The piece below is artful, it's gorgeous to look at, and it's a new way to think about something we all need.
When my old dog Murray really wanted to tell me something and his barking or pawing didn’t get the job done, he would start making sounds that I swear mimicked human speech. Now, I’m not entirely sure that he was attempting to get through to me as a member of my own species would, but I don’t know how else to explain this quirky behavior.
It’s pretty amazing when we see our pets cross the imaginary line that separates the species by exhibiting human-like behaviors. But if you were to try to explain them to someone who’s never had a dog or cat (or parrot you will soon see) most of them would probably just shrug it off.
So, I never really talked to anyone about my dog’s strange but funny human impersonation.
Reddit user DMLorance created a safe space for pet owners to share their stories that no one believes on the AskReddit subforum.
“Pet owners of Reddit. What quirk does your pet (past or present) do that nobody believes when you tell them?”
Here are 16 of the best responses.
"Every night at around 10 pm, my childhood dog would tell me it's time to go to bed. I could be in the living room watching TV and she would sit at the doorway and make little 'boofs' until I eventually got up and followed her to bed. This happened every night from my high school years until the day she passed at 15 years old. I miss that old sassy girl." — Shibsmarie
"One of my cats legitimately sleeps in my bed. Head on my pillow, under the blanket, held to my chest like an actual baby. He will spend all night like this and get mad if I stop cuddling him at any point. We sleep with our noses almost touching, and I know when he boops my nose with his that he wants me to cuddle him tighter. It's bizarre but adorable." — Dominoodles
"My dog refuses to drink from a bowl. We took him to the vet because he was sick, turns out he was dehydrated. My dog always has water next to his food, but wasn't drinking it. We changed his bowl to a normal dish, the ones we use to eat soup. Now he drinks from it, if u change it back to a normal dog's bowl, he will stop drinking water and get sick. Nobody knows why." — O_Pacaba
"My childhood dog had a weak rear right leg, so anytime he wanted to hike his leg on something off to the left he would just do a handstand rather than try to support his weight in the bad leg.
"But wait... there's more. When he started getting older we brought home a puppy who absolutely idolized his big brother. Within about a month he had worked his way up to also doing handstands when he peed, but for this dog it was EVERY SINGLE TIME. I guess he thought that was just how you were supposed to do it.
"Nothing like having two dogs pissing down their own chest several times per day." — LovelyShananigator
"I have a cat that plays fetch with his stuffed animals. He also gets annoyed when I don't throw the stuffed animal far enough, and loves to chase it down the stairs into the basement." — Upaupa212
"I had a toy poodle mix named Yoda who would meow like a cat if I said 'Yoda go meow.' It started as me saying it as a joke to him here and there and one day he actually started doing it. He was a good boy." — T-Rocks
"My dog demands I read to him. Whenever I'm sitting reading something he'll come over, put his head on pages, and paw at me until I start reading to him." — rogettheboat
"We have a very unique dog that seems to have internalized a set of rules. He is friendly with our 3 cats however if he observes them doing something that we (the humans) have corrected them for previously he will then take on the responsibility for future occurrences by sitting beside the misbehaving cat and barking at them until they stop." — ealoft
"I have another cat of which in an old house he found out how to turn on the bathroom sink to get water (it was one of those that you push/pull not twist) and so I’d always walk in to find the sink on. If only he had learned to turn it back off." — ashleyracheleee
"My father's dog designs elaborate alarm systems with his toys. At night before bed he arranges toys that squeak inside of doorways and at the top and bottom of stairs. If you move the toys he politely waits until you aren't looking and then places the toy back. They don't just end up in a spot they are placed there. It also seems that the toys are chosen for each location based on ease of squeak and volume. The loudest toys are inside the door of the bedroom.
"One final note on placement. If the door swings inward the toy is placed outside of the door's arc. If it swings outward it's right in the middle." — [Deleted]
"Our dog likes to watch tv. No matter what’s on or who’s watching it, she actively pays attention to what we’re watching." — crabgal
"Whenever I do push-ups, my dog crawls under me and pushes up off the floor against my torso, trying to help me up." — coturnixxx
"A long time ago we had a cat who potty trained himself. The cat was outside most of the time, so no cat litter box. He peed and pooped in my toddler's small toilet. It still had to be cleaned tho. But still, I consider it cool." — Fr3aky_Monded
"I had a cat named Ninja (nailed it on the name). She loved playing fetch with a twist. She would bring me her toy mouse and set it in my lap. Then she would climb on to the top of the reclining chair next to me and get in attack position.
"I would say 'Ninja! Are you ready?' she would crouch and get ready and I would have to throw the mouse across the room, but she would spring and catch it mid-air every time. She would do it for hours." — Ashwilliamsboomstick
"I have a cat that knows how to turn a lamp on and off. It's one of those twist knob lamps. He grabs it in his teeth and turns it." — Fournote
"I had a parrot who would only whistle, but sometimes he would straight up compose songs. Nothing amazing, mostly splicing together bits of tunes he liked, but still songs that did not exist." — JavierLoustanuau
A few weeks ago, Upworthy shared the hilarious winners of the 2021 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards and the winner was a well-timed shot of a monkey who appears to have hurt the family jewels on a suspension wire. (Don't worry folks, no monkeys were harmed for the awards.)
The awards were created six years ago by Tom Sullam and Paul Joynson-Hicks to promote positive awareness of animal welfare issues. The competition has been so successful, the duo decided to branch out and create the Comedy Pet Photo Awards, where photographers can submit pictures of their furry friends for a £2,000 ($2650) prize.
Donations generated by the competition go to Animal Support Angels, an animal welfare charity in the UK.
This year's winner is Zoe Ross for "Whizz Pop," a photo of her labrador puppy Pepper who appears to be tooting bubbles.
“We never ever thought that we would win but entered the competition because we loved the idea of helping a charity just by sending in a funny photo of Pepper," Ross said in a statement. "She is such a little monkey, and very proud of herself, bringing in items from the garden and parading past you until you notice her. She is the happiest puppy we’ve ever known and completely loved to pieces.”
Here are the rest of the winners of the 2021 Comedy Pet Photo Awards.
© Zoe Ross /Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
Did this puppy swallow a bubble?
© Carmen Cromer/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"My golden retriever, Clementine, loves to stick her face in front of the hose while I water the plants. Her expression in this photo made me think of a tyrannosaurus rex, hence the title, "Jurassic Bark." Duh nuh nuuuh nuhnuh, duh nuh nuuuh nuh nuh, dun duh duuuh nuh nuh nuh nUUUUUUhhhh," Carmen Cromer.
© Kathrynn Trott/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
Jeff stealing the limelight from his brother Jaffa.
© Mary Ellis/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"I like to visit the stable horses before I begin my hike at the State Park. This is the reply I received when I said 'Good morning,'" Mary Ellis.
© Sophie Bonnefoi/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"Cutie and Speedy are two chicks hatched from eggs placed in an incubator at home in August 2020. They spent their first few weeks indoors. In the photo, they are just over two weeks old. They were curious about everything. This is the day they discovered their own shadow. It was hilarious to see them wondering and exploring that 'dark thing' that was moving with them!" Sophie Bonnefoi.
© Suzi Lonergan/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"Our granddaughter gave the command to sit. Beau is very obedient," Suzi Lonergan.
© Jakub Gojda/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"This photo was taken by accident during the photography of my ex-girlfriend with her beloved mare. For this cheerful moment, I thank the fly that sat on the horse's nose and he instinctively shook his head," Jakub Gojda.
© Chloe Beck/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"This is my best friend Faith, her husband Alex, and their cheeky Sproodle, Hugo. Faith wanted a photograph to mark a special occasion—her first outing after shielding at home for 14 months. Hugo jumped into the frame at just the right moment!" Chloe Beck.
© Luke O'Brien/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"Losing the opportunity to play with my human bandmates during lockdown, Flint, my rescue dog, soon taught me that we didn't just have sharp bones in common, but musical ones, too. He soon became the perfect substitute for a collaborative stomp up at home, so much so that we felt we deserved our own band name (Muttford and Chum). With my camera set up remotely during this shoot, I think it's fair to say that the image is proof that his conviction as a performer matches my own," Luke O'Brien.
© Kathryn Clark/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"It's that time of day again! Little Blue enjoys it almost as much as me," Kathryn Clark.
© Diana Jill Mehner/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
This is Leia. As you can see, she definitely loves playing with all the leaves in autumn. It was really tricky to take this picture because you never know what the dog is going to do next," Diana Jill Mehner.
© Christine Johnson/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"I was busy playing with my dog on the beach and this dog came to play. I liked the shapes he was making in the air," Christine Johnson
© Manel Subirats Ferrer/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
Nuka playing hide and seek at the beach.
© Colin Doyle/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"According to Ozzy, we need a new fence panel ASAP. He is fed up with Chester our nosy next door neighbor spying on him every time he has a meal," Colin Doyle.
© Corey Seeman/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"Two of the morning regulars at the dog park are Gary (hound mix with the jacket) and Kona, one of the most chill dogs ever," Corey Seeman.
© Lucy Slater/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"This is how I like to sit!" Vincent the cat.
© Mollie Cheary/Animal Friends Comedy Pet Photo Awards 2021
"Bailey was so excited to see her friends, she couldn't sit still for a photo!" Mollie Cheary.
There are pop stars, and then there are singers. While recording studio technology can make people sound like amazing singers, the proof is in their live performances.
Kelly Clarkson and Ariana Grande took it a whole step further on "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon," delivering not only a jaw-dropping live performance but doing so in the form of revolving pop diva hits in an "impossible karaoke" showdown. In less than five minutes, they showed off their combined ability to nail pretty much anything, from imitating iconic singers' styles to belting out well-known songs with their own vocal stylings.
Watch this and try not to be impressed:
give kelly clarkson and ariana grande an exorbitantly expensive 10-episode Netflix series where they just hang out and sing dueling pop covers for an hourpic.twitter.com/m5IJAZ2DYL— alex (@alex) 1638284422
There's a reason Kelly Clarkson won the first season of "American Idol" and went on to become a multiplatinum recording artist. What's funny is seeing some people in the replies saying they didn't know she could sing like that. Yes. Yes she can. And she has since the beginning.
Check out this performance of Celine Dion's "I Surrender" during the first season of "American Idol." At this point, she was an amateur singer and her vocal chords were stressed after weeks of rehearsing and competing, and she still knocked it out of the park. Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson both said they'd put her in the same league as Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey and Celine Dion, and she's shown she deserves that classification over and over again since.
And Ariana Grande has made a name for herself for her ability to impersonate different singers while also sounding freaking amazing. Jimmy Fallon has had her on his show multiple times doing musical impressions. Check this one out from when she was just 21 years old. I mean, singing "The Wheels on the Bus" as Christina Aguilera? The woman can sing. Period.
So of course, having Kelly Clarkson and Ariana Grande singing together is a real treat. And they've gifted us with a delicious duet for the holiday season with a live performance of "Santa, Can't You Hear Me." Their voices complement one another so beautifully, with Grande's silvery sweetness and Clarkson's rich resonance. The amount of talent pouring forth from these ladies is simply unreal.
As Jimmy Fallon said, "How?"