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Black Pearls of Wisdom...

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A lot of dogs...

May 2nd 2009 4:42 pm
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The Mom and I got up early and left at 7:45 am for the Anti-Cruelty Society's Bark In The Park 3.1 mile walk at Chicago's lakefront. The Mom wasn't on her best game--had about 1 1/2 hrs of sleep, 'cuz Friday night is her 8pm-4am at the newspaper. And, of course, she didn't get out of there until 4:20!!

It was really beautiful weather. I took turns jumpin' around and smilin', then circlin' the Mom, then walkin' ahead of her, then trailin' behind her. For 3.1 miles. I was NOT allowed to smell all the smells left by the 3,500 dogs. THAT did not make me happy.

The Mom and I took an "official" picture for a $10 donation. The Dad will scan it in to the computer when he goes to work Tuesday. (Monday is another dreaded furlough day--day off without pay). The Mom and I matched. Instead of wearing the event t-shirt, the Mom wore her orange ASPCA We Are Their Voice t-shirt, and I sported my matching orange ASPCA bandanna. I tell ya, black dog and bright orange bandanna is quite striking, if I do say so myself! The video the Mom shot wasn't too good, but we'll try and get it up on my page soon.

After a short nap back home, the Mom took a 5hour Energy shot and then went off to work 6pm-2am tonight. I'm not sure what happens after 5 hrs... I am spending the evening with the Dad and relaxing after my exciting morning of sniffin', meetin' and greetin'. There are sure a lot of dogs in Chicago!


Recycle Love--ADOPT!

April 30th 2009 3:22 am
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While sitting at the computer trying to come up with something for Earth Day, my eyes fell upon our latest adopted 4-legged daughter, Dixie BlackPearl. I thought about how she saved our hearts from being broken apart when we lost all three of the Chicago Crew last year over the course of three short months. Gazing upon that furry bundle of love, the perfect motto came to me:

Recycle Love--Adopt!

I realized that motto worked three-fold: for Earth Day on April 22nd, for the month of April during which we "Go Orange for the ASPCA", and for the start of The 4th Annual ADOPT Stroll and Contest.


From Gibbon's Forum announcement:

"It’s time for The 4th Annual Adopt Stroll and Contest! Originally created by my pal, Lucia, we have kept the contest rockin' and rollin’ and every year gets more exciting! The deets are below!

What is the mission of the contest
By our own dogster pals and members sharing pictures and stories of how an adopted pup has brought joy, love and fulfillment to one’s life, we hope to inspire, motivate and encourage others to consider adoption when adding a member to their family. So many beautiful pups wait in cages and foster homes throughout the country. If this contest can change just one person’s mind to adopt, it will be a true accomplishment!"


There are currently 2,621 dogs on Dogster awaiting forever homes. They have a good chance here...out of the 479,396 dogs currently on Dogster, 95,916--a little over 20%--are rescues. But the sheer number of dogs that will not be saved in time in this country alone is staggering. Over 4 million animals--that's FOUR MILLION--are killed each year simply because too few people adopt from shelters or rescue groups.

It takes a very special person to work in the field of dog rescue. I tried, as a shelter volunteer doing weekly off-site adoption events and as a transport driver for a breed rescue. What I experienced nearly killed my soul.

Now we help by donating whenever we can and by participating in fund raisers like Bark In the Park, benefitting the Anti-Cruelty Society, the PAWS Walk/Run For Their Lives, benefitting the PAWS Animal Shelter, and Paws In The Park, benefitting the Humane Society Calumet Area.

And we recycle love--we adopt. PerkyPuppyPrincessGirl was from a small no-kill shelter. Remo the Red was from a puppy mill. HoneyBunny was from a kill-shelter that accepts dogs from 53 municipalities around Chicago--municipalities that don't have, and won't build, their own shelter. WINston came into our lives while we were picking up his Golden roommate to transport across Illinois into breed rescue. LuckyLucy was another transport that we fostered "just for overnight"--we became "failed fosters" when she never left. And lastly, but certainly not THE last...the bundle of love lying next to me...our sweet BlackPearl, Dixie, adopted from the shelter in Indiana that our wonderful vet, Dr. Trudy Mullings, volunteers at.

Please join us and help chip away at that 4 million...
Recycle Love--Adopt!


Less is More...

April 25th 2009 9:54 pm
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So, I told you about how I've had to school the Dad that sitting on the couch by the Mom is MY spot. Not his. So, the other day I'm taking a nap on my chair and I open my eyes only to see the Dad leaning on the Mom. Yup. Sitting together AGAIN on the couch.

Now, getting up and climbing all over the Dad was a lot of work. And apparently it had no effect. What to do... what to do... what to do...

Got it!! I looked at them with my big brown puppydog eyes. I sighed. A BIG sigh. Then I hung my head totally off of the chair cushion. Nose pointed to the ground. Looking straight down. And I waited.

Then I heard...

"Sweetie." *twitch* "DixieDawg". *twitchtwitch* "Baby". *twitch* "Dixie". *twitchtwitch* "ChaChaChewie". *twitch* "DixieDoodle". *twitch* "Birdie". The Mom and the Dad, both trying every nickname they know to get me to pick my head up. I held strong. It was hard. My ears twitched back and forth. So they knew I heard them. But I wouldn't relent.

FINALLY they got the message. The Dad said "oh, Dixie" and scratched my head as he went to sit back down in HIS chair. And I didn't even have to get up. Hmmm, it seems they're right. Sometimes, less IS more!


That's MY Mom!

April 15th 2009 6:47 pm
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Last night I was sleeping peacefully in my chair. The Dad sitting on his chair; the Mom sitting on Winston's couch--both watching the magic picture box. I wake up and see things have changed. The Dad is now laying on the couch. Using the Mom as a pillow. I look at the Mom. I look at the Dad. I look at the Mom again. Then I act.

I climb up, over the Dad's legs, onto the back cushions of the couch. I like to perch up there, behind the Mom. I usually rest my head on her shoulder. But last night, I draped my body over the Dad's shoulder. Then I sat up. Then I laid down. Then I sat up. Then I laid down. Slowly, surely, I maneuvered my body between the Dad and the Mom. Finally, the Dad got the message and went back to his chair. I stretched out on the Mom's lap and fell asleep. Just so everyone understands--that's MY Mom!


I am Home!

March 27th 2009 6:34 pm
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Well, the Mom and I drove the 38 miles to Indiana to see Dr. Mullings this morning. For my semi-annual comprehensive exam and some SHOTS! Only to find out when we got there that Dr. M had called in sick! So..... we left! Woooooooo hooooooo!!!

Then the Mom and I went to Burger King for breakfast. I had a sausage biscuit... num num num num...

We had some spare time, and seeing as how we were all the way over in Indiana the Mom decided to go visit the Humane Society-Calumet Area shelter where I lived for six months. I was very, very nervous when the people came to the reception area to see me. I crawled under the chairs! I thought they were going to take me away--back to the cage with the barkin' dogs...

The Mom and I went outside with this lady called Alex. I think I remembered her, but I wasn't too sure... it's been 7 months since I lived there. Then the Mom and I came back in and sat together until the Gift Shop opened. The Mom bought some soft treats and I showed the lady how I can give Paw and Sit UP for a nummy.

Got to say that I was very, very, VERY happy to get back in our Jeep and leave! ;D
Back in Illinois we stopped by the Nature Preserve for a quick sniff/walk. A couple of more stops as the Mom ran some quick errands. And now, I am Home!


The Pack Mentality...

March 17th 2009 4:31 pm
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Ok, what is with those Crazy Barking Dogs???? The ones who live right next to the Nature Preserve? You know the ones I'm talkin' about... The spinning top Jack Russell, the stoic and silent chocolate Lab and black Lab. I passed them by twice on Sunday with no big problem on my walk with the Mom and the Dad.

Yesterday was a different story. Yesterday they were joined by some Instigators! Two little barkin' dogs had joined the two Labs in their yard. NOW the Labs weren't stoic and silent... they were CRAZED! Bark! Bark! Bark! Bark! Bark! Bark! Normally, I don't let this kind of thing bother me. The Mom says "you're ok, Dixie, you're ok" and I usually am. But yesterday those crazy barkers almost got me BIT!

I had met up earlier with a yellow Lab-mix on the path by the duck pond. Sniff. Sniff. Wag. Wag. No problemo. But then, as I was passing by the Nutso House of Barking Canines, the Lab-mix decides to buy into the whole "pack mentality" thing. Suddenly she figures that, even though we met earlier and were fine, if the other dogs are barking at me there must be a problem with me. I go in for a friendly sniff and she turns into CUJO!!!!! Full mohawk of hair rising all the way down her back, fangs snapping, growling, mean scary bark... WHOA!!!! I'm the same dog you meet 15 minutes ago. I haven't changed! Don't listen to those other dogs! Don't fall for the Pack Mentality!


Sunny Sunday afternoon...

March 15th 2009 4:38 pm
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Today it got up to 55 in Chicago, sunny, no rain, so we went to the Nature Preserve. It was the first time the Dad got to drive the new Jeep (the Mom was NOT impressed with his driving--I think ol' Dad is destined for the passenger seat)!

It was quite busy at the Nature Center, as it is the only park in the suburb of Oak Lawn that allows dogs (talk about discrimination)! I met a Puggle named Marley and his Pug friend Bailey. I met a real friendly Labradoodle named Grover. I met a Beagle who was attached to a bike (grrrrrrrr... I still have some issues with the whole Bike thing, but after about the 10th bike passed me today I started ignoring them). We passed by a Chihuahua and Pekingese-mix who were NOT friendly to dogs (what's up with that??). Said hello to a very old Lab who had a nasty skin thing going on (poor guy). Boy, you meet a lot of pups at the Nature Preserve--the only game in town!

I felt sorry for the two Labs and the Jack Russell who were stuck up in the yards we passed. The Jack Russell had a 6 foot chain-link fence around his yard, but it looked like he could JUMP over it if he really tried. He was spinning, and jumping, and circling and barking... You think he'd get tired after a while. But Nooooooo, he just kept on... I guess he must feel he has to protect his yard from all the pups walking by on the path below him. I would be exhausted if I carried on like him! The two Labs in the next yard just stood there and watched. I guess they figured the JR makes enough noise for all of them!

After a bit, it got a little TOO warm for me. Sunny day + black coat = panting pup. BOL. The Mom said she is going to get me something called a "cool-danna" for the summer months. She'd ask Samantha (our Master Groomer) to shave me, but the Mom knows what the answer will be... Whenever Golden owners ask Sam to shave their Goldens down, she says "you want a short-haired Retriever, you should have gotten a Lab". And I DO have a glorious coat, if I do say so myself...

All in all, a very nice way to spend a Sunny Sunday afternoon.


Tagged by Bentley!

March 14th 2009 11:40 pm
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Copy this diary entry, and paste it into your diary. Read and then delete my answers. Then you can fill in your own! We can get to know our pals better!! Have fun!! Then send a rosette or pawmail to 4 pals and ask them to post it in their diary!!!!

1. What color is your collar? burgundy red

2. What kind of food do you eat? Science Diet canned and dry

3. What are your favorite treats? They're all my favorite, but I especially like soft treats that are small in size, like Bil-Jac liver treats or the Beggin' Bits that Rocky sent me.

4. Do you have a Valentine or significant other?? Lucas, my double, asked me to be his Valentine

5. Do you get Table Scraps? The Mom says "no"; the Dad says "when the Mom's not lookin'"

6. What is your favorite toy? I just don't get the whole toy thing yet... it's been six months and the Mom and the Dad are still trying. I get excited when the Dad bounces the tennis ball, but then I ignore it when he throws it...

7. When is your Birthday? I was abandoned outside of a shelter in the middle of the night, so they estimated my age and gave me the date of Feb. 10, 2003.

8. How many times a day do you get to eat? Twice (officially) ;)

9. Do you have a favorite color? Black Pearl :D

10. Do you hope all your pals put this in their diary? Of Course! (was that a trick question? )

I'm sending this to... haven't decided yet. I want to check a couple of pages out, as I don't want to send to pups that have already played.


A close one...

March 12th 2009 7:46 pm
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The Mom and I were suppose to travel back to Indiana tomorrow to see Dr. Mullings. Nothing Earthshaking... just for a semi-annual checkup and some SHOTS! And the Mom said something about asking Dr. M about a d-i-e-t for me... *shudders*

Yesterday they called us. They have been really, really busy. Could we reschedule until the 27th? Could we? OOOOOOOOOOOOh yes!

p.s. that was a close one.... ;)


I trained Mom...

March 7th 2009 11:30 pm
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The Mom has been after the Dad NOT to feed me any people food. The Mom is no fun. All because she can't feel my ribs. Hey, I don't go poking you in the side, do I? (on second thought, maybe I do when I'm laying in the Big Bed and feel a good sssstttttttrrrrrrreeeeeeeeeeeeeeetttttttccccccchhhhhh coming on... hee hee).

So, anyway, yesterday I scored. BIG time. From the Mom, no less. It wasn't people food, but it was treat after treat after treat after treat. All I had to do was give the Mom my paw. Give paw. Here you go. Treat for Dixie. Num num num...

The Moms been pulling this "give paw" thing for the entire six months I've lived here. But yesterday, I GAVE paw. And got a treat. Gave paw AGAIN. Got another treat. Showed the Dad. Give Paw. Paw given. Treat for Dixie. Showed the Brother. Another treat for Dixie. Boy, if I knew it was so easy to train the Mom I would have given paw six months ago!

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