Last week, two-hundred pound St. Bernard Walter Barkley, was commissioned by a carnival company to give pseudo-horseback rides to children. The company decided they could not afford to hire real horses, so they set their sights on more inexpensive talent. Walter was flattered by the request but nervous for the execution: he never thought he was the entertaining type.
There were several performance requirements for the gig. Walter would be required to wear a harness strapped to his back which would then be attached to a chain and connected to a central rotating pole. Walter, along with eight other St. Bernards, would circle around this merry-go-round fixture for one minute and thirty seconds. Only children under fifty pounds would be able to saddle up and ride the big hounds in order to prevent chronic doggy back pain. However, carnival staff would not be able to ask the kids their weight as to avoid harassment lawsuits.
Unfortunately this ride has not made it past the beta testing phase so far. It was revealed that St. Bernards do not like to be told what to do. Apparently the dogs didn’t feel that it was worth their while to parade around in a circle. In one test circuit, eight children saddled up and proceeded to cry as each St. Bernard laid down and refused to move.
Walter quickly realized that this was not the gig he signed up for. The other dogs were highly unmotivated and uninspired. One carnival employee agreed “Walter stands tall among the rest of the dogs, he is always ready to impress and can be easily motivated by the wave of a piece of fried chicken.” Walter was the only dog to successfully complete a ride cycle with a child on his back.
The carnival staff is looking into making the ride a solo venture, featuring Walter. Walter’s owners, Larry and Wanda, are excited to aid Walter in achieving his newfound dream. They proudly admitted, “He never thought he could be a show dog before, he never had the confidence. But now that he sees his potential, the options are limitless.” Wanda is currently speaking with Universal Studios about creating a Beethoven sequel starring Walter. Universal responded by stating that they’d already produced six sequels, each of which were highly unsuccessful.