Monthly Archives: January 2016

Meanwhile, Back in the Craft Room

I’ve lived in my house for over a year now, and I’m just now deciding how to decorate my house. One room is going to be dedicated to my Native American memorabilia. My downstairs bathroom to Paris. The hallway downstairs to Koi. My living room to…well I don’t actually know. I only have a color scheme for it: black, tan, and mahogany probably. My kitchen is going to be black and red and my mom even agreed to do stained glass for my cabinets. The utility room/the dogs’ bedroom will probably not have any decorations. The upstairs will be steampunk.

As for my second bedroom downstairs it will be dedicated to my love of dogs. Yes, I know I’m crazy. Friends have pointed out that my love for my animals is childish and that I’m obsessed. I own it up. After all, I don’t want to be anything else. This is me and if you’re my friend you either need to accept it, have already accepted it, or we don’t need to be friends. I’m not going to conform.

But I digress.

I already have some decorations–old calendars, a picture I picked up at Hobby Lobby, dog toys and figurines that I’ve had for a long time. I’m also making some decorations. I found a cube template online that folds into a paper box (or whatever medium you choose). I made blocks that spelled out “Steampunk” and I enjoyed it so much that wanted to make one that said “I Love My Shih Tzu” with a heart instead of “love.” After a couple weeks of planning, putting things together, watching Netflix, procrastinating, losing hope, wanting to start over, and everything else that goes with the creative process, I finally finished the blocks.

The Shih Tzu that I cut out using my Cricut aren’t perfect and I almost scraped both of them as soon as I finished them as I messed them up, but I put so much work in them and they actually are kind of cute, that I decided to leave them. One of them is modeled after Haley (right) and the other after Nia (left). Eventually I want to create little paper dogs that are modeled after my other three.

So…without further ado, I present my blocks.

Oooooh…Ahhhhhh.

The cube pattern came from: http://www.worksheetworks.com/math/geometry/polyhedra.html

The letters came from: http://www.activityvillage.co.uk/scramble-alphabet

The Shih Tzu come from the Cricut cartridge Pet Shop.

Anyway, I hope you like.

Until next time take it easy…

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

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All Wrong?

I probably have explored this thought in the past on this blog, but I want to explore it again and that’s how dogs view us vs how cats view us. Current opinion believes that dogs see us as pack members and some even go as far as to say that dogs see us as their Alphas. Cats, on the other hand, see humans as lesser beings; their servants. Sometimes I believe this, but other times I wonder if we’ve got it all wrong.

Cats scorn humans. If the cat doesn’t like you, the cat won’t come to you…if you’re lucky. If you’re unlucky, cats will scratch you. Think about it though, cats don’t just do that to humans, they do that to other cats as well. Cats exhibit an elegant disdain for…well everyone.  Human beings are not special. Cats treat humans the same way they treat their own kind.

The event that made me realize that cats might not see humans beings as lesser/different creatures is when my husband’s cat used to go into heat. If scratched just right, she would present her bum to just about anyone be it a human male, human female, other cat, or a four month old Shih Tzu puppy. She was indiscriminate. A female dog, on the other hand, only presents her bum to dogs.

Dogs are supposedly man’s best friend. They’re also woman’s best friend and a single person’s wingdog. Thanks to human intervention, they come in many shapes, sizes, and colors. Basically, there is a type/breed of dog no matter who you are.

The interesting thing about this human-dog relationship is that, unlike cats, it is not based on equality. Dogs do NOT see us as other dogs. I mean, they even invented a language in order for us to be able to understand them. Yeah, dogs bark at each other, but wolves howl at each other to show unity and to warn off other wolves. Most of the time, though, communication between dog-dog or wolf-wolf is primarily based on body language. Not so between human-dog.

Dogs bark at us to convey a bunch of things. A certain bark means “I want to go outside” while another bark means, “I want to cuddle with you” or “Pay attention to me.” Those who live with dogs know the difference between these barks. In fact, those who don’t live with dogs can tell the difference between some barks.

Those who live with multiple dogs will also know that housemate dogs rarely “speak” to each other. My dogs will growl when playing or when another dog gets near the place she has hidden all of the toys, and occasionally two will get into a barking match, but for the most part, they rarely ever make audible noises. That’s usually reserved for me.

Now, I’m not trying to start a debate between which is better: Dogs or Cats. I mean, it’s obviously dogs… JUST KIDDING. Don’t hurt me. I have no qualms with cats. It’s just that I spent a year and a half living with up to four cats which meant that their hair clogged all of the air filters and in turn clogged my ability to breathe. It left a bitter spot in my mind that I’m still trying to get over with. But, I still love cats. I just don’t want one.

Anyway, I digress.

The purpose of this entry was to make us reexamine our relationship with our cats and dogs, especially our viewpoint of cats. To dogs, we are another species and that called for a vocal language. To cats, we just might be funny-looking, two legged cats. So next time, when a cat scorns you, don’t take it personally. The cat would do that to another cat. As for dogs, they may actually be the ones who are plotting to take over the world.

Until next time, see how many barks you can decipher and let me know.

 

P.S. I should give credit where credit is due. I got some of this information from: Dogs Decoded, The Wonder of Dogs, And Man Created Dogs, Why We Love Cats and Dogs, The Science of Dogs, Dogs, and many other wonderful documentaries. Also The Hidden Life of Dogs and The Social Life of Dogs both by Elizabeth Marshall Thomas. There are many others that I don’t remember and one of these days I’ll compile a bibliography of everything.


Pup Resolutions

Happy New Year!!!!

I try not to have New Year’s resolutions, per se. Or at least I don’t call them that. I call them goals. Though I have several for myself–mostly writing and scrapbooking goals–I also have some for the pups.

One of them is spending more time with each individual. I always treat my girls as a pack; what one does the others also do (other than baths, I can’t handle bathing more than one at a time). This year I want to interact with them on a one-on-one basis; which is easier said than done. My girls are so bonded with each other that if one of them is by herself, she stays by my bedroom door until she’s allowed to go back with them. Go figure. I guess I need to be a more interesting pack member.

Another goal is each dog will learn two new tricks this year. Everyone knows basic obedience, despite the fact that they like to pretend they don’t. However, I want to teach some silly tricks just for the fun of it. Because they’re so chatty, Nia and Luna will learn speak and I’ll probably do agility with them. Also with Nia, since she’s so toy driven, I want to teach her at least ten different toys. I want to teach Clara roll over and maybe play dead or shake. Molly might learn shake and sit up pretty (something she does from time to time, but not on command). I don’t know what to teach Haley. I’ll have to think about it.

I also want to get my dogs so trained that I can get a picture of all five of them sitting still. That’s going to take awhile.

I have some weight goals for Clara, Nia, and Haley. Clara needs to loose and keep off 3 pounds. She’s eleven pounds, but due to her size she needs to be about 8. I’ve been cutting back on her food, but she always finds something to eat whether it is edible or not. Nia and Haley need to gain weight. Haley needs to be around fourteen pounds and Nia around sixteen; both are around ten or eleven.

Lastly, and the most important, I want to make it through 2016 without adopting another dog. That doesn’t include inheriting dogs. It just means that I will not pursue an addition to the family canine wise. Rats are a different story.

Well those are my dog related resolutions (goals). Do you or your pets have resolutions for this year? If so, let me know in the comments.

Fun fact: The study of dogs is Cynology. I found that out a couple days ago.

Anyway, until next time if your human wants to exercise more, make sure to help them by stealing things and making them chase you. Good human!