Tag Archives: dogs

Messy Days


“Mrs. Rackley…I was getting water and my shirt came up and he said the ‘s’ word to me.” “Shut up?” I ask hopefully.  “No…it’s a word from one of those romantic movies.”  Eek…not good, not good.  I finally ask what the word was.  “Sexy,” she whispers with disdain and a snarl of the nose.


Our house is in an uproar these days.  The upstairs bathroom has been gutted.  Goodbye faded yellow tile and moldy porcelain tub.  Goodbye 5 foot high shower head (kind of hard for a 6’1″ boy to wash the hair).  In a few weeks time, we’ll have new stuff – so excited!




and after the yellow is gone.

We’re also having our driveway completely redone.  Because we waited so long to address it, they had to take it back down to gravel.  It’s a mess, and I found out today, that it is senseless to wash your car until the mess it gone.

All the mess and chaos sent my baby Layla into an utter meltdown.  In her bouts of freaking out, my dog somehow threw her back out.  Yes…seriously, she threw her back out attacking the workers.  Please remember she’s only 12 pounds, granted 12 pounds of rolling thunder, but she has the anxiety level of a full-grown human.  The vet gave her a cortisone shot and a muscle relaxer.  He tried to reassure me all small dogs can get like this…I have a feeling he was just trying to make a worried dog owner feel better!

Pride and Puppies


“Don’t accept your dog’s admiration as conclusive evidence that you’re wonderful.” – Ann Landers

Oh, why not?  If we could, wouldn’t we be the most loved, appreciated, sought after people in the world?  My rat terrier/lap dog has the uncanny ability to make me feel welcome home whether I’ve been gone five minutes or five hours, she wants to snuggle at all times – no strings attached, and she never seems to get tired of me no matter what I’m doing.

Maybe dogs are too good for our self-esteem.  Maybe they make us believe we really are awesome!  Can their constant devotion blow up our egos?  Nah, surely not!

Layla - the lap dog in motion.

Layla – the lap dog in motion.

In my latest writings, I’m dealing with a woman whose pride has been battered and destroyed.  The character has been humiliated at work, abandoned by her husband, and now is struggling with overcoming the abuse her pride has taken.  I’m quickly introducing a puppy into the story – what better way to help her get over her sorrows?  Even though pride can be a tricky trap into believing your better than others, I think for most it’s way more simple.  It’s simply wondering if you’re worth the space you take up on earth.

Maybe pride comes and goes.  Maybe for some it’s an ego trip.  Maybe for others it’s only a sense of accomplishment.  Maybe for most it’s only feeling happy that in that moment, on that day, things went as they should.

My goal with this new character is to pull her out of her misery while helping her discover her self-worth.  Not sure how I’m going to get her there yet but I do know a lost, pitiful puppy, an old house and an aging grandmother are going to be in the mix.  Just as with children, there’s nothing like the love of an animal to snap you out of your own world – whether it’s pride-filled or sorrow-filled – and I hope to take that feeling into my new story.

Layla's first day at home.

Layla’s first day at home.

Have you ever had an animal that adored you, that maybe even saved you from self-pity or depression?  What about an animal that became your companion or friend?



My son recently brought home a new puppy.  A tiny, furry, very cute Labrador puppy.  Yes, I said Labrador.  Lord help us.  The last Lab we owned was in the 1990’s.  It managed to chew the siding off our house, yank all the wiring from underneath my husband’s truck, and swallow whole walnuts – which ended up requiring emergency surgery.

To say the least, I’m hoping we have a better experience with this dog.

Sadie, the new puppy.  Isn't she cute?  Her name should've been Miss Pee's A lot.

Sadie, the new puppy. Isn’t she cute? Her name should’ve been Miss Pees A lot.

This makes our third dog.  One inside dog, two outside dogs.  But here’s the catch – it’s too cold to let the dogs sleep outside at night, and we have to “potty-train” the pup.  Nights at my house have become very interesting, to say the least.  Four-legged creatures, all different sizes, wrestling in a pile on my once new living room carpet.  Beanie, the sweetest but smelliest mutt you’ve ever seen, knows no personal boundaries.  She is in your face, stinky or not.  Layla, my pampered indoor princess, is appalled at the presence of other dogs in her house, and the puppy…oh the puppy.  Sadie runs, she pees, she runs, she sleeps, she pees.  All within thirty minutes.

My princess, Layla.  She's spoiled, and I couldn't help it.

My princess, Layla. She’s spoiled, and I couldn’t help it.

My new carpet is no longer new.

What I have discovered…since before two years ago I was not a dog person, or an animal person for that matter…is that these dogs all have personalities.  Like people.  And it’s fascinating to me.  They are all so distinct in their behaviors and mannerisms.

If only they weren’t so messy.  And if only my carpet wasn’t new.

Beanie, the outside dog who wants to be an inside dog so bed.

Beanie, the outside dog who wants to be an inside dog so bad.