Friday, November 27, 2009

Wimsey's Blog: Diary of a Manhattan Bloodhound #146

Entry #146
November 28, 2009

Hello Everyone, Wimsey here coming to you from the turkey laden Upper West Side of Manhattan—I’m hoping you’ve had your fill of seasonal goodies (like the ten pounds (!) of yummy home baked goods that arrived from my human Maria’s mother to prevent me from wasting away over the holidays And in the spirit of the holiday I am actually allowing Maria to eat her mother’s goodies too).

I myself kicked off the holiday in fine New York style by viewing (along with Maria’s friend Elizabeth) the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade balloons being blown up. And naturally, as with all my activities, there was a coterie of New Yorkers watching me watching the balloons. And as I felt compelled to vocally encourage the chaps blowing up the balloons it was hard to say who attracted the most attention, me or the balloons. (I really have no idea why some people are terrorized by my baying and somehow think that it’s directed at them. It’s like get over yourself, you’re really not important enough for me to bay at. Clearly these are people who have no experience of Hounds). Many in the crowd seemed to want to figure out which balloon was fellow Hound, Snoopy which made me think that given the amount of attention I receive and the amount of time I generously devote to entertain New Yorkers and their guests, there really should be a Wimsey balloon.

Thanksgiving Day Parade 2010

Matt Lauer: Hello everyone. Welcome to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. I’m here with colleague Al Roker to bring the magic of the parade to you live.

Al Roker: Yes, Matt and this year we have an exciting addition to the parade. There will be a Wimsey balloon!

Matt: How very appropriate as he lives only a few blocks away from the start of the parade. I suppose the city wants to honor him for spending the year arduously posing for photographs and being petted, fed and played with by tourists.

Al: It’s a tough job Matt. The City is grateful to Wimsey for taking it on. You know, people from out of town think New Yorkers are crazy but when the see this giant Hound roaming the streets of the metropolis they know that we are. He’s an integral part of the New York image, and confirms what the rest of the world thinks of us especially when they actually meet New Yorkers idiotic enough to live in a small space with a massive Hound.

Matt: Not only that, but to spend so much of their waking hours exercising the massive Hound in Central Park’s 800 acres. Rumor has it that he’s peed on every acre.

Al: It wouldn’t surprise me Matt, Wimsey has a prodigious capacity in that department. Also people see him in every corner of the park and think that New York is chock a block with bloodhounds, but really they’re all him. He can cover a lot of ground when he’s motivated to give his humans a good tow. And right now he’s particularly motivated as apparently none of his humans has pulled or broken anything or is seeing a physical therapist.

Matt: Yes, I hear he hates when that happens. He feels he’s let down his side.

Al: Anyway, Macy’s is introducing a Wimsey balloon and here it comes!

Matt: It’s enormous! Oops. It looks like he’s missing a few bits.

Al: Macy’s has a strict no nards policy, Matt and given the size of the balloon. making the bits proportional to Wimsey’s would have been overwhelming, although I must say he is much admired for those parts.

Matt: What’s that! It can’t be rain. It’s too sticky and the sun is shining!

Al: I heard they were trying to devise a way for the balloon to fling drool, so I guess they
succeeded. The Wimsey experience wouldn’t be complete without it. Here, have a wipe and an umbrella.

Matt: And I see they added a vocal capacity to the balloon also.

Al: What! I can’t hear you!

Matt: Look Al. The handlers seem to be having trouble getting the balloon to turn the corner. It’s almost as if the balloon wants to go in another direction. How can that be?

Al: It’s the Power of the Hound Matt. Even the polyurethane ones.

Anyway, every day is pretty much Thanksgiving around here-- my humans are always giving thanks that I am around to make their boring lives more “entertaining” and turkey is the number one bribing meat of choice and there are always innumerable reasons to bribe me. And speaking of my entertainment value, we all enjoy listening to comments about me that people make in passing—comments like “amazing,” “awesome,” and “what a cool dog,” etc. Well the other day a passerby commented that I was “a real New York City crime detection dog.” And of course he was right as at that moment I was in search of turkey cadavers. And in cases of such crimes against poultry it is essential to personally sample the evidence. Of course I also detect crimes humans commit such as unlawful possession of a bed or a sofa or felony hoarding of Dean’s pizza. Which reminds me that this week the TV show “Law and Order” was being filmed on Elizabeth’s block and my interest in one of the crew convinced his colleagues that he was “carrying.” Fortunately for him I am not a drug detection dog but am more of a sandwich detection one. And I excel at my job.

But I think in general I would make a very fine detective (except that I am always detecting things that no one wants detected, like juicy rodents or people who haven’t changed their underwear) and then there could even be a board game devoted to my detectival abilities.

Hound Clue

Player #1: I think Colonel Wimsey Mustard stole the Thanksgiving turkey in the kitchen using his hind legs to gain access to the counter.

Player #2: No. You are wrong. Miss Wimsey Scarlett shredded the priceless autographed Shakespeare First Folio in the library with her unclipped nails.

Player #3: I disagree. The culprit was Mrs. Wimsey White and she destroyed the 18th century Sèvres dinner service that survived the French Revolution in the dining room with her giant scimitar tail.

Player #4: You are all wrong. Mr. Wimsey Green blew out the windows in the conservatory with his potent sonic baying.

Player #5: No, I accuse Mrs. Wimsey Peacock of chewing the legs off the antique Chippendale side table with her teeth.

Player #6: Sorry to disappoint you all, but after all the destruction, Professor Wimsey, using his powerful brain, deduced that humans who live with Hounds ought not to be in possession of knives, candlesticks, revolvers, lead pipes, ropes or wrenches or any other potentially lethal instruments as they are inimical to the long term h
ealth of the Hound. So he stole them, dug up the floorboards and buried them under the shredded Aubusson carpet.

And speaking of brains, it turns out that because I tweeted about napping on a University of Chicago magazine (usually I like to take an afternoon newspaper nap, but none were available that day to make a nest out of so I was forced to squeeze myself onto the University of Chicago magazine), I am actually now being followed on Twitter by the University of Chicago! Clearly, unlike my humans, these brainy folks can appreciate a true genius when they see one, even if my head does come to a point. I probably should eat a few Great Books in the University’s honor—I hear Herodotus is particularly tasty- and also follow the Chicago School’s economic philosophy by taking steps to reduce my humans’ money supply.

And on the subject of the money supply, my humans apparently found one Black Friday offer too good to resist—a sale-priced Ruff Wear fleece winter coat that they ordered for me. Who knew they made winter coats that size that weren’t intended for smallish ponies. Apparently all this is because Maria has been seeing fat squirrels (is that like seeing pink elephants?) and is convinced that this means we’re going to have a cold winter. And as my humans have nothing left to buy in the outerwear department (except perhaps crampons for staying upright whilst walking a Hound in snowy weather) they turned their attention to me. And it seems this year all the neighborhood dogs are sporting coats at the slightest nip in the air or the lightest drizzle. And they wouldn’t want me to stand out or anything; I mean people would notice a giant smelly, baying drool flinging Hound if he were coatless, wouldn’t they? Anyway, so now the question is, does an oversized Hound in a green fleece coat trump a fat squirrel in the weather prediction department? My humans are convinced that their eagerness to display me in my winter finery virtually guarantees a warm winter.

But we have had very mild weather this week which means I’ve been out and about quite a bit to take advantage of it before the fat squirrels have their way. And after much baying and furious towing Elizabeth finally relented (furious baying and towing generally does lead to relenting in my experience) and let me visit the snack bar at the Conservatory Water (this is a large man made pond in Central Park where in Spring and Summer children sail model boats and I need to be restrained from diving in and helpfully retrieving them) where I stood on my hind legs and was fed treats by the counter man. The feeding fellow was quite amazed at how gentle I was whilst I was relieving him of these snacks and my soft mouth encouraged him to keep the feeding going pretty continuously. Another example of my manipulative brilliance, which I am sure is being studied by University of Chicago scholars even as we speak.

Anyway, my annual Thanksgiving promenade was an especial succes
s this year as we ran into my gal pal, Oreo the delicious Dane. I really have a thing for these tall lanky Scandinavian types. Of course I have a thing for females in general. Especially the ones who don’t bite me when I stick my cold nose into their nether regions and inhale deeply.

Well all this following by major academic institutions has gone to my head and I might have to eschew making fun of popular cultural institutions and board games and such and go back to cogitating on the role of the Hound in the more rigorous intellectual disciplines such as physics, history, art, literature and making fun of the French. But first it’s time to hit the books!

Until next time,

Wimsey, Thanksgiving Day balloon manq

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Wimsey's Blog: Diary of a Manhattan Bloodhound #145

Entry #145
November 20, 2009

Hello Everyone. It’s me, Wimsey coming to you from Manhattan’s Upper West Side where, although we have been having lovely warm weather, the holiday season is just about to begin. The kickoff event is of course Thanksgiving and my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth give thanks every day for the simple things of life: “Thank goodness Wimsey didn’t try to kill me on the stairs today” and “Thank goodness he hasn’t broken any bones,” etc.

And Thanksgiving around here is a full participation holiday which means I will come in for my fair share of the food. This is largely because a lot of people don’t actually like a lot of the traditional holiday foods but feel compelled to eat them- as well as the seemingly endless leftovers—in spite of this. It is in such a season that we Hounds really come into our own in the cleaning out the refrigerator department, proving that we are actually good for something other than running up the vet bills and injecting a lively sense of fun into the otherwise peaceful rhythms of human life.

And speaking of vet bills, Elizabeth has gone out and found the world’s most expensive pet insurance (finding the world’s most expensive anything is one of Elizabeth’s special gifts) which makes sense as I am fast becoming the world’s most expensive dog. The insurance is called Embrace and if you send them two years of your dog’s medical records they will let you know what conditions they will exclude from coverage. Two years of my records were apparently 26 pages long! (My humans are expecting the list of excluded items to be 26 pages long as well).

The beauty of it is that I have managed to be pretty healthy while somehow contriving to contract a wide range of expensive inconsequential ailments. Of course the fact that I like going to the vet might have something to do with it. (I wonder if recreational vet visits will be excluded from my new insurance coverage). And it is immensely satisfying as well that I will have better health care coverage than either of my humans. But with all this talk of health care reform I think the Wimsey Plan should be considered:

Wimsey Health Insurance

Pre-examination belly rubs by massage therapist: Covered

Snacks, treats and bottled water: Covered

Staff time spent oohing and aaahing and generally admiring me and administering therapeutic scratches behind the ears: Covered

Turkey administered for refraining from sticking my nose into the other patient’s rear ends: Covered

More turkey administered to discourage the chasing of the office cat: Covered

Damage to veterinary staff from vigorous tail movements: Covered

Veterinary staff dry cleaning bills from drool and other miscellaneous unidentifiable stains: Covered

Weighing me: Not covered (I am a Hound not a Number. I refuse to be quantified)

Sticking a thermometer up my bum: Not covered

Sticking a finger up my bum and poking around: Definitely not covered

Listening to my heart: Covered (if you can hear it over the baying)

Feeling and gently massaging my internal organs: Covered

Sticking me with needles: Covered (see below)

Turkey to make me feel better about the needles (which I can’t actually feel owing to the thickness of my skin): Covered

Reaming the gunk out of my ears: Not covered

Analyzing my poop: Covered—this is one of my favorite items—what could be more interesting (except perhaps the eating of the stuff to make the poop)

Roast beef necessary to administer pills required after the analysis of my poop: Covered (makes a change from the turkey)

Trimming my nails: Absolutely Forbidden

Anyway, I will keep you up to date on my adventures in the wonderful world of health insurance. My humans are convinced that buying me expensive health insurance virtually guarantees that I will require no further vet visits.

And as I mentioned, we have been having mostly beautiful weather here which means that my efforts to quietly extend my afternoon walks without Elizabeth noticing have met with abundant success. I mean really, if you could be out and about in the park with me or home sitting in front of the computer which would you choose? I am merely giving Elizabeth a nudge (or a tow) in the right direction.

And some days, like this Monday, we were out for the whole afternoon as we once again met up with Elizabeth’s friend Nancy and her young daughter Alicia. And once again there was food involved—this time Alicia decided that feeding me her veggie straws was a more gratifying activity than actually eating them herself. I whole heartedly concurred. Also you might remember that last week I taught the little tyke how to avoid leaving the park by either walking very slowly or climbing up on a bench and refusing to move. This week she became a star pupil in the more advanced technique of taking off in the opposite direction from which people want you to go. It was quite gratifying to see the Wimsey Method in action. And down by the duck pond we both had to be discouraged from getting up close and personal with this feast of swimming poultry. I think she takes after me. Her mother hopes not.

And a week’s worth of park walks also entails a week’s worth of meet and greet—I swung by the Metropolitan Museum of Art again so I could be admired and photographed by the crowds lounging on the steps. Everyone in the rest of the country knows New Yorkers are crazy but no one expects that they are crazy enough to live with a giant Hound in the middle of Manhattan (“What’s next, a sheep?”). Wrong. But then there was the lady we ran into who was so excited to meet me because she said she just “ordered” a bloodhound (it will be the last thing she orders, trust me) from a breeder. Elizabeth casually mentioned that we bloodhounds are a tad on the difficult side but the woman assured Elizabeth that it would be OK as she has 4 Labradors and 2 1/2 acres of land. I wonder how she feels about having 2 1/2 acres of holes?

I seem to remember that we met our friend Gus the Alaskan Bloodhound because his human (who already had two coonhounds and felt that she was well versed in the ways of the Hound) was googling Problem Bloodhounds. After reading my blog she realized that Gus wasn’t a Problem Bloodhound, he was just a Regular Bloodhound.

Bloodhounds are kind of the anti-Labradors. Labs make excellent service dogs whereas the only services bloodhounds are interested in are those that humans render unto us (like the touching way my humans race to give me fresh water after I drink because I dislike drinking water with drool in it). Labs jump into lakes and rivers, retrieve ducks and bring them back to their humans whereas Hounds jump into lakes or rivers, retrieve ducks and then swim off to enjoy a light repast. Labs care about pleasing people; Hounds care about people pleasing them. Elizabeth wished this lab lady luck (you never know, she could get one of those rare strangely mutant bloodhounds who aren’t abominably behaved-- but of course then there is still the drool, the smell and the noise to consider), and gave her my card. We hope to hear from her about how it all goes (just as we enjoy hearing all about Gus’ food filching, clothing shredding and moose baying).

And speaking of other Hounds, on Sunday we met this lovely girl (I have to admit I have a secret ((or not so secret)) yen for the sight hounds: so graceful, so elegant, and so dignified. Proof positive that opposites attract. But alas, she is still a lady Hound and like all lady Hounds she exhibited a haughty disdain for my wooing efforts. Or perhaps she just didn’t appreciate my high decibel baying or having my giant, wet, cold proboscis stuck into her backside. Where is when you need it? Perhaps there should be a dating service for Hounds.

Match.hound Questionnaire

My idea of a romantic date is:

a) Strolling in the moonlight hunting rodents

b) Dining tête a tête in the same garbage bin

c) Running leashless on the beach with screaming humans in hot pursuit

d) Rolling around together on deceased animals

e) Spending a quiet night at home destroying expensive Italian stilettos

I am looking for a mate who:

a) Is unafraid to share his stolen chicken carcass

b) Is strong enough to knock over the sturdiest garbage can

c) Is adventurous enough to eat anything, even if it wasn’t meant to be eaten

d) Is gentle when stealing candy from babies

e) Is always polite enough to leave the toilet seat up

Physically my ideal type:

a) Has really big flews

b) Possesses a full10 inches of ear

c) Has a powerful whip-like tail

d) Sports a nose that is always wet and ready for action

e) Smells like they’ve never had a bath

But fortunately human ladies seem to like me and this brings out a veritable cornucopia of shared lunches, snacks, scratches and belly rubs. Of course guys like me too, seeing me as a poster child for the hygienically casual male way of life. But then there was this exchange during my evening walk:

Wimsey Admirer: What a beautiful dog! There are so few bloodhounds around. Is that because it is a lot of work to care for them or because they are really obnoxious?

Maria: Both actually.

In any case, Thursday is the day we all give thanks so I hope everyone remembers how crucial their Hounds are to the entertainment value of life, even if we are a bit hard of the pocketbook (literarily and figuratively; ((Elizabeth hides hers on a high shelf; she thinks I don’t know)).

Well that is all for this week. Hope you all have a Happy Thanksgiving and don’t forget it is better to give (to your Hound) than to receive (nothing from your Hound).

Until next time,

Wimsey, a matchless Hound

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Wimsey's Blog:Diary of a Manhattan Bloodhound #144

Entry #144
November 13, 2009

Hello Everyone, Wimsey here, coming to you from New York’s Upper West Side where despite some gloomy weather I have been dispensing my usual brand of Hound cheer. Usually this takes the form of thunderous bays, airborne drool and clouds of stink, but sometimes it’s as simple as chewing a stick. They are not visible here but at one point I had a crowd of people watching me retrieve this stick from behind the railing. Of course the stick retrieving was all in aid of introducing a delay into the process of leaving the park and the audience and subsequent chatting did provide extra assistance for this important endeavor. I suppose very much like celebrities everywhere, even my most trivial activities are observed and discussed with great interest.

Admirer 1: Oh look there’s Wimsey! How exciting! He’s sniffing that bush. Isn’t he magnificent? He looks even bigger in person.

Admirer 2: I wonder what kind of bush he’s sniffing? Can we buy that kind of bush? Or perhaps he’ll autograph it for us.

Admirer 1: I’m not sure you’d want his actual bush autograph. But all the bush sniffing has produced a wad of drool. Quick if we get close enough perhaps he’ll fling some on us. I’ve never been drooled on by a celebrity before; I'll be the envy of all my friends.

Admirer 2: And what is he wearing today? Is that a new raincoat?

Admirer 1: Yes and I believe it is designed by Outward Hound. I wonder if they make one in my size.

Admirer 2: And look how buff he is. What’s his secret? How can a dog that eats Grom gelato stay so ripped. What gym does he go to? I want to join!

Admirer 1: I read in Hound Magazine that he attributes his svelte figure to towing hundred pound plus humans around the city for hours and hours and hours and then more hours.

Admirer 2: Does he have a fitness video I can buy?

Admirer 1: I don’t think he wants to share his secrets. In fact he is not big on sharing anything. It’s an integral part of his philosophy. He’s very spiritual you know, he’s following a Houndist path. But of course everyone shares with him on account of the fact that he’s so cute. It’s all part of Houndism.

Admirer 2: Can I become a Houndist? I’m eager to join an exclusive celebrity cult that no one’s heard of yet. Is there a Maharsihi involved?

Admirer 1: I think you’re a couple of legs short of their requirements. In any case I doubt you could pass the nose test—you have to be able to identify people on the street who haven’t changed their underwear and embarrass them.

Admirer 2: I guess that could be pretty tough. Also I’d probably get arrested. But what about Wimsey’s beauty secrets--what shampoo does he use and who does his hair?

Admirer 1: I read that he uses a special formula that is quite hard to find. It’s called the Griminator and as far as his hair, he is a big believer in the tousled just got off the bed look. I understand he washes his hair as little as possible so as to enable it to retain its natural oils and fragrance. But I did hear a rumor that he enhanced the luster with Crown Royal Finishing spray and a good rub with a chamois cloth.

Admirer 2: Ooh! I’ll buy those immediately. I want to be just like him.

Admirer 1: Yes, everybody does.

Anyway today is Friday 13th which is supposed to be unlucky but my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth are never unlucky since they get to spend so much time in the presence of an adorable towing, lap sitting, food filching, bone crushing Hound such as myself. I mean how lucky is that?

Well it has been a pretty good week here although on Sunday there was an attempt to get me to wear the Goofy Hat that Elizabeth brought back from Disney World. Fortunately it did not fit very well so the effect was not as aesthetically pleasing as the ladies had hoped and I expect that I will get to wreak my revenge on it shortly. Personally I think it will make a much better stuffed toy than hat.

And on Sunday, in addition to the park, we ran around the neighborhood doing errands which mostly entailed my trying to trash pet stores while the ladies shopped for a big enough bag of new food for me (I am switching to Orijen) and hanging out in front of Fairway which I routinely turn into the Hound Information Center and Wimsey Petting Zoo.

Also during the week I decided to augment my afternoon walk by exiting Central Park at Fifth Avenue and checking out the goings on at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (for those of you who miss our little visits to the Wimsey Institute of Houndish Art (( I am hoping to arrange a visit again soon). As you know I am a well known art connoisseur and as an added bonus the Met’s plaza is now crowded with food carts which adds considerably to the olfactory pleasure of the experience.

Here I am in front of the Met and I am especially pleased with my fierce “Warrior Wimsey” pose in honor of the Art of the Samurai sign. But of course being a warrior is unnecessary for a Hound; we get what we want by less violent if more devious means. A Hound that uses force needs some classes in remedial Houndship, the whole point being that we make people actually want to give us what we want. Sometimes they think it is their idea and sometimes they just give up in the face of our relentless persistence. But we Hounds are nothing if not students of Sun Tzu and his Art of War (“All war is based on deception” and “The greatest conqueror is he who overcomes the enemy without a blow.”). On this basis alone I am sure Sun Tzu was an admirer of Hounds. The Samurai of course lived in Japan and not China and had a code of which we Hounds would have found uncongenial—obedience, loyalty, honor, etc. These things are best left to the humans who serve us.

The Code of the Hound
Never give up
Never give up
Never give up
Never give up
Never even think about giving up

Anyway, I had some more fun in the park this week with Elizabeth’s friend Nancy and her little daughter Alicia. Alicia is getting quite brave and even had the courage to touch me. But one of the best things about Alicia, apart from her interest in me, is the fact that she is often in possession of meals which she chooses not to eat. Well, of course waste is a terrible thing and I would not like to see Nancy feel bad about wasting food, so I often generously step in and offer my alimentary services. Here I am being fed a tasty hot dog. And Alicia has also been observing my tactics for delaying the end of our visits to the park. Now just like me, she begins walking v-e-r-y slowly and climbing up on park benches and refusing to move. She is an excellent pupil. Nancy says that I am a bad influence, but at least she hasn’t started chewing sticks. Nevertheless I think it is the duty of a sagacious Hound like myself to impart my wisdom to the next generation of cute manipulative beings. In any case if Nancy has too much trouble she can always go on one of those nanny TV shows like Nanny 911. Personally I think there should be one for Hounds.

Hound Nanny 911

Client: Hound Nanny, thank heavens you’re here! My Hounds are making me crazy.

Hound Nanny: They’re Hounds. They’re supposed to. But let me analyze the situation, tell you what you are doing wrong and humiliate you on national television.

Client: Sounds great!

Hound Nanny: Perhaps it’s not the Hounds that are making you crazy. Maybe you were born that way. Now first, let’s talk about exercise. Most people think the Hound is a dog, but really the Hound is a nose (also a stomach and another equally crucial bit which we won’t go into right now) and the nose must be appeased constantly. This entails many hours of happy outdoor fun watching your Hound stick his nose into disgusting smelly things and using it to track down even more disgusting smellier things. Do you ever attempt to get your Hounds to heel?

Client: Yes, Hound Nanny. We watch all the TV shows that say this is the way to get the Hounds under control.

Hound Nanny: The words “hound” and “control” should never be used in the same sentence. You’ll live longer. Anyway, heeling is inimical to the health and well being of the Hound. Besides they’ll get a lot more exercise if they’re towing you. You must learn the two acceptable Hound walking positions: Position One (which I call The Pose of the Tight Rope Walker): In this position, the leash is held in one hand with the arm and shoulder fully extended creating a smooth and beautiful line. The body is angled sideways whilst the remaining arm trails gracefully in the air for balance. The stability of this elegant and classic position is such that it can be assumed both at the walk and at the trot (Yours. Hounds, especially those familiar with the show ring prefer to gallop or to pace). Position Two (which I call The Pose of the Terrified Water Skier) is an excellent position for remaining upright when your Hound is feeling exceptionally frisky. The leash is grasped firmly with both hands, the knees are slightly bent and the abdominal muscles are engaged, all of which provides maximal stability in the face (or backside) of a powerfully towing Hound. The voice must remain quiet as yelling such things as “stop,” “slow down” or “help” will only encourage the Hound’s vigorous nature.

Client: Thank you Hound Nanny. And if the Hounds are tired will they behave?

Hound Nanny: No. At least not while they are awake. But all the exercise will encourage a more extended napping process. And in aid of this, the Hounds must be allowed to nap wherever they choose, even (and especially) if it is in a space already occupied by you.

Client: And what about the fact that the Hounds like to steal my food and possessions?

Hound Nanny: Sharing with your Hounds will increase your bond with them. They’re going to get your stuff anyway so you might as well make it look like it was your idea. Yelling at them will only increase their fun. And look on the bright side, the Hounds will give you the opportunity to constantly redecorate your home, re-landscape your yard and buy a new wardrobe. Also, all those unwanted Christmas and birthday gifts make excellent regifts for the Hounds.

Client: And how about when the Hounds slime my guests, knock them over or make them smelly?

Hound Nanny: Get new friends. Preferably those with Hounds. Anyway, after you’ve all enjoyed a strong cocktail the Hounds won’t seem so bad.

And of course no week would be complete without a little playtime with one of my friends. This is Jada the majestic brindle Great Dane. On our last meeting she declined to play with me but my manly charms have at last won her over (or maybe it is the beauty of my flying flews and ears).

Anyway, we are all hoping for a bit better weather around here and as the holidays will soon be upon us I am making my list and checking it twice as I intend to get everything I want and to give my humans nothing. It’s the Houndist way.
Until next time,

Maharishi Mahesh Wimsey, author of Houndism: How to Make Humans Your Slave By Being Loud, Smelly and Obnoxious