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MY DOG & I: HOLLY, JOLLY… BY JANINE LAZARUS

my dog and i dec 2015

I love Christmas!! Yes, all the songs and the decorations and the food and the presents and the hugging…everything.

I love that Christmas means I get to relax a little and have some home-time with my dogs and my dog friends’ dogs… I don’t care what the weather is doing, I know we will get a few wonderful hikes in and spend some quality time, lazing around on the couch in front of the TV, overeating and enjoying each others’ company.

shoneys dec
Christmas Meals! Shoneys.com

My personal dogs do not get a great deal of one-on-one time with me. We have a constant stream of visitors at the house on Muddy Creek and the” guests” usually get the majority of the attention. So it is nice, during this Holiday time to slow things down a bit and refocus on what my goals are for my own dogs, while I am spending time with them. This year, we welcomed a new puppy, Portia, into our lives and she has had an exciting beginning from a broken leg and an accident involving many stitches to all kinds of digestive issues…Of course my puppy is allergic to wheat and corn and wants to ingest every illegal item available!!! But we are hopefully through the worst and now I am having to “catch up” on some of her early training if we are going to be a great team.

A dog trainer’s dog has to have some subtle skills that do not fit into the general “obedience commands” list. She must be able to be polite to ALL new dogs arriving at the Facility…she must be calm in the face of the chaos of a first group class with dogs barking and people milling about…she must be able to spend long hours waiting while her owner works with other owners and dogs…she must travel well, not react to overt rudeness from unschooled dogs and sit politely while strangers stick their fingers into her face while talking in high, excited voices. She must be prepared to wait for her dinner sometimes, work in the rain, snow and heat and allow herself to be dressed in ridiculous costumes for seasonal events. And most of all and probably hardest…she must SHARE!! Her home, her toys, her Mom, her treats and sometimes even her bed!

Greenbrier Chiro Center Lewisburg WV
Chiro & Nutritional Support! GreenbrierChiro.com

These things are not easy to teach and cannot be learned overnight. Over time and with my support and consistent guidance, she will become the partner I need in my work and the friend I want in my play. We will be a team.

It is the possibility of such teamwork that I want to offer to all my wonderful students and their dogs. There has always been an understanding between dogs and humans that they can enhance each others’ lives and in this fast paced, commercially oriented culture, the bond you have with your dog may be bring you more peace and joy than any pile of presents under the Tree…

So think of your buddy at Xmas and find something that squeaks, smells or tastes good for their Xmas stocking and then go for a nice long hike together…

Merry Xmas Everyone and many, many thanks for all your love and support.

– Janine Lazarus, LBSPY #72. December 2015.

Publisher/Editor in Chief at HashtagWV | + posts

HASHTAGWV ART & ENTERTAINMENT Publisher/Editor-in-Chief, Christina Entenmann-Edwards has been a WV resident since September 2008. She was born and raised in Fairfield County, Connecticut, and is no stranger to hard work and the entrepreneurial spirit. In 2006, she graduated from Quinnipiac University (Hamden, Connecticut), Cum Laude, with a B.A. in History. In 2010, she graduated with an M.B.A. from Liberty University (Lynchburg, Virginia). In February 2012, Christina launched HashtagWV as the area’s first full-color, free arts and entertainment tabloid + online platform. Christina completed the Leadership West Virginia class of 2021, which is an innovative program that grows, engages, and mobilizes leaders to ignite a life passion to move West Virginia forward.

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