cody bear's friends

the bedroom meme…no worries, it’s g-rated
April 21, 2009, 6:24 am
Filed under: animals, blogs, dog, dogs, life, pet loss, pets | Tags: , , , , , , ,

dennis tagged me on the bedroom meme.  it should be a simple meme: post three interesting scenes from your bedroom. (sounds naughty, no matter what)

as i’ve mentioned….i sleep well.  seriously.  in the past i was always been a bad sleeper, but one thing i have conquered is the sleep situation. NO ONE sleeps better than me.

and ever since dennis tagged me, it has been obvious to me that the lack of interesting things in my bedroom is what makes me sleep so soundly. so it was work coming up with these meme photos.  so here gos.

now…dogs are obvious. as are dog toys, so this shot doesn’t count:

brobvioushowever they are comforting and do contribute to my successful sleeping.

but moving on to the actual meme.



a broken alarm clock.  it goes off at 6:26.  i cannot change the time.  it either goes off at 6:26 or not at all.   can’t move it forward…can’t move it back.  should i get a new one? yes.  but first i need a new electric toothbrush to replace THAT broken electronic device.

moving on…

2.  the loki memory panel

brlokiclick here for info on it, but basically it was a tribute made by a friend in memory of the dog of my heart, loki.  it hangs in the west facing window of my bedroom.

and 3. by the back door….


…dehydrated beef livers and a mag light…naturally.

you see, in the back yard the dogs have a variety of chase distractions: cats, rabbits, squirrels, lizards, cars, birds, lunatics, beetles, basketball players.  the dogs come when they’re called, and i reinforce this frequently with treats.  also, right by the back door is a large mag light.  we go outside late at night sometimes.  i need to find and/or beat the beetles/lunatics that may be hanging out.

funny thing about this meme, it came right in the middle of the re-feng shui-ing of my bedroom.  in summary,  it is a place of rest and solace.  and all the mag lights and beef livers in the world won’t interrupt my sleep.


more on ghostly dog toys…
July 24, 2008, 1:29 pm
Filed under: animals, canine, dog, dogs, life, love, pet loss, pets, photography | Tags: , , , , , , ,

been getting up earlier now that there’s a puppy in the house.  eyes don’t work so well first thing in the morning.  i sat down on the patio and looked into the yard and saw something out of the usual.  had pickles taken one of my bras off the drying rack?  no, it was still there, ready to wear.

it was piggy, who was actually a mouse.  pickles has been playing archaeologist againg.

piggies were loki’s beanie baby toys.  the first one she had was a pig, when it’s tail broke off i replaced it with an elephant or something, then a mouse….whatever had a tail. to her, piggies were beanie babies.

she would hold the tail in her front teeth and shake her head vigorously.  she would bounce around and flop the toys up in the air.  she always had a piggy.

pickles must have found it last night after dark one of the times i let the dogs out before bed.

i have no idea where it was, only that it hasn’t been shaken in 4 years.  sort of like that mini soccer ball, one of loki’s other toys the new puppy somehow located beneath the dirt years after loki’s passing.

i guess i’ll get her a piggy to call her own.  a newer fresher one.

we have so many dog toys, i don’t know why she keeps finding these relics.  and i have no idea what she will come up with next…

toothmarks and all

This is the story of a ball. A bouncy one, the size of tennis ball, designed to look like a soccer ball. It is also a window into two generations of my dogs: Loki, my border chow who died early but fit a few lifetimes worth of joy into her years, and Pickles, my new border collie puppy.

Loki loved playing soccer. A few days a week we would go to the park and she and I would tear it up with her futball. My mother had purchased a mini-super bouncy soccer ball for her one year. Yes, Loki and I played fetch with it, but whenever we went to visit Mom we took the ball with us and the two of them would get up early to play. Mom would kick the ball all morning while Loki fetched it or stomped on it and kicked it back with her paws. Over the years the ball got pretty nasty. Tooth marks, paint missing….skungie. Mom would buy her new balls, but she only wanted that crusty old spitty toothmarked ball.

When Loki got sick she stopped playing. The mini soccer ball was left in the yard while I spent my time keeping her still. It was difficult because she wanted to play, she was getting better, but I had to keep her rested. Months after he diagnosis, and after a severe feeling of recovery, Loki passed away one Sunday. Her indoor toys were put in an area of the living room not packed away. Of her four favorite toys, two were outdoor toys, one stayed in the backyard as a sort of memorial, but the mini soccer ball was forgotten. The ball stopped seeing action in June of ‘04. In late August of ’04 it had lost its dog.

4 years of hot summer sun and harsh monsoon muds passed, covering the ball. It sat under a tree while 4 years of leaves and bark covered it. It lay buried under the crazy, running paws of my Cody Bear at least 4 inches under ground.

Two weeks ago I adopted Pickles. The first couple days she lived with us she was too scared of Cody Bear to leave my side, but soon she started to explore the yard. Every day I would catch her staring at the ground beneath a tree. She would start to dig and I would say stop. She would walk away in search of a beetle. Again and again I found her staring at the patch of dirt. I would walk up to her and look, “what is she seeing?” Nothing.

pickles and the old soccer ball

pickles and the old soccer ball

Today I sat out back eating my lunch and Pickles was staring at her patch of dirt. She started digging but I did not stop her. Soon she produced the ball. She carried it to her secluded part of the yard. She ignored all other toys all afternoon. I eventually took the ball from her, half petrified and misshapen.

How did she know it was there? It certainly couldn’t still smell after all this time. Why did Cody Bear never know it was there?

Loki with balls in the background

Loki with ball in the background

mindy update
June 12, 2008, 4:22 pm
Filed under: animals, dogs, family, friends, life, love, pet loss, pets, photography | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

hi everyone.  i hadn’t even finished typing “update” before i started crying.  i hate so much to inform you that mindy has passed away.  so many of you have kept her in your thoughts and prayers and have offered encouraging words to her family, and for that i know they appreciate it.

she was diagnosed with severe kidney damage due to the chicken strips from costco (which are still on the shelves even though they have harmed many dogs already) over a month ago.  initially she was very sick, but she responded well to her holistic treatments, was eating, playing, instigating doggie trouble.  i was caught off guard yesterday.  i thought she was going to make it.

her family cherished her these past few weeks and her remaining time was actually joyous and full of love and expensive dog treats!  and as r says, every day with her was a blessing.

i took this picture several weeks ago,…the day after the e.r. doctors told r and a that she only had a couple days to live and should be euthanized.  But within days of her holistic treatments she improved.  r and a could just tell she was a fighter and wanted to be here, to stay with her family.

there is nothing like losing a dog.  i hate that two people i love are going through this mess of feelings.  if it weren’t for our mutual love of dogs, i never would have met these two fun, brilliant and loving people.  and i am so honored to be their friend, and honored that they let me participate in their family activities these past few months.

mindy’s pack consisted of r and a, hoju, kodos, barnie and maggie.  oh…and blinky, the family chinchilla.  blinky was mindy’s little buddy. she spent hours each day laying down outside his cage with her face right next to him.  on her last day here, the day she lost her vision, she stared intently into blinky’s cage….even though she couldn’t see him.  she wanted to stay with her chinchilla.

one of her favorite activities was waking up and and instigating a growly, howly, barky alarm clock….really early in the morning.

….and she knew she was loved.

regarding mindy, dog treats, china and the american manufacturing monster
May 14, 2008, 3:41 am
Filed under: animals, cats, dogs, family, health, life, pet loss, pets, rants | Tags: , , , , , , ,

So welcome to my least wordless Wednesday ever! That’s because I’m talking about…chicken stips! The toxic kind. I know you guys like short posts, but if you have dogs, please read this whole post.

Many of you have been following the news of Mindy, my friends’ dog who is battling kidney failure. )You can read past posts by typing in Mindy in my search bar to the left).

As I mentioned earlier, she’s holding steady, but I was going to post tonight, not about her, but the chicken strips and the pet food recall in general.

I won’t rehash the history, but to sum up, where we stand now there is a problem with the pet food our dogs are getting, which may be indicative of more. So here are some facts.

* mindy has gotten kidney failure.

* her two food sources are blue buffalo dog food, an all natural, made in America dog food with NO complaints against it, and the Costco chicken strip dog treat distributed by kingdom pets.

* there are multiple complaints of the chicken strips causing kidney failure on line.

* there is already an existing history of dangerous pet products from ingredients from china.

* I’m not Chinese, nor am I un-American.

Here’s what is happening. There are American corporations manufacturing these products in China using Chinese materials and the Chinese workforce. And they’re saving money. Not only are they endangering our pets, but we’ve seen horrible evidence of children’s toys with lead. We all blame the Chinese, but let’s remember that these are American plants with plant managers who have gone there to save money. These American companies w

BACK TO THE TREATS! Tonight I went shopping at Trader Joe’s. They appeared to discontinue their chicken strips months ago, but I saw some on the shelf today. (I go weekly) I approached the manager with doubt, as I will mention another experience next. I said, “You may not care, but these chicken strips are made in china and I have a friend whose dog is dieing because of pet treats manufactured in china. Will you please consider taking these off the shelves?”

The manager looks at me, totally serious, and says, “Absolutely. We are phasing out every product from China. These shouldn’t be on the shelves.” It was that easy.

THAT IS ALL YOU HAVE TO DO. Take the product to the manager and ask them to stop selling them.

Granted, it doesn’t always go so well. I went to Wild Oats, where people trust their food is healthy. I approached the manager and she said she would talk to the district manager. I asked her to take my number but she wasn’t interested.

But don’t let that discourage you. People trust that pet foods being sold now are safe; that since the recall is over the danger is gone. And we trust that these health food stores all know the ingredients, but they don’t. and they may not care.

Back to Mindy. Costco AND Kingdom Pet contacted my friend R. when the word got out to them that several hundred shelter volunteers were informed not to by treats at Costco. At first they treated r like he was just confused and there wasn’t a problem. “no one has ever complained before” then he learned r had a Ph. D. in biology and next thing you know….the manufacturer is calling. When R asked what the “seasonings” were…she couldn’t tell him. She said sodium. Sodium chloride, which is salt, or sodium nitrate, which damages kidneys? She couldn’t tell him.

I guess you’ve stopped reading by now, but if you’re still reading, you’re concerned about your pet’s diet. So thanks for reading. More later.

More fluffy positive blogs, too!

Thanks for everyone’s thoughts and concern. It’s so appreciated!

if you’ve ever loved a dog….
May 7, 2008, 2:42 pm
Filed under: animals, dogs, family, friends, life, love, pet loss, pets, photography | Tags: , , , , , , ,

oh my gosh! i went to my friends after work and shot pictures of mindy and her family for hours!  i have hundreds of pictures of them!

r & a are amazing. they love their dogs so much.  and you can see how much they love each other in their pictures, too.

please continue to keep them all in your thoughts.  it is a really hard time for them right now, you see, the doctors determined that the ongoing treatment was what was keeping mindy alive.  they sent her home to be with her family for a couple days, but they will have to take her back when she starts failing.  oh god that is so hard to type.

it is better she spend time with her family now, so r & a cleared their schedules and are staying home with their family for the week.

it took hours to go through all the photos.  late into the night.  cody bear finally gave up on me, until i turned around in my chair to look at him…

remember his not-so-super super power?  the one where he senses someone is looking at him and exposes his belly for rubbing?  his senses are becoming even more heightened now!

remembering loki…
May 2, 2008, 5:26 pm
Filed under: animals, blogs, dogs, family, life, love, pet loss, pets | Tags: , , , , , , ,

yesterday i did a post about 5 things in my bag, 5 of my favorite things in my bedroom, 5 things i’ve always wanted to do, etc.

under the 5 favorite things in my bedroom, i mentioned this….

which lavenderbay inquired about. it deserves its own post because it is about loss, and love and healing.

when my dog loki died in 2004 my friend susan showed up with a card with a $100 bill in it. i thought it was strange to get cash in a sympathy card, but she explained: that 100 dollars was to use to tribute my dog in some way, whether it was a grave stone, a pet urn, whatever i wanted to do to memorialize this dog that i loved so much.

so, i held on to the money for weeks, wondering what to do. everything just seemed so cliche, so unimportant, so…unloki. then i remembered my friend jill does stained glass panels. we talked and here’s what we decided:

the colors in the panel are all colors of the bandanas she wore the most and she just looked SO CUTE in them. we decided to have a crystal hanging, to catch the light, so that every now and then a sunbeam would flash and i could remember my girl.

then the dog biscuit cookie cutter. she would sit so patiently while the baking and mixing was happening, but as the first pan exited the oven, she knew a cookie was in her future.

there are two charms hanging together, a raspberry and a strawberry. once when loki didn’t know i was looking, i saw her through the window. she was sniffing all the strawberries in the backyard. i had called my dad that morning and said the strawberries were coming along fine, by that afternoon the first one would be perfectly ripe! after work, i watched her sniff each berry, return to the ripe one, look around to make sure no one saw, gently plucked it off the stem with her teeth, look around, eat it, then slink in through the doggie door as if nothing had ever happened. that was when i learned she loved berries. particularly raspberries, they were her favorite treat.

the soccer ball charm. a few days a week we would go to the soccer fields by my house. no one was ever there, 6 soccer fields! and she and i would play soccer. a couple times i put her in goal and she blocked shots. so cute. she LOVED soccer balls. kicking them with her feet, carrying soft ones in her mouth. that was one of the most fun activities i have ever had in my life. ever.

jill surprised me with the mirror. when she gave it to me she said that the most important thing to loki….what made loki her special self…was me. the bottom corner has little places to put little memory notes….

but i never used them because that cat of mine always batted them out.

in the top left is a picture of her, … me her paw. she always had her paw on me. she was my border chow. my girl. the dog of my heart. she seemed to understand everything i said. she looked in my eyes and with a look that said, “i love you and i understand you”. and to this day, even though she’s a dog and it may seem weird, i believe she was my best friend ever, my soul mate, and that she and i have been together since the beginning of time….some how.

so, lavenderbay, thanks for asking. i’m crying, but thanks for asking….