Jayadeva's Brooklyn: Dogs, Babies and Love in Sunset Park

My life in Brooklyn, now with my baby, and fellow dog lover, by my side.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Doggie Daycare

Park Slope welcomes Dog's Den to 5th Avenue!
Dogs Den Doggie Daycare
501 5th Ave, between 12th & 13th Sts.

I have not yet met these folks, but I'm excited to see a new dog related business in the neighborhood. Also, I did receive a couple nice email responses to my request to highlight their business here:

From Dog's Den Co-Owner, Bahman Danesh,

"Thank you so much for the press. It's much appreciated!! Please let me know when you want to come down and meet with our friendly staff..."

From Dog's Den Manager, Mike Nelson-Borriello,

"Hi! Great site!...previously, my dog and I worked at the Cato Corner Cheese Stand at the Grand Army Market, and so I really love the 'Dogs of the Farmers Market ' section...here are two guests reclining in style at Dogs' Den this week."

Send me a post with any reviews you might have.

As always, if there's a link you think should be here, let me know!

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Dogs of the Farmer's Market

Part One of an ongoing series.

I discovered this sweet Sheltie at the New York City Greenmarket at Borough Hall in Brooklyn. Her human companion works as a dog trainer for films and said she was trying to get her in movies. I hope she keeps us informed!

This is a picture of the beautiful wares we were all eyeing. My thanks to Ted, Dan & Nate King of Rexcroft Farm for letting me shoot their hydroponic produce.

Dan King who runs the 400 acre Rexcroft Farm in Athens, New York ( Greene County) is the seventh generation of his family to farm... Their greenhouses provide year round production of hydroponic vegetables as well as flowers which they sell through the New York City Greenmarket at Borough Hall in Brooklyn and at Bowling Green in downtown Manhattan...The farm is not organic but their vegetables are ecologically grown and their flowers are "low spray" i.e., grown with far fewer pesticides than the norm.

description adapted from: http://www.catskillmtn.org/past/festivals/2002_mcf/farms_festival.html

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Literary Dogs

Here is a collection of dog related books I've read, or have had recommended to me.
Alphabetical by Subject, Title, then Author.

For your child, or just the young at heart. I bought “Busy Doggies” under the auspices of gifting it to my little neice, but I just can’t let go. It’s such a pure, simple, dog-lover’s delight.

Bunnicula: A Rabbit Tale of Mystery, by James and Deborah Howe
I had to post the synopsis, because this is (notice "is" not "was" - no shame whatsoever) one of my all-time favorite books...
Harold the dog and Chester the cat are the contented pets of the kind Monroe family. Their life is gentle and quite--until the Monroes bring home a new pet, a rabbit they've named Bunnicula because they found it at the local movie theater while watching a screening of DRACULA. Bunnicula looks like your run-of-the-mill bunny to Harold, but Chester insists that Bunnicula has fangs, and the black markings on his white fur make it look like he's wearing a cape. Then something strange starts happening--all the vegetables in the Monroe house are suddenly dry and shriveled, as if they've had all their juices sucked out of them. And could those be fang marks? Is Bunnicula really a vampire rabbit? (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bunnicula for a list of the 20 other books featuring the Bunnicula characters)

Busy Doggies, by Beverly Sparks and John Schindel

Clifford, the Big Red Dog, by Norman Bridwell
An entire series devoted to this loveable guy.

Doggies, by Sandra Boynton

Harry the Dirty Dog, by Gene Zion
Another little-Jen favorite.

Kipper, by Mick Inkpen
I just love hearing my neice, Maya's little voice in my head talking about her favorite PBS doggy, "Kippah."

Lily the Lost Puppy, written by Jenny Dale, illustrated by, Frank Rodgers
Admission: never read this, just fell in love with Frank Rodgers' cover.

Poky Little Puppy, The, written by Janette Sebring and illustrated by Gustaf Tenggren

Sally Goes to theMountains, by Stephen Huneck
Read his whole woodblock illustrated series.

Whistle for Willie, by Ezra Jack Keats

Children (Espanol):

Here I found an old favorite, “Big Dog, Little Dog” in Spanish. I’m sure plenty of other can be found in translation.

Perro Grande...Perro Pequeno: Un Cuento De Las Buenas Noches, por P. D. Eastman

Great Titles:
These are books that sounds great, but as I’ve never read them, I cannot actually recommend them.

Doga: Yoga for Dogs, by Jennifer Brilliant and William Berloni
It was bound to happen. I mean, who does the best Downward Dog anyhow?

Life is Good!: Lessons in Joyful Living, by Trixie Koontz, Dean Koontz (Editor)
Yes, The Dean Koontz. Here, jumping out of his professionally spooky voice, he apparently is demoted to editing his dog, Trixie.

Living With Dogs: Tales of Love, Commitment, and Enduring Friendship,
by Henry Korman and Mary Ellen Korman

I & Dog, by The Monks of New Skete

My Lead Dog Was a Lesbian: Mushing Across Alaska in the Iditarod-The World's Most Grueling Race, by Brian Patrick O'Donoghue

My Therapist's Dog: Lessons in Unconditional Love, by Diana Wells

Three Dog Bakery Cookbook: Over 50 Recipes for All-Natural Paw-Lickin
Treats for Your Dog
, by Dan Dye, Mark Beckloff

Who Moved My Bone: A Guide for Multi--Dog Households, by Theresa Mancuso


For the Life of Your Dog: A Complete Guide to Having a Dog From Adoption and Birth Through Sickness and Health, by Greg Louganis and Betsy Siino Sikora
Yes, the Greg Louganis.


Mutts Sunday Afternoons, by Patrick McDonnell

New Yorker Book of Dog Cartoons, The
I love this one by, Danny Shanahan, Published in The New Yorker May 8, 1989

Why Dogs are Better than Men, by Jennifer Berman
My husband and I love all her comics in The Funny Times. Jennifer's online comic page is currently under construction.

My absolute favorite breed.

Just Mutts: A Tribute to the Rogues of Dogdom, by Gene Hill and Steve Smith
I just love this little guy on the cover! I keep hearing Jack's voice in my head saying, "Just Mutts!"

Mostly Mutts: Unforgettable Photographs of Man's Best Friend, by Darwin
My new favorite photographer.

Mutts: America's Dogs, by Brian Kilcommons, Michael Capuzzo
Underdog: A Celebration of Mutts, The, by Julia Szabo


Getting Lucky: How One Special Dog Found Love and a Second Chance at
Angel's Gate
, by Denise Flaim, Susan Marino
I haven't read this yet, but my friend, Poppy, brought it back for me from The Martha Stewart Show. Apparently the authors were guest staring; She said she was very moved. I'm looking forward to starting it!

Touring and Travelling:

DogFriendly.com's United States And Canada Dog Travel Guide, by Len Kain and Tara

Dog Lover's Companion to New York City, The, by Christian J. Lau and Joanna Downey


Sight Hound, by Pam Houston
I love Pam Houston so much. I've read everything by her. She seems to me the soul sister of Dar Williams, if that makes any sense. Well, I guess it does, becuase Pam quotes Dar in one of her books.

Timbuktu: A Novel, by Paul Auster
Fun, quick, very Auster, written from our dog hero's point of view, but never cheesy.


Dogs That Know When Their Owners Are Coming Home: And Other Unexplained
Powers of Animals
, by Rupert Sheldrake

Dogwatching, by Desmond Morris

Short Stories:

Dog Is My Co-Pilot: Great Writers on the World's Oldest Friendship, from the editors of Bark

James Herriot's Dog Stories, by James Herriot

Literary dog: Great contemporary dog stories, The, by Jeanne Schinto

Old Dogs Remembered, by Bud Johns


Cesar's Way: The Natural, Commonsense Guide to Understanding And Correcting
All Common Dog Problems
, by Cesar Millan

How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend: The Classic Training Manual for Dog
, by Monks of New Skete

How To Talk To Your Dog, by Jean Craighead George

Monday, August 28, 2006

Where Dogs Run Free

Running Free

(Thanks again, Darwin Wiggett for the running dog photo!)

Jaya and I found each other in Boulder, Colorado, in the Boulder Humane Society (http://www.boulderhumane.org/index.html). There, we were introduced to each other in the play yard out back, where, honestly, she showed a lot of interest in the goat and geese behind the fence than in me. We had a good time that first day and continued to along the many mountain trails of the Rockies. Boulder is a progressive city. Dogs were allowed off the leash on trails, as long as they "had recall," or would come to their owner when called. Jaya did this right off the bat, within her own timeframe though, of course.

Country Dog, City Dog
(Our neighbor, Max, dreaming of the park)

Moving to Brooklyn, I knew I had to find an affordable place, in walking distance to a big park where Jaya could run free. Alas, the affordable part pretty much blew Park Slope off the bargaining table.

Sunset Park

(Dina and Rita from, DOGS OF SUNSET PARK)

However, my future-husband lured me to Sunset Park. Although the neighborhood lacks a Tea Lounge and suffers from an unattractive graffiti problem (not at all the creative, artistic graffiti of my South Bronx neighborhood where I worked), it seemed fairly safe, friendly and sports a fabulous park.

Jaya and I met many friendly dogs and even found a dog run. There, the dogs froliced, as the guardians gazed at the Manhattan skyline, chilling on a comfortable bench. However, then word came down that this was an unofficial dog-run and people who getting ticketed all over. Rumor had it, that the residents across the street didn't like to hear the barking and that a real dog-run would be constructed somewhere (smaller) on the other side of the park. Well, that's yet to materialize and cops are still handing out tickets like candy.

The good news is, there's a citizen's organization on the case! Sunset Bark Park http://www.sunsetbarkpark.org/

Their website reads;

"There are no legal dog runs in Sunset Park, nor is there an off leash privilege between certain hours of the day. Please be respectful to your neighbors and other park users by keeping your dog on leash at all times. We understand this is a problem for dogs and their owners, and are working hard to change this."

I found their site a good fix of news and fun. I clicked on their, "Dogs of Sunset Park" page and quickly emailed Webmaster Sarah to add Jaya to the list! I also marvelled at their fund draising and P.R. efforts.

I clicked on the link to sign their online petition: http://www.petitiononline.com/barkpark/petition.html

The text of the petition is as follows;

"Sunset Park Dog RunTo: Sunset Park Community Board and NYC Department of Parks and Recreation YES! I support the Sunset Park Dog Owners Group's efforts to create a successful dog run in Sunset Park. Si! Yo apoyo los esfuerzos de Sunset Park Dog Owner Group para crear un parque para perros en Sunset Park. Sincerely, You Name Here."

Before I signed, they already had 206 signatures!

Prospect Park
(Picture taken from FIDO's Pupnic 2006)

Someone's looking out for Prospect Park dogs too! FIDO (Fellowship in the Interest of Dogs and their Owners) Brooklyn;

"FIDO is committed to ensuring that Prospect Park is a safe and healthy place for dogs; that responsible supervision of dogs will ensure enhanced opportunities for off-leash activity"

The first Saturday Of every month, they hold their "Coffee Barks". Dogs and their guardians meet in the Prospect Park Long Meadow, in front of the Picnic House, from 7 - 9am.

Dogs in the City
(Jaya's never been to Central Park's Conservatory Garden, below)

The lucky dogs of NYC, San Fransisco and Chicago have Urbanhound on their side.

Urbanhound describes themselves as;

the city dog's ultimate survival guide is the definitive source of information for urban dog owners.Covering topics that matter to people who care about dogs, urbanhound gives practical advice, makes informed suggestions, keeps up-to-date directories and data bases, and alerts you to hound happenings.Sunset ParkComing to New York was quite a shock for both of us. We're lucky enough never to have received a ticket, but have had enough near misses for me to never leave home without a leash.

As always, please let me know if there are any other links that should be here!

Friday, August 25, 2006

Dog Days of Summer

Whew! Jaya did Not like the weather this summer. Ok, yes, she does look pretty happy in this picture. I assure you though, she's panting up a storm. We just got lucky enough that afternoon to lounge some in the cool grass of Sunset Park.

I know that I was feeling the dread of Global Warming upon us, while sweating through a silk sleeveless on my short jaunt from Subway to office. I even left my A.C. on (lowest, energy saving setting) for Jaya all day. Even so, I'd still often come home to the sound of my arthritic pooch leaping out of her cool bathtub retreat.

Political Action

What to do something about it? Working Assets' Act for Change and League of Conservation Voters are launching a joint campaign to get Congress to get off their air-conditioned butts and take action on renewable energy and conservation issues.

You don't have to sign-up for anything, or receive any email from either organization. It will get you to a screen asking you to pass this initiative onto your friends, but after you see the confirmation that you wrote your representatives, you can easily just close that window and you're done.


Social Action

If you like getting daily, humorous and well-written updates about little things you can do to save the earth, sign-up for Ideal Bites Daily Tips. The site is run by down-to-earth, everyday people, who want to keep daily lifestyles green. I received a fast response to my request to post their link here,

"Thanks so much for adding our link to your blog! We're thrilled to hear you're enjoying the Daily Tip and helping to spread the Ideal Bite word...Cheers, Emily & the Ideal Bite Team."

Financial Action

This is my favorite form of environmentalism - shopping! I love that there are new eco-friendly shops opening up all over Brooklyn.

Here a two of my favorites in Park Slope...

3R Living


I received a few gifts from 3R Living and they're always welcome. They have an extensive online store as well as their well designed Brookyn shop (276L 5th Ave, bet. Garfield Pl & 1st St). They have fair trade handicrafts, gifts from reclaimed materials and green household items.

Here's my current online fav:

"Baaaa! Hand knitted by rural women in Kenya.

Made from Natural Wool.

7.0" x 4.0"

Our price: $25."


http://www.greenjeans.com/ (under construction) & their blog (also on Blogger) http://www.greenjeans.blogspot.com/

I met Amy, half of the Greenjeans married duo, back when their store first opened. She had an easy kindness and patiently answered all my questions about the crafts’ creators. Visit them at 449 7th Avenue, bet. 15th & 16th Sts.

As always, please let me know if there are any other links that should be here!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Dog Sightings

Ok, here's a close-up of our blog namesake. This is my sloppy hand at Printshop. Alas, it's all I have now.

I am an (almost) equal opportunity dog lover though. Jaya and Tramp (R.I.P.) will always be top dogs, but there are so many beautiful mutts (my favorite breed) in this world. When I'm at work and I need to distress, I like smiling at these dogs...

Jayadeva's Dog Sightings

Darwin Wiggett has a natural gift for capturing the canine and a nice way with humans too! I emailed him for permission to post a few of his photos here and he wrote back right away saying, "I am flattered, thanks for the link!" So, here are a few of my favs, along with a link to more. Thanks, Darwin!

Adoption Sites

Beware - These next two sites may create the STRONG urge to adopt!Newsflash for Adopt-A-Dog...This September 10th, 2006, is their 19th Annual Puttin' on the Dog Show and Festival! It's held at Roger Sherman Baldwin Park in Greenwich, CT, from 10AM to 5PM. My sister, a.k.a. T-

Rex's mom, will be volunteering, along with her three human kids (she promises to send us pictures). Adopt-A-Dog promises, "Bring your entire family and pets to enjoy a howlin' good time."

http://adopt-a-dog.org/ and

Now this next one is a real tear-jerker of an adoption site. You've been warned: http://ny-petrescue.org/. Look at beautiful Blue, their Pet Rescue's Dog of the Week!

Little Boy Blue could be Jaya's cousin! Here's an excerpt from his profile:

Blue is a beautiful Blue Merle Heeler. He is 1 year old and around 40 lbs. He is very smart, and has mastered "sit" and "stay" especially when you offer him treats. He sleeps through the night on his doggie bed...is housetrained...very affectionate and likes lots of attention from his people....likes to sit and cuddle with you at night.

Dogs on T.V.

The Puppy Channel, as featured on This American Life (http://www.thislife.org/) , "Starting from Scratch," 3/7/03, Episode 233:

Next is the number one "dog sight" of them all. I was so tempted to get Nature's DOGS: THE EARLY YEARS DVD, that I went so far as to become a WNET Thirteen member, so I'd qualify for the discount. Haven't gotten the DVD though, yet. I'm feel I'm getting my money's worth just checking it on this site once a day:

Fun and Fans

On the lighter side, there's the official site of Mutts, my favorite comic strip (obviously) :
www.muttscomics.com . Here, they have great, free screensavers and desktop drawings.

Here's a new site I just found. It's a "fanlisting" for Mixed Breeds. Haven't perused it too extensively, but the Home Page is beautiful:

Please let me know if there are any other sites that are worth highlighting!

The Birth of a Blog

Why does a blogger start a blog? I suppose the reasons are near as multiple as blogs in the blogosphere. I designed this blog to be a way from me to organize my thoughts, share tips, vent, and serve as creative outlet.

My favorite blog is http://designsponge.blogspot.com/ and I don't think I could ever pull off the momentous feat that Grace Bonney has accomplished. However, I also see the blog as a respository for all the facts, skills and knowledge I've accumulated.

Obviously, by the title and description, one may already gather that my dog, Jaya, Eastern Religion (Jayadeva's name popped out at me from a deliberate search through my "Sources of Indian Tradition" textbook...more about this later) and Brooklyn.

Let's get started, shall we?