Thursday Thirteen – 6 Word Memoirs, Canine Edition

Our friends over at Smartdogs Blog had a great idea – six word memoirs, canine style. The idea? Write a memoir for your dog, in six words.

I like the idea so much that I’ve decided to write thirteen memoirs, for thirteen of my most memorable – and memoirable – dogs.

  1. Tula – crazy dog grin masks sweetness
  2. Bunny – Her life’s soundtrack is circus music
  3. Journey – in her is everything zen distilled
  4. Sailor – I can still kick your ass
  5. I jump therefore I am Dexter!
  6. Delilah – weirdest dog in the whole world
  7. Paris – loves all people, hates most dogs
  8. Tessa – benevolent dictator in a fur suit
  9. Hammer – the soft center of Charlotte’s heart
  10. Tara – fierce warrior, puppy licker, child’s companion
  11. Ellie – only loved those she knew best
  12. Penny – your loss I regret the most
  13. Murfee – My gentle giant and best friend

Thursday Thirteen – 13 of my favorite French Bulldog photos

I just finished scanning and re touching some old print photographs. I had forgotten how hard it can be to get details out of print images, even ones done at decent photo developing places. Working with digital images for so long has made me complacent about being able to turn little images into big ones, without losing details. Not so, with prints.

Uploading all of these old images sent me on one of those memory lane trips that only old photos seem to be able to inspire. It gave me an idea for this edition of Thursday Thirteen – 13 of my favorite old French Bulldog photographs, in no particular order. You can click on them to see them full sized.

Thursday Thirteen – 13 things Tessa wants me to buy for her

Tessa has always been a rather stylish lady, but of late I admit I’ve rather slacked off on accumulating new goods for her (other than designer cookies, of course, which go without saying).

So, here are 13 things that Tessa has found on line and is insisting I purchase for her. Since my credit limit is exactly that (a ‘limit’, rather than a ‘limitless’), she’ll likely have to make do with just one or two things, rather than the whole shebang. This, no doubt, will cause her to skulk around acting like I’ve kicked her, which she was already doing as a result of my refusing to let her charge at the new kitten.

Poor Tessa. Born to be the pet of royalty, and sadly stuck with me instead.

Skull and Crossbones pet collar
13. Pink and Sparkly Skull and Crossbones Collar

It’s pink! It’s shiny! It’s got a skull on it!

Added bonus – I can get a matching necklace.

Skinneez Stuffing Free Dog Toy
12. Skinneez Stuffing Free Toy

Tessa’s favorite thing to do with stuffed toys is to grab them, shake them into submission, then gut them. By the time she’s done with them (roughly two minutes, give or take) all that remains is a pile of fluff and a masticated stuffie.

This toy from Golly Gear is perfect – it’s already stuffing free! It does look a little bit like roadkill, however… but Tessa thinks that’s a bonus.

Doggie Corset
11. Slightly Disturbing Leather and Lace Dog Corset

Tessa is a very, very girly dog (when she’s not kicking poodle butt and taking kitten names). I accept her propensity for wanting to wear frilly dog clothes, but I think I’m going to have to draw the line at this rather disturbing (yet very well made) piece of doggie lingerie.

I let her have this, and the next thing I know she’ll be hanging out downtown Toronto at the 5ive Nightclub…

Doggie Tiara
10. Doggie Rhinestone Tiara

What becomes a pretty pretty Princess better than a rhinestone tiara, custom made for your dog? Nothing that I can think of, that’s for sure.

Tessa firmly believes that what she really needs is a conquering army and a shirt that says “Dictators Do It Whether You Want to Or Not”, but barring that, she’ll settle for a tiara.

Dog Bed Fit for a Queen

9. Jakey BB Handcrafted Luxury Pet Bed

Holy Hannah… what becomes a doggie dictator better than this super deluxe, hand crafted, custom made pet bed? As the sales pitch says “From the hand painted signature border along the lower edge of the bed to the decorative molding, it’s easy to see that at Jakey BB it’s all about the details. Even the welt cord on the cushions has been tea stained to achieve that exact perfect color.” They even use recycled materials.

Wild Salmon Dog Treats

8. Alaskan Bear Wild Salmon Treats

When a girl is getting up past a ‘certain age’, her hips and joints aren’t quite as flexy as they used to be. No, I don’t mean me – I mean Tessa (although it might in fact be applicable to us both). The Omega fatty acids in salmon oil are supposed to be good for creaky old bones, plus Tessa has always rather liked fish. We ordered some of these in sample size, and she ate them up so fast I’m going to re order some in bulk.

Pet Stroller

7. Happy Trails Pet Stroller

One of the things that goes along with those aforementioned creaky joints is an inability to go for long walks the way Tessa used to. I hate leaving her at home, but hiking up the wooded trails behind our house just isn’t possible for her anymore, and it’s breaks my heart to see her struggle on the rough terrain. This stroller looks like the solution for that dilemma – it’s rugged, trail rated, and has sturdy suspension. The 50 pound rated model means that I can carry two Frenchies in it at once – which is good, because a few of my Frenchies are getting up there in years.

6. Oh My Dog! Dog Cologne

I’m a firm believer in intermittent baths for dogs. I bathe mine once every other month, at most, and while I do use a good quality, extra gentle shampoo, I skip all the colognes and sprays. Tessa finds this to be unacceptable. She personally believes that it is her Goddess given right to smell like “Rose Wood, Orange Leaves, Osmanthus, Freesia, and Vanilla”, and that my refusal to pat her down with cologne is tantamount to abuse. I caught her googling “PETA save stinky doggie” the other day, so I’d better order her some, stat, before a group of crazy naked chicks show up and stage a protest on my front lawn.

THrone Chair

5. Throne Chair

OK, technically this might not be a ‘pet chair’ per se, but wouldn’t Tessa look cute sitting in it? I think so, and more importantly, so does she.

And yes, you’re sensing a theme.

4. Custom Baked Doggie Birthday Cake

Tessa has a rather monumental birthday coming up this year – her 14th, in fact. In people years, she’d be Dick Clark, for heaven’s sake! What better way to celebrate than with a custom baked and decorated doggie birthday cake, to be shared with some of her closest friends? Or not shared, since this is Tessa we’re talking about…

3. Custom Made Bronze Sculpture

What better way to immortalize a divinely diva-esque doggie dictator than a custom crafted, way more than life size bronze sculpture? All Tessa would need to go with it is a park named after her. Or perhaps a small country.

2. Villa in the South of France

Well, hello? She’s a French Bulldog. Where else could be more fitting for her to live?

1. Private Jet

You didn’t expect her to fly coach, did you? Neither did she. And let’s not even discuss shipping her via cargo (shudder). In the interest of economy, Tessa pointed out to me that she’d settle for a part lease. She’s a thrifty one, that Tessa.

Thursday 13 – The Bad Breeder's List of Excuses, Part 2

This list originally appeared back on the rec.pets.dogs mailing list, around 2001 or so. It was written by Denna Pace. It might be old, but still holds true today.

Since there are 26 items on the list – the first thirteen were posted last week. Interspersed on the list are images of puppy mill/BYB bred Frenchies currently needing homes, fosters or donations.

The Backyard Breeders’ and Puppy Millers’ Big Book of Old Excuses
© Denna Pace 2001

14. If this is your first attempt at breeding, make sure to remind everyone that you HAVE to breed your dog because how else are you going to learn how to breed?

15. Assure everyone that your dog does not need to be shown because you were assured by someone at Petsmart/the park/the vet’s office/a friend that your dog is a perfect example of the breed.

16. Always remember that “rare” colors, oversized or undersized dogs, and mixes of popular breeds are great selling points. Anyone who doesn’t think so is obviously not in tune with their customers’ wishes.

17. Claim that your dogs are better because they are not inbred, as inbreeding obviously produces sick/stupid/deformed dogs. If breeding crosses [as in “Frenchstons,” “PugaFrenchs,” etc.] dogs or other mutts, always point to “hybrid vigor” as proof of your dogs’ superiority.

18. Remind everyone that you do not need a waiting list because your puppies are cute.

19. Assure everyone that your puppies will not end up in shelters or rescue because they are cute.

FBRN Foster Dog Nina
, a French Bulldog Rescue Network foster dog, and typical ‘cute’ back yard bred puppy that would ‘never’ end up in rescue.

20. Claim that YOUR breed never ends up in shelters in your area, therefore your puppies will never end up in shelters.

21. If asked why you think your dogs are breeding quality, point out that they “have papers.” Extra points awarded for using the phrase “AKC Certified.” Double points if those papers come from the Continental Kennel Club.

22. If you sell a sick puppy, always blame the owners for making it sick. If the owners are clearly not responsible, blame their vet. (see #11)

23. If presented with irrefutable evidence proving you wrong on any excuses you have used, pretend your server did not receive the post/e-mail.

24. Claim that none of the rules of ethical breeding apply to you because you only intend to have one litter and therefore aren’t a “real” breeder.

25. If all else fails, tell everyone who criticizes you to “get a life.”

26. If that doesn’t work, tell them that you’re a Christian, and that you breed dogs because Jesus wants you to. Accuse anyone who disagrees with you of being a God hating Jew. Then tell them “God Bless”, just to teach ’em who’s boss.

TX Dot, a French Bulldog Rescue Network foster dog. Dot’s former ‘owner’ handed her leash over to a vet tech, and told her to ‘find her a home, or put her to sleep’, then walked away. Dot had been used as breeding bitch her whole life.

13 Questions To Ask After Reading Kijiji Ads…

Kijiji is sort of a glossier version of Craigslist, an updated, on line version of the Buy N Sell newspapers and Pennysavers. Owned by eBay, it (unlike smarter and more politically attuned Craiglist) allows live animal sales ads, and it is chock full of puppeez for sail ads.

Here are thirteen questions that occurred to me after reading through Kijiji puppy for sale ads…

For sail..Daxshund / Shizoo / Dalmashun / Puddle / Mastife Puppy

If you’re going to breed, shouldn’t one of the very basic things you know about the dogs be how to spell their proper breed name?

Comes with papers. Has papers. Papered. Extra if you want papers

Papers, papers, papers. Every other freakin’ ad talks about papers – although what kind of papers, exactly, we don’t know for sure. Newspapers? Mongrel Association of America papers? Wallpapers? Who knows. Who cares?

“linebreeded mother to father has show chance”

Line breeded? Mother to father? What in holy hell are they thinking?

Oh, right. They’re not thinking – they’re just turning them loose in the yard and hoping for a litter. Which they got. And ‘show chance’? Sure, why not? I bet they take the Gardens next year.

After all, nothing says “Best in Show potential” like an in bred litter of yard raised dawgs.

“Yorkiepoos – Super cute! 6 weeks old ready to go home with you! “


No! No, they not ready to go home at six weeks old. They’re not ready to go anyplace, not even to the vet’s for their first shots.

Oh, but there’s me, assuming you’re selling them with shots. Not a chance, is there?

“Imported French Bull pups from champion line”

French Bull pups? Is this some sort of weird Charolais/canine hybrid? Because otherwise, we’re back to that question up top about not selling or breeding what you cannot spell.

And speaking of French Bull pups for sale ads…

“Imported European lined French Bulldogs. We import from Europe, as this ensures healthy pets”

Really? All I’ve needed to be doing all these years in order to insure healthy, genetically sound French Bulldogs is import them from Europe? Just any old place, and any old breeder, and they’ll magically be sound, healthy dogs? Wow, that’s way easier than all the pesky health testing I’ve been doing.

I suppose all those sick, temperamentally unsound adult European imports that keep turning up at rescue are just anomalies or something.

“Adorable Frenchtons – Boston and French Bulldog cross pupps!!”

Why, why, why? Why do this? Frenchies have health problems. Bostons have health problems. Why combine them into one seething morass of potential issues. Plus, just – why? If you like Bostons, get a Boston. If you like Frenchies, get a Frenchie. Just pick one, dammit, don’t screw up two breeds at once.

“Trendy adorable Puggles for sale!”

See above, plus – What’s the point of this?

PugHere we have a Pug.

Small, wrinkled, flat faced, snuffly, cute, dim witted. Adorable, too, of course – I love Pugs, black ones in particular, but they are a creature as far apart from a hunting breed as you can get.

BeagleThere we have a Beagle.

Compact, athletic, muscular, bred to run, bred to bay, bred to scent, bred to hunt (but not much else).

Combine the two, and what do you get?

puggleThe puggle – a mixture of the worst from both.

First off, they’re ugly. Sorry, but it’s true. This is one F.U.G.L.Y. cross breed. Also, congratulations – now you’ve got a dog that wants to run away from home, but is too stupid to figure out how to get back. Pointless as a lap dog, worthless as a hunting dog, and soon to overwhelm rescues and shelters across North America.

JUG puppy… God help usOh, and here’s one to make Terrierman‘s head explode – that would be a “Jug puppy” – that’s a cross between a Jack Russel, and a Pug.

Why would someone (sane) do this, you ask? Because the offspring will apparently be “HEALTHY LIKE JACK RUSSELL AND CUTE LIKE PUG”.

Or so the ad said, at least.

“Pure breaded Golden Retriver”

It’s breaded? You rolled it in bread crumbs and deep fried it? Oh, you meant pure bred. Now we just need to figure out what the hell a retriver is. Oh, you mean Retriever

“Pure breaded (ahem) Doberman stud dog. Can breed to any bitch. $200 or pick of the litter”

No mention of testing, titles or temperaments – how could anyone say no to using this dapper fellow on their bitch? Plus, you get to do all the work of whelping and raising the puppies, then hand him over your ‘pick’. And so the cycle continues.

“For saile lovely large Cane Corso mastiff girl, she is very nice tempered and a good gaurd. Needs space to roam. Loves our kids. Will trade for Jack Rusel or other small dog. “

Wonderful. You are giving away your ‘roaming’, intact Cane Corso bitch. First off, why does it need space to ‘roam’? Is it a gypsy (sorry, Romany) Corso? Does it have ‘wandering feet’? It doesn’t need to roam – it needs a securely fenced yard.

And of course you want to get another dog, and have chosen the JRT, a dog that most sane and above average pet owners aren’t equipped to deal with, let alone an irresponsible goof like you.

Plus, nice lesson to teach the kids – when we tire of our toys, we throw them away and get new ones.

“TeaCup Yorkies/Poms/Poodles/Doxies”

Teacup? Is that the code word du jour for ‘will have life long health problems’ or ‘is hydrocephalic’? One thing it certainly is code for, for sure – bad breeder.

“Cute, adorable, non shedding Frenchie pups!”

Cute? yes. Adorable? absolutely. Non shedding? Did you shave them bald? Are you blind? Do you not see the floating, house wide cloud of fine hairs they leave in their wake, and on your clothes? Have you ever looked under your furniture?

Non shedding? Please, share your secret formula with me, the one that gets you magically non shedding Frenchies, because last week I spent two hours outside using the Furminator on my dogs, and there’s a pile of undercoat out there the size of a LabradoodleMastifeRetriver.