!Pugs, la gente y el propósito en la vida va internacional!

(Pugs, People, and Purpose in Life goes international!) Pug lovers can be found just about anywhere you look in the world, possibly even the Antarctic, for all I know. I belong to several Facebook groups with pug-loving members all over the planet. So, it seemed logical to make an occasional international post. One of my first foreign pug friends was Alejandra Mendieta, from Mexico. I asked her if she would be the subject of my first world-wide blog post, and she jumped at the offer. Like the business professional she is, she wrote a detailed essay on her and her [Read more...]

Pugs, People, Purpose … and Painting

Back in May 2014, I volunteered to be a foster pug parent. In fairly short order, the permanent pug population at my house grew to four, at which point my ever-patient wife Denise drew a line in the sand. So, now being out of the fostering game, I looked for other volunteer opportunities, which are many and varied at DFW Pug Rescue Club of Texas. When a person decides to adopt or foster for the first time, there’s an application process to be navigated—to ensure that the pugs find a safe and happy forever home. The process includes a visit by one of our volunteers to the home of the [Read more...]

Anakin and the Chocolate Chihuahua

On the morning of Saturday, September 10th, I saw this post on my Facebook feed: Gaye Steinman LeBoutillier checked into PetSmart, Arlington, TX. Her status read: Dog adoptions. That afternoon, she posted: Seven adopted. Three left. And then only a few minutes later: Only Anakin and the chocolate Chihuahua are left. Eight adoptions! I went home. My feet are killing me. I thought: “Anakin and the Chocolate Chihuahua?” Sounds like the title of a movie—a cross between Stars Wars and Willy Wonka, produced by the Humane Society and directed by Scooby Doo. This has got some real [Read more...]

K9 Mill Rescue is SERIOUS about saving dogs…

Just a couple of days before July 4, 2016, a group of 32 pugs were rescued from a puppy mill. These dogs had spent their entire lives in crates, doing little more than producing other pugs. Their living conditions can only be described as squalid. Almost all of them were infested with fleas; suffering from skin diseases and malnourishment; several had serious eye injuries, a condition common among pugs whose medical needs are ignored. These fortunate creatures were saved from further suffering by three remarkable ladies. Jen Umbright, Debra Hutcherson, and Joann Meriwether are “K9 [Read more...]

Do you have a rescue story?

Net Galley reviewer Laurie H. had this to say about JEM: Jem: Lessons in Living by John Donald Middleton, was a beautiful story of how a special Pug becomes not just a "pet", but a dear friend and family member. Jem unwittingly filled a hole in the heart of the author and became for him a therapy dog and a true friend. The story of Jem is heartwarming and at the same time heart rending. A great book that will make you laugh and cry. If you believe that a dog can be more than just a "pet" then this book is for you! If you believe a dog is just a dog read this and be awakened! But even more [Read more...]

Meet the Artist – George Seng

The frontispiece of Jem: Lessons in Living is a pencil portrait by a young man named George Seng. George is serving a fifteen-year sentence in California’s Folsom State Prison. Quite a talent, I think you’d agree. How in creation did George and I cross paths? It’s complicated. As a recovering alcoholic, I participate in a program that matches sober prison inmates with people on the outside. The idea is that we share our experience, strength, and hope about our recovery in an admittedly old-fashioned way—letters. In July 2012, I began a correspondence with California inmate, Stacy Worthy. [Read more...]

No Pug Left Behind

SPOILER ALERT—Reveals the end of Jem: Lessons in Living In June 2013, I was still reeling from the sudden loss of my beloved pug Jem when I got a call from Leslie Matthews. Leslie was a veterinary technician at my vet’s office, but she was also a volunteer foster parent for DFW Pug Rescue Club of Texas. She knew about Jem and thought that I might be ready to adopt another pug. I doubted it. But, I agreed to meet a pug that she was fostering. The next Saturday, Leslie and her husband Lyle introduced me to Farah, and it was love at first sight. I adopted Farah the next day. Since then, I’ve [Read more...]

Taking the Bad (Reviews) with the Good

By and large, reviewers have praised “Jem: Lessons in Living.” NetGalley blogger Danny Deshong gave the book five stars, saying: "A loving but sad tale about a man and his best friend. I loved the little short story at the beginning of each chapter shedding light on the day to day happy moments between Jem and the author. The book is filled with warm moments with other pets as well along the way. Naturally there are sad moments which is inevitable but overall a sweet brief relationship tale amongst two souls." But blogger "Jennifer ReadingWithPugs" had a different view: “I wanted to love [Read more...]

How To Build a Rescue Grumble – IV

Chapter 4 – Dahlia is Different Pugs come in a variety of colors. The most prevalent is the familiar fawn coat highlighted by the endearing black muzzle and velvety ears. The next most common color is jet black with the occasional white points. A solid black pug with no other markings is a rarity. Pugs of different colors can be born in the same litter, and a mixture of fawn and black pugs is common. In fact, if you look closely at the fur of a fawn pug, you’ll see that the light brown is sprinkled with long dark hairs. Less common colors are apricot, silver, white, and brindle. In my [Read more...]

How To Build a Rescue Grumble – III

Chapter 3 – Nessie’s World Nessie was one of my earliest foster pugs. When I picked her up at the vet in Keller, Texas, I was more than a little nervous about fostering her. Rescued from a breeder at the age of eight, she had whelped many litters of pups. In fact, she had just weaned her most recent—and final—litter. One of the characteristics of unscrupulous breeders is that their dogs’ medical needs are often ignored. Nessie was in bad shape. Her body showed the stress and strain of continuous breeding. She was seriously underweight. But worst of all, her eyes were severely damaged. The [Read more...]