A dog is reading a book and decides to seek wild game, which happens to come in the form of the the Goofy Gophers. After trying to get them, only to see the Gophers dive into their hole and then overrun the hole and off a cliff, the dog (upside down, hanging off a tree) discovers four ways to get a gopher:
The canny hunter would remember that gophers possess an enormous curiosity concerning strange or unfamiliar objects: To this end, the dog places a spring with a punching glove attached to it in a chest. When the Gophers, after deciding to ignore the "Do Not Open until Xmas" sticker, open it, they "see" jewelry in it and take the chest with them. The dog takes the chest away from the Gophers and opens it, only to be punched below his chin, as he bounces like a pogo stick.
Gophers are quite fond of fresh vegetables which can therefore be used as bait: The dog, knowing that the Gophers are vegetarians, plants a row of radishes in the ground along with a turnip at the end of the row that is booby-trapped to an overhanging rock tied around a nearby tree, which the dog tests with a ball, triggering the trap successfully. Naturally, the Gophers pick up all of the radishes, and after initial trouble, take the turnip---but the trap is not triggered this time. The dog then holds the string, but triggers the trap and is crushed.
The gopher is a sentimental little creature whose feelings may be played upon to your advantage: The dog disguises himself as a baby under the alias of "Little Snookie", places himself in a booby-trapped carriage (complete with a letter stating that "Little Snookie" is an abandoned, homeless waif, as pictured on the page below), with his cries quickly noticed by the Gophers. The Gophers initially considered feeding the baby or changing its diaper (since according to them these are the two things that could help stop babies cry) but after discovering the booby trap under the dog (which includes a gun, rifle, bomb, and grenade), the Gophers push the carriage up a hill (disguised as a good deed of taking the baby out for a walk), and then release the carriage with the dog in it down the cliff on the other side, leaving the dog howling as he goes over several hills and vertically down a second cliff, where he crashes. As the dog claims that the Gophers missed his inner strength, the dog then falls down, stiff as a board.
If all else fails, you must utilize the gophers' love of music: The dog begins playing what amounts to a one-man band of music, drawing the Gophers' attention as they start dancing to the music. The dog unsuccessfully tries to crush them with cymbals and a banjo that also doubles as a gun, but does drag them to the drums using a trumpet. As the dog tries to crush the gophers on the drums, they evade him and the dog and Gophers end up in the piano, where the Gophers have the dog "trapped like a rat in a trap", as the Gophers then hop all over the piano keys. Hammers attacked to various keys hit the dog in his rear end with the dog regretting having ever read the book.
The dog in this short is the same one that previously appeared in "The Goofy Gophers" from a year before, he would appear one more time with the Goofy Gophers in "A Ham in a Role" from a year after this short.
Coincidentally, this is the only appearance of the dog in a Merrie Melodies short, as his two other appearances were part of the Looney Tunes series.
The United Kingdom airs this cartoon on Cartoon Network and Boomerang as a "Proto-dubbed print", meaning that it has the same color correction as well as non-pan-and-scan, as with the case of the "official" European dubbed print, but keeps the reissue end card and audio end cue. Other European countries air the "official" EU Turner dubbed print which has the same altered ending music cue (and virtually identical 1947-48 dubbed ending card) as the USA Turner dubbed version which has the same altered ending music cue. Hence this fact might prove there is two EU prints of this short.
Some airings of this cartoon's USA 1995 dubbed version print on CN/Boomerang USA have the black screens in-between the fade-outs edited out for time (evidence in the video in the infobox here), though the cartoon's USA 1995 dubbed version print does exist without the black screens edited out. The EU dubbed version print of the cartoon however doesn't have the black screens removed.
The Gophers take the dog (disguised as "Little Snookie") for a ride up the hill....before sending him down a large fall off two cliffs.
The dog sets his first trap on the gophers.
The dog falls down, stiff as a board after crashing hard on the ground from falling off two cliffs.
The letter in the bobby-trapped carriage indicating that "Little Snookie" is an 'abandoned, homeless waif', albeit written with lots of spelling mistakes.
The dog unsuccessfully attempts to kill the gophers whom were dancing to the music with booby-trapped musical instruments.
Production model sheet
Preliminary Sketch Lobby Card
The BR ending card, taken from the rare proto-dubbed version as seen on Boomerang UK