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Arthur's Pet Business (episode)

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This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the book, the VHS, or the DVD.
"Arthur's Pet Business"
Arthur's Pet Business title card.png
Season/Series: 1
Number in season: 5a
Original Airdate: United States October 11, 1996[1]
Canada January 10, 1997[2]
Written by: Joe Fallon
Storyboard by: Jean Lajeunesse
"Arthur's Lost Library Book"
"D.W. the Copycat"
Read transcript
I feel sorry for the world.

Mr. Read

"Arthur's Pet Business" is the first half of the fifth episode in the first season of Arthur. It is based on the book Arthur's Pet Business.


Arthur wants a dog very badly, but he has to prove he's responsible first. Arthur decides to start his own pet business in order to prove that he's responsible, which includes watching over the neighborhood dog Perky, who is very mean and aggressive.


Arthur is looking through the window of Al's Pet Shop. He wishes he could have a dog, for he thinks it could be helpful. In his imagination, Baby Kate is up high in a tree, crying, while her Mom stands at the bottom watching in despair. Suddenly, Arthur runs up with a collie dog. Arthur commands his dog to get Kate down, thus the dog obeys, picks up Kate with its mouth and brings it down to their mom. His mom is very grateful for him to have a dog, while the collie licks Arthur. After his imagination, he is standing, in a wary matter, up against the window. He then says, "But I never expected this", and the camera cuts to Perky, growling at him.

Arthur is doing homework until the timer rings, letting Arthur know that he needs to brush Perky. He brushes her an even hundred times, which relieves Perky, but only temporarily.

At dinner, the timer rings again, which reminds Arthur to feed the dog. He feeds her in a very finicky way: a quarter-tablespoon of chicken, a quarter-tablespoon of liver, the middle of a cheeseburger, without a pickle, and a cherry on top. He gives it to Perky, but she doesn't eat it; Arthur wonders why, and then notices he forgot the parsley.

Arthur's family is watching Bionic Bunny on TV, until the timer rings again, which begins to annoy Arthur.

Later, Arthur is taking a bath, when the timer rings once again, which exasperates Arthur. Arthur rolls out a mat for Perky across his bed. Perky notices a wrinkle, which Arthur fixes. Arthur begins to tire out from taking care of Perky. Later on, while Arthur is feeding Perky, his mom asks if he wants a dog if it's a lot of work. Arthur knows that if he can take care of Perky, he can take care of any pet.

Suddenly, D.W. enters and tells Arthur that Prunella wants him to take care of her ant farm. Prunella instructs Arthur about what to do and to put on music for them on Tuesdays. D.W. looks out the door and notices that the signs Arthur put up have worked. Arthur looks outside and sees a large line of people and their pets that need care.

The house is then full of animals, including a pig, frogs, a cat, a dog, a bird, an ant farm, a turtle, a turkey, fish, a rabbit, a mouse and a snake. Arthur's dad becomes concerned about all the animals. Arthur is worried too, about how he will keep them on schedule. D.W. is in the bathtub, screaming; four frogs are jumping around in the bathroom. D.W. runs out of the tub with only a towel and runs to her room. Dad runs upstairs to see if she's all right, and Arthur says, "Uh-oh" in a quiet tone (as though he has a hunch about what happened).

Arthur then notices Kate shaking the ant farm. Arthur quickly grabs it out of her hands, which causes her to cry. Perky growls at a bird in its cage, which scares it. In fear it escapes from its cage, having Arthur to chase it. While running after it, he steps on a cat's tail. Arthur's mom is nervous, for a snake is wrapped around her legs. Then D.W. and Dad enter the room rather angrily.

The scene then fades in to where Arthur puts all the pets in the basement to store them. The timer rings again, telling Arthur it's time to walk Perky. He then smiles, and asks D.W. if she would like to be his assistant; he'll pay her two dollars. D.W. is more than happy to do this, and then says “Let’s just say three dollars a week.” Arthur says “Deal” and they shake hands. Arthur then heads off to walk Perky, while D.W. smiles.

While walking Perky, he says hello to the mailman. But he notices Perky growling loudly and asks what he did; Arthur objects, claiming he took care of her. But the mailman is unsure, for he never saw Perky so mad before.

Later, Arthur checks a dog care book and sees that he did do everything just right, but Perky is more unfriendly than ever. He is sad, because he thinks he isn't a dog person and that when Mrs. Wood picks Perky up, she will tell everyone that he made her dog even worse.

Arthur has Perky's things all packed and ready. D.W. tells Arthur that he should be happy, because he is returning Perky and is going to earn ten dollars. But Arthur is sad for he thinks he can never have a puppy. His parents let Arthur know that Mrs. Wood is coming to pick Perky up. Arthur goes to get her ready, only to find that he can't find her. He asks his family if they had seen her. His parents notice that they haven't heard her make any sound that day. The family looks all around, but have no luck finding her.

Arthur is even more sad; he says that he wrecks dogs, and loses them: "Now I know I should never have a dog."

The doorbell rings and his mom answers it. It's Mrs. Wood, coming to pick Perky up. D.W. promptly enters and tells Mrs. Wood that Arthur lost Perky. In reaction to this, Mrs. Wood begins to worry about Perky's safety, while Dad is sorry for the world. Immediately, Arthur calls everyone to come to the den. They all run in and see that Perky had puppies — three to be exact.

And Perky is no longer growling, but is now happy, revealing that the reason she was so grumpy was because she was pregnant. Mrs. Wood gratefully thanks Arthur for taking good care of Perky and gives him the ten dollars. She then asks him if he wants one of the puppies as a reward. Arthur is surprised, and looks at his parents, who smile. His dad allows this, saying that he's earned it.

Arthur is overjoyed to hear this and wonders what he should name his new puppy. "Ten dollars," D.W. answers. Arthur thinks that's a ridiculous name. However, D.W. then explains that she was talking about the money he owed her — seven he first owed, and three for being his assistant, which comes to ten dollars.

Arthur merely smiles at this while holding the ten dollar bill.



  • One of the customers in the line clearly looks like Brain, only old and rugged and smoking a pipe.
  • Timeline:
    • Arthur tells (and retells) the story from this episode in "Arthur Writes a Story".
    • The story is briefly mentioned in "D.W. Tale Spins".
    • Before the previous episodes because, Arthur has picked Pal as his adoptive dog, and it's revealed that Perky is his mother.

Cultural references[edit]

Episode connections[edit]


  • When Arthur is running up the stairs in excitement, D.W. is wearing her normal clothes, but after she hears about Arthur having to watch Perky, she's in her pajamas. Although, it was bedtime.
  • During the scene when Arthur is taking a bath, the bubbles are floating upwards, which is impossible, for bubbles are filled with air and not helium. It's possible the air conditioner was turned on and the blowing air made the bubbles float up.
  • The cage the bird escaped from is missing a lock.
  • Two of Perky's babies were orange in the first scene, but yellow in the next.

Home video[edit]