A New Year…but the Same Old Rules


Dear Sam:

Happy New Year buddy. 2016 looks to hold even more promise than ever. For starters, you know I’ll be staying at home now, right? How cool will that be? You will no longer be a latch key fur-kid. You, me and dad will get to hang out and have such great adventures every day. While much of the country is experiencing uncommonly warmer temps, I thought it might be prudent to go over and reiterate the same old winter rules we’ve had since…forever about leash walking in Colorado.

  1. I know the cold temps make you extra frisky but please understand I don’t necessarily feel that exact same friskiness, especially when it’s still dark out on winter morning and night walks (though truth be told, with the lack of a work schedule in the very near future, I will no doubt adjust the time when we get started. Fingers crossed that I can be trained to not wake up before 5:00 AM in retirement.
  2. You may have 4 legs to help keep you reasonably balanced on icy sidewalks but alas I have only 2 and don’t possess quite the same navigational prowess that you possess. Please. walk. slowly.
  3. Zero to 60 in a nanosecond, especially at 5:30 AM make for a real challenge for this upright to stay…namely upright. See above rule about the number of legs necessary to reinforce that steady but slow pace. Not to mention icy sidewalks are dangerous for mommy, quick starts will also make her crabbish. And trust me when I say I don’t fancy looking like a new-born colt with legs splayed out in multiple directions, or worse, landing bottom side up. The fall down…go boom factor is definitely unwelcome.
  4. Please don’t suddenly stop behind me while we are moving at a steady pace making me have to yank on your leash and pull my shoulder out of its socket. My joints and bones are cold and stiff in winter weather (ha…who am I kidding…they are cold and stiff all the time!) and again sudden movements get mommy’s balance out of torque.
  5. Jack-rabbit loping is strictly forbidden. May I remind you that you are not competing in the Iditarod? You shouldn’t need to feel like mushing at break-neck speeds. Just saying.
  6. Finding the darkest, most inaccessible spot to take a dump is frowned upon, i.e. the deepest spot of snow that you can find. You should know by now that I hate fishing out little brown nuggets from deep snow. The little flashlight on your collar only allows others to see you, but not enough light for me to see your ‘presents.’ Carrying a hand torch is difficult since my fingers don’t seem to be able to hold on to anything while wearing thick winter gloves.
  7. When trying to see said poop to pick up, please don’t scamper around behind me and wrap your leash around my legs. This feeble attempt to ‘get out of the way’ falls flat on its face as will I once we resume our meanderings.
  8. Most mornings the temperatures are in the low-teens or single digits and we’re out for a walk…walk being the operative word. It isn’t known as “hey, we’re going for a sniff.” A moving pace assures a healthy walk for both of us. When you dally, it makes me crazy. Please remember… we’re out walking not sniffing or reading pee-mail and we’ll be golden and toasty warm without any aggravating delays.
  9. It is not necessary for you to develop Popeye-strength neck muscles each winter. See Rules 2 and 4 above for review and know that pulling makes mommy crabbish and we don’t want a crabbish mommy, now do we?
  10. Finally, it would be most appreciated if those early morning pee outings don’t go 3/4’s of the way down the alley. Remember, I’m not really dressed for the extreme cold temps when I let you out first thing in the morning or in the middle of the night and get totally irritated fret when you take off on one of your “I have to find the absolute perfect spot 87 blocks away to leave pee-mail.”

So here’s wishing my sweet, goofy fur-kid all the best 2016 can offer. Oh, and feel free to resume writing posts whenever your little pea brain desires-I think I’d like to sleep in later in retirement now. 😉
Love ya loads,

Live, Love, Bark! <3

Sam’s 2015 Resolutions

Sam and I did a lot of reflecting over the New Year’s weekend and we discussed some of his recent behavior of late and the need for, let’s just call them ‘adjustments’ with certain ones. Here’s the list of items he has agreed to work on this year. Some of these are probably impossible to hope for, but you know the saying: hope springs eternal.

  • I will stop trying to find the few clean area rugs in the house when I am about to throw up.
  • I will not eat my own vomit.
  • I will not roll on dead birds & squirrels or geese poop, etc. at the park.
  • I will not lick my upright’s face after eating goose poop.
  • I will not dig food bits or egg shells out of the compost bins.
  • I will not leave my elk antlers strewn over the living or dining room floors. [I’ve nearly gone lame stepping on the little one in the middle of the night!]
  • I will try not to hog the entire bed/sofa and ‘burrito’ the blankets around Mom so she can’t move or turn over. [if he can do this even just a few times this year, I’d be happy] 😉
  • I will not chew crayons, pens or markers, especially the red ones so my upright doesn’t think I’m hemorrhaging.
  • I will not try to stealth or push my way into the passenger front seat so I can lay my head/body across the gear shift into her lap for moral support.
  • Likewise, I will stop fogging up all the side windows with my anxious breath in the car.
  • I will not drop kibbles stuck to my face in Mom’s underwear when she is sitting on the toilet. [also see rule about face towels/napkins below]
  • I will not play tug-o-war with Mom’s underwear or pants when she is on the toilet.
  • I will not bark each and every time I hear a doorbell on TV.
  • I will not sniff at taller dogs while they are peeing.
  • The sofa is not a face towel or napkin, neither is Mom’s leg or lap. [this one might make it to the middle of February…if I’m super lucky] 🙁
  • My head does not belong in the frig or freezer.
  • I will not bark or growl at a police officer when he reaches for Mom’s driver’s license and registration.
  • I do not need to suddenly stand up straight when I’m lying under a dining room chair.
  • I will not go racing through the French doors at Grandma’s house when they are closed. [I think he’s still recovering from a concussion received over Christmas]
  • I will not roll my elk antlers underneath the media center and whine and pace back and forth when I can’t reach them.
  • The mail lady is not trying to steal our stuff-she pets you and gives good ear scratches and loves you.
  • I must shake all rainwater or snow off my fur BEFORE entering the house and finally…
  • I will not chew, eat or disembowel any leather accessory I just ‘happen’ to come across on beds or tables. [just to be clear, I am especially resolved to keep those items at eye level–my eye level that is and completely out of his reach!]

Did you make any resolutions for 2015? Anything you’re hoping to change in either you or your dog’s behavior? Now if only I can reduce the number of the dozens and dozens of post edits, then all will be good. 🙂

Live, love, bark <3

Sleeping dogs cause no problems
Sleeping dogs cause no problems