We support Animal Welfare: the responsible and humane treatment of all animals, and the proper husbandry of domesticated animals to ensure they live a life full of happiness and good health.

We support Responsible Breeding: the careful breeding of healthy, genetically sound animals to improve the overall quality of the species, and to provide loving families with a sound, healthy, well-adjusted, and happy new companion.

We support Raw Feeding: the wholesome and well balanced diet that contains what the animal is built by nature to eat and be able to digest, and the recognition that animals are designed with distinct nutritional needs that must be met.

We support Positive Reinforcement Training: the training method that relies on teaching animals the correct behavior and rewarding them for it to ensure they do not do unwanted behaviors. This has been proven by countless studies to be a more effective training method than negative reinforcement or punishment.

Welcome to An Empty Verse. This blog is dedicated primarily to animal related things, whether they be rants, raves, educational, philosophical, or so on. The main subject of this blog is Marlon, a standard poodle.

The Author

Howdy! I’m Arik (say like “Eric”), the creator of this blog. I am a psychology student, with a focus on comparative psychology. Having grown up on a hobby farm with a mother who loves animals, they’ve always been a part of my life, and the focus of my future plans. When I was little I wanted to be a veterinarian, and then a biologist, and then an ornithologist, an avian laboratory researcher, and now I hope to work with children who are autistic and/or otherwise disabled and animals in Animal Assisted Therapy, as well as raising and training animals to be emotional support animals, therapy animals, and service dogs.

I’m a hobbyist artist and creative writer, a web designer, a bit of a nerd, and a whole lot of other interesting things. Though not related, I’m also a gay man, polyamorous, and pagan, as well as someone with celiac disease (gluten is death).

The Star of the Show



Photo (c) Alicia Marshall

Marlon is a black standard poodle puppy who was born on March 3rd, 2016. As I type this he’s 4 months old. After much discussion with my family, I decided I need to try raising a pup and training him to be a psychiatric service dog (due to my crippling anxiety disorder). I contacted a local breeder with an excellent reputation who is well known for her pups going on to become successful service and therapy dogs. She happen to have just the pup in mind after I described my situation, and of all the luck, her current litter will be the last standard poodle litter she’ll have for a very long while. So, at 3 weeks old I placed a deposit on Marlon, and so far it’s proved to be one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Now 5 months old, Marlon has been my constant companion for about three months. He lives up to the breed reputation of being very intelligent, very loving, and very, very goofy!



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