Blog | Ella Beast
          

Ella-gy 2019 Calendar
Ella the Wonder Dog
2003 - 2018
In Memoriam

Ella's calendars have been an annual tradition for many, many years. Even though she's gone now, and sorely missed, the tradition continues with a collection of photos drawn from throughout her life.

In honor of Ella's memory, the new calendar is sold at cost, with no markup.

Goodnight, Little Bear.

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Get your 2018 Ella calendars now!

          

Ella-tivity 2018 13-Month Calendar
The new Ella calendar for 2018 is available now from Lulu.com. It features thirteen months of all your favorite Ella photos from from the past year, and for a limited time you can get it for the discounted price of only $11.99 plus shipping and handling.

Ella-tivity 2018 13-Month Calendar

But that's not all! If you just can't get enough of Ella, she's created an alternative calendar for the new year—the Ella Good! 2018 13-Month Calendar! Same great low price! Thirteen more super-cute photos of your favorite soft-coated wheaten terrier!

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Ella un-a-cyst-ed

          

Ella in her Surgi Snuggli after cyst surgery
I've been so focused on my book for the past year or more that I can't even remember the last time I posted an Ella update here to the blog. I find that unconscionable, so I'm here to remedy that.

First off, Ella is doing just fine, despite the fact that she had surgery last month, the second time this year. Like many wheaten terriers, Ella is prone to developing big sebaceous cysts, which for the most part we have left alone. They're mostly only a problem if they start to grow. In that case they can cause intense discomfort, or they can even burst and get infected.

Normally we've handled Ella's cysts by having them drained with a needle when they get too big, but in February we finally had to send her under the knife for the first time to have four of them removed. One had burst, another was getting bigger, and we figured we would just take as many off as possible as long as she was under anesthesia anyway.

This is considered minor surgery, but it's still nerve-wracking, especially because of the anesthesia. But Ella came through the first surgery fine, which made us a little less wary about doing it again last month.

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Just resting

          

Dead squirrel lies prone,
Chin resting on its two paws.
Looks like it's sleeping.

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Memory Lane

          

Their former stoop
She strains at the leash,
Trying to turn the corner.
"Not that way," I say.

But Ella insists,
So I give in and follow.
Not that big a deal.

This short, narrow lane,
It's a valid path back home,
Not such a detour.

Along the sidewalk
We rush, my arm stretched out straight,
Not pausing to sniff.

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Infidel dog

          

Infidel dog
This morning,
with a high of seventy degrees in the forecast,
amazing for a November in Chicago,
I drove the dog to Warren Park.
That's where we go for a special treat
instead of our usual neighborhood walk,
because the squirrel chasing is most excellent,
and there are never any cops there to harass you,
a scofflaw walking his dog off its leash.

We like to run up the steps of the sledding hill,
which a parks department sign actually proclaims "Sledding Hill,"
and then charge down the slope,
after which we make our way around the skirt of the hill
where the squirrels rummage through the leaves
like so many bargain hunters.
We crunch crunch crunch across the orange carpet,
and if we're lucky we spot a squirrel far enough out
in the open that Ella can chase it full-bore
back to its tree.
She has never once caught one.
Or at any rate never killed one.

Next we like to follow the cinder jogging path
all the way around the little nine-hole golf course embedded
like an off-center yolk
in the albumen of the park,
and that's exactly what we did this morning.
I walked in the leaves at the side of the path,
trying to encourage Ella to do the same,
but unless she has a rodent, lagomorph or marsupial in her sights
she prefers to walk on pavement. Go figure.

We were on the south side of the golf course,
the tall chain-link fence meant to protect us from flying balls
off to our left,
when I saw two men coming our way along the path,
youngish men—younger than I, at any rate—
neatly bearded men dressed in long robes the color of wet sand.
It was already warm enough out that I was regretting
the heavy coat I wore over my hooded sweatshirt.
I snapped my fingers imperiously,
calling for Ella to return to my side,
to leave the path and get out of the way
of the two youngish men engaged in animated talk.

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Almost fall

          

Squirrels chasing each
Other up and around trees
Like on Benny Hill

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Beware of dog

          

Earlier from the second-story deck
I caught a glimpse of the gate
slamming shut as Ella chased
someone out of the yard.
Her wild barking was
what had summoned me.
The thunk of something landing
solidly on the wooden deck below
brought me down the stairs
to find a package for my wife,
too big to fit through the mail slot.
The gate latch was still vibrating
at a high B or C.

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Haiku

          

sleeping puppy feet
pressed against my human toes
twitch in doggish dreams

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Ella the Wonder Dog saves the day again, this time warning the Invisible Hounds of Hell away from Astoria before they can instantiate a doorway into our dimension.

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About Ella Beast

Ella Beast (a/k/a Ella the Wonder Dog) was a beloved soft-coated wheaten terrier who lived from 2003 to 2018. She spent most of her life in New York City and Chicago. Ella enjoyed stalking squirrels, getting ear skritches, and pushing a basketball around with her face. She starred in her own line of calendars and YouTube videos.