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Devil Dog #cute #animals

We saw this dog while we were walking in Vava’u, Tonga. He craned his neck to see us and seemed to be guarding this partially built house. He looked a bit like a devil dog with his glowing eyes.

Devil Dog, Tonga

Puppy Tales and Newsletters

Bella Bone

The other morning we took Bella for her walk. We usually come across the “regular” walkers and say good morning.

This particular morning, Bella was off the lead and we met up with a local lady and her dog, which is a tiny thing. Bella is about three times bigger. This little dog is long-haired and you can scarcely see his face because he’s all hair. When he runs he looks like a flag fluttering in the wind. Whenever I see him, I put Bella back on the lead because she can be a bit of a bully with smaller dogs. Anyway, hubby said, “Leave her off the lead today.”

Bella behaved beautifully. The little dog just stood there with his nose lifted in the air while Bella sniffed him. She circled the little dog once, and then to my horror, Bella lifted her leg ready to pee on him.

I shouted, “Bella!” and she stopped at my horrified shriek, giving me an affronted look. I started laughing, and luckily, the lady thought it was funny too.

It’s obvious Bella subscribes to the dog rules: If you can’t eat it or play with it then you should pee on it!

Author newsletters:

I’ve been doing a lot of reading and research about author discoverability and newsletters recently. Many of the “experts” suggest a pop-up for a newsletter signup, one that appears the second someone clicks onto a site. I find them annoying and usually click away from the site.

What do you think about pop-up ads on a website or blog?

Where Bella Teaches Shelley To Sit

Bella, our puppy is very smart, and she picks up things quickly. She was top of the class at puppy school. Recently she has been difficult when it comes time to go for a walk.

Bella

She likes to go for a different walk each time, and if I head off in the normal direction, she sits down and refuses to move. If we turn in a new direction, she’s happy and bouncy, trotting alongside like a perfectly behaved pet. If she meets “little people” during her walk and especially giggly little girls, she sits down and refuses to move until a meet and greet has been completed.

Color me frustrated.

At first it was funny, and I laughed. Then this stubborn behavior happened every day, and I lost my sense of humor.

I tried speaking in a stern voice.

I tried bribery with some dog crackers.

I tried pulling her. (Can’t do this too hard because her collar sometimes pops over her head, and the last thing I want is a loose puppy on the busy roads)

I tried shouting. (The neighbors twitched their curtains, but that was all that happened. Bella didn’t move!

Finally last week, in exasperation, I sat down in the middle of the footpath and glared over at Bella. She looked at me, and I could literally see the surprise on her furry face. She jumped up and came over for a pat. I got to my feet and our walk continued. Each time she decided to sit, I sat too.

Our outings seemed to go a bit more smoothly, and I got my way about the location of our walk.

I was telling my husband when he got home from work, and he started laughing.

“What?” I asked.

“Don’t you see what has happened?” he said. “Bella has taught you to sit!”

Anyone else have a naughty pet? Also, does anyone have suggestions for natural remedies for dog allergies? We’re not sure what is causing the allergy. There are so many variables.

Sightseeing on the Web

Sunset Key Largo Florida

I’ve packed my virtual bag and gone for a holiday. Today I have three stops.

At Author Missy Jane’s blog, I’m talking about leopards, which are one of my favorite big cats. I might also mention my husband in this post.

I’m also visiting author Vicky Burkholder where I let you know about my writing companion who keeps me on the straight and narrow while I’m working on my books.

I’m visiting Nights of Passion, the group blog of several authors. Here I’m discussing artist trading cards and my book One Night of Misbehavior.

And finally take the opportunity to enter my Historical Giveaway on the post below. Oh, I almost forgot – there is a giveaway. Enter at each stop to win Amazon Gift Certificates.

A Visit to Akaroa, New Zealand

In February hubby and I took a cruise from Auckland to Sydney on the Diamond Princess. I love New Zealand. Even though I live here, I’ve done a lot of travel, and my country of birth compares well with most countries.

One of the stops was Akaroa, which these days—since the earthquake at Christchurch—is the main port of call for cruise ships. The previous port of Lyttelton sustained extensive damage.

Akaroa is surrounded by hills and used to be a volcano. One of the walls broke, letting sea water rush in to create the existing harbor.

Akaroa Harbor

This photo shows the entrance to the harbor where the sea breached the volcano.

The area was settled by French and many of the streets have French names. It’s a small town—a very charming one. Each summer the population swells since it’s the perfect place for a summer holiday.

While we were there, hubby and I went dolphin watching to see the rare Hector dolphins. They’re a small dolphin and their fins look like Mickey Mouse’s ears.

Akaroa Dolphins

This is me on board the dolphin boat before leaving the wharf. If anyone visits Akaroa, I totally recommend this company. The owner and his family have been in the area for generations—five, I think he said from memory. He’s very knowledgeable about the area and the fauna.

Murphy Akaroa Dolphins

This little cutie is Murphy who works onboard the Akaroa Dolphin boat. His task is to look for dolphins and he does an excellent job. If you see him run to the side of the boat, follow because there will be dolphins!

Hector Dolphin

Hector’s dolphins are extremely rare and are only found in New Zealand. The dolphins were a bit shy on the day we went out, but we did see a small pod.

Akaroa Township

This is the main part of the township. There are a few shops, some very nice cafes and restaurants plus the usual amenities such as supermarket, butcher, and church. On the day we visited there was a market at the church and I purchases a really pretty cameo-type pendant.

Fish and Chips

There is also an excellent fish and chip shop. Guess what we had for lunch?

Akaroa from Ship

This is the view from the ship after our day ashore. As you can see, it was beautiful weather and our day was memorable. If you’re ever down this end of the world, do put Akaroa on your must-visit list.

Feeling Hot, Hot, Hot!

Bella Hot, Hot, Hot!

It’s definitely summer here in New Zealand with higher than normal temperatures scorching the country. Bella has taken to cooling off by lying on her back with all her feet in the air. I call it her hot, hot, hot! pose.

Later today I’m visiting Not Your Usual Suspects blog where I’m talking about Scarlet Woman—the little book that could!

What are your favorite tips for cooling down during a hot summer?

Animal Antics – A Report from the Home Front

A report from the home front today.

Bella, our puppy, continues to challenge and delight us. She’s an active wee thing and loves to help out with jobs around the house. We’ve trained her to carry some of the recycling out to the bin, and she also enjoys toting the mail from the mailbox to the kitchen. Sometimes she likes the mail so much she refuses to give it back and a chasing game ensues. Most of our mail arrives in the kitchen complete with teeth marks.

Here’s a photo of Bella on recycling duty…

Bella

I had breakfast with my father and sister on Saturday and talk turned to some of their animals. My father hand milks his house cow every morning. Donna is a rangy black and white cow, and she and Dad have been a team for many years. These days—at twenty years of age—Donna’s eye sight is failing and her hearing is going, but she still kicks up her heels and charges through gates. My sister says if you see Donna coming it’s best to stand back.

But the funniest thing is that Donna goes to sleep in the middle of milking and starts snoring. Evidently the snoring is very loud. Who knew that cows snored?

I have a review for The Zombie Always Knocks Twice (seems to be free at Amazon at present so grab a copy) posting on 25 Sep, but apart from that I’m taking a blogging holiday. Hubby and I are off to Europe, so I’ll see you when I get back at the beginning of November.

A Day in the Life of Bella

The other day Mr Munro found a dog toy in the cupboard, one we’d purchased and saved for later. Bella was very excited since she is definitely still a puppy at heart.

Bella

 

This is what the toy looked like after about five minutes.

 

Puppy Toy

 

This is what our floor looked like after a few minutes of playing. Exhibit A.

 

Toy Stuffing

 

She had a lot of fun playing with her toy, and over the course of several days I picked up lots of stuffing. It was a magical toy, and the stuffing went forth and multiplied! Trying to separate Bella from her toy—not gonna happen!

 

Bella and her Toy

 

After playing all day Bella was exhausted. She retired to her bean bag for a nap.

 

Bella on her Bean Bag

 

She looks so cute when she’s asleep. No one would ever guess how naughty she can be during her waking hours.

 

What mischievous antics do your pets or children get up to during the day?

A Doggie Treat On Hot Days

Bella

During the hotter summer days we make our puppy an iceblock. It not only keeps her cool but also helps keep her amused if we have to leave her alone for a few hours. You have no idea how much mischief one puppy can get up to if they’re left to their own devices!!

To make an ice block you need:

1 x plastic container plus lid.
an assortment of doggy treats.

We use margarine or ice cream containers. For the treats we use meat scraps, chopped sausages, cubes of cheese etc. If we have them on hand we also use meat juices/stock to flavor the water.

Method: chop up treats and place in plastic container. Fill container with water and place in freezer. Once the ice block is frozen, tip it out of the container and give to your dog on a hot day. The treats tend to sink to the bottom so you might like to fill your container up halfway, freeze, then add some more treats and water so you have treats in the middle of the ice block.

Do you make any special treats for your pets?

Puppy Power!

We picked up our new puppy from the Humane Society tonight. She’s a Jack Russell X and is fifteen weeks old.

puppy,dog

She only has one speed—fast!

puppy,dog

Her name is Bella and she’s very cute.

puppy,dog



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