Stinky Hands – Conversations with Stella

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. Humans stink. They say that dogs do. They say our paws smell like corn chips, whatever those are. Corn chips. Mmmmm, they sound delicious. But back to my point – humans stink. I had to pull back my nose from Lady Human’s hands because they smelled so awful.

Me:        I saw that and I don’t know what your problem is.

Stella:    Millions of scent receptors, remember.

Me:        My hands don’t smell.

Stella:    Millions of scent receptors cannot be wrong.

Me:        What do I smell like?

Stella:    Where do I begin? You smell like whatever you ate last, the last three dogs you petted, that soap you wash your dishes with, that soap you wash your clothes with, everything you walked through for the past few days, raccoons, skunks, chickens, squirrels – yuck, grass, dirt, poop…

Me:        Okay, thank you. I get the picture. But I washed my hands and you still wrinkled up your nose.

Stella:    I am a bulldog. My nose is always wrinkled.

Me:        You pulled your head back and said, “Pffft”.

Stella:    I have the right of free speech. The right to comment on what assaults my senses. Pffft was the best description I could think of.

Me:        What does Pffft mean?

Stella:    Think of the worst smelling thing ever, a scent that humans hate. It sneaks into your nose and suddenly, ATTACKS! What would you say? PFFFT, of course! The perfect word for bad smells. It blows the scent out of your mouth and nose and says, Stay away, you nasty smell! Go back to the place you came from! Which in this case was your stinky hands.

Me:        Pffft. Okay. I’ll have to remember that. I’ll have to remember that every day.



Copyright 2017 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

Humans Do Have Good Taste, Sometimes – Conversations with Stella

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges, royal, majestic, noble, and Illustrious!

Me:        You really shouldn’t capitalize words in the middle of a sentence.

Stella:    I did not capitalize any word. You did.

Me:        Well, technically, but I am following your lead. ‘Illustrious’ should start with a lower-case letter.

Stella:    Another bizarre human custom, Lady Human. I choose to ignore it. Before I was so rudely interrupted, I was about to pay humans a compliment. Now I’m not so sure I will.

Me:        Awww, come on, Stella. It’s not often that you pay us a compliment. I would hate to miss it.

Stella:    Mmmm, all right, you talked me into it. Humans have the best beds. Humans are experts in laziness and really know how to put together the finest in sleeping spaces. If humans weren’t so lazy, they probably would never have come up with the idea of a mattress or a pillow mattress topper.

Me:        Is this because I ended up with a second mattress topper?

Stella:    Of course. Your bed was okay before, but now…now I can sink into it and leave the world behind.

Me:        That sounds wonderful. I wish I could.

Stella:    Lady Human, you have the most wonderful bed ever.

Me:        Then why aren’t you interested in sleeping on it?

Stella:    Too smelly!

Me:        What!

Stella:    Not an insult, Lady Human. I’m sure all those smells are scents that humans find pleasant, but they are not bulldoggy enough for me.

Me:        Snoopey sure doesn’t seem to mind.

Stella:    Snoopey is honored to share your sleeping space and would not dare to speak against your human candles and oils and… well, they may overwhelm her nose, but she probably just buries her head in the covers and ignores them. I, on the other hand, am too much of a connoisseur of bulldog scents to pretend that I like…human things.

Me:        I see.

Stella:    Don’t get me wrong. Your human bed is luxurious. The soft sheet, the soft covers, the cushy mattress toppers and it doesn’t stink…much. But the stink is the sort of thing that humans prefer. I tend toward a doggier smell. Which gives me an idea. You can make me a crate-sized bed just like your wonderful bed, except without the human sweet scents that are so offensive.

Me:        That’s what we humans call a ‘backhanded compliment’.

Stella:    ‘Back pawed’ would be more accurate.




Copyright 2017 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

Can You Smell That?

Stella and I visited The Bomb Fried Pie trailer when it was at RaRa’s Closet in Dallas on Saturday.  They serve a wonderful hot dog wrapped in crispy fried dough with a side of honey mustard. This treat is called a “Bomb Dog” and I make a special point to go and get one when I can. Stella hauled me toward the trailer as though I was not going to be able to make it on my own and besides I was walking too slowly. She forgets that I have two legs to her four.


They treated Stella to a piece of fried bologna and made her day. (I parceled it out to her so she would not eat it all in one swipe though that would have suited her just fine.)

Stella has been to The Bomb Fried Pie trailer before so that may explain her excitement when she jumped out of the car. Maybe she remembered the scent. Bulldogs do not hold a great reputation for nose skills compared to most dog breeds. Their short muzzles impact their breathing and they don’t usually follow their noses as well as others do. Our bulldogs can figure their way around with their noses though and I have been testing Stella on her ability to pick odd smells when we are camping or out and about.

I “let” her lead me back to the car. When she is in bulldog pulling mode, I don’t have much choice. Our leash training has not gone that well. But I did allow her to choose among the parked cars to see if she could find ours by scent. She’s done it before. This time she got close, within a few feet. All she had to do was turn around.

We loaded up, snacked on the Bomb Dog and honey mustard and fried bologna, and I drove to the other side of the building. We walked back to the trailer and RaRa’s and, after a couple of minutes, Stella turned her face in the direction we had come. She couldn’t see our car from where we were, but she appeared to be following her nose again, yep, straight to our vehicle.

There had to be a lot of different scents competing for Stella’s olfactory attention. The delicious odors coming from the fried pies and meats, people scents, dog scents from the other canine visitors, multiple vehicles. But when she focused her nose, Stella didn’t really have any trouble finding out which car was ours. She read her situation pretty well.

So what have I learned from this? Use the talents I have and focus. Being a human, my nose perception is pretty weak, but I’ve been given other gifts. Using them the right way will help me know where I am and where I am going.

“Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee.” Proverbs 4:25


Copyright 2016 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.