In Search of Ponies: The name game

I don’t know about anyone else, but after years of having pets it can get a little challenging to come up with original names for them. In fact, I think the names must have started running out when I was a kid. Aside from the brown dog named Brownie, we had a succession of shepherd-type […]

In search of ponies: Dogs have habit of running away

Sharna Johnson Why do they do it? I mean, come on. We’re nice to them, we give them treats, food, a warm spot to sleep and affection. So what is it that compels a dog to charge out the door like the devil’s after him? I found myself pondering this on the heels of learning […]

In Search of Ponies: ‘You go Gilligan’

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico Yeah, he likes the turtle neck… and the cardigan too. And the brighter the color, the bouncier his step. Poor Gilligan, yes, I’m outing him. I’d like to think he just appreciates the extra warmth, but it’s pretty obvious it’s not that simple. And no, I don’t think it […]

In search of ponies: Big freeze brings pet care lessons

Sharna Johnson Earlier this week, while heading out the door for work, I noticed a frenzy of bird activity on my back porch. The flock was centered around the dogs’ bowls of half-eaten food, abandoned when they gladly traded their 20-below breakfast time for the warmth of their kennels inside. I noticed one of the […]

In search of ponies: Good to be in the middle of the penguin pack

Sharna Johnson “Did you know penguins push one of their own into the water to see if it’s safe?” I asked a teen. We were discussing social angst among teenagers and the evolutions he has been through in recent years. “No,” he answered, a smile forming on his face as if he knew where I […]

In search of ponies: Barn smells become comforting

Sharna Johnson It was a wafting, almost ambient kind of odor. Sniff sniff sniff… “Urine… stale urine,” I identified, looking around and dismissing it, figuring there was a dirty baby diaper somewhere in the restaurant. The next time we ate at that restaurant weeks later, we were seated in the same booth. It was faint […]

In search of ponies: Bin full of not-so-useful pet gadgets

Sharna Johnson There’s a plastic bin on the shelf over my washer and dryer that mocks me like some kind of impulse cemetery. Inside the bin is a mess of “What was I thinking?” pet accessories. A couple weeks ago I was hunting for the shock collar for a dog vs. horse issue and was […]

State search and rescue director fired

Steve Terrell The director of the state Search and Rescue office, a former political hire who last year transferred to his classified job before a new administration took control, found out Thursday that he had been fired at the direction of the Governor’s Office. “Well that’s it. I am officially unemployed,” Peter Olson announced on […]

In Search of Ponies: Transferable protective disorder

Sharna Johnson I expected barking when I knocked. And I wasn’t surprised to see his nose help push the door open. What did catch me a little off guard was when the snarling continued, even after he saw it was me. “Hey Rusty,” I said, thinking perhaps he needed to hear my voice, but his […]

In Search of Ponies: Allergies call for compromise

Sharna Johnson Sneezing, wheezing, struggling for air with itching and puffy red eyes, my son’s friend sat in the living room on the ottoman, his shoulders hunched, his physique conveying sheer misery. Not knowing what to do, I asked if he needed some Benadryl. “No,” he said, trying to tough it out. “Should I call […]

In search of ponies: Christmas adventure for house pets

Sharna Johnson ‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house not a creature was stirring, not even the mouse… When out from the living room there arose such a clatter I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter… When what to my wandering eyes should appear but my dog shredding […]

In Search of Ponies: Java the gender-bending cat

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer In hindsight, there were clues. But that’s hindsight. I pondered them as it sunk in, as I listened to my wide-eyed friend relay what the vet was saying on the other end of the call. “She said the procedure is done,” my friend said, “and asked if you want […]

In search of ponies: Finding pet all about compatibility

“I’m learning a lot about women from having a cat,” he said one morning earlier this week. “Explain,” I said, stunned, not knowing whether to laugh or hang up. Turns out my brother’s cat is teaching him to be more intuitive and to adapt his approach or retreat based on clues to her mood among […]

Modesty small price to pay

Karl Terry Bet you can hardly wait for your next chance to fly the unfriendly skies on a commercial airline. The full naked body scan or the frisky pat-down search. Which will you opt for? I guess it depends on whether you want rather unconventional vacation photos or you’re looking for cheap thrills. I’ve been […]

In search of ponies: Vegetarianism not a crusade

Sharna Johnson No turkey for me. No green beans with chunks of ham. No brown gravy. No bacon-garnished this or that. But I’m fine with your fridge full of leftover bird. Really. And I don’t begrudge you the leftover ham sandwiches you’ll be eating next week either. Now before you glance at the bacon on […]

In Search of Ponies: Raven not much for conversation

Sharna Johnson Poor Poe verbally shook and twisted his 1800’s version of a Magic 8-Ball, only getting one word in return, regardless of the question. Not this raven. With Joe, it’s anyone’s guess what will spring from his unpredictable beak. You see, there’s a battle of the words being waged and Joe’s in the middle, […]

Father, son named to search committees for governor-elect

CNJ staff Father and son Caleb and Matt Chandler of Clovis have both been named to search committees for Governor-Elect Susana Martinez, according to releases from Martinez. Matt Chandler, the current 9th Judicial District Attorney, is one of five selected for a transition committee charged with finding candidates for state public safety director and director […]

In search of ponies: Easy living comes at cost

Sharna Johnson He wanted to be with us. It was one of those bizarre instances that feeds theories — perhaps he sought refuge with us because of hunting season, or maybe he was a lost pet — but the answer was never known. He flew into the yard a short distance away then waddled to […]

In Search of Ponies: Unorthodox relationship good for both parties

Sharna Johnson Ah, Moses and Jael, now theirs was a love like none other. It was an arranged relationship, born of necessity and convenience. It didn’t start with a spark or a glance across the room that stirred butterflies into action. In all reality, the dainty, leggy blond suffering from depression and the small dark […]

In Search of Ponies: Procedure may lighten load

Sharna Johnson He knew something was up when I spent an extra second scrubbing behind his ears, then rinsed and combed out his unruly curls. And he slept a little closer to me, stealing more of my pillow than usual — nudging me when the alarm went off at 4:30 a.m. Oh yeah, I knew […]