Guest Blog Post: “Canine Car Wash,” in Nick’s exact words

Most things are more fun if done with a dog, fellow blogger Nick and I agree. I say all the better if there’s some Labrador mixed in! Here’s Nick’s account of one such occassion…

Nick’s dog Dudley is quite a helper…

I have a confession to make. I use a ‘legal high’ and I am addicted. His name is Dudley and he’s a chocolate Labrador. Packing a far bigger punch than anything obtained ‘under the counter,’ he delivers mirth and laughter to our house without evening trying, but his most striking quality is his ability to turn the mundane and the ordinary into mayhem.

What could be more humdrum and uninteresting than cleaning your car? A classic Sunday morning chore, and for most of us, one to be endured, not enjoyed. That is, until you get a Labrador to help you. Stealthy forays into your bucket when your back is turned leave you brushless, the only clue as to the perpetrator being the nest of bubbles that still cling to Dudley’s eyebrows like fog patches. Wrestling the brush back from my hapless assistant, I soldier on determinedly. Bending down to clean the wheels, I find myself at his height, a sure cue for mischief. Waiting right until he has nosed his way into beside me, I cup a handful of bubbles and blow them at him, sparking a whirling, spinning frenzy as he chases his tail in confused excitement. Churning his way around the garden, every rotation as mesmerizing as watching an Olympic gymnast doing a floor routine, I struggle to take in each turn and grow giddy with laughter and amusement.

Nick’s dog Dudley takes pride in his work…

With him still distracted, I finish the job and go in search of a watering can, ready to dowse the suds off each streaking panel. And then I remember. Of late, the ‘can’ has become the object of his desires, his number one toy. It becomes a foot race to reach it first. I lose of course, but then I am winning also, my smile growing ever wider as I watch him stealing his prize and doubling away from me at speed across the garden. Looks like I’ll be washing those streaks off another time then. Thanks Dudley.

About the writer: Nick is a teacher with a passion for the outdoors, dogs and writing. Since getting his pet Labrador Dudley as a puppy two years ago, he has been inspired to blog about all the hapless, fun and joyous things that Dudley gets up to. Nick’s ambition is to grow and develop his  blog along with his writing talents and hopefully feel confident enough to write a book about his life with his canine companion. He also writes regular articles for ‘North Wales Magazine’ and enjoys walking and running. Mostly, with Dudley. Visit his blog here.

Guest Blog Post: “5 Tips for Greeting a Strange Dog,” in the exact words of Willie Mays

Love dogs but not getting bitten? Willie Mays blogs about cats and dogs. Here are her tips for meeting a brand new dog…

Brilliant photo courtesy of Ryan McGuire of

As we all know that dogs are one of the most loved animals around the world. Like who doesn’t like dogs? When we see a dog, our very first instinct is to approach it and run our hands over it. But we forget that every dog is not same and each one possesses a different personality. So, approaching a dog impulsively can sometimes go very wrong. Dogs are not like humans, so they don’t know if the interaction is going to be a positive one or negative one.

But you don’t have to worry about it as given below are 5 tips that you can follow which will help you in greeting any dog.

1. Ask for Permission

The very first thing you should do is ask for permission. This tip can be generally applied on dogs with owners. If the owner is around then you should always ask him/her if you can greet their dog. This way you can avoid any future conflict and also make sure if it is safe to approach one.

Once the owner shows you the green flag and trusts you with the dog, only then approach it. If the owner denies you then you should respect that decision as there can be a number of reasons behind the owner not allowing you to approach his/her dog.

2. Wait for the dog to approach

Once you start to approach the dog after greeting the owner, walk towards the dog very slowly. This won’t panic the dog as dogs can act out of instinct when something fast approaches them. If you are meeting that dog for the first time then give it some time to get familiar with your face and also make it comfortable near you. So, the best you can do is let it approach you. If the dog already knows you then you can advance towards it as it will be more relaxed that way.

3. Avoid the eye-contact

In humans, eye-contact is considered as a sign of friendliness and confidence, but in dogs, it’s not really about getting familiar. If you make eye-contact with a dog for a long time, then the dog can take it as a sign of aggression and threat. So, try not to look at the dog straight in the eye while approaching it as it can become more about who is dominant than about friendliness.

4. Don’t overdo

Once the dog lets you touch it and play with it, try to be as gentle as possible and avoid touching the top of its head. Also, don’t forget that it is the dog who decides how long you can play with it. If the dog has met you for the first time, be ready for a small interaction. If the dog starts to walk away from you then don’t try to follow it to reach towards it desperately as it can trigger the dog’s anger or anxiety. Moreover, always keep an eye on the dog’s behavior while you’re petting it. If you think the dog is giving you some signs to stop then stop.

5. Be confident

One of the qualities of the dog is that they can easily sense emotions. If you are feeling scared then the dog will probably know. This can make them cautious and angry, which can affect your interaction in a very different way which you probably don’t want. So, try to be as confident as possible and smile if you can. This way you can assure the dog that it does not have anything to worry about.

About the author in her own words: Willie Mays is a housewife, good mother, pet lover and a blogger. Auxier  is her dog and Mimo is the name of her cat. She loves them very much. She has an aim to help other pet owners and that’s why she wrote about shiba inu husky mix in her blog.

Guest Blog Post: “Preparation Tips for the Road Trip of Your Dreams,” in the exact words of Julie Morris

What’s not to love about vacations, right? For me, they’re all the better with my dogs!

Here are blogger Julie Morris’ hints for car adventures…

Photo thanks to Pixabay.

Every year, millions of Americans take road trips. If you’re considering one, these tips will help you prepare.

  1. Plan Ahead

Make sure you have a solid itinerary. Compile a list of places you’d like to visit, and then chart them out on a map. Come up with a route that hits all your spots as efficiently as possible. Set a target mileage or destination for each day, and plan where you’ll stop to rest and get gas and food.

  1. Pack Smart

If you’re visiting a variety of climates, pack clothing for each weather condition. Pack a first aid kit as well as a spare tire, tire changing kit, and air pump. To minimize the amount of stops you’ll need to make, pack enough food and water to last at least a day, and load up on a new supply daily.

  1. When Travelling With Dogs

Be sure to prepare your vehicle for pets. Ensure your dog’s well-being by investing in a safety harness or travel crate. Factor Fido into where you go and how often you stop, and know which rest stops and campgrounds are dog-friendly. Pack enough food and bottled water to keep your pet happy. Of course, if you’re leaving Fido behind, be sure to leave him with a caring, reputable dog boarding service.

  1. Before You Leave

Ensure everything is in order before leaving home. Make a checklist for the day you leave; check that everything is packed, and make sure there are no unnecessary electronics running that will drain your electricity while you’re gone.

Lastly, remember: when it comes to epic road trips, it’s not about the destination, but the journey itself. So, what are you waiting for? The road is waiting!

About the author, in her own words: Ms. Morris is a life and career coach who strives to help others live the best lives that they can. She believes she can relate to clients who feel run over by life because of her own experiences. She spent years in an unfulfilling career in finance before deciding to help people in other ways. Find out more about her at

Guest Blog Post: “Sticky Toffee Pudding anyone?” in Viola Bleu’s exact words

Voila! Viola’s sticky toffee pudding.

Rev up your baking gear! Fellow blogger Viola Bleu’s recipe has me licking my fingers in anticipation.

Apparently, it was so delicious that it got eaten before Viola could photograph the final plated dish.

Never fear. Here’s a video of cooking superstar Nigella making it for Christmas.

And here’s a video of a cook who makes me admire how she doesn’t apologize for how the final sticky product makes it hard for her to talk.

Now on to Viola’s great post


As the dish went in the oven, I admit the ingredients could have looked more appetising. But this is the truth of the process; sticky toffee pudding before its glory on the plate, and the gunky sweetness which sticks to the back of your teeth. This photo is the real life part of the fantasy which will be the portion covered with cream, dribbling down across textured contours of sponge and jagged rocks of dates. Real life is the seven selfies you take before the one which is finally chosen for public scrutiny. That one becomes the fantasy. The image of what we ideally want ourselves to be.

In fact I had to bring it out again, because I forgot the components of the sticky bit. Dark muscovado sugar, unsalted butter and some boiling water … all sprinkled, dabbed and poured over the top before cooking commences. (That looks even…

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Guest Blog Post: “Adopting a Pet: Do These Things First,” by Crystal

Love animals? Crystal loves them so much that both of her blogs, WELCOME TO CRYSTAL’S SITE(ORIGINALLY COUNTRY LIVING) and CRYSTAL AND DAISY MAE’S PHOTO-BLOGGING SITE, are dedicated to them.

Here’s Crystal’s advice for soon-to-be pet owners…

Deciding whether to get a pet? Some things to consider first…

  1. Will you adopt, rescue, or buy it from a pet shop?
  2. How will you get your new friend spayed/neutered?
  3. What is the background of the pet you’re looking to get?
  4. If you have children, will the pet get along with them?
  5. Is the pet trained? Or will it need to attend obedience school?
  6. Will your pet live indoors, outdoors, or a combination of both?
  7. If you rent, does your landlord allow pets?
  8. If you’re getting a dog, what size can you reasonably handle?

Once you decide to get a pet, here are a few things you need to do before bringing them home…

  1. Be sure to take it to the vet to make sure everything is alright.
  2. Make a pet emergency kit for each one.
  3. If you’re getting a cat, for every cat there should be two litter boxes. For example, for one cat, there should be two litter boxes. For three cats there should be four litter boxes, and so on.
  4. Set aside extra money for in case of unexpected vet trips.
  5. If you’re getting a dog, make sure it has someplace to exercise, and that your home is big enough.

These are only a few things you need to do when looking for a pet. I suggest that you either adopt or rescue one, rather than buy one from a pet shop!

For more of Crystal’s pet tips, visit her at WELCOME TO CRYSTAL’S SITE(ORIGINALLY Country Living) and Crystal and Daisy Mae’s Photo-Blogging Site.


Guest Blog Post: “A Happy Tail,” in Sue Clancy’s exact words

The artwork and stories of Sue Clancy are totally smile enducing. Here’s what she submitted, dear HBT reader, so you can smile too…

My mentor and adopted dad, Dr. Bob Hoke, had an Abyssinian cat named Missy. One day we were sitting and talking with our drinks, papers, and books strewn about the dining room table. When Missy jumped up and stalked through the middle of the table, her tail swishing left to right, we quickly grabbed our glasses; tall stemware filled to the brim with red wine.

“That tail reminds me of a story…,” Bob said, and proceeded to tell me, “A Happy Tail.”

This story, along with others, is included in this book…

About the artist: Sue Clancy is a fine artist represented by several commercial art galleries. Her art has been in exhibits and featured in public and private collections around the world. She is the artist/author of, “Dogs by Sue Clancy,” and many other artist books. Inspired by ordinary life in the Pacific Northwest, she creates in order to keep the dragons giggling and the good wolves fed.

Guest Blog Post: “The Benefits of Pets on Our Mental Health,” in Kalia’s exact words

Pets have enhanced my life in many, many, many, many, many ways.

Here guest blogger Kalia, from Washington state, writes of the many gifts that come of caring for furry friends…

Blogger Kalia with Ryder.

Hi there! My name is Kalia. I am the founder of Front Seat Ryder is a blog designed to inspire, encourage and empower the modern dog mom to improve her mental health with the help of her doggy companion.

I am super excited to share with Happiness Between Tails —  Thank you so much for having me! Today, I’m going to talk a little bit about the benefits pets have on our mental health.

When adopting a pet into your home, you probably aren’t thinking about your mental health. Are you?! I want to talk to you about some of the great benefits pets have on our mental health. These will give you another reason to love your fur babies – as if you needed one.

A pet can benefit you in a variety of ways including:

  • Mentally
  • Emotionally
  • Physically
  • Socially

While these are all important ways a pet can benefit you, improving mental health is high on the list. My dog Ryder is actually my Emotional Support Animal. He helps me cope with my depression and anxiety.

Pets fill the void of feeling isolated. Feeling of isolation and loneliness can lead to many different mental health issues. Some of which include forms of panic, anxiety attacks, and depression. Those feelings are soothed with the company of a pet.

Having a pet gives you a feeling of true purpose. A feeling that there is someone who needs caring for and tended to. Having a purpose in life gives someone suffering from depression hope. This can make all the difference in someone’s life.

How does your pet make your life better?