New Year’s Greetings

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In which Violet Greer talks to animals.

2013 was a big year here in Crystal Haven. Clyde’s book, Pall in the Family, hit the shelves and our tourism numbers went through the roof! We are so pleased that people want to spend time with us in our little town. And although I don’t like to be the kind of person who says, “I told you so,” I knew that Clyde’s story would draw new visitors. Who doesn’t like a story of secrets, murder, mayhem, and dogs?

Some of my clients were kind enough to share their holiday spirit. You might remember these two from the Webkinz affair. I still haven’t quite cracked that case…

And here is Astrid, wishing everyone a Happy New Year! She’s thrown the party of the year and must have gotten some help with those hats…

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Stay tuned in the new year for more pet stories, and some follow-up with old friends.

Thanks to Barb and Melissa for sharing their pictures! ~de

Canine Conundrum Part 3

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In which Violet Greer talks to animals.

This is Ollie. He has lawyered up. That’s Jasper whispering in his ear telling him not to talk.

“I have no comment,” Ollie said.

“Stop harassing my client!” Jasper said.

I explained that no one was in trouble and I just wanted to talk to them about what they may have seen.

“That’s an old trick, lady.” Jasper said. “I’ve seen it a hundred times before. First they say they just want to talk and the next thing you know, you’re in the dog house – literally.”

“Yeah, yeah. Remember that time we dug up the garden, Jasper? That did not go well…”

“Shut it, Ollie! She can hear you and you aren’t supposed to say anything.”

I’m pretty sure I have found the culprit, or culprits, at this point. Any dog who needs a lawyer is probably guilty of something. The problem is, I don’t have any proof and I can’t get any of them to tell me what happened. This is a tight-knit pack and I’ll have to be smarter than they are if I want to crack this case.

Right now, I’m thinking about consulting the pendulum…

Who do you think is the Webkinz thief?

Thanks to Melissa B for her photos! ~ de

Sibling Rivalry

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In which Violet Greer talks to animals.

I was asked to meet with Francesca again. You may remember her from this post. You can see from the photo that she was in a serious mood that day.

“I ‘ave asked you to return to my abode in the ‘opes you can ‘elp me. I do not believe in zees ‘pet psychic’ thing you claim. ‘owever, I am despereet.”

I asked her how I could help. (I had been warned that Francesca’s life has changed a bit since the family obtained more dogs – three to be exact.)

“I theenk you are aware of ze way things are around ‘ere. I am zee princess and I ‘ave my family very well organized. Zey buy me clothing and take me everywhere wiz zem. I even assist le daddy at ‘is work – ‘e relies on me so much.”

I urged her to get to the point as I could hear the pack of newcomers barking outside.

“Well, I ‘ave shared my lovely ‘ome wiz ozzer animals, wizzout difficulty.  As you can see ze ‘orse knows who is in charge.”

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But ze new ‘brozzers’ as my family likes to call zem, are ruffians of the worst sort. Just look at zem! Zey are despicable.”

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“Zey like to dig in la mama’s garden, and make such a ‘orrible noise whenever zey see a bird or a squirrel. But worst of all, zey say I am a spoiled princess and will not listen to my commands. Look at what zey did!”

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I mentioned that the new dogs were just puppies, and she certainly would be able to take charge of them once they calm down. And that their antics only serve to show how well behaved she is.

“Per ‘aps you are correct, pet psychic. In fact, I am feeling a bit better. I will put on my new lovely sweater and go outside to begin my training wiz zem. Zey need a lot of work.”

I encouraged her to assert her alpha status as the older, more experienced canine.

“Oui, oui. Zat is true, but mostly I am ze leader because I am still ze favoureet of le daddy. S’il vous plait,  don’t tell my girls – I don’t want zem to become jealous of me.”

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Thanks  to Patricia, Steve, Alexandra, Mackenzie, and Delaney for sharing their photos! ~de

Fashion Sense

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In which Violet Greer talks to animals.

This is Olive, she’s been on the blog before, here. I met with her to follow up on the bone-hiding behavior. She had her own agenda.

“I LOVE this family and my kids. I would do anything for them. I hate school days when they go away ALL DAY LONG. I watch for them the whole time. But sometimes I have to do things I don’t like. Like this.”

I pointed out that lots of dogs wear scarves and sweaters and enjoy it.

“It’s not the clothing I object to, it’s the style. Look at me! Do I look like I can pull off a pink scarf?! I’m really more of a ‘winter’ based on my coloring. Maybe a nice red, or black and white checks. But pink? I’m not a ‘spring’ or ‘summer.’ It just doesn’t feel like it’s ‘me.’

The girl really likes pink, so I put up with it. I wish the boys would share their scarves. They have some lovely jewel-toned options that would complement my coloring and my personality. Maybe you could mention it to them?”

I asked about the bone-hiding behavior.

“Bone? I don’t know what you’re talking about. If they say I’m hiding my bone, it’s not me.”

Thanks to Kali and Troy for their picture! ~de

Uninvited

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In which Violet Greer talks to animals.

Have you ever lived in a neighborhood where there is one kid who comes over all the time? He shows up at your door, asking for snacks, or just wandering in as if he lives there?

Rowdy claims there is a dog like that in his neighborhood. I went to see him for my routine visit after his surgery and bad grooming recovery. The family was shocked that he told me this story. They say every word is true, but can’t believe I heard it from Rowdy. I have to ask myself why they are paying me if they are surprised Rowdy tells me things, but that’s a whole other subject.

Rowdy said, “I was out for my usual walk with my girl. She likes to go around the park and even though there’s something wrong with my leg, I go with her. It seems to make her happy.”

“We were heading back home, when out of nowhere this dog shows up. My girl noticed he wasn’t wearing a collar and she talked to him and petted him. I didn’t care for that and I backed away. My collar came off because my neck is thinner since the grooming. Well, she freaked out and picked me up to take me home. I didn’t really mind because my leg was hurting by then.”

“The other dog asked me if I had had dinner yet and what kind of treats did I get after a walk and he followed us home! When we got there, the alpha human let us in and the other dog just trotted in the door like he owned the place! The humans laughed and called the dog to come back because he was all over the house. Sniffing my toys, checking out my food bowl, stepping on my bed. THEN, he picked up my chewy and came and stood in front of the door. Can you believe it? And THEN, the humans just let him out and walked him back home. They seemed to know where he lived and they let him keep my chewy! It’s an outrage! I had worked for a long time to get it just the way I like it and he comes into MY house and walks out the door with it.”

I could understand Rowdy’s frustration. Dogs are very territorial. We used to have a kid down the street who would just knock on the door, and come in and rummage through the pantry. I asked Rose if maybe his mother didn’t feed him, but I don’t think that was the problem. Some people are just overly familiar, just as some dogs don’t recognize their own or anyone else’s territory.

I told Rowdy I understood his indignation. He said his stomach felt fine, but there’s something wrong with his leg.

Thank you to Ellie for sharing this true story ~de

The Power of Denial

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In which Violet Greer talks to animals.

This is Tanner. We’ve met him before, here. You would think that being caught “red-handed” as they say would guarantee an honest confession. You would be wrong.

Me: What happened to the bag?

Tanner: This bag? I thought they left it for me to play with. Those kids hide all my toys and all I have left is an empty bag.

Me: What happened to the food?

Tanner: Food?

Me: There was food in the bag.

Tanner: No.

Me: You’re saying there was no food in the bag?

Tanner: Food?

Me: Tanner did you eat all the food that was in the bag?

Tanner: Bag?

This started to feel a lot like conversations I have had with my niece, Clyde. It’s a clever technique designed to frustrate me to distraction. I have found the best way to deal with this is to step away and come back to the topic when they least expect it. I will try to get a confession at a later date, maybe after a walk and some treats…

Thanks to Kris and Tom for the photo! ~de

Doom and Groom

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In which Violet Greer talks to animals

You probably won’t believe this, but this is Rowdy. I stopped in to check on him after my last visit when he had to wear a collar and was still concerned that his family didn’t know there was something wrong with his leg.

They wanted me to verify that this was really their dog. I’m joking, they could tell it was him because he hid behind the toilet once when a fly got in the house.

“They took me back to my old groomer, which I thought would be okay. I think maybe something happened there because my family keeps laughing at me and shaking their heads. That usually means I’m doing something they like, or I’m wearing a sweater. I don’t think I’m wearing a sweater because it’s kind of cool in the house these days.”

I explained about the unfortunate visit to the groomer.

“Well, my hair isn’t pulling and making me itch anymore. Also, no thanks to any of you, I think my leg is getting better. It would be nice if they would stop laughing, since you seem to think they’re making fun of my hair.”

I assured him that his hair would grow back soon and that his leg would get better.

“Whatev. Did you bring any treats?”