Sabrina the Human: I need 5 engery-boosting tips to finish this exhausting week.

Dear Paws to Talk,

I am in the middle of one of the busiest weeks of my life. I have so much to do before Sunday ends and am losing my energy.

Between my paying job, a looming deadline for the business I am starting, my family and keeping the house in order, I feel like I have nothing left to give. I am working 16 hour days and need some help to finish off the week.

There are 5 more days left of craziness. Can you give me 5 tips to help me boost my energy and accomplish everything?

-Sabrina the Human

Howl Sabrina,

Whatever you do in the midst of your busy week, don’t forget to feed your pets! Most of us aren’t as good as our ancestors were at hunting down dinner.

It seems like life has given you everyone else’s work to do this week. That doesn’t seem fair. We will try to see if we can file a grievance.

Here are your tips to make sure you survive the remainder of this week with grace and poise.

1. Take a short nap either after your lunch kibble or before your dinner kibble. Nap for no more that 30 minutes on the couch. If you go to bed and sleep longer than 30 minutes you probably won’t get up until morning.

2. Treat yourself to something special. You may think this is the wrong week to be doing this. However, a massage, facial or special meal is probably just the thing to rejuvenate your tired mind and body. The massage usually works for us every time when the humans stress us out.

3. Chase something. For us, this is easy because we have pesky squirrels invading our yard every morning. An invigorating run with a purpose in mind gets the blood flowing. If you don’t have a squirrel to chase then pick out a tree or building to run to.

4. When you are done for the day, be done! Sometimes we go to bed contemplating tomorrow’s blog or if the humans will remember to feed us the good kibble for breakfast. This is wasted time in which we could be getting our beauty sleep. Close your eyes and dream of something nice.

5. Bark it out! You have a lot going on. When it feels like you can’t do anymore, find a friend who understands and bark about the situation. You will feel much lighter, like someone removed your leash and collar.

Best of luck with the rest of the week!

Woof,

Bella and DiDi

Bella

DiDi

Aimee the human: How do I feel less guilty leaving my dog when going to work?

Dear Paws to Talk,

Each morning just as I am about to leave for work, I look at my dog Charlie and feel so guilty. He goes to his bed and looks sad which makes me feel worse.

Even though, I have a wonderful dog walker visit him while I am away, that doesn’t seem to help me from feeling badly.

How can I feel better about this?

-Aimee the human

Howl Aimee,

Charlie is lucky to have you as his mother because you truly care about him. These feelings most likely result in Charlie receiving more treats. Way to go our canine friend!

Despite the fact that Charlie looks sad when you leave, trust us when we say that he needs time to himself. Just as you have things to accomplish in the world, so does Charlie.

Speaking from experience, while you are gone, Charlie is working on various projects such as finishing a challenging chew toy, his side project(s) around the house and keeping in touch with his animal friends. These are all things that are put on the back burner when you are home because Charlie’s focus becomes taking care of you.

Take comfort in knowing that Charlie is being productive and not in bed sulking all day. However, just because Charlie fills his days with activities in your absence, is no excuse for you to pay less attention to him when you get home. Keep up the hugs, kisses, tug of war games and treat dispensing.

Charlie will let you know if something is really wrong or if he becomes lonely. Meanwhile, make some tea and biscotti for two and have Charlie tell you about his day.

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.

Carly the Human: I am not a morning person. Do you have any tips to help me?

Dear Paws to Talk,

I hate it when my alarm clock goes off very early each morning. I just want to stay in bed and go back to sleep for a while.

After a lot of cajoling, I get up and start my day. However, I spend so much energy pushing myself to get going that when I start my job I am already tired.

Unfortunately, I don’t have the ability to start my day later. Do you have any tips to help me get up?

-Carly the Human

Howl Carly,

*Sigh* I don’t like mornings either. I think they are not my favorite because I spend part of my nights watching over my yard instead of sleeping. Do you do the same thing?

Bella wakes everyone up very early with a crisp bark (I hope she gets laryngitis someday). I rollover in my bed but can’t avoid the humans leading me outside so I can take care of business. To say I understand how you feel is an understatement.

So both of us are not morning people but have to be up early. When I am bleary-eyed and hoping Bella will shut her kibble hole, the following things help me get ready to rise for the day.

Breakfast

I think about what I may find in my bowl after I take care of my business. Thankfully, the humans make a few different breakfast recipes and rotate them. We rarely have a boring meal.

You can do the same. Make you breakfast smell and taste scrumptious. This will wake up your body.

Companionship

Unless, you are a very important being, the world will not come to your bed. When you are upset about how early you have to get up, think about a friend or special someone you will see today.

I like to greet my Bouvier canine friend Josh every morning. We have lively discussions over the fence. If I buried myself in bed, I wouldn’t get to see Josh. He has an electric collar/fence which makes it difficult for him to leave his yard.

Reality

You have to go to work in order to earn enough bones for yourself to live. Unfortunately, this is your reality right now. Why spend your energy every morning dreading this fact?

Just get up and do it. It is not ideal but neither is the fact that I have to do my business outside in front of others. I would rather use a toilet with a heated seat.

Life is challenging enough so don’t give yourself another obstacle course to complete. Especially so early in the morning.

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.

Poppy the Brussels Griffon: I like to be in control. Is something wrong with that?

Dear Paws to Talk,

Just like so many of us, I have humans to take care of, jobs to perform and a house to manage. I prefer that these things are done in an orderly manner so I take control of each situation.

If the humans aren’t doing what they are supposed to, I bark or give them a nudge with my nose. When working my jobs, I always finish my tasks and make sure they are done flawlessly. If the house is not in order, I drop my bone and clean it up.

My friends have told me I need to relax more and not always be in charge. The humans even call me an Army general in the body of a dog.

Is there something wrong with being in control?

-Poppy the Brussels Griffon

Howl Poppy,

We commend you on keeping things in order. With skills like that, you should be a CEO of a large corporation. Hopefully, you would be CEO of a premium kibble and treat company that is looking for two Standard Poodles to work in the test kitchen. Our palates are refined and hungry.

We wonder why you feel the need to be in control all the time? Life can be fleeting and we would hate for your to miss its joys because you are stuck at work late at night.

All of us have our moments when it feels satisfying to have things just as we want them. However, it is difficult to maintain that. Eventually, one of your humans might defy you, walk away from your nudges and put you in time-out (DiDi: I hate time-outs). Or you may not be able to finish all your work by the end of the day.

There is nothing wrong with being in control as long as you don’t tear your fur out when things become unpredictable.

This may be impossible to comprehend but let your humans do some of your work. We canines are here to help out but our main job is to be companions. Your humans have had it easy while you run around with your tongue hanging out the side of your face.

After all, your paws must be tired from always juggling your house, humans and jobs. Even though, your biceps are probably very toned.

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.

Mason the Human: How can I get my work week off to the best start?

Dear Paws to Talk,

 I start my work week in complete chaos. Monday morning comes and I often didn’t relax or finish weekend projects around the house. Then, I go to the office and get swept up in a tidal wave of work and meetings.

I make it through the week somehow and get some reprieve from the weekend. However, by Monday morning, I am flustered and do all I can to ride the title wave.

I rarely enter the work week organized and relaxed. How can I make this happen?

-Mason the Human

Howl Mason,

Although we have never rode a tidal wave, Mondays make us anxious too. The humans scatter and go to different places which makes it so difficult to watch over them. Then we are usually taken off guard by a cleaning person, mailman or repairman showing up unannounced. Plus, the cuddling percentages almost always drop during the week.

Not to mention, it will be probably another year before we finish our weekend project of building a bone dispenser.

No matter what is happening in your life, clearly the work week likes to grab a hold of you and rarely let go until Friday evening. However, we think there are some ways to make the work week less grabby. See below.

Map out your week

Is there one specific area where you feel the work week is negatively effecting you? For instance, maybe you like to run and cook your own meals, but the week gets so crazy you don’t do these things.
Instead of mourning your missed runs and recipes, think about when and how you can incorporate these things into your week. Maybe Wednesdays are slower than Mondays and a good day for these activities?

Let your weekend be a weekend

This is a tricky one. Admittedly, we rarely relax on the weekend because we are preoccupied watching the humans take part in their extra activities. Plus,  lately we have spent a lot of time building the bone dispenser so our weekends aren’t as peaceful as they should be. Thankfully, we have Monday and Tuesday afternoons off to catch up on some much-needed rest.

Since you probably can’t nap at your desk on Monday and Tuesday afternoons, don’t let your side projects or even work take away the time you would spend with your pets, family and friends. Sometimes it is more important to watch TV than answer an email. Give your paws a rest.

Indulge during the week

Sometimes a sumptuous piece of treat and kibble cake (we can email you the recipe if you want) is needed after a long day. Be kind to yourself and you won’t find the work week ruling your life.

Perhaps, a nice spa treatment or watching a movie is just the thing to provide a pleasant escape.

Above all, remember this is your life. You can make it be as lovely or torturous as you want.

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.

Ted the Maltese: I have a lot on my mind and can’t sleep. What should I do?

Dear Paws to Talk,

I have had a terrible week of sleep. Each night, I settle into my comfy bed near my humans expecting to fall asleep like usual. Instead, I lay there wide awake with my mind churning.

I think about the gap in the fence surrounding my yard and what unwanted creatures are squeezing through it. Also, I think about the humans and animals who are suffering because of one mean lady named Sandy. Finally, I wonder if another mean lady like Sandy is going to come to my house soon.

How am I supposed to sleep when there is so much to think about?

-Ted the Maltese

Howl Ted,

It certainly has been a tough week in many ways. Sandy came to our house and she was very angry. Bella barked asking her to leave. Meanwhile, DiDi stood in the yard flopping her ears, trying to see if she could get airborne with the help of Sandy’s powerful wind.

Keep in mind that we are the lucky ones. Our humans, homes and yards are intact. This should bring you some comfort.

We are very distressed about those suffering because of Sandy. This is why during the day we have been working on ways to help.

Yesterday, we shipped boxes of treats, bags of kibble and some of our toys to a disaster command post with the help of our mommy. We packed the boxes and mommy did the rest. It was a nice display of human-dog teamwork.

Take action. It will make you feel less helpless and use some of that pent-up energy.  Get out to your yard and fix that fence. Use a branch or rock to plug the gap so no intruders can sneak in. A yard is a special place and you should protect it.

According to our daddy, who is very knowledgeable, Sandy the mean lady’s visit was a rare occurrence. We will all face other challenges in life but don’t spend your time worrying that Sandy’s nasty relative or friend is going to show up at your door tomorrow. It is very unlikely. Plus, Sandy’s family and friends must be exhausted from supporting her in all these devastating efforts.

Become preoccupied during the day with positive work and we guarantee you will drift off to a peaceful sleep at night.

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: I know of a scandal in my office. What should I do?

Dear Paws to Talk,

Recently, I became aware of some wrongdoing by one of my co-workers. It’s a complicated situation and I don’t want to explain all of the details.

Basically, co-worker and one of our bosses are taking company money that doesn’t belong to them. I have seen signs of this behavior but a few days ago the co-worker bragged about it to me.

I think he sees me as someone who is not bold enough to blow the whistle on him. He is right that I am quiet and usually keep to myself. However, I can’t stand by and watch this happen.

The problem is I don’t know who to speak to about this matter. Also, I am worried that discussing this scandal will make it look like I am involved. I can’t lose my job.

What should I do?

-Anonymous Human

Howl Human,

I don’t work in an office so it is hard for me to relate to exactly what you are going through.

The one time mommy brought me to her office I ate a pile of sticky notes and kept demanding cuddles from the staff. Needless to say, no one got much work done and I learned that sticky notes are the farthest thing from a satisfying snack.

You need to speak with a leader of your pack who you can trust. Pick someone who knows you and will be able to take your findings to the next level without involving you. Take some time to think about who is the right human to help you.

Don’t worry about being mixed in with the bad guys. Intelligent leaders know who the good pack members are and the ones who are just in it for the post-work treats.

Once you have unburdened yourself, refocus on your work. Based on my day at the office, it seems like many humans pound their paws on some kind of board all day. Make sure you pound your paws the hardest.

These disobedient humans will have to face the consequences for their actions. I hope their punishment includes eating several packages of sticky notes. Trust me, they will be very sorry.

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.