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Pet People

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

My Mother is Crazy!

My mother is crazy about a lot of things, but what she is most crazy about is her little dog, Bennie. Bennie is the family dog, as my mom lives with my sister and her family in Pennsylvania. My sister has to deal with the craziness in person, but I only have to deal with it only on the telephone and vacations!

Mom was visiting with me several years ago for a few months, when she got news that that the family dog, Daisy, a white poodle, had died. She was 15 and it was expected, but still a shock to my Mom who felt bad she couldn't say goodbye.

I was editing Animal Tracks at the time, and one day for the pet adoption page I received a picture of Bennie, who was up for adoption at Second Chance & Happy Tails. Something about him touched me, and I got the bright idea that maybe Mom should find a new family pet while here. So I called my sister to okay the plan and then told Mom, who, like she usually does for any occasion, thinks of a million reasons why something will go terribly, horribly wrong.

But I made her go check out Bennie. He was so tiny and pitiful-looking, the kind of dog you’d just want to hold forever. Inge Irby told me he was a stray that was attacked by a Chow before he came to her. We went to meet him, and he was so shy! He trembled all over and wouldn’t even walk. She, of course, fell in love and adoption arrangements were made. I’m surprised she didn’t assume his legs were deformed since we never did see him walk that day.

To make a long story short, he made it to Pennsylvania and blossomed into a dog full of life and personality. He is my Mom’s entire focus and she loves him more than my sister or me. That’s a GOOD thing. LOL. My sister’s life is very hectic and busy, and of course, my Mom thinks she doesn’t do what she should be doing when it comes to just about every aspect of her life. One time, my sister and family left the house and forgot to let Bennie back in from their fenced-in yard. Mom lost her mind and my phone burned with news of my sister's unforgivable sin. Mom became obsessed with the notion that they would now forget to let him in ALL the time and poor Bennie would freeze into a Popsicle just like Lot’s wife turned into a pillar of salt. So she insisted on getting a little dog house to keep on the back porch so Bennie could find comfort in the horrible hour or so he might have to spend outside if not let back in before his wee-wee dried.

But then, a new thought(worry). She fretted that maybe he would be too STUPID to go into the dog house and he'd still freeze. She’d call and say “What if he won’t go in it? What if they leave him out again? Blah, blah, blah, blah blah. I told her dogs aren’t people, they have fur, and that even the dumbest dog knows how to go into a shelter. Good grief! But Mom ain’t happy unless she’s worrying herself - or one of her daughters.

Mom got the dog house and guess what? Bennie LOVES it. He wants to be in it ALL the time! Is Mom happy? Ha! Yes and no. Yes that he won’t freeze to death (she’s added a layer of bedding; I’m surprised she didn’t order a heating system), but also upset that “he’s OUT THERE all the time.” She’ll say to me on the phone, “Guess where Bennie is?” I think she’s a bit miffed he would rather be out there than in with her.

But is it over? Nah. One day, she saw him in the yard just sitting there, “and it was so windy his little ears were just blowing back.” I’m surprised she didn’t put a ski mask on him. Which brings me to my next bright idea: I bought him a little coat, more for her than for him, because I think he's smothered enough. It was a coat that would be rain-resistant as well, because I know how Mom's mind works. When it arrived in the mail, she called. Did she tell me how cute it was? Say thank you? NO. She said it was “too small” and that the material would “keep the cold in and be cold against his ‘skin.’”

&*^%$#@@!!! Did I give up? No, I'm dumber than Bennie, I guess. I bought a different style in a bigger size that is in the care of the U.S. Postal Service as we speak. I’ll let you know what is wrong with that one as soon as I get the urgent call.

Picture above is of Bennie in his too-small, inadequate dog coat.

posted by Sandy at 1/23/2007 11:26:00 AM


Blogger Adrienne said...

OK, So'I'm crazy like your mom. My Mattie and Oscar (both Shih Tzus) NEVER leave the house without their "clothes". Its cold and they get groomed once a month to keep the mats under control,(that's what I tell my husband anyways) so their hair is short. And I admit it's so cute. My mom got them new coats for christmas a couple of years ago and the first thing I did was call and tell her they were too small. This year she sent them a gift card to Petsmart, We took them all in and let them pick out what they wanted. They loved all the attention they got from the employees. It was such fun!

Next year send Bennie a gift card.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 12:30:00 PM  
Blogger Stacey said...

Oh Dear Lord!! Save me from people that have little bitty dogs that wear clothes!!!!!!! Sorry, no offense to ANY of you girls, really!! I'm just one of those prejudiced large breed doggie parents. If something weighs less than 30 pounds, surely it MUST be a cat!!! LOL.

Okay, okay, don't yell at me. I'm not putting you or your children down. I value your dogs just as much as I do mine. But, I don't have to like it.

I do many crazy things with and for my babies, but putting clothes on them is not one of them. I have to draw the line somewhere. See, hubby, aren't you proud??? He didn't think there WAS a line.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 1:01:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

Yo, Adrienene (I couldn't resist the "Rocky" reference, even though I'm sure you get that a lot!)

I didn't mean to suggest she was crazy for wanting to keep him warm and I don't think people who use coats are crazy, but you just have to know my Mom. She worries about EVERYTHING. LOL. I mean, come on, give a break here--she actually thought a dog would be too stupid to go into a shelter if he was freezing? I will have to get my sister here to join me! LOL.

So, forgive me if I wasn't clear! It's my MOM and how she worries about how to worry before she worries about forgetting to worry. And that goes for a lot of things OTHER than Bennie!

And Stacey, for some it's not about dress up, but because some short haired, small delicate breeds are sensitive to the cold. You cold-hearted, big-dog snob! LOL! When I dog sit for my friend Carmen, I had to put coats on the Doxies and one still shivered!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 1:15:00 PM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

I love big dogs too. I also have a St. Bernard, Stella. They don't make clothes big enough for her, but when we go out she does wear a bandana.(Occasionally one of my husbands t-shirts if she's shedding really bad) since I don't actually have 2 legged children, I dress them all up when I can. My hubby does think I'm nuts and has on occasion refused to go with me if they are dressed up.

I did have a mutt that was too stupid to go into his doghouse. He would actually stand out in the rain or snow and shiver.

I worry about everything with my babies too. I have actually trained them not to take food from people unless I give it to them. I wouldn't want anyone to feed them something poisonous.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 1:33:00 PM  
Blogger Shannon said...

I love all the cute doggie clothes. My dogs have always been too big to wear the store bought clothes so I modify a sweatshirt.

I just love seeing the little ones prance around all dressed up. I would love to have a little dog one day. My oldest daughter has a little rat terrier and he is so personable. Quite the little stud (at least he thinks he is)when she dresses him in his faux leather jacket.

OK-not trying to change the topic but being the worrier I am-have ya'll read the front page of the LC today? If not, check out the article on the Dam on the Cumberland. I am extremely worried about it flooding here if something happens with the dam. Someone out there with a voice of reason please tell me I am worrying for nothing. I am going to walmart to check out prices of boats. I have been sick ever since reading this-thinking what in the world would I do with my pets? How am I going to corrall 5 cats and a dog that weighs as much as me? I do have life preservers for my kids but what about my furry kids? Have ya'll ever thought about an emergency plan for if something like this happened? I haven't so I do feel very vulnerable.

Sorry! I'm really not trying to be a downer. I suppose if we have time to drive somewhere to evacuate everthing would be ok. And yes, you can tell me I am over-reacting and I won't get mad. Maybe thats what I need to hear to settle myself down ! Stacey- maybe I need that margarita now!!! haha

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 2:21:00 PM  
Blogger Stacey said...

Well, Shannon, you just have to read this part very carefully: "Corps spokesman Bill Peoples said failure of the dam was NOT imminent. But he said people should have evacuation plans ready in Nashville and other downstream communities."

So, yes, I think you are over-reacting. But, let's face it, this is a wake up call on the local level for ALL of us to form an evacuation plan. Not just those of us with pets. If the call for some natural disaster (or non natural) went out while we were at work, I don't even have a pre-arranged location to meet my husband. Do any of you??

In this day and age of terrorist threats, we should all have an emergency plan. The article also says that the local TEMA office is helping draft evacuation plans for residents. Perhaps someone can contact them and see what is available.

And to backtrack to the pre-flood topic--YES, SANDY, I am a big dog snob! I can't help it! Dog and delicate should not go in the same sentence. :)

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 2:54:00 PM  
Blogger Shannon said...


Before I went into my off-topic rant(sorry) I forgot to tell you that you are definitely not dumb to try again with the coat- I was thinking more along the lines of patient. I think Bennie is adorable and dashing ( there now- I didn't say delicate Stacy! LOL) in his too small inadequate dog coat.

Thanks Stacy- in my rush to worry I guess I over-looked that key line. I was seeing images of the tsunami flash thru my head. Our house backs up to the Red river and I tend to worry about the rivers probably more so than I should. Thanks again, all better.

I do think this will make me at least get a plan formulated in my head tho. Never hurts to be prepared.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 3:34:00 PM  
Blogger Daisylouu said...

OK, I can verify that everything Sandy has written is true, being I'm her sister and also the *real* mother of Bennie. I would also like to state that I am not in favor of dressing dogs, the coat is ridiculous, Bennie hates it, and my mother would worry even if Bennie had a personal assistant to follow him and cater to his every need. As I watch my 75 year old mother on her hands and knees gently wiping Bennie's eye-boogers from his little peepers, only to hear the endless complaints about how her back is going to hurt from bending down to do this MUST-DO task, I silently think to myself, Sandy should be glad she lives in Tennessee.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 3:48:00 PM  
Blogger Alice said...

Don't ya love families! Bennie sounds sweet and he does look snappy in the coat. Charlie wore sweaters during his first year with us because his fur was so sparse and he was os thin. Even a Fresno winter was too cold for him then. Now he has lush, luxurious fur and about 15 more pounds on him. The sweaters are gathering dust. Would a rescue shleter want them? They are clean but furry. There is no way to get the fur off. I think I have 2 or 3. I know how your mom is, Sandy... obsessing... I do too. I worry when they are outside, I worry when we are gone. I worry when it's cold, warm... what time it is! LOL She's ok by me. And Daisy... give Mom a hug for me. You're a good sister and daughter!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 4:31:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Stacey, sounds like you are a bit prejudiced against cats too so as a cat person I'll try not to take that too seriously,ha. And I love the itty bitty dogs as much as the big ones but hey we all have our favorites right?
Bennie looks adorable in his little jacket and it looks like it fits just fine but photos can be fooling so we have to ask daisylouu what the real deal is. But then daisylouu you did say he hates the jacket and you know best. From the way your Mom sounds I would swear I'm related to you guys but then thinking I'm Sandy's long lost sister-in-law because of my fear of snakes that could mean some inbreeding, eeeeewww, gross, not that's not happening. Sorry guys, just had to makde that joke.
Anyway Bennie looks great and I am just as big a worrier as your Mom Sandy and daisylouu.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 7:15:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

P.S, for Shannon,
don't worry honey, we aren't going to ahve anything like what New Orleans had. Just relax, if anything would get bad we'll all work together to make sure the animals are taken care of.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 7:18:00 PM  
Blogger dragon said...

Therapists are available!! Never fear, it's not too late. You can all still get help. And, best of all, it's PAINLESS.

I've been reading the Pet blog for a while, and it has been humorous. I do get a chuckle, because I do live with a wife that thinks that dogs and cats are people. I have nothing against pets, I like pets, I live with pets, but they have their place (like Letterman's Stupid Animal Tricks--LOL).

I, like Sandy's Boss, fall low on the totem pole. If I'm really good, my wife will treat me like a pet! That's why I'm posting incognito, so she won't know it's me!! Otherwise, I'll have to sleep in the shed. Probably without a blanket.

Dogs and coats--where to begin?? All you people are warping these poor dogs' minds. They HAVE coats! They are born with a nice, warm coat. If you don't cut their hair in the winter, their coat will keep them warm. They aren't beanie babies, people!!!

I think the pictures are getting out of control here. Seeing people's pets is good, but the reindeer ears took it too far. That dog won't be able to look us in the eye now.

I am not a licensed therapist, but if any of you or your spouse need some pet related counseling, please let me know. I am a good listener, and I will help your pet to keep their dignity.

Sandy's Boss must be a heck of a guy to deal with all this. Maybe he and I can start our own blog for Spouses Living with Fanatic Pet Owners.

As a great philosopher once said, "Dogs and cats, living together--Mass Hysteria!!!"

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 8:12:00 PM  
Blogger Stacey said...

Pam!!! I am NOT prejudiced against cats! I've had cats all my life (except in the military). I didn't become a dog person until 1994 when I moved here. I am one of those cat AND dog people. The crack about 30 pounds and cats is because I have a big cat. My hubby is always calling him fat, but he's really big boned. He's no where near 30 pounds of course, but I always say that when I see little dogs somewhere. "Man, I have cats bigger than that!"

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 10:07:00 PM  
Blogger Shannon said...


Welcome! My Hubby will gladly join you in your blog. His current coping method is to sit on the couch shaking his head and laughing at me. He might not agree with me but he is smart enough to not buck the system. LOL-as you must be too since you are incognito!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007 7:07:00 AM  
Blogger Pam said...

Ok, trying this a second time. The first time it didn't get saved.

Stacey! I was just joking and not really serious about you being prejudice against cats, sorry if it sounded that way. You and I have two things in common I see, the military and fat cats. My ourtney weighs 17 1/2 pounds and is long haired which makes her look about 5 pounds heavier than what she actually is. The hair is like angora and gets all matted in the Spring so we have to cut it. Suzanne and Gerta from Cats Are Us are friends of mine so they come to my house and cut it for me. They are experienced and good at it.
dragon! You sound just like my husband. Whoa, are you my husband? Is your name Jon? If so, yes you will sleep in the shed! LOL Seriously my husband does think I'm a nut case the way I treat our cats but he does love them. He certainly would agree with everything yoou are saying though. Since we animals lovers are so kind and gernerous we will continue to allow you to voice your opinions even if we have to put up with some of the crap you are spouting, right gang? Now please don't take that serious either just got to get a little dig back at ya for giving us a hard time. Welcome to our chat and pet loving world ! Feel free to comment any time.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007 9:24:00 AM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

Dragon Boy, it's good to have you hear. I just hope you are as tough as a dragon, because we'll come down on you like a vulture on road kill!

Are you making fun of Scooter's reindeer hat? He is so proud of that hat, because I told him he's the leader, just like Rudolph. Besides, he only wears it for photos!

I am also glad to see you realize that you are pet on the totem pole, and not in a very high position at that! And if you slep in the shed, why would you need a blanket? If dogs don't need coats, dragons with their tough skin shouldn't need a blanket!

Stick around and you will learn much. LOL. Again, welcome

Wednesday, January 24, 2007 10:43:00 AM  
Blogger Pam said...

WHooooHOOOOO Way to go Sandy! You know how to put a man in his place where he belongs! "AFTER" the animals,Ha. Sorry Dragon but I think you knew what you were in for when you came in here . I do admire you for being brave enough to do it knowing the ribbibg and put downs you'll get with all of us Pet Nuts. As I said before, welcome to our pet loving world!

P.S. I like that Dragon Boy tittle!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007 10:55:00 AM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

Hey Dragon, welcome. Have you ever walked out your door for 5 minutes and when you walk back in, your dogs greet you all excited, like you have been gone all day? Having pets is therapy! Thats why we spend so much time with them and do such crazy things.If you were my husband (and I hope your not) you would be sleeping in the shed. I guess thats the totem thing.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007 11:53:00 AM  
Blogger Shannon said...

LOL LOL... Adrienne I am laughing so hard at your post. The "(and I hope you're not) is hysterical to me. From the sounds of our post-this could be any one of our husbands ( I only know its not mine because he is on a plane as we speak coming home from the sandbox overseas). You are too funny. Thanks..I needed a good chuckle

Wednesday, January 24, 2007 3:40:00 PM  
Blogger Stacey said...

I think the idea of a spouse blog is interesting. Or at least, a poker club or something. I'm always looking for an excuse to have a girl's outing. Maybe us girls could plan something and the guys could all meet each other and feel each other's pain!!!

I agree Shannon, Dragon could belong to any of us. Hmmm......

Wednesday, January 24, 2007 7:19:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

We can battle it out with the husbands here. Guess who's gonna win? LOL. They never win any other time when it comes to the pets; they certainly won't win the verbal battles here--at least while I'm around! But I hope they try! I love a good verbal throw down! I always get the last word and I'm always right. :) But if there are any brave boys out there, I hope they join in!

And all meeting some day is a great idea. That way The Boss can see that I am NORMAL, just like you all!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007 11:17:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Sandy, our ideal of normal isn't really going to be considered normal by The Boss or any of our husbands do you think? I know mine doesn't think I am when it comes to the girls, he says I am obsessed with them. He says I treat them better than him but hey he can take care of himself. They need me. The good thing is that now we are getting to know others just like us so at least the guys could see thier wives aren't the only ones out there, that might ease thier pain a little. I love the idea of getting together. Hey we could even form a club and call ourselves The Kennel Klub or something cute like that, what do you think guys? Maybe we could meet once a month for lunch or drinks? That would be fun! We could even extend the invitation to Dragon. Hey Drag told you we are kind and generous.
My biggest problem is I have terrible night vision and can't drive at night so always have to go somewhere with someone if it isn't daylight.

Thursday, January 25, 2007 8:19:00 AM  
Blogger Stacey said...

Actually, some of you guys are making my husband realize that I'm only a little crazy. I'll show him something one of you wrote and he'll shake his head and sigh. I say "See dear, I'm NOT the only one".

Thursday, January 25, 2007 12:24:00 PM  
Blogger dragon said...

Dragon hasn’t felt very good for last couple of days. My scales have turned gray, and my nose is dry and warm.

Pam If you want me to play your husband it's Ok with me. If you want to call me Jon. That’s Ok also. I call wife the wrong name once, that didn’t go over very well!! So far I have not slept in the shed.

Adrienne I have walked out of the door for 5 minutes and walk back in, dogs was excited. The dog needs therapy!

Shannon, I'm glad you think my post was funny. There is hope for you. I have been telling my wife for years I was humorous.

Stacey I think the idea of a spouse blog is not needed. A night out drinking and playing poker (Good). I to am always looking for an excuse to have a girl's outing.

Pam a bunch of girls called the Kennel Club, not a good idea. And thinks for the kid comments, but please don't call me Drag, kind a made me feel weird. Could be short for Drag Queen. Dragon would be nice.

Thursday, January 25, 2007 4:31:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

Called your wife the wrong name? I bet she was the one breathing fire! The Boss has the same first name as my first husband. I used to call him #2, but that didn't go over.

Since there already is a kennel club, we'll have to come up with something to more describe how nuts we are about our pets!

Glad you are feeling better Dragon boy!

Pam, when I am visiting my family in PA and call, I always ask about the pets first. The boss says THEY'RE FINE. You don't even ask about me. I do that next. LOL. I told him I have a good reason: they don't KNOW where I am and he does! And he blames me for everything. YOU LET THEM get away with it. YOU let them on the bed/couch/chair etc.

But I don't care! He'd never give me a choice, because he knows who'd come out on top! LOL

Thursday, January 25, 2007 10:57:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Sorry Dragon about the Drag thing, I didn't even think about that when I said it. I'm not challenging your manhood here, it's obvious you have the normal male testosterone going for ya. I won't call you Drag again
I promise. And I too am glad you're feeling better!

I agree with Sandy about you calling your wife by the wrong name,whoaaa, bet there was a bit of fire breathing going there. How did you get out of that one? You are definitely lucky not to be in the shed for that one! Your wife must be a sweetheart and just as kind and generous as all the rest of us here in the blog. Am I right girls?

Sandy, that is funny about you calling your husband #2 for two reasons, #2 get it? That hit me after I was thinking about him having the same name as the 1st husband,ha.Funnney. Jon carries on about the cat hair on everything like it's something new and not have always been a issue. I tell him he should just be thankful we have them. He says we can't have a damn thing around here for the damn cats yet if I've been at our daughters to stay a few days he'll put them on the phone to say hi,ha. I wrote that again on one of the blogs, just so you know I'm not repeating myself without remembering. At least not this time,ha.

Friday, January 26, 2007 7:23:00 AM  
Blogger Pam said...

You know Sandy I was just thinking how my husband could havve called me #2 when we got to gether too because his ex-girlfriend right before we got to gether was named Pam too. We did used to joke about how I wouldn't know if he was thinking about her when he called me name. I ahd forgotten about that till now,ha.

Friday, January 26, 2007 7:26:00 AM  

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Pet People

Sandy Britt, an animal welfare advocate and volunteer with Clarksville rescue organizations, takes care of three dogs: Zoe, Scooter and Peanut; two cats: Catfish and Tarzan; and one husband, Glen, and according to him she takes care of them in that order.

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