Author’s Note: I had the pleasure of meeting Bella’s mom Trista at Barkworld back in November.
How did According to Bella start?
My husband and I have always been dog people. We both had dogs growing up and adopted a Golden and a Rescue mix a year or so into our marriage. When they passed at 17 years old, I thought I would never have another dog in my life. I had a lot of healing over the next 2 years and my husband and I had started talking about talking about rescuing. On our trip to VA for Thanksgiving (a year ago this week!) I was scrolling through Facebook on my phone and this awesome dog with the coolest coloring pops up. Would you judge me if I told you I welled up at the sight of her? My heart knew she was mine before my brain did.
Where did Bella come from?
Bella was rescued from a kill shelter in NC by Crate Escape. They placed her in foster care where she lived, learned, acclimated for about 6 weeks until she was adopted.
How did she get her name?
When she is happy she prances and dances so her foster family named her Belle for Bellerina. We tweaked it to Bella when we adopted her.
Do you know what breed she is?
She was listed as a German Short Haired Pointer mix but the Vet says she is an Australian Cattle Dog. This breed is called a Heeler b/c they bite at the heels of cattle when herding them. There are RED Heelers and BLUE Heelers. Bella is a rare mix of both, referred to as a Purple Heeler.
What inspired you to write in her voice?
Her HUGE personality! She is the most opinionated dog I have ever met. And really good at communicating her feelings too. We spend a lot of time together so I have gotten good at understanding her.
What has been your favorite post so far?
Her first. “Prepare Your Pup for Winter – From a Clothes Averse Heeler Mix” This was the moment when her voice finally came out and it was loud and clear. I decided to write about winter prep and the kinds of things your dog needs to be happy and healthy for the cold winter months. As I wrote it remembered how much Bella hated to be in coats last year. I felt so torn as I prepared to write the post, because I knew Bella would never stand for most of what I was recommending based on research and things I had picked up since we adopted a short-haired breed. I realized Bella wasn’t the only short-haired dog that hates wearing clothes. And that point of view would probably be really helpful for owners of these types of dogs. So I decided Bella should be the one to talk about it first and then I added a section from me with advice about how to compromise between hating to be clothed and needed to be protected from the elements. I’m really proud of it.
Here’s a link: http://bit.ly/firstpost-whiskers
What has been the most rewarding thing about having a blog?
I love giving Bella a voice and helping others with the information I am learning. I’m not an expert, a trainer, a specialist. I’m just a dog owner learning how to deal with a dog that is much smarter and energetic than I bargained for. So many dogs in these categories (working dogs, herding dogs, etc.) are “returned” after adoption because the family can’t handle the responsibility of these breeds. I hope I can help these families so they and their new pup can be happy ever after together.
Does she do Periscopes as well ?
Yes! She does =) We have scopes of her playing with sticks, chasing bouncing balls and learning tricks. She also does pet product reviews.
Is there anything you wanted to add about her, yourself of the blog that people should know?
Through our experience with adopting Bella I have also learned the importance of Fostering. There is much education needed for successful fostering experiences and so that’s another big part of our blog and website. We hope that by helping increase foster education more dogs can be rescued and saved.
May I borrow pictures of her for the article? I will state they were used with permission and share the social media links.