What I Learned From… My Dog

Today’s post is a hat tip to Robert Hruzek, the guy who wears a twenty-gallon cowboy hat.  (Yeah, it isn’t ten-gallon anymore–have you seen the price of gas lately?)  Every week, Robert corrals a bunch of people to write about stuff and the current theme is:  What I Learned From Animals. 

Instead of slaving away like the rest of us, Robert and his wife are lounging on vacation at Laity Lodge.  But to be fair, he did submit his entry before he left:

The First Step to Effective Communication.  Go read it, he’s got some funny stuff about a deaf cat.

I’ve decided to turn this blog post over to Kaycie, my West Highland White Terrier, whom my sister-in-law/dog-groomer affectionately calls a mutt, because she’s missing some AKC papers.   I had a long talk with Kaycie the other day and she taught me a few things.  So I’m letting her share it here.  Without further ado, here’s Kaycie:

Woof, woof, arrh, arf, ARF, arroooooo.

(Uh Kaycie, you need to use English here.  Not everyone is versed in doggie-speak.)

Hi, my name is Kaycie.  Karen went upstairs to take a hot bath and read a book.  I’m going to share a few things that I’ve observed in my life that you can apply to yours.

First of all, I see you people running around a lot, darting from one activity to the next.  The garage door keeps going up and down, up and down, several times a day.  It keeps interrupting my sleep.  And you know what happens when you don’t get enough sleep?  That’s right.  You end up with a cranky dog.  I’m more likely to snap at you when I don’t get my zzzz’s.

But, while we’re on the subject of sleep–let’s talk about naps.  For some reason, I don’t see you people getting enough sleep, nor taking enough time out for naps.  Don’t you know that a nap does wonders?  When you’re tired, ya gotta slow down and take a nap.  Heck, when I take a little ten-minute power nap, then I’m up and ready to chase some rabbits.  I get a lot more speed on me that way.  Every day, I gotta get those varmits outta the yard for Karen.  She doesn’t like it when her pretty yellow flowers are chomped on.

Speaking of being on top of my game, every now and then I like to take some time to zone out–or as you people call it– meditation.  Sometimes I get really stressed out when I can’t find my bones among the mess in the house.  I take a few minutes to calm my mind and then I fire up the nose again.  I can usually find my bones that way.

I also find that it’s important to learn something new each day.  Not only can I follow commands by voice, but I know them in sign language too.  I get a little pissed at my master though, because in the winter time, she’s inside signing “go to the bathroom” and I’m outside in the cold trying to take a dump.   But anyway, I was talking about learning new stuff.  That’s how I keep my mind sharp– I like to try new things.  I tried taking up guitar, but discovered that I didn’t have any talent in that department. 

Of course, Karen doesn’t like everything I try.  For instance, I once tried to chew the leg on a kitchen chair.  Karen got all cranky and there were a couple of “No’s!” hollered at me.  I learned to let that one go.

I’ve learned that sometimes you gotta love your enemies.  Grandma has a big collie named Sonny.  I don’t like Sonny all that much–he likes those Milk Bones out of a box and I won’t have anything to do with those tastes-like-paper-fake-looking-bones stuff.  But somehow, we get along and every now and then, we’ll head to the yard and chase away the squirrels together.

Everyone needs a friend or two to hang out with.  I hang out with my dog pals, Buddy and Pepper when they come over to visit.  Once in a while, we get on each other’s nerves and have a brawl–especially when one of them digs into the wrong supper bowl–but we find a way to get over it and buddy up again.

But you know what’s important in life?  The ones you love.  I get all excited when the kids come home from school.  I jump all over and tell them I love them.  When Grandma Griffard comes to visit, even though she’s not crazy about dogs, I roll over and let her rub my belly and she finds a way to love me too.   Every night, I hop into bed with Karen and curl up at the nook in the back of her knees.  Once in a while, I go over and give Joe a nudge.

Life is good.  Enjoy it.






29 replies
  1. Sam
    Sam says:

    What a lovely post!! I do want one of those Westies, but I work allllll day long so it wouldn’t be very fair! One of these days!!

    Sams last blog post..Dad

  2. Betsey
    Betsey says:

    Hi Karen,
    I’ve been checking out your site for a while now. Just thought you might be interested in this…on MTV’s America’s Best Dance Crew, one of the crews has a team member with profound hearing loss. The crew name is “A.S.I.I.D” (And So It Is Done) and the guy’s name is Joey. I didn’t see any info on their website, but they talked about it a lot in the first episode. You may want to check him out. He was good!

  3. Pete the Aussie
    Pete the Aussie says:

    That was fantastic. Kaycie, thank Karen for me would you – namely that she allowed your paws access to the keyboard for this. And my what a clever dog you are: philosopher, fluent in sign language, typist…

    Great post. Made my day!

    Pete the Aussies last blog post..How Am I Doing… Really?

  4. Stephen Hopson
    Stephen Hopson says:

    What a cute post – Brad Shorr is right – Kaycie ought to have her own blog!

    I have a soft heart for dogs. I’ve been a dog lover for as long as I can remember.

    What a clever dog – that Kaycie! Let me shake your paw and thank you for such clever life lessons. You ought to be a motivational speaker. ARF, ARF, Woooooooof.

    Stephen Hopsons last blog post..Changing Your Perceptions…Can You Do It?

  5. Dog Signs
    Dog Signs says:

    Dogs are funny creatures. My 2 dogs are still in the puppy phase so all they want to do is play with each other, play fight with each other, eat and go to sleep! I wouldn’t change it for the world though as I love watching their personality grow!

  6. Dog Kennel Accessoriesi
    Dog Kennel Accessoriesi says:

    Kaycie, I’m all with you on the naps! I just only wish I had the time. 🙁 I have cats who always tell me the same thing – slow down, watch the birds, and take a nap.

    But today is cold and rainy, so I will take your advice!


  7. Richard Stanton
    Richard Stanton says:

    As a living organism animals such as dogs have feelings too…They want to please their master in anyway however they need to be trained in order to follow commands…Dogs also needs a nap, a rest and sleep like us…Provide them with dog supplies that could make them comfortable duirng rest and sleep.

  8. James M. Spotts
    James M. Spotts says:

    How beautiful dog my neighbor have a dog before four years but he died 🙁 This post help me on this time because i`m little depressed now ….. I have dogs many times but i not live with them for a long time maybe is time to i have a dog again.For your phrase “Life is good. Enjoy it.” yes it is but everybody know this fact if is good for a long time in one moment everything is disappears in one moment.Thanks again for this post, helped me in this time.

  9. Kozydogs
    Kozydogs says:

    Thank you Kaycie for this great information on how important slowing down and taking a nap is. You are right I am going to take your advice and try to get one in each day. You are a smart dog!

  10. Keith Harris
    Keith Harris says:

    Very nice article. It made me stop and think what I’ve learned from animals and that would be unconditional love. I’ve been a dog owner for years since I was a child. One thing in common has always been they’re unconditional love.

    Keith Harris

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