The family is forced to scrimp, save and cut back in order to pay for Santa's Little Helper's life-saving surgery.
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Homer Simpson, Grampa Simpson, Barney Gumble, Krusty the Clown, Groundskeeper Willie, and others
Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, Moe Szyslak, Chief Wiggum, Comic Book Guy, Lou, and others
Mr. Burns, Ned Flanders, Principal Skinner, Waylon Smithers, Kent Brockman, and others
Marge Simpson, Patty Bouvier, and Selma Bouvier
Bart Simpson, Nelson Muntz, Ralph Wiggum, Todd Flanders, and others
Maude Flanders, Helen Lovejoy, Miss Hoover, and others
Santa's Little Helper and Additional Animal Voices
Ned Flanders wears his Assassins sneakers. He bought them in 7F14, "Bart's Dog Gets an F."
A "Give a Hoot! Read a Book!" poster hangs in the library
Miss Hoover's hair color is blue in this episode.
Mr. Burns' aging attack dog is named Crippler.
Santa's Little Helper is picked up by the dog pound truck on the Michael Jackson Expressway, named so in 7F24, "Stark Raving Dad."
On Santa's Little Helper's journey, he passes through Swartzwelder Country, referencing John Swartzwelder, the writer of this episode.
The lion statues, outside the Veterinary Hospital, are wrapped in bandages.
A smaller newspaper headline reads: "President, Rock Star To Swap Wives."
A missing dog poster is placed over a missing Skinner flyer, from episode 8F03 "Bart the Murderer."
The animation used when Bart said, "I'm not giving up. I don't care if I have to knock on every door in this stupid town, I'm going to find my dog" and the animation used when Homer said, "And I'll be right here watching TV" was recycled from earlier episodes.
Goof: Marge said that the odds of winning the lottery were 380,000,000 to one, but a tv announce said the odds were 180,000,000 to one.
Homer: (about Santa's Little Helper) Aw, how come he gets meat and we don't?
Marge: You wouldn't want what he's eating, it's mostly just snouts and entrails.
Homer: Mmmm, snouts.
Veterinarian: This is the part of the job I hate the most. (Tosses hampster into trashcan with mini-basketball hoop)
Homer: Hey, you did the best you could.
Veterinarian: I love animals. I spend my life saving them and they can't thank me. Well, the parrots can. Let's see what's wrong with this one.
Bart: (after Homer explains about Doggie Heaven) Hey, wait a minute. Does this have to do anything with Santa's Little Helper?
Marge: Oh, honey, seven hundred and fifty dollars is a lot of money. We really can't afford this operation.
Bart: You're gonna just let him die?
Marge: I know you're upset.
Bart: Darn right, I'm upset!
Marge: Bart! Watch your language! Oh, you did. Sorry.
Bart: I'm not gonna let our dog die and that's it! (leaves the kitchen and mumbles to himself)
Homer: I want to tell you about the most wonderful place in the world: Doggie Heaven. In Doggie Heaven, there are mountains of bones, and you can't turn around without sniffing another dog's butt! And all the best dogs are there, Old Yeller, and about eight Lassies.
Bart: Is there a Doggie Hell?
Homer: Well… of course, there couldn't be a heaven if there weren't a hell.
Bart: Who's in there?
Homer: Oh, uh… Hitler's dog… and that dog Nixon had, what's his name, um, Chester…
Homer: Yeah! One of the Lassies is in there, too. The mean one! The one who mauled Timmy!
Homer: I wanna pet him again!
Marge: You can pet the cat.
Homer: The cat? What's the point?
Homer: (on Kent Brockman) Well, he's got all the money in the world, but there's one thing he can't buy.
Marge: What's that?
Homer: (Thinks for a moment) A dinosaur!
Marge: Well, we lost the money, but at least we still have each other.
Grampa: Hey, the dog's dead.
Kent Brockman: But there's already one big winner...Our state school system, which gets fully half the profits from the library.
Skinner: Just think what we can buy with that money...History books that know how the Korean War came out. Math books that don't have that base six crap in them! And a state-of-the-art detention hall, where children are held in place by magnets.
Homer: You don't understand, Marge. The lottery is the one ray of hope in my otherwise unbearable life! (pause) Uh, the lottery and you.
Announcer: The state lottery, where everybody wins! (quickly) Actual odds of winning one in three hundred and eighty million.
Lisa: Poor Santa's Little Helper, I'm starting to think we'll never see him again!
Homer: That was his dish, and that was his leash...and that's where he took a whizz on the rug.
Smithers: Wanna buy some cookies, wanna buy some cookies?
(Santa's Little Helper runs up to Smithers and greets him)
Burns: If that were a real girl scout, I would have been bothered by now!
Burns: Well neighbor, I see you've got your running shoes on, that's a good thing! Smithers, release the hounds. (Flanders runs and screams like a little girl)
Bart: Oh, it's all my fault! I called him a dumb dog!
Homer: Oh, he's gone and he's never coming back...wait, there he is!...no, that's a horse.
Homer: Marge, I've figured out an alternative to giving up my beer. Basically, we become a family of travelling acrobats!
Marge: I don't think you've thought this through...
Homer: If you were seventeen, we'd be rich, but nooo...you had to be ten!
Homer: Bart, I need some lucky numbers, fast, how old are you? Uh huh, and what's your birthday?...No kidding, and what's Lisa's birthday? What, you don't know your sister's birthday, what kind of brother are you?
Barney: You know, I heard the jackpot is up to one hundred and thirty million dollars.
Homer: PFF!...ONE HUNDRED AND THIRTY MILLION DOLLARS!!!!
Barney: Did you say one hundred and thirty million dollars?
Bart: I'm not giving up. I don't care if I have to knock on every door in this two-bit town. I'm going to find my dog!
Homer: And I'll be right here watching TV!
Marge: The odds of winning are 380,000,000 to 1.
Homer: Correction: 380,000,000 to 50!
Marge: Homie, did you close the gate?
Homer: Yes. (Gate thumps loudly) Oh, you mean tonight.
Smithers: People like dogs, Mr. Burns.
Burns: Nonsense, dogs are idiots. Think about it Smithers, if I came into your room and started sniffing at your crotch and slobbering all over your face, what would you say?
Smithers: Umm...if you did it, sir?
Marge: Even if he has passed on, there's no reason to cry. Remember Doggie Heaven?
Homer: Oh, Marge, there is no such place!
Marge: (Clears throat, indicating Bart and Lisa)
Homer: Or, to put it another way, there is.
Wiggum: (Answers phone) Uh, no you've got the wrong number. This is 9-1... 2.
Mr. Burns: What makes a man endanger his job, and, yes, even his life, by asking me for money?
The plot for this episode was based on a dog that writer John Swartzwelder had as a child, the dog became sick and his family could not afford to pay for its operation so it was put to sleep.
Until his death, Vince Edwards said one of his favorite moments was being parodied on The Simpsons, and he was actually remembered for his work.
Blackboard Joke: I saw nothing unusual in the teacher's lounge.
Couch Gag: Homer lies on the couch then the rest of the family sits on him.
Peter and the Wolf
The music that follows Santa's Little Helper's adventure when he runs away from home is from the musical Peter and the Wolf.
Croesus and Mammon: This is the intersection at which Monty Burns lives. Croesus was the King of Lydia in 6th century BC infamous for his fabulous wealth (and vanity about it). Mammon was a demon in Judeo-Christian theology famous for his extreme avarice.
Santa's Little Helper attacking the bear is a take on the film Old Yeller.
The vet, along with a number of other site gags and the theme music are all a parody of the 1960's show Ben Casey.
Santa's Little Helper rescuing a baby from a burning building is a paordy of an episode of Lassie.
A Clockwork Orange
To toughen up Santa's Little Helper, Mr. Burns straps him to a chair, puts devices on his eyes that won't let him blink, and shows him movies of dog brutality. This is just like the Alex's treatment from the book/movie A Clockwork Orange.
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