Thankful Thursday ~ January 16, 2020

As you might expect, yesterday was a very emotional and overwhelming day. So emotional in fact, I was unable respond to all of the touching comments and well wishes you left about Sam’s last day as a pet therapy dog. To say I was a basketcase as I read each of your sweet notes is more than an understatement. Please know I am ever so grateful for your support and kindness as we begin to write a new chapter in life as we learn how to cope with a new reality in the days ahead.

To say that Sam left it all on the field yesterday is an understatement. Not only did he see more patients at West Pines than we have ever visited with before, he was sweetly patient and attentive as loads of people showered him with loving praise. As usual, he had to sniff out all the go-cups of coffee (don’t know what it is about coffee-he wouldn’t drink it but loves sniffing at their cups), and performed his ‘licking his chops on command’ trick for everyone. It’s the only trick he has ever performed (it’s his belief that performance art is beneath him) and managed to visit with each and every person we encountered. Naturally he spent a  extra moments with several people, all who clearly needed the love of a sweet dog sent to put a smile on their face and in their heart. And yes, there were some tears shed by more than one patient at this wonderful dog’s ability to read what people need.

As I tear up just writing this post, I can honestly say I’ve never been more proud of this silly Knucklehead. The staff was touched by him and more than a few tears fell at the thought it was Sam’s last visit. Because we’ve met so many wonderful, caring folks in the nearly seven years of visiting the hospital, I decided we’d also swing by the main hospital to bid our favorites a fond farewell. Once people realized it was our last visit, we were surrounded by folks (many who were new to us) to praise Sam’s efforts. This silly, sweet ‘Dogtor’ has chalked up 219 visits over the years, reaching out to hundreds if not thousands of people extolling the virtues of pet therapists everywhere. I didn’t check to see how many hours he’s logged, but I can guarantee it’s been loads.

As a final act of doing what this boy does best, we went to say goodbye to our friends in the hospital lab. When we arrived, there was quite the commotion going on in the waiting room. A baby was wailing his head off much to his mother’s chagrin. She was unsuccessful at  comforting the little tyke but once he saw Sam he blinked through tears, babbled something I couldn’t decipher as Sam stopped dead in his tracks. There was one more person to comfort before saying goodbye. He walked up to the little guy who patted his back with chubby little hands. Then the little boy kissed Sam on his fluffy back and head. Repeatedly. Sam stood here relishing the attention and stuck his nose in the little boy’s face, as if to say, “there, there, little man…it’ll all be good. With tears dried up, the little boy began to smile and continued to simultaneously pat and kiss him as he tottered around Sam on wobbly legs. I nearly lost it at this point especially when people commented on how sweet the whole scene was.

Certainly that small chance encounter was emblematic of what we’ve experienced over the years but this one was an extra sweet experience and one that will remain in my heart for a long, long time.

We finished our goodbyes to those who had been ever so gracious and kind over the years with vows of staying in touch. As I sat in the car ready to head home, I had to spend several minutes composing myself. Once again, the hospital gave us more than we left. I am truly blessed to have experienced such camaraderie over the years to both me and to Dogtor Sam. What a community of people, those we visit and those who visit us, here as well in person. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for all of you following us, leaving such special comments over the years and supporting our efforts to make this world a bit better than we found it. Mere words of thanks don’t seem sufficient for all you’ve given us but please know I feel profoundly blessed and grateful for each and every one of you.

Sam

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Nature Friday ~ December 13, 2019

Happy Friday the 13th. We’re not that much into the superstition surrounding the second occurence of this so-called unlucky day of the year. Why? Because today is Nature Friday around Blogville which means we’re joining our friends, Rosy and her brothers from LLB in our Backyard while we check out various nuggets of beauty that Mother Nature showcases…provided we actually look for it.

It’s been a crazy busy week as we’re preparing for Santa Paws’ arrival in just eleven days. E-l-e-v-e-n!! Awk…I’m hustling as fast as I can but it seems as if I’m just on a treadmill and not marking too many things off the “to-do” list which is no good excuse for not consciously looking around to see what nature dishes out. As the week progressed, I bemoaned the fact the greyness of December hadn’t really offered much in terms of something notable until I took the pups out first thing this morning.

December ushers in winter and its Full Moon is called the Cold Moon. It can also be referred to as Long Nights Moon, or the Moon before Yule. Technically, the full moon reached peak fullness at 12:12 A.M. EST on December 12th however, in western time zones, the noon rose on Wednesday, December 11. No worries though, it still illuminated our early morning sky and as I waited for the Knuckleheads to do their morning constitution (or in the Ninja’s case, racing zoomies after emptying her bladder), I looked up toward the Western sky.

My neighborhood of older homes has tall, mature trees lining its streets. Across the street I noticed the moon was framed among leafless branches. All I had on me to capture it was my cell phone so it’s not a great image, but it still cast an interesting image with the branches surrounding the moon like a wreath.

Moon

What makes this month’s full moon special? Because of its high trajectory across the sky, it will sit above the horizon for a longer period of time.

Also notable this month are shooting stars from the Geminid Meteor Shower, which is the most active meteor shower of the year. I haven’t seen it yet but hope to check it out tonight when it should be at its most prolific. Snow is in our forecast so there may not be a chance but the shower may be visible for a few more nights.

We hope you have a terrific Friday and an even better weekend. The Ninja plans to spend as much time as possible squirrel hunting while I’m running around like a crazy person getting ready for the big holiday. Whatever you do, make sure to take a look at nature.

Nature Friday

Live, love, bark! 🐾

All American Pet Photo Day ~ July 11, 2019

Pet Photo Day

All around Blogville today, people in the US will be celebrating the All-American Pet Photo Day (“AAPPD”). The Knuckleheads from the ‘Ranch’ are inviting all our fur-iends from around the world to join us today. What little I could find out about this latest calendar ‘howliday’ seemed to indicate the AAPPD was created…you guessed it, due to an algorithm (collected data pointed to an especially large number of pet photos being posted on social media platforms on July 11th). It’s a somewhat new-ish holiday, being created within the past few of years but it has always been observed on July 11th.

It is estimated over half of American households have pets, making it an easy to ‘pawticipate.’ Obviously, dogs and cats are the most popular pets, but those who have birds, fish, hamsters, guinea pigs, turtles, lizards, and other pets are encouraged to  participate.

Although I celebrate these two characters every day, today will be an extra special opportunity to humble brag on about them on social media. So further ado, here are the ‘Ranch hands’ just for today. Do you plan to post an image of your pet-kid today? We’ll be looking for you on Instagram. Sam

Elsa

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Nature Friday ~ November 9, 2018

Even though a number of you guessed various locations of where I  might be headed to, no one accurately guessed so for the inaugural of Rosy and the Boys’ Nature Friday blog hop, I thought I’d share another clue. Be sure to visit the other blogs for some terrific shots of nature.

Have a great Friday and an even better weekend.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

 

Pirate Party Wednesday

We are joining the Speedy’s Annual Pirate Party event today. Sam isn’t  keen on getting dressed up as you can tell here, but he adores Speedy and is always willing to walk the plank for fur-iends.

So ahoy, mateys. Don’t be a scalawag today.

Avast Ye Mates…

Many of you have contacted me about the issue of your comments disappearing on our blog and some of you have indicated that some of my comments have been pillaged off to your spam folders. We’re working on it with the nice blokes at WordPress and hope you’ll be patient while they try to figure out why Akismet thinks I’m a bot. Shiver me timbers…I’m not even Russian. Aaaarrrrgggghhhh! 

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Fabulous Friday ~ September 22, 2017

Ahoy, mateys! You probably knew “International Talk Like a Pirate Day” was earlier this week but did you know my knuckleheaded mum neglected to post about it. Arrrgh! Sam here. She says it’s because she had already scheduled the Gotcha Day recipes and the ‘minor fact’ that we’ve been working this week at  hospital, hospice and West Pines and  she was totally up to her eyeballs in alligators getting our uniforms ready, making me walk the bath plank getting all spiffed up. Yeah, yeah, no excuses ye wench, just results, okay?

Aye, lucky for me lads and lassies…I did find my inner pirate for Speedy’s Annual Pirate Party and the cool gang from Blogville are celebrating all sorts of fun shenanigans today with an end of summer picnic , a ‘Trashure’ Hunt, and a barnyard dance and make sure you enjoy a margarita or two from Ruby’s. Sorry if I furgot any other activities-it’s been one of those weeks.

I’m kinda tuckered out from my work this week and since I’ve got more than four left feet, I’m watching from the comfort of my sofa bed whilst rejuvenating from some busy hospital visits but encourage effuryone to check out the festivities. The guys from Blogville are all so clever and always have such a great time. No doubt there are sure to be loads of scallywags and landlubbers enjoying themselves and a great time will be had by all. Shiver me timbers…those guys know how to host a pawty! Hope the week was kind to you. Now go enjoy the first weekend of Autumn, ok? Happy autumnal equinox.

Lie, love bark! ❤︎

Flowers for Dory ~ A Tribute

Blogville recently lost a dear fur-iend, Dory from Dory’s Backyard and today we will honor her with a tribute and blog hop. While we didn’t know her all that well, we were always inspired by her Flower Friday posts and her smiling face. Sweet little Dory will be missed by everyone in Blogville. We are sending digital hugs and tail wags to her ‘brothers’ Arty (the Mayor of Blogville), Jakey, Bilbo and to her ‘pawrents.’ Dory may be gone, but she will never be forgotten and is no doubt spreading smiles among way too many of the others who have crossed the Rainbow Bridge from Blogville and will definitely be missed.

In honor of sweet Dory, here are a few of Sam’s favorite flowers from around our garden.

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Thanks to Kinley the Westie and the Idaho Pug Ranch for hosting this special Flowers for Dory blog hop. Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list.

Live, love, bark! ❤︎

Blogville’s K9 K-oss Pawty~2017

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Sam here [again]. Mom said I could post about Blogville’s K-9 K-Oss Pawty. I was going to go as a stag dog, but then little Anne from over at Marty the Manx’s caught my eye and she agreed to accompany me. Is she just the cutest little bundle of fur ever??

I’ve been practicing my dance steps with my 2-left footed mom and I hope I don’t step on Anne’s paws. Do you think she’ll dance with me? Oooh, I sure hope so. I got spiffed up just for her. You think she’ll like my attire? I wonder how my dog breath is? Oh gosh, I’m just so nervous!!

Are you attending the K-9 K-Oss Pawty?

Live, love, bark! <3

Endangered Species Challenge

endangered-collageWe recently agreed to add our voice to Louis Dog’s Life Endangered Species Challenge. Mom however missed the date so I’m posting it for her albeit a couple days late. Why not use all that groovy technology you have at your fingertips for crying out loud, I ask? Sheesh, pawrents!

Sam here. I think we can all agree that far too many of the world’s fascinating animals are in danger of disappearing from Planet Earth. To figure out which threatened or endangered animal we wanted to highlight, we went to our state Parks & Wildlife website for their comprehensive list. Sadly there were waaay too many listed and it was hard to single out one in particular until we saw the beautiful and elusive Lynx. With its trademark ear tufts and huge feet, it was clear we wanted to shed some light on this beautiful mammal. Besides, I’m fascinated by cats!

Lynx are a large bob-tailed cat about 3 feet long weighing anywhere from 20-30 pounds, possessing a black-tipped tail about one-eighth of its total length, and only about half the length of its huge hind feet even if mom’s photo makes it look like Mr. Lynx is ginormous compared to moi. For comparison, I’m about 50 lbs. when I hold my breath 🙂 [sizing–yet another technology fail on mom’s part-ugh]. Their coats are grayish with some obscure spots but their single most recognizable characteristic is the fabulous ear tufts that might be nearly as long as the actual ears. Often referred to as a ‘silent predator,’ the lynx is a patient hunter, waiting for the right moment and helped by those enormous hind feet which allow them to move easily across the snowpack to pounce on their preferred meal of choice: snowshoe hares. Their feet are huge at around 8 inches long. Can you say, “Big Foot?!”

Endangered Lynx (Lynx canadensis) in Colorado
Endangered Lynx (Lynx Canadensis) in Colorado

Although you’re more likely to see Sasquatch than a lynx in Colorado, there was an ambitious and controversial reintroduction plan in the late 1990’s in the remote San Juan mountains. Nearly 30 years later it has been deemed successful with between 150-250 of these magnificent felines being monitored by radio-satellite collars. Lynx are still considered critically imperiled in Colorado and with a recent population explosion in our state, it does remain to be seen if lynx and humans can eventually co-exist again. We’re rooting for this ‘fur-tastic’ mammal to survive. Have you ever seen one in the furs?

Live, love, bark! <3

 

Purrs for Jamison

unnamed-3We were hoping our fur-iends over at Noodle4President would be sharing a feel good story about their cat-bro, Jamison. Unfortunately, Noodle’s ‘panther brother’ crossed the Rainbow Bridge earlier this week following injuries he received around Christmas in a dog attack. Jamison bravely fought to overcome those injuries longer than was expected but in the end, they were just too severe. Even though Blogville prayed its hardest, there wasn’t enough healing canine kisses to pull our friend though and like his brother and family, we are heartbroken about this latest loss in our community. Jamison will be missed by everyone in his family as well as  throughout Blogville.

All of us at the Ranch send our love to Noodle and the rest of his family. Rest in peace, dear Jamison. #jamisonforever 🐾

Live, love, bark! ❤︎