Thursday, July 31, 2008

Swimming with Dogs!

Kevin Costner should star in the movie version of "Swimming with Dogs!" It would be a hit with all of my furry friends. Last night the humans invited another Golden Retriever Rescue foster family over to join us in an evening in the pool. I let humans do the inviting, they talk on the phone better than I do. Bella and I and our three new friends went from five dry dogs to five wet dogs in a minute. Look at the pictures and share our fun!
Above, I am coming out of the water towards the stairs, I got the ball. Bella is still dry, she thinks water is for drinking, not swimming. Sergeant and Sorsha are looking over the edge of the pool trying to spot more tennis balls. Below, Sergeant show us how to get into the water quickly!

Two humans, John and Kris, chauffeured Evelyn (9), Sergeant (7) and Sorsha (7) over to join us in a dip. Sargent was so excited he jumped, or fell, into the pool as he rushed into the back yard. Sorsha took a few more minutes to get her bearings, then a ball landed in the pool and she was in it in a flash. They brought a bag of tennis balls with them and there were floating balls everywhere. Sergeant and Sorsha are brother and sister, Evelyn is a "foster failure." They took her in to foster her, fell in love with her and refused to give her up. Sergeant and Sorsha are wild and play hard, Evelyn is more cautious, but once she gets over her uncertainty, she keeps up with us. I understand "foster failures", I am one myself, my humans took me in to foster me and refused to let me go.

What fun we had, the humans were swimming with us and throwing balls for us just like we have trained them to do. They are good at throwing balls but they are very poor at fetching them. Humans don't seem to have a good "fetch" gene in them. It is nice to see dogs and humans sharing the same fun times. So often we dogs go off and run without taking the time to include our humans. Evelyn took her time getting used to the water, she even required some help getting used to it and learning the correct swimming technique. Swimming is such good, clean, family fun.

Five wet dogs. Twenty tennis balls. One large swimming pool. That tells the whole story. What fun we had. What a good nights sleep I had when it was over.

Mogley G. Retriever

Monday, July 28, 2008

A message from Alexis

There is a comment posted at the bottom of the second previous blog, the one in which we say good by to Alexis, which you may want to read. It is a message from Alexis at her new home. Alexis reports that she is doing well in her new home. She has two humans and no other dogs to share attention with. That means four hands to pet her, a much better deal than she had here. Whenever she was getting attention Bella and I would push her away and we would hog the hands. She has already been for a run in the fields. This is how the foster program is supposed to work, even if it hurts when a friend leaves for a new home. We hope she will keep in touch with us. We really like Alexis and we miss her. We moped around for two days after she left, good luck Alexis!

Mogley G. Retriever

A very Special Dog!

You may remember that Sophie was a foster dog staying at the humans son-in-law and daughters home along with Emma and Piper. Sophie was a super dog, she had the energy level of two normal dogs. She was a tennis ball-a-holic and she played from morning till night with her house mates. When it came time for her to be adopted we described her to one potential home as "like inviting hurricane Katrina to stop by your outdoor wedding to have a slice of cake." You were going to get more than you expected. She may have been the most energetic 18 month old Golden we have ever met. We were worried about her ever finding a home that could give her enough challenge and exercise. Then she tried out to be a police, drug sniffing dog. Her high energy and her need to work made her an ideal candidate to be a working dog. Being able to obsess over something, like tennis balls, means you will work hard and focus on whatever task you are given. All she needs is tasks to pursue and she will have a direction for her energy. It is exciting, a friend of ours is now in the training academy to learn to be a police tracking dog. Many people don't know that Golden Retrievers have Bloodhound in our genes, it was bred in so that we could more easily find birds and game when we were retrieving in the field. We have excellent noses and we are very accomplished trackers. What a wonderful opportunity for one of our friends to be a working dog to help find lost evidence and solve crimes for the police.

A very special thanks goes to the Golden Retriever Rescue of the Rockies, their volunteers went out of their way to find a way that Sophie could have a full life. It took time to make the arrangements for her to attend K-9 Academy. We appreciate the time and dedication it took to make it come true. Special people helping special dogs!

K-9 Sophie G. Retriever reporting for duty, Sir!

We expect to read about her in the paper soon:

"Foster dog from Golden Retriever Rescue
of the Rockies, Makes Good,
Sophie solves huge drug case."
Congratulations Sophie!

Mogley G. Retriever

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Good By, Alexis

This is how we will remember Alexis, she is watching for a squirrel to come down the tree. This picture is a few minutes before she had to leave us to go to her new forever home.

Thursday noon the humans drove Alexis over to meet someone who was heading north towards Casper Wyoming. Alexis was sad to go, she was settled in here and we could have kept her very easily. She was a wonderful friend. We sent the rest of her medications along with detailed instructions on her needs. She likes tummy scratches and she likes to rest with her head on your feet. We will miss her a lot.

My life is getting better. My appetite has returned but don't tell my humans. When I was sick they tried to bribe me to eat by sprinkling shredded cheese on my food. It worked, now they want to stop just because my appetite is better. I have to refuse to eat before each meal until they give me my cheese sprinkles on my food.

I am still jumping in the swimming pool regularly and getting locked out of the house regularly until I dry off. I don't know why the humans get upset, it is clean water. They call in a swimming pool, if I did not swim in it no one would be in it for days at a time.

We will not have another foster dog until we are sure there is no danger of anyone catching kennel cough. Life will be quiet until someone new arrives. Alexis will be hard to replace in our lives, she set a very high standard when it comes to being a wonderful foster friend.

We wish Alexis a wonderful life and we hope she sees many wonderful sunsets over the plains and mountains of Wyoming. We wish her a back yard full of slow squirrels. We wish her streams to wade in and meadows to run on. We wish her a warm place by the fire when the snow blows and the praries turn white. Good Luck on your journey Alexis, may it be a long one.

We wish you the best of everything;
Mogley, Bella, three cats and the humans.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Alexis the Space dog

The resident human took his lap top with him and left me without a way to blog. I may organize pickets in front of the house to protest and to organize a fund drive to buy my own computer. He claims dog hair on the keyboard makes it hard to type. He keeps spraying flea powder on the keys. Alexis has been to the vet three times to get her stitches replaced. The third time she came home with a big plastic collar on her neck. She looked like a dog from outer space. It upset me a lot, it still upsets me just thinking about it. I attacked her and tried to rescue her from the collar. It got pretty noisy and some fur was in the air. I tore the collar up pretty good, it has a lot of teeth marks in it. The humans separated us and took the collar off of her. They tried to protect the stitches by wrapping her leg heavily with bandages with a layer of duct tape on top of it all to keep her from pulling out the staples. That allowed us to become friends again. The collar was laying on the floor near my favorite nap place, I could not bring myself to go near the hated plastic collar.

The humans watched Alexis closely for a few days to make sure she did not open up the incision, then they relaxed, she managed to tear off the new bandage shortly after they replaced it and she pulled the stitches out again. They took her to the vet, only this time the vet decided that she had healed pretty well and she did not need stitches again.

Our kennel cough is getting better, it is almost a week since we started taking our pills, we only cough once or twice per day. My energy is returning, the cough took a lot of energy away. We still have four more days of pills.
Alexis has perked up a lot more as well. She now chases the squirrels pretty hard. Bella and Alexis keep the squirrels running from tree to tree in the back yard. She is not allowed in the pool until her stitches heal completely and she misses her morning swim. She loves to lay on her back and kick her legs in the air. She does this several times a day, it is funny to watch. She even bounces on her front legs in "play invite".

I miss my swims, the humans don't want anydog in a pool until Alexis is better. They did not tell me not to get into the fish pond. Yesterday when it was very hot I had to cool off and since the pool was off limits, I jumped into the fish pond. When I came into the house they yelled at me that I was not supposed to get in the pool, Alexis might follow me in. I told them they were wrong, I did not get in the pool. They smelled me and they agreed, I had not been in the pool. They took me into the pool to clean off and get the fish smell washed away. I wish the would make up their mind. They don't want me in the pool until I get into the fish pond, they when I get into the fish pond they want me to get into the pool to wash off.

Alexis is now ready to go to her forever home. She still has some healing to do, but that is easy. She has a few days of pills to take for her cough and we can send those with her. The problem is that Alexis thinks she already has her forever home. She has settled in, she took over one of the dog beds, she has her own food bowl, her own leash, and she has free run of the house and yard. She knows the cats by their first names and she knows the squirrels by their chatter. She does not see any need to move. We have explained that she has to go to a forever home so that another foster dog can come to live with us, she says the foster can just go to that other home we keep telling her about. She said that if it is that wonderful of a home, the new foster dog can go directly there. We think she will like her new home once she gives it a try, but she is not too keen on trying it.

We have not heard if there is a firm adoption yet, but we should hear soon if she has a new home. Keep reading, we will update it as soon as we hear.

Mogley G. Retriever

Friday, July 18, 2008

Another day, Another pill

Alexis and the human went to the vet this morning. I did not get to go, they have the best dog treats there. I told Alexis to bring some back, she will eat them, I know her. She told me that the vet did not even let them in the clinic. They drove up to the back door, the vet wheeled out a clean up kit and stitched her up right in the truck. They did not want kennel cough inside. She said that she had some treats and somehow they got lost on the way home. Sure!

We have been in e-mail contact with someone that wants to adopt Alexis. It sounds like a wonderful home for her. She would live in Wyoming, lots of wide open spaces, mountain trails to hike, streams to wade in, wildlife to chase, miles of open space to run in without your leash, and her very own dog door so she can come and go as she likes. What more could any dog ask for? It proves that dogs do not have to die to go to heaven. The people did not say what brand of doggy treat they would be giving her. Humans always forget the important things.

I came running in the house while the evening news was on, the news was that I was wet and dripping all over the floor. You know that "bad dog" routine? You know, the shaking of the finger, the stern voice? That is what I had to put up with. They shoved me out the door and locked the dog door again. I am a sick dog, don't they know they are supposed to treat me carefully?

We did get extra treats tonight. We had several extra pills to take and we had peanut butter with each one. Bring on the pills.

When we checked Alexis' leg and she had an open wound, she had taken out the stitches again. Maybe this time when she comes back from the vet tomorrow she will remember to bring me some treats. Maybe she will have one of those collar things on and we can laugh at her.

Bella is just laughing at us. She has not caught the cough, she has no stitches. She still thinks she is the queen.

Mogley G. Retriever

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Kennel Cough

We have never had any problems before. It turns out that it takes a few days for Kennel Cough to appear. Alexis has been here for 7 days now, and she started coughing yesterday morning. Now I am going to catch it, I started coughing this morning. We will get medicine to take, I hope its the kind of pills that you take with peanut butter.

When we were westling today the stitches pulled out of the place where Alexis had a fatty tumor cut off her leg when she went to the vet. Now we will have to go to the vet tomorrow and get her stitches replaced, but we can't go in the clinic with her coughing, Kennel Cough is very contagious. So we don't know what will happen. Alexis was just starting to feel better and she was running more as the new pills helped her knees feel better.

The humans locked me out of the house for most of the day today. If I go in the pool quietly enough, they don't know I am wet util I am in the house. If I make noise when I swim they rush to shut the dog door before I can sneak in to dry off on the couch.

I will let you know how we do with our cough.
Mogley G. Retriever

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Alexis and Company

Today was a good day for all of us. Alexis is feeling better today. With pills for her bad knees, she tried to run in the back yard. The human had to put a leash on her to keep her from running and hurting herself before she heals. It is really good to see her improve so much.

We received a comment from a person with an application in to adopt Alexis, they live in Casper Wyoming. It sounds like a nice person, a nice family and a very nice place. We spend time in Wyoming, our humans have a home up in the mountains near Buffalo. We enjoy going up there so much. We are allowed to run without leashes, no fences, just space to be a dog. There are forests, streams, vast plains, horizons that go on forever. We can smell new things on every bush and sniff breezes with odors you will never smell in the city. We hope it works out, it is a Golden dream to be a dog where there is freedom to be a dog, and have the love of a family. They did mention taking long walks, Alexis has knees that won't let her walk too far at a time, even with her new pills.

We have a team at GRRR that evaluates humans and dogs. They seek to make the perfect match. It is their decision which person will be the best forever home for each dog. We have not heard from the match makers yet.
Mogley G. Retriever

A trip to the vet

Monday morning we took Alexis and Sophie over to see the Doctor. According to the history we were given on Alexis, she had never been to a vet, had never had any shots. When we arrived the first thing the nurse did was take their history. Sophie was easy, she was pretty current on her shots and she had no known problems. They were weighed. Sophie was only 45 pounds. Alexis weighed 83 pounds, which is a lot for her height. She should weigh about 68 pounds. They are really going to have to cut back on the treats for her.

When we arrived back at the clinic to get them late that afternoon, both Alexis and Sophie were pretty sleepy. Sophie had been tranquilized so they could clean out the huge plugs of goop in her ear channels. Her ears looked fine from a normal inspection, but way down at the bottom they were plugged up. She was still groggy from that and she walked funny on the leash, swaying back and forth, she looked like a sailor on a Saturday night.

Alexis was very quiet. They decided to spay her, so she has a couple stitches we have to watch. Close inspection of her back legs disclosed that her knee joints are weak and her front left shoulder is not strong. That explains why she does not run hard like the rest of us. The Doctor said she has pain from her joints. They gave us some pills to make her joints feel better.

Sophie and Alexis were both so sleepy that they had to be lifted into the car. They slept most of the way home. We dropped Sophie off at her house where she woke up long enough to grab some toys away from Emma and Piper. When Alexis arrived home she went to sleep under the humans feet. When dinner time arrived, she did not want to eat dinner. They gave her her pain pill with some peanut butter and some water to wash it down. Alexis slept very well all night long.

In the morning, Alexis was really hungry, she enjoyed her breakfast. We both had our morning peanut butter pills. After a few minutes when the pain pill too effect, Alexis became a new girl. She wanted to chase the squirrel, before she had watched it closely but she did not run after it. Those pills must be great stuff. She is still sleeping a lot, and she is not allowed to run for a few days. She is on the way to a better life now that we know how her joints are and she has pills to make them better.

It will be a few days before we worry about finding her a new home, she needs to rest up and heal a little more. Then she will be ready to come to your house and play.

Mogley G. Retriever

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Alexis in the Olympics

Well, maybe Alexis will not make the Olympic team this year, but she is trying hard to be a competitive swimmer. Below is a picture of her in the pool taking some lessons on her breast stroke technique. She is rapidly becoming a water dog.
Two wet dogs, Alexis and Mogley drip dry beside the pool.
Below, Alexis gets some chin scratching as enticement to join the fun in the pool.
The end of a tiring day. Swimming and running can wear a dog down.
The humans daughter came by today. After meeting Alexis she asked "You are not going to give her up, are you?" Alas, she is just here until we can find her a new forever home. She has an appointment with the vet Monday to make sure she is in good health and to get her shots updated. Then we will be looking for a new forever home for this wonderful lady.

You may go to the Golden Retriever Rescue of the Rockies web site and fill out an application to have Alexis as your best friend for life. Just click on the link on the left side of my blog.
Mogley G. Retriever

Friday, July 11, 2008

Alexis the water dog!

Alexis went swimming yesterday shortly after she arrived from the pound. She ran into the pool just following me as I went in. She did not know what the pool was and she had never been swimming before. It scared her a little. Today when my human and I went swimming, we looked around and Alexis was following us across the pool. She has turned out to be a very good swimmer and she kept following us in. She says it is fun and once she got over her fear, it was fun. It is a low impact way to excercise, Alexis thinks it will be an enjoyable way to lose weight. Boy are we going to have fun now. We did not get any pictures because the human was in the pool with us. We will get pictures of Alexis swimming tomorrow when we play again.

Mogley G. Retriever

More Alexis

It is now day two for the visit of our new foster, Alexis. Alexis was turned in by her humans to the shelter. It was full so Golden Retriever Rescue had to get her out of their fast. So now she is living with us. We have taken some pictures so that everyone can enjoy her. She is a very quiet, mellow girl. She is looking for a new forever home, her last forever home turned out to be for less than forever. She can't understand why her family abandoned her, she is really a loving, well mannered, obedient golden. If you have room in your heart or in your house, go to the Golden Retriever Rescue web site by clicking on the link to the left of this blog.

This is a photo of myself (Mogley) and Alexis. We are taking a break from playing. Thanks for reading my blog, and thanks for being a lover of Goldens.
Mogley G. Retriever

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Alexis comes to visit! Sophie too!

We have a new foster dog at our house. Alexis (Alex for short) was in the shelter, she had been surrendered at age 9 to the pound. Her family was moving and did not want to take her along. She was devastated, she had tried to be a good dog, she sat when told, she walked on the leash without pulling, she did not take food from the table. She even fetched tennis balls when ever someone would throw them. But at age 9, she was placed in doggy jail, by her own family! She was confused, scared, and her entire world was gone. Nine years of being a best friend, a buddy and a member of a family, all gone in moments. Instead she found herself on a cold concrete floor surrounded by chain link fence, barking dogs and people that did not have time to give her a tummy rub or a head pat. Golden's love with all of their heart, now that heart was broken. This is the reality of abandoning an older dog.
Below is the first picture of Alexis after her bath.
We don't know the circumstances that caused this to happen, but it happens too often. A disposable society does not have room for the totally unqualified love of a dog for his human family. A family buys new drapes and wants a new dog that matches them. Sometimes it is for a good reason, an older couple have to move to a nursing home. A widower has health problems that make it impossible to walk or exercise a younger dog. But too many have no reason, the dog is abandoned just because the family seeks change.

When Alexis arrived from the kennels, the humans took special care in introducing us. To introduce Bella, Alexis and I, my family took all three of us for a walk in the park together, keeping a tight grip on the leashes to make sure we were all right together. After an introduction on neutral ground, we were turned loose in the house, then taken to the back yard. I jumped into the pool to show Alexis the water, she followed me right in and immediately panicked. Her surrender papers said she was an apartment dog, she obviously had never been in deep water before. She scrambled out and then looked back to see what had happened. I thought she was scared of me and for a moment after I came out of the water, we had a brief tiff. Now I know she had never been in water before and following me in blindly scared her.

Since she was already wet, the humans gave her a shampoo to clean her up. In the kennels it is hard to keep clean and she was definitely not clean. She loved the attention of being scrubbed and dried. Then they brushed her as she dried. They got enough fur off of her that they may knit a new dog from the fur. Below is a picture of her in her afternoon nap, sleeping "frog style".

Alexis is a little overweight, and she tires out easily. She has not been getting enough exercise. We will change that in a hurry. She does love to run and play, but she has not played with many dogs before, she is slow to understand how to play. She says that she did not get to go play with other dogs and she is unsure how to relate to them. I told her just to relax and we will teach her everything about playing that she needs to know.

We will update her story tomorrow after she has had a chance to settle in and get acquainted. We hope you will help her find a new forever home where she can give all of her heart to a human without her heart being broken.

But wait, that is not all. Piper and Emma have a new foster sister as well. Sophie came to live with them until a forever home can be found for her. She is 18 months old, her owner could not care for her due to his health. He felt terrible about turning her over to us, and she felt terrible about leaving him in a time that he faces a long recovery. At a time like that, the human needs the love of a dog. She understands why she is in a foster home and she is making the best of it by playing non-stop with Piper and Emma. Piper and Sophie are the same age, so they are having fun, fun, fun. I will update her story as well as she seeks her forever home.

If any of you know of a human that needs a dog, let me know. I know two wonderful dogs that need humans.

Mogley G. Retriever

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Lap Dog!

I am now officially a lap dog. No, not a dog that sits on peoples laps, I am a dog that swims laps in the pool! After I completed my swimming lessons I have been practicing every chance I get. In the photo below I am going to rescue a swimmer that is obviously in trouble.

I am going to work on my life saving qualifications. In the photo below I am pulling a swimmer to the shore by grabbing their swim float. I have a hard time throwing a life ring like the real life guards, but I can take a swim float to them.

Being a water dog is a lot of fun. I start the day with a short swim. Then the humans lock the dog door, they want to keep me out side when I am wet. Is that a way to treat a clean dog? At least I will have a nice cool summer, no matter how hot it gets. If any of my golden retriever friends want to stop by and swim, we can have fun.

Mogley G. Retriver

Ellie has a Home

Ellie has a new home. We don't have many details on the new home, we had to leave town for a few days. We turned Ellie over to another foster family who took her to her new forever home. From what we know, she has a wonderful home and she will be a very happy and lucky puppy. The picture below shows Ellie and I saying good by.
We went up to the summer home in Wyoming to pack it up. The human decided to sell it, and when an offer came in he had to run up and pack up the old home. So we spent a few days in the high mountains with the trees and the wild deer. There were lots of stuff to pack and they ended up using several u-haul vans to move everything. The house had been in the family for several generations and it was full of old items. They had old saddles from the ranch, old pictures and furniture. They had old magazines from the 1930's-50's, they had old dresses, lots of hats, old steamer trunks and even veterinarian equipment. More stuff than you can name. Now the question is what to do with it all?

We are home again, but several more trips will be necessary. Riding in the car is fun, but riding for 8-9 hours at a time is not comfortable. We had to stop and rest several times. A few days in the mountains is fun, but we did not get a chance to play very much. Everyone was working too hard packing and cleaning up the old house.

Mogley G. Retriever