Only Fools and Horses Wiki
Sleeping Dogs Lie
Series 04, Episode 05
Sleeping Dogs Lie.jpg
Air Date March 21, 1985
Written by John Sullivan
Director Susan Belbin
Length 30 minutes
Previous episode "It's Only Rock and Roll"
Next episode "Watching the Girls Go By"
List of episode

Del and Rodney babysit Boycie and Marlene's new dog, Duke.


As Uncle Albert watches an old horror movie on TV and Rodney bemoans about the lack of jobs in London, Del Boy has found another opportunity to be a millionaire by babysitting Boycie and Marlene's new puppy named Duke.

The Trotter Brothers arrive at Boycie's house and learn that Duke is a Great Dane who eats meat and pork, takes vitamin pills, and nearly kills people when playing with them.

The next day, Del and Rodney arrive at the park. Del reminds Rodney that it's his turn to take Duke for a run. As Del walks off to hit on a beautiful woman walking a Dachshund, Rodney is horrified to see Duke lying in the back of the Trotter Van with no sign of life, and tells Del the bad news. The Trotter Brothers run back to the van to see that Duke is still breathing, and quickly drive him to the vet.

At a local veterinary clinic, as Rodney believes that Duke being ill is all because of Albert, the vet enters and tells the Trotter brothers that Duke is not injured, yet his illness is a mystery. Del mentions that Duke ate re-heated pork. The vet comes to the conclusion that Duke has been struck down with salmonella poisoning, and so has Albert since he ate the rest of it. Del phones Albert and tells him that he has to go to hospital.

Later that night, back at the flat, Boycie and Marlene phone the Trotters to check on Duke, and Del pretends to be Duke by doing a quick barking noise into the telephone receiver.

The next morning, the Trotter Brothers arrive at the hospital to pick up Albert, who complains about what the doctors were doing to him. The good news Del has for Albert is that there was nothing wrong with him, and he's fine. Also, Duke has made a complete recovery and is back on his feet.

A doctor then shows them a bottle of pills given to him by one of the sisters. Apparently, patients aren't allowed to bring their own medicine into the hospital, so says the doctor. Del points out that those pills are Duke's vitamin tablets. Rodney denies it, says that he's got Duke's vitamin tablets, and pulls out a bottle that looks identical to the other one. After seeing both bottles, Del discovers the truth behind Duke's condition: Rodney had been feeding him Albert's sleeping pills. Del and Rodney decide not to tell Albert that he'd been on the "Bob Martin's".

Featured characters

Other notes

Episode concept

  • The idea for the script was purely based on a gag someone told John Sullivan.

Continuity errors

  • Del refers to Salmonella Poisoning as "Sam and Ella Poisoning", whereas in the first episode "Big Brother", he knew perfectly well what the illness was, when mentioning the "Salmonella and Chips" frequently cooked by Grandad.