Happy Birthday – I can’t Afford a Present…

This handsome fella is seven years old today!

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He nearly didn’t make it!

Seriously.

(If you have a weak stomach, leave NOW!)

Cane decided to give us (Second Born Son & me) a collective heart attack last week. SBS notice he was not feeling well. Vomiting and diarrhea. He then noticed that there seemed to be something coming out of his derriere. The photo he emailed me showed approximately THREE FEET OF FINE ROPE.

THREE FEET.

OF ROPE.

3 FT.

I immediately forward the pictures to our vet’s office. Then I call them. I use my calmest voice to tell the lovely assistant that I NEED them to look at the email I sent RIGHT FREAKIN’ NOW.

She puts me on hold. I can almost hear her eyes rolling. And then she gets back on the phone.

“Um, yah, we are going to need you to go to (the main clinic) as soon as you can. How soon can you be there?”

I’m standing outside my work which is 40 minutes away from home. Then I have to load up the dog, then I have to go the main clinic which is another 40 GOD-DAMN MINUTES IN THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION!

I am about to set a land speed record.

On my way home, I get a call from the lovely young assistant. She tells me she has taken the initiative to put together two quotes; one for the initial x-rays and examination, another for emergency surgery, ” in case we have to make decisions quickly.”

This is code for, “this is bad.” She tells me the cost for the surgery will be between $3,000-$4,000. I’m wondering what the black market rate is for kidneys, cuz I don’t have that kinda cheddar laying around. Who does?? Don’t answer that.

Once I get home, I’m met by the dog. It’s as bad as I envisioned. I pull into the garage and run inside to change before loading the dog, rope and son into the pickup truck.

Upon my return I’m horrified to see the rope is completely gone. It’s now wrapped around the base of the tires of my vehicle. It was pulled out as Cane ran around the vehicle.

THERE’S SEVEN FEET OF ROPE.

SEVEN FEET.

7 FT.

OF ROPE.

BASICALLY TWICE AS MUCH AS THERE WAS BEFORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am thrilled, horrified, fascinated, horrified, and panicked in a matter of seconds. Call to vet clinic confirms we should still come over in case there is any rope left in him (JAY-ZUS HOW MUCH MORE COULD THIS BEAST HOLD??)

Over we go. He’s not happy. He doesn’t care there’s a truck ride happening.

At the office they complete the examination. Cane is doing so well. They decide to do the x-ray. There’s nothing inside, they don’t think… whaaaaaaat? There was damage. It shouldn’t be permanent. Shouldn’t.

“How did he get into the rope?” they ask.

I have no clue.

“What kind of rope do you think it is?”

It looks like baler twine. We don’t have baler twine. What are you suggesting????????

$400+ later, we take Cane home. He’s happier, calmer (thanks to the sedative) and laying down in the back seat.

SBS and I look at each other, amazed at how a regular Wednesday turns into a freakin’ reality show.

Suffice it to say, there’s no new chew toy for Cane this year. He chomped down 7 ft of rope, so I think he’s good.

Happy Birthday Cane!

 

 

The Circle Of Life

As with any spring around the Boweryville, the flowers are blooming,

the sun rises and sets,

and my dog is murdering wildlife.

This is Cane. He’s truly loveable, unless you are a rodent or other small mammal. Yes, that is a dead groundhog between his legs.

Every spring, it’s the same thing; the temperatures rise, the animals start moving, and before you know it, Cane has a carcass on the lawn. Think I’m kidding?

This was April 30 2016. This is a spinal column of a cow. He found this treasure in the field behind our house thanks to the local farm who spread it on the field. Yes, it’s caked in manure, and yes, he’s eating it. Because for him, this is a like a double stuff Oreo with a layer of chocolate fudge.

THIS is the jawbone of a cow. It goes with the spinal column above. We think. There was also a leg bone, but I think you are getting the point by now.

Cane really likes bring his hunts home. It’s like a form of bragging.

This is a raccoon. This lil’ darlin’ was dropped LITERALLY at our front door last year, the night before Mother’s Day. I’m going to assume it was his idea of a gift. The Batman logos on the patio add a certain je ne sais pas.

This is Cane and his brother Roman looking for the next victim. A little thing like a wood pile isn’t going to stand in his way.

He just starts pulling out pieces of wood.

Now, you might think this is no biggie. He’s a big dog with a keen hunting instinct, which is to be expected from a working breed like German Shepherd. However there is a small issue. Literally, tiny.

WHAT. A. FACE!

This is Eco. He’s Little Sister’s dog. He’s adorable, and while he’s a little bigger than this now, it’s certainly no groundhog. We did arrange for a cousin meet and greet a couple of weeks ago, with all humans on deck, ready to extract Eco from Cane’s grasp. It did go well, with no blood shed, but Cane made it very clear near the end of the playdate, that he’d had enough, and this little nipper needed to be packed up before he became a Timbit.

So now that it is spring, we’ve come to expect that the days to get longer, the temperature to rise, and the bodies to stack up.

 

 

Reality Show Revelation

Days after our spectacular Christmas tree fiasco, we found ourselves the day before Christmas Eve Day. That’s an awkward way of saying Dec. 23. Second Born Son was at work because it’s high season in the grocery business, First Born Son was in the kitchen cleaning up some dishes. (Yes, that was my Christmas Miracle!)

Me and The Big Guy? We were in the living room discussing decoration placement for the rest of the room, since the tree was the only thing that was completed. You could say we left things a little 11th hour this year.

FBS calls me to the kitchen repeatedly, quickly, and I can tell by the tone, that we have a problem. He points at the sliding glass doors off the kitchen where Cane is anxiously looking to come in. He has his left paw up in the air and there’s enough blood in the snow on the deck for transfusion.

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We let him in the kitchen to inspect the damage, and the hemorrhaging continued inside. The same towels that mopped up water the week before, were now used to mop up blood. Once we got his heart rate down, the bleeding did subside and we were able to determine the source of the injury. It was the outside pad of his left paw. A clean slice on an angle that ran so deep you could see parts of the pad I’m fairly certain were never meant to be exposed.

Thankfully, and due to our history with Cane and Roman, we have a fully stocked First Aid kit just for the dogs. We managed to clean things up and wrap it. This was now around 9 p.m. and TBG and I decided to call the vet clinic rather than throw him in the truck for 45 minute drive. After the phone consult it was scheduled to take him in the morning when we wouldn’t have to pay double the rate. After all, once Cane was wrapped, he told us he was ready for bed, thankyouverymuch!

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The morning visit confirmed what we feared; that you can’t stitch a pad, and this was going to be a long healing process for Cane.

This made for a “fun” Christmas season; trying to keep a large dog inside and inactive while entertaining family.

<PAUSE> Cane was a model patient at the vet clinic. For a large, large-breed dog, he’s remarkably gentle, especially when he knows you are trying to help him. No snarls, no snapping, just one little whimper when they cleaned out the cut. <PLAY>

Christmas came and went and with it some interesting family interaction. Now folks, I can’t get into too much of what I’m referencing here, because honestly, I don’t need a law suit right now, but believe me when I say statements were made by certain individuals that were cause for “shock and awe-ful reactions!” Gotta love the holidays! I’m setting money aside for counselling for the boys!

This was followed up by an opportunity to educate my father in law, whose understanding of burning garbage over the years at the family farm, needed some updating now that he lives in town. We are hoping our neighbours are still speaking to us after learning what he was trying to dispose of in our light paper burning barrel. I’m fairly certain the black smoke billowing from our property was visible from space.

It was that day, just after lunch, that FBS made his declaration.

“We need to have our own reality show!”

“We’re pretty boring, bud. I don’t think anyone would want to watch us,” I chuckled.

Then he made his case. He figured the Christmas tree would be one episode, the dog would be another, and there had been enough crap going on in our world in recent weeks that it would most definitely be enough fodder for a first season. He pointed out we had all the right personalities that would make for good viewing.

“After all, if that family can have their own show, and it’s all written for them…our stuff is real!” I thought he meant Duck Dynasty. He actually meant Keeping Up With The Kardashians.

I reflected on this comment later in the afternoon and chuckled to myself. I think I’ve grown used to the “crazy” to the point that it’s become our “normal”.

After all, we have had a much drama as anything on TV. My father goes in for high risk surgery on a Friday, which takes much longer than estimated, but he survives. The next morning TBG’s mother passes away. SBS breaks his arm TWICE. The same arm – a year apart. We buy a new house, TBG gets a great job offer a month later, which he takes, and the following week I’m laid off of my job.  My mother and my sister move THE SAME WEEKEND – then my father in law moves a month and a half later! We decide to go on our first family vacation in 8 years and our furnace is condemned a week before we leave. Oh, did mention this is in NOVEMBER?

Maybe the kid is on to something!

I can recall catching up with a friend a couple of years ago, and she was stunned with the collection of events.

“If I didn’t know you, I would think you were making this up!” she stated in awe. It wasn’t a compliment.

I’m going to keep his little suggestion in my back pocket, for the next mini crisis. I’ll grab my cell to record while I’m juggling the chaos!

Puggly

I believe I’ve found the way to create world peace. Get a puppy.

But not just any old puppy. You need a Pug puppy.

WHAT. A. FACE!

WHAT. A. FACE!

Little Sister recently lost her beloved poodle (RIP Lance!) and the ache just wouldn’t go away. She saw a Facebook post that one of her friends had a litter of pups and couldn’t resist the puppy pull.

Now, you have to understand; we were raised with German Shepherds. BIG dogs! I am guilty of making comments about little dogs just being cats with dog tags. But that was before I met Eco.

Eco – as in Echo, spelled incorrectly, not as in Ecological. Little Sister does things like that.

We recently enjoyed a day at the beach with wee Eco. It was a slow start for his first day at the shore.

Pugs have breathing issues. Not aided in this instance by the fact that he's crammed his head into layers of blankets...

Pugs have breathing issues. Not aided in this instance by the fact that he’s crammed his head into layers of blankets…

Eco wasn’t really “into” much of the whole water, sand thing. But he really shone later on in the day. We like to go walk about after soaking all the sun we can handle. It’s nice to move around, see the local shops, maybe get some deals. It usually takes about an hour and we grab a snack before heading back to the parking lot and hit the road for home.

Unless you are with Eco.

Then it takes A LOT longer.

Hotter than Bieber, I tell ya!

Hotter than Bieber, I tell ya!

Little Sister bought a sarong and used it as a pup carrier, since it was too hot to let him walk on the sidewalk, and let’s face it, someone would step on him, then they would have pug all over their sandals. It would be a disaster.

Okay, let's walk!!

Okay, let’s walk!!

Finally we shake off the spectators when this happens!

#$&@!

#$&@!

We’ve moved about 20 feet – just to give you some perspective. Again, we move along, after answer what will be the same three questions; 1. What kind of dog is it? (He’s a Pug) 2. Is he full grown? (No he’s only 8 weeks old) 3. What’s his name? (Eco)

Then we decide to pop in to a store, having found something that catches our eye!

ARE YOU FREAKIN' KIDDING ME?!?

ARE YOU FREAKIN’ KIDDING ME?!?

Now we’ve got store clerks fawning over him. Let’s completely forget the fact that dogs aren’t likely welcome in the shop. It’s a puppy! It’s a Pug! It’s Eco! Even while sleeping, completely adorable!

Ok back on the street. Let’s move!

What happens when you stop for 5 minutes to order Dairy Queen!

What happens when you stop for 5 minutes to order Dairy Queen!

Second Born Son wanted to experiment. Was the attraction the puppy, or the owner?

Pug pups = people magnets!

Pug pups = people magnets!

Needless to say, he slept all the way home!

Give Peace Pugs A Chance!

 

Gone to the Dogs

Anyone who knows me, knows I like to cook and bake. I actually find it quite therapeutic. I’m not intimidated by new dishes, and to me, there are fewer things more rewarding than a table full of people enjoying something you’ve made.

Unless it’s your dogs.

Confused?

A friend at work, who helped us find Cane, has two shepherds and a lab. Soon after we brought Cane home, she asked if we were raw feeding our dogs. Completely baffled, we asked her to explain, and before long, I was online researching options on how to make home-made food.

Crazy? Not so much.

When you think about it, you try to eat healthy and take care of your body. Why treat your pet any differently? Some people can spend thousands of dollars a year on their pets, and never think about the food that is in their bowls. Sure, you buy the best kibble you can afford, but what’s really in it?

<PAUSE>
I could totally tell you what’s in dog kibble, in varying degrees, from your basic bulk styrofoam, to your overpriced designer puppy chow. But gross is gross, people.
<PLAY>

This got me thinking and before long, I was over the stove, with a copy of my friend’s recipe my hand. The concoction has two components; meat, or in this case ground turkey necks, and veggies, specifically oats, rice and a blend of veggies with some fruit thrown in for good measure.

Not much to look at…yet!

Not much to look at…yet!

Within minutes, the smell from the pot was drawing attention from the two-legged members of the household, who wanted to give it a taste test.

Down the hatch!

Down the hatch!

The verdict from First Born Son and The Big Guy – a little bland, but nothing that a bit of salt wouldn’t cure. Second Born Son took a pass.

Meat and veggies

Meat and veggies

So with two hungry pups, it was time to see if they would enjoy their new menu.

A chef and her first attempts.

A chef and her first attempts.

It was difficult to keep them away from their bowls. Once they got into it….

Not a veggie guy.

Not a veggie guy.

Roman was thrilled with the idea of REAL food. He was really off his kibble, even though we always bought better than average food. He delicately removed the offensive broccoli and strawberries, leading us to believe he was not a fruit and veggie kind of guy.

Cane eats everything that isn't nailed down.

Cane eats everything that isn’t nailed down.

Cane, on the other hand, dug into it like there was no tomorrow. Our poor pup, who is growing so fast, his bones were sticking out, has finally filled out. Roman, who was getting pudgy, in spite of the fact that he didn’t eat two squares a day, is now in the best shape of his adult life.

A couple of weeks later, I made another batch,

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This time, tomatoes!

So in the month we have switched to this new diet, we’ve noticed a number of things;

a) No food sitting in the bowls, ever.

b) Cane has gained weight, mainly because we can feed him more protein, while Roman has lost weight which was necessary, because he’s eating less filler.

c) No more dog breath. Scouts honour. Dog Breath is actually a compliment around here.

d) The cleanest teeth you’ll ever see on a dog. When these guys bare their teeth, they glow in the dark!

e) More organic waste. This will be a real plus for FBS and SBS who are CAOs of Poop Scooping. It reported breaks down faster and there is less of it, since the food is absorbed better.

f) The cost is on par with what we were spending on commercial dog food. Our time is all we invest.

And when we look at all these benefits, it’s well worth it.

 

Floor Flashback

Have you ever heard a story from your childhood and didn’t know if you remembered it because you lived it, or because you’ve been told it so many times?

One of those stories, to a lesser degree, was the story of Rene and the foster-brother who came to live with us for a couple of months.

Gingham was TOTALLY what all the cool kids were wearing - and Rene didn't mind my bowl bangs....

Gingham was TOTALLY what all the cool kids were wearing – and Rene didn’t mind my bowl bangs….

You can read more about my childhood pups here.

My memories collided recently, as I was playing with Roman and Cane after dinner in the kitchen. The dogs always hang out in the kitchen with us while we eat. While we don’t engage them while we are eating, on this evening, I decided to play with them after. I’m the Alpha Dog, so I don’t often “play” with the pups, but I had a random thought.

“Do you want to see me freak them out?” I asked The Big Guy and the boys. I laid down on the floor, looking to see what they would think of me doing something they had never seen me do.

Cane immediately came over and sniffed me from head to two, probably trying to ascertain that this was, indeed, “Mom”. I start to laugh and cover my face to save myself from a thorough bathing. Within seconds Roman is over my head, his paws on either side of my head by my shoulders and he starts growling and snapping at Cane. I know this because I can sense his presence RIGHT. ABOVE. ME.

Instantly, I’ve left my kitchen. I’m laying on the grass along the lane way at the farm I grew up on. My mind is playing tricks on me because I actually FEEL small, and I have a dog above me. It’s Rene and he’s snapping and snarling and I’m covering my face. I can hear my foster-brother crying out because he’s afraid, but Rene never touches him.

The two events are so parallel, it’s unnerving. I sit up, back in my kitchen in my 42-year-old body and realize what has happened. It’s one thing to hear a recollection, it’s quite another to remember it yourself. In an instant 35 years passed and I was able to remember exactly how I felt at that precise moment.

I calmed Roman and let him see that I was okay, which was the main concern for him. He has never seen me lay down in the house (and only on rare occasions outside), and this is the first time we’ve seen him be so protective of us. The Big Guy was never in danger, neither were the boys. Roman was simply covering me and ensuring Cane didn’t go too far.

It’s a very reassuring feeling to know that today, as when I was a child, I have someone who will protect me, even when I may not be able to protect myself.

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My very own super hero!

Mysteries – Solved and Unsolved

This time of year I like to get caught up on cleaning and organizing. After all, it’s not like I want to be outside!

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I started with a couple of drawers that hadn’t been touched since we moved in almost two years and 11 months ago. After all was said and done, I was left with a couple of random items.

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I’m SO glad I found THIS! This is what I’m going to be looking for a year from now. It will be the key component to some electronic device that I cannot name at this time because it’s not obvious (at least to me) what it is used for.

Then I found these…

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Now, I’ve wanted to call people “knobs” before, but now I can actually hand one to them and say “Here knob!” Again, very sturdy and appear to be key in whatever their original function may be. If only I knew what that was.

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Finally – I was RELIEVED to have found this. Some of you know I’ve lost a couple, and I’m sure I’ll need to find a couple more, but for now, I have one more than I had the day before, so I’m grateful.

Then it was time to move on to cleaning. I’m a bit of a masochist in that I don’t mind that the dogs are in the house. This time of year, it’s brutal though since we literally had two inches of snow yesterday, and today I have two+ acres of mud for them to track inside. Sweeping daily is a necessity because, well, they are Shepherds and that’s how we roll, unless we want to be crushed by tumbleweeds of dog hair the size of compact cars.

I was really frustrated this past week because I was trying to solve an issue. How were paw prints getting on the cupboards, the fridge freezer and the sliding glass doors? It’s not like Roman and Cane are working on Ninja tactics.

Then, I noticed a pattern…

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CAN YOU SEE THE SMUDGES ON THE FREEZER DOOR? AAARRGGHH

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AND THEN THIS!!!!

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And the mystery was solved.

Hi! My name is Sarah!

Okay, so we didn’t actually break up, stop being so dramatic!

The fact is, Summer is my favorite season and thanks to my ever evolving career (standard work week – yeah, shift work – BOOOO) I’ve tried to max my time outside as much as possible.

So let’s catch up, shall we?

For starters, this guy –

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Has grown into this guy….

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And folks, that photo is over a month old. The most recent check-up revealed that Roman is a fighting 33 kgs and Cane is 27 kgs!!!! He’s only six months old. I’m actually thinking about using him as a sled dog to get me to work this winter!

Naturally we watched ball. M&M was on a kick-ass team and had a very successful season at a number of tournaments, not to mention the Super-Duper Nationals in Nova Scotia in August. They won. Of course.

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As you can see, she picked #22 because it is the date of the birth of her favorite Aunt. She’s so thoughtful that way. At least that’s what I’m telling myself.

During the skills competition in Nationals she won for fastest runner.

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Which is why THIS is such a dangerous posture for the opposing team.

First Born Son took to the field for his final year in ball.

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And he had a great season! Lost in the finals for the A-Side Championship, but hey, going down swinging means there’s no shame in the game! He’s also had some other big events in his life.

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Sumthin’ missin’ here? THE BRACES ARE GONE! We are really proud of the fact that he’s done so well in caring for this teeth, which meant the braces could come off early for all the late summer/early fall activities on the calendar.

However, we are still paying for the braces…… For a couple of months…. Seems wrong don’t it?

With a family wedding coming up, we needed a suit for FBS. Thankfully, my Dad was able to help us out with this!

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With as much experience as my father has in selling suits, NOT taking him was not an option. Watching him flip through the fabric actually made my eyes a little leaky! Love how FBS is ROCKIN’ the running shoes, shorts and jacket look!

Second Born Son had easily the BEST. SUMMER. EVER. After starting with a party for his Confirmation….

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…he only had a few short weeks until he left for camp….

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…where the first thing they do is check for lice. I’ll give you a moment to scratch your scalp.

Better?

He also got his trip to Canada’s Wonderland, with his best bud, (who also went camping with him).

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The two of them mastered the rides. While The Big Guy and I waved from the ground in a couple of instances.

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This is Leviathan. It’s stupid big. We STARTED our day on this ride, and the boys ended their day with it. It’s so big, that when you think you should be at the top of the first big hill you look up and realize, you’re only half-way to the top!!!!

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That is my child up there. I could not fit the top and the bottom of the hill in this frame. They loved it. I am apparently getting old.

We also enjoyed the prerequisite trips to the beach. We love laying out on a blanket and enjoying the sand. Until some ass comes along and parks right in front of us with la-z-boy style “beach chairs” that obliterate our view of the water. We’ve decided to stick with the more secluded beaches from now on!

Then there is “The Party”. We decided to have a pork roast this summer, which coincided with our 20th Wedding Anniversary.

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Yup – did it up right. Got a tent, tables, and waited for the friends and family to arrive! Some even stayed over. We had our own little tent city!

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Needless to say, the highlight was the pig. My parents had pork roasts on our farm and I’ve always remembered how much fun we had, and how good the food was!

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SBS could have done without the head on the pig, but Roman didn’t seem to mind! Some wanted to contribute and brought their own favorite salads…

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So if anyone left hungry, it was their own damn fault! We had a fire pit that night and enjoyed a huge breakfast in the morning for those who stayed overnight. The kids are ready to do it again.

I think I’ll need a year to think about it!

The boys and I headed to the beach with LS’s family and my parents.

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The beach is my father’s favorite place. It’s a genetic thing as I’m pretty much ready to live near water NOW! The weather was perfect and the kids had a blast. ALL the kids…

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**STYLE NOTE** LS has buzzed 85% of her hair off. And yes, she’s rocking it!

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When I had to back to work (shift work – BOOOO) the boys had a little fun in Toronto.

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The Hobbit House made out of Lego – such a wonderful, family-oriented place, Fan Expo…

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…uh…ahem, where exactly is your hand my husband????

Okay, we’ll wrap this up now. Suffice it to say that it’s been a jam-packed summer and with the “fun” associated with back to school – FBS in Grade 11 (sniff sniff) and SBS entering Grade 8 (whaaaaaaa) I’m just starting to catch my breath now!!!

Would love to hear below how you spent your summer!

 

 

 

Puppy Tale

Like all great stories, this one starts off with “Once Upon A Time”.

I’m going to prepare you now – this is a bum nummer and you may require Kleenex. I’ll wait for you.

Ready? ONCE UPON A TIME a friend of mine at work, who is a fellow dog lover, told me about a litter of pups that was in the custody of the local animal control. Then she sent me a photo….

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…and that wasn’t a good thing.

The Big Guy and I had been discussing the possibility of adding to our family in the four-legged fashion. You see Roman had been demonstrating a lot of clinginess.

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He was really missing us while we were at work and school, and I remembered our German Shepherds while I was growing up. They did really well with a buddy.

At first The Big Guy came to a logical conclusion; dog x2 = food $ x2 and poop x100. I mentioned his math was a little off and suggested we go have a look at the pups. Between my friend at work and the Animal Control, they gave us the story on the litter.

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The original family lost their home in a fire. They were made aware of the fire by adult dogs, Angel and Max. They had a young litter of pups, but were able to make their humans aware of the danger they were in and everyone escaped safely. Their bravery was rewarded by being locked up in the shell of a house, left to starve to death. Fortunately neighbors contacted Animal Control and the family was quickly relocated and cared for.

Animal Control contacted the local “Humane Society” to assume responsibility of the canine family.

<PAUSE> I have to employ the use of quotations here for no other reason than my lack of respect for this organization. Now I know, many of you will protest that “Humane Societies” do great work and have provided support for countless animals. Unfortunately, I have not had this experience. Without broaching Slander, we’ll leave it at that, okay? <PLAY>

“HS” advised animal control that they would take the father and the mother, but was not interested in the pups, to the extent that they stated they would euthanize them. Yup – you read that right; KILL THEM THERE PUPPIES. The rep at Animal Control couldn’t abide by that. She offered to care for the pups and raise them until they were weaned, if “HS” would take them on at that age. It was agreed that “HS” would provide the necessary shots for the pups and would get the four, three males and a female, when they were of age to adopt. “HS” came for the male, as there was no need for him to stay on with Animal Control, and he left his little family.

A week or so later, when the time came for the first shots, the Animal Control rep contacted “HS” and booked a date, asking how the father had fared in the adoption process.

“Oh, we had to euthanize him.” she was told. YUP KILLED HIM!!! The rationale? He was “nippy”.

<PAUSE> Let’s take a moment here and review the facts. 1. The dog had been in a house fire. 2. The human family he loved and in fact, SAVED, had abandoned him. 3. He was left to starve with his brand new litter and mate. 4. He was taken from his home to Animal Control and then to “HS”. I think it’s fair to say he had a couple of reasons to be “nippy”. <PLAY>

The Animal Control rep was devastated. She said she had the male for more than a week, and he did have an aggressive personality, but she was able to work with him and felt he would be a wonderful pet for someone who was interested in giving him love and stability; understanding the trauma he had been through. He had calmed considerably in the time she had him.

With heavy hearts, we decided to see the pups in person, as the story was indeed intriguing.

2013-04-27 13.40.38Within minutes, we knew, we had to put our name in for one of the pups. Second Born Son joined me and The Big Guy as we met with Animal Control and got up close and personal with the pups. We asked if we could adopt from Animal Control, and they referred us to “HS”, who indicated, no, we would have to get our application in like anyone else. I asked if we could get on top of the list, as we were very  interested, were the first ones to contact them, and would even have agreed to help support the pup while it was with Animal Control. Would it not be easier on the puppy if we just moved him from Animal Control to our home? Was it not in the best interest of the animal??

“HS” wasn’t interested.

I didn’t have a good feeling about “HS”.

In spite of this, The Big Guy agreed that we should move ahead. We told First Born Son that we were going to look into adopting another pup. He questioned this, stating he was happy with one dog, until we showed him a photo…

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And that, my friends, was THAT. Hook, line and sinker.

So we waited to hear that the pups were at “HS”. SBS and I headed to “HS” the first day applications were accepted. We planned on buying the puppy gear we would need on the same trip, so we would be ready to be new parents – again.

We asked to see the puppies and I was advised I’d have to turn over my driver’s license. When I asked why, I was advised by the “HS” rep, “So you don’t walk out of here with my puppy.”

Kinda like using a sledge to kill a fly, dontcha think??

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I surrendered my driver’s license and we saw that the pup we wanted was growing before our eyes. His mandatory neuter was the next day, and the micro chipping would take place at the same time.

Later we would find out that within two days, 30 applications were filled out for FOUR PUPS. At this point, they cut off applications. The paperwork was one step away from a Revenue Canada Audit. Four pages of detailed questions. “What other pets are in the home?”  “Who is your vet?” “Names and ages of everyone living in the home.” “What kind of collar would you use for your dog?” “What kind of property do you have?” “Where will you sign up for obedience class?” “Does anyone have allergies?” “How much do you expect to spend on your dog in a year?”

Admittedly, some of these were valid queries and sadly some of them are necessary to weed out the twisted individuals who think the “HS: is the place to pick up animals for medical testing. HOWEVER, it would be nice to not be treated like a criminal before I’ve even signed my application. It took more than 15 minutes to answer all of the questions and when I turned in the form, I was told that we would have to bring Roman down for a meeting with the pup, IF we were successful in moving on to that stage in selection.

What

the

holy

hell??????

As we walked back to our vehicle, I turned to SBS and said, “You know I believe in being truthful, but I think this is a case where honesty may not have been the best policy!” He was so sad that I told him he would shop for the pup anyway. When we got to the cashier, I told her, “We’re dealing with the “HS”; I need to be able to return everything.” She gave me a knowing look and said we could, other than the custom name tag we were getting engraved. We promised we would not tell anyone what name we had picked out.

A week later, we were advised that we could come down with Roman to meet the pup. I pointed out that it was an hour drive, and I wasn’t sure it was in my dog’s best interest to have to travel that distance, as he was only used to traveling 10-15 minutes maximum. There was no budging on this point. We had to take him down or we’d forfeit the pup. Oh, and could EVERYONE in the family come along as well, please? Getting the five of us in my vehicle took a great deal of timing, co-ordination and begging.

Roman traveled well, met the new pup and was a complete and utter gentleman. The pup loved Roman. I thought things were looking good!! Then TBG and I were called into the office for a meeting. With the boys tending to Roman, TBG and I sat through a 20 minute grilling on what I had put on the form. What was perceived as “right” and “wrong”. I was told that I would have to register for obedience class. I pointed out we had three dogs at this point, two of which had gone to class, and we felt we had learned enough to train them ourselves.

Wrong.

answer.

Bub!

We were advised we would need to enrol if we wanted a pup. I pointed out that living in the “sticks” means we have puppy classes spring and fall. Too late for one, too early for the other.

Wrong.

answer.

AGAIN.

I promised to look into classes.

As we left, we were advised that we would be given an answer by the end of the week. Excited, but nervous, we returned home and waited for a call.

And waited.

Longer still.

Need a bathroom break yet???

Theories ran rampant. Maybe we wouldn’t be picked because we already had a dog? Maybe they didn’t like that we saw the pups before they belonged to the “HS”? Maybe the applicant (me) was too much of a bitch herself to be considered as the successful candidate!!!??? (Admittedly, the kids never actually SAID this in my presence….)

Friends offered to be references for us. Friends offered to “influence” the “HS”, but agreed with us, that it might not be well received!! We all agreed that there was a reason why puppy mills and kijiji do so well when it comes to selling puppies. One assumes they are helping an animal when they go through a “HS”, but it is more like undue hardship!

I called the following Monday and was told there was another couple coming in for an interview on Wednesday. Folks, this has been a month since we completed our application. At this point, the entire family is frustrated, along with my friend who was wishing she hadn’t mentioned the litter to us in the first place, for all the hassle it was turning into!

I waited until Thursday to call the next time. Left a message. Hours later, “HS” calls back.

We got the puppy! The other couple attended the night before with their dog for a meet and greet, which did not go as well as Roman’s did.

In short, Roman is the reason we got the puppy!!!

TBG and I brought him home and surprised the boys. No one was more surprised than Roman!! We introduced them right away. Roman, meet CANE! Cane, meet Roman!

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He bounced like a gazelle for 15 minutes, “OMG YOU GOT ME A PUPPY!!!!!!” It was truly one of the sweetest things you will ever see!

Well, other than this…

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…or, perhaps, this…..

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So for now, the house smells like wet dog. But they are happy, wet dogs!