My Animal Muse | Creative Creature | Furry Friend


Four Muses, by Caesar van Everdingen

Famous writers and their dogs  – Pictures of the Canine Muse

Famous writers and their cats  – Pictures of the Feline Muse

Cats and Dogs as Artists and Writers – A Humorous article with a spin on our canine         and feline muses.

A couple of weeks ago I ran two informal polls in my online writing groups. I had read two blog posts about creative animal companions. The two major contenders were pups versus kittens, pooches versus moggies. It led me to wonder whether one of them was better than the other as a creative animal companion. So I ran a poll asking my writer friends to tell me which was their choice of writer companion and why that choice may outweigh any other.

Although cats got a fair number of the votes, the  majority results in both polls were that the favoured creative animal companions were “man’s best friend” = dogs. Other creative animal companions listed were goats, rabbits and fish.

When I asked why dogs, the answers were as follows:

  • They needed daily walks so the human companion gets some time away from being cooped up in their writing cave as well as getting some good rumination time going well out on said walk.
  • The dogs also came out tops in that most dogs don’t tend to like lying on their human writer’s keyboard / laptop making it difficult for the writer to write.
  • The dogs also needed less physical affection from the writer human meaning that the dog would wait faithfully while its human got some much needed words down.
  • For those who chose cats as their creative companion, they liked the independence of the cat personality.
  • Also cats are the obvious choice due to necessity of the environment space – if you live in a city apartment, cats are easier to keep as companions.
  • Cats were a choice for those who want a lot of physical affection and want a “lap” companion. (Although small dogs are a winner in this category and the above one.)

So this brings me to who my choice of creative companion is…

He is just over 1 year old, white and black, has a face that resembles a butterfly, is full of energy, does not believe he is small but only short…His name is Jazz and he is a Papillon. Jazz adopted me in August 2010. I had no choice in the matter. I took a walk into the local Animates pet store and while browsing heard this mad barking. I went across for a closer inspection and there in front of me was this dancing ball of black and white fluff that was trying desperately to get my attention. It worked. Within a heartbeat, my heart belonged to him. I called him Jazz because ever since the first day, he loves to dance and although his style is more “disco”, Jazz suited him better because he has the eyes of an “old wise soul”.

Since that first day he has been my companion and shadow. He is the happiest little dog you will ever meet. Although he likes his dog friends that he knows from his beach walks, he is very much a human-dog and loves the company of his favourite people around. Papillons are incredibly smart and range no.9 in intelligence of all the dog breeds in the world. Although small dogs, they are not known for a lack of courage or confidence..they are very much Alpha-dogs. Jazz has no tolerance for other small dogs (except for other Papillons) but loves the company of much larger dogs. He even has a Husky girlfriend who is quite taken by his french charm.

Papillons are a very old European dog breed named after the French word for butterfly because their faces resemble a butterfly. The informal name for Papillons is: “Dog of Kings“. They were featured in many famous aristocratic and royal portraits during the Renaissance era by painters like Rubens, Titian, Largilere, Magrid, Fragonard, and Boucher.
They were companions in the french Royal families for generations and were a favourite companion of Marie Antoinette. Jazz reminds me every now and again that his ancestors were royal companions and therefore he expects nothing less than royal treatment. A good thing for me about Papillons are that although they love talking or singing, Jazz often has conversations with me, they are not “yappers” like a lot of other small toy breed dogs.

Famous Papillon Owners:

  • Marie Antoinette
  • Madame de Pompadour
  • King Henry II & King Henry III
  • Lauren Bacall
  • George Takei
  • Christina Aguilera
  • Yuga Tegoshi
  • Justin Bieber

Meet Jazz – My dancing Papillon aka Creative Companion aka My best friend and furry shadow

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 “Mom, can we please go for a walk once this photo is taken.”

“Mom, can we please play…photos make me mischievous.” 

 “Ssshh…don’t tell Mom, I am borrowing her laptop to surf the web for some animal stuff.”

 “Phew…this writing stuff makes me tired…”

 “Time for a nap I think…every pup needs a nap after helping Mom write.”

“I know I am very handsome…My Mom thinks that I am the most handsome little man in the neighbourhood.” 

 “Now tell me you would not pick me as the perfect creative companion.”

“Ah…playtime….always have time for playtime. Mom gave me a new toy today because I was so good with photo-posing.”

14 Comments

  1. Hi Kim…Loved the story about how you met Jazz and his pictures as well! I have always been a dog person, had a few while growing up and would love to have one as a creative companion but taking care of a pet at present would be kinda difficult so no pet creative companions for me…give Jazz a hug from me please!

  2. Oh, my, what a charming soul you have as a companion !!

    Makes me yearn for Arrow, the Doberman I used to have as my companion. When trained with love, they are sensitive and caring dogs–very good with children and, I think, just a touch psychic 🙂

    1. Hi Alexander…I totally agree that dogs are very sensitive and attuned to our moods and needs. I think all animals are. I used to have horses too and they are incredibly attuned to our moods. Jazz is a special soul and very charming. 🙂

  3. well for all the reasons given above I wouldn’t rate a dog for a muse in my experience they want that dammed walk just as one is in the middle of the best flow of words all day no make that week, and will they take no for an answer will they h-. Also they do need more physical attention than a cat and are always sticking their noses into your buissness and making put they are the most important thing since sliced bread!!!!

    Now a cat is relaxing, soothing, wise and very supportive – so they lie on the keyboard but they do it very elegantly and softly- my two wouldn’t dream of interupting a flow of words with rushing about like demented dervishes – they like to watch me and they too are critics but so much less strident than the dog!!

    Having said all that, Jazz looks to be an okay sort of fellow from the pics.

    1. 😀 Will let Jazz knows he gets the tick of approval from an ardent cat-person…Thanks for popping by Alberta. What’s your cat’s name? Jazz actually prefers most cats to dogs funnily enough… 🙂

  4. Jazz is beautiful Kim. What a lovely bit of writing and the sweetest story of how you and Jazz met. He looks just perfect for you and I’m sure brings much joy into your life. He has the sweetest little face which is made even sweeter framed by those large ears.

    I will be following more of your stories and this one has made my day!

    ange

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