Wasn't I just so clever?


Last night, before going to bed, I wrote a schedule for myself for today. This morning, I jumped out of bed, and started in on that schedule. First item: walken the doggen.

Simple enough. As I grabbed the leashes, though, I thought, hey, the big dog always has the bigger, longer leash, and the smaller dog always has the shorter leash. Why not switch them up?

I put the longer leash on the small dog, and the shorter leash on the big dog. Wasn't I just so clever? The little dog is going to have a taste of freedom, and the bigger dog won't worry me as much. Smart me!

We walked outside. They ran down the porch steps as I locked the door. The tug as they hit the bottom of the stairs should have clued me in.

Dog friendly places

Find places where dogs are welcome. covers hotels and activities in the U.S. lists lodging options in the U.S. and a significant number of non-U.S. countries. lists off-leash parks in the U.S. and Canada.

Irresponsible dog owners suck


Decided to try something slightly different from our drive-to-Starbucks-and-walk-the-dogs-home-juggling-a-drink routine that has, thus far, left me incredibly frustrated and annoyed that I would try something so stupid AGAIN as to walk two beagles who like weaving a tango underfoot while carrying a half opened glass of milk. Instead, Kris and I enjoyed a five minute breakfast at Starbucks, while I ate my pumpkin bread (because, really, after baking 46 cups of pumpkin puree, anyone would crave a slice of pumpkin bread, it's a rule). Afterward, we headed back out to the car, to find Bella ready to drive, and Annie good with the getaway:


For the record, yes, walking home with two dogs without attempting a master juggling act IS much more pleasant. The cold air made Bella walk quickly and sniff less, for better enjoyment all around.

With one exception.

I have to say that irresponsible dog owners who think it's okay to leave their dog's shit and not pick it up, are complete assholes. Even if it's on the parkway, it's still shit. It stinks. It rots. It smells awful. It could contain parasites and bacteria that have ill health effects to those who come into contact with it, which include NOT THE DOG OWNER because the jerk f---ing LEFT IT THERE.

While walking, Annie pooped in a good area: dirt not grass, easily picked up without a lot of debris. As I was picking up the poop, I nearly stepped in another pile of poop, left there by some other dog. Annoyed, I picked up some of that poop, only to find ANOTHER pile two feet away.

Do these people not realize how much they suck? Do they not realize that by being so irresponsible, they risk others' privileges? Do they not understand that they are LEAVING SHIT in someone else's yard? That by leaving it, they are encouraging more dogs to poop and urinate in the same place, creating a cesspool in front of a neighbor's house (a neighbor that might not even own a dog)?

Come on, that's just plain wrong.

Irresponsible dog owners suck.


Dog toothbrush and toothpaste

So Long Suckah

This came with Annie when we adopted her five (six?) years ago. It was still in its package, so we kept it. I'm not sure why we kept it THIS long, but, well, in the kitchen facelift, it's on its way out.

This item was thrown away in the garbage.

Doggen walken, Indiana style


So, Dad and Linda now have two doggen instead of just one. Willy passed away a bit ago (fewer than four months ago, since that was when I was out last). I'm more upset that they didn't tell me about his passing than I am about his passing, I think.

I suggested we take the two doggen for a walk today. Dad looked at me like I was insane. "Horizonal. Snow. Winds?" was all he could manage before shrugging his shoulders and agreeing that, hey, walking two itty bitty zooming dogs in sub zero with the wind chill factor was JUST the thing for a father daughter bonding moment.

George was excited. Gracie was a blur.


For the record, I've had better ideas than this one.

It was unbelievably cold coming back. It was so cold even Dad ran to keep warm when we walked back from the corner of Lincolin Hills Drive (yeah, you read that right, we spell Lincoln with TWO i's in Indiana). I don't recall seeing Dad run in my adult life. I shall cherish this memory.

Just as soon as my nose thaws.




Dealing with dog poop

From Tim Oey, one of the admins on the local Freecycle group:

Based on my research, the overall best way to dispose of dog poop is
to use a reusable pooper scooper and flush the poop down a toilet.
- Sewer systems are designed to handle poop (yours and your pet's)
safely and effectively (this was verified by calling the local sewage
treatment plant in Sunnyvale, California)
- The poop is treated and recycled fairly quickly and safely back
into the environment
- Need to carry the poop to a toilet
- Need to purchase or make a reusable pooper scooper

Here are other alternatives generally listed from healthiest for
environment to least healthy.

Use a flushable poop bag and flush down a toilet.
- Sewer systems are designed to handle poop
- The poop is treated and recycled
- Flushable bags can "melt" in rain or other very wet conditions
- Flushable bags should be kept sealed in another plastic bag before use
- Flushable bags are a bit expensive and hard to find
- Flushable bags smell a bit

Put the poop in the trash.
- Sometimes easier than flushing down a toilet
- Easy for poop picked up in a plastic doogie doo bag
- Dangerous to sanitation workers
- Poop is not recycled easily back into our environment in a landfill
- Takes up landfill space
- Uses up plastic bags (which do not decompose very quickly)

Hire a pet waste pickup service.
- Someone else does the dirty work
- Expensive
- Poop probably just ends up in the trash in which case those cons also apply
- It takes extra energy and causes extra pollution for a service to
drive to and from your house

Put it in a "doogie doolie" septic system.
- Does attempt to recycle poop and get it safely back into environment
- Expensive
- Takes work to set up and maintain
- Have to purchase system
- Can smell
- Can spread disease
- A real septic tank system is much more effective, these smaller
septic-like systems are usually too small to work safely and

Bury it.
- Cheap
- Takes a bit of effort to dig hole
- Can still spread disease and smell
- May be the best option when you are very far from civilization

Leave it were it is.
- Cheap & easy
- Spreads disease to you and your pets
- Greatly increases the local fly population
- Messy to step in
- Smells and is unsightly
- Illegal in many public areas
- This is generally the worst option.

Annie, unplugged


Annie has become quite the svelte dog. Her muscles bulge when she runs. You can see her chest muscles as she's lost all of her doggy fat, all of the soft parts of her body.

We feed Annie the same amount of food that we feed Bella: different formula, butthe same amount. Annie, however, runs around a lot more than Bella does. Sure, when we go for a walk, both the dogs and I all walk the same distance. When we go to a park, however, Annie runs around. When we go on a hike, Kris, Andy, Bella, Shadow and I walk x distance, Blue walks 2x distance, and Annie runs about 4x distance. She burns a lot of calories.

She's also very, very, very food motivated. Too much so in my opinion. I hate that she's always scavenging for food.

When we arrived home from Christmas, I thought she looked particularly lanky, so I thought to help her out: I decided to feed her more than her normal amount of food. She burns off the calories, what can it hurt?

Instead of her normal one scoop of food, I gave her three scoops of food for dinner, might have been four. She devoured it. Hoovered it. Ten seconds, it was gone.

Okay, clearly she can eat that much. I gave her that much again the next morning.

Well, last night, she wasn't doing so well. If Kris or I touched her along her back, she yelped. She wasn't able to jump up onto the couch, nor down from the couch. Come dinner time, she wasn't particularly interested in food, but was plenty interested in eating grass in the back.

Hmmmmm.... grass.... upset stomach. Crap.

I admitted to Kris this morning that Annie might be plugged up. "Plugged up? Why?" he asked. Well, see, you know, um...

Eventually, I confessed. I told him I had overfed the dog and maybe her intestines were impacted. Okay, he'd try to get a Saturday morning appointment with the vet.

I thought I'd try an old-fashioned way of unplugging her. I took her to the part this afternoon and let her run around. She managed all of maybe 20 yards before she stopped a took a dump. A spectacularly large one (lovely blogging material, that Annie). In the minute it took me to clean it up (and the next five it took me to clean up some other flippin' moronic dog owner's dog poop because he was too freakin' lazy to frackin' do it himself, thereby risking my ability to take my (Kris'?) dogs to the school because of his laziness), Annie had dashed off to the edge of the school yard and dumped again.

Well, there we go.

After that, she was happy as a clam, running around again, sniffing things, jumping up.

Apparently Annie's dog food is her goldfish. Need to get more fiber into that dog...

Or less food.

In one sitting.

YKD: wet

You Know Dog

you'd be a lot more comfortable and a lot less wet if you'd just let me dry you off with a towel.

Underwear, the continuing saga


Sometime last month, Kris came up to me and asked me, "Are those Heather's clothes in our room?"

I had just moved the basket of Heather's clothes from our room to her room, maybe an hour or so before, so answered, "No, I already moved them."

He was insistent, however, and asked me to look at the clothes. Fine, I'll go look at the clothes. I already put them away, why do I have to look at the clothes again? I stomped into our bedroom.

To find Heather's pajamas, and a pair of underwear all chewed up.


The underwear explained the bumping noises I heard earlier near her door: they were Bella rooting through her clothes basket.


So, I went over to Heather's door, and knocked on it. After she answered, I tried to explain through the door that, well, Bella really likes the taste of women's dirty underwear, and, well, could she please keep her bedroom door closed so that Kris' dog didn't eat all of her underwear?

She couldn't undertsand me through the door, and yelled, "What?"

At which point, Kris burst into laughter at the awkwardness of my delivery. Hi, my dog likes dirty underwear, but only girl underwear. How's that for an ice breaker at parks?

I opened the door and was barely able to explain everything; Kris' laughter making me laugh, too. Heather laughed, too, and, okay, dumb dog.

This weekend, we washed, dried and nearly folded every piece of laundry we own that wasn't already on our bodies. I did my "Count the underwear and see if you need to buy more" ritual when we had finished the laundry.

I then went online to buy more. On Kris' credit card.

In four days, I'll have 24 more pairs of underwear.

Which will probably last me a month.


Trained dogs


After watching a good four hours of Battlestar Galactica (watching it from the beginning, bought the DVDs), I turned on some random Law and Order SVU episode that tivo had recorded. Having seen every episode of L&OSVU except maybe two or three from the last season (and many of those episodes more than once), I was able to describe the whole plot from the first 30 seconds of the show. Kris was unsurprised.

A short bit into the show, which started with a dog chasing down a suspect, then finding another body (dead, of course), the officer with the dog called out to the other officers, "Detectives! You're going to want to see this. She (the dog) found a body."

This sentence immediately started me off on my "you're going to want to see this" rant (and how this show actually got it right). I can't stand television or movie dialog where one character says something like, "Captain, you're going to want to see this." If I were the captain, I would immediately shoot back, "Don't tell me I'm 'going to want to see this,' just tell me what the frack I'm going to see when I walk over there. Then I'll decide if I want to see "this." But don't tell me to come over to look. Idiot."

Kris laughed, then started talking about the dog, and other shows he had seen about work dogs. I cut him off and told him my dog stories.

When I was in junior high, we lived down the street from the Herrings. In particular, Officer Bob Herring, who we referred to as Ossifer Herring. He had a K-9 dog (crap, I can't recall her name), who was incredibly well trained. Dad tells the story of when Bob showed the dog his gun, pointed to the gun and said, "Mine." then set the gun on the floor. The dog went up to the gun, pulled it under herself, and sat on it. It was Bob's gun, and no one else was going to get it.

Another story of that dog was of when it was chasing an armed suspect. Said suspect had a gun and was running away when the dog was released. He had thrown away the gun and thrown his hands up just as the dog was leaping at the suspect, presumably for the throat. Mid-air, she heard Bob's call to stop, and managed to twist in the air mid-leap. Instead of killing the man, she merely knocked him over.

There were other dog stories (what was that dog's name?), but I'm blanking on them now. It was a big dog, not one I think I'd want, but definitely a very well trained dog.

Kris managed to finish his working dog story by describing a K-9 dog that lived at the officer's house, with two kids like five and three. The K-9 dog knew he was a pet when he was home, but the officer had to be very careful about what words he used around the dog. Sure, he was a pet, but he was also an animal trained to kill. When guests came over, people unknown to the dog, the officer had to be more careful, as the dog was typically fairly protective of the kids.

His other story, and the one he enjoyed more was about a shepherd who had three border collies. One was the dominant work dog. The shepherd gave his command to her, and she directed the other two (in dog-speak!) to execute the command. Kris said they were amazing to watch.

Yeah, watching. Time to turn off the television and do some work.