Monday, October 2, 2017

How I Found the Hidden Good in My Dog's Ill-Timed Upset Stomach

  • This is the third time I've published this post since 2012. 
  • In 2012, I was five years younger, but no wiser.
  • When I published the post in 2015, I titled it, 
    "How to Make 'Lemons' When Your Dog's Poop Looks Like Lemonade."
  • I do not buy the whole "life gives you lemons" metaphor. I mean, who said lemons are bad? No one--the metaphor writer was wrong. Lemons are good. Lemonade, in contrast, is fattening and can make one's teeth rot (if not consumed in moderation).
  • My life has changed somewhat in five years; however, the "bad" things are still in plentiful supply. 
  • The corgi's lives have changed, too. They haven't been crated at night in years. They mostly sleep on me. 
  • I promise not to mention the word "lemonade," in the same sentence with the words "dog" or "poop," for the rest of this post.  

Title of original post from March 23, 2012...

Exploding Dog Butts and Ill-Fitting Clothes - An Experiment in Looking on the Bright Side

My day could conceivably have gone two ways today: crappy or awesome.

Crappy attitude?

Okay, well, if I'm speaking in literal terms, so far, there's been lots of crap. But I'm not speaking in literal terms...just yet.

So because it's Friday, and I LOVE Fridays, I thought it would be fun to list all the crappy things that have happened in my house so far today and then for each crappy thing, come up with a way for me to look on the bright side. 

So, for example, if my bedroom smoke detector had started chirping at 2 a.m., forcing a middle-of-the-night battery replacement and minor sleep disturbance, I would argue that on the bright side, my family would not have burned up in a potential 3 a.m. house fire. 

Pretty simple, yes?

OK, here we go...

Crappy Thing (CT): Jon Farleigh broke out of his crate at 2:50 a.m. because he had to go RIGHT THEN.
On the Bright Side (OtBS): He didn't go in his crate.

CT: I didn't get back to sleep until approx. 4:15 a.m.
OtBS: While I was up, I watched a graphic WWII documentary (on the Smithsonian Channel). In comparison to that, my problems seemed petty.

CT: JF's crate had a pile of poop in it when he came out of it this morning.
OtBS: It was still in one neat pile and only touching the hard plastic crate floor (easy clean-up!).

CT: After coming in from being walked (by Middle Child - who told me--inaccurately, it turns out--JF had NOT done #2 outside), I discovered JF's back end to be a giant mess, so (while 2 of my kids were trying not to miss the school bus) I had to give him a bath (with kiwi-scented shampoo).
OtBS: He didn't have a chance to put his poopy butt all over the carpet or upholstery. And, the kids still made their buses, proving I can do several things at one time, when pressed.

Positive outlook?
CT: About 15 minutes after his bath, JF (with a twinkle in his eye) sneaked out of the kitchen, pooped in the family room and tracked it back into the kitchen. And I had to give him a second bath.
OtBS: His butt hadn't been that clean and sweet-smelling since the day he was born and his mother licked him clean. Also, I got to do a load of towels.

(Note: JF is OK; he just ate something disagreeable, probably deer poop.) 

Look how curly his fur gets after a bath!

CT: JF didn't get his breakfast, except for a teaspoonful each of mashed pumpkin and plain Greek yogurt.
OtBS: BOTH dogs got to eat yummy pumpkin and yogurt. (Note: JF didn't poop again for 3 hours after eating, and did not require a third bath.)

CT: My summer wardrobe shrank a half-size over the winter.
OtBS: I get to go shopping? (OK, not.) Tight clothes make me not want to eat? (Not really--they make it harder to breathe.) I get to spend more time outside (and not sitting) with the dogs (and/or family)? Yes! 

In summary: My day was awesome because:
  • I'm not a statistic in a war documentary.
  • Jon Farleigh's crate and butt are squeaky clean.
  • My dogs got to eat something yummy and wholesome.
  • I can multitask.
  • I have clean towels.
  • I have an excuse to go outside and play. 
Hope you are having an awesome day, too! 😊

UPDATE 8:34 p.m.: Because I was scrambling to get this post finished and not paying enough attention to my family's dinner, sizzling on the outdoor grill, I have another CT to add to the list:

CT: My hamburgers got burned to briquettes in a grease fire. Oh yes, friends, they did.

No lighter fluid required.
OtBS: I saw a Bald Eagle while driving back from the grocery store (because I had to go out and buy more beef). I had time to prune some plants in the garden while I was outside (not writing this post) supervising the grill. And it turns out, there was enough good cooked meat inside those black rocks to scrape out and add to Jon Farleigh's bland dinner (and breakfast tomorrow). Furthermore, if he could talk (thank heaven he can't, but if he could) he'd probably tell me he wishes he had more upset stomachs, because the recovery menu tastes SO good! 

Suddenly, I really want chocolate ice cream...

How's your day going? 

Monday, September 11, 2017

10 Reasons Why My Corgis Are Strange

For the record, there are more than 10 reasons the corgis are strange; it's just that I haven't mentioned these particular reasons here, in much detail anyway, before now.

10 Reasons Why My Corgis Are Strange

1. Jon Farleigh: Carries a "pacifier" (e.g., Kong, bone, rope, dirty, half-destroyed plush toy, empty plastic bottle, etc.) everywhere he goes. If it's not in his mouth (because his mouth is otherwise occupied or he's asleep), it's within reach.

His pacifier du jour.

2. Dewi: When on car rides, sits with his entire head, snout first, shoved into the crease between the back seat and the door. 

3. Jon Farleigh: Charges any cat who attempts to escape his ever-watchful eye. And by charge, I mean he springs to his feet, while violently shaking his "pacifier"-toting head. Note: No animals have ever been injured during this process (in fact, the cats mostly roll their eyes); however, some (humans included) have been jarred awake from sound sleep.

4. Dewi: Humps Jon Farleigh every time he (Jon Farleigh) charges a cat leaving the room. (Recap: Cat leaves room => JF charges cat => Dewi humps JF. Repeat, as necessary.)

5. Jon Farleigh: Growls whenever he's enjoying a particularly good back scratch.

6. Dewi: Screams in fear whenever he thinks he's going to get his nails trimmed* (as in, I am holding his paw in one hand and the clippers in the other). And by scream, I mean scream (not whine, not yelp, not bark - scream). Like this baboon scream:

Like this, except not a yawn. And substitute clippers for the dremel.

Like the last time we went to the vet for his annual physical, and they needed some blood for his heartworm check...

Me to vet assistant: He might scream. He screams when I handle his paws and he sees the nail clippers.
Assistant: That's okay, a lot of dogs do. Just hug him, like so, while we get a little blood from his wrist.
Me: [hugs Dewi]
Dead people: [wake up]
Me: [soothingly to Dewi] It's okay, buddy, it's all over! What a good boy!
Vet tech: All we did was swab the site with alcohol; keep hugging him! We need to get the vessel on the first try.
Me: [to myself] Good lord, it was just a swab?!?!
1/2 dozen or so bystanders staring through the examining room door: [wonder whether to call 911]
Me: [To myself] I told them he'd scream. [to Dewi] It's okay, buddy, just a little bit longer! Good boy! Good boy! [to the Heavens] Please, God, please let that needle go in the vein on the first try.
Dewi: [quiet]
Vet tech: All done! Good job, Dewi! [Straight-up lies, while wiping beads of sweat off her brow.]
The vet'll be by in a few minutes to read the test.

7 minutes later...

Vet: [smiling] I understand this guy got a little upset getting his blood drawn.
Dewi: [wiggles and beats tail out of sheer joy]
Me: [trying not to giggle] Yeah, but he's okay now. It was just his feet. He'll be perfectly unfazed by the rest of the exam, including his shots. Really.
Vet: OK, but I've got something here that'll keep him busy--just in case--while I give him the shots. [produces jar of ground chicken baby food; proceeds to spoon half of it into a paper bowl, and place it in front of Dewi]
Me: [to myself, as Dewi scarfs down the food] Boy, does that dog know how to work a room. 

Addendum: I forgot to mention that--when he doesn't perceive me to have the clippers--Dewi loves to have his paws handled. In fact, he voluntarily "hands" them to me for all-over, between-the-pad massages. I love those stubby white feet!

OK, back to the list...

7. Jon Farleigh: Yaps and "pecks" (bonks) Maddox with his nose whenever Maddox walks into the kitchen. Conversely, is afraid to get within 5 feet of Maddox everywhere else in the house.

Like this, except not five feet away, in the kitchen, and with lotst more bonks. 

8. Dewi: Is afraid of inflated balloons.

9. Jon Farleigh: Hates so badly when the cats play with string, that he steals the string, shakes it until it's "dead," and then sits on it for safe keeping. 

10. Jon Farleigh and Dewi: Have no fear of loud noises, including (knock wood) thunder. Probably because those loud noises--compared to their loud protests against string and nail clippers, for example--pale in comparison. 

* Dewi has not always screamed (at me) while getting nail trims, nor has he ever experienced a nail injury. However, the screaming and stress is why I (mostly) take him to the groomer for nail trims now, because, for some reason, he does not scream at her.

What strange things do your dogs (or cats, if you don't have dogs) do?

Saturday, September 2, 2017

My Corgi Licked My Brain

Previously published, but still true...

OK, maybe Jon Farleigh only managed to get the back of my eyeball (when I accidentally sucked his tongue up my nose, as he and Dewi tried to lick my face off!). Nevertheless, that's what I get for lying flat on my back to get these pictures of me for the "Meet the Bloggers" hop sweeping through pet blog-land this week (2013). 

OK, if I was truly, fully participating in the blog hop, I'd answer a handful of set questions about myself--like what's my favorite book, movie, food, actor, extracurricular activities, and whether or not I'm happy with the way I turned out in life (or something like that). But, I'm only half-participating, so I'm just gonna answer these three questions that I made up by myself:

1. If you had to transform into a fruit or vegetable, what would you choose to be?
A strawberry, because they wear their seeds on the outside. 

2. If you could choose one other breed of animal to have as a pet (hypothetically, of course), what would it be?
A cow, and I would call her Sugar Plum, milk her and churn my own butter.

3. What is the most embarrassing thing you've ever done?
In July of the summer between 4th and 5th grade, I laughed so hard I peed my pants sitting in a restaurant booth with my three younger* siblings. Specifically, on a family vacation in rural Pennsylvania, having lunch in a Friendly's restaurant full of older couples eating in complete, dreadful silence. Yeah, silence, until someone (not to be named) farted like a trumpet off a vinyl booth seat and I laughed so hard I slid under the table, cried in silent, side-splitting agony, and undammed a warm, yellow river all over myself. But the worst** was having to do the shimmy of shame (my brother playing wingman behind me with a strategically placed tray) to get out the front door. Damn vinyl seats. 

Anything else you all want to know? 

* I was 10 and was the oldest (and presumably, most mature) one at the table. Let that sink in a minute. (The 70's were the BEST, if you were a kid, y'all!)

** Actually, the worst might have been having to change into an outfit that was not a handmade, matching set to my two younger sisters'. (Think The Sound of Music, VonTrapp family matching outfits, except not made from expensive drapes, but inexpensive, terry cloth beach towels.)


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