By A. Campbell
Age: 4.5 years old
Breed: Couldn’t say for sure, but my parents think I’m a Dachshund and American Staffordshire Terrier mix.
Profile/history: Growing up, my Dad always had Dachshunds in his family, so he knew he wanted a pup that was similar. Mom and Dad adopted me from Companion Pet Rescue. They liked my white chest and my white “shoes”. They’re both fans of the Detroit Lions so they named me after NFL player Calvin Megatron Johnson, the famous wide receiver. I’m an athletic pupper just like my namesake. But the similarities might stop there. I mean, he’s 6’5” and 238 lbs. and I’m…neither of those things. Megatron signed a $132 million extension contract with the Lions. I wish that someone would ask me to sign anything for $132 million worth of raw hide treats and squeaky toys…(sighs) But, I digress. Go Lions!
Daily routine: Welp, I like to wake up my parents by staring at them. There’s nothing like awkwardness to get the day started. Occasionally I’ll incorporate a pounce, just so they know I’m waiting to be fed. I’ll watch them get ready for work as I eat my breakfast and then we’ll take a morning walk around the neighborhood. After work, we’ll go for an evening walk and we alternate between strolling through Central Park and Riverside Park. Both great parks! How lucky are we, Upper West Siders, to have not one but two lovely parks? When dad gets home, it’s time to settle in for some sports action. We watch a lot of basketball together, among other things. After I’ve had dinner, Dad and I will head out for a relaxing nighttime walk and then it’s time for bed.
Loves: Roadtrips! I love being in the car for any reason. My parents and I spend most summer weekends in Fairfield, CT and I enjoy going to the beach and roaming around off leash. I also get great fulfillment from being a foster brother. Mom and Dad have fostered a handful of dogs recently. Sometimes, it’s a little strange for me during the first few days, since I’m used to being an only child, but I always end up enjoying having another pup around. I like to impart my pup street smarts with recent New York transplants. For instance, I’ll share tips about how to walk around the sidewalk grates instead of over them. I’ll also point out which doormen are most pup-friendly and which hair salons have the kindest people working there and the best treats outside. It can be pretty difficult to say goodbye when my foster siblings get adopted, but I’m always happy for them.
Does not love: I’m still a little wary of people, and New York can be a crowded place. But if treats are involved, I tend to warm up pretty quickly.
Favorite store/business on UWS: Hmmm, probably Home Goods. I like to accompany Mom when she’s shopping for items for our apartment. I always find a few treats there.
Favorite park spot: The riverwalk in Riverside Park. I love walking along the Hudson, taking in the beautiful views and colors, and stopping at the Boat Basin for a beer. Fun fact – Mom and Dad got engaged on the Riverside Park Promenade, so that’s a special place for our family.
Favorite treat: Bocce’s Bakery snacks! You can find them online and in many New York pet stores. They make all different types of treats, but my favorite might be the limited edition pumpkin cheesecake treat. I’m telling you, it almost smells like human food. If you were to get a whiff of it, I think you’d be tempted.
City dog etiquette 101: I’d be happy to share a few thoughts on doggy etiquette for city dwellers, both great and small. As we all know, New York City can be a crowded and sometimes stressful place. Rescue pups like myself can be quite shy, just like people sometimes are. Other pups are outgoing. I think it’s always a good idea to approach an owner and ask if their pup is friendly and open to being petted before doing so. It’s important to remember that dogs have different personalities and backgrounds, just like people do. I also think courtesy and respect are the name of the game for everyone. And that goes for dog owners too! Always be a good citizen and Pick. Up. After. Your. Dog. Puh-lease don’t be the bad apple that spoils it for the rest of us. I don’t want to get side-eye from angry New Yorkers who blame me for other people’s messes. Throw poop bags away. Don’t give Upper West Side pups a bad name by being discourteous or irresponsible. Let’s all take care of our neighborhood. It’s what Megatron would do.
If West Side Rag readers are interested in becoming pet owners, we encourage you to consider adopting or volunteering to be a foster parent with one of the many shelters and nonprofits based in and around New York City. These include but aren’t limited to: Muddy Paws Rescue; Animal Lighthouse Rescue; NYC ASPCA; Humane Society of New York; Bideawee; Social Tees; and Animal Haven.