Santa's Little Helper

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Santa's Little Helper is a fictional dog. He is the Simpson family's pet Greyhound.



In his first appearance in "Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire", Homer was relying on a Christmas bonus to buy presents, but did not get it. He was relying on this bonus because the jar of Christmas money that Marge accumulates for the family's Christmas treats was disposed of to pay for the removal of a tattoo that Bart got on his arm. Homer took the small amount of Christmas money he made working as a Santa at the Springfield Mall and bet it at the dog track. Although Homer had inside information on which dog was going to win; he instead bet on the "long shot," Santa's Little Helper, believing the dog's name to be a sign. Santa's Little Helper finished last and his frustrated owner abandoned him. Homer and Bart adopted Santa's Little Helper, and everyone was so happy that it was a merry Christmas after all.

In various episodes, Santa's Little Helper can be seen chewing on newspaper and other objects in the Simpsons' household, tearing up the furniture, digging holes in the backyard and eating food from the dining room table. During the second-season episode "Bart's Dog Gets an F", Homer is fed up with the dog's rambunctious ways and threaten to give away Santa's Little Helper unless he graduates from an obedience school. Santa's Little Helper's life with the Simpsons was not always easy: he nearly died of gastric torsion (referred to in the show as a "twisting of the stomach") during the third season because Homer initially could not afford $750 for the required operation, and he also broke two legs when Bart's tree house was demolished by Mr. Burns' oil well ("Who Shot Mr. Burns? (Part One)").

In the episode "The Canine Mutiny" during the 8th season, Santa's Little Helper was briefly abandoned by Bart for Laddie, a purebred and very well-trained collie he bought from a mail-order catalog together with various other expensive gifts and gadgets. To do that, Bart used a charge card he applied for under the name of his dog, yet the credit card company misread the form and issued a card to Mr. "Santos L. Halper". Laddie learned many tricks that Santa's Little Helper was completely unable to perform—most notably a back flip, CPR and using a toilet (however, in "The Seven-Beer Snitch", Santa's Little Helper demonstrates the ability to fly a plane). The Simpson family nearly forgot about their old pet, and Bart eventually gave him away instead of Laddie when repo men take back everything he fraudulently purchased. Feeling guilty about this disloyalty and bored with his too perfect new dog, Bart tried to get Santa's Little Helper back. When he finally found him, Santa's Little Helper was serving as a seeing-eye dog for a blind man named Mr. Mitchell, but eventually decided to return to his former owner, Bart.

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