Sunday, July 28, 2013

Feeding Cissy

I thought I would give a little update on Cissy.  She does seem to be in pretty good spirits.  She and I continue with our daily 'conversations' and she enjoys going for walks with us and rolling in the grass.
However with Cissy we are faced with her being a very picky eater. Getting her to eat can be a roller coaster ride. Some days she loves what you feed her, other days, not so much. She will turn her nose up at kibble, hamburger, chicken, turkey, liver and white or brown rice.

But Cissy does like fish.  So last week after she'd eaten very little for a couple of days, more out of desperation than anything, I cooked pasta added half of a can of salmon and a cup of regular kibble, topped with parmesan cheese, which she happily ate. This became the meal of choice for the entire week; she ate practically everything each time she was fed.
~Cissy's meals last week~
I was feeling really good about what Cissy was eating until I discussed it with the vet who has been caring for her.  She urged me to remember to try and make her meals more "nutritionally-balanced." There's no question that I totally agree with her.  But I have to admit that there is a part of me that just wants to stick with the meal that's a 'sure thing.'  Those of you who have had dogs that won't eat, know that feeling when you give them a bowl of food that you have specially prepared, and as you set it down you say a silent prayer that they'll eat...Then when they refuse it, your heart sinks.  I worry about that happening if I change Cissy's meals.  But then, Cissy has surprised me before and this may not be any different.  We'll see.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Low and High Notes

To start, I have really missed not visiting your blogs this week.  It has been a week that started out low, but is ending on a high note.  The low notes were that myself and four of the dogs, Charlie, Josh, Wendy, and Annie were really not feeling well. By Wednesday evening we were all somewhat better, but I was totally exhausted from three nights of getting up more than once in the early morning hours to let someone outside and of course having to work as well.

However we end the week with everyone finally feeling better. Our newest arrival, Sunny, has settled in nicely. As we get to know him, I'm finding him to be a nice dog that is affectionate and wants to please.  On the flip-side he's a pretty good counter-surfer who has a real taste for cat food, and who doesn't like us to grab him by the collar.  The counter-surfing is pretty minor and isn't really a concern.  But grabbing Sunny by the collar could be, so we are making sure he listens to us when he's asked to do something, in particular when he needs to move.
Another thing Sunny doesn't like at all is having his picture taken. Even just seeing the camera causes him to want to run away and hide, which is what he's doing in the photo below.  I have to wonder what happened in his former home that has made him so camera shy?  
And as a final note, I'll end with a little update on Comet, (the dog who over-nighted with us last week and had lived confined to a 6x9 pen for all of her nearly 13 years).  My good friend who is now fostering Comet and spoiling her rotten, told me that she's a bit of a picky eater, but she is really enjoying going for daily walks to explore the neighborhood, her very big yard, and soft bed in one of the coolest spots in the house.  
Everyone feeling pretty good and the news about Comet is a good note to end the week.  I hope your week is ending on the same kind of note too!  I look forward to catching up on your news!
~Sheba and CarrieAnne (front)~

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Sunflowers and The Bucket List

Do any of you have a "bucket list?" For those of you unfamiliar with what that is, it's a term made popular by the 2007 movie with the same name. Basically it's a list of things you'd like to do before you "kick the bucket," as the saying goes. One of the things I have on my list is to see the sunflower fields in France. This all came about because of a sequence of blogs that I have been following that each year posts pictures of the amazing sunflowers under the warm sunny skies of southern France. This year the photos are posted on the blog, Bob and Sophie's French Adventure.

This past week I mentioned wanting to see them and a friend of mine told me about sunflower fields planted by the State of Maryland near Poolesville, which is not that far from us.
I looked it up and read that the sunflowers were in peak bloom.  And not wanting to miss the chance to see them, this morning Annie and I did a little road trip.  
It's a nice drive that includes a trip across the Potomac River on a ferry.  
At one time there used to be 100 ferries operating on the Potomac, and Whites Ferry just outside Leesburg, is now the very last one.
It was just after 8 o'clock in the morning and I wasn't the only one with the idea to arrive early to photograph the sunflowers.  Many of the photographers had fancy set-ups and reflectors and other equipment that I have no idea how to use--I believe in keeping it simple.
So, while Annie wandered around taking in the smells, I took photos.  
After several minutes I started to wonder, just how do you get really unique shots of sunflowers? 
 I really have no idea...
But I do know that I went a little crazy taking photos. 
Okay, maybe more than a little...
And I was okay with that and I think Annie was too.     
In the end, I decided that even though the sunflowers were not in the beautiful countryside in the south of France, they were amazing nonetheless. But I'm still keeping seeing them in France on my bucket list. 
Care to share something that YOU have on your bucket list? 

Saturday, July 20, 2013

The Overnight Guest: Welcome Comet!

Well, we've had Sunshine come to Golden Pines this week, why not a Comet too??  That's exactly what has happened.  This week I received an e-mail from Annie's former vet about an elderly lady who no longer wanted or was able to care for her nearly 13 year old Golden, named Comet. I sent the e-mail onto the rescue I volunteer with, but I couldn't stop thinking about her. Comet has lived her entire life in an outdoor 6x9 pen and has never lived indoors (while another family dog lived inside, in comfort).  But with our record temperatures and sweltering heat, all I could think of was how miserable Comet must be. I told the rescue that even though she couldn't stay with us, I would keep her until a foster home could be found.  Arrangements were made, and Comet arrived yesterday afternoon. She is very, very overweight, very dirty and very smelly, and was very happy, until ...    

...the initial meeting with our dogs...It did not go well.  As you know, our dogs are old pros at meeting new dogs, and this was nothing different than they'd done earlier in the week, and many, many times before.  But there was a lot of growling from Comet, and I of course worried about a fight starting. In all fairness to Comet her world that she has known for nearly 13 years had been totally turned upside down.  I knew that she was stressed, hot and confused.  I blocked off the kitchen, and got her inside to cool off and settle down.  Throughout the evening the dogs looked at her through the gate and I let Comet meet some of them individually and the cat too. (I'll just add right here that CC is always a good sport about my dropping her at a safe distance in front of an unknown dog to see what will happen--It's not the first time she's been used as bait, and I know it won't be the last). 
At 3:30 this morning Josh had to go out, and Wendy decided she needed to as well, I just opened the gate and hoped everything would be okay.  A quick sniff was all that was needed, everyone was fine.  Now that we've gotten over that hurdle I can admit that I find myself very taken by this sweet old gal who can't stop smiling and wagging her tail.  I wish she could stay so I could show her the world she has been missing her entire life.  But she can't.  Someone else will be doing that, and it will be a good friend of mine who also fosters the senior Goldens. Comet is going to be just fine.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Sunny-Sunshine Arrives at Golden Pines

A hot, bright summer day full of sunshine has brought us a new boy with the same name--Today we welcomed Sunshine, or Sunny for short to Golden Pines.  He was given to a shelter by his elderly owner who could no longer care for him.  The shelter was told he was twelve years old by the owner.  However a vets office who first saw him (not my vet) swear that he's more like two. I think he might be around ten.  Sunny, who knows the answer is proving to be good at keeping a secret and isn't telling.
Someone who is not so good at keeping a secret is Cissy.  Your good thoughts have made a difference and she's feeling much better and is telling me and anyone else who will listen to her all about it.  Her energy level and appetite have almost returned to what it was previously. But she's seeing the vet on Thursday just to make sure there's not something else going on.
I hope whatever you have going on, that it's a good week for you!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

A Summer Pastime

I don’t know about your summers growing up, but when I was a kid, my summers were hot!!
One of the things my siblings along with our friends loved to do was to play in the water.  And one of the favorite pastimes was to run through the sprinkler on the lawn. We didn't have  “Slip ‘n Slides” or anything like that, we only had the plain ole average lawn sprinkler, and if we didn't have one or if ours didn't work well enough, we would go and use someone else's.
Playing in the sprinkler was so spontaneous.  We didn't worry about sunscreen or anything else for that matter.  The only thing we needed was some friends to come and join in the fun.
In my  mind I can still remember rolling out the hose, twisting the squeaky faucet and watching the sprinkler come to life.  Sure the water was cold, but more importantly it was exhilarating.
There were different tactics we would use: 
Standing in one place and getting wet, 
Or just running through it.... 
Then of course there was “stay-away.” 

 It didn’t really matter what you did.  
As long as your were staying cool and having fun.
But after awhile the grass would start sticking to our feet...
And we would get tired of being cold and the fun would come to an end. 
But not before we took one last drink out of the hose and ran through it one more time....
Good times... 

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Getting Past the Problems

I've had really frustrating and exasperating problems with blogger this week which has kept me from posting on my blog.  More than once I had a post ready to publish, only to be given a "BX error message" that wouldn't let me save, post, or preview any posts. I spent precious evening hours in what seemed like a black hole otherwise known as the 'help forum' where I painstakingly combed through posts from other bloggers, hoping to find the answer to the problem.  What I did find were some who were also having the same issues I was.  In the end it somehow got the attention of Blogger, and it now seems to have been resolved because I'm now able to post. Have any of you had any problems posting or saving your blog posts?  

Knock on wood, because I'm hoping those problems are behind me as I am looking forward to the weekend.  Last evening Taylor returned to the vet for a check of her ears to see if the infections have cleared. They haven't, so another infusion of antibiotics was done. We have found her to be a quiet, sweet and endearing girl that is anxious to please and be friends. She has a great appetite and is also feeling like being up and around more than she was previously.  She fits in nicely with our dogs, and even Todd has tried to get her to play with him a few times.  All good signs.
The signs are not so good for Cissy.  Unlike the Goldens she is not a gal that 'lives to eat' but rather 'eats to live.' and her appetite has been waning for more than a week.  Cissy will have a couple of days that she acts like she's not feeling well and and won't eat.  Then she seems to feel better and her appetite returns, not fully, but it does return.  We are back on the track of her not eating.  My vet and I discussed it and she recommends that she be seen for a good once over if things don't change.  I know that Doctor J is right. Last night on the way home, I couldn't help but become discouraged by it all.  
But this morning I'm reminded that I should stay positive.  I was sure the problems with my blog could be resolved, and it appears that they have been. Cissy has been through so much and has come so far, I have to think that she can get past this too. 

Sunday, July 7, 2013

On the Front Porch

Yesterday was my co-workers out-door wedding.  I think that the bane of outdoor weddings is, well, they're outdoors.  Yesterday was one of our hottest days -- But despite the wilted flowers, guests and wedding party, along with a few melted desserts, it was a lovely celebration.

Once home, changed and cooled off, I decided that it was time for me to see if there were baby rabbits in our yard.  I've been seeing this rabbit in about the same spot for more than a week.
Leaving the dogs on the porch, the nest was easy enough to find because it wasn't covered.  Not wanting to get too close, I very, very quickly snapped a photo and left.  Suffice it to say, I will worry about these little ones until I know they are safely gone from the nest.
And the dogs may be spending a little more time on the front porch.
Enjoy your Sunday!!