When I mentioned that the prompt was “Bubblegum” today to Philippe, he started giggling and said, “Can you picture Phineas just casually blowing a bubble like it’s no big deal?” As it turns out, I could totally picture it, so I doodled our little dog Phineas doing just that. We make up elaborate things that Phineas is capable of doing, so this wasn’t much of a stretch. Our dog has no bark and rarely makes audible sounds, so his eyes hold all the secrets as to what might be going on in his mind. When we’re looking the other way while out on a walk, we imagine him blowing on a dandelion. Or, stopping to talk to his bird friend named Robin, who is actually a robin, but Phineas thinks all such birds are named this. Indeed, his squirrel friend Michael appears as we’re out walking multiple times and often just moments after we’ve seen him in an impossible new location. Phineas doesn’t seemed phased by this phenomenon and almost rolls his eyes as if to say, “that’s SO Michael!”

Phineas is a full breed basenji and this type of dog doesn’t bark, but is known to make a yodel of sorts. Though he did so when he was younger, he doesn’t make any sounds like that anymore, making his silence so intriguing. Indeed, the only sound his makes is a sneeze of displeasure. This he uses whenever he’s disturbed in his sleep and made to go outside before he’s ready. Or, if we’re late in getting him his food for dinner. The sneeze is followed with a solid stare that implies, he’s said all he has to say and that should suffice to get him what he wants next. Since I’m home all of the time these days, I join Philippe and Phineas more on their walks. What I quickly realized was that Phineas is entirely in charge of the route. Should I wish to walk down the hill, Phineas will plant his feet since that was the direction of the last walk, and stares at me sideways as if I must be crazy. This is a quality he apparently inherited from his dad, as Philippe gives me similar looks much of the time.

Though there is actually another sound that he makes more as he gets older. He snores rather loudly. Sometimes, it’s just a normal snore. Well, normal were he a large burly drunk man trying to sleep it off. But, at night, it gets weirder and I often wake thinking there’s people whispering in the corner. At this very moment, it’s extremely close to dinner time so I just heard the familiar sneeze and he’s heading my direction. Since Philippe makes all of his dinners from scratch, he’s sitting in front of the refrigerator as the staring contest begins. I look into those soulful brown eyes, though, and I just feel so much love. He’s not like any of the dogs I knew as a kid, but one that comes with a personality stronger than many humans I know. I’ve no idea what goes through his mind sometimes, but there’s always something that he’s thinking through. And who knows, perhaps those odds sounds he makes each night are not born from little nightmares, but instead, little bursts of joy and happiness experienced while having bubblegum dreams.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Gold Ochre, Opus (Vivid Pink), Cobalt Turquoise, Terra Cotta, and Indigo. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with black ink  in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!
Dog Blowing Bubble Basenji Phineas Watercolor Illustration Sketchbook Detail


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28 thoughts on “Bubblegum Dreams

  1. The reason I got my Basenji is because he did bark. I had a neighbor who bred them for show, and didn’t want the barking in the blood line. He only did it rarely and it was always a simple short bark. He never did yodel. None of that bothered me in the least and I was happy to take him for a very good price.

  2. He is pretty handsome. We have a cat that fetches. But she doesn’t play like most cats. No string chasing. She does like to hunt mice though. Sometimes she brings them in alive. Not my favorite cat trick!!

  3. Fabulous to see Phineas Charlie! I thought that we would get a dog or a cat when we retired but so far I am the only one that did as my husband is still working. No addition to the family yet. It’s great to hear about Phineas’ adventures.

  4. Makes my day to hear about Phineas! You can not know with certainty that each time you see a squirrel it isn’t Micheal. Perhaps Phineas is correct. Whenever a squirrel appears in our yard, my husband always says, “Your friend is here.” He knows better than to question my version of reality!

  5. What a sweet image. You know someone loves their pet tremendously when they have learned and turned their little personalities into people actions. They do become our children, or in my son’s case,our kitty became his sister. 😉

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