Jana Says

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Tag Archive: dogs

It’s the story of a dog named Dobie

Once upon a time, a woman and a man got married. They bought a house and quickly decided that house needed a dog. So they got a dog and named him Barkley (after the dog from Sesame Street and at the woman’s insistence). After a year or so, the woman and the man realized Barkley needed a brother. And they began the process of finding the perfect companion for Barkley.

It wasn’t easy. Barkley, like his mom, is very particular about who he likes and doesn’t take to everyone quickly and approaches all new people with caution and nerves. But there was one puppy, a small, underweight, runny nosed, wheezing puppy, who stole his heart. They took to each other instantly and the woman and the man knew that was the one. And they took him home and named him Dobie. 

Throughout his first year, Dobie grew and grew. His runny nose and ear infections cleared up. He gained weight. He learned to walk on a leash, he learned not to pee in the house, and he graduated from school. He took his rightful place in the woman and man’s bed and when they brought home a human baby, he slept in front of her crib, too. 

It was the beginning of an amazing 11 1/2 years. Because during that time, Dobie gave more love than he ever asked for in return. When the woman had bouts of depression, he still made her smile every day. When the man was stressed from work, he knew how to calm him down. When the girl needed someone to play with or dress up, Dobie obliged. When Barkley needed a headrest or someone to snuggle with, he provided it. Dobie did it all with patience and enthusiasm and smiles.

Loving his people, making them happy, tolerating their idiosyncrasies and endless nicknames for him, didn’t mean he didn’t have his own preferences. He loved food, especially hamburgers and peanut butter and carrots and ice cubes, but he enjoyed every morsel he consumed from kibble to a Starbucks pup cup and everything in between. If it was something he wasn’t supposed to have, all the better! The woman never cooked a meal without him right at her feet, waiting for something to drop, and he really loved licking the dishes in the dishwasher. Nothing made him happier than playing in the snow or a car ride with the wind blowing right on his face or quick swim in his grandparents’ pool. A rousing game of fetch with his stuffed potato was a favorite nighttime activity and dammit if he didn’t let you know when he was ready to start and was done. And no day started without a good scratch behind his ears. 

But what made him special was all the weird things about him. His foot fetish, his need to eat garbage and the girl’s toys, his choice to nap on the floor in corners or against the front door instead of the couch, his utter hatred of the squeakers inside stuffed toys and the precision he used to extract them, his reprimanding of Barkley when Barkley got a little out of control, the way he slept at the woman’s feet, the way he ran in crazy circles around the house, and the way he shook the bed when he snored. 

And what’s impressed most upon the woman and the man and the girl is the way Dobie loved, unconditionally and unfailingly. The feel of his kisses on their face, the heat of his body on their cold feet, the softness of his fur under their hands, the willingness to do what was asked of him, his persistence, his intelligence, and his ability to make everyone he ever met love him instantly. 

Dobie’s life will be remembered for all the things he gave and the love he had. And love and give he did, even at the end. No words can ever accurately and completely describe what an amazing dog he was and how my life is better and blessed because he was in it. I am infinitely changed and irreparably damaged now that he’s gone. All that’s left to do now is live my life in a way that honors him because God knows that’s what he deserves. 

Barkley made me a dog person.

Dobie made me a dog mom. 

And holy shit, did I love being his mom. 

Rest in peace, my sweet boy. I hope you’re running around in the wind and the sun and eating all the things you want and your heart never bothers you again. We miss you here but we know you’re needed there. Say hello to our baby and give him all the kisses he needs.

Until we meet again. 



Dog Days: Meet Barkley and Dobie

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I’ve been meaning to write about my dogs for awhile now  because, if you follow me on Instagram (which you totally should because I am not at all boring), you know that I take my fair share of dog pictures. Usually of my dogs. Maybe a random other one now and then. But usually my guys. 


Because I’m that lady. 

Sure, I have a kid and all but my dogs were my first children and they deserve love and attention, too (plus, I’m 98.3% positive no one will steal my dogs’ pictures and use them for any sort of nefarious reason. Also, I wrote that sentence just to use the word “nefarious”). And they’re adorable!


Okay, so maybe you can’t see their faces but look at the way they’re posed together! How sweet is that? And I assure you, there was no fighting less than 10 minutes after that picture was taken. 

Because my dogs? Never fight. At all. Ever. Not even when one invades the other’s space. They’re perfectly fine with it, especially in the middle of the night when I’m sleeping, and they never wake me up to referee. 

Nope. It’s always the picture of domestic bliss when it comes to my dogs. There’s no food aggression, no jealousy for attention, no 

In all seriousness, though, my guys do get along as well as brothers can get along. Which, incidentally, they are not. Well, they’re brothers because we are their parents but they are not from the same litter. Or parents. Hell, they’re not even the same breed. Barkley is a pure Bichon Frise while Dobie is a Bichon/Poodle mix, which means that Barkley is smaller and Dobie has apricot coloring in his fur instead of all white. Barkley is also older, closing in on 11, while Dobie had his 9th birthday this past January. Which we of course celebrated with special dog treats and new toys.

I told you. I’m that lady.

Now that you know the basics, let’s get to know them a bit more. We’ll start with Dobie since he’s the second child and always goes second. IMG_0559

Dobie is our resident cuddler. He loves nothing more than shoving his body next to you and squishing you into a corner so he can stretch out while still being on you at the same time. He loves to give kisses and if you come to our house with flip flops, you’ve been warned because he has a foot fetish. And while he’s not the brightest dog around, he’s the more obedient one, is a great listener (especially when there’s food in it for him), and is our resident fetch expert. No joke, now that he’s mastered fetch, he will play until he can’t run anymore. He’s also an expert nap taker, extremely friendly towards other dogs, and loves car rides. For Dobie, the longer the car trip, the better. And besides getting joy from car rides, cuddles, and treats, he loves, loves to be outside. Especially in bad weather. We should all experience the pleasure that Dobie derives from playing in the snow. 

Unfortunately, for as sweet and awesome as he is, Dobie is not without his problems. The poor guy has a heart murmur and a mild case of arthritis, as well as an addiction to eating child’s toys. His has eaten everything from crayons to Barbie shoes to Little People figurines to Legos. That’s not all. He will eat anything that falls on the floor (except olives. Go figure), socks, garbage, poop, dead animals that the cat leaves in the backyard…you name it, he has probably tried to eat it. He also incessantly licks the car door. 

But, psychological issues aside, we can’t imagine our lives without him and he’s basically the best dog ever. 

Now let’s talk about Barkley. Who’s just as awesome as Dobie. Only different. IMG_0558

We got Barkley 3 months after we got married. He was my first pet ever (except for two guinea pigs whom he hated and hunted on numerous occasions) and, as a result, will always be special to me. He’s the smarter of our two, loves to run, is an expert jumper (which is how he wound up rupturing his ACL, after trying to chase after his nemesis–the mail truck), does not care about food except for Milkbone Minis, chicken, cheese, and peanut butter, will sit on any pile of laundry in his path (especially if it’s clean because what’s better than sitting on warm, clean laundry?), and goes almost everywhere with his toy football. He’s not much of a kisser or cuddler so when he does kiss or cuddle, it’s a huge deal. He’s also not as friendly as Dobie, preferring to keep to himself and supervise. My favorite thing he does, though, is the Bichon head tilt, which he does mostly when I speak to him and it makes me feel like the most interesting person to ever talk. 

Barkley’s problems are less edible and more mental. He’s completely high strung and has horrible separation anxiety and pees constantly as a result. Sometimes he doesn’t make it outside, which is buckets of fun. He’s a bit of a sizeist, preferring to stick to other small dogs and staying away from bigger ones. And there has never been a dog with a more apropos name because he barks. At. Everything.

Oh, and for those wondering, he’s named for the dog on Sesame Street. This guy:


Sure, I may yell and complain about my dogs at times. But I love them and will do anything possible to care for and protect them. They make my life better, they keep me company when no one else does, are the best nap buddies, and always know the exact right thing to do when I’m sad or angry. 

I can’t imagine my life without them.


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Linking up with Erin for Meet the Canines 

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