About Me

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Washington, United States
loves: you win if you guessed "pets" and "museums". Also books, art history, travel, British punk, Korean kimchi, bindis, martinis, and other things TBD. I will always make it very clear if a post is sponsored in any way. Drop me a line at thepetmuseum AT gmail.com !

Sunday, May 20, 2018

the roommate

www.rijksmuseum.nl, , J.W.E. vom Rath Bequest, Amsterdam
According to this artwork's page at the Rijksmuseum, when business heir Edwin vom Rath's (Dutch; 1863-1940) parents both passed away he lived in the family mansion with only his pug for company.  Here's a watercolor portrait of the pug by Dutch painter Conradijn Cuneaus circa 1890-95, and I must say this pup does look like good company. Vom Rath's family had built a fortune from their sugar business; he himself remained unmarried and childless, and was a generous patron to Amsterdam's cultural scene.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

victoria the post office cat


Washington D.C., 1919:  a young Italian strikes a blow for equality as a single mother and immigrant in the employ of the US Postal Service.  Victor Emmanuel, a tortoiseshell left behind by a foreign official, was adopted by the city post office as a staff mouser, only to surprise her employer with the value-added gift of four kittens and a fast rethink on gender.

-- Angell, George T. (George Thorndike), 1823-1909, and Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Our Dumb Animals. [Boston]: Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, v. 52 no. 2 (July 1919), p. 27.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

a poem to "a bit of a dog"


A BIT OF A DOG.
The smaller the dog is, the surer to wear
A pushing, important, impertinent air.

I judge from Adolphus—the least of my friends
No sooner begun than he suddenly ends.

There's never a minnow more arrowy-spry,
No needle so sharp as his little black eye.

His wiry legs flicker too quickly to see,
And often he chooses to hirple* on three.

He runs like a leaf blown along in a draught,
Half side-ways, for want of more balancing aft.

His tiny brown body goes lightly on springs,
But his thoughts are concerned with the weightiest
things.

He has to enquire, as he scouts down the street,
The business of every odd dog he may meet.

He's always on business, quick, perky, and trim,
Not walking with you—you accompany him.

At evening his gravity seems to convey
His sense of an active, responsible day.

Oh, long may you dodge death's preposterous dart,
You little brown dog with the high little heart!

*Hirple: limp.  
-- Holmes, W. Kersley. More Ballads of Field And Billet, And Other Verses. Paisley: Gardner, 1915. p. 60.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

vintage wordless wednesday redux

a rerun but a good one

Monday, May 14, 2018

zoo boy jr



I've been tripping happily through a series of American field dog stud books published from 1901 to 1923.  Why? For the sheer entertainment of the names:

Waddle
Shadeland Flashlight
Bang Bang Fred
Sheriff
Spotiferous
Zoo Boy Jr.
Bird Graphic
Smut
Princess Nicotine Buckellew
Ornithologist 
The Abbot
Kate Perry (an English Setter from Hot Springs AR)
Queen of the Stubble
. . .  and that's from ONE year.

- Rowe, Nicholas, Mrs. The Field Dog Stud Book: an Authentic Register of Names, Colors, Ages, Pedigrees, Sex, Winnings And Owners of Field Dogs On the American Continent. Chicago: American Field Pub. Co., for Mrs. Dr. N. Rowe. v. 3 (1902), 1903.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

happy mother's day!

from the museum collection
Maybe you can go over to your mom's and look over all those old snapshots of when you were that one kitten that insisted on doing your own thing.  Or maybe you're Mom and counting your kittens. Whichever it is, The Pet Museum sends you love!

Saturday, May 12, 2018

unusual modern dog fables




From a 1924 book of modern and frankly odd fables:

The Druggist, the Little Girl and Her Dog
A self-recording scale stood on the sidewalk in front of a drug store. A Woman, accompanied by her little Girl and her Dog, approached the scale. The Dog jumping on the platform, the Mother of the Girl said: "Get off, Jack; this is not for you," while the Girl, seeing the weight recorded, called out, "Forty pounds!" The Druggist standing in the doorway of the store, hearing the command of the Girl's mother, remarked, "I am willing that my scale be used by all that are my friends, the lowly as well as the high." "I am glad to hear you say that," said the Girl. "My Dog is low, but he looks up friendly to everybody."

The Dog at the Window and the Girl
A Dog was looking out of a window opening on a street, when a little Girl standing on the opposite side observed him. The Dog was motionless and the Girl was uncertain whether he was alive, or whether what she saw was the stuffed figure of the animal. So she crossed the street, and approaching the Dog smiling, he extended his head so that she could pat it.
(Moral:) To make a friend one has to approach his heart.
-- Sonntag, Lincoln. Up-to-date Animal And Other Fables. [Tarrytown, N.Y.], 1924. pp. 16, 65

Thursday, May 10, 2018

cool old cat illustration

from british library flickr (PD)
This cat is serious.  He may be only a piece of decorative embellishment in a 19th century novel* but he is going to do his damned best at it, sir. 

*From p. 115 of "Jardyne's Wife. A Novel, etc." (Etc.? - curator) (London: Trischler and Co., 1891).