Steig can dress a floppy-eared, benign-looking dog in vest, armbands, and bow tie, give him the somehow perfectly suitable name of Tiffky Doofky, make him a jolly garbage collector on his way to a picnic--and who can resist going along? Tiffky Doofky is even more eager to get to the picnic after a visit to Madam Tarsal the fortuneteller, a duck who predicts that "This very day before the sun goes down, you will fail in love with the one you are going to marry. Nothing you can do can keep it from happening." But Tiffky Doofky never does make the party, for on the way he runs into a bike-riding biddy in baboushka who sends him off to a strange landscape and a series of dreamlike encounters. (The hen, it seems, is an evil rival of Madam Tarsal, maliciously enchanting Tiffky Doofky until she loses interest and he wakes up back in familiar territory--but Steig puts this information in parentheses as if scorning the pretense of working it into the story.) The duck's prophecy is fulfilled delightfully when Tiffky Doofky, dreaming of a gentle, sinuous caress, wakes to find himself in the coils of a boa constrictor--but the snake's carnival trainer, following close behind, is the pink-frocked poodle he's been waiting for. She might, however, disappoint readers with her pale, prissy appearance. But who's to quibble, when the whole is as good-naturedly loose as Tiffky Doofky himself, as arbitrary as vindictive magic--or falling in love.