Alex Terrgi here. I took my human to the park today. It’s not a dog park, where dogs get to run around wherever they want. It’s a human park, which means us dogs have to wear leashes. Still, it has good smells and also other dogs. Some of the dogs are friendly, some are barkers, some are smellers, and some seem to have murder in their hearts.
A Labrador named Dublin was there, and he made a big fuss because his human wouldn’t let him jump in the pond after a duck. A big fuzzy dog named Enormo was at the park too, but we didn’t get too close to her, which was fine with me. Even though she was on the other side of the pond from us, I could still smell her, and she smelled pretty angry. Also her slobber trailed behind her for miles (I swear) and I could feel the earth shake when she walked. I’m pretty sure she would have smashed me if we got too close.
The dog I liked best was a Beagle named Betsy. She reminded me of my dear departed fur-sister Goody, and I have always liked beagles. They are the best smellers around. Betsy alerted me to the smell of rabbits, who evidently frequent the park at night.
Nothing smells like rabbits except rabbits. I like rabbits. Even better than squeaky toys. Maybe next time we go to the Human Park the rabbits will show themselves in the day time and I won’t have to wear a leash, and then … well, I can dream, can’t I?
Alex Terrgi here. I like to cuddle with my human. She is soft and warm and good-smelling. Most of all, she is mine. I’m pretty sure she feels the same way about me. She tells me how much she loves me all the time. One of the things she says a lot is, “Alex, you are one of the best dogs of all time.” This is nice to hear, but sometimes she feels it necessary to add, “You are in the top three, Alex. You, and Goody, and Zipper are the best three dogs the world has ever seen.”
Hmm. I sort of understand about my fur-sister Goody, who died a few years ago. Goody was a great dog, no doubt about it. Best smeller I ever met. So I guess I can share the honor of Best Dog Ever with Goody.
But this Zipper dude, I don’t know. I never met him. He was my human’s dog when she was a little girl, from when she was 5 until she was 13. She told me all about him. He was a wiener dog. You know, short legs, long body, floppy ears. She has written lots of nice stuff about him and about how much she loved him. She even has a picture of Zipper in a frame on her writing desk.
But here’s the deal – this was a Very Long Time Ago. Zipper is dead. There is no way I can win Best Dog Ever when I have to compete with beautiful memories of a dead wiener dog.
I’m here NOW!
Alex Terrgi here. My human tells me today is the right day for thinking about those you loved who are no longer here. So I am spending today thinking about my beloved sister Goody Beagle. She lived with my human before I came to live here, and after that we lived together — until Goody died. It was a sad day. Dogs don’t cry like humans do, but that doesn’t mean we don’t grieve.
I grieved for Goody and even today, three human years later, I miss her smell and the feel of her body next to mine on the couch. I miss the fun we had together in the back yard, burying our toys and then digging them up again. I miss ganging up on The Cat, one of the most annoying creatures living on the earth. I miss howling together at the squirrel in our fir tree who chittered at us in response. I miss going for walks and letting Goody teach me the secrets of smells that only beagles know.
In honor of my sister Goody Beagle, today I will smell everything twice.
Goody Beagle here, back from the dead. Not possible, you say? But guess what – when someone ghostwrites your book, you will never die!
In one way, I died in 2013, three years ago now. But in another way, the real and only way, I am still here because we can read my words and see my photographs in my really good book that you should probably buy, if you haven’t already.
Here is an excerpt from my book. If you like it, you can buy the whole thing on Amazon
One of the first things I do at the Dog Park is put down my own smell for the day. Then after I leave, my friends – and my enemies – will know that Goody Beagle was here! Every day, I meet up with my dog friends, acquaintances, and sometimes enemies at the Dog Park. I play with my friends. I ignore my acquaintances. If any enemies come around, I show my teeth and hide under the bench my human sits on. You can learn a lot at the Dog Park about how to get along. That’s why humans need to read this book.
Alex Terrgi here. My human is working on a new book. Actually she is working on more than one book, but in my opinion the only one she should be working on is the one she is writing for me. She wrote a book for my sister Goody Beagle, so where is MY book? I’m not jealous or anything, because I loved Goody and I wish she didn’t die, but I’m important too, right?
If you read what I write on this blog, you know I’m just as good a writer as Goody too. Goody was kind of stuck on one subject – smell. (She was a Beagle, you know.) I like smell too, and have written about it as well, but I like other stuff too. I like playing ball. (Goody didn’t.) I like to hang out with humans of all kinds. (Goody was picky.) I like kissing and licking. I like running. I like … well, you will just have to wait until my human finishes the darn book. You could bug her about it, if you want. I could use the help.
Alex Terrgi here. We had a party in our new house last weekend. My human has strange ideas about parties. This one was about celebrating dead people. And even dead dogs. I thought parties were supposed to be fun. How is that a fun thing?
The humans brought pictures of people (and dogs, like I said) and put them on a table and then they told stories about them, and some of them cried while they were talking. I kinda wanted to cry too, when my human talked about my now-gone sister, Goody Beagle. (She was one of the dog picture on the table.)
But I’m not made for crying, I’m made for laughing. The only thing good about the party was that one of the partygoers brought her new puppy along. The puppy doesn’t know all the human rules yet, so she pooped in the corner and peed on the kitchen floor and then she chewed on someone’s purse. I mean, I almost died laughing.
If I had, they could put a picture of me on the table next year.
Alex Terrgi here. I have a bed of my very own. It’s where I take my daytime naps. (At night I sleep on the bed my human and I share.) My daytime bed is warm and fits my body perfectly, no matter what position I curl in. But the thing I like best about it is its smell. It smells like me. (This is not surprising because it is covered with my hairs.) The bed belonged to my sister Goody Beagle before me, and even three years after her death some of her special beagly smell still surrounds me and reminds me of how much I loved her. When The Cat was alive she sometimes stole my bed, so it smells like her too, and even though it made me mad when she stole my bed, I kind of like being reminded of The Cat, especially because now she’s no longer here to make me mad. My bed also smells like the bits of food that drop off my beard now and then.
Mostly my bed smells like home. It smells like love. I hope you love your bed too. It makes a big difference to your outlook on life.
Alex Terrgi here. My human is fond of telling me that I am the best dog in the world – but then she always adds “who is alive today.” And then she mentions my sister Goody Beagle, who I agree was a fantastic dog, and another dog I never met, Zipper. Both Goody and Zipper are dead, at least their bodies are. But they still seem to be alive in my human’s memory.
Zipper was my human’s dog when she was a little girl, and he must have been some dog because she still remembers a lot about him and it was a LONG time since she was a little girl. I’ve seen pictures of Zipper. His last name was Dachshund, which means he had a looong body and short – very short – legs. Kinda funny looking dog, if you ask me.
But hey, looks aren’t everything. If even half the stories my human tells about Zipper’s courage and love are true, he probably was as good as Goody and me. I am glad to be part of my human’s Holy Trinity of Dogs: Saint Zipper, Saint Goody, and Saint Alex.
Alex Terrgi here. It was just about this time 2 years ago that my friend Goody Beagle died. Goody “wrote” a lot of good blog posts while she was here. Here is one of the last things she wrote – and it’s about me. I hope I have lived up to her expectations.
Goody Beagle here. I am trying to train my so-called brother, Alex Terrgi, to blog about important stuff, like smells and food and love, but it is uphill work. For one thing, Alex gets distracted easily and can only seem to tell the human one tiny thought at a time, like “Ball! Let’s play ball!” and he repeats it over and over until she throws the ball for him. I mean, what’s she supposed to do with that?
But I have to admit that Alex does a good job when it comes to love. He knows how to love. I remember when The Grandpa, who was our human’s father, was dying. That was before Alex came to live with us, when he still lived at The Grandpa’s house. The Grandpa spent the last two weeks of his life in his bed, because he was too weak to get up. So Alex spent those two weeks in bed too, lying next to The Grandpa with his head on The Grandpa’s shoulder or thigh, or just curled up next to him, always touching. The only time Alex left The Grandpa’s side was when he had to go outside to pee or poop, or to go gulp down his dinner as fast as he could so he didn’t leave The Grandpa for long.
Alex knows how to comfort someone who is dying, like The Grandpa – and me. These days he lies on the couch next to me, with his warm body touching mine. He may be an annoying pest at times, but this is okay because he not only knows the meaning of life, he acts on it. Yes, Alex knows how to Do Love.
I know that when I leave, I will leave our human in Good Paws.
Alex Terrgi here. Finally, my human read me one of her haiku that was not about cats. It wasn’t about dogs either, but at least I didn’t have to listen to another cat haiku. There’s only so much I can stand. Today she read me one about birds. It went like this:
soft dawn and sharp peeps
the chickadees are awake
strutting their small stuff
Birds do strut, you know. I’ve never seen a bird who didn’t think it was something special and want to show off. Birds think they are smarter than dogs, maybe even smarter than humans. They think that right up until the time a dog sneaks up on them while they’re strutting around – and rips their heads right off their feathered butts. As my human says (to The Cat, not to me), “Arrogance is stupid.”
The other day when we went to visit my human’s daughter, I was surprised to find out there was someone new living there. For some reason my human’s daughter had acquired a chicken. The chicken is penned up in their back yard, which is visible from the sliding glass door in the kitchen. That chicken is a show off like all birds and it spent the entire time we were there strutting its stuff and fluffing its feathers while I watched. My human said I was watching “Chicken TV” and she laughed at me, which made me hate the chicken even more.
Humans and chickens have a lot to answer for.