Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Sophie update

I can't say enough how much I love getting updates from the adopters of my fosters. I've spent time with these dogs, house-training, working on manners, grooming and giving them a lot of attention. All of them come in seeking loving attention. While some come from homes where their basic needs were met, and even some come in well-loved, but their owner died or moved to a home where they couldn't keep their dog (those are usually older dogs and I can't foster most older dogs because I have three sets of steps in my townhouse), most of these fosters have been strays or neglected dogs.
While I know I'm going to be passing them on to great families, I do get attached to them. Some more than others, yes, but all of them hold a special place in my heart.

Here's a recent picture of Sophie. She's in the 2013 calendar, too! The calendar is also a cookbook.You can find/order that here:

Sophie's new family reports that she's a sweetheart with a little sassy fabulous!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Rocky finds a home!

I took him down to Farmington today and they love him. He was so mellow, he just laid down on the rug and put his head in A's lap and sighed. He would sit like that forever. I think dogs that come from his kind of situation appreciate the love more. Like anyone, actually, they don't take it for granted. 
Papers are filled out and signed, delivery tomorrow.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

New pictures!

It is REALLY hard to take pictures of a shy dog. He won't look at me, nor will he stay in one place. Hopefully KJ can get some better ones later with his iPad, too. There is such a delay with my cell phone that often all I get is a big blur.

Yesterday's annual dinner and a promise to Rocky

Rocky, I promise to brush you today and get new pictures to post on your bio so people can see what a beautiful dog you're becoming. You still have more coat growing to do, but what's growing in is thick and healthy.


Yesterday was the Annual Dinner and Fundraiser for MWCR in Wayzata. It was well attended and it was great to see everybody. If I heard right, we took in $5,000 on Give To The Max Day, which is so cool. As Mary reported, we have taken in a lot of very needy collies these past six months. From heartworm positive, to dogs needing major surgeries, it's been pretty expensive. It always amazes me how people step up to donate or find ways to raise the money. I got to put some faces to some new people I'd talked to on the phone, too, over the last year.

The silent auction did well, too. Lots of great stuff with brisk bidding. We got to test out the new iPad with the new card reader, that was donated by a member, so now we can take credit cards at events. Pretty slick. You sign your name with your finger and it will send your receipt in a text message or to your email. This will be really nice to have at events, because we've had a lot of people ask if we take plastic, then don't buy anything because we didn't.

The guest speaker was Ilga Cimbulis (see the link to her website on the right side of this blog). She spoke a bit on how she taps into the communication, and then actually started communicating with Mary's foster, Liam, who wasn't there, but she can do this across space. Liam has turned into quite the project. Ilga said he has very low self esteem, and gave Mary all kinds of tips on how to work with him and deal with his anxiety. 

A special thank you to, Jan Van Sloun, who worked with a company to donate bottles of waterless shampoo, odor eliminating spray and another all natural shampoo, and put them into gift bags for everybody. Much appreciated and I already used the spray this morning after Rocky pooped in the house! I was just thinking last night about how I could say he was 100% housebroken. Yet,  this morning was probably my fault because I didn't leave him outside long enough. He wants to come back in right away because I feed him then, but if I leave him out longer he takes care of that business. I hope his adopter is an early riser, because he's ready to get up before I am, even when I have to get up earlier than I want to, which is everyday, actually.

One last thing that I'm still a little blown away about, from last night. Terry, Linda, KJ and I were doing the last of the packing up, when I noticed a bag on a table. Turned out it was someone's purse, wallet, phone and all. She was one of the winners of who travelled the farthest to the dinner, too!. We're sitting at the table trying to figure out what to do. Thinking man, she's already been gone at least an hour, and what happens if she realizes she has to stop for gas before she realizes she doesn't have her purse. As we planned out what to do, the phone at the American Legion front desk rang and Terry got up to answer it. Weird, too, because earlier it rang and someone from the AL answered it in the bar. Terry says hello and it was the purse owner! Luckily she was staying overnight in Roseville instead of driving all the way back up north. So so weird. Roseville is closer to my house than Terry or Linda's so off we went. We met her at the Barnes and Noble in HarMar Mall (old stomping grounds for me as that and Rosedale were where we always went shopping growing up in New Richmond).

I'm going to use this waterless shampoo on Rocky and get to my promise.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

November newsletter

The new newsletter is published!
Always full of great information.
This month featuring the #1 pet health problem, the annual dinner coming up on the 17th, updates on some of our dogs, Toon orders and a new line of wine, plus lots more.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Still no adopters for Rocky. I really wish someone would find him, but I know the right home is waiting for him. I'm going to try to get some new pictures of him on his bio. His coat is still short, but growing in and he looks so much better.

In the meantime, I want to give a shout out to a friend and MWCR member, Mary Hall's website. 

All kinds of things for your puppies, custom made, too!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

1 1/2 months

It's been one and a half months since Rocky came to us and I'm seeing such a different dog. You can tell he feels fantastic! His coat is coming back in, there is a spring in his step and he's holding his head up higher. He's playing with toys.
I'm considering leaving him loose in the house and see how things go. He's been loose in the basement for a few days with no problems. 
And he let me sleep in this morning!
When he came in he was so miserable looking. Now he's settled into our schedule and is there to greet me at the top of the steps any and every time I come in.
Such a happy, sweet dog.
Let's have the perfect family come forward now to adopt him!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Still cold from yesterday!

But we had a great time yesterday at the Great Minnesota Pet Together.
I told KJ to dress warm and off we went. He brought his iPad because I had this great idea that if anybody wanted to see our available collies we could go to the website. He would have brought it anyway, though. The event was at the International Bazaar section of the state fairgrounds in St. Paul. 
As we walked in, just a few booths away from the MWCR booth, the ipad slipped out of the blanket KJ had wrapped it in and fell face down on the cement floor. He stood there stunned. A woman stepped out saying, "Let's just look, it might not be bad," but no such luck. It spiderwebbed pretty good, but was still working, so that was good. He was pretty bummed out for awhile, then eventually came around to his normal charming self. He and his friends planned a trip down to the MOA after he got home so he was able to talk to an apple person about what he needed to do and how much it will cost. So, plan in place and he's feeling MUCH better. 

We spent the rest of the day at the event with several volunteers and their dogs, Shelby, Robin's white collie, Maui (hope I spelled that right), Cat's sable and white collie, Phoebe, Judith's mahogany and white collie, also a certified therapy dog. My dog Woodson did better at his second event and Rocky did really well, greeting people as they walked by. Such a sweetheart. He met two potential adopters, who will probably adopt other dogs, but there are more people inquiring about him, so it shouldn't be long. We do know for sure, Rocky should not be around small children. He's fine if they come up to pet him, then leave. It's when they stay and jump around, moving their small fast feet that he doesn't care for. I was so sorry to disappoint the one family who really wanted to adopt him, but I didn't feel comfortable. They were willing to work with him, but I want them to be safe. I have no doubt they will find the perfect dog.

It was very cold. Not Minnesota winter cold, but low 40's with a chilly wind making it feel colder. Rocky's fur is growing in, but I brought a sweatshirt to put on him and after an hour or so, I did. I didn't take any pictures at the event. I think my brain was cold, too! I did take this one as we got home.

I don't think I saw a short-haired dog that didn't have a coat on.
A big thank you to Terry who worked all day at both events (the Harvest Howl in Forest Lake). She set up St. Paul, then went and set up the other one and worked at that one, came back to St. Paul to pick everything up and back to Forest Lake to get that stuff, because St. Paul started earlier and ended earlier than FL).
Rocky's dental on Thursday went really well and his teeth look fantastic! He's lost weight, doc says his body is working really hard at taking in nutrients and growing that coat back out, so I'm increasing his food, feeding him twice a day. He only needs to gain about five pounds. Doc says he's not a big boned fellow and should stay under 70 pounds.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Moving right along

Rocky is doing well. I brought home a tennis ball I had at work today and he was playing with it! Tennis balls don't last long around here. Brett chews the up until they're in pieces.
He goes for his dental work tomorrow and I've been speaking to a few people who are interested in meeting him. One is a family who have a 4-year-old and a 2-year-old. I'm really not comfortable sending him to a family who has small kids. He's very sweet and friendly, he greeted a woman on our walk earlier, but the sounds of kids at the playground make him nervous. And I can't really go up to someone and say, "excuse me, but can I test my foster dog with your child?"
He chases KJ when he runs down the hall, but doesn't grab or bite. He plays with Woodson, but not Brett. He loves the walks we take and is more and more interested in what is around him. He would take off after squirrels if he was loose. He loves Tuffy, the maltese next door.
His shaved areas are starting to grow out just in time for the cooler weather.
We'll be at the Great Minnesota Pet Together Saturday afternoon 1-4 p.m. at the Fairgrounds in St. Paul.

A good test for Rocky to see how he does around people passing by, etc.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Update on Sophie and new picture

Sophie has had a great summer with her family, settling in, learning schedules and being loved and getting all the attention she deserves and wants. I'm told they have found out how smart she is and is as sweet as can be. She's not liking their morning or nighttime walks in the dark though, probably because it's harder for her to see in the dark, but they are rearranging and adjusting to the shorter days. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

New pictures of Rocky

He's REALLY feeling better!
I'm supposed to keep him calm still from his surgery, but he wants to play, play, play. 
I gave him a dry shampoo bath the other day and have been brushing what's left of his coat. He doesn't like the grooming table, but is starting to get used to it. 

If Woodson is in my bedroom chair, Rocky will try to get him out of it, usually by barking at something enough so Woodson will get down to investigate and Rocky jumps up. He also moans as he lays down next to the chair as if to say, man, I'd rather be in that chair!
I don't blame him. He can really curl up in the chair and I think with the cooler weather and missing coat, he's cold. He's 65 pounds and thin. Should probably gain another 10 pounds.

And a tree in the park across the street, where we walk. 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Sleeping it off

Rocky is home, doped up on pain meds. He cried in the car on the way home, more than his usual whining, I think because it hurt to move around with the car's movement. I felt so bad.

Walked him right away. He seemed happy to be home, but sore.

I had to work, so KJ had care duty. Said he mostly slept in my bedroom chair or down in his kennel. 
Go back in two weeks for removal of the stitches, then he can get his dental work done and be available!

The Packers beat the Bears. All is good.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Surgery day

I dropped Rocky off this morning at Skyline. He will be neutered and have his umbilical hernia repaired. Poor guy. He will stay overnight and I'll pick him up tomorrow afternoon. I hated to leave him. He's just been through so much. He whines in the car, I think because every time he goes in the car it means major things happen. And not necessarily fun things. I haven't taken him to the dog park yet. I know there are unneutered males there, but for me, personally, I just don't like to do that. Too many people bring aggressive dogs in and I don't want Rocky to feel insecure. We've really made progress on his confidence.

He has now claimed the bedroom chair, so that tells me he feels really comfortable. As I've mentioned before, my bedroom chair serves as a dog bed overnight. I'm still closing my door at night to confine him in the bedroom. Most dogs don't soil where they sleep, but given too much freedom, they'll go elsewhere in the house. Brett sleeps in KJ's room, and Woodson sleeps in either room. So when Woodson is in my room there is often a juggling of who gets the chair. It's funny to see, actually. As I'm getting ready for bed, Rocky is getting in there first before Woodson thinks of it. I know they switch places throughout the night, too. I took a picture last night of Rocky in the chair that I'll post once I get it off the camera.

Rocky will come home with the old 'cone of shame' that I know I'm going to have to keep on him, even in the kennel. He's in the bigger crate when we're gone so that shouldn't be too bad.

Here's a new picture of Ramona (Rocky's sister). They were able to save her coat. She's gorgeous and I know once Rocky's coat grows back in he will be just as pretty!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

What a difference a day makes!

I was woken up by Rocky this morning. Happy he did it, but I could have slept another hour before getting up.

Took him to the vet. The people at Skyline are so great. Dr. Ryan feels Rocky is a bit older than four. Estimated 5-6 years old. His teeth are inbetween being bad and good. He has a broken tooth in the front where the root is still visible so that will need to be removed, during a cleaning if that gets board approval. 
Then came checking the male parts for his neutering on Wednesday. But wait! He was so matted underneath, that they brought in another tech and went to work on him. I've been brushing him, and his chest was shaved when his neck was shaved, so I hadn't seen him in his original state. When it came to his backside I was trying to be gentle because I knew he didn't like it, and that there were mats, but I was also assuming that could be shaved during the neuter. Dr. Ryan said they were too bad to leave until then. Rocky's been peeing into a mat and poop was getting caught up in a mat, not to mention the long continuous mats in several areas.

He did really well while they shaved his underside, but tried to bite when we got to his rear. I don't blame him! A muzzle was put on and they finished the job. He looks rather poodle-ish, but when I got home and walked him? Wow! He was actually prancing! And his head is starting to come up. It makes me want to cry to see him feeling so much better. I told Dr. Ryan my suspicions that the reason Rocky trudged along with his head down was because he's never been able to lift it because of the mats. He agreed. All the mats underneath probably had a lot to do with how he walks, too.

We discovered an umbilical hernia, too, which can be removed during the neuter, if approved. There are spots all along his underside. I asked if that was from chaffing and Dr. Ryan said yes. That some of them could be permanent discoloration, but that will get all covered up as his fur grows back. It's hard to see a collie shaved down to the skin, but I'm okay with it when it makes them feel so much better. Once this grows out, added with good food and care, he's going to be gorgeous!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Quick update

Yay for Rocky! He came into the room and started panting and wagging his tail. I asked him if he had to go outside and he wagged his tail, so off we went. Didn't take him long to go, either. Partay!!!!!!! Not saying he's housebroken, but this is definite progress!
I'd like to try to bathe him this weekend. Might be too chilly to do it outside, though.
Definitely plan to get some new pictures.

Forgot I had a few on my cell phone.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012


We're (KJ and I) really starting to lose it when it comes to the current foster's name! He keeps calling Rocky, Rocket, which was our foster in February. That's an easy slip. I, on the otherhand, keep calling Woodson, Thor. I've also started asking the same question three minutes after asking it. I know this is from having so much on my mind that I'm not listening well.

We've had a couple accidents with pee, but all No. 2 has been outside. Have an appointment at the vet on Saturday and then a tentative neuter appointment set up for next Wednesday. And no accidents this morning.

My morning routine, now that school's in session, is getting up at 6 a.m., and start the procession getting each dog outside and fed. I walk them seperately into the park. It's still dark, but starting to get light, so I can see. I keep thinking something is going to jump out at me. There are woodchucks and coyotes in the park. I know it's unlikely with a dog next to me, but still. Eventually I'll go back to tieing them up on the cable in the morning.

Rocky is a bush pooper. He likes to go on bushes. Woodson likes to go in the tall weeds. Brett is easy, he just goes in the grass, but has to run several circles around me (I feel like I'm lounging a horse), and I get dizzy!

Rocky is learning "kennel" and "go lay down'. He's very shy, so a quick 'hey' works when you want him to stop doing something. He's a hoverer, which is understandable, given his former situation. He wants attention, all the time. He walks with his head down. It's a little sad to see and I hope that he can come around to being more confident.

I brushed Rocky again yesterday. Got a lot more of the undercoat out. He stands still until I get to the backside and tail. I'm doing what I can back there, but I don't want to stress him out too much. I think it could take six months to a year for his coat to improve. The outer coat is so dry it feels like straw. Maybe there's a leave-in conditioner I can put on him.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

First night

We had a good night. I had Rocky loose in my closed bedroom and he really just slept all night. Didn't even wake me up this morning. He's not familiar with my sounds. The minute I open my eyes, check the time, Brett and Woodson will get up and start bugging me. 
I took Rocky out first, then fed him in the garage so he could eat by himself. I always run my fingers through a new foster's food, keeping my hand in the food as I set the bowl down. Then move my hand up over his head. It didn't seem to bother him at all. He was eating before my hand left his head.
I was giving him treats last night, too. He didn't really know what they were at first, but once he had a few, he wanted more!
I've noticed that when I walk toward him he backs away and actually seems to be looking for a way to get away from me. Don't know if this is just general shyness or if he's used to being 'grabbed'. He ducks his head as I reach for his collar to hook up the leash. To Brett and Woodson, the leash is a happy thing and they offer up their necks to make it easier to hook the leash.
He basically looked at the cats and that was it. Lily had a hissy fit when she felt she was cornered by him, but   I don't think he even knew she was sitting there when he came near her.

Now, this morning as I sit here, Woodson is trying to get him to play.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Rocky's here!

I picked up Rocky and Gabe in Bloomington and headed to New Richmond to meet Gabe's foster family. I grew up in New Richmond. It's been several decades since I lived there and it's changed a lot. I met them on the north side of town on a dead end road in front of what turned out to be the school bus parking lot. The Farm and Home is still there. When I was in high school, Kris and I would ride horses through a cornfield to the Farm and Home. Back then it was the only thing really on that end of town. We'd go in to buy candy bars, then ride back home.
On the drive to NR both dogs calmly laid down in the back. They were great riders. Rocky is underweight and has had his entire neck shaved. It looks really weird, because his skinny neck sticks out from this poufy body. 
We made the exchange. Neither dog would  jump into the car so I lifted him up.  Rocky started whining and wasn't happy, I think, about leaving his brother behind. I headed over to my cousin's house and spent some time talking to Trish in the back yard where Rocky was able to relax for a bit before getting back in the car. He'd been in a car since about 10 a.m. or so, so it was really nice to give him this break.
Got back home and walked him right away. Now he's getting used to the house. He doesn't like bare floors or steps but he's going up and down reluctantly.
I was able to give him a quick brush and got out a lot of the undercoat. There's so much left, though. The picture, with my foot for perspective shows what came out. This was about 15 minutes of brushing. The second picture is of KJ taking Rocky's picture. The deck is small so it's hard to get a good picture of a moving dog. 
So far no accidents, but I don't think he's house-trained.
He wants attention, constantly. I don't think he's had much in his life.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Update on Bunker

From Bunker's owner:

Bunker is doing great! Here he is with our daughter on the couch. There is plenty of room on the floor, and even the other side of the couch, but had to go here!

He loves his new sister. They play well together. Also loves his cousins at doggie daycare and is very excited to go visit them on the days he goes to daycare.

He and Quin are doing obedience classes with Greater Lincoln Obedience Club. So far all is going great! He does get diareah if stressed. We went on vacation and left him with the in-laws (doggie daycare) for 4 days and he ended up at the vet with runny poop when we returned. Went away one other weekend, same thing, so he has a bit of anxiety when we leave town.

Totally blew out his undercoat. There wasn't a single hair of it left (what a mess), but now growing it back in and looks beautiful!  

He looks pretty comfortable to me!

Comment on his digestion problem. Collies are notorious for sensitive stomachs. My collie mix, Jazz would do the same thing when we boarded him. Even eating his own regular dog food and not the kennel's food.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Change in fosters

No longer getting Ramona, but will get Rocky instead as #17. He's from the same group. Tentative day is Saturday.

Friday, August 24, 2012

#17 - Ramona

Some early pictures of Ramona, my next foster. She comes from a hoarding situation in Iowa. Five collies, the oldest being the mom at 12. She's also in the worst shape. They will be groomed and vetted before moving into the foster homes. It's really nice when this gets done before I get them, as it's nice to concentrate on general brushing and housebreaking.
Ramona is the one with the white blaze.

And the mom, Mariah. It's unlikely her coat can be saved, so she will probably be shaved.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

An amazing before and after

Laddie, a new intake to MWCR. I'm not sure who is going to foster him. The person who picked him up is holding him until he goes to his foster home. She gave him a bath and has been brushing him. I wish I could have taken him, but it's just not the right time.



Friday, July 6, 2012

Jinny pics

And while I'm at it, here's some pictures of Jinny with her family.


Overnight foster

I have Andy here overnight. He's on his way to southwestern Minnesota where he will be fostered by, I'm told, someone who will probably adopt him.
He is a collie mix, discovered at a Milwaukee shelter where he was soon to be put down to make room for "4th of July' strays.
He was very matted, and when those mats were cut away, maggots were found in a wound in his neck. Not sure the wound was caused by the maggots, but that is already clearing up. 
He's definitely had some training. He listens well, knows sit, down and no/hey.
I took him for a walk right away, then kept him on the leash inside for about a half hour, then let him explore the house. Eventually he laid down and slept. It's been a long day. 
He's very friendly. Hard to capture with my cell phone, but that's the only camera I have right now.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

MWCR July Newsletter

Do the clicky thing for the latest newsletter. Great dog stories and recent activities.

July newsletter

Friday, June 22, 2012

Picture of Sophie

Sophie with her brother! She looks so content and her coat is looking so much better!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Off topic: They tore up paradise

Summer Solstice. Bittersweet because now the daylight hours start getting shorter, but I don't dwell on it. It's summer! My favorite season. 

But this is about Webber Pool. I'm trying really hard not to feel depressed about this. I'm also vindictively hoping for failure in this plan for Webber Park. Really, I am. I don't even feel guilty about it. They could have built up the park and kept the pool for the same price. Built in 1910!

Webber Pool, year unknown. From the time it was built in 1910 until 1927, water was diverted form Shingle Creek to fill the pool. Beginning in 1927 the pool used filtered and chlorinated city water. In the early years, boys and girls used the pool at different times. One reason for the high wall around the pool was to prevent boys and girls from watching each other swim. In the 1930s, more than 1,500 children under the age of 14 used the pool every summer day. (City of Parks, Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board)

From 1996 through 2010, this pool was my 'summer at the beach'. I bought my first house a half block away because it was close to this pool. Someone asked me, 'you bought a house because it was close to a pool'? HELL YES! Six lanes of twenty-five meters on the one end, I swam laps daily for the 2 1/2 months it was open. I often had the place to myself during morning laps. Lazy Sundays were so peaceful. They opened at 11:00, but NOBODY showed up until 1.


There is nothing like diving in and laying at the bottom reveling in the prisms of all that sparkling water. 

It was a safe haven for kids in a not so safe neighborhood.

I know nothing stays the same, but this should have been listed on the historical register. Just my opinion, I know. Stupid Jon Olson, who ran a crooked campaign to win as park rep for the area. This new plan is his plan. He has been pushing this for many years. I will not ever go to his Dairy Queen and again, I hope his plan is an epic failure.

KJ went there Monday with his friend showing her the old neighborhood. Funny how he left when he was in 1st grade, but he still has ties to the area through the summers since spent at the pool.

He took this picture. Makes me so sad.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Updated with Sophie

Pictures of fosters with general dates I had them.
#16 Sophie (June 2012)

#15 Bunker (May 2012)

#14 Jinny (April 2012)

#13 Rocket (February 2012)

#12 Bruno (December 2011) now Woodson and adopted by me!

 #11 Desi (November 2011)

#10 Mac (August 2011)

#9 Prairie (May 2011)

#8 Diamond (September 2010)

#7 Swiper (July 2010)

#6 Becca (May 2010)

#5 Fergus (March 2010)

#4 Cody (December 2009)

#3 Dolly (October 2009)

#2 Baron (August 2009)

#1 Janis (June 2009)