Gotcha!

I see from my TimeHop that today is Ray’s Gotcha Day and truth be told, I knew it was around now but I’ve let the exact date escape my consciousness. You see, because I was there to witness his birth I would have always considered him “mine” in some way. Connected.
I don’t feel the need to celebrate the day he came to live in my house as much as I celebrate and cherish the day he came into my world and into my heart.

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So while I might not be able to cradle him in exactly the same way, you can be sure that if we are in the house together, chances are we’re near each other.

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I know that my life course has dramatically altered since my little piggy came into my life. There are things I do and think and want and feel just because of him so with that inspiration, after just one more sleep, I’ll be leaving my Gotcha boy in the very capable hands of his human sister while the hubby accompanies me on the fulfillment of a dream.

Dogs as Art

While I do have some dog-centric art in our home, I don’t feel like there’s too much or even enough yet. (The hubby might disagree). The thing is, until recently I had lots of photos of other dogs in our home.

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Recognize any of them? This is a portion of a collection I’ve gathered from participating in fundraisers, whether it’s been for Handsome Dan or Strut Your Mutt or even smaller fund raisers for blog dogs.

Well, I finally found some frames I like and made some prints of the Peaceabull boys to adorn my shelves and will be planning to commission some more art this year.

Hmmm…is this post s hint of some sort?

Happy Birthday, Baby!

For some reason, the day always creeps up on me faster than I realize and this year was no exception. I guess it’s because it was so close to Thanksgiving this year and yet so appropriate, because I am  thankful.

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Three years ago today this little family entered my life.  To help a pregnant mama dog get shelter and be present while she gives birth was amazing.  That one of those puppies became mine is wonderous, and having two of the others still in our lives is incredible.

Ray has taught me so much about dog ownership and forced me to become a different person.  After having volunteered for this long, I can safely say he was one of the “worst” puppies I’ve ever met:  He was smart and challenging and high strung and high maintenance and loving and clingy but all mine.  Mama’s boy.

Life with Ray has been a crazy ride and the last year and a half or so has been so rewarding just to be able to see how far we’ve come as a team and to mark our progress with another passing year.  So to  my little heart dog, I say “Happy Birthday.”

Birthday Boy!

Birthday Boy!

 

 

In the Interest of Fairness

I’ve known that PetSmart had BDL pretty much ever since I had Ray, so close to three years.  While I know it is wrong, I didn’t really give it too much thought for two reasons.  One, there isn’t a PetSmart doggy daycamp near us and even if there were, we wouldn’t use them.  We are so in love with the care, attention and socialization that Julius receives at Paw’s-n-Claw’s that we wouldn’t go anywhere else.  And two, it’s hard to get past the fact that PetSmart does a lot for homeless animals.  Even for homeless Bullies.

Proud to be a Pit Bull

Proud to be a Pit Bull

There’s a huge push this week to urge PetSmart to rethink their policy to reflect a more open admission that is based on temperament and not on breed/looks.

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After all, people look at these two and think “they look the same to me,” but they are as individual as a fingerprint with their own personalities, likes, dislikes and behaviors.  Neither is better or worse than the other, but they are different.  A passive solution would be to boycott PetSmart but to be honest, I don’t shop there very often at all.  I’m there more often to participate in adoption events and there have been only two instances that I have not handled a “bully” at these events.  Would PetSmart notice if I discontinued shopping there?  Nope.  Will I continue to handle dogs at adoption events held at PetSmart?  Yep, however I won’t be spending money there nor am I asking you to boycott, that is a personal choice for everyone to make individually.  I am asking you to voice your concern if you believe that all dogs should be seen as individuals.

Discrimination is discrimination and whether you would take advantage of their day care, or Pet hotel  or not, I urge you to stand against this by posting your pictures to the PetSmart Facebook page with the hastags #SeparateIsNotEqual #WhyCantIPlay #EndBDL #PetSmart

 

Ray’s Rebuttal

So, my little brother thinks he’s sooo smart, eh? Here are some examples of why I disagree. He’s always goofing off when Mama tries to take pictures of our my handsomeness.

Derp Face

Derp Face

And he gets these looks on his face that just seem so…simple.

Simpleton

Simpleton

And he has no dignity.

Really?

Really?

But I guess even though he’s silly, he IS my little brother and I love him a lot I guess we might as well keep him.

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20130819_204740Because like Mama says, we are yin and yang.  He puts himself out there and meets people like a good ambassador so that I don’t have to.  I prefer to take my time and hide behind my Mama for a while, so we suit each other just fine.

Yin and Yang

Yin and Yang

 

De-Myth-Tify

The interwebs are full of information about nearly anything you want to educate yourself on and you can very easily find both sides to any story if you dig deep enough. Being that we are, of course, Pit Bull advocates I tend to read articles more geared toward how wonderful my chosen companions are.

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I love those articles that debunk myths that keep circulating which further inflame the BLS propaganda. For instance, Pit Bulls do not have locking jaws, though a friend has told me this year that their vet told them otherwise.

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But the myth I really, really want people to stop sharing is the one about the Nanny Dog.  Although there are scads of pictures from back at the turn of the twentieth century with children and their Staffies, there is no written reference to these dogs being bred or raised to be nanny dogs.

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In fact, anyone who would leave their children in the care of a dog-any breed of dog-really needs to think long and hard about the consequences.  Children and dogs are some of the cutest things on the planet but while you can often predict what certain behaviors will occur in a dog, I know for a fact that a two year old is a loose cannon.  Our human baby absolutely loves her “goggies” and all of the visiting dogs from the shelter, but believe me, she is never left unatteded with any of them.

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Julius, who is very social and good in so many situations, knows he can just get up and walk away when he’s had enough “baby time.” Ray, who tries so hard to be socially appropriate, will let the baby sit with him, but often nervously licks his lips or rolls over. We keep the interactions brief and safe for Ray so that they stay just as safe for the Muffin.

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I love my dogs and I trust my dogs, however I know that they are dogs. Nothing has happened in our home to spur this post and everyone is fine but while I’d love to say, “yeah Pitbulls are so awesome that you can hire them as baby sitters”, but that would be irresponsible and ridiculous. Until they learn to speak words and tell us they don’t like something, I need to be their voice and keep them safe.

The Walk of Life

I’m feeling a bit teary-eyed as I reflect on yesterday’s walks with my boys and after having read a few archived posts. As Ray and I have been perambulating around the neighborhood lately and I’ve been marveling at how well we’ve been progressing, I’ve secretly been dreading knowing that Julius needs leash work. Badly.

 

The last time I took Juli for a walk, the muscles in my back and arm got a darned good work out, so I was hesitant to take him out again. Which means he wouldn’t get training and practice, which means I wouldn’t want to take him out…so he wouldn’t get practice…

 

Butt, Butt, Butt

Butt, Butt, Butt

So what would someone do if they, say, had a dog who used to be a nightmare to walk and one who still is? Oh, and the combined weight of those dogs was, say 160 pounds of big muscles? Surely the sane person wouldn’t decide to walk them together!

 

Playing around with the clips

Playing around with the clips

Well, fully expecting that Ray’s good manners would osmosize to Julius and that this outing would be a short disaster, I leashed up the dogs and set out down the block. And it was bad. The good news though is that it wasn’t as bad as I anticipated, so I thought about what the challenges were and brainstormed my new game plan.

 

Freedom Harness

Freedom Harness

Julius pulls and skitters back and forth across the sidewalk which made for a tangle of legs and leashes. I had them both on just their martingale collars with my double clip Freedom leashes. Clipping Juli to Ray was a bad idea, clipping the leashes together to make a longer one was a bad idea, walking in the heat of noon was a bad idea, walking home while it started to rain was a bad idea.

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Fully heartened by the midday walk being less of a failure than I anticipated, I decided to take an evening walk with the boys, Asia, and the baby (because we’re all about the distractions.) Reevaluating the hook up situation, I knew Julius needed his harness back on, but previous outings didn’t make for any less pulling and though I was using the stopping method, it was going one step at a time. After clipping the leash front, top, to this, to that, we finally figured out that using his Freedom harness and only clipping to the front worked wonders. The walk actually went so well that we went further than planned and were rewarded with tired, happy dogs upon the return home.

 

We can do this!

We can do this!

I fully intend to make this a regular part of our routine and believe that a happy ending is in sight.

O Captain, My Captain(s)

It had been seemingly forever since either of the boys got new collars and I was starting to feel the urge pulling at my Paypal account pretty strongly. Gosh, thinking back and using all of my brain power, I’ve deduced that the boys haven’t had new collars since Valentine’s Day. Ugh! How have they survived this long?

 

I knew it was getting time for a new Sirius Republic collar and I had some criteria for these new works of neck art. I wanted them to be similar and match but not be completely identical and they had to be extra awesome. I’ve noticed Juli’s neck has been a bit pink lately underneath, so I’ve been pretty mindful to take collars off when they aren’t out and about but these would be special in that I decided to have them lined with soft fleece.

 

I debated back and forth on the Super collars or the Captain collars and in the end, after saying “Super Julius, Super Ray, Captain Julius, Captain Ray,” over and over I decided on the Captain collars which I would be able to do in both blue and red.

 

I must have added sixty several collars to my cart and removed them until I felt like I had the right formula. Blue for Ray and red for Julius and then further decided on the 2” collar for Juli while Ray has always looked better in the 1.5” and when I finally decided after perusing my cart obsessively for a day or two that these boys would look like the little Captain Americas that they are, I clicked and sent off my order.

Clearly the waiting is the hardest part, but when I saw from the tracking site that they would be delivered, I practically camped out at the mailbox was overjoyed when I finally was able to check the mailbox.

Captain Ray

Captain Ray

 

Unfortunately, they were both too diva-ish to share the spotlight and insisted on solo photo shoots.

Captain Julius

Captain Julius

But that’s ok, because I don’t think these could have been any more perfect, do you?

Two Forward and Three Back

We’ve been pondering what content we should concentrate on regarding our Facebook page.  We’ve been fairly static in our “likes” for quite a while and that is ok, but we notice there are days when we gain a like but may lose two.  We gain one “like” and lose two then gain three and lose another one.

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Here is our philosophy:  Our page is meant to be positive for the most part.  We like to show the boys in their best light, but don’t shy away from revealing flaws.  (“Hey, Mom, we don’t have FLAWS! We give you opportunities to be a better Mom.”)   While we are and always will be advocates for the Pit Bull types, we like to show the boys as “dogs.”  They are individuals and are treated as such. We will share pages and fun things when asked and love to see things our followers share.  Here is a little about what we don’t do, and this is not a judgement of anyone who does it, it just isn’t our” thing.”  We don’t utilize the term “death row dogs.”   We know it refers to the E list, but Death Row is where those convicted of murder sit, we do not like the phrase.  (Not that we like E list or any of the other terms.)  We will occasionally share an “urgent” but we try to research who, what, why first.  We don’t do “woe is me”-we celebrate successes.  Maybe our focus is really just as scattered as this paragraph.

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We share relevant news stories, fun stories and pictures and hope you’ll do the same.  We are, however trying to figure out how to get the best content to you and make our page more fun and interactive.

So, with a very special occasion coming up in the next week, we are going to have a fun little game.

As of today, we have 563 likes and if you help us get to 575 by July 26th, we will choose one random ‘helper’ to win a prize.  How will we know?  Well, this is a Rafflecopter give away that will end at 6:00 pm on Saturday July 26.  So, click, enter and win!
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