Sunday, April 25, 2010

We Love Them Anyway

What do these 2 pairs of shoes have in common?

Hint . . .

What they have in common is that Mom left them out while away at school. Mom is very happy that the goal was simply to remove the pull tabs on the backs of the shoes, and not to completely destroy the shoes.

I believe Miss Star was the culprit this time, but I also accused her in The Avocado Incident. However, I have since changed my mind about The Avocado Incident, and this is my official public apology to Miss Star - I am sorry, my little doll.

There is sufficient past evidence of Sunny being a counter surfer, including the loss of a half a slab of cooked salmon, earmarked for 3 days of yummy left-overs. Hearing a scuffle behind me this week, in the vicinity of another slab of salmon on the counter, and turning around in time to see that it was little Sunny Sunshine on the prowl, I decided that he probably also was the avocado culprit.

But, since Sunny is officially the Dog of the Week, he is officially forgiven for past sins, including eating my scholarship. More specifically, his knee ate my scholarship. Indirectly. By stealing the scholarship funds (and more!) to cover the cost of repairing the second knee. But it was the sad picture of him with his monkey after the operation that garnered him the 240+ votes, resulting in an unchallenged stake as Dog of the Week for Safe Harbor gets $65 for the honor, and I get a copy of the book A Dog's Purpose. That's a nice little birthday present. Thank you, my sweet boy.

And Sunny is a happy boy to be the cover puppy for the week.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

A Doggy Bedtime Story

Katie reading Dr. Seuss to Star

It is getting a little crowded in my bed at night, but we all seem pretty content with our bedtime routine. When I head to the bathroom for teeth brushing, Star immediately vaults herself onto the bed and plops down dead center. As you can see from the picture with Katie, it's not a huge bed. With Network and Lily, I eventually got us a California King, after waking up every morning in the crack between the two mattresses of the Ikea bed that moved with us from Germany. But I'm not getting this gang a new bed anytime soon, and definitely not bigger than a Queen when I do.

After my teeth are brushed and Sunny's eyes have been treated with the dreaded drops (he is cooperating much better now that we are down to twice a day), I assume my position in the bed - traditional north/south orientation along the western edge. Then I pull back the top of the covers so Sunny can assume his position - non-traditional east/west alignment. His head is either on my shoulder or maybe head-butting me in the rib cage.

When Star sees the cuddling start, she angles in at about 30% to my legs, and plants her head on my stomach. Sorry - haven't managed to photograph the layout yet. Suffice to say - it IS cozy.

Fortunately, it's not usually permanent, although Sunny has stayed in his slot the past 2 nights, rotating 180 degrees at times, so I might wake up with my face close to his tail, which fortunately is down, protecting my face from worse awakenings. But sometimes Sunny moves off and spends the night on the padded blanket chest next to the bed, curled up in a tight ball.

And Miss Star often retreats to the far south east corner and curls up in a little ball over yonder. So there is room for me to breathe and move in the night.

Then comes the morning! At my first wiggle, Star is back wedged against me for some lovin'. She lies on her back and starts bicycling those front legs such that I fear once again for the safety of my face. She just wants her belly rubbed, but she's pretty excited about it all, so I often pretend to be asleep for a while with an arm thrown over her, delivering an occasional scritch to the head or belly.

Now Mr. Sunny in the morning is another story. He's a sleepy head like me. If he's still on the bed laying horizontally across the pillows, or at least against them, he might also get pummeled by the flying hooves of the Mrs. But he snoozes on. Eventually he and I start losing the veil of drowsiness, and they start wrestling and now I fear for my life as those jaws start clacking in close proximity to my defenseless posture. Oh yeah - forgot to mention - Star also likes to step right on my belly, right down low there on top of the full morning bladder. Yikes.

Before signing off for the week, I'll paint one more cute scene which I have yet to photograph, in the absence of a water camera.

Sunny has always taken up his post on the bath mat while I shower. When Star first joined us, she stood guard, or laid guard, outside the open bathroom door. I felt so safe - ain't no psycho killer gonna sneak into my shower with my double layer of furry guard.

Just in the last week, when I've stuck my wet nose out around the shower curtain to spy on Sunny all curled up in his spot, I noticed that our little girl has joined us, in the middle of the bathroom floor, keeping guard a little closer in. And the next day I think she was even closer. One by one, she is overcoming fears and settling in. Although the bed routine was settled in her mind from Night 1.

I am just overjoyed with this pair. I compare them often to my last pair - in fact Star is often mistakenly called Lily or Silly. My biggest joy is that they interact with each, something Network and Lily just never did. Sure makes for some fun photography.

Sunny is truly my sweet boy, very connected to me, but Star is so completely attached to me that I couldn't even sneak away and leave her at the dog park if I tried - most dogs would gladly be left there. I know Sunny wouldn't know I was missing if I left while he was attached to someone wielding a Chuck-It. Have I written about his CII disease yet? Hmmmm. A story for another day. Or another month - he has 3 more weeks of recovery before he gets to go crazy at the dog park.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Wow! My list of followers has grown. I am honored. Thank you, friends. I will try to keep you entertained.

This week all I can say is - I have the cutest and sweetest dogs, and on the eve of my leave, I can summarize my time in Colorado as letting go of old dogs and rebuilding my pack from scratch, with the reciprocal help of Safe Harbor.

And thanks to all who have voted or will vote for Sunny for Dog of the Week on His specific link is He had 88 votes before I even told anyone he was on there - thank you strangers! Then with my promotion he went from 15th place up to 8th place overnight. My only regret is that he doesn't look very "sunny" in the photo - I should have used one of him smiling. But, alas, I hope to see him make it to #1 so that Safe Harbor will receive a donation in his honor.

Don't worry Miss Star, you will get your chance at a later date.

Go Sunny Go!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Definition of Dog Eared

I was never quite sure what "dog-eared" meant, but now I am.

We had a bit of a crazy week - must have been the full moon/April Fool's Day combination. On Wednesday, I came home to orange smears all over the living room carpet. Did you know that avocado pits are orange when cracked open and smeared all over the carpet?

I specifically pushed that avocado all the way back into the corner of the counter before leaving for my test that day. I'm sure a dog standing on the ground would not have been able to reach it. And more importantly, not been able to pull it down, without opposable thumbs. So I can only imagine that someone (and I'm going with my suspicions that it was the girl) must have jumped up on all 4s on the counter to retrieve my precious treasure that was going to be yummy guacamole for lunch the next day.

The next day, April Fool's Day, I came home to the site of a tornado touchdown. I should'a gotten the camera out before I proceeded to pick up the mess. A bag of recyclable papers (that I had ALMOST hidden away in a closed room) had been ripped open and spread around the room. I had already stripped my bed to wash the sheets, but a full-speed run down the hall followed by a leap onto the bed, and possibly a wrestling match on the bed (now I'm implicating both sweet and innocent pups) had pushed the mattress out at a 45 degree angle and pulled the mattress pad half off. The library book (shown above) that had been on the nightstand was out in the living room. Strangely, although the pages had been "dog-eared" none of the words had been eaten.

Sweet and Innocent Pups

"It wasn't us. We were just laying here holding hands all day."

We also had some fun with late March snow. Star got to "let 'er rip" at our favorite dog park, which we will sorely miss.

This is how big it is. Can you even see the perimeter fences? It feels like even when there are 20 cars in the lot, every pair of dogs has their own acre. And there are 2 good sized small dog areas that I have never seen in use. I used one in December when Sunny's leg was sore, so he could play ball within a limited space.

From the western edge, the photos are taken counter-clockwise sweeping from my right to my left.

Little dog park in the far corner.
(Light poles are a ballpark across the street.)

Parking lot way up on the hill.

Best angle to see most of the middle area.

Northwest quadrant.

With Sunny still on-leash, and a little cranky about it when surrounded by a handful of off-leash beasts, we like to steer away from the crowds and do a couple laps around the perimeter. Star usually sticks pretty close, although I encourage her to go make friends or just go for a run. Once in a while, she finds someone worthy of a good chase.

Also this week, while I was packing some boxes, Sunny snuck a tennis ball out of the closet where they have been sequestered since his surgery. I won't throw it for him yet, but he likes to carry it around (so does Star).

Napping in the sunny spot with our favorite toys.

Happy Easter!