Oh this is embarrassing: Tech challenges

Oh, one of those weeks of tech challenges

Actually, I’ve been tech challenged all week. We have a small business with several business branches. This year had to be the year to migrate to new computers and to upgrade software, we skipped an entire generation of MAC operating updates (turns out this saved time).

By the way, I could not login this Tuesday

Too bad, I had promised the next story in my series on Dawn, our adopted dream dog. A rather odd excuse, but I had no login due to the fact that I had been using Google to secure my blog. It turns out Google’s authenticator, which served me well for several years and provided me with 2-step secure login code for WordPress, has gone blank and now refuses to upload to the new device.

Darn, drat that cat named Tech-today-gone-tomorrow. So similar to this photographic pet moment below, sometimes we must accept defeat and take a nap, while others hop around. Sydney, our dog, learned quickly that our rabbit, Paris, insisted on being in charge. Sydney had grown up in a home with a cat. I’m sure his first family taught him that cats will not tolerate being chased. With a simple turn of his back, Paris taught Sydney to leave him be. Great life lesson. Sometimes, I’m the dog and sometimes, I get to be the rabbit in-charge.

"I'm the boss," said Paris.

Paris wins over Sydney

Posted in Animal Welfare | 2 Comments

Little lies we tell our dogs: Photo Friday

Daily WordPress Prompt for “Sweet Little Lies”

Do you ever tell your dog you’ll be right back? For you right back may mean three hours, so what do you think your dog did for those three hours? Sat by the door, paced, lapped some water, looked at his empty food dish, laid down, jumped up to bark at someone on your porch delivering packages, sat by the door…

You get it. It’s a dog’s life (not the best part either).

Dog time is longer than people time.

We’re waiting for you.

Wrapped in this prompt were questions. Is it okay to lie, sometimes? Any reasons it would be okay to lie?

To lie is human, to forgive? Love as much as dogs do.

From my experience, all people learn to lie as young children. We try it out. If we fail, we try again, another day, a different person. Most lying comes out of fear. Some of that fear might be fear of losing, friends, family, love, food, etc. We learn to tell many social lies intended to protect other people.

“A man is never more truthful than when he acknowledges himself as a liar.” Mark Twain and I, Opie Read

The problem with lying, the very root, mushrooms quickly out of control, to lie about lying, trying to remember our lies and to keep secrets.

“If you tell the truth you don’t have to remember anything.” Mark Twain

I like to err on the side of truth. If it’s an ugly or nasty truth then I err on the side of silence. I don’t promise my dog I’ll be home soon. Soon to Sydney means five minutes.

“Never tell the truth to people who are not worthy of it.” Mark Twain- Notebook, 1902

Click this link for on this topic of Sweet Little Lies.

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Ready? Break Down, California Flooding

Ready? Storm drains full and flooding

We live like the electricity will go out all the time.

No kidding. I’m a candle lover and keep them in every room with matches. Also we have a system of night lights, which charge plugged so this morning when we lost our lights before dawn, we felt prepared.

In minutes, we both put on our camping headlights because we keep them near our bed and use them for reading at night. We had to rush to shut down our desktop computers before the battery backups failed. I’d been logged into this blog and wondered if anybody cared that we were without power.

Not Powerless without electrical power

While thousands in our county live homeless, we live snug, dry and warm. Yesterday in a Sonoma County Library parking lot, I watched a white-haired woman make a sandwich. The trunk of her car stood open as she laid out two slices of white bread and spread something on them. My guess is she was about 70 plus years or older. My throat filled up with tears.

Homeless man & puppies asleep

Homeless man & puppies asleep

Wherever you are, white-haired woman, find a warm dry place

White-haired senior I do hope you have found warm shelter and have warm tea to drink and food to eat.

Gritting my teeth over homelessness

Gritting my teeth over homelessness

When I think of how wealthy the United States Congressmen and women are, I grit my teeth that they hold the power to make that homeless senior much poorer than she is right now.

The Daily Post on WordPress


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Is your dog driving you nuts?

Got dog troubles?

Whether the dog in question happens to be your first rescue dog, first puppy not responding to house training or your fifth dog that loves to hear himself bark, you are not alone. We know. Why? Think of the thousands of dog lovers who have felt overwhelmed at one point or another. We have been there, a few times (or more).

Some dog lovers ask other dog parents for advice. Others consult books, dog trainers, canine behavior experts and veterinarians. The feeling of being driven nuts can bring up the fear of living out of control. Perhaps, you feel a little scared faced with a new dog’s difficult behavior or canine health problem?

Hey  Better no touch my car.

Do you have an escape artist dog?

Six tips for your sanity

to retain one’s reason in unreasonable times, we suggest the following

  1. Describe the problem.
  2. Write the problem down.
  3. How bad is this problem? Rate the problem on a scale of 1 to 10. Make 10 the most difficult or distressing.
  4. Name parts of the problem and details such as the time the problem began, describe the situation(s) where it happens, ask as many rational questions as you can.
  5. Come to your senses. Take time to observe, listen, note the cycle of behaviors or signs that signal another round of stomach trouble. Make this a lucid interval. Be curious about every observable clue.
  6. Make every effort to not respond in a manner, which might be making things worse.

Stress trumps sanity

Synonyms for sanity; a soundness of mind; sobriety, lucidity.

We need to think clearly before we take actions to help our pets.

Of course, these steps may all seem common sense. With hindsight, we have not always responded with these logical and sane questions. Stress in the form of our own or a a family member’s illness clouded our logic. When time to think over our dog’s problem may have been lacking, working a high stress job or running a business was all absorbing (if not physically and mentally exhausting) we had to reach out to others.

Yes, we have experienced how stress shrinks thinking abilities. One rather embarrassing story, that we have not shared before, goes like this.

Ideas about ideal dog behavior wrecks logic

While both running our own businesses, we moved from southern California to northern California. Due to living in an apartment, we had not had a dog in many years. So I felt an urgent need to find our perfect dog. Perfect is not a word I often use. Maybe “dreamed of dog” fits better? After visiting the Petaluma branch of the Sonoma County Library and we discussed the type of personality we wanted in a dog. Both very fit, we wanted to hike and to run on the beach with our dog. Planning our family to include children, our very top priority meant a dog that demonstrated patience with children with a calm temperament. Plus being educated we hoped our dream dog would come to us both smart and motivated to learn.

Soon, we began contacting dog experts in our area for local keeshond breeders and rescues. We wanted a female dog. Without attachment to getting a puppy, we made an attempt to contact a Marin County keeshond rescue. That effort proved unsuccessful. We visited three breeders who fit an ethical breeding profile, each raised beautiful, loving and calm dogs. Each never let a puppy or dog end up in an animal shelter.

Got milk?

Hi, I’m Dawn, a keeshond dog with my very own girl.

Ethical breeder defined

Please read more about ethical breeders and their lifetime buy back contract at “Photo Friday: California Dreaming.” Then we heard of a one-year-old female that had been returned to breeder.

Dream dog trouble?

Of course we fell head over heels and signed the contract. We thought we had done all our homework. Ha!#@? A few more questions, would have saved us worry, time and money.

Mixed advice gave mixed results. Dawn, our first dog, a one year old spayed female had two problems in the first 24 hours. She refused to go potty. She happily went for walks, sniffed grass, drank water, but NO GO. Her first morning with us, she limped displaying a lame front paw. Off to the Vet we went.

I have run out of time. Tune in next Tuesday for the conclusion of our first 24 hours with our dream dog, Dawn.

Deborah Taylor-French

Posted in Dog Family Stories, Dog Leader Mystery Bites | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

A candle for forgotten pets

Light a candle to remember a forgotten pet.

Waiting is hard to do.

A face in the crowd

Adopt Me Maybe? Song and video by

 WAGS Pet Adoption shelter animals 

“Out in the streets walking around, you were just a face in the crowd.” Tom Petty  a lyric from his song A Face in the Crowd, album Full Moon Fever.

Tom Petty still a heartbreaker

BTW Tom Petty’s on the cover of December’s Rolling Stone, looking pretty good for a bad boy Boomer. Another unusual item about this musical artist and songwriter is that he has had the same band for most of his career, gives them credit as top musical collaborators that listen to new lyrics and go to work on making more great rockin’ roll songs. Cheers to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers! Congratulations to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, whose Hypnotic Eye is the veteran rock band’s first Number One album ever.

Thousands of cute, calm and teachable dogs like this one below are waiting.

Marshall, a lucky adopted dog

Going for a walk with my new Mom!

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Epiphany: Photo Friday

“An epiphany is a sudden realization of a significant event. At that special moment, a life meaning becomes clear to you —an insight into your personality, a discovery of something you value or believe in, an acute sense of where you are in life.”

Epiphany as call and response

The specific epiphany when a friend became ill and I called her. The question was to respond breakdown without need or fear. Did I answer?

Yes, I answered a literal call for help and felt divinely supported in providing. In fact, I feel so grateful that a strong friend expressed over the phone her needs. How often do we tell each other the truth? How often do we wish we had taken the time to tell the truth?

What a joy to give and feel bigger

There comes a marvelous intimacy when the most important inner need comes to us as the opportunity to give. Giving feels like a jump for joy moment, I feel bigger and more able to give. When people believe in God or have faith, they give from faith. They give from the knowledge that God gives them all good things. They experience the epiphany that God gives abundantly, and therefore, as receivers of God’s love they also must give abundantly.

Watch dog

Loyal, calm, loving and ever protective of his family Simba keeps watch.

So this blog post comes late, with the photograph of a neighbors beloved Japanese Shibu Inu. Many dogs of this breed await adoption so please adopt, don’t shop.

Give to a dog rescue or sponsor or foster a homeless pet

Visit Noahs Dogs to learn about the breed and find the perfect dog waiting for you.

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Dog Chocolate Toxicity Meter

What took me so long?

Just stumbled on this PetMD Dog Chocolate Toxicity Meter. What a helpful and important resource, just type in what type of chocolate your dog ate and the meter states how toxic it is. My mission rolls out in my blog’s tagline “saving dogs’ lives and dog lovers’ sanity.” Four years ago, I set my purpose yet I have strayed a bit from it.

Blogging goals for 2015?

My goals for 2015 include sticking to this mission statement tighter in order to write and publish e-books, relating strongly to my purpose for Dog Leader Mysteries.

The thought just struck me to call this “Mystery Monday” and begin sharing my fiction on Monday. Perhaps, I will need to wait a bit due to the need to choose between WordPress.org vs. WordPress.com. In the meantime, you will find my blog on WordPress.com, until I get this all figured out.

PetMD Dog Chocolate Toxicity Meter

Beware of what goes in my mouth.

Beware of what goes in my mouth.

Thanks for reading, sharing and caring about dogs.

Deborah Taylor-French





Posted in Keep Your Dog Healthy, Save Your Dog's Life | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Should I stay or should I go? WordPress- .com vs. .org

Changes here and beyond

Dear Readers,

I thankfully acknowledge how much each of you mean to me. Changes must happen. In thinking toward the future of Dog Leader Mysteries, several huge jumps and hops have danced in my mind. Yes, for few years. Actually, I’ve built an author Website on Weebly, which is private, but I hesitate to launch it. I happen to have a very long name. Not so easy to type in search windows, so I’m also toying with a pen name.

Any of you using a pen name?

Have you thought through the advantages vs. the hassles? Email me if you have advise for me. My public email: dtfwriter@gmail.com.

The other big, BIG, biggie I face is moving this blog from WordPress.com to WordPress.org. The ledger book began tilting years ago, yet I hung on to this blogging site due to the many friendships I treasure (made on this blog).

Yummy. People food!

Thanks, I waited sooo long for this.

“Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls.” Joseph Campbell

Not exactly bliss

I have less than a month to make these changes.

So in the next week I’ll ask you questions. I need your help to make some choices. Meanwhile we have set up an email at Mail Chimp for you to add yourself, if you want to keep in touch.

Dog Leader Mysteries from Deborah Taylor-French

Posted in Redwood Writers | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Photo Friday: California Dreaming

Young Golden Retriever adopted from a shelter

When we met this young dog, his new dad had just adopted him from an animal shelter. We offered to hold his dog’s leash, so the man could make a quick trip into Trader Joes. What a lovely young dog. He watched the doors, waiting for his new dad.

What do you want? Just say the word.

Young adopted dog waiting for his dad.

Please adopt, do not shop.

Please adopt, don’t shop for your next dog. Remember millions of wonderful puppies and dogs die in shelters all over the United States of America, due to not being adopted. If you never have adopted, talk to people who have. I’ve adopted and raised five dogs, all wonderful dogs, including two purebred keeshonds, Dawn and Nabisco. Both dogs came back three times from families to their ethical breeders due to a buy back contract.

Lifetime buy back dog breeder contract

Nabisco and Dawn, our keeshond dogs

Nabisco and Dawn, our keeshond dogs

What is an ethical dog breeder?

Definition of an ethical dog breeder: a breeder who only breeds dogs free of health issues, screens potential puppy purchasers and stands behind a legal contract signed by the buyer to sell back each puppy to the breeder for the life of the dog.

An Italian retriever wearing a video camera

Thanks for reading and sharing. Please share this message, adopt, don’t shop. Keep sharing until no more dogs end up being killed due to lack of homes.

Join the Humane Society of the United States.

Please comment, we love our readers.

Deborah Taylor-French




Posted in Give A Dog A Chance, Adopt, Photo Friday | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Mutt Monday: Best DIY Dog Training Video for Barking

By Deborah Taylor-French Wolfish or Puppyish? Dogs Speak

What is your dog barking at? Do you know?

We have a “problem dog.” He came from an animal shelter. In most ways, Sydney behaves adorably. He knows many commands. He has earned his K-9 Good Citizen Certificate from puppy school. We took private training sessions  because Sydney cleverly escaped whenever people tried to handle him or make him do anything he did not want to, like put on his collar or snap on his leash.

His rap-sheet included biting groomers and veterinarians.

Shelter volunteers and staff nicknamed Sydney, “Sid Vicious” because he chewed on fingers!

Ten Years Later, Sydney still has his short barking fits. He lets us help distract or command “Sydney, quiet.” We think he applied for the job of guarding his family.

Today at ten years old, Sydney is the apple of Winnie’s eye.

If I look over there, am I invisible?

Okay, I got it, you want me to wear this.

Of all the training methods we explored with Sydney, water squirt bottle included, the best help we ever got is in this training video. I did not make this, nor am I a dog trainer by profession, I am just one dog lover who has adopted and helped a half-dozen “problem dogs.

Each of those “problem dogs” trained up to be crazy to please family pets.

Please share on Facebook or send this to a friend, you may help a dog lover help his or her fearful dog learn to stay calm.


Getting Started with a Clicker My Positive Dog Training Blog

Dog Looking at and Listening to a Phonograph, ...

Dog Looking at and Listening to a Phonograph, “His Master’s Voice”, The Original RCA Music Puppy Dog Logo Symbol for Advertising (Photo credit: Beverly & Pack)

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Today Show: American Kennel Club Approved Puppy Mill Pups

A Distinguished Member of the Humane Society

A Distinguished Member of the Humane Society (Photo credit: Wikipedia.

Help stop puppy mill breeders from parading as American Kennel Club approved breeders.

Please share and reblog.

“New accusations that one of the country’s largest organizations dedicated to dogs, the American Kennel Club, isn’t doing enough to protect animals. TODAY National Investigative Correspondent Jeff Rossen reports.”  

Do you know that the American Kennel Club has only nine inspectors for the entire United States of America?

In my opinion, this is NOT nearly enough inspectors to do site visits at even 10% of all AKC approved breeders. AKC pedigreed puppies should be bred for healthy lives and under humane conditions. Don’t the dogs and the dog buyers deserve this?

What do you think? 

Can 9 breeder inspectors protect all AKC registered breed dogs across American from unethical and inhumane puppy mill breeders?

American Kennel Club Hounds

American Kennel Club Hounds (Photo credit: eschipul)


Video: One of the country’s largest organizations dedicated to dogs, the American Kennel Club, is facing new accusations from the Humane Society and the ASPCA saying that some AKC-registered breeders are raising dogs in filthy, inhumane conditions. NBC’s Jeff Rossen investigates.”

The Today Show

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Please share this Today Show news and video.

AKC-registered breeders raising dogs in ‘miserable’ conditions

Help dog buyers stop buying puppy mill dogs approved by the American Kennel Club. Help dog lovers find breed rescue groups and shut puppy mills. No more animal cruelty under the AKC stamp of approval. Dogs lives and futures depend on us. Be their voice. Speak up. Write for dog rescue and adoption.

Yours most truly,

Deborah Taylor-French

Posted in Animal Welfare, Give A Dog A Chance, Adopt | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments