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Pet People

Monday, January 22, 2007

What is the silliest thing you ever did to/for/with your dog or cat (or bird or ferret or any other pet) ? We pet people who love our pets like crazy, often do crazy things with them, things others who don’t “get it” might roll their eyes at and scoff. Who cares? We’ve all seen pets dressed up in outlandish costumes, and anyone who’s ever seen “America’s Funniest Pets” on Animal Planet have watched cats playing ping pong or dogs water skiing.

My dog, Tramp, was my “first born,” a spaniel mix I adopted from the Humane Society back in 1992. On her first anniversary with us, which became her birthday, I had a real birthday party for her and invited my in-laws. Now you have to understand how this must have looked to them, country people from the old school who believed dogs belonged outside 24/7! A shocking revelation to me, who comes from a family of dog lovers whose pets are part of the family INSIDE and out.

I made a sheet cake cut into the shape of a bone, with icing and the words, “Happy Birthday Tramp!” I worked at a sign shop at the time and also made a banner with the same message I put on the wall. I had presents wrapped up with bows (toys and treats) and had a big candle ready. After we played our usual Rook card game and ate dinner, I dimmed the lights, got out the cake, sat Tramp on a spare chair AT the table, lit the candle and made everyone sing “Happy Birthday dear Tramp-E….” LOL. Now, I think I’m great at reading body language, and their bodies were screaming, “I can’t believe I’m sitting at a table with a dang mutt singing happy birthday to it!” They were never much for birthdays for their own kids and grandkids and not the type to even send a card to them, so this lavishing of attention on a dog really messed them up BIG TIME!

The Boss's Dad always thought I was a crazy Polish Yankee to begin with, and this scenario further proved it! I sent cards to them from the grandpup/s throughout the years to further polish my “crazy” image. And I never get embarrassed by such things, because I don’t give a you-know-what about what people think. I am never offended and don’t even understand the concept of being offended. I feel that if you are secure in yourself and your beliefs—about anything—then how can anyone else “offend” you?

The pictures above: The two doxies are pets of my friend, Carmen, for whom I’ve dog sat for in the past. That will be a whole blog entry by itself one day soon! They were both adopted from Coast-to-Coast Dachshund Rescue, a breed rescue group. Josie, left, is my “favorite,” but don’t spread it around or Lacey will get jealous. Carmen’s been having trouble signing on, but hopeful that will clear up and she can tell you more about her girls. She also fosters doxies for the group.

The beautiful tuxedo cat is Birdie, adopted from Cats Are Us by Ramona, who posts here as “birdie.” I actually KNOW this cat, because I volunteer for Cats Are Us and take pet pictures for their Petfinder Web site (someone else has taken over those duties while I am on night shift). I loved Coo-Coo-Bird (Birdie) because she looks so much like my Catfish. Before Tarzan became Catfish’s best bud, I had wanted to adopt Coo-Coo. I told The Boss about her and showed him her picture. I said, “Bubby needs a bride…” to which he said, “no one needs a bride.” LOL. I am so glad that she found a great home! And Cats Are Us is a great place to find a bride or any other type of cat you might want, as is the Humane Society or the county shelter. Last picture, Scooter posing in his Christmas reindeer hat.

So share all your foolishness with us! You know we’ll understand!

posted by Sandy at 1/22/2007 09:30:00 AM


Blogger Pam said...

Hi Sandy,
I'm trying to think of what all I've done that would seem silly or crazy to other people but not you or my other pet loving friends. Right now I'm drawing a blank other than I too have wrapped presents for them. I do heat thier food in the microwave even if it hasn't been in the fridge cause I know they like it better. I make sure they have fresh water upstairs and down twice a day after they get clean dishes. Their dishes are washed in the dishwasher. I do a lot of things for thier comfort but still can't think of much else right now.

The photos you just posted are sooooo cute!

Hope you friend gets on soon too as well as my friend Charlene. She just e-mailed me that she would try to get on today or at least by later in the week.

Monday, January 22, 2007 1:30:00 PM  
Blogger Alice said...

Well... I guess I am not as crazy as you, Sandy! (but in a good crazy way!!) I refuse to let hubby dress up the dogs. I think to non-dog people the craziest thing I have ever done is buy Doggles for Aimee when we came to Clarksville from Fresno. She loves to stick her head out the car window and I was afraid she might get a bug in the eye or worse. So I got her some doggy goggles and she wore them as well as seat belts attachers for her, Max and Charlie. One thing did occur to me the other day which would seem crazy to some people, is that in the event of some sort of tragic accident to my husband and myself together, we have no family here in Tennessee. I told my hubby we should set up a savings fund so that our "kids" can be sent to California to live with our best friend, who is a vet tech and an animal lover and knows our kids. I also am worried that if we were both killed, would anyone check our home to even see if we had pets! I know this topic is a downer but I am wondering if there is any sort of information that anyone has. Sandy... if you see my name in the obits... send help for our kids!

Monday, January 22, 2007 2:39:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Oh Alice, Bless your heart! I understand how you feel. I worry every time I leave our home because I am afrraid of a fire or a break in that would let our cats outside to run away. When I was 20 my home burned and my family and I lost everything we had ( no pets thank God ) so I have been terrified ever since of fires. We were only away for 15 minnutes when the fire began and my sister who was 16 was home alone when the fire started. She got out ok but we had nothing after the fire department left. Now when we leave home I have to get a sitter for our kitty's. On 4th of July and New Year's Eve and neighbors shoot off fireworks I don't dare leave home without a sitter. I panic at the thought. This past weekend we had to go to Murfreesboro to baby sit our grand kids and as much I love being with them I was sick at the thought of leaving because our friend Charlene who usually stays with our girls is out of town. Usually we turn the heaet off to give me a llittle more peace of mind but this time it was too cold to do that. I just prayed that God would watch over our girls and keep them safe and he did. I couldn't go and leave them all the time like that though. I'll be happy to help Sandy make sure your kids are taken care of should anything ever happen to you too but it's not going to. We'll think positive like I did on Sat. I too worry about my girls if something should happen to us. I made my daughter promise she would take care of them if that would happen but I still worry. I worry they wouldn't get all the love, hugs and kisses and spoiling I give them. We're worry warts aren't we? Well we love our babies.
I love the goggle idea. I've worried so many times when I see dogs with thier heads out the window like that. I wish everyone would get those goggles, what a great idea!

Monday, January 22, 2007 9:16:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

P.S. I put seat belts around our girls carriers when they are in the car too so if we stop quick or whatever they will be safe. Wish everyone did the seat belts too.

Monday, January 22, 2007 9:18:00 PM  
Blogger Shannon said...

I love the pictures-they are adorable. And what great ideas-the goggles and the seat belts. I know I have often driven with one hand on the wheel- one arm out holding the dog stable in the seat. I am a bad mommy!

I don't think I do anything really unusual either. Sandy I love the story about the birthday party. I had a birthday party for Cody when he was 1 and it is a wonderful memory of my family being oblivious to my craziness. I have pictures of me very pregnant trying to hold Cody still to take a picture with his birthday hat on, and my wonderful step-father (who had just had surgery and still had the brace on his neck) holding a cake in front of Cody. I got such a hoot reading your desciption of your family at the b-day party Sandy. I could just picture them-so funny.

I did have Cody's pic taken with Santa that year also. The Humane Society in NC did this as a fund-raiser and it was a lot of fun. My Cody was SOOOO excited to get up and lick and paw at Santa. He was hasseling(sp ?) and slobbering and wiggling all over. Much to our surprise-When we got the photos back in the mail 2 weeks later they were quite x-rated. Didn't realize at the time that he was so excited that his little red crayon was showing in ALL the photos. Not too mention the big gooey white slobber that was hanging from his teeth too. He was a very happy boy though. We don't display those pictures but I get a good laugh everytime I look at them.

I could never find affordable coats for my boxers so when it gets cold I always used a regular adult sweatshirt and rolled up the sleeves. My neighbor laughs at me in the winter as I run around behind my female -Harley and make sure her shirt is pulled up so she doesn't pee or poop on it.

Alice, I'll help with your babies too! I worry about things like that too. We use to have to leave Harley at a kennel when we left and it was like leaving my child. The last time we did that I had such a horrible time on our trip. It was only 3 days that we were gone but I could not relax and enjoy myself. When I left her there, shaking and scared from the noise, I cried and cried and felt absolutely dreadful. I kept telling my husband "she doesn't understand that we are coming back to get her- all she knows is that we have left her in this awful noisy place away from her home" At that time we had just moved here, had no knowledge of home pet sitters, friends or neighbors we trusted. It was traumatizing for me. But I also worried that if we were in a wreck and killed-she would be in that place indefinitely and what would happen to her? I am so thankful that now I have neighbors and friends who will look after her for me when we are gone. But they know that I am going to call them 2 or 3 times a day to make sure the house hasn't burned or that she is eating, drinking, etc.

I guess we are all worry warts. But that makes us the good pet-parents that we are.

Monday, January 22, 2007 9:55:00 PM  
Blogger Stacey said...

Well, Alice, if you and your husband don't have a will, you should make one. Come to think of it, I should too! You can make those arrangements for your fur-babies in your will. You can specify that portion of your estate be used to transport them to whomever you are turning custody of them over to. But, you have to remember, any funds in your estate will probably not be available until the will is probated. Us "crazy animal people" are becoming more mainstream than ever before, so lots of people are taking care of their four legged children through their wills. Food for thought...

Also, Pam, you can buy large specialty stickers that you can put on the windows of your home that are designed for fire fighters to see, stating what type and how many pets are in the home. Most times, if they know pets are inside, the firefighters will attempt to rescue them. EMS has even gone so far here locally as to administer oxygen to pets that were overcome by smoke.

Monday, January 22, 2007 9:59:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy Britt said...

I worry about all of the above! We did do our wills and I have money set aside for my vet to care for the pets until family can come and care for them. I told him that he's in my will too! I have no family here, and The Boss's family doesn't have pets, don't like pets, etc. I really think we should develop a pet care group for such things! I would hope all my friends in the animal world would hear of any "bad news" and send someone out to take care of the pets. I have the stickers on all the doors, but they are fading and I need new ones. I guess the best thing to do is to make sure people know and someone has a key. Make arrangements with your vet to keep them temporarily. When I leave the pets inside, I worry about fire and that they couldn't get out.

I don't dress up my dogs to go out, just for photos to be silly! I used to have seat belts, but that became a pain. My dogs don't stick their heads out, they are good and just lay on the seat. However, I guess in a wreck they'd be missles!

I too have done the Santa photos, since the shelters get money from it.

Glad to hear I'm not the only one with such worries. The Boss thinks I'm nuts, but someone has to plan for things! His method is to ignore everything and hope for the best! I am the one dragging him to the lawyer for wills and such. Men! LOL.

Monday, January 22, 2007 10:34:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Thanks Stacey, I do have those stickers, one on a front window and another on my kitchen door window. I get them from the fire department when I take them a donation. But- I do need new ones because we had 4 cats when I got them and I tried putting a 3 over the 4 after Sam died but it isn't working too well. I'm afraid it might confuse the firemen if we did have a fire. I don't want any of my babies missed. Stacey, where can I buy new ones?
We had a friend that lost one of his cats in a fire that destroyed his new home. Guess how the fire started? Yep, fireworks from a neighbor! That is why I am terrified to ever leave home when neighbors are shooting them. Between oour friend's tradgedy and losing my home to a fire I really freak out about that!
And Sandy you are right about the dogs being missles if you brake really fast. A quick story about that. My daughter, son-in-law andI were the way back from Memphis one time. My son-in-law was driving, Me thier dog Roxie and thier two cats in a carrier was in the back seat. We had a blow out and luckily Billy knew how to handle the SUV without wrecking but poor Roxie and the cats went flying into the floor scaring them all silly. They were ok but it was scarey. That is when I started putting our cats in seat belts in thier carriers. Now Roxie still sits in the seat and floor so we need to come up with a way to keep her safer too. She is a big dog. Any suggestions anyone?

P.S. Did anyhone else see the letter that man wrote in the paper this morning about finding the abandoned puppy? Thank God for that nice man who cared enough to take care of it and shame on the blasted dirtball ( keeping it much nicer than I'd like to )that left it there on the side of the road in a box.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 11:17:00 AM  
Blogger Alice said...

Thanks for the advice all! I will talk to an attorney soon.

Pam, I did see that letter to the editor. What is so obvious to me is that the bad person put the dog in a box so no one could see it. He knew it was in bad shape and he wanted it to die in that horrible box. It breaks my heart. Bless that nice man. Both will get their rewards... although one won't like his. Good!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 12:04:00 PM  
Blogger Stacey said...

Pam, I got mine at a pet store in Nashville, but I don't recall the name. I was killing time before a meeting one day. I would think Petsmart or Pet Food Center would have things like that. I've never specifically looked though. If you shop online, there are tons of types on this website: They even have breed specific decals.

Sandy, does the Humane Society offer anything like that locally?

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 12:45:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

Stacey! Thanks for the info on the sticker. I don't think the Humane Society has them but I will ask next time I talk to Amy the director. I know I can get them from the fire department but thought maybe the ones like you have might be bigger or easier to see. The ones I ahve are only about 4 inches in diameter. Again thanks!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007 9:34:00 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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