Where do I even begin?

And just like that **SNAP!**, in the blink of an eye, seven months has gone by.  My last post was August 16, 2015.  What the hell?  I hadn’t PLANNED on a hiatus.  I had no reason for one…I wasn’t burned out.  I wasn’t any more busy than usual.  I wasn’t off somewhere sulking in a corner.  I don’t know WHAT happened, really.  But I’ve missed it!  For weeks I’ve been meaning to get back here and dust the cobwebs off this old thing.  I’ve even come to the page a couple of times and asked myself the title of this post.  I sat here with my fingers hovering over the home row, ready to pound out a post and drew a big, fat blank.  I did it just now, too, but this time I just decided to roll with it.  I feel like so much has happened in the last seven months, but to keep this one post from getting insanely long, I’ll do you a solid and break them down into shorter posts.   Haha  Maybe one for each topic.  But in short, since I talked to you last I have…

  • Run six half-marathons in four new states.  If things had gone according to plan, I actually would have been in the car traveling to the next one right this very moment, but due to some conflicts I decided to forego this one.  My next one will be the Garmin Marathon in Olathe, Kansas on 4/16.  (*currently accepting applications for suitable travel partners  haha)
  • Gotten very serious about cross- and strength-training.  I’ve been saying for EVER that I knew I needed to do it, but I finally did it.  And now I kick myself every day for not doing it years ago.  I have never felt better or stronger, and if you’ll allow me a moment of vanity, I’ll admit that I don’t think I’ve ever looked better either.
  • Taken an awesome vacation to Florida.  We go to the panhandle of Florida as sort of a farewell-to-summer getaway almost every year, but last year we mixed it up a bit and went to South Florida where epic shit ensued.
  • Got a new tattoo.
  • Carried out a stakeout and trap, resulting in the newest addition to our family.  I now have a new feline brother.
  • Nursed my girl Bella through her third (yes, THIRD) knee surgery.  She’s three and a half weeks post ACL repair now, after already having undergone two surgeries in the past for a torn ACL and meniscus in the OTHER hind leg.

And well I guess that’s about it!  haha  It sure seemed like more before I started writing it out.  That’ll give me a starting place for posting anyway!  Also, when I logged into Blogger, I had approximately 4 million unread posts.  There’s no way I could make my way through all of them, so I cringed and hit the “Mark All as Read” button.  So if I’ve missed any huge news on YOUR blog, please catch me up!!!!!

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Weekend Recap + An Injury Update

TL;DR version:  Foster puppy adopted.  Ran two miles.  Hip/leg still hurts but not as bad.  Not ready to commit self to psych ward just yet.

As I briefly mentioned last week, my little foster pup Penny was adopted.  After having her for three months, she finally had a wonderful adoption application.  (Many, many thanks to Kara for that!)  Friday morning started off bright and early for Penny and I as her adopter lives clear on the other end of Tennessee–a 6-hour drive from here.

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Snoozing in the passenger’s seat just a few minutes from our destination, clueless that her life was about to change forever!

The family that she went to has another hound that they had rescued just a few months ago, two rescue cats, and three kiddos (the oldest is four!), so lonely is something this little girl will never be!  Of course I teared up when I left (and then ugly cried in the truck lol I’ve become so attached to this one), but seeing how happy she is in the pictures her new mom has posted to FB and texted me, I know she is right where she is supposed to be!

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Once I cleared away the snot and tears, I realized how famished I was.  It was after 4pm and I hadn’t had anything but a Larabar all day.  I used the Happy Cow app to find a veg-friendly place.  The closest one was a place called Cootie Brown’s.  The name cracked me up, and it was 2 miles away, so I drove straight there and had a delicious grilled veggie sandwich.

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I also used my dining-alone time to find a hotel.  I had told the rescue and the adopters that I would spend the night just in case anything went wrong and Penny needed to come back with me–plus I have a friend in Bristol that I haven’t seen in years, so that was a HUGE bonus and incentive to stay the night!  But I was on my own for that evening because Rebecca couldn’t meet me till the next day.  I had noticed road signs on my drive there that said “Asheville” so I knew I was only about an hour away.  I have always wanted to see the Biltmore Estates, so I came VERY close to driving on to Asheville to get a hotel so I could get up and go tour the Estates the next morning, but I ended up talking myself out of it.  It was supposed to rain the next morning, and the web site said that one should allow 6-8 hours to tour the entire grounds.  I was supposed to meet Beck at noon, so I nixed those plans (which turned out to be a good thing because it rained its ASS off the next morning).

The most reasonable hotel I found was a Red Roof Inn just a couple of miles from where I was sitting eating my dinner.  It was only $60 but it had mixed reviews.  I figured I’d give it a drive-by and check it out before I booked.  The grounds and lobby were super well-kept and the front desk dude was super polite (and spoke English!) so I took it.  I couldn’t be more pleased with the room!  And I didn’t know that Red Roof Inns were pet friendly, so I’ll definitely keep them in mind from now on when I need to travel with pups in tow.

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Small but squeaky clean with a comfortable bed and pillows.  For $60.  Can’t beat that.  And the location was great.  It was within walking distance to a little strip mall with a Target, Books A Million, Pier 1, and TJ Maxx.  A little retail therapy was just what the doctor ordered after my emotional day.  haha

I came back to the room, called the hubs, turned on the tube, and was out like a light before 9:00.  I slept longer and harder than I can remember sleeping in a looooong time.  Funny how you can do that when you don’t have a snoring/tossing/turning husband sharing your space or a cat pawing at your head or demanding breakfast.  I slept until 6:30 and only woke up then because I was having a horrible dream about one of my dogs.  Leftover feels from the previous day, I’m sure.  I lounged around for a little while then got up and headed to my friendly neighborhood Starbucks.

Helllooooo cinnamon chai soy latte!
Helllooooo cinnamon chai soy latte!

As fate would have it, the Starbucks was directly across the street from a mall, so wiih still a couple of hours to kill before meeting Beck I headed to the mall for a little continued retail therapy.  The universe must have known I needed to do a little shopping before our NYC trip coming up!  I came away from the whole trip with three super cute outfits, a cardigan that I can wear over two of them if it’s cool, and a pair of sandals on the cheap.

I totally ate my words and bought a shorts romper suit.  It's acceptable for 35-year-olds to shop at Forever 21, yes?
I totally ate my words and bought a shorts romper suit. It’s acceptable for 35-year-olds to shop at Forever 21, yes?

Then it was time to meet Beck!  And like a terrible blogger, we didn’t take a single picture.  But we enjoyed a fabulous couple of hours over a delicious meal and fell right back into place where we left off the last time we saw each other about 12 years ago.  Yes, we’ve sort of kept in touch through FB, but there’s just nothing like face-to-face girl time.  We ended our visit with hugs and promises not to let it be another decade before we see each other, and I began the long drove home.

Sunday… I have no idea where Sunday went.  It started out normal.  I got up, made my coffee, and had some breakfast before 8.  I sat around and caught up on blogs, paid bills, etc., till D left to go to work sometime around 9:30ish.  Then I decided I wanted to start “unfucking my habitat.”  haha  I started with my closet.  Somehow it was around 10 when I went into my closet and much, much later when I came out, but the whole “unfucking” deserves its own post.

I grabbed Bella and Harley and took them to the park for a walk…which took forever.  There were SO. MANY. SMELLS.  haha

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Then when we got home I decided it was time to try out my leg.  It’s been almost a month since I’ve tried to run, at which time I was able to run 800 x 3 with walking and stretching in between, and by the end of the last one I was limping.  Since then I’ve had fairly marked improvement (although still not as much as I or my orthopedist would like).  I’ve changed physical therapists at his recommendation, to see what someone else can offer.  My pain level without anti-inflammatories is now where it was with them just a few weeks ago, but OMG can I just get healed already?!?!  It’s been over two months!!!  Anyway, I set out at a very slow pace with no plans other than stopping when it hurt too badly.  I was actually fairly pleased.  I ran one mile, walked a quarter-mile, stretched, ran another mile, and walked the quarter-mile home.  It was hard to get started again at the start of that second mile, but then it loosened up a bit and I was able to continue.  It was very uncomfortable by the end, but not anywhere near the level of pain I had at the end of my last attempted run.  I stretched and rolled the ever-loving shit out of it, but as I went about my evening I felt it getting more painful.  I popped my first anti-inflammatory in several days, and as I sit here now, the pain is almost back to where it was pre-run.  So although the improvement is not coming as swiftly as I’d like it to come… it’s coming.  Thank God.  Just in time, too.  I’ve been inching closer and closer toward a dark place with every day I don’t run.  Today, even though it wasn’t pain-free, I felt more like myself than I have in quite some time.

Baby steps.

10 Virtues Instilled and Strengthened by Pets

Most people that have kids like to say things like, “My kids made me realize what’s important in life, ” and, “My children make me want to be a better person.”  Well, I’ve VERY INTENTIONALLY never had kids, but I think the same thing can be said about pets.  Every single day, they help me exercise one virtue or another in some way.

Patience – “I know you’re waiting for me to pee so you can go to work, but I have to finish these snow angels first.”

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Wonder – Seeing a puppy experience things for the first time.

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Sacrifice – “Oh you wanted to get a new bedroom suite?  Sorry, I just tore my meniscus.  Six months after I tore my ACL.”

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Forgiveness – We forgave them.  And then we bought crates while the couch was being reupholstered.  Lesson learned.

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Respect – I had to pee like a race horse when I took this picture, but he just looked so comfortable!  I couldn’t bring myself to disturb him.

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Compassion – This old girl just doesn’t get around like she used to and requires some special accommodations and extra TLC and spoiling.

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Whimsy – Don’t mind us.  Just taking some doggy kissy selfies.

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Selflessness – “I know you’d like to go to happy hour after work rather than coming straight home every day, but remember we’re here waiting for you.”

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Service – “Psssst.  Wake up.  I’m hungry.”

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Humility – Fostering is hard.  Let me rephrase that.  Letting go of a foster is hard.  Some more than others.  I’ve had this baby for three months, and her adoption was just finalized.  She will be going home tomorrow.  You love them like your own from the day you bring them into your family and then you just have to hand them over and recognize your place in their lives was only temporary–the bridge between what has been and what will be.  I’m trying to cram a lifetime of snuggles and kisses into the next few hours before I take her to her new family.  I know she’ll forget me quickly, but I will love her forever.

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Weekend Recap

Holy shit, y’all, where has this weekend gone?!  I seriously feel like I just left the office and here I am winding down in PJs at 9:30 on Sunday night!  It’s been a pretty hectic two days, but it’s all of my own doing.  I was too much of a “yes” woman for this weekend!

A friend and co-worker asked if I would work for him Saturday so he could take off to go to his boy’s baseball tournament in Nashville.  YES #1

Another friend asked if I could dog-sit for her while she went to Knoxville for the weekend.  YES #2  I paid for that one.  lol  Gnash hadn’t been here 10 minutes before he discovered a mudhole in our back yard and proceeded to be a bad influence on my dogs and show them how much fun it is to wallow in mudholes.

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Last week a lady involved in dog rescue pulled a bloodhound from our local shelter after she’d secured him a spot with a bloodhound-specific rescue.  He had to get to his trainer on Sunday so she could work with him for a while on some issues before sending him to that rescue.  I was asked to transport him to his trainer on Sunday.  YES #4.  And sort of related to that one, a couple of weeks ago I moved a nursing momma dog and her 12 puppies to a foster about an hour and a half from here because their elderly owner needed help with the puppies but they were too young to be separated from momma.  He has surrendered the puppies to rescue, and now they are weaned and momma was ready to come home.  Soooooo I was asked if I could come get her and take her back to her owner.  YES #5

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Sweet pretty momma…who will never be a momma again! The rescue her puppies were surrendered to will be paying for her spay as soon as her milk dries up. Sometimes rescue can be as much about helping the owner as helping the dogs.

And Sunday afternoon after I finished hauling dogs all over West TN, D and I did this!

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No more mud hole!  We had been saying for a while that we needed to do something like this because it got really trampled down this winter and has been getting really muddy when it rains, but the dogs’ Friday afternoon shenanigans lit a fire under our asses.  haha  And all the dogs were a big help, as they always are with yard projects…

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I hope everyone’s weekend was as beautiful as ours!  We all soaked it up because it’s supposed to rain for the next seven days!  Thank goodness we got our stones down before THAT!

I haz a puppeh

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Okay, all together now… “Awwwwwwww!!!!!!!”  Guys, this is Penny.  Penny is a 10-week-old coonhound.  We’re fostering her for a while for a local rescue.  Penny doesn’t have a significant story, really.  She wasn’t abused.  She wasn’t starved.  She wasn’t injured or sick.  She was one thing… unwanted.  Her story is exactly the the same as millions of others across the country.  She was the product of irresponsible breeding, and her owner was camped out in the Tractor Supply parking lot giving her and her litter mates away for free just to get rid of them when they learned that they couldn’t sell them to make a quick buck.  Y’all, I despise a lot of people, and backyard breeders are right there at the top of that list.  They told me during our short conversation that they had sold the first five of the eight puppies for $200 apiece and couldn’t get rid of the last three.  *sigh*  I offered to take all three puppies, and he was agreeable to that until I made the mistake of telling them that I was with a rescue.  Backyard breeders HATE rescues.  They think we “cut into their profit.”  Seriously.  So when the “R” word came up, he balked and would only let me have one puppy.  Since I had to choose, I took the female so that I would at least know that she would be spayed and not contribute to our atrocious overpopulation.  See, that’s how it happens here.  People are irresponsible and don’t spay and neuter their pets; they give them away to people who are in the market for a free pet because they say they “can’t afford” shelter adoption fees; these people also “can’t afford” to spay and neuter those pets (or provide good food or other basic vet care, but I digress), so that one unwanted litter turns into dozens of unwanted litters and the problem grows exponentially.  (Oh, and these are the lucky pups that just go to irresponsible homes… the unlucky ones are scooped up as free bait for dogfighters or moving targets for practice.  Yeah, reality is harsh.)

But Penny is safe.  Penny is LOVED, she is WANTED, and she is SPOILED!  My dogs are teaching her how to be a dog, and we are teaching her how to be a GOOD dog.  haha.  I don’t know how long we’ll have her, but she has a place here with us for as long as she needs us until her forever family finds her.

The Goofy Runner

I mentioned yesterday that I had a goal for 2015 that I hoped you guys would help me with.  So let me elaborate a little bit!

I have two loves:  running and animals.  For a long time I’ve been trying to find a way to combine those passions.  I started a local group a couple of years ago where me and a few other folks would go get some of the shelter dogs and take them out for runs.  That fizzled out pretty quickly.  Everyone thought it was a fabulous idea when I first pitched it, but then when it came time to start doing something, everyone was suddenly very busy.  It was just me and the same handful of people for a while and then it got to where they were available to help less and less.  And that’s just not a chore that someone can take on by themselves, so I nixed that program about a year ago.  I’ve volunteered and transported for several different rescues from time to time, but I’ve never really found my place.

Now on the running front… I’ve recently decided to give this 50 half marathons in 50 states a real shot.  I’m not sure that I’ll ever complete it, but I sure as hell won’t if I don’t ever start, so right now we’ll say that I’m officially going for it.  I knew there had to be some way to turn that into a fundraiser of sorts, but I just wasn’t sure how.  When I was searching the interwebs for ideas, I found an organization called Running for Rescues that does something sort of like what I was wanting to do, but their participants solicit donations for one key race and their proceeds are spread out all over the country.  I wanted to do something spread out over a broader time frame, like all of 2015, and I wanted to be sure all of my proceeds were kept local because GOD KNOWS this area needs all the help it can get.  The south in general is pretty irresponsible when it comes to companion animals, and we live in an area that is particularly bad.  So after mulling it over and getting advice from a few friends, I came up with a plan.  For all of 2015, I’ll be hosting a pledge-based fundraiser to benefit Goofy Foot Dog Rescue in West TN.

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Even though they’re based out of a neighboring county, a lot of their rescue efforts are focused here in my home county, so I’m satisfied that I’m keeping it as local as I can. They are an amazing organization founded by an amazing woman, and I am excited to be able to help them help more animals.  The plan right now (and this is a new plan, so it’s still subject to some tweaking) is to do this a month at a time so that potential donors don’t feel like they’re on the hook for an entire year.

This is the pledge structure for January:

Training miles = $0.10
Racing miles = $0.25
A new state = $5.00
A PR = $10.00

Assuming that I average 80-100 miles a month with several races thrown in there, I’m hoping I can get an average of at least $15 per sponsor per month.  I wanted to keep it low enough to encourage participation but high enough that GFDR would actually benefit from it.  I think that’s a nice middle ground.  I started a Facebook group called The Goofy Runner (based on the name of the rescue, but hey, I think it’s a rather fitting title anyway!) where I’ll be posting updates on my progress as well as the rescue’s goings-on so that my sponsors can follow along and see where their money is going.  I went public with the page on January 1st, and so far i have five committed sponsors for January.  I’d love to see that number at least double!  I know I have a lot of animal-loving followers, so please join the group and play along!  And please spread the word!  This is a small, grassroots rescue that depends solely on their founders’ income and donations to do everything they do!  And if you don’t want to do it for the animals, do it to watch a runner push herself like never before to be sure she squeezes every dime possible out of her supporters!  This could be the motivation I’ve been lacking all along!

Aaaaaaaaaaand BREATHE….

It’s no coincidence that I work in the delivery industry and disappeared from The Land of Blog three weeks before Christmas.  This was the wildest season I’ve been a part of during my decade-long career, and I’m SO. GLAD. IT’S. OVER!  For everyone else, Christmas ends after December 25, but that’s just when I’m starting to enjoy the season!  I didn’t get my tree up until the 19th, did the vast majority of my shopping the 20th, wrapped (okay, mostly I stuff shit in bags) the 21st, back to work for three more hellacrazy days the 22nd, 23rd, and 24th, and finally…. FINALLY… when I locked the door to my office at 4:00 pm on Christmas Eve, I was able to sit down, breathe, and allow myself to feel Christmas.  I needed to hurry home to get ready for a family thing that evening, but I literally did just sit in my office for a few minutes to relax and let it sink in.

It turned out to be a really great Christmas for us this year.  I was so worried about how it would be on Dewayne’s side of the family given the recent loss of his mom.  His sister tried so hard to keep things the same as they would have been had she been here, but when she met resistance from a couple of family members who said they just weren’t ready for that, she gave up and we decided that instead of the huge dinner with all of her extended family that this year we would do immediate family only with pizza, BBQ, and alcohol.  hahaha  Seriously, who else’s family celebrates Christmas Eve with shots of Fireball cinnamon whiskey and a rousing game of Bounce Off?  hahaha  (Side note: That stock photo cracks me up.  They make it look so sweet and innocent.  There was a lot more yelling and cussing when we played.  I should send them a photo of us playing to use instead.  It’s just too bad that photo doesn’t come with sound.)

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I think we were better off doing something completely different.  We still felt Debbie’s absence, but not in the same sort of miserable way that I think we would have had we tried to pretend nothing had changed.  This was new, this was FUN, and I know she would have been laughing her ass off right there with us had she been there.  Her favorite thing in the world was always to have all her kids and grandkids there.  She loved a loud, boisterous, happy house, and we sure gave it to her!  It was nearly 1:00 am before we finished with the games and goofiness and presents and headed home.

The next day was spent with my side of the family.  It was quite fun too.  The little ones all kept us entertained that day.  And I don’t mean children.  Well, not of the human persuasion anyway.  haha  We brought our dogs with us, as did my uncle, plus my sister’s dog who lives there.  So we had four rescued doggies celebrating their Christmas Day with us.  That alone made my heart full.

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Pibble selfies
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My sister Kim and her not-officially-fiance-yet-but-we-all-know-it’s-gonna-happen Brandon and their dog Sangria. Sangria was appalled by all the dogs in her house and refused to cooperate and look at the camera. haha
My Uncle Mike's babygirl, Amy
My Uncle Mike’s babygirl, Amy.
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Bella was all Christmased out by the end of the night.

And with that, our Christmas was over.  The new year came very peacefully.  D asked a couple of weeks ahead of time what I wanted to do on New Year’s Eve, and I believe my exact words were, “I don’t wanna do SHIT!”  I was whooped from the last month of work and wanted more than anything to just enjoy a low-key night in, and that’s exactly what we did.  It was pure bliss.  I have a couple of goals floating around in my head for 2015, but that’ll be a different post for a different day.  (Spoiler: One is a pretty big one that I hope some of you will help me out with!)

And in other news…. IT’S MY BIRTHDAY WEEK!!!!  I’ll be turning 35 on Saturday, and I’ll be celebrating by running the Mississippi Blues half-marathon–the first of several that I have lined up for this year.

Maybe it’s just sheer hopefulness and optimism, but I’ve got a feeling 2015 is gonna be pretty great.

We Interrupt Your Entire Routine, Schedule, and Life to Bring You This Puppy

Last Tuesday night, I was chilling at home, skipping a run because my hamstring wasn’t too happy with the 11 miles I’d run two days before.  I was perusing Facebook and contemplating dinner when I was alerted through a local rescue group to this little dog that was in a bad situation and needed immediate help.  Being the sucker that I am, and knowing her fate if no one intervened, I went and got her.  Less than an hour after I found out about her, she was safe and warm, dozing on my couch.

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I ain’t gonna lie.  The first few days were pretty rough on everyone.  She was scared and confused and expressing those feelings through less-than-desirable behavior; I was in tears more than once; and my two dogs were pretty frustrated, too.  Thankfully, all of that has passed now, and she has become such a joy to have around.  We aren’t planning on keeping her though.  As sweet as she is, we just aren’t where we can take on a fourth pet right now.  Rather we are fostering her.  I called on a few of my rescue friends and secured her a spot with one of their organizations.  Since coming to us, she has been vaccinated and spayed, had an umbilical hernia repaired, been treated for hook worms and whip worms, and started on heartworm prevention.  (By the grace of GOD, she was heartworm negative!)

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Now that she’s gotten used to us and built a little confidence, she’s really finding herself and has turned into quite the little clown.

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I accidentally dropped a potato, and she was ON IT… and took it directly to my crocs that I keep by the door, dropped it into the shoe, and wrestled the shoe when she couldn’t get it back out. HILARIOUS.
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“I lost my tater. I can haz another?”

We’ll be fostering her for at least a few weeks probably.  The rescue that took her in said that all of their foster homes were full and that it’s really hard to find fosters through the holidays, so I couldn’t say no.  Who could say no to these ears?

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Sami is available for adoption through Companion Pet Rescue.  Applications for adoption can be found at www.cprdogs.com.

A Little Late But… National Pit Bull Awareness Day!

October 25th was National Pit Bull Awareness Day.  It was founded in 2007 by a lady here in Tennessee as “… a day to educate and foster positive communications and experiences in the communities in which we and our dogs live.”  I have two rescued bullies of my own (Harley, the American Staffordshire/Boxer mix, and Bella, the American Bulldog/Belgian Malinois mix–according to their Wisdom Panel DNA tests!), so it’s an important day for us.  Around here we celebrate birthdays, gotcha days, and National Pit Bull Awareness Day!

I tried to take Harley’s picture to commemorate the occasion, and when I told him to smile, I got this.  haha  He’s such a smartass.  (Truth be told, I caught him a split second before a yawn, but it’s funnier to think it’s a cheesy grin.)

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Since there were no events held locally, the pups and I drove up to Nashville for Nashville Pittie’s NPBAD Pit Bull Revolution.  It was such a good day!  So awesome to be surrounded by so many ambassadors for this wonderful breed with their families.  I only snapped a few quick photos while we were lining up for the March of the Pitties parade because I saw Nashville Pittie volunteers taking pictures all over the place.  I assumed they would be sharing them, but they haven’t posted them yet.

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There were tons of vendors there giving away samples and just volunteering their time and services.  We took advantage of two awesome ones.  The first one you may think I’m a little crazy for, but I don’t care.  I’ve heard of people having this done but had never done it myself, and it was an AMAZING experience.  We had a session with an animal communicator.  Within the first minute of our session, she made me a firm believer that she was legit, and I most definitely will be using her again in the future.  The second one was a photographer.  Amiee Stubbs was there taking photos which would be free for us to download.  She posted them a few days ago, and I kind of love ours.

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That’s Bella on my right side and Harley on my left.

As the day went on, it got louder and more crowded as more people showed up and the live band started playing.  Bella has the world by the balls, but Harley doesn’t have her confidence (one thing the communicator and I talked about), and he was getting a little anxious.  We made our exit, but instead of coming home we stopped in Clarksville at their dog park.  They both loooooove the dog park  As shy as Harley can be at times, and as much as he depends on Bella, all of that completely disappears when you put him in a dog park.  It’s amazing to watch.  He’s a little social butterfly!  He plays with every dog and greets every person there.  It makes me a proud pittie momma, especially when other people there comment on him.

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When everyone was finally exhausted from the day’s fun, we packed it in and left.  Once we were headed home, I felt like it was FINALLY safe for me to drink something.  haha  I brought water and bowls for the dogs, but I had kind of intentionally dehydrated myself because when you’re traveling by yourself with dogs it’s hard to make a pit stop.  You can’t leave them in the car and you can’t take them into a rest stop, so unless you find a Petsmart or Tractor Supply or some other animal friendly place, it just ain’t happening. It was like 4:00 and I hadn’t eaten since breakfast or drunk anything all day, so I was starved and parched.  We pulled into a Sonic where I got what felt like the coldest, wettest cherry lmeade ever and an order of tots to tide me over till dinner… and I couldn’t stand to eat in front of my babies, who I was sure had worked up an appetite too, so I got them a plain burger to share.  haha!

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Once all the bellies were full, it was lights out.

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I absolutely loved spending the entire day spoiling my little furry family.  Screw baby showers and soccer tournaments.  This is my thing!

 

 

 

 

 

One Animal at a Time

We live in the rural south where the pet overpopulation is a real problem.  I work in a little town where the general population lives well below the poverty line, so the problem there is even worse.  It’s not at all uncommon to see dogs roaming, but Friday afternoon I saw one I hadn’t seen before.  I just happened to be looking out the front window when this little blue heeler mix limped into our parking lot.  It was obvious he was not okay, so I went outside to see if I could help.  I called to him, and he limped right up to me.  Of course, he had no collar and no identification.  He had several bloody spots on his side and on the side of his face and was obviously just exhausted.  My first thought was that he had been in a dog fight.  Me being who I am, I always have dog food and water bowls and leashes in my truck, so I sneaked him into my office to give him a safe place to rest and offered him some food and water.  He wasn’t interested in either but took advantage of the quiet office and rested while I took a few minutes to wrap up a couple of things before I left for the day to take him to the vet.

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I called the vet to let them know we were on our way.  I was afraid it would be difficult to get him in my truck since he obviously couldn’t jump.  I was afraid I would hurt him if I picked him up, but I did so as gently as I could and put him in my passenger seat.  He laid right back down and went back to sleep.

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The vet took us right back and he quickly ruled out my suspicion of a dog fight.  He pointed out what I hadn’t noticed–all of his injuries were on one side of his body.  He got the clippers and started shaving him and exposed at least 50 shallow entry wounds.

Buck shot.

This poor sweet little dog had been shot.  Thank GOD none of them had gone deep enough to puncture a lung or anything.  He was going to be okay but was in a lot of pain.  The only treatment needed was anti-inflammatories, antibiotics, and lots of rest.  The meds I could do, no problem.  The rest?  Yeah, that was going to be the difficult part.  I have two very rambunctious dogs of my own.  When another dog comes over, it’s party time.  Since it would have been very difficult to keep them separated, for his safety and comfort I just paid for them to board them until Monday, hopefully allowing me time to locate an owner over the weekend.

Turns out, it didn’t take nearly that long.  As soon as I got home from the vet, I began posting his picture to local lost and found sites and local shelter sites on Facebook.  I was still in the process of posting them when someone responded with a link to a post that someone had made earlier in the day frantically looking for their missing blue heeler mix that had gotten away from them.  I called the guy and compared the pics of his missing dog to the pup I’d found and there was no doubt that this was his baby.  He was devastated to learn that he’d been shot but incredibly relieved that he had stumbled into the path of an animal lover who made sure he got the treatment he needed.  He picked him up from the vet the next morning and this sweet baby is now recovering at home where he belongs.

I’ve had my hands in local rescue for a while now, but it still shocks me and saddens me to my core to see the abuse.  There was NO REASON for this animal to have to suffer this way.  Absolutely NO REASON for him to have been shot.  There’s no reason for ANY dog to ever be shot, but my God this dog was the sweetest, gentlest dog… it makes me sick.  I know I’ve said before that maybe not everyone has a true purpose or calling in this life, but I fully believe that animals are mine.  I pray that someday I’ll be able to do more than I do now, but until then I’ll do what I can every time I can.  One animal at a time.

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