Yes I'm Red, and No, I'm NOT an Irish Setter...by Remo the Red

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Today We Celebrate Your Life...

June 2nd 2012 1:26 pm
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A wise man once said "When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight". We choose to remember the day you came into our lives, not the terrible day that you left...

Born on June 2nd in a puppy mill, you were a survivor. You became our first "puppy". So many wonderful memories as you grew. Such a goofy, big, leggy Red Golden. You loved to play. You loved to sit. You loved to eat. You loved to ride in the car. You loved to go on walks. You loved to lay on the grass and watch the world go by. You loved to meet people, but loved meeting other dogs even more. You loved life. And we loved you.

Remo the Red, turning White, always True Blue! We celebrate your life and all the love you brought into ours. Happy 18th Birthday, beautiful boy...

 

Another Golden Memory: Remo, the whirlin' dervish...

January 9th 2011 7:30 pm
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One of our favorite memories of Remo was how he loved our son's ferrets, Clarke and Belle. He was introduced to them at a very young age, and was taught "don't you hurt that baby". Remo understood that meant he had to lay down and play gently with whatever animal was around.

Remo loved to play hide and seek with Belle and Clarke. We would first prepare the playing field by lining up all of the dining room chairs along the wall of the hallway, and by making other "safe passage" barriers between furniture. Then we'd let Clarke and Belle out to roam.

The ferrets would scurry through the house behind the chairs, furniture and other barriers. Remo would follow them, half crawling on his belly, frantic to keep up, until they all made it into the living room. Then Belle and Clarke would have their fun. Ferret #1 would sneak up behind Remo and do the Happy Ferret Dance, bouncing around complete with an excited vocalization of "shnuck-shnuck-shnuck". Remo would whirl around on his belly and chase Ferret #1 back under the couch, table or chair. He'd lay there whining, tail wagging furiously, nose pressed up to whatever piece of furniture the ferret dashed under.

Then it was Ferret #2's turn to sneak up behind Remo, do the Happy Ferret Dance, cheering "shnuck-shnuck-shnuck". Remo whirls, chases Ferret #2 underneath something. Then Ferret #1 sneaks out... shnuck-schnuck-shnuck... whirl... chase... whine... Then Ferret #2. Then Ferret #1. Then Ferret #2. Around and around and around Remo would go! They would play this game until Belle and Clarke were tuckered out and then, like all ferrets, they'd drop right where they were and go to sleep.

It was really something to see these tiny little creatures spin 89 lb Remo around like a top. Remo the Red, Whirlin' Dervish...

 

Maxi the Golden Angel

March 27th 2010 10:22 pm
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Several years ago, sweet Maxi, #490032, wrote me to say that like me, Remo the Red turning White, she was now Maxi the Yellow, turning white. I wrote back to say, no, never just a simple yellow, you are Maxi the Gold, turning white.

Now dear Maxi has received her angel's wings. I, and the rest of the Chicago Crew of Angels, welcome her to the Bridge. And to her family, we wish

Deep peace
Of a running wave to you
Deep peace
Of the flowing air to you
Deep peace
Of the quiet earth to you
Deep peace
Of the shining stars to you
Deep peace
Of the gentle night to you
Moon and stars
Pour their healing light on you
Deep peace to you

Say hello to that first bright shining star each night--it is sweet Maxi watching down on all of you.

 

Taking a Bite Out of Cancer

March 13th 2010 6:32 pm
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I was misdiagnosed with nasal cancer. I lived many more years, to the age of 14. My bestest buddy, Rocky, has not been misdiagnosed. He has late stage nasal cancer, and his time may be quite short. This list from the Land of Pure Gold is presented as an aid to Rocky's family and all the families out there fighting the good fight. Taking a Bite Out of Cancer:


T ake control of the situation by arming yourself with the most up to date information you can. Ask for printed materials or information from the professionals you meet. Obtain resources to help you understand your dog's specific disease and treatment options. And, finally work together with your dog's health care team so that you understand the reliability and validity of all the information you've gathered.

A ssemble a team of compassionate, and trusted specialists. This may include: a conventional veterinarian, a certified veterinary oncologist, a certified radiation oncologist, and/or a holistic veterinarian certified in areas such as homeopathy, nutrition, Chinese herbs, acupuncture, chiropractic, and massage therapy. Do not be afraid to get a second opinion before selecting your best course of action.

K eep a running record from day one, writing everything down in a specially designated notebook on: treatments utilized, medications along with your dog's response, progress on combating treatment side effects, supplements that are added, and changes in habits and behaviors. Write down any questions you may have before each visit is made to your dog's doctor. Take notes during discussions with your dog's specialists. And, don't be embarrassed to repeat information back to ensure that you truly understand what was said.

I ncorporate excellent nutrition and a homemade cancer diet as this will play an integral role in your dog's survival. Organic ingredients are the best! Use supplements to boost the immune system or address adverse treatment effects. Also, introduce changes to diet or supplements slowly in order to be sure that its effect is a positive, rather than stressful or compromising, one.

N eutralize the hazardous effects of our chemically-laden environment. Use only filtered water. Do not use any chemical agents to clean your carpets, floors or surfaces. Only use vinegar, mild soap, and water. Do not use any pesticides on the lawn or in the house. Also, do not expose your dog to environmental toxins or second-hand smoke.

G ather strength from your family and friends. Bring a partner or friend with you when you talk to specialists involved in your dog's care. And, make sure that all discussions that you have involves everyone who loves your dog, including family members and children. Guarantee an acceptance of what is shared so that everyone feels comfortable in asking questions and expressing their feelings and opinions.

A nticipate that there will be many ups and downs during this new chapter in your life. Plan for emergencies by keeping an assortment of medications on hand and having various mobility aids available (e.g., Bottoms Up Leash, Folding Pet Ramp, Pet Stairs).

B e kind and gentle and compassionate to yourself. Know that you are doing the best you can do, and that your dog knows that. Let go of judgment about what you can and cannot do. Your dog will be okay either way. Simply forgive yourself, love yourself, and care for yourself.

I nsure the integrity of your dog's physical body and immune system. That means, absolutely no vaccinations or caustic flea applications! And, protect your dog's lymph nodes by using an Easy Walk Harness which places no strain on a dog's body. Only use a light-weighted collar for ID purposes, having it hang slightly from the neck, rather than being tightly affixed around it.

T ake comfort in knowing that here are no incorrect decisions. And, do not worry about what others may think about your treatment choices. Just trust in your judgment, knowing that you are the only person who fully understands your dog's emotional, social, and physical being. With all your knowledge in hand, you need only listen to your heart in order to make the right decisions.

E mbrace life. It is a precious gift. And, be sure to remember this. Every day is a good day that allows you and your furry love to remain together.

TAKING A BITE OUT OF CANCER
A Golden Mnemonic from Rochelle Lesser, School Psychologist at the Land of PureGold Foundation—landofpuregold.com

 

It's been one year...

July 17th 2009 12:55 am
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since you left us for your journey to the Bridge. You laid on the living room rug all week, newspapers underneath you, your head resting on that last stuffy from Rocky & Sarge. You were a strong pup and, even though you'd stopped eating, with your sub-q fluids we could have held you close a while longer. But that would have been wrong. That would have been selfish. That would have been poor repayment for the 14 years of love and joy you had given us.

I sat tonight, in the dark, crying for what I had no longer, instead of celebrating all that you were to me. Then to login to find that sweet Teddy has left to join you. Bob suffered so much after Layla left, but he opened his heart again to Teddy. And now, not even a year later, Teddy, #966024, is an angel. It puts things quickly, so quickly, into perspective. Remo, turn that special smile toward the gates and welcome sweet Teddy-bear as he comes over the Bridge.

Remo the Red, turning White, always true Blue, I celebrate your life. Thank you for all that you've given me. You will live in my heart... forever.

####

Today's Zelda Wisdom, available from www.ZeldaWisdom.com:

"Life should be a snuggle, not a struggle.
Savor your time together."

 

Another Golden Memory: Remo, Whirlin' Dervish

July 16th 2009 3:19 pm
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One of our favorite memories of Remo was how he loved our son's ferrets, Clarke and Belle. He was introduced to them at a very young age, and was taught "don't you hurt that baby". Remo understood that meant he had to lay down and play gently with whatever animal was around.

Remo loved to play hide and seek with Belle and Clarke. We would first prepare the playing field by lining up all of the dining room chairs along the wall of the hallway, and by making other "safe passage" barriers between furniture. Then we'd let Clarke and Belle out to roam.

The ferrets would scurry through the house behind the chairs, furniture and other barriers. Remo would follow them, half crawling on his belly, frantic to keep up, until they all made it into the living room. Then Belle and Clarke would have their fun. Ferret #1 would sneak up behind Remo and do the Happy Ferret Dance, bouncing around complete with an excited vocalization of "shnuck-shnuck-shnuck". Remo would whirl around on his belly and chase Ferret #1 back under the couch, table or chair. He'd lay there whining, tail wagging furiously, nose pressed up to whatever piece of furniture the ferret dashed under.

Then it was Ferret #2's turn to sneak up behind Remo, do the Happy Ferret Dance, cheering "shnuck-shnuck-shnuck". Remo whirls, chases Ferret #2 underneath something. Then Ferret #1 sneaks out... shnuck-schnuck-shnuck... whirl... chase... whine... Then Ferret #2. Then Ferret #1. Then Ferret #2. Around and around and around Remo would go! They would play this game until Belle and Clarke were tuckered out and then, like all ferrets, they'd drop right where they were and go to sleep.

It was really something to see these tiny little creatures spin 89 lb Remo around like a top. Remo the Red, Whirlin' Dervish...

 

Another Golden Memory: Remo, Stunt Coordinator

July 15th 2009 3:04 pm
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One of Mum's favorite Remo moments occurred the first time she tried to jog while walking little Remo:

They were walking around the neighborhood, practicing sitting at every curb; practicing "watch it" when they came to an alley or driveway... things were going fantastic! Mum could see BIG things in Remo's future... obedience title? He was obeying every command and making NO mistakes!

So, Mum gets this bright idea about JOGGING with Remo... so she picks up the pace... a quick step...an easy lope... a slight jog... quicker... quicker... quicker... Remo doesn't break "heel" and soon they're both flying up and down the sidewalks. A thing of beauty... a joy forever...

The first big test was just around the next corner. A group of three young adults... standing on the walkway going up toward a house... would Remo stay with Mum and run past them without stopping? We all know how much Golden Retrievers LOVE people... but Remo continued to be the Perfect Pup... he didn't even glance at them as he jogged passed--his entire attention was focused on Mum. What a Brilliant Dog!!!

So, Mum is now confident that this jogging thing was going to work... she felt so proud of her little red boy... she could just imagine how impressed the people they'd just passed must be... she could just

WHAM! BAM! STARS!!! BIRDS CIRCLING!! CUCKOO SOUNDS!!! EARS RINGING!! WHY AM I LOOKING AT THE SKY???

Mum suddenly found herself doing a complicated twist, turn, and subsequent flip of some sort, landing flat on her back on a front lawn next to the sidewalk. She had the wind knocked out of her and she was seeing stars... but as Mum lay there catching her breath she realized she was no longer holding the LEASH....

She heard something to her left and rolled over to her side only to see the Perfect Puppy sniffing happily, tail wagging, doing a "meet 'n greet" with a small white dog through a fence! Oh, Remo wouldn't break stride while passing a group of HUMANS, but he WASN'T gonna pass up the chance to meet a new DOG!!!!!

To this day Mum still can't figure out how she ended up on her back! (and that was the first and LAST time Mum tried to jog while holding a leash!) And to his last breath, Remo was ALWAYS interested in meeting... not the people holding the leashes... but the DOGS!!! Totally unGolden-like, but totally Remo!

 

Another Golden Memory: Remo, Interior Decorator

July 14th 2009 1:33 am
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One of Dad's favorite funny memories of Remo involved changing him over from the generic dog food fed to him at the puppy mill to a premium food. We wanted our first puppy ever to have the very, very best start in life at his furever home. We took Remo to the pet supply specialty store and purchased the top-of-the-line puppy food. The pellets looked kind of nasty, but the next morning Remo gobbled up the entire bowl.

Fast forward about, oh, a half a day. Remo was getting gassier and gassier as the hours passed. We, being newbie puppy parents, were confused. The premium puppy food promised better absorption, superior nutrition, less stool and gas. What was wrong? For those of you who are experienced dog owners, you'll know quickly where this story is going...

Remo, now jokingly renamed Senor Stinky, was walking through the hall, pooting with every step. Phewy!!! Suddenly, he wasn't pooting anymore, he was pooping! And not just poop, but PROJECTILE POOP! Remo was so startled by what was happening, he tried to turn around to get a look at what was coming out of him, thereby spraying the walls! And Remo kept turning and turning and turning and spraying and spraying and SPRAYING!!! Dad couldn't get near enough to grab him without getting doused, so he just stood there and laughed until Remo was finished redecorating the hallway!!! Can I just say "thank G*d for panelling?

Lesson learned? Transition to a new food s-l-o-w-l-y, over a one week period, by mixing the new food in with the old, adding more of the new food each day! (Funny how so many memories about Remo revolve around bodily functions...)

 

Another Golden Memory: Remo, Multi-tasker

July 13th 2009 6:38 am
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One of our favorite Remo stories (and there were so very many of them) was the story about Remo's first trip to the Forest Preserves that circle most of Chicago...

"I'll tell you about my first trip to the forest preserves. Chicago is really neat in that it's bordered by alot of forest preserves. We drove to a really big one in the southwest suburbs.

Mum wouldn't let me walk on all of the neat twisty, tiny paths 'cuz I am attracted to burrs and foxtails like they're magnets! So, we hiked on this wide, cinder covered path. Turns out, this was a really great place to sniff! From time to time we would come across the biggest piles of sniffable stuff I've ever sniffed!! It smelled different than any doggy pile I've ever sniffed. It had pieces of hay in it!

Suddenly there was alot of noise coming down the path...clop clop, clop clop, clop clop, winny, snort, clop clop, clop clop. Mum pulled me off of the path (FINALLY) and tighten her grip on my leash and then... woof, woof, woof, woof, PLOP, woof, woof, PLOP, woof, PLOP PLOP, woof, woof, woof, PLOP PLOP PLOP....I was SO excited seeing these HUGE dogs with saddles and people riding them come down the path that BOTH of my ends started workin'!"

The riders all laughed so very hard... it's still a wonder that they didn't fall out of their saddles! Remo, so many memories, so many smiles...

 

A Golden Memory: Remo, The Great Destuffinator

July 12th 2009 10:47 am
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One of Mum's more memorable Remo moments involved our first new car EVER... being two "starving artists" with two young teenage boys, used cars and hand-me-down cars were the norm. Several months before we got Remo, our first puppy, we finally got our first brand spankin' NEW car!

Fast forward. We were proud new puppy parents, taking Remo out whenever we could to socialize him. On a cool, overcast and rainy September day, that meant a trip to PetSmart and Petco, because the park was out due to the weather.

It was a big outting for such a little guy... car rides, two doggy stores, treats, lots of petting and spoiling, and lots of other dogs to meet. So much excitement that after the last stop, little Remo fell sound asleep in the back seat of the car.

We had to stop at the grocery, and I was going to run in for just a moment. Dad said "I'll come in too", but I was worried about leaving little Remo alone in the car. Dad thought that Remo would sleep through the quick shopping trip, and seeing as how he was in his harness and seat-buckled in, 5 minutes alone couldn't hurt. So, we got out of the car as quietly as possible.... click.... beepbeep... door locked, alarm set... and Remo slept on...

5 minutes stretched to 10, and my "spidey-sense" was tinglin'--that special ESP that all Moms have that tells them their children might be up to something. We hurried to the car to be greeted by a very happy, very proud Remo... he had just destuffed his first stuffy! Yip, Yip, Yip... look at me... look what I did... Yip, Yip, Yip...

Yup, we were crazy in love with our little red boy... so much in love that, instead of getting all upset with the fact that our 3 month old puppy had DESTUFFED about a square foot's worth of the BACK SEAT cushion down to the metal frame in less than 10 minutes, we both stood there shaking our heads and laughing and laughing... so much for the first "Brand NEW" car... and "The Great Destuffinator" was born...

 
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