Wednesday, December 31, 2008
So what are the lessons we can learn from these animals? First of all let go, what will be will be. I'm sure the dogs aren't aware of the economic downturn, they do know we didn't GO as much this summer when gas was high because there weren't so many car trips for them to enjoy. Did they pout and worry? No their just glad to have people around WHEN we are around. OK the bichon is a little weird for the first 15 minutes after I get home and he tends to pout when I'm gone and he is here with someone else but otherwise they are just grateful for what they have right NOW. When someone else comes home the animals show their joy at just being in their presence, we don't have to bring food or treats they just want to know we are close.
Sometimes they are overachievers but mostly they just try to please, what ever happens happens and they may not like it but they don't try to force the situation. OK once again the bichon is the exception, if we try to teach the lab tricks the bicon is like I'll do three backflips and walk 10 ft on my hind legs just GIVE ME THE TREAT! He does understand when mommy is on the computer it doesn't always work to do the bichon bounce to try to get me to play either.
2008 may have not been the best year which is an understatement but we in the midwest are rather protected from the economic downturns. My own personal economic crisis came in 2007 and we are much better off than we were last new years. So this new years eve lets be thankful for what we do have, hopefully we in the USA can pull together under the new administration, be thankful for our blessings, and don't forget to step back and just be in the momet. Oh and give your dog or cat or iguana an ear rub of whatever they prefer. Happy HOLIDAYS!!
BTW the story of our Christmas is on the blog florenceview.
Monday, December 29, 2008
Like so many others I suspect I followed the war closely @ first, plus my son was over there, but then life got in the way, this book explains what life is really like in Baghdad or was a couple years ago. For this reason this book is just not for dog lovers but everyone who has any stake in the war which means all of us.
Melinda Roth is a co-author with Jay Kopelman, I would like it if they had written a little more verbosely but the short paragraphs lend themselves to the story.
You can buy it @ Amazon here.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
I work @ Wal Mart part time. Have for 6 months now. After having a "desk job" (running my husbands business) for the last few years it's been a culture shock. I had to cashier yesterday @ the front of the store but as they say @ Christmas EVERYONE is a cashier. For awhile the store manager was behind me cashiering, they don't lie, everybody does what they can to keep everything running smoothly. Here in the mid-west we are gearing up for another round of ice and snow, that coupled with the Christmas season made for extremely long lines @ the cash registers but everyone was patient and curteous that checked out @ mine. I don't cashier most days so I may have been slower than some but most of the people left laughing, don't know if that's in the job description or not. I have to work marking down Chrismas items in the early am Friday, trust me I will NOT be standing by the doors when the store opens Friday morning.
My husband was @ home asleep in his recliner when I got home with the three kittens curled up on his lap. Anyway the wild kittens were hissing @ everyone when they came in the house after their mother disappered right before Thanksgiving, now they stand up and beg like the dog for attention. Here's a picture of them asleep in my dads old office chair, Ok Crusoe the survivor isn't asleep, he's begging for food or me to pick him up. My husband keeps saying they are really wild cats, they think they may be dogs and I may be their mother but they aren't sure, they really don't like those big cats outside.
I confess this is for 3 blogs, have to leave for work in less than an hour, haven't had much time to read but I'm still working on The Toss of the Lemon which is an excellent book but just too much going on this time of year. Plus Wal Mart fed us yesterday, good ole holiday meal of bar-b-qued pulled beef and pork and ribs, plus salads and beans and desserts, it was excellent.
I hope all are safe in their traveling this season. Hopefully we won't lose electricity with the storm and those still without get it back soon in the northeast.
Monday, December 22, 2008
In Britain the recession deepens just as it does here and it seems to be effecting the number of abandoned pets also as it does here. Remember your local Animal Shelter and if you can't adopt or aren't so inclined please take a minute and think about donating.
Here's a link to the story about British animals.
Much closer to home there seems to be a lady in Ardmore Oklahoma who cares for 100 stray dogs. Not a big deal you say, the lady lives in a van, has for years, it seems she cares for these animals on her $700 Social Security check and she is 71! She was employed for years, used to work for the humane society in TX but fell on hard times and landed in Oklahoma. A local animal shelter sometimes takes part of the dogs but she is always getting new ones.
If you have a pet and are getting it a Christmas present, think twice, go ahead and get the present but maybe a smaller or cheaper one (trust me the pet won't care, he/she/it thinks you hung the moon anyway ) and donate the rest in the form of food or cash to the animal charity of your choice. I think I read that 75% of animal owners give their pet a gift for Christmas and a google search of "Christmas presents for dogs" gives 11 pages of returns.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
I'm sure everyone can relate. Newman used to be Runt, he's named after Newman on Seinfeld. Here's his halfway grown and baby pictures.
Do these look like marauding creatures of the night? They are, trust me. It started with the crocheted doilies and the glass bowls in the living dining room. Our house is long with the family room/used to be garage @ one end, living/dining room and then the bedrooms, kitchen is off to the side of the living room. The kittens were in the family room, THEN as all of my kittens do they discovered this whole other big wonderful world of HOUSE. Plus two picture windows where they could see for 1/2 mile or more. Only problem was there were lace doilies on the tables by the windows. With glass bowls of potpourri or candy or whatever on various surfaces. Kitty FUN. Then they discovered mama sleeps @ the other end of the house and they could annoy the white bull of fluff most people call a bichon by jumping on the bed and just creating havoc. So the family room door started being shut @ night with kittens imprisoned. Then the family room door started being shut 75% of the time when I discovered a bowl about to be pulled off of a table. Nevermind candlesticks and lamps and various other silly things I have in my living room. (Presently they are jumping in the plant making the leaves crunch that is by the front door, had to go see)
So @ night I shut the door and kitties sleep out here. Last night I couldn't sleep (wasn't a good night, phone calls, cold, etc) so I got up about 3:30 am. Didn't turn on light but I could see the evidence by the computer. Kitties had had a paper towel/paper clip party. Gotten a little wire bowl of paper clips and a almost used roll of paper towels off my husbands desk and shredded and scattered respectively. Not a big mess but still?? Husband says it's time for them to go outside, I said NO, it's too cold. BTW I was feeling guilty about the outside animals being outside and it's so cold (they have a log cabin with straw in it they can go to if they want so please no angry emails). I look outside now and there is a pile of dogs out by the highway romping and playing, the neighbors and mine?? This is on top of a hill in MO and the lawn chair just went scooting across the patio from wind and it's 10 outside?
So I guess the kitties will go outside soon. My husband was raised without animals in the house so I can't really say anything, I have a dog inside, sometimes dogs, sometimes the cats come back in. Supposed to be fairly warm here after our annual before Christmas cold blast and snow/freezing rain storm so maybe I will let them out a bit then.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Rosie was weaned at 8 months old when her mother and the two other horses left our farm for new homes. Rosie was a lone horse for many years and because of that she pretty much laid claim to her 30 acres of pasture and her caretakers. She does have some personality quirks that some people couldn't deal with or handle her, so she will never be sold.
We first got a glimpse of this when the first farrier came to give her a trim. Handling her feet on a daily basis was routine. Her first farrier was a loud talking, bossy, know-it-all kid of about 27 years. Long enough to have some experience, but not long enough to have experienced everything. With little tolerance she allowed him to trim her front, but by the time he got around to her hind, she was going to kick him and his likings over the moon. After what seemed like forever of him fighting with her and she not allowing him to touch her, he gave up. I took his rasp, picked up her hind and ran it across both just to show her it could be done. Of course the whole time she stood still like it was old hat. Then there was the Mennonite farrier. She didn't like him much, but she learned to tolerate him because he was a quiet. A man of few words, but slow, slow, slow in his work.
One New Year's Eve when I had left her to the care of someone else with specific instructions on feeding her a new grain, Rosie came down with acute laminitis. We had no knowledge this was happening until she had been symptomatic for approximately 16 hours. The "caretaker" phoned to say something was wrong but she didn't have a clue what? This coming from someone who had been raised around horses, owned a foundered pony for years, and yet claimed to not know what the symptoms were indictive of. I could write more on that person, but it would serve no purpose here.
Several vet barn calls later and alot of watchful care, medicine and time, Rosie recovered. It was bearly noticeable to even the trained eye that she had been a victim of laminitis. Laminitis is inflammation of the laminae inside the the hoof. It attaches the hoof to the horse so to speak. The hoof swells on the inside constricting the blood flow, resulting in dead/dying laminae and this allows the coffin bone at the core of the hoof to rotate to some degree or another. It is very painful and a horse left untreated and in severe cases even those that are treated must sometimes (not always) be put down.
At any rate Rosie recovered and went on to rule her pasture kingdom once again. Once while quietly grazing she noticed a coyote chasing a deer across the field into the pasture. She took off at a dead run, cutting the coyote off and chasing him down. Lucky day for that deer, he got away and the coyote went away with an empty stomach and a few cracked ribs!
On several other occassions for one reason or another, some unknowing soul would wonder into the pasture unannounced and without my husband or I present. She charged them, chased them and literally would have hurt them had they not ran for their lives!
Was she part burro? Not hardly, possessive, territorial, THE QUEEN OF THE 3 Ninety Eight Ranch, that's who she is and no one better forget it!!! LOL!
As I write this Crusoe is perched on my shoulder, he is one of the 3rd set of 3 kittens I have adopted this year. From no cats to going through 9 kittens, we have 6 left. 3 outside cats and 3 inside. This is the story of the first 3.
We have outside dogs, Mugsey who was from a yard in
One night in May of this year the dogs were raising a terrible ruckus over by an old old log cabin across the driveway, I went over there and there’s a mean little kitten, little is the operative word here, hissing and spitting and growling @ the dogs, holding them @ bay quite well. I took it to the house, came to my senses and took it back to the log cabin, I put it up on straw where it would be warm on the second story thinking mama cat would find it. We have no cats, I think this was a neighbors cat or a wild cat. Next morning I go up to check on the kitten. It’s belly is not so full, it’s colder and no mama, hasn’t seen mama all night, I can tell. So I take it in the house, I think I used cows milk and an eye dropper @ first. Next night the same thing happens, this kitten is a duplicate but with an EMPTY belly. I finally invested in kitten bottles and formula. The next day was Saturday, I said I’m going to get the ladder and see where these kittens came from and see if perhaps there’s more or the mama. There was one more, he wasn’t in such good shape but after 24 hr of formula and a warm place to sleep he perked right up. They were eating every 2 hours @ first and then 4 hours and then they let me sleep 8 hr after a week or so. They slept by the bed in a laundry basket till they kept waking up all the time to be fed. I wasn’t working @ the time obviously. I did go to work when they were about 4-5 weeks old, I fed kittens before I went to work and immediately after I got home for awhile.
My bichon in the house HATES cats so I watched him, the video of them playing is on my video’s on the first page of blog, he became fairly friendly, he only chases the kittens from littler # 2 when we get to that story you might see why. The kittens learned to poop when I washed them with a washrag or a paper towel outside, for a couple weeks that was the first thing I did every morning and then made kitten formula. I was SO glad when they started eating cat food. They did learn to use the litter box quickly but we couldn’t nap on the couch in the family room anymore because we were just a large play toy in the middle of the night, noses and ears were really good things to bat @.
We named them Meany, he’s the one we have that survived and was the first kitten that put up such a fight the dogs were afraid of him, There was the name of the second kitten because he looked just like Meany and he was just there, Sluggo was the 3rd one, big wide black stripes on a grey cat and so very friendly, he ate the most and slept the most. One day there was only one kitten outside after we put them out @ 8 weeks or so, my husband mentioned it to his mom and dad and they wanted to know if the other kittens were grey, seems that Sluggo had ridden on the pickup motor over to his mom and dads house one day. I went to get him and he was the best passenger I’d ever had, was SO very happy to see me. We don’t know what happened to There, I presume he was maybe on the pickup motor and jumped down along the way. Sluggo disappeared when the kids were fishing @ the pond on Labor Day, don’t know if he saw the bright lights of the little town ½ mile away or a coyote got him but I haven’t seen him since. So we just have Meany left of those kittens and he is anything but mean. He looks about 7/8 grown but is only 8 or 9 months old.
And thus started our ever increasing cat population. We haven't had cats for years since the late 90s but we are quickly becoming a cat oriented household, I pound on hoods or feed cats before I start vehicles and buy more cat food I think than I do dog food. We've graduated to 9 lives for the bigger cats, I couldn't get any special kitty last time, they eat off of a shelf outside so the dogs don't help themselves so all kittens have to be able to jump on the shelf. These inside are ready to go out but I just can't bring myself to do it yet. Feeding the cats on a shelf outside has improved the dogs health drastically. Our old dog Skeeter? She can climb up there if I give the cats turkey or ham broth, it's a miracle!
Don't these look like poodles? Well they aren't, they are bichons. The main difference is poodles are sometimes not as rough and tumble as bichons. Bichons LOVE to rough and tumble, they blitz which is another word for running around like they are nuts, you can imagine them saying I am soooo fast, I am the fastest dog in the world, I will stop and touch you (or the couch or the kitten or another dog) but I am just so faaaaast, watch me go, I can even run sideways on the back of the couch for short distances I am MAGIC!! And above all I am faster than the rest of you!! Or @ least that's what mine seems to be saying.
These Bichon Frieses are on the website Small Paws Before and After, I can't go there very often because I will break down and cry. It's a wonderful organization and a wonderful site, take a look and read the heart wrenching stories. Grace was marked Dead on her cage and Spunky was given up by his master because presumably the new bride didn't like him. Check out Small Paws Before and After. Do what your heart tells you to do. And BTW bichons ARE supposed to be harder to train than poodles but they are not dumb. Mine knows by how I dress and whether I get my travel mug out of the dishwasher whether I'm going to work or taking him with. He also knows cheese and cat and bed and we have to spell LOTS of words.
Also mine hates cats, after the 3rd set of rescued kittens I've adopted this summer he's reconciled himself to they might not be so bad, he stops @ letting them snuzzle when he sleeps too much but they do play with him, bat the dog, chase the cat 2 feet, bat the dog, etc. They can be taught very easily, OK they can be spoiled more easily but for a companion dog they can't be beat.
Monday, December 15, 2008
Snopes says the animals are trained to do this. I am going to have a talk with my bichon about earning his keep and maybe the kittens now. The least they could learn to do is paint walls?
It's late, I'm reading both Stepehn King and Curtis Sittenfeld @ the present moment, what a combo? Supposed to be freezing rain and snow here tomorrow so might just stay home from work!
Sunday, December 14, 2008
I couldn't find this quote from my one page web search. Well the quote that comes from the end of the story that makes up this post. I was going to write a big long post about my kittens and the 3 sets of orphans I have raised this summer/fall/winter but that will have to wait. I spent a good deal of the day on the phone talking to my husband who is waiting to get unloaded in OK city, he's driving his truck, he's not personally being unloaded. Even if you are just from MO you really don't appreciate Oklahoma aesthetics OK?
Anyway I wake up during the night, on a rare night I sleep through 8 hours, blessed, most nights I wake up @ least once, sometimes up to 4 times, I get up go to the bathroom and perhaps see what the weather is doing, sometimes I get on the computer for 10 minutes, you get the picture.
Well I've had to shut the door from the garage turned family room to the rest of the house because the kittens have discovered where I sleep clear @ the other end of the house. Their catbox is in the family room and also they disturb the dog which disturbs me and they take little side trips to the dining room and I'm finding bits of potpourri strewn about the house and the lace doilies and tablecloths are getting a pulled and rumpled look? So I shut the door @ night and part of the day. I'm in the family room when not asleep or cooking or cleaning anyway.
So I get up last night for like the 2nd time and start to go back to bed, I saw that the kittens food bowl was almost empty and thought everyone says I spoil them horribly because they are never without food and get either milk or canned food once a day. My daughter who is studying to be a vet assistant has even suggested my big cats are overweight?
So I start to go back to bed and even though the heat is on but turned down in the family room (we are talking animals with fur on them remember) and they have a comforter to snuzzle into on the couch and the plant light is on by the plants (also known as cat box #2 and #3 to them) they look @ me as I'm going to shut the door and it hits me they are thinking:
She has left us here in the cold and dark to die.......................alone.
So I give them the last 1/3 of a can of cat food and filled up the dried cat bowl and go back to bed. Dunno if it was the Stephen King short story collection or actual cat telepathy but the thought stuck with me. To die in the dark and cold, alone.
Of course it's possible they are just drama queens too?
Friday, December 12, 2008
I got Dispatch as a Poodle, long story short, he's a bichon, Vet said so, probably a cross between a poodle and bichon. He has a little hound in him too, he's like RELAXED compared to most little dogs sometimes. Also there is the matter of those black straight hairs on his back by his tail.
He does not like to be groomed. When he was a puppy I tried to cut his hair a little the first time and it was a laughing battle in a lawn chair. It soon turned out to be a battle every time. Forget clipping his nails. I'd have the vet clip his nails and pull the hair out of his ears. I started getting him groomed but he didn't get invited back to some of the groomers and the last one didn't do as good a job as I did as far as I was concerned. I found Big Birds Groom Blog which is also one of my links over to your right. I figured out how to do a modified Bichon cut with the aid of cheese sticks, for the dog not for me. As you can see the results were great! The first two pictures are of him trimmed like a poodle and the grown out bad haircut I got from the last groomer. The last 3 were taken the fall of 2007 and 2008. I've also found training him to be helpful, he does sit, lay down, roll over, beg, and shake on command plus of course he walks on two legs like 10 ft across the floor for cheese or steak. We also know quite a few tricks he has taught us such as the bounce bounce move which means I'm gonna bug you till you play, bounce bounce followed by a whine or a bark which means PAY ATTENTION TO ME, the jumping from a high object to your arms move which means human had better catch dog, and the waiting to be picked up which he will assist you with by jumping or crawling into your arms. And as my son said we try to teach another dog a trick and Dis is like what do you want me to do, 3 flips and then walk across the room like a person, JUST GIMME THE TREAAT!! He also does whatever we are trying to get the other dog to do which is cute.
Granted the pictures are of an ungroomed dog and a freshly brushed dog but you will see what a difference the proper haircut and brushing can do for your bichon. Also the tail hair length was shorter on some of the earlier good grooming pictures because we had a labrador puppy that thought the bichons tail was a handle to grab him by and RUN. That's been a year ago and the tail has grown back out.
Oh yes the heavy collar I leave off unless he is going with me somewhere. The reason he has a big dog leather collar is because he destroyed his first cute little puppy collar in 10 minutes, chewed through it. I bought a heavier cloth collar, he knew what he was doing the second time, took 2 minutes for him to get rid of it. Thus the big dog collar.
Monday, December 8, 2008
A toddler lost in the Virginia woods was back home safe Sunday thanks to two puppies who kept him warm through a harrowing night of freezing temperatures........another member of the search party that found the boy, said the puppies refused to leave his side.
As the child was placed in an ambulance to be taken to a local hospital for examination, "The puppies were watching where he went.
Read the complete story HERE
I know dogs sense helplessness, I had a dog when I was a child that wouldn't let me get close to water and would start tugging @ me if I started climbing when I was a toddler, I can barely remember it but he was my built in babysitter, Shep, he was an english sheperd, big furry black dog. Lets remember our animal guardians today no matter how large or small.
Sunday, December 7, 2008
The English bulldog of my nephews has found a name, Newman, off of Seinfeld, I thought it was appropriate but Mikey (the nephew, he's over 6' and over 40 but he's still Mikey) wanted a literary name since he is like a high school English teacher or literature or whatever they're calling it. He likes to read like me. Anyway I reminded him that Newman wasn't a very literary name, haven't gotten a response back yet.
I let the kittens out for about half an hour (kittens are inside until they are like 1/3 grown and can survive outside hopfully, haven't been outside for like a month or two) while I was cleaning off the patio/apron/driveway/playground large chunk of concrete outside the back door. I put our 10 year old bar-b-que up, some sort of record for a grill, swept all the acorns (no acorn famine here) and sticks from the ancient oak tree at the corner. Our storage shed went flying in a tornado a couple years ago and hasn't gotten replaced so it all goes in sort of a hidden spot by the back door where the cats have a shelf to eat on and I keep my everyday gardening utensils and the grill etc. I put the kittens there and the other half grown kittens from the other two bunches of kittens I rescued were out there. My other outside dog was out there and maybe my cousins dog and my other two dogs. Guess what happened?? The young kittens rubbed against the dogs and followed them around and hissed @ the other half grown cats, they knew the dogs were familiar and friendly because they had been in the house some but the cats don't come in or aren't supposed to??? Makes me a little leery of letting the kittens out but the rule is dogs in the house that are housetrained but not cats and we have a building full of straw for them to stay warm in so soon the kittens have to go out. BUT what will happen to them if they love the dogs and expect no harm from them and are afraid of cats? I'm sure they will learn they are cats @ some point but it's rather amusing.
Also made me think about prejudice and how what we are used to is what we aren't afraid of. Not necessarily because it's better but because it's familiar.
We've all done our fair share of career changes and lifestyle changes lately. I hope we haven't made any flawed choices because of fear of the unfamiliar. I know our country is in uncharted territory right now and it is scary to have less money than you used to, trust me it's either been feast or famine most of my life, BUT that doesn't mean all things that happen will be bad. Board games and home cooking are making comebacks. I think people have came to the realization that they can think and what doesn't make sense really does not make sense, it's not because they are stupid that all the excuses for the economy doesn't make sense, it's because they are excuses for greed plain and simple. What does this have to do with prejudice? Sometimes prejudice is just fear of the unknown, we don't know what will happen to us or our country, personally I think it will get worse before it gets better. I hope it's never the same, I hope we are more sensible as a people and realize we can't have new ALL the time and we can still laugh and love and enjoy each other because that's where the true wealth and happiness are at.
You can find pets for adoption on moads4u or on the Stover Animal Control Website.
This is Miller, he is a boxer/lab mix with that special look that made me take my yellow puppy home when the last thing I thought I needed was a baby lab. Miller is beyond part of his puppy days but he still has that I wanna play look about him. Check him out or the other animals @ the websites.
More about Miller:
Nov. 5, Miller was an owner surrender. He does well on leash and gets along with everyone. He is partly house broken but needs work. The girl at the vet office said he never once made a mess in his run for the 24 hours he was there. He could not wait to get outdoors to go when I picked him up. His eyes have such a great expression. Adoption $75.00