Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Galina is gone- many tears at the Haven

Well, this is very hard to write and harder yet, because I cannot find any of Galina's pictures. Galina was one of our "showed up at the doorstep" one day kitties who stayed for five years. She was one of the most gorgeous cats I have ever seen- she was a long haired cat with a gorgeous white "ruff" around her neck and four white feet. She was non vocal- but spoke volumes with her body language. She always wanted to smell your hand before she would let you pet her and then preferred to be pet on her body, not her face. She got along with everyone and was always in the garage or in the sun. I cannot write about her death very much as the memories of finding her hurt so badly still. She had a severe UTI which we didn't know about and would have no way of knowing about and the poison from her kidneys spread throughout her body. I went out to feed and she was lying under my van and I knew INSTANTLY that something was VERY WRONG- I grabbed her and yelled to Jon, who was sleeping, " Jon, Galina is very sick, I need you right now in the kitchen!" We rushed her to the ER vet and learned what was wrong and that she was hypothermic (her heating pad was 1 foot from my van but she couldn't get there, I guess) and that the cost to try and save her would be over $1000 and the vet thought it was too late. I said, " Please put her to sleep." I cried like an animal- I was in a white t shirt with her blood and fur on it and I was barefoot- I cared for NOTHING except rushing her to the vet- nothing else mattered. We brought her home for the other cats to say goodbye to and buried her in the backyard. A sudden death here is a horrific thing for all of us, but especially for me. We are prepared for old dogs and cats to die and it hurts, but it isn't like this- this is like a stabbing knife and I spent most of the day in bed yesterday sleeping, as when I was awake my mind was filled with visions of her, the syringe the horrid ER vet left with us that had her bloody urine in it, and her nuzzling against my shirt on the way to the vet- completely paralyzed but she could feel her face and for once in her life she wanted, NEEDED me to stroke her face- I stroked the whole way there, and said, " We love you little girl- hang on, we're going to get help." She responded to my touch, moving closer to my hand and resting in my armpit. I will not advertise the emergency vet we went to, but the vet there was abrupt, ugly and just made the whole thing more horrific. I know she is with my other kitties who died of old age and I pray that she will tell them hello for me and spend the rest of her days in the sun, being admired by the company she is in. We love you little Galina. I love you so much little girl- I am so sorry I couldn't save you- I am so sorry I didn't know you were sick- I am so grateful that the last thing you knew was my hand, my voice, and the warmth of my body. I miss you so.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

It's December and I am on blood pressure meds- coincidence or not????

Well there is one type of medicine I never thought I would be on and damned if I aren't on it- blood pressure meds. It makes perfect sense- I have gained 20 pounds on my bipolar 2 meds and I have been pretty stressed out lately, but ME?????????????? So, now I have the hard work of getting these "Seroquel 20 " off- (it has a nickname because it is SO COMMON) and trying to find a "natural remedy " for high blood pressure. Mercedes, girl, I need your advice. I can't find my camera (one of my kids "borrowed' it) and I don't have time to take any pictures of my darlings. We just changed hard drives, so all my pics are on my OTHER hard drive which is upstairs.

But, I have decided this- I love Jesus, but I hate December. I hear Christmas music on November 27 and my jaw clenches. I want Christmas to be about a peaceful manger, not shopping and mailing and pressure and CHRISTMAS CAROLS FOR 30 STRAIGHT DAYS!!!!!!!!!!!!! So if there was a month that I would have high blood pressure, this would be the month. Thank goodness the animals don't know what month it is, because if Pepper started whistling Christmas Carols in this house before December 9 (my 43rd birthday), his goose would be cooked. (He's a parrot, by the way). So my way of coping this year is I am not sending Christmas cards with pics of my beautiful girls. I figure every mom deserves at least 3 Christmases when she doesn't have to send cards, and this is my first. (I think it's my first, did I skip a year 10 years ago???????????) Don't remember. I am determined to make this a quiet and peaceful Christmas and since I don't like shopping or going to the mall, I think I can do it. I'll stay home and make our little manger and not get freaked out by the huge trees with all silver or all gold decorations or the signs saying, " There's still time for Christmas delivery!" (Well, there should be, when you sent that catalog, it was December FIRST!) And no, I am not a grinch, I am just a Jesus follower, and the last time I checked, Jesus got THREE presents and much after his birth. What in the world has happened to that simple message? I am claiming it this year, even if I have to stick my fingers in my ears and say, " Nah nah nah I can't hear you!" in stores. :)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Samson should be named Lazarus

Pharaoh's Haven is a place filled with miracles. It is a place that witnesses amazing gifts from God each and every day. Recently we were the recipient of an amazing miracle. Our oldest dog, Samson is 17. In the picture he is one looking at me instead of the camera- so typical. He has been with us since the age of 14. When he arrived here, he was very thin, anemic, covered in fleas, and I expected him to live at the most a few months. 14 is pretty old for a Greyhound, so I took this dog in knowing whatever time he had left we would give to him with great joy, comfort, and love. He quickly became my "soul dog". If you've ever had that one great dog in your life, you know what I am talking about. He is the epitome of all that is amazing in dogs and desirable in humans. He is gentle, kind, patient, long suffering, honest, and has the soul of a Southern gentleman. That is the way I describe him to people, since most people need a "human comparison" to understand a dog's soul. His first three days here after a bath to remove more than 100 fleas, he did nothing except sleep, eat, and go outside to go potty. I honestly thought we was going to die then. After three days, he got up with this new look in his eyes like, " Ok, I am back- what's on the agenda?" He loved to run in the pasture with the other dogs and was pretty darn fast for an old man.

After a couple of years, I noticed that his back leg was causing him pain, especially on rainy days and in the morning. I have arthritis and have the same symptoms on the same days so I knew right away what it was. I took him to see our dear vet, Renee Rockefeller at Augustine Loretto Animal Clinic and she examined him and said, " He has a very crunchy knee, Anne." Turns out that the back left knee was so filled with arthritis that is sounded crunchy when she manipulated it. So I said, " What can we do?" She recommended Deramaxx (doggie Celebrex) and we went home. The medicine worked wonders for the old man- he could bear weight on that leg again and his appetite improved. He wasn't tearing out in the pasture anymore, but that was ok- he could walk without pain. After about a year, he started to not respond to the meds as well and his appetite would come and go and he would spend all his day on the couch (it's HIS COUCH) and not want to interact or go on walks. We went to the beach last week and left him in the care of our zoo sitter, whose name is Betty and who is God's gift to our family. She is an amazingly gentle and intuitive woman who is the best zoo sitter we have ever had in 15 years. When I got home on Saturday, Sam was far away- he greeted me of course, and then got on the couch and slept. He wouldn't eat that night or all day Sunday. His eyes had the "death look" that all animals get when they are near death and it's a look I've seen MANY TIMES. People get the same look - they look past you to somewhere far away and they are not "here" if that makes any sense. I knew it was time. I cried so much on Sunday that I busted the blood vessels under my eyes, and thought I would die from the pain. Now, mind you, I have put at least 6 old dogs to sleep here, many of them dogs we'd had since puppyhood, so it's nothing new to me- I take them to ALAC and hold them while Renee puts them out of their pain. I cry and it's sad but when I leave I feel relieved that my dear dog is out of pain and in doggie heaven. I have never mourned this hard over any dog, and it was quite frightening for me to feel such intense sadness even though I knew it was time.

I called Renee on Sunday, sobbing my guts out. She said, " It's Sam, isn't it?" I said, " Yes, it's time." I told her, " I feel a very strong feeling that he is not to leave here, so I need you to come to the house and put him to sleep when it fits in your schedule." She assured me she would call me the next day with a time. All that afternoon I sobbed on this sweet dog's fur and told him how much I loved him and what a dear dog he was to us. Jon dug his grave outside before work on Sunday. The kids said goodbye in their way- the tears would come after he was gone- they don't mourn in advance, bless their hearts. I gave Sam his meds as usual Sunday as I thought, " I don't want him in pain anyway even if he is going to die." On Monday, he hopped off the couch and came in the kitchen and ate breakfast. I am thinking, " That's nice, but weird." All during the day, he was up and out, asking me for bones that he hasn't asked for in a year, and very frisky. I was freaking out. Renee called at noon on Monday and said, " How is 11:30 tomorrow for you?" I said, " Renee, I need to talk to you. He's like a different dog." I went on to tell her about his appetite, behavior, and walking around and even running in the yard. She said, " Well that's great news!" So we said, " The grave is there, and we'll just keep it covered until it's time." (We had covered it anyway to keep the little dogs from falling in it.) On Monday and Tuesday I did not recognize Sam. I took him on a short walk down our street and he ran ahead of me. He hasn't done that in over a year. Even our dear friend Mercedes said, " Anne, he hasn't looked this good in MONTHS!" So I knew it wasn't wishful thinking on my part. Sooooooooo, maybe God gave us an extension because of the horrible sadness, or maybe Sam saw the grave and thought, " Wait guys, I am just sore, not ready for the grave yet!!!" Either way, I said out loud to God while walking with Sam- (trying to keep up with him to be honest) "God, I don't know why you gave us this gift, but I thank you and I praise you for it- I truly thank you for giving us a few more days or months with this amazing dog." So I sing Sam his silly song that I have sung to him since his first days here- I can't write it or everyone would laugh at me because is is a truly silly song but part of it is " I love Sam and Sam loves ME!" I am grateful that I get to sing that silly song a while longer.

Friday, July 10, 2009

New batch of squirrels here!!

Well, I was really surprised to get a call from the vet that has my number for squirrel rescue! Nesting season is April and August, and we've not had a single windy storm in while. There were four newborn squirrels- someone was trimming a tree and down the nest fell. We got them quickly and they were in great shape- not dehydrated or injured. There were two girls and 2 boys. On the first night, Lily, one of the girls, crawled under the heating pad and died- I've never had one do that before-the other three have been with us for almost two weeks and they are doing great! They are up to almost four cc's of formula every 2-3 hours and their eyes should be opening soon. Their names are Sammy, Squirt, and Emma. Emma is the smallest, but a very good eater. We are taking them to the beach with us and I am FREAKING OUT because I have to leave them with someone for four days while we fly to NM and I am super protective of them- when you have worked your fanny off to keep a squirrel alive for 2 weeks, getting up every 2 hours in the night, you really freak about leaving them with someone else. Here are their pics. God is so amazing- they are tiny, precious, and love humans. They do not make good pets and will be released at my mom's house when it's time. People ask me all the time why we don't keep one and it's because squirrels are not one of God's creatures that can adapt WELL to caged life. If they are injured or brain damaged, that is a different story, but if they are healthy, they don't do well in captivity, so please don't be tempted to keep one- it's also against the law ( I think). In the meantime, we are enjoying them and I am finally at the point where they can go overnight without a feeding- Jon feeds them at midnight and I am up at 5 am normally, so they eat again then.
I often use them as an example of our dependence on God, and even took them to a women's Bible study (not these guys- one from a hurricane years ago) to show the ladies that without God feeding us, keeping us clean, and stroking us, we would die, just like these squirrels. And unlike humans and God, squirrels never run away from the humans caring for them, but instead move toward my voice- the hungrier they are the faster they move. Sometimes in their eagerness to eat, they get frantic and I have to gently hold their head and show them where the syringe of milk is. God's like that too- we get all freaked out and God has to get our heads and hold us down for a minute and say, " I've got what you need- quit flipping out." I really need to remember that right now as we have two vacations coming up and getting ready for vacations is a HUGE trigger for me and my bipolar depression. I am fine once I am in the car or plane but the week beforehand, I get totally wigged out, frantically all over the place and sadly, I don't look for the the "syringe" of comfort that God is holding right in front of me- I just keep running all over, trying to figure it out on my own. Maybe there was a bigger reason that I got this group of squirrels at an unusual time- I need to remember them when I get paralyzed with so much to do. I am constantly amazed at how God teaches me through these animals- never fails and since I understand animals so much, I learn about God all the time. (Not to say I don't learn about him other places too, but face it, I am here at home more than I am any other place.) I'll post more pics when their eyes open, which should be within this next week. :) So exciting for them to see whose voices they have been hearing. By the way, Julianna is a super squirrel girl- she fills in for me when I am sick or gone and she does an AMAZING JOB.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The zookeeper's Mother's Day gifts!

When you take care of two children, a home, and some 30 animals, you had better think long and hard about what you ask for when Mother's Day comes up. At first I thought about luxury- how nice it would be to have someone else file my nails and rub my feet and put pretty polish on them. That idea got thrown out as I realized that the polish would last maybe 3 days on my hands, with all the washing I do, and my toes never show, because I wear running shoes 24/7, literally. So, I thought about what would truly make life easier. And my dear husband surprised me and did it before I could ask. While I was out with Em, Jon cleaned my upstairs room/office. You see, Miss Gracie Rose had found the Crayola Clay in four lovely colors and had taken her sweet time in getting into each color, leaving clay and paper EVERYWHERE. It was more than I could deal with, so for two weeks I ignored it. Yes, I know, you are wondering HOW I could ignore it. Well, I don't go up there except to sleep once in a while, and I stepped over it and went to bed. There were also various items in the upstairs hallway that needed to go to the battered women's shelter store but had gotten stuck in the hall, just waiting. When I got home, the hall was CLEAR and my room was CLEAN. I could have cried. In addition, he helped me trim 9 sets of dog toenails, 4 beaks and 12 parrot toes. This is no small feat, if you pardon the pun. Then, to finish it off, when our disposal died, he called a friend and installed a new disposal and the instruction manual was my Mother's Day card and I LOVED IT!!! I told my children that all I wanted from them was to sit on the floor and play some games together and be a team about getting the birds fed and watered. I got two lovely homemade cards which are two of the most beautiful ones I have EVER GOTTEN and I felt so loved and special. I love being a mother- I am blessed with two gorgeous and lovely acting girls, a very thoughtful husband and 30 other "children" that are worth all the trouble they put me through. :) One good nose kiss or bed snuggle from a dog is enough to make my day, ANY DAY. And enthusiastic hugs from my girls are the best gifts I could ever get from them. I am a blessed woman. Thank you Lord, for my family, my own mothers, and for my life.

Monday, May 4, 2009

For Donna

My dear friend Donna who blogs like a fiend bugged me about my recent lack of writing. I don't know why I haven't written, I just haven't. Nothing amazing or spiritual or even amusing has happened until last night. Pepper, our African Grey put on a show last night like we have never seen. Pepper was rescued from a sad home that was dark and from someone who didn't believe cleaning the cages was HER job and he had very little interaction. We've had him almost two years and we think we are seeing him almost at full blossom just now. (Bird rehab much slower than dogs.) She (we don't know if he's a he or she's a she so bear with me- we refer to him/her in both ways all the time.) has a vast repetoire of voices and sounds and words. Here are a few of his favorites. "Good girl!" (He says this whenever a dog comes in as we have had to praise Maggie SO MUCH for coming in as she used to be terrified of thresholds.) "Good night Pepper bird" "Goodbye" "Hello" "Wanna go out?" (Again in regards to the dogs), "Woo HOOO"- heard by me all the time as my kids can't hear me over their stinking radios unless I use the grandma yell. Well last night he cracked us up. He loves to dance with me- which for him consists of him bobbing his head and saying Hoo hooohoooo." Last night I snapped my fingers and he started "cracking" his beak while dancing, and then he made a PLLLLLLLLLBBBBBBBBBBBB! sound like a kid sticking out his tongue and blowing- and then he burped and started laughing. It was a LOUD BURP. We were all just dying laughing - he has finally relaxed enough to open up and show his true colors. He still won't allow us to touch anything but his head and his feet, but I think in another 10 years we'll be able to cuddle him. Good thing they live so long.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

God doesn't take his gifts back!

God gives all of us gifts. We can have gifts for teaching, counseling, raising children, showing compassion, or rescuing animals. And as much as we would like to sometimes, we cannot give those gifts back. I have a new squirrel who was brought to me very very deyhydrated, near death and covered with fleas. It took 4 injections of subcutaneous fluids and hours of trying to get him to eat before he finally TODAY he figured out how to suck on the syringe. Now, I am exhausted and was talking to a friend. She said out of love, " You've got enough on your plate, you need to not take in any more squirrels, etc." I wanted to say, "Well, YOU NEED to quit dragging your plants in and out of your garage and just let them deal with the cold." She has taken her plants in and out of her garage at least four times due to this nasty weather. To me, that is "too much on HER plate". But I wouldn't tell her to stop caring about her gift- loving plants. I would love to have the ability as some people would be able to- to fling an almost dead squirrel into the woods and never give it a second thought- but I am physically unable to do that. Nursing that squirrel is my gift and as tired as I am I cannot give it back. Nor, can I give back the gift for taking care of my husband and children and teaching them everything I think they need to know. I have a friend with six adopted kids with special needs and people think she's nuts. IT"S HER GIFT- SHE CANNOT GIVE IT BACK. While you may not agree with other people's gifts, don't argue about them, because God gave them and I don't think you want to question HIS wisdom.

Monday, March 2, 2009

God's grace

I am short on time but wanted to say that there are no accidents with God. I took Sassy to Petco last night to get groomed and at the last minute had to get some dog food- on my way back there I ran into a friend that I had been praying I would see. We talked for a long time about a certain situation going on in my life that has been very trying. And while I was there, there was a very lovely young woman who had a litter of puppies that were to be euthanized and she rescued them. I don't EVER STOP at adoptions- after all- I am a rescue- retired, but still- I don't adopt puppies. In fourteen years of doing this I have NEVER adopted a mixed breed puppy(Sassy was five when we adopted her) or even LOOKED at mixed breed puppies in pet store adoptions- literally. But something made me stop. And there in the middle was this tiny little mixed puppy and after talking to the rescue woman, I discovered that she needed a foster home for this little tike, as she needed to be fed four times a day (she's the runt) and a ton of TLC and this woman is a teacher. Now, she didn't know me from Adam's house cat, but when I asked her what I could do to help (God was telling me that this young woman was hurting and needed some TLC of her own) she said, " Could you take this little girl home and give her some attention and foster her for me?" Now, she saw something in me that she instantly trusted- was that God in me? I hope so. So we have a little mixed breed pup who weighs three pounds who we have named Gracie- (It is by grace we are saved and not through anything we do ourselves). This little dog and her littermates were saved by the grace of this woman. So next post, I"ll post pics of Gracie- now named Gacie- I leave out the R. She's so cute and I am so glad that I could allow Ana to sleep a bit better last night. Right now, I have puppy poop to clean and pretty girls to feed. :)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Shut up about the pink shirt- where is everyone's BRAIN???

I am so fed up with the cops doing the investigation for Haleigh. First it was the 17 year old girlfriend put her to bed, then it was she was in the bed with Haleigh. Now they are saying there is a possibility that she wasn't home at all when Haleigh was taken. Now, if I put a child to bed and then got into my own bed, I would remember that. If I slept with the child in the child's bed, I would remember that, so why is this girl having such a hard time sticking to one story- either you tucked her in and slept in another room or you got in bed with Haleigh- how hard is that to remember????Then it was "she was wearing a pink shirt and undies" and then it was "no pink shirt- we have the pink shirt." Ok, maybe I am the only person on the planet who thinks like this but WHOEVER TOOK THIS CHILD SURELY PUT DIFFERENT CLOTHES ON HER AND PROBABLY CUT AND COLORED HER HAIR. So why is the media still stuck on the damn pink shirt. We are not looking for a child in any certain outfit, for God's sake- we are looking for a child who could be wearing ANYTHING- boys' clothes, a baseball cap, overalls, you name it- kidnappers do not keep the child in the clothes they found them in -that is just common sense, or at least it is to me. I know this because it is a well known fact that when kids are abducted from stores like Walmart, the abductor takes them into the bathroom, cuts their hair, throws different clothes on them (making them look like the opposite sex) and then walks out of the store and no one notices. So can we please post photos of this dear child with a progression of what she would look like with a boys' haircut, red hair, blond hair, black hair, or a buzz cut? Because at this point, she could look NOTHING LIKE HER PICTURE and no one would notice her as a boy, or with short red hair, or dressed in a purple dress. COME ON MEDIA- quit wasting time asking about the damn pink shirt- surely your minds are quicker than this??? And the investigative team should quit wasting time giving us updates every day only to say, " There is no pink shirt and no, we cannot answer any questions at this time." WHY IS THAT AN UPDATE??? Is that supposed to make Ronald FEEL BETTER??? Stay off the TV and look for the child, please. Don't get me wrong- I so want to find this baby- but I am so sick of the investigative am holding these ridiculous update press meetings only to tell us nothing. Does anyone else think about the possibility that the child could look totally different now? Why aren't new pictures of her being posted? SOMEONE EXPLAIN THIS TO ME!!!! We care about every missing child because we are parents, so I pray for Ronald every day and for Haleigh's safe return, but having lived in Florida my whole life, I have to say that after 10 days, I don't think she will be found alive. Miracles do happen and I am still praying for one, but if I was Ronald Cummings I would be skinning the media and the sheriff's office alive for wasting every one's time with updates that have no new information and for not posting new pics of how Haleigh COULD LOOK NOW. In the meantime, I will continue to pray and send this post to the Times Union. Maybe then someone will think of updating her pictures. Heavens.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

I finally succumbed to the lure of..........FACEBOOK!!!

All my younger friends who have been hounding me can finally smile- I am on Facebook. I had a long list of why I didn't want to deal with Facebook-

1. I don't have time.
2. I don't have time.
3. I don't have time.
4. It's going to be some sex predator place with naked women everywhere.
5. My kids will want to be on there and THEY ARE NOT GOING TO BE ON FACEBOOK. PERIOD.
6. It's not as cool as everyone says it is.

Well, I still don't have time but DANG, IT IS FUN. I haven't yet seen any naked women, thank the good Lord- and I have connected with a ton of college buddies, which has been AWESOME. My kids are able to see pics of people I have told them about like my first college roomie, Steph, and my first real boyfriend, Daniel. I've been able to see what became of the people I went to London and China with and able to just keep up to date with local friends- a nice way to pray for their sick kids, get pics of their life, etc. I am still not ready to let my girls be on Facebook- I don't know enough about the privacy settings yet. Now, we've got to get Jon's gorgeous self on there- he's pretty interested. Have I said lately that I won the lottery with this man?? Well I did, and when all his old girlfriends see him on Facebook, they are going to be JEALOUS. Hee Hee Hee. Sorry ladies, he is so mine and so happy to be my own private zookeeper. :)

Monday, February 16, 2009

Taking applications for anyone who wants to take over my Chronic Fatigue Syndrome! Qualifications below

Note to readers- I am pretty much in remission from CFS now and lead a pretty normal life except for occasional "crashes"- meaning I will overdo it one day and spend the next day in bed. Many of these symptoms were the ones I experienced in the first two years of having the illness. I am a very happy and busy woman now, but occasionally I do get FED UP with being tired after doing some ordinary thing like washing the dogs. :)

Well, it's been 15 years of having this disease and last night I decided I've HAD IT. I am taking applications for the next person to take this ailment and leave me free of it forever. There are many qualifications, so before you fill out the application, please read over what it takes to own this disease.

1. You must be able to quit your job in moment's notice. Note, having money in savings is a must or you must not be the bread winner in your family.

2. You must be very patient and able to tolerate huge amounts of pain. If you cannot deal with joint pain, constant headaches, sore throats, and sore lymph nodes, stop reading now.

3. You must give up your right to lift anything over 2 pounds on some days - you will need two hands to put milk in the refrigerator, will not be able to take clothes out of the washing machine, or drive a car that has a stiff steering wheel. You will not be able to hold a blow dryer above your head for more than 5 minutes, so short hair is a must. (Plus the fact that short hair doesn't look as dirty and greasy after lying in bed for 3 days straight as long hair does.)

4. You cannot be one of those "I won't take medicine for any reasons!" people. You must be willing to swallow any pills that your doctor tries on you, as well as have the ability to swallow $100's of dollars worth of supplements, some of which are as big as your thumb. Clear out two cabinets for the massive amounts of natural herbs, seaweed tablets, vitamins with extra b-complex, colostrum, and prescriptive pills you WILL BE TRYING. Most of them won't do a damn bit of good and you'll eventually throw them out, but you must try and try you will and you will try with a good attitude, always.

5. You must love your bed more than anything else in your life. You will be spending a lot of time there. On any given day you may sleep up to 17 hours. Your sleep will be non restorative and you will sweat through 4 or 5 changes of clothes a night, so keep a stack of clothes next to the bed and be prepared to wash alot of wet clothes and sheets. Doubling up on pillowcases is a must. Layering towels underneath you is always helpful so that you don't have to wash wet sheets every day.

6. Be prepared to lose at least 15 IQ points. This is called "brain fog"- it will render you helpless to complete sentences, will have you calling family members to tell you how to get home from WalMart, and cause you to have a panic attack in the grocery store as suddenly you have no idea where you are and why you are there. This will come and go with no warning. You will be reduced to calling spoons, " the thing that you eat soup with", and looking at the dishwasher and asking your spouse, "What goes in there to wash it again?" You must get over it and stop crying at the fact that you feel like someone with brain damage, because you ARE someone with brain damage and the MRI proves it.

7. You must be capable of seeing at least 15 doctors, many of whom will suggest that you are depressed or going through menopause at 30. You must be able to muster up the guts to ask the receptionist, " Is there someplace back there where I can lie down, because I can't sit up?" You cannot be discouraged when you have to wait more than an hour to have your blood drawn and you will teach yourself to love needles. You will teach your children to never fear needles or having blood drawn. You will be willing to humble yourself to call someone to pick you up from the doctor because in the hour and a 1/ 2 that you waited, your hands and arms have become numb and driving would now be dangerous.

8. Get used to saying the words, " I cannot make it tonight." You will be saying that alot- as well as "I won't be able to keep that appointment", and "Sorry, Mommy cannot go on the field trip-it's too much walking for me." Get a tough skin about people staring at you as you sit against a wall in Walmart while your spouse shops. Better yet, get a stadium seat and carry it to all malls with you in the event that there is no bench to sit on and then ignore people's glances. Become familiar with the feeling of losing your breath - a trip from the bed to the bathroom will cause it and climbing stairs will be almost impossible, for the exertion will make you sit at the top of the stairs for five minutes before being able to get your breath.

9. Be prepared to either lose or gain tremendous amounts of weight, and instill in yourself an iron will that even though you would rather peuke than eat, you will pour mustard on a slice of turkey and swallow it whole because your body NEEDS PROTEIN. Remember the tricks of your youth with downing foods that you hate because all food will become repulsive to you when you are most sick, but you must eat or you will get weaker. Cereals and sweet foods will be all you want to eat, but you will resist eating them as you know that they will make you sicker, so you force down spinach salads and McDonald's cheeseburgers because your body can only fight with strong soldiers in your body.

10. Make sure you have married someone who is patient, understanding, willing to pull more than their fair share, ready to believe your unbelievable symptoms, and go alone to many family functions. This person will be the closest to God you will ever get in your life and their love will keep you going on days that you want to give up. The love of this person and their encouragement will allow you to stop stressing and rest.

11. Last of all, get to know God really well. His word and his presence will be the only thing that will keep you from killing yourself on some days. You will spend hours begging him for pain relief and sleep. His promise of healing will be a promise that you cling to night and day. You will spend so many hours in bed that you will learn to pray for everyone you know constantly.

Now, do I have any takers??? Thought not.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Praying for Haleigh Cummings and not scolding our watch dog any more!!! Video monitors for our kids' rooms???

Five days ago, a five year old child in Satsuma, Florida was taken from her bed. Her name is Haleigh Cummings. The story is that her dad's 17 year old girlfriend put her to bed at 10:00 and when Ronald, her dad, got home, she was missing. Later on the paper said that the girlfriend has been sleeping WITH Haleigh and never woke up when the child was abducted. To see this father on TV would make anyone cry- he is absolutely devastated- he was at work when she was taken from her bed. He looks at the camera, sobbing and begs for someone to bring her home. What heartache- how would you sleep at night? I cannot imagine this man's grief. And we all know that with every day that passes, the chances of her being found alive narrow. I am not being mean- it's just the truth- we've had so many missing children in Florida and the stories almost always follow the same script- child is missing, they search for days, the search discontinues, eventually the child is found dead. I pray this is not the fate for this beautiful little innocent angel. I am posting the website with her picture for everyone to look at - we never know how God might use us to help find a child. http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=12017905&ch=4226713&src=news

This has made me really think about our home, it's safety, and the safety of our daughters. We have an excellent watch dog in Maggie- she is an Ibizan Hound and hears things long before we do- and she barks VERY LOUDLY. We yell at her, we put her bark collar on, and we scold her. Not anymore. Last night my girls fell asleep on the couch and Maggie slept right next to them- did I move them to their beds? NO. So, if you have a watch dog who annoys you, think about this- if that dog hears something in the night that you cannot hear because you are sound asleep, wouldn't you pray that dog would bark? Let them bark- it might just save the life of one of your children one day. Of course, we all need to lock our doors and windows and I personally think it would be a great idea to keep a baby monitor in our kid's rooms at night- to hear any sounds that they might make- they even make "baby video monitors" that show your baby sleeping- if you had one of those and someone attempted to abduct your baby or small child- you would have SOME INFORMATION about the abductor- sex, size, color of hair, what time it was, etc. I think it is time that we all started thinking ahead of these deranged beasts. If you feel silly for spending $150-200 on a camera monitor, imagine what price Ronald Cummings would pay to get his little girl back.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

I knew they had souls!!!

Ok, I've been called an animal freak my whole life. People look at me really strangely when I tell them that yes, I am a Christian, but I TRULY BELIEVE that animals have souls and go to a heaven. Well, I just saw a video that nailed it down for me- I'll include the link if I can find it. It is a video of a dog who gets hit by a van on a six lane highway- other cars drive over him without hitting him again. Out of nowhere, another dog crosses THREE LANES OF TRAFFIC to get to the injured dog. He puts his paws around the injured dog's neck and PULLS HIM BACKWARDS over THREE LANES OF TRAFFIC- bit by bit, inch by inch, until he has pulled the other dog to the side of the highway. He even looks left and right at one point to watch for cars. The road workers (who were not attempting to cross traffic and help the hit dog,) see the dogs cross to the side and go over to assist them. The hurt dog lives. It is a video that is unbelievably hard to watch, but watch it knowing that the dogs don't get hurt again. It will SHOCK YOU. I have always known that animals have souls- that they are capable of helping others and that they do care about humans and other animals, but this was the nail in my coffin so to speak.
My question is this- why in the world would God create the animals BEFORE HUMANS and take such pride in them that He asked Adam to look after them if they were soulless bits of rotting flesh? I don't believe that. They might not go to my heaven but I think they will be there- what heaven would be complete without God's creatures? Recently, I've seen examples of how animals are superior in their acts of kindness and compassion that a lot of humans. There were climbers getting to the top of Everest. They come across a man that was climbing Everest as well, but he was sick and was off the trail to the side. He was very sick with hypothermia and elevation sickness. DO YOU KNOW THAT ONLY ONE PERSON STOPPED TO HELP HIM??? The rest of the hikers (probably 30 in all, in different groups, at different times) saw him, knew he needed help, but did not stop because they had worked their whole life to climb Everest and by God, they were going to get to the top. How sick and wrong is that? The man who stopped and got help was a hiker who had hiked Everest before and wanted to hike it again, but he said that he could not leave a fellow human to die and go on with the hike- it was WRONG. Mamas dumping their newborns in dumpsters? Mama animals will not abandon their babies unless their own life is in mortal danger- there are some exceptions out there of lower classes of animals who eat their young, but I am talking about mammals here. Elephants form a circle around an expectant mother elephant- facing outwards in a tight circle- so a predator cannot strike the mother and baby. They stay like that for days afterwards- allowing the mother elephant to find food and keeping the baby in the circle. When an elephant dies, the animals cry tears and will stay by the dead family member for weeks- many times not leaving to get food for days. They cry and trumpet and the sound is gut wrenching and very soulful. Animals can predict storms, epileptic seizures, and earthquakes- was that ability given to us as humans? Do we have an instinct that tells us to RUN because a giant tsunami is about to engulf us and our children? NO. Can one human feel another human's seizures coming on? Nope. Can one person detect cancer by sniffing the other person's skin? NO. WHY??? If they are nothing but flesh and bones, why would God waste His time giving them these amazing capabilities? I know for my own life, my animals have created more comfort at times than all the humans I know put together. They love regardless of our actions. They protect us when their own lives are in danger. They save other animals- sometimes even animals of other species. A good example of this is the next video - a leopard who kills a mother baboon only to love and protect the day old baby baboon nestled in the dead mother's fur.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gpfvkeo0KBc&feature=related This is a truly amazing video to watch.There are books written about these astounding examples and after reading many of them, I can absolutely convinced that animals do have souls and in some cases are higher on the scale of morality than many humans. So, think what you want of me, but I know that I will be petting a giraffe after I see God. http://www.youtube.com/user/elephantsanctuarytn Here is a video of Tarra and Bella- an inseperable pair- dog and elephant.

Here is the link to the dog rescue video. You will see related links on that page- a stray dog who saves a bullfighter- etc. They are beyond comprehension.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

My advice about your dogs- Anne's "doggie Bible"

I find that I am always getting asked advice about other people's dogs and I love helping out, so I thought I would send this out into cyberspace- feel free to email to your doggie buddies. This advice is built on 35 years of experience with all kinds of dogs and all kinds of "issues". I have spent my life watching dogs, so alot of what I have learned is from experience with my own dogs, and the rest is from books, vets, and other rescue people. I am not a vet, but I am almost a vet tech. :) I will list advice based on what I get asked most often and if you have other questions, feel free to write! I am amazed at what people don't know about very basic things so I will start there. Don't mind my "attitude" in my writing- it's just me. I tend to have pretty strong feelings about much of which I am writing.


Do not ever feed a dog any food that wheat, soy, or corn in it. These are cheap fillers and are not good for a dog. If you think about it this way, it makes sense. A dog is a domesticated wolf. Period. Do wolves eat corn? How about wheat? SOY????????? No, dogs are meat eaters and any grain or grass they would get as a wild wolf would be the tiny amount in the stomach of the rabbit or rat that they ate. Pay a little more now, scoop less poop and literally cut the vomiting episodes out for good, unless your dog is sick, of course.

Feed every single dog at least twice a day. I DON"T CARE WHAT YOUR SCHEDULE IS. Feed the dog in the morning and at night. This will prevent stomach issues and eliminate "torsion"- which is twisting of the gut which happens in larger breeds when they are starving and they scarf down one meal very quickly. This leads to death if the dog is not operated on. Marley died for this reason- remember the book? Dogs get low blood sugar just as we do and feeding them twice a day just makes sense if you think about it. I feed less food and also give my dogs treats 2 times a day. Small dogs and young puppies are more prone to have low blood sugar seizures, so always feed them 3 times a day. Adult small dogs may not need three feedings, but young puppies MUST be fed at least 3 times a day. The brain will not develop properly if it is starved of sugar. Lazy owner, dumb or dead dog. Simple.

Water- clean it out every day- yes, dogs will drink pond scum but ONLY IF CLEAN WATER IS NOT AVAILABLE. If you don't believe me, put an old bowl of water next to a brand new clean bowl and watch your dog. I TOLD YOU!!!!

Wet vs. dry- Ok, listen to me- it makes NO DIFFERENCE IN YOUR DOG"S TEETH WHAT YOU FEED. Yes, I said that. You should give your dogs something to scrape their teeth on regardless of what you feed, but as with us, 90% of their potential teeth issues are INHERITED. I had two dogs that were fed the exact same food for 12 years- one lost 6 teeth and the other did not lose ONE. So I know this is the truth. If your dog has a nasty mouth by heredity (small breeds and toy breeds are more prone to this) you should take extra care to give them bones to chew on. I personally don't have time to brush my own teeth twice a day, much less my dogs. :) JUST KIDDING.

Food allergies show up most often as redness on the tops of the paws, red ears, and an itchy dog. There is no food allergy test for dog- it is just trial and error. If you think your dog has a food allergy, go to a good pet store and get some outlandish food like venison, salmon, or elk. Try your dog on that (NOTHING ELSE) and see if it improves. Salmon oil and Norwegian sea kelp are also super helpful.


90% of all behavior or eating issues are related to one thing- lack of exercise. If a dog is not allowed to run, walk, or get some intense exercise, they are going to get into things and refuse to eat or be a picky eater. They will also be more prone to leg breaks (toy breeds) and arthritis as they age. If you find your dog being bad or not eating, ask yourself this question FIRST- "How much exercise has my dog had today?" If the answer is NONE, it's your fault, don't scold the dog- get your fanny outside and walk or run your dog. Now, if your dog is sick, this doesn't apply- of course. A happy dog sleeps alot. My dogs spend from 10am -5pm outside every day unless it is cold or rainy. Thus, they sleep HARD from 5pm- 6 am. Puppies are no exception- if they are bored, they will chew, ransack, and be a pain in the tush. They are curious, so provide TONS of different kinds of toys for them- especially REAL RAW BONES. Go to the butcher shop in your store, ask for some raw soup bones. Put a sheet down for your dog and supervise while you watch TV- easiest puppy sitting ever.

Sick dogs
- if you are tuned in to your dog, you will KNOW when your dog is "off". Look in their eyes- are they sad looking? Are they off their food? My rule for sick dogs is this. Take their temperature first. Use ANY KIND OF THERMOMETER- a sick dog will have 102.5 or higher. If they have a fever, go to the vet- NOW. Take a stool sample with you. If the dog is not running a fever and has vomited, do not offer the dog any food for at least 12 hours. Then offer chicken and rice. If you are too tired to cook, buy rice cereal for babies and chicken baby food- and keep these for these emergencies. Add extra chicken broth as dogs can dehydrate quickly. One day of sickness is "watch and wait". Second day is "go to the vet". The only disclaimer to this is if your dog has blood in his stool or vomit, GO TO THE VET NOW. Many times a dog will eat something in the yard that disagrees with him or her and after 24 hours, they will be as right as rain. A second day may indicate something more serious. If the vet tells you that your dog has colitis, email me. I am a pro at colitis. It's nothing to be freaked out about, but it does require diligence and alot of nursing on your part. If you work and cannot give the dog fluids by mouth, please leave the dog at the vet- a dog with colitis should not be left alone all day. If you have a good relationship with your vet, ask them to show you how to give a bolus of liquid under the skin. It is the best and most reliable way to keep a sick and feverish dog hydrated and it is not difficult, nor is it expensive. Basically you buy a bag of Ringer's solution at the pharmacy and insert the needle under the skin facing down and allow the fluid to flow underneath the skin slowly. There will be a lump there but that will go away as the body absorbs the Ringer's solution. Your vet will tell you how much your dog needs and how often to give it. This one thing will save you alot of heartache. Until you have tried to get 12 syringes of water down a dog's mouth that is sick, you won't know why I suggest that every owner learn to do this. Pharaoh, our first dog, was sick with colitis quite a few times and GOD BLESS HIS SOUL, he let me give him syringes of warm water or broth in his mouth even though he was miserable. He knew I was helping, but it is tedious for the dog and the person. I love that dog and he will always be the best example to me of what a good dog or human should be.

One other thing I would like to yell at every owner- LEARN HOW TO PILL YOUR DOG, FOR GOD'S SAKE!!!! You would not believe the number of dog owners who crush up pills over their dogs' food when all they need to do is swipe the pill through some butter and put it deep in your dog's throat. The problem with crushing up the pills is this- if your dog does not eat all of the food or lick the bowl clean, how much of the medicine did he actually get? People say, " I can't pill my dog, he's impossible." Well, I've pilled dogs for 30 years and this is what I can tell you- teach the dog that if he's a good pill taker, a treat comes immediately afterward. I give my dog Maggie her allergy medicine and then immediately I say, " GOOD GIRL, WANNA TREAT?" and I then give her something divine such as summer sausage or chicken or some other goodie. (She has environmental allergies, not food allergies.) This is such a routine at our house that when she hears the Benedryl bottle come out, she runs into the kitchen. Our African Grey now says, ' Good girl Maggie- wanna treat???"- That's how often we do this. The dog would swallow a watermelon for me. The best stance to take is from the back, in my opinion. Crouch with your body over the dog, behind them sort of- then open their mouth and put the pill WAAAAAAAAAAAAY back and actually push it down their throat. Butter is great because it makes the pill slippery and it tastes good. After a while you can do it from the front because the dog won't struggle anymore. I pill all my dogs and cats from the front. If you just cannot handle that, put the pill in a piece of hot dog- most dogs won't chew it, they'll just gulp it down.

Dog medications
- your vet is either forthcoming or he or she is not- it's that simple. I am blessed to have honest vets. There are some drugs that are human formularies- meaning they were made for humans and dogs can take them. Other drugs are pet formularies only. YOU DON"T HAVE TO BUY HUMAN DRUGS FROM YOUR VET!!!!!! If your vet tells you that your dog needs Keflex or Prednisone, ask if those drugs are human drugs or dog drugs- then ask them if you can please get them at Walmart or Publix- many antibiotics such as Keflex are FREE at certain stores. Your vet's markup on these drugs is ridiculous- save your vet's drugstore for "dog only formularies". And if your vet refuses to write the script for Walmart or Publix, get a new vet, NOW. I cannot stress the importance of the honesty issue enough. I will address this more in the next section.

Your vet and what you should expect from them

I have been using Augustine Loretto Animal Clinic for almost 15 years. When we moved 20 minutes from their office eight years ago, I tried all the vets between me and them. I went to SEVEN vets and found all of them to be either dishonest, egotistical, unethical, overpriced, or ignorant. I promptly returned to ALAC. I have taken over 75 animals there in the last 15 years, so I know what to tell you about vets.

Price- you don't want the cheapest vet around, unless it is just for shots. You don't want to go to the most expensive vet, either. Price should play very little into your decision on a vet- this should be your last consideration and I will tell you why. A cheap vet is not a great vet and an expensive vet is not a great vet- a great vet is a great vet apart from their price sheet, period. You should get a three year rabies shot and IF YOUR DOG HAD ALL OF ITS PUPPY SHOTS FOR THE FIRST YEAR, your dog should not need other shots, period. The only exception is bordatella for dogs who stay in boarding facilities. If you think I am loony, look up "vaccination protocol adopted by American Veterinary Schools on Yahoo or Google. A healthy dog should only need a rabies shot and that every three years. This is another indicator of the honesty of your vet- if they tell you that you must bring in your dog every six months after a certain age, run like hell. If they tell you that your dog must get its yearly shots regardless of the dog's exposure to other dogs, get another vet. Think about this- if your dog stays in your yard and never comes into contact with other dogs or other sick dogs, why in the world would you need to vaccinate against distemper when your dog is six years old? Where is the dog going to get distemper? I see more dogs get auto immune illnesses because they were vaccinated to death in the first five years of life. You can save money and tears by discussing your dog's specific vaccination needs with your vet. Again, this is a very good indicator of the honesty and integrity of your vet.

Qualities of an exceptional vet- an exceptional vet should look you in the eye and listen intently to what you have to say about your pet. You are your dog's advocate and YOU live with the animal 24/7, not the vet. The vet's job is to take your information and use his or her knowledge to find out what is wrong. A vet who won't listen to you or a vet who rushes you is not worth your time or money. The vet should be willing to teach you about your animal- if you want to learn, which every owner should want to learn as much as they can about their animal's condition. A great vet will tell you the numbers and names of the blood work or whatever and then go into a thorough explanation of what those numbers and names mean. Often I ask my vets to tell me "in kindergarten language". I have never been rushed in 15 years- EVER. If the vet has an emergency come in, then they should be willing to call you on the phone and explain later. A great vet will call you after a surgery. A great vet will allow an established client to page them in case of an emergency. A vet who tells you that they "don't take call" and to take your dog to the emergency vet without talking to you is not a vet worth having in my opinion. Many times I have talked to Dr. Prince on the phone and he has saved me a trip to the Doggie ER, which by the way, is a wonderful place when you need them, but you will pay a standard $74-$150 fee JUST TO WALK IN THE DOOR. No, I am not kidding. Obviously there are times to skip the page and run straight to the ER- hit by car, seizures, vomiting blood, etc.

The other gauge to know whether a vet is good is how they behave when it comes time to put down a beloved animal. Any vet worth their salt will not rush you through this horrible process but let you take the time you need to pet, love, cry over, and say goodbye to your animal. Dr. Eslick, one of my four vets, once sat for 30 minutes and told me, " I am not putting this precious cat to sleep until he is purring and drooling." My cat would drool when he was very very happy. So, she sat and I pet Spaz and then after a while when he was soaking my lap, she talked to him and told him what a great kitty he had been and gently put him to sleep. THAT'S a great vet. Lately, Dr. R has been our friend at this time and I see her as the angel who sends my dogs to heaven. She gets teary eyed (for me) and always gives me a big hard hug when I leave and that means more to me than she will ever know. SHE CARES. That is the most important quality of a vet besides knowledge- compassion. If a vet acts like a pompous jerk, pick up your dog and say, " Thank you but I 've changed my mind about your being my vet- I don't care for your bedside manner." AND THEN LEAVE!!!!! They need to know that they are being callous. I've done this myself with one of the seven vets I tried and I have heard that since he heard it so much, he is now working on being more "people friendly".
Boarding your pet
The best option for boarding your dog is to find a family who boards animals in their home. Often you can find these on Craigslist or ask your vet if they know of anyone. The next best option is a pet sitting service. You shouldn't pay more than $25 a day to board your pet ANYWHERE. Beware of pet boarding facilities (including vet hospitals) that charge you extra for things that should be standard. For example, we once took our birds to a local vet's office (not my regular vet as they don't board birds) and we paid $15 per bird per day. That's pretty good. I asked the attendant how many times a day someone would talk to them or take them out. "Interaction is $10 extra per bird per day." was her reply. If I hadn't been desperate I would have left with my birds. INTERACTION IS EXTRA???????????? Don't pay extra for them to pill your dog (they are supposed to be doing this because they love animals, remember?), to walk your dog, or to interact with your dog. There are plenty of people out there who would love to nickel and dime you to death and those folks are not doing this for the love of the creature- it's all about profit. If someone is doing something for profit and not for the love of the animal, I wouldn't trust them with any of my animals. A professional pet sitter would consider all of the above things to be "standard" with any pet sitting fee. If you cannot find a pet sitter in your area, contact the rescue group for your breed in your town- they would probably be very happy to dog sit for you to offset the cost of their rescue work, and they know your breed better than anyone else. This is not hard-you just google, " Italian Greyhound rescue, Jacksonville Florida" or whatever and you'll have 2 or 3 options within an hour's drive from you, probably. Alot of rescues will dog sit a breed that they don't rescue- as long as there's not a huge size difference. For example, we dog sit Italian Greyhounds but we wouldn't dog sit German Shepherds- we might sit a poodle, or another small breed. Always go in and look around at wherever you are leaving your pet- look for holes in the fence, sharp wires ,glass, or anything else that might injure your pet. If the place is nasty- LEAVE. Don't worry about hurting some one's feelings- your dog is more important than their feelings. Always sign a release stating that you give your permission for the individual to take your dog to a vet if necessary if they cannot get in touch with you and SPECIFY WHAT VET THE DOG IS TO BE TAKEN TO!!! I have heard more horror stories of dogs being taken to "the local yokel" vet and having disastrous results. It is YOUR RIGHT to have your dog transported to the vet of your choice, period. Make sure that is stated on the release and sign it and have the dog sitter sign it.

Pet stores

This is real simple. Don't ever buy a dog from one. If you want to know why and are prepared to have your guts ripped out, google or yahoo the term backyard breeders or pet shop breeders and watch some video- it will be enough to make you run from every pet store you see. PETA is a great place to find those videos. Most people have no idea what goes on behind the pet store's pretty presentation. It's ugly, vile, and very dishonest.

Why should I choose a rescue dog over a purebred dog from a reputable breeder?

I have very strong feelings about this and here is the reason. In the USA in one year, 8 million dogs are taken into humane societies or animal care and control facilities. 4 million leave alive. 4 million dogs (at least) are euthanized each year. ANYONE WHO IS ADDING TO THE POPULATION OF DOGS IN THIS COUNTRY is adding to the problem. I know good breeders and they breed maybe 2 times a year- I have no issue with that. Someone has to keep the lines clean and make sure there are healthy and genetically correct dogs out there. Remember this one thing- dogs in rescue are not "problem children" always. Many times they are victims of "problem parents"- people who divorce and give up their dog, people who switch breeds like they change underwear, people who find they are expecting a child and can't POSSIBLY handle one dog and one baby.(If you can't juggle one dog and one baby, the teenage years will kill you.) What's wrong with their dog? NOTHING, except it had the sad fate of belonging to someone who didn't take their committment to the dog seriously. That sounds harsh, but let me say something. If you can take your dog to a kill shelter and leave it when there is nothing wrong with the dog, you have no heart- there are many other alternatives to kill shelters. Rescues are always ready to take in dogs and if the first 10 that you call are full, keep calling. There is NO EXCUSE for anyone to leave a "good" dog at a kill shelter. So, if you want a grateful dog who will spend the rest of its life thanking you for saving its life, get a dog from a kill shelter or from a local breed specific rescue. Let's put the backyard breeders OUT OF BUSINESS.

I hope that you have learned something you might put to use one day. I've been blessed to be able to help many owners with their problems so feel free to email me if you have a question that I didn't address here. My email address is JonAnne@aol.com. Enjoy your dog and realize that they are valium covered in fur. :)

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

My new assignment from God!

Well, God tells me things sometimes and they are almost always bizarre things that I would never think myself. A few examples are- adopters lost their dog 5 hours after they adopted him and God said, " Take Sassy and you will find Milo." Well this dog had been missing for 6 hours and they had been callng him the whole time. I took Sassy and within seven MINUTES we had found him and I got my finger under his collar and he was safe. Insane. Another time it was, " GET AWAY FROM THAT TRUCK NOW!!!" I did, and five miles up the road, there was the truck on fire, with a car stuck underneath it (the person in back of the truck which would have been ME, had not been able to stop in time when the truck caught on fire, and so this sports car was 1/2 under the back of the burning truck. I know the voice and I LISTEN. Well, the last announcement, " I got you through it and now I want you to write about it." I knew instantly that he was talking about Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and my almost complete healing from it. (Meaning that I am not bed ridden anymore but still have rough days sometimes.) Well, dang it, Lord, I don't want to take on such a serious hard task. But I will. Well the first 20 pages have written themselves- the words have flown out of me like I was just moving my fingers and the words were there. Very weird, but not weird because I knew if this was really from GOD, it would be like that. Always is. Don't know if it will make any difference to other CFS patients but I sure hope it does. Look for it on the New York Bestseller List!!!!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Heaven has a new gentleman dog

It's taken me a few days to be able to post this. Most of you who keep up with my blog already got my letter. If you look to the left of this post, you will see a picture of Pharaoh, our 14 year old Ig, the first one we ever had. On December 31, we had to put him to sleep. He had been carrying around cancer, hemangiosarcoma for about two years. This is cancer that originates usually in the spleen or liver and then spreads slowly. It is most often first noticed as lesions on the skin that look like blood blisters- you have them removed surgically as long as you can, and when they become too large and too many, you make the gut wrenching decision to put the dog to sleep. On December 31, Pharaoh has been lying on an old comforter on the couch and got up to go outside, and when I came back in, I saw a large puddle of blood- the size of a bread plate. Jon immediately realized where the blood came from and we went and found him- he was sleeping peacefully under the oak tree and the bleeding had stopped. (He was lying on the side where the bleeding was, which is why we didn't notice it.) We all looked at each other and Julesy said, "Today is the day, isn't it Mama?" "Yes, baby it is." Dogs can bleed out and die from these and we always said we couldn't bear that possibility. So we called our dear vet, Dr. Rockefeller and got showered and dressed. All the way, we told him what he had to look forward to- being the fastest again (he had lost that honor a while back to Houston), being able to eat all he wanted, being thin again, being able to see and hear again. I told him that the feast at God's table was amazing and that I wanted him to tell Spaz and Izzy and Bianca and Pancho and Panchita hello and to tell them we loved them so much. I will have to copy and paste what I said about him because I'll never be able to say it that well again. I came into the living room today and saw him and started to go over and pet him and say, " Hey old man, I love you.", but it was a beige comforter- and I cried again.

As most of you know, Pharaoh was our first IG. He was 14 years old and the "once in a lifetime" dog everyone dreams of having. He was a gentleman and the first dog we introduced every new pet to when they came here- hamsters, cats, other dogs- whatever- he would lick them and love them and then they knew they were in a good place- we used to call him our ambassador to all living things. He was in no pain at all (these things don't hurt- they just look ghastly) and he left the world in the hands of our dear Dr. Rockefeller who has been our vet friend to ease our darling dogs all to heaven and we so dearly love her for being that angel. It was not a hysterical scene for any of us- just a sad thing that we all knew was coming. He was the reason for our loving this breed. We want to thank Carol Harris for such a fine and noble dog. We often said that if ever we wanted to clone an animal, he was the one. I have owned many many dogs and many have come through my doors as rescues, but NEVER will another dog have 1/2 the dignity, kindness, and character of this dear old man. I am on my new laptop, so I don't have a recent picture, but he is on my blog, first page. :) I love you, old man. You are no longer deaf or blind and you are the fastest runner again, buddy. Tell our other babies we love them and enjoy the buffet at God's table. Love, Mommy