My 5 Favorite New Yorkers: February


It’s that time again! Today, I present my 5 Favorite New Yorkers of February. The fact that this month is shorter than the others doesn’t mean it is any less of an honor to be chosen.

These choices are based on this dog’s opinion of each candidate’s dog friendliness, animal advocacy, good-eggishness, and general New Yorkitude. Honorees may be humans, animals, or institutions.

In no particular order and without further ado…

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The Tennis Ball Game

About the same time that they met me, my People began to develop a more serious interest in tennis, a curious game that humans play. They had always watched this sport, but now they watch a lot, which I don’t mind because I find the rhythm of the ball quite soothing. Besides, I have a lot in common with Roger Federer (he is almost as debonair as I am).

They also like to play tennis—perhaps I should say “attempt to play tennis”—as often as possible, which in a New York winter is not very often at all. The Guy is not bad and is improving all the time. The Lady, however, was born with subpar depth perception, woeful hand-eye coordination, and no athletic ability whatsoever. I cannot decide whether it is admirable or pitiable that She persists with such enthusiasm in an activity for which she has no aptitude.

All this tennis means that we have a lot of old tennis balls, more than we can really use. For many dogs, who like to fetch tennis balls, that probably sounds like a wonderful thing. But I’m afraid I am not much of a retriever. The Lady donates many of the old tennis balls to the dog run or drops them off for recycling at the tennis center.

However, She has continued to keep a small stash of balls in the closet. Yesterday, I found out why. Continue reading



The name my People gave me, Albert, is one I share with several humans—among them various monarchs and a genius. I consider it a highly dignified and thus suitable moniker.

Yet, having chosen such an appropriate name, my People and other humans I know can’t resist saddling me with more than a dozen additional nicknames. Some of these really show considerable lack of respect, I must say. But what is a dog to do? The names they choose to call me probably say more about them than me.

A question for my fellow domesticated animals and their people: How many nicknames do you have? Do certain humans have a special name for you that only they use? Let me know in the comments.

A reminder: Have you deduced the name of my houseguest yet? Entries will be accepted by e-mail until 10 PM EST on Monday the 22nd.


Albert the Dog
Albert the dog in New York

The Leap that Landed Me a Home

Greetings, readers. Do you know what today is? If you guessed my birthday, you’re close, but not quite.  My People and I don’t actually know when my birthday is, so we celebrate a different anniversary—the day I adopted my was adopted by my People. Today marks the four-year anniversary of my Adoption Day.

No doubt my People and I will be celebrating (maybe with a nice lamb shank) later. They will probably take a lot of pictures and tell me how wonderful I am and how I’ve enriched their lives. But here is their dirty little secret:

I’m not the dog they wanted.

Four years ago, my People decided they were ready to look for a dog who was willing to put up with them. They had met a lovely dog that summer who had come from Animal Haven Shelter, so they were spending a lot of free time looking at pictures of adoptable dogs on that shelter’s site, hoping to find their match.

One day, they saw a photo of a Pomeranian-Poodle mix named Mr. Bernstein. Mr. Bernstein hadn’t been at the shelter as long as I had, but he was getting a lot of interest. He was an almost inconceivably adorable little fellow, with big ears and soft, shaggy, white fur. My People made an appointment to meet Mr. Bernstein that very evening. On the way there, they discussed what new name they might give him if they were approved as adopters.

However, when they got to Animal Haven, they discovered that Mr. Bernstein was a very shy dog. Although he was young, he had already been through an ordeal, having been rescued from a puppy mill. As a result, the Animal Haven people wanted to find him a home with another dog who could help teach him how to live in the normal world. The Lady and the Guy were dogless, so they wistfully withdrew their application and wished Mr. Bernstein good luck in finding the right home.*

The Animal Haven staff then suggested that they glance through the other photos on the website. Frankly, my People weren’t expecting to find a dog they’d fall for that night; after all, they had already seen those same photos before. But to be polite, they looked anyways, and the Guy said they might as well meet me. He thought that I might be tolerable because I was described as a terrier mix, which he knew implied a fair amount of intelligence.

The Lady, however, wasn’t too keen on his selection. She thought I looked deranged.

Well, maybe She had a point.

Warning: Young children and those with sensitive stomachs might want to avert their eyes.

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