Sunday, June 21, 2015

SUMMERTIME.....And the Rolling is Easy!

I might have mentioned that my sister Lucy
Has a rolling fetish?
Give her the tiniest patch of grass, 
And she flops down in a crazy back dance.
Eyes wild, mouth grinning, tail wagging.....
She's the picture of innocent pleasure!
Lucy's especially gleeful to roll 
after we've been to the Spa.
(For some reason, 
Mom's not thrilled about that.)
Mostly, I just watch her and sigh......
Oh, the Young and Immature!
But, it's Summer.....The pavement's HOT,
And even a middle aged Guy like Me needs Frolic occasionally.
Oh, What the Heck!
I'm going in.....
SOMEBODY needs to watch that Girl !!

Mom's seems way happier if you pick a CLEAN patch of grass.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Reduced Rations.......

Ever since my Birthday,
I've been living the High Life.....
Eating every kibble in my bowl,
Drinking double time,
Grazing the neighborhood street buffet,
Snapping up each wayward bite.
It's been a Party, a Celebration!
And I've enjoyed every Scrap!!
But lately, my collar's been feeling a touch snug.
My tummy has a couple extra rolls.
And Mom has been calling me "Fluffy".
Just because these days I'm a little 
Broad Around the Belly,
Chunky, Husky, Filled Out, "GORDO"?
Does that mean a Guy's FAT?!?!?
Guess you could say,
I've been in Denial.....
I check out those sleek Vizslas next door,
Bounding about with limitless spring and energy,
and I realize..... I've let myself Go.
Sure, as a Westie, 
I've probably got a different Metabolism.
I'm built Stocky.
I'm never going to be 2' 2" 
Long legged and Svelte.
But, that's no excuse to be Obese!
The Vet told Mom that my 27 lb girth HAS to GO.
The mark for my breed is 24 or less.
OK, that's a healthy 13% drop.
Good for my heart.
Plus, I can fit into my cute little t-shirts again.
Suddenly, my bowl is filled with carrots, apple and GREEN BEANS.....
Where is the yummy Salmon kibble, the Rice, the SWEET POTATO?
Where are those fabulous Paul Newman Organic Snax??
Mom says it's just for a couple weeks.....
Sounds like Eternity to Me.

When you're Living it up and Sucking it all down,
Remember..... Down the road..... There's a Price to Pay!
Unless, of course, you're GOOD with GORDO.

BTW, Your Sister is probably glad to chow down your beans.
Always a Silver Lining......

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Top of the Heap.....

I had a Birthday recently......
And I partied with mixed feelings.
You know, I'm at the Age
Where it's not that exciting anymore.
Mom still works her birthday magic.....
Hats (YIKES!)
Cake (Turkey Loaf with purple frosting!)
Presents (NEW virgin Lambchop!)
Extra Lap Time (My favorite part!)
But the truth is.....I'm getting OLD!!
This was # 9 (Sixtyish for you Humans).
Where have the years gone??
Yes, yes.....9 is the new 5.
I'm in good shape, eat organic and floss.....
Roll in the grass and frolic like a pup!
But Still.....I'm Old.
With Mixed Feelings.
Mom's saying I'm Top of the Pyramid now.
It has a ring to it.
But Hey, could we maybe just say.....
I'm Top Dog?

Each stage brings it's Gifts.
Other than a great Turkey Loaf,
What will this year bring?
Think Positive.....
Believe it will be Amazing.
And so it will.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Launch Pad......

Springtime has come to 
Our corner of the World.....
Birds sing, grass is greener, 
Days are warmer, windows open,
AND, dog walkers are suddenly Everywhere!
Lucy and I hit the streets ourselves, 
At least once a day.
Got to stay in shape!
But we're inside dogs.....
(We wish it were different)
No fenced yard for Us!
SO, most of our daily surveillance 
Happens from the back of the couch.
Such a great perch.....
And, VERY little gets past our Attention!
Humans, Canines, Birds, Bikes, Postal.....
Arrf, Aarrfff, AAARRFFFFF!
It's a talent all right, 
To be snoozing peacefully,
While patrolling the entire neighborhood
With ear cocked and one eye open!
At the slightest noise, 
Lucy and I JET off the couch and down the hall,
Giving virtual chase to any interloper lurking outside.
Bark, Baarrkkk, BaArRkK, BARK, BAAARRRKKK!
Whew! That was a close one!!!
Almost missed them......
Yup, Vigilance is KEY!
There is a constant parade of dogs and their humans past our home,
And somebody's got to Administrate.....
We Westies gladly take up the challenge!
My most favorite time to Watchdog is during the Evening News.
Mom is settled into her chair, dinner's cooking, all those great Doggie
TV commercials are streaming by, and I am cozy on Mom's lap.
Suddenly, in a millisecond, there's a squeak outside and I have 
LAUNCHED off Mom's lap, claws out, teeth bared, 
and headed straight arrow for the front door.
Lucy is yapping close behind.
Mom is hollering for us to STOP!!!!!!
And she's rubbing her leg like something hurts.
Hmmm......Is she OK?
I come running back and give her thigh a quick sniff.
Do I smell a bruise?
I climb up to her lap, my favorite Launch Pad, and settle back to nap.
Just another day on the job.....

You know,
Come to think of it......
I haven't seen Mom wear short shorts
in a long, long time.

Keep an eye on strangers,
But be gentle on the ones you love.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Forever Friends......

Lucy and I have many Friends,
From fellow Westie Duffy
Down the street,
To siblings Winston and Petey,
Who winter in Scottsdale
But are here all Summer to street play.
Many we see from afar,
Walking with their Folks 
Past our yard.
But some we actually get 
Nose to Nose with!
Rumor has it there's even a couple 
New Kids on the Block.....
Cavalier Puppies.
Young Kids.
We're not allowed to see them yet!
There are Block friends, Park friends,
even Dogbook Friends.....
We love them all, in different ways,
Though it's pretty much Agape Love
(Because you know we're neutered)
Except for one Kid.....Guinness.
Lucy's True Blue Boyfriend
and who was a hunky Husky
With the longest eyelashes
You've ever seen on a Canine.
Lucy was crazy for Him,
and flirted whenever she'd pass.
Geeez.....Young Love.
I say WAS because Mom says Guinness
Passed over the Rainbow Bridge last week.
Lucy doesn't know yet.
She keeps looking for him.
Not sure how to break THAT news.....
Then, there are the Bearded Collie Twins.
Daily, we'd all race down their fence line,
In dizzy bursts of Joyful speed.
Mom says they moved away.....Wow.
Having Friends is a tough thing sometimes.
You share block walk mornings,
You sniff butt in that special way,
You bark greetings and pee on favorite rocks.
You look forward to seeing them.
Then, one day, you lose them.....
Never to be seen again.
I guess that's how Life is.
The risk of loving someone.....
Good thing I have Lucy.
No love lost there.

Never stop loving your Friends.
They are the closest thing to Heaven
We've got in this Dog Eat Dog World.
Let them know you care.....
Because one day, sadly, they might not be there.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Time Out......

Sometimes, the World puts its hand up and says.....STOP.
Stop the running in circles.
Stop the intensity.
Stop the obsessing.
Stop the madness......
Stop...................And Get Quiet.
Listen to your breath.
Go deep inside.
Feel the Forever.
Float for awhile.....
And when You surface, 
Ask Yourself,
What do you REALLY want?
What choices will make your Heart sing?

I guess we could All use a Reboot 
somewhere along the way.
(Except for Mom.....
She's pretty much Perfect)

There's a Time and Place to get your Doggie Lama on......
Could This be Yours?

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Short Stuff ......

Mick Wagger here ......
Canine Clint Eastwood, 
Lover of Open Spaces,
Champion of the little Guy,
Keeper of the Peace.
On my Block (and in my mind)
I am a Force to be reckoned with.....
Not much escapes my laser focus.
Our Neighborhood is safe with Me!
(OK, maybe some days I might try too hard,
But those sneaky Squirrels deserve it)
Just one little secret......
At exactly 12" tall,
I AM the Little Guy.
Not exactly Goliath, or even David.
Truly the Napoleon of my Species.....
The kitchen counter is invisible territory,
I need help to bridge the bed,
and I can't EVER see over the snowbank.
Fences? Forget it......
Look for the knothole.
But HEY, Height isn't everything, Right?!
I've got a Keen Eye and a Shepherd's Bark.
My Intellect works overtime and
My Nose could win the National Bloodhound Award!
I'm a creative guy, who likes a challenge.....
I'm reasonably handsome.
And my Heart?
Well, Mom says I've got the Heart of a Champion.
Some days, 
It would be awfully handy to have an extra foot or two.....
Looks are great, but in my next life
I want I want those long Great Dane legs!

Use the Gifts God gave you.....
Make lemonade from lemons.....
And, if you're a short guy like me,
practice your High Jump skills.

Sunday, March 1, 2015


I've always felt I was pretty good at Boundaries.....
You know, how far the World (and your Sister) can push you.
Touch my bowl, and I'm gonna snarl.
Bark at me, and I'll likely bark back.
Put one paw on my front yard, and there's Hell to pay.
And don't even get me started on the UPS Truck!
I'm a Terrier, after all.
That's how an Alpha Guy lives.....
But lately, I've had some pangs of regret.
(Chalk it up to my Catholic upbringing.....That Guilt thing.)
Maybe there's room for a kinder, gentler Mick on this Planet?
I could share my stuff......
I could make friends with our neighbors.....
I could drop a bone at Big Brown's feet.
Really, I could.....
But, would I respect my Terrier Self in the morning?
Actually, I've always been a little suspicious of those 
Mutts that don't know where to draw the line.
Who wag their Tail for just anyone.....
But that's just Me.
An Alpha needs to know where he 
Stands in the World.
Often, an Alpha stands alone.

Good fences make good neighbors.....
Thanks to Mr. Frost.
But, We All know.....
The smaller the dog, 
the quicker under the Fence!
They're made to be crossed.

Sunday, February 22, 2015


Last Fall, 
Something really scary 
and awful happened.....
It's only now that I can bear to remember.
It was a beautiful, 
golden Colorado morning
And Mom and I were nearly home 
from our morning jaunt.
Flushed, happy, endorphins pumping,
We rounded the corner towards home.....
Suddenly, I heard a deep snarl, 
saw a streak of Shepherd fur, 
and found myself pinned to the ground 
In a nano second.
Mom was kicking and hollering above me, 
But the choke hold continued,  
I couldn't breath
And the light was dimming.....
Jaws were locked on my neck
And my whole body was shaken 
Like the Dog Toy I'd become.......
My World felt like the inside of a
Maytag washing machine.
The shouting and snarling continued.
My life was flashing before me.
Goodbye Mom.
I love You.
It's been A Wonderful Life.
Give my toys to Lucy.
And THEN,  I was released.....
The 130 lbs of Fury was dragged off me,
Still twisting, snarling, snapping.
Mom was breathing hard,
(Or hardly breathing).
I jumped up, 
Glad to have 4 paws on the ground again!
I headed down the block 
as fast as my short Terrier legs could take me,
Towards home.
Once inside, I took stock.....
Paws check.
Tail, check.
Ears, OK.
There was a necklace of pain
Wrapping my throat.
Blood was now dripping on my paw.
I was one sorry Westie!
Mom's on the phone......
"Bring him right in.....", they say.
So, to add insult to injury that day,
I'm headed to the VET.
(It's common knowledge how I feel about THAT)
Several shots later, my wounds are salved
And I'm back on the couch.
Wondering if I'll ever be able to walk down
That block again.
But, I'm counting my Blessings.
It could have been so much worse.......
I just hate to think of Lucy messing with my toys!

I could say, NEVER trust a German Shepherd.
Their Bite is definitely Worse than their Bark.
But, that would be contrary to my democratic soul.
Not every Shepherd is a biter.
Each must be judged on their own merit.
Still, it makes sense to keep your Westie eyes open.....
Perhaps pick a different block?

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Who Do You Love.....?

Yesterday was Valentine's Day,
Day of hugs, love, and plenty of slobber Kisses!
All week, Lucy and I have been wearing our 
Heart print Scout Scarves.
(She loves hers.....I feel a little less macho in Pink)
Humans on the street thought we were SO cute!
All the fuss was kind of fun,
(Who doesn't like heart shaped dog cookies??)
But it also got me thinking......
What is Love to ME?
Sure, I love my neighbors, my sister, 
My family, my home.....
The deer I bark for, my favorite pee tree.
I love my couch, my bowl, my new Beef Hunk dinner loaf.
I loved Lamb Chop and a hundred other toys.
But who do I LOVE?
Who do I watch for end of day......?
Who do I follow in tireless circles.....?
Whose eyes do I yearn for.....?
Whose nose is my favorite lick spot?
Who's got my heart, 
and I've got hers?
I'll tell you Who...........MOM!
In a Word,
That's what Love means to Me.

Who you Love is Voodoo Magic.
It just is.

Listen to George Thorogood.
(Minus the Cobra necktie)
Now, Who do YOU Love.....??

Celebrate them every day,
And let them know 
with a Hearty Licking!

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Sun Kissed.....

This week,
I dreamt I was in Paradise.
On a Winter's day,
Front door open
and Sun streaming in
Through security glass,
The entryway can reach
a very balmy 85 degrees.
Mid morning, after my workout
and local wildlife administration,
I so enjoy a little Sun Kissed snooze.
Delightful to let your cares slip away
In a tropical heat wave!
Surf is pounding, parrots calling
Wind ruffles my bleached out whiskers.
I smell satay on a stick
And the Vendors are calling my name.....
Children are laughing, Perros are yipping,
Nothing to do but soak it all in.
Just another day on Paradise Beach.
Maybe it's time for a little chips and salsa.....

Savor the moment Kids.....
Real life is back in a flash,
Your Sister chasing your tail
And UPS at the door.
Paradise can't last,
But your Dreams do.....

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Time to Say Goodbye.....

Last week I realized 
I was going to lose Lamb Chop.
After months of Westie love, 
Her paws were ragged, 
Her face chewed off and 
Her stuffing trailed the house 
like a bad hunter's camp.
She was my one and only Girl,
and while there were always 
multiple toy friends scattered about,
She was the one who meant the most.
Wet from slobbery kissing, 
She now lay pitifully in a pile on the floor.....
Yesterday, Mom stepped in.
"Health Hazard"......She said.
Huh?.....How could that be?
Lamb Chop is the kind of 
Forever Friend 
every Guy dreams of......
Long lashes, sweetest smile, soft and cuddly.
Plus a great personality and a big Heart to boot.
Sure, she didn't say much,
But what guy wants that?
Maybe I got too involved.
Maybe I loved her to death.
But, I wouldn't have it any other way.....
Thank you, LC, for the gift you were.
This morning I woke up, stretched, yawned
and realized Lamb Chop is gone.
Probably in a dust bin somewhere.
It's's really over.
Time for an Andrea Bocelli CD and 
Lots of wound licking.
Parting is such Sweet, Sweet Sorrow.....

Best to have an extra Lamb Chop in the wings.
You never know when this one's bound for the trash.
(Hey Mom, when are we heading back to Wal-Mart?)


Friday, January 23, 2015

White on White......

Snowflakes swirling over my head......
The softest cold under my feet.
Total quiet wraps Me and Mom.....
As we wander down the white out street.
She's in her world, I'm in mine......
Not a word do I hear her speak.
Still, I know her heart and she knows mine.....
Two separate paths destined to meet.
Perhaps we were one in a different life.
Perhaps we shared adventure big and small.
Perhaps there was love as there is today.....
Two Souls roaming Eternally.
I can't know what lies ahead.....
Being only a Dog after all.
But I trust her to lead me 
to greater good.....
Where all is white, 
and time stands still,
And gentle snow will forever fall.


Saturday, January 17, 2015

Bird Watching.....

At the risk of seeming a full blown Geek,
I have to admit that nothing excites Me
Like a morning following our neighborhood Birds!
Just beyond reach,
Two feeders hang over key windows,
And we Kids patrol them like 
Alcatraz  prison guards.
With laser focus, Lucy and I stalk our 
Feathered Friends.....
Robins, Sparrows, Magpies and Chickadees
Ours is a very diverse bunch!
Without a sound we watch, 
'Til every perch is full with busy beaks.
Wings are beating, seed is falling, 
A sacred bird communion!
And just when tension is highest 
And we can stand no more.....
Barrk, Baarrk, BaRRK, BAAARRRK, BARK!
Off they scatter to the trees!!
Lucy and I puff up.....
Once again, we've protected Home and Hearth.
No time for self congratulation though.....
There's more to do.
NOW is prime time to administrate those cheeky Squirrels!

As You Watchdog, beware your own perch.
I've landed in a heap on the floor more than once.....
Sadly, Canines have no Wings.
Imagine the World if We DID!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Loving Lucy.....

I've had a little Sister for 2 years now, and God knows it hasn't been easy.....
When she arrived, scruffy, scared and dragging a tattered toy,
she wasn't the most lovable rescue pup on the Planet.
She demanded attention, snapped loudly, stole my food and toys,
Even drew BLOOD!
And It's common knowledge that I wasn't thrilled.....
Thanks MOM.
But, I was thinking today how much things have changed??
I can't say where or when exactly,
but somehow along the way I stopped Hating her..... 
and started Loving Lucy.
Maybe it began with that first friendly tug of war.
Maybe she waited just a milli second longer to pirate my bowl.
Maybe she stole Lamb Chop, but shared her back a moment later.
Maybe, just maybe, her heart became a bit happier
as she learned to love our family way.....
Her Spirit felt lighter,she became a whole lot cuter, 
and she finally gave us All a break!
One day, I realized I actually looked forward to her coming through the back door.
I teased her..... and she flirted back.
We could eat in the same room, without hiding our food.
And, believe it or not, I actually WANTED to share my pillow with that Girl!
Families come in all shapes, sizes and flavors.....
Lucy may be a quirky Sister, 
But she's MY sister.

Life sure has a funny way of working out.

Faith, Hope and Love......
But the Greatest of These is Love.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Keep Dancing.....

Here we are at the beginning of yet another Year,
and I know I'm getting Older (white chin hairs!)
Though not much Wiser it seems.
Chasing the same squirrels, scarfing the same kibble,
Barking up the same old tree.
And, it makes a Guy wonder, is that all there is?
Is that ALL there is??
If that's all there is my friend, then let's keep Dancing.....?
(Or, in my case, frolicking with Lamb Chop)
And yet, Life is too short not to EXPLORE!
Life is for finding the next Rabbit Den, sneaking Holiday Pumpkin Pie
and chasing the neighbors' cute little Pekingese ALL the way to the Reservoir!!
Yes, Mom will be disappointed in me..... but a Guy's got to LIVE!
2015..... I want to travel the world (or at least cross town), 
Meet new friends and stay out late (even if it's back yard howling)
I want to see, taste and do things I've never done before.......
I want to slide into NEXT year with No Regrets!
Come on Kids.....Are you with me?!?
There's FUN to be had, even if I AM an Old Man!
The Moon is Full, the Call is Wild, and I have some Fox Holes to sniff!

As they say on my Block,
If you're not the lead dog, the scenery never changes.
No problem.....I'm Alpha all the way!
Look out World, Mick Wagger is WAY Out Front!!