I was going to introduce the Doods but they let me know with a lot of eye rolling, barking, pawing, and a bit of humping, that they could do a much better job. So despite my reservations, here are my three creative canines. First up is Charley, the handsome guy on the left. Wait, before he starts, I have a confession. When my daughters were little, I used to tell them that when no one was around, the dogs would talk to me. They said they didn’t believe me, actually I think they used the word “crazy,” but I know they tried to catch me. If and when they read this post, it will only confirm their suspicions.
CHARLEY As the senior doodle, the largest, and the calmest, I am often referred to as a gentle giant. I am the “bark” of reason in this pack, and the one who makes Ellen, or Pack Leader, as she calls herself, look good. As a puppy, I heard stories of her failed attempts to train other dogs, so I kind of figured it out on my own. People assumed that she had something to do with it and gave her all sorts of credit. What I’ve had to deal with! Fortunately I have the patience of a saint.
A therapy dog for over eight years, I have a gift for making people feel better. I hate to brag, (you know who does enough of that) but if you bring me into a group of people, I can sense the one who needs me the most and will go and lean on them. Working at UCLA Medical Center and at Providence Hospital, I’ve performed lots of little miracles. For instance, I was visiting a neuropsych unit (how’s that for a dog with vocabulary) when I walked over to nuzzle a woman who had been catatonic for several days. Much to the surprise of the therapists, but no surprise to me, she suddenly began to smile and pet me. It was a good day.
ELBEE I am Charley’s handsome half brother from a different mother. I was a bit shy as a puppy but have come into my own as a therapy dog. I just take a slightly different approach. Some refer to me as the class clown but I like to think of myself as the life of the party. Charley may be the obedience king but I can do more tricks. Does Charley know how to shake his head yes or no when asked a question? Does he know how to pull a handkerchief out of Pack Leader’s pocket when she sneezes? Can he say his prayers? I don’t think so.
Not to be a negative Nellie, I do have a bone to pick. My name. Elbee? Are you kidding? When I was a baby, no one in the family could agree. Their choices ranged from Fido to Beelzebub. When we got to the vet for the first time, the receptionist asked for my name to put on the chart. When told I didn’t have one she said, “well, we can’t put blank, so we’ll put little brother.” P.L. jumped all over that and said, “perfect L.B.” Then she decided to spell it out, which in my opinion is ridiculous.
That reminds me. One day I overheard her talking about the sweetest Cocker Spaniel she’d had as a child. The dog’s name was Killer! What’s wrong with these people?
GUS Finally, it’s my turn. I’m an adorable teddy bear doodle who was adopted into the pack last summer. I’m not quite a year and a half and I still chew up rolls of toilet paper but I’ve already done some visits to an adult health center with my big brothers. As for the toilet paper, I’m so over it but it seems to be expected of a puppy.
Like Elbee, I have an issue with my name. I was originally called Cedric which I thought was pretty sophisticated and made me sound British. P.L. decided that it was not a good therapy dog name and changed it to Gus which was much more user friendly. Personally, I think it sounds like the captain of the bowling team. For all you keglers out there (and Charley thinks he has the vocabulary) I have nothing against bowling but with these dainty paws it’s just not my sport.