Fourteen furry reasons to smile

As usual, my monthly roundup is just a little bit late. (You also may have noticed that No Frown Friday was missing yesterday – I’ve been having some technical difficulties, so you’ll get that soon as well. I promise.)

Anyway, I hope you don’t mind too much. Enjoy this roundup of posts from November that put a big smile on my face:

  1. Dear Fourteen Year Old Me from Rescued Insanity – A beautiful post.
  2. Like Herding Cats from Tales and Tails – Behind the scenes of a canine photo shoot,  humor awaits.
  3. Felix, I Swear the Camera Won’t Steal Your Soul from Kol’s Notes – Speaking of amusing photo shoots…
  4. Brooks Says, Adopt a Senior Dog from Peggy’s Pet Place – Can’t argue with that. (In case you’re not yet convinced, read this post from Something Wagging.)
  5. A Couple of Blondes Take a Thanksgiving Walk from Yikes! Loy Turns 60 – I know that sounds like the opening line to the joke, but this story had me smiling from ear to ear.
  6. Why I’ll Never Own a Dog Again from Something Wagging This Way Comes – You know I love thinking about words. How do you describe your relationship with your dog? (This post in response from Rescued Insanity is pretty interesting too.)
  7. 295/365: Babushka? from Life with LuLu & Wally Too! – Honestly, this one just cracked me up.
  8. Monday Mischief: Christmas List Mischief from My Brown Newfies – Being a reindeer for a day is a totally reasonable request, right?
  9. Live: Turkeys on Ice! More Fun Than in Your Freezer from This One Wild Life – I would like to request a TV channel devoted to the happenings in Kim’s yard.
  10. Six Tips for Photographing Dogs With Any Camera from kate with a camera – Several great tips here… check ’em out!
  11. Dogton Abbey Blog, Things Are Getting Crabby Down At The Abbey Episode 4! from  Molly the Wally – Pamela from Something Wagging turned me on to this one. Go read the whole series!
  12. A Wienerholic Family Christmas from My Life with Wieners – This post makes traveling with Bella sound tame.
  13. Friday Funny! Video: Dog loves automatic ball throwing machine from Dakota’s Den – Tavish totally needs one of these.
  14. If You Give a Nutty Pet Blogger Some Cheap Holiday-Themed Accessories from Target from Chronicles of Cardigan – Hilarious as always.

That’s all, folks! Stay tuned for December – I’ll try to get that one to you before February. No promises, though.


Seventeen reasons to smile

Today’s mischief is all mine, not the dog’s… I confess that I’m far behind in sharing my monthly post roundups. Today, I’m bringing you the best from September… these posts are guaranteed to put a smile on your face: Continue reading


PSA: Don’t play cards with this dog

You got to know when to hold ’em… know when to fold ’em… know when to howl and play… know when to run. You never count your dog treats, when you’re sittin’ at the table. There’ll be time enough for barkin’ when the dealin’s done.

I hope you learned something from today’s PSA (Puppy Service Announcement).


8 posts I loved this month

I vowed to post every day in the month of January.  I’m pleasantly surprised to report that I did so (with the exception of one day for the SOPA blackout – and I’m pretty sure that one counts as an excused absence).

I don’t know if I’ll continue to post daily – it was a lot of pressure!  However, I thought today would be the perfect opportunity to take a look back at the month and share a few posts that I thought were really fantastic.

In no particular order, here are eight posts that I really enjoyed this month.  I hope you’ll swing by and read them.

  1. Homeland Security Systems from Tales & Tails – If you’re troubled by trespassers, Tales & Tails has a solution for you.
  2. A is for Adoption (yay!) from Peggy’s Pet Place – A great post about adoption (yay!) that just made me smile.
  3. 5 Ways Dogs Save the World – From the Sublime to the Ridiculous from Something Wagging This Way Comes – “So give your pooch a smooch. And thank her for protecting us from a postapocalyptic hell the likes of which have never been seen on earth.”  With a line like that, it had to make the list!
  4. When we don’t see eye to eye from Love and a Six-Foot Leash – Before you judge, read this post.  Seriously.
  5. Positive Advertising with a Dash of Newf from Rescued Insanity – This video is guaranteed to make you smile.
  6. If You Could Ask One Thing from Rescued Insanity – If you could ask your dog one question, what would it be?  (I couldn’t decide between this one and #5, so they both made the list.)
  7. Porcupines, Fawns and Turkeys – A Winter Woodland Celebration from This One Wild Life – The conclusion to a trio of posts that celebrate nature in all its glory, read this post when you need that moment of Zen.
  8. Saturday’s Dog: Celebrating the Wins by Bringing Up Bella – Need a reason to smile?  Check out these dogs that found their forever homes.
Obviously, I’m a linkaholic.  I also wanted to note that I enjoyed way more than eight posts this month, and you can find links to many of those in my regular Friday posts

What posts did you love this month?  Share them in the comments!


22 things that made me smile in 2011

‘Tis the time for reminiscing about 2011…

Last year, I shared some of my favorite posts from this blog.  This year, I’ve decided to stop the navel gazing (until the Pet Blogger Challenge later this month, of course) and highlight some of my favorite posts from other bloggers.  (Thanks to Mel from the No Dog About It blog for the inspiration.)

It’s a tough task, actually. There is a ton of great content out there in the pet blogging community.

The posts below all have one thing in common – they make me laugh or smile (one of those really big smiles).  There are many beautifultouching, and thought-provoking posts that touched my heart this year. However, today I felt like aiming for tears of laughter or joy rather than the other kind.  Hope you don’t mind.

It was a long year. I’m sure there are some others I adored that slipped my mind when writing this post.  (Perhaps one of my 2012 resolutions should be to do a better job of keeping track of my favorite posts. You may notice that this list skews toward the more recent entries.)  In no particular order, here are 22 posts I loved this year…

  1. My Most Embarrassing Dog Moment from My Brown Newfies – I have no words. Just go read it.
  2. The Puppiness Project – Everything’s Better with Puppies from Something Wagging This Way Comes – With a title like that, how could this post not make my list?
  3. 10 Pictures of Dogs Reading Books from Doggie Stylish- I love dogs. I love books. I love this post.
  4. Favorite Video Friday – Stella’s Shasta Adventure from No Dog About It – I don’t know how Mel finds so many great videos.  However, I still watch this one when I just need a moment of Zen.
  5. (Viewing this may cause extreme joy) More Happy Pets! Part I from The Chronicles of Cardigan – It really did cause extreme joy. Extreme.
  6. Adopting Beelzebub: A Beast of a Bird? from This One Wild Life – An adoption story that warmed the cockles of my heart.
  7. 17 Things Bella Has Stolen from Bringing up Bella – I’m kind of glad my Bella only hoards socks.
  8. Spam Saturday: Amazing Products, Thrilling Occasions, Thanks-a-Mundo! from Will My Dog Hate Me – This post is masterwork. Go put the lime in the coconut and drink it up, okay?
  9. 32 Simple Things You Do That Matter To Dogs from Peggy’s Pet Place- More warming for those cockles.
  10. Dog a Day Project – Why I Don’t Have Kids from Doggie Stylish – I’m just going to start replying to everyone who asks me when I’m going to have children by emailing them a link to this post. (Don’t get me wrong – I don’t know what the future holds. However, I tend to think people should mind their own beeswax and stop asking.)
  11. 5 Reasons Puppies are Easier Than Kids from Smart Dog – A perfect companion to the Doggie Stylish post. 
  12. She Who Cannot Be Trusted from Postpartum Paradise – A toddler, a dog, and adventures in unconventional (and unsanctioned) grooming.  See? I can appreciate posts involving kids!
  13. Senior Dogs: Appreciate, Don’t Discriminate from Grouchy Puppy – This one is actually a guest post that Sharon from Grouchy Puppy contributed to this blog. I just love the message.
  14. The Mystery of Burt’s Bees from Tales and Tails – Or, as I like to think of it, “how to collect puppy kisses in one easy step.”
  15. Dogs in International Costumes: Bone Voyage! from Will My Dog Hate Me – Just because.
  16. Drunken Master IV:  Canine Fu from Rescued Insanity – A funny tale of DWWI (Dog Walking While Intoxicated).
  17. For Woofing Out Loud from Kol’s Notes – In case you’ve ever wondered if your dog thinks you’re as funny as you think you are… the answer is apparently no.
  18. 15 Ways to Tell if You’re Dog Crazy from Something Wagging This Way Comes – Just a genius post, and, well… it’s funny ’cause it’s true. This post inspired me to start that whole dog song parody series of posts. 
  19. Pinterest Tuesday – Dogs Making Messes from Two Little Cavaliers – The cutest kind of mess is the kind that I don’t have to clean up.
  20. Chinese Takeout = Bad Dog Parenting from Life With Desmond – Speaking of messes… wondering if something is trash or treasure? Just ask the dog.
  21. Dressing Up Dogs at Holidays from Grouchy Puppy – I just love this creative take on the antler photo.
  22. From the DDY Digs Desk from Daley’s Dog Years – I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m including this post partly because of the Ryan Gosling photo.

Why 22?  I have no idea. I feel like this list could have gone on forever (for example, I wanted to include a post from BZ Training, but I just couldn’t pick a favorite photo shoot, so I’m cheating and linking to the whole blog here). Finally, I just held an intervention for myself, cut myself off, and sent myself to list-making rehab.  
What was your favorite pet blog post of 2011?

Christmas carols for dogs & dog lovers

The title of this post was almost “Christmas carols, doggie style,” but then I thought better of it.

Anyway, I’ve been promising you some caroldies (a.k.a. carol parodies) for a few days now. It’s finally time to deliver.

There are already some great “12 Dogs of Christmas” songs out there, so I’m not tackling that one today.  I do have a few others for you, however.

Grab a cup of cheer and prepare to learn a few new songs…

Barkin’ Around the Christmas Tree

Barkin’ around the Christmas tree,
because the cat has climbed on top.
She is dropping ornaments on me,
if I bark, perhaps she’ll stop.
Barkin’ around the Christmas tree,
I wish I had some springs.
If I did, I’d jump so high
that the cat would have to flee.
You will learn a fundamental lesson, when you hear
Doggies barking at your folly, as the cat climbs up the holly.
Barkin’ around the Christmas tree,
it’s an eventful holiday.
As the tree comes crashing down,
you’ll wish you had kept the cat away.

Sleigh Ride Revisited

Just hear those dog tags jingling, ring ting tingling too,
Come on it’s lovely weather for a long walk together with you.
Outside the smells are calling and dogs are sniffing them too,
Come on it’s lovely weather for a long walk together with you.
Bark and yap, bark and yap, bark and yap, let’s go,
I want to play in the snow.
Why won’t you just grab the leash so we can go?
Bark and yap, bark and yap, bark and yap, it’s grand,
When the leash is in hand.
I’m ready to bark at the park,
it’s a puppy dog fairyland.
Other dogs may get quite nosy, but comfy cozy are we.
We’re playing fetch together, keep throwing that stick for me.
Let’s take the path before us, and howl a chorus or two.
Come on it’s lovely weather for a long walk together with you.
There’s a dog park near the home of Mr. Gray,
It’ll be the perfect ending to a perfect day.
We’ll be playing the games we love to play, without a single stop,
At the dog park while we watch the puppies hop… hop, hop hop!
There’s a happy feeling nothing in the world can buy,
when your favorite puppy looks you right in the eye.
It’ll really be such a perfect day, of wags and jumps and dives,

This wonderful day will be one we’ll remember all through our lives!

If that’s not enough for you today, I suggest you swing by Something Wagging and start humming along with “Walking in a Neutered Wonderland.” (Update 12/24/14: full version available here.)  However, you might want to use caution when singing that around your husband or other male friends.

Anyway, more caroldies to come later this week… stay tuned.

P.S.  I take requests.


Another trip down Memory Lane for #My7Links

Last month, I was notified by Katie from Tripbase that I had been nominated to take part in My 7 Links.  (A huge and belated thanks to Kim from This One Wild Life for the nomination – sadly, it took me this long to write the post.  Oops…)

The goal of My 7 Links?  “To unite bloggers (from all sectors) in a joint endeavor to share
lessons learned and create a bank of long but not forgotten blog posts
that deserve to see the light of day again.”  Sounds like fun, right?  Here we go…

1.  My most beautiful post

This was kind of a tough call – I think that a lot of the photos I’ve shared of Bella are quite beautiful. (I’m biased, I know.)  However, I decided to go with something a bit wordier: “Lend me your eyes and I’ll write you a blog.” 

2.  My most popular post

According to my stats, my most popular post (based on page views) was one from my recent series recapping the BlogPaws pet blogger conference.  Specifically, the post entitled “BlogPaws Episode 2: Say hello to my not so little friends,” in which I discussed listening to the guys from Rescue Ink give the keynote on the first day of the conference.

(My photo post “Leave(s) it to Bella” was a very close second in the page views category, while I received the most comments on “Take a look at me now,” a post I did as part of the Pet Blogger challenge reflecting on my blogging experience.)

3.  My most controversial post

I’m not the most controversial of bloggers. (I love puppies and cupcakes and spend way too much time talking about pop culture, after all.)  However, I think that the post that qualifies as most controversial is probably “Dogs in hot cars: when will it stop?”  The story I shared in that post was horrifying on so many levels and did inspire some debate.

4.  My most helpful post

I’m not sure I’m that helpful either.  However, I was a bit torn on which post to list here – some of my recent BlogPaws posts have contained some useful information, but I wanted to go with something a bit older.  I do think that “Bella: the Great Houndini” was a pretty useful post – I shared some of our methods of Bella containment and I think that the ideas there would be helpful for others dealing with their own crafty canines.

5.  A post whose success surprised me

As you may know, I have a regular feature that I call No Frown Friday.  These posts are kind of a hodgepodge of things depending on what I have on the brain that week.  I never really know which ones will strike a chord and which ones will fly under the radar.  I find it interesting that the most popular of these posts has such an unassuming title: “That’s one way to stay cool.”

(Also interesting – the most commented on Friday post was “Appreciate a squirrel today.”  Guess it’s not always puppies around here.)

6.  A post I feel didn’t get the attention it deserved

This one was kind of a tough call.  There are many posts from the early days of the blog that never really saw much traffic.  If I had to pick one, I’d probably choose “She’s cute, but…”  This post is a perfect introduction to Bella.

7.  The post that I am the most proud of

I knew that the post I selected for this category would be one where I was blogging the change for animals or sharing an important cause.  I think I’ve settled on this one: “Blog the Change: Pets of the Homeless” (the first time I mentioned that particular cause on the blog).  I think that this is a really important organization, and I’m dedicated to spreading the word about it.  (I discussed it again as part of the recent Pay it Forward blog hop.)

So, those are my links.  Now, for the fun part – nominating five others to participate!  After checking the list of bloggers nominated so far, I think I’m not duplicating… if so, my apologies.  Anyway, I’m nominating these great bloggers:

Happy Monday!


BlogPaws Episode 7: This is the end

When last we saw our intrepid heroine, she had just finished lunch on the last day of BlogPaws.  What adventures await her in this installment?

After lunch, it was time to head to my final session.  I chose one entitled “Copyright Basics for Bloggers & Staying Out of Trouble with the FTC.”  Obviously, I’m not here to give you legal advice, but I am happy to share some resources so you can learn about copyright, product reviews and contests.  These sites will provide you with some handy information:

  • To learn more about copyright law, visit the U.S. Copyright Office.  There are a few angles to consider here, including learning the basics about when your work is copyrighted and protecting your own work.  There’s also a handy page intended to help you unravel the mysteries of copyright law, whether you’re the creator of the content or wondering how and when you can use someone else’s content on your site.  (On a related note, I love a government agency with a sense of humor – this FAQ was my favorite.)
  • Speaking of using content you didn’t create, you may want to check out the Creative Commons website.  You can search this site for creative works that you may be able to use on your blog – visit here to learn about how content is licensed and how you can use it.  You can also find some Creative Commons work on Flickr.
  • Before you do any product reviews on your site, it’s important to know the rules of the road, especially if you’re receiving free products to review on your site.  Visit the FTC website to find out more.
  • If you want to run a sweepstakes or contest on your blog, there may be legal issues related to running a promotion.  For an overview of the issues, take a look at this article.
  • Finally, for a wealth of info, you can also check out the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Legal Guide for Bloggers.

After this session, I finally managed to meet Sharon from Grouchy Puppy, thanks to some help from my pal Kim over at This One Wild  Life.  Sharon was on my must-meet list, but we hadn’t managed to make it happen yet.  While I chatted with a few bloggers, including Sharon and Diane from To Dog With Love, we were treated to a special presentation:

No offense to anyone else, but I’m pretty sure that Cosmo was the cutest speaker at the conference.

After this adorable presentation, Sharon, Diane and I did what many bloggers do with downtime – we had a photo shoot!  Sharon (and Cleo’s proxy) posed for a few shots with Cosmo.  This shot was my favorite:

Sadly, the end of our photo shoot also meant the end of my BlogPaws adventure.  Irene was fast approaching, so I headed home to spend the evening hanging out with Bella and hoping my power wouldn’t go out.  (Spoiler alert: my power did go out.  However, it went out at 2:30 A.M. and was back before 10 A.M., so I won’t complain.  I don’t think Bella even noticed.)

Well… that’s all, folks.  (I’m at a bit of a loss – what will I ramble about now that this series is done?)  I had a great time at the conference and met some absolutely wonderful people.  I hope you enjoyed these recaps – if you want to read or revisit any of my BlogPaws 2011 coverage, you can do so by clicking here


Less adoptable? Super awesome is more like it

In honor of Petfinder’s Adopt-a-Less-Adoptable-Pet Week, I’m dedicating this week’s No Frown Friday to the less adoptable pets out there. This week’s motto?  Appreciate, don’t discriminate!

  1. Punny pet name:  Mike-howl Ian Black.
  2. Did you see my guest post on Grouchy Puppy earlier this week?  If not, check out 10 great reasons to adopt an older dog.
  3. Even better, Sharon from Grouchy Puppy did a guest post here as well (check it out if you missed it).  Remember: when it comes to senior dogs, appreciate, don’t discriminate! (For a host of senior dog resources, I also recommend that you visit Daley’s Dog Years.)
  4. Also among the less adoptable? Pop over to Something Wagging to learn about tripod dogs (a.k.a. dogs with three legs).  Don’t get too cocky – I have a feeling that many of them could beat me (and probably you) in a race.  You can also read about more special needs pets at Bessie Mac, Bringing up Bella, and browndog cbr.
  5. I’ve talked about Black Dog Syndrome before and introduced you to some of the awesome black dogs from my past.  Check out this post at the Northern Virginia Dog Blog for more info.
  6. Do any of your pets (past or present) fit into the less adoptable (a.k.a. “awesome but people are too dumb to see it”) category?  Tell me about them!  (You can also stroll down memory lane with some other bloggers this week, like Kim from This One Wild Life and Dr. V from Pawcurious.)
  7. Dawn from Affurmation shares why she prefers adopting those so-called less adoptable pets.  It’s a great reason!
  8. Warning: this story from Amazon Cares about the special bond between a less adoptable pet and his human might bring tears to your eyes.  (I promised no frowns, but I said nothing about happy tears.)
  9. Kim from CindyLu’s Muse reminds us why different is beautiful.
  10. As Marg’s Pets will tell you, it’s not just dogs that have to deal with this label.  Learn the facts about FIV-positive cats at Brian’s Home and check out some black cats at House of Carnivores and The Chronicles of Cardigan.

We end today’s post with a video of one of those less adoptable pets…

Based on how cute this “less adoptable” black dog is, I can only conclude one thing… people are crazy.


My mixtape to you: 5 dog song parodies

I recently read Something Wagging’s post on 15 Ways to Tell if You’re Dog Crazy and it got me thinking.  In particular, number 15 on that list is “when you sing around the house, you change the lyrics so they’re about your dog.”  I have a long and storied history of changing lyrics (for both dog and non-dog related purposes). It’s a disease for which I have not sought professional help. 

Today you shall get the benefit of my crazy.  I present a sampling (a blog mixtape, if you will) of songs I’ve changed the lyrics of to sing to or about Bella.  She gets to experience my performances live on a regular basis (it’s like I have a show in Vegas, but it’s at my house and no one pays to see me).  Feel free to work these songs into your daily life – I won’t even ask you to pay royalties.

5.  “You Give Love a Bad Name” by Bon Jovi – this whole song is perfect, but it begins, “Rolling in stuff, and you’re too blame… Bella, you give dogs a bad name.”

4.  “Hey Mickey” by Toni Basil – As in, “oh Bella, you’re so fine, you’re so fine you blow my mind – hey Bella!”

3.  “Iron Man” by Black Sabbath – Short and to the point: “You… are… Bella dog.  Do do do do do do do… you’re a dog.”  This one is subject to multiple variations during live performances.

2. “Paparazzi” by Lady Gaga – this one may be familiar to you: “”Open the dog food can, I’ll follow you until you walk me, pupper, pupperazzi.  Baby, there’s no other pet owner for me, my pupper, pupperazzi.  Promise I will whine, until that toy is mine.  Maybe you should feed me, I’ll chase you down until you feed me, pupper, pupperazzi…”

Finally, my personal favorite:

1.  “Karma Chameleon” by Culture Club – sing it with me: “Bella Bella Bella Bella Bella Chameleon…. you come and go, you come and go-oh. Walking would be easy if you would stop zigzagging… just walk calmly, just walk calmly-eeee…” (And remember, it’s pronounced “Cha-me-lee-on.”)

There are many (MANY) more I could share with you.  However, I figure I should leave you wanting more.  So… do you want more?  If so, perhaps I’ll post more of these another day. 

I don’t think I’ve mentioned it here yet, but I’m in the process of participating in a 31 Days to Building a Better Blog Challenge.  Today’s task was to compose a list post… hence the format.  I do enjoy a good list, and I sometimes forget how fun they can be!  For other list-type posts I’ve done in the past, check out these:  favorite posts, bath tips, favorite tv episodesparody TV shows and parody movie pitches.  I also utilize the list format for No Frown Friday and sometimes add smaller lists in other posts (like this BlogPaws recap ). Do you use list posts?  What do you think about them?  Tell me about it in the comments!