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Our official 30th foster.


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Another new foster!


Our 28th!

Meet miss Ruby!


Our new foster!


Meet our 27th foster! His name was Magic, but he has no idea what that is, but he comes to Marvin, lol, so Marvin it is!

Losing a dog to bloat


I wanted to do a series of posts addressing very common dog diseases/ailments. We’ve lost 3 dogs to these and I’m always left questioning if I could have done something different, better, or something to have kept these loves of my life around longer. The answer is mostly no, bloat being the possible exception.

The first dog I personally owned, was a purebred Doberman puppy whose parents were turned into the rescue.

The year of his 6th birthday, Joseph and I went out one evening and when we came back, Caesar didn’t greet us when we came home. He was out in the backyard and wouldn’t come to us. It was so weird. I then noticed that he had been up on the guest bed, peed all over it, and had also jumped on our bed. When he finally came in, his abdomen was huge. We knew that wasn’t right. We called our vet, which had suggestions for emergency care facilities. We called one and headed over.

Let me say this. Bloat is such a common affliction for so many dog breeds. It is such a quick, yet slow death. If you are not home and with your dog when bloat happens, it’s likely a death sentence for your dog. You basically have 20min to get that dog to the vet and into the surgery room if you want to even think about saving that dog. I’m serious. Even if you’re that fast, there are still no guarantees. The rescue owner’s own dog got to the operating table in time and ended up dying from heart complications after the fact! We had no idea how long Caesar had been bloated, but it was at least, AT LEAST, an hour. It took us 20min just to get to the vet. Bloat is a twist and flip of the stomach. It cuts off circulation to the organs downstream. Caesar’s organs were likely already failing. Surgery would have done nothing. Yet we sat in that lobby, sobbing, trying to figure out if we could borrow the $5k for surgery. That vet, who we hate, should have just told us the facts. Addendum, we were told later by our vet that it’s possible to let the air out to keep the animal more comfortable.

We were devastated. We knew nothing about bloat. We didn’t have any known options. So we put him down. Which was the most horrific euthanasia, which I won’t go into. We thought it was our fault. We thought we killed a totally healthy dog. It took us so much research and talking to people in the know to finally come to peace with what killed our dog.

This can be prevented with a gastropexy. It’s a stapling of the stomach to the outer wall of the abdomen, essentially preventing the stomach from flipping. RMGDR does it as a standard when fixing Danes. We do feed all our large dogs from an elevated food dish, but that may or may not actually help anything. There are also theories that it’s hereditary. Just because we had a pure bred dog didn’t mean we knew any bloodlines or anything. That might not have even come into play. Speaking of play, allegedly not letting your dog play hard after eating is supposed to help too, but even that isn’t a fact.

It’s an ugly way for a dog to die and it was particularly scaring for us as first time dog owners.

Losing a dog to Wobblers


I wanted to do a series of posts addressing very common dog diseases/ailments. We’ve lost 3 dogs to these and I’m always left questioning if I could have done something different, better, or something to have kept these loves of my life around longer. The answer is mostly no, bloat being the possible exception. We lost our second dog to Wobblers, which given our losses, I’d take this one if I had to choose.

We adopted a 1yr old Doberman that was purchased from a pet store. He came to the rescue when the family somehow couldn’t get a Mange diagnosis and were at the end of their financial rope trying to get Jimmy healthy. When we got him, he was missing about a quarter of his fur and had been kept outside as he never knew how to ask to go outside.

At about the age of two, we noticed that he was holding his back left leg. He’d hold it up, occasionally rest on his knuckles. After tests and xrays yielding nothing visibly wrong, we decided it was Wobblers. A crazy expensive MRI might have been more telling but ultimately, there was very little we were going to do to beat this. We were VERY lucky that his was a slow onset. We tried Rimadyl, Prednisone, and even acupuncture, and chiropractic treatments that all made no difference. We even tried getting steroid shots, but the vet insisted on putting it in his left hip rather than in his neck where Wobblers is the problem.

Surgery is an option, but it’s not a guarantee.

As time progressed, Jimmy used his back left leg less and less. We knew that his time would come when he could no longer walk. The year of his 11th bday, we had a few days where Jimmy had accidents in his bed and wasn’t getting up anymore. We made the appointment. The night before we gave him pizza, his favorite. The morning we were to take him in, that rascal got up and went and stood in the backyard sunning himself. I canceled the appointment. We knew we were on borrowed time, so for every week he continued, he got a “last meal”. He got Thanksgiving dinner and he got a bacon wrapped hot dog. He didn’t finish the hot dog and again couldn’t get up and was having accidents again. We again made the appointment. That appointment, he didn’t get up.

What I can say about this being the way we lost this fantastic dog is that we had a good long time with him. 11yrs is a good run for a lot of dogs. We were lucky for the most part in that we knew when it was time to let him go. It’s always about quality of life. So many dog owners are so selfish and continue to keep their pets going, which pets will always want to keep going for you. It’s just not right.

Losing a dog to bone cancer (Osteosarcoma)


I wanted to do a series of posts addressing very common dog diseases/ailments. We’ve lost 3 dogs to these and I’m always left questioning if I could have done something different, better, or something to have kept these loves of my life around longer. The answer is mostly no, bloat being the possible exception. After having just lost a dog to bone cancer, we were shocked at the speed with which this disease wreaks havoc on it’s victim.

Our Dane’s age was a guesstimate. He could have been between 6-9yrs old as we adopted him from the RMGDR and his past was rather checkered. Mostly a senior regardless. He was in great health by all accounts.

In Jan of this year, we returned from our holiday vacation to our Dane acting completely different than when we left him. Everything about his behavior was so drastically different and he was making whining noises when his head/neck area was strained. Honestly we believed there was some hidden altercation between him and our pet sitter. I’d asked our pet sitter if anything had happened. He said no and that he just noticed that the last couple days he’d come over the Dane, Norman, wasn’t acting himself.

We ended up going to the vet and putting him on Rimadyl and a new allergy medicine Apoquel, which as a side note if your dog has allergies, get this, it’s amazing! So the Rimadyl definitely made him feel better, so we mostly got our dog, as we knew him, back. We let the Rimadyl lapse occasionally, hoping that maybe whatever was bothering him was better. It never was. On one long span between vet visits/Rimadyl prescriptions, Norman’s face swelled up. He had runny eyes and nose, yet the top of his nose was dry. After going back to the vet, we re upped the Rimadyl, allergy meds, eye drops etc. He looked and felt better shortly thereafter. We had basically resolved to have a crazy expensive Rimadyl habit.

After months of Norman being relatively normal, about the end of April/beg of May, we noticed his face swelling again along with the nose and eye ish. After some internetting we decided it was from him getting into the chrysanthemums out front. They are poisonous to dogs. So we started giving him Benedryl to help with the reaction. It wasn’t getting better and he started having colored discharge from his eyes and nose. This became compounded by his front feet knuckling under when he tried to walk. By the time we finally took him into the vet, he hadn’t eaten or drunk anything in two days and now couldn’t stand on his own. See for symptoms

We were thinking it sounded like a reaction to the Rimadyl. Rimadyl really is terrible for your pet. We were going to try putting him on cannabis oil, but alas never got around to it. The vet had a few theories that he tested his way through. The xray of Norman’s, now missing, jaw bone told everyone is was bone cancer. It had clearly metastasized to the point of his not being able to eat, drink or walk. Our vet said we could try steroids like Prednisone and see if it would buy us some time. Joseph and I decided that it was best for everyone to put Norman down. When we went to spend time with him before, he wagged his tail when we walked in, but that was about all the movement he could muster. We knew we were doing the right thing.

After researching bone cancer in dogs, it seems to love our favorite breeds, German Shepards, Danes, Dobermans, often dogs over 90lbs and it’s so fast moving. Apparently 5mo is the general life expectancy if caught early. I guess we should be happy we got what time we did with him. I wish it were somehow enough. I wish that I didn’t feel that I could have done more. If you’ve lost a dog to this or are in the throes of it, I’m so so sorry. It’s a painful way to go, for everyone. Apparently if it affects an appendage, it can be removed and the dog might go on to live a great life. Unfortunately for a senior Dane, with the cancer in places that can’t be removed, it was a death sentence.

Goodbye you handsome boy…


It’s with the heaviest of hearts that we had to say goodbye to Norman yesterday. Bone cancer took him too soon. The two years we had simply weren’t enough. It took two dogs to fill Caesar’s place. It took a Dane to fill Jimmy’s. I don’t know how to fill this gaping hole now.

This dog, though only in our lives for too short a time was so fancy.

He would greet us with stuffed animals. He was big enough and fast enough to catch Gracie, which she didn’t like. He would come and check in on me when I was working from home. He was so good off leash.

He just had a presence, and yes size had to do with it. The house is so quiet and and empty without him.

I know the fostering will kick into high gear knowing a failure is right around the corner.

My dear friend Joanie nailed it. It hurts so much when these fur babies leave us because there’s just so much love there.

Say hi to Caesar and Jimmy for us big man. xoxo

Stress dump 2!


Ok so following my other stress dump, things got better, so I think it’s time to try again! 6yrs without feeling the need to do this isn’t too shabby, so there’s a plus.

2016 has been a bit boo sauce. In February, while on a family ski trip in Telluride, I broke my wrist.


For which surgery was recommended.


I found out that I was one of the lucky few who’s tendon to their thumb ruptures and requires additional surgery. ( So, that’s fun. The second surgery will likely be in July. My dr wants to take the plate out then too, which I’m not too keen on. Every xray still shows it’s broken so we’ll see.

I’ve just finished physical therapy, but not before getting into a car accident. Which of course was my fault.


The car is currently in the shop, which I’ll actually have to pay the deductible on, which isn’t a lot, but more than I want to shell out for this. Joseph was also rear ended in his truck, and thanks to the shit show of an insurance circus, he got nothing out of the deal and ended up pounding his own bumper straight enough.

Norman has been to the vet more than I’d care to admit. After our xmas vacation he seemed to have a neck injury. He’s been on rimadyl since which is effing expensive. The vet wants to do blood work to make sure we’re not messing up his organs, which are expensive. Plus side is that we got him on a great antihistamine which solved a lot of his skin ish. That too is expensive.

There has been some job ish for both Joseph and I as well, but hey, at least we have them.

Ready for the upswing!

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Sinatra now Norman


I realized I’d abandoned my blog and found out that it wasn’t up and running anymore! Thankfully my hubs fixed that.

So we officially adopted Sinatra and renamed him Norman. I believe it was July of 2014. He’s been a fun addition to our home. We’re unfortunately dealing with a bit of health crisis with him at the moment, so hoping all turns out ok! I’ll write more when we know for sure so as to hopefully help others if they run into this too.

New chicken owning proposal in Denver


A proposal passed allowing anyone to own up to 8 chickens and or ducks and up to 2 goats.

No zoning, no asking the neighbors, no proving that they’ll be provided for with appropriate shelter etc.

Yes we had to take the hard road and feel that others should too. It shows determination.


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