Accepting Yourself: Your powdered sugar nose is just perfect.

We were really adorable when we were puppies (as all puppies are), and as we’ve grown up, we’ve just gotten better and better. We have the wisdom that time brings in our eyes and have earned our powdered sugar noses. We’re confident in who we are and don’t let the fact that we’re getting a day older dim that conviction. We still have a lot of room in our hearts for love. Plus, Mom tells us every day that we’re beautiful and handsome inside and out, no matter what. The Dog to Human Translation: Just because you have a little gray in your hair or a wrinkle by your eyes doesn’t mean you’re any less beautiful. Those things are just your surface and don’t define who you are or showcase your true beauty. Your beauty shines from within – from your spirit, from your personality, from your soul. Age brings wisdom and confidence and that’s one of the most beautiful things you can have. If there is something that you consider to be a flaw, take a good hard look in the mirror and recognize how those “flaws” combine to form your unique beauty. Embrace your “flaws” because you know what? They’re not flaws. They’re stepping stones on a beautiful path to accepting who you are as a complete...

Lessons from a K-9 Officer

Different types of service dogs fascinate me. Police and military dogs, service dogs, therapy dogs, prison dogs. The relationships these dogs have with their humans are different and ones that I don’t know about from first-hand experience. As I continue to work on my Dogs Know Best journey, I knew I wanted to learn more about these amazing dogs and the different relationships they have with their humans. My hometown of Stow, Ohio, has three K-9 officers in the police department, so I thought it would be a great place to start my exploration. Last week I had the pleasure of meeting with K-9 Officer Ted Bell, a 15-year K-9 officer in the department, and his partner, Mingo. Mingo is Officer Bell’s third K-9 partner, and as you can imagine, he had some amazing stories to share. Officer Bell was extremely generous with his time, spending nearly two hours with me, telling stories of his partners over the years, Bruno, Nero and now Mingo. He shared his scrapbooks that documented their life together, catching bad guys and keeping our city safe. Most importantly, he took the time to explain – at times as best he could – the unique relationship that a K-9 officer has with his four-legged partner. I added “as best he could” because at points there just weren’t the words to express the bond they share. More on that in a minute. Officer Bell took me through the process of how the department gets a K-9 officer, in fact explaining how their vendor, Von der Haus Gill German Shepherds in Wapakoneta, OH, get their dogs from...

Relocating with your Pet

After my last blog post I went on the longest car ride of my life and boy was it fun!  I traveled from Ohio to Florida with my Dad.  Of course I was wearing my seatbelt and it worked out really well because not only was I safe but the harness I wear my Dad could easily attach my leash and take me to potty on our trip.   There were tons of interesting smells and humans I met along the way! A couple of things that I noticed is it is a lot warmer in Florida and I drink a lot more water. Instead of chasing squirrels in my backyard like I used to in Ohio, I am now chasing lizards.  I haven’t caught one yet but I have gotten close. I get walks early in the morning and later in the evening to avoid the heat.  Sometimes I even get to go swimming in this water that is funny smelling and tasting.  It isn’t what I am used to but it is still fun. The Dog to Human Translation: I recently moved across the country with my dog Daisy and it was a 16 hr car ride.  I of course made sure she was secured in her seatbelt and also had food and water available for her throughout the ride.  I stopped every couple of hours along the way to make sure Daisy could get out stretch her legs and use the potty.  For the most part she slept which was great. Prior to moving to St. Pete Beach I did some research to make sure that I...

How Did Dogs Know Best Happen?

Where Did the Idea for Dogs Know Best Come From? A lot of you may be wondering how Dogs Know Best came about. It’s not your typical dog story book. Like many dog-related books, it is about a relationship with my dogs, but it’s more than that. Dogs Know Best is my love letter to my two senior German Shorthaired Pointers. It is a thank you to them for all the things they have taught me, and continue to teach me each and every day. I spend a LOT of time with my dogs, they are my constant companions. I knew there was a story in there somewhere, but honestly, there’s nothing fancy or unusual about our story. We live a quiet life somewhere between the city and the country, almost on the edge of a national park. We go to the store, we go for walks. They hang out while I work, they play. They are in a routine, with meal times and bedtime happening at just about the same point every day. So the story of Dogs Know Best just happened. It happened quietly, like our life. It didn’t come with a big bang, it didn’t come with a lot of ceremony. It was a simmering thought, the lessons coming to me as we would be out on our walks (which is when I do my best thinking and brainstorming). Pointers have a reputation for being energetic, nutty “handfulls.” Just ask anyone who has ever shared their life with a Pointer and they will quickly agree. Words like “stubborn,” “strong-willed,” “too smart for their own good,” “balls...