The Puppy Chronicles of St. Paul

Laurie Hertzel is the Star Tribune’s senior editor for books. She is not a dog expert, just a dog lover, chronicling the first year with her rescue puppy.

Angus and I walk on a 2-below-zero morning. Below, he embraced the slower pace.Photos by LAURIE HERTZEL •

The Puppy Chronicles: A cold snap changed the length of Angus' walks – and intensified their beauty

A stretch of days with highs below zero meant Angus' daily walks were truncated. He embraced the torpor.
Morning winter walks with Angus are the best.

The Puppy Chronicles: Long winter walks with Angus are filled with peace and hooting owls

January 29
Long walks in the cold with Angus are filled with peace — and hooting.
As an experiment, I prepared a smorgasbord for Angus, each item containing 1/4 of a pill: liver sausage, peanut butter, cream cheese and Velveeta. The

The Puppy Chronicles: Readers offer scores of suggestions for getting Angus to take his pills. Guess how many worked.

December 31, 2020
Readers had scores of suggestions for getting Angus' daily pills inside him. Angus scoffed at them all.

The Puppy Chronicles: Every day a new behavior

December 18, 2020
Just before he turned 3, Angus reverted to old puppy behaviors — some endearing, some downright dangerous.

The Puppy Chronicles: A few hours of peace

December 8, 2020
Medication is not the answer to every difficulty with an anxious dog, but the right drug can help a lot.

The Puppy Chronicles: Better living through chemistry

December 8, 2020
After three years of training and tears, Angus' anxiety is starting to ease, thanks to something I vowed I would never do.

The Puppy Chronicles: A bunny in our garden keeps Angus enthralled

August 16, 2020
When a bunny takes up residence in the garden on the side of our house, Angus is riveted.

The Puppy Chronicles: What is Angus afraid of? Easier to ask what he isn't afraid of

July 17, 2020
Even something as benign as a misplaced broom can strike terror into the heart of our overly sensitive dog.

The Puppy Chronicles: The original social distancer

June 19, 2020
Even as pandemic distancing restrictions are slowly lifted, Angus stays calm by staying away.

The Puppy Chronicles: The solace of walking the dog

May 1, 2020
Daily walks with Angus are a balm during this difficult, locked-in spring.

The Puppy Chronicles: Sibling rivalry

April 17, 2020
Too much togetherness can spark jealousy between Angus and his big sister, Rosie.

The Puppy Chronicles: Home is where the dog is

March 27, 2020
Working from home in this time of pandemic is scary and strange, but Angus and Rosie get us outside and keep us grounded.

The Puppy Chronicles: Muzzle Man

March 14, 2020
We bought Angus a muzzle to help keep vet visits peaceful. But teaching him to wear it was no easy task.

The Puppy Chronicles: Angus is not a fan of hot summer, but comes into his own in the winter

February 14, 2020
Bring on the snow and the cold, says Angus, who would prefer to put summer off forever.

The Puppy Chronicles: Two years with Angus

January 18, 2020
In his second year with us, our rescue dog stole his first bagel, killed his first squirrel and wormed his way deeper into our hearts.

The Puppy Chronicles: In the blink of an eye

October 4, 2019
One dog bite years ago taught me to be super-careful with skittish dogs.

The Puppy Chronicles: Angus loves Ellen

September 14, 2019
All it took was repeated visits, lots of treats and a T-shirt.

The Puppy Chronicles: It took a long time to accept that Angus is a 'reactive dog'

August 30, 2019
It took me a long time to accept that Angus is a "reactive dog." But once I did, I began to learn how to care for him better.

The Puppy Chronicles: Learning to play nice with others in socialization class

August 2, 2019
Angus is back in school, this time learning to peacefully coexist with strange dogs.

The Puppy Chronicles: Leash walking 2.0

July 12, 2019
Over the past year, Angus and I have slowly gotten to a good place on the daily walks. But oh, it took a long time.

The Puppy Chronicles: Angus in summer

June 28, 2019
After Angus is calm and attentive with the new dog sitter, I'm starting to think some of the problems lie with me.

The Puppy Chronicles: Yes, Angus misbehaves, but he also does a lot of things right

June 8, 2019
Sure, Angus misbehaves. But it's time to recognize his virtues, too.

With two big dogs and a shady yard, mud season lasts all summer

May 24, 2019
Twenty years of busy dogs and maturing trees have rendered our backyard grassless. Angus doesn't care — bare ground is easy to dig. And so he digs.

The Puppy Chronicles: A dog door stymies Angus

May 10, 2019
When we replaced a torn screen with an actual dog door, Rosie was fine — but Angus was flummoxed.

The Puppy Chronicles: Angus' training has been two steps forward, one step back. Sometimes two steps back.

April 26, 2019
Just like this chilly spring, Angus' training can feel like we're lagging behind.

The Puppy Chronicles: Angus has started hiding some of his treats and Rosie is determined to find them

April 26, 2019
Angus has a habit of hiding, rather than eating, his nightly chewies. Rosie has made it her mission to find them.

The Puppy Chronicles: Not all dogs respond well to the same kind of training – with Angus, we are trying something new

March 29, 2019
A new kind of training means better communication between dog and human.

The Puppy Chronicles: Four dogs might be two dogs too many

March 16, 2019
When the man of the house goes out of town, the dogs outnumber the lone adult left behind. Reinforcements arrive — in the form of more dogs.

The Puppy Chronicles: Nature vs. nurture: Angus has a calm, loving home life. So why is he so wary?

March 1, 2019
Angus has never liked strange people or unfamiliar situations. But when he growled at the veterinarian, it was time to act.

The Puppy Chronicles: Angus' famous ear goes kerflooey

February 15, 2019
An ear infection, dark and icy walks, mocking squirrels — it's been a tough winter for Angus.