Scenes from the home front

In the post titled “A cat with a dog of his own” I shared a few memories of the challenges of convincing Buddy The Wonder Cat to share his home and his people with Sasha. There were a few early bumps in the road, but the two of them have happily settled down to life together. In fact, we’ve now reached the point where Buddy The Wonder Cat stands vigil whenever Sasha leaves the house without him:

It’s fair to say the cat takes a personal interest in anything the dog does. Training time? Buddy’s right there to supervise.  Yard patrol? They share sentry duty. If Sasha overlooks a treat during the Find It! game, Buddy finds it for her. Feeding time creates shared moments, too, although the cat doesn’t share the dog’s passion for cucumbers and Sasha seems puzzled by Buddy’s penchant for ice cubes in his water bowl.

You’ll see quite a bit of Buddy The Wonder Cat later this year–or at least his fictional counterpart. In Dangerous Deeds (Book #2 in the series), Maggie’s dog Sweet Pea finds an injured kitten and carries it to safety. Some of the injuries mirror the real-life accident suffered by Buddy The Wonder Cat a few years ago.  Confession: it was a traumatic experience for the cat, me, and the staff at the Crossover Veterinary Clinic.  On the other hand, our vet (Beth Stropes, DVM) was remarkably cheerful throughout, assuring me that this wasn’t her first cat rodeo. It was then that I decided that if we all lived through the experience, that scene was going in a book.  We all lived, and I kept my promise; Dangerous Deeds will be released this fall. In the meantime, here’s a slideshow of Buddy The Wonder Cat through the years. Enjoy!

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In the Spirit of Giving…

DEADLY TIES 

I’m sharing a free excerpt of Deadly Ties!

If winter weather has you shivering,  visit Eagle Cove where it’s sizzling hot and mystery awaits!

Come meet Maggie Porter and her dogs—a champion Labrador Retriever, an aging Cocker Spaniel, and a Beagle retired from federal service. Maggie’s returned home to reopen the family dog kennel business, where she’s plagued by problems from the start. Serious trouble arises when a gossip-loving employee turns up dead holding an heirloom locket belonging to Maggie’s mother. Anonymous threats and break-ins occur as the violence escalates, and Maggie becomes a target when she searches for answers. With her loyal dogs at her side, she must dig for the truth. Along the way, she learns that everyone has something to hide—and some secrets are worth killing for.

 Deadly Ties FREE EXCERPT

The Canine Connection

What’s the best way to spend an afternoon? Why, playing with dogs of course!

agility

Yesterday I had the privilege of attending the Grand Opening celebration for The Canine Connection in Fayetteville, Arkansas. I’d donated a copy of my latest release, Deadly Ties (set in a dog kennel, so a perfect match), and was on hand to watch the excitement.

If you’re in that part of the world and looking for a place to board, groom, or train your dog, be sure to check them out. I loved the personal attention that both dogs and owners received. And even if, like me, you arrive without a dog you’ll still enjoy VIP treatment and a personal tour of the facilities. Even though it was raining when I arrived, I saw plenty of activity because of the large indoor arenas.  The owner, Valerie Murphy, knows just how to make the kennel experience a happy one for everyone involved.  Whether your beloved dog is a pedigreed champion or the All-American variety kind of dog, Val and her team will treat you like royalty.

In addition to clean and spacious indoor arenas, there’s also a separate grooming area, ample room for boarders, and separate outdoor play areas for small and large dogs. If you’re interested in obedience or agility work, this is the place of you. I had the pleasure of watching Jack (a handsome Australian Shepard owned and trained by Diana Nagel) demonstrate a variety of agility exercises. It was very impressive, and I swear he was laughing (or at least barking) with joy as he went around the circuit.

My sincere thanks to Valerie and Diana for a lovely afternoon!