Mom’s home again (I think that’s a good thing)

My mom Cathy just got back from her conference this morning. My Aunt Sara dropped me off at home this afternoon via her “pet taxi” service. Mom told Aunt Sara, “I took a couple of days to relax and have a mini-vacation. I need to do that more often.”

Yes! I absolutely agree. I came home with a note from the Barking Lounge, reporting what I’d done. I don’t fetch. But I did cuddle with everyone and I got some serious nap time and exercise. If that’s a vacation, give me more.

Best of all I got to escape our feline housemates. Ophelia was very upset with Cathy. She’s strutting around the apartment, emitting yowls of discontent. Creampuff of course is so ditzy she didn’t even notice anybody was gone.

Now I’ll get to hear Ophelia’s story. Just what I don’t need. Time for another nap. I guess life could be worse and anyway I need to spend the next week or two acting Very Grateful For My Owner. Cathy just saw the boarding bill. “Might as well send you to the Four Seasons,” she said.

I have no idea what that means. But I sat up when she reminded all of us, “You are lucky to have a good home. These days the shelters don’t have room for all the abandoned animals.”

Yes. Definitely not a week to press the mom for extra treats, let alone a winter coat and those cute little booties. If the mom won’t wear high heels, and she loves her ancient parka, we know who’s not getting a new wardrobe this year.

Cats totally relaxing in their new home

Don’t they look like an old married couple? My mom says, “The cats are getting along much better since we moved. Everything was strange except…each other.”

Or else, I would add, they’re getting older and wiser. When a cat hisses, Cathy says, “Look, you either get along or you go back to the pound. You didn’t like the pound, did you? Both of you cats spent serious hard time in small cages. You really don’t want to go back there, do you?”

Nobody feels seriously threatened. We all know we’re not going anywhere. But somehow the cats pick up on Cathy’s energy and they seem to respect each other’s boundaries a little more.

The cats never go outside, except in their small crates on their way to the vet. So windows are a big deal to them, especially Creampuff.

Creampuff would have preferred to be an outdoor cat. The only problem was, nobody wanted a 2-year-old calico cat in Silver City, New Mexico. She had been in a cage for three months when Cathy came looking. Her calico cat Loretta had just died. (Loretta was named for the country music singer, Loretta Lynn, because she had whiny done-me-wrong yowl. I shudder when I think about it.)

The shelter staff persuaded Cathy to take Creampuff home. It was an easy sell. My mom usually takes the first dog or cat she sees at a shelter or (in my case) online. So Creampuff got a new home. Not perfect, but she’s alive and free to express her ditzy personality.

Creampuff wouldn’t last long on the outside. I’ve been there and I know. My mom says Creampuff once caught a mouse in her New Mexico house. But I suspect that mouse was even ditzier than Creampuff herself. Even my mom says, “We were the only house in the neighborhood with cats. So any mouse who ended up there wasn’t very bright.”

I rest my case. And these cats are resting as comfortably as any cats in Seattle, or maybe the world.

Dog Grooming Goes Wild

My mom just showed me this article from today’s New York Times: Where Creativity Wags Its Tail. Apparently there’s a contest to sculpt dogs fur into images…anything from a person to a dragon.

As a certified dog, I say, “Forget about it! No way!” My mom takes me to a groomer to get a bath and brushup. Period. No funny stuff in my fur. And I’ll keep the color I was born with, thank you very much.

According to these groomers, the dogs love all the attention. True. I love attention myself. When we go to the dog park, I always go over to people and ask for a rub or a hug. But stand still while somebody clips me? Getting dyed green or blue or yellow?

Not for me. Fortunately my mom is big on “simple and easy.” And we both value our nap time.

So what’s the big deal…

Of course I sleep. Dogs sleep most of the time. So do cats.

What’s unusual, my mom says, is that dogs and cats rarely sleep together. she keeps taking pictures of me with Ophelia on our own special corner of the couch.

This time I got to the couch first and Ophelia went into the dominant sleeping position that only a cat can take.

“What’s wrong with your dog bed?” my mom asks. “It’s nice and fuzzy and you would have room to stretch out.”

“Who cares?” I say. “The important thing is that Ophelia’s getting way too confident in this household. She’s the most recent acquisition. She started out as a timid, fearful feline and now…she’s taken over.”

Alas, my mom is the kind of person who roots for the underdog. She’s thrilled to see Ophelia making such great progress. She’d like to see Ophelia and Creampuff getting along, instead of this triangle where both cats adore the dog.

Well, what’s not to love? Total strangers come up to say, “Aww….what a cute dog.” Even a cat can recognize an adorable housemate when she sees one.

Meanwhile, back to the nap.

Dog’s Serious Playtime Gets Interrupted By Intrusive Ditzy Housemate (video)

My Aunt Sara is truly gifted when it comes to choosing toys for me. Here I am trying to play with my new toy, when we get interrupted. On this video you’ll hear an insistent yowl followed by the entry of our ditzy housemate, Creampuff.

Luckily my mom’s camera ran out of battery life. This was getting a little soppy.

City Dog’s Boring Day, continued: Watching My Owner

Well, after my mom picked up a few books from the library, we walked over to the Queen Anne Community Center. I had been in here briefly, when we went to the Farmers Market. But now we went into a room I’d never seen. It was horrible. I hate shiny, slick floors. Mom had to pull me along.

“We just want to see how the pottery turned out,” my mom said.

We ran into one of Mom’s classmates, who was really friendly. She said, “What a wonderful dog! Why don’t you stay and throw something?”

“Because Gracie could break something and I’d be responsible.”

“Just tie her up.”

Great. Just what I’ve always wanted. So here I am, waiting again. This is the part of a Dog’s Life that nobody wants.

One Fact Not Worth Knowing About OUR Cat

My mom just came across this article: 17 Things Worth Knowing About Cats. cat sleeping on sofa

The article said a cat can run up to 30 miles per hour. That’s an ordinary house cat, they said.

Whoever wrote that article has not met our Ophelia. However, I admit Ophelia can move pretty fast when Creampuff is chasing her.

ONE thing worth knowing about dogs. We are superior to cats. And we love to sleep.

Two things? I am a dog. Who says I can count?

Back to work (sigh…)

My mom went out of town last week and I got to spend 5 days in the Downtown Dog Lounge. Yaay! It was like a vacation. I played with my Big Sister Summer and got a nice spa treatment on Sunday: bath, mani and pedi. They even did my ears.

Aunt Sara picked me up on Monday because Mom doesn’t have a car. When Sara dropped me off, she said, “Gracie needs a new leash and collar.”


“I was going to give her a Christmas gift,” my mom said.

“Nope. You need it now,” said Aunt Sara.

My mom is well-intentioned but a little clueless sometimes. What happened to my birthday?”

But I knew I was back at work this evening. Mom was feeling a little tired. “With all the flu going around,” she said, “I am not taking any chances.” She headed off to bed and pressed me into service as a heating pad.

“It’s cold out there,” she said.

Other people would turn the heat up. Not my mom. She’s into ecology and healthy living. She opens the window, piles on the quilts and grabs her dog. If dogs had a union, we would modify the contract. Dogs go on walks. They don’t do heating pads. I should get overtime pay.

WNBA Seattle Storm Basketball Game Surprises My Mom

Mom came home later than usual after the game last night. I was more than ready for my evening walk. But she was in a great mood.

“The game was not at all boring! The score was never more than 5 or 6 points apart! We went into overtime!” she exclaimed, hooking up my leash. “Can you believe it? The reserves held off Taurasi and Pondexter! We’d have won if we hadn’t gotten a couple of really bad calls from the referees. WNBA officiating is so bad.”

“Right now, mom, the call is one of a more down-to-earth kind,” I said.

Nobody at the rescue group warned me. If you’re looking for an owner, try to choose someone who’s NOT a basketball fan. And my mom should listen to her friend Bill more often. He was right about the game, wasn’t he? So she needs to pay attention when he advocates spoiling all dogs rotten. No diets for his dogs.

Dog Gets Bath Followed By Treats

On Saturday night I was totally zonked. Friday of course I went to Magnuson with my Aunt Sara. Saturday mom took me for a walk and I got to run a little in the local dog park. So when bedtime rolled around, I was stretched out on Mom’s bed, ready for a snuggle. I didn’t move the whole night.

“Gracie, if you’re going to sleep up here, you will need a bath,” Mom said on Sunday morning. “Whew! You smell like a dog.”

Like, duh. What am I supposed to say? Cats smell like cats and…

So Sunday morning we headed over to the Downtown Dog Lounge on Elliott. Mom was cursing the day DDL lost their lease in Belltown. “This is SO inconvenient,” she muttered. Nevertheless, she dropped me off. On Sunday baths are half price. I told you Mom is cheap.

Mom caught a ride from the gym so she was here early to pick me up. Just before I went home, the staff gave me a beautiful bandana and a treat. I could do without the bandana but DDL has the best treats. My mom’s camera caught two staff members fussing over me, paying the homage due a true Canine Urban Princess.