Breaking Bad Wiki
Breaking Bad Wiki

"Rabid Dog" is the twelfth episode of the fifth season of Breaking Bad and the fifty-eighth episode altogether.



Walter White parks his car down the street from his house just after collecting his revolver from the car wash ("Confessions"). Saul Goodman's car is parked in his driveway and the house door is open.

Walt jumps the wall to the backyard and enters the house from the back entrance, the living room smells like gasoline and there's a gas can lying on the floor. He notices that the carpet is soaked in gasoline, but there are no signs of Jesse Pinkman's presence. Walter checks every single room in the house to make sure, he then walks outside and investigates the interior of Saul's car. There is used meth on top of a CD. It appears that Jesse's been using, but has mysteriously changed his mind before torching the house.

Act I

A cleaning crew cleans the carpet of the White house and a locksmith replaces the locks. Huell Babineaux takes back Saul's car. Walt is insistent the locks remain exactly the same (surely to cover up what has happened from his family), and that the cleaning crew remove all traces of the gasoline scent. The cleaning crew says the scent cannot be removed because it has soaked too deep, into the carpet padding and floorboards. Walt calls Jesse and nobody answers, so he leaves a voice message telling him that they should talk about what happened. The crews leave and Walt ponders what has transpired for a while before soaking his clothes and the driver's seat of his car in gasoline.

Skyler White returns and Walt tells her and Walter Jr. about a malfunctioning gas pump, saying that he unintentionally left his clothes soaked with gasoline lying on the living room floor, causing the bad smell. Jr. urges his father to be truthful about the spill, thinking his cancer has caused him to blackout again, which Walt reluctantly agrees may have played a small part in the "accident at the gas station". Walt suggests the family go to a hotel temporarily to escape the fumes.

Skyler talking with Walt.

Outside the hotel, Walt meets with Saul and Patrick Kuby, urging them to find Jesse. Saul suggests Jesse be taken out to pasture like the rabid dog Old Yeller and Walt scoffs at the suggestion, saying that he doesn't want Saul to ever mention any of these kind of ideas again. Back inside the hotel room, Walt acts like he left just to grab some ice in the lobby, but Skyler was spying on him and saw Walt talking to Saul. She asks Walt to tell the truth about the gasoline and why he just had a secret conversation with Saul, and he tells her that Jesse found out about something that he did and got angry, prompting him to attempt to burn their house. Skyler is shocked, saying that she knew that someday, somebody would come to their residence trying to hurt them ("Cornered"). Walt insists that Jesse changed his mind and Saul is working on finding him, so they can talk and make peace, but Skyler surprisingly suggests that they kill Jesse to make sure that this is not going to happen again.

Act II

Hours prior to these events, Jesse drives Saul's car and parks it on Walt's driveway. He snorts a line of meth from the CD, grabs the gas can from the trunk, kicks the door down and pours gasoline all over the furniture and carpet of the White family home ("Confessions"). He takes a lighter from his pocket and is about to torch the place when Hank Schrader enters the room and points his gun at Jesse. He orders Jesse to calm down and put out the lighter so they can talk. Jesse yells that Walt cannot just keep getting away with things, mentioning that he poisoned a child just to accomplish his needs. Hank suggests that there is a better way -- he and Jesse can work together to take down Heisenberg once and for all. Hank takes Jesse to his car and they drive off just as Walt parks his car at the end of the street, barely missing Hank's departure (scene from the beginning of the episode) by mere seconds.

Marie Schrader meets with her therapist, Dave and talks about poisoning a "family friend" who betrayed their trust and endangered many lives. Dave tries to get details but she refuses. Perceiving Dave's alarm she adds for him not to worry as she could never actually harm anyone, only that it's feeling real good to fantasise about it.

When she returns to her home, she notices two of her bags ready waiting for her at the entrance, Hank urges her to leave because he is dealing with something that Marie may not like. After asking Hank what's going on, he tells her that he got Jesse to help him take Walt down, and he is sleeping in the guest bedroom. Upon learning this is bad news for Walt, Marie insists on staying and helping any way she can. Jesse's cellphone rings inside Hank's pocket, but he doesn't answer. He listens to the voicemail shortly after and discovers a message from Walt, asking Jesse to meet up with him.


Walt and Walter Jr. hug by the pool.

Walt sits by the hotel pool, deep in thought, thinking about how he can get Jesse on his side. His son joins him and shares his concerns about his father's mortality. Walt stresses that he will survive this bout of lung cancer and they hug. Walt Jr. heads back to his hotel room as Walt decides to leave Jesse another voice message. 

The following morning, Jesse wakes up, now slightly more sober, and sees Marie who asks if he wants coffee. He finds Hank and Steven Gomez in the living room setting up a video recorder to get a confession from Jesse. After showing some initial concern to their approach, Jesse spills the whole can of worms, on everything from the rival dealers to the murder of Drew Sharp.

Some time later, Hank and Steve step out onto the balcony, standing silently for several minutes, stunned by the sheer measure and amount of Walt's crimes. Gomez tells Hank he believes Jesse, but they need solid proof to convince the rest of the office about Walt. The three sit at the table to decide their next move, Hank reveals the second voice message left by Walt during the night, asking Jesse to meet him the next day at noon in a plaza. Hank asks Jesse to wear a wire and meet Walt, so they can finally get some concrete evidence of his criminal activities. Jesse believes he will be killed, believing that Walt will be one step ahead of everyone because he is a lot smarter. Hank tries to show Jesse from his own testimony that Walt would not hurt Jesse and actually cares for him-at least to some degree. When Jesse leaves, Hank tells Gomez that he doesn't care if Jesse is killed — he only cares about catching Walt.

Act IV

Jesse calling Walt from a pay phone.

At the meeting location, Hank tapes a wire to Jesse and sends him on his way. The place is open and public, Walt is sitting on a bench in the middle of the plaza. Jesse is approaching Walt from behind when he sees a hulking man staring at him, scared of this being part of Walt's plan to kill him, Jesse changes his course for a pay phone. He calls Walt and tells him the meet is off because he saw what he was walking into, and now he is going to get Walt back. Jesse then walks off as a furious Hank picks him up in the next corner, complaining that Jesse blew up their last chance to get Walt, but Jesse tells him he has a better plan. Back at the plaza, Walt gets up from the bench and passes by the hulking man, who in the end was not associated with him at all — he was merely a random father watching his daughter play in the park; Walt had indeed intended to meet Jesse alone and unarmed and thus Jesse has cost them a potential chance to obtain evidence to arrest Walt. A now really concerned Walt gets in his car and calls Todd Alquist to talk to his uncle about "another job".

Official Photos


  • The title refers to a scene where Saul implies Jesse is like a rabid dog that needs to be put down (references the movie "Old Yeller (1957)"), but Walt shoots down the idea. It is the seventh episode to reference an animal in the title.
    • In the episode "Problem Dog", the dog that needed to be put down was Gale Boetticher, shot by Jesse himself. In this episode, Jesse became the dog.
    • It also refers to a scene between Skyler and Walter where Walter states that "Jesse is not just some rabid dog" (probably inspired by the aforementioned conversation with Saul he just came back from) when Skyler implies that they should kill Jesse.
      • Skyler asking Walt to kill Jesse, to make sure that problems won't happen again, leaving Walt speechless, resembles the scene in "Breakage" where Walt asks Jesse to handle the Spooge situation.
  • As Walt douses his clothing in gasoline, his gun is shown to be tucked in the back of his underwear. This seems to reference the "Pilot", which also showed Walt having his gun in the back of his underwear.
  • When Walt asks Patrick Kuby about his search for Jesse, Kuby tells him, "I put a bug in the tall kid's mom's place.  For three hours straight all he kept talking about was something called Babylon 5."  Bryan Cranston had a small part in that show as Ranger Captain Ericsson in the episode "The Long Night."
  • When Saul is in the car talking with Walt, he makes a joke by saying that even though Jesse beat him, "deep down inside he loves me." Mike says this same line in his speech to Walt in the episode "Half Measures".
  • In this episode, Jesse meets Marie for the first time. Walt Jr. is the only series regular who never shared a scene with Jesse.
  • Marie’s Therapist Dave makes his first and only appearance in this episode
  • When Hank encounters Jesse in Walt's house just before Jesse burns the house down, Jesse is standing in the same spot where Walt was when Jesse had a gun pointed right between Walt's eyes ("End Times"). But this time the gun is pointed at Jesse.
  • The scene where Jesse starts recording his confession to Hank and Gomez mirrors Walt's confession in the previous episode.
    • At the same scene, there is a book named "The Rat" while Jesse becomes a "rat". Additionally, the coffee Marie gives to him is in a DEA mug, fitting as he is now working alongside a pair of DEA agents.
    • When Jesse is looking at Hank's bookcase, he picks up a copy of "Dutch: A Memoir of Ronald Reagan". Ronald Reagan heavily opposed illicit drug use and declared them a threat to national security. Drug raids and drug-related incarcerations rose dramatically during his administration.
    • A DVD box set of "Deadwood" appears on a bookshelf in Hank's house. It does lead one to ask why Hank doesn't think his sister-in-law looks like the actress who played Martha Bullock, a Deadwood character played by Anna Gunn.
  • The scene where Jesse warns Hank and Steve about how dangerous Walt is, saying "Whatever–whatever you think is supposed to happen–I’m telling you, the exact reverse opposite of that is going to happen, okay?" is a foreshadowing of the drastic change of events in the subsequent episode.
    • Jesse is worried about the meeting with Walt being an assassination attempt, saying "There will be one of those guys in a clocktower". In the plaza scene, a clock can be heard chiming in the background.
    • The microphone and wireless audio system Hank uses during the failed meeting was the actual equipment used by the film crew to record the dialog.
  • The scene where Hank and Jesse plot to meet Walt at the plaza, the table centerpiece resembles the 5000 milliliter flask Walt was excited about in season 1 while stealing glassware from the school.
  • When Jesse is getting into Hank's car, the pink teddy bear can be seen stuck in a tree behind him.
  • The hotel pool where the White family is staying is reminiscent a batch of Blue Sky during its final stage of production.
  • Saul's white jacket and the red shirt with long collar resemble the clothes of Al Pacino in a scene in "Scarface (1983)". Fittingly, when he looks at his bruised face in the mirror he asks if it will leave a scar.
  • Laura Fraser (Lydia) and Jesse Plemons (Todd) do not appear in this episode, although both are mentioned in dialog.




  • Wray Crawford as Locksmith
  • Manny Rey as Carpet Cleaner
  • Rafael Herrera as Carpet Cleaner #2
  • Sachie Capitani as Kid
  • Jack Burning as Homeless Man

  • Uncredited

  • Chester Gayao as Businessman
  • Holly Pinnell as Homeless Man's Wife

  • Filming Locations

    • The location used for the failed meeting was also used as the "playground" for the game Society in the film Gamer.

    Featured Music

    • "Fumes" by Dave Porter (as Walt stalks his home)
    • "Chaotica" by The Bambi Molesters (Walt cleans up the gasoline and fabricates a story)
    • "Gas Can Rage" by Dave Porter (as Jesse pours gas over Walt's lounge and is confronted by Hank)
    • "Hello Kitty Wonderland (Instrumental)" by M3m (After Hank tells Marie about Jesse staying with them, Jesse's cellphone rings with this ringtone and Hank listens to Walt's voicemail to Jesse)
    • "Circling the Square" by Dave Porter (during the sting operation with Jesse) 

    Memorable Quotes

    Walter: "I–I don’t know how we got off on whatever it is we’re talking about here. But clearly, I haven’t explained the situation well enough, because this is a big overreaction. We all need to just take a deep breath and calm down, because Jesse isn’t just some–some–some rabid dog. This is a person."
    Skyler: "A person that is a threat to us. I mean–my God–where we are now with Hank and Marie and that awful tape we made. After everything we’ve done, you can’t just talk to this person."
    Walter: "You’re saying that I just…What–what exactly are you saying?"
    Skyler: "We’ve come this far. For us. What’s one more?"
    ―Skyler asking Walter to eliminate Jesse.

    "Look– look, you two guys are just guys, okay? Mr. White–he’s the devil. You know, he is–he is smarter than you, he is luckier than you. Whatever–whatever you think is supposed to happen–I’m telling you, the exact reverse opposite of that is going to happen, okay?"
    ―Jesse to Hank and Gomez at Hank’s house.

    Gomez: "What if the kid’s right? What if it’s a trap?"
    Hank: "The kid? Oh, you mean the junkie murderer that’s dribbling all over my guest bathroom floor? Well, then, he’s right. Pinkman gets killed, and we get it all on tape."
    ―Gomez and Hank about sending Jesse to the appointment organized by Walter.