I don't do much with social media. I know I should. I should be promoting my books and connecting with people on Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn.
I'm on all those sites. I have many Facebook friends, including several dogs, and I follow a cat on Twitter. I just never seem to have the time that these sites take. I mean, Facebook eats up 45 minutes to an hour every time I go near it.
Last week, though, I connected with Skip Haynes on LinkedIn. Skip and a friend started a company called Laurel Canyon Animal Company in 1999, and they produce CDs about, and for, animals. Skip sent me mp3s of two of his songs (he says they're mp3s, and I'm not in a position to argue. I still think of music in terms of records).
Anyway, I really liked them. They have catchy beats and lyrics any dog owner can relate to. One song is entitled, "If My Dog Wants to Sleep on the Bed All Night That's All Right With Me," written by Skip and his partner Dana Walden. The song extols the delight of having your dog on your bed with you. "Slip off alone and free, or sleep with fur behind your knee" is one line from the song that reminds me of Rhiannon when she curls up in bed with us. I liked this line, too: "Dog head on my pillow, dog breath on my feet, Dog on top of the blanket or underneath the sheets."
The other mp3 Skip sent was of a song called "Squeaky Deaky." The information with this song says that it was created with the help of an animal communicator and that dogs just love the song. I enjoyed it immensely, both the music and the lyrics. Rhiannon and Gael weren't that impressed. I corralled them both in my office, Rhiannon complete with her own squeaky toy in her jaws. "Listen to this," I said. I pushed play. I'm sorry to say that Rhiannon turned her back and left the room almost immediately. Gael stayed for a while longer, but when I stopped petting her, she left the room as well. In spite of their opinion, I think the song captures the joy a dog feels with a squeaky toy.
Here's one verse: "Squeaky Deaky, I love my squeaky toy. Squeaky Deaky, it makes me jump for joy. Squeaky Deaky, roll it on the ground. Squeaky Deaky, I love that squeaky sound."
It turns out that dogs aren't the only animals that Skip and Dana sing about. While their first CD was "Ugly Dogs Need More Love," their second CD jumped to the feline side with "Cat-A-Tonic." Then they decided it would be fun to work with an animal, and that led to "I'm a Green Chicken," with a green parrot named Carla singing the lead in the chorus. Next was "Fine Animal Gorilla." That's what KoKo, the gorilla who uses American Sign Language to communicate, calls herself, and all the song lyrics are taken from conversations between KoKo and her guardians.
"Music from the Pink Dolphins" will, say the liner notes, "smooth away the rough edges." Apparently, in the Amazon in Peru, there are pink river dolphins. The notes don't say if they recorded these water mammals, or if the music just evokes their water journeys, but it sounds lovely.
To jump back to the canine songs, Skip sent the lyrics to another song, entitled, "Adopt a Dog Today." It could be the official anthem at shelters across the country. "Sad eyes at the shelter saying take me home/Unconditional love for you sitting all alone/It's always up to you, all you have to say/Is, I'll adopt a dog, I'll save a life, I'll adopt a dog today/I'll adopt a friend, I'll save a life, I'll adopt a dog today."
For more information on these animal CDs, go to www.petcds.com. Unlike my unappreciative Corgis, your dogs may absolutely love the "Squeaky Deaky" song. If you have a bird, maybe it will sing along with Carla the parrot. Maybe your cats will become addicted to "Cat-A-Tonic." Or, maybe it will just be you, enjoying the catchy beats and the lyrics that seem to capture just how you feel when your dog curls up to sleep with you each night.
I can't get too enthusiastic about social media, but I'm glad I said yes on LinkedIn and connected with Skip Haynes. To quote, "Squeaky Deaky, always makes me laugh."