Dispatches from the Swamp – the ‘I can’t believe it’ edition

  • Clearly I have failed at NaBloPoMo this year. I have been finding crocheting in the evening much more relaxing than blogging. In fact, I am almost reaching a meditative state in the repetition of stitches and counting to ten. It is a good thing. Although I am a little concerned about the afghan I am attempting to finish my mom. I am worried it is going to shed for quite some time after I give it to her. It seems to be a magnet for pug hair!
  • I am not to sure wtf is up with the Christy Clark government and not funding the HEAT shelters this year. Apparently, according to Rich Coleman, the minister (ir)responsible argues that enough social housing units have been created that the HEAT shelters are no longer needed. What a load of political BS. He is delusional. The only reason there may be been fewer visible homeless on Vancouver’s streets is because some of them were camping out at Occupy Vancouver. Now that OV has packed up from the art gallery lawn it will be interesting to see what happens. As well, just because some of the homeless have been housed doesn’t necessarily mean there are fewer numbers. With gentrification and the lack of resources to keep hard to house people housed the numbers of homeless people increase all the time. There are still plenty of people losing their homes.
  • With the recent loss of Molly we now have no incontinent dogs in our house for the first time in about 10 years. Clio was never reliably toilet trained and often had accidents. Zoe has had accidents as well however if we consistently put her out 4 times a day she is unlikely to pee in the house. Deb went to mop something up the other day and the bucket was actually dry! I am thinking we will no longer need to have full mop buckets in 2 locations in the house.


A little downward dog

We lost Molly yesterday. She was a really good dog. She came to us in April of 2007 from SAINTS. She had just had all of her teeth removed and was known her stretches. Everyone called it her the Pilates Queen. She also completely ran the show here when we had 11 dogs. They all thought she was crazy as she would bark, growl and snarl at them if they came anywhere near her.

Talk to the paw

Molly thrived here. Even though she had no teeth she insisted that she too would eat raw. We are not talking ground raw (although she did eat some of that) she wanted to eat the chicken legs and other assorted pieces of raw meaty bones. At the beginning we would feed her high quality wet food, which she would eat and then she would go and steal something from Clio the blind dog.  Eventually we dumb humans figured it out. She could strip a raw chicken leg in under 10 minutes.

Molly really didn’t bond with many of the dogs here. She did however adore Clio. I think Molly liked Clio because she was blind and she moved slowly and posed no threat to her. They were often seen cuddled together. When Madison was alive she would cuddle with the 2 of them as well.

Molly continued to do her ‘pilates’ here for the whole time. She also added to the repertoire with ‘yoga’ poses including downward dog and something I liked to call the frog. Molly thrived on attention and she loved to put on a show

Molly was quite healthy for the past 4.5 years. She did have a collapsing trachea, which got progressively worse. This week her heart started to fail and she couldn’t keep going. She has left a big hole.

More Pictures

I am busy crocheting this today.

My newest project!

I am two-thirds of the way done, so the push is on.

Instead of a blog, I give you more awesome dog photos!

"I want my agent."
"I have a very large tongue, apparently."
"I have no idea why I am in this pose."
"I am truly one of the beautiful people."
"You don't really think you can get away from me, do you?"

Posting may be light over the rest of the weekend. We have people coming for dinner tomorrow for Thanksgiving!


We had a photo shoot with the Food Lady recently. She adeptly captures all the different personalities of our dogs! If you want great pictures of your dog get in touch with her. Enjoy!

Piper - in motion

Great picture of the Punk running. She always looks kind of goofy when she runs.

Sawyer in a quiet pose

Sawyer in a quiet moment. I love the teeth.

Zoe running

I Seriously, this picture should have the soundtrack to Chariots of Fire playing. Zoe rarely runs anywhere which makes this picture rather rare. Her tail is so perfect! I have working on getting her tail to grow out well and we are there. I adore this picture (and the dog!!).

Talk to the paw!

What can I say? This dog is adorable.


We were trying to get some action shots that day but it didn’t work. Oh well.

Look forward to more new pictures!

A picture post…

In celebration of my purchase of Aperture 3 – I give you photos I have altered. Deb is the photographer.

Zoe is really not that serious!


Pit bull in deep thought!


Sawyer enjoying the sun.


Piper looking quite serious.


Sadly Molly is not really photogenic but she is cute in real life!


Kiefer laying in the doorway to the kitchen. Road Block!


Bella looking intense!





Gratutitious Pet Shots

I can’t string too many words together today. I am still sick. Instead I shall regale you with pictures of the crew. Enjoy!

Zoe - her smaller, blind eye
Pipes looking very serious
Great shot of the boy!
Molly looking good!
Kiefer licking his lips
Clio getting a treat


Isn't Bella adorable!!!

Why is anyone surprised & some other thoughts

So Stephen Harper has appointed 3 failed Conservative candidates to the Senate. Even though Harper harped on for years about the unelected Senate being a repository for washed-up Liberal hacks, he is not above using it for the same purpose. The fact that he made these appointments in spite of his ‘belief’ that the Senate should be elected should not really surprise anyone. I hate to say it but this is only a sign of things to come. Harper is really a despot in disguise as Prime Minister. Now with a majority government his real nature will come out and I don’t think it will be pretty. It is too bad that over 40% of Canadians did not bother to vote. We definitely need electoral reform in this country.

Has anyone noticed that a lot of the police procedurals like Law and Order: SVU, Criminal Minds and others in the genre are getting really bad? Some of the story lines of late have been absolutely pathetic. Take one recent SVU episode about ‘reproductive abusers’ in which John Stamos played a guy who tricked women into getting pregnant and having his children. I thought Mariska Hargitay was going to choke every time she had to get out the words ‘reproductive abuser.’ There also seem to be crimes presented that are so bizarre that I doubt how any of them could be possible. It seems like these shows have pretty much run their course.

Molly went to the vet today to have her nails trimmed and her anal glands done. She had been scooting off and on for a week, so I decided it was time to take her in. I can’t believe how much fluid she had in the glands! It was a lot. She was very good for the vet! Oh and she has lost a whopping 10 grams! Woo hoo Molly girl! Molly continues to do very well. We seem to have her collapsing trachea under control. As soon as she starts to cough we get right on it with the hydrocodone cough syrup and it does not seem to progress into a non-stop hack anymore. Molly is very popular at the vet’s office!

Now it is time for the annual PSA about not leaving dogs in cars when you go inside somewhere. Even today, which was only about 22 degrees it was far too hot to leave Molly in the car while I went to Subway.  Because Molly is so small and uber-portable, I brought her in with me. No one said anything. Even with the windows down, cars can become extremely hot in just minutes. Dogs can die very quickly in hot vehicles. In the heat, do your dog a favour and leave her home where it is cooler. In the lower mainland only about 4 months[1] are too hot to leave your dog in the car. Dogs can go for rides in cars in the summer you just can’t do any errands and leave them there.

[1] June, July, August and September. Although June and September can have some days where it is cool enough. Anything over 19 or 20 degrees celcius is too hot to leave the dog in the car.

Dispatches from the Swamp – the ‘backwater’ edition

  • Where we live there is no garbage pickup. This means that Deb has the dubious task of loading up all the garbage into the back of her truck and trekking it to the dump. Once there we get to pay for disposing of our garbage. In a way this means we recycle more but, nonetheless, the garbage piles up. I am just grateful that I don’t have to bag and load it.
  • So, what would a ‘Dispatches from the Swamp’ edition be without some references to the dogs. So here they are, in no particular order:

o   Molly – is seriously the ‘freak of the week.’ The dog is a total spaz. It is so easy to get her going. She starts to spin and bark and do her stretches. She is always good for a laugh.

o   Piper – Piper sleeps harder and more than any dog I know. She can literally be back to sleep in less than 10 seconds after being disturbed. The other day Deb carried her down the stairs so she could go pee and she fell asleep in her arms. She is a sloth who can hold her bladder for 14+ hours.

o   Sawyer – is blossoming. He is such a nice boy. The toilet-training boot camp is paying off. We need to keep it up for another year or so and the boy will be solid, just like the pug. It is difficult to train a little dog and it is almost impossible to do it in a house with 2 incontinent little dogs.

o   Kiefer – is doing well. He loves the sound of his own voice. He is quite happy that the nicer weather is here. He loves to lay outside where it is cool.

o   Zoe – Angelina just shaved her and she is so happy. That dog really hates having any amount of hair on her body. I think she is just really uncomfortable. She is so much more interactive when she has been shaved. She is very funny and she is one very, very happy dog!

o   Clio – is still hanging on. She has a serious heart murmur and she is at the maximum dose of Lasix right now to keep the water off of her lungs. She probably only has about 6 months until she has some sort of crisis that takes her. Right now we are still trying to fatten that little dog up. She is not so interested in raw food as she once was – I think it is too difficult for her to eat it and she doesn’t really smell all that well. She gets a lot of cooked eggs and cooked meat now.

  • One of the good things about living where we do is that it is pretty easy to do errands. We have everything we need very close by and we don’t really have a whole lot of traffic to contend with here in the sticks.
  • I still feel like I have been hit with a bus. I am not sure what is going on but I hope it goes away soon!

****For some reason my sub-bullets are the prominent bullets and the regular bullets are the sub-bullets. I hate bullets.

And now for a change…

It has been a while since Deb, the official photographer of the Swamp and the Swamp Rats has taken pictures. She got some absolutely fabulous shots at Golden Ears today. I have also included some pictures of those who don’t go to the park. Enjoy

Pipes at the park
The Punk!
Zoe the Beautiful
A fabulous shot of our beautiful Zoe who is doing so well
The 'Little Man'
The 'Big Man'
She is such a tiny dog
The ever gorgeous Bella
One of the last great pictures of Madison

Dispatches from the Swamp – the ‘Sawyer’ edition

  • Things have been a little out of control at the Swamp lately. The terriers have been at again and we have stuffie entrails everywhere. They are absolutely hilarious when they each grab an end of a toy and they pull. Watching the two of them tug on either end of a toy is hysterical. They have about 40 pounds of weight difference but what Sawyer lacks in weight he makes up for in intensity.
  • Speaking of our boy, he seems to reach a certain age. You know when a young boy’s thoughts turn from playing with stuffies and roughhousing with his siblings to thoughts of well, sex. For a while he has had a ‘humpy bunny’, which he would become ‘intimate’ with every night. Now though he seems to have decided that Sienna should be his ‘humpy bunny.’ Sienna, of course, is not really amused by this situation. However, she has a hard time dealing with him because he is on her back humping away and she can’t reach him.
  • It is time to make a vet run with Bella to have her thyroid levels checked, Clio to have her Lasix dose increased and Molly to check out what can be done about her worsening collapsing trachea issue. I am hopeful that there is some kind of a fix to improve her quality of life. She eats well and her personality completely is completely intact. She still does not want to share the same air as Sawyer and she demonstrates this by barking, growling and shark attacking any dogs who even look at her food.
  • My previous point brings me back to Sawyer again. He does not like his own food for some reason. He actually seems to prefer slightly used food. He loves to take Molly’s chicken bones because she can’t eat them. He eats voraciously when he finds them. This of course does nothing for their relationship! We have decided that we are no longer going to hold him into this or by hand feeding him etc. No dog voluntarily starves to death so he will eat when he is hungry.