Meet Chock.

After two girl fosters (Holly and Lovebug) we were thrilled to get our hands on this boy… we are about gender equality in this house and since Bodie last left, we were having boy withdrawal.

Meet Chock.  He said  he’s please to meet you all.

He kinda reminds me of a panther, do ya see it?

A smiling panther… with a wiggle butt…and frog legs.

We first laid eyes on this guy at our Pints for Pits Fundraiser (for BARCS) in mid-June.  We still had Lovebug, but she did have an adoption application pending…when we agreed the adopters were a perfect fit, we knew exactly who was coming our way next.

LB left us on a Saturday morning and this dude showed up the next evening.  He’s been with us about a week now and he’s pretty fantastic.

Oh…and Handsome too.  Check out those chestnut eyes.

And that adorable lower lip.  How could he not win us over every time?  “Puh puh puh please can I have that treat?”  Yup, he’s got a bit of a stutter too, so we imagine.

We are big fans of this guy.  Huge.

A distinguished gentleman.  (ok…well maybe he still needs some finishing school…more on that later!)

Introducing, Bodie!

You all thought we were really gonna call him Gimp!?  How cruel do you think we are around here?!?  Despite his true gimpy-ness, we use that nickname only occasionally.

We decided to call him Bodie, after one of our (many) favorite characters from the Baltimore-based series, The Wire.

Our Bodie is a determined teenager, like Bodie from The Wire.  However, our Bodie is a hugger and a cuddle monster, very unlike the human Bodie who inspired his name.

Bodie had a pretty exciting weekend around here.  He got his cast off (yippie!) — He was very worried about his tan lines when he was out stoopin’ on St. Pitty’s St. Patty’s Day, so he was relieved to not have to worry about that.

He also got to socialize with some festive people in green.  Despite his initial hesitation about his outfit (the cone of shame), he realized it got him even more attention and decided that since the humans embraced it, he would too!

We hope everyone had a great St. Patrick’s Day!

The gimp

We have a new face around here…we’ve nicknamed him Gimp.Why you ask?  Well check out that gimpy limb!  Lucky for him, he gets to keep it.  But a car sure did do a number on it.  He showed up at BARCS and was sent to rescue (MABB) pretty quickly.  Good thing too…the shelter is no place for any dog, especially one who needs to recoup and recover!

He’s only had his cast for a few days, so he’s still figuring out how to get around with it.  He’s doing an impressive job, I have to say.  But of course there are some funny moments.

Though…he doesn’t like it much when I make fun of him…

Oh and we’ll have to take care of those boys too… one surgery at a time though…

Dear Knox, Part II: The Journey

Dear Knox,

You were a smart boy, picking us.  Just like we were a smart couple, picking you.  After bringing you home, you really taught us what it was to learn the meaning of ‘responsible’.  We grew up because of you.   We got you through a nasty case of demodex mange that despite keeping much of your hair, you had a lot of trouble getting rid of.

Playing with your buddy, Foster (and your mangey coat!)

You had countless belly troubles, and oh yea, some of the worse separation anxiety anyone had ever seen (let alone us, who knew nothing about it).  It was about six months of consistency (5 dog beds, 2 crates and a bazillion kongs later) that finally made you realize we would never really leave you, not for long anyway.  It was torture hearing you yelp, cry and scream for us when we left for work day after day; but we were SO proud of you for finally understanding that we’d be back for you.  Always, bud.  ALWAYS.

And fun, there was so much fun!  You, my Baltimore-city-picked-up-running-the-streets-of-North-Ave Boy, got to experience the country!  And boy did it suit you!  I think your most favorite place in the world is the lake.  You’ve been both summers and you LOVE it there.  You hunt for sticks most of the day (even mastering the art of snorkeling), and sun yourself on the dock in the afternoon.

snorkeling for sticks

You sleep so well there since you don’t stop from sunrise to sunset.  I’ve been visiting the lake since I was only a few years old, but it has a special meaning to me now.  I think I’ll always have an easy time finding you there.

You’ve traveled to Rhode Island, New York, St. Michael’s (MD), The Outer Banks, D.C., and a ton of local day trips to hike and swim.  I loved how well you did, everywhere.  If you were with us, all was good in your world.  My easy boy.

Running with your buddy, Tyson in OBX

And Change minds?  Hell Yes you did.  Just within out close circle of family and friends, we got the “YOU got a WHAT?!?!” when we brought you home… but look at the love in these faces now… these people ADORE you now. 

And of course, the fostering.  It was because of your needs at first.  It was a debt, actually.  We needed so much help with the mange and anxiety and everything else.  I told ‘T’ (that sweet gal that runs MABB and basically saved your life a bazillion times since this mama knew nothing and T always had the answer), that once Knox was settled in, we’d give it a whirl.  After all we certainly owed her (let’s pretend I didn’t email her every other day with ridiculous questions…).  Well, who would have guessed, you were the best damn foster brother that ever could have existed.  You were playful with the puppies and let them walk all over you, you gave space to those who needed time to warm up, and you comforted those who were unsure at first, about many different things (like steps and crates and city buses).  I never did capture in a photo, but both Eve and Lola looked at you CONSTANTLY for reassurance.  It was amazing how calm cool and collected you were knowing that you had your lil girls to look out for.  And that wild Buddha man, what a personality!  But you helped him contain himself when appropriate, and you really helped him get over his separation anxiety a lot faster than you did (and can you believe his was WORSE?!)  His new mama owes you a big thank you for that one!

You’re weekends were filled with ‘stooping’ and ball at the park,

Enjoying the grass after some nice fetch at the park - your favorite way to start a Saturday morning

followed by evenings of snuggling up close.

What a trip you had buddy… this journey through life was anything but ordinary.  They guessed you were born sometime in August 2009, but we know your life didn’t really start until May 17th, 2010.  You really lived it up and when it finally came time to lay you to rest, it brought me peace to know we gave you every ounce of love, affection, and experience we could.

I hope your enjoying sun, grass and endless tennis balls and bully sticks right now… I love you sweet boy.  Tomorrow, bud, I’ll tell you all about the Legacy you’ve left behind…

How’s Knox?

The question of the month.  I can’t even imagine counting how many times I’ve been asked this question in the past month.  And my heart is grateful to every single person who’s asked.  So, how IS Knox?

Knox is skinny, lethargic and sick.  He’s sicker than I’ve ever imagined he could be.  So sick that sometimes I start preparing for the worst.  But smart and supportive friends have said to just take it one day at a time.  He’s got two weeks (well, 10 days at this point) to turn a corner.

I know he’s fighting hard.  Really hard.  And so are we.  Our boy has gone from a jubilant, energetic boy who would amaze everyone with his speed after a tennis ball…from my running partner, an entertainer for each foster dog that came through the door…a great big muscle-y lug head; to skin and bones.  He gets up only to go for a quick walk or to eat (thank goodness he has continued to do that…).  He’s lost what little fat he had before, and we suspect a whole lot of muscle (thank you, prednizone).  His spine, hip bones, ribs and shoulder blades protrude.

Will he get better?

We have no flippin’ idea.  It’s been an emotional roller coaster to say the least.  Some days I accept that 5 weeks on medications and no progress means, he’s done.  Then I really think about it… and how is that possible?  Just over Christmas he was his normal, happy, (sometimes over) excited self.  In just a few weeks he’s turned into a different dog.  He’s sad; he’d prefer not to cuddle when before, you had to warn guests that a 68lb pile of love would most likely attempt to sit on your lap.  Of course we give him his space…most of the time.This boy is loved, that’s for sure.  And not just by us… and that is comforting on some level.  But the truth is, we just wish there was an answer.

If there is no improvement by February 10th, we’ll probably cut him off his meds and let fate take it’s course.  It may sound horrible (it certainly does to me), but I refuse to string him along for no reason, not to mention waste thousands of dollars to keep him alive for my own personal benefit.  This is not him.  If he starts getting better, I’d risk my arm to make sure he improves, but if he doesn’t?  Keeping him alive, barely…who is that serving?  Certainly we love him too much to be that selfish…we love him way too much.

An update from Ivy

So since we’ve been in need of some good news, we wanted to share with you how wonderful our Ivy girl is doing!  (this is news that makes us very happy!)  We’ve been in touch with her adopters, and actually ran into them at Barcstober fest this past October (she was adopted in June 2011).

Here’s what they had to say:

After a bit of a rocky start, mostly due to our learning curve as new dog owners, Ivy (aka puppy) has settled in and we can’t imagine our lives without her. Even during the rocky start we were so torn about what to do because she’d wiggled her way into our hearts in such a short time … and when I say wiggled, I mean full body, butt almost hitting the head, wiggle! there’s nothing better than coming home to that every day! 🙂 

Ms. Ivy has attended and graduated from obedience training (the only one to graduate that day!) … and is a lady on leash and off, except for sometimes when her ball is involved, but she’s getting better at sharing! Boy, does she love her ball … and puppies. She LOVES puppies … and could play with them for hours. Also, when she’s really excited on a walk, she does this little bunny hop thing, which couldn’t be cuter. After a long walk or romp with her ball and friends, she likes nothing better than to curl up with one of us or her blanket(s) for a looong nap.

 I, like another previous foster update, was strictly against allowing our dog on the couch. She was going to learn to love her plush dog bed, darn it!! THAT lasted about as long as i could stand that gorgeous face staring at me in bewilderment. those ears!! She was on the couch within a couple of weeks … and remains there to this day.

This was our first christmas with a dog, so we weren’t sure what to expect with regards to the tree … but so far, aside from thinking the tree skirt was yet another blanket for her, she hasn’t fussed with it much. Every now and then I’ll find her sitting awkwardly underneath it … and have seen a few episodes of butt scratches on the branches, but mostly she leaves it alone. We (meaning my husband) thought we would need a fake tree from now on, but he seemed to have forgotten that our puppy is such a lady.

Anyway, I’ve gone on too long … but just wanted to take one more minute to thank you for all that you do for this breed and for all your support during those first couple of weeks when we had Ivy. You were extremely reassuring and I can honestly say that your support (along with MABB) is one of the reasons we are still the proud owners of a fantastic dog!!  Thank you!

Oh, and I’ve attached a few photos if you want to share … 🙂  Sorry for all the sleepy pictures, but she spends a lot of time doing that!We are so glad to hear how well Ivy is still doing.  We’ve been taking a lot of time this weekend to think back over all the dogs Knox has been a big foster-brother too, and Ivy was one of his favorites.  Despite the rocky start, C & E, Ivy’s mama and dad, are the epitome of committed and loving owners.  The second an issue came up, the communicated it with us, MABB, and got right to the trainer.  Because of their commitment, consistency and love for Ivy, she is now doing fabulous.  Now THAT is a happy ending that puts a smile on Knox’s face.

Our first award!

We couldn’t be more thrilled!  excited! And humbled of course.  Last week we received our first blog award : )  Thanks to Our Waldo Bungie for gifting it to us.

Liebster means Dearest in German, so the Liebster Blog Award is the Dearest Blog Award. It’s an award intended to recognize worthy, lesser known blogs and to help expose their work. Of course, accepting The Liebster Award comes with a few rules!

1. Thank the giver and link back to the blogger who gave it to you. (check!)

2. Reveal your top five picks {with less than 200 readers} and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog. (See below)

3. Copy and paste the award on your blog.  (done!)

4. Hope that the people you’ve sent the award to forward it to their five favorite up-and-coming bloggers and keep it going!  (fingers crossed!)

So I’ll admit that I actually have no idea how many people are following some of the below blogs, so if I offend anyone I apologize in advance!

In no particular order:

A&A Friese: I am completely amazing by anyone who lives in Alaska.  A reason to blog in and of itself (in my book).  But on top of that?  An adorable pitbull type dog named Molly and they foster.  Fabulous!

Running with Squirrels: Love the name of this blog!  And they Just started fostering so go check them out!  I also know (thanks to my fabulous internet stalking skills) that they are fostering through Jasmine’s House, another awesome pitbull rescue here in Maryland.

Between Trains: Another fabulous foster blog that’s also just getting started.  On their first foster dog now, but boy do they have a beautiful pack of their own!  Also fostering through Jasmine’s House!

Twenty Six to Life: Now my gut strongly tells me this blog has way more than 200 followers, but hey, I can plead the 5th because I honestly have no idea how to tell… Anyway!  Love this blog because if features three resident pitbull typers and the secret to how it won my heart?  Kate (blog author) is hugely helping me with my photo skillz and she doesn’t even know it!  Until now…  Thanks Kate!  Kate also sent Knox the bestest squeaker toy ever during the Pittie Posse Secret Santa…How could this blog not be on here!?  Go check it out!

Fields of Green: Now there are Dog people, and there are Kid People, some dabble in the other, some take on both hats, and a whole bunch NEVER want anything to do with the other.  That’s not me… I love ’em both.  This blog is by a dear friend of mine who is currently doing the baby thing while I’m doing the dog thing.  Someday I’ll have a baby (I hope… and I also hope not too soon) and someday she’ll (probably) have a dog.  Until then we can live vicariously through each other (with the respective dog/baby thing… otherwise I think we’re both quite content with our lives).  Credit must also be given to fabulous Taylor for her wonderful writing, photography techniques (Knox as the model here), and gluten-free recipes.

And because the foster girls have been hogging the blog, here’s a picture of Our One True Love, Knox, and his true love; his orange ball (taken in November).

And we say goodbye to another…

Yup, so quick.  Our Lolabug is gone.  It happened so fast, but she’s an easy gal to fall in love with.  We had her exactly one month.  She was adopted on New Year’s Day!

She will no longer have to spend her afternoon naps dreaming of her forever home because she’s got her own now.

We’re so Happy that our little Lola will spend her days with a wonderful couple, on a big plot of land, and a small canine brother named Bean.  The couple who adopted her has adult children, so for the rest of her (hopefully long) life, Lola will be the center of their life.  We can’t be more thrilled for our gal.Knox will miss his head rest, his playmate, and his snuggle buddy.  We’ll miss the little Lola who kept the kitchen mat warm.But we’re just so happy for you Lola bug!  And what a way to start the year!  A new home.  Best wishes, girl!

A recipe for a Perfect Christmas

We hope everyone had a great holiday!  Despite the fact that Knox missed Lola a lot during his trip to New York to visit his Grandma, he figured out a recipe for the perfect Christmas!

It started with a lot of staring out the window waiting for the guy in the red suit who looks like a big chew toy…

Add some cookie sniffing  (He did sample some, but not directly from the table!  He was on clean-up-the-crumbs duty)

and a good amount of time opening Christmas presents with some of his favorite human relatives.  Sprinkle in some awesome chew and tug time with the dragon (thanks to the Pittie Posse Secret Santa)

And finish off with the best part of all:  Playing Ball!  Green grass!  and Chilly temps!

Nothing compares to a little bit of mud, a lot of space, and a green ball.  Even when its 34 degrees.

And maybe add in a little romp with your favorite Schnauzer…if your into that sorta thing 😉

There!  You got a recipe for the perfect Christmas!

We hope you enjoyed your holiday just as much as we did!

Lola, the Hostess with the Mostest

Lola’s a party girl, who knew?!  She helped Knox host a holiday party this past weekend.  She really was the hostess with the mostest, and put me to shame!

She mingled with guests,

and helped with some babysitting duties.

She checked in on guests in the kitchen since it was too crowded for me to get in there…  “Yup everyone’s glasses are full!”  Thanks for the update, Lolabug.

She ensured that the crumbs were caught when guests made messes, even when Knox was dozing off (he’s a slacker sometimes she told me).And she made sure all the guests that needed a good lap-warming, got one.

I could not have pulled off this party without my Lolabug… If you need help hosting, Lola’s your girl!  She was calm cool and collected even when I was stressing out.  Thank you Lolabug!