Monday, January 4, 2010

Traveling Bob

I want to tell you a story about a little dog. This dog was a good little dog. Yes, he chewed on shoes and piddled on the floor. But he didn't mean it. He was just a puppy after all. He wanted to be good. But the man and the woman who lived with him and his 4-legged mom said they had too many dogs already and that the little dog was too much trouble. So they took him to the animal shelter. The little dog was put in a small cage with no friends to play with and no one to pet him. He had food and water and sometimes he got to go outside and walk around, but most of the time he was in the cage - alone. It was very scary! Sometimes the people who worked at the shelter would come and get a dog for a walk - and the dog would never come back. The little dog heard that they were put to sleep. Sleep was good, but somehow sleeping and never coming back didn't seem right. The little dog worried that might happen to him and he was afraid. Sometimes, people would come in to the shelter and take a dog from the cage. These dogs also never came back. But the little dog heard that this was different. These dogs were going to new homes where they would be loved and be part of a family. The little dog wished every night that someone would take him home.

One day a man and woman came in to the shelter. They stopped at the little dog's cage and talked to him. The little dog sniffed at the woman's fingers as she reached through the cage. She asked if she could hold the little dog. When she picked him up, the little dog reached up and kissed her on the chin to say thank you for taking him out of the cage. The woman cuddled the little dog, looked at the man, and said, "I want him." That's was all it took! The little dog couldn't believe it. Someone was going to take him home.

The man and woman took him to a big house in the country.  There were lots of trees with squirrels to chase.  There were some other dogs to play with.  There were also cats, but the little dog soon learned that they were almost as much fun to chase as squirrels - except for the big one with the claws!

Every day the man left the house to go to someplace called work.  Then the woman would go upstairs to a room and also go to work.  She began to let the little dog in to sleep in a chair while she worked.  The little dog watched her work on something called a computer and talk on the telephone.  Pretty soon he began to understand that what the woman called work was actually helping people find hotels and other locations for meetings, weddings, and other events.  She knew a lot about hotels and different cities and enjoyed helping others find just the right location.

One day the woman announced that she had to go to one of these events to meet with a client.  The little dog was sad because he did not know what would happen to him while she was gone.  He sat every day in the chair in the office worried about where he would go while he watched the woman make plans to travel.  One night after the man came home, he and the woman were talking.  They decided that they would both go on this trip so they could take a vacation after.  Then the woman started talking about what worried the little dog - what they would do with him while they were gone.  The little dog listened and as he did, he couldn't believe what he heard.  The woman did not want to leave him alone because he was so little and not used to being alone.  True, she said someone would stop by a couple of times every day to check on them and make sure they had food and water.  But she said while the other animals who lived in the house were used to this, the little dog was not.  And so they decided to take the little dog with them!

The little dog had the best time on his trip.  He would spend his days with his new dad while his new mom went to meetings.  Then they would all go for walks in the parks or on the beach.  At night, mom would bring dinner to the hotel room and she and dad would eat and sometimes share a bite with the little dog.  Then they would all curl up on the bed and watch TV or read.  The little dog was so happy! 

One day on the trip, the woman and the little dog met another lady who was traveling with her dog.  The women stopped to talk to each other for a while.  On the way back to the hotel, the woman began to talk to the little dog.  She said the other lady had a hard time finding a good place for her to stay with her pet.  She said it was too bad that there wasn't some place where you could not only find listings of pet-friendly hotels, but actually learn enough about them to know which one was the best.  Then she looked at the little dog and said perhaps she and the little dog could help others who travel with their pets find the best places to go, just like she helped people having meetings find the best location.

In case you haven't figured it out by now, the little dog in the story is me.  And this is how Traveling Bob was born.  Mom and I have traveled together all over the country.  I have learned a lot about what makes a good pet-friendly hotel in a great pet-friendly city.  I love sharing what I have learned with other traveling pets.  And I'm really excited now that Mom is letting me have my own website so I can put all this great info in one place.

So the next time you are going on a trip and taking your furry family members with you, ask Traveling Bob for advice.  We'll make sure you find the best place for you and your family.  Remember - it should be a dog's world, even on the road!

Friday, January 1, 2010

New Year - New Changes!

It's been a while since my last post.  The last few months have been difficult ones for me and my Mom and Dad.  Lots of illness and time spent in hospitals and doctor's places.  Hard things for Mom and Dad to have to talk about and think about and decide what to do.  I tried to help as much as I could by cuddling up with Mom or Dad when I saw they were troubled and letting them know they were loved and needed.

Last night was better though.  Mom and Dad said it was New Year's Eve.  There was food, and people wearing funny hats, and lots of noise.  And at midnight Mom kissed Dad, and then all the kids and grandkids and said 'Happy New Year!"  And then she picked me up and I kissed her nose and she said told me Happy New Year and things would be better now. 

Everyone left shortly after that, and Mom and I sat in her chair.  She talked to me and called me her special boy.  She reminded me of how long I had been part of the family.  It made me think.  I am an old dog.  I may not look my age, but I'm getting up there in years.  And just like Mom has Austin now to help with things I can't do anymore, I've decided to have Mom make some changes here also.

Mom has been teaching Austin all about traveling, so he know all about it now - almost as much as I do.  He is going to start sharing his travel experiences with us so that when I get too old to go as much as I used to, Austin can carry on. 

We've have also decided to let some of the others share their experience.  When Mom first brought Oscar home, he had been sharing an apartment with Jessica, Mom's baby.  Oscar knows all about dog friendly apartments and what makes a good town for a dog to live in.  He'll be sharing that knowledge with all of us on our new website.

Beauty is old - even older than I am.  But she is still pretty spunky.  That's because she knows all about how to stay healthy and strong, even when you're her age.  Beauty will be sharing the latest in health, grooming, and nutrition tips - all of her secrets that keep her so young at heart.

Ginger is big.  I mean REALLY big.  But thankfully, she is very well behaved.  If not, she could hurt one of us just because she is so much bigger than the rest of us.  She'll be teaching other dogs how to behave well and maybe even do some tricks like when she dances with Mom. 

And of course we have The Rat - I mean Austin.  Not only will he be helping me with the travel tips, but he will have an entire section of his own for kids.  Austin loves kids and they seem to like him.  He'll be sharing our adventures with them, and teaching them how to care for their pets, and giving them lots of fun things to do.

Along with this, we'll have some guest appearances by the others in our family - the cats: Iris, Little Bitty Kitty, Bogart, Buddy, and JoyBelle.  The racoons - George and Gracie.  The possum.  Our friends - Pixel, Aspen, Copper and Tink.  Even Shiloh the grumpy grasshopper might stop by.

We are working very hard to get the new site ready.  Mom says now that the holidays are over and everyone is well again, she will spend all her spare time getting it done.  Meanwhile, I'll introduce you to Oscar, Austin, Ginger, Beauty and the rest in our blog.

Everyone is excited about their part in our new project.  We hope you will be as excited about it as we are.

Happy New Year!