Friday, August 30, 2013

Early morning Ideas

     You know the feeling when you wake up, turn off the alarm, go to the bathroom, make coffee, and start eating your breakfast?  The feeling of, "ok, it's going to be an ok day because I'm at least out of bed and look at what all I've accomplished in 15 minutes."  This is usually the point in the day I start thinking about "what should I start writing about for the blog?" and I start thinking of different things and partially composing some things in my head.  Of course, I'm not near the computer at this point.  That in my room on the headboard away from the cereal that I will most likely spill while trying to type on said computer.  It's 5:50 am and for some unknown reason, I think, "I'll remember these post ideas later today when I have the time to write them down on my computer."
     It's not a totally unreasonable idea as I am a computer teacher and spend the majority of my day looking at and using computers.  And then reality sits in.  While yes, I spend the day running between my students, colleagues, and computers, I never have that spare moment to punch my ideas into blogger.  (Not even on the blogger app)
     I don't even attempt to take care of anything like this on the commute home (hour long car drive).  By the time I get home, walk pups, make dinner, do some work, and attempt to relax by blogging, I'm sooo out of it, I can't think of a thing to write.   I know I had wonderful blogging ideas at 5:30 am.  Why is it I can't remember them for the life of me by 7:30 pm?  *Sigh*

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Monday, August 26, 2013

Shopping with out the pups

     "I didn't recognize you without the pups!"  I heard this several times this weekend while at the dog mall with only The Hubbs along to pick up his new glasses.  We picked up his glasses, walked around the mall enjoying the fresh air and mild temperatures for this time of year.  We even stopped into Sur La Table for a few moments.  I'm defiantly not used to shopping with out Annie and Paul in tow.  It was amazingly simple to walk around the store without having to worry about what they'll do around the large glass displays.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Back to School

This week marks my first week back to school. The kids will arrive later (ready or not).  So for today's early morning, I'm leaving you with a pic from the night before school started for me.  Annie and Paul snuggled on the couch with me...

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Early Morning at the Dog Mall

Annie and Paul were about 15 minutes early before 3 Dog opened and couldn't figure out why no one would let them in.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Old tag collection

     Each year, we get new tags for Annie and Paul from the city (registration tags).  Every 3 years we get new rabies tags.  And for some reason, I can't bring myself to throw them out or toss them in the recycling bin.  So here they sit.  I've added them to the Christmas tree once or twice when we've lacked ornaments, but I'm not sure what else to do with them after that.  Any suggestions?  Sadly, this is as clean as I can get them.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Annie Loves her Dad

     If you look at the paperwork we have on A&P, you'll see that Annie is "my" dog and Paul "belongs" to the Hubbs.  Now, if you actualy followed us around for a day, you'd see that Annie is an absolute Daddy's Girl and Paul is just as much a Moma's Boy.
Annie telling the Hubbs that she needs to go outside.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Sleeping with Paul

     Last night was one of those nights where Annie and Paul woke me up at 2 to go outside and use the yard.  I was happy to wake up (they at least woke me up before using a corner of the hallway) and just as happy to head back to bed afterwards.  However, Paul had different ideas.  Annie headed back to their room with a beagle bagel from 3 Dog, and Paul took his and ran to our room.

     I walked out to the couch in the living room and got Paul to join me out there.  He at the bagel on the floor then hopped onto the couch with me.

     Sleeping with Paul always seems like a sweet idea, until you try to do it.  So how is it a 50 some pound dog and kick the Hubbs out of bed?  Somehow, he rotates his body until he's no longer parallel to you, but perpendicular.  The last few hours of sleep for both of us was spent on the edges of our mattress.  Ah well, c'est la vie!

Monday, August 12, 2013

No Blog Is An Island: Why I blog

     A couple of months ago, I posted something on my personal Facebook page about Annie and Paul.  I can't remember now what it was about, but within an hour, I had several responses from Aunt Karen and E at Our Waldo Bungie.  They both bounced ideas off of each other and gave me a bunch of solutions on what to do.

     Last week when Annie started removing her own fur because of flees, my anxiety set in.  Once again, it was fellow bloggers to the rescue.  Aunt Karen swung through to confirm that I was looking at flee bites on Annie's back and Melvin and Jake's Mom kept me calm by telling me about Melvin's allergies and hair loss over the years.

     Last week, I wrote to Athena's Mom at Pitlandia about dog allergies and how much Benadryl they were giving Bena.  Thinking maybe I could just up the dose and Annie would stop itching.  (She's now on (Claritin 10mg a day for 60lbs dog.))  We ended up consoling each other's lack of knowledge over "what's wrong with our dogs?!?!?!"

     About once a month, I see a cute Mutts comic strip somewhere on Facebook.  I immediately hit share and send it to Shadow, Buddy, and Ginger's Mom, G, in India.  She may be sleeping or at work (and I've given up counting time zones), but I always get a happy response back in 24 hours of how it was loved by all.

     This past year, one of my students pointed out that I no longer talked about my dogs as much as I had in prior years.  I realized that often when coworkers talked about their child at home, I'd chime in with what Annie and Paul did that was similar and my students would hear of Annie and Paul that way.

     "No man is an island" is an age old poem by John Donne that highlights beautifully what I love most about being a blogger.  Truth be told, I hate to write.  It is the bane of my existence and often, I will go out of my way to get out of writing.  But, I write here because it allows me to be part of a community of dog lovers.  It gives me an outlet and a link to other people who have been down this road before.  We may not live in the same state, time zone, or continent, but we all support one another.

     I am constantly falling in love with the world that was opened up to me when one summer I discovered the blog "Two Pitties in the City."  From there, I've discovered countless blogs: "Love and a 6 Foot Leash", "Our Waldo Bungie", "Pitlandia", "Mr. and Mrs. Nola Kisses", "Oh, Melvin", "Paw Prints in the Sands of Time", "Oh, Corbin", "Bad Rap Blogs", "Erie-sisti-Bulls", "Rolling with Rubi" and many more.

    This is my favorite little corner of the world that I choose to live in.  And I thank all of you who live here with me.

Friday, August 9, 2013

The Saga of the Itchy Annie: Flees

Monday Night
     On Monday, I had to go to my first training of the school year (CPI certified!).  By the time I got home that night, Annie had removed 2 square inches from her backside.  She's always been itchy since we first got her, but she's never removed her own fur.  Upon closer examination, we noticed a bug bite on her back.  I did our monthly treatment of K9 Advantix.  Benadryl and some calamine lotion was all we thought we needed to help Annie out.

    On Tuesday, I went in for my 2nd day of training and once again returned home to find Annie had taken another square inch of fur off her backside.  Now the anxiety set in hard core.  Benadryl had usually done the trick in the past for taking the edge off, but this was a new one on me.  I started the hardcore freak out of thinking of everything that could be wrong with my dog.  Mange, separation anxiety, flee infestation, and allergy testing started rolling in my head and into my search results, knowing we didn't have the money for anything major to treat.  Melvin's Mom calmed me by telling me stories of what she's had to do for Melvin.
Wednesday Morning.

     Wednesday morning, while lying in bed with Annie scratching her, I found another flee.  "Great!" I thought, "The flees are laughing at me!"  I quickly got Annie off of our bed, closed the door, and called the vet.  I only wanted to know if I put Advantix on Annie on Monday night, if it was too soon to do another round of it.  I only got half way through the question when Gina the receptionist/vet teck stopped me and said that they were being overrun by flees this year.  (If you live in Virginia, here's another reason to hate all of the rain.  The flees are having a field day right now!)  She said that there was a prescription for a pill that would kill the flees as soon as they bit Annie or Paul.  And for the same price I pay for their monthly does of Advantix!  Since we had been in for Paul's yearly exam just a few weeks ago, we didn't need an appointment!  The anxiety stopped and I started the search for how to get rid of flees.

     I started the cleaning process.  Dog blankets, linens, our bed stuff, area rugs, and anything else I could wash was tossed into the wash and then the dryer.  All mattresses and box springs have been encased in vinyl.  I vacuumed the couch, recliners, and office chair.  Anything that can't be washed that Annie and Paul adore has been double bagged and is now sitting in the garage for a month just waiting (dog beds too big to be washed, toys, and pillows).    Aunt Karen stopped by to confirm that it was a flee bite, and noticed that Annie had a bit of a rash where she was taking the fur out.  Annie's skin is actulay black and white spotted (think Dalmatian fur as her skin.) so trying to see any abnormalities on her skin can get tricky.
     When we went into the vet, I brought Annie and Paul along.  (Double trouble as they're called) Gina pulled up our charts, took out the meds and patiently waited while I pointed out the fur that Annie had removed and commented on how she had never done that.  I also commented how 3 tabs of Benadryl twice a day wasn't helping either.  Dr Bunting was consulted and Annie got a mini vet visit in the lobby (free!) along with a steroid/antihistamine combo prescription.  She also said to switch from Benadryl to Claritin.  (60lbs dog get's 10 mg once a day).  For the first time ever, we got out of the vet paying less than $100!

     We got home, dug 2 spoons into the peanut butter, broke down the Comfortis (the big pills above), added in a vitamin e supplement,  Annie got her new prescription and within 20 minutes, both were both fast asleep on the couch.  Annie snored blissfully.  It's now Friday, and for the most part, Annie hasn't itched since Wednesday.  She normally does the lizard Anne when she get's her back scratched.  That's not even happening now.  Slowly, the fur is starting to grow back in on her butt.  Life is returning to normal.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Wednesday Video: Annie Itches

     If you're like me, you don't need to see the video to see Annie chewing on her paws.  You know what it looks like when a pup chews on their paws to deal with itches.  But still, it highlights nicely what these are like and why I'm going nuts!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Events of the Past: Arts in the Park

     Arts in the Park happens the weekend before Mother's Day each year in Byrd Park in Richmond.  It's a great chance for the community to come out and enjoy the arts be it painting, sculpture, garden, hammocks, poetry, glass work, soaps, jewelry, and soo much more.
Paul thinking about Mr. B's TeePee and wondering about what life would be like with one.  Too bad no one sells pop up hoguns.  
     Since I usualy go on my own, I don't take Annie and Paul together.  Annie and I went on Saturday for Mother/Daughter bonding time and Paul and I went Sunday.

     Annie spent most of the 3 hours we were there sniffing.  She is defiantly a hound.  We only got through half of the exhibits while we were there because Annie stopped and sniffed at every tree in the park.  So you can imagine how slowly we walked the whole time.  But she got lots of compliments and lots of little kids pet to pet her.  

     Paul and I made record time the next day going around the park.  I was very proud of him in the double booth of glass bird baths.  The place you pay for the glass was at the back of the booth and there were lots of distractions and people and expensive glass all around.  One false move would mean a large bill at both the emergency vet and to the artist.  With the help of cheese and his thundershirt, he stayed very calm!!

     I think Paul had lots of fun when he found the dirt a little while later.......