Category: Dogs

billie-charm

Introducing Billie Henrietta Konik

We interrupt our normally scheduled Thought of the Week to introduce you to the newest member of the MichaelKonik.com family: Billie! She’s a 5 month-old shaggy mutt of indeterminate origins. We found her at the Hope Ranch Animal Sanctuary, where she lived communally (and cage-free) with all sorts of other adorable orphans. My wife the...

chareze and charm

Chareze

We knew her for a month before she died in a terrible accident, but Chareze Clamor touched us so profoundly that she may have well spent 15-or-more years, a whole doggie life, as part of our family. She was only five-months. A puppy. She weighed maybe seven pounds, much of it hair. A pure Shih-Tzu,...

runyon flora

Friends of Runyon Canyon?

Runyon Canyon Park, the dog-friendly nature sanctuary in the hills above Hollywood, has been the subject of several essays in this space, as well as a scenic location in at least two or three of our books. It’s just about the greatest part of living in this neighborhood, and maybe all of Los Angeles. For...

Unknown

Cages

After reading Adam Gopnik’s masterful examination of the American prison system in a recent issue of the New Yorker, in which he examines our fetishistic compulsion to warehouse millions of errant citizens in prisons, it’s easy to conclude that our conception of “cruel and unusual punishment” needs reconsideration. Gopnik burrows through the rotten veneer of...

ella

Brooding on Death

The remains of my dear friend Ella the dog arrived from the crematorium in a nice fabric-covered box. The ashes themselves were in a plastic freezer bag, which was probably a good thing, since in addition to a fine grey powder there were many pinky-nail-size bone fragments and flakes from the few teeth Ella retained...

mike_ella2

Ella Konik: 1993-2008

Ella Guinevere Konik died peacefully last night at home in her bed, surrounded by family. She was close to 15 1/2.  Frank Sinatra once told an interviewer, “They say you only live once. But if you have a life like mine, once is enough.” Ella’s time on Earth was like that. A white-lab and greyhound...

ella in eur

The Ella Update

Ella Guinevere Konik, the lab-greyhound mutt who inspired the best-selling book “Ella in Europe” and the subsequent Animal Planet TV show “Ella & Me” is getting old. Not just “older,” but old. Depending on which set of medical records you believe, she’s either 14 or 15. Iin human years that’s around 100. She’s dealing with...

vick dog fight

Dog Fighting

My sweet old mutt, Ella, is napping in her corner bed, dreaming, I reckon, of squirrels that are slower than she and big plates of rare prime rib (bone in) that someone mistakenly, providentially, left on the floor for her to bolt. When she was much younger, thinking she was providing essential security for her...

barbaro in heaven

Anthropomorphism

Being a dog owner, I understand completely the impulse to anthropomorphize our pets, imbuing them with human traits that canines and felines — and goldfish and hamsters and salamanders — don’t really have. Our furry (or scaly) friends seem so much more than mere animals. They’re companions and confessors, students and teachers, and they magically...

Dogs ready to eat

Philippines Notes, Part Two: Using Dogs

Some people in the Philippines eat dogs. (A recent documentary about the country, made by a native, was entitled “Dog Eaters.” Some expatriate Pinoys didn’t appreciate the label, but the verity of canine consumption wasn’t ever in question.) Occasionally, pet-owners here suffer the heartbreak of having their furry friend kidnapped — dognapped? — and transformed...