Blogging Tips from a Shih Tzu

You can learn a lot about community from a puppy
Guest blogger: TinkerToy

© Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CTP, CMC, ACT, MCC, SCAC

My ten and a half pound fur-baby just turned two. It seems like only yesterday I wrote the post about going to get him when he was just a teeny-tiny.

Like most teens (in dog years), he is obsessed with staying in touch with his pack – and he has some great ideas about blogging. I’ll let him tell you in his own words.

Happy Birthday to me!

TinkerToy here.  Don’t judge me for that. I didn’t get much of a vote, and Killer wasn’t on the menu.

I was born on October 8th, two years ago. I’ve been watching Mom blog for all that time — watching and waiting, trying to be good.

She said that if I let her work and didn’t distract her, I could try it myself when I was two.

This is my very first blog post — and it’s about blogging.

Dogs do it better

Modern dogs spend a lot of time indoors, you know. You two-legs don’t give us a lot of time to interact, so we’ve had to work out another way to connect.

We’ve figured out how to leave messages for one another as we stroll, so that our buddies can sniff out the news later.

Pretty cool huh?

You read and write, we smell and pee —
so it’s a darned good thing
we have better noses than you!

Wanna’ know why it won’t work for you?

Mom says that even though her whole brain is ten times bigger, the part that controls smell in my brain is 40 times bigger than hers. Even better, where she has about 5 million scent glands, I’ve got at least 125 million — and some dogs have as many as 300 million.

Even a dog can work out what that means: my sense of smell is anywhere from 1,000 to 10,000,000 times better than any two-leg.

A message from my sponsor

(Mom’s making me add this bit she got from some PBS article)

“Let’s suppose they’re just 10,000 times better,” says James Walker, former director of the Sensory Research Institute at Florida State University. “If you make the analogy to vision, what you and I can see at a third of a mile, a dog could see more than 3,000 miles away and still see as well.”

“Dogs can detect some odors in parts per trillion. Barnard College Alexandra Horowitz, a dog-cognition researcher, writes that while we might notice if our coffee has had a teaspoon of sugar added to it, a dog could detect a teaspoon of sugar in … two Olympic-sized pools worth.”

  • “Another dog scientist likened their ability to catching a whiff of one rotten apple in two million barrels.”
  • “There’s the drug-sniffing dog that ‘found’ a plastic container packed with 35 pounds of marijuana submerged in gasoline within a gas tank.”
  • “And the cancer-sniffing dog that “insisted” on melanoma in a spot on a patient’s skin … already pronounced cancer-free; a subsequent biopsy confirmed melanoma in a small fraction of the cells.” And so on.

[Also check out: Dogs Really Can Sniff Out Cancer on the Whole Dog Journal blogsite – a first person about training dogs to do just that! Read the comments too.]

[Click over to Dogs Detect Cancer for more truly fascinating info from an organization that spearheads the training in an evidence-based, scientific manner, now in partnership with Doctors at UC Davis Medical Center]

And now, we return you to your article. Back to you, Tink.

See? So when I say I can teach you a lot about how blogging works, you can believe me. I’ve got a lot of followers, and I’m gonna’ tell you how I do it.

Don’t forget that you can always check out the sidebar
for a reminder of how links work on this site, they’re subtle ==>

TinkerToy’s BEST Tips for Bloggers

Claim your domain & water it regularly

My turf is a particular couple of trees and a post at the back of the building where we live.

All my buddies know to check that particular address if they want to know what I’ve been up to lately. I make sure I leave a little something on a regular basis.

I also check every day to see if anybody’s left a little something for me.  And I always respond.

Dogs really hate to be ignored, so I don’t do it to my pals. When other dogs don’t reply I stop sprinkling their turf.  Sometimes I don’t even give ’em so much as a sniff after a while. And if they never comment on my turf, I cut them off.

I mean, why waste a perfectly good sprinkle on dogs who don’t return the favor? There’s only so much to go around, after all. It has to work both ways or you’re just peeing in the wind.

Content is key

Some dogs sprinkle just enough to let me know they’re still alive.  That’s not nearly as interesting as when I catch a whiff of something with more information.

It may take me a bit longer to sniff out the meaning, but those are the ones my pals and I prefer. We like to get to know each other.

Even if I don’t have anything much to add (or when I’m pushed for time), I usually leave a little something to let them know I sniffed their post.  My pals really appreciate it.  Yours will too.

Make the Rounds & Leave a Trail

I know it’s hard to believe, but some dogs rarely travel beyond their own turf.  Then they wonder why nobody shows up to read the news on their own posts.

How do you expect anybody to follow you if you don’t look for places to lay out a trail?


Venture Forth

Lots of days I travel the same route, but I know I need to sniff out new territory every once in a while.  I’ve connected with some really great dogs that way.  That’s how come I’ve got so many friends.

It’s really amazing how much it turns out we have in common. I have a few best buds I’ve never even seen.

Life is a lot more interesting when you interact with others

Even though I’m stuck at home most of my time, I can still sniff out some connection with the other members of my pack. And the more I do what I’ve told you, the larger it grows.

Don’t isolate yourself by standing on your corner, spreading your message like one of those yappy little dogs. I mean, that’s what the crazy two-legs do, right?

Calling all Dogs

So now that I’m going to be online sometimes, I wanna’ invite all the blogging dogs out there to leave a link to one of your posts down there in the comments section.  According to Mom, I need to include some Related Content if I’m going to follow her format.

And I’m all for diversity.  Mom says she knows about some blogging hamsters. Any cats or parrots out there who want to connect?  Rabbits are welcome too.

You two-legs can leave a comment for my mom – she loves that (and it might make it easier for me to convince her to let me drive her computer more often).

© 2016, all rights reserved
Check bottom of Home/New to find out the “sharing rules”

As always, if you want notification of new articles in this Series – or any new posts on this blog – give your email address to the nice form on the top of the skinny column to the right. (You only have to do this once, so if you’ve already asked for notification about a prior series, you’re covered for this one too). STRICT No Spam Policy

IN ANY CASE, do stay tuned.
There’s a lot to know, a lot here already, and a lot more to come – in this Series and in others.
Get it here while it’s still free for the taking.

Want to work directly with me? If you’d like some coaching help with anything that came up while you were reading this Series (one-on-one couples or group), click HERE for Brain-based Coaching with mgh, with a contact form at its end (or click the E-me link on the menubar at the top of every page). Fill out the form, submit, and an email SOS is on its way to me; we’ll schedule a call to talk about what you need. I’ll get back to you ASAP (accent on the “P”ossible!)

You might also be interested in some of the following articles
available right now – on this site and elsewhere.

For links in context: run your cursor over the article above and the dark grey links will turn dark red;
(subtle, so they don’t pull focus while you read, but you can find them to click when you’re ready for them)
— and check out the links to other Related Content in each of the articles themselves —

Related Articles ’round the net – from the fur & feather set

And some advice from a 2-legs (Mom’s author friend Diana, aka D. Wallace Peach)


BY THE WAY: Since is an Evergreen site, Mom revisits her content periodically to update links — when you link back, like, follow or comment, you STAY on the page. When you do not, she tells me you run a high risk of getting replaced by a site with a more generous come-from.

About Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, MCC, SCAC
Award-winning ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching field co-founder; [life] Coaching pioneer -- Neurodiversity Advocate, Coach, Mentor & Poster Girl -- Multi-Certified -- 25 years working with EFD [Executive Functioning disorders] and struggles in hundreds of people from all walks of life. I developed and delivered the world's first ADD-specific coach training curriculum: multi-year, brain-based, and ICF Certification tracked. In addition to my expertise in ADD/EF Systems Development Coaching, I am known for training and mentoring globally well-informed ADD Coach LEADERS with the vision to innovate, many of the most visible, knowledgeable and successful ADD Coaches in the field today (several of whom now deliver highly visible ADD coach trainings themselves). For almost a decade, I personally sponsored and facilitated seven monthly, virtual and global, no-charge support and information groups The ADD Hours™ - including The ADD Expert Speakers Series, hosting well-known ADD Professionals who were generous with their information and expertise, joining me in my belief that "It takes a village to educate a world." I am committed to being a thorn in the side of ADD-ignorance in service of changing the way neurodiversity is thought about and treated - seeing "a world that works for everyone" in my lifetime. Get in touch when you're ready to have a life that works BECAUSE of who you are, building on strengths to step off that frustrating treadmill "when 'wanting to' just doesn't get it DONE!"

84 Responses to Blogging Tips from a Shih Tzu

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  10. Tink, Those are great tips for all bloggers even two-leggeds although they rarely pee on trees. Perhaps they’d have more friends if they did! 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

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  19. Hi, Tink! Happy belated birthday. You share the same birthday as Mya, my cousin who passed away last year. Mom says October 8th is one of the best days ever because it was the day Mya came into the world. Now it’s doubly as great because it’s the day you got here too!

    I was never a fan of cats until I became part of the blogging community and met so many great ones. Prior to that, my only experience was with Jamison, my feline (devil) brother. *shudder*

    Anywho, welcome to the community, Tink!

    *ear licks*

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks, Noodle – but I didn’t get a cake. Mom found that picture of some other dog’s cake for the article. (Don’t want to mislead my new bloggin-buds).

      You have a great name too, btw (by tail-wags). Mom says my birth-Mom called me Pumpkin – and Mom was thinking maybe Nutmeg. She came to her senses for a minute, but then she balked and went cute. YUK.

      My mistake was letting on I knew she was talking to me with that TinkerToy nonsense. I like Tink or Tinker (which I do a lot of, btw, especially with kleenex and paper).

      The cats near me are only good for chasing, but my Mom won’t let me. She says something about getting my eyes put out. ???? (I can’t see where they’d hide their Red Rider BB guns, so what’s the big deal?)

      But I’ll bet the cats who blog are really cool. I can’t wait to meet some of THOSE kind.
      Woof! Tink

      Liked by 1 person

      • On my sister Macy’s 1st birthday, we all got a waffle with a drizzle of syrup. It was SO delicious. My name was funnier before we found out that I’m a Jackapoo. Originally everyone thought I was a Schnoodle – Noodle the Schnoodle. Now I’m Noodle the Jackapoo. Hey! I love kleenex and napkins. I always shred them into 87 million pieces. Check out the cats/dogs/birds/guinea pigs who comment on my blogs. They’re all wonderful 🙂 *ear licks*

        Liked by 2 people

        • Mom says some idiot is messing with our blog, so she’s not giving me much time on the computer while she Sherlocks (but no hat and magnifying glass, so WTF? – fur, btw)

          When I found you, I planned to check everybody out as time goes on – so thanks for the reminder.

          Keep an eye out for a ping. I need to make sure I’m linked to you so I can find you again fast. (Mom’s only away from her computer for as long as it takes to ‘nuke cold coffee.)

          You’ve got me beat in the shredding dept. – Mom generally finds me with her dustbroom thingie before anything I manage to locate has a chance to become confetti. She’s got something against confetti – maybe scared by a parade when she was young or something?

          Oops – I hear the sound of slippers fuffing from the kitchen.

          Woof! Tink

          Liked by 1 person

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  21. Wendy says:

    Happy Birthday Tink! Kiki and Max say hello…Woof!, Meow!… but haven’t ventured into blogging world yet.
    We think you have some really great tips, you are very smart.
    You will do well in the blogging world.
    I’m sure you’ve sparked some creativity here.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Tink says thanks, hi back to the critters, and pleased to meetcha’

      LOL – his first post already has more likes and comments than almost any other. Who knew, huh? Maybe you need to let your pets at the computer. (and maybe I need to give Tink a standing spot!) 🙂

      Glad to see you are feeling well enough to visit, Wendy. I’ll be over to your patch once I sort the WPress problems.


  22. Woof, right back at ya.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. What a fabulous fun post with heaps of great tips! Love it 🙂 Thanks heaps TinkerToy

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hey – I know about you. You’re that lady who helps kids do more on their phones and gadgets than texting and tweeting, right?

      And you have gravity boots to keep you from falling off the bottom of the earth too, right? WOW, I now know somebody with Super Powers!!!

      Mom says she’ll visit to see what she’s missed as soon as she sorts out this WordPress ad and formatting thing that she’s so grouchy about.

      Woof! Tink

      Liked by 1 person

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  25. Piglove says:

    Hey my new friend. Thanks for tracking me down 🙂 Oinks and snorts. XOXO – Bacon

    Liked by 2 people

  26. colinandray says:

    Hi Tink – I’m Ray, 75lbs of Shepherd/Rotti attitude! I love food….. any food….. all food. BOL! Ray.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Ray – my mom told me she’d met your dad, so she was over on reading about that pumpkin biscuit you always get. I like those too, but sweet potato chews are my favs, personally.

      She showed me your picture, but so far hasn’t found anything written by you. Don’t TELL me he doesn’t let you blog? You’ve gotta’ fix that.

      Hurry back with a link to anything you wrote, otherwise I’ll link to those pumpkin biscuit pics. ~Tink


      • colinandray says:

        Hi Tink – I have a book out about me, which includes my thoughts on so much stuff. Tell your Mom that she can read bits from it in the Ray -The Book category. As for Posts?


        A Ray Tip!

        Woof! Ray.

        Liked by 1 person

        • WOW – you mean I’m friends with a celebrity? This online blogging deal is great!

          None of my local buds are famous besides me – and that’s only at what Mom calls her Cheers Bar down the street, where almost everybody knows my name. I feel bad they don’t know hers, but I do what I can to introduce her around.

          Thanks for the links! Can’t wait to sniff ’em out.
          Woof! Tink


          • colinandray says:

            BOL! I know what you mean. So many people know me, but nobody knows my Dad!!!

            Who Am I?

            Doggone Etiquette

            Have a laugh Tink! BOL! Woof! Ray.

            Liked by 1 person

            • I know – two-legs are really weird. They say what they like about us is the company, but they don’t reach out much to other two-legs. And they’re really picky about colors and stuff. I don’t care WHAT color they are, I’ll sniff any dog’s butt.

              Thanks for the links. I already added one to the bookpage, so I might leave these in the comments alone until my next article.

              Speaking of comments – thru a comment on one of your articles I ran across Noodles – as in NoodlesForPresident.

              Mom’s been having fits about some loud-mouthed mean guy running, and us having to move across the border if he wins, so she might be happy to know that Noodles is running too. I heard her tell another two-leg that politicians are dogs – so why not get in a REAL one?

              Then I’d have TWO famous friends – I mean if Noodles wants to be my friend, that is.

              Woof! Tink


            • colinandray says:

              Yes Tink… humans can be very confusing. Woof! Ray.

              Liked by 1 person

            • Well, we can’t ALL be lucky enough to be born dogs, huh?
              Woof! Tink


            • colinandray says:

              Hi Tink – Yes I was lucky to be born a dog, but only because I ended up being part of a wonderful pack. My life did not start out too well, and there were lots of dogs at the Humane Society (where I met Colin) who had really bad histories of all sorts of abuse.

              While I’ve got your attention Tink,

              I was rudely interrupted on your page by a sponsor ad which changed the page layout and lost my position completely. I had to go out and come back in to find the Reply box thingy again. I know that Colin has Unfollowed sites that (as he puts it) “screws him around when he is trying to go somewhere”.

              Just thought I’d mention it. Woof! Ray.
              READERS: I edited the formatting so that the rest of you can quickly see the problem reported (words unchanged). Please see my response below.

              Liked by 1 person

            • Thanks for letting us know, Ray, and our apologies for that hateful nonsense – blame the WordPress Gremlins.

              I actually PAY THEM so that my readership is not subjected to ads of any sort – because, since a majority struggle with reading already, I despise *anything* that pulls focus from absorbing the information I spend a great deal of [non-billable] time to provide at no charge.

              I’ll send your second paragraph to the “Happiness Engineers” so that they can sherlock and fix. It’s not the only thing more than a little nutty of late – but probably the most disturbing.

              The LAST thing I want to do is “screw anybody around” with something as self-serving as attempts to sell them something they didn’t come here to buy.

              Please tell Colin not to give up on the site. I’ll get this sorted as quickly as I can. Let me know if this was a one-off or if it continues, pretty please.



  27. akiwifreund says:

    Reblogged this on The Sick and the Dating and commented:
    Great tips for circulating your blog (and who knew dogs were bloggers too??)! Thank you, Madelyn. 🙂
    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * ** * * * * * *

    Liked by 2 people

  28. reocochran says:

    This was a sweetly fun and wonderful way of sharing doggy “tips” for blogging, Tink! xo
    I used to have my owner take me to visit a nursing home, oh, the stories I could tell! (Past pet) ❤ Toby

    Liked by 2 people

    • Tink says thanks a million, and he can’t wait to meet Toby. Is he with another earthly owner, or waiting on Rainbow Bridge with some of my many Shih Tzus of many days gone by?

      Tell your mom that, although I have never taken my own dogs, I did participate in a Pet Therapy project sponsored by the Manhattan ASPCA, years ago. Their offices were on the Upper East Side, but one of the nursing homes was on West 106th Street – a block away from my apartment at the time. My roomie and I drove a van load of animals across town to a group of volunteers we had organized to fan out and spread the love. I’m sure we could swap tales – and somewhere I have some pretty funny pictures I wish I could find and share.

      Liked by 1 person

      • reocochran says:

        Toby’s on the Rainbow Bridge with other dogs from the extended family.
        Oh, my old Toby lived with my ex-husband who allowed visits but as I walked away, poor Toby would howl. I am ashamed to say, this hurt so much I stopped a year or so after. My grown kids visited and he didn’t cry but did follow them around closely. Toby lived to 14 years old, which is amazing considering my ex- fed him cheeseburgers every couple days. I am sure Toby enjoyed them!

        Liked by 1 person

        • If I could go back, many of my puppies past would have gotten different treatment than they got (besides LOTS of love, which was always present.) I did the very best I could at the time – and I know you did too.

          I only left one dog with an ex. He was a Shih Tzu rescue who, it seems from behavior toward me, had been abused by a woman. I thought I was doing the best for him, but I wish I had insisted on taking him with me when I left the ex-.

          We can’t drive forward looking into the rear view mirror, however.

          Liked by 1 person

          • reocochran says:

            We definitely cannot drive forward while looking back, Madelyn.
            I have been on eHarmony since 1/1/18. It has already taught me how to hold back and listen better for clues. . . Next weekend, meeting a WVa man in Zanesville at a Bob Evans for coffee. I think it is good to go halfway, then neither is in their full protective “mode!” Smiles and hugs from me to you, dear! 💟💮


  29. Oh and PS… the blogging hamsters say thank you for the mention xxxxxxxx

    Liked by 2 people

  30. Wonderful and very true post xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

    Liked by 1 person

  31. I guess that’s why dogs can sniff out cancer, as you said. And things like imminent epileptic seizures. My cat has been known to come racing into the room, jump up on the dinning table and come to comfort me with her very presence when having a meeting at home with a service provider (service being a creative term in this case) and before the meeting she was nowhere to be seen. I’m a cat person, does this mean we can’t be friends no more? (Channelling Ricky Lake, sorry.)

    Liked by 2 people

    • LOL – Tink seems to like cats – at least he doesn’t bark at them and seems to be curious. I’m highly allergic, so he’s only been around my friend Peggy’s. Her cat comes running whenever she sits or lies down and jumps up to cuddle, just like a dog. Animals are so funny – great company.


  32. I prefer my cat, less demanding than a dog lol

    Liked by 2 people

  33. Sue Vincent says:

    Hi Tink… nice to meet you after hearing about you from your two-legs! They do have some weird ideas though… I thought I’d share atraining guide for them: Ten Tips for Training your Two-Legs
    Happy birthday! Much love, Ani xxx

    Liked by 2 people

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