Dear Family, Friends, Fans and Abolish the Crate Federation Members,

Happy Independence Day! Grady has some thoughts about freedom that he would like to share. Today I am busy perfecting my weave pole entry for agility so I am more than happy to let Grady guest blog. I’ve no idea what he will write and plan on pleading the 5th if necessary.

Happy 4th!


Grady here. I’ve been thinking a lot about freedom lately primarily because it has been very hot and humid in the great state of Tennessee. My year round fur coat often limits my outside exposure time which leaves me with a lot of down time in the hot afternoon. And, although I like napping as much as the next dog, who wants to sleep their life away? While I was trying to come up with something to do, I started thinking, what would I do if I had the freedom to do anything?

Now, I’m not talking about the freedom one has when one has thumbs. That game has been overplayed although Dawson did a contest searching for the best answer to the question, “What would you do if you had thumbs?” We had many types of responses (open the refrigerator was a popular one as was drive to the park). It was great fun and a little disturbing to see some of the replies. In case you’re wondering, the winning response involved a squirrel and tickling but that’s all I’m going to say. You know who you are.

I attempted to discuss the concept of freedom with Dawson to see what ideas he might have. Freedom is very important to Dawson which is why he started the Abolish The Crate Federation. As a youngster, he opposed being crated as evidenced by his constant barking, whining, and occasional vandalism while crated. I encouraged him to take his oppositional energy and channel it into something worthwhile (and less costly to Mom) which is basically how ATCF started.

Apparently, Dawson had no time for discussion because he referred me to the ATCF manifesto, explaining that the ATCF manifesto had all he needed to say about freedom. I decided to reprint it (with Dawson’s permission, of course). Here it is:

Abolish The Crate Federation Manifesto

by Dawson Earnest Huntley

It’s about freedom. Seeking, smelling, finding, expressing freedom. Being liberated from the confines of rules, crates and the demands of others.

Freedom to:

  • think freely
  • run with wild abandon
  • jump as high as the moon
  • tussle with your best bud
  • shout out your convictions from the depths of your soul whether it be in agreement or in protest
  • play without restraint
  • make your own choices
  • compromise or not
  • sniff without interruption
  • dig until you capture the mole
  • live without coercion
  • drink from the toilet
  • bury the bone in someone’s flower bed
  • engage in a lively game of chase
  • fetch
  • roll in smelly stuff

Freedom to express the exuberant joy that lives in the heart of all dogs.

Freedom to be.

I must confess it is an excellent manifesto and covers almost everything but I believe it is missing one thing. And that is the freedom to love your Mom with all your heart.

No thumbs needed.



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