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10 October, 2013

Remember all the fun of the Cat Bill 2011? Today we head to the Dog Amendment Bill 2013:

MR D.A. TEMPLEMAN (Mandurah) [10.46 am]: […] I am always interested in the science of dog ownership and the hypothesis that as owners get more attached to their dogs, they begin to resemble their dogs. I thought of this as I was driving to work from Mandurah, stuck in the traffic this morning for over two hours. I could not believe it. I left Mandurah, where I live—

Mr G.M. Castrilli: It took me two hours and 40 minutes.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: I could not believe it. Did the member go to Bunbury last night?

Mr G.M. Castrilli: No, the day before.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: I left Mandurah at 7.10 am and did not get here until 9.20 am. It took more than two hours.

Mr W.J. Johnston: Luckily there was no division.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: I would have had to deal with myself appropriately if there had been. In this spectrum of dogs that resemble their owners, I could not resist looking around at members of Parliament. I got out the parliamentary handbook with its members’ photos and I looked at members on both sides, and then I began to wonder what sort of dog they would own if this hypothesis that a person starts looking like their pet or their pet starts looking like them were true. This is certainly meant in the spirit called humour, but I did a little straw poll first of all of who actually owns a dog. Sorry, I did not ask whether the minister owns a dog.

Mr A.J. Simpson: No.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: That has destroyed my first line of attack.

Mr A.J. Simpson: I had to put it down a couple of years ago.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: Yes, I know, and a number of members have told me that they have had to put down their dogs. It is a sad thing because some people have their dog for over a decade and the bond between a pet and its owner is very strong.

I own a golden labrador called Rove. He is a beautiful dog. We are careful with our dog because he is big and our kids are small and, of course, Rove loves kids, as most labradors tend to. Whenever Rove gets around them, he basically sends them cartwheeling across the lawn. It is good character-building for them. Children need character-building in some respect; the kids will probably be acrobats when they get older. The member for West Swan told me she has two dogs, and I am glad to know she has no more than two because we have restrictions on the number of dogs a person can keep.

[Interruption from the gallery.]

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: I think there was a stranger in the house then, Mr Acting Speaker.

A member interjected.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: I was looking too. I thought it was something I ate earlier. The member for West Swan has two little Jack Russell terriers called Max and 99. We all know that the Minister for Corrective Services—was that the member for Eyre barking next to the door?—has a great love for two Alsatians. I do not think he looks anything like an Alsatian. The member for Butler has a dog that I would never have expected the member for Butler to have—a mini-schnauzer called Max. I would never have picked that. I would have picked a more elongated, hyperactive dog.

Mr M.H. Taylor: A whippet.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: Yes, a whippet for the member for Butler would be more appropriate. The member for Armadale has a dignified dog called Sophia, a golden retriever. I can just imagine the Obama-like member for Armadale, who apparently is quite often mistaken for the President of the United States, sitting in the oval office in Armadale with his beautiful wooden desk and his dog, Sophia, at his feet while making decisions on how to attack the government. The member for Cannington has a dog called Ginger. It is a labradoodle and the member describes it as the most pathetic and dumbest dog he has ever known.

Mr W.J. Johnston: Not pathetic, just dumb.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: Dumb. The member for Eyre, who was in the house before, has a kelpie or a blue heeler cross called Sally, or his son does. The member for Belmont has a dog called Bindi and she calls it a little mutt; it is a mix of all sorts. Mr Acting Speaker (Mr I.M. Britza) is unfortunately not allowed to have a dog and he is very sad about that. He tells me he would love to have a dog but he is not allowed.

I wondered then whether there are any members who actually look a little like a certain dog breed. I would have been certain, for example, that the member for South Perth would be a basset hound. The basset hound has these wonderful eyes and a wonderful look. It is a pity the member for South Perth is not in the chamber this morning because he is the epitome of a basset hound, and I am sure he would have taken that comment in the right manner. The member for Albany is the greyhound on our side; he is lean and fast. Members only have to look at the member for Collie–Preston to know that he would be a mix of everything, but I could imagine him having a strong boxer dog influence. The member for Southern River would definitely be a Doberman because we know he has a history of jumping. Dobermans jump and we know the member for Southern River is now infamous for jumping the Bar of the house at the back of the chamber. I would not be surprised if the member for Southern River actually had a Doberman.

Members may ask what this has to do with the Dog Amendment Bill 2013, and that is a very good question.

Subject: Dog Amendment Bill 2013 [Legislative Assembly – Second Reading]

Date: 8 August 2013

Hansard reference: pp. 3085-3086 [online (pdf)]

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