Category Archives: Pets

Attack of the Great Black Beast


It was the picture perfect sunny Saturday morning. GrammaJ was in town; Search had already demonstrated his propensity for scootering and it was time to show off the big boy bikes.

I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to steal a shower.

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Case of the Broken Tail


Scout’s tail never stops moving. In full “love the one you’re with” Labrador enthusiasm, his otter tail is always thwacking his excitement.

I grew up in a Southern California desert canyon <cue ominous Wild West whistling> fueled by the fire of 1,000 suns.

It is a death valley of its own kind for lizards and lawns alike. My parents’ house has plant potters housing baby palm trees. Lizards scale the basket – lured by the mirage of water amid the cool 95-degree autumn afternoons. Cacti stand in mocking triumph over the fallen. Continue reading

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Sorry, Had to Go See About a Ball



I died on a Tuesday.

I was old. My once golden fur had long since faded to white. My joints ached. My body hurt. The seizures were robbing my mind of more of me every day.

I’d wandered the backyard. I tossed my tire rope to myself for a while. I chased my ball. I remembered being a younger pup; I could play fetch for hours, rest for a few moments and hit the grounds for more. Continue reading


How to Train Your Dog


Let him grow old.

That’s it. That’s all I’ve got.

Cooper is crazy. From his very first escape attempt through the streets of his puppy neighborhood, to is grand adventure on his third day as a member of our family, our lives became a precision orchestration of keeping the door closed and making sure keys were at the ready to chase after Indy Speed Racer. Continue reading

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Must Love Dogs


Dogs make me happy.

The unconditional love. The uncontained excitement so intense they can’t help but piddle on the kitchen rug because you’ve been gone for forever (or 20 minutes). The cuddles. The pathetic puppy dog eyes because oh my god they’re starving and will absolutely die if you don’t share that loaf of French bread. The exasperated sighs echoing your own frustrations when you share your concerns. And the overwhelming affection – each in their own way. Continue reading


Dog Behavior


I like dogs. They make me happy.

I have two. They are buffoons. They are the living embodiment of Pinky and the Brain. They hurl themselves at the door when the FedEx man arrives with our daily delivery of diapers. They frantically bolt from the house to bark at the bushes should the battery in the smoke detector beep to alert us the battery had run low. Continue reading

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How to Ruin Dinner in Six Easy Steps

To be fair, I was already a bit distracted.

I worked from home today. And after a lengthy webinar, spent pacing the perimeter of my office, I ventured forth into the kitchen for coffee. I desperately needed a recharge after talking to myself for an hour wondering if anyone was listening.

It was a whole Silicon Valley technological version of “If a tree falls in the forest…” moment updated to “If I give an online presentation and no one pays attention…”

I knew something was amiss the moment I crossed the living room threshold. Now, with two growing boys, I’ve smelled my share of special deposits. But this was unique. Continue reading


The Great Cooper Caper

We have dogs. Two of them. A yellow one and a black one.

Remember the 90s cartoon “Pinky and the Brain”? Genetically engineered mice – one brilliant and sly, scheming for world domination. The other desperate to be loved, but may have missed a few days when intelligence was being handed out. Their standard dialogue:

Pinky: Gee, Brain, what do you want to do tonight?
The Brain: The same thing we do every night, Pinky—try to take over the world!

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Bobby. A dog.

“I found a replacement for Scout,” read the text message.

“He’s cute. He looks like Cooper,” I replied. (Isn’t he cute?) “Why is he in our kitchen?”

“His name is Bobby.”

“Is he staying?” Because that would really be a LOT of testosterone in my house. Continue reading

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Why Our Dogs Flunked Obedience School

Jon: Our dog ate an entire box of packing peanuts. Do I need to bring him in?

Vet: Packing peanuts?

Jon: Yes – those Styrofoamy twisty things they put in boxes to protect stuff. Continue reading