ah...there is a story there. It's not my dog, she belongs to a lady in Holland. Anyways, the dog wanted her Mom to wake up and play with her...and out of frustration tore up a bunch of cushions. This photo was taken after she was caught and Mom was mad...and she knew it.
Drawing is both a maual and a visual skill...but it is a skill, that can be learned. The above book is very good, as well as books by Lee Hammond, and "Drawing for Dummies" by Brenda Hoddinott. The best "right now" hint I can give you is to take a sloooow appraoach...start light and draw in layers, also for me personally, I found that not overly relying on mechanical blending worked out well...that is let my pencil blend my tones...not my fingers.