Sunday, September 20, 2015


Casey is 5; Poly will be 5 next month.  5.  5 years old.  Yes, you read that right, 5.

Poly does not understand that it's not permissible to tinkle in the house.  It just isn't.

We have tried so many things, but she just doesn't get it.  Casey has freedom in the house, except when we got out and Poly has to go to her kennel.  Then, Casey can run free upstairs and he can sleep on the sofa or the bed.  Poly has been out of her kennel overnight (the gate is locked then) and we have, more than once, found that she has peed on the sofa (typically).  Just last night, K came down to find that the towels covering the holes the dogs created when they were first here.  It's usually a blanket, but last night it was a towel.  We have tried putting towels or blankets in her kennel when she was confined overnight and she always peed on those.  I think the towels caused her to think that it was okay to tinkle on the sofa towels.

The problem is that we have left her out of her kennel overnight.  If we try to put her in, she will bark her little head off and we know she can sustain that for well over 90 minutes straight.  The neighbors will file an official complaint.  We can tell that she knows we're home because we can hear her barking.  That leads to the obvious conclusion that the neighbors can also hear her.  It's embarrassing.

But back to the peeing.  She's 5 years old.  I've tried a number of behavioral techniques, all with no success.  We have to catch her when she goes to the kitchen and assume it's because she has to go out.  For me, she usually doesn't react and I have to guess.  Sometimes I get it right, sometimes I miss and wind up stepping into it.  She won't pee on the carpet, but she will on a rug he have in the kitchen.  For K, of course, she will act like a "perfect" little princess.

If only she's wasn't so darn cute!

Friday, September 11, 2015


Hubby and I took a cruise - and Alaskan cruise, to be specific.  It was incredible!  We left the day before the cruise left (we departed from Vancouver) and did an excursion the day we disembarked.  This meant that we took the red-eye and didn't get back to Philly until bright and early Tuesday morning.

We had someone coming in to care for the cats.  After the many years she's been coming here, she'd never seen them, but she looked under the bed this time and caught a glimpse of our black twins.  She knew they were there and alive because the food was gone and the litter box was full.

We board the dogs at the most wonderful place.  It is called "The Dog House" and is located in Spring City, PA.  If you go onto Facebook and search for them (or just click here) you will find a picture of Poly and then a montage of pictures.  The LOVE her there.  The owner has said that she is the only pup he lets sit in his seat.  She is a star on social media!  LOL

We know our kids are safe and sound and happy while we're away and we could ask for nothing more.  We don't have to worry about them at all.  In fact, the dogs come home exhausted and will sleep for days after they get back home.  They are, in fact, asleep as I type.  Perhaps I'll join them for a little nap.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Long Time

It sure has been way too long since I've written and I will have to keep this short since I'm recovering from carpal tunnel surgery and typing is a bear.

So, hubby and I went on vacation and came back to discover that during their usual rough play, Casey bit Poly.  The boarder took her to his vet and took all the necessary precautions.  She was on an anti-inflammatory as well as an antibiotic, which just finished a few days ago.  He got her in just the "right" place.  Evidently her neck blew up to the size of a baseball!  I can't even imagine.  I would be in tears for her.  I know that it was innocent rough-housing.  Heck, I've been bitten by one of them when I tried to separate them.  Well, it was two weeks ago today that we returned and she had to go see the vet.  While the lump is much, much smaller than it was, it's still there and sizable (than if there was nothing there).  The vet took a quick sample and decided that it was a mucus gland thing.  She said to give it a few more weeks since she isn't acting differently than usual, is sleeping and eating fine, etc.  If it doesn't clear up in 2-3 weeks, we may be talking surgery - significant surgery.  Now, our cat Nikki (an only child) had more surgery in her little life than I can deal with remembering.  Poly is NO LESS IMPORTANT than Nikki.  We do have to consider that this is major surgery.  They don't do it at our vet's office and would have to refer to a specialist.  It is a practice of specialists we've seen before with Nikki's health problems.  I just pray that the lump shrinks and even better, disappears altogether.  We feared what Casey, being the tricky thing that is is, would do, so we took him with us.  He got all worked up, of course, but was more than happy to go back to the car.

Also when we got home, we found that one of our cats was missing.  The basement door had mysteriously opened while we were gone and the kitty sitter noted that it was open whichever day she came in and saw it.  The sitter has never, ever seen the kitties.  They hide from her, so she didn't think twice about not seeing him.  Between my husband and myself, we went down to the basement more than a dozen times, opened every drawer, door, cabinet, and closet, as well as under all of the aforementioned, all to no avail.  I was beside myself.  Not only was I a wreck, but his sister would stand on the steps at night and just holler at us - every night.  We knew she wouldn't last long without him.  We've always said that we feel less guilty that they stay upstairs since they have each other.  Anyway, we called the 2 local SPCAs, local vets and posted all over social media.  We wracked our brains as to how and when he would have gotten out.  We hung posters all over the neighborhood.  The worst case scenarios kept running through my mind as we drove around the neighborhood at dusk yelling his name.  Someone on hub's Facebook page commented about having taken all the drawers out of her bureau before finally finding her baby.  Well, it gave us the idea to hunt for our baby there.  We didn't even start with our own, master bedroom furniture.  We went into the basement, in the far corner, way, way back, tucked away to my bureau from childhood.  Hub started pulling out drawers and almost immediately found the little stinker.  My first question was "is he alive?"  The poor guy could have gone as long as 5 days without food or water - we're not sure exactly when he got down there.  Hub worked to pull him out, because of course he was in the furthest spot possible.  Once he was back upstairs, he had food and water and hopped right back into his routine, starting with waiting for me at bedtime when we snuggle.  When we called our vet to put out a "BOLO" on Bert, they gave us a site to reach out to, which led to the vet putting up a "missing kitty" sign in their office.  When we were there today with Poly, we got to tell them they can take it down!  It was a great feeling - and they said how excited they are when they get to take one down!

Now my hand is about to fall off, so I have to stop typing.  Those have been our critter adventures of late.

Monday, May 11, 2015


The Animal Rescue Site.

This site saves animals.  Rescues animals.  The name of the site is pretty clear.

Now, here's what's involved.  Click on the above link and there will be a button which says "Click here - it's FREE" and that's all there is to it.  There are other links/buttons you can click on, such as "Hunger" "Literacy" "Autism" "Diabetes" "Alzheimer's" "Veterans" and more.  It's a matter of clicking every day.  It doesn't take more than a couple of minutes and you're making a difference.... in the lives of those who live in poverty, helping those who aren't able to read, advancing research and resources for those with diabetes, veterans, and Alzheimer's, including others.

You can get sign-up to get a daily reminder email.  Personally I click on each everyday.  I mean, what the heck, I'm already there and it sure won't hurt anything!

If you are reading this blog, you are likely an animal lover.  You may foster rescues, volunteer at a physical rescue location, work at a special pet store (especially one like ours who is locally owned; sponsors rescue animals in-store, like our kitties; hosts foster organizations draw people to them outside of the store; promotes and sells only healthy foods and treats and well-made toys; partners with quality pet services such as vets, pet-sitters, day-care, and boarding locations and finally - one thing we love about our favorite store! - has events throughout the year where many reps from these services participate -- can you tell we love this store?); and adopt, not shop!  Yep, I stole that.  It's everywhere, but personally, it's on my husband's car.  My car's magnet is "My kids have fur" and there are so many more out there.

I've gone off on a few rabbit trails but I feel strongly about this cause and I suspect you do, too.  When people ask what breed Casey and Poly are, my answer is always "rescue" followed by saying that they are rescues, so we were told they are an "x-mix" and a "y-mix" but everyone sees something different in them.  I'm not trying to get any kudos for being some sort of hero but to show that these guys deserve forever homes!  Some of them have been abused, but can be trained, others come from high-kill shelters (Poly came from one in the South, which I understand is common), some are simply not wanted for one reason or another.

This site is one simple thing you can do to make a difference.  If we each click daily, just think what good can be done!  Won't you take a couple of minutes out of your day to improve the lives of others.

The Day After (from the eyes of someone who can't have kids)

To those who gave birth this year to their first child—we celebrate with you
To those who lost a child this year – we mourn with you
To those who are in the trenches with little ones every day and wear the badge of food stains – we appreciate you
To those who experienced loss through miscarriage, failed adoptions, or running away—we mourn with you
To those who walk the hard path of infertility, fraught with pokes, prods, tears, and disappointment – we walk with you. Forgive us when we say foolish things. We don’t mean to make this harder than it is.
To those who are foster moms, mentor moms, and spiritual moms – we need you
To those who have warm and close relationships with your children – we celebrate with you
To those who have disappointment, heart ache, and distance with your children – we sit with you
To those who lost their mothers this year – we grieve with you
To those who experienced abuse at the hands of your own mother – we acknowledge your experience
To those who lived through driving tests, medical tests, and the overall testing of motherhood – we are better for having you in our midst
To those who have aborted children – we remember them and you on this day
To those who are single and long to be married and mothering your own children – we mourn that life has not turned out the way you longed for it to be
To those who step-parent – we walk with you on these complex paths
To those who envisioned lavishing love on grandchildren -yet that dream is not to be, we grieve with you
To those who will have emptier nests in the upcoming year – we grieve and rejoice with you
To those who placed children up for adoption — we commend you for your selflessness and remember how you hold that child in your heart
And to those who are pregnant with new life, both expected and surprising –we anticipate with you
This Mother’s Day, we walk with you. Mothering is not for the faint of heart and we have real warriors in our midst. We remember you.
(Excerpts from: Source)
This says it all.  -J

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Spring Has Sprung

It's here.  The long-awaited Springtime.  I'm naturally warm and wore short sleeves most of the Winter, including the single-digit days.  But at least we're not dealing with snow and ice.  Heck, that amounts to copious amounts of dog poop when the snow melts.  With two large dogs.... well, you get the idea.

Today, hubby was outside weeding (!).  He SO very much wants to take Casey outside when he's out there, even just to get the mail.  We're not sure we can trust him to not run off.  This dog loves, loves, loves to run and you can see the smile on his face when he's doing it.  We want to get the pups a bigger yard, but that's a post for another day.  We have a 50' leash so while hub was outside weeding, we put Casey on that leash and hubster sat on it.  Casey seemed more interested in his desire to go for a ride in the car and peeing on a bush in our yard.  So, no such luck, bud.  He was still really good and didn't run away.  We are both envious of people in the development who have their dogs romping around in the yard while they do one thing or another.  It's just a tough call.  Casey is very protective of us and very protective of HIS yard.

Now to his sister.  When I put her out this morning at 7:30 she would run back and forth parallel to the house (which is unusual since she has her paths carved out on the perimeter of our property).  She would stare at something in one direction and them flip herself 180 degrees and run to the other side.  This went on and on and on until I called her in for breakfast.  I admit, I wanted to take a nap and the sooner I fed her, the sooner I could plop myself down on the sofa and snooze off.  She does still get excited about her new feeder so when I called her in for breakfast and she saw the neon green she came running!  She woke me up at some point and when I let her out she kept herself busy leaping around watching the ground for shadows of anything flying by.  It's really rather funny to watch but I can never catch a video of it.  Isn't that always the way?

To re-cap: We have Casey sometimes outside, eating dirt when he's unattended.  We have Poly chasing shadows and trying her darndest to break out of the yard by digging at the gate, despite K re-filling that hole with dirt today.  We have the possibility of Sir Casey having some freedom on our property.  Yep, I think that about covers it.

So, we have open windows, happy puppies, a weeded "garden" area (thank you, thank you, thank you, K!) and the prospect of Mr. Casey being free in the front yard when we are out there.  Updates to follow.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Ask and You Shall Receive

Poly is a piggie.  She inhales her food.  Even if I showed you a video, you wouldn't believe how fast she would snarf down her food.  BUT, today I got her this new feeder and while Casey lays down and takes a few pieces at a time, reaching his neck over his bowl, today they finished at the same time!  The exact same time!  This thing is miraculous.  I am not receiving any compensation for this post, but with just one use, LOVE this product!!

It is called Green mini interactive feeder:

It is my new best friend!

Monday, April 13, 2015


I don't know about any of the rest of you, but weather here is currently 74F.  I do not intend to brag, but it's magnificent, near perfect weather!  The sun is shining, there's a slight breeze -- heck, I even drove on the highway (!) with my windows down.  It is that great out.  For this time of year in this part of the country, I'll soak up as much of this as I can!

Poly and Casey?  They are loving life right now.  I only had to stop Casey from eating dirt once and never saw Poly dig.  Impressive!  They were out a few times but I think the sun got to be too hot for them.  Right now, every window is open and the doors are making for a spectacular breeze.  But, Poly is on the love seat sound asleep and Casey is enjoying the cross breeze while laying on the floor.  I'm in a bad place physically, but if I wasn't, we'd be taking the most enjoyable walk of all time!

Weather wise, our week is hit or miss.  Tomorrow - rain and mid-60s; the rest of the work week has us in the 60s with no rain in the forecast, just clouds.  Over the weekend I think we had one day of 46 (or something).  Happy Spring, Mid-Atlantic!

I hope you're having as gorgeous of a day as we are!!!  Take those doggies for a walk...and if someone feels so inclined, c'mon over and walk my big kids!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Oh Dirt!

Yes, dirt.  Guess who?  If you guessed Poly you'd be wrong.  Right now, Casey is outside by himself.  When I don't watch him (and sometimes when I do), he will find himself or create pieces of dirt.  He is a good pup, he really is.  But when I call his name for him to come inside, he stays put.  This is not the Casey we know and love.  It's as if he's been invaded by dirt-eating aliens.  We go to an amazing pet store and I asked the owner if there was a reason.... if there was some deficiency in his food, if it was a sign of something bigger, etc.  It turns out it's one of those "weird dog things."  Casey isn't the only one and that's good to know.

Now Poly has her own dirt issues.  She is a digger and she's GOOD at it!  We're not sure what she's trying to find or where she's trying to escape to, but she's a digger.... a very, very good digger.  So, snow melts when it gets warmer.  Melting snow = mud = very, VERY messy digging.  She's outside now but the mud is slowly becoming dirt.  I can deal with dirt.  I still head over to the door or the window since she's outside.  She's not allowed to dig.  It's one seriously bad habit.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Animal Kindness times 100

I'm not going to do much writing here.  This story really says it all.  Now, have the tissues ready and have a seat for the fewer than 15 minutes it will take to watch this video.  It will warm your heart - I promise!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Spring has Sprung, Melting Snow has Created Mud

Let me start off by saying that I am not complaining.  While I do love the cold (coming from a middle-aged woman, remember), I also love Spring!  Now, here in the Northeast, the first day of Spring brought with it 6" of snow.  Happy "living in the Northeast" weather, where you never know what to expect.  I think we could create a game show of some sort.

Now, take 6" of snow and add in a pinch of above-freezing temps and we have a melt.  Now, before I had dogs (as an adult) I never considered the ramifications of this melt.  Melt=Mud.  It's as simple as that.  For my pups, Poly in particular, this means that digging creates a gargantuan-sized mess.  Casey will come in and I'll have to wipe off his feet.  While it's not his favorite thing in the world, he tolerates it.  Heck, I'll come in and find that I have to wipe my shoes off to avoid trampling mud and muck into the house.

Enter Poly.  Today I had an appointment so I left her outside to let off some of the energy she had from a whopping 2 hours in the kennel.  I checked on her several times and all appeared well in her kingdom.  One time, though, things were amiss.  There was dirt on the ramp to the shed.  This can mean only one thing.  Digging!  Fortunately she came in when I slid on a pair of shoes - she knew I meant business and that she was coming in one way or another so it was best if she didn't fight it.  What I saw was nothing short of .... well, ICK!  I pulled solidified mud (though not as dry as dirt) in pieces as big as one square inch.  Gross!!!!  There was mud going in all directions.  She isn't a fan of the paw-cleaning to begin with and this was that multiplied by 50!  It wasn't long until I was going to be leaving and neither she nor I could tolerate any more, so I put her in her kennel.  There was just enough time to get the hand vac out and clean up the big pieces that were strewn about the nook.  I have to say, she was not happy about that noise.... and she couldn't escape.  At the time I wasn't terribly sympathetic, but now I do feel sort of bad.  However, there wasn't a better option.  She couldn't go running free around the house with her dirty toes and the mud had to be cleaned up.

I wish I'd taken pictures.  It was quite the scene, although I have already admitted my terribly inconsideration of any sensitivities the vac may have caused to her ears.  It's just hard to describe the amount of mud that could garrote itself into those toes of hers!

On another front, Casey continues to sleep upstairs.  He also continues to sleep parallel to the head/foot boards, leaving little room for hubby and me.  Last night I got up for some reason and came back to zero room.  Do you have any idea how hard it is to move an 85-lb dog from your area of the bed?  He wasn't super co-operative, but some excited calling of his name and some physical encouragement got the job done enough that I could squeeze in.  No complaints though, not big ones.  It's nice to have him snuggling with us at night and this morning I woke up to him with his head on Daddy's pillow and somehow under the covers - just like a human.  So cute :)

Tuesday, March 10, 2015


All of our furry kids are spoiled.  The twins, Casey, and Poly.  The way we see it, that had rough starts so we want them to live in the lap of luxury.  Had it been children or Kilter the story would tell a little differently, but it's not.

In my last post, I said that Casey had most recently figured out how to open the gate and that we had to lock it; he figured that out, too; we added the bungee cord and he broke through that (without actually removing the cord).  We have made a decision here in the "B" family and it's a big one, so...

<drum roll, please>

Sir Casey now sleeps upstairs with his Mom and Dad.  In the bed.  An 85-lb dog.  In the bed.  With two adults.  In the bed.

Let me paint you a picture.... I sleep with a wedge pillow for reflux; I also sleep with a body pillow to help keep the pressure off of my arthritic back (yes, I really am 43); I have had to move more to the center of the bed for reasons I won't bother to describe here; finally, I am not a tiny woman, rather quite the opposite and I mean quite the opposite!  MrB has 2 pillows and one of them usually winds up more towards the center of the bed.  This is not a complaint but a statement of fact.  Add in the big guy, who sometimes sleeps perpendicular to his parents and we find ourselves in quite the quandary.  We do find ourselves in a king-sized bed so we humans do have that going for us.

I went out yesterday.  When I came home, I found some of the kitty's toys in the living room, joined by a couple stuffed animals we keep on the steps (I mean, Dory has to keep an eye out, right?).  Since I was gone, Poly was in her kennel, so the "injuries" done to our stuffed friends is all Casey.  I put them on top of a cabinet which is about 3' high.  I came down this morning to find the cat's spider toy being decimated.  He was already missing a "pom-pom" foot yesterday, but this was the final blow.  He was bleeding out... innards, that is.  He flat-lined.  He didn't make it.  It was then I realized that the only way to keep everyone else (Dory, the turtle, and the monkey) safe was to put them onto the counter.  I did have to be careful, though, since Poly has found a way to reach onto the counter and take things (to date, it's only been food, meat specifically).  We'll see if these guys stay safe.

On another topic, I know I wrote a few days ago about how Casey ripped open the bag of jelly beans and spit out the black ones.  Crack.Me.Up!  Anyway, I saw this video of a dog with a lemon and think I may have to pick up a lemon next time we're at the supermarket!

Have your furry kids done anything funny with food?  Had any adventures with those of the stuffed variety?  Done anything funny at all (and the answer to this is always, always yes!)?  I'd love to hear from you!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Oh Casey.....

We've given the babies a little more freedom of late.  While Poly continues urinating on the couch, she still has the freedom of spending the night on the furniture.  Casey does as well, but he doesn't chew or use the house as a toilet, etc.  He just doesn't make bad choices.  Or at least he didn't.  He had been escaping his kennel which is what prompted the "more freedom" movement in our house.  Casey had escaped enough times and since we didn't see how he got out, we didn't want him to hurt himself on the way out.  He has a breakaway collar, but he could still get scratched/cut.  It just didn't seem safe and we didn't want to put him in danger.

We have a baby gate on the steps to the upstairs.  It keeps the dogs from going up and there is a cat door, should they decide to come down.  Poly and one of the kitties have touched noses a few times, but mostly Poly gets freaked out, barking and running around the house.  When both dogs are outside, I have recently felt or heard a kitty in the kitchen while I'm watching the dogs Poly to make sure she takes care of business and doesn't beg to come in and wind up going in the house.  The gate has served its purpose for years now, no problem...... Until - earlier this week, Casey figured out how to get the baby gate open.  This dog is too smart for his own good!

It's a teensy bit hard to explain but I'll give it a shot.  The gate's lock in on top.  There is a red part that slides left, unlocking the a handle-type thing which lifts up so the door will open.  Now, we didn't use the "unlocking" part because it just makes it more difficult on us and the handle part had been enough to keep all of the kids in their own spaces (with a random kitty sighting on the dog floor).  One night we saw Casey - upstairs, trying to get on the bed!  Upstairs!  There was a lot of banging and he broke through 3 times (I think).  Each time he had opened the gate and after the first time we slid that red part over to further lock thing up.  That means that he is brilliant and figured out a way to slide the red thing over and pull the lever up to open the gate.  We're pretty sure that he just wanted to be with us and was going to get to us one way or another.  We can hear him sometimes jumping onto the gate to get to us - as is evidenced by the missing paint where the gate meets the wall.

It was probably 3 days ago that we added a new layer of security.  When hubby and I are away from the house, we keep the red thing over the lever and have now begun using a bungee cord to lock the door in place.  That worked.  Until today...  Hubby was in the shower and heard a lot of banging.  When he got out of the shower he found Casey, upstairs and the bungee cord was still in place.  Who knows how this guy made it upstairs, but he did.  We have to figure out something new.  We definitely have a Houdini on our hands.

It's coming up on Easter and we have jelly beans in the house.  We leave Casey free during the day and when we go out, Poly goes into her kennel.  Keith and I both went out last evening.  Keith arrived home before me and found that he had broken into a bag of jelly beans I had hidden in a basket which I had covered with a med box and my datebook and a few other things.  Well, Casey and his super nose found them.  He got the bag open and ate a bunch; we're not sure how many.  He did spit some out, though - the black ones.  I mean, who likes black jelly beans?  There must be a market for them because they make entire bags of just the black ones, but to add them into the fruit-flavored mix?  Well that's just wrong.  Casey knows that and Keith found them laying on the ground with the rest of the opened bag.

Oh Casey.....