Friday, June 06, 2014

Griffology: Scruffy Dogs Go Social

I think it's kind of interesting that now I've picked up my blogging again, I suddenly find that a single social media post just isn't enough to say what I want to say. For a while, I think Facebook made it easier for me not to blog when I felt compelled to say something. I'd just dash off a couple of lines and toss in a picture, then spend far too much time reading about everyone else. Now, suddenly, a couple of lines of "all about me and mine" just doesn't feel like I'll indulge myself here. Yet, I know I'll still spend far too much time reading about everyone else on Facebook.

At least I have a creative outlet. This is what I'm telling myself.

I know, Facebook is not a substitute for getting out in your community and doing things with friends, in person. But I have to say, the community of scruffy-dog-loving Wirehaired Pointing Griffon aficionados in the Facebook group "Griffology" has become one of my communities too. This is a place I go when I'm in a dog-talkin' mood. I'm sure my nearby, in-person friends would tire altogether too soon as I wax nostalgic about our first Griff, Baxter, and what a perfect canine he was. Or go off on a tangent about how funny our little dog Kirby is when he gets all Napoleon on our spirited young Griff, Remy. I could speak for hours on subjects like physical fencing vs invisible fencing, whether e-collars are a good idea and the health benefits of grain-free dog food.

Where some of my in-person friends' eyes would glaze over, my Griffology friends share these questions and many more. We share answers and personal experiences, joyful pictures of new puppies, tearful tributes to those Griffs who have left this world. We post lots of funny pics, artistic pics, "caught in the act" videos and throwback Thursday memories. We post and comment (and comment and comment) about how we overcome the challenges of raising and living with these highly intelligent, strong, athletic and sometimes crafty canines.

This is my go-to group for all things Griff. The founder even sells Griff swag from time to time (my "Life is short, play with your Griff" T-shirt is one of my favorites...even though a friend's Griff puppy bit a hole in it the first time I wore it). When I joined this community nearly two years ago there were a less than two hundred members. As of today, it has nearly 1800 members (1798 to be exact) from all over the world. I didn't think there were that many people on the planet who even knew what a Griff was!

(I'll talk about the yin/yang of this breed growing in popularity another time.) For now, I just want to say to all of my Griffology friends: thank you for being such a wonderful, funny, open and sharing community. Your advice has been valuable and your Griff pictures always make me smile. I have found a group of scruffy-dog-loving kindred spirits and the far-too-much time I spend with you is (almost) never wasted!

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