Embrace Your Inner Doberman and Other Life Lessons from a Tiny Dog by Sonia G. Medeiros

Welcome back to Life List Friday! I’m hosting the fabulous Sonia Medeiros and her cutie pie dog, Katara. When you’re finished oohing and cooing over them, I hope you’ll come see me over at David Walker’s place where I’m discussing Personal Mantras? (I think you’ll like mine!)

Take it away, Sonia….

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Embrace Your Inner Doberman and Other Life Lessons from a Tiny Dog
by Sonia G Medeiros

This is Katara.

Katara at approx 6 months and full cuteness capacity.

She’s half chihuahua. We have no idea what the other half might be, though we’re pretty sure there’s at least a little alien in the mix.

She stands 8.5 inches high, is 12 inches around the deepest part of her chest and 23 inches long. About a quarter of that lenth is tail.

And yes, she is named after the female protagonist in Avatar: The Last Airbender. The animated series, not the movie.

Although she’s closer in size to a guinea pig than a full-grown doberman, she doesn’t let that stand in the way of taking care of her doggish duties. Guarding the property and house from burglars and meter readers. Terrifying birds that have the nerve to land on her grass. And keeping the cats in line.

When faced with a challenge to her dogly authority or dignity, this tiny dog morphs from floppy-eared cutie to pint-sized Cujo.

Hell hath no fury like a part alien, half chihuahua who spots a bird on her lawn.

She then proceeds to bark and snarl until said threat backs down. Grown men and large dogs have been known to back off with undignified speed when presented with her ferocity.

I can’t help but admire her. She learns from each encounter, adapting her next response accordingly. Should the challenge prove too much, she quickly executes a strategic withdrawal and regroups for the next go around. And no matter how many challenges might get the better of her, she never wastes time beating herself up over her failures but prepares to face the next with undiminished enthusiasm.

While our challenges rarely involve impudent birds and sinister meter readers and probably would not benefit from brute force barkage, we certainly could stand to approach each and every challenge with the kind of giant courage and boundless enthusiasm this tiny dog displays.

Never mind the nasty whispers of our inner critics and other naysayers, we could throw ourselves in each challenge. And, if we should fail, we could pull back, gather our strength, sort out what we’ve learned and try again.

And again.

And again.

As many times as it takes.

Maybe it doesn’t matter if we ultimately succeed or fail. Maybe it only matters that we harness our inner doberman and keep trying.

What about you? How do you face challenges? What life lessons have your pets taught you?

This is a blog hop, people!
Click on any of us to the right under Life List Club if you want a fun Friday tour. :-)

Sonia G Medeiros is a writer of fantasy, science fiction, and horror. She’s the author of more than a dozen short stories and flash fiction pieces, blogs at WordPress, and is working on her first novel, a dark fantasy. When she’s not wandering along the tangled paths of her wild imagination, she wrangles home life with one fabulous husband, two amazing, homeschooled children, a part-alien half-chihuahua and two cats who battle each other for world domination.

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About Jenny Hansen

Avid seeker of "more"...More words, more creativity, More Cowbell! My passion is finding those qualities that are unique in every person and every piece of fiction. Founding blogger at Writers In The Storm (http://writersinthestorm.wordpress.com). Write on!
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43 Responses to Embrace Your Inner Doberman and Other Life Lessons from a Tiny Dog by Sonia G. Medeiros

  1. Great post, Sonia! And, yes, it took me a bit to get past the oohs and aahs.

    I’m here to learn today, not to impart wisdom (or, more accurately) lack thereof.

    I am tempted to try that “brute force barkage.” Somewhere out of sight and hearing of my labs.

    Your post validated what I did yesterday with my MG Series Rewrite. I discovered I was writing a new ms rather than dissecting and rewriting the original first draft. Duh! I have 65,000 words on the page. I need to slash, craft and polish those.

    So, like Katara with an attack plan that wasn’t working, I regrouped.

  2. Jess Witkins says:

    First I want to know who came up with the name. I feel fairly confident you had much weigh in on the matter…

    Love this post, Sonia because not only is Katara adorable, but it’s so very much written in your voice and from your heart. I hope this isn’t the only lesson Katara gets to teach you about taking charge in life and adapting to situations. She’s a smart one for so young a pup!

    • LOL. Honestly, the kiddos named her all on their own…though I did steer them away from Fluffy and Nugget *shudder.* The kiddos were obsessed with The Last Airbender cartoon on Netflix at the time.

      And thank you so much for the kind words. :D

  3. Great post Sonia. There is nothing like a small dog with a big heart. I have one of those – she doesn’t understand that the world doesnt want to hear her all the time.

    Courage is a wonderful thing to see, until it’s not

  4. Brilliant piece Sonia! It’s amazing what we can learn from everyday experiences if our eyes and our hearts are open. Thank you for sharing.

  5. amyshojai says:

    Outstanding! Yes, we’d do well to channel our “inner dog” (or cat) and live each day like it’s the last–and don’t back down from challenges when the prize is soooooo fantastic! Little dogs seem to have a Napoleon complex and we writers do well to harness their charisma and confidence.

    • So true. And my kitties have definitely taught me some great life lessons too. The most tempting one right now is…harness the power of the sun, but sleeping in it all day. LOL

  6. Loved this, Sonia! I am now a big Katara fan. To answer your questions, I face most life challenges with a “let’s do this” and project management mindset. I grew up with two cats and learned from both how to try different plans until you succeed at a task. They were patient little tag teaming devils.

    From Marcus, I learned to be direct and straight with what you want. He chatted all the time and said/showed what he wanted. At the vet, he screamed when he got a shot or the thermometer, then was fine. No holding it in with that one. From his twin sis Mindy, I learned the power of quiet strength and living through change. She went blind and then outlived her brother by one year. I taught her how to climb the steps again and after two steps, she was a pro. Her last year was fab, fun and full. Being blind was just another task to master.

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      OMG, I love Mindy! I’ve been thinking about her all day. :-) Thank you for sharing that story, Barbara!

    • It’s amazing how much our furry friends can teach us. Thank you for sharing that with us. I love your “let’s do this” mindset too. By nature I’m a procrastinator but I’m working on that…it’s always work in progress. LOL

  7. Great post, Sonia! And what an ADORABLE dog. Mine teaches me oodles—to take breaks, enjoy nature, take my time rather than rush and cherish every day. I’ve never seen anything like her behind going wild with wags and shakes when she sees me or my husband walk through the door. We think we’re making their lives better, when in reality, we gain more.

  8. Aww!! What a great story and a great little pooch. :D
    My cat teaches me each day that if I go too fast, I’ll throw up all over the living room! So I need to go slow, whether with eating or anything else.. and when all is said and done, a nap never hurts anything..
    Love this light heated post.

  9. tomwisk says:

    Wonderful post. Sonia. Having a guardian with a heart that big must be an inspiration.

  10. She’s adorable and I love the lessons pulled from her plucky attitude. I think it’s possible she weighs less full grown than my dog (a Great Dane) weighed when we brought her home at 8 weeks (15 pounds). She certainly doesn’t let size stop her though. You have to keep an eye on those birds. You never know what maliciousness they could be up to :)

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      I love Great Danes, Marcy! I have a good friend in Missouri with Danes and they are just wonderful dogs. It’s hard for the big guys to let them go so soon though. (And you’re right about those dang birds.)

    • LOL. Yeah. She’s probably less than 4lbs. She’s a skinny minnie. She eats like a dog 10 times her size though…don’t know where it all goes. Plucky is a good word to describe her. :D

  11. Julie Glover says:

    I’m loving that phrase — inner doberman. Great post, Sonia!

  12. That pup is just too damn cute! I face my challenges by just jumping in and doing it. Sometimes there isn’t much water when I jump and it hurts, but I survive ;-)

  13. hawleywood40 says:

    Loved this! And double-love the name Katara! I face my challenges by circles around them and testing the waters and then diving in, I think. Although like Katara I might go a little overkill on the barkage now and then : ).

  14. “She never wastes time beating herself up over her failures but prepares to face the next with undiminished enthusiasm.” I love this line! It never ceases to amaze me how much time I spend feeling bad about my perceived failures – once I’m done feeling bad, of course. I think that quick rebound is key to maintaining a course of action. Otherwise, we end up wallowing. Katara is terribly cute, and I love her name!

    • Thanks! It’s really easy to beat ourselves up. I wonder if writers are extra prone to it somehow. We definitely have to nip that in the butt…or bud…or whatever. :D

  15. Sherry Isaac says:

    Lessons from my dog? A sweet disposition will get you the biggest bone. Love unconditionally. When someone comes home, always stop what you are doing and let them know how much you missed them. Pee whenever you get the chance–you may not have access when you need it.

    Bailey past away 2 years ago New Year’s Eve. I miss her today, I will miss her always.

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      Oh, Sherry… I didn’t know about Baily. My gal was Hoshi and I miss her terribly too. They live on in our hearts, don’t they?

      (And A-Freaking-Men to that “pee when you’ve got the chance.” Ever since I had a baby, that’s one of my life principles.)

      • Amen over here too! And, if you get to pee in private, totally wallow in it. I never realized how wonderful it was to have a bathroom to myself until I had kiddos. LOL

    • That’s a wonderful lesson. The love and affection our dog and the cats give is so lovely. We definitely could stand to do that more with our two legged loved ones.

  16. Marcia says:

    LOL, Sonia! I love it…brute force barkage! Katara is so cute and I can totally see her defending your property. I used to have a Toy Fox Terrier, similar in looks and only slightly larger than your pup. She would not hesitate to take on the biggest dogs that dared to enter our yard. She was smart, too. We also had a Collie at the time. The Collie would eat all of his food and then go for Taffy’s bowl. Taffy liked eating a little at time, so when she’d come back it was all gone. One day I caught her scratching the paper towel her food dish sat on. She got it out from under her dish and nosed it up over the top. The Collie was stumped! He could not figure out how to get at her food. Little dogs can teach us a lot about confidence and strategy!

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