Pregnant Paws is the 39th episode of King of the Hill. It was first aired on October 13, 1998. The episode was written by Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger, and directed by Chris Moeller. The title is a reference to the idiom "Pregnant pause".
Hank is aghast to discover Ladybird walking outside the house wearing a pair of his old underwear. Peggy explains that the dog is in heat. Hank decides it is time to breed the animal before it is too late. He pairs Ladybird with one of Mr. Strickland's males. Afterward, Hank and Peggy bring Ladybird to a veterinarian's office where they are informed that the union was unsuccessful due to the dog's narrow uterus. Hank recalls a similar situation some fourteen years earlier, when he and Peggy were trying to conceive. At the time, Dr. Rubin informed Hank that he and Peggy were unable to have children due to Hank's narrow urethra, the result of years of chronic tension. But Hank receives new hope about Ladybird when two fellow dog owners fill him in on all the latest techniques for impregnating an animal.
Meanwhile, Dale encounters a bounty hunter at the Arlen shooting range, County Gun Club. Enticed by the man's stylish hat, which reads "Bounty Hunter," Dale decides to enroll in a four-hour training course so he, too, can "hunt humans." After Dale successfully completes the course, he receives his first assignment from a bail bondsman: tracking a fugitive named Jimmy Helstrom, who is wanted for a series of unpaid parking violations.
As Hank spends more and more time attempting to impregnate Ladybird, Peggy grows irritable. In flashback, Peggy recalls how Hank refused to consider artificial insemination when they were trying to conceive. Instead, Hank gave up on the notion of having children altogether and did the next best thing: he purchased a puppy and named it Ladybird. Meanwhile, Dale finds his prey holed up in a remote cabin. His efforts to apprehend the fugitive fail when a pack of snarling guard dogs blocks his path. Thinking quickly, Dale dognaps Ladybird and uses her to distract the vicious canines. The ploy works and Dale comes face to face with the armed fugitive. Unfortunately, both men panic and throw down their weapons, resulting in a stand-off. Hank discovers Ladybird is missing and finds Dale's note detailing the dog's whereabouts. Hank and Peggy rush to the cabin, where they find a dehydrated Ladybird sitting in Dale's truck surrounded by the vicious dogs. The couple has a heated discussion, during which Peggy mentions she might want another child. Hank tells her that he does too, admitting that he's always believed that playing with Ladybird when she was a puppy relaxed him enough to allow his narrow urethra to open so the couple could conceive; hence, he believes having another puppy will help them achieve the same result. The pair rescues Ladybird and returns home, where they roll around on the floor as they had fourteen years earlier. Meanwhile, the stand-off between Dale and the fugitive transitions to the living room, where they sit on the couch, eating dinner and watching television while keeping their guns pointed at each other, tensions high. Then he offers Dale more Spaghetti-Os.
- Hank Hill
- Peggy Hill
- Bobby Hill
- Luanne Platter
- Dale Gribble
- Jeff Boomhauer
- Bill Dauterive
- Kahn Souphanousinphone
- Buck Strickland
- Stuart Dooley
- Jimmy Helstrom (cameo)
- Dr. Rubin (cameo)
- Bounty Hunter (cameo)
- Buddy (cameo)
- While Dale is inside of the house with the vicious dogs, he turns off the TV while in the house. Before he turned it off, what was playing at the time was the opening of the TV show "Sanford and Son".
- The name of the episode may be a nod to the Beavis and Butthead episode Pregnant Pause.
- Since Bobby bought $26 worth of dog biscuits and there was only 8, it is assume that one biscuit only cost $3.25.
- The show Dale and the bounty hunter are watching at the end of the episode is from the TV show Whats Happening!!
- When reading Dale's note Hank says "nab criminal" but the note actually reads "collar criminal".