Friday, December 24, 2010

The Making of a Christmas Card

Every year we try to take a picture with our boys since they are a big part of our family. Every year it is a challenge. I think this year was the hardest so far. Bradley is a year and a half. He is full size puppy. Brodie is finally healthy and feeling good. That means we are in play mode pretty much all the time. That and they have become best of friends. This is just a glimpse of what it looked like to try and take a picture this year.

Bradley and I sit on the couch while Grandma practices taking test shots. That way we can move quickly when we bring the whole family into the picture. Little did we know that these would be the best pics. Too bad Daddy and Bro were missing.

We call Brodie into the picture. He grabs a toy to bring with him and mayhem ensues in the form of tug-of-war. 

Let's try again. We bring Daddy into the picture. Now it's a game of Jump Up, Jump Down, Jump Up, Jump Down. Our normally LAP-rador Retrievers won't be still.

So here it is! Our family photo. This is the only one where you can see every one's face. Too bad Bradley is sitting off to the side like a little orphaned puppy. But don't be fooled. That was just before he pounced on us. . . again!
 Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Christmas Time

My parents came for an early Christmas visit. We had lots of fun. They are always so good to our boys and treat them like little grandpups. Of course we couldn't wait, so we opened presents the very first night they were here.

They both got a big bone and a Harley Davidson squeaky toy.

We walked down the street to take a picture with Santa and the other animals. The next night we walked to a different neighbor's house and watched their Christmas light show that is set to music.
Grandma and Bradley get cozy while watching a movie.

Friday, December 17, 2010

With EVERY COMMENT $1 Will Be Donated To Help Provide Service Dogs!!!

I saw this on a blog that I follow so I am link back to her blog. Although I love comments on my blog, the money doesn't get donated unless you comment on THIS blog. I'm sure there are other places to comment and have the money donated as well. But this is the place that I saw it and so this is the site that I am publishing.

Many people in need of a service dog depend on Canine Assistants to pay for the lifelong care of the dog. Without the help of any government funding, Canine Assistants relies on the generosity and private donations made by philanthropic partners, like Milk-Bone®, to help pay for the training of these special needs dogs. In an effort to help care for and train more assistance dogs for recipients across the country, Milk-Bone® is asking you to rally around Canine Assistants.
Bark It Furward was created by Milk-Bone® brand to educate others about the inspiring work being conducted by Canine Assistants. By simply making a comment to this post you are a part of the Bark It Furward movement, you can help raise awareness and much needed funds to provide assistance dogs for people with disabilities.
Bark It Furward challenge ends January 4, 2010 so hurry up and spread the word.. 

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Petsmart Howl-O-Ween Party

The boys and I attended the Halloween costume contest at the local Petsmart. We had to go by ourselves. We sure missed getting to go with our friends back home. But we quickly made other friends. People fell in love with my boys in their costumes. People were lining up with their cell phones asking if they could take their pictures. Of course! You know my dogs are camera hounds. So I was able to get a lady to take a couple pics of us.
Sitting pretty while people take their picture
Bradley is wearing his bull costume with a cowboy riding his back. He's holding on with one hand while waving his hat around with his other. Brodie is wearing a chariot with a gladiator on his back who is waving his sword around in the air.     

They won second place. The Mad Hatter took first place. The Mad Hatter was at the photo day from their school too. This was the prize. Two gift bags. The stuff was pretty good. Pill pockets which we can use. The wipes that are like baby wipes, but for dogs, great when they need freshening for company. Two Toys. Toothbrush and paste. Chews. This stuff you put in their water to make their breath fresher. Various treats. A medical records booklet and stickers for your window to alert firefighters to save your pets. Plus they got an award certificate with their names on it. We also got the regular goodie bags that they were giving to everyone. So it really paid to go to the party.


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Dogtobier Fest

 This weekend we went to Dogtobier Fest. It was thrown by the boys' daycare to raise money for their favorite no-kill animal shelter. So it wasn't all about the beer. There was a band, food and lots of mingling between the dogs and people. Which meant that sausages were being stolen left and right. If you turned your back on your food, it would be gone. Brodie and Bradley worked the crowd over begging for the dog treats that had been so carefully placed on all the tables I'm sure as a means to help deter the dogs from eating the human food.

It was a nice try. So once they had begged their way into the hearts of everyone there, Brodie turned his attention to the feet of everyone there. Why? Because that's where the good stuff is. While Bradley ran around playing, Brodie spent the entire evening diligently searching for scraps as if his very life depended on it. You can see in the photo below that he has put some weight back on. In fact, his medicine is working really well. Even though he was fed lots of treats that were not in his "approved diet" he did not relapse. Although they both had doggie hangovers. That being defined as, well, never mind.
  Let's just say I had to pay for it, too, picking up the yard. Our friends came and brought their dog Blue whom our boys had never met. He is a Fox Hound, only about 6 months old. He was hilarious. Bradley loved running around with him. I've never seen Bradley so active. I wish I hadn't forgotten my camera. These pics were taken from either my phone or the owner's camera. Blue gave Bradley a lesson on howling. Blue was singing with the band. Bradley tried to sing too. Let's say that he's not as musically inclined.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Yay for Bradley

Bradley is a big boy! He has started trying to raise his leg to go potty. I know it sounds funny, but he's over a year now. The other day he was trying to hike his leg against the fence. He was trying so hard and his other three legs were quivering with the challenge of holding up his body. His hiking leg kept trying to come down to the ground, but he determinedly kept it up. But Brodie interrupted trying to get the ball out of Bradley's mouth. So Bradley didn't get to complete his first three legged potty mission. I told Bradley it would be easier to do without a ball in his mouth. That's just too much to think about. And Brodie interrupted him. But he's trying!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Halloween Portraits 2010

Here are some of the portraits taken by the photographer at the fundraiser that we went to recently. I assume that it is okay for me to post them on my blog because he had them on his Facebook page with a link for you to download them in high resolution. So that is what I did. So don't freak out that I'm posting his pics here. If he tells me to take them down I will. 

It was very difficult to get them to sit still long enough to take a pic, especially to jump up on a hay bale and pose. But we try and try and try and try.

This dog was having some fun that day. He was acting exactly like what he was dressed as. Bradley is a bull. He has a brave cowboy trying to hold on. You can't see the expression on the cowboy's face because his bandanna was covering it, but was scared, as he should be. Look at the wild in his eyes.


Look at that face! The attention in the eyes, the ears forward. I just wanna smush him all over with kisses. Anyway, you would see his costume better if he was standing up. He technically is the horse because he is wearing a chariot carrying a gladiator into battle.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

For A Good Cause

This weekend our boys made their first celebrity appearance. Well, that's what they think was going on. After all, they were greeted upon arrival by a professional photographer and a group of puparazzi. They believe they were their to model their Halloween costumes, slobber all over everyone, mark the territory and leave the entire pack in awe upon their departure. What really happened was that the daycare where they attend had a fundraiser for a local no-kill animal shelter. A professional pet photographer waived his sitting fee in lieu of a pet food drive. I believe the profits from the pictures sold go to the shelter also. There was a lady from the shelter selling some jewelry she had made with proceeds going to the shelter. We bought Grandma a bracelet. Shhh! Don't tell her. The owner of the daycare had made goodie bags. Let me tell you, those were not goodie bags, they were great bags. They included a coupon for a free day of daycare, a free doggie bath, Bath and Body Works hand sanitizer with clip, people and pet treats and other paraphernalia. Thanks Kim and Mike! There was a costume contest and both Brodie and Bradley placed. They got awesome prizes. I still can't believe it. They each got a 2 night stay with bath before returning home. That means no kids for an entire weekend! I mean, that means that we can rest assured that our children are taken care of if for some reason we are stricken with the unlucky task of going away for the weekend. 

Here's a sneak peak of Bradley in his costume. Don't worry. You haven't seen it all. There's more to his costume. And Brodie's is similar, but not identical.

Here are some of the puppies that were up for adoption. If you are in the SA area and you are able to provide a loving forever home for a puppy or older dog or cat you can contact me at for more information.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Weight A Minute!!!!!

We went to the vet's office yesterday to get some more heartworm and flea prevention, food for Brodie, break the bank account, etc. They weighed the boys and I couldn't believe it. They both weighed less than I expected. Brodie now weighs only 48 pounds which means he has lost 4 pounds since starting his new food. The good news is that his medicine is working and he hasn't been vomiting so the weight loss is just because we haven't gotten his new diet balanced out yet. So we have increased his food intake again. He now eats 1 1/2 cups of food 4 times a day. Yep! That's 6 cups of food a day. That's the maximum amount of food recommended on the guideline for a 65 pound dog. He gets even more if Rob can sneak it by me. Bradley on the other hand weighed only 75 pounds. I had also expected him to weigh more but we're not disappointed that he didn't. He definitely isn't underweight. He's no longer a smushy puppy. He's putting on the muscle mass of a big dog. The doctor said that he shouldn't get any taller, he'll just grow out. I was so surprised. I really expected him to weigh more. He feels so much heavier when stepping on me, laying in my lap or pushing me out of the bed.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Hermine VS. Brodie & Bradley

Tropical Storm Hermine came through last week. She tortured my boys by keeping them inside and driving me nuts in the process. I will tell you the last place you want to hold a lab hostage is inside. They need room to run and exercise and get out their energy. Or they will find other ways to get that energy out. Usually ways that we are not so happy about. So I spent two full days trying to keep down the demons that live deep within my sweet-faced little puppy dogs. On day three the rain had stopped but the yard was soaked. So we still couldn't run and play fetch or we would destroy the yard with those precious feet that leave giant gorges in the ground when the grip for traction. So I pulled a new toy out of my arsenal. They were wrestling over it and having fun. They ran outside. Then. . . I didn't hear anything for about five minutes. I knew something was wrong. I just knew. A red flag went up. It's mother's intuition. There's an internal clock that says "warning- it is now one second passed the longest time for which they have ever gone without barking, yelping, whining, running by, jumping on, stepping on, slobbering on or begging from you." So I go to check on them. When I look out the window I immediately see Bradley digging in the mulch bed at the fence like he's trying to escape. I yank open the door and scold him. Brodie's running back and forth like there's some injured prey on the other side calling out to the wild hunter within him. This time I remembered to get the camera. So I call into evidence, your honor, Bradley's hole:

My camera fogged up with the change in temperature coming outside but you get the idea. Thankfully I caught him early.

You can see Brodie's rear end in the picture. He is diligently trying to show me something. So what prey tell is Saint Brodie so vigilantly trying to show me?

Hermine had blown our fence off it's post and it was coming down. Had I not gone out and seen Bradley's hole and Brodie pointing, I would not have noticed the fence so soon. It was resting against the palm. I think they were really looking for a way out and Bradley got frustrated and started digging. But Rob was able to repair it.
Good thing the palm was there to block the bottom or they would have made their way out. And they are runners when they get free. So they would have gotten lost pretty quickly. So really Bradley's digging a hole ended up being a good thing.
Hermine was not match for my boys!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Fun PicR

Rob found this fun pic on the web and just wanted to share it with you

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Fetch Makes Me Smile

When we were out at the farm, back in February, we were playing fetch with Brodie. I love these pics. He caught it and then smiled.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Toy Basket

Is this the face of guilt or what?

Bradley cannot stand for all of his toys to be in the basket. He always comes and digs into it and knocks them all over the floor. He doesn't play with them then. But he can then relax. He just likes his stuff all over the place. He's messy.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Jack's Bow-Wow Blogger's Award

Here is my award to your excellent site about your dogs. I love dogs, too.  I love anything fuzzy and furry and friendly.  Keep the good work and I hope this doesn't get sent back to me!!
Jack and my human Missy  :0)

Of course Brodie and Bradley accept any awards since they are not very humble creatures. In fact, Brodie always tries to hold his head higher than ours as he is from an AKC champion pedigree on both lines. Brodie and Bradley would like me to share with you their acceptance speech. "We'd like to thank Jack, Missy and the entire committee who have made this possible. Thank you to Daddy for going out to earn the kibbles everyday then coming home and playing with us afterward. Thanks to Momma for taking us to school all the time and for picking up our poop so we don't run through it. Most of all thank you to God for making us such wonderful creatures that someone would want to write about us and that others would want to read it. Oh, yeah, and that it doesn't go to our heads."

After School Special

Around My House This Is What I Call An After School Special.

A pup dog too tired to bark at his brother
A pup dog too tired to beg for fetch
too tired to wrestle
too tired to whine
too tired to tug
too tired to chase
too tired to pester
too tired to care
too tired, two tired


People have been having trouble leaving comments on the blog. I changed the settings. Hopefully that will help.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Through the Blinds

 I cannot sneak up on Brodie. He just knows when I'm around. 
This is me trying to look at him through the blinds to see him enjoying the backyard.

I finally got the blinds open.
 He's so high strung I like to see him relaxing when I'm not around.
Putting that extra rug down really helped him. He likes to have a rug or blanket to lay on because he's really an inside dog.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Teaching Manners

One of the first things we taught our "kids" is to sit. It's like saying please. And then they have to wait. They've had to do this for all kinds of stuff. But lately, our boys have been getting a little wild. Brodie especially has been getting overly excited at dinner time dancing around and poking me with his nose while I'm trying to get it ready. And by ready I mean in his toy because our dogs eat from toys. All the while both dogs are drooling on the floor getting it all wet for me to step in later. So I decided to go back to manners camp. That's right.  New rules for meal time. They each have a mat. They have to sit on the mat while I am getting their food ready. Not stand, pace or dance. Sit. The mat is far enough out of reach that they cannot touch me while I am getting it ready. They have to be on their mat enough so that their mouth is over the mat so that aforementioned drool will land on the mat and not on my carpet or linoleum. When given the okay they can then come off of their mat and to their toy to eat. As with everything, they took to it quickly. They are doing really well. Dinnertime is much calmer around here. Bradley is actually staying out of the way while I do Brodie's and then goes to his mat pretty well. He's been easier than I thought. Brodie eats in the bedroom with the door closed because we have to make sure that he does not get any of Bradley's food because of his food intolerance. Bradley gets fed in the kitchen, but ends up rolling his ball through the living room. We have to be able to see him because he's the one that will get in trouble if let to himself. Right now Brodie is using the Linkables to eat from and Bradley is using the Giggle Ball, which we have actually had this particular one since Brodie was a puppy.

Since Bro's food is kept in our walk-in closet I just bought the cheapest mat I could find. A $3 doormat.

Since Bradley's mat is in the kitchen and I have to look at it all day I bought the cheapest one that I kind of liked. A $5 kitchen mat at Wal-mart.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Enjoying Backyard

Here's some more pics of the boys enjoying the backyard

I was trying to get a picture of them lying in front of the porch together, but Brodie was too hyped up because we had been playing ball. He was listening to some kids splash in a pool next door. Then some birds flew over and I lost them both.

When I'm sitting on the porch they'll wrestle and play.

Sometimes I'll look out the window and they are just lying in the sun enjoying the weather. It's really nice to see this.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Busy Buddy Kibble Nibble Ball Toy

this is not my dog
Once again Premier has made a genius dog toy for my genius dog. And of course I'm talking about Brodie. . We love Premier toys. This is the best toy so far. This is the most challenging. Brodie is brilliant and has mastered every toy so far. When he first got this he actually got frustrated which I've never seen. Because of the egg shape it is extremely difficult to get the treats out of the ends. The momentum, angle, everything has to be perfect. It's not for the beginner dog. We did trim the prongs in the end a little because Brodie's food was too big to fall out easily. There are a few challenges for us as well. It can be difficult getting the threads lined up and getting it screwed together. It does take patience. We left it unattended, with our not so genius puppy; it was open in the closet. He got it and chewed the edges of it for just a second before I caught him. It was enough to permanently destroy the threads and render the toy useless. But as long as the human can work the toy properly, your dog should love it for a long, long time. Looking at the construction I can say that this toy is not intended for chewing. It is not intended to be left alone with your dog. The rubber ridges on the outside will easily come off. A dog left alone with this, possibly frustrated by the one last piece he can't get out, I think could easily destroy it. So don't leave it alone with your dog. It's meant for him to eat out of, play with, give you a break. Smart dogs needs smart toys to challenge their minds. This is definitely a toy for the smartest pup.

PROS: Extremely Challenging, Dishwasher Safe, Occupies Their Time
CONS: Treads Easily Damaged, May Be Too Difficult for Some Dogs, Only Comes in Purple

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Brodie's Follow Up With Vet

Brodie had a follow up appointment with the vet today. He said that Brodie is doing really well. We are going to stay on the medicine to help keep the valve closed. We are trying out a treat. This is the first time we have added anything new to his diet since he has switched foods. For those of you who do not know, Brodie is on a very strict diet for food intolerance. The only treats he has gotten so far are actually just pieces of his food. Fortunately he's not picky. In the near future, if Brodie gets sick, we are to assume that it is from the treats and discontinue them. The doctor gave him a treat while we were there and he could tell by the way that he swallowed that he was still have problems with the reflux so we are going back on medicine for that. I asked him to explain the difference in food allergies and food intolerance and this is what he said: Food allergies show themselves in dermatological symptoms like itchy skin. Food intolerance is strictly intestinal like diarrhea and vomiting. Brodie is still only 52 pounds while his ideal weight is 64. But the doctor said that we should not be concerned just yet since he should gain it back slowly. I liked the doctor and Brodie did something I've never seen him do in his entire 4 years of life. He laid down during an office visit. Of course, when I took him in that time he was so sick he had to lay down because he could hardly stand. That doesn't count. But Brodie is so high strung and anxious. He does not like doctor visits. He cries and paces the entire time. After the doctor came in and greeted him and petted him, gave him a treat and was talking to me, Brodie laid down next to me. Even laid his head on the floor between his paws like he could sleep. I guess this means that Brodie is comfortable with this doctor too.

If you need backstory to understand this post click here  , here and  here.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Mmmm, Grass!

So, I've mentioned many times that Bradley likes to eat grass. Here's a pic of him with a pretty big piece that he pulled up out of the ground.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Good Morning

Bradley makes some really big eye boogers. This one is nothing compared to some of them, but I did catch a picture. And it's a really wet one. That's so gross!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Doggie Decor

We spend a lot of time on the back porch. The dogs spend a lot of time running across the back porch. Some of that time is chasing each other in and out of the house, around the yard, up and around the porch sense it has three points of entry (or escape as they look at it.) When I sit in my rocking chair I throw the ball. They play tug-of-war. Here's the deal, no matter how short and neat we keep their nails trimmed when they dig in their feet to get a good grip, it scratches the deck. So we bought another rug to cover the main area in front of the sitting area where most of the scratches occur and then a little runner where they  take off for the stairs. But it doesn't matter. This is where we live and those are just proof of life. When we restain the deck it should cover them. We're happy here. See look at Bradley, doesn't he look happy. And now they have more rug to lay on.

Thursday, August 19, 2010


I had been vacuuming and set Brodie's bed on top of Bradley's bed. Well, evidently I didn't move it in time because Bradley decides to lay on both of them.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Vote for Bradley

I posted Bradley's picture on a contest site as a joke, but it's gotten a few votes, so go vote for Bradley by clicking here. You will have to flip through the pictures to find his so be prepared. The contestants name is SaintBrodiesMom, go figure. Here is his picture and the caption that goes with it:

I'm Bradley. I love to lay on the grass  in front of the porch while my mom rocks in her chair.
I also eat the grass while watching the birds fly over.

Homemade Dog Toy #4

So there's a lot of back story to this toy. When Brodie was a little baby dog he knew exactly what was his and what was not, which was great for us, most of the time. But he also loved to make a game of it. When I would ball up my socks and put them in the drawer he would snatch a pair and take off running. I would call him back and make him give it. He would look at me out of the corner of his eye, wait for me to turn my head and then snatch a pair and run. Then when I would think I was done, he would come stand in front of me and just look up at me like, "Well?" and I would say "What?" and he just continued staring at me. "What?" nothing. Then I would notice a little piece of white from the edge of his lip. He had a whole ball of socks shoved in his mouth and he was waiting for me to notice him. When I would fold the towels and put them in the cabinet under the sink he would wait for me to look the other way and then snatch one and take off running. So Mr. Brodie loved snatching our things, but he had the habit of saying "that's mine" when it came to his stuff. So when I would fold laundry he would see me fold his fleece blankets when I was folding our towels. He would just tremble in anticipation as I folded his blanket. As soon as it was folded I would hold it out to him and he would take it and run off with it, eventually bringing it back. Sometimes I was able to get him to put it in his kennel, but mostly not. This obsession, with having his newly clean and folded blankets immediately, continued for years. Although now he usually just takes them from me and sets them on the floor and waits for the next one. Well the other day he did happen to run into the other room with the blanket in his mouth. Bradley saw this and thought "Oh goodie, a game." They started playing tug-of-war, I don't care because they are not bothering me which is rare these days, and I let them go on. Then I hear the blanket start to tear. So I go in and tell them "no more." This Bradley does not understand. I put the blanket in Brodie's new doggie bed and and explain to him (as if he were Brodie and I could just explain things) that "this is Brodie's blanket for his bed just like you have a blanket for your bed." Later Bradley is running through the house with same blanket. Repeat explanation, repeat running scene. etc. etc. So I go get this orange blanket that is in tatters and barely hanging on. It was Brodie's first ever blanket. He chewed it to pieces. There are holes all in it. He pulled all of the trim off of it. I learned a lot about picking out a blanket for a dog's bed from Brodie. I learned that you just go buy some fleece by the yard at Walmart. Anyway, I take this blanket and tell both boys to sit and listen. "From this moment on I formally declare that this blanket will henceforth be a toy. You may play and chew on this blanket and this blanket only." Brodie nods his head in total understanding and Bradley drools. They take the blanket and play. Then Bradley begins to play with Brodie's bed blanket again. I put it back in the bed and say "no, that is a blanket." And I kid you not, Bradley looks over his shoulder at the orange blanket and I swear a little bubble popped up over his head saying "But that's a blanket too?" So, I tie a big knot in the middle of the orange blanket. Then I make a cut down each side, which is still folded. On those strips I make two knots each. I tried to give it as much of a tug toy look as I could. They loved it. There was no more blanket/toy confusion. Bradley has dragged that thing all over the house. They play with it more than any store bought toy we have. And I know there are expensive fleece tug toys out there, but you could make one for the price of 1/2 a yard of fleece.