Walking the Dog

Rufus Thomas

About Walking the Dog

"Walking the Dog" (or "Walkin' the Dog") is a Rufus Thomas song. It was released on his 1963 album Walking the Dog. It was his signature hit and also his biggest, reaching number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 in December 1963 and remaining on the Hot 100 for 14 weeks. The lyrics make references to children's nursery rhymes, especially Miss Mary Mack. The song was recorded several months later by the Rolling Stones in 1964. Unlike most Stones' recordings, the song features harmony vocals on the chorus solely by Brian Jones (most early Stones songs feature Jones and Bill Wyman on backing vocals, with Keith Richards replacing the two not long after), which makes their recording of the song unique in their catalogue. The only hit version in the UK was by the Dennisons, whose recording reached number 36 on the UK singles chart in 1964. Many other artists also recorded the song, including Aerosmith, Johnny Rivers, John Cale, Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames, Roger Daltrey, Green Day, Hans Theessink, the Flamin' Groovies, the Kingsmen, the Sonics, Ace Cannon, Jackie Shane, the Trashmen, Luv'd Ones, Bob Paisley and the Southern Grass and Ratt. It was performed live occasionally by the Grateful Dead in 1966, 1970, and the mid-eighties. 


 Become A Better Singer In Only 30 Days, With Easy Video Lessons!

Baby's back, dressed in black,
Silver buttons all down her back
High, low, tipsy toe,
She broke a needle and she can't sew

Walkin' the dog,
Just walkin' the dog
If you don't know how to do it,
I'll show you how to walk te dog

Asked a fellow for fifteen cents,
See the fellow he jumped the fence
Jumped so high he touched the sky,
Never got back till the fourth of July

Walkin' the dog,
Just walkin' the dog
If you don't know how to do it,
I'll show you how to walk the dog

Come on now, come on, come on

Mary, Mary, quite contrary
Tell me, how does your garden grow?
You got silver bells and you got cockleshells
Pretty maids all in a row

Walking the dog
Just a walkin' the dog
If you don't know how to do it
Show you how to walk the dog

Come on now, come on, come on
Oh oh, just a, just a, just a walkin'
Just a, just a, just a walkin'
Just a, just a, just a walkin'

Oh yeah, if you don't know how to do it
I'll show you how to walk the dog, oh

Just a, just a, just a, just a, just a, just a walkin'
Just a, just a, just a, just a, just a, just a walkin', oh

 Watch: New Singing Lesson Videos Can Make Anyone A Great Singer

Rufus Thomas

Rufus Thomas, Jr. (March 27, 1917 – December 15, 2001) was an American rhythm and blues, funk and soul singer and comedian from Memphis, Tennessee, who recorded on Sun Records in the 1950s and on Stax Records in the 1960s and 1970s. He was the father of soul singer Carla Thomas and keyboard player Marvell Thomas. A third child, Vaneese, a former French teacher, has a recording studio in upstate New York and sings for television commercials. more »

0 fans

Written by: Rufus Thomas

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind

6 facts about this song

1. "Walking the Dog" was included in Aerosmith's eponymous debut studio album, "Aerosmith," released in 1973. 2. Aerosmith's version of the song brings a more rock and roll feel to it, in line with the band's signature style. 3. The band frequently performed "Walking the Dog" in their initial years, even before their album release.
John Cale
1. "Walking the Dog" became a feature of John Cale's live set in the 1980s, though it's not included in any of his studio albums. 2. Cale's way of performing the song was known for his traditional blues emphasis mixed with experimental tendencies. 3. John Cale's version of the song focuses on the strength of the musicianship rather than the charm of the lyrics like the original.
Roger Daltrey
1. Roger Daltrey, lead singer from the rock band 'The Who', covered "Walking the Dog" in his second solo studio album, "Ride a Rock Horse" in 1975. 2. Daltrey's version of the song was a departure from the traditional rhythm and blues style of the original and falls more into rock. 3. Unlike the other versions, Daltrey's version of the song has a more complex arrangement, including a larger number of instruments.
Rufus Thomas
1. "Walking the Dog" was originally recorded by Rufus Thomas and was his biggest hit. 2. Rufus Thomas's original version of the song was released by the legendary Memphis label, "Stax Records," in 1963. 3. Thomas's original recording was subsequently covered by many bands and artists including the Rolling Stones and Aerosmith.
The Rolling Stones
1. "Walking the Dog" was covered by the Rolling Stones in their debut album, "The Rolling Stones," in 1964. 2. The Stones' version of "Walking the Dog" features their early bluesy and raw rock & roll sound. 3. It is one of the few cover songs included in their debut album, indicating their admiration for Rufus Thomas's music.
The Sonics
1. The Sonics covered "Walking the Dog" in their debut studio album, "Here are The Sonics," released in 1965. 2. The Sonics' version of the song helped them establish their aggressive garage-rock sound, which heavily influenced punk rock. 3. They interpreted the song in a fast-paced, aggressive style compared with other covers, which aligns with their signature sound.

Discuss the Walking the Dog Lyrics with the community:



    Use the citation below to add these lyrics to your bibliography:


    "Walking the Dog Lyrics." Lyrics.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 4 Dec. 2023. <https://www.lyrics.com/lyric/2180/Rufus+Thomas/Walking+the+Dog>.

    Missing lyrics by Rufus Thomas?

    Know any other songs by Rufus Thomas? Don't keep it to yourself!

    Watch the song video

    Walking the Dog

    5,301     146

    Top Hot 100 Songs 1963

    Billboard #10

    Browse Lyrics.com

    Our awesome collection of

    Promoted Songs



    Are you a music master?

    In Dolly Parton‘s hit song — who was the real Jolene?
    • A. Her best friend from high-school
    • B. A young fan who came on stage for her autograph
    • C. Her sister
    • D. A red-headed bank clerk who flirted with her husband

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant explanation for any lyrics that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant explanation for any acronym or abbreviation that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Rufus Thomas tracks

    On Radio Right Now


    Powered by OnRad.io

    Think you know music? Test your MusicIQ here!

    Movies soundtrack

    Walking the Dog