In Lieu of a Holiday Card

Wherever this day finds you, whatever tradition you celebrate, I hope you are able to spend time with those you love the most, human and animal.


Right now, as you are reading this, I am thinking of you and wishing you nothing but the most relaxing of holidays. I hope you have your feet up with a glass or mug of your favourite beverage and a furry friend in your lap. I hope you are comfortable and full of contentment.


Now get off your behind and go create some memories!

Happy Holidays to each and every one of you.

With love and gratitude,

Shiva’s House of Deluded Dreamers

Dear Santa – Shiva Style

014For the last three years, when the holiday season looms, one of the things I have anticipated the most is Tales and Tails’ annual “Letters to Santa” feature. This round is no exception. Today’s letter, from the incorrigible Küster, reminded me why I enjoy this so much. Sure, it’s a little impractical. We are all adults. We know dogs can’t really write letters to the big guy in the North Pole. Nonetheless, I think these letters showcase just how well the author knows her dogs, knows what they likely would say, if they had the ability. Her sound comprehension of each of her dogs’ unique personalities is something I covet.

We are all only guessing. There is no way to truly understand what our dogs are thinking and there is certainly no way to know what they would make of a bearded man who delivers presents around the world. Still, I wish I had the confidence the of the Taleteller when it comes to knowing what motivates my dog.

I don’t think this cuts it, but here is my attempt at Shiva’s letter to the jolly old elf, with warm thanks to all the puppies at Tales and Tails for the inspiration. 

Hi Mr. Kringle!

How are you? My name is Shiva! That’s with a “v” and not a “b”. A lot of people get confused. Since I hear you bring presents to all the good doggies I wanted to make sure you got the name right. Sheeeevvvvvaaaaa. And not Shebbbbbaaa. Okay? Cool!

Ummm! I guess I am supposed to tell you about all the good things I did this year. But it’s kind of boring and I’d rather tell you about all of the fun adventures I went on! Like, I went on this reaaaaalllllyyy long truck ride and saw lots of cool new things! I ran and ran and sniffed and didn’t get sick once! Also, I am living in a really cool new place that is kind of cold and kind of weird but it smells really good with lots of really nice doggies and my people are here so it has been lots of fun! I just wish I could run more. I missing running. But that’s okayI I can always run in my dreams.

Oh! I just remembered. I have been extra good this year. Just ask His Excellency Mr. Kitty Meister Meister Kitty. He doesn’t bat at my nose with his claws nearly as much these days so I think this must mean I am doing better. Yeah, I still chase him sometimes but only when he runs first! I think he likes it too. Yeah, we’re totally BFFs now. Totally.

010Anyway! Can I ask for what I want now? Honestly, I don’t want that much. Only, can you get my people to stay at home with me more often? That would be nice. It sucks when they have to leave every day. I try to be good when they are here. I don’t jump on the counters as much and I tolerate all of their weird cuddling. But they still leave so maybe that’s not enough. If you could make that happen, it would be great.

Also, if it isn’t too much to ask, I am a bit worried about something. I am not sure why I am worried but my human has seemed upset lately the closer it gets to the big day so I am assuming something scary is going to happen. They tell me it is going to be my first Christmas away from home. That sounds exciting but when my person says it her face gets all tense so maybe it’s bad? I don’t know. I just want everyone to be happy. Can you make that happen? Will you be able to find me if I am not at home on Christmas Eve? Is that why my person is worried? I hope not. Can you please tell her it will be okay? That’s all I want, us to be together and happy no matter where we are. Because if I am with my people and they are with me then I know it will be okay.

So, that’s it! I hope you have a very good week and holiday with your doggies. I promise to be as good as I can and Mr. Kitty Meister Sir promises to also be good so maybe you can give him something he wants too? Like maybe more string? He seems to like string.

Happy holidays, Mr. Kringle! I don’t know if I want to see you because your booming voice is kind of scary but I hope your magic is real.

Your doggy friend,




Rescued Insanity Goes Caroldy

002It doesn’t happen very often. Take a second to enjoy a puppy kiss and you’ll miss it. But once a holiday season, maybe once every other,  I will get swept up in the egg nog and the Charlie Brown and the glitter and attempt to re-write a favourite seasonal tune with a canine twist. Now, to say my skills at the parody are limited would be a giant understatement. The declared Queen of Caroldies will always be I Still Want More Puppies. Have you seen her latest? So cute, so appropriate. Anything I attempt looks amateurish in comparison to the master.

But I can’t resist the lure. Every year one song in particular gets lodged in my brain. It isn’t a good song. It isn’t even a good Christmas song. But it is played on the radio ad infinitum and I find myself involuntarily singing it in the shower every morning. It drives everyone around me insane. I have come to the conclusion that the only way to deal with this spectre of a song is to re-work it doggy style.

002So here it is, “Last Christmas”, originally recorded by Wham! – the only true version – and written by George Michael. May my shower belting be less mind-numbing from here on in:

(If it’s too painful for you, I understand if you need to click away.)

Last Christmas
I gave you a toy
But the very next minute, you tore out its guts
This time
To save me a dime
I’ll give you a broken shoe box

Last Christmas
I gave you a blanket
But I turned around and it was peed on
This time
To save me a dime
I’ll give you a chewed up tree branch

Bankrupt and out of joy
I try to find
Something you won’t destroy
Tell me dog
Must you wreck everything?
If it’s been a year
My wallet still feels the sting
“Merry Christmas”
I wrapped your gift and placed it
Cautiously under the tree
It was hard
Now I know what a fool I’ve been
But if you give me those eyes
I know you’ll trick me again

Last Christmas
I gave you a bully stick
But within three seconds you’d swallowed it whole
This time
To save me a dime
I’ll give you some stale dog food

Last Christmas
I gave you a ball
But all you played was keep away
This time
To save me a dime
I’ll give you a dirty sock

What do you think? Should I make my own music video? It’s bound to go viral, I am sure.

Olden Times and Ancient Rhymes…

Of love and dreams to share!

Ahem. I apologize. The instant the calendar turns to December I feel like I have free reign to belt out as many holiday tunes as possible. The iconic song from the best Christmas special ever is always one of the first on my playlist. It is this time of year when I miss choir membership the most. Christmas, for me, will always be able the music. I don’t care how much my PH teases or how many times the radio plays “Silver Bells”, there is such a small window of opportunity for rocking around the tree that I am compelled to take advantage.

Of course, the start of December marks more than just the ability to annoy people with my out of practice singing voice. It is also the beginning of some pretty big blogging events and I would be remiss if I did not provide the full details.

And the lights. Can't forget those.

And the lights. Can’t forget those.

calendarNumber 1 Today was the very first day of the brilliant Advent Calendar for Dog Lovers. Each day leading up to the 25th all host bloggers will be offering a different dog-themed giveaway. Every. Day. That is a lot of chances to win! Last year I was too distracted over things that did not matter nearly as much as winning doggy prizes and did not put forth my full effort. But this year, this year I have a feeling I am going to win big.

Since I am going to win it all, I guess there is no point in me sharing this with you. Still, I wouldn’t mind a little competition.

Number 2

Today is also the start of Something Wagging This Way Comes’ Pet Blogger Gift Exchange. The best thing about this event is that everyone is a winner! I can’t think of a better way to get to know my fellow online pet lovers. In fact, I found out who I have been paired with today – shhhh – and I couldn’t be more thrilled. Don’t worry, it won’t be a secret for long!

In case you missed the sign up for this exciting holiday tradition, never fear! Submissions will be accepted until December 20th so as many people can join in the celebration as possible. What are you waiting for?

Number 3

This one I am much less anxious to share as I am much less confident of my chances. However, I have such a good time preparing my audition videos that I want to encourage all of you to do the same, whether you decrease Shiva’s likelihood of being selected or not.

Remember the wicked Andrew Grantham of Talking Animals fame? The one who donates 100% of the proceeds from his merchandise sales to the Nova Scotia SPCA? Of course you do. Every year, the talented video editor puts out a special holiday montage based on videos submitted by pet-loving fans. That’s right. Your pet might just end up an Internet star!

Last year Shiva and I auditioned but clearly I did not work hard enough to enable her entertaining qualities to shine through. Maybe this year is her big chance at glory?

006I’ve decided it doesn’t matter. Win or lose, we still have a blast trying. I encourage you to try out with your cat, dog, parakeet, or guinea pig as well. If you win, your video will be featured in a special holiday video. If you lose? You’ll have had a lot of laughs! Besides, it’d be awesome to see a few more Petosphere animals in the mix! Special thanks to Bringing Up Bella for the reminder of this opportunity!

Do you know of any other fun pet blogging events during the holiday season? Please share the details in the comments!

Letters to Santa From Shiva and The Cat

Dear Santa,

How are your reindeer? Are they ready for their big trip? I wish I could fly. I try and I try and I try but my feet just won’t keep me up. Maybe I need hooves? Could you get me some hooves for Christmas? That would be cool. Then I could fly over that water and get that stick and I wouldn’t have to worry about the lake monster eating me.

011I want you to know I have worked very hard to be good. I haven’t even chased Mr. Kitty Meister Sir very much! Only once a day, just to make sure he gets his exercise! And I have been working hard to remember to come back when the humans call my name. Sometimes I still forget but only when there is something really yummy and stinky. You understand, right?

I’m still thinking about those reindeer. They have such a cool job! Do they have enough water? Do they have enough food?

Speaking of food, I would like some more of that, please. It doesn’t matter what kind of food. I like it all. As long as it’s food.

Yep, food and hooves! If you could. And maybe for Mr. Kitty Meister Sir to keep his claws in when we play. But if you can’t do that then just more food would be fine.

Lots of licks,



Dear Overly Jolly Human,

I honestly don’t know why I am condescending to write to you. Frankly, I don’t even believe you exist. Perhaps it is the lessons taught to me by the three ghosts? They visit me every year. It would make sense that eventually their teachings would stick. Perhaps it is that saccharine program the humans watched last night, starring that fine fellow The Grinch? If even he has converted maybe there is something to all this holiday humbug.

Perhaps I am just getting old.


I have no idea what lies that canine beast has told you but I do not need more exercise, thank you very much. I am not fat. Perish the thought of it! I am perfectly capable of managing my weight on my own and require no interference from mangey dogs.

In fact, I would like to say that I do not require anything from anyone. I have learned how to hunt for food by calling for it in the humans’ ears. There is nothing you can offer that would interest me, especially since you probably are not real.

003Nevertheless, on the minute chance there is such a person as “Santa”, I suppose I could be so humble as to ask him to bring me some opposable thumbs. Yes, they would serve me quite nicely. If I had them, I don’t think even the humans could stop me from my plans for world domination. At the very least, I would finally gain the respect of the other neighbourhood cats. The ones in this new place have yet to bow to my authority. It’s really quite troubling. Opposable thumbs would show them all exactly who the real Meister is.

If you are real, you will get them for me. If I wake up tomorrow and still have to paw at the door like a useless mutt, I will know the truth. The ball is officially in your court.


Kitty Meister Meister Kitty

Welcome to the Advent Calendar for Dog Lovers hosted by Kol’s Notes, PupLove, Rescued Insanity, Woof Woof Mama & I Still Want More Puppies!

Today’s giveaway is sponsored by Pawmetto Pet Treats. Click here to enter to win a all-natural freeze dried meaty treats and be entered to win our Grand Prize package worth more than $1000!

Advent Calendar for Dog Lovers – Day Twenty-two and Day Twenty-three

006It is with almost a sad heart that I help present the penultimate days of the Advent Calendar for Dog Lovers. The two days leading up to December 25th are my two most favourite days of the year. As much as I am enjoying them, I can’t help but feel wistful, knowing they are soon over. It’s been so much fun sharing so many giveaways with you. I don’t know how I can possibly keep up the momentum when all the prizes are won. Holiday excitement is a hard thing to sustain.

How typical of me, already weeping for the end of the celebration before it has even begun. It’s a wonder I ever get out of bed at all with that mindset. Shiva really is a hero for putting up with me. If she could talk, I am sure she’d roll her eyes and tell me to quit my whining and get to the good stuff.

And so I shall!

Welcome to the Advent Calendar for Dog Lovers hosted by Kol’s Notes, PupLove, Rescued Insanity, Woof Woof Mama & I Still Want More Puppies!

The two great prizes we have for you this weekend are some of the best yet, I can assure you. If you haven’t yet entered for a chance to win, you are definitely going to want to check these out. I don’t know about you, but I always feel guilty when I think of getting things for myself this time of year. Now that it’s so close to the big day and all my shopping is (mostly) complete, that shame fades. Thus, I have no trouble drooling over these next two giveaways. Think of them as a reward for all that time spent battling crowds at the mall with a smile on your face.

The giveaway for Day Twenty-two was sponsored by Toby and Max. Click here to enter to win beautiful dog-centric jewelry!



How adorable is this pendant?

How adorable is this pendant?

The giveaway on Day Twenty-three is brought to us by Chet the Dog, Author Spencer Quinn & Atria Books. Click here to enter to win a full-set of the Chet & Bernie Mysteries!



Can't think of a better way to enjoy the rest of the winter than curled up with a good dog mystery

Can’t think of a better way to enjoy the rest of the winter than curled up with a good dog mystery

Don’t forget! Every entry for a daily prize also enters you for a chance to win the Grand Prize worth more than $1,000! You are not going to want to miss that.

Good luck!

Advent Calendar for Dog Lovers – Day Nineteen

Welcome to the Advent Calendar for Dog Lovers hosted by Kol’s NotesPupLoveRescued InsanityWoof Woof Mama & I Still Want More Puppies

Every day between now and December 24th, we’ll be giving away great prizes! Plus! Every time you enter to win a daily prize, you’ll be entered to win our fabulous Grand Prize Package worth more than $1,000 featuring gifts from each of our 24 fantastic sponsors! 

Once more, I am excited for the chance to introduce the sponsor of the day. The name alone makes me smile. It doesn’t hurt they are also home to some of the cutest canine accessories I have ever seen.

With no further ado, I am proud to introduce today’s kind beneficiary, Chuckle Hounds!

We all know collars serve an important function. They clip onto the leash and they hold your dog’s tags. At least, they are supposed to do the latter. Shiva’s tags seem to keep going missing and I’ve not managed to get down to city hall to replace them for the 567th time. As a result, she has been tagless for months. Don’t tell the municipality, shhhh!
But I digress… Most collars handily sport your dog’s tags and serve other practical purposes. However, just because they are primarily functional doesn’t men they can’t also be fashionable.
Chuckle Hounds was founded by a couple of dog lovers who were looking for interesting collars to express their puppy’s unique personality. All of their collars are handmade. With tons of adorable patterns to chose from, there’s bound to be something to suit your dog’s spirit!
You can also make your dog’s collar a little extra special by accessorizing with a pretty flower.
Or – perhaps for the canine gentleman in your life – a debonair bow.
Feel free to mix and match and make each collar your own! The fun folks at Chuck Hounds are happy to accommodate custom orders and sizes.
Chuckle Hounds is giving today’s winner a Chuckle Hounds Collar, plus a flower or bow tie to bling it up with!
They’re also adding one of their bow ties, a Chuckle Hounds leash and a $10 Gift Certificate to the Chuckle Hounds store to our fabulous grand prize package worth $1000!

Enter now for your chance to win and 
check out the entire Advent Calendar for more chances to win great prizes!

You must complete the Rafflecopter form and leave a comment below in order to be eligible to win. Good luck!


a Rafflecopter giveaway