“One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.” - Nikola Tesla
I may have taught this spider to knit.
I was finishing the last 20 rows at the park, when this little spider wandered over to me, It climbed up my knitting bag, and walked all up and down the piece, then climbed onto my hand and watched me for a couple rows.
After the second row it started waving it’s front four legs as if to get my attention. Once I was looking at it, it started pulling silk from its spinneret, and fiddling with it. I don’t know if it was knitting or purling as it was quite small scale, but every few seconds it would stop and look up at me to see if I was still watching. After a little bit I moved it to one of the vines overhanging the archway I was sitting in, and it went about its business.
This wasn’t the only unusual thing that happened at the park today, but it was the most unusual.
Maybe it thought you were a spider
I’m gonna level with you that’s the fucking cutest shit I have ever fucking heard of okay I want a little spider that knits not sits menacingly above my bed at night threatening to fall into my mouth.
sorry again about vertical video, ugh me
Fritz got himself into a dusty spot and when I fished him out, he did this. Now you know why his name is Fritz.
Cannot get enough of this moth
Your choice affects your dog’s choice — a lesson I’m reminded of everyday. (Image credit goes to Lili Chin.)
Way back this winter, when Chalo started having growly reactions toward other dogs, I made the mistake of correcting him for it. Traditional wisdom and all the training books I’d read as a kid in the ’90s told me firm discipline was necessary, so I spoke sternly and used physical corrections with a choke collar. Surprise: in just 48 hours, it became so much worse. A little growliness turned into full-on explosions of snarling and lunging and raised hackles and high emotions. The changes were happening so quickly it frightened me. This was not a dog I recognized. So I backtracked, devoured every bit of reactivity literature I could find on the internet, and soon wondered if, in Chalo’s mind, the situation looked very different. To him, it seemed to be, “Every time we see a dog, my person gets worried and bad things happen. She becomes a person I do not recognize. I need to growl more to make that dog go away, and to keep bad things from happening.” My whole perspective on the issue changed — or at least, made me more receptive to alternatives, out of desperation and concern that I was singlehandedly ruining my dog.
The next day I approached it differently, with a soft, open, patient mindset and a bag full of cheese. And in one session, Chalo was sitting quietly and sweetly, twenty feet away from the golden retriever who previously sent him into a growling frenzy.
In one week, he was walking past yards of snarling, lunging, barking, frustrated dogs with the same sweet, quiet, expectant look on his face.
Today, Chalo hasn’t growled at another dog in months.
I definitely don’t propose that there is any one-size-fits-all training method for every dog, and everything I don’t know about dogs could fill several rooms several times over. But Chalo teaches me so much, all the time: how to be a better teacher, how to approach problems creatively, how to be patient, how to motivate. So many canine behavior problems are misunderstandings, rooted partly in a failure of human imagination and empathy. And that is fixable. That can change. Chalo continues to show me what I need to give more of, not just in dog training but in life in general — reflection on my own actions, and consideration for how we all can be shaped, battered, or buoyed by the world around us. Dogs can make us better, and this dog is making me better.
Please watch this. It is 100% worth it. Many people think that declawing is “normal” & “safe” but really it’s NOT. Declawing is unfortunately currently supported by the AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association) so many people don’t listen to people who actually know what they are talking about. The AVMA claims that declawed cats will not develop behavior issues but this is a LIE. Declawed cats are more prone to quit using their litter boxes, biting, and disassociation issues.
People declaw cats for three main reasons. Scratching furniture, fear of trimming their nails, & they believe indoor cats don’t “need their claws”. I’m here to tell you these are all POOR excuses to declaw your cats. I have two cats and let me tell you something… SCRATCHING POSTS ARE CREATED FOR A REASON! My cats have a cat tree & two scratching posts. They NEVER touch the furniture or my carpet. I trim their nails myself, but did you know that PetSmart will trim their nails for you. Only $14. And indoor cats needs their claws just as much as an outdoor cat!
Declawing a cat is like cutting off their toes! It literally crippled them by changing their ability to walk properly.
Please, watch this movie. It’s SO worth learning what declawing is really about.
There was a split second there where his like, “wait, what? bro what are you doing?”
On more serious note, PTSD dogs for veterans are so fucking therapeutic. They’re like the one person you can spill your guts to and never worry about ever being judged or have that secret divulged. There are times when I definitely prefer the company of a dog over a human.
Therapy animals save lives.
These dogs are even still so much more amazing. They check rooms before their handler enters, so they can clear it to help the person feel safe. Like in the gif, they are there when panic attacks or nightmares occur, to be something for the person to help ground themselves on, or yes just to turn on the lights. Even more amazing, many people are able to reduce their medication when they have a PTSD service dog there to help them. These dogs are useful for not just veterans, but also victims of abuse, accident trauma, natural disasters, and others. Their training allows them to be useful in situations where medical assistance is needed, as well. Some PTSD dogs are trained to recognize repetitive behaviours in handlers, and signal the handler to break the repetition and stopping the behaviour and possibly injury.
Service dogs in general are just awesome. Remember to respect any that you see out in public. They are not there for you to walk up to and play with, even the puppies!
Fun fact my best friend growing up had a service dog for PTSD, depression and anxiety and this sparked my interest enough to write an essay on it for a class that ended up getting published in something the teacher submitted it to but ANYway, in my research I found that a service dog can help with nearly any mental illness in a variety of ways. They are fucking incredible.
A few months ago, I introduced everybody to a community that my girlfriend started called Susie’s Senior Dogs. (Named after our dog Susie, who we adopted at age eleven and has been a complete joy.) I haven’t mentioned Susie’s Senior Dogs in awhile, because I try to keep HONY 99.9% portraits, but amazing things have been happening over there. In the past few months, Erin has connected over 100 senior dogs with homes all over the country. Almost all the dogs are over seven years old, and some have been sitting in shelters for months or years. Now they have wonderful, loving homes in which to live out the rest of their days. So if you think you may ever want a dog, know somebody who may want a dog, or just want to be encouraged by some of the wonderful adoption stories— please consider following the page. (The four dogs pictured— Eva, Savannah, Holly, and Lucy— all found homes through Susie’s Senior Dogs.)
I do not own these pics. They were sent to me in an email. But I thought I’d share with you all because they’re just AMAZING.
They look like mythical creatures O:
Peacocks FLY?! The extent of my knowledge of peacocks was seeing them walk around freely at the zoo. Holy crap. Day made.