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


Sports Injury Part 2


In which Violet Greer talks to animals.

Now that the blog tour frenzy is over and Harriet has relinquished control of the blog, I thought I would follow up on Rowdy and his injury. I had the opportunity to check in with him on day five or six after his surgery. Things were not going very well. The family asked me to talk to him again and explain that he had to stop licking his incision.

Some dogs are pickers and they just can’t leave a cut or itchy spot alone. Rowdy is one of these. As you can see, when I met with him, he was wearing a collar designed to stop him from reaching his surgical site.

“I don’t know what has gotten into these people,” Rowdy said to me. “First, they take me to that crazy groomer, then they carry me around the house for days (which I really don’t mind, because there’s something wrong with my leg), then they buy me a new ridiculous collar. I like the old collar. This one is too big.”

I tried to explain that the collar was there to stop him from causing an infection, but Rowdy is not the most intuitive dog I have ever met. He kept insisting that his family had lost its collective mind and that there was something wrong with his leg that they were ignoring.

He perked up a bit when I asked him about his new toy.


“I love presents, especially squeaky ones! Maybe you could tell them that there’s something wrong with my leg.”

Lord of the Flies


In which Violet Greer talks to animals.

Violet Greer again sharing another session with Rowdy. It is fly season where Rowdy lives. That means the family is on Red Alert. There is a lot of discussion about flies, and how they might get in the house, and how one might have been spotted, and whether Rowdy has seen it.

Like many small dogs, Rowdy has an over-inflated sense of his own power in the world. He spends his time protecting the perimeter of his territory with the kind of zeal that most dogs reserve for steak. He fears nothing and will take on all threats to his home and family – except for flies.

His family will notice a sudden hush has descended. No low growls of warning to people who are still hundreds of yards away in the public park that Rowdy can see from his perch on the back of the couch, no excessive barking when a dog is spotted. Rowdy will not answer when he is called and will not be lured out with promises of treats. The family has no choice but to begin checking behind the toilets.

Once found, Rowdy will come out if a fresh fly corpse is presented. He is not fooled by a long-dead fly. I may need to work with the family member who thinks it would be a good idea to keep a jar of dead flies around just to get the dog out from behind the tank. Maybe Diana, my niece’s Wiccan friend has that sort of thing, but I imagine it’s unsanitary, not to mention gross.


Once out, Rowdy ventures carefully into the rest of the house scanning the ceiling like a bomb spotter from WWII. The moment he decides it is “all clear” he resumes his normal activities and refuses to acknowledge he was ever behind the toilet. I will have to spend some more time with him to get to the bottom of this…