Dr. Dithering is a character in An American Tail: The Treasure Of Manhattan Island, voiced by the late René Auberjonois. He is a British archaeologist who works at the New York Museum of Natural History, alongside his assistant Scuttlebutt. It was Dithering who told Tony Toponi of the existence of the Beach Pneumatic Transit system, which Tony later shows to Fievel Mousekewitz. Tony and Fievel discover a map underneath the subway, which they bring to Dithering for translation. Upon examining it, Dithering concludes that the map leads to a treasure beneath the city that was left by the Lenape. He organizes an expedition to find this treasure and brings Tony, Fievel, Scuttlebutt, and the cat Tiger. Upon arriving at the hidden village, Dithering is excited to learn that the Lenape still live underneath the city and eagerly begins to study their ways, and he is appalled to learn that Scuttlebutt had been caught stealing from the villagers.
Dithering returns to his home upon the conclusion of the expedition, but he is soon caught up in the panic incited by the discovery of Cholena's presence in the city. An angry mob seizes him and puts him on trial for aiding Indians, but he is saved from execution by Tiger. Later, he attends a rally organized by the factory workers' union and gives his telescope to Fievel, directing the young mouse's attention to a waving Chief Wulisso and Cholena.
- Dr. Dithering's species is unknown, but he doesn't appear to be a mouse. It is possible he is a rat or a mole.
- The sequence where Dithering is sentenced to death and then rescued has parallels to a similar scene involving John Smith in Pocahontas.
- Dithering only appears in The Treasure of Manhattan Island. However, in The Mystery of the Night Monster, a headline on The Daily Nibbler's wall reads "Mice Find Treasure" could be referring to his expedition to the Lenape village.
|An American Tail: The Treasure of Manhattan Island|
|Characters||Papa Mousekewitz • Mama Mousekewitz • Tanya Mousekewitz • Fievel Mousekewitz • Yasha Mousekewitz • Tiger • Tony Toponi • Cholena • Chief Wulisso • Lenape Mice • Mr. Toplofty • Mr. Grasping • Mr. O'Bloat • Chief McBrusque • Scuttlebutt • Dr. Dithering|
|Locations||New York • Les Club Des Grands Fromages • Cheese Factory|
|Songs||We Live in Manhattan • Anywhere in Your Dreams • Friends of the Working Mouse|