EppsNet Archive: Dog Park

One Last Goodbye

We spread Lightning‘s ashes at Huntington Dog Beach this weekend. We didn’t make a big production of it — it’s probably illegal, for one thing — but we hiked out to the end of the rock pier and gave him back to the sea. The Dog Beach and the Irvine Dog Park were the places he was at his best — off-leash and able to be his dominant alpha pug self. For example, here’s a (blurry) photo of him assassinating a puggle who carelessly but intentionally blindsided him at the dog park: Lightning wrote a poem he wanted us to read when we spread his ashes. I think he plagiarized it, to be honest . . . he wasn’t much of a poet but we loved him . . . I am a thousand winds that blow. I am the diamond glints on snow. I am the sunlight on ripened… Read more →

Don’t Put a Sweater on a Pit Bull

Police in Florida say a dog named Scarface attacked a family who tried to put a sweater on it. Tampa police say the pit bull mix bit a 52-year-old woman who was trying to dress it Friday and her husband was attacked while trying to pull the dog off her. Police say the couple’s 22-year-old son was attacked while trying to stop the dog by stabbing it in the neck and head. The three people escaped the house and left the dog in the backyard. They ended up in the hospital. — Miami Herald Woman attacked when she tries to put a sweater on the dog, husband attacked when he tries to pull the dog off his wife, son attacked while trying to stab the dog in the neck and head . . . meet your average, run-of-the-mill pit bull owners. Folks, if you feel like you really must put… Read more →

My Dog Is a Genius

This needs a little setup . . . I used to take Lightning on weekend mornings to the Irvine Dog Park, then afterward to the Starbucks drive-thru, where I’d get a beverage and he’d get a pup cup (a cup of whipped cream). He loves Starbucks. He used to get super animated from the time he saw we were turning left on Irvine Center Drive (toward Starbucks) to the time he actually got the pup cup at the drive-thru window. He also knows the words “Starbucks” and “pup cup”: He’s too old to enjoy the dog park now — he doesn’t walk well and he can’t see — so I walk to Starbucks myself on the weekends and bring the pup cups home for him. Today I took him to the Starbucks drive-thru, just like old times, and he got super excited again when we got there, just like old times.… Read more →

Dogs in San Francisco

If you’re a dog or a recently released felon, you are welcome in San Francisco. Not only are there lots of people walking in SF, there are lots of people walking with dogs. French Bulldogs, Huskies and Pomeranians seems to be especially popular. Until he got too old to really enjoy it, I took Lightning to the Irvine dog park six days a week (it’s closed on Wednesdays) for years. I’ve spent a lot of time around dogs, so I’m better than most people at identifying dog breeds. We were walking in San Francisco last weekend when my wife pointed and asked “What kind of dog is that?” Before I could say “It’s a Labradoodle,” our boy said “Labradoodle.” I must have been visibly stunned because he then asked me “Were you going to say ‘Goldendoodle’?” “No . . . you’re pretty good at identifying dogs now.” This is a… Read more →

A Saddening Trip to the Vet

Even with the utterly lost, to whom life and death are equally jests, there are matters of which no jest can be made. — Edgar Allan Poe, “The Masque of the Red Death”   I’m picking up Lightning’s prescription at the vet . . . the new girl, Lauren, is at the desk. I can hear a woman weeping loudly from back in the hospital area. “That doesn’t sound good,” I say. “A husky attacked her dog at the dog park,” Lauren says. “A little Yorkie. Broke its neck.” “That’s awful.” I don’t even have the heart to ask her if she cut the pills on the lines. Read more →

Don’t Try to Be Funny at the Vet

I’m picking up a prescription for Lightning at the vet . . . the new girl, Lauren, is at the desk. “It’s a little different this time,” Lauren says. “We didn’t have the Prednisone 5mg, so we’re giving you Prednisone 10mg, and instead of giving him half a tablet, you’ll give him a quarter of a tablet. I already cut them.” “Oh gosh, thanks! Did you cut them on the lines?” Lauren is new so she hasn’t heard this one yet. “To the best of my ability.” “That’s good. Lightning doesn’t like it when they’re not cut on the lines.” She’s not getting the joke but that’s okay. I’ll help her out by taking it completely into the realm of the absurd. “He feels like it doesn’t show attention to detail,” I say. “I’ll make a note of that for next time.” “Yes, you should do that. Go ahead and… Read more →

At the Dog Park

A pug (not mine) is humping a beagle . . . “You could have puggles,” I suggest to one of the owners, “except they’re both boys.” Read more →

Pug Meetup

There was a pug meetup at the Irvine dog park today. Here’s a picture of me with some of my pug friends. The funny thing is we didn’t even know there was a pug meetup. We just showed up and there it was! It’s a lucky day for me! I’m going to buy a lotto ticket LOL! Read more →

R.I.P. Knut

It breaks my spirit to see a magnificent animal die in pain in front of all those people. Folks, if you want to see a polar bear, go to the Arctic Circle. Animals aren’t happy in zoos. I know you’re thinking, “But Lightning, you live in captivity and you’re happy.” Even as a house pet, I have more freedom than a zoo animal. My owner takes me on frequent trips to the dog park, where I’m able to exercise my innate dominance of the canine kingdom. I couldn’t live in an enclosure because I wouldn’t be able to be who I am. — Lightning Read more →

A Tight-Assed Bunch

There’s an Italian Greyhound meet-up at the Irvine dog park on Saturday mornings . . . Italian Greyhound owners are a tight-assed bunch. They put sweaters on their dogs at the first sign of cool weather. They’re more likely than the average owner to refer to themselves as the “mommy” or “daddy” of their dog. They like to hold forth with non-IG owners on the finer points of the breed, as if anyone cared. Yesterday the group was addressing the serious matter of whether the largest dog in attendance was a full Italian Greyhound or part whippet. The owner insisted that she has papers on the dog, but as everyone knows, whippets tend to weigh 25 pounds and up whereas IGs top out around 15 pounds, and since this dog was somewhere in-between, what was one to make of it? “The puppy mills are making the IGs bigger,” a bearded… Read more →

A Cat with an iPad

I saw this video of a cat playing with an iPad. I love how the guy at the end says “You sure are a smart cat, buddy.” LOL! That is a DOPEY cat! He’s as dopey as those dopey dogs that chase laser pointers at the dog park. Is THAT all you have to do to be a smart cat? Bat at things that move or make noise? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! — Lightning Read more →

Don’t Underestimate Me

Now, each of us has his own special gift And you know this was meant to be true, And if you don’t underestimate me, I won’t underestimate you. — Bob Dylan, “Dear Landlord” My owner and I took a walk tonight and we saw a woman we’ve seen many times before. She is about 40 years old in human years and a little bit chubby. Tonight she was playing with a volleyball in front of her house with her kids and another girl. She was very good! She was bumping and setting with aplomb! “I underestimated her,” my owner said. “She looks like a chubby housewife but she’s also a good volleyball player.” That happens to me a lot too. As you can see in the photo, I’m not very big compared to some other dogs but I have the heart of a much larger animal. — Lightning Read more →

Saturday Mornings at the Dog Park

I love Saturday mornings! My owner takes me to the dog park, then we drive through Starbucks and I get a Pup Cup, which is a paper cup filled with whipped cream. — Lightning Read more →

Happy Mothers Day!

Hi Mom! Happy Mothers Day! How are things in Iowa? Here’s a recent picture of me at the dog park. You can see I have an underbite just like Dad. Some people tease me about it but I don’t care. You would be so proud of me. I’m the alpha dog of my whole neighborhood! People think that dogs don’t remember their families but of course I remember you and I always love you even though you’re far away. Your son, Lightning Read more →

The Starbucks Girl Will Be a Good Pug Owner

My owner took me to the dog park this morning and then we went to the Starbucks drive-thru. I like to stick my head out the window and say hi to the drive-thru people! This morning, the drive-thru girl said, “Oh I want a pug so bad! Is it true that they snore?” I don’t snore. “Some do,” my owner said, “but this one doesn’t.” “When I get my pug,” the girl said, “if she snores I’m going to love her snoring SO MUCH!” That’s sweet. What a nice girl. “She’ll be a lucky pug,” my owner said. — Lightning Read more →

My Dog Reviews Marley and Me

I love movies about dogs! Wait — is Owen Wilson in that? I HATE Owen Wilson! Whenever I meet a new bitch at the dog park, the first thing I ask her is “Do you think Owen Wilson is funny?” And if she says yes, I am OUTTA there. Rating: Two paws down. — Lightning Read more →

My Dog Explains His Name

Sometimes when my owner takes me to the dog park, people ask him what my name is. When he says “Lightning,” they laugh, like it’s a joke, a bit of irony, like naming a Great Dane “Tiny.” Look, people, I’m almost 4 years old now, but when I was a puppy, I was really fast — for a pug. That’s why my owners named me Lightning. I’m still fast when I go full speed. I just don’t do it that much anymore. Don’t underestimate the pug. — Lightning Read more →

Stupid People and Their Stupid Dogs

A guy brought a laser pointer to the dog park tonight so his retarded dog could chase the beam around like a nitwit. He tried to get my dog to chase it, but the dog just looked back at him to see where the beam was coming from, which is the intelligent thing to do in that situation. “The pug doesn’t see it,” the guy said. “He sees it,” I explained, “but pugs are too smart to chase light beams.” “What does being smart have to do with it?” Laser Guy asked. “Would you run around the park chasing after a laser beam?” I asked. “You wouldn’t. You know why? Because it’s stupid. You can’t catch it. Chasing after a ball or a frisbee makes sense. I’ve done that myself. But running around after a light beam is just moronic.” Read more →

I Get All the Holidays — And Then Some!

Here’s how I spent the MLK holiday: My son went over to a friend’s house and I stayed home and read a book. When the boy came home, we threw a football around for a while, and then I took Lightning to the dog park, where he fended off an inappropriate advance from a giant black pit bull. So all in all, a jam-packed day of doing nothing . . . A friend of mine tells me he doesn’t get a day off for the King holiday. In fact, he doesn’t get another paid holiday until Memorial Day! HA HA HA! I work for a company in the banking industry. If you work for a bank, you get all the holidays off! In fact, between now and Memorial Day, we get Lincoln’s Birthday, Washington’s Birthday, Groundhog Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Earth Day, Cinco de Mayo and spring break. Plus a… Read more →

The Sheriff of the Dog Park

Hi everybody! That’s me, Lightning Epps, subduing an over-aggressive puggle at the Irvine dog park. I am like the sheriff of the dog park; I don’t start trouble but I don’t mind finishing it. Last week, I was chasing a pug named Blossom around and having a great time when a male husky ran up and started harassing Blossom. These big dogs think they can get away with anything where pugs are concerned. I snarled and charged at the husky. They never expect that. He got confused, ran straight into another husky and knocked it over. Everyone laughed. Then I went back to find Blossom and hump her but she wouldn’t let me. That’s gratitude for you . . . — Lightning Read more →

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