Sunday, December 19, 2010

A Christmas Miracle

I have been lucky enough to have been witness to so many miracles involving animals, Christmas and otherwise, but I thought I would share one during this season that is near and dear to my heart.

Years ago a technician and good friend of mine was in a bad car accident with her sister. Her sister came away with a broken wrist and sprained ankle, but my friend had been thrown from the car.

Even when the police and EMTs arrived they simply couldn't find my friend. It was a cold Christmas Eve with snow on the ground and everyone knew if they did not find her soon (since it was clear she must have at the least been unconscious) we could loose her.

Everyone was combing the thickly wooded area when my friend's sister heard the tinniest mewing. While she wasn't in the animal field she had been around her sister enough to know that was a newborn cry.

So even though the cry was coming from the opposite direction her sister should have landed from the accident, she simply couldn't let a baby kitten die of the cold.

But when she followed the sound, she found a tiny white kitten curled up with her sister! Somehow the kitten had found her! She was named Christmas Miracle right there on the spot (although we usually call her "Chrissy" for short).

They rushed my unconscious friend to the hospital for emergency surgery, as I got the call about the kitten. Even though they were reluctant, after they heard the story, the hospital staff allowed me to try treat the kitten in their waiting room.

With my friend's entire family (she was Catholic, so there were A LOT of people) gathered around, expressing their love and appreciation that little baby kitten faded. You would have thought it would have been sad, but it was so joyous.

We all sensed that little creatures pure soul and her singular purpose was to come down, save my friend then be called home. Tears flowed but in gratitude (as they are right now as I write this).

When my friend awoke from surgery we told her the miraculous story.

She wasn't shocked. As a matter of fact, somehow in her traumatized haze, she had heard that kitten's cry and thought it was God letting her know everything was going to be alright. She didn't know what was going to happen but she said she wasn't scared.

That was over 15 years old. Now my friend and I live states apart and seldom see one another. She has gone on to become a registered tech and a mom. I get a Christmas card from her each year and each and every year there is a tiny note at the bottom...

"With ever loving thanks to Chrissy."

And each and every year I cry remembering that little white ball of fluff and how she saved my friend's life.

Even though I only knew you for a few short hours I won't ever forget you either, Chrissy. That I can promise you :-)

If you have a Christmas (or otherwise) miracle involving an animal share it below! That's use this season to celebrate the animals that changed our lives!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Rambo Rambunctious

Now if you didn't guess that was a Yorkie, I don't know what you were thinking! :-) LOL

If you thought the breed and name were weird, wait to you hear his story!

You see, my clients couldn't decide on a name for this little terrier. They wrangled over names like Twerp, Jazzy, and Pete. But nothing would stick. And he wouldn't come to any of them.

Now it wasn't like Rambo didn't have enough personality. He had TOO much. As a matter of fact one of his favorite things to do was to pick out his outfit for the day.

And yes, he was macho enough to pull off a pink sweater occasionally!

But the one that was his favorite was ... you guessed it a red head band and leather pants.

So one day he came in for some vaccines dressed up as I described. Well some of my other client's weren't as understanding and laughed at him.

Well, he barked right back!

In that moment we knew we had a true Rambo on our hands. Although we have to admit most times he gets called Rambie, but you get what we mean!

Do any of your animals like to get dressed up or had an unusual naming process? Comment on them below!!!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

I hate to be a party-pooper...

Ok, I don't really hate it because it is my job to keep pets safe so as we head into this Holiday season I must put out my annual...

A Party-Poopers Guide to Keeping Your Pets Safe Around the Holidays

Do I wish I could tell you to decorate to your heart's desire and share every bit of holiday goodies with your pets? Yes I do.

However I took a silly oath to always put animal's health first so here is a list (long but not exhaustive) of things to think about during the holidays.

First and foremost do not feed your animals any holiday food. It is too rich and in the case of chocolate, it can be toxic.

Even be careful of giving your pets to many of their regular dog treats. Remember these treats are many times the animal equivalent of a candy bar. Give LOVE rather than calories.

When decorating, think as if you had a very rambunctious toddler in the house. What would they pull down? What would they put in their mouth. Yes, even seven year old, well trained dog will go for the popcorn on a string tree-trim.

When in doubt keep anything new to the household either up above a dog's ability to reach or in the case of a cat - LOCKED up. Even the water under the Christmas tree can be toxic, so keep it covered at all times.

Animals are creatures of habit. If their schedule is changed too much it can bring about stress which can result in behaviors that can go from annoying to downright dangerous. If possible try to keep feeding and exercise routines the same.

Don't expect your pet to be social. Some dogs love a good party. Others want to run and hide. Unless your pet is super social, create a room/crate for them - AWAY from the action! Get them used to this little den before the party to let them know it is safe. Some animals also like a TV or radio on to drown out the party noise and reduce their stress.

New animals especially can feel this social stress. And yes, they may be used to your family members, but maybe not ALL of them at once! When in doubt, create a 'den' space where they can relax during the festivities.

Ok, that wasn't too much of a downer, was it? LOL

If you have any to add, just leave a comment below and I may include it in next year's Party Pooper Guide! :-)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

My Goodest Boy

I was going to call this blog "A Tough Year" but then that wouldn't have honored my Bestest Good Boy in the Whole Wide World, Orlin.

As many of you know I lost my cherished flame point Siamese, Lance Flame the Wonder Cat, a few months ago then Orlin (my cocker spaniel, golden retriever, afghan, bull dog cross - don't ask me, ask his Mamma) was recently diagnosed with nasal cancer.

But Orlin would never want me to dwell on the bad or painful. I think he would have reported the last two weeks of his life as awesome. Simply because he didn't have a negative bone in his body.

Like I said he was the bestest.

If you asked him to sit across the room he would be like... "Um, okay that's a little weird, but whatever you want, Mom."

Even when he was 'bad' and jumped up onto a counter and knocked bread down for Molly, if you caught him and said "Orlin! What are you doing?"

"Um, getting bread down for Molly."

"But that's bad!"

"Um... but Molly asked me to."

He was such an innocent but willing pawn of Molly. Even his worst habit, humping Molly was hard to get mad at. After all, Molly had asked him to!

When Chief was pouting due to the injustice of the world (you know, the lack of steak and lobster every night), Orlin would comfort him. When Princess needed someone to snark at without them snarking back, Orlin was her go-to guy (he would just lift his head so she couldn't reach him).

He had the best bed head. Oh, how he loved his feathering.

I am going to miss all of that and so much more about him.

Right after he passed, I got worried that he wouldn't be appreciated in Heaven the way he had been here.

Then I had the feeling of my closest friend, Gary (who passed years ago) saying, "Carolyn, don't you think I know a good dog when I see one?"

Of course Gary knows a good dog (after all I learned my good dog identifying skills from him) and Orlin was the best of the goodest boys.

I know they are up in Heaven just hanging out waiting for... well... to be perfectly honest Orlin is probably waiting to hump Molly, but that's okay. Even good dogs deserve to have some fun!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Let's be Thankful for so much this week...

Our health, our pets, our pet's health.

However, Pancreatitis is not one of those things we should be aiming for this Thanksgiving.

I know, I know, during the holidays we have this nearly overwhelming urge to share with our pets. There is SO much good food around and we know how much we enjoy it, we think... just a tiny left over... or let them lick the dessert plate.

I am here to encourage you to share your LOVE not your food.

Because you see all dogs (and even cats) can get pancreatitis. It is a painful inflammation of the pancreas usually brought on by... you guessed it rich/fatty/sugary foods.

And small breed dogs especially are SUPER susceptible to this condition. Many times this disease requires days in the hospital on IV fluids, antibiotics and anti-nausea drugs. Besides the huge expense (usually right around the holidays), imagine your little angel having to be in a cage hooked up to an IV pump. #Ishudder #heavenforbid

So keep that image in your mind when that urge strikes you to share just a little stuffing or slip your own pumpkin a little pie.

Again... share you LOVE, not your food :-)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Linus, Kamikazee Dog

I may have mentioned that Linus is...well...bouncy. I may not have fully conveyed how crazy he is.

Linus is missing part of one of his paws. He doesn't really use that leg at all. And yet, somehow, that doesn't slow him down ONE BIT! You would think that, as a small dog with only three fully operational limbs, he would be cautious. Not so much.

He is the one member of the pack that I am constantly having to scold for getting up way too high and LEAPING. No gingerly stepping down off a high roost for this pooch. That takes way too long. Launching himself into orbit is much more his speed.

And watching him run? You would never guess that he had any sort of disability. He's super fast, makes hair-pin turns and stops on a dime. The faster he goes, the less you notice his leg.

Even the way he greets you when you walk in is over-the-top. He acts like he hasn't seen you in MONTHS (even if it's only been a couple of minutes) and won't stop gyrating until you stop to pet him and say, "Hi, Linus." I once tried to see how long I could hold out...I only lasted a minute and a half, and that was through sheer force of will.

Because that's the other thing about Linus. He's cute. Yes, I know, everyone thinks their dogs are cute. I'm not just talking about attractiveness. It's the whole package. Linus throws himself into life with complete and utter abandon. His life is lived in warp drive.

The one thing Linus does slowly? Learn what "no" means. #oy

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Why Don't You Like Me?

Poor, poor LJ (our new flame-point kitten).

He doesn't understand why Enya (our elderly torti) doesn't love him.

Entitlement does not even begin to cover LJ's attitude.

You see his name sake Lance (the Wonder Cat, and yes, even though he has passed away, you really should still wave your hands over your head when you say his name) is like the old patriarch who built up his reputation and his fortunes with his bare hands. Lance was a self-made cat.

LJ on the other hand? Um... not so much. We call him our 'trust-fund' cat. You see he has the legacy of Lance, but hasn't really worked for it.

If anything we have given him everything on a silver platter. But why you might ask?

Because of Elvira (our black cat who LOVED Lance). You see God love Elvira but she can be a bit... well... evil... mean... swatty... witchy.

She tolerates her sister, but as I mentioned she LOVED Lance. We knew it might be tricky to introduce another cat into the household and we really wanted her to love the new kitten.

So, well, we told her that LJ was Lance. Ok, she thought it was a little weird he had gotten smaller, but he was the same color and the same smell (we rubbed Lance's favorite blankets all over him) and the same name so... he must be Lance!

Elvira was ecstatic! Not only was Lance back, but he LOVED her back (something that never happened when it was the actual Lance). We have never seen a happier cat!

But back to LJ. Now that we had conquered Elvira, we also convinced Yersinia (our not-quite-with-it black cat) that LJ was awesome.

So basically LJ has gone through his short life with everyone adoring him (really whether they wanted to or not! :-)

You can imagine his chagrin when he walked up to Enya who not only did not like him, but no one else was trying to convince her that she should.

Um... ya, Enya was Lance's sister, hun. She knows you aren't him... and well... They were siblings with lots-o-rivalry. Even if you were him, I am not sure how glad she would be that Lance was back!

But maybe this is a good thing. LJ needs to know that not EVERYONE loves him.

Sure we will have to put up with the sighs and the sad looks, but he will be the better for it #hopefully #notsosure #tugsatourheartstrings :-)

Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Evil Chihuahua Empire - Part 2

Princess is disappointed in you. She just thought she should let you know! LOL

Yesterday in the exam room I saw Lolli, a Chihuahua. She was tiny and sweet and gave me kisses.

I went home and informed Princess of this and she became enraged!

What Chihuahua is nice? To strangers no less???????

I am not sure if Lolli knows this or not, but she has been kicked out of the Empire (I am not even sure if Lolli ever applied, but that is a whole other story).

Now today I saw Champ, a Chihuahua. he was suspicious, growled and even tried to nip at me.

Princess will be so proud!!!!!!!!!!!!

Champ's owner was all apologetic and embarrassed. I told her not to worry.

He is simply a fine, upstanding member of the Evil Chihuahua Empire!

So all you Chihuahua owners out there.... Are yours more like Lolli or Champ?

Princess wants to know! (and keep tabs on everyone) :-)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Halloween - A fun but potentially dangerous holiday

I think pretty much everyone is up to speed on the obvious dangers of Halloween.

Lots of doors opening and closing. Lots of excitement and kids hyped up on sugar. So keep all pets either confined to a room away from the action or keep the dogs on leashes.

And yes, even your dog that has never run out the front door before. I worked emergency shifts for years and can't tell you the number of animals that came in for various wounds and injuries on Halloween that had 'never run out the front door before.' So play it safe!

I am also pretty sure everyone knows about the problem with chocolate in dogs (and cats but for some reason most cats simply don't dig the taste of candy bars). So again, play it safe and keep ALL candy away from the pets.

Most cat owners are also aware of the dark side of the holiday and keep all "Halloween" kitties (black, torti, orange and white) locked up tight the week before and during Halloween. You don't want your kitty targeted by some mis-guided people.

What a lot of dog owners (esp tea cup size) don't realize is that ANY sugar or fatty food can create a condition called pancreatitis. This is a condition of the pancreas that inflames especially after high caloric foods are ingested.

The rash of pancreatitis after a holiday (any of them really since most holidays involve ingesting large amounts of rich food #duh) is staggering.

Don't be one of those people in my waiting room Nov 1st!

I know we all have an instinct to want to share with our dogs, especially the little ones with their pitiful eyes and mind powers, but remember they don't have the same pancreas as we do!

So have a GREAT Halloween. Just if we want to give treats to our dogs this year, how about we give LOVE instead :-)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Oh. There you are.

God love these foster kittens but they are the most gentle little souls in the world.

They aren't that loving though either. They are just... well... very proper. We think someone might have swapped out our kittens with some British kittens.

How gentle and proper? Well I broke my pinkie toe last week. It was swollen and bruised and sore. Little Gretchen came over and started to play with my foot. I, of course, tensed up expecting pain.

Nope. She just gently patted my foot with her paw, no claws, then 'gnawed' at my toe with her lips. That's it. That's how she plays. It wasn't like she knew it was sore or I asked her to be gentle. She just was.

For more proof we just have to talk about the kittens favorite game, "Oh. There you are."

And yes, it is about as exciting as it sounds. Basically the a kitten will 'find' either their sibling, another cat, or one of us humans.

When I say 'find' I mean 'find.' There is no pounce. There is no 'Boo!' Or even a 'OH! Holy Cow I found you!!!!' Instead it is just a slight cock to the side of their head. "Oh. I found you." Then maybe a little bat of their paw, but nothing like a tag, you are it. Just a little acknowledgment that they did in fact 'found' you and then they are off doing something else.

Then about 5-10 minutes later they come back. "Oh. I found you."

Like I said, we are surprised they don't break out the afternoon tea!

How have you been surprised by little ones (canine or feline)? Let us know!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Chi-Chi the... Shih Tzu?

Yes, that was my reaction too when I first met Chi-Chi.

I expected a cute little short-coated Chihuahua when I walked into the room. I mean I didn't even check the chart first to see what breed she was.

What I found was a black and white mop. Matted but oh so friendly. Even though she had eaten a paper clip.

It was lodged in her intestine and the owners decided not to treat.


Well, as you can imagine, we couldn't let that happen so Chi-Chi was turned over to the clinic and we of course took care of the problem.

Now that could have been the end of the story. A poor mis-named Shih Tzu rescued from a bad home, but that was just the beginning.

Just when we were starting to look for a new home for Chi-Chi, one of my staff come in with her elderly grandmother. Grams was 87 years old and did not understand why everyone was fussing over her and not wanting to let her drive.

Her license had been suspended but that didn't stop Grams. They had hid her keys and Gram just hired a locksmith to come out and make new keys.

But when Grams walked in and saw Chi-Chi. It was love at first sight! Once Chi-Chi was out of the cage, she ran right over, jumped in Grams' lap and curled up.

Luckily I knew of the situation so when the notion of Grams adopting Chi-Chi came up, I approved it, but only on 1 condition. Chi-Chi had to go where ever Grams went... and had to sit in Grams' lap.

Of course, of course. I looked at my receptionist and winked. Problem solved. How could Grams drive if she had to take care of Chi-Chi.

Now if Grams needs groceries, she just calls one of her kids or grand kids and they come and pick Grams and Chi Chi up and drive them to the store, because after all Chi Chi had come from a bad environment and needed that 'extra' care. ;-)

Littleness, once again, comes to the rescue!

Share your story of "Littleness" below in a comment!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Chief does NOT like change

No, seriously, he HATES it.

I think this is a characteristic of "Littleness." It seems the smaller they are the more they want their routine to be EXACTLY the same.

The only change they want in there life is for YOU to give up more of your life to be with them more.

Case in point? As I announced last week we have two new kittens. They were sick so required care. Which of course took time.

I think you can see where that is going! I mean, not only did I spend less time with Chief, but then I spent 'his' time with some stupid kittens?

Why that is the most insulting thing he has ever heard!

So the first night we had them, he REFUSED to get under the covers with me. Oh not just refused to sleep with me, but went to the other side of the bed and laid with his BACK to me!

Finally after a half an hour I coaxed him back under the covers. Somewhere during the night obviously while he was groggy, he crawled up and curled up in my arms.

I awakened with 2 pounds of Chihuahua snuggled under my chin with my arm wrapped around him.

But that's how Littleness is, right? They pout and strut and punish but at the end of the day, or first thing in the morning, they simply melt into you.

I love the kittens. Who couldn't? But Chief? Ah, whether he knows it or not, change just makes me love him all the more!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

"LJ" is in the house!

"L.J" stands for Lance Junior. So okay, this blog post may be about "Littleness," just not the doggie kind.

If you have been reading this blog you know that we lost our most beloved flame-point Siamese a few months back. We then went into a strange altered state of not finding/yet finding a replacement for him.

Well, not him, but you know some kitten energy into the household to take our minds off of how lonely we were without him (even with 5 dogs and 3 other cats).

We had truly given up (at least for now) when the call came. A 4 week old flame-point Siamese kitten in trouble!

You can only imagine how fast we were out the door. Even if it wasn't LJ, we could not in all good conscious in Lance's name a flame point kitten to go untreated.

So we were driving to the not so great part of town and our GPS took us down a dirt alley. Um... Should we go down there? It was getting dark and my Roomie and I are not the bravest of the bunch.

But then out of the shadows stepped a huge flame point Tom cat. He was dirty and scrappy and thin. But oh so beautiful. Since we were within 3 houses, we knew that was Daddy kitty. He disappeared back through a broken down car, but we knew we had just had our first sign that LJ was right around the corner.

When we got there the foster mom totally had her heart in the right place, but did not have the knowledge necessary to care for such sick kittens. There were 5. Honestly LJ was so thin, malnourished, and dehydrated we weren't even sure if he was the kitten for us. But how could we leave him there?

Then there was his runt sister. She was half the size of the other kittens who weren't really all that big to begin with. The foster mother and I spoke for over an hour giving care instructions and general tips.

But at some point both LJ and his little runt sister ended up inside my sweatshirt. I looked at my Roomie. We both knew what that meant!

Of course I rationalized it that with only 3 kittens on her hands the foster mom could give better care to the remaining litter, but the truth was I knew that little runt wouldn't make it another 24 hours without aggressive care.

We spent 3 days getting the kittens back on the bottle. Giving fluids and medications. Grooming. Loving. Biting our nails. Would they make it?

Well, we are happy to say they have! With flying colors. Our little runt is named Gretchen while of course the newest addition to the family is LJ, who happens to be a 'snow ninja,' but that's a whole other blog.

And we are having the time of our life. To see two kittens on death's door bloom back to life (mainly so they can chew on our toes it appears) has brought love and light into the house.

We shall always miss Lance, there is no doubt, but I think our period of deep, sorrowful grieving is over.

After all Lance clearly sent LJ to us. We HAVE to enjoy him!

#thankyouLance #evenknowwefeelyourlove

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Magic Dog Cookie Dispenser

My Bichon "Molly" believes that any object in your hand is a magic dog cookie dispenser.


Now let's be clear, Molly has chronic pancreatitis so in the 14+ yrs I have had her she has NEVER gotten a treat. Chewable medicine, maybe. Treat? Never.

Yet a Bichon can always dream, right?

Recently one of her little warts on her back leg (she is a Bichon so basically since birth we knew she would have fourteen million warts as she grew older, destined by her genes) got infected.

No big deal. Gave her an injection of abs and started using a topical spray. Now she doesn't mind the spray. It doesn't sting. It doesn't bug her at all.

Yet every time you get the little spray bottle out, Molly jumps up and starts wagging her tail.

Because you see the bottle could be a magic dog cookie dispenser.

Me: "No, Molly. I need your rear end."

Molly: "Nope. I'll take the cookie right here in my mouth."

Me: "There are no cookies, Molly, just medicine."

Molly: "Um, that there is a magic dog cookie dispenser."


So what should take about 2 1/2 seconds takes about a minute in a half. 87 1/2 of those seconds convincing her that the tiny vial does not have cookies in it and the other 2 1/2 to spray it on her.

Don't even get me started about putting on flea control!


#lesstrauma.... #forme :-)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

"Ali" - The Boxer #thebreed #nottheprofession

Ok, yes, I know this blog is called "Pups in Tea Cups," and I am in theory supposed to talk about "Littleness" 24/7, however sometimes a true underdog comes into my life and I just have to share their inspiring story about "Bigness."

When I first met "Ali," it was a difficult time for him. He had been dumped at the shelter (at 10 years old) then adopted, but he kept 'fainting.'

Anyone that knows Boxers, knows this isn't a good sign.

Each time he got excited (especially at a niece's birthday party), he would fall over.

Between my testing and the cardiologist's verdict, it looked like Ali may have only had a few weeks left. After talking to his new parents about my 'honored to have been a part of this animal's life' motto, they decided to give him the best few weeks he could have.

Then a month later they called me. His fainting spells had stopped. They brought him in. Sure enough he still had the heart problem but had somehow medically stabilized.

We thought that was the only miracle 'Ali' had up his sleeve. Boy were we wrong.

Months later they were at the dog park and two unleashed Pit Bulls jumped the fence and headed straight for my client's young daughter. 'Ali' didn't hesitate, he ran between them and got attacked for it.

My client's were distraught. They loved him for protecting their daughter but knew this had to be the end for 'Ali.' Either the fight or the stress would take him.

But no!

Not only did he not faint, he survived the attack! They rushed him into me.

After washing the blood off of him... it turned out NOT to be his! There wasn't a single scratch on him. He was busy wagging his tail and looking for treats!

Even with his fragile heart, he won the fight! Now, that's our 'Ali.'

We have no idea how much longer he will be with us, but he proved beyond a shadow of a doubt why he was meant to enter our lives. He quite possibly saved their daughter.

So here's to a Ali!

He just showed us that even with a damaged ticker, you can still show heart! #lovehim #bignesstotherescue

Sunday, August 29, 2010

My Life as a Vet

It is funny. I get people all the time saying either... "I wish I were a vet." or "I can't imagine how you can do it."

The truth is I can't imagine NOT being a veterinarian.

Life has taken me lots of different places and at times I have taken a break from vet med, but I can't imagine not having the knowledge I have nor the experiences. Even the heart-breaking ones.

I think I was born in-love with animals. If you look at every pictures of me as a child, there is an animal in it. We are kissing or hugging or I am sharing my food. We even have one with the 'ghost' of a goose in it.

And since then I have been an animal magnet. If there was a stray or injured animal in the neighborhood (and let's be clear I lived in the country so my neighborhood included miles upon miles of farmland), it found me.

Even now, exhausted baby seals come right up to my yard, knowing they will be safe.

Why do some people think being a vet is hard? Well, there is the loss. Beloved pets (to their owner and to me) whose journey on this plane comes to an end.

I think I was lucky I grew up in the country. So young I was introduced to the cycle of life and that death is simply a part of it. Doing rescue as a child, I probably lost more animals to an early death than most people have pets their entire life.

One might think that would harden me to it. Instead I think I learned to embrace the good of the time we had together.

I truly do believe God misses that animal and calls them home.

Some of these were true hard luck cases. Whenever I lose an animal and start to ask 'Why did I even try? Why did I let myself in for this pain?", I always ask myself... "If I knew EXACTLY how this ended, would I still have tried?"

The answer is always yes. Because I always feel honored when an animal comes to me for even end of life care. Sometimes it is just five minutes. It doesn't matter. They honored me by inviting me into their lives. I wouldn't change a thing. I am so blessed to be at the center of an animal karma hub.

So that is how I 'do it.' How I am able to see so many animals pass through this plane and into the next.

I count myself lucky to have known them. To have loved them. Because if they were in my heart, for even just a second, they will always be there. #always

In loving memory of Uther, Gwen, Morgan & Minxie, May God find as much joy in your light as you gave to me.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Yersinia - The Cat & the Invisibility Cloak

Yes, I know another departure from "Littleness," but I have told this story to every dog owner I know and it cracks them up so I figure you guys wouldn't be much different :-)

Yersie is a black cat. She has lived with my Roomie from the age of 4 weeks old where she has been treated like a princess. Why do I tell you this? Well, after I describe her actions you would immediately feel sorry for her and think she had been abused.

She has not.

Her problem is she is a Bombay... with possible mental issues. Don't believe me? Read on!

Please note those HUGE eyes. Now that is a picture of a Bombay cat... CALM.

Now imagine one scared, and that would be Yersie. Only she gets 'scared' by air molecules. She gets 'scared' by me walking into the room or if you put a new rug down.

Everything in her world is 'scary.'

So thank goodness Yersie has what we call an 'invisibility cloak.' You will walk in the room, which normally will set her eyes bulging and her running for the nearest exit, and she just sits there calmly. Blinking casually.

Clearly, her invisibility cloak is 'On.' Now if you go to pet her, she freaks out, realizing her invisibility cloak has fallen off and runs for her life.

She also thinks I am her Mommy half the time. The other half the time she panics and runs away (awkwardly, but that's a whole OTHER blog). Now wouldn't you think if 1/2 the time the person you are rubbing up against ISN'T your Mommy, that you would do the sniff test first? Nope, I've usually pet her for about a minute before she finally sniffs my hand and panics.

Sometimes she will try to sneak away and her invisibility cloak slips and somewhere half way through her exit she panics and runs.

Now let's be clear. The vast majority of the time none of us have moved an inch.

Ah, Yersie's inner world.

If only I could live in it for a day (and learn how to sew me one of those invisibility cloaks :-)

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Pumpkin Pie with Whipped Cream on Top

Yes, that is the name of a Shih Tzu puppy I know.

And the story behind it is even better than the name! :-)

You see my clients went down to Mexico for vacation for Thanksgiving. They had a cat and had lost their dog about a year before so this was the first year they could really travel for the holiday. I had no idea at the time they were having marital problems.

Well, while they were down there trying to 'spark' the connection, they actually made the decision to break up... Um, until a tiny, scrawny, little rag-a-muffin puppy trotted into the resort then promptly collapsed.

Oh my gosh! They knew enough to give it some Karo syrup to get its blood sugar up, but since there wasn't a veterinarian for miles around they decided to just jump in the car and haul booty home to my clinic.

Now this pup had EVERYTHING you could have wrong with you. Parvo, parasites, mange, kennel cough. You name it. He had it.

I warned my clients that I had no idea if I could get the little guy through, but they wanted to try.

To make a very long medical story shorter, I helped the little guy through just about everything and he should have been on the mend, he would NOT eat. I mean we were feeding him through his vein, but he wouldn't even tolerate force feeding.

What were we going to do with the little guy? At some point I need him to well... eat!

Needless to say they both spent hours at the clinic keeping the puppy company and begging him to eat.

I told them to take a break, go get some dinner and come back so we could talk about our options.

They came back and had generously brought back a piece of pumpkin pie for me. So there we are, my clients tempting the puppy with baby food, and turkey and NutriCal and anything under the sun while I munch on the dessert. I leaned over to check his catheter when he jumped up and took a HUGE bite out of my pie!

It all happened so fast he downed the piece then jumped up for another one, getting a face full of whipped cream!

We all started to laugh. Little dogs will decide what little dogs want to eat. Or was it so much what I was eating as that I was eating it off a plate of my own?

We got another set of plates and each put 'our' food (baby food, turkey, NutriCal, you know all the stuff the puppy wouldn't eat a minute ago) and then pretended we were eating it.

Oh My Gosh! He couldn't get enough of it. We even 'tried' to keep it away from him. No way! It was HIS!!!!

So that is how Pumpkin Pie with Whipped Cream on Top got his name.

And in the course of caring for the puppy, my clients somehow realized why they fell in love in the first place. A few months later they renewed their vows... in Mexico. With Pumpkin Pie standing right between them!

Once again, 'Littleness' comes to the rescue!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

I know this Blog is usally about "Littleness"

But this week I met "Sandy."

A big, goofy Golden Retriever that I just had to tell you about.

Now you see my dogs generally like other dogs, however on walks if Orlin (my cocker/Golden cross) feels like his girl, Molly (my nemesis Bichon Frise) is endangered or even slighted in the least by a new dog, he will jump the other dog.

Doesn't matter it could be a poodle or Great Dane, Orlin will take them on.

Now I keep them on leash because of this and usually can keep them separate enough to keep everyone out of trouble... until "Sandy."

So we are starting our walk and see a HUGE golden chasing a ball into the surf. She is soaking wet and as happy as could be.

I angle us so we take the 'high road' in the sand dunes (my legs complaining) to avoid any problems when Sandy sees Orlin and Molly. She looses her mind!

"DOGS! DOGS! DOGS!" She drops her ball (I mean, come on that should tell you how excited she was) and comes charging over. Now Sandy's Mom must have predicted this because she already has a leash out and yells, "Sandy! Down!"

Shockingly, Sandy skids to a halt in the sand half way to us.

"Whew!" I think. She is just a big, goofy, puppy but at that weight and that speed? Holy Cow!

Everything went great until Sandy's mommy was a few feet away. Suddenly Sandy realized "Wait a minute! If Mommy gets that leash on me I can't visit my new friends!!!"

Well, within moments, Sandy was bounding our way again and then jumped on Molly!

Now she was just playing but tell that to Orlin and especially Molly! Snarling, snapping, and hysteria ensued.

Thank goodness Orlin's got that huge overbite and can't really bite, but he was holding onto Sandy's ruff for his life! And once Molly got over her initial shock, she latched onto Sandy's tail and wouldn't let go.

What, you might ask, was Sandy doing the whole time?

Um... Smiling! Panting, happy. No actually thrilled!!! You see, she thought they were playing.

Sandy was like "I know!!! I am so happy to meet you TOO!!!!"

Mommy wasn't far behind and got the leash on Sandy, the whole while I am trying to apologize for my two white fluffy Cujos.

But Mommy just laughed. "Nope, Sandy's got to learn some time. She gets in trouble five times a day for this!"

As Mommy was dragging Sandy away the Golden was like "Bye Molly and Orlin! I am so glad we met! Maybe we can do it again sometime!!! Call me!!!! I'm serious, CALL ME!!!"

And of course my two are like "oh ya, we'll call you!" as they growled.

Ah, Sandy. I hope some day to meet her again. You know, after more obedience training :-)

Just so everyone knows no dogs were harmed during the creation or writing of this blog!

Alright, enough with all this cat and bigness stuff I've been writing about lately. Next week's blog will be about Littleness!

#unlessofcourse #werunintoSandyagain :-)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

This isn't so much a blog about a cat as...

A blog about how crazy my Roomie and I are for animals.

As most of you know, our beloved, gorgeous, sultan of a flame point Siamese kitty, Lance Flame passed away last month, (if you want to catch up and read that post, click here).

Afterward we decided not to get another cat. That lasted all of a half a minute when a apparently pregnant cat came into my Roomie's clinic.

Then it turned out the cat was not pregnant. So we decided we would not get another cat.

That of course lasted a half a minute when out of the blue my Roomie got an email about a flame point Siamese kitten up for adoption.

But he had already been adopted. Now luckily we didn't bother to go through the 'we decide not to get another cat' stage. Instead we went to every shelter, humane society, or rescue organization in a 50 mile radius.

Because, you know, that's how we roll. I can't even tell you the ups and downs of that search just that we came home with a pregnant, REALLY pregnant cat.

We have turned our upstairs bathroom into a palatial birthing spa.

Why? Because while we still have 7 other animals including a Chihuahua that travels in my bra, there is a hole in our home. Lance, even at his healthiest, required our constant attention. He was a force of nature that moved the house around at his whim.

And now we have another force of nature in our home. A mother in crisis that requires our unique care.

We will miss Lance forever but hopefully the wonder of birth will help lighten our hearts.

Oh and did I mention that we ran out and bought a baby monitor and nanny cam so we can monitor every moment of our new munchkins.

Like I said this blog is more about our craziness than any cat :-)

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The story of Tumbler

Tumbler, a tiny Yorkie, well... tumbled into one of my client's life.

They had lost their beloved German Shepherd, Dixie, several months before and had sworn off dogs. It had just hurt too much to lose her and besides, life was busy.

But not always in the good way. They had a child with significant health issues which meant Mom had to quit work and not only care for their son, but get to and from the myriad of doctor's appointments etc.

They had a cat. They loved the cat. That was enough.

As any of you who read my Twitter stream or blog probably have already guessed, it wasn't enough, not by far.

Fate forced Mom to go to the shelter to help find a friend's dog. Joyfully, that dog was found and returned home, but in the same run was a fluffy Yorkie who insisted on doing strange somersaults. She asked what was wrong, but the shelter didn't know and they couldn't afford to pay for the vet bills to find out.

Ok, Mom had sworn off dogs, but she couldn't let this little one be 'red-lined.' So despite her better judgement, she adopted the 10 month old Yorkie. About 15 minutes later she was in my office.

While the Yorkie did appear to have a perchance for doing a forward roll then busting out some break-dancing moves, he seemed perfectly healthy. We would run some lab work, but I thought the pup was healthy, just strangely playful.

But what was she going to do? Mom didn't want a dog, let alone a weird little one. I reassured her that we could find a home since it was free of any parasites or diseases so why didn't she take Tumbler home just for one night while I tried to find a foster home?

Now, of course, I saw the universe's work in Tumbler and of course, I knew if that little one made it to her house it would be Tumbler's home, but I was going to let Mom figure that out for herself!

I was a little worried however, when Mom and Tumbler were at my door at 8am the next day.

Had I missed something? I had. Exactly how much this little dog was going to change my client's life.

It turns out as soon as they got home, Tumbler did his little routine and their son, who had been too ill to run or play, got off the couch and started mimicking Tumbler's routine. What a sight!

Then it was time to go to the pediatrician. The child balked. He hated it. He hated taking his medication. He hated getting poked.

But what if Tumbler came along? The boy brightened. Mom thought she could hide the dog in her purse, but as soon as they got to the office her son began chattering to the other kids about Tumbler. Everybody had to see.

While the nurses were reluctant to have a dog in the waiting room, they had never seen my client's son be so happy and interactive.

The entire doctor's exam the boy chatted on about the new puppy. This pediatrician must have had kids and dogs too, because he informed the child if he wanted to be able to bring Tumbler in, he had to take all of his medication AND do all of his physical therapy. Of course!

So there Mom was on my doorstep at 8am to hug me and tell me of Tumbler and her tumbling son. She always wanted to make sure I had taken Tumbler's picture down for adoption. I laughed and told her I had never put it up #duh

You would think after being in veterinary medicine for over 30 years I would tire of such a story. I am here to tell you, I haven't and don't think I ever will.

If you enjoy tales of how "littleness" over comes big odds, leave me a comment. I am working on a book and would love to know the market out there for it! :-)

And of course if you like Patterson-style thrillers I have written a very un-silly serial killer book entitled Plain Jane. Read 50 pages for free (to make sure it isn't too dark for you :-) at:

Until next week! :-)

Sunday, July 18, 2010

"Yeah Us!"

Yes, that is a statement made by my pack about twelve thousand times a day. Think I am exaggerating? Um, think again.

We're going outside! "Yeah Us!"

We barked at a dog on the beach, "Yeah Us!"

We spilled Mommy's drink, "Yeah Us!"

Let me tell you there is no shortage of self-esteem around here. #none

They even 'Yeah Us!" as they run around shouting "Yeah Us!"

One would like that Linus spearheads this movement, but it started far earlier than his arrival (although no one does the "Yeah Us!" dance so well as that little Moppet).

Molly, the uber-alpha is of course the one to have started it. I mean, she thinks she rules the world, so why shouldn't she and her subjects indulge in a little self-appreciation?

Her question would be "Why isn't every single thing they do, or even think about doing, worthy of a victory dance?"

They take a drink of water. Why on earth wouldn't they run around, proclaiming that to the world?

Literally, while I was writing this blog, Molly jumped up onto the couch. Just a routine jump. Nothing special. No gymnastic moves, just a typical, usual jump. Yet there she was doing a little "Yeah Me!" jig before she laid down.

And here I thought I was maybe exaggerating that no matter how small the occurrence, my pack takes pride in it.


Ok, as I was typing that, Princess came over, coughed on a piece of dog food she had eaten too quickly (surprise, surprise), gagged then wiggled her booty "Yeah Me!"

So, if you ever need a pride transplant. Just DM me. My pack has PLENTY to go around!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Survivor - The Terrier Edition

I could (and usually do) wax poetic about what troopers dogs are. I mean their resilience, especially puppies is pretty freaking incredible.

But terriers? Holy cow. They were bred for tenacity. Like, why don't you go into that badger's den for me kind of tenacity.

So it is no surprise when a terrier beats all odds to survive.

I am not going to go into depth the trauma that "Totsipop" (named since she was all hard and tough on the outside, chasing squirrels and taking on Great Danes, yet yummy soft on the inside, winner of best kisser on her block 5 years running) went through.

Let's just say that rattlesnake was a little more than she had expected to take on.

And poor Totsipop had every known complication you can imagine. But did she give up?

Heck no! She was hooked up to 2 IV lines, fourteen medications and was being fed through a tube and she had the audacity to bark at the hospital cat (I mean she may have been on injured/reserve list but that didn't mean she had to put up with cats! #Imean #getreal).

I can't tell you how many times I warned her Mommy that we may need to say good-bye to Totsipop. But her Mommy just smiled and shook her head.

Nope. Totsipop would make it. Mommy would come and sit for hours with Tootsipop, sometimes when the terrier was barely clinging to consciousness and tell that her all the bad things the squirrels were doing in the backyard.

How the neighborhood possum was starting to dig around their wood pile (which according to Totsipop was sacrilege).

This was early in my career and my training told me that poor Mommy was just in denial, but lucky my heart could see that this owner knew more than my medical tests did. Seeing Tootsipop's crazy wire-hair and those determined eyes, I too knew that a stupid rattlesnake bite to the jugular wasn't going to get her!

Seven days later, Tootsipop trotted out of the clinic, bandaged and without quite the usual spring in her step, but trotted nonetheless.

Tootsipop taught me such a valuable lesson.

No matter the circumstances, hope can be as powerful a medicine as any injections I might have.

On this island, no doggie gets voted off!

If you liked this story, please leave a comment below. I am thinking of putting together a book of all the inspirational stories I have experience in my career and want to know if people would be interested.

Thanks so much and have a great week!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

This one goes out to Lance Flame!

I am a dog person. I mean, I think you probably already knew that given the whole 'pupsinteacups' thing.

However I do have 2 cats of my own and live with 2 other cats. I love three of them. I mean they are animals so of course I love them.

But one? Oh, 1 used to be the sole apple of my eye (until Chief came and stole it, core and all :-)

His name is Lance Flame the Wonder Cat. And he really prefers if you shake your hands above your head when you say his name (he also likes you to say his name while you are spanking him but that is a whole other PG-13 rated blog).

Out of all my years as a veterinarian I have never met a cat like him. Sure I have met other bossy flame point Siamese. I have met cats that stole things... to punish you. I have met cats that were snuggle love bugs.

I have never met a cat that was all of those things and more.

Lance has ruled the house for nearly a decade and a half at a whopping 22 pounds. Did I mention he was a big boy?

When I first met him, at 4 weeks old, he could fit in the palm of my hand, glaring at me with those GLACIAL blue eyes of his. But he was so very sick. It took literally months of fluids, antibiotics, force-feeding and love to get him through.

Since then he has been the epitome of health...

Until last month when he was stricken with cancer. I can't tell you the devastation. No amount of fluids, antibiotics, force-feeding or even love will get him through this time. He is melting before our eyes.

To be a veterinarian and know that with all your skills and knowledge and experience you can't save your own cat?

There has been weeping and bawling and bargaining with God. But alas, it is becoming clearer and clearer that Lance is being called home.

So my Roomie and I have been preparing for it. What will life look like without Lance to tell us what to do every second of every day? I know we will feel unmoored.

Usually after the death of a pet, I wait until I feel ready, then go rescue another animal. It makes me feel better to do something proactive and positive.

However, with Lance and his Sultan mentality, both my Roomie and I felt that it would maybe not be honoring his memory to bring another cat into the household, and let's face it NOBODY can replace Lance Flame the Wonder Cat (and yes, one hand was up in the air doing 'jazz hands' while I typed that).

We discussed in depth whether or not to get another cat and made the connected decision to not replace him (because how could we)...


What came into my Roomie's clinic?

Um... a FEMALE Orange tabby (ok, rare enough) that clearly is a Siamese cross (ok, lots rarer) with BLUE eyes - ok, that really should be genetically impossible.

Oh and did I mention she is PREGNANT!!!!!!!!!!!

So yes, a pregnant stray cat came into my Roomie's clinic the day after we decided not to get another cat! And the chances she is carrying a male flame point? Um, pretty darn high.

It is like Lance heard that we weren't getting another cat and talked to the big guy about it. I mean, if we aren't going to go out looking, how is Lance going to come back? Or at the least make sure there was a Flame Point in the house (you know, to boss everyone around, since Lance is clearly worried we will fall in with the wrong crowd in his absence).

I am not sure what is going to happen next. I'm not sure how much longer we can keep Lance happy and comfortable. I don't know when this stray cat is going to give birth. I don't know if any of those kitten will be "The One."

All I do know is that this is another great story to tell any professor (see for the "Do dogs have souls" blog) that tries to tell me that animals don't have souls and aren't part of God's plan.


Sunday, June 20, 2010

How can you live with 5 dogs? In your BED?

Yes, even as a veterinarian I get asked this question... #alot

But you see, I barely even notice them. As a matter of fact, half the time my Roomie will ask me 'Where's Chief" or Princess or Linus, etc and I won't know, even though they are under the covers with me.

Well, I won't know until my foot falls asleep and I realize Princess is draped across it (a Chihuahua's signal of true and undying love) or my hip feels particularly warm (for only weighing 2 pounds, Chief can RADIATE body heat) or find a half destroyed cat toy between the sheets (ok, that one could be Orlin or Linus - certainly not Molly, otherwise the whole thing would be gone).

I do, however, usually know where Molly is, simply because we have a nightly, elaborate, grueling battle for my pillow.

You see, she thinks she is alpha and as alpha she should lay on the most comfortable pillow.

Therefore, each night I come to bed, I kick her off my pillow. Then she lays with her head on the corner. Then a paw hits me in the face, then I kick her to the other side of the bed. Then I get up to go the bathroom. Then I have to kick her off my pillow again.

You can see how this becomes a vicious cycle!

And did I mention she snores? Like a LUMBER JACK. Seriously, she could saw wood with that snore. And of course, remember she is sleeping on the corner of my pillow?

My Roomie can hear her from out in the hallway and yet, she is sleeping right next to my ear.

But would I have it any other way?

I could, of course, have them sleep in another room or crate them, but then how would I know how much my Chis and the rest of the pack love me (or in Molly's case replace me as Alpha)?

My question isn't how can I sleep with 5 dogs...

It is... why aren't you???? :-)

Remember, Mommy has written a mystery novel about serial killers. Which might seem odd, but then remember Princess' obsession with them and it becomes a little more clear! :-)

You can watch the trailer, listen to the audio excerpt, and even read up to 50 pages before you buy! Follow the link here: and here is a 50% off coupon as well! RH88E

Thanks so much and we will see you next week!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The Fluffy Life

It’s not easy being adorable. White, fluffy, with a face that makes you want to go, “Awwww.” Small, but not so small that he's fragile. Boundless energy. Oh, and a personality the size of Montana.

These are the challenges that Linus faces on a day-to-day basis.

He’s made peace with it. See, none of this would be even the slightest problem if he were on his own, but instead he’s part of a pack that almost defies description.

There’s the aging alpha who calculates every move five steps ahead of time. There’s the Afghan mix who’s going deaf. The long-haired land-shark (excuse me, Chihuahua) who thinks every visitor is a serial killer.

And then, of course, there’s Chief, the two-pound, three legged Chi that holds his mommy’s heart.

How does a Tigger-like cutie like Linus compete??

Well, he doesn’t.

Luckily, Linus has his imaginary friend. He plays fetch with him, eats with him, even fights with him. And then, when his imaginary friend goes home, Linus comes inside and sleeps the sleep of the just.

See, Linus brings spunk to an otherwise spunk-less pack. But the pack can only take so much of it. So if Linus didn’t have his imaginary friend, there would be problems.

Instead, his energy is enough to stir the pot a little, without ever making it completely boil over. Pretty perfect, actually.

And that suits Linus just fine.

Remember, Mommy has written a mystery novel about serial killers. Which might seem odd, but then remember Princess' obsession with them and it becomes a little more clear! :-)

You can watch the trailer, listen to the audio excerpt, and even read up to 50 pages before you buy! Follow the link here: and here is a 50% off coupon as well! RH88E

Thanks so much and we will see you next week!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Chihuahuas. They could be the death of me!

You see, I live for my Chihuahuas.

Do I love my other dogs? Of course I do. I have had dogs since I was 3 years old. As a matter of fact, I stole my poor aunt's dogs. But that's another blog.

As most of you know, I am also a veterinarian so I have treated and loved thousands of dogs.

My motto: A day without a dog is a day not worth living. (um, you can start to see why I am still single).

But since I rescued the Chihuahuas? My heart was permanently stolen. I worry about everything. Did they eat enough (ok that's really only Chief). Did they drink enough? Do they know I love them enough?

Some days it feels like my heart only beats for them.

But alas, they are Chihuahuas so their goal is to apparently to try to give me a heart attack every single minute of every single day.

From flinging themselves off furniture (which they shouldn't have been on anyway), stealing food off your plate then trying to choke to death on it, or after just coming in from the backyard they decide to pee on your bed.

Because, after all, don't you know they hate peeing when the ground is all dewy?

Yes, those are the moments when I can feel my heart pounding and my blood pressure spiking and a cardiac event feels only moments away.

But, as Chihuahuas will, Princess breaks out her turbo tongue and covers my face in kisses or Chief does his hyena dance.

And then, in a single instant my heart is theirs again. #totoywithmainly #buttheirsnonetheless

Remember, Mommy has written a mystery novel about serial killers. Which might seem odd, but then remember Princess' obsession with them and it becomes a little more clear! :-)

You can watch the trailer, listen to the audio excerpt, and even read up to 50 pages before you buy! Follow the link here: and here is a 50% off coupon as well! RH88E

Thanks so much and we will see you next week!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Dogs Know What Real Love Is

They really do. I mean as humans we search and beg and wish for it and dogs, well, dogs just live it.

As I work at my computer, I can tell you exactly what the dogs will be doing.

Chief will have wedged himself into my lap somehow (given the fact my laptop is supposed to be the think on my lap).

Princess will be smushed up against my leg, partially under the pillow 'desk' that supports my laptop.

Molly will be on the dog bed next to me, just waiting for her chance to take me down a notch and be able to sleep on my pillow and, of course, Orlin will be curled up on his pile of blankets.

And Linus, well, he will be playing with his imaginary friend.

Each one of them is doing EXACTLY what they love.

Chief and Princess are absolutely certain true love comes in the form of full body contact. I can also feel them just absorbing and radiating that love as they sleep (because napping is also super far up the 'love' list).

Molly comes from a different school. For her, power is love. The more she can control the pack, the more loved she feels. As many of you know I was afraid for the move to the beach for her.

She was failing, looking old. But do you know what transformed her into nearly a puppy again? Barking at the other dogs on the beach. Power. It is the elixir that runs through her veins.

For Orlin, being near his girls (me and Molly), pointed out at the beach (the source of potential danger) and having his blankets 'just right,' is enough to make him practically purr.

Which leaves Linus, who I believe is love incarnate. Or maybe play incarnate. Which since he loves to play... #youseewhereIamgoing

Dogs don't just know what love is, they know how to soak it in and be content with it.

If that isn't the most awesome thing in the world, I don't know what is!

#dogsrule #catsarenttoobadeither :-)

Remember, Mommy has written a mystery novel about serial killers. Which might seem odd, but then remember Princess' obsession with them and it becomes a little more clear! :-)

You can watch the trailer, listen to the audio excerpt, and even read up to 50 pages before you buy! Follow the link here: and here is a 50% off coupon as well! RH88E

Thanks so much and we will see you next week!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Orlin and I have a Signal

Even though I am a veterinarian, I still live in denial of how old Orlin is.

When people ask how old he is, I answer somewhere between 10, 11 or 12. Kind of like how I say I'm 29 (#ok #fine 39)

But he's not. First off I've had him for 13 years. And he was an ADULT. He could have been anywhere from 1-3 years old at the time I found him.

I don't even want to add those numbers on to 13 to come up with 14-6 yrs old.

Thank goodness he's in great shape. Deaf and cloudy eyes, but healthy.

But that old age is starting to creep in. He peeped on the bed the other day. He sometimes gets confused about what the routine is. He sleeps 23 hours a day.

I know he won't last forever.

So while my heart will break in two when he goes, I know, I just know, we will see each other again.

Because you see we've got a plan.

I figure if there is karma, Orlin is in about as good a stead as you could be.

He's been the best big brother a pack could ever have so he really should get his choice on what he comes back as.

After much debate, we have decided Orlin should come back as a medium-sized terrier.

He has always wanted to be a lap dog, but cramming 45 pounds into a lap has been awkward at best. But he wants to be big enough to protect everyone (that's just how he rolls). And he wants to be wire-haired so he can have great bed-head (again, how he rolls).

So about 6 months after he passes, I am going to start looking at the area shelters for him.

I know, I just know, it will be him, when that new dog gives me the 'signal.'

You see for all his life, Orlin has never just kissed me. He always looks into my eyes first, sniffs where he is going to kiss, then plants the most luscious kiss.

He doesn't lick, he kisses.

I have been called many things on the stream: "A weirdo," "Crazy," even "unprofessional" calling my license into question because I, you know, sit around and talk to my older dog about reincarnation (and having a sound plan for it).

But you know what? I don't all.

Because I've been around enough to know that one day I will stop at a cage and Orlin will peer out through new eyes, sniff my cheek and plant a kiss.

And on that day, my heart will heal #again

Remember, Mommy has written a mystery novel about serial killers. Which might seem odd, but then remember Princess' obsession with them and it becomes a little more clear! :-)

You can watch the trailer, listen to the audio excerpt, and even read up to 50 pages before you buy! Follow the link here: and here is a 50% off coupon as well! RH88E

Thanks so much and we will see you next week!