Story: After BlogPaws, a Guilt Trip

I got back late last night from my trip to Las Vegas for the BlogPaws conference. I probably have about two months worth of ideas, stories, photos and posts swirling in my head, which I will not attempt to stuff into one post. You’ll see it all come through in detail in future posts, but for now I’ll try sum up my experience in a just a few words. At BlogPaws 2014, I was, at any one time (and sometimes simultaneously):

  • Delighted
  • Inspired
  • Captivated
  • Befriended
  • Surprised
  • Amused
  • Educated
  • Awed
  • Energized

…and I was recognized and honored by my peers.

On Saturday night, I was thrilled to receive the BlogPaws Nose-to-Nose Award for Best Blog Post, (High and Mighty, which you can see here).  I hadn’t expected to win, as the finalists in my category had all written wonderful, thoughtful and meaningful posts–and my nominated story was a humorous little tale about my cat Calvin and how he found a new spot to climb to in my house. ( I have links to the other finalists at the end of this post; please check them out as well, as they are very deserving nominees.)

Winning the Nose-to-Nose Award was a dream come true, and I am very appreciative of the family, friends and fans who support me and my blog.

But all good things must come to an end and it was time to begin the second part of my trip.

The guilt trip.

After four days away, my dogs greeted me at the door with howls and moans of joy. I could barely walk as I waded through hip-high happy pups.

The cats came by to stare at me from a distance, making sure I knew that I had not gone through the proper channels to get my travel authorized.

How could I have abandoned them like that? They had been left with only had my husband and son to feed them, pet them, play with them and love them.

I had shipped home a huge box of dog and cat swag  that included toys and food and treats galore, but that wouldn’t arrive for days. However, I had managed to tuck a small bag each of dog and cat treats into a corner of my overstuffed suitcase before I jammed it closed.

It was a pleasure to bring the dogs out into the cool yet moist night air for their last potty break of the day. Afterwards, I brought them upstairs to the bedroom to hang out with my husband, who had stayed up past his bedtime to pick me up at the airport. With the dogs ensconced upstairs, I was able to focus on the felines of the house, without nosy boisterous dogs in mucking up the works.

Cats waiting for treats

Waiting for treats: Calvin and Dawn share a gentle moment while Elsa gives me the What’s Taking You So Long glare.

The sound of a bag of pet treats being opened is like ringing the dinner bell, and Calvin, Elsa Clair, and Dawn came running as I opened up a sample bag of dry cat food. The smell alone made the kitties giddy with excitement. Except Athena. She wanted the treats, but didn’t think it was worth rubbing furry elbows with the other cats.  Looking around the half wall between our kitchen and family room, she hoped I might decide she was cute enough to toss her a few crunchy noms too.

Athena corner halfwall

I would like some treats, but do I have to mingle with the others?

I gave a few morsels to each of them, and in just a few minutes the purrs were set to full rumble.

Now for the pups. They were waiting at the bedroom door. Once again, that distinctive sound of a thick plastic ripping generated huge amounts of excitement. 

3 dogs are given treats

The tongues and noses are goin’ as the dogs wait for me to hand out the goodies.

I always ask Jasper, Lilah and Tucker to work for their treats, so they had to Sit, Down, Stay, Shake and High-Five to earn their rewards.

After a few rounds of tricks, it was time for me to call it a night. Though disappointed that I put the snacks away, all was right with the dog posse. Dogs always forgive.

I was officially home; my guilt trip was over.

BlogPaws Nose-to-Nose Finalists

In the category of Best Blog Post, the other nominees were:

A complete list of all the finalists, along with links to their sites, can be found on the BlogPaws site.


You may also want to read:

This post is part of the Monday Mischief blog hop. Check out the great blogs listed below.


I also joined the BlogPaws conference Blog Hop. Check out other reports from the conference below:

14 Comments on "Story: After BlogPaws, a Guilt Trip"

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  1. Slimdoggy says:

    Treats always make the heartache all better.

  2. Rebekah says:

    Congratulations on your win, thats awesome!! I get the guilt trip thing. I took a vacation without my SO two years ago, and checked in on the dogs multiple times each day. My dad and stepmom often lament about how their dogs are excited to see them upon returning, but their cats do not speak to them for several days afterwards.

  3. Again you have captured what its like to have various pets all asking for attention in their own way. I love the look on Elsa’s face. It makes me miss having more than just one pet. Please don’t feel guilty you truly deserved your award and I am honored to have been a finalist with you. Thanks so much for sharing my link. We still aren’t home after two days on the road, should finally make it there later on Wednesday, I think Dolly is truly bored and fed up with her road trip. Again, congratulations!

  4. Hi Susan

    I’m glad you had such a fab time! I have to ask though, it didn’t sound like the Cats had to work for their treats yet the dogs did? How come the cats get such an easy ride? 🙂

    I hope you’re having a fun day,

    Your pal Snoopy 🙂

    • Snoopy, that’s a very good point. To be honest, the cats did have to work for their treats, but as a dog, you probably wouldn’t think of it as “work.” First, they had to all gather in a certain spot–without hissing, swatting or nasty looks. This is very hard for the cats, as none of them like to share–food or space.

      And (they’d probably be angry if I told you this), often I make my cats do tricks for their treats: sometimes they have to “beg.” They don’t like anyone knowing this because it might embarrass them, but it is true. Cats can be trained.

      The one thing that’s really hard is to teach them to sit still while I take a picture; it’s possible that they just don’t want any evidence that they have to act a certain way. 😉

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