dog writer
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Why I Write About Dogs

dog writer
An outtake from my recent photo shoot in Portland, Oregon.

I write the blogs that make the whole world read. I’ve been tagged by a fellow fab blogger, Amy Shojai, to tell you why I write about dogs and more.

I uttered that line aloud at a BlogPaws staff retreat earlier this year and that phrase says it all. I’ve been asked to participate in a “Why I Write” blog hop.

My heart beats dog®. At the very core of who I am, it is dog that is my passion. I decided to switch careers several years ago, and I knew in my heart and gut that incorporating writing for and about dogs into my life was a must.

During my youth, when I would  play Candy Land, Operation, Atari, and later Trivial Pursuit, my friends would go home but I would “blog “ about it; in my diary, of course: The diary with the key.  I’d write up catchy, snappy descriptions for the back of the box that would effectively sell these games to consumers. Realizing corporations weren’t pounding down the door seeking a 13-year-old slogan and jingle writer, I set my sights on a career in writing and have not looked back since.

I see it, I hear it, I research it, and I write about it. This is what I do. Why I write, however, is a different story (pun intended).

Writing completes me. I get a thrill, an innate yearning, and the warm fuzzies when I write. I would write even if I did not get paid to do so: Writing is in my blood.

dog writer

The Back Story and Abandonment

After high school graduation in 1986, I opted for a career and not college. Though I was a 4.0 GPA student (and back then 4.0 was the maximum), I lacked guidance from an adult authority figure. So I did what many of my friends were doing: Hit the work force.  In the one solid full-time job I had for almost 7 years before returning to college full time, I was the go-to girl for writing needs.

“Hey Carol, can you write me a letter that expresses this….”

“Carol, do you have a half hour to write to the sales force and get them to do …..”

I pined for more writing assignments. So when I was encouraged by my now wife to return to college full time as an adult, I leaped at the opportunity to find myself and be the “real me.”

 College Days

I earned three degrees, an A.A. and A.S. in Education and Business Management, and my proudest moment, graduating Summa Cum Laude with a B.A. in English from Misericordia University in Dallas, Pennsylvania.

 So Now What

Having the passion and college education, my next move was working as a medical language specialist and transcribing reports for doctors from all over the world. Heck, I may have even transcribed a report from a surgery you underwent. I transcribed everything from gallbladder removals to heart transplants and psychiatric reports.

I chose this career because I felt I could embrace my lifelong passion for learning and still have time to write for ME on the side. Most importantly, as an adult I decided I wanted a telecommute/virtual career. I work better independently, in a quiet environment, and my work ethic is strong enough to support this decision. I also want a career where both my spouse and dog are with me. As of this writing, we are together 21 years and it works for us.

Unfortunately, medical language processing didn’t cut it for me. It is a great career for some, but I was ultimately bored and creatively unfulfilled.

Covering the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show

 Taking the Leap

I applied for a remote position as a medical education content writer. Long story short: I got the job. For two years, I loved it: Writing and changing the lives of people who were, in essence, changing their lives. The company would be purchased and as happens, they wanted their own in house people. Bye bye me.

I’d be lying if I told you I wasn’t devastated: I was. I am the type to bounce back: It might take me a little bit longer, but no one holds me down. I will come back and rise above and be even better than I was before. I love the quote, “You have no idea how high I can fly,” which Michael Scott said when he was let go during an episode of “The Office.

Flying High

I always loved dogs. In fact, I’ve trademarked the line, “My heart beats dog.®” I went on to become the social media and PR director for a fledgling dog magazine. They had no blog presence, so I created one. They had 222 Facebook followers. I took that to 50,000. I was then hired to write for the magazine and became one of their most published writers, averaging six articles per issue.

From there, I developed my own blog, worked freelance for several dog magazines, developed an online presence, and walked into a conference room in 2010.

I have been to every single BlogPaws conference since their very first one in Ohio, each of them with my dog, Dexter, by my side. I fell in love with the entire concept of pet blogging and knew this is where I belonged. I officially joined the team in April of 2012.


And Current Day

I write five times minimum per week for Fidose of Reality, once a week for Pet360, two to three times a week for BlogPaws, and assignments here and there. I’ve fallen in love with PR and Marketing, so I can tap into my writing, communication, and interpersonal skills there.

Dog products excite me and invigorate me. I am absolutely over-the-top obsessed with dog products, keeping up with the pet industry, and learning as much as humanly possible about trends and the story and manufacture behind the product. I am a watchdog and an alternative  lifestyle blogger.

My writing empowers me these days on many levels. BlogPaws is a force with which to be reckoned and a source of empowerment for new, intermediate, and advanced level bloggers as well as those who are interested in blogging.

“A dog lover of the highest order,” is how Gayle King introduced me when I appeared with my dog, Dexter, on  Oprah Radio’s Gayle King show to dish dogs.

Fidose of Reality is an alternative living magazine-style dog blog if your heart beats dog. We unite dog lovers of the highest order.

Does any of the following apply to you?

  • You take your dog on vacation and/or travel with your dog
  • You would go without so your dog can have what he or she needs
  • You are someone who identifies as L, G, B, or T and has a dog
  • You like the idea that “dogs are the new kids”
  • Pet fashion is fun for you as long as the dog is happy about wearing the clothes
  • You like to read about off-the-beaten path dog news and information that is reality based and provides actionable, doable things for pet parents
  • You think the idea of a dog wedding for a fundraiser is way cool

If you answered yes to one or more of these things, then welcome home. You are probably considered alternative by someone, somewhere, and we embrace that. Alternative living is the new norm. I’ve colored outside the lines for as long as I can remember. I certainly don’t plan to change.

We’re alternative but extraordinary. Fidose of Reality is all about extraordinary dog lovers.

QUESTION TIME: So that’s me in a raw nutshell. Is there something that affects your life as profoundly as writing affects mine?

And now here are three folks I encourage to do the same and share their writing passion and why they write in this blog hop:

Jen DeHaan of Stylish Canine and dogthusiast

Rachel Sheppard of My Kid Has Paws

Kristin Elliott, of Doodie Pack who is a pet product inventor, in addition to her full-time teaching job – she also writes!


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  1. I’ve been tagged! Thanks Carol, so excited! It is wonderful to hear more about your background, too.

    I have to say that many of the items from your list are true for me. Obviously, I take Mort with me on vacation (and he’s getting better at it – he used to be terrified of the car!) We do have a bit of work to do – he melts at the end of a conference day, but does amazing on road trip days.

    We went without for many years providing for the needs of our cats. It absolutely made me cry when a random stranger from Usenet (remember that?!) sent me $20 in the mail to help with our vet bills. Obviously I never asked for anything, and being 2001 it was *way* before people started doing things like that, she just sensed I was having a tough time and sent me $20. I don’t even know how she found out my address. That’s the power of community.

    As I won’t be having kids for various reasons, I’m glad I have dogs to care for and it warms my heart when people discover how fulfilling it is. I never understood that until I adopted Mikey.

    Having Stylish Canine, I have to agree that dogs wearing things that they don’t mind wearing is neat, and also a nice bonding experience.

    And fundraisers are the best 🙂

    xoxo for the tag!

  2. You found your true calling because of your love for Brandy Noel and Dexter. I love reading all the articles you have written. ❤️❤️

  3. Like Karen, Carol, I read your entire article in one long sustaining breath and your words fill me. Renew me. You are a spark, a kind of energy, that draws people in with your images, and your honesty. You inspire me to stop making “busy”, and start getting busy writing.
    From the moment I met you, I knew we’d be friends. I still remember the day- a gloriously sunny day in New Jersey, your welcoming smile, a giddiness while introducing me to Dexter. You were writing for a magazine then, and I made a custom Doodie Pack for Dex to strut his stuff. I thought you were a “superstar”. You were my glam. You still are.
    I have been humbled and blessed by your friendship and your generosity of heart. You have supported me through my Doodie Pack journey, often being the help and inspiration to springboard me into things I never dared; speaker, writer, traveler, learner. You are “that” kind of girlfriend- who, with a wink and a nudge, dares me to take the leap, and reassures me you’ll hold my hand as I do it. I wouldn’t be here, six years later with so many stories to tell, without you.
    Though distant our geography may be, all I have to do is read one of your pieces and I can hear you, your voice, and I don’t feel so far away. I love words. I love the power of language. I have to thank my Grandma for the grace of writing- though I still prefer a fine ink stylist on linen paper. No matter the medium, however, words let me say “thank you”, “I appreciate you”, and “I admire you”, in three simple words….You are loved. <3

    1. I love you to bits and this means so much to me – you are a dear, treasured friend and industry rock star. <3

  4. It is a process isn’t it? Life is a journey finding what our gifts are and then coupling them with our true passions. We are detoured…fall down..get side tracked…but some of the fortunate…like you succeed!!”””

  5. Carol

    I read your entire article in one breath! Awesome! So glad to know how you got started! You are a fantastic writer!


  6. It is as much a joy for me to read what you write as it is for you to write it. What I appreciate about you (aside from the fact that your heart beats dog) is your authenticity. You are open, honest and out there-what you see is what you get. That makes you trustworthy which is reason to come back to you time and time again for all things dog. I am ever so glad to have met you and your family in person, even more glad to call you friend.

  7. This post is everything! I needed this bit of inspiration today. I was just like you and had the diary with a key. I was always journaling and writing something!

    Writing is my therapy. When I get stuck in a creativity rut it actually feels physically and mentally painful for me. I’ve been in that rut most of the summer and I’m hoping to find my mojo soon!

  8. SO enjoy your writing.
    Just coming on to the online dog business scene, it is the trust factor that is THE most important thing to us here at TheBooneDoggies. Molly Bob said it so well in her post above.
    I look forward to reading you often. Thank you Carol!

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