Sunday, June 1, 2008

Interview with rob2ca20

Cleopatra and Tiger

Following is my interview with rob2ca20, a member of my flickr group Dogs and Art. Behind the user name rob2ca20 is Rob and his wife Sheridan who were gracious enough to take the time to answer a few questions and tell us a bit about themselves and their beloved pets. I hope you'll take a moment to stop and read the interview and get to know a little more about Rob, his wife and their dogs Cleopatra and Tiger, the dynamic Aussie duo.

1) Tell us your name. How many dogs you have, the name of your dog/s and how old they are? My name is Rob and my wife is Sheridan. We have two dogs: Cleopatra (4) and Tiger (2). Cleopatra arrived when we had a 5 pound teacup poodle named Brutus. Tiger arrived later and he already had a name. The breeder named the litter after golfers. Guess the name of his sister?

2) What breed of dog do you have? Australian Terriers – This is something most people have never seen. Australian Terriers are about 19 pounds with short long bodies, docked tails (USA versions), perky ears, front paws are larger than the back paws and the ruff around the head that looks like a lion's mane.

3) How long have you had your dog/s and how did they come to be your dog? My wife and I have had dogs most of our lives. Four years ago, the lovable adorable Moose, a kennel dog died she was a Lab/German Sheppard mix. (Anything next to Brutus looked like a moose). She was the sweetest dog I ever had. We were not going to get another dog right away. When we asked our vets about small dog breeds he told us about Australian Terriers. I started researching the breed and everything I found out made me want one. In the United States, puppies are difficult to find. I went on the USA Australian Terrier web site at I contacted breeders thinking we will be on a 2 year waiting list. I got an e-mail back, "I will have puppies, lets talk." After multiple visits to see the puppies (interviews), we took home Cleopatra when she was 10 week old. She was the first in the litter to the food bowl, and the one everyday enjoyed her the most. I took two weeks off work so that she could adjust to her new home.

The poodle died two years ago, and we were offered Tiger (it is a long story) who was 18 months. He failed at being a show dog, but had great markings. He was not getting enough people time and very depressed. He has produced some great looking puppies.

4) Do you find that you've come to favor a certain breed of dog and if so, what are their unique characteristics that you've found to be so wonderful? I do not think there is any 'best breed'. Ten years ago I would never own a terrier, and now I adore them. My wife talks about getting a small poodle some day, but at the present time, we love our Aussies. They are a big dog in a little package, courageous, smart, loyal, and clever. Each day they fill our home with sunshine. They are people loving dogs, and I am never alone. They absolutely adore children. It is funny to watch a 3-year-old grand child give our sometimes stubborn female a command and she does it. They are considered mild terriers, but they a true terrier, and this is sometimes spelled Terrorist. They are a lot more work to train, at times stubborn, and if they get something in their head, then it is difficult to convince them otherwise. Example: every morning we have a big decision on who gets to sleep where in the bed. Tiger likes to take over my pillow so that he can give me special kisses to keep me awake. Cleopatra likes to get between us and roll up into a ball that pushes us off the bed. After negotiations for real estate, and positioning the dogs, things go back to this position quickly. This is a breed that benefits being around people, and does not do well left in a yard for long periods of time.


5) Any favorite stories you'd like to share with us about about your dog?

At an early age, I started to take Cleopatra to small dog parks. Poor Cleopatra never had other Australian Terriers to play with. Just before her first birthday, I had the idea of doing a puppy reunion birthday party. I contacted the breeder and got the list of owners and contacted them. Six out of eight agreed to come. Finding a suitable safe small dog park was the hard part. The party was such a success that we have been doing it every six months ever since. We lost some dogs and gained others. We refer to it as the Northern California Australian Terrier play day. Some people drive over 100 miles to come. Having ten Aussies together is a big deal. Cleopatra is more independent. She guards the yard, and screams (barks) bloody murder if she thinks she is protecting the house. Tiger is more people dependent. He has tremendous agility, jumping 5 feet easily. He will cry if he is unhappy.

6) Are there any other pets in the home other than dogs? Nope – Two terriers are enough. My wife talks about missing the tiny dog, but we will see. The chemistry is good. The two dogs have totally different personalities, but they are best friends. A few days ago, I locked Tiger in the bedroom, and Cleo came to me "Ra-Ra-Ra…" and took me to rescue him.

7) What kind of art do you create or what kind of dog art do you enjoy, if any? I have done photography for over 30 years. Some of my pictures have received praise and have been published. My wife loves painting and takes art classes. She painted Cleopatra and will do Tiger.

8) Is your main focus on dog art and if so, what made you choose the dog as your main subject for creating this type of art? My wife has painted a great picture of Cleopatra, and I hope she will do more dogs. I take a lot of dog photos. The dogs are not our primary artistic focus.

9) Do you create or make anything other type of art/craft that's not dog related? Not at this time.

10) If you sell your artwork, where can we find your pieces for sale? Or do you have a blog that you'd like to share? We have nothing for sales at this time. My pictures are available for viewing on under the user name of rob2ca20.


I hope you all enjoyed the interview and urge you to stop by rob2ca20's flickr page to see some of his amazing photography, there are some lovely photographs to view! -- and we hope to see those paintings of Cleopatara and Tiger soon.

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