Archive for July, 2014|Monthly archive page

Dog clubs (just for the dogs)

In Dog Clubs, Dog comfort, Shelley Widhalm on July 27, 2014 at 11:30 am

My BFF Shelley is talking about writer’s groups (again). I have already made the case for the need for dog groups. Here is what I wrote Aug. 11, 2013, basically 11 months ago. The problem is I’m kind of tired and don’t feel like dog-blogging this time. (By the way, dog is spelled d-o-g and blog is spelled b-l-o-g, meaning dogs who blog are a perfect match).

Okay, here goes:

There’s book clubs, writing clubs, service clubs and clubs of special interests for humans, but there isn’t anything for dogs (or cats).

There are dog parks, doggie day camps and doggie play dates.

And there are breed specific clubs, such as the German Shepherd Dog Club of America, the Labrador Retriever Club and the National Greyhound Association, as well as the Dachshund Club of America (my favorite, by the way).

Though I would like to join the Dachshund Club of America and meet up with other dachshunds, the club is for breeders and dog owners. These humans want to show off how their dogs compete in agility courses, perform training tricks and compare in confirmation, or how closely an individual dog meets the ideal breed standard.

These clubs aren’t about us.

I would like to find (or even start) a dog club that meets once a week, such as in a dog-friendly coffee shop, where we could sit at our own table and bark, whine and howl. I think a smelling or hearing club would be ideal, so we could trade tricks on how to improve our senses and find good sources of smells.

We’d discuss business over our dog-friendly cups of water and dog-licious treats. We might even select a club president, a role I don’t want because I prefer being the secretary. I like to take notes and am quite literate, unlike some dogs that don’t blog.

Once we got the formalities squared away, we would plan dog outings free of leashes (and humans), visit dog-friendly places and experience the great outdoors, running wild and free in our new pack.

This club is henceforth the Dachshund Club of a Particularly Smart Breed.

A dog who loves cats

In All About Me, Being Cute, Shelley Widhalm on July 20, 2014 at 11:30 am

Come on, kitties, let's play!

Come on, kitties, let’s play!

I seem to make mistakes when it comes to cats.

Twice, I’ve tried to befriend cats, and though I’m their size as a 10-pound miniature dachshund, they aren’t interested in my offers.

The first time was with a group of feral cats who live underneath the shed at my BFF Shelley’s dad’s house. I peeked in the hole in the doorway (the shed’s kind of old) and sniffed out their presence, but they didn’t come out.

When I saw one of them, I was inside on the window ledge, so I barked a “hello” over and over, but Feral Cat would not look up at me. To make it worse, I never saw her again, because when I came back for another visit, word was the feral cats had moved on.

The second time was last weekend when Shelley and her family were doing some work in the garage and, though I was boxed in, literally, by a row of empty boxes, I played a Houdini and escaped through an opening.

“Zoey, get back here!” Shelley’s dad yelled as chairs tumbled and she and Shelley took after me.

I wasn’t interested in obeying, no way. I had a whole neighborhood to explore to identify where all of my dog friends actually lived, instead of just greeting them with barks from the backyard in an anonymous calling out to each other.

At the house next door, I saw a black-and-white cat and walked up to her, slowing a little when I noticed that she was hissing, back arched.

“I’m so sorry,” Shelley said over and over to the cat’s owner as she ran up to us.

The cat apparently did not want to be friends, even though I kept trying to show her, with my gentle approach, that I only wanted to say “hello.”

I got scooped up and taken away … away from all the potential friend sources.

What a way to not even get a second chance to try.

Dogs and moving

In Being Cute, My family, My new home, Shelley and Zoey, Shelley Widhalm on July 13, 2014 at 11:30 am

Zoey has her toys packed in a bag or two.

Zoey has her toys packed in a bag or two.

I was quite happy in my old apartment, or the one I shared with my BFF Shelley.

That is, until she took everything apart, reconfiguring my routines and sense of space into a bunch of boxes, as if we were in a city of cardboard.

I wanted my life back but she disassembled it all.

To figure out what had happened, I stood down the hall from my BFF, head tilted, asking, “What? What? What!”

On Moving Day (as if all the days that are the same need a special label), the boxes disappeared and Shelley and her fiancé, who helped her move into their new place (and mine, too), left with the boxes. I was the last thing to be moved, as if I am the least important.

We moved into a place with slippery, laminate floors, lots of windows and lots of boxes, the same ones from before. I didn’t know what to do or where to go. Where was my doggie bed, and why wasn’t there linen on the big bed? Why were there boxes on the couch? Where was my water bowl?

After a box or two, it magically appeared with my boring dog food.

But then how do I tell Shelley I need to go on a potty trip, when my potty box (think kitty litter) wasn’t there? At first, we went on more walks than normal, and I peed my way through my neighborhood, marking all my new spots. And then the box appeared on the patio, just a different one.

Still, I didn’t get why my address changed.


What does that mean for my identity? Who am I now?

I guess I will adjust, because I can deal, being a dachshund and all. We look cute, are cute and act cute, so when things change, we and our long bodies eventually adjust. We can find our home anywhere. Really. As long as we got love in the street name.