Back from three days in New York to attend the annual Dog Writers Association of America (DWAA) annual meeting and banquet. Usually these trips are incredibly energizing -- how can one not feed off Big Apple vitality? -- but this time the trip had a special edge.
Some of you already know that I was part of an effort to change in the leadership of DWAA. My partners and I blogged about that effort here. Happily, our efforts resulted in an outcome that I am convinced will help revitalize the organization. The new president of DWAA is Deb Eldredge, DVM; the new secretary is Liz Palika, CPDT; and the newest member of the Board of Governors is Eve Adamson. I have been elected vice president. It's an honor and a responsibility, knowing that the members of a 70-plus years old organization have placed their trust in us -- and we will work tirelessly to justify that trust.
I am also thrilled and honored to be able to report that at the annual banquet, I was presented with two DWAA Maxwell Awards for excellence in writing about dogs. One was for my AKC Family Dog article, "In the Swim," which described how water-loving dogs can tap into their aquatic roots. The other was for "You Don't Know Shih Tzu" for the Shih Tzu Puppies edition of Popular Dogs, which aimed to be a primer on how these little dogs (and even littler puppies) learn.
Allie has always loved picking up and carrying sticks. (She is a Golden Retriever, after all.) During puppyhood, though, her ambition sometimes far outstripped her capability, because she would attempt to pick up entire tree limbs, leaves and all. I remembered her efforts in that regard when I saw this year's Budweiser/Clydesdale Superbowl commercial:
No, this is not a picture of me. This smiling face belongs to Allie, the eight-year-old Golden Retriever for whom this blog is named. I'm an award-winning writer who specializes in companion animal topics, especially those pertaining to dogs. In addition to my writing for periodicals, I've also written six books about dog care, including the best-selling Housetraining For Dummies. On this blog, I'll explore various aspects of living with dogs and writing about them -- with occasional detours into totally unrelated topics (because I can!). Enjoy!