The Princess Tails

The Musings of Zena, a Tibetan Terrier sharing her life and wisdom with Raffles, a Standard Poodle


RIP DEVON (aka Prissy Paws) 2004 – 2014

So far I have to say that 2014 has turned out to be a tragic year. First we lost the lovely Rosie at the tender age of 4 years and then a few days ago Devon’s battle came to an end.

Devon belonged to The Help’s parents and used to visit us regularly. He never really liked us (or any other dogs) but he did get used to us and tolerated us. We realised that he was never going to play with us and after our initial greeting used to leave him alone. Strangely he used to enjoy the visits.

He would often just sit watching us with his big eyes. I think he thought we were the entertainment!

He had been a champion show dog until his breeders decided to give him up for adoption when he was about four years old. I don’t have a photograph from his show days to show you, but I have seen one and he certainly looked special.

Devon 10 years old

Devon 10 years old

About eight months ago we received the news that Devon had a heart murmur. By the time the vet saw him it was already grade 4 even though all he was showing was a bit of a cough.

We were very sad. The vet thought he had between 3-5 months. In fact he lived another eight months before he showed signs of being uncomfortable. He had a nice quiet life (except when we came to call), and lived a life of privilege. He slept with his people at night (do you hear that Help?), and always enjoyed going out for his sniffs around the beach or nearby reserve. Until the last few weeks of his life his routine didn’t waiver.


He starred in a few of the Princess Tails Fairy Stories before we knew he was sick. His most commanding performance was as the Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws who ended up being turned into a rabbit.

Bunny Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws

Bunny Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws

He was on medicine of course and yet his heart became weaker and although he had a big spirit in that little body, eventually his heart began to cause him to tire and even the 4.00 pm sniffs became too much for him. Still he was allowed to be quiet and sleep when he wanted to. Some days he showed signs of energy and would grab his favourite toy wanting to play for a time before he would become tired again.


Finally last week he went off his food and it became obvious that his quality of life was slipping. He went quietly over the bridge. It was almost as if he was so tired that he welcomed the idea of rest.


Little Devon we are glad you are at peace and hope that you are playing over that bridge with Bella, your lovely Standard Poodle pal, the only dog you’ve ever loved, and you can enjoy feeling young and whole again.

We will miss your sweet nature and your huge eyes and the excited barks you used to give when you arrived to visit – not to mention the sulks when we came to visit you!!

RIP Devon, the house is empty without your quiet but solid little presence and your owners are mourning and missing you more as each day goes by.


Goodbye Devon from a sad Princess Zena and Raffles


I’M BACK………………… for now

Hi everyone and a huge thanks to those who wrote to me and encouraged me to continue on with my musings, pup rearing tips and tails of triumph 🙂

Taking in the summer air

Still looking good 🙂

Despite his diagnosis of heart murmur and fear he would only live a few months Devon, aka Prissy Paws, is still with us and we go gently with him. He still comes into our house and turns up his nose at us. Sometimes I find him gazing at Raffles with what looks like wonder in his eyes. I imagine he is wondering what he is. He isn’t really afraid. He lines up with us for treats and things and Raffy is the perfect gentleman around him. He doesn’t try and get him to play or step on him or anything!



Raffy is a pup no longer. He is now 17 months old and weighs in at 37 kilos. No kidding!! 37 kilos and he may still be bulking up a bit!! I tell you he is a giant. In fact he is literally a giant. In the States there is apparently a category of Standard Poodle called Giant Standards and he fits. That is so typical of my family. Not content with getting a bigger dog they have to get a huge one. Well they needn’t expect me to play with him however gentle he may be. 37 kilos against 12 is just not fair.


Raffles all grown up

We spend most mornings at the dog park. Though of course I don’t go out if it’s wet. I have discovered that there is a plot for the Standard Poodles to take over the village. I warn you all now, it may even be a worldwide threat. Be alert.

When we got Raffles we knew of two other Standards at the park. Then we met Ollie and Rosie. Then Cassie became his bestie. Then Ringo appeared. Then Daisy came on the scene. Geordie and Leo made occasional visits and now there is Paris and Jack as well as Jacques and Coco Chanel. I tell you…… it is a conspiracy.

I occasionally run with the others but on the whole my business is to check the incomers. I particularly object to some of the labradors that dash into our group of pals expecting to grab all the attention and I usually have to tell them off until they improve my manners. The Help stops me doing this but I believe it is an important job. The poodles are just playing and would accept anybody, I am more discerning!


Paris in front, Rosie the red and Ollie the black walking behind.

Paris is one of the smaller Standards and steals everyone’s heart (except mine). They are all taken in by the mooning looks and cuddles. I know she is just manipulating them and whilst all the other poodles run around she hangs about for hugs. Ollie does the same too but he doesn’t make big eyes at everyone like Paris and I quite like him.


Supervising the play from a distance.


Joining in the stick chewing game with Raffy and Cassie

Very, very occasionally I try to play with Raffy but it isn’t easy. Tug of war is no fun at all, one pull and I have to let go. I have been pulled across the floor by him once but I decided it wasn’t that much fun.


Looking cool in his summer coat

Going out into the garden has become fraught with danger for me. Raffy is always hoping that I will feel like a game of chase. I do occasionally but I have to keep him guessing by not encouraging it too often. When we do I move too fast for The Help to get a photo and it usually ends like this below – a race to the door and my favourite hiding place, under the desk!


Finally. Made it safely indoors!

The Help wanted to get a photo of us both together so you could see the difference in size, but I was in a very scratchy mood and I usually walk away from the camera. After all, I am a star and I’m not just going to give away my image 😉

Raffles loves the camera and when it comes out he begins to pose.


Spot the differences!!!

Whilst our games usually end with me running for cover, we have other ways of making life fun too. Like who gets onto the red sofa first. Usually we share it, but sometimes one of us hogs it and the other one has to lie in the bed on the floor.

The laugh on his face says it all - he got the sofa first.

The laugh on his face says it all – he got the sofa first.

And despite his size. This often happens at night:

Doesn't he look stupid

Doesn’t he look stupid

So there we are. A very quick catch up to bring you up to date. I hope I will be back shortly and with luck I’ll be able to keep The Help posting from now on.

With love from Zena, the happy Princess


Happy Christmas

From all of us here in OZ

From Prissy Paws, the unwitting victim of much of our humour throughout the year and probably the next:


From the pup Raffles who is still only five months and growing!


Our Christmas will look a little bit like this:


And I expect to spend most of the day assuming the position on the chair!!

And of course being in OZ where the temperatures are rising, rather than snowflakes and snowmen, this is more the style of Christmas which we will be celebrating:


Have a wonderful Christmas everyone, in whatever style you enjoy and we’ll catch you on the ‘other side’ 😀

With love from a festive Princess Zena xxx


The Next Big Thing Award


I have another award!! What a great Christmas present. This is all down to my pal Easy

If you don’t know Easy you really should pop over and catch up with him. If you do know him then you understand why this award is so important to me. Easy is smart. He knows talent when he sees it! He runs his staff so well, he gets to sleep on the bed, eat what he wants and @TEOTD he just rules.

I’m not sure if there are any rules to The Next Big Thing Award so I’m just putting it out here and if you have come to this page, help yourself to this award as a reward for coming to see me. A41&14A as the guys in the feathery hats used to say 🙂


I think I shall take this award as my 2013 New Year’s Resolution.

Otherwise, things are pretty quiet around here at the moment. The Behemoth continues to grow, but far from being a bodyguard I find myself watching over him at the park. Well I guess he is still only 5 months! I am AAS.

ATM we are working on our Christmas Blog card – you would think it was  the Queen’s speech! 😀

The Producer won’t make the card until Raffles has been washed and poufed tomorrow. I keep telling her that this blog is all about me but I have not been able to move her yet. I just hope she doesn’t lose sight of who’s important here. AFAIUI this is The Princess Tails and he aint no princess.

So adieu pals for the moment. Thank you Easy for my award and I’m loving your Britmas Christmas saga. ALOL at most of it which is great therapy at this time of the year.

BITMT enjoy a Christmas Greeting from Prissy Paws!


Love from Princess Zena – The Next Big Thing


Knotted (an adaptation of Rapunzel starring Princess Zena)

Once upon a time there were two TT’s (Tibetan Terriers) who desperately wanted a litter of puppies. The father TT wanted a son to carry on his genes, the mother TT wanted a puppy to love.

One day Suprize (for that was the father’s name) was walking in a local park and met a wizard called Prissy Paws. For some reason he confided his dilemma to Prissy Paws and the wizard had a great idea.
He promised to give Suprize a magic potion to give to Stormie his wife so that they would have puppies, but only if he could have one female puppy from the litter.

Wizard Prissy Paws has a plan

Wizard Prissy Paws has a plan

Suprize agreed. He would have agreed to anything but in truth he was only interested in the male puppies and giving away a female was nothing to him, just another mouth that he wouldn’t have to worry about feeding.

When he went home he gave Stormie the magic potion but he didn’t tell her about the deal he had made. He knew she would be cross. Soon afterwards on one cold and wet night two puppies were born. One girls and one weak boy.

Suprize was furious but he wasn’t going to double cross the wizard so he grabbed the girl who was Princess Zena and went out to meet the Wizard. Stormie cried and Princess Zena cried but Suprize took no notice.

He met Wizard Prissy Paws in a cold and lonely wood and handed over little Princess Zena who was shivering with fright and the cold.

Wizard Prissy Paws was delighted. He was an ambitious wizard and so far because he was so small the other wizards had not really taken him seriously.

He devised a plan to make them notice him. He was going to embark on a psychological study and perform experiments on the lovely and gentle Princess Zena. When he wrote up his work the other wizards would be forced to acknowledge that he was the cleverest wizard of them all. He would probably be feted and become famous.

Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws dreams of his fame

Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws dreams of his fame

Wizard Prissy Paws had found a tower in the middle of a forest where he was going to keep Princess Zena all alone. Once a day he planned to visit her and give her a little food and tell her scary tales. Then he would write down everything that he observed and he would be recognised as a true scholar and highly educated wizard.

Princess Zena's tower

Princess Zena’s tower

Each day the Wizard Prissy Paws would visit the tower for his social experiments.

There was no door to the tower so he shouted up to her:
‘Princess Zena, Princess Zena let down your long and fluffy tail that I might climb up without fail’

Then the Princess, who did indeed have a beautiful long, fluffy tail, let her tail dangle out of the window and Wizard Prissy Paws climbed up.

Once in the tower he gave her food and drink and then he made up stories about what was happening outside her prison walls.

He told her that her brother had died and she was very sad even though she didn’t know her brother very well. The next day he told that far from being dead, that her brother was living happily with her parents and no-one missed her. Then he would ask her how she was feeling so he could write it all down.

Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws experiments on the gentle Princess Zena

Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws experiments on the gentle Princess Zena

He would return home to his comfortable bed each night to write up his latest experiments on his laptop delighted at the progress he was making.

Princess Zena meanwhile grew more beautiful and sadder but she could see no way out.

She became more and more timid and was so frightened of the wicked Wizard Prissy Paws that she didn’t even think about escaping.

Each time Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws left her she would promise herself that she wouldn’t let down her tail again, but each day when he appeared she was so lonely and hungry that she would let him climb up.

Then one day a prince from a foreign land was wandering through the forest and saw the tower where the Princess Zena was being held.

Prince Jet finds the tower

Prince Jet finds the tower

He was bored. All the dragons had been slain and there seemed no more heroic deeds to be performed. He didn’t really want to return home to rule his kingdom without having had at least one adventure.

Whilst he was sitting quietly pondering these things he heard a distant sobbing. He stood at the edge of the forest and saw an island in the middle of a lake. The crying seemed to come from the tower on the island.

Intrigued he sat at the edge of the wood and waited.

Eventually he saw wicked Wizard Prissy Paws approach and say some magical words which made a little bridge appear over the water.

Wizard Prissy Paws crossed the bridge and cried up:
‘Princess Zena, Princess Zena let down your long and fluffy tail that I might climb up without fail’

Prince Jet, for it was the handsome Jet himself, crept to the edge of the trees and was amazed to see a beautiful long, black tail be lowered from the tower window and the nasty wizard climb up it.

He watched for a couple of hours and heard the wizard ranting and shouting nonsense and heard the sobs of Princess Zena. His chivalrous heart was moved. What in earth was going on?
 He waited until Wizard Prissy Paws left and then crept to the edge of the lake.

Hero Prince Jet swims the lake

Hero Prince Jet swims the lake

He dipped a paw in. Just water. He didn’t need a bridge. He swam easily to the island and shouted up:

‘Princess Zena, Princess Zena let down your long and fluffy tail that I might climb up without fail’

The Princess did as she was asked and imagine her shock and delight when it wasn’t Wizard Prissy Paws but the handsome Prince Jet who climbed in through her window.

She fell in love with him instantly, and because this is a fairy tail and it was meant to be, Prince Jet no sooner looked into the beautiful brown eyes of Princess Zena than he lost his heart to her too.

From being so sad, Princess Zena was suddenly very happy, but there was still the problem of Wizard Prissy Paws to overcome. How were they to break the evil contract he had made and set the Princess free.

Prince Jet had an idea. He looked at the tail of the Princess and his own tail and he discovered that they were not dissimilar.

Prince Jet and Princess Zena curled up together that night and the Princess slept properly for the first time since being locked in the tower.

The next day they talked and played a little together and Prince Jet told Princess Zena about his large and friendly family and about his kingdom of which she was to be queen.
Princess Zena was enraptured.
Then when it came near to the time when the Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws was expected Prince Jet helped Princess Zena to escape the tower and hide in the forest until he, Prince Jet, called her.

Princess Zena hides in the forest

Princess Zena hides in the forest

‘Princess Zena, Princess Zena let down your long and fluffy tail that I might climb up without fail’
Prince Jet grinned and lowered his tail for wicked Wizard Prissy Paws to climb up.

As Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws climbed in through the window Prince Jet leapt at him and grabbed him by the throat. The wicked Wizard Prissy Paws shook with fear because like many bullies he was actually very cowardly at heart.

Prince Jet Leaps at Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws

Prince Jet Leaps at Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws

Prince Jet dragged the bedraggled Wizard to the bottom of the tower and Princess Zena joined them.

Princess Zena’s kind heart was wrung. He had been very wicked but she could not see him torn to pieces in front of her.
‘Wait’ she said to Prince Jettie, ‘I know he has been very wicked, but is there some other way of punishing him without taking his life?’

Prince Jet, who had never intended to kill the wicked wizard only to frighten him into letting the Princess go, decided to give Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws a lesson he would never forget.

‘I could have my wizards turn him into a bunny.’ he said

Bunny Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws

Bunny Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws

Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws paled and begged them not to turn him into a bunny. ‘Not that I have anything against bunnies,’ he said hastily, it’s just that I would hate to have to live in a small burrow. I’m claustrophobic you see.’

‘Well okay,’ said Jet. ‘I won’t have you turned into a fluffy bunny. How would you like to be banished to the desert?’

Bedouin Wizard Prissy Paws

Wizard Prissy Paws in the desert

‘Please, not the desert.’ he pleaded. ‘My eyes hurt in the bright sun.’

‘Okay,’ said Jet. ‘I won’t have you sent into the desert. How do you feel about snow?’

Eskimo Prissy Paws

Eskimo Prissy Paws

‘The snow!’ gasped Prissy Paws. ‘I could never survive in the cold. You had better kill me now and get it over with.’ And he looked so dejected that Jet decided that he had learnt his lesson and stopped teasing him.

He stripped the wicked Wizard Prissy Paws of his powers and his laptop and then they did something which made Prissy Paws shiver with fear.

‘Henceforth’ announced Prince Jet. Who has a very regal way of talking. ‘Henceforth, you shall be known as Devon, Prissy Paws and your care has been entrusted to two faithful subjects of this land of OZ who are kind and understanding and will help to reveal to you the error of your ways.’

Devon, aka the Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws begged the Prince not to make him into a house pet, but Jet insisted and he was sent to his new home.

Princess Zena with stars in her eyes travelled with Prince Jet to his kingdom where she was welcomed and adored and she was never locked up, mistreated or alone ever again.

Princess Zena and Prince Jet lived happily ever after

Princess Zena and Prince Jet lived happily ever after

As for the ex Wicked Wizard Prissy Paws, something very strange happened. He actually enjoyed being Devon Prissy Paws and living in a house with a couple of slaves to feed him, walk him and make him comfortable.

'Breakfast? A croissant, chicken and some bacon on the side please.'

‘Breakfast? A croissant, chicken and some bacon on the side please.’

He discovered that a life of ease suited him much better than a life of striving to excel in academia. In fact it was the best thing that had ever happened to him. So there!!

Sucks to Princess Zena and Prince Jet says Prissy Paws

Sucks to Princess Zena and Prince Jet says Prissy Paws

And so they all lived happily ever after

Love Zena, and thanks to Jet who requested a part in my next production. I hope he enjoyed it.