Ginger Block (and her Person, Karin)
We’ve been dying to do an interview with Ginger and her Person ever since we discovered “Scholarly Saturdays”, Ginger’s master class on puggish methods of training a wayward human. Ginger’s Person, Karin, emailed her responses to our questions, which absolutely delighted us as she’s a wonderful writer; check out Ginger’s book, “So, You Found Yourself a Human, Now What?” (which we might just be gifting to someone in a Giveaway soon, so keep a googly eye out).
PP: Karin, how did you become a Pug Person? Tell us your history. Karin: When I was in the 6th grade, my family got our first puppy, a little 3 month old pug we named Wodan. It was love at first sight. We got Wodan a little sister named Freyja a few years later, and I've been obsessed with pugs ever since. PP: What do you love most about the breed? Karin: I love how they're like little humans. They're just vertically challenged little furry people who love everyone. Other dogs know they're dogs. Our yellow Lab, Stewart, knows he isn't human. I honestly think Ginger would be shocked to learn she isn't my biological child.
PP: What do you like most about Pug People? Karin: I like how we're all the same. If you're walking down the sidewalk and see a pug, it's perfectly acceptable to scream "pug" and go say hi. Sometimes Frenchie people will accept you, but if you scream "Shepherd" at someone walking a more doggish dog, they look at you like you're nuts. I like how pug people understand that you miss your pug if they're not there with you because they feel the same. PP: Karin, are you a pug paraphernalia person? Karin: Yes! I like everything pug! It's perfectly normal to have shirts, bags, cups, socks, jewelry, blankets, artwork ... I have pugs throughout my house and in and on my car. They're everywhere! PP: Does Ginger sleep with you (and Stewart, too)? Karin: Of course. Where else would my baby girl sleep? Now that she is older, she sometimes wakes up confused and tries to walk off the bed. So now she has a pile of stuffed animals and pillows to snuggle with. She has a very comfy little nest that takes up over two-thirds of the bed.
Karin: Of course, Stewart has his own bed. He's my daughter's dog and is too big to fit in bed with her. He knows he's a dog so he's ok with that arrangement.
PP: Does Ginger have any weird habits or quirks? Karin: Nothing a pug does could ever be considered weird.
Karin: Oh, but when she was younger, she would bite my pants leg when she wanted to go outside. It was really cute and apparently other dogs don't get away with that sort of thing. Now that she's older, she tries to climb up on my shoulder. She is happiest when she's snuggling on top of my left shoulder. PP: If Ginger was a celebrity, who would she be? Karin: She would be Anton Ego, the food critic on Ratatouille. She would have fine chefs prepare fancy meals for her and if she didn't like it, she'd spit the food out. It's her in cartoon form. She has me cook for her and if she doesn't like or want what I prepare, she will spit it out. She won't just let it fall out of her mouth either. She actually spits it at me.
PP: Can you share a favorite story or memory of Ginger? Karin: On Instagram Ginger is a proper lady who would do nothing wrong. But years ago, she was the same misbehaving little puppy that all pugs can be. Her Snuggle Buddy (human sister) would like me to share the "chicken incident" story. Back when Ginger was a puppy she got a chicken bone out of the trash. Her Snuggle Buddy, blissfully unaware that the puppy had a bone, walked into the kitchen. Ginger instantly turned into a Cujo sort of beast with sauce dripping from her mouth and a bone in her mouth. She charged, Snuggle Buddy screamed, and older humans came running. By the time I got there, Ginger was under the dining room table snarling with her bone and Snuggle Buddy was crying. That's when 6-year old Snuggle Buddy learned that even a 3-month old pug will fight to protect their trash. PP: Do you have a "True Pug Confession", something crazy or sweet or obsessive you do with Ginger that you wouldn't tell anyone but another Pug Person? Karin: I was having trouble coming up with something and asked my daughter for help. She told me to "pick any one of my daily activities. I mean, come on..." And then she started listing things. So, Ginger starts her day with 2 pieces of freeze-dried liver. I pet her head gently to wake her up and then hold a piece of liver in front of her nose so she can smell it. She lays with her head on the pillow eating her liver and then I pick her up and carry her outside.She stopped drinking a few years ago, so I fed her soup instead of other food. All her meals were, as she would say, scrumptious soups, until she became diabetic and finally started drinking again. One day, a couple of years ago, she stopped eating on her own. Apparently, she wasn't spoiled enough and wanted to be handfed. Now she sits on the couch at mealtime while I feed her pug sized bites of her food by hand. About 6 months ago she decided she didn't want to eat solid food anymore so I started mashing it. Now she wants stew...We'll see what next week brings us. I helped Ginger write a book so that pug parents everywhere can be as well trained as Ginger's sisters and I are. Hopefully humans everywhere are handfeeding their pugs by now, or soon will be. And last, but certainly not least, I have been known to buy Ginger flowers because she likes to smell them but the weather outside isn't fit for a pug. She likes roses best.