The 2016 Pet Blogger Challenge 

It has been a few years since I participated in the annual Pet Blogger Challenge; so I decided this would be a good year to re-join the fun. So, let’s get started.

1. How long have you been blogging? And, for anyone who is visiting for the first time, please give a quick description of the subject of your blog.

Since it has been a while, I’ll pretend it’s the first time. I’ve actually been blogging for about five years. I published my very first – and very short – post on December 6th, 2010. In the beginning I had no real direction in mind. I pretty much posted about whatever I felt I needed  to get off my chest. Eventually it morphed into a blog about my (then) two Golden Retrievers, Callie and Shadow. And then about Ducky – our shelter rescue demon dog – as well.

2. What is the one thing that you accomplished during 2015, either on your blog or because of it, that made you most proud?

I have absolutely no idea. Truthfully, I didn’t accomplish much in 2015 either on the blog or because of it. Especially from August on, when my beloved Callie was diagnosed with lymphoma. I had a hard time focusing on anything the last four full months of the year.

3. Which of your blog posts was your favorite this year and why? (Please include a link.)

I didn’t really have a favorite post during the year, but looking back I’d have to say my three favorites were the two about Callie’s early life and the one about Shadow’s early life. They were such cute little fluff balls!  Looking Back at Callie’s Early Life, Looking Back at Callie’s Early Life Part 2, and Shadow’s Early Life.

4. A common theme from last year’s challenge was that many of us wanted to increase the size of our audiences. Whether or not we intend to monetize our blogs, it seems we’d all like to reach more people. It feels good to know that we’re connecting with others, sharing a laugh or supporting a cause, and it’s motivating to see those numbers grow! What is one thing you’ve done in the past year that has brought more traffic to your blog?

Actually, I didn’t really try all that hard to reach more people. My hubby sometimes gets into these “moods” where any time that I spend on the computer – for any reason – is, according to him, because I’m addicted to it. (I could say the same about the time he spends watching television. Sometimes I have.) So, I tried – at times – to limit the amount of time I spent on the computer to early mornings before he got up and late nights after he went to sleep. And while Callie was sick, I tried to use only the phone to take whatever pictures I could of her and her sisters (especially Shadow).

5. Which of your blog posts got the most traffic this year? Why do you think it was so popular? (Please include a link.)

According to the WordPress stat monkeys, my most popular post in 2015 was “My Heart Is Broken” which I wrote and published the day after we said goodbye to our precious Callie. I guess it was popular because I poured my heart and soul into it. 

6. What is one blog that you read religiously – other than your own – and what makes you such a devoted reader? (Please include a link.)

One?? There are so many I can’t possibly pick just one. I will say though that every blog I do read faithfully appeals to me because of the humans’ love and devotion to their non-human family members, be they dog, cat, rabbit, bird, or some other animal.

7. What resources do you rely on to enhance your technical, writing, photography, social media, or other skills that improve your blog?

Ha! Resources that improve my blog? That’s a good one! I take most of my photos with my iPhone 5s. For the others, I use either my little Canon point-n-shoot with bells and whistles I haven’t figured out yet. Or, I scan in pix from years ago. Personally I have a love-hate relationship with Facebook, usually ignore Google+, Instagram and Pinterest, and totally stay away from Twitter.  

8. What is the best piece of advice you can offer other bloggers?

Just be true to you. If you try to be like someone else it will come across as phony and you will lose credibility. None of us want that. I know it sounds like a cliché but it’s true.

9. What is your vision for your blog in 2016? Do you have specific goals?

I recently started a new blog dedicated to all my furry kids. My goal is to tweak it and make it as much mine as the current one is. I have not yet decided whether or not to transfer the content of “My Golden Life” to the new one. But I don’t have to make that decision any time soon. However, the new blog will eventually become my primary blog. Hopefully by mid 2016.

10. You have the attention of the pet blogging community – is there one blogging challenge you’d like help with, or one aspect of your blog that you’d like input on?

Not right now but I might come up with several things as I move forward with the new blog.

Well, that does it for me for this year’s challenge. Why not join the fun? It’s a great way to “meet” new pet bloggers and get some really great advice. Don’t forget to link up below. And be sure to visit the other bloggers who are participating this year. Many thanks to Amy at Go Pet Friendly for designing and hosting this fabulous blog hop!

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14 thoughts on “The 2016 Pet Blogger Challenge 

  1. somethingwagging says:

    It’s so sad to realize that “My Heart Is Broken” was your most popular post. But it just shows how authentic you are that you drew every other person who had ever suffered a loss into your circle of grief.

    I hope 2016 brings you many good things.

    As for the hubby resenting the blogging–mine hasn’t said a thing since he started his own blog. 🙂

    • My Golden Life says:

      Thank you, Pam! As for Sam, he would never start his own blog b/c he hates computers…had to use one at work all day long, 5 days a week…which is fine. But to each his/her own. He will just have to get over it. 🙃

  2. Beth says:

    I’m so happy to hear that I’m not the only one who is mostly using an iphone or a point-and-shoot camera 🙂 Hope that 2016 is a happier year.

  3. Jodi says:

    I had no idea we started our blogs 5 days apart!

    The one thing I’ve learned about this blogging community is how they rally around one of their own when someone loses a pet. There is no better community on this planet, than the blogging one. They are truly amazing. It doesn’t surprise me that the post about Callie getting her wings was the most popular post.

    • My Golden Life says:

      I didn’t know for sure when I started my blog until this afternoon when my curiosity made me look it up. 😊 We should celebrate our “blogiversaries” together somehow!

      And, I could not agree with you more, Jodi!! Our “little” pet blogging community is like a close-knit, extended family.

  4. easyweimaraner says:

    sometimes it is crazy what the wordpress-monkeys find out. my post with the most traffic was the one as Easy’s dad had his roof-top accident. not sure if we can top that this year (noooo, heaven forbid!) .

  5. Elaine Bryant says:

    It was so nice to learn a little more about you and your blog through the challenge. My sister also lost her golden last year and it was a really tough time for all of us. I’m working up the courage to read your “My Heart Is Broken” post. 🙂

  6. Colby says:

    I have a DSLR camera, but I often resort to the iPhone. It’s just so dang convenient and many times it’s the only camera I have on hand. Best of luck to you in 2016!

  7. Jan K says:

    I can’t remember exactly when or how I came upon your blog….or maybe you found me first? I just know how happy I was to find a blog with golden retrievers! That has grown into us becoming friends and I’ve felt your pain this year. But I know you’ll keep moving forward and I look forward to what the new blog brings!
    Oh, thank goodness my hubby is about as addicted to media as I am. He never complains about the time I spend on the computer…and it’s A LOT. He totally supports my blogging and that makes my life so much easier. So he won’t complain about that, or the glass of wine that is next to me every evening…LOL…even though he is a recovering alcoholic! But trust me, there are other things we disagree about and some of those things involve the dogs. The challenges of marriage…..

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