By A. Campbell
Hello! My name is Finn — short for Franklin. My Dad enjoys reading about American presidents and he had just finished a biography of President Franklin D. Roosevelt when it came time to name me. I’m a two-year-old English Cream Golden Retriever. While my friends know me as Finn, if you say “Franklin” I’ll snap to attention because that’s my recall name from my days of behavioral training.
A few years ago, my Dad was living in Denver where he fostered and adopted a senior Golden Retriever named RJ. The two of them were devoted to each other. After RJ passed away, my parents agreed that because they’d had such a great experience with him, they’d love to raise another Golden Retriever from puppyhood. City life has been great for me. My parents are always happily surprised at what a warm, welcoming subculture the Upper West Side dog-owning community is. Needless to say, we’ve made lots of friends with whom we’re now on a first name basis.
Each morning, we’re up early to enjoy off-leash hours in Central Park. I’ll romp around with my friends and race around the mulch pit at 86th and Central Park West. Afterward it’s back home for breakfast and then time to start the work day. That is…unless I decide it’s a good day for a protest…Like my Dad, I love to read about history and one of my idols is the late civil rights activist and United States House Representative John Lewis. I’ve learned so much about him and from him, especially when it comes to building community and gathering support for peaceful, nonviolent protests. Of course, I recognize that my protest to leave Central Park pales in comparison to Mr. Lewis’ monumental work protesting systemic injustices, but I still like to take inspiration from his legacy.
On the weekends, I like to take a long walk down to Riverside Park South and then retrace my steps and peek into Little Creatures on Columbus Avenue to see what’s new in the store. In the evening, we’ll grab a drink at The Upside Bar on Amsterdam Avenue. The staff are always very friendly and ready to hand out dog treats. On Sunday mornings, we’ll stop by Plant Shed for breakfast – coffee for each of my parents and muffin crumbs that have fallen from other people’s tables for me.
In service to our local Upper West Side community, I intend to volunteer my services as a passionate gardener and resident hole-digger to the good folks of the Central Park Conservancy. I would be delighted to help dig holes for all of the bulbs – hyacinths, tulips, daffodils – that help transform the park into such a breathtaking landscape in the Spring. Maybe I can even dedicate a little plot to my predecessor, RJ, in honor of his memory and all the great times he shared with my Dad.
If you think your pup deserves a shot at neighborhood fame, we encourage you to reach out to Audrey at firstname.lastname@example.org to be considered for a future profile on West Side Rag and follow your fellow Pupper West Sider’s adventures on Instagram at @pupper_west_side_uws
If 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; Animal Care Centers of NYC; NYC ASPCA; Humane Society of New York; Bideawee; Social Tees; Badass Brooklyn Animal Rescue and Animal Haven.