In Search of America

Charley doesn’t have our problems. He doesn’t belong to a species clever enough to split the atom but not clever enough to live in peace with itself. He doesn’t even know about race, nor is he concerned with his sisters’ marriage. It’s quite the opposite. Once Charley fell in love with a dachshund, a romance racially unsuitable, physically ridiculous, and mechanically impossible. But all these problems Charley ignored. He loved deeply and tried dogfully. It would be difficult to explain to a dog the good and moral purpose of a thousand humans gathered to curse one tiny human. I’ve seen a look in dogs’ eyes, a quick and vanishing look of amazed contempt, and I am convinced that basically dogs think humans are nuts

Travels with Charley


A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike.  =Steinbeck

Doctor Dog

Hippocrates had a dog.  Little did anyone know…until recently.  Argo’s is credited with the Dog’s Affirmations!  Hippocrates had experienced a lull in his medical practice.  One bad turn took another.  The business went into foreclosure.  Hippocrates needed cash badly.  He turned to Argo and begged him to sign over the rights to the ‘Affirmations.’  With a little coaching from an editor.  Hippocrates changed a few words here and there.  And, we now have the Hippocratic Oath.

Argo’s Affirmations:

I swear to fulfill, to the best of my ability and judgment, this covenant:

I will respect the my groomer, and her muzzles.  For it is because of her that I walk in style.

I will apply, though I do not understand the term completely, to be an emotional support animal for all.  Even if the twin trap is flying on airplanes or wearing those hideous vests.

I will remember that there is an art to being so cute.  There is a science to my warmth, loyalty and understanding.  I fully understand hugs outweigh…treats.

I will never be ashamed to say, “the cat did it.”   And, I will not fail in antagonizing the cat…when no one else is looking.

I will not respect the privacy of the litter-box or the bedroom.  Most especially I must tread with care in the matters of my admirer’s shoes.  They were given unto me to keep an eye on…not eat.  It is given to me to save a life.  I have the power to enhance a life.  And, I face this challenge with great humbleness and awareness.  I am not god…but I am damn close.

I will remember that I am not protecting a bunny, butterflies or trees.  I am protecting a sick human being.  If I am to care for this sicko…I must care for those who are equally sick, in his or her’s inner circle.

I will prevent sadness whenever I can.  Unless my human friend is out whoring around with another dog.

I will remember that I remain a member of a family, with special obligations to all my fellow loved ones.  Not just those of sound mind and body but the nut jobs too!

It’s hard not to immediately fall in love with a dog who has a good sense of humor.-Kate DiCamillo

If I do not violate this oath, may I enjoy life and art, respected while I live and remembered with affection thereafter.  May I always behave so as to preserve the finest traditions of my heritage and may I long experience the joy of healing those who seek my help.







National Pet Day 2019

Vanity: the original hate crime

There are many things I’ve always wanted to know about my animals.  Such as, why did you eat that, how did you get yourself in there, when hell freezes over, you’ll love me, and…where on earth did you get that thing that looks like an over cooked bat?

For national pet day, I gathered my brood and announced, there will be a new and improved, sheriff in town.  Everyone just turned and walked away, as is typical.  Therefore, I went on-line to find out…WTF is wrong with these animals?

-Cats don’t typically meow at each other—that’s a communication tool reserved for their humans. According to Science of Us, in a 2003 study, researchers at Cornell University recorded meows from 12 cats in five typical scenarios; when they played the meows for humans, the people who either had cats, interacted with cats, or liked cats were far more successful in deciphering the scenario. According to the lead author, Nicholas Nicastro, cats are very good at changing their vocalizations depending on the situation: The 7 a.m. “feed me” call, for example, is longer and has more energy in the lower frequencies, while the “adopt me” meow at the local shelter is shorter and equal in low and high frequencies. After millennia of working together, each species has managed to figure out what the other one wants.

-Goldfish have a reputation as short-lived creatures, but given proper care, they can live as long as 30 years in captivity. The oldest captive goldfish ever recorded was won at a fair in 1956 and died in 1999 at age 43.

-Many dogs have a condition nicknamed “Frito Feet,” in which their feet smell little bit like corn chips. As Matt Soniak wrote in a Big Question on this site, this has to do with the kind of bacteria found on a pup’s feet, and “could be due to yeast or Proteus bacteria. Both are known for their sweet, corn tortilla–like smell. Or it could be Pseudomonas bacteria, which smell a little fruitier—but pretty close to popcorn to most noses.”

-One survey found that 81 percent of cat owners let their felines sleep on the bed, compared to 73 percent of dog owners.

-According to the ASPCA, around 2.7 million shelter animals are adopted each year.

-One of the biggest differences between human behavior and cat behavior is the way we approach social interaction. Humans thrive off of establishing and maintaining relationships; we like to talk, touch, and make eye contact with one another. We interpret a lack of social interaction as something negative.

Cats, on the other hand, do not feel a particular need to engage in interactions that do not interest them. Their ancestors were somewhat solitary animals, and they generally did not communicate through sounds. Cats feel no obligation to constantly show their affection, even to their guardians! Your kitty isn’t being rude or spiteful, or even trying to ignore you; they just don’t feel like hanging out right now.

-Dogs receive more olfactory information about the environment with their head outside than inside the car, according to Robin Foster, Ph.D., research professor of animal behavior at the University of Puget Sound.

“The air being forced into the dog’s nose may intensify the odors,” Foster told The Dodo. “Even a dog who can’t get his head out the window, he will spend a lot of time sniffing at a gap in the window – probably gathering real-time intel on the current location.”


Thus, my ‘intel’ tells me…

Ride with the window down in the middle of winter.  Wait until my cat comes to me…before I fawn over it.  Adopt, adopt, adopt!  It is far better to lay down with the ‘cat’ than the stinky dog!