Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Approrpriate Use of Tax Dollars

My first reaction to watching this video was disgust. If my husband were to do this I’d make fun of him and be mad. At first.

This is in my neck of the woods. The officer stops traffic on a very busy highway in order to let a momma duck and her ducklings cross the street.

Why do I say it, at first, made me angry? Because it is not the job of a police officer to protect wildlife that happens to wander on the road.

Not only that, but most law enforcement deaths are from traffic accidents so this officer was putting himself in even greater danger for some ducks. I would be furious if my husband put himself in this kind of danger. You can see that even though he was trying to stop traffic some of the cars were still going around (which also pissed me off … you see lights you stop or pull to the right…you don’t go around!).

On second consideration though I think that the cop did the right thing. Why such a change in thought?

I was discussing this with my coworkers and one of them brought up the fact that if he hadn’t stopped traffic that it is very likely that some moron would have swerved to avoid the ducks, thereby causing a serious accident and very likely a fatal pileup.

Knowing the people in this state I can say that is probably exactly what would have happened. There are people here who would rather swerve to avoid hitting a squirrel and put their own lives or the lives of others in danger than to hit the squirrel.

Me? I’d hit the squirrel if there were cars or people around. I hate squirrels anyway and no way would I try to avoid one if it meant crashing my car or hurting someone. [Lest you think me heartless, I also wouldn't swerve just to hit a squirrel...yucky.]

So after considering the situation I am glad the officer did what he did, even though my gut reaction was disgust. He probably saved the lives (or at least prevented serious injury) of people.

Oh…and yes, I’m specie-est (or whatever the word is) because if it would have been a dog I would have immediately been glad the officer stopped traffic. But whatever. =) I know my faults.

Monday, December 29, 2008

English Muffins

It’s been awhile … I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas last week and that you are all looking forward to a great New Year. I had a great time with more than 9 days in a row off from work. Woohoo!

This meant more time at home with my babies. Except on Christmas Eve when they were forced into their outdoor kennel for more hours than I prefer while we visited family. They survived just fine.

Unfortunately, we also had a huge snow storm - three of them actually. Which is great in some ways. I love the snow and so do the dogs. Watching them play was hilarious and I have some great pictures to share later.

The bad part is that we were all pretty much stuck in the house for a good week. No walks - it was way too slippery and with a dog who still pulls slippery is not good. No agility training - the roads were too bad and it was too cold for the other dogs (of course Trooper loves the cold, but not all dogs have his lovely coat). And no car trips because we pretty much didn’t leave the house except for one or two times.

So the cabin fever has pretty much set in fully and our youngest pup Timber is acting up. Last night hubby came in the bedroom and asked me how many packages of English Muffins I bought at the grocery store.

The answer was three (don’t judge me…I eat one every single morning and sometimes for lunch too). Hubby had a slightly concerned look on his face so I asked what the problem was.

Apparently there were only two packages left and a piece of a wrapper from the third. Timber was a very naughty puppy last night! I just laughed because I knew he was going to have a very upset tummy - the English Muffins are double fiber flax seed. hahahahaha And he ate FIVE of them! Good grief. I can only imagine the tummy upset.

Lesson for the day - don’t leave high fiber English muffins where a long legged pup can counter surf and find them.


Sunday, December 21, 2008

Winter Wonderland

What a joy this weather is when you have snow dogs! :) They are having so much fun, even my little old lady is enjoying herself. But Timber and Trooper are having the most fun. Chasing each other around, throwing their balls in the air, digging in the snow. It cracks me up.

Trooper especially is in heaven with the snow. His coat is so thick he could sleep outside all night and be comfortable.

Trooper Snow Dog

Of course we are cruel parents and “force” him to sleep inside at night. LOL The poor guy. Of course we do tend to open the window to get fresh air moving, even when it’s 10 degrees outside. The things we do for our babies.

Timber Snow Dog

Timber thinks this weather is the best thing since dog food. He wants to be out there ALL the time. All day and night. It’s so cute. I don’t know that he’s ever seen snow. Although I’m sure with his old owner he would have seen plenty and not have been taken inside.

I would have thought that he’d get cold but he seems just fine. Maybe he’s got a super secret undercoat that we can’t see. =) Because his coat is ten times as thin as Trooper’s.


It was 11 degrees this morning and, as usual, I had the door open while the dogs were outside. We don’t ‘lock’ them out … we like to be able to hear what they’re doing and let them come in when they want (when we don’t call them in ourselves). And for *some* odd reason I felt like it was colder than normal. hahahahaha I can’t imagine why that was! =) 32 degrees is one thing, but 11! We’re definitely not used to that kind of thing here.

Come On Out!

I hope everyone is staying warm and dry wherever you are! I’m praying the electricity stays on during the wind storm they’re predicting.

Monday, December 15, 2008

If You Can't Do the Time

Don’t get a dog! In this case multiple dogs.

I’m very frustrated with an acquaintance and it is a slightly sensitive situation…especially with me being so darn vocal.

I’ll call this person Bob. Bob and his family have two stunningly gorgeous pure black German Shepherd dogs who are a little less than two years old. If we didn’t already have four dogs I would snap them up in a heartbeat.

Apparently these beauties have become inconvenient for Bob. Can you feel my rage burning?

As I ranted to my husband…dogs are not accessories to be purchased like a pair of earrings. Used a few times and then stuffed away and out of sight. Stuck in the back yard until they are more convenient. Left alone and expected to behave the way “we” want just because … but with no guidance or training.

The dogs are left in the back yard with each other. They are provided adequate shelter, food, and water, but their stimulation is only each other and the trouble they cause together. And of course they cause trouble…they are BORED!

German Shepherds are working dogs. They need an activity, a job, a sense of purpose. They can be extremely destructive dogs (I think Timber is part German Shepherd) if not given proper training and stimulation. Of course they will destroy a very expensive dog bed when the family goes out and they are left alone in the back yard. Of course they will bark like crazy when the family is inside the house with guests and they are stuck outside looking in.

I am not opposed to dogs “living” outside (though I could never have that situation myself) but only if they are provided for beyond the basics of food, shelter, and water. They need to be part of a pack, to have a leader, given boundaries, trained, nurtured, and especially exercised.

Apparently these dogs freak out when they get around other dogs - gee I wonder why?!? Could it possibly be because they haven’t been freaking socialized!!!???!!! They also don’t listen Bob’s wife and scare his children. Again…I can’t imagine why (insert sarcasm here).

I’m very frustrated with this situation…particularly since I have absolutely no control and only feel like yelling at Bob. He’s a responsible person who has a significant amount of authority in his job and takes it very seriously. I wish he took the care of his dogs as seriously. :(

I did try to advise him not to take the dogs to the pound as they would have a very hard time getting adopted. It would be better if he contacted a special pure bred rescue for German Shepherds. The best situation though would be to be a role model for his children and put some time and energy into the dogs. It would only take a few months - a couple of hours each week of good solid training and exercise and the dogs would be much happier and less destructive.


Thursday, December 11, 2008

I Wish it Would Snow

Oh my gosh. I laughed so hard when I watched this that I have tears in my eyes!!! My dogs … well, at least two of them … would totally be doing this same thing if it snowed this much. I really wish we’d get a good amount of snow. At least 6 inches would make me happy. We may have to make a special trip somewhere to find a lot of snow for the dogs to romp in.

Seriously watch this and feel your heart warmed.

Hat Tip - Secret Lives of Scientsts

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Do Dogs Understand Fairness?

We have four dogs. I love them all but I admit to having favorites. Trooper is clearly “my” boy and we spend lots of time together doing special things like agility. Don’t get me wrong, I love them all very dearly. Kodiak is my “first born” and his attitude cracks me up. Quinn is the queen. And Timber is my sweet rescue (always into something) baby boy.

But when it comes to picking one or two dogs to go with us somewhere I tend to prefer taking Trooper. He’s easier for me to deal with and better behaved than the rest. My mother in law HATES this and always says that it’s unfair and the other dogs are going to be jealous.


Do dogs get jealous?

I mean, I know that Trooper gets jealous in the moment…like when he sees me giving attention to Timber. Or when he’s at daycare and trying to be the center of attention and starting fights (yes it happened again the last time he was there). But in the long term? Do they really get jealous?

I have no idea.

I just called Timber inside from the yard and he came right when I said “Timber, Come” so I wanted to give him a cookie. So far we’ve averted two run away situations by shaking the cookie bag. Thank God my dogs love cookies.

So I walk to the cookie jar and the other three dogs run up to get their reward. Reward for what!?! They didn’t earn it. They didn’t do anything. I didn’t call them. So I gave Timber and Trooper a cookie and that’s it. The other two didn’t seem overly miffed. But it does make me wonder. Do you think they “know” somehow in their being that they got shafted?

They both need to lose weight (actually, so does Trooper) and I know when papa gets up he’ll automatically give them treats. It’s not like they’re deprived or anything.

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Dog Chooses You

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I had all last week off and really tried to tune out and do things around the house. So not much posting here or my other blogs. We had a wonderful week, took the dogs on a couple of walks, spent time together as a family.

I got to see my brother’s dog, Echo. I swear he is the sweetest and friendliest dog ever.


My brother suffers from extreme anxiety and depression. A year or so ago (has it been that long already?) my mom and I decided that he needed a dog. Partly for therapy and partly for companionship. Plus we were hoping a dog and the responsibilities of having a pet would get him out of bed on days when anxiety kept him asleep for 18+ hours.

Anxiety can prevent people from doing even the most basic of tasks. Something as simple as filling up the gas tank of his car can create such panic that he will throw up. So you can imagine the fear of choosing a dog to bring home from the pound.

That is where pushy, bossy, big sister comes in. Whether he will agree with me or not, I generally know what is best for him. Even when we were younger I knew when to push him and when to back off. This was a push moment. He knew we were coming but the dog we’d originally planned to adopt had gotten adopted.

If we had told him this he would have backed out so we just headed down without telling him. When we got there and told him the other dog was adopted the look of sheer panic on his face would have been funny if it weren’t so sad. We didn’t give him enough time to stress over it … just pushed him into the car and started to drive to the Humane Society.

That place was huge. I was impressed. We met one dog but it was just so jumpy and fearful. It would come to me but not to brother.

The next dog was Echo. We figure he was part Rottweiler (although he’s very small…maybe 40 pounds) due to his coloring and eyes but mostly some sort of collie. In other words, a mutt.

I actually tried to ignore him because I wanted brother to get the attention. At one point I told my brother “You know, we don’t choose the dog. The dog chooses you.” And at that EXACT moment Echo put his paw on my brother’s leg as if to say “I choose you” and that was it.

My mom and I paid the rescue fee and Echo was on his way to a new home (after getting neutered of course).

This sweet boy sleeps with my brother and listens to his every word. Brother said that he just has to whisper “Echo” softly and the dog comes right to him. I think that his companionship has increased the quality of my brother’s life…without question.

It was a blessing to see him again last week. I hope brother brings him to our Christmas gathering too. I want Echo to play with our pack. :)