Sunday, July 5, 2020

Cookie-Cutter Days

The weather-lady said this morning that we are having "cookie cutter days."  I know she was talking about the weather, but the same could be said about our last few weeks. Each day seems like the one before, and passes just as quickly.

However, a very talented and kind friend made me a cake - For no particular reason. And no, Todd did not get any part of it.

We have had in the last couple of weeks several evenings of thunderstorms that have done a lot to frighten poor Leo. After a lot of discussion about Leo's storm fear, I've learned that this type of fear is most often "baked in" and not one that can be totally resolved. It's one that is managed.
On the positive side to Leo being so afraid, if there is one, we've found a way to manage him during a thunderstorm that makes him feel safe and he'll settle down. In the finished part of our basement living area, that has no windows, is a quiet place where we can sit with him, turn on the TV and wait for the storm to pass. This has worked out really well - In fact its worked so well that there has been no need to give him any medication to ease his nervousness and anxiety, which I think is another plus. 
~Leo a bit more relaxed during a storm~
Having this solution has really helped. So, knowing what works for him during storms, its been decided to make Leo available again for adoption, so stay tuned.....

At the vet was Hannah. Before we adopted her, I was concerned about her back leg that has had swelling around her hock. I brought it up several times, but the vet for the rescue, for whatever reason, never addressed it. It is actually (another) one of the reasons for adopting Hannah because I was concerned about it. But the first day I took her, Mobile Vets x-ray machine didn't work, so we had to reschedule. Mobile Vet wanted to try and stabilize her leg, so we tried a brace on it, that didn't stay on for too long.

Back we went last week, and the news was that her heart and lungs looked pretty good.

Of course I'd really hoped that the swelling on her hock wasn't anything too serious - But I had a feeling that it was. Unfortunately, just like Chip, it's bone cancer. With Hannah having heart-worm, mammary cancer, and eye problems, more than anything I wished that this girl could get a break in her health.
Mobile Vet said that given all of her health problems, we're really on borrowed time with Hannah. Of course, I don’t know how much time we’ll get to borrow. But however long it is, we’ll make it count. We all agree that with all she has been though, this sweet girl deserves that.

Sunday, June 21, 2020

A Not So Good Day for "Longtime Groomer"

Last Friday it was Todd, Charlie and Max's turn to be groomed. Like so many of us, they were well past due for a good haircut. It was good to see "Longtime Groomer" and I'm glad that she's able to open her shop again.
Unfortunately, it didn't end all that well. "Longtime Groomer" said that Todd seemed nervous when he was unable to see Max or Charlie. And, in a moment when he couldn't see them, Todd tried to jump off the grooming table. When she quickly grabbed him, he bit her.  Oooohhhhh nooooooo.....
Of course, I could not feel any worse about this!  But if there is one good to come out of this, and trust me, it takes a lot to find a good point, it's that the single bite was on her forearm, and not her hand. "Longtime Groomer" was as understanding and as forgiving as she could possibly be, and of course I appreciated that.

When I called a couple of days later to check on how she was healing, we decided that Todd may have been out of sorts because she was wearing a mask the entire time. Not that any dog should ever bite anyone - But I'd noticed that Todd was a bit unnerved and leery around me when I'd had a mask on a few days before and he was a little nervous when we arrived at "Longtime Groomers" that morning. So, that may be what led up to the bite, I just don't know.

We'll have time to figure it out though. The three of them won't be due to go back to be groomed until at least September. Plenty of time to worry about next time, right?

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

A New Co-star at Golden Pines

Even though I'm back to finally working only 3 days a week, the last couple of weeks have been fully charged with a lot going on.
~Todd, always a star, and always  fully charged!!~
My last post mentioned about my going out of town overnight. It came about when a friend in Kentucky was trying to find a home for a stray cat. I am really missing having an outdoor kitty and with a few days off work, along with just wanting to get away, I considered a 3 day round-trip to Kentucky to get this cat.
Okay, I'll agree, it was probably not my best idea. And just to help validate to my inner self what a crazy idea it was, I had that nagging feeling (again) that it wasn't something I should do. And for whatever reason, I said something to a "very cool and fun longtime friend" in North Carolina who by the way, just happens to have her own, non-profit, cat rescue.  So, can you see where this led me?

Yes, it took me to North Carolina instead of Kentucky to get a cat from Cool and fun Friend, G.
I stayed overnight in the small town in Virginia where Todd came from - and also the home of Lynn, of Rocky Creek Scotties. Unfortunately in these crazy times, I wasn't able to see her. Hopefully we'll get that chance in the months ahead.
Cool and fun Friend, G and I met around Winston-Salem, North Carolina in a shopping center parking lot. After more than 10 years, it was wonderful to see her again and it would have been even nicer to be able to sit down and just catch up. But again, these crazy times kept us from doing that. However, her great company via phone on the drive home was almost as good.
~Winston-Salem, North Carolina~
So, without further delay, please welcome Gerry to Golden Pines.
~Gerry's first photo~
He's a young cat, that was a stray, and a lady that he had picked for his very own, was moving. She had an outside dog, that he seemed to get along with, so that was a big plus.
~A photo from Gerry's first life~
Our plan was to have Gerry live outside, as Gino had done. But after nearly 2 weeks, he's adjusting nicely to living inside - And trust me, he has a pretty strong opinion about being outside - So I've decided to just let Gerry, our newest co-star in a big cast of characters, decide how and where he wants to live at Golden Pines.

Thank-you again "cool & fun friend, G" for your friendship, for all you did to for Gerry and to get him to us!! 

Saturday, June 6, 2020

YOU All Were Right!

As I prepare for a quick overnight trip today, that I'll tell you about next time, I wanted to give you an update on Leo.
I appreciated your thoughts about the path that Leo should take to his forever home. Those of you that reluctantly thought that Family #3 was the best choice for him, were right. They WERE the family that I had chosen for Leo. Personally, I liked them very much. They are a really nice, fun couple and I know they are a good home. But I will confess, that I had a nagging feeling that I couldn't quite get rid of. Even as I talked about "being sure" about the decision, deep inside, I knew, but wouldn't admit, that I was trying to convince myself.
Leo has a storm phobia. We knew about this from his previous family, and it was discussed at length with every family interested in him. One of the reasons I chose "Family #3" was because they felt confident with being able to manage it. However, on Thursday night, we had a pretty bad storm that included thunder and lighting, and it gave me an unvarnished view of how Leo reacts during them. He was pawing at me, digging at corners as he tried to get into the smallest of spaces, and pacing and panting. Nothing and I mean nothing I could do, or did, consoled or reassured him. Once the medication that he takes for them started to work, he settled down and we were both able to get a little rest.

I told Family #3 about what had happened. And I received an e-mail that said:
Thank you for being honest in your evaluation of Leo's fear.  We spent a good part of the day talking about this and we have decided that we are not able to manage him.  We didn't understand the full extent of his fear.  We thought it could be managed with a thunder vest and comfort from a human.  Our experience with pets with anxiety has been that human touch calmed him down enough to rest and sleep. We are concerned about what will happen should a storm come up while we are away.  At this time of COVID of course we aren't away much but at some point this will end and we will occasionally be away for several hours. We are sorry and we want you to know that we made this decision with heavy hearts.  We do feel that this would not be a good fit for us thereby not being a good fit for Leo.  He is a sweet boy who needs the right home.  
Looking back on all of this, it's all been a reminder to pay attention and listen to that inner voice, and even listen to YOU the readers of this blog.

So, where does this take us? We are lucky to have great support from the rescue and resources to tap into. With that, I'm feeling optimistic that we can find something that will help Leo going forward through this "stormy season."

Thank-you for cheering Leo on.