Tag Archives: Holly Ralston Oyler

Does Your Dog Speak English

Dog poodle isolated on white backgroundDoes Your Dog Speak English?

We are smart, sometimes too smart for our fur. Not to mention smart enough to make you think that yes, your dog does speak English. Seriously, we don’t have a clue.

During the first several months of my life I thought my name was No. That’s because Mom and Dad were constantly saying no to me, so I just thought that was my name. Kind of funny when you ready my early posts and realize just how many name changes I went through during that first year.

So, if you want to communicate with us on a serious note, you are going to have to learn sign language. We actually communicate through body language. Now, don’t get me wrong, that doesn’t mean you are going to have to sniff, well you know what and yes – we can learn some verbal commands, but it is best to train us by showing us what you are saying.

It’s simple really. Want us to sit? Then simply put us in the sit position on the floor and give us the “sit” command and the hand sign you have decided to use for the word sit.  A word of warning here…if you are not agile or flexible, by all means don’t attempt sitting down on the floor yourself for us to see how to do it. That has been done and believe me there are limits to our ability to help out in a situation like that (not that I would know that first paw or anything.) We can’t call a tow truck and we can’t dial 911 or the neighbor. We can’t even bark the command to Siri or Cortana. If we offered you a helping paw, you would flip us right over you head and out the window while trying to get up. What we can do, is snuggle up along side you and keep you company until someone comes home or to visit. Of course by then the puddle(s) on the floor would most likely be considerable and don’t even think about trying to blame it on “the dog”.

Plan ahead and figure out some hand signals the down, stand, stay and come commands. Position us and then show us what you want with the hand signals. Most of us are quick and easy learners. In fact we are usually excited to learn something new. We certainly want to learn if it makes you happy and you show it by your excitement or praise.

Just think about it for a minute. How exciting to you think it is to sniff grass and walk the same yard four or five times a day, day after day? Believe me, not exciting stuff. That is why we get in so much trouble around the house or out in the yard when we are really bored. Want to see a dog owner get really excited and look up from their phone or iPad? All you have to do is find something disgusting in the yard, put one shoulder downward and act like you are going to roll your ears in whatever it is. Let me tell you, there is nothing as sharp as the peripheral vision of a dog parent.

Some dog parents are treat based trainers. Thank goodness I was born into one of those families. Others are pat-on-the-head and praise trainers. Truthfully, dogs react evenly to both kinds of praise, so there is no right or wrong. However, the wider I see my backside getting and the more remarks Mom makes about my cute little jiggle walk the small the treats get. I could make a few comments about her walk, but I’m not totally brain dead at the moment. For now I will just go with the really baby Milk Bones, turkey bites or chewies and keep my bark to myself.

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I Am a Little Bit Concerned and Jealous

Taz- Warner Brothers & Looney TunesOkay, I admit, I am a little bit concerned and jealous. My first alter-ego is about to come out in fighting mode.  For the past two years and two months I have been the top dog around here. That means 24/7 attention and affection, except when we are sleeping or Mom is away from the house.

Last week things changed drastically. In fact, I haven’t seen much of her even though she is here. She has been holed up in the library/file area of her office. Sure, I can run back there and stand in front of her with my sad-woo-is-me look and she will stop pitching papers and files to pick me up for a few minutes.

Of course that is the same library/file area where those out-of-print books live and I don’t like spending much time there, hence she remembers my faupaw. Seriously, how is a pup suppose to know such things?

I have my masterpiece poor puppy look (I mastered that one the first week I was here and it works every time) that will stop her in her tracks instantly. Then she will turn off the lights, move to another room and it is “all about me-Titan time.”

What I’m not understanding is where the need to throw out files with a vengeance and where her burst of energy came from.  I’ve listened to enough soap operas to know that kind of behavior usually means a huge change is coming soon, if you get my drift. But that can’t be right in this case, she is never out and about long enough and too even notice that kind of change coming straight at her. So it must be the Continue reading

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Happy Fourth Of July

Poodle Dog RunningHappy Fourth of July!

For us doggies, the Fourth Of July is simply a “yes, I did eat that burger that fell off the grill and now I am heading for Mom and Dad’s bed, where I will feel safe after burrowing in underneath the covers – because the sky is exploding kind of day.”

All in all we had a fun day around here. Mom cooked (now there is a really scary event) and Dad barbecued. Mom made Grandmother Nina’s southern potato salad, baked beans and corn. Dad barbecued ribs. I actually scored a couple bites (without the sauce) and they were really good.

After cleaning up Mom and I hibernated in her office and studio (a new thing this week.) I slept while she tried to find a surface that was free of beads, wire, tools, baskets and stacked paper, files and magazines. When I woke up she was still searching, so I guess she didn’t find any. Oh well, there is always tomorrow.

Now, don’t get we wrong or anything, but do you see anything wrong with the concept of putting cases with thousands of beads within a paws reach of such an angelic pup like me? I can think of thousands, can’t you? Geez, and to think,  I’m still hearing about the three out of print books I chewed the corners off of last summer.

I’m off to the covers now.

Titan

ps. Happy belated birthday Tiffany!

 

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Keeping Your Dog Calm During Thunder Storms

stormfromt-sized-for-postKeeping Your Dog Calm During thunder storms can be more stressful for you than your than your dog. It takes time (and several storms) to figure out what works the best. Being born during one of the worse thunder storm and a F4 tornado, has made me kind of an expert on the matter. Thunder no matter how far away sends fear through my veins.

I have my own theory of survival when it comes to thunder storms. One clap of thunder or one flash of lightening, I am movin’ full speed ahead to find a lap to sit my behind down in and a chest to flatten out against, so I can hear a heartbeat.  On that horrific day in 2012 my Momma Doggie told my sisters and me, that if we could hear and/or feel a heart beat, we would always be safe and secure. Oh, and just so you will know, a wind-up alarm clock under a blanket does not count as a heart beat. Continue reading

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Writing Camp Results

Well, it just goes to show you, when you put a great mind (mine) with a good mind (Moms) together in a summer writing camp, things get done! Mom’s new book is complete and on Amazon.com in the Kindle store.

We are getting ready to pick up where we left off on my new book, Siri’s Summer and work on it over the  weekend. While sniffing around Mom’s desk for treats I noticed her calendar and boy is it full of writing projects. She even has another section of writing camp starting in the fall. I’m going to sleep that one out – she is on her own.

I graduate from obedience school on Tuesday night. I sure hope Mom doesn’t make me wear one of those cap and gown thingies. I doubt that she will mainly because she knows I would chew the tassel off right away. I’ll have to admit, she has been  a little less forth coming in the clothes department lately. I outgrew of all the original goodies she bought me –  in record time. I had fun with them and I got to send them to my younger cousin Polar in Lakeland, FL so he can wear them for awhile.

Today is the launch of Mom’s book on Amazon and she is checking stats each hour. Every hour the “happy dance” gets a little bit happier. I’m glad it is going well for her, she worked really hard to finish the book by her August 1 deadline. She is not as excited as I thought she would be. I don’t think she feels very well right now.

Hummmm – that makes me wonder when our deadline for Siri’s Summer is. What? Oh it’s August 25th. “Are you crazy – you expect me to work hard so I can finish it by then? Just because you made your deadline does not mean I have to make mine.” Wow, she can be one crazy woman sometimes. One would think that dog breeders would screen their forever parents better.

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On My Way To A Summer Writing Camp

I am so excited. Mom signed us up for Summer Camp, a Summer Writing Camp by Debra Marrs. It starts tomorrow night and I am ready to jump in with all four paws on the ground running. Gotta do something productive, after all mom has posted my publication schedule for the rest of 2012 and let me tell you, I am one busy little puppy.

What’s even more exciting is that you can join us – wouldn’t that be fun? I promise not to misbehave – really I do. For additional information visit http://yourwritelife/camp. Okay, I will tell them. Mom said to tell you that is the regular link to register, not an affiliate link.

Debra says if you take 5 simple actions a week for the next two months, you will transform your creative writing life. Sounds good to me. She will be offering us ongoing support, new and informative instructional materials, weekly deadlines (that are doable, no matter how busy you are) and most of all inspiration. Debra will be our accountability partner and our mentor.

I was looking over the lesson plans last night (while chewing on the corners – sorry mom) and I was impressed that she starts with a “Getting Started Week”. Wow, even though I am a really young pup, I know that is really important. How do you think I learned how to chew so perfectly?

I’m looking forward to the Virtual Writing Days she has scheduled.  She holds space for us to really focus on what we are writing. We meet virtually as a group via call-in ever 90-minutes for updates, check-in and commitment for the next 90 minutes (I may have a small issue with the 90 minute segments, I will most likely need a grass break every 60-minutes).

Even if you can’t do any of the Summer Camp calls live, they will be recorded so you can pick them up and listen to them in the Summer Writing Camp website classroom when you have time.

I gotta go pack my book bag for tomorrow night with some SmartBones® to chew on quietly (so I don’t disturb anyone else), my pens and papers and carve out a space of my own on mom’s desk.

I hope to hear you on the calls!

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Time Out…What Is That?

Okay, so Friday and Saturday did not go so great around here.

Anyone care to guess what this is?  Something I’ve never heard of before, a thing called time-out. Well let me tell you, the next time out, that beige thing behind me is going to be in shreds –  lot’s of shreds, no really – tons of shreds!

All I did was bite mom on the arm one more time today (besides the three times yesterday).  Seems I remember Justin mentioning something on Dogs In The City about blood bites verses regular bites.  I’m guessing, if you see red, it is considered a blood bite. Hum…I always see red, so I guess I am in serious trouble for sure! Continue reading

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