Kira

IMG_3942I met Kira on October 24, 2004. She was a scared little bundle that had to be caught from inside the pen where she and her siblings had been living before she could be handed to me. She was so light and small cradled in the crook of my arm. She wouldn’t look at me but I kept cooing and kissing at her like the goofball that anyone near a puppy becomes, and I finally felt a tremulous wag from the little tail under my elbow. She then turned her head and gave me a few timid kisses on the nose and quickly looked away again. She was quick, but it was enough time for me to notice that she had adorable little freckles on the bridge of her nose. I got her to turn her head one more time so that my ex-husband could take a picture of us but in the second picture she’s looking away again. I held her brother too who was a normal Eskie puppy size and more confident in attention, but I already knew that the little girl had my heart.

The only problem was that we had just come to “look” at the puppies on our way to a pumpkin fair and I didn’t expect my ex-husband to let me adopt one. We left and continued to our destination, and I did my best to not think about how I wished the little girl puppy was with me when we arrived at the fair.

It was the next day – when we were at Wal-Mart of all places – that my ex-husband told me that I could get the puppy. I wanted to jump up and down and scream with joy, but I controlled myself. I asked him if he was really sure because he wasn’t an “animal person”, but he said yes with the contingency that I couldn’t pick her up until Sunday, the day after the Halloween party we were having on Saturday night. As soon as we got back to the house I called the woman who had the litter and told her that I wanted the puppy. “You remember which one it was, right? The one I held?” I asked anxiously. “The one with the freckles on her nose?” She assured me that she knew which one I wanted and would hold her for me until Sunday.

I couldn’t wait an entire week to see the puppy again though, so I stopped at the woman’s house a few days later on my way home from work. I knocked at the door but no one answered so I went around the back to the puppys’ kennel. To my surprise two little white bundles of fluff were running around in the yard. “My” puppy and her twin sister who was as tiny as she was had dug a hole under the fence of their kennel and escaped while their other sister and brother – who were twice as big as the little ones and couldn’t fit through – barked in indignation at them. The twin managed to run past me and squirm back under the hole into the safety of her kennel, but mine continued to scurry while I did my best to catch her. For twenty minutes she managed to avoid my grasp, but she started to seem not so much scared as she was just enjoying making me chase her. This theory was confirmed when she ran under the deck then assumed the pounce position with her front legs on the ground and her butt in the air, she did her first yodel/howl at me. I did finally caught her when she made a break for the hole to return to her kennel but wasn’t fast enough to shimmy through before I grabbed her. Once I had her in my arms I didn’t want to let have to let her go again, so even though it was a long shot, I called my ex-husband to see if I could convince him to let me bring her home early. Unfortunately he wouldn’t budge, and I had to hand her back to her custodian again. I remember the woman was wiping her face to get all of the dirt off and she squeaked in distress. The woman told me that she was dramatic, but it made leaving her that much more difficult.

It was the longest four days ever, but when Sunday, Halloween, came I picked up the girl who would always be referred to as my favoritest Halloween treat ever, my Kira.

The following three years were very difficult for both of us. My ex-husband never turned into an animal person, and in fact was jealous of the attention I gave her, so the abuse that I suffered increased in my effort to shield her from his tantrums. I hated having to go to work wondering if there would be enough people at the house to distract him from looking for any excuse to chastise her. As difficult as those years were though I find myself now thinking back to all of the beautiful memories Kira and I managed to create with just the two of us together. I remember taking her to a second round of obedience/socialization class and having her win the trophy for Most Improved. I remember leash training her and then taking walking around the neighbourhood going down different blocks to mix it up. I remember walking around the blocks in the south and looking at all of the decorations for Christmas and Halloween while she sniffed along the sidewalk. I remember walking her northwise while listening to “Preston & Steve” podcasts. I remember driving to an old cemetery near us and walking her around all the crumbling tombstones. I remember watching Christmas shows – all of the classics like “A Year Without Santa Clause” – with her snuggled against me on the bed despite my ex-husband forbidding Kira sleeping with us, and how she would hear my ex-husband come in the front door and jump off the bed and hop into the bed in her crate as if she had been there the entire time. I remember how she was always with me whether I was making run to the one shopping center to get sushi for dinner, or going to Dunkin’ Donuts to get coffee and a vanilla-iced doughnut. Oh my God, how she learned to love “Double D’s”. There was Dunkin’ Donuts just down the road in town and I’d stop in there enough in the evening or on weekends, but the one I remember most is the Dunkin’ Donuts right after the circle on 73 North in Berlin. That’s the one I would always stop at in the morning on the way to work when I had Kira with me to drop her off at her Grandmumma’s to stay there while I worked. Kira never got over her “stranger danger” despite all of the classes and socialization, but she learned that the drive-through attendants were not someone to bark at because they would give you treats from their windows. Her love of Double D’s reached a point that she would recognize the crinkle of their bag if I stopped on the way home, and she would be quite indignant if I did not share what I had purchased without her supervision. But of course I always shared. I found that I loved vanilla frosted donuts best only because I started getting that flavor instead of chocolate frosting since dogs shouldn’t have chocolate. Vanilla doughnuts WITH JIMMIES are still my favorite.

When we had our own apartment I would take her walking all around the complex, both for exercise and for her to do her business. There were these decorative grasses that the complex had planted all around the walkways in the complex and Kira would have to pee in each and every one of them. And she wouldn’t just pee on them, she had to get all the way up right in the middle of the plant to pee. My mom and I am jokingly called them her “tickly pee plants.” I’ve been to our old complex and found that they removed all of the tickly pee plants. I can’t really blame them because they weren’t that attractive but still, I don’t know if it makes me feel sadder or better that they’re not there anymore.

On June 30th 2015 I noticed that Kira’s poo was too dark for my comfort. Not that I regularly analyze my pup’s poo, but we had just adopted our Daisy, and since I had to be outside confirming Daisy’s bathroom habits I noticed Kira’s too. I told my mother that I was going to call our vet to have them run an occult blood screen on it.

The next day I was sitting at my desk at work when I saw my mother’s number flash on my cellphone. She never called me at work and I just thank God that I had my cell in a position where I saw her calling despite my ringer being off. When I answered my mother told me that Kira had “passed out” but assured me that she was better, however she was still on her way to the emergency vet to be safe. I wanted to fly out of the office and meet her there but instead I composed myself and waited to hear more once my mother got Kira to the vet. My mother called me back when she reached the vet and told me that Kira seemed fine now but did I still wanted them to examine her to be safe. I knew it would be expensive but I said yes that I wanted her examined because it would be worth it to know that Kira really was fine. But when ER vet called me about an hour later I found out that Kira wasn’t fine.

The vet told me that Kira’s hematocrit was at 20 whereas the normal level was 30. She was bleeding internally somewhere and the vet recommended an abdominal ultrasound to look for any foreign objects or a possible tumor in her stomach. I agreed to the ultrasound, and the vet said she would call me as soon as she had results.

The next few hours of that day are a story in themselves because I did not handle the stress well. The vet was taking too long to call me with results so I decided to drive to hospital and demand answers. I was on my way there and then, long story short, I took road rage to the next level when an asshole driver blocked my lane-  and then flipped me off when I beeped – by grabbing a desk fan I had in my car, jumping out and threatening to beat the man to death with it if he didn’t get the fuck out of my lane. But anyway. It ended up that the vet called me just as I was pulling into the hospital parking lot. She hadn’t be able to see anything in the ultrasound due to a lot of gas and wanted to do an endoscopy. Kira’s hematocrit had also dropped during those hours and she needed a blood transfusion. I agreed to the blood transfusion but Kira did not handle anesthesia well and I didn’t want to put her through the stress of a procedure without being sure that she needed it so I asked to wait on the endoscopy. The ER vet was actually very sweet and considerate and said she would do the blood transfusion and understood my decision to wait on the endoscopy. When she asked me if I wanted to pick up Kira in the morning or have them call when the transfusion was done which would be around 2 am, there was no question that I would be driving there in the middle of the night to get my girl.

At nearly 2 am on the dot they called me and said that Kira’s levels were at 28, and I could come to get her. I knew as soon as I picked her up that it was not a good situation. Kira looked exhausted, panting and her eyes drooping. As soon as I set her down when we got home she dove into the water bowl drinking the entire thing. Ten minutes later it all came back up. I sopped up the vomit/water and she immediately guzzled down another bowl of water. And it all came back up. I tried letting her parched little body drink from the bowl one more time, and when it all came up again I had to force myself to only give her a 1/2 cup of water at a time. The water finally stayed down, though it broke my heart to see her licking and licking at the empty water bowl. We both dozed on the living room floor that night but neither of us got much sleep.

I went to work – or I think I went to work, I honestly don’t remember since I was awake for 30 hours at that point – but later that day we became concerned when Kira would not eat any solid food because without her eating we could not get her medicines into her. Once again I have to commend the vet for her trust in me because when I called and explained the situation and how I felt that Kira being away from me had exacerbated whatever was going on inside her, she agreed to give me the syringe of medication and have me administer it myself at home. This is actually a really big deal for a doctor to allow someone to do this and I’ll admit that I was nervous when the time came for me to administer this huge-ass needle to my baby. I finally mustered and got most of the injection in her – she shrieked halfway through the injection and the needle came out when she ran off – but it was enough that she finally started eating solid fool.

That Monday, July 6th, my mother took Kira to doctor who was covering for our regular vet as a follow up while I went to work and waited again for news. I remember sitting in the dark, empty auditorium at my office when that vet called and broke the news that Kira’s levels had dropped again. I sat there listening as she told me the possible causes and what treatment did I want to pursue if Kira had cancer. I could not answer her because I did not believe that Kira had something that would threaten her life. I felt that she had a stomach ulcer and that the medication we had been giving her just needed more time to work. I told her that I wanted to continue our current course of medication and we scheduled another follow up for Friday the 10th. We labored religiously to get all of Kira’s medications in her at all of the exact times and had everyone we know send prayers and good vibes that week, and when she had her follow up her levels climbed to 25. It was a miracle.

I was so relieved and thankful, particularly when I celebrated her birthday on the 14th. We hadn’t been to a Dunkin Donuts drive-through in since we had moved and lived within walking distance of one so I made a special trip and took her to the closest Dunkin Donuts with a drive-through so that she could get her vanilla doughnut as we had done so many times before. I remember that I was furious that they didn’t have vanilla – we still got a doughnut and I did get her a vanilla one at a walk-in Dunkin – but I was so upset. I think it was because some part of me knew. However I still wasn’t prepared when the vet called after Kira’s next appointment a few days later on Thursday the 16th and told me her levels were down to 18.

I went hysterical. I was at work sobbing on a dear friend’s shoulder trying to comprehend that my girl was so sick.

Our regular vet was finally back from vacation and surprisingly had hours that Saturday and he agreed to squeeze us in. We saw him only two days after her previous appointment and her levels were down to 13. The only good thing was that he agreed to put Kira on steroids and antibiotics like I had wanted for the previous week.

Again we had a schedule for all of her medications and gave them to her exactly when the had to be taken. I even started giving her a blood booster supplement and baking her “Pibble Pot Roast” a recipe from another dear friend that had helped her boy when he was sick. Her poo seemed to be getting lighter, but on July 22nd I noticed that Kira’s gums were extremely pale and she was very short of breath, so I rushed her to the ER again. This time when they tested her blood her level it was down to 10. I immediately consented to a second blood transfusion, but the vet did warn me that it was more difficult to predict a blood type interaction after a previous transfusion and that they would have to keep her overnight to be sure she didn’t have a reaction. They told me that she was refusing to eat though and asked if I would bring her some food to see if she would eat for me. I drove directly from work and took her for a stroll to the hospital’s yard and stroked her as we sat in the grass like we would do at our old apartment. I prayed the entire time. My mother came to the hospital too and brought some baby food and a hamburger. We got the food and the medication into her and then I had relinquish her back to the tech. It felt like how it did eleven years earlier when I wasn’t able to take her home as a puppy, the time I had stopped to see her after work and chased her around to catch her mischievous puppy self. All I could do was wait and pray that the transfusion took and that she held her levels. Incredibly not only did her levels hold but they rose through the night and reach a high of 28. I left work as soon as I got the call and brought her home. She seemed better than she had since this had all started three weeks prior.

We had a good week.

On the night of July 30th, Kira seemed to be having trouble breathing. Her gums were extremely pale and she didn’t want to eat. I laid on the carpet next to her and rubbed her gently and kissed her on her little freckled nose. I told her that I loved her and that I was so proud of her for being such a fighter. And then I told her that it was okay if she was tired and didn’t want to fight anymore. She had been such a strong girl, and it was okay if she wanted to go home.

I went into work the morning of July 31st, and then came home so that I could take Kira with my mother to her appointment with Dr Heller. She was such a good girl and didn’t struggle at all when he took her blood. He went out of the room and when he came back in with the results I knew that it wasn’t good. I stood next to him as he measured her levels and read them as 13. He asked me what I wanted to do, and said that she was okay right now even though her levels were low, she wasn’t struggling, but what did I want to do if they dropped. I told him that I didn’t want to put her through anything more. I wouldn’t put her through any more stays at hospitals or pricks at her legs trying to get blood from her tiny veins. He said to call if we needed anything.

We went home, and because I’m such a coward, because I knew what was coming and the reason I will hate myself forever, I went back to work while my mother watched Kira. At 3:45 my mother called me to make sure that I wasn’t working over time, and to be honest I had considered it, but I will always be so thankful that she called me.

I walked in my front door and Kira stood up to greet me as she always did, but I knew that she was suffering. My mother told me later that it was the first time that she had stood up all day. I immediately grabbed Kira up into my arms and vaguely remember hearing my mother saying that Dr. Heller could not stay but that he had told his associate about Kira and we could go right over. I don’t remember getting into the car – was the front door locked? I don’t know – all I knew was that I was holding my baby girl, the one who had been through so much with me, the most perfect and beautiful piece of my heart, and she was struggling. My beautiful brave little girl was still fighting despite how tired she was. I could not in my selfishness keep her here. She was a little restless as my mother floored the car out of the driveway and into the street, but relaxed a little as I adjusted her on my lap and turned her so that the air conditioning vent could blow directly on her. I wrapped my arms around her and felt her finally settle and then rest in the crook of my arm. I told her, “It’s okay. Mommy’s here. Mommy’s here.” She closed her eyes a little, and then I felt her take her last breath, a gasp and then a quiet sigh, and she was gone.

We made it to the vet’s office where they quickly took us into a room and gave me a towel to wrap her in so that I didn’t have to place her on a cold exam table. Then the vet came in and listened to her chest to confirm what I had already felt in the car. The thing is though, the vet’s office is literally three minutes from my house and Kira had passed before we could get there. Kira had already known it was time but she had been holding on for me to be with her. I believe she knew that I would have shattered completely if I had not been with her when she passed and so she fought until I was able to hold her in my arms as she finally able let go.  Kira had loved me and taken care of me as she always did, down to her last breath.

IMG_1288_1024I’ve so many beautiful memories of you, my Kira. I know that they will help me and make me smile, but I will never stop missing you. I will miss your “Uncle Leo hello” yodel that you would do when you were excited that someone came home, and I’ll miss your “Crazy Shake” as you gave me tons of shakes (and “sits” and “downs” and every trick you knew) to get me to give you the treat in my hand faster. I will miss you opening the bathroom door when I’m peeing, and I’ll miss how you would rub your rump against my leg for back scratches. I’ll miss how soft your fur was, it was more like rabbit fur than dog fur. I’ll miss how you somehow always smelled like Snuggle fabric softener. I’ll miss having you velcroed against my leg when I sat on the floor or against my foot when I sat in a chair, and I’m miss reaching down absentmindedly when I’d lay on the couch and know I would feel you sleeping against it. I’ll miss your random burps and I’ll miss blaming all of my burps on you. I’ll miss your soft snores as you slept. I’ll miss your kisses when I cry because you were always there to lick them away. I’ll miss you when I’m in the garden and expect to look up to see you lounging in the grass “Eskie suntanning” in the summer or sniffing the cool breeze in the Autumn. I’ll miss seeing you in the passenger seat of “Zoe” and know that it will always be “your spot” especially thanks to the nap of the seat which is permanently flattened from your sitting there or from you resting your head on my hand when I set it there. I’ll miss hearing you smack at the water bowl when it wasn’t filled up to your standards. I’ll miss you opening presents on Christmas, taking the initiative to tear into them even before Grandmumma had finished reading the Christmas story from the Bible. I will miss your beautiful smile, I had never seen a dog smile but there was no denying that you were smiling especially when you were being cuddled. I will miss holding you and having you tuck your head under my chin in response when someone would ask, “Do you love Mommy?”

I’ll miss you for all of these reasons, Kira, and for so many more because I see you in so many important things in my life. You were such a part of how I went from an insecure abused wife to a more confident and self-sufficient person. I truly believe that I would not have grown as much as I have if God had not blessed me with you. I gave you a piece of my heart on that chilly October afternoon in 2004, and I am so thankful that you accepted it. It’s yours and it will always be yours. Keep it safe in Heaven until I see you again.

I love you, Kira.

For My Kira

Comic altered by me from original comic here (you really should read it because it’s a beautiful tribute to her own furbaby) done by artist located here.

 

My 200th Post Celebration Has Gone to the Dogs! And the Cats! PART 1

This is my 200th post.
And it’s HUGE!

First of all, the fact that I, an extremely slow writer with the most erratic life which simultaneously creates inspiration for posts yet prevents me from having the time to actually write them, have completed and posted two-hundred entries is bloody monumental.

Second, it’s quite literally huge because when I put out the call in my last post for your animal rescue stories, I wasn’t sure how many of you would have time to respond, but lot of brilliant peeps came through big time. You came through so much in fact that, despite editing your stories a teeny bit where I could, there was just too much love to put in a single post so this is the first of two celebration posts. When we party we party big up in here, yo!

Part Deux is going to run on Thursday (statically the other high traffic day and I want everyone to get as much exposure as possible…and because I’m not off until Wednesday and I’ll need to sleep at some point this week) so make sure to come back to read the rest of these wonderful tales of rescue love.

As I mentioned above, I work a lot of hours (pretty much all of them between writing and my second job) and whenever one of your stories popped up on my phone it truly made my day, so thank you all so very much for sharing them with me. Not only did your stories make me smile (and sniffle in a few cases) but they are the very things that make a difference in spreading the word about how awesome it is to adopt an animal. As most of you know both Kira and Seamus were rescues so it’s a cause that is very dear to me.

Finally, thank you, thank you, two hundred times thank you for being here and reading my what-the-fuckery and helping me to reach this landmark. I’m a writer which means that I can’t not write but it means the world to have you all here to read it. MASSIVE GROPING HUGS TO YOU!

And now without further ado, here are your animal stories! PART ONE!

~Brody & Stacy: The Bromance (Instagram)

I didn’t think I’d get another fur kid. I saw something on facebook about a dog at a shelter an hour from my house and I just remember thinking how awful it feels to be left alone. As I was walking around [the animal shelter] wondering what to do (and panicking because I *could not* leave without bringing a pup home (I can’t articulate that feeling)), I saw a brown bear right there in a cage. Good God he was huge. And his fur! If an afro and a cloud mated, the result would be what I was seeing before me. And I met Brody. In the 10 or so minutes we spent meeting each other, he showed me no less than 15 facial expressions, a freckled tongue and a gentleness that surprised me.

It’s been three weeks today since we rescued each other. He is kind and gentle and playful and curious and still tilts his head when he’s confronted with anything out of the ordinary. And I’m lucky. It boggles my mind why anyone would get rid of him voluntarily (the story was a “change in lifestyle” and that “he doesn’t get along with other pets” which is ridiculous), but I couldn’t be more grateful. I’m going to write the shelter a letter and a separate one and ask they forward it to his previous owners. Thank you, Person Who Didn’t Want My Dog.

nightmare dog, animal rescue stories

~Roxxi & Gina: Pibble Love

Roxxi is the sweetest girl & best companion anyone could ask for! I went to the shelter in search of a puppy. I sat cross-legged in the middle of the floor amongst all of the dogs & Roxxi came right up, crawled into my lap & laid her head on my shoulder, we’ve been best friends ever since. She was due to be euthanized & I just couldn’t let that happen. I could say that I rescued her that day…but really, in every way that counts, she is the one who rescued me!

animal rescues

~Alexandria, Nineveh, Lucy & Brenda: Finding Out You’re a Dog Person

I found Alexandria & Nineveh in a shelter in South Carolina around 2005 or so. Alexandria convinced me to take her and her sister home, and they have been running the household ever since. (Though I suspect that Nineveh is really the evil genius behind most of their plots).

Lucy adopted my father-in-law several years ago. The story goes that he was at work (I believe he was repairing engines at the time), and Lucy walks into the workshop, walks past several of my FIL’s coworkers, and sits in front of him with a look as if to say “You’re the one. Take me home.” He got her a bowl of water and they were inseparable until just this past year. Sadly, he was diagnosed with ALS last year, and the rapid progression of the disease has made it impossible for my in-laws to give Lucy the time and space an active dog needs. Keith and I took her in, and she has since convinced me that I was, in fact, also a dog person. (I swore I wasn’t, but holy crow I love that dog).

cats, dog

Note from Brenda: Lucy broke her leg in the backyard at the beginning of the summer in a suspected squirrel-related mishap, but she refuses to tell me the details. I think the squirrel won that day. That’s why she’s wearing a cast in the picture. It has since come off and she is running around chasing squirrels and rabbits once again like the vicious hunter (not really) she thinks she is.

~Ozzie & Nancy: Brotherly Love (This Crazy Life of Mine)

We adopted Ozzie in April 2011. We had a crazy idea to adopt a brother or sister for Blue who we had since early 2010. The Humane Society of Pinellas County happened to post a video one day of an Australian Shepherd that had been dropped off by it’s previous owner because they had to move. That video sent me to the Humane Society immediately to meet him. He was shy and timid and oh so handsome. Someone else was in the process of adopting him, but it fell through and we were next on the list. Later that day, we took Blue up to meet him as they recommended. They didn’t even look at each other and we decided that was all we needed to take Ozzie home and spoil the heck out of him.

Ozzie has come so far 2 1/2 years we’ve had home. He came into our home unsure of how to act around my husband, very timid, and afraid of little things like a belt being picked up off the dresser and more. We realized very quickly that he probably did not live in the best circumstances prior to our home. We worked with him closely every day and he is now a happy go lucky dog who is so happy to be in our home.

Ozzie and Blue get along like most “brothers”, sometimes they drive each other nuts, but it’s also not uncommon to find them snuggling on the floor or couch. I am thankful every single day that we rescued Ozzie and have given him a home where he is spoiled rotten. He is incredibly loyal and he just wants to be loved. We joke about how the dogs don’t live with us, we live with them. They are our children and we love and adore them.

australian shepard

~Bear & Andrea: Ten Acres and a Dog  (My Everything Corner)

We had been living at our new home on a 10 acre piece of land for nearly a year, when I decided that enough was enough. Being that I am often alone out in the yard, I deserved a dog, the large space deserved a dog, and a dog deserved the large space.

It didn’t take too long looking at nearby shelters for our puppy to come in. The story was that he’d been dropped off in a Saskatoon parking lot with two young girls. Their big hearts took him home, but being that they already had a dog, and she didn’t get on well with Bear, they would have to take him to the SPCA.

We drove the 3 hours to Saskatoon, fell in love, and brought our new puppy home. His looks, his disposition and his size would suggest that he is Tibetan Mastiff cross.

It’s been well over a year, and with lots of training and even more love, we have the perfect dog. And myself, Bear and our 10 acres couldn’t be happier.

~Yoki & Bryan: Not Your “Classic” Rescue But a Rescue All the Same (A Beer for the Shower)

I rescued Yoki from a pet store. I know, that almost sounds like an oxymoron, but hear me out. I was at the mall one day, walking by the pet store, when I saw this poor disheveled dog looking out at me from behind a glass cage. She was sharing a much-too-small pen with a huge bulldog that had been bullying her. Her hair was matted, her ears were down, and the fur on her tail had been chewed off completely to the point that her tail was nothing more than a limp noodle covered in red, raw flesh. I’ll never forget the sign that was posted beneath her.

“$100. Please take me.”

It was Christmas time. Everyone else was so excited to look at the other dogs and bring home a cute, well groomed puppy for their Christmas gift, but no one was even giving Yoki a second glance. And her, she just sat there, helpless, staring at me. Whimpering. Pleading with me to help her. She was getting old for a puppy – 6 months according to her tag, easily the oldest dog in the store – so I walked up to the counter and asked the girl what they did with puppies that didn’t sell once they got too old. The girl said, “We’re not allowed to disclose that.”

AKA they were going to put her down.

I saw potential in that dog. I knew she could be beautiful if the right person just took care of her, and nursed her back to health, and loved her. I knew that person had to be me. I knew if I walked out of that store that they were going to put her down. That I’d regret it for the rest of my life. I bought her on the spot.

She’s been my best friend for 7 years now, and even though I got her at a pet store** (the very place I hate), I have no doubt in my mind that on that day I saved her life.

**Said “pet store” has since been shut down
animal rescue stories, american eskimo, eskie

(By the by, Yoki is Kira’s unrelated nearly identical twin and if you want to read the comic that they made together then you can check that out here.)

That concludes PART ONE of my 200th post celebration, but please make sure to come back on Thursday for PART TWO and read the rest of the stories because they are all so heart-warming and adorable and so worth the read.

Get Ready FOR EPIC AWESOMENESS!

To quote Dave Chappelle who was quoting Rick James: “It’s a celebration, bitches!”

Or at least it will at my next post, which will be my 200th post!

american eskimo, eskies, dog, 200th post

I knew that I wanted to do something special for this landmark post but I couldn’t think of anything until the other week when one of my Facebook friends mentioned that she was going on a roadtrip to bring home a pup from an animal shelter. That’s when it struck me that I wanted to celebrate by having my 200th post dedicated to the awesomeness of animal rescue. I could do this just by talking about my own experience since both Kira and Seamus are rescues but whether I’m celebrating the anniversary of my BONing or my 100th post, I like to include other people and pimp the love out. Also, since I personally know that many of my awesome peeps have rescue stories of their own, I decided to open the floor–in other words, I want to hear your stories of rescue love and share them in numero 200.

I’ve already put the call out on Facebook last week and have received some completely face-meltingly adorable stories but there’s plenty of room to add more stories and to get yourself so exposure since I’ll definitely put a link to your blog or twitter or Instagram or whatever you want. Email me at katsidhe@gmail.com and send me a pic of you and your rescue dog/cat/ect, and a brief bit about them. I’m taking submissions until October 12th which is a little over a week so make sure to send me your stories ASAP, peeps!

LET’S PARTY!

PS-I made a form below that you can use to send me your info information but the only problem is that I don’t think you can use it to send a pic. And given my recently documented lack of computer skillz the odds aren’t good that I’ll figure out if this is possible, but I’m leaving it on here in case it helps anyone.

How To Look Like A Total Ass at the Beach With Your Dogs

I have been wanting to take my dogs to the beach for a long time. I thought that this would be a brilliant idea because I already love the beach and what could make it better except to be at the beach with dogs! Yes my mind was atwitter with shimmering visions of splashing in the ocean with my dogs and then laying on the beach as they recovered from the exhaustive ocean romp.

I was finally able to realize this beachy doggy dream the other week when I had a rare day off. Not only did I get to take my dogs to the beach, but also I learned how to look like an absolute moron while doing it. Yeah. So, here are my tips if you too are so inclined as to look like stupidass at the beach with your dogs.

(Before we begin I should mention that you get bonus points if you happen to take your dogs to the beach on the absolute hottest fucking day of the year because it makes every one of these points just that more brilliant.)

Make sure that you have to spend at least an hour in the car with your dog to get to the beach.

american eskimo dog

One of the few moments he turned to face me.

Since I like to do things over and above the watermark of stupid I live about an hour and a half from the beach but whether it’s one hour or three you’ll want to use this time to already begin to question your sanity at attempting this trip. The easiest way to do this is to make sure that at least one of your dogs have no car manners. In my case two out of the three dogs that I took on this excursion spent the entire ninety minutes trying to create as much havoc as possible by alternately trying to drive the car (Lily)** and attempting to balance on the middle console despite being the size of a small wolf (Seamus)–the latter of which resulted in long stretches of me having my dog’s ass in my face as I was in the back seat.

Hottest fucking day of the year bonus: During the drive you get no air conditioning because your dogs stick their faces in the A/C vents and hog it all for themselves.

(**Lily was not allowed in the driver’s seat which is extremely dangerous and upsets me whenever I see someone let their dog do this but that did not stop her from trying.)

Have one more dog than the number of people in your party.

Most people seem to only have one dog in their family but I call them pussies. If you want to look like a true ass at the beach then you bring more dogs than you can physically handle. I now have two dogs and I will tell you that it is exponentially easier to look like an ass while trying to control two dogs than it is with only one–especially since one of the dogs has not been trained by me since they were a puppy. I will admit though that I did have my mother with me and could pass off a leash to her while I untangled myself from my dogs’ attempts to mummify me with their leashes but since she still had to contend with the third dog in our crew it was still acceptable.

Hottest fucking day of the year bonus: The sand between the parking lot and the ocean is scorching and you have to carry to carry your dogs over it so that they don’t burn the pads of their paws.

Make sure your dogs won’t go in the water. At all.

You’ve brought your dogs all the way to the beach in a cramped car, carried their pampered asses over the sand and deposited them in front of the cool refuse of the ocean. Now you can watch as all three of them–including the one who loves water and always leaps into creeks like a little furry frog–scatter away from the water as if you were trying to drop them into Tabasco sauce. If you’re really lucky then the largest of your dogs will be so freaked out that he jumps into your arms and digs his claws into your tender flesh.

Hottest fucking day of the year bonus: You had planned on your dogs getting cool by going in the water and now feel like an asshole because they’re hot.

Buy the shittiest umbrella that $5 can get you.

Your dogs won’t go in the water but the good news is that you have an umbrella which snaps in half as soon as you try to shove it in the sand in an attempt to at least provide your dogs some shade.
Another reason you want your umbrella to be shitty is because…

The dog beach is bay-side where the wind whips across the water with massive fury.

The wind will rip that shitty umbrella right out of the sand and send you scrambling down the scorching beach with your arms outstretched and flailing like a drunken Frankenstein.

Hottest fucking day of the year bonus: the combination of heat with the high winds makes it feel like you’re in a massive convection oven.

Have a dog with a deceptively large mane.

He’ll manage to get out of his collar and you can go from chasing an umbrella like a drunken Frankenstein to chasing your dog like a drunken Frankenstein.

Hottest fucking day of the year bonus: Running. Duh.

Be so concerned with keeping the sun off of your dogs that you don’t apply sunscreen to several large areas on your back.

I look like I have vitiligo.

Hottest fucking day of the year bonus: Burns hurt worse in the heat. It’s a Kat fact which means that I said it so it’s true.

Have you fluky heart–which has been a complete trooper during this–finally say “What the fuck you are doing you moron? That’s it! Pass out on the hot sand right now!”

And though I didn’t completely lose consciousness it was nonetheless magical.

Pack up after two hours and take your dogs for ice cream.

american eskimo dogs

“Where’s the ice cream???”

They deserve it after all of the energy they put in to helping you look like a stupidass.

In closing, sometimes I even astound myself at my ability to create clusterfucks.

Non-Related Identical Twins

I recently discovered that my American Eskimo dog, Kira, has a twin sister to whom she is not biologically related.  Her name is Yoki, and interestingly enough Yoki is owed by Bryan from A Beer For The Shower, who himself is not biologically related to his twin and co-author, Brandon.  The coincidences don’t stop there though because both Kira and Yoki have parents who drink too much.  This past Sunday Kira and Yoki got together to discuss their human parents.

american eskimo dogs

**The story behind Yoki’s (thankfully temporary) paralysis is here.

Kira Yoki 2 Kira Yoki 3Kira Yoki 4 Kira Yoki 5 Kira Yoki 6

(This was made on the fly and as a joke so I apologize for the poor picture quality.)

((Massive thanks to Bryan and Brandon and Yoki without whom work would have managed to screw me out of doing two posts this week.  *scratches behind all your ears*))