Friday, January 30, 2009

Even the Cows Love Me or How to Get Stuck in Your own Driveway

Sort of an involved story but it was like a comedy of errors. And it does involve animals.
Wednesday was our wedding anniversary. My husband had been gone on a trip and called to say he was coming home, he has a big truck (semi) and had driven through all the ice and sleet and snow we had in the midwest. We had like 2 inches of mostly sleet on the ground, some snow and ice, highways were clear but side roads hadn't melted @ all @ that time. I'm driving home and thinking can he get in the driveway? My dad had blacktopped the end of our driveway and it has a little hill so it's doubly hard to get into when it's slick. So I get a brilliant idea to use the bags of salt I had stockpiled in the trunk of my car. So I get home get out of the pickup and get in the car and take the salt out to the end of the driveway. Actual highway is out of sight in this picture, it's behind the mailboxes, this is what remains of the snow after a day of above freezing temperatures, was taken this morning. So I go out there and spread salt and get the brilliant idea to mush it into the ice and snow with the car. I own one of the last rear wheel drive cars made, cadillac cts. So I'm out there on this steep little hill with the car going back and forth and eventually I can't go back anymore, just forward which is downhill and out to the highway. So I have no phone and no drivers license because I wasn't planning on going to town. Don't want to turn around because all of the other side roads were bad, so I go to town to turn around which is only 1/2 mile away. On the way back there are cows (you knew we would get to them eventually?) in the cemetary which is across from part of our property. Two young cows, big calves actually, I think OK, I will honk so they won't run out in front of me, works with deer and cows usually. So I honk honk honk, get back to my driveway and get a run @ it and get back in. So now I'm back @ the house and look to the N toward town.
This picture was taken this morning when snow had mostly melted but it's the view I saw minus cows. I see the cows running down the airstrip toward me, that's it running along the highway and then almost up to the house. A car had pulled in behind me and the girl in it said she didn't want to bother me but did I know my cows were out? I told her they weren't my cows they just followed me home but thanks anyway. Remember it's my anniversary, I have to feed my animals and think of something for supper because sandwiches won't do on an anniversary, and figure out whose cows these are. In the meantime the dogs, lab, schnauzer, bichon and terrier have discovered these cows in the yard happily munching on the compost pile and are naturally trying to run off the invaders but luckily the calves ignore them, I didn't want them out in the highway. I figure out whose cows they are, get ahold of a babysitting 13 year old boy who isn't sure how many calves they have. His mama is supposed to call me. I decide to go shovel a little on the blacktop part of the driveway, feed animals, start supper etc. After awhile I see the cows hightailing it back to the cemetary. Eventually after 1/2 hour or so my husband does come home, makes it in the driveway fine, the boy calls me and says the calves are home, I described them and told him somebody needed to check the fence.
So that was Pee Wees big adventure for the day. I guess they call the calves to feed them by honking so that's where I made my mistake, they thought they were being called to supper! Was hilarious but for awhile it was what next! So how long has it been since you've had cows follow you home, @ a run no less?

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Bichon Grooming Bath and Final Brushing

He's not so cute when wet. I used antibacterial deodorizing shampoo and whitening shampoo this time because I don't think he has any fleas.
Here he is after the first brushing with a pin brush and partly dried in front of an electric heater, he REALLY hates a blow dryer but sometimes we resort to it when pressed for time. In the summer I just brush him outside and dry him on the patio.And this is him in all his glory in the living room where no one ever goes except the grand kids to play because it's big? I used a comb on him to finish partly and no mats or snarls, well hardly any but I avoided those, will trim some later.
And I tell him to sit so he stands and looks out the window one way............
and then the other way because I call kitty hoping he will look @ the camera but it flashes and he doesn't like it. I could have brushed his legs and feet a bit more but we were both getting tired and his haircut is rather uneven but after 3 hours and 2 people this is as good as it gets! Look @ the before pictures this morning a couple posts below this and see if it's not an improvement. Maybe not as much as a beauty parlor for a woman but close?!

Brushing the Bichon part II with Daughter and Granddaughter

Ok, my plans for the day went awry when I took a nap, then my daughter and the grandkids came over. Was a good day, don't see them enough when it's just sitting around. We finished watching Best of Show, dumb movie, and O Brother, Where Art Thou? Watched the kids wrestle and fight over who got the last little debbies cake even though there are boxes and boxes of em, all the nutty bars are gone. Grandma does bake on occasion, just not this occasion!

So we did get the dog brushed, here's the pictures including Sara brushing the Lab, Mugsey, he enjoyed it. JJ my oldest daughter held Dispatch the bichon and we brushed and combed him. Dispatch has a love hate relationship with JJ, for some reason he loves her but is deathly afraid of her so he was a GOOD BOY when we brushed him. She made him behave when he was a puppy and cut his hair and pulled it out of his ears (not cruel, necessary for a bichon) and he has been VERY wary of her ever since but he loves her, she smells and sounds like mommy of course he loves her! Pictures were taken in the family room, it's supposed to be messy!

Brushing the Bichon part I

You say what's the big deal? Well it's supposed to be done every day. I haven't done it for a few days and like a week before that, the last haircut was inside which didn't make for an even haircut and he needs a bath. Pictures @ top are before and last ones are after the FIRST brushing with the pin brush. Bath will be on later, I hope. First a rest for both of us and then brushing with the slicker brush and maybe combing and a bit of trimming. BTW he HATES grooming of any kind except long brushes with the people brush.

Dog and Cat Funnies Sites

funny pictures of cats with captions
more animals
Ok, I'm computer literate but don't do much surfing, does that make sense? Facebook and Myspace leave me cold, my kids are there saying silly things that I'd just as soon not read. Noaa weather and cnn and my email are the first tabs up on my firefox and then the blogs and then whatever else I may be doing. All this is in explanation of WHY I just now found these sites. We have satellite and get fapped (fair access policy, means if you actually use the internet it will be almost stone age slow the next day, thanks hughes) if we view too many pictures or video. I have this bichon habit on youtube that has gotten us fapped a time or two and then watching tv on the computer when the hurricanes came has gotten us fapped. SO I normally stay away from videos and photo sites as much as I can.
For those who may not know these sites are out there here's the links, the one for the dogs, and the one for the cats. That will kill a few hours of your time if you are so inclined on this snowy (here in MO) Sunday morning!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Bichon rescues family!

Here's the link. It's an older story from September but I found it interesting and heartwarming. BTW the dogs name is Fluffy.

Happened in New Zealand, seems the wife of the house left a pot of oil on the stove on low low heat by mistake thinking it was off and it exploded while everyone was asleep later that night. The dogs barking woke her up. Proves a bichon frise is good for something even if it is just barking! Ok, they are good to cuddle and love and spoil too. Everyone got out of the thick smoke safely thank goodness.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Orphaned Kittens group III

What scared mangey little kittens you say? They had had a hard life from day 1. Lets just say they were born @ a Wal Mart store and Wal Mart isn't in the cat business. Somehow I ended up with them, it involved a specially constructed box and catching the mama cat but we won't go into details, she was feral, she was making people jump, we made a mistake when we made the box though, was supposed to go in my trunk but it wouldn't fit, had to go into the backseat (I got her in the car and these terrible growls were coming from the cardboard box after 10 miles, could have been the pizza I'd picked up that she smelled too, it was in the trunk but you could smell it, I said if she got out in the parking lot of the pizza place I was putting the kittens out and driving away and not chasing her all over after all I'd gone through to catch her) but I figured the country was a better place for her and maybe I could tame her. THAT didn't happen. I kept feeding mama cat, she and her surviving kittens were in a log cabin across the driveway, perfect cat heaven. Two of the kittens didn't survive the first few days but they were about a week old when I brought them home. Not much I could do. I finally started seeing the kittens playing in the sun after a couple weeks. All was fine in kitty land with 4 surviving kittens and a wild mama. I would see mama outside hunting by the cabin on occasion but as soon as she was aware of my presence she was GONE. She would let the dogs get much closer than I could. I went to feed her the first cold snap we had before Thanksgiving and didn't see her. I saw the kittens and they were fine and healthy so I figured all was fine. The next day I had two of my grandkids over and I went to feed and water the mama cat. The kittens were out in the straw in the cabin but one was stiff and still and one was cold and barely moving! I snatched up the one that was cold and disposed of the dead one, the other two hid in the straw. The rest of the afternoon was spent capturing the other two surviving kittens and trying to revive the cold one that was barely alive (and trying to figure out how I was going to explain another bunch of kittens in the house to my husband?). I wrapped the one that was barely alive in a towel and put him in a graniteware pan in front of the heater and got a few drops of warm milk, cream and corn syrup down him. I'd run out of kitten formula or ingredients to make any more. I did have some canned cat food and I mixed up a thin gruel for the other two which they lapped up like it was good, I gave them a bottle too but they would eat out of a bowl, they really preferred the bottle though. By evening the sickly one was mewing and seemed so grateful for having his life back. He has hardly ever hissed @ us but he is a survivor thus the Crusoe. The pretty long haired red one is a beautiful kitten so she is named after Paris Hilton whom I don't think is so beautiful but the name seemed to fit. When I took the black one in the house I told Marcus my grandson (13) to hold it because I didn't think his little sister Sara who is 7 could handle him. She named the black one Satan which I changed to Devil, just seemed nicer. He is still the cat that will hiss @ the drop of a hat. I had to work all week and had a sick sick little kitten to take care of, I got more kitten formula, that stuff is expensive. I put them in my bathtub with a litter box, their gruel and water and lined the tub with towels and turned the heat up, thank goodness we have 2 tubs. I fed them before work sometimes twice and then I tried to feed them as often as possible in the evenings and in the middle of the night. By Thursday I was off work and my husband came home so we decided it was time the kittens were introduced to the rest of the household full time. They hissed, they ran, they hid, I put them in the big pet carrier for the night with a small cat box and food and water of course. The next morning I fed them and played with them a little and they were tame? Loud noises still got to them but they were sleeping on "Daddy" in the recliner by the middle of the day and coming when I called them to eat? Remember my husband isn't a cat person, they like him though and he likes kittens, spoils them rotten. Crusoe had almost gotten over being the sickly ugly one, my husband told me when he saw them Thursday after I'd had them in the house since Sunday he didn't know if they would ever tame down or Crusoe would live. I thought he was looking pretty spiffy by then?
We had people over forThanksgiving and the kittens were fine with them by them, you couldn't even tell they were wild kittens a week before that. My nephew got a new puppy from my daughter and the kittens were fine with it but the puppy had never seen cats before and was totally weirded out by these new strange creatures. As you can see below the cats were fine with the dogs, they really wanted to snuggle to the white furry one but he's not much into that, especially when they thought they might nurse. They like to try to climb the bigger dogs legs like a tree or try too till the dog says hey that hurts.

Around Christmas time my husband started saying maybe it was time the kittens went outside? By that time they had started tearing down the scarfs on the windows in the family room and were banned from the living room because they grabbed the lace tablecloth on the dining room table and swung. I'd had to start shutting the door to the family room @ night where they slept and were supposed to live because they figured out where mama and the dogs went to sleep @ night and it wasn't peaceful when they tried to play with the dog on the bed. The plant in the foyer was the favorite jungle and it didn't look like it would survive much more. So people are gathering @ the house Christmas Eve, I had to work but got off in the late afternoon, I got home and went to open the door and kittens rush it from the outside? I let them in of course and ask if anyone knew they were outside? Seems that my husband had let them out earlier in the day when he was home by himself and they started climbing on everything in the family room, they were even up on tall desks and shelves knocking things down, maybe it was the excitement of the season? So he gathered them up and put them outside, I'd had them out before for a few hours @ a time and so he thought they would be OK? He goes outside later in the morning and no kittens, we were supposed to have nothing but warm temperatures for a couple days, had snowed a little earlier but that was fast melting. My husband can't make the noise I do to call cats which is like when you roll an r but I'm rolling the k in and it sort of comes out kkkkkddd. They weren't used to kitty kitty. So he's looking for the kittens but can't find them. He looks in all the window wells and all around the house, over @ the log cabin, no kittens! By this time his 2nd daughter and my 2nd daughter had showed up and my daughter said he was stressing because he had lost my kittens, I'd said they were too little to go out and he turns them out and they disappear. She said this was like the first thing he said when she got there after he said hi, he said "I'm going to be in trouble, your mama is going to be MAD @ me, I've lost her kittens." You have to understand my husband is this guy over 200 lb and I'm little and pretty easy going, he normally doesn't stress about much but the kittens were worrying him and it was a holiday, supposed to be joyous times and he'd lost the animals I'd been coddleing for a month or so. So my daughter can make the rolled k sound and call the kittens, she goes out calls and sees the cover on the dog crate I use for a dog house moving. Evidently it was warm in there and the kittens had crawled in and gone to sleep and it was next to a door which they wanted back in plus there was food and water there so that's where they stayed. So the kittens come in for another few days, when we were going to have a string of several 60 degree days I put them out and they are fine. They have learned to snuggle to the other cats or even the outside dog if they get desperate or they sleep in the cat carrier I have outside. I do give them hot water in their water dish 3 times a day if it's going to stay below freezing. And the animals have an area to stay in that is practically windproof and waterproof and is lined with blankets by the front door, not pretty @ all but it works. Or they have a log cabin filled with straw. Usually I get up in the mornings and the cats come out of the cat carrier and the outside dog might stick her nose out of the dog carrier so I know that's where they sleep.
So that is how we went from no cats for years to 6 cats in a matter of months. I'm still thinking maybe Crusoe needs to come back inside, he LOVES people, his brother and sister used to pick on him when he was sick. He made up for it when he got to feeling better and loved to launch himself @ them when they were asleep. And I finally put the cat box outside, was sitting by the back door till I could clean it, it's been a fixture in the family room for months now, I look out the door and there is Devil, using the cat box outside. Was totally funny or maybe he was bargaining saying what a good kitty he was could he come back in now?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

What to Feed Your Dog

Link to list of what not to feed your pets and some books to buy for home made dog food.

Discussion of pet foods and what they can cause, which ones are good and which ones bad.

Link to doggie casserole and doggie hamburger helper.

Link to Vegetarian Dogs.

I've read 40% meat and 30% each starch and veggies is a good formula, all cooked of course, brown rice the best but oatmeal Ok too or white rice on occasion. Green beans and carrots the preferred veggie. BUT I've also read the proportion of meat is way too low. If you could afford it and it seemed to agree with him I'd maybe go with a 60% meat 20% each veggie and starch diet and a multivitamin, garlic powder in small amounts supposedly repels fleas, others say it's dangerous.

I'm thinking of trying this cooking for your pet again. It makes sense that we don't eat exactly the same thing every day to stay healthy so why should your pet? I used to do it, I'd cook the rice and veggies and chicken, combined the brown rice and veggies usually, keep it all in tupperware in the frig, and then added the chicken when I fed him. Of course Dispatch is spoiled as we all know so.......... at least I feed him dry dog food instead of those little pouches now!

And since I'm on my way to work and don't have much time, congratulations for our new president and everyone who made the transition go so smoothly. It was a great thing to watch.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Newman Update January

My nephew wrote this about Newman also known as Runt, as you may or may not remember or care he came to get Newman @ Thanksgiving, what a way to get the relatives to come see you on holidays, give them a dog! Anyway here's the Newman update.

Newman is good. He is laying in the floor chewing on a barbell. Yeah, we don't mess with the wimpy chew toys, we go straight for the heavy metal stuff. He's stupid. He broke out of his baby gate today and look totally thrilled and quite surprised when we got home. No damage, so that was good. I would like to see how he did it. I'm thinking he did a running start and just bashed into it. He's like that. Took him to the dog park about a month ago and he was mean, mean mean. Not joking. So I took him back a couple of days ago and he did much better. He found a friend. A jack russell named Rowdy who constantly bit him. It's all good in dog world.

I wrote him back and told him Dispatch didn't do so good with other dogs in social situations either. At petsmart he acts like he's thinking "OK I finally got in the store where people can worship me properly and I can see what mama does in these places but WHY are these other dogs in here and WHY do they want to act like DOGS? I'm in my human incognito persona and they still want to sniff butts? Maybe if I act like a human I will finally get to really drive and learn to talk right? AND be able to get in the refrigerator whenever I want? I've got the walking on my hind legs pretty well down pat."

Or @ least that's what he seems to be thinking.

Going to the Bathroom with Pets

I don't mean house training or walking them in the morning and evening (we train ours to stay out of the road and just let them out, much simpler when we are @ home). I am talking about the human in the house using the restroom. It becomes free for all petting time with a captive human who can't get up. Of course this only happens if the door is open or the pet manages to open it or accompanies you on your mission. Around here it's usually 2 people in the house, door gets left open since the bathrooms are scattered all around and fairly private and after all we are married.
It's not so bad since the kittens went out, as I've written before somehow I've raised 3 sets of orphan kittens 3 times last year, that's a 0-9 cat increase in a year. We only have 6 left, don't know what happened to two but one decided my car engine was a good place on a HOT summer morning, not a smart move on his part but he didn't suffer. Anyway 2 dogs and 3 kittens in a bathroom can get a little claustrophobic, especially if it happens EVERY time you go and the dogs are trying to edge the kittens and each other away from the parent who happens to be on the throne @ the moment. Now it's not so bad with just the two dogs but I was thinking about this as the Bichon attempted to push the lab away from me in our latest family gathering in the little room.
The funniest episode happened with my husbands brother. Dispatch (Bichon) loves his uncle, in fact uncle had a hand in naming him, we had a trucking company @ the time and it was a running joke, people would call and ask to talk to Dispatch and if we were feeling very humorous and knew them we would say you can try but he can't talk too well yet, he's only a puppy. Anyway uncle was using the restroom in the laundry room between the kitchen and family room, I was doing the supper dishes. Dispatch was a puppy, I heard the door shut, knew it was uncle but forgot the door didn't always lock right or completely latch for that matter. Heard Dis scratching, scratching and then door bang open. Heard Uncle shout, get out of here you durn dog, dog left, I was bending over the kitchen sink trying to stifle intense laughter. Uncle seemed not to be into this communal bathroom time thing the dog prized so highly? Of course Uncle is unmarried and childless, by the time you go through children in the house privacy becomes a thing of the past.

Oh and when little foo foo dog does go outside to go potty he kicks his heels like male dogs do after they have marked their territory, in fact he kicks so much he throws grass all over himself sometimes, if you stand and laugh it goes on all the longer. I've seen him throw twigs up on his back though and think someone was throwing things @ him and hightail it for the house because he is just pretty sure he has been attacked in his own yard! Doesn't the green green grass look really nice right now?

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Mother hides guinea pig death, would you?

Link to Cnn story here.

It seems a mother hid a guinea pigs death from her 3rd grade son because he would be upset and had multiple tests in the next two days.

I've never done this. Most of the little furry things we had in the house survived when the kids were little. We had one hamster but I think I missed his death by being @ work and the girls were teenagers? I accidentally ran over my 5 year old daughters dog once on the way to the school bus because I swerved to avoid another car and I didn't know he was racing my car on the driveway. She wasn't horribly upset, in fact it's a family history story, she asked in her cherubic blond way "Are we going to skin him and eat him Mommy?" You have to understand we did NOT kill or eat dogs or cats for that matter. We did kill the flock of chickens because I'd discovered most of them were roosters and didn't feel like they should live all winter getting fat and tough and mean. We live in Missouri also and killing deer and turkeys is a time honored tradition and I usually got the job of skinning and butchering or @ least helped. We were too poor to afford the meat locker option. So the kids point of view was sort of understandable but you can imagine my shock when she asked that particular question?
My other daughter loved black animals, we lived on a farm with her grandpa and grandma in a different house and it seemed like we always had puppies or kittens, she always claimed the black ones and they would die. Not be killed necessarily but succumb to a mystery illness or just disappear. She always named them Blackie. After about 2 puppies and 3 kittens named Blackie the name became off limits and we got a black terrier and named her Cujo. Cujo survived for years and years, the spell was broken, Cujo weighed about 15 lb. soaking wet. We still won't name animals Blackie.
For the next story you have to understand I was a very independent child, my mom worked or went to college all the time it seemed like (or was with her family her brother was dying though we didn't know it @ the time) my dad raised me a great deal of the time and he had a business on the farm, a fix it shop, big metal building, he worked on everything from TVs to combines, to big trucks and tractors, mostly tractors and trucks though, and a dairy with 30 Holsteins. He had 2 or 3 employees @ one time so from the time I could turn on the TV and be depended on not to kill myself and watch for traffic on the driveway I could wander between the shop and the house and barn and about 200 ft. from the buildings. I learned to warm up lunch when I was like 6 and I don't remember learning to drive, I was too young and my mother always said they had me because my dad didn't like the way she drove a tractor? This was the early 60s.
When I was a child I had various animals, only one dog was mine, Shep, but more on him later. I think it was one of Shep's puppies this story is about. He was a curly little white and black English Shepherd, cow dog all around farm dog, we had had him for a month or so and one day I was playing in the yard before Daddy came home for lunch (I think I was 5 or 6) and I saw something funny in the driveway not far from the house. It was the puppy and he had been ran over and there were flies all over him. I didn't cry, it was shocking and horrible but I went in the house and turned on the cartoons that used to come on @ noon. I almost think I was afraid it was my fault somehow, I'd played too rough with the puppy or done something wrong. Can we say avoidant paranoid personality? My dad came in the house and told me he had something bad to tell me, he gathered me in his arms kneeling in front of the TV and told me the puppy had been ran over and was dead. He actually cried which was the most shocking thing that happened, I'd never seen him cry before, men didn't cry back then @ all, I don't think I'd ever seen a man cry much less my big dark burly father. Putting it all together now I'm not sure he wasn't upset because my uncle was ill but my father loved dogs too. He had 29 hounds for hunting when he and my mother were married, a year after they were married it was down below 10. She wasn't a dog person. Anyway I never told my parents that I can recall that I'd found the puppy first and hadn't cried or really done anything but switch on the TV.

Not saying the mother in the CNN story did anything wrong or my parents or I did it's just the different ways we approach life.
Can't find a picture of my dad @ the time of the story, this is not long after, the cat is enjoying itself contrary to what it looks like, it's name was Whitey? From left to right- my niece, grandpa, brother, me, grandma, sister-in-law, and my mother down @ the old house around Christmas after my uncle passed away. I still have the flower pot, didn't realize it was that old!,

Orphaned Kittens group II

These are the second bunch of orphaned kittens I had this year. These were never on the bottle, the pictures were taken a few days after they came to our house. They are Kansas cats, my daughter lives in KS, she stays with some friends of hers and takes care of a relative who lives nearby and works in a greenhouse. All is well and fine my daughters friends like cats, they don't LOVE cats and they didn't like the neighborhood cats deciding their house was the place to be. They live on the edge of a small town and it seems a great deal of the town cats who weren't house cats decided to live @ their house, on the deck, by the pool etc. Then one of the cats had kittens, my daughter Sissy gave them away or some of them I believe, then another cat had kittens etc. These were the product of one of the litters, mama was wild. So they aren't exactly orphans but they were heading for being feral cats or going somewhere else. So Sissy calls and says I'm bringing you kittens, OK? I say no. I have 3 kittens, actually 2 @ the time. She calls again and said what if something happened to your kittens, you need back up. I finally gave in and one Thursday evening here she comes bringing the kittens. Sissy left and went to here sisters because I had to work and her sis had some time off. So I have these kittens in a pet carrier. I bring them in the house and open the door and they are a little skittish I think? I make sure they know where the cat box and the food and water are and my husband comes home from a trip so we go to bed. The next morning no kittens? I call and call and no kittens, I finally find them under a large piece of furniture and they are acting like they are completely wild. They did hiss the night before but I figured it was the car ride and the pet carrier. So I got a yardstick and push them out one by one and give them to my husband to hold. They calm down some but when they get away from people or see the dog they are like WILD. By the time I leave for work about 9 am they are sleeping on my husbands lap, he has that effect on animals, he doesn't like cats particularly but he spoils them? All weekend they are a little weird and skittish but I think they acclimated well considering these pictures were taken later in the week?
All of this is leading somewhere, the kittens had not been touched by human hands till the day I got them, when she caught them to put them in the cat carrier that was the first time anyone had touched them? She neglected to tell me this till we had them tamed down. Also they ranged from having a short tail, to a stub to NO tail basically. Their names were Tail, Stubby, and Bobby, very easy to remember. They were also marked weird and fought over their food like they were wild animals? I did look up whether bobcats and domestic cats could interbreed and supposedly it doesn't happen but these look like they may have some bobcat in them, if not Manx probably. As you can see they soon became completely relaxed in the home environment. This is Stubby.

And Stubby a few weeks ago on the dog bed in the sun.
And Bobby who is marked weirdest of all. He is really prettier than that picture. People who haven't been here for awhile tell me how beautiful he is and then they tell me my cats are FAT, they really like Special Kitty cat food, I think I buy more cat food than dog food.
There is no picture of Tail lately. Tail was only with us for a couple months and lost his life in the car engine. It was a warm morning in October, one of those 80 degree days we still get then and I hadn't driven the car since the night before but for some reason Tail was in it. He didn't suffer but it upset me and my husband had to come home and fix the car before I could go to work. I normally call all the cats to the cat shelf if I can't see them so I know they are out of the way of the car but I had gotten lax about it since they were getting older.
Stubby and Bobby are alive and well, they have VERY thick coats and are not skinny cats by any means. They are great hunters too. Mice mostly but snakes too. We have little tiny ringnecks which I despise. I don't like snakes OK, I HATE snakes but for some reason we have more snakes up here on this landscaped hill than we ever did down @ the "old" house which is where the actual farm buildings are. At least I haven't seen any in the house for awhile! Ringnecks are not any bigger than an earthworm until they are fully grown but I still don't like them. These kittens declared war on them, I think I counted 10 headless snake bodies and that's just the ones I saw, good kitties.
Here's a group picture taken this month. You can't see Stubby he's in the back, I'd given them some beef trimmings when I was making stew. Bobby, Meany, Paris, Crusoe, and Devil is the black one.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

John Lennon, Yoko Ono, and a missing model from the 60s?

You ask what in the world does this have to do with animals. Well guess what I'll tell you. Seems this model caught the eye of John and Yoko, she did a film entitled "Rape" with Yoko and John. Rape was about the invasion of cameras into everyday lives.
Eva Rhodes is the missing woman's name and after her divorce from a British architect she went to Hungary and established the Puss in Boots Animal Trust. Eva is now 65 and was last seen 4 months ago in the company of a young man she was recruiting for the animal sanctuary. Evidently the Hungarian police weren't ecstatic about the sanctuary and are just treating the disappearance as a missing persons case and Eva's family is unhappy that nothing has been done after 4 months, can't say as I blame them since there has been no evidence that Eva is still among the living.
Complete link here.
A story of Eva's animal sanctuary here. After reading this I'm wondering who is taking care of all of the animals?

Friday, January 16, 2009

Labradoodle or Portugese Water Dog for the Obama's?

Link to the white Labradoodle puppy breeder Copper Canyon Labradoodles.

To me the labradoodle looks like a lanky bichon but maybe I am just a little touched about bichons?

The other choice is a Portuguese Water Dog, I think this is Teddy Kennedy's choice? The picture above is from the American Kennel Club, don't want to get into trouble.

They both seem like nice dogs. Good rambunctious dogs. Not foo foo dogs like Obama said he didn't want.

OK, we have a foo foo dog but he's just really cute and cuddly, let him think something is attacking mama and he turns into the tazmanian devil. One night I heard Skeeter the terrier fussing out by the bar-b-que grill. Seems a possum had made it's way under the grill, opossums are not known for their speed or being particulary ferocious so I decided I either had to get it out of there or kill it to make Skeeter shut up. I got a shovel and managed to get le possum on it and drag it out from under the grill. Dispatch wasn't very old, less than a year but when the possum came out and snarled he threw himself on it teeth barred and growling because le possum was coming toward beloved mama. Well duh, if I have a shovel and am pulling le possum toward me it's going to get closer. Opossum left the shovel and the yard with a bouncy white butt in close pursuit and a black slow butt behind that (Skeeter).
Foo foo dog also shows no mercy when confronted with strange dogs in his yard. I've seen him chase huge hounds off and a blue heeler. I'm standing there actually calling the blue heeler and Dispatch catches sight of him and it's bar the door Katie. A little white cotton fluff ball heading down the hill in hot pursuit of a VERY scared blue heeler. Just didn't make sense to me, maybe the blue heeler thought the q-tips had gone mad or it was a ghost?

Anyway all the best of luck to the Obama's with their puppy.

And if you are considering adopting go here for a list of rescue dogs in your area.

My dog is spoiled Part III

This is a picture of dis and mittens, they had a long standing feud, the big cats we had might have made Dis want to chase cats more? This was another unfortunate teenage picture of dis, I cut his hair and obviously he wouldn't sit still for that or being brushed!

Getting tired of this yet? I've never written this all down yet and feel I must finish. Plus it gives me blogging material I can put on during the week when I'm @ work and the white fuzzy one is home by himself. Ok, he's not always by himself, he's got family going by and stopping in all the time but he says he's terribly lonely.

And BTW little white foo foo dog, fireworks, guns and thunderstorms, don't bother him in the least. Ok if the thunder shakes the house or camper when we lived in one in MS he would move to my lap but that was about it. I think he actually likes the commercials for Disney World with the fireworks because he always watches them, or maybe he's thinking he can go there and chase mice on his birthday, you get in for free on your birthday you know? The lab and the terrier are terrified by any and all of the above, thunder isn't so bad for the lab but fireworks do him in and they both go the opposite direction if there is a gun being fired.

Dispatch has only been hurt or sick three times and they all show how spoiled he is. The first time he was only a few months old, it was almost Christmas and I had gone to California MO to distribute gifts to people we did business with, my husband was already over there in another truck. It had been a long long pickup ride but Dispatch hadn't acted upset or like he had to go potty, it had only been like an hour since he'd been out, my husband had bought this new pickup the February before, his pride and joy, 2002 Silverado with cloth seats, that's important, this truck was CLEAN. I brought my husband lunch from Mickey D's and told him it was in the truck to go out and we would eat it. He gets out there and I follow him, he slams the door after grabbing the food which thankfully was in a different seat from the dog. Evidently the dog had gotten sick or gone potty all over the new pickup, I didn't think a small dog could produce so much whatever it was, it was ALL OVER. I think he was sick but I had to drive 30 miles home with him and that stink, I have a strong stomach but it was all I could do not to get sick myself, he was so upset because I wouldn't let him touch me and he finally crawled over by the other door and laid down facing away from me. I can't remember whether I cleaned the dog or the pickup first but neither one was fun. Then the dog curled up beside the heater in his bed and let me wrap him up so I'm pretty sure he was feeling horrible, he slept for hours, perked up a little before bedtime and was OK the next day. I knew my husband had accepted the dog when he asked about the dog BEFORE he asked about the pickup when he called later that evening. I did get the pickup clean and after a month or so it didn't stink like upholstery cleaner anymore.

The second time dis was sick he got neutered. I was a baby about it and Dispatch was like over 2 when we finally got it done. I really wanted little Dispatches but knew that was silly. The vet INSISTED on keeping him overnight, I told him that wasn't a good idea, Dispatch had never been away from me overnight but once when we our nephew was killed in a car accident and then we left Dis @ home and a friend came in and let him out and fed him but he was @ home. The vet insisted, I gave in because Drs know best right? It's the next morning, my husband stays home later than he should from a trip to IA because he wanted to go with me to the vet to get the dog. I'd called the evening before all is fine, the vet calls back in the morning after he
goes and checks on Dispatch and tells me to wait till late late morning. Seems Dispatch was FINE when he left him for the night. But somehow during the night (or probably all night) Dispatch tried to escape from a stainless steel crate with NO sharp edges. He pawed and pawed till his feet were bloody, the vet himself gave him a bath and apologized all over himself, I guess he looked horrible when he went in in the morning and scared the vet, he was like totally bloody. He said if he wanted to keep him again remind him of what happened. I got to the vets and I hear this barking and whining all at once sounds like 3 dogs, it's Dispatch who is VERY glad to see me despite his operation.

The last time he was sick it was my fault. We were in MS in early 2007, everyone around had a dog and had gotten new puppies and it's a warm southern climate, that means fleas. I tried everything to get rid of them on Dispatch, he'd had frontline before like once a summer which seemed to take care of them so I went and got some from the vet again. Don't know if it was what I'd put on him before (I bathed him before the frontline) or a bad reaction which I had read about after all this happened but all of a sudden one morning he was like lethargic just barely raised his head when I would get out of the car, I had to carry him to the car that morning which was NOT like him. I don't remember if I'd put on the frontline the night before or gotten it that morning. Called the vet and she told me to rush him home and give him a bath, I gave him 2 or three baths, he didn't mind. When we were in the car running errands he would look up when I would get out but that was it, no barking or whining, didn't even want to stand up. The night was horrible, his breathing was fast and shallow and he was restless but didn't want to do anything but lay by my head. I didn't want to disturb my husband so I laid on the living room floor with Dispatch on a pallet all night. He made it obviously but it scared me horribly and I will never put frontline on him again. It took like 2 or 3 days for him to be bouncy again and completely back to normal, it was like a child was sick.
So that is the story of our spoiled rotten little dog. As you can see he can be useful, actually I painted the rose and sold it on ebay, Dispatch wouldn't leave me alone while I was trying to take the picture so I said Ok earn your keep, roll over, then I put the picture on him and took the photo. The picture is small they are called aceos, I used to sell them before the economy went south and I had to get a "real" job. LOL

Am I goofy over the dog, yes. Is he goofy over me? yes. Do pets enrich your life whether they are fuzzy or short haired, bark or meow, or even have scales or feather? Yes Yes Yes. Remember if you are thinking about getting a new pet get one you can take care of, and PLEASE think about adopting a rescue pet.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Spoiled Dog Part II

The picture above is Dispatch reviewing computer files when he was like 6 weeks old.
You know my dog is spoiled when it takes two posts to describe how spoiled he is. In his defense I've never bought him clothing, my husband says anything I put on him gives him a headache, the dog gets a headache not my husband. How does he know you ask? My husband says he can just tell. I think he just doesn't want a foo foo dog although a bichon looks foo foo, when he's blitzing or attacking he's anything but foo foo.
The dog does have a car seat and a stroller. Perfectly logical explanation though. I had to travel between here and MS with him when we lived down there cleaning up after Katrina. Dispatch is a good traveler, as long as he gets his way which is on my lap. Considering he's 17 lb now he doesn't quite fit between my legs and the steering wheel, well he does but if I were to wreck and the airbags came up it would be dead puppy automatically. Besides he does get annoying because not only does he like to ride on my lap the old leaning on my left arm is the perfect way to see the world go by. If Dispatch doesn't get his way he has been known to cry and pace for 650 miles of a 700 mile trip. So I got the car seat and put it in the back seat, he's fastened in by his collar, he immediately learned how to get out and hang himself. After a new harness and a few episodes he did learn to ride in it. He doesn't like it and it's every bit as cumbersome as an infant car seat except it folds but he would ride in it. Most of the time. I finally decided to put the passenger seat back as far as it would go and put the car seat in it. Don't know if he was any safer since he sort of hung out of it but he had a better view? Now since he doesn't go with me EVERYWHERE I took it out of the seat and only use it for long trips or when I feel particularly masochistic toward myself.
The stroller is because he follows me everywhere, all the time, continuously. When we were working in MS I would leave him in the car sometimes, then I left him in the car with the ac running. He still gets that treatment on occasion. He wasn't happy though. He does stay with me right on my heels, I know most towns have leash laws and I usually had a leash with me or on him but he didn't need one. He was right with me. Unless a large machine made a noise or a tree branch fell then he ran for what he perceived as safety which because he's a bichon sometimes his perceptions aren't too good. So I'd seen these strollers and thought it would be a good investment, you guessed it, he was penned up, he will ride in it just fine but when I walk away he wants to be right behind me. So the stroller is sort of a novelty item but I'm sure I'll use it again someday.
Bichons are known for being stubborn and having minds of their own, most HAVE to have a leash so I'm glad in a way he's like he is. He does respond to hand signals some. Oh and he was 2 years old before he got his first collar and leash. As I've written before he had to have a big thick leather collar because I got him a cloth one the first two times, they lasted 5 minutes and 2 minutes respectively. The first time I put a leash on him I was sure he was going to injure himself, we walked down to my cousins house, maybe 200 yards away. Dispatch was just going to live there if I wanted to put the leash back on him, sat there under the kitchen table when I got ready to leave and looked @ me like are you nuts I'm not getting that thing back on. We went to FL because my husband was cleaning up after Wilma down there, a bunch of French Canadians go there to winter, it was a NICE resort but crowded. Anyway they played that French bowling whatever it is and the dog and I would walk in the evenings, everyone would coo and say what a sweet bichon, (actually they would say ohh ave sich a sweet pupppeee, es ee beechon? don't flame me I'm part French) I'd say no he's a poodle (Missouri accent sounded like naw, heaz a poodel), after 2 states of people calling him a bichon we finally decided maybe he was, and the vet said he was. Anyway Dispatch was still learning to walk on the leash, he's mastered it now but down in FL he would prance and strut while people were around saying what a cute dog he was, they would get out of sight and he'd be back to wild cur dog struggling to get free of his oppressor, on his hind legs biting valiantly against the cruel ties that bound him or that's how he thought. I found a light chain leash so he wouldn't chew through THAT while I wasn't looking.
More on the spoiled dog later. He was rather compliant back then, this was an awkward teenage picture, see he didn't make a pretty poodle did he?? Plus brushing was like this horrible ordeal so I mostly cut his hair and gave up.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Dog TALKS!

Right now he is "talking" to the powers that be, growling and play barking, evidently they are outside the window and he is frustrated because he only got a bite of the grilled chicken breast I just had?? Oh, I just figured it out, the plastic wrap the chicken was in is in the trash beside me but he isn't supposed to get in the trash, check out the video @ the top or go to it here.
BTW I hadn't vacuumed, the blanket hanging off the chair is to protect it from the dogs.

Spoiled dog???

Dispatch @ 5 weeks, exploring among the giant elephant ears I had that year.

Did I mention my husband spoils Dispatch too, he spoils both dogs, Mugsey goes almost everywhere husband goes when he's not working. My husband was raised without dogs in the house and was determined our dogs would stay on the porch if we had one, his mom and dad had an enclosed one where the dog slept, really like part of the living room. We have no porch in this house and when we got Dispatch he was supposed to be a poodle and we promised we would keep him inside, was OK with ME! So when we got this little puppy he was only about 5 weeks old but the lady who had him said he was ready to leave his mama. I think he was a little young, he was the strangest puppy I'd ever seen, he wasn't that interested in eating or being cuddled. Little did I know I was creating a monster. Back to husband, we kept Dispatch in the garage which was the family room/office, picture carpet on the floor, paneling on the wall but still had a garage door @ that time. Dispatch was so little I would put him on the chair to sleep and he couldn't get down, I'd put a newspaper under him and a towel or blanket for him to snuggle in but he would NEVER potty in the chair. I was home almost all of the time and he was like instantly house trained although I used newspapers on the floor for when I was gone or outside without him for long periods of time. He decided the white area rug in the living room was possibly a newspaper also and it became the place he would go if he couldn't get my attention. Sometimes it still is if he is sick and just can't get me to wake up, but it's still white so that tells you how easily he was house trained. Anyway we had had Dispatch maybe 3 nights or so and my husband was home, he'd been away on a business trip and he said don't you think he is lonely out there all by himself (meaning the little dog in the big family room) so I went and got Dispatch and he has slept with us ever since. Preferably by my head but he's gotten too big for him and me on the pillow. He used to try to sleep between us when he could and would feign instant sleep if he could just lay there between us, was the funniest thing I'd ever seen, instant sleeping dog. He doesn't like to get up in the mornings and doesn't wake up well, if he was out in the wild he'd be soooo eaten by wild animals it wouldn't be funny.
I kept him on my lap constantly @ first, partly because he was so small, partly because he didn't seem to be bonding with us as fast as I was used to puppies bonding. I spent most of the day on the computer or the telephone, we had a trucking business, and Dis was like THERE. He was weird in that he watched the computer screen too. I had a screensaver that would make everything on the screen get bigger in jumpy increments and then start over. Dispatch did NOT like it, especailly if there was a picture of a horse or something on the screen or another dog. He finally figured out if he moved the mouse the stupid thing would go off, that's when I wondered how much he did understand? When he was all OVER the guy who had had him when he was a baby puppy and hadn't seen him for two years I wondered even more? So Dispatch was used to being with me constantly, like glued to me. Which I wanted him to act like he was my dog but this was ridiculous. He HAD to sit in the chair with me, after he got too big to fit between the keyboard tray and my lap (he weighs like 17 lb now) I leaned forward and he sat behind me, not the way a computer chair was meant to be utilized but hey that's how it is, I tried to break him and he will now sleep in his bed or on the couch if I'm on the computer but if he's insecure or feels he needs me there is no hope. A great recipe for backaches I might add.
When I would leave the house I sometimes would think he was crying, he gets this shocked look and sits or stands stock still. I thought he was putting on and then I knew he was when he started raising his paw like he was hurt if I showed the slightest inclination that I might take him? He gets this look when I take out my coffee mug in the mornings, I wear certain clothes to work and when I put them on he seems to know I'm leaving.
At first he ate puppy food, we had a cheap plastic bowl because of course he was a dog. (he's on my lap and resting his chest and front legs on my left arm now, preferred position for pre sleep, doesn't do much for the typing, we have to bond again, he just went outside). He took to dragging the food bowl around if it was empty enough for him to drag when he was a puppy, so I got a heavy ironstone bowl and that's what he's eaten in ever since, that or a heavy metal one that clangs when he moves it. The eating the puppy food soon quit when my husband found out the dog could dance for his food. Actually the dog can walk about 20 ft on his hind legs and go backwards, getting him to do it on command is another thing. So the dog started eating people food. Then the dog started having to have his own food if he didn't like what we were having, I would feed him those Pedigree soft meals in the pouches if I didn't feel like cooking him a chicken breast and he would eat them if he got hungry enough. Dry dog food??? It could sit there for hours and maybe days and he would pick @ it, maybe and it had to be little tiny chunks. I gave up. Then my husband was gone on business for like 2 weeks in 2005, dispatch was 2 years old and I didn't cook meat much for myself. Dispatch soon learned to eat dry dog food. He also learned to eat vegetable soup if he couldn't get anything but dry dog food. He's been eating dry dog food ever since. Old Roy, kibbles and chunks, he just eats the little pieces but hey it's better than soft dog food for him.
Spoiled dog is resting comfortably behind me right now. More later, my laundry is calling. BTW, this game is I'm bigger than Mama, or kill foot game. He latches onto my shoe or pants leg and I jerk him around and he pretends that he is growling. He was less than a year old when this picture was taken, we hadn't figured out he was a bichon yet, just thought he was a weird poodle.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

What greets me when I come home.

My lap is warm, there is a Bichon on it, the picture above is him as a puppy of 2 or 3 months old. He was SOOO cute. He still is cute or @ least I think so. He was really worried about what the tree frog was doing on the door in this picture below. He is spoiled, have I mentioned that but come to think of it he spoils me too. He's hopelessly devoted and pouts if I'm not home. He forgives everything especially my strange aversion to him chasing cars and cats. He even forgives spankings, I know some people say corporal punishment is not a good idea for children or animals but it gets the point across, I'm talking spanking, not with any great force and not with an object and not as a regular occurance. Also biting them if they bite you gets the idea across, for children AND dogs but you will get strange looks. I don't think I've ever HURT him except by accident when brushing him or cutting his nails etc. Speaking of that Dispatch the bichon has a peculiar habit that I've been wondering if all bichons have or he's just weird. If he thinks he's in trouble or doesn't know what to do he will just freeze, stand stock still, if I keep yelling (this happens most often when he's gone somewhere he shouldn't or got in trouble for chasing something) he will look stiffly one way and then the other like he's watching a slow tennis match? Sometimes he does this for like a minute till I start laughing and go pick him up, OK, he's spoiled, sometimes he will snap out of it and come to me. It's like his little world has turned upside down and he doesn't know which way to turn but he's sure which ever way he does turn it will be WRONG because he's made mama mad.

Anyway be kind to your best friend. Remember all the unconditional love they give you and how they enrich your life. No matter what strange things you do or how you make them stay by themselves or not jump on the furniture which is sooooo very cozy or have old Uncle Al over who thinks it's great fun to meow like a cat they will forgive you.

I just petted my smelly little furball and hugged him, he has breath like he's been eating something dead for a week. I've threatened to brush his teeth since he will have nothing to do with those breath freshening doggie treats.

When I come home from work I know there will be a white dynamo wanting to wiggle all over me, getting petted and having baby talk just makes it better. We try to avoid doing it when I walk in the door because of his separation anxiety, more on that later. Dispatch does have a tendancy to like go nuts when you come home though, if my husband has been gone for a day or so he really goes crazy, jumping and whining and barking, running from person to person. He's the epitome of "I'm REALLY happy to see you". We've had people ask who haven't seen him before what's wrong with him and does he ALWAYS act this way. He was sick twice in his life and would come to the door but that was about it, was a sad sad time. I know he's spoiled but like I said I'm spoiled too.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

I'm a BADDD doggie mama

This is Mugsey in the ice last winter, can't remember which storm, I think it was the one of December 12, 2007 here in MO, his eyes really don't glow all the time, I'd just discovered the tree fell or what was left of it and went to investigate, the building is the infamous cabin where I found my first litter of kittens. Anyway Mugsey had just fallen on the ice several times and decided walking was NOT an option. He finally learned he had to pick his way on the grass and all would be fine.
He's a golden lab, his daddy was a large black lab and his mama was a rather petite golden retriever, he's my husbands dog. To negate the results of having a bichon follow him for years probably. A MAN'S DOG. The bichon is maybe not braver but he doesn't take discipline so very hard. Of course the bichon has only tore up shoe laces, scratched a few doors and the tinting on my car windows. I won't start in on the list of Mugseys items that are no longer with us but the outside landscape lighting and the irrigation system in the flowerbeds are two items, he is also sometimes just not the sharpest crayon in the box too.
That he was so sensitive didn't enter my head last Saturday night, I got home from work and Mugsey was GONE. My Step Son #1 had brought SS#2's dog down because he didn't know she was banned because she attacked smaller dogs constantly, made them scream and think she was going to kill them, Terri is a german shepherd/lab or possibly doberman instead of lab. My husband was sitting here thinking where they possibly could have gone, no Terri and no Mugsey, I finally asked if they had been in the shop, Mugsey likes to get in buildings and cars and take naps and forget to follow people out. Long story short Mugsey and Terri were in the shop, I drove down to get them out and Terri attacked our terrier Skeeter. I snapped and started honking the car horn and screaming obscenities (and I don't curse hardly ever) @ Terri, she jumped off of Skeeter and ran under my husbands truck, I drug her out and explained what a bad dog she had been and she stayed in the house so we could keep an eye on her. Suffice to say she didn't hardly even look sideways @ another dog or the kittens till the kids came and picked her up the next day.
But after all that died down Mugsey had disappeared again! I called and called, went outside and looked and finally thought to go to my neighbor/cousins house. Steve had Mugsey on a leash, seems he had been trying to break in their house and he knew something was wrong. Mugsey forgave me after about 15 minutes of petting. But Dispatch the bichon evidently caught wind that mama was mad and it wasn't @ him so the totally house trained bichon who can go for 12 hours without wanting out if it's raining decided to urinate on the comforter on the floor that the big dogs had been laying on, so then he's in trouble too.
This is Terri, does she look like she EVER did anything wrong?

So I have a psychotic golden lab who can't be yelled around or he leaves home and a bichon who takes advantage of me being mad and says p^$$ on you to the other dogs. So evidently I must be a BAD doggie mama? Except I've taught my dogs not to chase cats (well most of the time) which is a minor miracle in itself so perhaps Terri can learn not to attack other dogs.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Marley and Me look alike stolen!!!

Seems that in Stanton CA thieves distracted the pet store clerk and lifted a puppy, literally. It was all caught on videotape which you can see here. $1300 for a yellow lab? I hope they catch the thieves and they have treated the puppy well.