Thursday, January 19, 2017

Sally J. Pla & Leo

Who is in the photo at right?

Why, hello. It’s me, Sally J. Pla, debut author of The Someday Birds, with my golden doodle, Leo. He is large. Almost 80 pounds of large. A bit of a jumbo doodle. Let’s call him a Venti.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

Leo jumps heavily onto the foot of my bed every morning. Then he drags me downstairs for coffee, a scoop of kibble, and a wee. Me, I’d rather slide straight from REM sleep right into writing, but it is never to be. So the occasion, here, is our every-morning routine…coffee in the kitchen.

What's brewing?

Bella Donovan roast, ordered online from Blue Bottle, in a Bodum French press, with cream and sugar. Leo always asks to lick the cup. I don’t usually let him.

Any treats for you or Leo on this occasion?

There’s a French café/bakery down the road; on weekends, I’ll head down for a croissant to go. They have a raspberry almond variety that’s darn fine. That, on a Sunday, with The New York Times and the sun streaming in the kitchen, is a pretty optimum coffee-with-canine experience.

How were you and Leo united?

When my son was 10, he campaigned like crazy for second dog. We resisted, until the day he developed acute appendicitis. They wheeled my son into the OR, still pleading, hands clasped, suffering, angelic. “All this would be better if I only had a puppy!” he moaned. What monster would say no to that?

We got Leo soon after. And as the two homebodies of the family, Leo and I… bonded. Deeply. It happened almost from day one – while Leo loves my son, he has always been ‘my’ dog, somehow. I feel closer to him than to many people.

Several years ago, I was bedridden for a month after major surgery. Leo never left the foot of my bed. He never left me. My son had to pull him by the collar to get him to go downstairs to eat. Leo guards my bed every night, and is never more than an arm’s reach away from me at all times. When I leave to run errands, he parks himself by the front door until I get back. I can’t even go to the bathroom without him standing guard. It’s really a little ridiculous. But his loyalty and devotion is heart-melting. I’d do anything for that dog.

How did your dog get his name? Any aliases?

He was carefully and lovingly named by my son.

Does Leo do more to help or hinder your writing?

He helps and hinders. He’s missed plenty of walks because I was too deeply in thrall to a scene, too immersed. He is infinitely patient, slumped nearby, sleeping, awaiting the Magical Sound of the Closing of the Laptop. When he hears it—no matter how softly I close that MacBook—he scrambles up quickly in exasperated anticipation: “Are we finally going to do something now?” he’ll asks me. (Yes, he talks.)

Has Leo inspired the creation of any fictional dogs?

There’s a bit of Leo in the three-legged stray, Tiberius, that Charlie and his brothers rescue in The Someday Birds. And Leo’s goofy side is in Albert Einstein, the world’s least intelligent golden retriever of my second middle-grade novel, John Lockdown is in the Building (HarperCollins 2018). I cannot imagine writing a novel without a dog in it. Dogs rule!

Cat, postman, squirrel...?

Cat-phobia. Squirrel-perplexion. Postal workers incite frenzied love-attacks.

Ball, squeaky-toy, stick...?

He’s a heavy chewer. The only thing that stands up is an elk horn or Galileo Bone, heavy as a rock, and when Leo chews on it, the whole house shakes.

Who is Leo's best pet-pal?

Although Copper, the neighbor’s teacup Yorkie, is fairly well tolerated, Leo’s not a dog’s dog. Leo thinks he’s a person. A timid person. At dog parks, he hides behind my knees like a kid on the first day of preschool.

What is Leo's best quality?

Could it be the intelligence and emotional honesty in his eyes? The warm leathery feel of the inside of his ears? How his floofy feet are the size of dinner plates? Could it be the unconditional mutual love? Seriously, it’s a problem how much I adore this dog.

If Leo could change one thing about Californians, what would it be?

He’d tell them to give homes to more real dogs, not those tiny spoiled yippy purse-toys.

If Leo could answer only one question in English, what would you ask him?

Are you comfortable and happy?

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which Leo could speak, who should voice him?

Some magical meld of Jemaine Clement, Robin Williams, and Greg Kinnear.

What advice would Leo give if asked?

He’d say: “Stop obsessing about the pet hair on your leggings. Concentrate on the good stuff, on treasuring our every moment. A dog’s life is fleeting. Don’t forget to stop and smell the coffee.”

Visit Sally J. Pla's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Valerie & Pippa, Amy, Charlie and James

Who is in the photos at right and below?

I'm Valerie, 25-years-old and living in Belgium, with my four beautiful dogs - Pippa, Amy, Charlie (the white Labrador) & James (the brown Lab). Shortly after we adopted Amy (age 4), my beloved Doberman, Zita, passed away. A few months later, Pippa (3), a Greek stray dog, joined our little family.

In December that year, we decided to become a foster family and welcomed Charlie (3) to our home. Charlie is rescued from a pound in Serbia by a local organization. It didn't take long for him to concur my heart, so we decided to adopt him.

Last, but not least, James entered our lives and made our family complete. He is a purebred Labrador I bought from a befriended breeder.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

My dogs love to play in the yard or go for a run in the park. But when it comes to Coffee with a Canine, Pippa is my partner in crime. Whereas my other dogs don't have enough patience to join me for coffee and some casual shopping, Pippa loves those mommy-and-me moments.

What's brewing?

I love to treat myself to a Starbucks Caramel Machiatto! Yum!

Any treats for you or your dogs on this occasion?

Unfortunately not. My dogs are not allowed to have 'human' food because it's bad for their health. But I always have some delicious dog treats on hand! If I know I'll take a while, I'll bring a chicken wrapped dog bone, to keep her busy.

How did your dogs get their names? Any aliases?

My boyfriend decided on most of the names, haha! I picked 'Amy', because I love The Big Bang Theory and Amy Farrah Fowler is my favorite character! I told her on Instagram, but she hasn't responded yet, haha!

Pippa [photo left] and Charlie were instantly decided, it was just a match. But we couldn't agree on James' name for over a week! He was just 'Puppy' for a while because we couldn't decide! But in the end, it all came together, and I think 'James' is just the perfect name for him.

Do your dogs have a role at Puppy Tales Studio headquarters?

Of course! They are the inspiration behind everything. When it comes to dogs, there is just so much to learn and to talk about. How to properly care for them, recognize signs of illness, wellbeing and mental exercise, puppy training..

Since three of my dogs are adopted, I hope to inspire people to consider adoption before they buy a dog. There are so many dogs in shelters, looking for their forever home and it breaks my heart to know that many of them will spend their life in a shelter. And if people do want a purebred dog, I want them to search for a responsible breeder. Owning a dog is a big responsibility; it's something to think through before you buy or adopt.

L to R: Amy, James, Pippa, and Charlie
Cat, postman, squirrel...?

Cat! Pippa was in the 'cat' section of the pound, so she has some cat-like behavior. But recently, she loves to chase them. Next to hunting down flies in the house, annoying cats is the next best thing!

Ball, squeaky-toy, stick...?

Squeaky-toys all the way for Charlie and James!! Amy is more a stick kind of dog!!

Where is your dogs' favorite outdoor destination?

In Oudenaarde, Belgium, we have 'de Donk'. It's a large recreational area with a lake. My Labradors love to swim, and Pippa and Charlie can run for miles and miles!

What is each dog's best quality?

Pippa's patience, Amy's loyalty, Charlie's clingingess and James' playfulness!

If your dogs could change one thing about about you, what would it be?

I think they would make me quit my job so that we could spend all our time together!

If your dogs could answer only one question in English, what would you ask them?

I would ask them if they would change anything about our daily routine to make them happier.

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which your dogs could speak, who should voice them?

Haha, that's difficult! For James, I would pick Seth MacFarlane (the voice of Brian from Family Guy). I know Pippa is a girl, but she is such an old soul so Morgan Freeman would be amusing! For Amy, I would search for someone with a soft high pitched voice, very girly and gentle. Maybe Paris Hilton? And for Charlie, Kunal Nayyar, Rajesh from The Big Bang Theory. The accent would really suit his foreign background.

What advice would your dogs give if asked?

To spend all your money on treats! It's the best investment possible.

Visit the Puppy Tales Studio website and Facebook page.

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Rebecca Meluch & Jeremiah

Who is in the photo at right?

I'm Rebecca Meluch. I write science fiction as R.M. Meluch. My first novel was Sovereign, a Signet paperback, in 1979. Goddess empress Sheila Gilbert was my editor then and now.

My dog is Jeremiah, a/k/a JDog or JDawg. He's seven years old, born in Ohio. He's Shepherd mutt. (Best not look too hard at his parentage as long as we're living in New York. He's part abominable snow beast.)

We are a blended family, so I must also introduce my husband, Stevan Apter and his little bitty doggies, Muggsy, who is an American Bulldog, and Gigi, a petite little Rottweiler who managed to keep her tail. The boys don't get along, but we never worry about break-ins into this house.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

I'm back in the USA and I got a book release today from DAW. It's the latest incarnation of Jerusalem Fire. We are joyous.

What's brewing?

Coffee. In any guise.

Any treats for you or your dogs on this occasion?

Chicken jerky, stuffed into a Kong to slow them down.

How were you and your dogs united?

Well, Stevan is the virtuous one. Gigi and Muggsy were Stevan's rescues before he and I ever met.

My first dog was a beautiful darling purebred Doberman princess who had every genetic flaw of the breed. She died in my arms. I was devastated. I could not live without a dog. So I bought the sturdiest creature imaginable. Jeremiah filled the bill. And Jeremiah did the match making. Stevan came down to Mexico where we (me and Jeremiah) were living. Stevan got out of the car. JDog was instantly all over him, tail wagging, whole body wagging, licking Stevan's face off. Didn't think I'd ever marry again, but that was the one.

How did your dogs get their names? Any aliases?

Stevan's rescues have the names they were saddled with when he rescued them. My Jeremiah's name came from the Three Dog Night song. You know, Jeremiah was a good dog...

Do your dogs do more to help or hinder your writing?

Well, I put dogs on the space battleship Merrimack. Gotta say they're a help.

Have any actual dogs ever inspired dogs in your fiction?

Yes. Inga is on board the Merrimack. Inga the doberman ate the Sargasson ambassador.

Cat, postman, squirrel...?

Nope.

Ball, squeaky-toy, stick...?

Nope.

Who is each dog's best pet-pal?

Gigi and Muggsy are a set. JDog is my appendage, though he adores Stevan too.

What is each dog's best quality?

Love. Loyalty. Goofiness.

If your dogs could change one thing about you, what would it be?

They would have unlimited treats. (Not happening, guys, not from me anyway. Go ask your father.)

If your dogs could answer only one question in English, what would you ask them?

Tell me if you're in pain.

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which your dogs could speak, who should voice them?

Andre Braugher for JDog.

What advice would your dogs give if asked?

More treats, please.

Visit R.M. Meluch's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Zana Fraillon & Tishkin and Moomin

Who is in the photo at right?

That is me (Zana Fraillon) with my two gorgeous Golden Retrievers, Moomin and Tishkin (Moomin is the one lying quietly and calmly). I write books for kids, so I am lucky enough to spend the day working with my dogs at my feet. Taking them for a walk along the river is also a sure fire way to overcome writer’s block. Tishkin has just turned one, so we are hoping he is just about over his destruction phase (it is a phase, right?), and Moomin is 4. She is far more sensible, although has a thing for carrying shoes around – this has caused many a late morning when at least one of us will have to rummage in the garden for the missing shoe…

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

Coffee is an essential part of my day, and sitting on the front porch is the perfect place to have it. The dogs always join me – both for the morning tea titbits which often find their way into the dogs’ mouths, and for the lovely morning sun that soaks the porch. We have all sorts of wild birds around here (including the rather bossy cockatoos who tear up the wood on our porch when the neighbours have neglected to fill their bird feeder) so the dogs are on lookout for intruders. Of course, they are a little scared of the cockatoos (they are huge birds), so bark from a safe distance.

What's brewing?

A latte is my coffee of choice. We usually use beans from our favourite café – Everyday Coffee in Collingwood – which at the moment is a blend of Colombia La Playa and Colombia Yancanquer.

Any treats for you or Tishkin and Moomin on this occasion?

I did enjoy some lemon syrup cupcakes left over from the kids’ lunchboxes, and shortly after this photo was taken the dogs both enjoyed their daily bone in the back yard. They have recently worked out that they can both enjoy their bones if they stick to separate spots in the garden, which makes for a much more relaxing morning.

How were you and your dogs united?

Moomin was the first Golden Retriever we have ever had. We bought her from a woman who wanted her dog to have just the one litter (and despite us pleading to have more after we bought Moomin, she stuck to her promise). We bought Moomin when our previous two dogs had reached 13 and 12 years of age. Moomin re-energised them both, and made the transition from ‘old dog’ family to ‘young dog’ family as smooth as it can be.

We knew after the success with Moomin that we wanted another Golden Retriever, and searched Golden Retriever Rescue for a long time. Most of the dogs there though were old and ‘needed a quiet life’ or interstate and unable to travel. With a fairly young dog already and three young boys we decided to go for a puppy instead. We found Tishkin through a reputable breeder and have really enjoyed watching him grow up with the kids.

How did your dogs get their names? Any aliases?

Both the dogs are named after book characters. When we first got Moomin, she looked exactly like a Moomintroll – fat, white and fluffy. She also made a noise that sounded a lot like Chewbacca, so for a while we couldn’t decide. In the end we decided that if we called her Chewbacca she would get Chewy for short, which would surely only cement her desire to eat everything. As it is, she gets Moomy and Moom (or Moomin Troll Fraillon when we are being formal) and doesn’t chew a thing.

Tishkin was named after the character Tishkin Silk. This is a book by the wonderful Glenda Millard, and just a beautiful story. We had all read the book and loved it, and Tishkin suited the pup straight away. Funnily enough, he ended up with the same middle name as Moomin, so he gets Tishkin Troll Fraillon, which makes no sense at all.

Do Tishkin and Moomin do more to help or hinder your writing?

They definitely do more to help me write. Dogs are wonderful for bringing people back to the important things in life, and their daily walk is one of the best parts of the day. They have also taken me to explore places I wouldn’t otherwise have ventured to, and these places inevitably end up in my books.

Have your dogs inspired the creation of any fictional dogs?

Not yet – although they have inspired the creation of characters of different species. Undying loyalty and unconditional love are the hallmarks of dogs, as well as their ability to know when something is wrong without you having to say a single thing. They are perceptive and know exactly when to cosy up for a snuggle, or when what is really needed is a good game of fetch (which, by the way, they are both hopeless at. They chase the ball, they pick up the ball, then they drop the ball where they are and wait for me to come and get it. I guess they haven’t cottoned on to the ‘retriever’ part of their gene pool…)

Cat, postman, rabbits...?

Both Tish and Moom love chasing rabbits. I always wonder what would happen if they were fast enough to catch up to one – I suspect they would run away. They do also enjoy chasing cats, but only to play with. They look quite offended when the cat in question takes a swipe. The postman seems largely irrelevant to the dogs, although parcel deliveries which make it to the front door are always met with waggy tails and the hope of a pat.

Ball, squeaky-toy, stick...?

Anything, especially if it is in the water. They both love swimming and taking them to the beach is wonderful. It always makes me wish we could live near enough to a beach that I could take them swimming more regularly. We have a river near us, but the risk of snake bite means we can only swim the dogs there for about 4 months of the year.

Who are Tishkin and Moomin's best pet-pals?

Each other. They love meeting new friends down at the park, but invariably end up charging around with one another, while their bemused new friend looks on.

What is each dog's best quality?

Moomin’s best quality is her calm nature. At some stage I will do some therapy dog work with her, because she is so in tune with people and so calm. I have taken her to the kids’ school where she has been surrounded by 50 excited, yelling 6 year olds, and she just sits in the middle of the circle and lets them pat her.

Tishkin is also wonderful at adjusting his play - he will lie down as soon as a baby arrives at the house, or when he meets a small dog. He is also fiercely intelligent so very easy to train. Of course, this does mean he can get bored if we are out for the day, but who wouldn’t?

If Tishkin and Moomin could change one thing about you, what would it be?

Not having enough time in the day. They are both very chilled dogs, and as I speed around trying to fit everything in, they do look at me wearily. If only life was one big holiday, we could all live as happily as dogs.

If Tishkin and Moomin could answer only one question in English, what would you ask them?

I would ask Tishkin why he always steals the newspaper from the table and the tea towel from the oven door, even though he knows he shouldn’t…and I would ask Moomin what they actually do when we are out. I can tell by the look on her face when we return that they haven’t been sleeping quietly in the sun...

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which Tishkin and Moomin could speak, who should voice them?

Oh that is so hard! My old dog Trapper, I would have said Clarke Peters (Lester Freeman from The Wire) but he is too old for Tishkin’s voice…If we could go back in time, I would choose Wayne Rogers (Trapper from M*A*S*H) for Tishkin, and Carrie Fisher for Moomin (because who wouldn’t choose Princess Leia to be their voice, right?) – although really I can’t imagine them having a voice at all. I have a feeling if they could talk, it would totally change their character. Things are much wiser when you can’t understand them…

What advice would your dogs give if asked?

‘Ladies and Gentlemen take my advice, pull down your pants and slide on the ice…’ (The dogs are both huge M*A*S*H fans as well…)

Follow Zana Fraillon on Twitter.

My Book, The Movie: The Bone Sparrow.

Writers Read: Zana Fraillon.

The Page 69 Test: The Bone Sparrow.


--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, December 4, 2016

A. J. Mayers & Dexter

A.J. and Dexter in the Mirage elevator
Who is in the photo at right?

I'm A. J. Mayers, a film studio marketer by day, and an author/novelist by night - but also day too! My dog is Dexter Whiskers Mayers, but we can call him Dexter or Dex. He's a 5 year old French Bulldog, male.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

We went to Vegas for a Thanksgiving family trip. Dexter got to see his human grandparents and uncles.

What's brewing?

Dexter got to run around the casino - he's not old enough to gamble, but he enjoyed the people watching.

Any treats for you or Dexter on this occasion?

His minty bones so we can keep his breath fresh and clean.

How were you and Dexter united?

I found a breeder in Orange County and emailed him - he agreed to meet me with Dexter and his brother Bruce. I ended up picking Dexter because he had a cute white mark on his forehead that set him apart.

How did your dog get his name? Any aliases?

I was going to name him Tex as I'm from Texas, but then I saw the season 1 DVD of the show Dexter on my desk and thought..Dex...Dexter! I sometimes call him "my little creature."

Does Dexter do more to help or hinder your writing?

He keeps me calm and happy. A nice break from writing to pet and play with him is always welcomed.

Has Dexter inspired the creation of any fictional dogs?

Yes! In my latest novel, Final Boarding, there is a man named Dexter which of course was inspired by my dog's name!

Cat, postman, squirrel...?

Squirrel.

Ball, squeaky-toy, stick...?

Squeaky-toy.

Who is Dexter's best pet-pal?

A pug named Lola.

What is Dexter's best quality?

His temperament.

If Dexter could change one thing about Angelenos, what would it be?

Having the ones that own corporations allow your dog to go to work with your human if that isn't a perk already!

If Dexter could answer only one question in English, what would you ask him?

What do I do to make you most happiest?

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which Dexter could speak, who should voice him?

Steve Carrell! He's great with accents and funny voices.

What advice would Dexter give if asked?

Whenever I leave for work, don't worry, you're on my mind and there's no need to be sad. I have to work to support you!

Visit A .J. Mayers's website and, and follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Check out Dexter on Instagram.

--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, November 27, 2016

M. Ann Vanderlaan & her dogs

Who is in the photo at right?

I'm Ann Vanderlaan, a former oilfield engineer and data management specialist. (My knees are to the left in the photo.) I studied Neurophysiology, Neuropsychology, and Veterinary Systems Physiology in graduate school. The common threads in this crazy patchwork are mathematics and a desire to know how things work in a crowd—takes more than one person to make a mob. I taught in courses in veterinary, medical, and nursing schools before moving on to jobs in the oil patch, advanced software development and data analytics.

The dogs in the photo (left to right) are:

Angel (4+ years at the time), male American Pit Bull Terrier mix; adopted October 2010.
Spike (3+ years), male Dogo Argentino/American bulldog mix; deaf, adopted June 2011.
R Kane (4+ years), male American Bully, adopted late July 2012.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

At the time the photo was taken in September 2012 I had recently added a new dog, Kane, to my pack. Almost all of our coffee moments are learning situations for my dogs. The occasion was a chance to socialize and reinforce behavior in an all-male pack of large dogs, which sometimes rescues are reluctant to consider as suitable homes for adoption or foster dogs.

The goals for this tête-à-tête were non-competitive sharing and “everybody gets a lick”, especially when there’s a stranger around to take pics and stir up the pot.

What's brewing?

The “Coffee with a Canine” moment started out with a nearly empty bottle of Starbucks Frappuccino and progressed to dipping the bottle neck in chicken broth—although Shiner Bock would have worked too. I prefer regular coffee from home-roasted beans (Kenya, Brazil, or Costa Rica) that I grind by hand before brewing or French-pressing.

How were you and your dogs united?

All of my current dogs are rescues. Since this picture was taken, I have adopted or fostered 3 more dogs, one of which recently died. So I currently have five bully breed dogs in my home.

How did your dogs get their names? Any aliases?

At the time I started adopting bully breeds I was first watching the Joss Whedon series Angel. Angel and Spike were perfectly matched to their characters in the series. I ran into difficulty when Kane joined the Thundertail Tribe. The obvious male character names available were Gunn, Lorne, and Lindsey (Pee-Pee demon was never a consideration). Since none of these seemed a good fit for a future therapy dog, I named Kane for the actor Christian Kane who played Lindsey.

All of my dogs except Spike have both call and “Don’t Mess With Me” (DFMW) names. Spike has a single hand sign.

Angel / Angelo (his rescue name).
Kane / R Kane – adopted. (The “R” stands for ‛raising’.)
Diva / Godiva (her rescue name) – adopted May 2014, deceased October 2016
Norma / Norma Jean (her rescue name) – hospice foster since January 2015
Fiona (her rescue name) / Madame –foster to adopt November 2016.

Do your dogs do more to help or hinder your writing?

Always help. Play breaks, walks, and vet visits are very little to pay for what they teach me about behavior and how they manipulate humans. They are quite entertaining and great snugglers if you don’t mind being stepped on by seventy pounds plus.

Have any actual dogs ever inspired dogs in your fiction?

Kane’s ongoing therapy efforts and nosework have informed all of the tracking and therapy-related content in Lone Wolf.

Cat, postman, squirrel...?

The only one of those we like are the UPS and FedEx delivery people who come bearing food boxes from Chewy.com or Petflow.com. Nobody barks when they come on the porch except for Fiona who hasn’t learned the rules yet. Diva hated cats so much she would growl at a cat statue at the vet.

Ball, squeaky-toy, stick...?

Jolly Ball Horse toys and elk antlers to chew—they are big dogs.

Who is each dog's best pet-pal?

Spike and Angel.
Kane and the ladies (Diva, Norma Jean, Fiona).

What is each dog's best quality?

Angel (loyalty), Spike (earnest and honest), Kane (loves to comfort people and adores children), Diva (attitude), Norma Jean (sweet), Fiona (best snuggler, and she doesn’t weigh seventy pounds)

If your dogs could change one thing about Texans, what would it be?

BBQ. Texans barbecue with mesquite and Kane is extremely allergic to mesquite. I can’t even bring leftovers home from a restaurant.

If your dogs could answer only one question in English, what would you ask them?

When we move to the mountains will heavier sweaters be enough?

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which your dogs could speak, who should voice them?

That would be Diva Iron Paw Thundertail. Although she wasn’t with me for long, Diva was the perfect blend of life as we live it, powering through obstacles, voicing her opinion, and running the Tribe. I was only privileged to have Diva in my pack for 2½ years, but she was a true heart dog. She was the only dog I’ve ever had that watched TV. Her favorite show was Vikings—I think it was the screams.

What advice would your dogs give if asked?

“Chill Mom, we got this” as they try to jump fences or chase frogs on the walls of the pond, and “Hurry up and feed us before we expire” if a meal is late.

Visit Ann Vanderlaan's Facebook page, and read more about Lone Wolf: An FBI K-9 Novel by Sara Driscoll (the pen name of Jen J. Danna and Ann Vanderlaan).

--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, November 21, 2016

Bailey Fabricius & Moo

Who is in the photo at right?

That's me, Bailey Fabricius, and next to me is Moo, my 11-month-old Frenchton. Moo was born completely deaf and, while this may seem like a burden, he has been a complete blessing to my life. I am a senior at Oglethorpe University, studying Journalism and English in hopes of becoming a journalist/novelist.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

Every Sunday afternoon, Moo and I stop at Starbucks on our way to the dog park.

What's brewing?

For me: a vanilla soy latte (iced in the summer). For him: a puppucino, of course!

How were you and Moo united?

French Bulldogs are my absolute favorite breed. When I moved into my first one bedroom apartment, I realized I needed a puppy to fill the roommate void! After months of searching for a Frenchie, I came across a Frenchton breeder in Florida who had one puppy left, which was 8 week old Moo!

How did your dog get his name? Any aliases?

Moo is black and white so naturally, he looks like a cow! I call him Moo or Moocow all day long but of course he has no clue what his name is.

Cat, postman, squirrel...?

Cats are his absolute favorite. In fact, he thinks all animals are friends but a hissing and back-raising cat clearly means friend.

Ball, squeaky-toy, stick...?

He loves all three. His favorite type of toy however is a stuffed animal. I think he likes the company it provides while I'm in class.

Who is Moo's best pet-pal?

Moo's best pal is a black Lab/Greyhound mix named Luna. She is owned by my boyfriend's sister so Moo feels a sort of "cousinly" kind of love for her. He's pretty good at holding his own with the large breeds.

What is Moo's best quality?

Moo is very perceptive to moods. Although he can't hear, he always knows what I'm thinking and when it's time to act like a rambunctious puppy (most of the time), and when it's time to chill.

Where is Moo's favorite outdoor destination?

Other than the dog park, Moo loves to visit the barn where my horse Giggles lives. The fresh air and the many acres of land excites Moo like nothing else. He is still amazed by the size of his "large dog friends."

If Moo could change one thing about you, what would it be?

If Moo could change the fact that I ever leave the house without him, which honestly isn't that often, he definitely would. He is so incredibly spoiled and probably treated better than my children if I had any.

If Moo could answer only one question in English, what would you ask him?

Do you like being an only dog-child or would you like a brother or sister?

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which Moo could speak, who should voice him?

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson.

What advice would Moo give if asked?

"Eat poop, it tastes good!"

--Marshal Zeringue