Friday, August 30, 2019

Foley Tries to Find the Kitties a New Home

Sometimes we angels can only watch as those we left behind make foolish decisions that complicate their lives. Furthering our misery is knowing how different the outcome would be if we were still mortal. 

This week Pocket contacted me and asked that I be the angel for the cats that were living under the house.  She told me that she had warned them that the animal control officer was arriving so they didn't get trapped.  Now the kitties were in the breeze, and she was worried. 

I know Pocket has a big heart, but I wish they had not whittled away at so much of her brain to make room.  If I were still on the mortal side, I would have gone under the house and flushed those kitties weeks ago. We are ratters for heaven's sakes.  It's in our blood. But, for all Pocket's barking, she does not want to bite, but to get hugs from everything she sees. I told her if you hug a kitty, you get claws in the back. 

As for River Song, she is more interested in developing schemes to get the cats out then getting dirty in the crawl space.  That girl has forgotten she is a dog. 
I promised Pocket when I went to the Bridge that I would never refuse one of her prayer requests.  I hadn't imagined I would be shepherding five kitties and their mom through our village at night looking for a new home. 

"The key to finding a safe place is locating one with a new car in the driveway signaling that the person living there has money to support you, evidence that the owner loves animals, perhaps a birdbath or feeder, and that they have an unsecured bottom,"  I told them as we searched for their new home.  

“We had that!" The mama cat said, "then the humans put down traps. What a betrayal."
"You shouldn't have picked a house where they already had dogs!" I said emphatically.
"Dogs? I thought it was a ferret with a thyroid problem and a stuffed squirrel."

I stifled a laugh. "We have to find somewhere nice for the kitties," I said.  'Hopefully, the human living there will find the little ones adorable, bring them inside and adopt them." 

"My babes are not becoming domesticated," the mom said.  "My father was a feral. His father before him was feral. His father before him was feral. That is four years of my family being feral.  That's an eternity. Live free or die is our motto."  

"Did you ever wonder why life expectancy in your family is about three years?"  I asked. "I know Pocket thought she did the right thing when she warned you about the traps, but the kitties would be better off in the shelter than on the street." 

"You mean in the system?" the mama said.  "No, thanks. we'd rather take our chances out on the street."  I couldn't say I blamed her. Those shelters are terrible places. Some animals are never the same after they come out. But it's better than getting ripped apart by a crazed coyote. 

We found a lovely house with a beautiful lawn. There were statues of little dogs outside signaling that the owner once had pets. There was a nice hole in the skirt and a 2018 Fiat in the driveway. I told them they found their new home. 

"We'll  try it,'" mama said, "but if the amenities under this house aren't as good as the other house we are going back."  I couldn't blame them. My parents are kind people with big hearts. The cats would probably be safer under their house than anywhere else. And I think my parents are out of the "working with the authorities" business. 

The house was 50 yards from mine. I'm sure they'll be visiting my parents soon enough.  And seeing how my sisters the ferret and the toy squirrel are treated maybe, they'll learn that being inside the house is the best of all. 

I checked out my parents' house before I l left. All was well.   I know I'll be back soon. My family needs all the angel help they can get.

Thursday, August 29, 2019

We Have Kitties!

Like a biblical plague of locusts for the past two years, we have been beset by cats.  Their main point of entry is by the HVAC unit. There was a hole between the skirt and the unit perfectly sized for a cat.  A tiny kitty could also squeeze between the gaps in the skirt that surrounds the crawl space under the house.  

From the first kitty sighting, River has been adamant that we needed to build a wall on our southern border to quell the cat invasion.  I, along with my parents, took a more measured approach. I told River just because we build a wall doesn't mean the kitties won't find a way in.  

In March the kitties, in an effort to keep warm, ripped off the heat duct that had connected the outside furnace to the floor grates. After a cold late winter weekend without heat, and a big old bill, my parents sided with River and built a brick wall along the gap where the unit meets the house.  They were all mutually satisfied that they had solved the problem.  

Eight weeks ago, my Dad and I saw a fat female cat trying to squeeze under the HVAC unit.  We chased it off. There were small oval cutouts on the unit's base. It didn't look like there was room enough to invade, but life finds a way.  Daddy shoved bricks into the oval cutouts and congratulated himself on a job well done.  

When we went outside I would stop and sniff the skirt. "I think there is something down there," I told River.

“Don't be silly." She said.  "They have no way to get in."  

Last Thursday, while Daddy was working, Mommy leashed us so we could go outside.  She was ready to go out the porch door when she saw five kittens and their mom lying in a sun puddle. The kitties looked like they were having grand fun playing.  "They couldn't have come from under the house," River said. Just like that, the kitties went behind the chair, pushed back the skirt, and slipped under the house.  

River was incensed that the wall she touted would work 100 percent of the time had failed.  I was happy that a more nuanced response to the kitty problem had proven to be wiser. Mommy loved seeing the kitties, but she knew they could not stay.  She called Daddy at work, and he called the Animal Control Officer.  

The officer said he could not come out until Tuesday.  When he did arrive, he would put out a couple of traps. This upset me.  I hate to think of an animal in a cage. The next day when we went out, the kitties were playing under the chair, and the cat was lying in Foley’s garden.  My Mommy prepared to take us out the front door. I stopped and barked at the kitties. “Run for your lives. They are coming to trap you.” The mama cat sat up and nodded her thanks. 

For the next three days, there was no sign of the kitties.  I hoped they had listened to me and had found safer ground. I barked one final warning when the man arrived with the traps.  He put them by the hole where the cats had disappeared. 

On Wednesday morning, the trap was empty, and I gave thanks that no one was caught.  On Thursday I saw something moving in the cage. I looked out the storm door and saw a big possum imprisoned inside.   “You my lawyer?” he asked. I told him I wasn’t. “Can you at least give me some cigs..I need something to trade-in here.” 
Daddy called Animal Control.  A short while later the man arrived, freed the possum and took the trap.  The kitties were safe! 

I contacted Foley who reluctantly agreed to watch over the cats,  and the poor possum too.  

I hope my parents have learned their lesson and won't try to trap kitties because when you do, you often end up with an ugly possum.    Daddy said he had sealed the skirt, but we expect to have more kitties next summer. 

Nature and life always find a way to spoil human plans.  I hope the persistent pussies proved this to my parents. 

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Beat This Caption

You only have one baby in there?  My mom gave birth to six.  It doesn't seem to be very time efficient to give birth on only one 

Monday, August 26, 2019

Monday Question

What are some of the wild animals you have seen?

We have seen possums, squirrels, chipmunks, groundhogs, eagles, owls, vultures, deer, coyotes, turkeys, and rabbits.

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Darby the Shark Fighter Is the August 25, 2019

Earlier this week I was taxed with speaking to sharks and trying to dissuade them from getting close to Cape Cod beaches.  I went as a ghost. I knew if I took corporal form, I was at a high risk of being eaten up. I don't know any land creature that is brave enough to approach a shark. 

That was before I knew of Darby a 1-year old pit-bull who confronted a shark and lived to wag the tail.  This is Darby's story. 

Darby's dad, James White, was fishing from the shore at Bodega Bay in Sonoma County, California.  Darby stayed in the car overlooking the bay and wondered why he didn't just stay home and relax. Sometimes when we ask questions, we get answers we did not expect.  

James hooked something big.  He fought to bring it to shore.  It took him ten minutes to land what turned out to be a sevengill shark.  It wasn't just his fishing skills that helped him land the beast.  The shark was swimming to shore as fast as he was being reeled in.  Perhaps it was looking for lunch.  

At this point, Mr. White's experience as a fisherman nearly led to his undoing.  An inexperienced fisherman would have cut his line and thrown the shark in the sea.  Mr. Brown thought he had the skill to save his line. He reached down to remove the hook from his prey's mouth; the fish mounted a counter-attack. 

The shark twisted and bit down on Mr. Brown's ankle. It severed an artery.  Blood began pumping out of his body covering the shore.  To make a bad situation worse, the shark would not relinquish the hold.  White jerked and turned, hit and kicked hoping the shark retreated.  It was acting more like a fish who had caught a human than a fish caught by a human. 

Meanwhile, Darby was just chilling in the car when he heard his dad scream for help.  Sometimes, when our parents are in danger, we dogs let slip just how talented we are.  Darby opened the car door, hoped his father would not notice his ability to do so, and rushed down the hill.  Without a thought of his own safety, Darby attacked the shark's side biting its gills. 

Unfortunately, this only caused the shark to tighten his grip. White tried to call Darby off, but they would not leave his human in danger.  Realizing his first attempt was unsuccessful, Darby adopted a new tactic.

The only creature in nature who can match a shark's bite is a pit bull. Darby sunk his teeth into the shark's tail and locked on. He began to walk backward up the hill, dragging the shark until it relinquished hold of the leg.

When the shark was clear of his Dad, Darby let him go.  Mr. Brown limped up the hill, grabbed the shark, and threw it into the sea.

Mr.  Brown told everyone that Darby had saved his life.  There would be no parades, no testimonial dinners, just the knowledge that his Dad is proud of him. To a dog that is enough. 

And somewhere in the Pacific is a shark with a pit bull bite on its tail and a whale of a tale to tell.

Friday, August 23, 2019

Foley Enters the Shark Tank

I have never been a big fan of sharks. I try to avoid anything that can chew me up like a Liver Snap.  Even the sharks I meet at the Bridge are cold, aloof and impatient, like a starving man waiting for his order to be filled at Subway.  The only sharks I truly like are the little ones who swim around in a fish tank. My friends Max and Baron have one. He's awesome. He is another soul determined to show smaller is better.  

I have received several prayer requests from business' owners on Cape Cod who are seeing their summer season washed away because of the number of times the beaches need to be closed after another shark sighting.  No matter how good your sales are, no one wants to shop Shark City. 

I love fulfilling prayer requests, but this one was tricky.  I decided the best way to approach the sharks was to be a ghost. The ravenous predators were likely to eat the body I borrowed, and I did not want to visit their dreams because they are dark and twisty places. 

I decided to levitate above them as a ghost. If nothing else it would be a cool visual.  7
I spotted two sharks who were lazily swimming off of Nahant Beach.  I perched above their fins. "Excuse me, " I said brightly. "I am a ghost who needs to ask you a few questions." 

The shark leaped out of the water and tried to bite me, only coming up with vapor.  "Who is there?" He asked, excitedly.

I said I had been tasked with asking them to stop hunting close to the beach and scaring the humans so much they stop swimming.

"We only go close to the shore because that's where the seals are," a shark, who identified himself as Fred, said.  "Have you ever had one of those things? Crunchy on the outside, creamy on the inside, with a caramel center. They are delicious."
I told him I did not like seafood. "My brother Tom was like that,” Ed said.  “Hated seafood. Last I heard he was trying his fin at being a land shark. I wonder how that worked out?." 

I asked him if I got the seals to move if they would stay away from the beach.  Bruce, the second shark, shook his massive head. "Truthfully, we want to scare the humans, with their jet skies, their motorboats, paddleboards boards. They are messing up a perfectly quiet sea.  Sometimes we swim up to them and go: "do, do, do, do, do, do, do, do," and watch them freak out." 

"And sometimes we eat them by mistake, " Ed said. "Have you ever had human?  It's mostly fat, it's gamey, it has a horrible aftertaste, and it is hard to digest.  The grain-free is a little better, but we don't have time to read the labels.

I realized this was one of those dreams that would be answered with an affirmative "no."  But, at least I had tried. I thanked them for listening and said I must get back. The Cape Cod Small Business Organization demands to hear bad news immediately. 
They asked if I could go with them to the ocean floor to watch a movie. It was the shark version of "Jaws."   I was intrigued and said I could hang out with them a little longer. 

The movie was great.  At the end instead of Roy Schneider killing the shark with a lucky shot, the shark lifted its head out of the water and snapped old Roy in two then had a Dreyfus Dumpling for dessert.

I found, as would humans if they took a chance, that sharks were utterly delightful creatures with the one drawback that they might eat you.

But what's a lost leg between friends? 

Thursday, August 22, 2019

River Has a Drinking Problem

"That's enough, River!" I heard mommy say from off in the distance. Mommy never tells me this; she can't get enough of the things I do, except when I am slurping water out of the bowl. 

I am a dog of tiny mouth, nose, and tongue.  To fully quench my thirst I need to stick my face, up to my ears, in the water and lap like a hummingbird trying to get the last bit of frozen nectar from a feeder in winter. 

Mommy doesn't like me spending too long drinking water because I am not a good judge of how much I can hold.  Sometimes, when I finish, water gushes from my throat, causing me to leave a puddle on the floor. 

Pocket has a small snout too.  Still, she can get a drink by gently lapping water.  Conversely, she has no empathy for my troubles.  

"Did you double dunk that bowl?" Pocket asked while waiting behind me for a drink. 

"You took a dunk, you came up for air, and then you dunk again!'


"That's like putting your whole head in the bowl!"

"I have to put my whole head in the bowl. It's how I drink!”  I yelled back.

Pocket shot me a disgusted look and walked away.  She complained to Mommy that I was leaving "floaters" in the water.  That is not my fault. I sniff outside then I get stuff on my big, thick beard. When I stick my head in the water to drink debris comes off. I hear Karl Marx had similar problems with soup. 

After I get a drink twice as much water drips from my beard, then I consumed.  I leave a water trail, like that monster in The Shape Of Water does on the floor.  If I am the monster, then Mommy is the cleaning lady following me around with a Swiffer to keep the water from settling and loving me with all her heart.

Then there is the problem with the noise I make while drinking.  I am rather loud. Mommy says it is a cross between two blind dolphins trying to French kiss and a hypoallergenic monkey attempting to perform oral sex on himself.   Either way, it seems to be upsetting to delicate ears. 

Forgive me, but I think I am an old school drinker.  Animals weren't meant to be like Pocket and delicately lap their water like a Disney princess caring for a dehydrated chipmunk.  We are meant to be noisy, like the rhinos slobbering up more than their share of water on Noah's Ark, or a bunch of Buffalo Bills fan doing a kegstand in the freezing cold stadium parking lot after another close loss.  

I may not be a proper date for a distinguished ball. I grunt when I eat, I snort when I drink, I fart indiscriminately, I leave a trail of water wherever I go, I am a double licker, I have been pregnant, I am not the dog you bring home to mother, but I am loyal, lovable, and give great stare.

I am an All-American dog.  God loves me for it. 

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Beat This Caption

Nothing going on here kids!  Your mommy had something caught in her teeth and I got it out.  Now go back to your rooms and next time knock before coming in

Monday, August 19, 2019

Monday Question

Where is your favorite spot to be scratched?

Pocket: I like to have my ears scratched.

River Son:  My lower belly is my favorite spot.  

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Bella is our August 18 2019 Kitty of the Week

We don't have many happy Bridge crossings here. Sometimes a human-angel is awaiting a new arrival, and their reunion is poignant, but there is also a beloved person left behind  We are lucky if the repair done to a heart by the reunion equals the damage done by the parting.

This week we had a rare happy reunion, although I had to go to the cat village to experience it.  The saddest day for a pet is when their human leaves for the Bridge. It is worse if it is a single-parent home.  The pet not only losses their reason for living but their house too. If the pet is lucky, they will be placed with a family member.  If not they go into the system, loveless and homeless.

When our good dog mom friend Mama Teri's mother passed away, she left behind her beloved cat, Bella.  Mama Teri's mom had made arrangements for Bella to live with Mama Teri's sister and niece after she passed.  Bella was lucky to go to a home filled with love and compassion instead of being on a shelf at PetSmart next to the litter.  But Bella's heart still longed for the woman she had grown up with.

Bella was suffering from cancer and was ready to join her Mom at the Bridge  Her mom visited her in her dreams (we have the advantage of remembering our dream visits because pets' minds are more open to miracles than humans, which is why we still think the Mets can make the playoffs) and her mom asked her to stay just a little bit longer, and to play just a little bit longer, because she didn't mind, and if Bella don't mind, she could take a little time before she left it all behind to play one more time.

Bella could never refuse a request from her Mom.  She said she would keep the Bridge at bay for as long as she could to ease the family's suffering over their mom's loss.  She loved her mom's kids too.

One day last week, after being separated for months, Bella told her mom she missed her and was tired. Her Mom realized Bella had given all that she could and told her it was time for her to come to her true forever home.

There was a  substantial amount of tears shed on the mortal side when Bella took her last mortal breath.  Her soul came to rest in the River and once reunited with her body, she floated to the Bridge.

We dogs hurried over to the cat village to watch the reunion.  We have greeted hundreds of pets who were saddened by their arrival. Finally, we had a soul yearning to be an angel.  On top of that, we would have a mother and child reunion.

We were standing on a bluff above the Bridge.  Judge Cotton was ready to give the oath. Next to her was Bella's Mom wearing the body she had on the last time Bella saw her.  Loud cheers erupted as Bella climbed the stairs toward Cotton and her mom.

Bella anxiously waited as Cotton administered the oath, and then she jumped into her mother's arms. There were a lot of tears, but thankfully, they were happy tears.  Bella didn't need any lessons about visiting her Mom on the mortal side. They were together again forever.

The last time I saw Bella and her mom Bella was happy curled up on her lap, and her Mom was contently stroking her.  They looked like they could stay there for eternity.


Friday, August 16, 2019

For Our Friend Enzo: The Art of Racing in the Rain's Enzo is No Match for the Original

I got an urgent request from my old friend and fellow blogger Enzo today.  When I abandoned my “Ask Aunt Foley” blog, Enzo picked up the gauntlet and has been answering our fellow dog inquiries diligently ever since.   But what if he who answers has a question?

Enzo is suffering a crisis of confidence.  For years he has been the one and true Enzo.  But this week a movie called "The Art of Racing in the Rain" was released featuring a golden retriever named Enzo.   Our Enzo is afraid he is going to become a second rate Enzo. To see if his worries were justified, I screened the movie.

Kevin Costner voices Enzo. He does a fairly good dog, but if I had a voice like his, I would sit by the bowl all day and say: "If I sit next to it, it will be full."  What a wasted opportunity.

The biggest issue with Movie Enzo's character is that he yearns to be human.  Why the hell would he want to do that? Dogs are the superior species. Our pre-prepared food is plopped in front of us at the same time every day.  Humans have to go to prison to get that sort of service. Dogs and cats are the only souls who have their poop picked up and disposed of for them. Cats get it done once a day; dog poop has to be picked up when it is fresh.  Most humans come home from a hellish day at work, look at the dog, and wish they could change places. Who would want to be a human?

Also unrealistic is the love story between Milo Ventimiglia and Amanda Seyfried.   Whenever a young woman falls for a middle-aged man, you can bet some old, balding guy wrote it.  It left me with the feeling that Jack was hitting on Kate's older friend. Creepy.

Then there is the scene where Milo meets Amanda.  Enzo smiles at her and in his Kevin Costner voice, he praises her grooming habits.  Ridiculous! If this were a real scene, Enzo would stick his nose in her crotch. That is how a dog judges a human, not by the color of their skin, but by the smell of their crotch. The world would be a better place, with proper hygiene, if humans did the same.  This is why dogs are better than humans. Our Enzo can sniff Amanda Seyfried's crotch whenever he wants. The worst thing that happens is he’s told: "down boy."  Kevin Costner sniffs Amanda Seyfried’s crotch once, and it is a whole #Metoo disaster. Dogs rule!

Many humans assumed that after the couple meets the film would be a cute dog story like "Marley and Me," but it's "Marley and Me and Manchester By the Sea."  There is death and crying and suffering and a lawsuit and death and death and death. It does stand as a tribute to a dog’s ability to stave off suicide. Casey Affleck became so distraught in Manchester By the Sea he tried to kill himself.  Milo takes Enzo for a walk and it's okay.

The most important question:  Does the dog die? I did not watch until the end. I fell asleep, but my minions told me that Enzo does indeed leave Milo heartbroken.  The movie tries to sell this as a happy ending because Enzo is reborn as a human, but we dogs know it is our worst fears realized.  

My synopsis of the movie:   Boy meets dog and falls in love.  Boy meets girl and falls in love. Boy sufferers immeasurable losses. Boy loses dog.  Dog goes to hell. Happy movie!

So, do not worry, my dear friend Enzo.  Unless you are a human wanna be, or a no crotch smeller, or a pup who is uninterested in food, or a dog who thinks there is a better life without their parents, then you are the only Enzo worth recognizing.

Don't give this movie a second thought. In a week it will be gone from the theaters. A year later, it will gather a little buzz when it is on HBO.  And then it will be forgotten. Being forgotten is something you never have to worry about.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Pocket Wonders if She is Her Own Worst Enemy

This summer has been excellent for walking. We have not had many bad stretches of weather.  There has been some storms, and days that it was too hot to walk, but they have passed quickly.  I don't think we have gone three days this summer without taking our constitutional — not a bad record for this vicinity.

This year we began taking our hikes in the front of our village near the old yellow barn. From there, we walk to the big field on the left.  We do this because my parents mistakenly think that River, and especially I, act like crazed dogs desperately in need of attention when we see humans, so they keep us away from populated areas. We only pass four houses on our new route. It has totally changed our waking habits.

Because the barn sees little activity, it has become a place for the creatures of the night to gather together.  When the sun comes up, they go back in their holes, but they leave behind the most amazing smells.  

If there is no room at the barn, the critters overflow to the field.  By the time we turn to go home, we are on sensory overload.

The different ways River and I sniff are an indicator of our personalities.  I try to sniff everything at once, my head bobbing up and down in the grass. River will find a single blade and bury her face in it studying it like a scientist examining a new flu strain under a microscope.

Still, we miss seeing our humans. Our interactions with them have been few and far between.

This week we were blessed to see two people on our walk.  Better than just seeing us, they stopped, smiled, and reached down to give us blessed attention.

We approached the couple the way we approach life.   River slowly, and silently walked up to the gentleman and gratefully took his scratches.  I went to the woman, excitedly barking: "Me!  Me! Touch me." When the woman did, I immediately went over to the man who had to be better at giving attention. I muscled River out of the way.  The man stroked me once. "Nope, the lady is better," I barked. I went back to find that she was not as good as I remembered, so I barked and went back to the man.  I kept this up for the entire two minutes and only got ten seconds worth of attention. How did this happen?

I barked at them as they walked away and then we went in the opposite direction. "You know," River said, "you would get more attention if you didn't act like a spaz."

Goes to show what she knows. A spaz always gets extra attention.

But, maybe River is right. Perhaps if I learned how to curb my enthusiasm, I would get more attention. Perhaps I am my own worst enemy.

Hark!  What is that sound?   Are those footfalls outside my door?  Bark bark bark. Off I go, exhibiting my enthusiasm.

It is something that should be celebrated, not shunned, even in the most spastic little dogs.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Monday, August 12, 2019

Monday Question

We stole this from a friend on Facebook:  How many poop bags do your parents go through on an average day?
Pocket:  I usually poop three times a day and River poops twice so our answer is five.  Someday it can be less, which is okay, if it is more it's trouble.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Scooter Lawson is our August 11, 2019 Pup of the Week

Once again, we at Rainbow Bridge have been subject to the curse of three.  

This week Scooter became my third friend from the Judd-Lawson gang to ascend to the Bridge, joining his siblings Jack and Jill. 
Scooter's mama Tina has always had large packs. The bigger the pack, the more love in the house.  But, it also means there is more heartache.  

Scooter entered this world with several strikes against him. He was a puppy mill dog and arrived at the Judd-Lawson home with all the social issues and anxieties that accompany them.

It took a lot of patience to get Scooter assimilated to life as a family dog. It is likely, in less experienced families, that Scooter would have been surrendered.  But, Mama Tina had been challenged by dogs before, and she had never given up the fight. 

Scooter found his niche in the crowded pack.  He was goofy, weird, and quirky, which made him stand out.  His mom could not have loved him more if he had come from champion bloodlines.  

 Scooter was unable to avoid the health issues that plague puppy mill dogs.  In 2016, at nine years of age, Scooter became gravely ill. After days of mystery, as Scooter drifted further away, the vet diagnosed him with hemorrhagic gastrointestinal disease.  After medication, he was back to his quirky self.  

Three years later, that wasn't to be the case.  All dogs are given a certain amount of heartbeats.  Puppy mill dogs get even less. Scooter managed to get more than twelve years out of his heart, a startling achievement given his humble beginnings.   But, when the Bridge Charons told him it was his time Scooter had little energy to hold them off. 

The Bridge Charons are the ones who present us with the final illness, which will be the medical reason we go to the Bridge.  Without humans, we would leave without fuss, which is why you never see squirrels with cancer. They just go to the Bridge to further torment us.  But, people are logical, and they need a reason that we go, which is why we get the final disease. 

This one came without a name.  Scooter became tired and would not eat.  He spent a weekend at the vets, but there was no improvement.  He was in pain and exhausted. His mom knew she had to help her little man.  Heartbroken, she made the sacrifice of setting him free taking on all his pain on to herself. 

Jack and Jill were thrilled to be reunited with their little brother.  When he saw them, he bounded across the Bridge like a puppy, which is how he felt.  He was so grateful to his mom for taking away the awful pain. If possible, he is even more devoted to her as an angel.   

Scooter was given one privilege when he arrived. We angles have birds who are fed continuously. Scooter was allowed to send the birds to the puppy mill breeders who caused him so many problems and let the birds poop all over them.

Scooter attests that no revenge is better than Rainbow Bridge revenge.

Friday, August 9, 2019

Foley Shares Popular Dog Hashtags

We dogs have kept a secret from you humans:  We have our own Twitter. Like a high pitched whistle, these tweets are only recognized by dogs.  I have been allowed to share with you some popular hashtags. 

#WhatsThatSmell?: This one is always trending. As is,

#NeverHump:  Very popular with the spade and neuter crowd.

#IsThatThunderOrFireworks?:  An oft posted and self-explanatory summer hashtag.

#WhereisMommyWhereisMommyWhereisMommyWhereisMommyWhereisMommy?: This, along with #WhereisDaddy? is tweeted a million times by nervous dogs throughout the day. When their parents come home the tweet #IsItSupperYet? is posted a thousand times.

#ThrowTheBallThrowTheBallThrowTheBallForTheLoveOfGodThrowTheBall: This is the number one trending topic at the park.

#FakeBrady: Someone who pretends to throw you the ball but doesn't, making you chase after nothing, and look foolish. 

#ChanelNumberBleh: A dog that had been shampooed so much they lost their natural scent.

#MuellerButtSniffer:  A dog who spends an abnormally long time sniffing your butt and when he is done he is unable to draw any conclusions about you.

#HisLifeIsAnOpenButt: Dogs who give away too much information about themselves on the first whiff.

#FoodMyHumanDroppedOnTheFloor: Self-explanatory.

#NurseRatchedTreat:  When you think you are getting a piece of cheese and you find a pill in it.  

#BitterLitter: When your ungrateful kids won't call you.

#SecondSuperDiner: A poop eater.

#Pussyhats: An ill-fated dog scheme to make cats wear sombreros.

#FreeASAPRocky: A plea for a squirrel to be allowed out of his tree so you can kill it right away.

#Resist: The bath

#MAGA: A proud post for dogs who visit senior centers and means My Adopted Grandma's Awesome.

#Hamburgular: A dog who steals food from the grill.

#CommonStreetWalker:  A dog who walks on the street with just a leash and collar.

#DrRichardKimbleForaDay:  A dog that runs away from home for a few hours then comes home.

#MyPeopleAreTheBest:  What every dog tweets constantly

Thursday, August 8, 2019

River Gets a Clean Bill of Health and a Bad Attitude

This week I had my annual examination, or as more commonly known, my yearly humiliation.

Every time I  get in the car without Pocket, I end up at the vet.  But, that does not stop me from thinking, when Pocket is put in her crate, and I go outside with my parents, that we are going somewhere magical where Pocket is not allowed.

I sat on mommy’s lap as we steered through town.  I smiled at everyone. Then Daddy turned into the vet’s office parking lot.  I still smiled, having convinced myself that it was a social visit. 

Mommy carried me inside.  Any chances that this was a social visit ended when we were told to wait in the foyer.  Welcome visitors are never told to sit and wait, only paying customers.  

I squirmed to get down.  Daddy told Mommy I wanted to explore.  Wrong! I remembered the last time I got an exam they asked for a fecal sample.  My morning poop had gone in the trash. Even though I do not like the vet, I am accommodating.   I took a giant crap in the middle of the floor while wearing a proud expression. To my surprise, the vet tech threw this crap out too. So my crap wasn’t good enough for them? This was not going to be a good trip.  

I was brought in the exam room.  The techs told me how cute I was.  I hate when you go to the doctor’s, and they tell you what you already know.  They put me on the scale. I despised the feeling of the metal under my paws and moved around trying to find traction.  This caused the reading to fluctuate. The techs waited until the reading was at the highest point, said that was my weight, and declared I gained a pound!  So hurtful, and so unprofessional. 

Then my back half was firmly gripped, and I realized my precious bodily fluid was under siege.  I tensed my muscles, pushed off with my paws, wiggled like a Kardashian trying to escape a pair of tight jeans, all to no avail.  The experienced bloodsuckers tapped me dry, or at least enough to fill a tube. I had been violated! How do you take my blood but my discard crap?  Momma inquired about the rejection of fecal matter, and the vet said they only test it if presented with a problem. I wish I had known that. I would have saved my poop for the shoes of those who had brought me here. 

Then the vicious techs left me. I had a few precious seconds to convince my parents we needed to flee.  Neither acquiesced. The door opened, and the vet proper, a lesser-Herriot appeared.

I stood silently while they checked my vital organs. I appreciate this part of the process and fully cooperated.  Then the vet smelled inside my ears. "She has yeast," the doctor said. "It smells like Doritos." 

Bitch, what?  Doritos? Like I didn't smell from behind the door that D'angelo's number nine sub you had for lunch.  You best not be coming up in here with a “smells like Doritos" comment when you is all mushroom steak and cheese breath.  You be trippin'. 

The vet told mommy if she cleaned my ears regularly, I should be fine.  Sure, my ears. But what about my pride? She then checked my pearly whites.  She pulled my lips back to see the big back teeth where even Julia Roberts has gunk.  She found the treasure of tartar. "You might want to consider getting them cleaned," the vet said.  Yes, and you might consider a high colonic at noon. 

The vet noticed the chafing on my belly. Poppa told her that was from my demanding need to be scratched there three hours a day.  The vet nodded. Great, now she thinks I’m cutting. 

Finally, the wicked vet of the west left.  A few minutes later, the tech told me I had a dormant case of Lyme disease, which I have known about for the past five years.  Some blame dormant limes for my sour disposition.  

The tech asked if I needed dental work, and my parents declined.  Foley and Pocket had dental work done. My parents know bad teeth when they see it, and mine still look good. 

And then, when we left, my parents had to pay money for this abuse.  I guess getting a reasonably clean if kind of smelly, bill of health was worth it, but I sure hope I don’t see the inside of that place for a year.  Now, I have to go. For some reason, I am craving corn chips. 

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Beat This Caption

After all the year's of eating that tasteless cardboard
now you tell me grain-free isn't good for me?

Monday, August 5, 2019

How do you sleep?  Do you run in your sleep?  Do you whimper or bark?  Do you twitch when you dream?  Do you snore?  Do you like to snuggle?  Tell us more
Pocket:  I like to snuggle when I sleep. I am pretty quiet but I do let out a whimper now and then.

River Song:  I can wake up my neighbors by snoring. I also run.  I am a handful.  

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Guluva, A Hero Dog, is our August 4,2019 Pup of the Week

Dogs will do anything to save their parents, but Guluva, a crossbreed dog from Philippi, South Africa, was ready to make the ultimate sacrifice for his family.  
Guluva lives with his beloved human, Derrick Mfengwawa, and his family.  He was happily playing in his gated yard when Mfengawa’s brother-in-law drove up and unlocked the gate that surrounds the property.   

Guluva heard a commotion by the gate.  Taking pride in his role as a protector, he walked towards it and found their guest trying to get back in his car while being surrounded by a group of criminals who were attempting to steel the vehicle. 

When the criminals saw a determined Guluva charging at them, they turned heel and ran. One of them fired a shot as he fled. 

Guluva was ready to sacrifice his life to save humans. We dogs may not have the best eyesight, but we do have sharp ears and outstanding noses. 

Guluva heard the bullet crackling through the air and smelled the bitter, sour scent of a recently discharged shot.  He determined where it was and jumped in its path to impede its progress. 

The bullet hit Guluva in the face. It briefly staggered the dog.   He ran in circles and rubbed his face on the ground. Remarkably the bullet did not take him down. 
When Derek's sister heard the shot, she ran outside screaming that someone had shot her boyfriend.  Derek saw blood on the ground and reached the same conclusion. They were stunned to find the boyfriend uninjured and Guluva still standing. 

Then Daniel noticed his brave little man was bleeding from the nose and mouth. His brother-in-law told him how Guluva had taken the bullet for him. Daniel got a towel from the house and wrapped Guluva's head then rushed him to the vet. 

The dogs who were on prayer patrol that day were discouraged about Guluvu's prognosis.  They flew their prayers up to the mountains to The Ones Who Decide and vehemently lobbied them to have mercy and to spare Guluvu.  The dog angels knew the Ones Who Decide did not like getting involved in helpless causes. Still, the angels persisted with every measure of their devotion.   

We don't know what the cause of the miracle that happened that day was.   It might have been the prayers, or that Guluva's feat was so exceptional that it needed to be acknowledged by the Ones, or that it was just a lucky shot, but when the vets examined Guluva they determined the bullet went through his nose, the roof of his mouth and exited under his jaw, while not hitting anything vital.  A few stitches would staunch the bleeding. Guluvu is to stay at the vet's for a few to ensure there was no infection, but his prognosis was for a full recovery. 

Guluvu is still in need of prayers. A lot can happen when a dog is hospitalized.   Those angels who flew the original prayers to the One who Decides are working extra hard to make sure that' the little hero is returned to his family, safe and sound.  

So I bring to you the rarest to stores. The hero dog who stopped a bullet and got shot in the face for his troubles but somehow in a great confluence of love, prayers, and devotion is still with his family ready to save them on another day.

Dogs are humans angels on Earth, and sometimes they need the angels at the Bridge to help them. We are always happy to oblige.

Friday, August 2, 2019

Foley Catches Up on Some Unanswered Prayers

I have been so busy; lately I have been unable to answer some of the less pressing prayers that have come my way.  Please bear with me while I do so now. 
Please give me guidance on what to do with my dog, Fred. He has never got along with other dogs. He goes behind me to avoid them on walks, and if one comes to close, he snarls at them. Now that he's a senior dog I worry he doesn't have any doggy friends. Should I introduce him to other dogs to see if you'll finally get along with them?  Anxious mom. 

Dear Anxious Mom:  How would you feel if you lived your whole life avoiding idiotic people in the quest of solitude and when you reached an age when you needed to depend on others they decided the best thing for you would be to sit you in the park all day and have you put up with stupid people?  Fred just doesn't like other dogs. Let him live the rest of his life in peace. We dog only need human companionship. Spend less time worrying if your dog is lonely and more time with him. 

I am planning to go with my husband and three children to Auckland for six months on a sabbatical. My husband will be working at a hospital there. I think it'll be an excellent experience for the whole family. The only problem is we can't bring our Yorkie Digby with us. Friends of my daughters say that they will take him for the six months, but they would like to share custody of him when we come back. Please guide me on the right thing to do. Traveling mom. 

Dear Traveling Mom: So your entire family is going but not your Yorkie?  Isn't your Yorkie part of the family? I was watching this documentary from the 80s about this family that left their little tow-headed boy home alone while they went off on a sabbatical. He ended up being attacked by crazed robbers and during the encounter, and he almost killed them with fishing line and a paint bucket.  Would you want that for Digby? If he can't go, maybe no one should go. Digby is going to be very confused when you come back. Having a dog is a commitment, and sometimes a commitment means you can't do things you would like to do. Besides, why do you want to go to a country that puts immigrating dogs in cages?  It is barbaric, unlike putting immigrating kids in cages, which is beautiful. 

My dog Molly is perfect in every way except at night when we are sleeping she sneaks in our rooms and steals our shoes. When we get up in the morning, we find them in her dog bed. Is there any way we can get her to stop stealing our shoes? Shoe lover 

Dear Shoe Lover: I think Molly is aware of the fact that she lives in a house with a bunch of idiots. If your dog is stealing your stuff in your sleep, put it up higher. I don't think she's taking the shoes for any nefarious purposes. I think she knows you're all going to be stumbling around looking for things in the morning and if you know the shoes are in her bed you'll probably get to work on time, won't get fired, and her kibble supply will stay steady. Don't feel bad.  The dog is the smartest member of every family I have encountered. 

Thursday, August 1, 2019

River's Kissing Rules

I have rules about kissing. I am the kisser.  Whoever I am kissing is the kissie. They need to sit there and take it. Kissing is like kicking off in football. Both participants can't kick-off at the same time. Then your balls would be at either end of the field, and nothing would get accomplished. 

Poppa is my main kissing partner. I will give Momma a smooch here and there, but Poppa has totally given up on life, so I can kiss him as long as I want.  

I cling to Momma more than to Poppa.  I wait for her outside the shower. I fret and pace when she's not home.  I sit on her lap for hours on end. But, as a lickee, she has her shortcomings. 

First is that she doesn't want to be licked. I'm not going to spend a lot of energy kissing her if she doesn't appreciate it. Second, she has much better hygiene than Poppa. You can barely get any taste off of Momma the way she washes her face and brushes her teeth. But Papa's lackadaisical bathroom manner leads to greasy skin, and food stuck between his teeth. That is why he is the perfect candidate for a good licking.  

Last week, I was intently kissing him trying to dislodge a bit of corn that was stuck between his teeth two weeks ago when Poppa did the most unmentionable, unconscionable, unprofessional, act ever:  He puckered 

I loathe the sight of the human face puckering.  They suck in their flabby cheeks. Their eyes become even beadier.  And then, for some unknown reason, they try to put their lips on me. Disgusting. 

I made a little moaning sound and looked at Momma, hoping she would tell him to stop. She laughed and told me not to b ea doofus.   A doofus? A Griffon is never a doofus. 

I decided if I closed my eyes when I licked I wouldn't see that awful puckered face. But, the sensitive nerves on my tongue told me his lips were puckering.  I stopped and looked at him with my most ferocious gaze, which is pretty much my everyday look with a little more glare.  

I was left with little choice. I lifted my right paw on to his lips and raked it down his chin. Papa let out a cry and his hand went to his mouth to see if he was bleeding.  I knew he wasn't. A dog knows the strength of their own paws. Poppa looked at Momma, but she remained equally uninterested in either of our plights. 'That's what you get for puckering," she said. 

So, now I have added a face rake to my repertoire. As soon as I feel the onset of a pucker, the claws come out. Although, I do wonder if between the suffocation that can be caused by the rapid movements of my little tongue and the pain that can be caused by my clawing if Papa isn't enjoying this a little too much. 

Regardless, I was able to achieve my goal of making him shut the puck up. 

Monday Question

  Where are your favorite spots in the house? I love both my parent's chair...