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Archive for the ‘dogs’ Category

on owning a puppy and an iPad

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Last April I wrote about how I’d rather have a puppy than my iPad. Now I have both!

This is Finchley (on the left):

Comparing beards

So those benefits of a puppy reviewed:

  • I do get more exercise. The accuracy of my ball throwing is also improving.
  • I do need less heating, but only in the morning. Finchley is not willing to be a lapdog after noon.
  • On the vacuuming topic, I’m an idiot. Whilst it is true than Finchley hoovers food from the floor she often does so whilst depositing a baffling amount of dog hair and sawdust. Luckily she is pretty much Roomba compatible.
  • Upfront costs were cheaper than iPad but not as cheap as a rescue dog (she’s an intentional cross-breed rather than any old mutt).
  • The ongoing costs have indeed been substantial including vet bills for having excessively long ear hairs, medication to counter the horrific consequences of the puppy being an ‘indiscriminate eater’ and the cost of providing decent food (this is a much more compelling imperative for a pet whose poo has to be picked up in little plastic bags).
  • I did not die from the excitement but I do bounce with happiness more than I did 6 months ago.


Written by Karen

May 8th, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Posted in dogs,happiness

i’d rather have a puppy than an iPad

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I remember saying that. “I’d rather have a puppy than an iPad”.

Now I’ve got an iPad and  I still don’t have a puppy. I use the iPad continuously. But I would still trade it in for a puppy without even momentary regret.

There are more side benefits to a dog. I’ll get exercise. I’ll need less heating (all dogs are lapdogs). I’ll need to vacuum less (there are no crumbs with a dog).

Upfront costs range from far cheaper than iPad (rescue mutt) to several times more expensive (Malamute). There are more ongoing costs to a dog but the upgrade timescale is longer. Round my way I think they are both equally at risk of getting pinched.

If I got a puppy, I think there is a reasonably possibility that I might die from the excitement. I’ve been waiting ten years. It’s been a consistent life goal since leaving home (and our dog).

The point isn’t really that I really really want a dog. It’s about trying not to waste money on things that don’t carry that death-from-excitement risk.

I do, of course, value good design but that has a limited value (in the literal sense that there is a limit not that it’s value is low). I won’t pay the premium regardless of what the premium is. I’ll weigh it up against other things of value to me.

My resistance to regular purchasing of expensive gadgetry (robots not included) really comes down to the other wanted things in the back of my head, things that the dog is only one representative of (having the fabled farm, moving somewhere where our neighbours don’t steal our trucks, not being a wage slave…)

I guess my (work) point is, make sure you understand everything the user values.

Written by Karen

April 19th, 2012 at 6:31 am

Posted in dogs,happiness

dog of the week

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Guide dogs vomiting at work is not actually a new thing for me. That happened at the BBC too. The story became the stuff of office legend but at the RNIB it merits a pan-building email (admittedly to explain why the second floor had been without power):

“Dog of the Week – a new slot. So there’s Jimmy, lying under John’s desk, dreaming of chasing rabbits and sniffing “things” whilst John beavers away earning a crust. Sod this for a game of soldiers thinks Jimmy, I want to go home, and promptly throws up in the floor-box, thus short circuiting the electricity supply to the second floor. Nice one Jimmy – the lads in my Team only do that at Christmas.”

Written by Karen

October 14th, 2008 at 6:51 am

Posted in dogs,rnib

my new favourite trend-forecasters

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I have no idea if their work is any good but I love The Future Laboratory’s Christmas card.

Neologisms, a cute dog and the money saved goes to a tree charity. If only those neologisms went somewhere.

Any ideas for what Synth-Ethics is?

Written by Karen

January 8th, 2008 at 5:31 am

Posted in dogs,future

Crufts goes Web 2.0

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Following my earlier enthusiasm for DoggySnaps and particularly their dog tags, this year Crufts goes Web 2.0 (sort of).

They are hooking up with Flickr and Youtube to include photos and videos. There are blogs from judges and there are even gradients and a star-like rosette.

Judges will still be picking the winner though.

Written by Karen

November 15th, 2007 at 4:29 am

Posted in dogs