Nicolas is Becoming a Dog!

April 22, 2009

We have had little Nicolas for two months now and he’s been a joy for the most part.    In the last couple of weeks he has actually started to initiate play with our Min Pin, and even a little with the cat.  Okay, so the cat doesn’t really return the favor, but he makes a good effort.   Actually, she often chases him off mostly, but he’s a persistent little dog.  He’ll go into a play bow, then he’ll grrr and turn his head sideways and look all happy and excited.  Its really too cute to see him act that way now.  I’m trying to get a video of it.

He still hasn’t discovered the joy that is a good toy.  Marie shakes her stuffed gorilla at him and tosses it his way now and again, but he just doesn’t understand.  Or maybe he’s just not down with swapping slobber with another dog that way.  Who knows.

I took Nicolas to the Phoenix Pride Festival this past weekend, as RESCUE had a booth there.  He did quite well considering we spent two long afternoons there in the heat with all the strangers and the big dogs.  Nicolas is not a fan of the big dogs.  Easy enough to handle though, if I just turn him to face away from them, he stops with the barking.    He’s just letting them know that “I’m tiny but I’m tough! Ruff!”   He met lots of people and did his best to look sad and cute.  Hopefully it will bring in a few application for our little man.

He’s pretty much housebroken, but as we don’t have a doggie door, sometimes we don’t catch his subtle “I need to go potty now” signs and he’ll leave us a little present somewhere in the house.  But for the most part, he’s doing well in that department.   We have discovered though that Little Man does not enjoy being crated.  Our Min Pin prefers the crate and will spend hours in there on her own without us putting her in.  Its her safe space.  But not so with Mr. Nicolas.

We tried him out first in a smaller crate, one appropriate to his size.  He was so upset by the whole thing that he ripped off three toenails by pawing at his crate door.   Our solution was to up his crate size and put plexi-glass over the majority of the gate door, leaving room at top for air flow.   And that seemed to work for a week or so.   But the drama kicked it up a notch and he started to make himself sick over it, vomiting on a daily basis when crated.

So now, Nicolas gets to sleep in the laundry room, with lights on during the day, and jazz music playing softly on the radio.  He gets the giant 3 ft x 3 ft furry pillow and one of my t-shirts to keep him cozy.  He’s doing really well in there, no accidents and no vomiting.  And he still has the remaining toe nails intact, as well.    Its less than ideal, and required purchasing yet another baby gate (we should buy stock in those things I’m telling you), but it works and he’s a happier and healthier little chihuahua.

We’re still not getting very far with basic commands with him, but he does well on leash if Marie is walking with us (he seems to try to do what she does and act like her on leash, he’d really benefit from a doggie mentor in his new home).   But we’ll keep working with him.

Nicolas has been such a joy to have around and he’s just so darn cute I almost can’t stand it. 😀   We hope his forever home finds him soon, but until then, we get to enjoy this goofy little lovable pup.

Thanks for stopping by.  See you at the dog park!

Obama Family Dog…sigh

April 13, 2009

I know I’m not the first to blog about this, but I feel a need to express myself here.  This is not a political statement or a bashing of our president.  Its just my own personal opinion on a matter very near and dear to my heart.

Well, the Obama’s finally have a dog.  And its NOT a rescue dog.  I’m not 100% sure how I feel yet, but I know I’m not happy and glowing.

I know there was the complications of a child with allergies.  But the fact that they were so adamant about adopting and then end up with a puppy from a breeder?  Now, I’m sure it was indeed a reputable breeder, and not a puppy mill situation.  And I’m all for going the reputable route if you must have a specific breed for some reason. I understand it was a gift, but I’m sure it wasn’t an unexpected gift.  But this saddens me a bit.

First of all, they aren’t “adopting” a dog in need (according to an article I read, they are making a donation instead…that’s something I suppose).

Second, it will cause a rise in popularity of a breed that is not for everyone and that needs plenty of exercise and mental stimulation.   This means that later this year, we’re likely to see more PWD being turned into shelters than we’ve ever seen before (PWD are pretty rare on the shelter scene, hence the Obama’s having trouble finding a rescue in need of their help I suppose), because people will want one and will then find out it is more dog than they can handle or have time/money for.

It sets a precedent though, and one that bothers me.    I had high hopes that having a rescue dog in the White House would help to bring a greater focus to the plight of homeless animals in this country and to the importance of helping your local shelters.  Especially during these tough times, when so many are finding themselves losing jobs and homes, and not being able to continue caring for animals.  Many end up taking the family pets to the pound because they have no other options left.  Now that focus will be on a pure-bred dog, and the plight of the unwanted will be pushed back from the scene, overshadowed by photos of an adorable curly haired pup and his human family.    I feel like an opportunity for creating some real change is being lost here.  The First Family is an influential force on American Society, one with the power to help “popularize” social change.  Look at Michelle’s garden, which I’m sure has inspired many to do the same and think even just a little about creating some sustainability in their lives.  By adopting a rescue dog, the family could have really brought the problem of homeless animals to the forefront and helped to encourage others to look to their local shelters rather than breeders when looking to add a furry family member.


Maybe they will redeem themselves, and in addition to making a donation, maybe we’ll hear about them actually putting in some volunteer time with an area shelter, since they couldn’t adopt…. Obama did after all make a call for service.

Stepping down off soap box now, and going off to hug my own pound pup and foster dog.

Thanks for reading.  See you at the dog park.

Meet Our New Foster – Nicolas

March 9, 2009
Nicolas loves to rest his head in your hand

Nicolas loves to rest his head in your hand

We have had the joy of little Nicolas for a few weeks now. The little man has been neutered and is ready to find his new forever home.

Nicolas is a small, 8 lb chihuahua, with pug-like tendencies.  That’s right.  He looks like a chi, but snorts like a pug.  Its not constant, but he does snort.  And he snores.  Which is just too funny, and too cute.  I’ve actually recorded the sound of it.   He also has a soft, pug-like coat (around the scruff its super soft) and he sits and lays in very puggy positions (pug owners will know just what I’m talking about).   I do so miss having a little snorting machine around and he fills that void nicely.

Little Nicolas, or as we like to think of him, Bruiser, is a little hesitant initially, but once he’s knows you’re a friend, he’s happy to accept some cheek and neck scratches.    That’s what he’s doing in the photo above.  If you are seated on the floor, he will come over and put his head on your hand until you scratch him.  He can be quite persistent about it too.    He also loves to just snuggle up in a lap or will curl up on next to a human on the couch and snooze.

His favorite place to be is on the pillows on our recliner.  That’s his little spot, and we have a feeling that if we didn’t crate him at night or while we are out of the house, that the chair is where he would spend most of his day.

Nicolas is finally starting to come out of his shell.  This weekend he made huge puppy leaps by actually initiating play with the Min Pin.  He actually play-bowed and let out a tiny little grrr, then flung his head and romped across the room to get Marie to chase him.  She was all too happy to oblige and we had a brief round of Puppy 500 in the living room.  Then I took a step forward from the kitchen and distracted Nicolas (“Ohmigosh, there’s mom, I’d better go see her, its been minutes since I’ve seen her last and that’s just far too long”).   He still has no clue what to do with toys, but Marie has been a pretty good teacher in the area of play (she’s been trying to get him to chase her for a couple of weeks now).

He is also still mostly afraid of our cat.  She enters the room, he stops and turns his head away and won’t look in her direction at all.  But that’s slowly changing, yesterday he actually gave her a little chase down the hall in a playful manner (hey, she hissed and swatted first, with no provocation from him, he was totally justified in that moment of feline following).   But seeing as he’s about half the size of most cats, he’s totally cat-safe.

I find myself wondering about life for this sweet little guy before he ended up at Animal Care and Control.  When he was rescued, he has some major staining around the eyes (he looked owl-like in his rescue-day photos), one of his toenails was a short little mangled thing with a pointed tip and he has some scars on his tiny body (see second photo in his gallery, on his right hind leg).  And he’s only about a year old.    I just wonder what he’s seen, what he’s been through and experienced.   But I know its better to not dwell on his unhappy past and rather focus on helping him to blossom and become the sweet and well-adjusted little dog he was always meant to be.

Nicolas would probably be happy as an only dog, but I also see him doing fabulously with another small and playful pup.    His ideal home is an adult home (or home with children 12 and older) where his people will be home more than they are away.

If you’re interested in Nicolas, you can fill out a Matchmaker form on our website.  

He’ll also be at the Grayhawk Bow Wow Pow Wow this coming Saturday, March 14th, from 10am-1pm.  You can swing by and meet him there!

Thanks for reading.  See you at the dog park!

Velvet Says….

January 27, 2009


How can you possibly refuse? I met Miss Velvet this past weekend, and let me just say, she is a real love. And even better, she’s available for adoption and just waiting for you to find her and be her forever home.

Velvet is 8 years young. She currently shares a room with another cat and does quite well. She hasn’t spent much time around dogs though, so I’m not sure how she would do in a home with one. A RESCUE Matchmaker might be able to give you more information on that. She’s a quiet and friendly gal who will be happy to grace the sunny spots in your home.

Velvet went through a rough patch in life. She was adopted out but returned due to her family moving. Initially she was scared and confused, but she has since blossomed and learned to trust people again. She loves attention and isn’t afraid to ask for it. Her space at our cat facility looks out into the entrance area. I was greeted by her when I came in the door. She let out a little meow and then reached out a paw to me. And when I decided to stop scratching her head before she’d had enough lovin’, she let me know about it. 😀

If you’re interested in Velvet, or know someone who might be, check our her profile on our website. Then fill out a Matchmaker form.

Thanks for stopping by. See you at the dog park.

Quick Update

December 30, 2008

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season this December. We sure did. Marie happily received a new chewy toy, Neika got a new cat-nip filled crinkly pillow toy, and Reggie got a new red sweater (we shaved some mats off back in September, but the fur never grew back fully, so he’s a little bald in spots, and gets chilly at night). Marie spent the week chewing, Neika spent it kicking around her little pillow (usually just as we were trying to fall asleep), and Reggie adjusted nicely to wearing something more than just his collar. He was less than thrilled with the whole situation, but I think he feels better at night now.

Other than Reggie walking into the tree every now and again (hey, you move things around on your blind cat and chances are good they’ll run into stuff now and again as they get used to the new set up), we all had a nice Christmas.

We took some time off from fostering. Marie and our last foster, Diamond (a Queensland Heeler), didn’t get along so well. There was an incident involving just who got to use the small crate, and neither girl wanted to back down. Yes, I said small crate, and yes, Diamond is a Heeler. No idea how, but she actually managed to fit in a small crate and liked it that way. So, needless to say, we decided we all needed a break.

And it was for the best, as Reggie has gotten worse these last couple of months. For your review, Reggie is a 15 year old Maine Coon cat. He suffers from hyperthyroidism, kidney damage (from the HT, requiring daily sub-q fluids), high blood pressure and arrhythmia. He is also blind. Add to that now having an infection in his mouth and you have one grumpy cat. The mouth infection begs for removal of teeth. He’s actually already lost one on its own. Problem is, he’s a 15 year old cat with an arrhythmia. Our vet feels that surgery is just too risky, and the chances of losing him there on the table are too high. So we’re treating that infection with a round of antibiotics every couple of weeks. He’s been having problems getting to his litter box in time the last couple of weeks, so we’ve come home to some pretty foul messes on the tile in the kitchen and dining room (at least he keeps it on the tile I guess). He has his good days and his bad days when it comes to eating (the last few days have been bad days unfortunately). So we’ve had some fun in the House of L lately. We just felt that adding a new dog to the mix probably wasn’t such a good idea.

So that’s all that’s been happening around here. I’m hoping to be able to post a bit more often after the New Year. I don’t know where 2008 went, but it sure went by quickly. Hope you all have a great rest of 2008 and wonderful New Year!

Thanks for reading. See you at the dog park!

I’m in Love….

December 9, 2008
…with a boy named Tad.

I got the joy of spending some time with Tad a couple of Saturdays ago. And I have fallen hard for this adorable little guy. I posted a picture of him from his rescue day back in May. Little did I know that the sad little face belonged to the sweetest little dog.

We list Tad as a Chihuahua, though he reminds a little of my Min Pin (and it’s not just the markings). He could have a little crazy pinscher in him, who knows.

He has soulful eyes, a soft smooth coat, and a funny little “collar” of fur that sticks out a bit on his neck. He loves to sit in your lap and give you soft little puppy kisses. He’s a quiet little guy who is content to just “be.” He has wonderful manners in public and walks well on the leash. He also appears to be mostly housebroken (we were at Noble Beast in Phoenix, and he let me know he needed to go outside while we were there).

Tad enjoys spending time with his canine companions, and while he would probably be fine as an only dog, he would also do well with a sibling. Because he’s a small, calm dog, he doesn’t require a large amount of exercise beyond daily walks and romps across your living room. He’d make an excellent apartment or condo dweller.

Tad also looks quite stunning in a sweater, as you can see from the photo. ;D

Do you have a space in your pond for this little Tad-pole? If you do, hop on over to our website and fill out a Matchmaker Form.

And until he finds his forever home, I will continue to pine for the little guy.

Thanks for stopping by! See you at the dog park!

Help RESCUE Win $10,000!!!

September 29, 2008
All you have to do is vote! Its that easy.

Click on the “Go Now” button above and vote. To browse for RESCUE, select Arizona for the state, then scroll down until you see the Phoenix listing. Click on RESCUE and vote! We have 183 votes as of this posting. We’ll need a whole lot more to win, so start voting!! You can even send it on to everyone in your email address book to help spread the word.

Thanks for voting. See you at the dog park!

Meet Gracie!

September 19, 2008

Meet our foster Gracie!
She has been with us since August 25th, but I just haven’t had a chance to post about this sweet and goofy girl. Gracie came down with pneumonia a few days after coming to stay with us, and she started out a meager 19lbs. But she’s recovered from that is now a crazy, silly, energetic puppy. And she’s put on a pound or two.
Gracie is a Whippet/Dalmatian mix (we think). She’s a medium sized dog, coming about to the knees. But she’s all legs!! She is so not a graceful dog. Its part of her charm though.
Gracie loves a good toy. Whether you throw it for her or if she pounces on the toy and sends it flying herself, she loves to fetch. And if a toy squeaks, its good times in the House of L. Right now as I type this, she is raiding the doggie toy box. Not sure what she’s trying to pull out, but I think it might be the ball that lights up.
She is a young dog, and exhibits many puppy behaviors. She’s mouthy, but does not chew inappropriately. She is housebroken, but sometimes she’ll be so focused on playing with a toy that she’ll forget to go outside and just tinkles in the house, then goes on playing. We have to make sure to make her take breaks to go potty. She is high energy and it is a must that she go to a home with another playful pup. She isn’t the best on a leash yet, but she’s a smart dog and will learn quickly. She has already learned “sit” though she’s not always consistent with it yet. She’ll sit when we stop and wait for her to before placing her food bowl on the floor. She’s also started to crate up on command.
Gracie has been an absolute joy to have around. But tomorrow, she’ll be going over to the dog daycare where we board some the RESCUE dogs. She’ll be much happier there because she’ll have lots of playful friends (both four-legged and two legged) to keep her busy. She’s getting a little bored here, since the old lady (the Min Pin) and the grouchy cats won’t play with her. I try, but I just can’t over the feeling of fluff in my mouth when I’m carrying around the squeaky stuff toy. Oh well. We’ve had a lot of fun with her and can’t wait to see her find her forever home. Now that she’s up on the website and available for adoption, I don’t think she’ll be with RESCUE much longer. 😀
Tomorrow I pick up a new foster. He’s a 3lb Chihuahua named Jalen. I’ll post more about him soon.

Bowl-a-rama Was a Success!!!

August 4, 2008

Wow! We had an initial goal of $45,000 for this fundraiser. At the beginning of last week we were only up to about $31,000 and so dropped that goal to $35,000 for a final total. Well, we surpassed that, and while we didn’t quite meet the original goal, we did raise a whopping $43,000!!!! I don’t know if any of those donations came from my 2 readers, but if it did, thank you very much!!

We also had a blast bowling on Saturday morning. People came dressed in their best ’50s attire and we bowled our little hearts out. The dogs beat the cats, ahem. You can see some video footage on RESCUE’s Facebook page. Check it out! And check out some of our other videos and photo albums while you’re there. You can get your morning dose of cuteness from all the dogs and cats.

Thanks for reading. See you at the dog park!

Bowl-a-Rama Fundraiser: Three Days Left!!

July 30, 2008

Well, we have three days left until Phoenix-area shelters converge and take over a bowling alley this coming weekend!!

RESCUE has a goal of $45,000. This will help cover most of our expenses for the rest of the year. $1500 a month covers our dog boarding costs. But we also have cats in boarding, medical expenses (we recently had to have all the teeth pulled from one of our little dogs, man was the expensive) and various other expenses that come with any business (even non-profits have bills to pay). But with only three days left, it looks like we won’t quite meet that goal, which is unfortunate.

However, the volunteers have all worked really, really hard to raise the money we have so far. We now hope to raise at least $35,000 before the end of the week. We’re about $1000 short of this goal!! If you haven’t made a donation yet, please take a moment to go over to the website and make a secure, tax-deductible donation. Every little bit helps, even a donation as small as $5 will help make a difference.

Already made a donation? Please pass the link on to the animal lovers in your life and encourage them to make a donation as well.

Thanks for reading. See you at the dog park.