Stella's little brother Sam decides Fred the dog needs some new tricks. Not content with just teaching him to roll over, Sam decides to broaden Fred's horizons to include swimming, cooking, and painting. Of course, Fred finds a way to subvert each experience in order to do exactly as he pleases and to create the maximum amount of mess. Stella watches the goings-on with amusement, always asking "What are you doing, Sam?" -- a phrase familiar to little brothers and sisters everywhere. Gay's delicate watercolors, full of expression and humor, complement the whimsical story.