Trouble the Millionaire Dog

Posted on June 10, 2011


Today the world mourns the death of Trouble the millionaire dog.

You may remember Trouble as billionaire Leona Helmsley’s Maltese who received $12 million in inheritance when Helmsley died in 2007.

RIP Trouble

The news articles covering Trouble’s death mentioned she received death threats throughout her life from people angry that a dog would inherit 12 million dollars.  None of the articles was clear on the exact wording of the death threats, but I assume it was something along the lines of a letter reading:

“Who’s a bad dog?  Who’s a bad dog?  Who’s a bad dog?”

Because Trouble is a dog and probably can’t read and write, I assume this message would have been lost on her and a more effective threat would have been:

“Ruff, ruff, ruff!  Growl!  Ruff!”

I say Trouble probably can’t read and write because the police aren’t entirely convinced of the authenticity of the Last Will and Testament giving Trouble the $12 million and are highly suspicious of Leona Helmsley’s signature:

Declarant's Signature, Leona Helmsley

The media would like you to believe Trouble was a sweet, innocent dog hated solely because of her inheritance, but wealth changed Trouble and she won herself many enemies over the years.  For example, Trouble was known to visit all the best New York City restaurants, where she would walk past all the other patrons in line, bark until she got the best table, and then continue to bark at the staff throughout dinner.  She would bark when shown the wine list, bark when the soup was too hot,  and bark when the soup was too cold.  The only time she stopped barking was at the end of the meal when the head chef came from the kitchen to ask what Trouble thought of the veal piccata and she would give her reply to his shoes with a lift of her leg.

She also had a famous falling out with the New York arts community when she embarrassed the Metropolitan Opera by interrupting the climax of Puccini’s Nessun Dorma to sniff Pavarotti’s crotch.

She was also loathed by the children of her staff because she loved to sneak into the children’s rooms at night and eat their homework, knowing their teachers would never believe the excuse, “My dad’s boss ate my homework.”

Many readers may be wondering how much money a dog really needs.  How could Trouble possibly spend $12 million?  Two of Helmsley’s grandchildren were cut out of her final will–apparently because they didn’t name any of their children after Leona’s late husband–and the grandchildren challenged the will in court.  Trouble’s lawyers were forced to give an accounting of Trouble’s recent purchases:

$500,000: Commissioned a humorous painting of humans playing poker

$2,500,000: Golden fire hydrant

$1,000,000: Hitman contract on Bob Barker

$2,400,000: 15 luxury cars–Trouble insisted on purchasing every car she caught and always had expensive tastes

$50,000: Cosmetic tail-lengthening surgery allowing Trouble to catch her own tail

$25,000: Custom dog leashes which made it appear Trouble was walking the human

$700,000: Avant-garde sculpture of a cat stuck in a tree

$200,000: Valuable collection of tennis balls signed by celebrity tennis players

$100,000: Tiny flea collars for fleas, repelling each flea from all other fleas and preventing them from reproducing

$4,000,000: Donation to Harvard scientists researching how to teach old dogs new tricks