Apr 012010


When I was child, I was painfully shy. I am talking pathological anxiety, excruciating and terrified of people kind of shyness.

Even though I have been a mental health therapist for 19 years, I still do not know where the shyness came from. I do, however, know what saved me from it.


Having family pets gave me friends of whom I was unafraid, and who showed me unconditional love. My pets also gave me something that I could talk about with people, alleviating some of my social anxieties.

I am 48 years old now, and I now feel fairly comfortable in most social situations. I even have found comfort in speaking in front of large groups. Even so, I still rely on my love of animals as one of my mainstay conversation topics.

So it is no wonder that I gravitated towards pet lovers when I stepped into the vast sea of social media.

Through my blogging cat Brewskie Butt, I have met hundreds of pet lovers from all over the world, and I have developed friendships that are very deep and meaningful through online interaction. I have even had the opportunity to meet some of these people face to face, enjoying a more full experience of our shared love of animals.

Next week, I will get the chance to  meet many more of these people and other new friends at BlogPaws 2010, the first ever pet blogging conference, being held in Columbus, OH. I can’t wait!

I am looking forward to the event as an opportunity to expand my professional network as a pet portrait artist and blogger, and I am hoping to learn some new skills to enhance my online presence.

More than anything, though, I am looking forward to meeting people who share the love that I have of animals on a personal as well as professional level.  And, I am looking forward to meeting some of their pets also, because many people will be  bringing their animals with them to the conference!

Robert Brault said, “The difference between friends and pets is that friends we allow into our company, pets we allow into our solitude.”

I believe this to be true. We allow pets into a very special place in our hearts that is unguarded and unfettered. Friends who understand this best are the ones I most want to allow in my company.

So you see, painting pets is more than just a niche art style for me. It is something that connects me to the world from a place deep within my soul.

And that is why meeting up with fellow pet lovers at BlogPaws is so important to me.

I hope to see YOU at BlogPaws!

Life is an Adventure!


P.S.–It’s not too late to register for BlogPaws! You can still register here. Use my special code VIP-VB to get a 20% off discount!

  No Responses to “Why BlogPaws is so Important to Me”

  1. Yay for animals and how they can be so therapeutic!


  2. Have a blast at BlogPaws! Hopefully I can attend next time! We're looking forward to your tweets from the event!
    Theresa (@tildatoo & Prudence)

  3. What would I be without critter? Not much…

  4. You know i will be tweeting like crazy, Theresa! Wish you could be there!

  5. I *love* that quote from Robert Brault! For me, as an only child, the cat my parents got me at age 3 acted as the closes thing I had to a sister. And began my lifelong love and connection to the animal world. Thanks for this post.

  6. Thx for your comment Jill! We had many pets when I was a child. I had a sister and a brother, but I was closest to the animals. My sister gave me the best Christmas present EVER this past year by giving me 4 CD's of old family photos that had me walking down memory lane with all my childhood pals that someday will greet me at the Rainbow Bridge.

    BTW–In the photo above, I am holding Vas estas (German for What is this?), a dachshund puppy from one of Snoopy and Baron's litters!

  7. Looking forward to meeting you at BlogPaws! Can't wait!

  8. Looking forward to meeting you too Donna! It is going to be such a fun conference!

  9. Looking forward to meeting you at BlogPaws! Can't wait!

  10. Looking forward to meeting you too Donna! It is going to be such a fun conference!

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