Saturday, May 11, 2013

RIP, Juno Dog

Such a magnificent and classy dog, Juno left us today. She was with me for fourteen of her fifteen years. I hope I gave her a good life. She was loved by everyone—human & canine—who met her.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Still Here

The big snow of 2013 & me
I stopped writing my blog because I just got too old; and, like Samuel Pepys, my eyesight was getting really bad.
I'm about 15 now. The vet can't believe I'm still alive. He says I have a neurological deficit, but so does everyone.
My life is pretty good now. Macgregor makes me laugh and Saki always moves out of the way to let me walk. What more could a dog want?
This is all I can manage for now.

Best wishes,

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Annual Portrait

Juno, Saki, MacGregor
and the azalea, 2012.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Monday, August 22, 2011

Rebel's Birthday

Happy Birthday, Rebel. Like soft moonlight, perfume of rose, and whispering lilt of song, you live forever in my soul.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Saki's Anniversary

Three years ago, Joan found a cold, scared, very dirty dog in the street and brought him home to get cleaned up and fed. "Just for the weekend," she said.

Saki stretching out on "Chula's" chair, just because it's "Chula's" chair.

Well that dog is still here, and his name has been Saki since Kyla named him that first day. He's a little crazy, but he's got a great big heart and I think it would be a lonely house without him. I guess he's here for a lifetime. Like me.

Best wishes,

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

See Chula Jump

Yup. We had to get a six-foot fence because we don't want to lose crazy Chula. Look, I know she's very happy living here, but that doesn't mean she doesn't want to explore life beyond the yard, beyond the morning walk. But, the girl still doesn't know how to control herself when she sees other dogs, so we want to make sure she's, well, "contained."

However, here she is trying to get "uncontained." Oh Chula, you're very silly. (Shhhh. Don't tell her I said this, but, she's not going anywhere. Shhhhh.)

Jumping Chula: Good thing it's a 6-ft. fence!

Best wishes everyone,

PS: I'm free to go wherever I want, because I don't want to go anywhere anyway.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Winter Blahs

What a winter. We've all been cooped up inside, so really, what's a dog to write about? I mean, you can churn out only so many philosophical tidbits, and then all you want to do is sit in the yard and feel the breeze.
See me out in the snow? I actually love it, but Joan's afraid I'll freeze. 

We're getting a fence—I mean a taller fence—because Chula has decided she's a cat instead of a dog. The girl can jump anything. No running start, no warning. Boing! She's over the four-foot fence in a flash. She's cost so much at this point she might as well be one of those Westminster dogs.
Chula's getting a little chunky: "Winter Speck"

Anyway, excuse me for not being in touch with the world much any more. It's just such a chore to get around. But, hey, I'm old. I can do whatever I want.

Best wishes to all of you,

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Wee Geordie

Happy Birthday, Geordie. Joan hasn't forgotten you.

This is Wee Geordie, but everyone called him Geordie. He was born on December 29, 1968 in a New York City loft. Papa was a Malamute and Mamma was a black Labrador.

When Joan first saw him, he was hiding in a corner, afraid to come out, afraid of the puppies, afraid of light, afraid to be touched. Joan picked him for all those reasons, but also because he had a softness about him that wouldn’t turn into a hard shell or a bite of fear.

He lived for twelve years and saw all sorts of changes in his world, including the arrival of Joan's four babies who never became rivals. He just accepted the babies and watched them grow. And when the babies got big enough to go beyond the yard, they adopted an abandoned puppy that had been dumped in a neighbor’s yard. Geordie didn't get jealous; instead, he got younger and let the puppy—named Scotty—jump all over his head and climb on his back. He tried to play, but he wasn’t sure how. So, he would stand up and bow, stand up and bow, over and over.

When he died, there was great sadness in a small part of the world because, well, it’s always that way when someone gentle is no more. Their leaving ruins the earth's balance between kindness and cruelty; and it’s a sadness indeed that cruelty so often gets the upper hand.

Best wishes, Juno
PS: Charles Scott made the portrait.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Time, Snow, Sleep

I realize that time is passing me by. I'm not so active anymore. Sleep is fun. So is getting Joan up in the middle of the night. So is eating. Gone are the days of traipsing around the park, hopping in the car (now, I tremble and struggle to get up on that seat), and chasing after that cat that used to taunt me.

It's somehow okay. This is what life is supposed to be like. First you tumble and frolic from morning until night; then you get more serious and make a concerted effort to observe and comment on the world; and then you realize that a good sleep and a deep stretch followed by a nice meal are the real stuff of happiness.

Saki and Chula do my running around for me now. I don't mind. And I still love a good snow storm. Ah, yes, the beautiful snow. I still have that. And dreams.

Best wishes, Juno

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Bath Time for Juno and Saki

What's with the baths? Oh, just because I don't pass the human smell test? So today was bath day for me and Saki. While it feels good when it's over, I'm not so sure it's worth the humiliation. Okay, I admit it. I smell pretty. Saki smells pretty. However, world, we are dogs. We're not really supposed to smell pretty.

Here we are drying off after the baths. Oh, for the sweet scent of earth.

On Tuesday I have to go to see Dr. Liguori. Sigh. I have some old-dog problems, and everyone is hoping I'm still going to be around. Not to worry. I'll always be around—in reality, in memory, even in someone's imagination. That's what makes life so interesting.

Joan keeps telling me I'm magnificent. She likes that word. It's way better than cute or beautiful, although I'm not one to turn down a compliment involving those adjectives. Now that I'm all clean, it's time for my nap. Call me when supper is ready.

Hey, why didn't Chula get a bath?????? Look at her, all dry and superior. Hrumph!
Chula on her perch. La-de-da.
Best wishes, Juno

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Shhhhhhhh (I'm sleeping)

Life is getting very slow and sleepy. Shhhhhhh.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Hot Sept. Finally Over

I don't care what you all say about nice warm weather. Eventually, you just get tired of it. Thanks all the same, but I prefer to sit inside. Let the mad dogs of summer, like Saki and Chula, go out in the noon time sun. Anyway, today it is, at last, cool.
Now I can venture forth. Well, not too fast.

Some people think Chula is cured of her problems, but she's not. Maybe this is as good as it gets. She's fine here in the house. She fine in the yard as long as no dogs pass the house. We'll keep her around and hope that someday she'll blossom into a relaxed and happy dog. My goodness, the terrible things humans  do to animals. Yikes. Oh well. At least Chula is safe with us.

She loves her stuffed turtle and the ceramic look-alike dog, but she also has Saki for a best friend.

Best wishes, Juno

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Down at the Pool

Sorry, I'm not in this video. It was just too hot to go out, and stepping in the pool is a great challenge for a girl of my age. But, as you can clearly see, Saki and Chula are cool with it (ha, ha; I made a pun).

Best wishes, Juno

PS: Chula looks really happy, doesn't she?

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Chula's Still Swinging on the Proverbial Learning Curve

Chula's going to a therapy session today; wish her well

She still has issues, but I'm doing the best I can
(and never mind Joan's foot, which you probably didn't notice until I pointed it out to you)

So, it's another beautiful day in uptown W. Babylon. That makes three beautiful days all summer. Chula is on her way to the park for Crazy Dogs Anonymous meeting. We hope it goes well and teaches her that she should never be afraid of dogs—only people are scary.

Anyway, she's a little scared of me. ME! And I don't know why because I'm so damned nice. She's not scared of Saki at all, but sometimes she just prefers to sit on her daybed with her stuffed turtle. Alas. I do what I can.

Best wishes, Juno

Sunday, August 22, 2010


See that? Kids never forget. Happy birthday, Rebel.
Rebel 22 August 1956 - 10 March 1958

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Jason and All That Alpha

Chula & Saki at the lake teaching Joan some alpha moves

So, yesterday, Jason Mickalauskas, the dog genius of Best Paw Forward, came to the house with three dogs—big Ranger the Pit Bull & two little bitty dogs who love to stand in the doggie pool on a hot day. Allegedly, Jason was going to teach Chula how to chill. But, the truth is he was really trying to show Joan how to be alpha.

You wouldn’t believe it. The yard was suddenly filled with dogs—the two little ones hanging out in the doggie pool, Ranger Macho Dog being the boss of the world; tired Saki panting in the shade; rambunctious Bailey trying to steal a ball from Ranger, which isn't the best idea ever; me going in and out of the house, occasionally barking just because I can, and constantly watching this crazy party; and, through it all—well, almost it all—there was Chula acting pretty much like a regular dog.

Jason did refer to me as “the old lady.” At first, Joan took umbrage to this, but I didn't mind at all. After all, there are certain privileges that come with being the old lady in the group. First, I have the right to be grumpy; second, I can bark and complain all I want and everybody leaves me alone about it, saying, "She can't help it; she's old"; third, I get to go inside and rest in the air-conditioning while all the humans have to stay outside with sweat pouring down their back trying to impart alpha-ness on Joan's psyche.

It’s good to be the old lady in the yard (or house).

Anyway, I’ve got to say that Jason is a miracle worker. I mean, to get Chula to chill with a pack of dogs—it's nothing short of wondrous.

Ahhhhhh, air-conditioning.

Best wishes, Juno

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Learning to Play & Chill

This is the day Chula learned to play
I've never known how to play, and I admit it. It seems that Chula has the same problem, but it's way worse because she WANTS to play. Now, Saki. Saki knows instinctively how to play. So, after an hour or so of learning how to get the ball without getting mad and pulling on a pull toy without attacking the world, Chula stood in the pool to cool down and then condescended to have her picture taken with me and Saki.

See? She's getting there. She'll never be chill like me, but she's trying.

Best wishes, Juno

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Too Hot for Words

SAKI: Hey Chula, you want to go out?

CHULA: You're kidding. I'm not going out there. Too hot. I'm staying in the air conditioning.

SAKI: You think Juno would like to go out?

CHULA: What are you, nuts? I just moved here, and I already figured out that Juno doesn't go out unless Joan forces her out.

SAKI: So, what are we going to do today?

CHULA: We're doing it already.

SAKI: Yeah, I guess this is good.

CHULA: Nice bed. What is this, some sort of memory foam?

SAKI: Yeah. It used to be thicker, but I ate the top layer.

CHULA: Was it good?

SAKI: Yeah. I was a lot younger then. I wouldn't eat it today.

CHULA: I'm getting sleepy.

SAKI: Me too.

CHULA: zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

SAKI: zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

JUNO: It's about time.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

She's Home

When Joan came home, I wasn't sure if she had really been gone. I remember waking up and hearing her come in the house. So, first I thought that was normal. Then, I realized, it wasn't normal since she hadn't been around for a while.

I was so happy that I sniffed mightily for maybe five minutes and even wagged my tail. Hey, I'm an old girl and can't manage much more than that.

Now, all is well. Joan's back from wherever she was; Saki's happy (that's him perched on the back step looking at the world); Chula's learning to be a dog in a dogs' world. Now, to sleep; perchance to dream.

Best wishes, Juno

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Where's Joan?

An entire month without writing! How could this happen?

Yo! Joan? Come home!

I'm on my way, Juno.

See you tonight.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Chula's Doggie Rehab Hope

SEE, CHULA, THIS IS WHAT HAPPY LOOKS LIKE! (Not to worry; you'll get there.)

So, on Monday, Chula--former garage dog who lived in the corner of a garage tied to a tool box, who slept on a filthy piece of cardboard, never got petted, never even knew a kind word (see below for more Chula news)--WELL, Chula is going to doggie rehab for at least two weeks.

We will keep everyone posted as to her progress. Jason Mickalauskas at Best Paw Forward seems to be Mr. Alpha Cool Miracle Man, and we're all full of hope that Chula will learn how to live in the world as a happy dog.

I'm not saying she could ever be as chill as I am or as cocky as Saki, but she might just learn to wake up with a smile on her face every morning and sigh a contented sigh at night. Yeah, Jason. We all have some serious hope for that!

Best wishes, Juno

Monday, June 21, 2010

Chula: A Garage Dog No More

Chula. Yes, here are two pictures of Chula--sad Chula and happy Chula. Just imagine, they were taken about one week apart.

Chula spent around two years chained up inside a garage in New York City. No one cared anything about her--no one even washed her or petted her or spoke to her. That's why she looks so haunted, so tormented, so hopeless.

Then, along came people who wanted to help, and Kyla brought her home. We want her to come and live with us, but she's got some major dog issues before she can do that. (Yikes, when I say major I mean crazy major!)

I guess the people who read my blog already love dogs, so I'm barking to the choir when I make this quiet observation that humans who don't like dogs shouldn't be adopting them to begin with. I just don't get it.

You can read more about Chula here, and maybe you can even help.

Best wishes, Juno

Friday, June 11, 2010

Friday, June 4, 2010

Sleepy Spring

Wow. I've been remiss. How profound my need for sleep these days, so I hardly manage to haul myself to the blog. It's been a sleep month, indeed.

For a while, everyone thought I was a goner, but I surprised them and came back with a rambunctious waddle across Charles's lawn. However, that spurt of energy was short-lived, and I retired to my favorite perch in the sunroom to sleep it off and half listen to Saki and Bailey romping around outside, tugging and pulling on their toys, and racing around just for the sake of racing around. They always end up back in the same spot at the back of the house, so I don't really get it.

I'm a happy dog. I hope you're happy, too.
Best wishes, Juno

Friday, May 14, 2010

Who Am I?

There's a discussion on Facebook about my origins. It's stirred up quite an interest, so if anyone would like to leave a comment here, I'll be happy to relay it to my Facebook friends. Majority guesses are Newfoundland + Great Pyrenees.

I don't think I look like Beethoven at all.

Anyway, it's not absolutely essential that I know who I am or what my tendencies might be given my origin. As they say in Italian, "Ormai?" That means, at this point, does it really matter?

Best wishes, Juno (And, yes, my Italian's not so bad.)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Trouble Getting Around Today

Here we are, just yesterday, for our annual picture in front of the azalea. This is the first year without Shane, but we remember. We're here. We're not here. It's life.

I’m not having an easy time getting up. Ouch. That’s what I say to old age. Ouch again. However, the good part is that everyone’s testing my state of health by offering me biscuits. Of course, what am I going to do—refuse them?

So I take the biscuit, and everyone says, “Well, she still likes her food.”

Then they appear to be all relieved for an hour or so. Then they get worried because I haven’t moved from my spot, and they bring me another biscuit. Of course I take the biscuit. I’m not one to turn down something like that.

“Well, she still likes her food,” they say. And the seem happy about that.

Well, of course I like my food. Don't you?

I was able to walk in the park yesterday where I met three nice dogs and a nice man who said I was beautiful. What more could a dog want? Biscuits and compliments a happy dog make.

Best wishes to you all, Juno

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Summer's Back

It must be summer, because the pool is out and Bailey came over to play. What a run-around day for Saki. It’s just as well since he’s packed on a few pounds over the winter. Not that that’s a bad thing, but he gets all tuckered out a little too soon. Not like me, but a little exercise doesn’t hurt.

No, really, Saki, you look great, and everyone loves you just the way you are. (Whew!)

Best wishes, Juno.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

The Cat & Cool

The orange cat on the other side of the fence drives me and Saki crazy. She’s so la-de-da about rubbing up against the chain links, knowing perfectly well that we can’t do anything but bark and look dumb. And that’s just what we do—we bark and look dumb.

Sometimes, especially when Saki’s inside and I’m alone by the fence, the cat comes over and we stare at each other. I’m calmer about the whole thing when Saki’s not there to tempt me into barking. She’s very cautious about me, but I can tell she’s curious and maybe even wonders what it would be like to befriend me. After all, what can I do at my age? And I’ve never been given to violence or rowdiness.

She’s a pretty cat. Maybe she thinks I’m a pretty dog. I don’t know. But, she does love to tease us strutting the way she does, pretending she doesn’t notice us, looking like she’s the queen of cool.

My trick is to wander nonchalantly into the sunroom, climb up on the couch, and pass out. It perplexes Saki, but he doesn’t know cool the way I know cool. Not yet.

Best wishes, Juno

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Life goes on, and so does the fun.

We’re having a beautiful spring. Shane would have liked it, but then this is the time of year when we think how much everyone would have liked it if they were still alive. (That's him and Saki and me in front of the azalea last May.)

A picture of Joan’s Rebel is now in the living room, and that makes his absence less of an absence. I can’t tell her how dogs feel about dying, because we don’t think about it. We just accept it. Just think about the flowers. They blossom and they’re so beautiful that people stop and stare and breathe deeply. Puppies and kittens and human babies have the same power. Then, the flowers wilt, the puppies, kittens, and babies grow up, puff up, and then wrinkle up and drop off the face of the earth. But that doesn’t mean they’re gone. They’re just not where you think they are.

Seems easy enough to me.

Best wishes, Juno

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Love Spilling Into the Years

So, 52 years have passed since the first two pictures were taken. That's Joan and Rebel and Henry in the first picture, and Joan and Rebel in the second. Fifty-two years! Wow. And here we are all these years later. Instead of Henry and Rebel, Joan is loving me and Saki. So the love never goes away, does it? It just grows and grows and spills into the years.

Is that what they call good Karma? Yes, I believe it is. So, Rebel and Henry wherever you are, you are also here. I like that notion.

Best wishes for love splashing across the centuries,

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Ish's Escape

So today I got a bath. Alas, another bath. One of these days, I'm just not going to get into the tub by myself and then what's Joan going to do with her freaky cleanness? (Rhetorical question.)

Saki did a lot of moping by the front door (see picture). No one to play with. Rain still coming down. Then, when he was about to despair entirely, Ish jumped over his jail fence and came running across the street. Naturally, Joan let him come in the yard and he ran with Saki for about an hour (see picture). Wow. Where do they get that energy?

I'm still miffed over the bath thing, but I've got to admit that clean feels better than stinky. Saki got a bath, too. Now we're all very clean and extremely tired. Joan finally brought Ish back to his yard and left him with a giant biscuit. No one was home over there, so I guess he got to eat it in peace. I'll bet he's one tired dog tonight.

Best wishes, Juno

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Rainy Days

Yes, everyone's been going a little "stir-crazy," as Shana put it. So she brought Bailey over for a run, or many runs, around the house with Saki.

I stayed firmly inside, thanks all the same. Running around just isn't my cup of tea. However, the running was interrupted several times when Saki and Bailey came in to get rub downs. As you see, we had a picture-taking session during the drying out periods. Bailey did jump over my head at one point, but as you can see from the picture, we had a little chat about it and all is well.

Too bad humans can't manage that last trick.
Best wishes for better weather,

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Needing to Get Out More

So, it's back in the house again with Joan sick for over a week. And what are we to do? Thank goodness--I can't believe I'm saying this--Bailey came over to play and relieve the boredom. Really, sitting around is great stuff, but you need relief from it.

Poor Bailey jumped on Joan's bed and landed like a seal--that is, on his chin. We tried not to laugh, but it was funny. Then he tried to steal a treat right from my mouth! It's good that he was here, but, sorry, no pictures for this visit. Next time.

So, it's time to think about getting out of the house for a bit. Too much of a good thing is so bad for me.

Best wishes, Juno

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Bailey's Growth Spurt

Yesterday--the first day of spring, so Bailey came over for a visit. Would you just look at what's happened in ten months! Bailey keeps growing and growing, and Saki just hangs around smiling like he doesn't notice the change.

Everyone else notices. Mark is so proud that Bailey has grown so much. You know, like he's responsible for the growth spurt. The next time they come over, I think we're do for a Juno-Bailey picture. Then we'll talk about big!

Best wishes for a healthy growing season,

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Too Much

I couldn't make it through the park today. The noise, the warm weather. My apologies to Saki who wanted to run and play.

It's just too difficult. Oh, and then getting back into the car. Let me sit in the yard and watch the people pass and the neighbor's cat roll on her back. She likes that. I like that. Or let me sit on my nice big bed and relax. I'm at least 11 years old at this point. A girl that age needs her rest.

Yesterday, Joan got stuck on the roof when she kicked over the ladder by mistake. The man across the street came over and put the ladder back up for her. That was fun to watch. Actually, it was pretty funny to watch. Silly. See? I still love life and find it amusing. But I don't want any more long walks to find it. In short, let life come to me.

Best wishes, Juno