Zoey

Dogs and the Holidays

In Cute Dachshunds, Cute Dogs, Holidays, On Being Cute on November 1, 2017 at 5:30 pm

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I am opening my presents during a previous Christmas.

I love the holidays because my BFF Shelley takes me out to the dog-friendly shopping malls. I get to be carried inside the store, where I can see all of the sale items.

Being carried is advantageous when you’re a long-haired miniature dachshund with short legs.

What I see and smell is all low to the ground. I want the apex of vantage points to search out potential dog lovers, so that when they see me, they remark on my cuteness and want to pet me.

I want to be able to see everything from the human eye level to the ground, instead of relying on my sense of smell and knowledge of feet and shoes. That’s because my two aims in life are finding, eating and getting food (a top priority) and, second, getting attention. Attention results in petting sessions, playtime and cuddles.

Attention also reminds me that I’m cute, so I  never doubt my state of cuteness and remain confident at all times. I think we all need to hear positive feedback, whether we’re human or a dog or a cat.

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A Dog’s View: Controversy over Halloween Costumes

In Cute Dachshunds, Cute Dogs, Halloween Costumes on October 1, 2017 at 5:30 pm

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I am not a witch. I’m a cute dog! I just dressed as a witch for Halloween.

Halloween scares me a little for one big reason.

Though I love the treats I get—an extra rawhide that’s vet-recommended—I don’t like the tricks part of it.

My BFF Shelley likes to dress me up for three reasons: sometimes on Halloween, always on Christmas and whenever it’s cold and we’re outside or on a walk. I’ve been a witch, a mechanic with a pink bandana and a school girl with a tan skirt and white cable knit sweater. And at Christmas, I have to wear my green T-shirt with an image of Santa with one of his reindeer.

But I don’t like it. When I was little, I’d squirm right out of my clothes, or bunch them up, or get my little paw caught in one of the arms. Now that I’m older, I just put up with it.

I’ve done some research and found that dressing up dogs in over-the-top costumes is usually for the pet owners’ benefit and not for the sake of the pet. It’s OK to dress us up to be warm but not if the costume physically restricts our movements or causes discomfort. Shelley puts me in a warm jacket or sweater if it’s cold out, and I like it well enough after I get used to the extra layer and understand I can still walk.

But when large sections of our bodies are covered by material, it’s hard for us to communicate with other dogs, particularly because body language is one of our major methods for expressing ourselves. Granted, I really don’t like other dogs unless they’re smaller than me, though I do like cats. Still, I need to get my message across.

Some dogs become scared or confused when they are dressed up, and some won’t express themselves. Things on our heads, like hats and hoods, can be particularly disturbing, because they’re in the way and we’re not used to them.

Anyway, here are some photos of me in costume, but as you can see, I don’t look that excited. I’d rather have a treat and no tricks and silly costumes.

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I’m not very happy in my witch’s hat. My BFF Shelley took a photo and took if off of me, thank goodness!

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I am dressed as a mechanic. This costume isn’t as bad because it doesn’t have a hat!

Zoey's new outfit

Why am I wearing a silly bow that matches my silly shirt?

What a Dog Smells (and Hears)

In Cute Dogs, Dog Barks, Dog communication on September 3, 2017 at 11:30 am

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Zoey the Cute Dachshund stops to smell the flowers during her downtown walk.

As a member of the canine species (and a very cute one), I find smelling things to be my favorite way of using my senses.

I experience my world first through smells of different types and intensities, instead of relying on visual information like most humans. I track and explore these smells to obtain my information.

When I go on a walk, I have to stop at every brick wall, light pole, street sign and grassy area to check out the smells. If I encounter another dog (hopefully not a big dog), we’ll engage in mutual sniffing to greet each other, as if shaking hands or exchanging business cards with our essential information, such as sex, breed and mood. I might be friendly, but I still want to tell the dog that this is mine, all of what I can see, smell and touch.

I don’t do so well with sight, because, unlike humans who can distinguish the full color spectrum, I only see blues, yellows and grays; plus, I use vision as a secondary sense to confirm what I already know.

With sound, I am better than my human counterparts. I can hear higher-pitched sounds and am quicker at identifying a sound’s direction.

If you hear me (or other dogs) whimper or whine, I might be telling you I’m hurt or that I want something. If I yelp, I might be hurt or terrified. If I growl, it’s likely I’m fearful, angry or demonstrating threat to another animal or human. And when I’m repeatedly barking, I’m telling you I’m excited.

And, yes, I’m excited to have you read my blog.

Bark, bark, bark!