Wide Load – Conversations with Stella and Wiggles


I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. I am not fat.

Me:   Thank you for that information, Stella.

Stella:   I know you are going to talk about it, so I thought I would clear that up first.

Me:   How did you know I was going to talk about it?

Stella:   The way you and Tall Man have been looking down on Wiggles’ back the past couple of days.

Me:   Was it that obvious?

Stella:   Yes. And you telling him about how she is so wide that she blocks the door when you go to open it.

Me:  Well, that’s not just her size. It’s her predisposition to ram her way through in front of everybody before I can get the door open.

Stella:   Which she would be able to go through on a narrow opening if she weren’t so fat.

Me:   Mmmm…maybe.

Wiggles:   Are you gossiping about me?


Me:   No…

Stella:   Yes.

Wiggles:   What are you saying about me?

Me:   I am remembering what the vet said last spring about how we need to control your weight because you have been packing it on the past few years. I don’t want to be embarrassed the next time you see her simply because I haven’t been able to help you lose a little.

Wiggles:   How do you lose weight?

Me:   More exercise…

Wiggles:   I get plenty of exercise. I run out to potty. Then I potty. Then I jump up on the sunshine table. Then I jump down. Then I run back inside and take a nap.

Me:   That doesn’t really qualify as weight loss exercise.

Wiggles:   What other thing can I do to lose weight, so you won’t be embarrassed in front of the vet lady?

Me:   Eat a little less.

Wiggles:   WHAT AN UGLY THING TO SAY, LADY HUMAN! HOW DARE YOU? I eat precisely what you give me!

Me:   And anything you find on the floor. And whatever you can snoot up in the kitchen.

Wiggles:   Hey, if it’s on the floor, I figure you dropped it for me. I don’t see you picking it up and eating it. Like you always say, WASTE NOT!







Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.



Silly Dog Names – Conversations with Stella and the Pack


I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. I have a pretty name. It does not make any sense, but it is a good, solid name.

Me:   It means “star”. My younger daughter named you when you came to us.

Stella:   What was my name before? I don’t remember.

Me:   Chata.

Stella:   What does that mean?

Me:   Well…it’s Spanish and it means…

Stella:   What?

Me:   Flat as in flat nose.

Stella:   Hmmmpphh. So that’s what they thought of me. I like your daughter’s name for me better.

Me:   You are a star.

Tiger:   What about me?

Me:   We called you Tiger when you came to us because you were fighting for your life. You are a fighter. And you have that brindle stripe design. So… Tiger.

Wiggles:   And me?

Me:   When you came, the first thing we noticed was that you never stop wiggling.

Wiggles:   I guess that’s all right.

Miss Sweetie:   And me? What about my name?

Me:   It just came to me that you were the sweetest thing. So…

Miss Sweetie:   Awwww. I think you are Miss Sweetie, too, except you are really Lady Human, and not as sweet as I am.

Me:   Okay, fine.

Doodlebug:   Why did you name me after a bug?


Me:   Doodlebugs are not really bugs, though some people call them sow bugs or pill bugs. They are not insects. They are more closely related to lobsters than to bugs. And Tall Man named you that because of the narrow white mark in the middle of your forehead. He said you looked to him like a doodlebug because of that. If you look right at the head of a lot of doodlebugs, they have a little white mark in the middle of their heads. So…

Doodlebug:   So, I got a silly name.

Me:   Yeah, but Tall Man has always loved doodlebugs since he was a little boy. So…







Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.





We Saw a Grown Human Puppy Today – Conversations with Stella and the Pack


I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. There was someone here today, a human we have not seen before.

Me:   You have seen her, but not for a while.

Tiger:   I was scared when she came into the room.

Wiggles:   At first, I thought it was you, Lady Human, but different somehow.

Miss Sweetie:   I love her!

Doodlebug:   Did she bring us special food?

Me:   No. That’s not why she was here.

Stella:   Who is she?  It was so exciting!  I jumped up and down!

Me:   I saw you hopping. She is my daughter.

Stella:   Your puppy?

Me:   Stella, I have explained this. Humans have children. Dogs have puppies. She is one of my daughters all grown up. She is not a puppy.

Stella:   When I saw her, she reminded me of you so much that I thought she was you. Until I scented that she was not.

Me:   Yes, we are different.

Tiger:   And the same. Like you and Tall Man.

Me:   Yes. In the same way. You are perceptive.

Doodlebug:   Why did she not bring special food?

Me:   That’s not why she was here. She was doing a job that humans call ‘business’ and a huge ice and snow storm forced her to leave where she was before it became to difficult to travel so she headed in our direction.

Stella:   Ice? Snow? I forgot. What are those?

Me:   Something you don’t want to drive a rolling box through if you can avoid it.

Stella:   But the wet ground did not stop her.

Me:   Nope. The ground is wet, but it won’t freeze here. Not this weekend anyway.

Miss Sweetie:   Will she come back? I want to look at her again.

Me:   She will when she can.

Miss Sweetie:   Good. I will keep watching that door for her.

Me:   I would plan on doing other things between now and then.

Miss Sweetie:   Okay. So long as I can keep watching that door.









Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.






Door Jam – Conversations with Stella and Wiggles


I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. And that’s all I have to say.

Me:   Maybe you could communicate with Wiggles better than I can.

Wiggles:  Let me go outside. I need to pee.


Me:   I’m trying to let you out, Wiggles. You are jamming the door. Just step back so I can get it open.

Wiggles:   Please let me out.

Me:   I’m trying, Wiggles. Step back. Stella, explain it to her. She is blocking the door with her big, wide body.

Stella:   Wiggles, your big, wide body is blocking the door. How’s that?

Me:   She’s still pressing against the edge of the door.

Wiggles:   Pee. Pee. Pee. Pee.

Me:   Okay. Listen to me. Move back away from the door.

Wiggles:   But I want to go forward.

Me:   To do that, you have to take a step or two backward, so I can open the door.

Wiggles:  Go back to go forward? What is that? Human sense? Because it makes no sense to me.

Me:   We are dealing with physical laws here. Take my word for it. Please.

Wiggles:   Oh, all right. There.

Me:   See. Now you may go forward.

Wiggles:   Yay! If you had just opened the door earlier, I could have already been done. Physical laws indeed! More human nonsense.









Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

You Don’t Know Where That’s Been! – Conversations with Stella and Doodlebug


I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. I am a connoisseur. Of cheese. Of dog food. Of human food.

Me:   I wouldn’t go that far.

Stella:   I know what I like and what tastes good and, more importantly, what smells good. I am very disturbed by what Doodlebug puts in his mouth.

Doodlebug:   I eat what I want.


Stella:   Which appears to be EVERYTHING!

Doodlebug:   Not rocks. I draw the line at rocks. Hard. Dry. No real flavor. Yuck!

Stella:   You’ve been known to eat things stinkier than rocks.

Doodlebug:   Mmmmm. Poop!

Me:   At least we can stop some of that.

Doodlebug:   It is hard to come by really good poop.

Me:   My turn to say ‘yuck’.

Stella:   But whatever it was you were snacking on today, not even I could identify.

Doodlebug:   It smelled interesting.

Stella:   You don’t know where it had been. What if it was squirrel food that they threw away? How embarrassing!

Me:   All I saw were some wet sticks and a lot of slobber. But I agree with Stella. If you don’t know where something came from, you probably shouldn’t eat it.


Me:   Of course, you will. You will have your regular food.

Doodlebug:   But I don’t know where that ‘s been!

Stella:   Oh, silly head! Of course, you do! It comes from that big yellow bag Lady Human drags in. Problem solved. It sure doesn’t come from squirrels.





Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

Cheese Connoisseur – Conversations with Stella


I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. Cheese, glorious cheese!

Me:   Well, cheese is a great food. Glorious? I don’t know.

Stella:   Do you have a cheese snack for me tonight?

Me:   Yes. Yes, I do.

Stella:   Bring it on! Bring it on! Bring it on!

Me:   Settle down. Here it is.

Stella:   Hmmmm. Soft. Tasty. Meh. It’s okay.

Me:   What? What do you mean ‘meh’? Do you know how much this cheese costs?

Stella:  Costs? What’s that?

Me:   Money.

Stella:   Oh, that thing that humans think about all the time. No. Does that make a difference?

Me:   It’s just that I don’t need to spend money on stuff nobody likes.

Stella:   Do you like it?

Me:   Yeah. Maybe. It’s okay. Meh.

Stella:   Where is that good stuff you gave me last week?

Me:   Oh, that? We ran out of that. I can only get that at one store around here.

Stella:   Go to that store right away! Get that cheese!

Me:   They don’t always have it in stock.

Stella:   NOOOO! Wait! What’s ‘stock’?

Me:   Stock is what they have in the store. They don’t always have that cheese in the store. They have to order it. It takes about 2 weeks. It comes all the way from Ireland.

Stella:   NOOOO! WHY? OH, WHY?

Me:   Look, I’ll find some other cheese if they don’t have it.

Stella:   Some other cheese may not be to my liking. Hmmmph! Why can’t I go to the store with you?

Me:   They don’t let dogs in the store. Sorry.

Stella:   Typical.

Me:   So, you won’t eat another cheese if I offer it to you?

Stella:   Are you kidding me? Bring it on! If I don’t like it, I will be sure to let you know.

Me:   Oh, thank you so much, Stella.

Stella:   Not a problem, Lady Human.






Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

But Where Is The GOOD Food? – Conversations with Stella


20151220_230434.jpgI am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. The humans are up to something. They have been very active. New smells are entering the house and no, they are not from stuff we bulldogs caused. I think they have another one of those holiday things coming.

Me:   Is there something wrong with celebrating holidays?

Stella:   Not if we are included.

Me:   You all are always included.

Stella:   No, we aren’t.

Me:   Toys. Treats. Food.

Stella:   What about the GOOD food? Where is that?

Me:   You always get good food.

Stella:   What about that thing you were eating a while ago?

Me:   Oh. That was homemade fudge. You can’t have that.

Stella:   And you can?

Me:   Well, a little bit, now and then. I don’t overdo it.

Stella:   It had peanut butter in it. Don’t lie to my nose!

Me:   It also had cocoa in it.

Stella:   Sounds delicious.

Me:   Cocoa equals chocolate equals not for dogs.

Stella:   A likely story. That doesn’t explain what you had for supper.

Me:   Those were tortellini.

Stella:   Sounds delicious. They had cheese in them. My nose knows.

Me:   They also had a good dose of garlic in them and garlic is not good for dogs.

Stella:   Lady Human, I think you are making these rules up as you go.




Copyright 2018 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.