My diary from the first year in Doggy Heaven has its own page. Here are my older diary entries from the second year in chronological order.
May 15 – Misty Escapes
Today Misty was for a walk when she saw some deer and she got very excited. She managed to get out of her harness, and she chased the deer into the woods! I was appalled by her bad behaviour.
Zorro said she was not chasing the deer, she was herding them off the road for their own safety.
“Yeah, sure,” said Loba, and she rolled her eyes.
Mom tightened Misty’s harness when she got back.
May 22 – Letter to Loba
Dear Aunt Loba,
I am a mother of 8 weeks old octuplets and we live in the wild woods. Now my pups want to go to karaoke with the coyotes, but I think they are still too young. They are very good and smart pups and I totally trust them, but I am still uncomfortable for them to mix with the coyote crowd. My pups says that I am neurotic and overprotective, and that all their friends are going. What do you think Aunt Loba? Am I being unreasonable? Should I let them go?
Misgivings in the Woods
You are not unreasonable, and you must not be stupid. Your pups are far too young to venture out anywhere on their own, and they are not trustworthy, and possibly not so good either. Follow your instincts and make sure they stay around you all the time, their lives are at stake. If possible, move to a better neighborhood, or even better, go to an animal shelter where your pups will get an opportunity to find good work with humans. There you can get fixed as well.
May 29 – Misty Gets Sick
Something shocking happened on Earth yesterday. Daddy took Misty for a long walk and all seemed fine. Two hours later she suddenly vomited and had difficulty standing up and was wobbling around, she was very ill. We thought she might die.
The vomit smelled of nicotine, Misty had been poisoned by eating a throw away cigarette! Dad took her to the emergency clinic but the vet could not really do anything.
Fortunately, Misty recovered the next day. Mom took her for a walk and picked up all cigarette butts that she could find on the road.
Cigarettes are stupid and poisonous. Poor Misty!
June 5 – Dear Aunt Loba, I want out.
I am a young lady in my first heat. I live with a good family, but they just do not understand me. I like to go out and meet boys without being on the leash, but they don’t let me go anywhere on my own! I just want to have some fun, what is the harm in that? I am getting desperate, I want out, I must get away!
The worst thing is that yesterday I overheard them saying that I should get fixed asap. Dear Aunt Loba, time is short, I am thinking about escaping tonight. Should I go for it?
Hot and Desperate
Dear Hot and Desperate,
I somewhat sympathize with your dilemma; I was myself spayed at an early age and never had puppies. My dear adopted son Flurry has been good company though.
You say there is no harm in having fun with the boys when you are on heat. That is plainly wrong, you will get pregnant and you need to think if you really want to have puppies on your own, the father will almost certainly not be around. Do you intend to go back to your family after your fling? Will you even find the way back? Do you have resources to raise your pups to adulthood, or will they suffer and maybe die?
This is your decision; all I can say is that the feeling of desperation will soon go away, and you will forget all about meeting boys and start playing fetch again. Especially if you get spayed.
June 12 – Interspecies Relationships
Did I take Mom and Dad for walks or did they take me? Who is in charge of the interspecies relationship? Maybe dogs serve humans, but pets (like myself) are served by humans?
It is my opinion that in a well run household, the dog is in charge.
Zorro says he is in charge in our family but he is delusional. Loba is the boss.
June 19 – Dear Aunt Loba, I am good looking…
I am a pretty good looking gal, and I have many admirers. I get lots of letters from males that are deeply in love with me. “I love you, hugs and kisses”, “Marry Me, please”, “Love you forever darling,” etc…
I live with a good family, but it’s a bit boring at times; you know, pee, eat, walk, poop, sleep, pee, sleep, walk, eat, pee and poop and sleep until next day. I have the occasional play day at the park and a few trips out, but the thing is; I am young with needs.
There are some incredibly handsome males around here that want to marry me and I am sure it is true love that will last forever. What should I do? Should I stay with my family or should I elope with one (or several) of my heartthrobs? They say they will take care of me, forever.
Dear Good Looking,
You are on heat and you need to get spayed. The males will disappear as soon as you are not hot any more.
June 16 – Zorro is Looking for Staff
Zorro is interviewing for Loba’s position at Zorro’s Zecurity. There are two applicants; an Irish Wolfhound and a Chihuahua.
The Chihuahua has no experience, but she said she always wanted to be a guard dog and she was very keen.
The Irish Wolfhound has an impressive resume from being a guard dog at a Scottish manor on Earth. Zorro asked if he had outside the fence experience and he said no, but he could probably get over most fences and he said that all critters were frightened of him.
Zorro thought he was arrogant. “I don’t know what it is, but I get the feeling he is not loyal,” Zorro said. “What is an Irish Wolfhound doing in Scotland anyway? He should have served his Irish master.” Then Zorro said he favored the Chihuahua. “She is lively and attentive, I think she will do good.”
“How will she get over the fence,” asked Loba.
“She will get UNDER the fence,” answered Zorro.
July 3 – Dear Aunt Loba, My Wife does not Understand Me
I am married to a good looking mixed breed, although I myself, is of the finest pedigree. My wife is very smart and she wants to have freedom and her own career, but that leaves me without support in my security business.
When I come home tired, she is not there to groom me and serve me food. She does not keep house very well, instead she roams around and gives free advice to whoever listens. Can you tell her to focus on me and…
Zorro! I know this is you. I supported you my entire life on Earth and I am still here with you in Doggy Heaven. Just not all the time.
July 10 – The Chihuahua Quits
The Chihuahua has left Zorro’s Zecurity, she got a better offer from Doogle. They give out free snacks and toys.
This employee did not last long, and now Zorro is without staff again. The Irish Wolfhound is no longer interested. Zorro says that it is hard running a business.
July 17 – Zorro does a Survey
Zorro is worrying about the high turnover of employees in Zorro’s Zecurity, so he is doing a survey about work satisfaction.
“It is completely anonymous,” Zorro says. He gave me, Loba and the Chihuahua a sheet of questions to answer.
1. Do you feel Zorro’s Zecurity is a good place to work?
a) yes b) could not ask for better c) it is an awesome workplace
2. Is Zorro a fair and understanding boss?
a) yes b) I adore him c) very
3. Are the pay and benefits at Zorro’s Zecurity enough?
a) yes b) more than enough c) absolutely
4. Tell me in your own words about anything the management can improve at the company: (3 letters left).
July 14 – Dear Aunt Loba, My Human is in Trouble
Dear Aunt Loba, I am worried about my human Mom. I am always at her side doing everything I can for her, but she seems to want more. I am talking about boyfriends.
Well, it would be nice to have an extra human in our pack, but not just any human. She goes for guys that beat her up. I do not understand. I try to warn her, that he treats her badly, it is obvious. She does not listen, just asks me to stop barking, even tells me off when I defend her.
Why does she choose menacing guys? How can I protect her? How can I tell her to get a nerd?
Distressed and Scared
Dear Distressed and Scared,
Sometimes human females admire aggressive and narcissistic behaviour in men, thinking that they will be protected and gain in status as girlfriends. But the opposite happens, these men are abusive. All the guy have to say is “I love you” or “you are my baby” or something like that and her mind goes stupid.
Your Mom’s bad decisions are your reality too. I suggest you continue your display of dislike (barking, growling, disobedience) toward the offensive males, but be excessively loving toward your Mom. Do not cross the boundaries and bite the enemy, just be very loud. Peeing in his shoes is a good tactic, and why not poo on his favorite clothes too.
Lick every nerd that comes her way. Approach a guy that smells friendly and lick him. Maybe your Mom gets the message. I am worried about you and your Mom.
July 31 – How To get a Longer Walk
If you think your walks are too short, do this:
when your human steps on a scale to check their weight, discretely put your paws on the scales and push down hard.
The humans think they have put on weight and they take you for an extra long walk.
You are welcome.
August 7 – Employee Survey Results
The results from Zorro’s employee survey are in and it is all positive! Zorro’s Zecurity is a great company to work for, employee surveys do not lie. But wait, are there any employees left?
August 14 – Loba is an influencer
Zorro says that Loba’s advice column is old school and that she should be an influencer instead. All they have to do is to take photos when they lazy around and eat food. Then companies give them free stuff.
Zorro told Loba to sunbath on a pretty blanket with cucumbers over her eyes. He placed a drink with an umbrella next to her, took a photo and posted it on instadog. Then he ate the cucumbers.
We are waiting for followers, that is what influencers do, he said.
I don’t understand anything.
August 21 – Looking for Likes
The first day Loba posted her glamour picture, she got three likes. One from me, one from Zorro and one from old aunt Kara.
Then Zorro told our friends to like her post and she got 12 more. “Not enough,” said Zorro, “I will fix this.”
Next day she had 25 000 followers and 20 000 likes! Wow, Loba is admired! This is outstanding!
Loba asked Zorro how he did it. “You know,” he said, ” the right exposure is important.”
“And the right bot,” said Loba.
“That too counts,” answered Zorro smugly. “They all do it, even the famous Top Doggers.”
August 28 – Heavenly Dog Snacks
Toff has started his own food business in Doggy Heaven; he is selling dog snacks. Small and tasty round little bites packed in bags labeled Havenly Dog Snacks with a picture of a very fat Toff. The snacks are very popular and Toff is making tons of money, they are cheap to produce. Zorro refused to taste them, but Loba tried a bag.
“Deer poop,” she said. “This is packaged deer poop. Quite good.”
September 4 – A New Fragrance for Dogs
As Loba now is an influencer, she has been sent a new fragrance by a company. It is called Sea Breeze and it is guaranteed to make you attractive to other dogs, gender neutral. The company only wants her to try it and write something positive on Instadog.
Zorro and I like the fragrance and when Loba put it on she was immediately approached by several dogs nearby.
I think Sea Breeze smells of sardines.
September 11 – Dear Aunt Loba, I have Trust Issues
Can you please give me advice. I love my boyfriend very much, he is an attractive shepherd mix, his fur is rich, his teeth big and his paws enormous.
The problem is that he says I am neurotic and overbearing, that I must give him more freedom and trust.
I am so confused, I really do get anxious when he disappears for days and I am left to look after our recent litter of 12. I do understand that he has to be away as he has another litter to support, the mother is an ugly bitch that tricked him and I know he does not love her.
I know I was snappy when he came back after three days and ate up the food I had scavenged for myself and the pups. Then we had an argument because I saw him with a lovely cocker girl, she is on heat, but he assures me nothing happened and that I should calm down and trust him, or he will leave me.
Dear Aunt Loba, am I neurotic and overbearing? Should I see a dog psychologist and work on my trust issues? I love my boyfriend and I don’t want him to leave, he says we might get married one day.
Debbie in the Dumps
You do need to work on your personality, you are too trusting and you are dating a selfish jerk. Stop looking at his shiny coat and look at his behaviour. Stop making excuses for his lack of support to your, and other female’s pups. You will do better without him; for one, you don’t have to share your food with him and I can guarantee he will never marry you. He is no role model for your pups.
September 18 – Mission Statement
“Help me formulate a mission statement for Zorro’s Zecurity,” said Zorro. Loba and I sat down. “All modern companies have mission statements to motivate their employees.”
I pointed out that he does not have any employees, they all left, but Zorro said that’s the problem. The employees need to have a vision to be motivated to work for him!
Loba thought the employees need better pay and benefits but Zorro ignored her.
“We need to start with a statement about what the job is about,” said Zorro.
“Right, what about; We provide security and varmint control around your property…,” Loba started.
I told then they need something about Health and Safety because it is very important.
“Ok,” Zorro agreed, “how does this sound: We provide security and varmint control around you property in a safe and non- violent manner so the community can be relaxed and worry free. It is always good to be community minded,” he added.
“It must have something about having fun,” said Loba, “all young employees want to have fun.”
“And something about being part of a team,” I suggested.
In the end we settled for this; We, the team members at Zorro’s Zecurity provide security and varmint control around your property in a safe and non-violent manner so the community can live relaxed and worry free, while we have fun.
“Excellent,” said Zorro, this will make a big difference. We just need a few jobs so I can hire more employees.
September 25 – HR Department at Zorro’s Zecurity
Zorro’s Zecurity has no applicants for guard duty despite the mission statement, so Zorro is asking Goldie the therapy dog, to help him with recruitment. “She will be my Human Resource consultant,” said Zorro.
Goldie’s first suggestion was to increase the starting salary with 50% and to give a sign on bonus of 5 tins of Toff’s select, bacon flavor. “But don’t tell your old employees about these incentives,” she said. “They will get upset.”
Zorro thought they should increase the salary for existing employees as well, but Goldie told him it’s not how it’s done. “They have already shown that they are willing to work for a lower salary, no need for an increase as long as they don’t know that new employees get more.”
As Zorro’s Zecurity does not have any current employees, it is academic anyway, so Zorro did not insist. Goldie went away to write the HR manual on fairness and ethics.
October 2 – Change
Goldie is holding a meeting to get the staff at Zorro’s Zecurity through the difficulties of change. Staff is resistant to change, and she needs to convince the workers to accept the company transformation.
Loba and I were called to a meeting explaining future changes. She showed us a diagram.
“You are here, aimlessly drifting,” she said, pointing at some lines at the bottom.
“When we change, you go into chaos.” She pointed at the center which looked like a birds nest. “Change is difficult, and you may feel anxious and confused, but know that management is here to help you through.
When the changes are done, you arrive in the future, you have direction and it is worth it, you will be happy and productive!”
I tried to understand, but it just looked like random scribbles. Goldie must have seen my hesitance and she gave me a condescending smile.
Loba rolled on the ground, roaring of laughter. ” Sniff My Butt,” she said and asked Goldie if she ever had lived on the streets, shelters, changed families, been lost, defended herself against criminals and wild animals, all while finding enough food and shelter for survival? Goldie did not answer but turned to Zorro and said the employees are very resistant to change and may have to be sacked.
Then she asked for her consulting fee in bacon. Lots of bacon. I think Zorro soon will be broke.
October 9 – All Paws Meeting
Goldie has called all staff at Zorro’s Zecurity for a meeting. The issue is that they have no staff so Loba and I turned up to show support.
Goldie took charge, I was surprised as Zorro normally acts the Alpha male. “We will start with a safety moment. Please look around for Exits in case of a fire. No fire drills are planned today.”
“We are outdoors,” said Loba.
“Where would you run? Have you thought about that?”
“I run the opposite direction of the fire.”
Goldie turned to Zorro. “Your staff need more training.” Zorro looked uncomfortable and Loba left to check on some garbage bins.
“Zorro’s Zecurity need to staff up,” said Goldie. “There are several important positions to be filled urgently; Health and Safety Officer, Inclusion and Diversity Advisor, Climate Change Manager and a we must create a Senior Compensation Board.”
I tried to say that we need to get in some actual security work and employ security guards but Goldie did not listen. She told me to adapt to the new times. “Get used to change,” she barked.
October 16 – Zorro’s Zecurity is Hiring
Zorro’s Zecurity is looking for new team members. Are you an adaptable group oriented problem solver motivated by a high working pace in an exciting and really fun growth environment; the security business? Then Zorro’s Zecurity is a god fit for your ambitions
Current openings include HR Assistant, Salary Negotiating Specialist, Ethics Assistant, Ergonomics Controller, Assistant Advisor to the Climate Change Director, Charity Selector Analyst and Equal Opportunity and Fairness Enforcer.
Come join us, we provide a safe working environment with excellent salary and benefits. Positions are entry level, at least two years previous work experience needed. We are an equal opportunity an ethical employer with 0 carbon emission paw print.
October 23 – Interviewing Job Applicants
Today, Goldie, Zorro and I have been interviewing job applicants. Loba was not allowed by Goldie to be on the panel because she might say uncomfortable things, and we do not want to make the applicants uncomfortable, said Goldie.
For the Salary Negotiating Specialist we settled on a really enthusiastic Bull Terrier called Kaiser, he negotiated 20 tins of Toff’s select and 5 bags of snacks for himself right there and then. Zorro just have to pay for talent! We figured we use him for the senior staff negotiations.
The real problem was the Equal Opportunity and Fairness Enforcer. First we talked to a Chinese Crested Dog, but Goldie thought she was too hairless and weak. The Rhodesian Ridgeback was too aggressive, the Dingo too unfocused, the Alaskan Malamute too sweaty and the Yorkie too small. In the end, Goldie settled for a friend of hers, another Golden Retriever called Docille. “I feel I can trust her,” said Goldie, “she fulfills all that I am looking for in my staff.”
October 30 – Red Pages
As it is Halloween, Zorro is showing Loba and me the Red Pages in Dr. Bite Bark’s Varmint Identification book. The Red Pages describe the most dangerous varmints and are so scary that they can only be seen with special permission.
First he showed a Tarantula. “They attach on your nose and inject venom and you cant breath.” We were trembling.
Then he showed a Rattlesnake. “They hide in the grass or the rocks and bite with lightening speed. Almost always fatal.” I put the paws over my eyes.
On next page was a pack of Wolves. “If you come into their hunting ground, the pack tear you to pieces. A slow and painful death.” Loba and I were hugging each other.
Zorro turned the page again, slowly, and it was the Mountain Lion!!! “Sharp claws and teeth, strong and agile, it can finish a dog in minutes.” A giant CAT!!! I had enough and ran away.
Now I can’t sleep, I am having nightmares. “Loba! Where are you?”
November 6 – Climate Change
Goldie has called another meeting to discuss climate change. “All companies have a policy on climate change and Zorro’s Zecurity must express support for climate change”, she barked. “We must create an action plan and declare it to the world.”
“If we all play more, we will get hot and make the climate warmer,” said a Boston Terrier.
“We should snooze more and not use up so much energy,” said a Whippet, “one more hour of snoozing a day will help to reduce energy need.” A lot of dogs agreed on that plan.
“I have heard about ice ages,” said a Siberian Husky, “I am hoping it will come back, can we change the climate to ice age?”
All the Chihuahua’s got very upset, they wanted to change the climate to warmer. “We can’t survive in an ice age you selfish brute,” they yapped angrily to the Husky, “think about all the small and thinly haired dogs for once!”
“Huskies can move to Greenland,” said the Greenland Dog. We have a full ice age going on there right now. I actually don’t think we in Greenland can take any colder climate.”
Toff turned up to the meeting carried on a float by several Rottweilers. “If I don’t walk, I don’t use energy,” he declared. Everybody applauded and discussed if they can save energy by being carried. Then Toff said we must fix the climate, he had worked all his life to get rich and he did not want anything to go wrong now.
Goldie called everyone to attention. “We will make the following statement about Climate Change:”
Zorros’ Zecurity support efforts on climate change and we are taking every steps possible to leave a zero carbon paw print.
“There are no carbon in my paw prints,” said an employee proudly.
I am going home. Goldie does not even know what carbon is and still she makes statements. She also employs a climate change advisor. What about getting in some security work? Truth is, she knows nothing about that either.
November 13 – Golden Goldie
I have to keep the books at Zorro’s Zecurity and it has not been time consuming as we do not have any jobs. But recently, this has changed with all the new hires, we have tons of outgoings for promotional material, kennel visits, and salaries to all the administrative staff.
The truth is, Zorro’s Zecurity is broke, we have no income and our supply of tins of food are almost out. I called Zorro and Goldie to a meeting, but they dismissed my concerns. “You think small,” said Goldie, “we are in a growth phase, all big companies have all this staff. Imagine the cost to the company if we are hit with a lawsuit for treating staff unfairly!”
I tried again to argue that we needed some jobs and actual workers before we needed administrative staff but Goldie was not concerned. She said I was old fashioned and did not understand the new world. She then left for her company paid daily spa session and bacon break.
Zorro was a bit nervous, after all he has to provide the resources. “I will try to find a venture capitalist,” he said rather nervously. I told him to sack Goldie, that she was reckless, irresponsible and clueless about the real work, but Zorro said he could not. “She has a very big Golden Parachute, I can’t afford to get rid of her.”
November 20 – Ethics and Fairness at Zorro’s Zecurity
Goldie was inducting the new hires today and told them about the company’s ethics record and the rules on behaviour:
Zorro’s Zecurity has an unblemished record of ethical and fair activities. When you work for Zorro’s Zecurity, you can be sure to be treated fairly and equitable and with respect. We welcome and listen to your concerns and suggestions. Rudeness, bribery and intimidation of any kind are strictly forbidden and will be dealt with mercilessly. The company has never been involved in lawsuits or received any type of complaints. We support climate change and we have zero carbon paw print. We are an equal opportunity employer. You can trust Zorro’s Zecurity.
“Of course there have been no complaints, there has never been a job!” said Loba. Goldie looked irritated and told her it was beside the point and could she shut up as she had nothing sensible to contribute. The new hires were all listening intently, but Loba left. “She is not corporate material,” said Goldie, “a loose cannon and not a team player.”
Later, Zorro told me that all the new hires are neutered and obedience trained. Loba’s problem is that she did not receive the training as a pup, she was a street dog, he said.
November 27 – Health and Safety at Zorro’s Zecurity
Goldie and Human Resources are working hard to set up Zorros’ Zecurity as a modern company. Today they called a meeting explaining the Health and Safety rules.
At Zorro’s Zecurity, we take Health and Safety very seriously, and the well being of our team members is a priority. The employees should at all times feel secure and comfortable and therefore we do not allow dangerous practices such as night work, or confrontation with varmints of thieves. Chasing is absolutely prohibited, so is growling and biting.
To ensure proper rest and recovery, a working shift must never be longer than 8 hours, with 4 mandatory 15 minutes breaks and a 1 hour lunch break and absolutely no weekend work. Vacation is 5 weeks, all the above is subject to management approval.
I respectfully raised my paw and asked how we would do the work as most of the security work was at night and on weekends and the point was to get rid of thieves and varmints. How would we fulfill our duties toward the paying clients?
Goldie looked at me condescendingly: “If there is security work, we get in the lowest bid contractors. Zorro’s Zecurity is not responsible for third party contractors! Health and Safety are for the employees.”
December 4 – Rave Reviews on Door Flap
Zorro’s Zecurity is now a popular company to work for and reviews on Door Flap are very positive.
“Best Company to work for, excellent snacks.”
“Management is very understanding, I have not actually turned up yet, but my boss told me it did not matter.”
“I get all the zzzz’s I need at Zorro’s Zecurity.”
“The atmosphere is so positive; we play a lot. Love the massage beds.”
Goldie is happy, “We have created a socially responsible and hip company,” she said.
I am confused, nobody is working.
“You just don’t get it,” said Goldie, we have got the company structure and culture right, it’s a huge success.
No, I don’t get it. I keep the books, and we are BROKE. Nobody seems to care.
December 11 – An Award to Goldie
Everyone in Zorro’s Zecurity is cheering, the company has grown 500% and is breaking all records and Goldie has been voted Business Dog of the Year by the Pedigree Club. Her picture is on the cover of “Moments” Magazine.
Goldie is getting the coveted Toff Award of 1000 tins of Toff’s Select and she has requested bacon flavor.
I thought the award was to feed deserving street dogs, and when I objected, the Pedigree Club officials called me petty and jealous, so I shut up. “Goldie is deserving,” they said, “and she has been walking on streets, so what is your problem? Can’t you recognize greatness?”
Goldie gave a big speech and thanked first and foremost Toff, the Pedigree Club, the talented employees of Zorro’s Zecurity and the people that trusted her to lead Zorro’s Zecurity into greatness. “I remain humble,” she said at the end and everyone cheered and applauded. Then she and the Pedigree Club went off to a celebratory dinner.
Zorro was not invited.
December 18 – New Head Quarters for Zorro’s Zecurity
The company has grown so much Goldie says that Zorro’s Zecurity need to acquire new locals for the administrative staff. She settled for a new development in the center of Doggy Heaven, near all watering holes and food pantries. It has three large rooms, one is for Goldie, one is for the senior board members and the last room is for the rest. “The staff need to be close to each other in order to cooperate, communicate and exchange ideas,” explained Goldie.
In the basement, there is a gym, a spa, a grooming salon and a gaming arcade. “Young people like to game,” said Goldie, “have to keep them happy.”
I guess Zorro can use the room for the senior board? I know he does not like gaming. I will continue to keep the books from my home den.
December 25 – Christmas Party at Zorro’s Zecurity
Merry Christmas everyone!
Today we celebrated at Zorro’s Zecurity with a huge Christmas Party! No expense was spared: Zorro and Howlers band, liver pate and bacon to eat, artificial snow, dancing, games and gifts. We partied all night, it was a good time. Everyone loves Zorro’s Zecurity!
Management did a fun song changing the words from Twelve days of Christmas for Goldie to sing, it was a huge success:
On the first day of Christmas, Zorro’s Zecuritee
hired HR Goldiee,
On the second day of Christmas, Zorro’s Zecuritee
hired two salary negotiators, and
hired HR Goldiee,
On the third day of Christmas, etc….
bought three new offices, and
wrote four ethics papers, and
hired 50 new employees, and
won 6 health and safety awards, and
wrote 7 climate reports, and
had 8 team building exercises, and
gave 9 inspirational talks, and
compensated 10 senior managers, and
gave 11 huge bonuses, and
the 12th day we Celebrateee!
January 1 – New Year’s Day Parade
The Pedigree Club held its traditional New Year’s Day Parade. Technically, Zorro was allowed to walk with the Carolina Dogs, but he was not interested. “If Loba can’t be in the parade, I won’t go either,” he said.
This year Goldie was the Parade Queen and on the big float. She sat on a raised throne bed with a crown on her head and scepter in hand, while dressed in long, golden sheets of cloth surrounded by lots of dancing Golden Retrievers. It was a spectacle to see.
Behind came Toff in his top hat, driving a black Mustang, and, and, and wait!!! “Zorrooo,” shouted Loba, “you didn’t”!
Zorro hanged his head. “Yes, I did, I had to pay salary to all the staff Goldie has hired, we are broke.”
Zorro had sold his Mustang to Toff to pay the bills at Zorro’s Zecurity. He assured Loba he would make the money back. I wonder how 2022 will go?
January 8 – Offsite Think Tank
Zorro talked to Goldie about the need for generating more cash and she decided to hold a think tank for the board to come up with ideas.
“We have to get away from the daily distractions,” she said, and booked a week at a hunting lodge. “We brainstorm in the mornings and hunt in the afternoons. The hunt will stimulate ideas for generating capital.”
Zorro got very excited and packed his deer stalking hat and some camo outfits. Loba could go as Zorro’s partner, as long as she kept out of the business meetings, she brought an evening dress. I was not invited, and I did not want to go after I heard Goldie muttering something about me being negative and fixated on irrelevant details. “I only want to surround myself with positivity,” I heard Goldie say.
I guess the irrelevant details are the financial accounts that are deeply in red and thus negative.
January 15 – Sales Team
The offsite event was declared a huge success and the board’s conclusion was to hire a sales team to sell security services!
“A brilliant idea,” declared Goldie, “we have brilliant leaders at Zorro’s Zecurity!”
Five dogs were quickly hired: two large mixed breeds, a German Shepherd, a Jack Russel Terrier and a Bulldog.
The Terrier asked why anyone would need security in Doggy Heaven, it is completely safe here. Goldie said they need to focus on status. “Just say that anyone paying for security must be important. Sell it as a status thing. Celebrity dogs, for example, they have to keep the fans away. Explain that Lassie and Old Yeller bought the full package. If you are someone, you have to have security!”
Goldie decided to incentivize the sales dogs with bonuses. They will not have any base pay, but for every security contract they get signed, they get a bonus of 5 tins of Toff’s Select, any flavor but bacon. A year’s contract is worth 6 tins.
“Just hook the clients,” said Goldie.
The freezer at home is full of venison. Loba was the most successful hunter at the lodge.
January 22 – Lots of Work for Zorro’s Zecurity
Good news, the sales team dogs are dynamite, the contracts are rolling in! Finally, some income generating work, I am relieved. Maybe Zorro can buy back the Mustang soon?
But who is going to fulfill the contracts and do the patrolling? The administrators in HR say it is not their responsibility.
Loba volunteered that she could chip in temporarily, but she suggested she get some young trainee’s that could take over in the long run. Goldie was not too pleased, she said it would take away from the profits, “and that is what the company is about, shareholder dividends.”
I asked Zorro who the shareholders are, and he said himself, Goldie and the senior managers.
January 29 – Ergonomic Assessments
Some of the new hires have complained that sagging beds and feeding bowls in awkward positions in the office are giving them backache. Goldie decided that all office staff should undergo an ergonomic assessment.
“The well-being and health of our staff is a priority,” she declared.
Nurse Bella, a black lab, came and measured lengths of legs and backs of all the dogs and everyone got weighed. Then she made some calculations and handed out custom made beds and feeding bowls. Tall dogs, like Great Danes, had to have their bowls elevated from the ground. All beds got fitted with mattresses appropriate for each dog’s size and weight.
I must say it seems very healthy, and as an extra bonus, one could choose the pattern on the beds. I like the flowers, sunshine and bone patterns, but I can’t believe the dogs that choose tiger and leopard patterns, these are dangerous cats. What are they projecting?
February 5 – Loba is Told Off
The company has a lot of new work and Loba has been doing all the patrolling and security for Zorro’s Zecurity by herself, and she is tired, working day and night and she has not had any time off. I am working all hours with the accounts and administrating contracts, and we never see the managers, they are always in meetings or business lunches or at corporate events.
Zorro suggested that she ask the Climate Change Assistant and the Charity Support Administrator to help out with the patrolling, and they reluctantly agreed as long it would not interfere with their scheduled spa sessions, or lunch.
Before going out to the field, the new assistant dogs were issued with company safety gear, two-way radios, night goggles and reflective vests. It was all nicely branded with Zorro’s Zecurity logos and their names. The assistants posed for photos in their cool gear and posted it on Instadog.
Loba did not say anything but she was a bit irritated because she had been doing the work all along without all this stuff. (She also did not get an ergonomic assessment and a new bed; it is only for administrators).
But before they ever went to a security site, Loba got called into Goldie’s office.
“I have received complaints,” Goldie said, “you are making the young staff uncomfortable.” Loba was perplexed, what could she possibly have done wrong?
“You are asking them to do patrol work,” clarified Goldie. “They are not here to do security work.”
Loba asked who would do all the patrolling for the new contracts. Goldie said that Loba was exaggerating her role in the company. “You need to be more respectful of others, control what you say, that sort of thing,” Goldie said.
And that was that. No one did night patrol that night, Loba respected herself, controlled her voice by not speaking, and went home to sleep.
February 12 – A Theft
A theft has happened to one of Zorro’s Zecurity clients. It was 10 bags of Heavenly Snacks that was stolen the night Loba went to sleep!
The client is very upset and is demanding compensation and the 6 tins he paid for a year of security service back. He also wants the stolen snacks recovered.
Goldie quickly got the lawyers out and pointed to page 36, section 5, paragraph 9 that said that Zorro’s Zecurity is not responsible for any theft of vandalism! Oh yes, there is such a clause, I had to put on my glasses and read it, it is in very fine print. The client said he had not read the contract and he can’t read anyway. He then got even angrier, and the lawyers told him that violence is not allowed and if he does not calm down, they make sure he gets thrown out of Doggy Heaven.
Goldie never talked to Loba about her lack of patrolling, but I heard Goldie say that Loba is unreliable, and they should put something negative in her file.
I am not sure I want to work in this company, I am only doing it for Zorro. I was so upset I took a long walk, and then I noticed a number of empty Heavenly Snacks wrappers near the coyote area.
February 19 – Design Team
Zorro’s Zecurity will be featured in “It’s a Dogs Business Magazine” and Goldie wants to upgrade the look of the office. “We must project a modern and relaxed atmosphere, yet being disciplined, inventive and efficient at the same time,” she said. So she brought in a design team before the photo shoot.
They threw out the individual beds and feeding platforms, and replaced them with shapeless beanbags in neon green. Feeding was to be done in communal bowls in a few pods. “We have to get rid of the image of geriatrics working at Zorros Zecurity,” explained the head designer. “In the security business, you have to signal physical strength. Ergonomic equipment is for old and tired dog.”
Loba and I took the opportunity to choose new beds from the trash pile. “Once a scavenger, always a scavenger,” said Loba. Goldie nodded in agreement and told Loba to stay away from the photo shoot. “I don’t want to be rude, but your ears are not symmetrical,” she added.
Then Goldie paid the design team, it was expensive. Loba and I took our beds from the rejection pile and went home. I took a blue one with white bones and Loba took one with pink heart patterns. We took a bed in camo for Zorro.
February 26 – New Troubles for Zorro’s Zecurity
We have had a complete change of fortune lately, every day clients are revoking their contracts with Zorro’s Zecurity on a get out clause valid within the first 30 days. The sales dogs said they had to put that in to get clients to sign up.
“How do you think you get customers for security in a safe place like Doggy Heaven? We gave the clients one tin of Toff’s Select lamb flavor for signing up for a year’s contract. They had 30 days to decide if this was working for them. If the client was not satisfied, they could get out of the contract and keep the sign-on tin. This is how we sold so much, we made it risk free for the customers!”
The sales team seemed very proud. “And we took the sign-on gift from our own bonus of 5 tins. It was our own sacrifice!”
“But Zorro’s Zecurity are losing on this deal,” I whined. We paid you 5 tins for each contract that are now being cancelled! The sales dogs said the problem was not theirs, and maybe we should have provided a better service and they pointed out the recent theft of snacks.
“The company told us to sell, sell, sell, and that is what we did. The profits for Zorro’s Zecurity are your problem, we are sales dogs!” They took their bonuses and left.
March 5 – About Interest Rates
The Financial Director at Zorro’s Zecurity, a pedigree Doberman Pinscher suitably called Cash, gave a long and learned talk in a town hall that concluded that the reason that business is slow is because of low interest rates everywhere. “The interest in business is low, because of low interest rates, it is a celestial problem,” he said. “Not our fault.”
Considering the terrible drop in the stock price, Goldie decided to double the bonuses for the top dogs. “It is more important than ever to retain top talent,” she said. “How else are we going to get out of this crisis?”
Hmm, I thought that the so-called top dogs had got us into this crisis with their expensive and impractical ideas. Goldie called me cynical.
Goldie then looked around to see if she could cut cost by getting rid of staff. First, she suggested that Loba should go, but I pointed out that she has never been paid, so that would save nothing. And then, there is that she is the only one doing any security work… although lately, Zorro himself had chipped in.
After a lot of discussion and deep thoughts, Goldie decided to get rid of the mid-morning office snack service as they never bring bacon. “That shows that management is taking some deep cuts,” she said.
March 12 – The Iditarod
This week the Iditarod dog sledding race took place on Earth. This is a big event here in Doggy Heaven, everybody at Zorro’s Zecurity got the week off except for Loba. Goldie asked her to continue doing security patrols. “We don’t want another theft,” said Goldie, “it would be bad for the company and not reflect well on you.”
But Loba ignored Goldie, “I am not paid, and I am half Huskie, ” Loba told me, “I have to see the Iditarod. I also happen to know that the coyotes will also follow the race, so there will be no problems,” she added. What does that mean?
I find the race horrifying, dear diary, but I cannot admit this to the other dogs. It is a lot of snow and I lived in Canada when I was young. Snow can be fun to dig tunnels in, but then you get big lumps in your fur and under your paws, and after a while you start shivering, no thanks!
The Iditarod dogs are wild huskie types, and they are insensitive and dangerous. They run and run for hours, and then they eat some raw fish and howl and curl up to sleep in the snow. I swear I would die the first day, it is like a horror movie.
The other dogs in Heaven are keenly interested, keeping track of all the teams and betting a lot. I am afraid uncle Zorro is one of the worst gamblers. I can see that Loba is looking admiringly at the huskies, and she says she wish she was there. Her blue eye looks wilder than normal. Great Aunt Kara is very knowledgeable and comments on form and techniques and gives unsolicited tactical advice. They are so excited.
I don’t understand them.
March 19 – Logo Change
Goldie has decided that Zorro’s Zecurity’s problems are due to the logo. It is two black Z next to each other on an orange background.
‘”We need a modern approach, we must be greener,” said Goldie. She called all the best corporate designers to submit their suggestions. Zorro was disturbed, but he did not protest.
After a lot of discussions which Zorro was not allowed to attend, Goldie declared the winner: Six lime green lines on a white background. Apparently it was Goldie’s own design, but she still paid all the designers handsomely. She also paid herself another bonus.
Here is the result:
March 26 – Spokes Dog
After the theft, (and there have been a few more) Zorros Zecurity is receiving a lot of negative comments and critique and Goldie is tired of answering difficult questions. She is hiring a Spokes Dog that will be the public front of the company.
After reviewing many resumes, where Goldie rejected any dog with actual security experience, she settled for a Springer Spaniel named Chat. “Chat has the right look of friendliness, yet a strong appearance, but not too strong, and is young and good looking.”
Chat was sent forward when angry clients arranged a press conference.
“We are so sorry for the extremely rare unfortunate break in security,” said Chat to the crowd. “I assure you that we at Zorro’s Zecurity are doing everything to please the customer and we see your pain.”
“So that means you will reimburse us for goods stolen on your watch,” someone asked?
“Due to privacy laws, I cannot comment on individual cases,” answered Chat. “But again, we are doing our outmost to see if there has been an extremely rare breach of routines, which we very much doubt, but we feel and empathize with your anger. We at Zorro’s Zecurity are always listening. You can absolutely trust the integrity of Zorro’s Zecurity and to show how engaged we are, we have recently changed our logo. Thank you for today!”
“How did I do?” asked Chat. “Excellent,” said Goldie, “it is so important that we appear to care.”
“But how are we going to address the thefts without more patrol staff,” I asked? Goldie stared at me sternly and said:
“Looking good is everything, don’t get complex by doing good which is not important, it is the appearance that counts in business and politics.”
Another staff on the payroll.
April 2 – Virus In the Office
Dear Diary, we had to close the office for a few days, all the dogs were getting sick with stomach ailments. A doctor traced it to the communal eating bowls, a sick dog started the epidemic.
Goldie took strong action and removed the communal bowls. Now, everyone has to bring their own bowl and food too. The staff quickly recovered. (At least we do not have to pay for the food anymore).
The neon green bean bag type beds are all breaking and beans are spilling everywhere. Goldie calls the staff whiners for complaining after all that she has done for them. “The neon green beds are the height of fashion and costed a fortune!” she said.
Rats are eating the beans; the terriers are having fun. A few rats had been seen in the communal eating bowls before they were taken away. It’s no joke.
April 9 – Crisis Management at Zorro’s Zecurity
Some of us have been called by Goldie to be instructed in crisis management. Finally, I thought, we will deal with the company problems, stop the senseless spending, improve services and focus on our jobs. Something like that.
This is what we were instructed to do:
Always protect the image of the company.
Never admit anything is wrong. Deny, deny and deny.
I asked what to do if we actually had made a mistake, but I was rudely cut off.
“Zorro’s Zecurity does not make mistakes, and if we do, we deny it and confuse the issue. To admit mistakes is exactly the sort of negative talk we must avoid. Only losers admit mistakes, and there are no mistakes in Zorro’s Zecurity, only unfortunate things that happens.”
Express sympathy and concerns about the clients feelings and experiences, but do not admit to any failures.
“This is how you communicate with the public: I am sorry you feel this way and I can assure you that Zorro’s Zecurity is committed to the best service in the world. If pressured about thefts on our watch, just explain that you cannot comment on individual cases due to privacy laws but hint that you know that Zorros Zecurity is in the clear. Try to refer all questions to Chat, our esteemed Spokes Dog.”
“By all means, don’t be weak and actually try to change something, that is a loser’s behavior. Unless the complaint is coming from a powerful person of course, then fix the problem quickly and publicly and apologize profusely.”
April 16 – Can’t Fail Economic Plan
Cash, the economist dog, has laid out a plan to stimulate the economy and get Zorro’s Zecurity more solvent.
“It is all about spending, you see,” said Cash. “You must spend to make money. Spend fast and furious and everyone benefits. It works like this:
A business owner, like Zorro right here in Zorro’s Zecurity, makes a profit. He then pays the staff salary. The staff spend the money on food, housing and stuff like doggy spas and entertainment. The dogs in those businesses then all get paid and make profits and buy a service from Zorro’s Zecurity. Zorro makes more money and can then spend more which will make other dogs richer. Everyone benefits when we spend.”
I had to think about this, it sounded plausible but somehow, I wonder if it really was how it worked. I asked Cash if, he was sure. He said yes, ” he had learnt it all in economy school.”
Cash now wants Zorro’s Zecurity to stimulate the economy and spend on company cars for all the staff. “It’s like an investment, he said, ” if we spend more, wealth will trickle down to the public who then can afford our services and we get even more income. The plan can’t fail.”
And Cash gets a car, I thought to myself.
April 23 – Decisive Actions at Zorro’s Zecurity
There has been a meeting at Zorro’s Zecurity that only the board and senior managers were allowed to attend. I just happened to be in the office working overtime and overheard the discussions. Goldie said that the company was in good shape, but just in case something bad would happen and the company would go under, they all needed to take decisive action in secret. She laid out the following action points:
“Call a meeting and a press conference and declare that all is under control and that everybody’s jobs are safe. Say with force that all rumors to the contrary are lies.“
“Dump your stock.“
“Look over the company’s financial liabilities and prioritize payments in this order: a) My paycheck, saving schemes, bonuses and golden parachute. b) The executives and senior managers salaries, bonuses, saving schemes and golden parachutes. c) taxes (governments can be so vindictive). If money is short, raid the lower staff’s savings and retirement schemes.”
“Lay off the staff except lawyers (needed to defend management in case of lawsuits, and if you lay off a lawyer, he may sue YOU). Keep the finance department (except for some low-level clerks), they know where the money is, and keep Human Resources (again, the low-level HR people can go). Human Resource people will always be laid off last, because they actually do the laying off.“
“HR will now make you sign a non-disclosure agreement for eternity about basically anything in Zorro’s Zecurity. If you do not sign, you will not get any of your compensation, contractual or not, and our lawyers will come after you and it won’t be pretty.”
April 30 – Instadog
Dear Diary, Loba, Zorro, Kara and I were very pleased seeing Misty on Earth, posting photos on Instadog. (Misty is the dog Mom and Dad adopted after I passed to Heaven).
Misty is living the high life. She is allowed on the settee, which I was not, and she is wearing my sweater.
Misty has replaced me. I guess I should let it go.