Archive for April, 2012

City Dogs

April 26, 2012

Happy Thorsday!  I have a question for those urbanites out there…


Mugsy, humoring me as a purse dog 2008

Let’s backtrack.  I was in San Francisco last week, and I delighted in the canine presence on the streets, from the wee, young Scottish Terrier in a large tote, to the MASSIVE white Great Dane hanging out while his owners dined el fresco for lunch, with countless sightings in between.

I was jealous.  My own girls were back home with the Knight.  Now, neither of my girls are meant for the hustle of a city.  Gretchen would have a panic attack and even hiding a purse would find her unglued.  Sissy?  Well.  If you’ve read more than oh… one post here, you might guess that while DIVA would LOVE to walk the streets ANYWHERE, she simply doesn’t get boundaries, much less that not everyone wants to speak to her… or for her to greet them.  Hem.

Anyway, I know the fair Lucy gets to go to a special bar that likes doggy guests, but have the rest of you gotten to go out on the town?



April 19, 2012

Hunting where Mama fears to tread

Happy Thorsday!   It’s finally time to report that we are making strides with Gretchen’s anxiety.   I still find it perplexing that when she’s hunting, she’s a normal, fearless Jack Russell Terror, but I am pleased to note that she can now make it past another dog without having a full-blown panic attack, especially if I can convince Sissy to keep her big mouth shut.

This question is especially for the hound owners…  How do you TRY to teach a dog that was bred to make noise when something exciting is happening to be quiet?!   Sissy is just being friendly and wants to say, “Hey!  How are you?!  Wanna’ play?” when she sees someone, but that excited energy flows straight over to Gretchen as STRESS.

Any ideas?  Talking sweetly, keeping Sis – well, both dogs, actually – in a close “heel” helps, but once Sis decides she needs to give a shout-out, it’s all over, no matter whether I stay calm, snap, issue firm commands, try to hand out treats just to distract her/them…

Blog the Change

April 15, 2012

Blog the ChangeOh, how we hate being late to a party… but better late than never.  Today is the 2nd Blog the Change date in 2012.

My – Mama, Chan – philosophy is pretty simple.  We’re all here to make the world a better place.  I could go on for days about how dogs make us better people, but for this post, the important message is to promote canine glaucoma awareness.  Eventually, we’ll have a separate site/blog to focus on that mission and to share resources and offer support to others trying to manage a diagnosis of canine glaucoma.

Our awesome Vision Vet is working on a post for us, but in the meantime, all you really need to know is that there are two kinds of canine glaucoma.  Primary is genetic and is what Sissy has.  Yes, HAS.  She lost her left eye to aggressive glaucoma over a year ago, and we’re fighting a good fight with the right.  It can occur at ANY age, so pay attention to any change it your dog’s eyes’ appearance and to any sign or symptom that might indicate a vision problem.  Secondary glaucoma can be caused by an injury or other eye illness, so likewise… it too can happen at any age.

December 2010 010

Sissy 12-26-10... already blind

Blinking and/or cloudiness of the eye are big clues.  That picture still almost makes me cry, because the other piece of glaucoma awareness you need is it is PAINFUL when the pressure is not under control.  Sadly, we weren’t able to control Sissy’s left eye’s pressure, so she lost sight permanently from the damage, and we had no choice but to remove the eye to stop her pain.

photo.JPGSo… there’s our post for change.  If we can help one other dog owner spot the signs sooner and get proper treatment faster, we’ve been successful.   That Sissy still lives large and keeps us on our toes with just one eye is just icing on the cake.   She’s still quite the live-wire, always up for an adventure, and she adapted so quickly that really, she helped us deal with the loss of her left eye far more than we helped her.

What change would you blog for your dog(s)?


Model Dogs

April 12, 2012

April 2012 008Happy Thorsday!  Just a quick little post today, because when Mama is home, we’re making her walk us… when she’s not pressing us into service to model her knitting projects.

Hardly my style.  (Sissy here.)   Couldn’t she tell I was busy watching those annoying squirrels?!   What with keeping up with those little pests and yelling at the deer that are already eating things out of the yard, I’m a busy DIVA.   The woman needs to get on my schedule if she wants me to model AND cooperate with the camera. 

April 2012 009Hem.  Gretchen Greer here.  Don’t mind the grumpy DIVA.   Believe it or not, she can be really focused when she’s hunting.   Luckily, Mama always has me.  As one wise friend said so well, I’m interested in whatever interests Mama.   And no, I really wasn’t trying to rub my new pretty in the pollen; that’s my happy, flirty pose.  Yes, I had to sneeze when I was done!  Awful, yellow, icky mess…

Are you a model dog?  Or do your humans snort when you suggest such a thing?

Paws to Remember

April 10, 2012

Knowing it is coming doesn’t really soften the blow.  Please pop over and extend your sympathies to the Portie Pack

Tsar 11-14-01 - 4-10-12

I’m sure there’s a cool spot with your name on it over the Rainbow Bridge.

Ribbons of Drool

April 9, 2012

photo.JPGThat photo pretty much sums up my Saturday.  See the STREAMS of drool on each side of her mouth? 

Yeah.   Sis didn’t feel well.  She’s normally a great rider and the belle of the ball when we get to the eye vet’s.  Not Saturday.  They were worried.  I was worried and frustrated because I didn’t know what the problem was.

Sissy’s favorite tech suggested the depth perception problem (that comes with only having one eye) was causing motion sickness.  Maybe, but it didn’t FEEL right…

Hem.  I finally realized on our walk that afternoon, when she had a ring of tiny bubbles around her mouth, that the girl had been helping me when I gave her a bath from the neck up first thing Saturday morning.  She kept licking her ears, even while they were soapy. 

Yep.  Sis took in enough soap that it upset her tummy, made her drool like a river, tremble like a leaf in a tornado, etc.  Gah.

The good news is she’s fine, and her eye pressure was a nice, low 6. 


You can see, she was up for a big adventure walk despite it all.  That’s the Rivanna River.   The girls don’t have any interest in diving in, thankfully.

Have you ever ingested too much soap?

Open Gate!

April 5, 2012

Happy Thorsday!  I just wanted to share a poster we created over the weekend.  The fur-girls’ Aunt Sus found a photo of a little terrier in mid-leap with a very similar quote, and I offered to turn it into a print for her.  Then, I got to pondering copyrights and all, so…

Gate open 2

Copyright blah, blah...

And that’s pretty much Sissy’s life philosophy.   It’s all the more perfect since Susan also leaves part of her heart in the Outer Banks… oh, just a few miles away from where this photo was taken. 

Yeah.   I had an 11×14 print made for our house too, but I’m wondering now if maybe I should frame it and gift it to my aunt (the owner of said piece of heaven) for Easter… and then order another for home?

Speaking of Easter, will we see you at The Five Sibes’ Easter Parade?

Crossed Paws

April 2, 2012

Kari & her Fred, courtesy of Houndgirl

Gretchen & Sissy here.  Mama spent most of yesterday a little weepy.  Her friend had to send her Fred over Rainbow Bridge.   What’s really sad is Fred is just a few months older than Sissy.  Please click over and wish Ms. Kari well.  It’s going to take all the sympathy in the world to even start to mend her broken heart. 

If you never knew Fred, he had epilepsy.  Too many of our doggy bloggy friends have epilepsy!   Don’t forget to support the Five Sibes and their mom’s book, which promotes canine epilepsy awareness. 

Courtesy of Khyra's mom

Yesterday wasn’t all sad though.  Mr. Jack Basset got to meet his new family thanks to Khyra’s mom and her transport friends.   Mama got all wrapped up in Jack’s story and we all breathed a sigh of relief when Khyra’s mom said he already had a home waiting. 

We hope you had a good weekend.  We had some pawsome walkies with Mama, except for the part on Saturday when she screamed like a startled girl over the black racer snake in our path.  I – Gg – had already gotten close enough to say hello and was asking him politely to get out of the way, but Mama over-reacted, and then spent the rest of the walk keeping us strictly on the paths, and VERY close to her.  Hrmph.  I’ve already held my own with three copperheads (Mama insert – including one RATHER LARGE one this winter!) so I don’t know what the problem was.


Sissy & Mugsy January 2008

Sissy here.  Don’t mind the naive tot.  I know that my brother Mugsy might have left us early because of the nerve damage from his copperhead bite.  No wonder Mama’s a train wreck even though she did politely thank Mr. Racer for moving on so quickly without much fuss, and then tried to explain – but Gg wasn’t listening, obviously – that while black snakes keep the posionous ones away, they can still bite and it still hurts and can get infected and cause bad problems…

How was your weekend?