“No... no, the world's always got another cage, waiting, keeping everything you want... just out of reach.”— God
Dog is a psychologically disturbed nightkin who helps Father Elijah by capturing "assistants" for him and fitting them with explosive collars in 2281. His alternate personality, God (referred to by the former as simply "the voice"), is trying to break Dog free of Elijah's grasp.
The "Dog" personality is activated by the sound of Father Elijah's voice, and the "God" personality is activated by the sound of his own voice (via holotape or radio). When one personality is dominant, the other is said to be in "the cage" or "the basement".
Hand-picked by the Master to serve in his super mutant army, Dog's job was to fetch new humans to be turned into super mutants. Dog was crushed by the Master's defeat, and he eventually found his way to the Sierra Madre, where Elijah took advantage of his need for a "master" figure in order to enslave him. Elijah utilized his previous purpose, using him as a tool for bringing in potential treasure hunters and later for activating the Sierra Madre Gala Event. Dog is extremely loyal and will follow the commands issued by his master's voice to the letter, even when it puts him in danger. He also has a tendency to eat anything, even ghost people, when hungry. This eventually led to him accidentally eating his own explosive collar when it came off after the first Gala Event occurred trapping Elijah and, as his other personality mentions, keeping him a prisoner to his hunger and to Elijah. Like most nightkin, Dog exhibits severe mental trauma from prolonged Stealth Boy use, resulting in dissociative identity disorder. He hates the voice, and is willing to do anything to be rid of it, even going to the point of self-harm. Pain hurts him, but also quiets the voice, so he will go to extremes such as scarring his body and putting his arm in a bear trap in order to make it stop.
The voice – "God" – is very different from Dog. He is quiet, articulate, controlling, and far less pliable than his counterpart. However, he does threaten a very painful death when the Courier mentions having the power to put him back in "the cage". He claims that he only wishes to help Dog, even confessing a protective brotherly affection for him and believes the best way to do that is to eliminate Elijah - only then can he help Dog overcome his hunger and need for a master. He does not care for the treasure of the Sierra Madre, and frequently comments on the Courier's perceived greed. When in combat, he is far less adept than Dog, as he is less accustomed to using the nightkin body and lacks the bloodlust of his other personality.
After recruiting Dog and watching him kill and consume one of the ghost people, the Courier can talk to Dog and, after going through a few speech options, receive the Ghost Hunter perk from him. However, if they have the Cannibal perk, it is possible to get the Ghost Hunter perk from him without fighting.
When Dog fell in the Sierra Madre casino, two died as one. Dog died hungry, alone, frightened. The voice in his head died with him. Screaming. Furious. Enraged. But the voice was gone, and Dog was grateful. At least Dog was dead and the voice needed to watch over him no more. In the moment before their lives ended, the wall between the two personalities fell. The two became silent as they saw the chain between them. Hunger and control are twin greeds, something Dog and his shadow had never realized.
Dog forgot himself, as did the voice that raged within him. After their passing, a new voice spoke within the mutant's shell. It was difficult for the voice to remember the two it once was... there was the beast, Dog consumed by hunger... ...and the other in reverse... the one consumed by control. Both were driven by need for the other. The Courier brought them together, somehow, joined the two into one. All that happened at the Sierra Madre, was a faint memory to the new personality... like a flickering light in the clouds of the mind. The new voice did not think of the Courier again until the battle at the Divide reached his ears. The battle between the two couriers, beneath the torn skies and the Old World flag... each bearing a message for the other. And the mutant prayed the Courier that had saved him... had been saved in return.
Dog, free of the voice inside his head and no longer waiting on the voice of the Master, wandered back West. His hunger never ended. Often, small communities would suddenly vanish. They were assumed to have been hit by Wasteland creatures and dragged away... dogs, brahmin, and humans alike.
Freed of both Dog and the one who held Dog's leash, the other voice resumed control. First the mind, then finally, the mutant's shell. His first act was to tend to the scars on the body with careful hands, slowly healing all the scars except the ragged name torn on his chest. He briefly thought of remaining at the Sierra Madre. But it was a monument built by humans, representing something he no longer needed. He began walking west, in search of others like him. As he did, he spoke of the courier who had set him free and allowed his life to begin again.
Since Dog/God cannot equip any weapons unique to Dead Money and outside weapons cannot be brought into the Sierra Madre, Dog/God are effectively restricted to Unarmed fighting, frag grenades and the sledgehammer.
Dog is set to level as the Courier does, and will reach a maximum level of 45 depending on the order in which each add-on is completed (Dead Money being completed last/close to last). God also levels with the protagonist, but has no maximum allowed level, and also has no minimum level either. Because of this, God/Dog has an extremely high amount of hit points at very high levels, in his God incarnation more than any other enemy in the game save for the legendary bloatfly or X-42 giant robo-scorpion. This, combined with his inside 30% DR, can make him a very powerful opponent if the Courier is forced to fight him towards the end of Dead Money.
Dog is actually smaller than God, set to a scale of 0.9, whereas God is a normal scale of 1. Like Lily Bowen, Dog and God are both noticeably shorter than a normal super mutant, although they still stand a head taller than a normal human, in order to traverse narrow terrain like human sized followers do.
Dog and God have different combat-related personal perks. Dog has the typical nightkin's 30% DR, while God's health regenerates over time.
If the Courier has the Cannibal perk, they can ask God what the ghost people taste like. He will reply that they taste like plastic and copper.
While Dog/God are in fact a mentally disturbed nightkin with dissociative identity disorder (something that likely started developing when the Master died in Fallout), Elijah seems to be under the impression that he is merely a normal second-generation FEV mutant. God has given him this impression by cleverly not speaking aloud whenever Elijah is listening, exposing him only to Dog's personality, who acts like any second-generation mutant.
If Dog/God has throwable explosives (e.g. frag grenades) in his inventory, he will use one initially in combat against ghost people, but is then unable to attack when they get close enough to melee.
When God is asked about Elijah, it becomes apparent that he knows about HELIOS One and Elijah's failing there.
Dog/God has a unique face, a unique body appearance, and a unique voice compared to other nightkin.
God will engage Dean Domino in conversation while they are both dismissed to the Villa fountain by the Courier. He is apparently familiar with Dean and expresses contempt for the ghoul for not leaving the Sierra Madre when he had the opportunity.
Similarly, if Dog is a companion, he will engage Dean Domino in a short conversation if they meet at the Villa fountain. Dog will refer to Dean as if he was some kind of food, Dean's reply being "you stay in your corner while I stay in mine". Then, Dean will talk quietly with the Courier, asking them to "keep him away from this thing".
If the Courier's collar explodes while having Dog or God as a companion, his subsequent death will count towards the Super Mutant Massacre challenge.
Should Dog/God be killed in the Cantina Madrid and if the area is revisited, his corpse will be shown to have exploded into bloody chunks, due to the fact he ate his collar.
God has no associated game script, which can have a dramatic impact on gameplay. Notably, this means he does not automatically heal after combat, and can even die outright without triggering the detonation of the player's collar directly.
pcps3xbox360 The dialogue options "Who's this old man that brought us here?", "So you're the one that knows how I got to the villa", "You Brought Me Here to the villa", and "I want to know more about the man who brought us here" remain highlighted even if you have selected them. [verified]
ps3xbox360 Sometimes, when clearing out Salida del Sol North with Dog/God, he will fall through the floor and be suspended underneath it.
pcps3xbox360 Sometimes Dog/God may be unable to heal when idle or given stimpaks. [verified]
xbox360 Sometimes when he is ordered to wait, Dog/God will attack the first ghost person he can find before waiting. [verified]
xbox360 There is an exploitable bug where you can obtain God's perk without him following you. By having God as a companion, use Elijah's voice to summon Dog's persona. This is only temporary, however; as soon as you dismiss him at his post for Fires in the Sky, this perk will be lost. [verified]
pcps3xbox360 Dog/God is prone to getting stuck in walls around the villa and may be unable to follow the player in the same cell. [verified]
pcps3xbox360 Sometimes Dog will bug and repeat the phrase "Let Dog out. Hungry, hate being in here" after you have brought him to the fountain. This is because the game still thinks Dog is in the cage at the police station due to the result of buggy dialogue options when you are convincing him to leave the cage. [verified]
FIX: If updating the game or returning to a previous save is not an option, the console is the only solution. Go to Dog and open the console, then click him. Remember the first two digits of the number at the top then type set xx000fbf.bDogFreed to 1. Replace XX with the two digits from before.