November 4th 2012 7:35 pm
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On October 5, 2012 our beautiful boy succumbed to his four year fight with epilepsy. It was a condition we never were truly able to bring fully "under control." Throughout his life, Mudge had at least one grand mal seizure every two weeks. He took phenobarbital twice a day and potassium bromide once a day for the duration of his condition. In the last year we added zonisamide in an attempt to reduce the pheno. and minimize the effects on his liver. Although it gave him some respite from the hind quarter weakness that had gotten so pronounced shortly before we made the changes to his meds, it never brought the seizures under control. In the end, our boy began to show signs of liver failure and was clearly unhappy and in pain. We loved him too much to allow such a magnificent creature to live like that and so we made the difficult decision to send him on to the next life. On his last day, amidst the symptoms of the liver failure, he still had a few moments of being himself and left with dignity. We sat with him on the floor of our vet's office and reminded him of how loved he is as he set foot on the other side. I pictured him greeting his older brother Humphrey and walking the path together. I hope and believe that my dad, who would have loved him had they ever met in this life, was there at the end of the path to take him the rest of the way.
Although his life wasn't always easy, he was a happy dog and loved by everyone who ever met him. He often came to the church office with me and slept on the floor by my desk. He was the doorway to meeting many people in our small town. People whose names I still do not know would walk up to me and ask, "How's Mudge today?" He is and will forever be the best first Saint a person could ever have.
Today we took the first steps to welcoming a new Saint into our family. We drove 4.5 hours to Waverly, IL to meet a wonderful breeder of beautiful, friendly, happy, healthy Saints. Her pack of 11 greeted us as we stepped out of our car and it felt a little like we'd stepped into Heaven...except that Mudge was not among those smiling Saint faces and wagging tails.
We are now anxiously awaiting the birth of a litter so that we might soon bring another furry bundle of love into our home. We plan to name our new boy Ivan Jeremiah. Ivan simply because it's a name we think is befitting of a noble Saint and Jeremiah for one of my favorite pieces of scripture..."For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11
I have big plans and even bigger hopes four are future family member. From the beautiful dogs I met today, I have no doubts that they will all be fulfilled.
Forever and always, Mudge's Mom
June 4th 2007 9:06 am
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Mama says I'm one-year-old today!!! It's a rainy day here, so unfortunately I can't go outside and do anything really special. But, I did hear something about getting my own chicken breast for dinner and my boy says there are presents hidden somewhere in the house for me :)- We're going to have a little birthday party with my dog brothers and my humans when Dad gets home from work tonight. I hope I get a new ball, cuz that would be super cool!!!
My kids sang "Happy Birthday" to me this morning and I got lots of extra pets before school. Mama has been paying lots of attention to me, too. I like this birthday thing :)
Okay, off to snooze in front of my fan.
Sloppy kisses from the birthday pooch!
May 24th 2007 7:43 am
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Whew! No matter how fast I dash around the house (Mama looovvveesss that!), I keep getting tagged by my Dogster pals. I've been tagged three times already. My taggers are:
Zuke (who has a really long and cool name, but I just call him "friend")
Here's the rules of the game: (If I tagged you, copy and paste these...it'll make the game much easier and more fun to play!)
Each player starts with seven random facts about themselves. Dogs who are tagged, need to post in their Diary the rules & their 7 pawsome facts. Then choose 7 dogs to tag and list their names. Don’t forget to bark them a pmail that they have been tagged and to read your Diary, or, send them a fun Rosette announcing they've been Tagged!
1 I'm afraid of the dark and mailboxes with shiny reflectors.
2. My mama calls me a marshmallow.
3. I think my yorkie brother Harley is really funny when he tries to act all tough with me. (I humor him and just watch and wonder...)
4. I may be the world's only hyper-active Saint!
5. I have my own fan club at my kids' school :)
6. I get yogurt mixed in my food every morning...mmmmmm!
7. It's not me racing around the house...I get possessed by chihuahuas and they make me do the naughty stuff...honest, it's true!
Here are my tags! (and it wasn't easy...so many Dogsters have been tagged already and I'm kinds slow...I don't run, I galumph!)
5. Big Pappi
Thanks for inviting me to play, my pals! This was fun :)
May 22nd 2007 12:31 pm
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Okay, I haven't written in just about forever. Life is so busy for a growing boy like me :) I still visit my fan club at the school as often as I can, but with the weather getting warmer, I don't really like to sit out in the sun and wait for my kids to come out. So, Mama walks me in the morning and plays ball with me in the shady backyard instead.
My training is coming along. I'm a wild goofball, so I'm not ready to start therapy work yet. I have some growing up to do! Mom says that's okay, though...she loves me anyway and thinks it's great that I love everyone and everything. I guess that's half the battle for therapy work...being willing to meet everyone, big, small, in a wheelchair, with a walker, or cane, or just about anything else you can imagine (as long as it's not a skateboard...those are just plain scary!!!). Now, if only I could control the mad wiggles that overtake me whenever I think I'm going to be petted. Mom says that's a little dangerous for a therapy dog my size; I could knock someone over!!!
Speaking of size...I had a weigh in yesterday. My butt was wiggling and my tail was hitting the scale where the readout was, but Mom says I weigh somewhere between 119 and 121 pounds. Not bad, huh?
Okay, gotta go snooze in front of my own personal fan in my cozy crate :) I LOVE it there!!!
February 19th 2007 6:39 am
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Mudge's Mom here. I just discovered I have a new pet peeve and figured I'd put it down here for anyone who cares to read it. So here goes:
I think the word "rescue" as it applies to dogs really needs to be defined for a great number of people out there. Now, I know the politically, and perhaps socially, correct thing to do these days is to rescue dogs who wouldn't otherwise have a home. And, don't get me wrong, I'm all for that! Every dog on the planet deserves a loving home where all of its needs are met. I readily commend people who have adopted their dogs from shelters or rescues or who have taken a homeless stray in from the street. That's wonderful and I say, "Keep it up!"
Lately it's been driving me nuts to see a number of people who consider it a rescue when they purchase their dog from a pet store or a backyard breeder. I've seen so many bios out there that say, "I rescued my dog as a puppy from a cage in a pet store." No, you didn't rescue the puppy, you purchased it at a pet store! Then again, maybe I should just take advantage of that and claim to have rescued my 12 yr old dog Humphrey from the pet store rather than admitting that I made a mistake in supporting the puppy mill trade before I was aware it existed. Come on, let's be honest, you didn't "rescue" that puppy from its cage because you felt sorry for it. You bought it because it was cute and you wanted it! Does that mean I don't think your dog purchased at a pet store doesn't deserve your loving home? Absolutely not! It's not that pup's fault that it was born into a mill. Do I believe we should avoid purchasing pups at pet stores in hopes that one day the money there will dry up and that evil practice will stop? YES! But, please, please, please, don't call your dog a rescue when you spent hundreds, and perhaps thousands, of dollars to bring it home from a store.
This morning I saw a description of a dog on another site that said, "I rescued my Saint Bernard at six-weeks-old from a man who had 18 Saints." Woo hoo, folks! I've got another rescue! Mudge was purchased from a breeder who, technically speaking, had 14 Saints. He came from a litter of 10 and the woman also had four adult dogs.
Wow, if I decided to be less honest with myself, I could be feeling pretty good about what a great person I am for having rescued two of my three dogs. But, I know that's not true. I am not one of those fantastic people who took in a dog from a shelter or a rescue not knowing as much about the dog's background as perhaps they'd like to. I admit that I am a bit nervous about rescuing an adult dog because I don't know that background, but I'm pretty sure that doesn't make me a bad person--just someone who knows what she can and cannot handle in a dog.
So, bottom line is this, be proud of your dog no matter how it came to be in your life. Say thank you to those who had the courage and love to take in a true rescue. And, for goodness sake, just be honest!
February 14th 2007 9:03 am
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Ahhh...it's a dog's life. Tonight Mom and Dad are going to pick up my new chauffered limo from the car dealership. See, I don't fit so good in the car they had anymore, so they traded it in for a bigger one just for me. I figure that makes the new car MY car, right? So, that makes Daddy the chauffer, right? And that means he has to drive me wherever I want, right? Okay...here's where I'd like to go, Dad:
1. To Maggie's house to run in the field and munch horse apples.
2. To Petco to see my favorite store clerk who gives me lots of pets and tells me how cute I am...and, of course, I'll pick out some new toys and treats while I'm there.
3. To the dog run.
4. To Gunner and Shadow's house to play!!!
5. Anywhere my mommy goes!!!!
I'm hoping Mom and Dad will add a few accessories to my car after it comes home. You know, like an automatic cookie dispenser and my own personal water cooler. Maybe some cushy pillows, a blankie, and a box of toys. Is that asking too much? NAH! I'm spoiled and if I give Mommy "the face," I'll get what I want.
Okay, speaking of the face, my mom says the person who designed the character "Boog" (the bear) in the animated movie Open Season must have had a Saint because Boog reminds her of me. Hee hee...if you haven't seen the movie yet and you know me or another Saint, check out the movie and see if you don't agree!
Well, back to my nap...dreaming of taking my pup pals for a ride in MY car!
February 6th 2007 6:50 pm
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On Jan. 24th Mom and Dad took me in to the vet really early in the morning to get "tutored." Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't "tutored" mean being taught something? I must be really talented because whatever I learned, I learned during a good long nap! Apparently learning is really hard work, though, because I woke up feeling kinda sore around my winky and on my left front paw. Mom says that what I learned was how not to add to the pet overpopulation problem. Ummm....okay....What I think I really learned is that Mom and Dad are really, really nice after a tutoring session at the vet. I got lots of treats and cottage cheese for two weeks afterward!
I guess Mom and Dad thought the tutoring took a lot out of me, too, because they haven't taken me for a walk in two weeks!!! HELLO! MOM? DAD? I really miss my daily walks and the fan club that awaits me at the school!!
Mom says I could go for walks again, but now it's too cold here. I don't know about that; I like the cold! But I have to admit that fancy new haircut the vet gave my front paw makes it a little cold in the snow. Mom says that -25 is a little too cold for walks. Whatever, Mom! Grow some fur and toughen up, I say!
Oh well, I'm sure I'll be seeing my fans again soon. And, as they say, absence makes the heart grow fonder :)-
Off to spread some Saintly love to my family!
***Mom's Note*** Mudge doesn't have his visit to the vet quite right, but he's so proud of his "lesson" and his fancy paw do that I don't have the heart to correct him! He was, as you've figured out, neutered. But, at the same time he was under for that, he had a dew claw that kept growing back removed. To make sure it was all gone and there was no chance of regrowth, the vet actually took out the entire bone section. So, Mudge was restricted from walks and climbing a lot of stairs for two weeks. This, of course, meant that I had to sleep in the living room with him since our bedroom is upstairs! Oh well, he's well worth any inconvenience :)- He came home on antibiotics and pain pills because of the foot surgery, so that's why he was getting cottage cheese three times a day. Now he seems to think he should keep getting it. He's stopped chewing his glucosamine tablets...I think he's hoping I'll put them in cottage cheese, or at least peanut butter! He weighed 98 pounds at his vet visit, so he's getting to be quite a big boy!
January 13th 2007 1:14 pm
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I'm a big boy and can be trusted at night (Mom adds: "Mostly."...Hey, Mom, whose diary is this anyway?) so I don't sleep in my crate anymore at night. I spend the night snoozing on the floor of Mom and Dad's room. I love to crawl under the bed to sleep, but I confess it gets a little lonely. So, I devised a plan...I'd EAT the bed, then Mom and Dad would have to sleep on the floor with me. I started with pulling some foam off from underneath the box spring. Darn Mom! She sleeps really light and she caught me. I got scolded, so that's the end of that plan. I'll keep thinking, though...there must be a way.
Off to dream up a new plan on the cushy bed I conned Dad into buying me because...poor me...the wood floor is just so HARD...hee hee hee
December 19th 2006 5:06 pm
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...there was this really cool thing dangling from the tree (yes! a tree! in our living room? And I am NOT allowed to pee on it!!!). It looked like the mittens my human sister puts on her little hands, but there was a small dog poking out the top. Mom said it was a chihuahua. Well, I just had to chew it up! You see, Santa, I just know I'm a small dog perfectly suitable for sitting on laps. I keep telling Mom I'm a chihuahua. The problem is that I don't look anything like the dog on that ornament, so of course I had to ruin it! I can't have Mom looking at that thing and comparing it to me...she might decide that I'm not a chihuahua after all and then I'll never get back on her lap or on the furniture.
So, Santa, I wasn't really being naughty...I was just...um...protecting my interests?
All The Saintly Manners I Can Muster,
P.S., There's extra milk and cookies in it if you can leave Mom a chihuahua ornament that looks a little more like me!
November 27th 2006 6:03 pm
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It's been a really long time since I've gotten Mom to sit down and take dictation. I've gotten soooo big! At last weigh in, which was a couple of weeks ago now, I was 70 lbs. And, believe me, I'm not chubby so it's all lean muscle, baby!
It snowed here a few weeks ago. It's all gone now, but I'm okay with that. For a dog who sleeps with a fan every night, I'm not sure I like that cold, wet stuff. When the snow started Dad was still at work. So, Mom waited to take me out until he got home because she wanted him to see my first reaction to it. Well, Mom put me on my leash, Dad walked out the door, Mom walked out the door...I took one look and stopped dead in my tracks. Mom finally coaxed me outside and I walked very slowly with her. I didn't want to play in it, but I did...ahem..."write my name in the snow." Mom says I'll like it better when there's more on the ground.
This past weekend I spent two nights at Maggie's house again. Mom and Dad went to visit Grandma and Grandpa in Minnesota. Grandma said I was welcome, but that I'd have to stay in the basement because my tail is huge and I might knock her Christmas decorations and other stuff off the shelves and tables. Hmmm...Mom said there was no way I'd stay in the basement by myself all weekend and besides, I don't fit so good in the car anymore. Mom and Dad are planning to trade it in for a bigger one after the holidays so that I can go on longer rides with them. So, Mom and Dad took Humphrey to MN instead and I went to Maggie's farm :)- Uncle Larry wore me out everyday and Aunt Betsy said I slept through both nights and didn't get anyone up to go outside. Darn it, Aunt Betsy, don't tell my parents stuff like that!!!! I LIKE the 2 a.m. potty run!!! Today I spent the day in an empty horse stall because Uncle Larry was at work and cousin Steph was at school. Aunt Betsy can't walk me cuz she hurt her neck and even though I walk real nice on a leash, if I saw a squirrel, I might pull and hurt her. But, I thought being a horse for the day was super duper cool! Mom says I smell like a horse now. Then she said that she likes it...it's better than my normal dog smell. Thanks a lot, Mom!
Anyway, Mom says she's tired of typing, so I'll have to write again another day.
Oh, check out my two new pictures. Am I getting to be a big, handsome boy or what????
Slimey Saint Slobber,
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