Harper B.

Haute Dogue vs. Hot Dog


ginger hot dog
Photo by Naomi Torres

In response to the March 6th Haute Dogue column, Ginger sent in this picture. Unfortunately, homophones can be a bit tricky for us dogs.

But this brings me to my next style tip, Haute Dogues! If you don an outfit, you have to carry it. And even though I don’t necessarily recommend running around in a bun, I think we can all agree Ginger’s workin’ it!  I mean, look at that tail…that confidence…wow and woof! That’s the way it’s done small dog fashionistas~


Woofs of Wisdom: Bark Softly and Carry a Big Stick


walk softly sepia

I love this quote. Roosevelt must have been thinking about dogs when articulating his approach to foreign policy. Of course, we all know how important it is to bark softly…But it’s the second part of this equation that really inspires me. I believe Roosevelt was saying dogs should always be at the ready to play fetch. This week’s Woofs of Wisdom remind us to keep the yapping down and always have a big stick on hand; you never know when you will need it. It’s good canine policy.

Paws & Crafts: Felting with Poodle Hair


paws and crafts headerFelting is in, dogs! Looking for ways to use your extra dog hair and help your humans fill up their empty time? This month’s project, submitted by my friend, Calla, can do both! Poodle and doodle hair are perfect for felting. “I love having a mini me!” confesses Calla.

Felted Calla
Felted Calla
Real Calla
Real Calla

I am just head over tails about this month’s project. So all you oodles out there…you have a new reason to love your hair!


Photos of Calla by Renee Lee

Build Your Human’s Strength


First, balance on your human's back.
First, balance on your human’s back.

Of course, dogs take their job as exercise motivator very seriously. We all know our people need regular walks to help them stay fit; that’s why we make it a top priority to remind them when it’s time to get out. But humans also need to build their strength to keep their bones and muscles in tip-top shape. For you Fitness Dogs, here are some great ways to help:

Next, have your human move down to her elbows while maintaining balance.
Next, have your human move down to her elbows while maintaining balance. If she starts to wobble, try wagging your tail in the necessary direction to help with rebalancing.


Alternatively, you can have your human do a partial handstand with her feet braced against the wall. Then, balance on her posterior. This is only for advanced humans.
Alternatively, you can have your human do a partial handstand with her feet braced against the wall. Then, balance on her posterior. This is only for advanced humans.

There are as many ways to help your people live a long and happy life as there are dogs. In terms of building strength, find what works in your house, and get to it!



Chef Peanut relaxes at home before starting work for the day.
Chef Peanut relaxes at home before starting work for the day.

At Small-Poodle-at-Large we want to showcase small dog talent. My friend, Chef Peanut, has worked at Chez-Pooch-Panisse for the past ten years as the head dog pastry chef. His peanut butter dog biscuits are a perennial favorite. “Alice just loves my work, and I love being part of the Chez-Pooch family. It’s amazing to be at the cutting edge of the ‘slow dog movement.'”

There is also a philosophy and educational mission behind Peanut’s work. “At mealtime, many dogs put their heads in the bowl and chow down. At Chez-Pooch, we strive to create a dining experience the sophisticated dog can savor. We also educate our customers so they can appreciate the organic, seasonal and locally sourced nature of their food.”  So, dogs, don’t chow down, slow down!   Bone Appetit!

Paws & Crafts: Bone Arrangement


paws and crafts headerAs much as our humans love us, sometimes they put us in boxes…In this case, I’m not barking about kennels, I mean a limited view of a dog’s artistic sensibility. For myself, I find being a creative dog helps me stay balanced. One of my favorite modes of expression is bone arrangement. I use whatever materials are handy in my toy box. I like to think of my pieces as chew toy mandalas, representing the transient nature and beauty of life.

harper bone stackingI’m very pleased with my latest piece. In my work, I strive for simplicity of composition, symmetry, and a pop of color. I call this piece, “Red Bone, Chew Bone.”

So don’t let the fact that you’re a dog stop you from being an artist…sure, you probably can’t make a living at it, but then again you don’t need to.


Woofs of Wisdom: Chase your Dreams and Your Friends~


Chase your dreamsThere is a big emphasis on chasing your dream in our dog-eat-dog culture. Pursuing your passion is a good thing, but sometimes we spend too much time caught up in our to-do lists. In all the hustle and bustle, it’s important to remember good friends are key to happiness and health. And good friendships take tending and energy. This week’s Woofs of Wisdom remind us when you’re out there chasing your dreams, take time to chase a friend as well!

Puppy Love ~ He’s Just Not that Into Me…


Puppy love headerIMG_2864

Puppy love is never easy. My first boyfriend was a man, literally.  I fell in love the first time I set my little puppy eyes on him. He’s a dog walker, so he understands a K-9 gal, and a good kisser, too. But, as hard as it was to accept, he just wasn’t that into me.

IMG_5101So, how is a girl supposed to please her man? I’ve stopped asking myself this question. Now I ask, “How can my man please ME?” Once I realized my first relationship was going nowhere fast, I met the most fabulous chihuahua, Chief. Sure, he’s a little man, and I know he gets around…but he’s always a perfect gentleman and he knows how to give me what I like. Plus, let’s face it, I’m an eight-pound poodle…it’s nice to be someone’s Big Woman for a change.

Shakespeare for Dogs: A Profound Question


Shakespeare for dogs headerTo Be A Poodle Or Not To Be“To be a poodle, or not to be a poodle, that is the question—”                                                                             ~Willhound Shakespeare, Hamlet

This is my favorite Willhound Shakespeare quote. The profound nature of the question, first written in 1599, still resonates deeply today. At times, I meditate on it while I chew my bone. This is a great tool for the introspective poodle. Of course, in the end, “To be a poodle” is the obvious answer…but pondering the alternative gives one paws, and perspective. I like to elevate my mind, since my body is only ten inches off the ground! Hmmm…to be ten inches off the ground, or not to be?….I think I have a new question to contemplate.

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