Mr. Wilson Made it Home!

Mr. Wilson Made it Home!
Mr. Wilson

Friday, August 29, 2014

The Spark

That red bandana that Mr. Wilson is wearing is more than a simple fashion accessory, it's his official Therapy Dogs International kerchief! We are now certified to go anywhere and offer pet therapy to people in nursing homes, or home alone and unable to have a dog in their lives, or have kids with difficulty reading sit with the big W and read him a story. From puppy mill to Therapy Dog, it's been quite a ride!

From Mr. Wilson Makes it Home, available February 3, 2015 

Chapter 17  The Spark

      Wilson was safely tucked away in the air-conditioned comfort of the Alpha Dog Transport trailer, along with a few dozen other homeless dogs, all headed for an uncertain future. We knew that great things were in store for Wilson, but he had no way of knowing what was happening; only that things had changed. Again.
     His life had been rife with changes until this point; we believe he was born in Arkansas in what has been described as a puppy mill. The internet is full of places that look fabulous on a computer screen, and come with lovely stories of rolling hills and fresh water streams, and puppies running through tall grass, lovingly followed by their doting parents, all under the watchful eye of a responsible breeder.
     Those places may well exist, but what definitely does exist is the anti-heaven so delightfully described by web designers. The reality is stark contrast to what we are shown, dark, excruciatingly hot trailers in the woods filled with animals who breed until they die, or can no longer provide a revenue stream for the people who own them. Conditions at these places are appalling, malnourished mothers giving birth to malnourished pups, four weeks later those pups being taken away from their moms, packed in crates and shipped off to unsuspecting buyers. The mom is put right back at it, and is impregnated as soon as possible, and if she barks metal rods are shoved down her throat to sever her vocal cords, and she lies in her own excretement and eats the floor sweepings from dog food companies that ship their waste in boxcars to people who buy it in bulk and feed it to their charges, not for nourishment, rather to keep them alive long enough to deliver another pile of cash.
     When the dogs have finished being productive they are shot in the head or clubbed to death and their body thrown in a fire, and one of her pups takes over pumping out four-legged money producers, and the cycle repeats itself.
     Ole Wilson and his sister were sold to a pet store, and then bought by, and then lived with a lady and her kids. He didn’t like living there much, and took every chance he had to escape. He would run wild, and I’m sure he had loads of fun, until he got hungry, or cold, or afraid of the bigger, wild animals that shared his roaming grounds. Then, the life of a vagabond freedom loving little dog got much more complicated, and being on his own not nearly as much fun as anticipated, and he would slink back to the only home he knew, and be punished, and reprimanded, and probably whacked, and made to feel like a bad, bad boy.
     A wonderful woman named Cheri took a liking to Wilson after seeing him running free with his sister too often. She had a feeling about him, and knew that he was special. And he is.
     All living things need to be nurtured. People, animals, plants, even bugs need some sort of interaction with other beings to thrive. Flowers need bees, bees need flowers, bugs need something to do, and other bugs to do it with, people need other people to take care of them, to love them, to feed them and educate them, and lead them toward their inherent tendency toward good. Left to fend for ourselves we would revert back to a single-minded cell that does whatever it takes to survive. A dog is no different. The survival instinct will take over if prodded, and he will never know what he could have been if given a chance.
     All too often a child’s creative spark never gets a chance to blossom into its potential for the simple yet cruel reason that nobody notices it. That creative fire burns brightly for a few years, and if stoked grows, and with the proper guidance is brought under control, and the gift is nurtured, and the child given the chance to be everything he is supposed to be.
     Or not. Far too often potential for greatness is overlooked, and before long even the child forgets just how great she is, and settles for existing rather than living.
     Much is the same for dogs. Wilson was headed for a life of being “trouble.” His free spirit was nearly extinguished because nobody saw that special something in him that Cheri saw. She knew, deep down that this dog needed a chance. He simply had to be given the love he needed to thrive, and grow, and be loved as much as his little heart could handle so that the love inside of him could be expressed, and given freely to anybody who asked for it. Or needed it.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Feel Good Friday

Things have been nutty here at Mr. Wilson's house, how it became his house is still a mystery, Lunabelle and Victoria Mae don't agree, but the fact of the matter is, he who has the most fun wins, and Old Mr. Wilson wins that contest hands down. There's not even a close second. He doesn't even need us or the cats to be fun, he'll find a bird to maim, a bug to chase, a mailman to bark at, another dog to completely lose his mind over or a chair to call his own at naptime.

The new book cover has been unveiled, it's not official yet so I can't share it, but I will as soon as I can.
In the meantime I wrote an article for Uniform Stories about a former US Marine, police officer and volunteer firefighter who brought Mr. Wilson home. Here's the link, give it a read if you have time, it's a feel good story, and we all can use as many of those as we can get. All except for Mr. Wilson, who just feels good.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Bed Day!

Some days it's just better to stay in bed!

I got to thinking about health, and sickness and being well, and how we humans are forever trying something or other to feel better, and if we get sick absolutely positively expect that a medicine be available to cure us, or at least alleviate our symptoms.

In some ways it might be nice to be a dog, and not have to live with the expectations of feeling better than we do. They feel what they feel, and when they don't feel very good they go about their business until they do.

Dogs don't get drunk, don't have hangovers, don't feel sorry for themselves and don't waste time waiting for a miracle cure to what ails them.

They just live.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

What they know

     The exuberance that he shows is remarkable, but it is not for everybody. Something happened in his past that keeps him from fully trusting everybody on sight. There must be some cloudy memories of pain in that little head of his, and in some way certain people, through no fault of their own, or no sinister, deep dark meanness hidden with friendly smiles and handshakes bring those emotions to the forefront, but he doesn’t lash out at people who intimidate him, rather he cowers, and worries, but ultimately gets close enough for them to be touched by him.
     There is something everlasting about the spirit that accompanies a dog, something that as smart as we are
we will never fully understand. We have the brains and reasoning ability to know everything, but what do we really know? Perhaps there is a completely different way of communicating that we cannot comprehend, something that far surpasses our ability to understand the world around us and the people in our lives. Maybe each species is gifted with senses that surpass what we think are the five biggies, sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch. Our eyes see, and our ears hear, and our noses smell things. Our tongues taste and our skin feels, but is that all there is? We feel emotions like love, and fear, and hate, and sense those feelings in others, but how deeply? Is a dog able to sense those emotions as clearly as we can see written words on a page, or hear the crescendo as our favorite songs reach their climactic peak?
     I think so. I think they are capable of that, and things that we cannot imagine, and in their bodies that are vastly different from ours, I think that they too know when they are needed most and are able to make their feelings known with absolute clarity, and for those fortunate enough to be on the receiving end of a dog’s attention the result is one of the things that makes the mysteries of living not only bearable, but incredible.

From the book, Mr. Wilson Makes it Home, (Skyhorse Publishing, February 3, 2015)

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Big Descision

Looks like Mr. Wilson has been busy collecting signatures in an attempt to overturn The Publisher's decision to omit his mug from the cover of the new book. 10,000 were needed for the Big Boss, Tony to re-consider, and crafty old Wilson pulled it off!

My friend Bob the Photographer came to Mr. Wilson's house yesterday and did a photo shoot. Here's our favorites:

 Mr. Wilson sees no reason why all of them can't be used, but there can only be one! Any suggestions welcome...

Monday, August 4, 2014


If you look to your right you will see a "donate" button. If you choose to click on the button and donate something you are pretty much trusting in the honesty of the author of this blog to actually donate the money "to help the animals." At present there is no designated recipient for donated funds, the plan is to do a fundraiser every couple of months for a rescue organization that has been chosen either by us or on the recommendation of somebody else.

When the book, Mr. Wilson Makes it Home is released I plan to do a signed copy give away promotion to help homeless pets. Stay tuned for further details on that, I'll keep you posted as things develop.

If, however you fell a burning desire to help the animals right now, please feel free to do so, at the moment all donated funds will be sent directly to New England All Breed Rescue. I will post all donations to the fund every week, if there are funds to post.

Thank you for your support, every bit helps!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Moon Bears

Each of us is capable of changing our own destiny.
How we can change the future for us and other lives
depends on how we behave and respond when
the messages arrive, accept or reject,
it’s our choice.
— Jill Robinson | Founder of Animals Asia
I never knew that Moon Bears existed, now that I do know, thanks to a Google search for something completely unrelated that ended up showing me a picture af a Moon Bear named Derek that comedian/actor/animal activist Ricky Gervais adopted I can't get them out of my mind. 
These critters have been hunted in Asia for centuries, their most precious part being the bile from their gallbladder which is used in oriental medicine. In China and Vietnam, the bears are held in captivity and their bile is farmed. Sounds nice, but it is barbaric.
Most farmed bears are kept in tiny cages. In China, the cages are sometimes so small that the bears are unable to turn around or stand on all fours. Some bears are put into cages as cubs and never released. Bears may be kept caged like this for up to 30 years. 
Most farmed bears are starved, dehydrated and suffer from multiple diseases and malignant tumours that ultimately kill them. Bile is extracted using various painful, invasive techniques, all of which cause massive infection in the bears. This cruel practice continues despite the availability of a large number of effective and affordable herbal and synthetic alternatives.
It's not just dogs that need rescue. I know that it can be overwhelming thinking about all of the animals that are being abused. I lived in denial concerning animal cruelty for most of my adult life while working as a firefighter/EMT in Providence, and seeing unspeakable cruelty that people did to other people, never mind their pets.
I'm slowly becoming aware that even though I cannot do much as an individual, every individual effort does not go unnoticed, and when there are a number of individual acts of kindness and awareness, and perhaps a small donation, those acts gather momentum and the rising tide of cruelty, apathy and isolationism is diminished.