Please join our
mailing list.

the inner dog

Choose the issue you're interested in viewing.

Fall 2006 Issue #19
Summer 2006 Issue 18
Spring 2006 Issue 17
Winter 2006 Issue 16
Fall 2005 Issue 15
Summer 2005 Issue 14
Spring 2005 Issue 13
Winter 2004 Issue 12
Autumn 2004 Issue 11
Summer 2004 Issue 10
Spring 2004 Issue 9
Winter 2003 Issue 8
Fall 2003 Issue 7
Summer 2003 Issue 6
Spring 2003 Issue 5
Winter 2002 Issue 4



The Dog Lady and Shorty

Monica Collins is an op-ed columnist and radio commentator in Boston, MA but what intrigued us the most was the opportunity to shatter her anonymity by blowing her cover as the wise, slightly wild, irrepressibly witty and wickedly funny Dog Lady (

She and her West Highland terrier, Shorty, started the “Ask Dog Lady” advice column for a neighborhood dog owners’ newsletter three years ago and the column has blossomed from there – syndicated to various newspapers around Boston, appearing in the Bark Magazine, and on the internet where it was recently named a “Hot Site” by USA Today.

She and Shorty answer any and all non-medical dog questions. She admits she’s a “big meddler and loves to hear human-dog dilemmas---the funnier, the better---especially those involving relationships and bad/bed manners.”

Dog Lady claims to be an expert on “life and love”, because ,“….it’s impossible to live with a dog and not consider deeper matters of life and love. Dogs are our guides into all human relationships.” We here at Urban Dog Magazine could not agree more.

What is his idea of perfect happiness?
Outdoor happiness: Stalking a squirrel and chasing it up a tree. Indoor happiness: Being stalked and chased by any male guest in our home while he runs around with a chew stick or squeaky toy in his mouth. Bedroom happiness: Having his belly rubbed.

What is his favorite treat?
Freeze-dried liver chunks, preferably smeared with pesto.

If he could change one thing about himself, what would it be?
He really believes he’s perfect – although he’d probably want to lose the leash.

What is his most treasured possession?

What is his most endearing quality?
His stoicism, his tenacity, his passion in the moment, and his twisted tail.

Assuming there is such a thing as reincarnation, what or who might he have been in a former life?
An English farmer in the Midlands.

Is there anything that embarrasses him?
When I see the squirrel first and have to point it out to him.

What is it that he dislikes most?
Bathing or water games of any sort.

What is his greatest fear?
Garbage trucks

What is his greatest accomplishment?
He understands this complete sentence: “Oh, Shortman, wanna go chase squirrels?” He even can identify the s-word by its first syllable – “squir.” He’s hooked on “squ” phonics.

What is his favorite place?
The Boston Common, our city’s oldest park, is his Temple of the Almighty Squirrel. Shorty can tug his way to the Boston Common from anywhere within a mile’s radius.

What does he really like in other dogs?
When he meets dogs he likes, he rolls over, front paws in the air, legs spread and exposes his belly. He really enjoys it when they sniff his inner thighs and private part – an embarrassing sight for humans, perhaps, but not for my dog.

Does he have a motto?
Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today.

Photographs by Cami Johnson,