet turtle in a turtle race in a casino. When Van finds out she bet all of her money, he starts shouting out threats to cook the turtle, causing it to move faster and win. There's good eating off a turtle.
  • In an episode of Darker Than Black, Hei's landlady finds Mao (a human in a cat's body) wandering around the apartment complex (so he could relay orders to Hei) and she inquires if cats are eaten in Hei's home country, China. To Mao's chagrin, Hei jokes that it wouldn't be a bad idea.
    • In one of the gaiden episodes, there's a Contractor who is a human in a dog's body and she gestures to a nearby meat market to explain why she feels uncomfortable staying in an area. This scene is set in China.
  • In the manwha Vagrant Soldier Ares, the titular character names a crow that follows him around, "Emergency Ration." His definition of "Emergency" is a bit loose though.
  • In Cyborg 009, the Pu'Awak humanoid race is used as this by the Athans, a race of scientifically advances winged dinosaurs. The Black Ghost group comes in and offers help, but soon they prove themselves to be just as bad as the Athans, and force the five Pu'Away princesses to be a part of their plans...
  • Inverted in Cage of Eden. One girl declares that a turtle she found will be dinner, leading to a discussion on how turtle meat is prepared. The girl admits that she was joking, and lets the turtle go...only for it to be revealed later on that she kept the turtle on a leash.
  • In Barefoot Gen, a soldier teaches Gen and Ryuta to kill a dog and eat it to avoid dying of malnutrition.
  • In Inuyasha, Sesshomaru's mother briefly wonders if he's keeping Rin and Kohaku around as future snacks. A bit of irony as Sesshomaru is a dog youkai and Rin is a human, but youkai are known to eat humans.
  • In "Tegami Bachi", one character adopts a rare animal, and names him Steak, and attempts to eat him when feeling particularly hungry.

    Card Games 
  • The flavor text of the Magic card Snow Hound plays with this. To quote General Jarkeld: "If you're starving, eat your horses, your dead, or yourself — but never eat your dog."

    Comic Books 
  • It would be a heroic labor to list all the unorthodox things people eat in the future of Transmetropolitan, from caribou eyes to Welshman legs.
    • On one occasion Spider tosses a thug through a window and he crushes a sad looking puppy, Spider, shown abusing canines frequently, then announces that he's having that dog for dinner.
  • The Far Side spoofed this, with a group of five castaways on a raft drawing straws to see which of them will be eaten, despite one of them being a dog. One of the people loses.
  • When Groo The Wanderer first meets the dog Rufferto, Rufferto thinks he's found a caring new master, but what he sees as Groo's affection is really just hunger. Soon afterward there's a story where Groo thinks he has eaten Rufferto, and is overwhelmed with guilt. When Rufferto finally shows up alive and well Groo really does become a caring master.
  • The Lizard Lady in Negation names the last surviving Kaliman Retriever something that translates to "delicious treat" in her native language. Saurians are very indiscriminate eaters.
  • During an arc in Wolverine the eponymous anti-hero was being stalked across Canada by a Cylla, a half-cyborg and Bloodscream, a vampire, who occasionally captured a local to drag along in case he got hungry. Towards the end of the arc they were both starving to death. Luckily Bloodscream had one sheep left in his flock...
    • Wolverine meanwhile almost literally eats a dog. Technically it was a wolf that he fought and killed, but he lived off of the wolf carcass during the entire trek. The first thing he did when he reached civilization was scarf down a pile of burgers after confirming that they weren't wolf burgers.
  • After being badly bitten by a dog, Rudi buys a Korean cookbook and invites the owner and his dog for "dinner", while preparing everything.

    Commercials 
  • There's a car-insurance ad in which a couple determined to save money are implied to have eaten their daughter's pet fish.

    Film 
  • A very off-color gag in Superman Returns features Lex Luthor abandoning and then 'rescuing' a Pomeranian. Actually, it was two Pomeranians, but when they got back to the mansion, one had eaten the other. The ending also implied that Lex and Kitty would soon eat the remaining dog in desperation on a desert isle.
  • This was also a plot point in Babe.
  • Despite providing the page quote, this does not happen in The Patriot. In fact, Benjamin Martin uses the dogs as a bartering tool with General Cornwallis (they were a gift to him from King George himself), and then whistles for them as he's leaving parley, keeping them for himself as pets.
  • In the movie The Quick and the Dead, gunfighter Dog Kelly is so named because of an event in his Back Story where he was forced to eat his beloved dog or face death by starvation. As a result, any mention of his nickname or the event in question is a good way to seriously piss him off, as evidenced in a deleted scene which had Ellen, the heroine, teasing him about it.
  • In Monty Python and the Holy Grail: "They were forced to eat Robin's minstrels. And There Was Much Rejoicing." This line contains a bonus pun in Britain, where Minstrels are a kind of sweet (they're like chocolate drops with a chocolate flavoured hard sugar coating, similar to M&Ms but about twice the size).
  • Inverted in A Boy and His Dog, as the main character uses his love interest to save his dog from starving to death. Also the dog is both sentient and telepathic.
    • Almost played straight; the girl was a bitch. She was demanding that they kill and eat the only friend he'd ever known.
  • Almost in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. The group barely escapes an island of cannibals, except for that dog carrying the key. The cannibals chase after the dog and After The Credits he is shown to be have been made their chief As we saw with Jack earlier, they believe their chief is a god trapped in physical form and want to free him from that "fleshy prison." Go on, guess how.
    • And then he appears in the third movie with Jack Sparrow's father, with the only explanation given for the dog's escape being "Sea turtles, mate."
  • In Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead, after the kids return home from the supermarket and only being able to afford the necessities, one of the kids jokes about using their pet dog as emergency rations.
    Melissa: When our food's gone, we can eat Elvis!
  • One of the most infamous scenes in Count Yorga has the character Erica, who was recently bitten by the title character. Feeding on her pet cat as her vampirism starts to take hold.
  • Invoked by the Gyro Captain in The Road Warrior:
    "It's my snake, I trained it, I get to eat it!"
  • As a bonus feature on the DVD of the Dawn of the Dead (2004) remake, a man holed up in a gun store keeps a video diary, and is often seen talking to a pet fish that'd belonged to his (deceased) little girl. Eventually starvation compels him to eat the fish, which he justifies as a Mercy Kill.
  • Played for laughs in the French comedy Sur un arbre perché with Louis de Funès. The car containing the protagonists goes off a cliff but is caught in a tree on the way down. Being caught there a day or so, Louis' character gets hungry and starts gauging the girl's dog. Hilarity Ensues.

    Literature 
  • In the final book of The Dark Tower series Susannah considers doing this to Oy the cute lil' billy-bumbler (basically a dog crossed with a raccoon) while she and Roland pass through a frozen wasteland (though she wants to kill him for his fur, not for his meat).
    • Earlier, in The Waste Lands Roland mentions that a billy-bumbler's meat is no good, and he'd rather eat a dog (which he did).
  • This is the driving point for the entire plot in Charlotte's Web. At least, after Wilbur's told by the goose that's what's going to happen to him eventually.
  • A running gag in Small Gods, when a deity is trapped in the form of a lower animal. There's good eating on a tortoise...
    • Also, because Discworld is awesome, played with in The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents, when the Wrong Genre Savvy Malicia pretends to hold this view so she can provoke Maurice into talking again.
    • Also the subject of a weirdly upbeat running joke that various characters use to hint that they never had enough to eat as children. Even Vimes gets into it at one point. "The small animal looked up at him. He remembered how he'd always wanted a dog as a child. Mind you, they'd been very hungry. Anything with meat would have done." And in another book: "Pets can be a great comfort in times of stress. And in times of starvation, too."
    • And in Interesting Times, the barbarians are rather shocked to discover that the Agatean word "chow" isn't a general term for food...
    "There's nothing wrong with it," [Teach] said hurriedly, with the sincerity of a man who had ordered bamboo shoots and bean curd for himself.
    • In Making Money, Moist and Adora very briefly think that a golem who is crushing on Moist (It Makes Sense in Context) has, in a fit of jealousy, cooked up for Moist's dinner a small dog whose well being is incredibly vital to Moist's cherished state of not being assassinated. Fortunately, this turns out to be a false alarm.
    • In Men at Arms it's implied dwarves will do this if they can't get hold of rat note , although in Feet of Clay Gimlet pads his stock with steak, beef and chicken instead.
  • Disturbingly inverted in one of the chapter-opening "quotes" in Orson Scott Card's Children of the Mind. A man always keeps his dog around even though it cannot be taught anything useful or funny. His friends tell him, "That's not a dog, it's a wolf." Then there's a plane accident and the man is terribly injured. The dog strolls up and begins chewing on him, and his last thoughts are "Thank goodness at least one of us will not starve." "This is the most beautiful story I know."
  • Inverted in Orson Scott Card's Xenocide, in which a character tells the story of a man and his beloved pet dog. The dog would learn no tricks, performed no useful function, and did not even seem particularly affectionate, but the man loved it. Then the man and his dog got into a plane crash in the mountains. The man was pinned under some debris, but the dog was largely unharmed. Unperturbed, the dog trotted up to the man and, rather than attempt to aid him in some way, began to eat his exposed entrails. The man's last thought was, "Oh, good. At least one of us will not starve." The purpose of this story is a matter for interpretation, but it appears to be an Aesop about unselfish love. Or something.
  • In David Gerrold's The War Against the Chtorr novels, it appears that, at best, this might be the role assigned to humans in the invading Chtorran ecosystem. It's already the role assigned to the cute Chtorran bunnydogs.
    • Not to mention the captured Chtorran worm that's fed with stray dogs.
  • In some versions of Puss in Boots, the titular Intellectual Animal begins assisting the protagonist after hearing the latter's plans to eat him and sell his pelt.
  • Angela Wright's Potato People plays the trope straight.
  • Jack London's story To Build A Fire features a man freezing to death, who decides to cut open his dog and put his hands inside for warmth, Tauntaun style. He ends up unable to do it (not for any ethical reason, his hands have gotten too numb with cold to unclasp his knife), and the man dies while the dog bugs off back to camp. Buddy system, people!
  • More a literal example than following the trope, but in The Tamuli (Second half of The Elenium), Ulath and Tynian convince their troll companion to eat dogs, since a troll's usual food of choice, people or horses, would draw far too much attention to them. The joke starts running from there when various issues crop up, from Blohkw offering to share the dog to other issues.
  • In The Count of Monte Cristo, Maximillien Morrel rescued Chateau-Renault during combat in North Africa, and as the two ended up in the desert without rations, they were forced to kill and eat one of their horses. Played for laughs when they recount the incident to their friends, there's a comment about it being tough (i.e. a difficult thing to do), which one of the friends jokingly interprets as a reference to the horse meat being tough. Also Hilarious in Hindsight because of the stereotype that French people love horse meat.
  • A Boy And His Dog by Harlan Ellison notoriously inverts this trope in its Twist Ending, when the boy eats the girl because she matters less than his dog.
  • Averted in one of The Vampire Files, when Escott offers to find a friendly dog and bring it in for injured Jack to feed on. Jack, who likes dogs, is horrified at the notion and sends Escott out to the Stockyards with a jar and syringe instead.
  • In one of the Dragonlance books, Tasslehoff is captured by the minotaurs, and is quite jarred when he finds out that those lovely monkeys they keep around their ship are actually their meal.
  • Jack London is quite fond of this trope.
  • Letters Back to Ancient China: The narrator protagonist (a time traveller from medieval China) has to find out that sadly, in today's Germany you won't get Pekingese's liver and such.
  • There are several references to lyorn legs being served as meat in the Dragaera novels. A lyron is essentially a large dog with a horn on its head.
  • Discussed and subverted in Stephen King's 11/22/63. Al's Famous Fatburger is called Al's Famous Catburger because it's priced well below the wholesale price of ground beef. Al later reveals that the price is so low because he has been using his ability to travel through time to buy meat at 1958's prices.
  • In what is arguably a bit of Early-Installment Weirdness, when introduced in Sojurn, the third novel of The Dark Elf Triliogy, Bruenor Battlehammer, a dwarf, is fixated by the idea of eating Roddy McGristle's dog. At the novel ends, he ends up cutting off one of the dog's legs as punishment for its master's misdeeds, including assaulting his adopted daughter, and promptly decides "waste not, want not". It's mentioned afterward that he is quite horribly sick as a result.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In an episode of Roundhouse, the focal boy imagines visiting the home of his crush from a foreign country. It doesn't become nightmarish until he asks to feed the cute little dog and hears, "Of course; we are fattening him up for dinner!"
  • In an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm, Larry David believes that his Korean bookie kidnapped and ate Jeff Greene's dog.
  • Referenced on The Young Ones:
    Vyvyan: That's what we agreed when we first came: you do the cooking, I'll look after the plants and the goldfish.
    Neil: Yeah? And what did you have me cook on that first day?
    Vyvyan: Sausages! It was a Tuesday.
    Neil: Sausages and...?
    Vyvyan: [sigh] Sausages and plants and goldfish.
  • Intercepted in an episode of The Goodies, with Bill taking care of a guinea pig that Tim is holding.
    Bill: Just be careful, he's sick.
    Tim: What's wrong with him?
    Bill: He's off his food — he hasn't eaten for days.
    Tim: ...Well, neither have I...I'm starving. ...[opens mouth, leans down]
    Bill: Don't eat him!
    • Also, caused much Squick in an episode where The Goodies are trying to write a nice, clean song that'll make the charts...but they have to make a filthy song first to be discovered. Thus, Bill writes one seconds before they go on a show with a talent agent. It's called "Mommy, I Don't Like My Meat", and is about a man with a wife and child. He can't work because of his broken leg, and thus slaughters their pets to feed their child.
    The budgie's now chicken
    ...
    Tomorrow we'll curry the poodle
  • John Sheppard of Stargate Atlantis offered to eat Beckett's pet baby turtles in one episode and McKay's whale buddy (It Makes Sense in Context) in the next. (He's mostly joking.)
  • In an episode of I Shouldn't Be Alive, a man is lost in the Amazon rainforest with his dog for a companion. Facing starvation, and not being able to find any food except some berries (which his body rejects), he is forced to bludgeon the dog over the head to kill and eat him. Unfortunately, his body rejects this as well.
  • Joked about in Elementary when Sherlock adopts a tortoise named Clyde after its owner is killed, claiming that he's going to make soup from him once he's fat enough. Joan's not sure if Sherlock is joking until he says he actually loves the reptiles and could never eat them.
  • Sam on NCIS: Los Angeles once claimed this was one reason he'd prefer pet fish to having a dog or cat: if it didn't work out, there's always the "sushi" option with a fish.
  • Not explicitly dog, but Col. Sherman Potter of M*A*S*H has as a Berserk Button the eating of horses. He delivers a rant about it in one episode, where he basically says that cows are such ugly wretched beasts that when people eat them they're doing them a favor, but horses are noble and beautiful animals. Might have something to do with the fact that he was in the Cavalry at one point.
    • Invoked by Pierce in an episode where he's been forced to take shelter with a Korean family (none of whom speak English). At one point they serve him some stew. He takes a bite and says something like "Meat? Where did you get meat? ... (looking around suspiciously) Where's the dog?" After a moment, the dog barks offscreen, to Hawkeye's visible relief.

    Music 
  • A comedy song by Tony Hendra and Nick Ullett entitled "Rover (The Shaggy Dog Story)" is about a man and his dog who get lost in the desert, eventually leading to this trope.

    Newspaper Comics 
  • In a Garfield strip:
    Jon: I had a pet named Henry back on the farm. Then one evening there was Henry on the dinner table... I loved that snake.
    Garfield: Times were tough.
  • A The New Yorker cartoon once depicted an author writing about "blockade mutton". If a city has been blockaded long enough, the locals will be reduced to eating dog. At one point, his research fails him, but after a trip to a pet store and a (flexible) restaurant, he returns to his desk and types, "It is tough, gamey, and strong-flavored".

    Tabletop Games 
  • A running joke in Dungeons & Dragons is that a wizard's familiar is only useful for emergency rations.
    • The Complete Book of Villains, a supplement for 2nd Edition, featured a warlord called Bakshra the Dog Eater as a demonstration NPC. As a child, Bakshra had been tricked into eating his beloved pet dog as a cure for a curse-imposed illness, and he obsessively continued the practice as a grown man.
  • In Warhammer 40,000, the goblin-like Gretchin, or Grots, serve as the weak but brainy backbone of Ork "civilization," working as unskilled laborers, farmers, merchants, bankers, and assistants to Ork Meks or Painboyz. In appreciation, the Orks use the poor Grots as cannon fodder, minesweepers, ammunition for some of their more twisted weapons, and of course, snacks.
    • Their fantasy counterparts, the goblins, in ''Warhammer are in pretty much the same boat. It's treated indifferently by the goblins themselves, since they readily kill and eat one another all the time.
    • Likewise, in 40K and Warhammer, squigs. Admittedly, since a squig is a carnivorous Planimal fungus monster that's at least 80% teeth and bad attitude, this is more of a case of Eat The Dog Before The Dog Eats Me.

    Theatre 
  • Dutch Comedian Herman Finkers has a musical bit about where Lassie saves a couple caught on a mountain from starvation. "Zijn daad heeft ons echt geraakt, geen hond die zo lekker smaakt." quite literally, his deed touched us, not a dog that tastes as good.
  • Another Dutch comedian, Toon Hermans, had a famous routine about a dead pigeon, in which he mentions having lots of animals for his magic act, but then came the winter of 1944...
  • In the Muppet audio-drama version of The Frog Prince, Sweetums the Monster and the Witch have captured a frog (Kermit's nephew Robin):
    Witch: He could be your pet, your friend, your —
    Sweetums: Breakfast!
    Witch: That, too!

    Video Games 
  • Another pet pig sacrificed itself in Illusion of Gaia to save the party from cannibals. Stop laughing! Apparently for Hamlet, it was "not to be".
    Eric: Poor Hamlet; To eat, or not to eat?
  • In Pokémon Mystery Dungeon Explorers of Time/Darkness, Swellow and Wurmple (that is to say, a bird and a worm) make up Team Tasty. Wurmple spends the entire game wondering whether he's Swellow's emergency food supply, and Swellow's constant exclamations of "Try to guess what I most want to eat right now!" don't help. Amusingly enough, when Wurmple finally gathers the courage to ask him if indeed he is this, Swellow is surprised and shocked, and makes it clear he considers him his best friend and would never eat him.
  • From The Oregon Trail II on (as well as later versions of the first game), if you are nearing starvation, or a draft animal dies, you get the option to slaughter/butcher an animal for food.
  • Dwarf Fortress allows your dwarves to literally eat dogs. And cats. And horses. Really, they'll happily hunt or butcher just about anything that moves and doesn't talk back (and even then, you can edit the raw files...).
    • This is usually considered one of the best ways to control cat populations.
    • Averted in the case of specific animals adopted as pets. The rest of the fortress won't care about them any more, but the ones that took it as a pet will go on a giant Roaring Rampage of Revenge if their beloved kitty is slaughtered. Matt Boyd once told of how one of his fortresses collapsed that way; since the source cats were pets, he couldn't slaughter them, and even after he curtailed all activity not related to controlling the cat population, they were simply being born too fast to really put a dent in the population.
    • And now that herbivore animals have to graze on grass to survive, it is actually more convenient to use cats and dogs as livestock, as feeding mechanics for carnivores haven't been implemented yet.
  • Usagi, Pleinair's rabbit (and in Disgaea 2, the one who's actually reading the news in place of Pleinair), is referred to as such. In Disgaea 2, he is joined by a shark in this regard—or is it a shark-like demon?
  • Fallout 3 features Dogmeat. Just like any of the feral dogs in the game, if he dies you can loot his corpse for meat.
  • In Dragon Age: Origins, if the player gives Leliana a pet Nug (an animal used as foodsource for Dwarves), Oghren tells her that if it doesn't leave him alone he might just get hungry. However he's promptly disgusted that she names it Schmooples.
    • And in the sequel, your cat-loving party member Anders complains that the cats all seem to have disappeared from the slum where he lives and speculates that maybe the refugees drove them off...or ate them.
  • In Planescape: Torment, a merchant looking to sell you a Lim-Lim (a large insect-type thing that behaves much like a puppy) as a pet confides to you in a whisper that they make pretty good eating in a pinch. If you buy one, it never happens that you have to test the theory, though.
  • Rosarita ("Rosita") Aries of Sakura Wars V treats her pet weasel Niccolo like this.
  • The Lost Crown gives you the option of befriending a pig named Cairon, which grunts happily each time you share your lunch with it. Try not to grow too attached to the animal, because there's barbecue on the menu for the May Day Fayre....
  • Discussed in Raidou Kuzunoha vs. King Abaddon in certain parts of the final dungeon and occasionally elsewhere in the Shin Megami Tensei franchise; apparently if one eats one's demon en lieu of being driven to such hunger, one can absorb part of the demon's power.
  • In NetHack, you get a pet at the beginning. Eating/Sacrificing it is probably not smart.

    Webcomics 

    Web Original 
  • The Whateley Universe, where Sara/Carmilla sucks the souls from dogs and other animals with her tentacles, for most meals. Yes, she's one of the good guys, at least at the moment... But the way she eats cause her tons of grief, especially early on. She very blatantly had puppies in her box at least once. And a lot of times old, worn out dogs who suffered more by living, and seemed to want a release from it. Right from the local pound in Dunwich.
    • For that matter, the school cafeteria, having to deal with the dietary needs and occasionally odd tastes of hundreds of mutant teenagers, seems generally able to provide pretty much anything if given sufficient notice in advance. In one Heyoka story, one Jerk Jock is forced to literally eat dog (though not a live one) in front of all the other students in order to break a curse he's brought on himself.
  • In Xanauzumaki's Twilight Princess abridged, Zant LITERALLY ate Midna's dog when they were kids. He thought it was an animal cracker.
  • In BAMF Girls Club, Katniss kills and cooks Jacob}}.

    Western Animation 
  • Done repeatedly in Futurama with the resident Butt Monkey Dr. Zoidberg, a lobster-like alien. One episode has the crew stranded at the bottom of the ocean with no food:
    Hermes: There are rules for situations like this[holds up 'Code of Conduct for Cannibalism]. Now, the first order of business is lunch. I suggest a nice Lobster Zoidberg. I mean, Lobster Newberg. I mean Doctor Zoidberg.
    • In a what if episode, Leela went berserk and killed everybody, except Fry. After killing Zoidberg, the next morning you see a plate with chopped and boiled Zoidberg on it.
    • This actually happens quite often in Futurama, since in the future we apparently have less strict diets and eat animals that are considered off limits today, such as parrot and peacock (the gag is that 21st Century preservation methods worked too well, and now the animals are overabundant). Nibbler also devours any animal indiscriminately, and so does Zoidberg, though Zoidberg usually sticks to small animals. It's established that humans find it acceptable to eat any animal that's not intelligent. That means individually. A particularly stupid family of dolphins is mentioned as being fair game.
      • Before people jump at us: We're well aware that people actually do eat peacock today.
      • At least once a can of "Tuna-Safe Dolphin" is seen.
      • Walrus Juice! Ride the walrus!
    • Don't forget Glagnar's Human Rinds! It's a munch-a-bunch-a-crunch-a-humans!
  • Sokka of Avatar: The Last Airbender tends to want to eat every animal smaller than him he comes across, of course, he never gets a chance to do that. In fact, the first animal he tried to eat ended up becoming the team's pet, Momo.
    • And when Momo goes missing, Sokka angrily accuses Appa of eating him.
      • Also averted by the Foggy Swamp tribe; when Sokka asks why they don't eat the catfish crocodiles, they are disgusted at the notion and say that they regard the creatures as being like family.
  • Subverted in Robot Chicken. George W. Bush gets a gremlin as a gift (from the Japanese). After a couple of scenes of them being buddies, the Gremlins get the nuclear launch codes and FIRE ZE MISSILES. In the rubble with his wife, the Gremlin, and Cheney, Bush says that someone has to be eaten- and they all turn to Cheney.
    • Likewise in a Star Trek sketch at the end. Kirk, Bones, Spock, Layla, and Toby the Red Shirt have escaped onto a nearby planet after their ship explodes. Having no food on hand, the main crew take a vote and decide to eat the Red Shirt. However he turns out to be Genre Savvy enough to expect this, and reveals he was the only one who brought a phaser.
    Toby the Red Shirt: "On behalf of all the Red Shirts that fell before me, it makes me very very proud to speak the following sentence: I'm the only one that brought a gun."
    • In another skit, Aqualad is talking with the other sidekicks about Aquaman's last aqualad, a merman who was more "mer" than "man". When Aqualad asks what happened to him, it cuts to Aquaman in the arctic in front of a crashed plain, screaming in (apparent remorse)
    Aquaman: Why?! Why?! *cut to the former Aqualad on a spit with a giant chunk bitten out of him* Why is there no tarter sauce?!
  • In one episode of The Fairly OddParents, the Yugopotamians are invaded by a race of ultra-cutsey aliens, thanks to the Yugopotamians being freaked out by anything "nicey". The Giggle Pies, as the invaders are called, use their fluffy-wuffy looks to charm Cosmo and Wanda until Cosmo, in one of his usual fits, eats one of them and disgustedly remarks that they taste just like manure. Manure happens to be a delicacy on Yugopotamia, and the Yugopotamians aren't exactly happy about being enslaved...
  • Family Guy does this in a Star Wars parody:
    "Hey Luke, what ever happened to that dog we stole from the Death Star?"
    "I KILLED IT AND ATE IT!!"
    • In "Dog Gone", when everyone ignores Brian's PSA and complain that they can't go vegetarian, Brian angrily tells them that dogs are eaten in some countries. This gets them to start trying dog...starting with Brian!
    • When the Griffins became lost on Mt. Everest, they survived by eating a dead body they discovered. A bit later, Stewie wonders why they resorted to cannibalism, instead of just killing and eating Brian.
  • In an episode of Jimmy Two-Shoes, Heloise inadvertantly ends up insulting a lava worm, who insults her back. At the end of the episode, she serves Jimmy a meal, saying that she hopes the lava worms aren't too chewy. At this, the lava worms friend (seen earlier in the episode) walks by, looking for his friend.
  • In The Venture Bros. Season 3 finale, Sergeant Hatred bragged that he "ate a whole Labrador Retriever once" during a bragging contest with Doctor Venture.
  • In The PJs Thurgood wishes to eat his pet dog because the dog has eaten his last little blue pill and he wants to be intimate with his wife because it's their anniversary. He even says "Think, Thurgood, there's got to be a perfectly logical way to eat that dog."
  • In King of the Hill, the Soupanousinphones (who are Laotian) move into the neighborhood and after not being able to find Ladybird or Doggie (Hank's and the Soupanousinphone's dogs) Hank thinks he was served the dogs at a barbeque. But they weren't. Bobby and Connie let the dogs off their lines and they ran away (but came back in the end.)
  • In The Simpsons, all it takes for Bart is being sent to his room without any dinner, and he already feels so hungry he begins to visualize Santa's Little Helper's head as a pizza box, with his lolling tongue as a slice. The dog seems to realise the strange look he's giving him, as he whimpers and bolts out the door.

    Real Life 
  • The Philippines. Oh, them and their azucena.
  • Dogs in Mesoamerican civilizations were in fact raised specifically for this purpose (the only other domesticated animal on the Aztec menu being the turkey, aside from other sources), which means you shouldn't be too surprised that your Chihuahua is a bit twitchy.
    • The Incans had guinea pigs for food, called cui. They still do in some places, such as Ecuador (there, the spelling is cuy).
    • Technically, the Xoloitzcuintli (the Mexican Hairless) should be a lot twitchier, since it was the most common source of dog meat.
    • The Incas (and other cultures before them) also bred their own Peruvian Hairless Dog for the same reason.
    • Chihuahuas were bred both for eating and for warmth. In other words, the dogs shake a lot because of their high blood temperature which was bred into them so they were good to cuddle with on cold nights. In the beds of the people who would eat them.
  • The Chinese. There's even a standard formula for what type of dogs are good eating — yellow and black ones.
    • Don't order "fragrant meat" if you happen to be a dog lover. Just...don't.
  • Koreans are also stereotyped for eating dog meat. While it is culturally acceptable, they distinguish between companion dogs and food dogs (which are either caught wild or kennel-raised like cattle). Even then, few Koreans have a preference for it.
    • On a non-stereotypical note, refugees that had defected from North Korea claimed that this trope was played very straight in the famine that struck in the 1990's.
  • Governments in both Beijing in 2008 and Seoul in 1988 banned the sale of dog meat at local restaurants for the duration of the Olympics. While eating dog is normal in those countries, it was apparently deemed easier to just change local menus for a few days rather than deal with foreigners being horrified that they might accidentally eat schnauzer.
    • That's probably because very few restaurants would even have dog in stock, as dog is the Chinese equivalent to chicken pot pie, yankee boiled dinner, chicken kneidel soup, shepherd's pie, and beef stew and both countries instituted the rules for the summer Olympics.
    • Ironically, several athletes from different countries stated that they were disappointed in this, as they had wanted to sample a dish of dog and see what the big deal was.
  • Just about any society using sled dogs, and most of the polar expeditions that took them (for both man and dog food), the pros knew not to eat the liversnote .
  • Heck, just about any non-agrarian society that keeps pets uses them for food when the hunters come back empty-handed.
  • The British found quite a fondness for "roof rabbit" (that is, cat) during the Second World War.
  • Douglas Adams, originator of Let's Meet the Meat, in Last Chance to See describes sharing a boat with some live chickens intended by his guides for his later meals. He was not happy. Neither were the chickens. As it happens, a Komodo dragon got at least some of them instead.
  • Averted by the Inuit; hunting groups would starve themselves for a while rather than let their dogs go hungry; naturally, they're somewhat later than the last thing on the menu.
    • But standard procedure when there is no prey around for a long time. The best example here is Roald Amundsen, who led the first expedition to the South Pole. His team killed and ate their sled dogs on a strict schedule.
    • In fact, the reason invoked by some Inuit to not adopt motor sleds is that they can't be eaten if you suffer an accident in the wild and help delays too much.
      • Which has been pretty much dumped as rationale in North America with the widespread availability of GPS units, satellite phones, and emergency beacons. And, as many Inuit hunters will point out, not using dogs means more food for you. The only hunters who still use dogs routinely are polar bear hunt guides, first to give an "authentic northern experience" and also because the dogs will alert the humans if a bear tries to sneak up on them.
  • The Mandan Tribe used Dogs as a pack animal and hunting companion as well as a pet. They were sacred to the Mandan as well as valuable. They would only eat them as a religious rite and was rarely done due to their value. Europeans learning from George Catlin's paintings and informational tours were disgusted.
  • The ancient Hawaiians domesticated and ate dogs. One story from Obake Files featured a group of people transporting a delicious baked dog over the mountains, possibly near Honolulu. A mysterious voice asked "Where are they taking you?" The baked dog answered "Wherever they take me!" The group reversed course, minus one baked dog.
  • Because of lack of provisions, the Lewis and Clark expedition had to be pretty...creative when traveling the Louisiana Purchase Territory. It was mentioned that they found dogs to be particularly tasty, something which one Native American tribe in the Pacific Northwest apparently found appalling. Somewhat ironically, the crew had a pet Newfoundland that they kept with them, though there was never speculation to eat it.
    • Indeed, they were rather fond of that Newfoundland. At one point, a certain tribe kidnapped the dog and planned to eat it themselves; the expedition members threatened to raze their village to the ground if the dog was not returned.
  • In the Stephen Ambrose book Undaunted Courage the author notes they picked up the habit from plains Indians they met early in their journey. After months of living on grubs and tubers in the mountains, they relished the thought of having some dog.
    • Fridge Logic sets in when you realize that the tribe they were getting the dogs from was very well supplied with salmon
  • This article discusses research arguing that the original motivation for domesticating dogs was to have a good meal waiting in the future.
  • Many of the Plains Indian tribes considered dog a delicacy only to be eaten on special occasions. You could get buffalo every day and then some, but dog is hard to come by.
  • The Antarctic explorers that attempted to transverse the continent with Ernest Shackleton had to eat their dogs after losing their ship. Some of them even insisted on knowing which dogs they were eating.
    • Amundsen (who was the first to reach the South Pole) did this not as an emergency measure but as a deliberate strategy.
    • Robert F. Scott, who got to the pole shortly after Amundsen, used this as part of his plan. The other parts (snowmobiles and horses) didn't work so well for him... the snowmobiles were somewhat unreliable in the cold and required fuel that (unlike food for the dogs and horses) couldn't also serve as emergency rations for the humans, and the horses he used were purchased by a dog expert who didn't know anything about horses so he didn't have as much success with them as Shackleton had.
  • A satirical proposal to eat dogs.
    • ...satirical?
      • If the reference to Jonathan Swift's own modest proposal is any indication, then yes.
  • During Iraq's occupation of Kuwait, some of the animals in the Kuwait Zoological Park were stolen, ending up as field rations for Iraqi troops.
    • At the time of the Boxer Rebellion, the rare Pere David's Deer was already extinct in the wild in China. Only one herd existed within the gardens of the Forbidden City, and it was completely slaughtered and eaten as another of the excesses committed by the foreign occupying troops in 1900. Fortunately, some few individuals had been shipped to Britain years earlier and made into a healthy population that was used to reintroduce the species in China in the 1980s.
    • Most of the animals in the Paris zoo were also butchered and eaten during the siege of 1870-1871. Primates were excepted because some people considered that eating them was dangerously close to cannibalism.
  • After the captain died, the Spanish soldiers at Baler in the Philippines (who continued to fight for a year after the Spanish-American War was over, believing that news about the Spanish defeat were lies) took great delight in eating their late leader's obnoxious pet dog.
  • Done ceremonially in parts of Benin as a coming-of-age rite. The courage of the sacrificed dog is said to pass into the boys who eat its flesh, so they'll face their circumcision bravely.
  • The Batak tribe of Indonesia is known for having dog-based menu in their cuisine. The majority of Batak are not Muslims, and thus they don't forbid themselves from enjoying dog, or pork, or even cake made of congealed blood. What this means is that if dog-loving foreigners are looking for food stalls that serve pork, they better make sure that the establishment doesn't also serve dog meat. Watch out for eateries that states they serve "B1", it's an euphemism for "dog"note .
  • Notoriously, done by Barack Obama when living in Indonesia as a child. (His stepfather insisted that he try various sorts of exotic foods. Snake and grasshopper were also on the menu.)
  • During the Revolutionary War, the winters drove the Americans to the breaking point. They ran out of food and had to eat dogs. When they ran out of dogs, they ate the leather on their shoes. When they ran out of shoes, they dug up dead bodies and ate them.


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