Category: Pup culture
|May 8, 2014||Posted by Ruth under Lifestyle, LOLs & BOLs, Pup culture, Rusty's place, Videos|
I don’t know what this is, but it’s woofin’ wrong. Mom, hold me!!
Now this is more like it. I could swing with this poodle.
Just between you & me, that first video’s gonna drive me straight to catnip.
I swore I’d never go there, but what’s been seen can’t be unseen without a bit of nip.
Don’t judge, dawgs. Don’t judge. ~Rusty~
©2014 The Soulful Pet
|April 7, 2014||Posted by Ruth under Inspirational & motivational, Lifestyle, LOLs & BOLs, Music, Pup culture, Training/Behavior, Videos|
Rusty and I just had a long talk. We’re owning two words: “crazy” & “bitch”.
Personally, my poodle buddy loves a bitch who thinks outside the box. That’s his play style: outgoing; smartly switching up his game, including your style, too; with tons of give & take. I’m happy to fill that role for him as best as my 2-legged human self can. We aren’t interested in a “normal” game of border-line obsessive, robotic fetch. He’s met labs like that. I’ve met teachers like that. Don’t color outside those lines; don’t stray from my game; and don’t speak your mind. That’s quite insane, actually. Bonus: If you’re a human chic swimming up that stream, you’re sadly labeled a bitch.
“Crazy” is in the eye of the beholder.
Usually, that beholder is ignorant, insecure and/or envious of originality & spontaneity. They’re eager to label others as abnormal to soothe themselves. So then who’s wacko? No one. (Unless you’re just card-carrying, certifiably cra cra.) We’re all individuals doing our thing. March to the beat of your own drummer. After all, that’s why we’re here, isn’t it? Shine a spotlight on your crazy & share it. It’s charming, creative & downright adorable – and it’s all uniquely yours. The world’s a better place for it. Normal’s way scarier than a big box of crazy. Normal strikes me as Stepford-y creepy.
Let’s take a break to watch what most of my clients would call “crazy” canine behavior:
That pup’s not nuts; he’s very, very happy. (And gifted; he should be doing parkour!) He’s livin’ large, being himself because that’s all he knows how to be. He’s completely unencumbered by the fact that his human is about to put him up on YouTube. While you probably wouldn’t want that pittie party happening on your upholstery, you found yourself smiling, didn’t you? You’re not alone. This vid went viral for a reason. His “crazy” is charismatically contagious. I want in on that couch game!
Rusty disagrees with me on this one, but we can’t forget our feline friends.
Watch Simon perfectly depict a scenario played out in every cat-blessed house @ around dark-o’clock each night. This chaos causes my bleary-eyed, sleep deprived clients to wonder if Kitty needs Prozac:
Kitty’s not psycho. Cats are crepuscular (more active @ dusk & dawn). And they’re master human trainers. They quickly learn that normal nocturnal behavior pays off big: you get up & feed them just to calm them down. Mission sanely & smartly accomplished!
Back to “bitch”, please. Gals, the sooner we own this one, the better. I’m uber comfy with it, and so is Rusty.
If you want to get your crazy on, you have to be bold. You have to believe in yourself. You have to live, laugh & love like no one’s watching. And so what if they are? It’s your life. Guys, you might want to try this decidedly feminine definition of “bitch” on for size, too:
“Being a “bitch” means….
I stand up for myself & my belief. I stand up for those I love. I speak my mind, think my own thoughts or do things my way. I won’t compromise what’s in my heart. I live my life MY way. I won’t allow anyone to step on me. I refuse to tolerate injustice. It means I have the courage & strength to allow myself to be me. So try to stomp on me, douse my inner flame. Squash every ounce of beauty I hold within. You won’t succeed. If that makes me a bitch, so be it. I embrace the title. I’m proud to be a bitch.” ~author unknown~
So, a “crazy bitch”? Sign me up for life. As long as I’m being true to myself, it’s all good.
Rusty reigns me in if I get off track. In fact, just the other night, after I… um… let’s say had to be someone I’m not, Rusty put his paw down. As I tried to calm down to sleep that night, Rusty chose an awkwardly unusual sleeping position. He curled up as far away from me as he could get, with his back to me. I reached out to him, selfishly hoping that making contact with him would relax me. But when I touched him, he growled softly. (Don’t jump off the ridiculously erroneous dominance theory deep end here.) He didn’t growl because he thinks he owns the bed, or me, for that matter. He growled because I had unnerved him with my earlier rare & unpleasant personality change. Touching him while I was still upset was indeed selfish because he had already distanced himself from me. Message sent & received, Rusty. Sent & received.
What’s next for Rusty & his human sidekick?
We’re working hard on a project that will bring this blog to life. If we were normal, coloring in the lines & playing someone else’s game, our project would fail before it flew. The hell with normal. What is that anyway?!
Cheers to crazy, bitches! xxoo ~Ruth & Rusty~
©2014 The Soulful Pet
|March 1, 2014||Posted by Ruth under Lifestyle, LOLs & BOLs, Music, Pup culture, Rusty's place, Training/Behavior, Videos|
Yo, dawgs. My mom’s singin’ a Lorde song, & I’m waitin’ for the postal carrier.
It’s uber fido fun to bark @ ’em, but I’m not hatin’ on ’em. Not like these pooches:
Obsess much, dawgs? This ain’t healthy.
If I don’t talk to you about your nasty little habit, who will? Go cold turkey & have your humans get rid of the mail slot. Go chew on a bone or a stuffed Kong instead. Outasight, outamind.
Sometimes ya gotta watch a spooky movie to stop a bad habit.
Gather round, hounds. Dig my puplic service announcement: When cats do it, it’ll scare ya straight!
Ya feel me? xo ~Rusty~
©2014 The Soulful Pet
|February 14, 2014||Posted by Ruth under LOLs & BOLs, Pup culture, Seasonal|
|January 22, 2014||Posted by Ruth under "Wordless" Wednesdays, Lifestyle, LOLs & BOLs, Music, Pup culture, Rusty's place, Videos|
If you know my mom, you know she loves music, singin’ & dancin’.
In fact, she’s woofin’ fab to howl with. So when I saw her lovin’ this tune, I promised to share it with y’all:
If mom’s happy, I’m happy. Groovin’ & woofin’! xo ~Rusty~
©2014 The Soulful Pet
|January 15, 2014||Posted by Ruth under "Wordless" Wednesdays, Lifestyle, LOLs & BOLs, Pup culture, Rusty's place, Seasonal, Videos|
What’s that white stuff, “snow”? It looks cold, messy & FUN!
Maybe I’ll get my CA poodle paws in some soon. Until then, I’ll live vicariously through these dawgs:
Whoa! Mom rolled in this stuff, too? I wanna poodle snow day! ~Rusty~
©2014 The Soulful Pet
|December 18, 2013||Posted by Ruth under Blog hops, Inspirational & motivational, Lifestyle, LOLs & BOLs, Pup culture|
This is a scary-new kind of post for me. Why?
It’s my first blog hop! I’m amateurishly rubbing elbows with fellow pet bloggers who I admire. Why else? While I’ve given you a few personal glimpses of me in The Soulful Pet’s first year, it’s been much easier to hide behind my sweet pup, Rusty. It seems that I’m not alone in the pet bloggers’ world in that way. Which is why this blog hop is called “Meet the Bloggers”, aka “The Grand Unmasking“. We’re all exposing ourselves a bit more than we naturally would without a push.
Why on Earth should I do this?
Why answer all these pre-determined, personal questions so god-knows-who can read into my soul? I squirmed as I asked myself this when I read about this event. My knee-jerk was “hell no!” Then I realized that it’s the writing version of my cliff jumping, ziplining adventure. So Geronimo!
First, to participate I have to literally expose myself in a candid pic.
I was going to cop out & use the uber-lucky selfie that I’ve slowly grown comfy with you seeing on The Soulful Pet. But, as with ziplining gear, vulnerability shouldn’t be pretty. So here’s a painfully raw, un-Instagrammed outtake (complete with trashcan in the background) from the selfie session Rusty & I originally endured for this site’s sake. We are blissfully selfie-challenged.
Deep breath. Now to answer those pesky, disrobing, probing questions:
What’s your favorite non-animal related book?
I just finished Chelsea Handler’s, “Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang.” She makes me laugh – hard. She puts the “coslopus” into being a strong, funny bitch. Love her. (She does talk about her dog, Chunk, in the book, but just in one chapter.) Was I supposed to be more cerebrally high brow with this answer?
What’s your favorite non-animal related movie?
Sooo many! I love to laugh, and I love a roller-coaster scare. So I’ll say “Bridesmaids” & “The Cabin in the Woods”.
What’s your favorite non-animal related food?
Does that mean it has to be vegetarian or vegan? A glass of juicy red vino & eggplant Parmesan is heavenly. I was pesco-lacto-vegetarian until I started cooking for my boxer. Now, I can’t wait to visit family in PA and have a REAL Philly cheese steak. Extra sauce, light on the cheese, no peppers or onions, soft roll – drool!
Who’s your favorite actor?
Now that she’s played a sex addict in “Thanks for Sharing”, I can properly answer this otherwise dull (sorry) question: P!nk!
What’s one thing you have to do every day?
Car dance & sing, usually to P!nk, Jessie J, or Karmin – turned up LOUD. Of course, if Rusty’s in the car I tone it way down. Not the dancing, just the volume. He loves it when I make a fool of myself. Today, though, even I was embarrassed to be with me as I jammed to Daft Punk on the way to the gym.
What makes you feel fabulous?
That’s easy: being loved & cute shoes.
What do you wish you were more skilled at?
Spanish & techie stuff.
What’s your favorite holiday?
A self-ish, elfless Christmas with loved ones.
I make a mean chicken & dumplings. Yum!
What do you like to do in your free time?
In no certain order: Hike with girlfriends; visit consignment shops & local galleries; bake; read; try new restaurants; drive thru the countryside & along the coast; and hang with my little man, Rusty.
What one word would people who know you use to describe you?
Why is this so hard to answer? Ugh! No, that’s not the word. Still thinking & feeling awkward. Can I phone a friend on this one?…. OK, I just asked 5 of my girls, & I got 5 words. I’m not picking one. They said: loyal, loving, selfless, compassionate & kind. I think I’m a golden retriever.
If your pets could talk, what one word would THEY use to describe you?
Trustworthy. I really try to be predictably stable, kind & fair for my pets – no matter what’s happening in my life. As it turns out, that’s good for me, too.
What is one thing you’ve done that you’re most proud of?
I could write a book on this, and I might someday. Plain & simple, I survived the last year of my life: burnout after 20 years as a pet behaviorist, anxiety & learning that my husband doesn’t love me. Currently, I’m rising like a Phoenix from its ashes, reinventing myself as a writer. (I’m fascinated & inspired by our bonds with pets.) Loving family & friends – and Rusty – give my wings strength.
How is your pet most like you?
Rusty & I are both very sensitive to our environment & the beings in it, pets & humans, alike. We don’t like chaos. We’re extroverted introverts.
What can your body do for you that makes you most proud?
My intuition is pretty keen. I’ve learned to listen to her over the years. She’s saved my life & my sanity many times. And, she’s made me a better behaviorist, writer & friend.
If you could change one thing about your life what would it be?
On the heels of this horrendous past year, I’ve already made that change. I consciously chose happiness. As a result, I know that all of the other pieces will fall into place. I’m good.
Other than blogging, what are three things you do that bring you joy?
I can’t be alone in this: Couch surfing with my dog, cozy under blankets. When I’m stressed and/or I have a nasty case of writer’s block, I need to be in nature. And, I’m a super happy girl while sipping a delightful vodka cocktail, dining al fresco on a warm summer night with good friends. Cheers! Wait, there’s a fabulous fourth joy: MUSIC!
What’s one thing you could do to be more kind to yourself?
I’m learning to ignore negatives, whether they’re internal (self-talk) or external (haters). Life’s too short.
What drives you nuts about your pets? What melts your heart?
My pets don’t drive me nuts. I do hate thinking about how short their precious lives are. So I stay in the present, enjoying each moment with them, accepting & honoring who they are. They are my teachers. I’m blessed, not driven nuts. That and a warm snuggle or a howl fest, melts my heart.
If you didn’t have your current pets, what pets would you choose to have?
I was without a pet for 3 years after my soul-mate cat, Alex, & my boxer boy, Gumbo, died in 2006. Never again. I’d love 2 dog-friendly cats & one cat-friendly dog. That’s my perfect pet family. It just feels right. But Rusty is anti-kitty, so he’s solo unless his doggie buddies visit.
So now that I’ve peeked out from behind my pal Rusty to risk dying of exposure, please join me.
I need some company here. I’d love to hear from you. Why not answer a few questions yourself? It’s not so bad, after all. Maybe I should try skinny dipping next? Hmm…. I do have a friend who’s been trying to convince me to join her at a Buddhist retreat – naked in their hot springs. Happily peeling the layers off….. xxoo ~Ruth & Rusty~
©2013 The Soulful Pet
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|November 16, 2013||Posted by Ruth under Lifestyle, LOLs & BOLs, Pup culture, Rusty's place, Videos|
I don’t run with a dangerous pack.
But, I’ve been binge-watching “Breaking Bad” with my humans.
(Shhh! We don’t know how it ends, so no spoilers please!) Now I have a new-found respect for the criminal mind. Check these degenerates, yo.
Crazy capers, yo! ROTFLMTO ~Rusty~
|October 27, 2013||Posted by Ruth under Lifestyle, LOLs & BOLs, Music, Pup culture, Seasonal, Training/Behavior, Videos|
I love a good ghost story, especially if it’s dipped in reality.
For example, it’s fascinating to read that a nearby landmark, the Bodega Bay schoolhouse featured in Hitchcock’s “The Birds”, just might be a haunted home. A classic episode of Syfy’s “Ghost Hunters” is another fun fright. Why? Dolls & clowns creep me out. (I can’t point to any specific childhood trauma that stems from.) So I related to GH’s lead spook chaser, Jason Hawes, when he commented on a framed doll during an investigation, saying, “That’s the creepiest baby I’ve ever seen.” Later, upon reviewing a recording (EVP) of that moment, they heard an eerie child’s voice answer, “It’s not that creepy!” (Believe me, I tried but failed to find a clip of this for you. It’s episode 5.2 from Star Island, in case you want to catch it.) That ghostly quote is now a running joke in our house whenever we spot a ridiculously sinister doll. It’s all in good fun.
Speaking of good fun, in case “The Birds” was before your time, here’s the schoolhouse scene. Note: This still might be too scary for kids to watch. In that way, Hitchcock is timeless. Enjoy….
What if you had a personal experience, in your home? Would you be scared?
I’ve had a few “unexplained” moments. Have you? Most of them involved my much-loved departed pets. You’d think they would be terrifying experiences, but they’re oddly calming & comforting. Go with me on this: These are just the facts of my experience. Most recently, a few years ago, I got up @ 2:30 a.m. to go to the bathroom. (TMI? Sorry.) As I got back in bed, I heard the meow of my dear cat, Alex, emanating clearly & loudly from right next to me on the bed. (You know your pet’s voice without error, right? Right.) It was the same tone he used to get my attention in life, and it came from his preferred spot on the bed. Yes, I was wide awake. Yes, I know the difference between a meow coming from my bed or from outside. No, I didn’t have another pet in the house @ the time. No, I wasn’t still traumatized by losing sweet Alex a few years earlier. I’m sure of the time because I looked @ the clock when it happened. I’m not crazy; I’m certain of what I heard. And, you know what? It wasn’t that creepy.
Unlike dolls & clowns, there’s nothing spooky about my little boo, Rusty, either.
He’s a brave soul, but nighttime walks can unnerve both of us. Facing shorter days, we set out to make our evening strolls safer. Now, Rusty’s got day-to-night swagger in his new bow tie & evening bling. We took back the night. Not at all creepy, just uber cute.
A quick note about Rusty’s Vivid LED collar: It’s a size small – the smallest available. It’s meant to fit necks 12.5 – 16.5″. Rusty weighs about 13 pounds, and it’s too big for him. Fastened as snug as possible, it still slips over his head while buckled. That’s one reason why I attach his leash to his harness instead of the collar. The other is that I prefer harnesses to neck collars. Harnesses are healthier because they disperse any leash tension over a dog’s body, rather than focusing it on his neck. Having said that, despite the amazon.com reviews of the Vivid collar, it works perfectly. It has varied settings, from a steady glow to the fast blink I used for effect. It’s well made, nicely padded & rechargeable. Safety first: When you’re not walking your dog, remove the collar & keep it out of Pup’s reach.
How do you & your pets spend Halloween? Do you have any favorite winter gear for your pets? Any creepy stories you’d like to share?
You’re welcome to visit our FB page & post fall pics of your pets. We’d love to hear from you.
Boo! xxoo ~Ruth & Rusty~
|October 24, 2013||Posted by Ruth under Lifestyle, LOLs & BOLs, Music, Pup culture, Rusty's place, Seasonal, Videos|
I’ve sported a few Halloween hound looks in my day.
Here are my two favorites.
Don’t get me wrong; at best, I tolerated the monkey thing. Really, dawgs – WTF? But chicken was involved, so I chilled with it.
In my last gig as a solo dog blogger, I was a vampire.
That was cool ‘cuz the costume just hung from my collar. Not like that sweaty wool monkey suit.
Grrr…. Boo! ~Rusty~
©2013 The Soulful Pet