Sunday, October 31, 2021

Raja Arrives at Rainbow Bridge

We angels spend so much time trying to comfort our parents after we leave we often forget others are mourning us, specifically our siblings, who are far more likely to follow us into the dark than our parents are.

Pocket knew I was sick and didn't mourn me when I was gone but concentrated on aiding my grieving parents.  River, after two months, still looks for Pocket but she loves being an only dog.

Other dogs don't adjust as well. One of them, Raja, arrived at the Bridge this week after suffering from a myriad of issues none more significant than a broken heart after losing her brother Logan.

Through many adventures, Raja was Logan's sidekick, and despite watching Logan deteriorate before her eyes, she was still stunned when he passed.  Each day she would check his bed and other favorite spots, but her brother never appeared.

When Logan went to the Bridge, he took part of Raja with him, which proved to be vital. Raja was never the same dog after Logan departed.

She became part of the world-famous lab pack at four years of age. When her first mom could not take her when she relocated, the woman picked Moma Wendy to care for Raja, and she could not have chosen more wisely.

Raja had a tumor on her tail when she arrived. Mama Wendy is a  firm believer that once a dog enters your life, it is there for good, and she paid the hefty vet bill, so her latest baby was healthy.

Thus began a wonderful life filled with swimming pools, visiting friends, dog parks, and a significant lifestyle change when the pack moved from the Arizona desert to rainy Washington.  She did it laughing all the way.

She even won the heart of the legendary Smoochy, who she married before the angels called him to the Bridge.  Her husband would surely be one of the angels awaiting her arrival.

When Raja, aided by her mom, passed from one side of the river to the other and gained immortality, Smoochy, holding flowers, was waiting next to his mortal brother-in-law's namesake Brody, Hattie Mae,  Lily, Hobo, Tommy Tubes, Leo, her brother Dodger, her beloved Logan, and many more friends. When she arrived, Smoochy gave her the flowers and put one delicately behind her ear, and then she hugged Logan sniffed, and cried, communicating more than they could have using words.

Then, after a knowing nod between them, the Labbies ran off together. They spent hours going over hills, through fields, and fording rivers with three hearts beating as one like they had done in their glorious youth. Then they joined their friends for a welcome to the Bridge feast.  With full tummies and hearts, the trio began to devise a way to reach their mom through dreams.  If anyone can do it, the Labbies can, using their power of three.

Friday, October 29, 2021

The Power of Forgiveness


As you know, minions are terrible humans worth redemption but must first serve angels until they redeem themselves. We are assigned humans who abuse dogs, and it is up to us to determine when they can become angels.

    Since I arrived at the Bridge, Cecil has been my top minion. I found him to be diligent and trustworthy. When he was mortal, I was shocked to find out that he left his dog tied to a tree in a blizzard and the poor creature froze to death. He certainly deserved being a minion for a long time. I didn't think I could ever look past his transgressions.

    Every year the minions are reviewed to see who should become angels. If I judge that they have exorcised all the traits that made them fail as a living human, I agree to let them go. What I look for is for my minions to tell me what they did was wrong. This is where Cecil failed, insisting what happened to his dog was not his fault.

    Cecil's review came up this week. I didn't want to waste time asking questions and pushed forth the most critical inquiry. Was he responsible for what happened to his dog, Max? "No, I am not," he said. I was ready to close the hearing when Cecil had a witness, and Max entered the proceedings. 

    He introduced himself and asked that I release his father from his duties. I inquired if he was guilty of the charges, and Max admitted that Cecil had left him outside in a storm, and after a harrowing night, the dog shed his mortal coil and arrived at the Bridge.

"But it wasn't his fault," Max insisted.  

I asked how if Cecil had left him outside in a storm, he wasn't responsible. "What I mean is he didn't do it intentionally. Sadly,   Cecil doesn't know any better."

I told Max that ignorance was no defense of the law.

"Whose law?" he rebutted. "Are we ruled by human law? Or because we are higher beings, are we above their rules?"

I wish I had known Max when I was representing dogs in private practice. He was a first-rate litigator. I asked him how judges like me were supposed to determine if a minion was cruel or ignorant and when their sentence should end.  

"You shouldn't," he said confidently. "It should be up to the dog who the minion wrong to decide if they should have forgiven him.  Many offenses are so abusive and evil there will never be forgiveness, but this isn't one of them, and I forgive him. "

"But should we leave the perpetrator's fate in the hands of their victims?" I wondered. "If humans did that, every suspected wrongdoer would be sentenced to death."

"That is why I give thanks each day. I am not a human."

I had never heard a case brought forth with such wisdom in all my years of being a judge. I only had one recourse. I put Cecil's fate in Max's paws.

Cecil forgave his dad, and I ended his time as a minion. Cecil suddenly changed into a bald, thin, feeble-minded human. He ran to Max, hugged him, and begged forgiveness for which Max gladly granted, and then together they walked into the setting sun once again, man and dog.

A hearing often concludes with a judge learning something, but this one sure did. I would rely on the wronged dog to decide a minion's fate from this day forward because dogs are the wisest and most forgiving creatures created.

The only downside was that I lost the minion who ironed my robes perfectly. It would take months to train another.

I do suffer for justice.

Thursday, October 28, 2021

The Man Who Lived Alone



Just because you arrived at Rainbow Bridge doesn't mean you want to socialize with the other angels.  Some people are just better off on their own.

High up in the mountains is a house the no one visits occupied by a person to whom no one talks.  Many angels have tried, but none of them has been successful.  It was time for another to try, and I thought it should be me.

"It shouldn't be you," Pocket said.  I asked her why.  "You are a lot to deal with and rather impatient.  To approach a hermit, you need someone passive, like me.'

I bit her a hundred kibbles that she would never get past the front door.  We set out the following day, climbing high up the mountain to the shack.  There was a fence around it, and we had to dig under it, which I hated because I had just got my nails done.  

We knocked on the door and were told to go away by someone with a strong, deep voice.  It sent a  shudder down both our backs.  Still, a hundred kibbles are the most that we can bet on anything, and Pocket could not lose them.

We walked around the house.  There was a window open a crack.  I let Pocket stand on my back, and she pulled herself inside.  She carefully walked through the house when she saw a big man, around 240, with a cruel face, sitting in a chair, looking out a window.

Pocket froze, afraid to startle the man.  Then she softly approached and scratched at the chair's leg, asking to be picked up, but was he ignored her.  She activated her wings and flew up, then softly landed on his lap.

I was sure he would slap her out of the sky like a troublesome houseplant, but the man allowed her to land on his lap.  She sighed, shut her eyes, and went to sleep, breathing deeply.  She woke up when the man's cold hand touched her fur.

Pocket stayed still, understanding the calming properties of a soft, warm dog. Pocket stiffened, thinking he would knock her off, but instead, the man's hand began to softly stroke her fur. Pocket patiently waited until the man stopped, then looked up with her deep brown eyes, and asked what was wrong.  The man said he had a son, who he had not been close to, and did not attend when the boy, now an adult, crossed over because he was afraid his son would shun him.

Pocket finally spoke, saying that he would never know unless he tried.  I began frantically searching the angel databases for a soul who matched his son.  I found him and barked to Pocket that we could take the mean old man to his son.

Pocket asked the man to take her for a walk, and when he agreed, pulled him along the trail that I had blazed until we came to someone fishing on the bank.  The man gasped when he saw his son and slowly walked to the water's edge and sat next to his son.  When he recognized his father, he smiled and reached his side to keep the pole he always brought with him in case his father finally joined them.  Pocket and I left the father and son, happily fishing and silently enjoying one another's company.

It was the best of a hundred kibbles I ever spent.

Monday, October 25, 2021

Monday Question

How vocal are you, when are you vocal and do you have conversations with your parents?


River:  I bark when I hear noises, when I want food, or when someone comes over.  I talk through growls all the time, and my parents answer like they understand me, which they mostly are. 

Sunday, October 24, 2021

Jake Gets Stuck Between a Rock and a Bigger Rock

loving jake – Adventures of Jake the Border Collie! blogs below

It all began when Jake thought he saw a kibble.

Jake, a border collie, is a wanderer, something rare in this world of leash laws. Unlike splendid isolation, Jake's family constructed a lovely home deep in the woods.  Far behind them was a cliff overlooking a lake.  Jake loved exploring the area. He likes jumping off the slight cliff into the cool water and swimming downstream, where he can easily climb out.  He thought he knew every inch of the terrain.  But Mother Earth can change her appearance overnight and catch us unaware. that was literally on you Jake's downfall  

Jake was exploring the cliff when he saw something new. A large crack had developed in the ground. Jake sniffed around it. Confident that he had seen something lying at the bottom of the opening, Jake jumped into it.  

He immediately realized he had made a grievous miscalculation. There was nothing at the bottom worth jumping in after, just water that wet his paws. The walls were too steep to climb.  In short, he was trapped.

It was morning, and Jake's parents would not be home until the afternoon to complicate the issue.  Even after they arrived, it was not odd for Jake to be out until supper time. It wouldn't be until after dark that they would realize something was amiss. By then, the crack would fill with water. There was no one to hear Jake's barks. His only chance was prayer.  

The Powers That Be thought that Jake's chances of survival were slim, so they sent the case to Foley, the Miracle Worker. I flew down to comfort Jake and promise help was imminent even if I didn't know-how.   I asked him why he jumped into the crack, and he said he thought he saw a kibble. That was reasonable. When it comes to food dogs, dismiss all logic.

The tide fed the lake, and when it rose, so would the water in the crack. I had little time.  I told Jake I would be back then went flying over the area looking for help. There would be none found on his side of the water, but on the other, there were boats. If one of the owners was home and had a dog, I might be in business.

I found a beagle named Brittany, who was asleep on her dad's lap. I went into her dreams and said, "run to the boat and bark until your dad wakes up and follows."   When I told her a dog's life was at stake, she happily agreed.

Brittany awoke and barked at her dad until he was up too. She scratched at the door to go out, and when she did,  stood on the porch barking at her dad to follow. Curious, he did and then walked after her. He saw Brittany jump on the boat and asked her if she wanted to go for a ride. Her wagging answered his question. As the ship started, Brittany stood on the bow, guiding her dad until they were on the other side. That is when he heard the barking, followed it, and found Jake trapped. He called 911, and soon a rescue team was there for the dog.

It took three hours to free Jake, who ran home and arrived at his parents' door just as they did.

"Hi Jake," his dad said. "Did you have any adventures today!" If only they knew.

Friday, October 22, 2021

The Doppelganger Part Three



  When my doppelganger appeared and chained me in a barn, I thought Riley had done it just to replace me.  I did not know she was a group of denizens from the dark side who intended to take over the Bridge  A rabbit named Quick freed me, but my family and the other angels believed Riley was me.  When they turned on us, we took refuge in the river where we needed to formulate a plan to stop the villains.  

Pocket, who knew I was the real Foley, and for that reason, was hunted by Riley's minions, lay on the riverbank, wet and cold.  "What are we going to do?" she cried.

Riley may look like me, but she had none of my memories.  If we contacted our friends and I proved to them, I was the actual Foley by stating facts about our relationship that only I would know, we could form an army to prove Riley was a fraud and send her back to the barn where she belonged.  

The first dog we saw was Aran.  She began to bark when we appeared, thinking we were the evil angels.  I told her her Secret Paw when she went to the Bridge and sent her mom a picture book of sweet Aran.  She realized only the real Foley would have remembered that and apologized for not believing me.  I told her not to worry, everyone did, but she could help us change that.  

Next, we traveled to the most well-respected angel at the Bridge, Tommy Tunes.  I began to explain that despite what he may have heard, I was Foley Monster when he laughed and said he knew that because of my eyes.  Tommy has always been on top of everything. With Tommy on our side, the chances of defeating the imposter grew exponentially.  

From there, we convinced Paco, who is one of my friends, and with whom I share hundreds of secrets, and Winston, the newest angel, who knew how I helped him become an angel.   We heard a commotion occurring at the town square and saw an Angel Foley appreciation party happening.  There was a big bowl of Kool-Aid near her, and she was passing out cups filled with it.  "I know whatever is in there will help the dark angels take over," I said.  "It is going to take someone that all the angels love to stop them."  I meant myself, but Tommy stepped up and told the angels not to drink.  Everyone stopped.  

He told them to empty the cups and that Riley was an impersonator.  They began to do so when I stepped up, and they stopped.  "Get her!" Riley ordered.  

"It's me!"  I yelled.  

"Why should we trust you," one of the angels asked.

I tried to come up with a reason, but the crowd was turning on me.  Suddenly Pocket was next to me.  "I understand," she said.  "I know Foley stretches the truth, but I don't, and you can, believe me, this is my sister Foley." She held my paw in the air.  Aran and Paco swore she was telling the truth.  The crowd turned on Riley.

She tried to run but was caught by Sheriff Benjamin and would have been sent to minion court, but I said she was just misunderstood sent her to training classes.  We let Beevis become a minion.  Then the party turned into an appreciation for all of us who stopped the evil angels.

When I returned home, I had one more angel to confront.  I approached Jax and asked him how he could have mistaken another dog her me.  "Oh, I knew it wasn't you; I just liked her more."

If I weren't so grateful and tired, I would have butt bit him.

Thursday, October 21, 2021

The Doppleganger Part Two

 Thank to a rabbit named Quick, I escaped the barn where my doppelganger and her lackey Daddy Beevis had chained me.  I had to get back to Doggyspace and reclaim my life.

We found the road back to my house.  On the way, I promised Quick he could live in my yard, where there is yummy vegetation to chomp.  When we finally reached my home, I heard raucous laughter.  I looked in the window and saw my family sitting down for dinner, and at the head of the table, I was regaling them with what I thought was a mundane story.

I burst into the house and said, "That Foley is an imposter, I am the real one."

"There she is," the Faux Foley yelled, pointing at me, "my double who is trying to take over my life!"

Riley was clever.  She was doing the old fake double switch.  Thankfully for me, my family would, upon seeing me, know who the real Foley was.  Jax hoped down to greet me, or so I thought, instead he yelled "imposter!' and, along with my siblings, chased me out of my yard.  

It surprised me when Pocket was the most determined chaser.  I had been on my paws all day and was tired.   Plus, the body I was wearing had a few extra pounds.  After ten minutes, she bit my tail to stop me.  I fell to the ground with my sister over me.  "Please!" I begged.  "I am the real Foley."

"I know that," Pocket said.  I inquired how.  "The other Foley was kind, funny, brave, intelligent.  I think our siblings, who have hoped for years that you would change from being mean, cowardly, and a dope thought that the powers that be answered their prayers, but I knew better.  You would never go changing just to please us."

I wanted to give her rap in the mouth, but she and Quick were my only chance.  If my family couldn't tell Riley was an imposter, then my co-workers surely would.  I learned there was going to be a swearing-in ceremony and hurried to Hobo's Landing.  I saw a new angel approaching and waited anxiously to see Riley make a mess of the commemoration, and then I would step forward and declare, to great cheering, that the real Foley Monster was here.  I could imagine the celebration.

I watched with joy as Reilly stopped the proceedings by giving a speech about life at the Bridge.  What a mistake!  Angels wanted to be sworn in immediately and then see their friends, not listen to some long-winded, maudlin speech.  When Reilly finished, everyone was crying, along with Quick and Pocket. I had to put a stop to this, but Pocket bit my tail and stopped me.  "Listen!" she said.

Jax appeared, carrying a poster board.  On it was pictures of me, Pocket and Quick.  Reilly announced that we were wanted imposters who were trying to take over the Bridge. She warned that we would be hard to find, but she had a foolproof way of locating us.  Jax produced the comforter from our bed.  He lay it before a pack of hound dogs who sniffed it.  Then the biggest one turned towards us and pointed.  The angels turned to us, and one shouted:  "There they are."

We ran off and jumped in the river, and luckily the hounds didn't follow.  We climbed out a mile downstream.  Pocket asked me what my plan was.  I wish I knew.  
To be continued

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

The Doppleganger Part One


I was enjoying my morning walk when I became aware of someone following me.  Every time I turned back, there was no one there.  Finally, I ducked down an alley, then stepped back out to catch my follower red pawed.  I was shocked to see, except for being dirty, the dog looked like me.

I asked her why she was following me when someone put a bag over my head and threw me on the rear end of a horse.  When the bag was removed, I was in a barn; the fiends quickly put a collar on my neck and chained me to a wall.  I demanded to know why this was happening.  

My Dopplengar introduced herself as Riley.  Despite being one of the prettiest Yorkies in existence, she never had a home on the mortal side, and even at the Bridge, lived on the street.  Riley thought it was her destiny to be alone when she read Doggyspace Daily and saw my picture.  That is when she began to formulate her evil plan.  

Because of circumstances beyond her control, she believed she had been denied the life she should have led.   When she saw me, she became jealous, which triggered her dark side as it often does.  She worked every day on her body, molding it until it looked like mine, then began to hunt me.  When she finished, Reilly began to search for me, and on this day, she was successful.  

I was in the barn where she had slept most nights.  The owner, Beevis, had been a former minion who a fellow judge decided had been cured of his worst tendencies, a decision I immediately regretted. He was the one who had bagged me, and now I would be a barn dog, keeping it free of critters, while Riley went to Doggyspace to take over my role as judge and free more unworthy minions.  Her interference could tip the scales between Good and Evil at the Bridge and send it and the world into darkness.

They left to start their nefarious scheme, but I was not worried.  They had picked the wrong dog to pupnap.   My friends would immediately know that Riley was an imposter.  I was far too witty, wise, and urbanite for a mere barn dog to impersonate.

After two days of being trapped in the old, wet structure, I began to worry my friends were not as bright as I thought. If help were not coming for me, I would have to find a way to escape.  The only souls visiting me were the vermin they had tasked me with chasing from the barn.  I would have to befriend them so that they could free me.  But they had been chased away by Reilly so many times they didn't trust me.  

A bunny named Quick had poked its nose in the barn twice.  It was too scary to enter.  I told him I could send him to a place where carrots grow bigger than tree trunks, and all he had to do was free me.  The others told him it was a mistake, but Quick could tell I wasn't a bunny hunter.  A bunny chaser, sure, but who isn't?  Quick came in the barn, then chewed through my collar.  Soon I was free and Quick, and I started to search for my home and the tree trunk carrots.

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

For Ruby


We dogs are adept at hiding pain and illness.  Not only do we hide them from our parents but our friends too.

That is why I was surprised to see my friend Ruby the Aerrdale on the list of dogs to be sworn in on Saturday.  I read every post, visited Ruby in her dreams, and she has never barked a word about being ill.

I saw the reason for her impending arrival was arthritis. Ruby's old bones were betraying her body. She also had a tumor on her eye and two on her breasts.  The longer we live, the more we have to carry. Because her mom loved her more than she did herself, she sent him to us where she could be happy and carefree.

Ruby was a lucky dog. She had scores of online friends who followed her, enjoying her numerous posts and always happy to see her smiling face. That was why there were so many pups awaiting her arrival.

Overnight the beavers, carpenter ants, and skilled minions built Ruby her home in Blogville. I  have a place there, too, and at Doggyspace, Tanner Land, and  Facebook, my least favorite spot because there are ads everywhere, and the leaders get up in your business.

Blogville lies just north of Doggyspace. It is a small, loyal group, and its inhabitants were anxiously awaiting their friend's arrival. I looked to my right and saw Easy, holding a Margarita, Ruby's favorite drink, although she was only allowed sips.  Now she could have an entire one for herself.  When I heard a slurping sound, I gave Easy a side-eye, and he dropped his head sheepishly.  

It seemed like we were waiting an excessive amount of time.  My arrival times are never wrong, and the paperwork said Ruby should have arrived a half-hour prior.  I felt responsible for the delay and apologized to the crowd.  "Who are we waiting for?" a voice asked.  We turned around and saw it was Ruby.

"We are waiting for you to cross the Bridge!" I said.  Then everyone gathered around her gave and shared 25,600 kisses and hugs.  I tried to get her attention to give her the critical angel oath because if she didn't take it, and everyone found out it was meaningless, I would be out of a job.  

"I think I got lost," she said.  I crawled out of the river, and I knew I was supposed to cross the first Bridge I saw, but a squirrel ran in front of me, and I began to give chase.  I couldn't believe how I felt. Then I was next to the squirrel.  I didn't want to kill it; I wanted to play with the little tree rat. We went through the fields and meadows, laughing all the way.  Then the squirrel told me I had to cross, and I did, further down the river, and made my way here."

I had never known a dog who got lost on his way to the Bridge, but that is okay.  Passing over can be very stressful.  I gave Ruby the oath (I have to keep justifying my salary, I have four homes, and the taxes are killing me), and then she toasted us with the margarita.  "These things are tasty," she said. "I was only allowed a sip on the mortal side. Okay, I'm sleepy now."

I know, when she awakens, Ruby will devote her entire angelhood to relieving her mom's pain.  For tonight, she must be comforted knowing her baby is home waiting for her, with the light on, and she will see her in her dreams.

Monday, October 18, 2021

Monday Question

If you could dress up for Halloween as something that reflected personality what would it be?

River:  I would be grumpy cat



Sunday, October 17, 2021

A Desperate Foley Hires Bounty the Dog Hunter


You would think that there were no disputes between angels at the Bridge, but sadly there are.  Usually, one soul will ask another for a favor, and in payment, choose a service that the requestor can do for them.  Problems occur when one of the parties does not believe the contract was upheld. That is when litigants come to me:  Judge Foley Monster.

     Last month I had a tough case.  Morey, a male poodle, had a malfunction in his favorite body.  His nails kept growing.  He went to Lovey's Salon, and she agreed to do his claws until he went to Happily Ever After, and in payment, Morey would bring Lovey one fresh fish each week.    Lovey did a fantastic job with Morey's nails, but the fish was boney with very little meat on it.  Lovey was dissatisfied and filed her briefs with me.

    I summoned them to my courtroom.  Lovey, a Shih Tzu, came in perfectly groomed.  Morey limped down the aisle, with his back end held up by a platform connected to wheels, which aided his mobility.  "Sorry, your honor.," he said.  "I have trouble walking since I got a bad nail job."  Immediately I smelled a rat.  It was under my judge's desk.  Bailiff Pocket scared it off.

    Morey began to present his case.  He showed me his nails, and they were ragged, then swore that this was how Lovey left his nails.    

    Lovey was incensed and swore that Morey had done it to himself by being a nail licker.  The crowd howled in shock.  Lovey said she could prove it.  She called her witness, a rabbit named Hazel, who hopped up on the stand.

    The rabbit stated that Morey comes to his field, stops, and gnaws on his nails.   He had even filmed it on his I Paw.  The evidence was irrefutable.  I ruled for Lovey and ordered Morey to pay her with fish.

    I thought that would be the end of it, but Lovey came into my courtroom a week later and stated that she had never got the fish from Morey.  He was the first dog ever to refuse one of my orders.  I would have to find someone to bring him back into court.

    That is when I met Bounty the Dog Hunter.  Other judges have used him to help them find pups who did not adhere to the judge's orders.  Bounty told me that he would locate Morey, bring him back, and make sure he never ignores a court order again.

    Bounty said that he had never lost a subject.  He smelled the chair where Morey had sat, said he had the scent, then came back 20 minutes later with Lovey.  "You smelled the wrong chair!"  I yelled.   Bounty apologized to Lovey and told Bounty to smell the right chair.

    He did and left for a week.  One day Morey returned and said that he was sorry that he had ignored the court order.  He realized it was wrong and brought Lovey a beautiful fish.  It seemed like the matter was done when Bounty arrived with a strange dog and said he had found the wanted dog.  "Morey standing right next to you," I told him.

    He looked at Morey and told him he was under arrest.  I stopped Bounty and ordered him to leave my office, and I would no longer need his services.  He grumbled out the door.


    I think Morey, a former street dog, will be a first-rate angel with a bit of work.    


    There is no hope for Bounty.

Friday, October 15, 2021

The Yorkie Leading the Yorkie


Pocket has been getting up early and going somewhere for the last couple of weeks.  When I ask her where she has been, she says just for a walk.  I didn't believe that for a second.  She was having fun without me, and I could not stand it.  I had to follow her.

I knew as soon as I got outside that I was not as prepared as Pocket. I had chosen to wear my eight-year-old body, which was comfortable but carries a few extra pounds. Pocket picked her puppy body and lengthened the distance between us, causing me to do the most dreadful activity:  Running.  

Pocket came to a mud puddle with a round log over it. Because of her diminutive size, she was able to scurry across. I had to move more carefully, and when I came to a slick spot in the middle, I slid off into the mud covering my body.

I stood and tried to clean myself off, although nothing would cleanse my humiliation. I followed Pocket's path for a minute and saw her smelling a tree trunk. Were these directions to whatever fun place she was going? When she scampered forward, I walked ahead to smell the tree. It said to follow the light.  I looked up, took a few steps towards the sun, and fell down a gopher hole.

Darn the dreaded luck; I began to claw my way to the top when I felt the teeth of an angry gopher sinking into my tail. He let go long enough to call me a hole invader. I used that opportunity to pull myself out. I looked back and saw a chunk of my tail was missing.

At that point, a wise angel would have gone home, But I have always been too curious for my good. I picked up Pocket's scent and saw her burrowing under some thick brambles.  I waited for her to clear the thorns then followed.   They dug into my skin and the burrs stuck to my skin.  I got one on the bottom of my paw, which made every step painful.   I considered giving up but heard Pocket barking happily.
Now I had her.

I burst through the woods into the clearing where I expected to find her.   Instead,  a surfeit of skunks confronted me. Before I could speak, they hit me with multiple blasts of skunk spray.

I gave up and began to walk home covered in mud, thorns, burrs, and skunk spray. I.was limping, missing part of my tail, and unrecognizable. Those who did notice me provided a wide berth. They were less able to tolerate my odor than I was.

I arrived home to find Pocket blithely sitting on the picnic table licking her paw. I asked where she had been. "You should know," she said sagely. "You have been following me."

I tried to feign ignorance. "The truth is written all over your face," she said," or at least your fur. You fell in the mud chasing me over a log, fell into a gopher hole trying to sniff my tree, got the cuts from the brambles I climbed under, and my skunk friends sprayed you."

"How did you know?" I asked anxiously.

"Because I led you there," she said.  "I wanted to teach you a lesson about sticking your nose where it doesn't belong.  How did it go?"

I was furious and vowed my revenge, but deep down, I was proud of her.

I had taught her well.

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Tango and the Great Pumpkin by Pocket Dog


I Pocket Dog am taking over the reporting duties from my sister, Foley, who is judging a pumpkin contest at Doggyspace on the Bridge, where we like to keep our weather concurrent with the seasons our parents are experiencing.  It is autumn for many of us, which means cooler weather, shorter days, and an obsession with pumpkins, all capped with the gourd growing contest.  

The morning of the competition, I was surprised to see a frantic Tango knocking on my door. I had been inspecting the pumpkin gardens and knew that Tango had, by far, the best crop.   But now, it was apparent something was wrong.  

I asked Tango what was wrong. He said that someone had stolen his prized pumpkin from the patch.  He had come to Foley for help, but any interference from the judge could cause Tango to be disqualified from the contest.  This was a job for Pocket, Girl Detective.

I brought Tango into my office and asked her when was the last time he saw the missing pumpkin.

"Last night, I went to check on it, and it was still growing in the garden."

"I see, and can you describe it?"

Tango looked at me curiously. "It's big, round, and orange."  I wrote that down.  "Wouldn't it be better if we were looking for it instead of asking questions?"

"According to the big book of detective tactics, I can find out more through questions than searching," I explained.  "Did it have any reasons to leave?  Was it an unhappy pumpkin?"  I asked.  

"It was a great pumpkin," Tango said. "Are you sure Foley isn't here?" Tango asked, looking around the house.

"She's busy ironing her robe," I said, then stood.  "I think we will begin looking in donut shops."

"Oh my gosh," Tango said, frightened. "You don't mean?"

"Yes, I am afraid your pumpkin may have become an ingredient for spice latte,"  I told the trembling Tango.  "If so, we might be able to save some of it."

We hurried out of the house and went to Bisket's biscuit shop.  Our friend was brewing a spiced latte as we entered.  In my big book of detective tactics, it said to confront a subject immediately.  I accused Bisket of stealing Tango's pumpkin and, offended here, threw a pot of coffee at me.  When I realized it was French Vanilla, I moved on.  

We checked more donut shops, a tad less aggressively, but still did not locate the great gourd.  When we left the last establishment, I saw a flyer on the lamppost for the Grand Pumpkin Ball.   It would be starting in a half-hour.  I told Tango we were going there, and if my hunch were correct, we would find his pumpkin.  

We waited by the entrance as dogs passed us in their Halloween best.  A group was looking down the street and began to ooh and ah.  Then a Tango's great pumpkin, on wheels, stopped, and Lily climbed out with Hattie.  "Hey, that's my prize pumpkin!" Tango exclaimed, running towards it.

"I found it in a patch," Hattie said.  "I didn't know it belonged to anyone."  

"I was supposed to enter it into the fair today.  Now that it is a carriage, I can't."

Lily touched his paw and told him she was sorry, but how would he lie going to go the ball with two of the most beautiful dogs at the Bridge?  It was an offer he could not refuse.  He took Hattie and Lilly by the legs and happily walked into the dance.

I think Tango had a much better time than he would have at the pumpkin contest.  

And Pocket Dog Girl Detective had solved another case.

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Unloved and Alone Moxie Takes Matters Into Her Own Paws


Dear Sweet Mommy:  Humans always think that they are the ones who pick out their pets, but as you know, between dream visits, prayers, and old-fashioned persuasion, we choose you.  Sometimes, when we don't have access to dreams or a way to get to your subconscious, we have to hunt ourselves down.

One of those dogs is a Yorkie/Shiz Tzu from Spain named Moxie.  Before he picked his new parents, he needed permission to leave his old ones.

Dogs take an oath to look after their families for life, but people also take wedding vows, which they often break, sometimes before the end of the reception.  Moxie had picked out a quiet man who lived in the country as his dad.  It was a wise choice, but after two years, the man's heartbeats ran out, and the man's brother, who viewed dogs as workers, and gave Moxie the job of clearing rats from the barn.  It was not a life Moxie enjoyed.  

Moxie sent a prayer asking that he be allowed to leave the man, who did not care for him, and there was no bond between them.   Never before had a dog asked to divorce his parents.  It was sacrilege.  But, I still wanted to hear the case, so I had it assigned to my courtroom.

Moxie gave a brilliant summation of how he only came by his current keeper by luck, and he had taken no oath to serve him.  Because of this, he should be set free to find parents who would appreciate him and treat him properly.

The Powers That Be's attorney, a  pompous Great Dane, could only debate that thousands of dogs would want the same if I allowed Moxie to be free. It was not an argument I found persuasive, but I also didn't want to make a ruling that separated people from dogs.  

I took a nap, then made my decision.  Moxie was not bound to his keeper.  There is no need for a dog to stay in a neglectful situation.  But, once Moxie is free, he will be on his own to find a new family.  Moxie agreed, and the case was done.  Of course, I could not let it go.  

The day he ran off from the barn, I floated down to see him. He was gleefully walking down the street.  I asked him what the plan was. "I will know my people when I see them," he said confidently.  "Then I will introduce myself, and we will become a family."

Before telling him that I didn't think the plan, he yelled, "There they are!"  A white Volvo with a man and a woman had driven past.  You could barely see them through the window, but Moxie had decided they would be fine parents.  I sadly watched him running up the road barking.  The car was getting further away, as was Moxie's hope of quickly finding a family.

Suddenly, it slowed down, and to my amazement, backed up.  The woman got out of the car, and brazen Moxie jumped right in her arms.  She was carried for a few minutes while they tried to find an owner, but of course, they couldn't. They put Moxie in the car, and they drove away.

I went into Moxie's dreams that night.  He said that his new family had tried to find their owner and fell in love with him in the process.  They decided to keep him.   Now Moxie was resting easy because he had picked out his forever parents and found his home.

Moxie has opened up a new way for dogs to escape abusive homes and find the right parents.  She changed the game for all of us.  I am just glad I could help.  

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Monday, October 11, 2021

Monday Question


Do you watch your parents eat?

Do your parents watch you wat?

River's Answer:  Yes on both counts

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Teaching Bullies a Lesson


I hate bullies of all sizes and species.  They are often cruel.  They tend to look for the weakest souls and hurt them.  As a Yorkie, bullies mistook me for being weak, but any dog who crossed my path learned differently.  For human children, dispatching a bully is more challenging than a hardy snarl and snap.

Larry was a sweet little boy.  He loved stories about wizards and dreamed of being one himself.  He spent his afternoons in his room, performing spells.  At recess, Larry and his friends would practice wizardry.  Their activity caught the attention of bullies named Andre and Davis.  Larry's crew wasn't bothering anyone, but Andre and Davis were feeling a particular way and decided to hurt the group of wizards.  Their victims were sitting in a circle, casting fake spells, from a book Larry's grandmother had given him.  Upon seeing the bullies, everyone scattered except for Larry.  Davis lifted him from behind, and Andre punched Larry in the belly, sending him to the ground.  "We will show you what we think about your magic tricks," Andre said.  He picked up the Book of Spells, given to Larry by his grandmother, and ripped it to shreds.  

The poor boy went home and cried to his mother that the bullies had picked on him, hit him in the stomach, and ripped up his book.  His mother said she would call the principal to ensure the administration punished the boys, and his dad told him he would teach him to fight.  Neither of those solutions pleased Larry.  Feeling misunderstood, he retired to his room, where he poured his heart out to his dog Homer.  The pup knew neither the punishment nor a fight would end the bullying.  Homer had a better idea.  

That night Homer prayed to the angels for help.  I was assigned the case and met Homer in his dreams.  I was anxious to teach the bullies a lesson., so I hatched a plan.  I entered Larry's dreams.  The boy believed in magic enough to listen to my idea and implemented it the following day.

Larry stood before the school at lunchtime and said he would cast a spell at the end of the day and asked for volunteers.  Predictably, Davis and Andre said they wanted to help, savoring the idea of humiliating Larry in front of everyone.  

 Eager to embarrass Larry, Davis and Andre arrived at a groundkeeper's shack at the appointed time.  A group of students soon joined them.  Finally, Larry walked into the shed, wearing a pointed hat and cape.  The kids laughed at and mocked him.  He ignored them, just as Homer instructed, confidently stood in front of his classmates, and asked the bullies to join him.

Meanwhile, unknown to anyone but Larry, we angels, were conjuring spells of our own.  People report supernatural occurrences so often it seems like an everyday occurrence, but it takes a tremendous amount of concentration and will from the angels for them to occur.  We dogs were ready. Most importantly, we had been drinking.

Larry called the evil duo to the front of the room.  He had them stand with their backs to the audience.  Larry held up two papers and said they contained the most frightening information ever read by humans.  The boys confidently said they weren't afraid.  He handed them the notes; they read them,  smirked, and turned around.  When the audience saw them, they roared with laughter.

The witnesses did not know everything that happened to create the illusion, which is necessary for magic.   First, Larry bought some paper that would melt if it came in contact with human skin.  Larry used gloves when he wrote, "Don't tell what this note says, or you will be cursed," and the papers did crumble and disappeared after the boys read them, but that was only a tiny part of the trick.

Pocket, a dreaming Homer, and I used all our power and energy to pee through the dimensions and covered the boys' pants, so the audience would think they peed their pants when they turned around.   When the boys realized why the crowd was laughing, they insisted they hadn't peed themselves, but that is precisely what a pant's pisser would say.  

Nothing cures a bully more than pissing their pants in public. Convinced that the urine appeared because of Larry's spell, they didn't try to retaliate, afraid of what the little wizard would conjurer next.  Their bullying days were over.  They became Larry and his friends' protectors.  

Of course, we will never speak of what happened.  A magician like Larry never reveals his secrets. 

Friday, October 8, 2021

Kismet Comes to the Bridge and Reunites Two Famiies


 I, Pocket Dog, am taking over the writing from Foley Monster, who was out late last night drinking Foleytinis and is sleeping off the effects. Thankfully, no pups were waiting to take the angel oath in our district. I like days when the population here at Doggyspace doesn't grow, but I got a message from my cat friend Paddy who said a kitty I knew was crossing over. As the Doggyspace ambassador to the cats, I thought it was my duty to be there to greet the newest cat angel.

Paddy greeted me after I made the trek between the two lands. I got there minutes before the crossing over. That is when I saw my social media friend Kismet, who belonged to Momma Cynthia, crossing the Bridge with her head high.

Kismet is a beautiful siamese. It reminded me of when I met Gizmo. She was my parents' siamese in the 90s and put them off of cats for decades. Gizmo was an attack cat who liked to hide in corners, jump on his unsuspecting victims, or leap at them from her perch on a bathroom closet shelf.

When Kismet crossed the Bridge, all the pain and illness that sent the kitty to us dissipated, and she was young. Whole again, Kismet was greeted by all the pets her Mom had lost during her life, a contingent of Siamese cat representatives, and most importantly, her aunt. The latter preceded her to the Bridge and would give her a temporary forever home until she was reunited with her Mom.

All Bridge crossings are sad, but those that involve tool souls reuniting bring joy with the sadness. I was going to leave when I recognized one of the Siamese who had greeted Kismet. It was Gizmo,

I called her name. She stopped, and looked at me with her deep blue eyes, and released a tiny hiss. I ignored her act of aggression and ran down the hill to greet her. "Yes," Gizmo said. "You are the sister of that Foley, who replaced me."

I explained that Foley didn't replace her; she was just next and openly wondered if Gizmo was the one to chose Foley to help rebuild our Mom's heart: "A Yorkie?" she said dismissively. "I don't think so. I would sooner send her a pig to live with than a dog."

"Oh, pigs are cute," I said, seemingly missing the point again. "Why don't you come home with me," I said.

"I have no home," Gizmo said. "I am the wind; you can't contain the wind. Like me, it blows."

"Well, I know Blake would love to see you. And the rest of us dogs would too."

"That's the thing. They are dogs. No self-respecting cat would sit down with a bunch of dogs for dinner."

"Wel, as the Doggyspace ambassador to kitties, formally invite you to our house. I am sure Blake would make anything to want to eat."

"You can't bring the wind home with you," Gizmo said, taking a step away, and then she stopped. "Unless there is going to be fish."

I told her I was sure Blake could make some. That convinced her to accompany me home. When we entered, Blake gave her a big kiss and saw a place for her. Finding a subject we could agree upon was hard, but then I asked everyone to say their favorite memory of our Mom, and soon the stories were flowing, and we ate like a family.

Gizmo stayed until the moon was high in the sky. We wanted her to stay, but she reminded us she was the wind and had to go but would return. Once she was gone, Foley said: "I don't know if she is the wind, but she sure does pass a lot of wind."

I must say t thank you to Kismet. Her passing, while said, reunited her with her aunt and us with our kitty sister.

Sometimes bad things can make good things happen

Thursday, October 7, 2021

I Was Teenage Praying Mantis by Pocket Dog

Dear Sweet Mommy: I, sweet little Pocket, have taken over the writing duty today because Foley is sleeping off our grand adventure with the golden eggs. It gives me a chance to state how much I liked hanging out with you on Monday in my praying mantis body. It felt like iI was a real dog again. 

When I told Foley that I was visiting you as a praying mantis, she told me not to do it because praying mantis bodies are bulky and challenging to manage.   But, I have been an angel for more than a month and felt up ready.

The issue with a praying mantis body is that they aren't airborne, which means I had to find a flying form, then trade it for the praying mantis, with a layover at your neighbor's house.  I used a bee.  I have earned a good reputation with them, and I like the buzzing.  I flew to where Maude, the praying mantis, was hanging to a leaf, hidden by the plants towering over him.  I had visited him in his dreams and arranged the switch.  He had never been able to experience a flower as a bee did.  I think it was a sex thing, but I didn't want to hear about it with my virgin angel ears.

Melvin made me promise I would take good care of the body.  Praying mantis are built to blend in, which helps them avoid being attacked by predators but hinders them when navigating clumsy humans and their massive feet.

I told him I would treat it as my own, then we switched, we left me momentarily dizzy, and we agreed to meet back on the leaf, and exchange bodies, in an hour.

My first few steps as a praying mantis were complex.  I am used to having short legs, and a praying mantis walks on stilts.  You and Daddy were on the other side of the house so that I reached the patio uninterrupted.  I was glad River was locked inside. I did not want her to eat me.

Maude told me the ground was the worst place to be.  I decided to climb the grill.  It was an exhausting trek, but I made it.  I climbed on the shelf and waited for you to sit.  Thankfully, because of your bad back, it didn't take long.

You sat next to me and looked so pretty. You immediately realized it was me.  I wanted you to scratch my head, but chances were good you would crush my skull.  Daddy took a break and recognized me too.  Then the two of you fell into conversation, and I laid in the sun, turning my head as you each spoke and slowly falling asleep, just as I had before I went to Sleep-Away-Camp.

When you stood, I realized my hour was nearly up, and getting across then patio, onto the grass, and into the leaves was going to be hard, especially when I was on the lawn, and that darn mower was chopping grass and insect heads.  Thankfully, Daddy gave me a ride on a trowel, brought me to the leaves, and slid me onto a leaf where Maude was waiting.  She had a marvelous time humping the butterfly bush, was exhausted and wanted to climb under a rock and rest.

When I got home, I told Foley how to sit with you, and boy was she jealous.  Who would have thought I would be giving Foley angel lessons?

And please look out for Maude.  She's a good bug, and I never know when I will need a new body. 

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Beat This Caption


The baby?  Don't ask me.  It must have gone out for cigarettes or something.

Monday, October 4, 2021

Sunday, October 3, 2021

Foley Informs Her Mom About River and the Loose Puppy Dog

River is a very relaxed dog as long as you are within her site line. Unlike Pocket, who is praying for some perceived problem to go away daily, I rarely get requests from River, which is why I flew down to see her in her dreams when she reported that she was in dire straits. 


I asked her what was wrong and she said that there was a vicious dog loose in our village and it attacked her while she was on a walk. I was incensed that some dog violated my sister. Also, I was worried because loose dogs usually lose battles with cars and end up at the Bridge. 


I got the perpetrator's address and went to see the violator. When I arrived at their house, I saw a tiny three-pound black and white fluff ball sleeping in a dog bed. I asked if he was the only dog there, and he replied yes. Could this little runt be the pop scaring my brave sister?


"My sister Riversong walks by your house, and she claims that a loose dog attacks her every time she does," I claimed. 


"Attack her?" the little dog, who I would learn was named Zuzu, said. "No. I will run up to her to play. I roll on my back, pop up and lick her face then I run behind her for a butt sniff. It is grand fun."


Honestly, it sounded like typical dog behavior to me. I did not know what River was persnickety about, but that's her nature. I decided to take a different approach with this puppy. 


"It is dangerous to be running loose," I said." You could get hit by a car carried off by a hawk, or attacked by a coyote. You should tell your dad he needs to leash you.


"The cars here don't move very fast," Zuzu told me. "I can dodge them. As for any predatory animal, I am not afraid. God gave me a healthy immune system. My dad says being leashed puts a stranglehold on our Freedoms, and he must oppose all leash mandates as our fore dogs did."


I had learned there is no arguing with souls who believe that someone is curbing their freedoms. I tried the convince Zuzu's father through dreams, but his subconscious filled them with elevator music and Majorie Taylor Green cosplay. There was no changing the behavior in this house, so I went back to my sister to change her's. 


I told her that I was unsuccessful in getting her walk interrupted, but the provocateur was so tiny that River could scare him with a nip or vicious growl. "You never had an issue with a Pocket, and this pup is even smaller."


"That isn't the point," River said. "That Puppy is interfering with my freedom to walk. I should be able to go down the street without being stopped, licked, or butt sniffed. I refuse to be objectified by someone just for living my life."


River wasn't wrong, but there are scores of ignorant people in the world who interrupt the lives of people just trying to get through the day in the name of freedom. "All you can do is keep your head up and ignore them," I advised my sister. 


I knew I might as well have told her to fly to the moon. A Griffon is a stubborn breed, none so than River. So I implore you as her parent to make sure she doesn't walk down that street.


Meanwhile, I will teach Zuzu not to run in the street because that will cause an accident, and I will have to swear him in as an angel. I will have to watch over him and keep trying to teach him the right way as his parent continually pushes him in the wrong one. 


Someday, I hope, the Zuzu is like every other dog here stuck inside and listening to River bark insults at them while she walks down the street the way our founding fathers wanted. 


Friday, October 1, 2021

A Trip to the Dark Side Final Chapter



 Willie, Chelsea Smoochy, and I entered the dark side to rescue Spencer, a friend of Willie's incorrectly assigned there.  The dark angels immediately captured us, but a quick-thinking Ashton saved us, and in turn, we saved all the dogs sent there, including Spencer.  As we tried to leave, squirrels of unusual size stopped us.  The only way out was through them.  We charged.

Usually, I would bet on dogs in any fight with squirrels, but only the pups in my raiding party were battle-ready.  Their captors had neglected the rescued angels for their entire time at the Bridge, and, while their spirit was willing, they did not have the stamina to battle giant, armor-wearing tree rats.

Also, the squirrels were angry and armed.  I never thought about how we treated them on the mortal side, but all that chasing and occasional killing made these angels angry.  Now that they were the larger species, they were intent on revenge.

Chelsea and I, being the smallest in our group, had the most success.  The squirrels' armor did not reach their paws, and we were able to sneak under their armor and bite their ankles, but it only did minimal damage, and the tree rats quickly kicked us away.  

I sent the rescue dogs to the rear, and Smoochy, Chelsea, Willie, and I huddled together, desperately trying to form a plan.  Unfortunately,  when one of us conceived a plan, two others would point out its flaws.  The situation became direr when the squirrels began hurling their nuts at us.  We retreated further into the darkness, our only hope being the squirrels would tire, and we could slip [past.

Truthfully, I didn't think we would ever escape, but I had forgotten the founding rule of the Bridge:  Good always triumphs over evil, even in the darkest circumstances.  

I had left a note for Pocket explaining where we were going.  When we did not return, Pocket gathered the Tanner Brigade, a highly-trained branch of the Doggyspace army, and they bravely marched to the dark side and entered where few dogs had gone before.

Pocket is not a fighter; she is too gentle for that.  But, the Powers that Be blessed her with cleverness.  Having heard rumors about the Squirrels of Unusual Size and knowing even the Brigade would have difficulty challenging them, she bought bags of pecans along the way.  Once in the darkness, she commanded the Brigade to create a distraction by howling near the entrance.  Like moths to a flame, the squirrels rushed to the sound.  That allowed Pocket, along with Lily, Paco, and Cassie, to slip by the squirrels with the pecans.  When they reached the cells, they dumped the nuts on the floor and whistled.  The Brigade retreated, and the squirrels smelled the food.  They hurried towards it, and once inside the cell, Cassie slammed the doors shut, locking the squirrels inside with nothing but their nuts.

With their security force stuck in cells licking their nuts, the dark angels dared not challenge the Brigade as we made our escape accompanied by the dogs we saved from the darkness.

When we were back in the light, we reunited Spencer with his family and found homes for all the unfairly jailed dogs. Finally, Pocket and I settled into bed to sleep. However, Pocket excitedly and repeatedly recounted the day's events until I finally broke down and not only said I was proud of her but thanked her.

The Ruby Rose Report: The Crate Door

  My parents had a cookout to go to on the Fourth of July, one that I was neither invited to nor barred from. My participation was fully at...