Sunday, December 30, 2018

Ginger Arrives at Golden Pines

This was a post on the Facebook page for Lab Rescue.
"A Lab Rescue volunteer told her husband that she wants all the senior dogs adopted for Christmas. So, he decided to pledge on her behalf to cover the adoption fees for all of the dogs age 9 and older from now until the end of the year."
What a generous donation to the rescue! It has of course, created a lot of buzz. And for our foster girl, Nina, there ended up being no shortage of interest in her. By Thursday I had 4 phone calls, and by the end of the week, Nina had met her perfect match! Joanne is retired, recently widowed, and she lost her previous Lab about 6 months ago. I liked her right away. She is compassionate, and caring and she and Nina are perfect for one another.
~Joanne and Nina~
Joanne loves senior dogs. She cried when she met Nina and felt a connection to her instantly. I have no doubt that they should be together.
~Nina all settled into her new home on her new bed!~

You know our dog beds never get cold. So, our year is ending with the arrival of Ginger at Golden Pines! Ginger will turn that respectable age of 13 in May. She was given up by her owner who simply no longer wanted her. He even threatened to take Ginger to a shelter (or worse) if Lab Rescue didn't accept her.
~In my van for the ride home~
Ginger was so happy to be out of boarding, and was anxious to get into my van to start the next chapter in her life. Her tail has not stopped wagging! Intros that are always taken really slow have gone well. Our dogs like Ginger just fine!
~Checking out the new girl~
Ginger is a typical Lab. Easy going, happy, and eager to be friends. If we're having any problems, it's that Ginger is constantly pacing and panting and won't settle down inside. Given that her world has been totally turned upside down, it's understandable. I know when she realizes that she's going to be okay, and finds her place she'll be just fine.

Welcome to Golden Pines, Ginger! 

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Onward to the New Year!

Wow, it has been way too many days since I posted! And I could ask that age old question, "where has the time gone?"  Usually I don't know the answer to that, but this time I do. Because, believe me, even without Christmas, there has been plenty going on at our house.
It didn't help that I was sick for about a week, missing work, and staying in bed one weekend helped to put me behind on almost everything. A cough is still hanging on, but I'm recovered from the bug that also knocked down half of my co-workers, and my husband and brother too.
Back on my feet, I got almost all that I needed done just before the holidays. And during that time Alf had his dental surgery. Six teeth were removed including a canine that exposed his sinus. Alf has fully recovered, and is back to eating normally and barking at me when I am not getting his dinner to him quick enough.
~Alf when he wasn't feeling so well~ 
Sunny has had a bout of what is either canine vestibular syndrome, or an inner ear infection. We don't know which. He's unable to fully keep his balance when he walks, and we've started him on an antibiotic. He's much better, but of course I'm worried about him.
~A not-feeling-so-great Sunny~
Then of course there's Bailey. She is having mostly good days right now. We had a visit to Holistic Vet and she's given Bailey a Chinese herb that we hope will help her digestion and keep the acid in her tummy to a minimum.
I'll now just fast forward past some of the other things that have happened, like the opossum inside our garage that got caught halfway inside a plastic bag the other night and couldn't free itself. And how a couple of the dogs are growling at the rocking chair that has been sitting in the same place since we moved here. Is it a ghost of Christmas past? 
~Outdoor kitty Gino, NOT keeping our garage critter free~
Whatever it is, we do know that the end of the year now in sight. And after a week off work, I'm filling in on Friday for my counterpart who wants to spend time with her family. So with that, it's onward to the New Year!

Thank-you, friends, for stopping by! I do hope all is well with you! 

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Days of Grace and Goals for Bailey

The end of another week, as Christmas draws closer. 

This week ended with Bailey back at the Internist for x-rays and an ultrasound in hopes of finding the cause for her cough and all the problems that it brings about for her.

Unfortunately, the Internist "identified a 3.9 cm mass deep in the abdomen that is likely pressing on her esophagus."  This mass is expected to grow and will eventually cause discomfort or blockage. This mass in particular, because of where it is, is totally inoperable. Even if Bailey were a younger dog, the Internist does not feel that removing it would be an option.  And if that weren't enough (and it was) also found was another mass between Bailey's ribs.
~Bailey waiting for her tests~
Given all of that, and at the recommendation of the Vet, I've discussed everything with the medical-coordinator from the rescue and together we have decided to make and keep Bailey happy and comfortable but not pursue any further treatment for her. She will of course have any needed medications and vet care, but there will be no "extreme measures" taken to prolong her life. 

So, as we begin Bailey's precious days of grace, I will do as I always do.....  To really (really) try to not dwell on what's to come. And if I have learned anything about this kind of diagnosis, I know to just forget what the vet says and remember to live in and savor the moments together. It also helps to think and remain positive and set goals and do our best to reach them. Bailey is feeling well, she is not coughing, she has a really good appetite, and is up and around. She is happy.  So, for our first goal it will be an easy one, Christmas and onto New Years.  The big goal will be her 14th birthday that comes in March. I think with your cheering her on, and POTP, we will make it together.
~Good night from Bailey~

Sunday, December 2, 2018

The Scottish Terrier

Our weather this weekend has been foggy, with watery splatters, thin drizzle, drizzle strengthening to steady rain, with a low ceiling of clouds, chased by cold damp temperatures. What dreary weather.

Seeing Todd sitting outside, all by himself this morning in the rain, fog and cold, reminded me of the origin of the Scottish Terrier and the description written by the Westminster Kennel Club, that perfectly describes them.
"The Scottish Terrier’s character and personality reflect the bleak and lonely moors of his origin. Life to him is serious, to be met with dignity, reserve and stout heart. He is by nature aloof, but to the accepted few friends and family his devotion is deep and lifelong. A secure place in his home, understanding and companionship are essential to his happiness. In spite of his independent spirit, his strong desire for approval will win compliance with your wishes where harsh words and punishment will fail. To those who appreciate his unique character, the Scottish Terrier is a friend and companion, second to none."

I hope you're having a good weekend! 
~Todd, feeling the glow of Christmas, already!~

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Spare Change

With my work week now only being 3 days, they seem to fly even quicker.  Now I get everything done on Wednesday, instead of Friday, so I can be a "stay-at-home-dog-mom" by Thursday.
~Time to check those tree lights~
This Thursday I took Alf to the vet.  He is all healed from his first surgery so it's time to move onto the next treatment that he needs.  Dental work. He has at least 3 teeth that will need to be extracted, and of course they'll need to be cleaned too. After the console, I had no real plans for the rest of the day.
~Alf, ready for the next step~
So, I decided to take a small road trip. The vet that I'd taken Alf to was in the same direction as a parcel of property that is for sale in the neighboring county. The land and its location really caught my eye, so much so, that I contacted our realtor about it.
~I think it's this view that has caught my attention~
I was about an hour from home, and knowing I needed gas I decided to wait because gas in this neighboring county is almost 50 cents less per gallon.  My thriftiness became my downfall because when I got to the gas station, I suddenly realized in my rush to get Alf to his appointment, I'd forgotten my wallet. I had no money, no credit card, no ID, nothing.  And, my gas tank was almost on empty. I scrounged through everything and came up with $2.60ish in loose change. It would buy enough gas to get me pretty close to home,
~The not-so-good-start at looking for spare change~
But I knew once I was closer to home I could count on my friends to help me if I needed them. So, I went in to buy the gas, and explained why I was buying so little with change. Before I realized it, a man behind me in line said he'd give me a couple extra dollars that he had, and another man behind him did the same, even offering to fill my tank. (I thanked him, but said I only wanted to get home).  Between the two men in line, and I can't be sure, but maybe even the lady behind the counter, I ended up with $10 for gas. More than enough. I do not think I could not have been more thankful for their kindness. Alf also thanked them with tail wags and we were soon on our way home.
~Hope safe 'n sound with Alf!~
I thought about going to see the property. But decided against it. It'll have to wait for another day. When I have more gas and my wallet.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Hopefuls after Thanksgiving

Happy day after Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays because it’s all about getting together and reconnecting with the people we care about and remembering what we have to be thankful for - And it is of course a day, and a day after where you have an excuse to overeat.
~No one home in a now visible birdhouse in one of our trees~
We had a really nice dinner at home. I'll admit that this year, the table was not going to make the cover of a decorating magazine. Don't get me wrong, I really do love a beautifully set table, especially for a holiday or special occasion. Who doesn't?
~This was NOT our table because I am NO Martha Stewart....~
But I have to say that it's totally lost on my husband and brother. So because of that, I didn't feel the pressure to morph into Martha Stewart for the day. It's never going to happen today or any day for that matter, and it's okay!

Max, (below) cares nothing about Martha Stewart. After dinner and dessert he came to the table hoping there may be something left for him.
Another hopeful after dinner was Sunny. I don't write much about Sunny, and I should. He is slowing down a bit and the cold days are hard for him because of his arthritis. He avoids the spotlight and especially a camera whenever he can. But he doesn't realize that I'm taking his picture with my phone, so Sunny is staying around when he sees it in front of him.
But all the dogs did get a little bit of turkey added to their evening meal, the ultimate treat for them. Todd, checking out the refrigerator this morning, is hoping for the same thing this morning. Again,m he and the others were not disappointed.
Now with one holiday behind us, it's onto the next one. Our foster girl Nina is now available for adoption via Lab Rescue. So she's also hopeful and waiting and ready to find her forever home.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

The First Snow Fall and Snow Day

Up early this morning as the first snow of the season began to fall. 
We ended up with about 4-5 inches that wasn't pretty snow at all. It was mixed with sleet and rain and made a mess of everything. An appointment that I had cancelled, so I was able to be home all day.

The dogs liked being outside and taking in the fresh smells that only the first snow can bring.
Well, most of the dogs did. Max doesn't like to get his curls wet.

Thank you all for the good thoughts and vibes for Bailey. Internist Vet thinks that Bailey might have mega-esophagus.
~Checking Bailey's Heart~
When all the test results are returned, we'll know for sure and be able to make a plan going forward for her. We changed up a couple of Bailey's medications, and she's had a good week.
~Bailey, happy to be on her way home!~
So with snow today and a good week for Bailey, this Thursday couldn't be any better. 
But just to see if it could be, I baked some chocolate chip cookies.  And I was right, it did make it just a little better.
I hope you had a good Thursday too!

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Needed Answers for Bailey

We again round the corner to the end of the week that has been a mostly quiet one.  My day off today filled with errands, and taking Max to the groomers for a winter-haircut that will last him through the cold months ahead.

Tomorrow morning I'm off to the veterinary internist with Bailey for an ultrasound. She's had a  productive cough the last several months. Antibiotics have helped, and the cough all but disappears, and Bailey feels better, but then the cough returns.

Then the vet puts Bailey back on the antibiotic, and the cycle starts all over again. I've lost track of how many nights I've listened to her raspy breathing and we've both been awake as she coughs up fluid over and over again. At 13 years old it's taking its toll on her. X-rays show a spot on Bailey's lung near her heart is probably the culprit. But its hard to see because of a large lipoma that's blocking and clouding the view.
So we are hoping that tomorrows ultrasound brings the needed answers for Bailey.

And finally can you answer the question of who our outdoor kitty Gino is reacting to? 

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Kirsten's Forever Home Is.....

Thanks for your guesses on who Kirsten picked as her forever home. I had fun reading who you thought would be a good fit for Kirsten.  You were all right, both Ms PhD or Old Friend would have both been a good match for Kirsten.

So, I will start by telling you that I did not pick the Grandparents for Kirsten. The reason was based on "Grandma's" purely and utterly absurd and ridiculous concern that Kirsten's missing eye would scare her grandchildren. Grandma was also worried about how she would explain it to them and other people who she was so sure would be frightened by Kirsten's missing eye and even her spotty tongue. Based solely on what I felt and feel is so ludicrous,  I could not end the visit fast enough.
~The face of a frightening dog??!! I don't think so!!!~
So that left the two people who you thought and I liked very much for Kirsten. But in the end, it came down to who I felt Kirsten really connected with, and that was Ms PhD and her dog Frisky.  Kirsten responded really well to them both, and there were lots of tail wags and an ease and comfort that just seemed so natural when they were together. I also really thought Kirsten needed to have a canine companion. And with Frisky being a bit shy, I thought the quiet reassurance that only a dog like Kirsten could give would help her, and allow Kirsten to blossom in that role.
~Kirsten and Frisky~
The reports have all been positive ones, and I feel strongly that all is as it should be. I am grateful to be part of Kirsten's story that helped her find a forever home. 
~Kirsten in her new yard yesterday~ 

Friday, November 2, 2018

A Forever home for Kirsten - YOU Guess!

Back in March we welcomed Kirsten. And today, seven months later, Kirsten left us for her forever home.
~The day we met Kirsten, on March 31, 2018~
When Kirsten first became available for adoption, there was practically no interest in her. Then, like that, I had three inquiries about her.  I decided to meet each of them.
~Another first day photo of a skinny Kirsten~

The first Hopeful Adopter we met, Ms PhD was a single lady with a shy border collie mix named Frisky. With the passing of her last dog several months ago, Ms PhD really wanted Frisky to have a companion, so the two being compatible was important.  She lives in the country and is home most of the time and does therapy work with all her dogs. I let them all go for a walk together to get better acquainted. 

The second Hopeful Adopters, I'll call "the Grandparents" lived in the city and had specific hopes for their new addition. One requirement was that the new dog like and get along with young children. This was a concern because Kirsten came to us as a stray, so her past is totally unknown.  I let Grandma take her for a walk.

Finally, the third Hopeful Adopter I'll call Old Friend. It has been a number of years, but I knew her from the time that I served on the board of the rescue. She recently lost her Golden, and is looking for a dog to share her life and bed with. Old Friend lives in a retirement community so there are a lot of people and other dogs around. She took Kirsten for a walk too. 

I've tried to not give too much away, and I know the pictures aren't the best, but can you guess who was picked for Kirsten?  Leave your guess, and I PROMISE to post on Sunday with who KIRSTEN chose as her forever home.
~Kirsten, on her way to her forever home!~