Sunday, May 2, 2010

Winners of my Birthday Drawing

Guess what?  Last night was my 6 month birthday dinner and I announced the winners of my birthday drawing during dessert.  Because it was a special occasion, I got to sit at the head of the table (for a few minutes) and I tried really hard to be still and behave myself.  It was considered a grand success because I didn't break the Tiffany candlesticks or taste any of the antique hemstitch linens.  To start we had Kir Royales in very very tall champagne flutes that are normally kept in a velvet box with tiny silver latch.  The Lady likes drinks that taste like candy and slip down easy, so she added extra Chambord and stuffed the glasses with way too many raspberries.  She let me have some of the fresh raspberries because she said they were the same texture as my lips.  They were interesting, but I just squished them up and spit them on the clean floor.  For dinner The Lady made a tasty Raspberry Chicken.  (Are you beginning to sense a theme?)  She kept proclaiming in a loud voice how it was a Lo-Cal dish as she stood over the stove and furiously whisked in another quart of heavy cream for the sauce, cackling maniacally like a mad scientist.  (I think several Kir Royales had slipped down by this time.)  She also made some grilled asparagus and leeks with carmelized scallions, and a bunch of other stuff that wasn't very interesting.  I got a little piece of plain chicken and gnawed on some asparagus stems while she was still in her lemon yellow apron, throwing everything together.  At the end of the evening Miss Eileen, one of the guests, snuggled into one of the squishy chairs, wrapped herself in the edges of the slipcover, borrowed some lime green socks and announced she was nodding off in a food coma.

Ok, so if you couldn't make it to my birthday dinner, you didn't hear the announcement about the winners of the drawing.  Remember, if you are one of the lucky winners, you have to  send your land address to my very own e-mail address so The Lady can send your present.  I was only supposed to select 6 winners, but when I picked the last one, two slips of paper stuck to my tongue, so we had to be fair and give away seven presents.

Here are the winners: 
Carina Guinane, Dozer Dottie & Cooper, Bijntji, Darlene & Samantha, Laurie, Princess AnnieBella, and Mario da Cat.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Happy Birthday Contest! Win Animal Planet Dogs Rule Cahooties!

Guess what!?!  Today I am 24 weeks old.  That means today is my Six Month Birthday!!!  Because it's my birthday, I want to give all my friends presents.  When I mentioned this, The Lady stuttered a bit and looked at the floor and told me we don't have enough presents for everyone, so I suggested a contest, or more of a drawing really.  So guess what?  We're going to do it! Since I am the guest of honor, I'll let The Lady explain the contest.

Greetings everyone, The Lady speaking here.  I do wish we had gifts for the whole party, but I think Harbor's idea for a drawing is a good one.  Such a generous little nonpartisan pooch.  (At first Harbor didn't like the word "drawing."  I had to explain the difference between my art lessons where I sketch nudes, and the concept of having a drawing for a prize.  Now that he understands, he's ok with the word.) 

Here's how the contest works:
Vote for your favorite picture of Harbor!  He is getting all kind of e-mails and messages about his adorable little self, so let’s take it public.  

1. If you aren't already a follower, sign up to be a follower of Harbor’s blog at  (Yes, here.  Look up. Yes, you.) At the very top of the page, youll see the word FOLLOW in blue.  Click FOLLOW. Then follow the directions, and become an official follower.  Follow, follow, follow. Follow is a strange word, isn’t it?

2. Pick your favorite picture of Harbor.  Don’t forget to look at the OLDER POSTS, especially the posts from December 2009.  Awww…!  Leave a comment on the blog entry featuring your favorite photo of Harbor by pressing the (0)COMMENT(S) button at the bottom of the post.  Follow the directions.  (Follow…  there’s that word again.)

3. Somewhere in the body of your clever comment please include the contest code #PHOTO.  Yes, just like that…  #PHOTO.  If you don’t include this code, you won’t get to be in the contest.  Bummer.

4. Harbor will do a random drawing with his big sticky tongue on April 30th and we’ll announce the winner in the blog post on May 1st

5. If you are the winner, we’ll ask you to send your land address to Harbor’s personal e-mail and we’ll ship your prize right away.  Simple!

Now let’s hear a word from my friends at Cahooties, the way cool peeps providing your prizes….

Animal Planet Dogs Rule! Cahootie

Dogs Rule!  But of course you already know that…if you are simply nuts for your pup or any pooch you meet, then you will have a blast playing Dogs Rule Cahootie, the iconic folded paper game reinvented to deliver crazy canine fun with loads of entertaining questions, fortunes and challenges for dog lovers of all ages!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Little Green Men

Here is the little green man I had stuck in my teeth! More than a few readers had questions about that particular tweet, so here you go, yes you especially Princess AnnieBella.  I actually have two of them, one at home in my dynamite box and one in my toy drawer at Auntie Cynthia's.  He doesn't scream very loud when I bite him, but when I shake my head with death-roll zeal, his little arms and legs smack around in a very satisfying way that I enjoy very much.  Very much.  Since I am still a bit scanty in the teeth department, sometimes he gets hung up on the snaggly bits and The Lady has to pick him out like an errant piece of popcorn.  I don't like it when she sticks her fingers in my mouth, and she is forever shoving her hands down my throat to pull out the garden rocks and slimy chewed up paper towels from the trash bin in the kitchen.  Now she's developed this habit of pulling my rather generous lips over my head so she can examine the disappearance and progress of my teeth.  Sometimes I feel like a horse, but I exhibit maturity beyond my months and never bite her when she feels the need to play doctor.  So really, can you blame me for needing to execute a Little Green Man every once in a while?

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

With A Fervor

I just found out something really twisted.  These delicious chewy bones that I have been gnawing on continuously for the last... oh….three months, are not what they seem.  No no no. (I feel faint.) I thought the smelly brown baton was some kind of flavoricious factory-manufactured particleboard chew toy, a candy cane for dogs if you will.  However, this stinky six-inch shaft that I have been sucking on with a fervor is not some kind of Slim Jim Jerky for canines, NO.  These roots, these stems, these stinky sticks that cause me to create a vicious stench of my own are actually dried up old bull penises.  What!?!  I’ve been devouring penii?  Bovine, mastodon, buffalo, bronco, bull, whatever …. One after the other? Yes I know they are called "Bully Sticks" but I’m sorry, I just didn’t make the connection.  I feel sick.  For a number of reasons.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Because of the Sand

Guess What?!  This morning we went for a marvelously long walk by the ocean and I met about, oh I don’t know, a THOUSAND other dogs.  I think everyone in Laguna Beach has at least two or three dogs and they are all out walking or playing on the beach at 7:30 in the morning.  Most of them are big dogs, like me, or like I’m going to be when I grow up.  It was a beautiful thing and I have so many new friends.  Anyhoo…  right when I had resolved that I could maybe learn to like living here, only a little, because of the sand, and the other dogs, and Auntie Cynthia’s squealy noises, right when I came to grips with the fact that somewhere along the line I must have been really bad and My People were giving me away, guess what?!  They packed up (almost) all my belongings, put everything into the truck, and PUT ME INTO THE TRUCK TOO, and we drove home.  Home!  HOME!  Yes, it seems it was just a test to see how I would do staying away from home overnight, and they aren’t giving me away after all.  What a relief. All the way home in the car they talked about what a “little traveler” I was becoming, and how they had left a few toys and extra bowls at Auntie Cynthia’s for the next visit.  They made a list of all the places we are going to go, all together.  Ummm… they also mentioned that I need to stop peeing on the floor when I get so excited to see Cynthia or she’ll never let me near her fancy rugs, but I don’t even care because I am with My People and I am HOME!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Leave Me Forever

As soon as I had finished gobbling my lunch The Lady, The Man, Auntie Cynthia and I all went down to the beach to play.  I’ve never been to the beach before!  Sand is the most wonderful substance in the world.  When we get home I’m going to convince The Man to dig up the front yard and fill it with sand.  (Oh wait, for a moment I forgot they gave me to Auntie Cynthia and I’m never going home again. Never mind.) At first it was a little scary, since the rest of the world is experiencing tsunamis and earthquakes, making the waves quite loud and rather large.  Oh, but the smells!  Do you realize that all kinds of nasty old stuff washes up on the shore and gets buried in the sand?  Decomposing junk, rotting and festering, sometimes for years?  Dead fish, rubber boots, broken plastic crap, disgusting slimy old rope, and even some disappointingly clean dentures.  No one else was doing anything about it so I figured it was my job to dig it up.  They kept talking about my webbed toes, and how I should be such a swimmer, but they don’t realize how having webbed feet provides me with excellent shovels for digging.  There was a rock I liked in particular, and I tried to dig it up, but it was too big and I got tired.  Besides, my Auntie Cynthia started running down the beach and I had to stop digging to chase her.  Do you know the wind felt so good in my fur that I didn’t even realize I had sand crammed up my nose! 

You know, when bedtime rolled around, I slept in my house (CAGE!) in a lovely suite of rooms, (just remodeled so I was firmly informed not to eat the smelly grasscloth wallpaper) and My People slept in the big bed next to me, just like at home.  I figured they would say goodbye and leave me forever when it got dark, and then I would sleep in the room with Auntie Cynthia. But here they are… still.  I’m glad, but I didn’t sleep too well, worrying and wondering.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Way I Like My Ears Rubbed

Guess what?!? When the car jolted to a stop and I woke up, we weren’t at Evil Steve and Wicked Wanda’s House of Pain at all. We were at Auntie Cynthia’s! My superb sense of direction must have gotten confused or perhaps I went to sleep for a moment longer than I thought when they made a few unauthorized turns and random lane changes. (The LA traffic seems to make them do irrational things behind the wheel.) I was really off because Auntie Cynthia lives in a dazzling house on the beach in Laguna and not anywhere at all near the coven of the Terror Twins. Since The Lady and The Man packed up all my worldly possessions, I guess I’m going to live with Auntie Cynthia now, which is OK. I’ll miss My People, but Auntie Cynthia is lots of fun and makes really spectacular squeaky noises. I hope My People tell her how I like my dry kibble mixed up with a few spoonfuls Puppy Plate, and how I like to jump all over the furniture when I play with my Rakunk. (Hummm… she has an awful lot of white furniture.) I guess she’ll eventually figure out that I need one delicious freeze dried dehydrated Chicken Drop at bedtime to convince me to get into my crate (CAGE!) and go to sleep. As soon as we opened the door, The Man set up my fence near the front steps and put down my pink blanky to cover the stone floor, which is nice since it was kind of cold on my puppy feet. It’s a good spot for me to hang out because I can bark at whomever is coming and going at the front door, I can see what is going on in the living room, and I can walk around the corner into the kitchen for a drink of water when ever I want. The Lady put my toys inside the fence with me, but mostly I just nap and wonder how long before they leave me forever. Do you think they will explain to Auntie Cynthia the way I like to have my ears rubbed? I am wondering if anyone will call me Bunny Rabbit anymore?

Monday, March 15, 2010

Not Even One Tear

Well I knew it couldn’t last.  Today My People packed up all my belongings and put me in the car.  And I mean EVERYTHING.  My dishes, my crate (CAGE!), my pink blanky, my fence, my blue towel, my pillows, my Gulpy, my leash, even my food and my treats.  The worst was when The Lady gathered up all my beloved toys.  I thought she’d at least want to keep my Blue Lizard or my Rakunk or my Skin Crab to remember me by, but nothin’ doing.  She put every last toy into a suitcase and zipped it up, very efficient and businesslike, not a tear, not a frown, not even a furrowed brow.  At first I ran frantic circles around their feet and tried to stop them, especially when The Man heaved my 42” crate (CAGE!) into the back of the truck, but they didn’t even notice me.  Finally I just gave up and sat on my little rug in the bedroom under the drapes, wallowing in complete despair.  I’m surprised they didn’t snatch the rug right out from under me and get rid of that too.  The truck was positively exploding with my stuff.  I did notice a few other bags in the car, but they were tiny compared to the girth of my belongings.  As usual, I sat on The Lady’s lap for the car ride, but this time I tried to spread out across both of them, putting my paws on The Man’s legs and wedging my head between his belly and the steering wheel.  I figured maybe if I were extra pitiful they would change their mind.  (I have a nasty feeling this might have something to do the mouth sized purple bruise I put on the Lady’s arm the other night when we got into a little tussle over the stupid doormat. Hummm…  I still say she should have let me eat it.)  They seem to forget about my keen sense of direction, chatting with each other in cheery tones, while I was sick with certainty that we were headed toward Evil Steve and Wicked Wanda’s Horrible House of Badness.  About halfway down the jammed 5 freeway, I got the idea that if both The Lady and The Man passed out while we were driving then we wouldn’t make it all the way and they couldn’t give me back.  I did my best to manufacture and squeeze out as many of the worst nasty bad smells as possible, one after the other, but My People just gagged and pulled their shirts over their noses like robbers and rolled down the windows.  Short of chewing through the dashboard to ignite the airbags, it seemed nothing was going to stop them from returning me to the Siblings of Satan, so I just sat in the middle of The Lady’s squishy thighs and hung my enormous head into the foot well and willed myself to sleep.  I wished I could just sleep forever so I wouldn’t have to wake up on the dark side to Evil Steve’s felonious ways and Wicked Wanda’s parade of so-called boyfriends.

The Leash

Please tell her to unhook my leash. PLEASE.

Helpful Around the House

Quite mistakenly, because I am a puppy it is assumed that all I do with my time is play and sleep and eat rocks.  Au contraire! I am very helpful around the house.  It’s a toss-up as to whether I like to Make the Bed or Sweep the Floor the best.  When we make the bed, she throws the covers off the end of the bed and over my body.  It’s very much like playing parachute during a rainy day recess.  The bed is a California King and she really likes to pile on the comforters in the frigid Los Angeles winter, so we’re talking about some significant textilian real estate.  (My guess is that she wouldn’t last long sleeping outside in the yard, but The Man doesn’t like being pinned down by so many covers, so he has a pretty good chance.  His internal thermostat is set to roast, like me, so he might do better should we ever need to show off our survival skills.)  Anyhoo, sometimes when we make the bed The Lady rolls around on the floor with me under the mountains of covers, making dens and burrows, growling and snorting something awful.  She drools more than me and I’m half Saint Bernard.  Her hair gets very messy and she looks like she escaped from Bedlam. Or needs a prescription filled.

Now, Sweeping the Floor is an equally pleasing activity, but I don’t think The Lady fully understands her part in the procedure.  I mean really, I cooperate with enthusiasm from the moment she pulls the broomstick out of the closet.  I get positively giddy with excitement at the presentation of the dustpan. Sometimes she tries to be sneaky and opens the closet when I’m downstairs, but who does she think she is fooling?  I hear that door squeak a mile a way and come running as fast as I can, sliding all arms and legs into the dustpiles. It’s an activity we do together, a real bonding experience, so I can’t imagine why she would want to deprive me of such enjoyment.  Besides, I think she is only testing my reflexes or she would have the sense to squirt some WD40 on the hinges. Regardless, as soon as I hear that delightful “whisk whisk whisk” across the linoleum, I understand my mission and jump into action. I am SO there.  Now, for my part I understand it is my duty to ensure there are no long sweeping motions that might clear the floor completely of any delicious dinner crumbs.  We’re simply trying to retrieve the crunchy goodness from those hard to reach areas.  Unfortunately, she is not very clear about this.  She continually gets out of control and makes grand movements all over the floor with the broom, hollering LEAVE IT! LEAVE IT! LEAVE IT!  Such a spazz.  But so much fun!  And so, I persevere.  I am fully committed to the task and do my best to make sure the crumbly little taste treats are pulled from the far-reaching corners of the kitchen and into the center of the floor. It is at this juncture that she pretty much blows it all to hell.  Right when we’ve gotten everything organized into convenient little piles for easy snacking access she shovels it all up with the dustpan, in some kind of frenzy with even more shouting and clumsy maneuvering.  WHAT is she doing, I ask you?  I am licking up the snack piles of crumbs and dust bunnies as quickly as I can, and with practice I will learn to be faster.  I’m sure I will improve with maturity, and perhaps the addition of some teeth.  I just need some help explaining the rules of the game to The Lady.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Living Under the Bed

Guess what!?!  I found a whole stash of socks under the bed.  There were about 15 single white socks in a basket, just sitting there!  I was sooooo helpful and pulled them all out on the floor so The Lady could sort them. She is forever complaining about how there is something living in the back of the dryer that snitches socks, but that isn’t true!  There is something LIVING UNDER THE BED that steals the socks.

PS- You should see what other stuff is under the bed.

The Most Awful Face

Remember I told you about the cat named Menu?  Well here is her picture.  See what I mean?  When I stopped to visit Grandpa this time, Menu wasn’t imprisoned in the laundry room like a criminal.  Instead she was sulking under the dining room table.  I found her in, like two seconds, and was so excited to meet her, but it seems the feeling wasn’t mutual. She made the most awful face at me! See?  And she hissed! Chairs made a fort around her so I couldn’t get too close, like I’d even WANT to get anywhere near her.  I just wanted to ask her if she had any more of those tasty little fake mice. Sheesh.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Captain Corn Nuts

After we’ve been for a walk in the rain, The Lady dries me off with my big blue towel. While she struggles to reach the curly bits, it is my job to try to bite the end of it and run through the house like Superman.  When she catches me, she gives me a kiss and tells me I smell like Corn Nuts.  

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Fast, Easy, Gentle

I just hope she kept the receipt.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Injury to Insult

I seem to be missing something.  Almost all of my front baby teeth, top and bottom, have fallen out over the last couple of days.  You can see in the picture that my front teeth are gone.  GONE.  It hurts something awful, and I am cranky.  If I chew, it hurts, if I don’t chew it hurts worse. With nothing to hold it in, the end of my enormous tongue hangs out of my mouth a little bit, and The Lady says I look like I have boiled ham stuck to my chin.  And, to add injury to insult, yes in that order, I keep biting my tongue with the few remaining teeth I’ve got left.  Ice cubes sound great, but how am I supposed to crunch up an ice cube with my gums?  Huh?  The Lady keeps expressing disappointment that she can’t find any of my lost teeth.  Apparently she has a little box of Oliver’s teeth and The Boy's teeth, and wants a few of mine for her voodoo headdress or shillelagh stick whatever she’s got going on.  (Keep in mind this is a woman who kept her tonsils in a jar in her closet from age 7 until she finished college and moved to California. Morbid child.) And my legs are growing. And my puppy fuzz is falling out and being replaced with big boy dog hairs, but only in patches. And I have the hiccups. Everything is out of alignment.

Sunday, February 21, 2010


Today The Man invented a new game for me to play.  We went into the garage, which is a regular carnival of smells, and moved a few things around.  The most significant item was a long plastic thing that looks like a banana, almost as long as the truck.  The Man placed it the middle of the floor and put a very serious look on his face and stared me down for a few seconds.  He put a treat under my nose, my favorite flavor, and shouted, "Kayak" in the most determined way.  I had no idea what he wanted but I tried to look as alert as possible and wag the dickens out of my tail, providing an excellent cleaning service for the floor, just in case that was the intention.   I assumed the treat would be forthcoming at that point, but apparently there was more to this exercise.  The Man helped me climb over the side of the yellow thing and arranged me in an indentation near the front.  This was no easy task since the inside of the yellow thing had enormous ridges, scupper holes, and footholds that make it difficult to find my footing.  Do you think that is the thrilling moment when I got my treat?  No.  Of course not.  The Man could barely contain himself with glee, but in a (pretend) stern voice told me to SIT, then DOWN, then STAY.  By this time I assumed there was no treat coming, ever, but guess what?  That's when I got my delicious freeze-dried chicken drop! We repeated this three or four times before he hauled me back into the house to find the lady. She was playing with her pink laptop and I made her stop by leaping on top of her on the sofa.   We brought her into the garage and I assumed she was going to get into the yellow thing with me, which meant I'd have to share my delicious chicken drops.  Instead, The Man asked me go through the routine again, which made The Lady clap her hands and squeal.  This game really doesn't seem that difficult, but I did have trouble following the conversation that followed.  Something about practicing in the pool, which seems ridiculous since I don't see how they are going to move the entire garage into the pool, but Hey, it's their house.  Then they examined my feet again, just to confirm, one more time, that I really do have webbed toes, which lead to more squealing from The Lady, since she thinks that is another feature that adds to my extreme cuteness. Then there was something about a PFD for dogs which I gather is some sort of fancy jacket.  The weirdest part of the conversation was that the big yellow thing has a name, and it isn't Banana.  It is Arava, which is also the name of the bungalow where they lived on a deserted island in Tahiti, and it means Lemon Shark.  Shark?  From watching discovery channel I do believe sharks have more teeth than me, certainly at this point in my life when I have mostly gums.  How do sharks fit into this picture?  I'll have to learn the specifics, but I think I have come to my decision about about the pool and I wanted to let you know.  After discovering that the pool most likely contains sharks, I'll not be getting into the water, ever.

And here I've been thinking that I'm the only pet in this family.

Friday, February 19, 2010


Since My People can't go out much these days because of me, they are holed up at home watching the Olympics.  I make it impossible to leave the house for any length of time and apparently I also make it difficult to watch an entire movie from start to finish.  Movies are awfully long and tedious, don't you think?  Anyhooo.... I just love the Olympics.  When we are watching, I lounge around on the floor and chew something, anything I can find, preferably one of The Lady's excessively stinky shoes, and I stare at the large television set.  My favorite is Shaun White because he makes $10 million dollars a year rolling around in the snow like a puppy, Lindsay Vonn is tall perfection and looks like The Lady's friend Wendy,and that little Mancuso girl with the sparkly crown is pretty cute.  Bode Miller is a madman, which is what The Man calls me on a regular basis.  I've heard Bode was raised by wolves, so I'm wondering if he is a relation somehow?  OK, and I have to admit that even though I am a US citizen, I catch my Saint Bernard DNA cheering for Simon Ammann.  He flies like a bird and wore that fetching silver coat when he first showed up at the Olympics a few years ago.  But as far as that clear-eyed KGB assassin on ice skates goes, I don't like him at all.  He is scary. And skinny.  The competition is very exciting, and I try to participate the best I can.  I can't go to Vancouver by myself so I have to use what is available in the den.  If I leap between the ottoman and the sofa, twisting in the air and howling a little, I can (sorta) get the effect of a half-pipe.  The stairs covered with ancient worn down carpet make a fantastic down hill run or even a ski jump, especially since I always land on heavily waxed hardwood flooring and go flying.  And speaking of the slippy hardwood floor, if I get a running start around the corner, I can transform the length of the room into quite a convincing short track, as long as I don't smack into the sliding glass door.  So far, no medals have materialized, but with the effort I've put into the events, I'm sure at least one is forthcoming soon.  Maybe at least a little extra dinner?

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Bag Lady

The Lady keeps forgetting to bring her reusable bags to Trader Joe's and Whole Foods. She went to the store today, and came back with paper bags containing the groceries. Has she not heard about global warming? Taking care of the environment? You know... Go Green? Hello? Anything? She owns a regular bouquet of reusable bags but forgets to bring them about two thirds of the time. She even has a pretty black one with butterflies on it. How do I know this? The bags are kept on the door handle in the laundry room, right next to the vault that holds my stash of dogfood. Can't miss them. Today I reached my limit and decided to do something about it. While The Man and The Lady were eating lunch I staged a protest by shredding the paper grocery bags in to little tiny bits all over the floor. The Lady thought it was funny! The Man was skeptical and raised his eyebrows, but even he didn't put it together. The harder I worked to make my point, the more she made cracks about me being part gerbil or hamster or guinea pig or some other creepy little rodent. She totally didn't get it at all. How can I make my opinion about the bags clear? I'll have to come up with another plan. If you have any suggestions, let me know.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A Perfect Random Wednesday

My People cornered me in the kitchen after I'd had a delightful morning of random shoe snatching and playing keep-away with a decorative pillow. The little pillow is just lovely, made with green shantung silk and covered with teeny-tiny bells, each sewn on by the skinny eight year old hands of some unfortunate child in Calcutta. For a moment I thought perhaps I'd pushed it too far by running the pillow out into the yard and making The Lady scramble up the embankment after me to get it back. I thought it was pretty funny but she was swearing like a sailor as she dug her freshly manicured bare toes into the dirt and got tangled up under the prehistoric sized sego palm. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but now I'm having second thoughts. Later, when I believed it had blown over and I was in the clear, I was caught sniffling around the cupboard where they hide my snacks and treats. The Lady snuck up behind me on tippy-toes and clamped the leash to my collar. She said they had a big surprise for me and I had to come with them into the car. My heart sank into my empty stomach. What is a surprise? Does it have anything to do with Evil Steve and Wicked Wanda stir-frying me for a Saint Bernard dinner? I think I am in even bigger trouble about the pillow than I thought. It turns out, I'm not in trouble at all! (Well, maybe a little bit.) Instead of being deported, we drive only a little way down the road to an enclosed patch of dirt with a few trees and some benches. It is called a Dog Park and it is positively infested with dogs. I was so excited I almost jumped from The Lady's lap and straight through the windshield when I saw all of the different dogs. Big ones! Little ones! Barky ones! Old ones! Black ones! Brown ones! Fancy ones! Happy ones! The second we got out of the car and through the gates, I was off like a rocket, running at top speed from side to side, from dog to dog. It was the most fun I've ever had, even more fun than ice cubes or the Visitor Bell. I chased after the yellow lab, played with the big black lab, sniffed the chow chow, stepped over the little boston terrier. The only one who growled at me was the miniature pincher who was just all silliness and absolutely no real bite, and my favorite was Max the enormous doberman. Max played with me the most and it was so much fun. Every single person there said I was the cutest dog at the park and wanted to pet my fuzzy fur. Of course I let them. (You know.... I don't think I peed when I met any of the people at the dog park. How interesting...) We only stayed for about 45 minutes, but I was starting to get awfully tired and it was time to go home for my lunch. A perfect random Wednesday.

Sunday, February 14, 2010


Today is Valentine’s Day, and Oliver’s birthday. I’m getting lots of extra hugs but I think it has more to do with Oliver than with me. Last year they had a party for the occasion, but this year everyone was sad and the biggest event of the day was a bath. Well actually a shower. I was trying to avoid the tub and was hoping to hide in this big glass closet on the other side of the room, hoping The Lady would forgot about giving me a bath. Instead she looked over at me in the glass closet and said, "Well, Ok. If you're game, I'm game." Then she took off all of her clothes and got in the glass closet with me, COMPLETELY NAKED. I'm not a prude or anything, but it was MOST disconcerting, especially since she spends most of her time wearing LOTS of sweaters and socks and hats owing to the chilly February weather. But that was just the beginning of the weirdness. She twisted her naked hand around a few knobs and levers on the wall and water started pouring all over me, just like it did outside when I was potty training during the monsoon. Except this time it was hot water and I didn't get to stand under a patio umbrella. The glass closet was too small to escape. Believe me I tried, but I was locked inside. If that automatic rain feature wasn't bad enough, she poured fancy designer shampoo all over me and rubbed me until I was a giant ball of suds. The shampoo is called GoochiPoochi and it is made by her friend Alan, who used to be named Keith. He is a famous hair stylist who loves dogs and thinks they should have hair as pretty as his celebrity clients. The shampoo itself was nice, but I didn't like the shower at all, especially when she used a separate hand nozzle that sprayed me at close range. Water got in my ears and made me deaf for hours. The worst was that she made me sit there in a puddle with detangler and conditioner slathered all over my fur while she shampooed her own hair and then proceeded to shave her legs. Can you believe it? I puckered up my little lips and howled as loud as I could for as long as I could, but she just laughed at me and kept remarking on how many freckles I have. It was just awful.
I'm not even going to discuss the hair dryer. I'm exhausted.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

To Come or Not To Come?

I have decided I don’t like COME anymore. They stand at the door and holler COME at me, like fifty times in a row, right when I’m doing something fun. I totally ignore them, but it is annoying to have them barking at me, the same thing, over and over. I’m sure the neighbors find it bothersome and I’ll have to see what I can do to correct it. Certainly I’ll not be encouraging COME by participating in the activity anymore, even if they do offer treats. It is a sacrifice I am willing to make in order to keep harmony in the neighborhood and help My People become more peaceful.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Nasty Overdose

I have picked out my favorite treat. Ice Cubes! They are just delicious. Currently there is a lot of frozen tuna in the freezer from The Man’s extremely successful trip to Baja Mexico so the ice cubes have a very subtle ocean flavor that only I can perceive. And most interesting is the effect they have on the inside of my mouth. First it feels cold, then if feels almost hot, then it just disappears with very little chewing. Ahh, but the chewing! Nothing, and I mean nothing, has such a satisfying crunch. Much more satisfying than crunching up a few of the smaller seashells I found in the potted plants. Even My People indulge in these treats regularly. The Man finds it very entertaining to say in a happy voice, “It’s time to make some more Dog Treats.” Everyone else thinks this is amusing too, and I can only believe that this because these particular dog treats bring such happiness to everyone. As a sidenote, I will admit there is a limit of how many of these treats one can enjoy in a session. After five or six of them, they seem to lose their effect, and I can’t even feel them in my mouth anymore, and tend to bite my own tongue. I’ll have to watch myself with this indulgence, as it might have addictive qualities and some sort of nasty overdose symptoms.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Thunder and Mudslides

Because of starting off so terribly ill, with such nasty gastrointestinal distress, and My People suspecting I am younger than they were told (I am! I am! I am!) they set their alarms and faithfully took me outside to potty every single hour, every single night. Then they moved it to 1 hour and 15 minutes, then 1 hour and 30 minutes, and so on and so forth. Eventually it settled into a routine of The Man taking me out at midnight, The Lady taking me out sometime in the middle of the night around 4:00, and then The Man taking me for my first morning walk at 7:30. When this became the routine, I felt much better, was a few weeks older, and really didn’t like to be dragged out into the cold yard from my nice warm crate (CAGE!) right when I was hitting my REM cycle. It was bad enough that it was cold, but some sort of extreme weather monsoon had started in Los Angeles which made it particularly unpleasant. I went along with it for weeks, but I was starting to get angry. Instead of holding it in, I decided to express myself and started growling a little. It seemed to have some sort of effect, to I growled more. Eventually I got so loud I woke The Man up with my impressive vocal styling. I thought she would stop making me go outside, but she seems to think it was for my own good and persisted with the schedule. Finally, finally finally she agreed to let me sleep all night through, but the first night displayed gale force winds, sheets of pelting rain and hurricane conditions outside. I heard thunder for the first time, which was very scary, and some loud dripping noise was echoing from someplace outside that sounded like someone in high heels was walking down the hillside steps next to the bedroom door, and I imagined it was Wicked Wanda, coming to get me with Assassin and Accomplice. About 3:30 in the morning I heard a terrible roaring noise which turned out to be a violent mudslide in which most of the California hillside fell into the street. Three houses across the street have red tags and are condemned. My first night of sleeping all the way through wasn’t very successful and I spent much of the night growling and yipping and wiggling around in my house/cage. (I’m not much of a whiner.) I guess it wasn’t very nice for The Lady either, since she spent most of the night curled up on the floor outside my door in a pile of blankets and pillows so she could keep a few fingers in my fur for reassurance. We’ll do better tomorrow night.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Exercise in Tolerance

Because I have had more shots, I can have a doggie visitor, so The Man invited Earl to come over for a play date and bring His Person, Elizabeth. Well, it wasn’t really a play date as much as it was an exercise in tolerance on the part of Earl. I LOVE Earl. He is an elderly Australian Shepherd mix (like me!) with cataracts and hip problems, and a luxurious plume of a swoopy tail. One day I hope to have a tail as beautiful as Earl’s. I was waiting for Earl on the front lawn while The Lady was cutting some camellia flowers for a bouquet. When he came around the hedge, I was so excited I couldn’t stand it and peed a little in the grass, but I don’t think anyone noticed. ("I noticed."-note from The Lady). We all went through the garden gate and shut the door behind us, making sure we were safe. For an old guy he was pretty happy about being let off leash in our yard, and roamed all over exploring everything, sniffing all the raccoons and skunks and possums that congregate by the watering hole (the pool) every night, sniffing all the pets that have lived here before me, sniffing the neighborhood stray cats that sleep in the planters because this yard is safe from the coyotes that will eat them, and of course Earl was sniffing all the smells that I have carefully placed all over the yard, to let everyone know I belong here. I danced circles around Earl as I showed him the side of the house where the spare flowerpots are kept to collect rainwater and leaves to make the most delicious soup. Then I persuaded him to examine the Badlands crawl space under The Lady’s pool house where nothing grows because that area has never seen the light of day. I think Earl especially liked the embankment over the pool deck where My People put lots of Mexican Feather Grass and big rocks with Lemon Thyme tucked in the corners to make it smell nice in the sun. Elizabeth was a little worried Earl might lose his footing on all the rocks and roots, especially since he can’t see very well anymore, but he did just fine. The only problem he encountered was getting stuck backwards between a bench and fence in a space too small to turn around to get out. The Lady helped him by lifting his front paws on the bench and rotating him around so he could walk out frontways. Earl gave her a grateful look with deep dark eyes framed by his Kabuki white eyebrows. Everyone said I was nice because I shared my enormous water dish and offered my toys, even the Fishing Game. After a while Earl had had about enough of me being so excited to finally have a friend, and everyone scolded me when I bit his tail a little. It is so hard to resist, so feathery and soft, and I only bit him a little. I hope Earl comes over to visit again soon. Next time I’ll show him how to rip up the grape fines and run as fast a possible with them through the yard.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Naked People Playing Statue

Something is up today. Auntie Cynthia came to visit again last night and she’s still here. The Lady spent extra time dusting the furniture and there seems to be more activity in the Dining Room involving the good silver, the collection of mismatched monogrammed napkin rings, and some antique hemstitched linen napkins. Is it Christmas again? Auntie Cynthia has been receiving a lot of instructions about being less exciting so I don’t pee my pants in her presence. She so much fun I just can’t help it! She get me so wound up and crazy that my eyes swirl independently in their sockets and I just lose all control of everything, my mind, my sense, my arms and legs, and the on/off switch in bladder. When I heard that bell ring in the house, this time I knew what it meant… visitors! The Lady went to the front door first and was talking to the visitor, explaining something about my special way of greeting everyone and pointing to his lovely Prada shoes. He was nodding and telling her he understood. Just as they were about to enter the linoleum protected kitchen to meet me, Auntie Cynthia opened the kitchen door that I was hiding behind, holding my breath. Of course I ran out into the living room and of course I peed when I met the tall man named Brett. I missed his shoes but I managed to get the parquet floor and a couple of the fancy little rugs. Auntie Cynthia got in Big Trouble for letting me out because she was supposed to do this one little thing to help train me so I could go visit her someday and not sprinkle anything on the VERY VERY VERY VERY fancy new floors in her house. She explained to The Lady she thought I was asleep and The Lady rolled her eyes and called her a disobedient big sister. Well, I WAS napping before the Visitor Bell rang, but did anyone really think I was going to sleep through the opportunity to meet new people? Seriously. After I met Brett, all four of them had a lovely lunch of homemade butternut squash soup topped with walnuts, parsley and dried cranberries, a salad with chicken and raspberry dressing, and some crème brulee for desert. (The Lady was delighted that her attempt at the desert of creamy goodness turned out so well.) I got plain dogfood and napped in my playpen in the kitchen. After lunch we all went out to the backyard to watch me run around. I must have done a good job since Brett wants to come back and bring Rex. Rex is his wire-hair terrier who looks like Asta from The Thin Man movies, and I can’t wait to meet him. Rex is very worldly and has taken airplane rides to visit his 1834 country mansion on the Ohio River in West Virginia. When he is here in LA, he lives in a loft in downtown LA with a view of the city and a hot tub on the roof, but in West Virginia he has a big yard of 14 acres with horses and snow and everything. I bet he’ll run around the yard with me. Yay! He might even do some digging. I’ll have to show him how easy it is to rip up the agapanthus. Auntie Cynthia, Brett, The Man and The Lady were having a nice chat when suddenly The Lady bolted out the door saying she didn’t realize it was this late and that she had to get to her class where she sits for three hours and draws naked people playing statue in uncomfortable poses.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Cheap High Heels

Even though it has been a month since I have been in their presence, I still have dreams of Evil Steve and his twin sister Wanda. In these dreams, the two Siblings of Satan are chasing me with giant forks and knives. They carry their cutlery like jousting knights, with Wanda’s long curly fingernails twisted around the handles while her cheap high heels click as she runs. I am trying my best to run away, but I’m still too little and keep getting cornered by them, their German Shepherd named Assassin (who once bit one of my sisters) and their popeyed chihuahua named Accomplice. I yip and bark and growl as loud as I can in my sleep, but it just does no good and I know I'm a goner. Eventually they morph into shiny pink and green street racing cars and attempt to mow me down in cold blood, chasing me through the dog park. Wicked Wanda's eyes glow red as she files her teeth in the rear view mirror, opening and closing her mouth like a python. Just as I am about to get run over by Evil Steve I wake up. Sometimes The Lady is petting me gently and whispering my name, but sometimes I just wake up by myself. I wish I could forget them, but I can’t seem to put them out of my mind entirely. I think the silverware part of the dream comes from overhearing My People talk about how some Asian country is importing Saint Bernards, my cousins on my father’s side, for FOOD. Look it up, I’m not lying.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Slap around in the wind

Ok, so I’m starting to get the potty training thing. I’m supposed to pee and poop outside. Ok. Fine. I don’t see anyone else going outside in the middle of the night to poop in the bushes, but fine. What isn’t fine is that is hasn’t stopped pouring rain by the bucketful for at least a week. I know I shouldn’t complain since my house hasn’t washed away or filled up with mud like some other nearby homes, but seriously, there must be some other way to get this taken care of under these circumstances. I agree, it was very nice for The Man to rig up an impromptu cover over part of the grass using last summer’s shade umbrellas. And, I agree that it was nice of him not to get really mad now that one of the umbrellas has been beat to hell and back in the gale force winds. Now most of the wooden spokes have snapped into pieces leaving the canvas to slap around in the wind like abandoned laundry. Perhaps I could be taught to use the same facility as My People? Just a suggestion….

Sunday, January 24, 2010

THEY bring sticks into the house

If they are going to bring logs and sticks (my favorite!) into the house and stash them next to the fireplace, I don’t understand how they can expect me to leave them alone? They tell ME not to bring sticks into the house, but THEY bring sticks into the house. Yet another point of confusion I am supposed to sort out on my own. PS - Today is Auntie Shauna's Birthday!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Yet again, who is Oliver?

When I ran from my CAGE to The Lady’s side of the bed to shower her with good morning kisses, she scooped me up into the bed for a quick cuddle. This is the first time I’ve been allowed on the bed and it was heavenly! I did see something curious though. Hanging from the lightswitch on her excessively tall bedside lamp is a chain with a little metal tag that says OLIVER. The mysterious Oliver, yet again. Who is Oliver?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


I have noticed that sometimes I do not receive treats in exchange for behavioral requests, yet I’m expected to do what they ask every single time, regardless. I'm not sure I like this arrangement, so I'm not sure I'm going to do anything they ask anymore. I’ll let you know what I decide.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

When I am very tired...

When I am very tired, one of my eyes drifts a little off center. My People feel that it’s ok to discuss the freely. I’m sure they wouldn’t appreciate it if I sat around and talked openly about all of their physical defects and shortcomings.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Race Relations

The white part of my tail seems to be growing at a faster rate than the black part of my tail. Is this normal?

Sunday, January 17, 2010

The Park

The Man, The Lady, The Boy and I went to a park today. This was the most perfect Sunday morning. I was asked to get into the car, and of course I assumed I was going to the hospital or being returned to Evil Steve and Wicked Wanda, Siblings of Satan, but instead we went to Eagle Rock Recreation Center Park. The Man and The Boy brought a football and The Lady and I chased it back and forth between them. She was laughing, but I think this activity is new to her, as evidenced by her stumbling and general slowness. After a while of this silliness, The Man said I could remove my leash since no one was around and we were in a secluded area. It was wonderful! I ran back and forth in the soft grass between everyone and we had such fun. The Man brought the special little spongy frisbee with the hole in the center that I can pick up by myself and that was the best. The football is a little unwieldy and doen't fit very well in my mouth. I have a very big mouth, but not quite that large, at least not yet. Perhaps it will be easier when I get bigger teeth. We couldn’t have asked for better weather in January with a view of the ocean on one side, mountains covered with snow to our backs, and golden sunshine shining from above. Because it was so nice and warm outside we stayed for a long time. Eventually two enormous families showed up for a picnic, so out of respect for their food, we went home. There was some discussion about how I might knock down toddlers for their hot dogs. I was pretty tired anyway, so it was time to leave. What an excellent day!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Gobble Gobble Gobble

Apparently I’m not supposed to gobble my food. At first I was so happy to have my very own bowl of food, just for me and me alone, that I couldn’t believe it and tried to eat everything as fast as possible, just in case a hungry someone was sneaking up behind me, planning to steal my lunch. From the reaction of My People, especially The Man, I am not supposed to eat with such enthusiasm. The Lady keeps telling me to chew my food, but I don’t listen because if I waste the time to chew it, then someone might steal it. Duh! Besides, I still don’t have much by way of teeth. To slow me down she tried feeding me on a cookie tray, but I discovered I have an extra-large size tongue that is covered with excess sticky material, being that i am half Saint Bernard, and I am able to just whisk my tongue over the cookie tray and it works like flypaper. Instead of congratulating me on my talent and ingenuity and efficiency, she was not pleased, saying something about how I was going to choke to death. She also added that it was possible I might slurp up the bowl and all on accident and they’d have to have it surgically removed from my gizzard. The Man is now concocting elaborate games involving holding my bowl of food over my head then making me LOOK him in the eye, SIT still without trembling, LEAVE IT alone, even though my dish is positively HOWLING my name, and WAIT FOREVER until he tells me it is OK to start eating, FINALLY. This is very difficult for me and really takes the enjoyment out of mealtime. I’ve noticed no one hold his dish over his head and makes such ridiculous demands at his dinnertime. He gets a nicely pressed linen napkin.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

For one so little...

I’ve learned to growl and find it quite useful. Apparently I have quite an impressive growl for one so little. I will have to practice this a lot, as I can see advantages, particularly when I am sleeping and The Lady makes me wake up to go outside.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Interesting Sauce

My new favorite taste treat is old leaves steeped in rainwater, preferably in a flowerpot thick with mulch. The rainwater creates such an interesting sauce with these ingredients! O The aroma! Apparently I am not supposed to enjoy anything not found in my official dish located inside the house, so I have to be sneaky about indulging. Fortunately for me, we have very lazy gardeners who just Mow, Blow, and Go, and are particularly careless in the side yard where The Lady stores her extra planting supplies. This remote and infrequently visited quadrant of the yard has quite a buildup of ancient and exotically seasoned leaves, offering a regular smorgasbord of this menu item. i just have to plan my visits to the buffet when they aren't paying attention, which isn't very often. Occasionally I can slip around the side of the house in the dark when they think I've gone out to use the grass and have a quick slurp. Do you think they would believe me if I told them I'm stepping out for a moment to smoke?
No, probably not.