DiDi: Who can confidently stand alone?

DiDi: Alone on a snowy day relying on myself even though I know a human let me outside.

Howl,

It took me a few years on this planet and knowing that I could hunt for my dinner if needed to realize that I can rely on my own four paws. I stepped out of Bella’s shadow and discovered what I wanted out of my life. More play, nature and time in the kitchen cooking with mommy. Less double dates with Bella, shopping trips and romantic comedy movies.

The best part of standing on your own is finding those special people who appreciate you and want to stand with you.

   DiDi: Bella and Toby join me for some snowy fun. 12 legs are better than 4.

Can you proudly stand on all four of your paws?

Woof,

DiDi

Cleveland the Bloodhound: Can you suggest New Year’s resolutions I will keep?

Dear Paws to Talk,

It is that time of year again. This is when I sit down, close, my eyes and think hard about my New Year’s resolutions.

My humans probably think I spend today and each January 1st sleeping off my New Year’s Eve celebration but in reality I am concentrating on my goals for the upcoming year.

In my experience, it has been so tough to complete my resolutions.This past year, I failed at seeking more adventure outside of my yard. The year before that I wasn’t successful in losing my extra vanity weight.

Can you suggest some New Year’s resolutions I can keep?

-Cleveland the Bloodhound

Howl Cleveland,

You are a very ambitious dog and we like that. Most humans have barely risen from their beds (they are still probably covered in shiny paper from midnight parties and too embarrassed to show their faces) and you are contemplating how to make the most out of this new year. Bravo!

We discussed your letter last night over our kibble and a little bubbly (we like to cheers to a new year) and decided that a resolution puts too much pressure on a being.

So many humans and animals make their resolutions too difficult to complete and they set themselves up for failure. This is no way to spend one’s days.

Instead, why not set 2-5 realistic goals or things to accomplish? If you get them done before the end of the year then make some new ones.

See our 5 suggestions for achievable resolutions below.

Get your blood flowing

Run 10 laps around your yard 4 times a week to burn off the vanity weight. You will be amazed how fantastic it feels to break a sweat and have that blood pumping through your fur.

Who can really give up bones or spit out delectable kibble? So burn it off.

Be friendly

Once a week, start a conversation with a neighbor or friend you don’t usually bark with. New friendships or relationships can begin anywhere.

Explore!

You don’t need an airplane ticket to an exotic locale to add more adventure to your life. Have the humans walk you on a different path. Or spend some extra time in a part of the house you typically avoid.

Always be ready for a squirrel sighting. You never know what creature may enter your yard.

Limit bad habits

It takes a long time to give up a bad habit so why not start off by cutting back? If you are in the habit of sneaking food off the counter everyday then cut back to doing it 4 times a week.

This probably goes against every desire in your body but in the end your belly will feel better and the humans will trust you more.

Be open

Try new kibble if it is put in front of your nose. Play a new game if friends suggest it. Participate in a yoga or meditation class.

Happy New Year and good luck!

Woof,

Bella and DiDi

Bella

DiDi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk, 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Julie the Chow Chow: How should I behave at a party?

Dear Paws to Talk,

Recently my humans had a party at my house. There was human food and drink everywhere. I usually am restricted to the upstairs during these parties but this time I was allowed to socialize. I pranced around the room greeting guests. Everyone adored me. I even got a taste of human food. How do you think dogs are supposed to act at parties? Did I pass the test?

-Julie the Chow Chow

Howl Julie,

I am happy to answer your letter because I attend many parties. DiDi wishes she could answer. However, she is always banned from our human’s parties and ends up pouting in her bed. She gets too excited and ends up with her paw in an appetizer. Last year, while the humans weren’t looking, she pulled the whole tablecloth off the table trying to steal a stick of butter and basket of bread. Foolish girl.

Being invited to a party is a privilege, so you must be grateful and act politely. Always greet each guest with a tail wag even if they are not your favorite. It is a party. A time for fun. There are other times to growl at someone you don’t like.

Once everyone has arrived do laps around the room (don’t run) and collect love and pets on the nose from everyone. If you don’t put yourself out there than no one can ever love you or pet your nose.

Enjoy the food and drink but don’t pull a DiDi. You don’t want to be the laughing stalk of the party. There is nothing worse than waking up the next day and being ashamed to show your face.

It sounds like you did well at your first party. Keep it up and maybe next time they’ll give you your own lamb chop to chew on. Yum.

Woof,

Bella

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Tessa the Black Lab: Am I old?

Dear Paws to Talk,

My daddy said something to me the other day that caught me off-guard. He called me an “old girl.” Usually, he just refers to me as “girl.” I admit that my bones get a little sore after walks and I find some of the antics young canines do a bit annoying. However, I don’t feel old. My mind and sense of smell are still very sharp.  Am I old?

-Tessa the Black Lab

Howl Tessa,

*Big Sigh* This is another example of humans saying something silly. When will they learn that we hear everything they say and their words affect us? Maybe your human feels older so he is dragging you down with him?

I believe that you are the age that you act. I am 6-years old but I like feel the way I did when I was 1-year-old so I do things I did when I was that age. For example, I run around the neighborhood while everyone chases me, dig holes and sometimes steal Bella’s kibble. If you buy into being an “old girl” then you will be one.

Of course, we are all getting older and with that comes experience which can be a great asset. For instance, I now know that I will never eat my daddy’s cycling glove ever again. Also, I know how to prevent Bella from pushing my buttons. I’m sure you have many things that you have learned over the years that made you a better dog.

Take your life experiences and act what ever age you want. The next time your daddy calls you an “old girl” make a grumbling sound. Don’t let him off the hook. Soon you’ll just be “girl” again.

Woof,

DiDi

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Bella and DiDi: Be spunky!

Howl,

Don’t forget to let the spark in you ignite! Run around, laugh, hug, be happy, explore, challenge yourself, learn and then eat some treats.

     Bella: I am an older dog but I still zoom around my yard. It makes me feel alive!

                                    DiDi: Nothing stops me from trying something new.

Woof,

Bella and DiDi

 

© Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Anonymous Human: Why is my dog reverting back to his old puppy habits?

Dear Paws to Talk,

I have a black, furry, dog beast. We recently moved to a new house and all of a sudden my housebroken dog is peeing inside every other day.

I know it’s probably because he wants to mark his place but he stopped peeing inside four months ago when he completed puppy training. Why is he going back?
What should I do to keep him from peeing?
And lastly, are you girls looking for a black, furry roommate? Thanks for your help.

-Anonymous Human

Howl Human,

We sense your frustration. Who wants to make progress and then go backwards? Although, sometimes it is fun to run backwards. It is a good thigh workout.

For a moment, forget about the frustration and put yourself in your dog’s fur. He is probably scared about being in a new place. The floors, yard and hiding places are all different.

We think that he is trying to make this new home his territory but he could also be acting out against the change. We hate to admit it but we act out sometimes when things aren’t how we like them.

For instance, our mommy bought us new beds because our old ones were “disgusting.” No one asked her to change our beds. We were comforted each night by the “disgusting” scents on the beds. When she took them away, we refused to sleep on the new beds. Instead we slept on the living room couches for a while before giving the new beds a chance.

During this time of transition, be sure the dog gets enough exercise. When tired, we have no energy for mischief. Also, when you go to work or run errands, leave him in a penned off area. He will not pee in his area. Trust us, we would rather cuddle with a squirrel than have a messy environment.

The most important thing is to just be patient and loving. Your dog can visit anytime but our inn is full. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

Woof,

Bella and DiDi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Goldie the Poodle: What should I be for Halloween?

Dear Paws to Talk,

My neighborhood Halloween party is this weekend and I have no idea what to dress up as. Last year, I went as a ghost and many people told me I wasn’t very creative. Of course, this is not true as I like to paint portraits in my spare time.

I just ran out of time to get a lovely costume. This year, I really want to make a fabulous impression. What should I be?

-Goldie

Howl Goldie,

We’re sorry that others made fun of your costume last year. This year you are going to wow them with your creative and festive look. After much barking, we have come up with the following suggestions.

Dress as your favorite food

Bella: I would be a filet of salmon.

DiDi: I would be a stick of butter.

Don’t forget to eat your costume after the party!

Be an Olympian

Bella: I would be Nadia Comaneci. Who wouldn’t want to be a perfect 10?

DiDi: I would be Misty May-Treanor. Anyone who gets to run around the beach all day is my kind of human.

Remember to accessorize with your gold medals!

Go as your favorite TV character

Bella: I would go as Joan Holloway from Mad Men.

DiDi: I would go as Brenda Leigh Johnson from The Closer.

Master an impression of your character.

Be a newspaper headline

Bella: “Standard Poodle becomes first dog to win Nobel Prize”

DiDi: “Dog digs hole from her yard to China”

Be sure to fact check your costume before going out.

Woof,

Bella and DiDi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.