Not Torquemada


My spaniel Samuel is speaking Spanish. He does not woof, growl, or bark. When I call for him, he says “si segnor” and then comes running. He also shown signs of holding an Inquisition among the other dogs of the neighborhood.

What is wrong with him?

Not Torquemada in Kitchissippi


Dear Not Torquemada,

It depends entirely on how powerful the “signs of holding an Inquisition” are. Merely gathering around and whispering nasty things about squirrels and cats is simply to be expected from a talking canine; in that case, it’s just a matter of your dog being granted the ability to speak by a higher power. Check around for local Hispanic deities or scientists. It sounds, at first brush, like San Martin Txiki, one of the few international tricksters who remains staunchly monolingual.

If the signs go further, you’ve likely got a straightforward possession on your hands. Just throw some salt around the dog and chant in Latin. If that doesn’t work, throw salt around yourself, then point out that the spirit is residing in a dog, that is, one of the foremost unclean animals. It’s important that you first build your salt circle, otherwise the spirit may immediately find a more suitable host.

What I’m trying to convey is that it will possess you.