On top of my other dislikes and pet peeves, I need to add another one — i.e., the term “water dog.” Not the reason or history but the damn sound of it. What have dogs got to do with water apart from the fact that good owners given them warm baths every so often? Who has pleasant associations of dogs and wetness? The term sounds inane. What if someone decided to call a certain species an Arabian sand dog? Or a Lithuanian milk dog? Would that make any sense to anyone?

I recoiled the instant I heard the term. It made me think of a dog covered with water-filled tumors, and an image of the tumors bursting and spilling water all over the floor when you pick the dog up. Revolting. I’m not kidding or putting anyone on about this — I really don’t care or the sound of it. Obviously not the dogs themselves.