THE BLOG

To Cure a Racist Dog

04/22/2013 01:42 pm ET | Updated Feb 24, 2014

My family has a Saint Bernard. He is 150 pounds of pure joy. Racist joy. What? Ya. My dog is racist. Let me re-phrase that, my dog was racist. He was cured when the dog whisperer came over and told him what's what.

When we first got my dog, Charlie, he was roughly the size of a small boyfriend, or a big baby, take your pick. Point is, he was cute as hell.

He was gaining ten pounds a week and never quite understood his own strength and size. When he was a puppy and would bark at non-white people, it was weird, but we didn't think too much about it. He just seemed like a weird dog. When he got bigger and started snarling and baring his teeth at people, it was a Saint Bernard-sized problem.

You might be thinking, This makes sense. Dogs are colorblind, and if he was only exposed to a white family as a puppy, it would follow that he would not understand the varying colors of the outside world.

Thing is, my dog was more discriminatory than that. He would chase my Asian friends out the door. Hispanic friends who might even pass as white in the eyes of a colorblind dog -- Charlie could tell. Black people didn't stand a chance. It was odd, to say the least.

I began to imagine hypothetical situations like: If my Saint Bernard were not in sunny Los Angeles, and was instead in the snow saving people from avalanches (like he was originally bred to do), would he rescue a fallen person that wasn't white? Probably not.

It was at this point when my mom said, "Something needs to be done about this racist dog. I'm calling the dog whisperer."

How very Los Angeles.

Good idea, mom. No, but seriously, it was a good idea.

Upon the arrival of the dog whisperer, we were instructed to invite our friends of color to our house to face the dog. Dun Dun Dunnn! Convincing them to come is a whole other story. Long story short, we got around five people (of varying races) to agree, and it was like the best culture fair I had ever been to. I secretly wished that they were each required to bring a dish from their respective muthalands.

The dog whisperer came and looked Charlie straight in the eye, and with a glance told him what's up. "Here is what is up, you will not be a racist dog anymore."

Charlie wasn't going to give in that easily.

The dog whisperer pet Charlie's head and informed us that he had anxiety. Makes sense. My family is entirely composed of neurotic Jews. So I guess that makes my dog a neurotic Jew too.

According to the whisperer: Charlie's anxiety stemmed from the fact that people were constantly petting him without his permission. And it was true. This dog is the ultimate chick magnet, and taking him on a walk meant being stopped by at least two people per block for a nice lonnnnnggggg pet. People don't see full-grown massive St. Bs in L.A. too often, so everyone wants a piece of the action.

This still didn't explain his aversion to people that weren't white.

One by one, our friends reluctantly marched in. Charlie would start to shake with rage, but the dog whisperer taught us how to have more authority in our voices, and to give him commands like "Charlie, go to your place!" Charlie could feel the power of the whisperer, and amazingly, he listened to him.

After some practice runs, Charlie learned his place (in life). I never did discover the true root of his racism, but I will go ahead and say it's a systemic problem inherent in our society's ideological faux pas that somehow surfaced in my dog through the verisimilitude of recursive osmosis? Ya, ya.. That sounds right. Right?