We live in a very dog-friendly neighborhood. I can’t go for a walk without seeing another dog. I love this! I like dogs and I like people who like dogs. However, it really peeves me off when I am walking Noke and then I see someone stumbling along head absolutely glued downwards to their phone. I start wondering to myself why they have a dog in the first place if they don’t want to actually spend real time with it. Sure, maybe it’s an emergency and they really have to contact that person then and there. But usually–let’s face it–it isn’t. I bet your walks aren’t more than an hour long, maybe not more than 30 minutes either. You can spare that time to really be with them.
As soon as I see someone on their phone walking their dog, I immediately take Noke to the other side of the street and avoid that person. They have no sense of what their dog is doing, feeling, or intending because they are in some Facebook post. I can’t trust the human to handle their dog correctly, and thus I don’t want Noke anywhere near them. It’s not just the right thing to do, but you can also benefit from just being with your dog:
Our little puppy is now one year old. It’s hard to believe that she’s already a year old and how time flies by. At the same time, I feel like she’s been in our life forever.This morning I was looking at old posts about Noke from when she was a puppy like How to Survive Your First Week Having a Puppy and Puppies: Advocates for a Meditative Lifestyle. She was so darn stinkin’ cute! She still is, but now she’s grown into a sleek-looking coyote. I’ve definitely been reflective today about how far we’ve come together and how we’ve grown. I am thrilled that she is a year old!!
Raising a puppy is tough work, but I can say now that it is truly worth it. No matter what, Noke can cheer up my day, give me plenty of kisses and tell me that she loves me. She’s my constant companion and I love her to bits. It wasn’t always easy–getting her out of her nipping habit, dealing with sicknesses, and more, but in the end, like I said, it’s absolutely worth it. Dog is man’s best friend, truly.
So today she gets to enjoy Santa Monica weather and I might even get her something from a local dog bakery just for fun. It’s her day, but more so a milestone of us being a team and getting through the terrible teens! Now it’s not like she’s going to be a perfect angel now that she’s hit a year old–far from that. However, it’s a big step into her first stages of adulthood. Thank you for being here with us for the journey of her growing up. And as always, stay hungry and fit!
In the Western world, black cats are for some reason considered to be bad omens. They are an omen of death and misfortune. They are also considered to be some serious bad luck. There’s all kind of folklore that puts down black cats And on days like Friday the 13th (today) and Halloween, superstitious behavior goes through the roof. We even get emails from the Humane Society reminding people to be aware of their black cats are on these days because people can be cruel and act on superstition. Which is absolutely beyond me, but still. I’m here to be the black cat’s champion!
I mean, come on, have you ever seen pictures of Nymeria? She’s adorable. It’s all fun and games to avoid walking under ladders and such on Friday the 13th, but there’s no sense of being scared of or being mean to black cats. After all, in Japan (and in other places in the East), black cats are good luck.
Continuing with this discrimination, at animal shelters, black cats will be severely underpriced compared to the rest of the cats there. Why? Because people are less likely to adopt a black cat. This seemed crazy to me! That kind of thought never even crossed my mind! Nymeria was way cheaper than Misty because she was an ordinary black cat. Insane!
So I’m here to put an end to that stupid superstition and petition for black cat’s rights! Alright, getting a little ahead of myself, but you know what I mean. Don’t shy away from certain cats because the color of their fur or their eyes. Everyone has different personalities and a black cat could be the one for you. In fact, Nymeria (our black cat) is our most precious of the babies. She has such a unique personality compared to most other cats. She’s cuddly, loving, needy, and mischievious. It’s really really difficult not to love her.
My rant is over. Enjoy your Friday the 13th and pick up a black cat! Hey, it may even give you some good luck. 😉 And as always…stay hungry and fit!
When we first adopted Noke, the Humane Society of Boulder Valley believed she was a German Shepherd-Akita mix and would possibly grow to be 70-80 lbs. We could see it at first. She had some Japanese Spitz features including a somewhat curled tail and that unique forehead but her paws were tiny! We thought she must be a Shepherd-Shiba Inu mix but we had no idea what she really was until we did a DNA test. So we did and here are the amazing and somewhat unexpected results!
None of Noke’s parents or grandparents were pure-breeds. She did however have great-grandparents that were and amazingly enough the purest traces in her DNA were Collie and Great Pyrenees. Her great-grandparents also showed large amounts of Basenji, Siberian Husky, and German Shepherd. These, however, were at a lower confidence and might have been mixed already at this point. (They can only track back to great-grandparents and have a harder time determining the calculations in mixed breeds.)
Before I mention, what other breeds were recognized by the genetic history as the most likely other pieces of her mixed breed heritage I will say that Noke is almost certainly most visually and personally a Basenji-German Shepherd mix. At this point, those seem to be by far the most dominate components of her look and attitude. We get asked regularly if she is a pure-bred German Shepherd and obviously the HSBV thought she was an Akita. Akitas and Basenjis do have quite a bit in common.
So, by looking into that chart I posted you will see there are a lot of spaces that are taken up by a dog tag that says mixed breed. The three mixed breed dogs that were her great-grandparents could have contained the following breeds in order of most likely to least: White Swiss Shepherd, Chinese Shar-Pei, Affenpinscher, Glen of Imaal Terrier, and Clumber Spaniel. This makes sense. Noke obviously has a lot of Shepherd in her, whether German of White Swiss. We can also see some Shar-Pei in her although the other breeds seem very unlikely.
Some of her breeds are not very large while one is relatively huge. The DNA test estimates that she will weigh 50-77 pounds as an adult. They classify her as a Basenji, Collie, German Shepherd, Siberian Husky, Great Pyrenees mix. It doesn’t quite roll off the tongue. We will keep you updated on her growth and development. I hope she grows to be the full 77 pounds or more because I love big dogs! Will she continue to look like a German Shepherd and act like a Basneji or will things change? We will let you know!
And as a note, these DNA tests are inexpensive and humane. They are very simple and give an owner important knowledge as to how to train, treat, feed and raise their dogs. It is an awesome option so let us know if you are interested in getting a test for your dog. It is never too late to know! And as always…stay hungry and fit!
They might not know it, but puppies are definitely advocates for a meditative and mindful lifestyle! I’m being reminded of this more and more as we raise Noke. I never would’ve thought of it at first, but she’s slowly having an effect on me! Don’t believe me? Read on to see how puppies are such strong advocates of a mindful lifestyle:
1. They help you to be more understanding. To raise a good puppy, you need to be able to get in its head and understand why it does the things it does. It isn’t ripping up your shoes because it wants to be evil. You have to step off your pedestal and kneel down to their level of understanding. They’re just a baby and they need all the love and understanding you can give.
2. Their main emotion is love. Wouldn’t it be nice if humans were like this? Dogs and puppies love love love. We are their entire life. That positive energy is contagious. It opens up your mind and your life. Let it in!
3. They get you up and at ’em. Instead of pressing snooze five times and then racing to get ready for work, you are up early with the puppy. I’ve enjoyed many a golden sunset since having Noke and I enjoy that peace walking around a quiet neighborhood. Although I already was a proponent of morning walks, I wouldn’t always make it. But now, I am out with the sunrise every morning, enjoying the quiet side of life.
4. They discourage technology. I’m not sure of any puppy who encourages you to use your cell phone. Their cute faces and insatiable desire for attention discourages your constant use of electronics. When you were spending an hour on the computer, you are now playing ball with your pup or teaching her how to lie down. And especially during walks, I find it important to keep your phone in your pocket (even if you’re tracking the walk), and to be alert. This just allows you to disconnect and breathe.
5. They encourage you to be with nature. This connects to #4. Even if you live in an urban environment, that walk can really help with a mindful lifestyle. Instead of plugged into a million things at once, you are simply walking in your environment and taking it all in. It’s a wonderful way to reflect and just be with your surroundings. It’s a beautiful feeling.
6. They lead you to reflect upon yourself. Do you curse yourself the moment after you’ve lost your temper with your puppy? And those sad puppy eyes don’t help either. Their eyes, drawn with a curiosity and wonder, can really help open up your reflection. Maybe you realize you didn’t have that steller patience you thought you did. Or perhaps you don’t have that strict hold on your temper. It could even lead to reflections about what you really want in life. These puppies are powerful, I’m telling you! And they don’t even try.
Do you believe me now?! Getting a puppy is a great introduction to a mindful and meditative lifestyle if you haven’t already begun that path. Although Noke is a handful, she makes me appreciative each day. Get a puppy to stay hungry and fit!
BONUS KITTY PIC