Monday, November 29, 2021

Blake, Our New Charcoal Labrador Pup

Introducing our new puppy, Blake. He was born on August 31st of this year. He is almost 3 months old. He has blue eyes and gray colored hair which is commonly referred to as silver lab.

We got him on November 17th so he's been with us for 11 days. Hubby and I drove 2 hours to an Amish breeder in Holmesville Ohio.

I mentioned on my previous post how devastated we were, especially my husband, when one of our dog died. Bolt was a great dog, he was very loving and gentle. We said, we won't get anymore dogs since we still have our jack russell terrier, Champ. But I think my husband misses Bolt very much that he couldn't help himself looking at puppies online. We even considered adopting at the local animal shelter. We went there but did not really find one that we like since most of the dogs in the pound were old and we didn't know how Champ would react to an adult dog.

So when he saw this silver lab online, he was ready to have another one.  Just like having a baby, getting anew pup is a big responsibility.  You have to teach them  everything that they need to learn.

The hardest part of having a new pup are acclimating them to a new sleeping environment and potty training. Just like us humans, we don't feel comfortable when we go to a new place. I know it is stressful for me when I am in a place that I am unfamiliar with.

You have to be consistent in letting him out to do his business. So far, so good. He's got quite a few accidents inside the house but that's to be expected. He is a voracious eater so he's grown a lot ever since we got him. He likes just about anything, carrot is one of his favorite snack.

When we were driving home with him, we thought, he was like Bolt because he was calm and wasn't crying at all but man, we were totally wrong.  He is a ball of energy and a voracious eater.  He doesn't discriminate any food that we give him and man, he can eat!  He seem like he is never full.  He was little when we got him and here's two weeks of being with us and he look like he gained about 5 pounds already.  He definitely  weighs heavier than when he first got here.
His paws are big which is an indicator that he will be big.
For the first couple of nights, I had to make him sleep with me in the couch because he cried when I put him in the cage.  I couldn't sleep at all on the first night but he was sound asleep and he let me know when he  has to go potty.  I had to get up multiple times so it felt like I had a new baby.
On the 3rd and 4th nights, I made him lay on the dog bed which was good for a couple of hours but then he wanted to sleep with me again so I let him.  Definitely takes time to transition into a normal sleeping habits.  After a week, I started  putting him in the cage at night but I still have to sleep in the couch, he sleep good that way.  Still have to get up a number of times to  make him pee but at least the sleeping pattern is changing.
We were concern that he has something wrong with him because he had diarrhea for a couple of days when he first got here but I think  it was just the change of environment and the stress was causing it.
I had to give him a bath when we first brought him home because he  smelled so bad.  The breeder told us that he got a bath before we got him but he still stank.
I have given him a bath twice already and he is back to smelling like a plain pup.  No more  puppy mill smell.
He is  also  sleeping good and not getting up to potty that much at night which is a plus because it gives us more sleep as well.
We will be taking him to the vet on December 6th.  The contract that we signed when we got him only gave us 72 hours to take him to the vet but we couldn't admit him to the vet that early.  So the window for us to be able to get a pup replacement just in case he has some type of illness is now out of the equation.  We hope that he is healthy and no lingering health condition.  We shall see.
He doesn't have much hair so he gets very cold when we take him outside.  I have been cutting some of my old leggings for him to wear and he seems to like it.  Hubby and I took him for a walk in our neighborhood once but he gave up after a couple of blocks lol.
He feels very comfortable at home now, he feels as if he belongs to our family.
Our kids wanted to name him Toby but I said I wanted to name him Preston.  My husband said  he look like a Blake which was a name I like as well so that's what we named him.
He is not afraid of Champ and fights back when our JRT tries to bully him.  In fact, Champ was scared of him at first when we first brought him home.
I hope that he develop a liking for a walk vbecause I miss my walkjing buddy, Bolt.  He loved his walks that's for sure.
I am glad that our JRT, Champ is finally warming up to him.  He didn't have anything to do with him at first but now he sleeps with him.
My husband  is concern about Blake's  sleeping habits but I told him that training a pup takes time, just like babies.  It needs the parent's patience and time.
Soon, we won't be able to hold him like this anymore because he is getting heavier each day.  

We celebrated our Thanksgiving this year without Bolt but Blake fill that void which we are grateful for.  We look forward to happy years ahead with our new fur baby.  Hubby and I said that he has a big shoes to fill since Bolt was such a great dog.  Too bad, he got sick and died young.  Well, furfriends, tune in for the next post.  I will be  chronicling Blake's growth in this blog.

Saturday, June 19, 2021

In Memory of Bolt, Our Super Loving Dog : 2012 - 2021

 Rest in Peace Bolt.  May 30, 2012 - June 19, 2021

Today was a tough day for my family.  We had to put one of our fur babies to sleep.  He started to get sick around  January and we didn't really think anything of it until mid February when he first started vomiting.  We brought him to the vet and he just prescribed him some medication which it didn't help at all.  We brought him back there again and this time they did  some blood work done.  He tested positive on Lyme's disease.  They gave him four  kinds of medications and we were hopeful that he will get better but he just went downhill.    He lost his appetite and every time he would eat, it would just come out few minutes after.  I felt so bad because he loved to eat prior to getting sick.  It was hard watching him withered away.  He lost half of his body weight and he looked so thin already.  
I talked to my husband when his vomiting got frequent and he is no longer the lively dog  that we had.  I told him that we need to decided whether to prolong his life in agony or end his suffering all together.  My husband was still holding out hope because Bolt was his favorite dog.  Bolt chose him to be his human although I was the one who picked him.  My husband cried so hard, we all did, but I think it impacted my husband very much.  Bolt would always wait for him by the window when he is coming home from work.  My daughter had so many videos recording of him getting so excited when she tells him that "Dad is coming."

During the last few days,  he was still dong stuff with us but you can tell that he was in agony.  He never failed to sit beside my husband on the front porch and he was able to go with us on a long walk a couple of times.  These last few days though, we tried to take him for a walk and he only made one block and he couldn't go on so we just turned around and came back home. 
It's so sad to see somebody (even for a dog) not being able to do the things that they love.  Bolt loved walking, he was very passionate about it and to see him not able to complete his journey was heartbreaking.    I feel so guilty putting him to sleep but we didn't want him to suffer anymore.  

As we were driving to the vet this morning, he made a couple of whimpers,  I started crying because to me it was like him telling us that he did not want to go yet.  We told him were very sorry and that we didn't to see him in pain anymore.  

The vet offered cremation but I told my husband that I want to bury him in our backyard that way I could visit him every time I am out gardening.  He wasn't my gardening buddy but he could watch over me when I a  out there doing my thing.  We buried him underneath the red bud tree.  I made a little grave marker for him and put his collar around it and attach it to the tree.

It was May 30, 2012 when we adopted Bolt, he was one of the six puppies from our neighbors.  I picked him because of all the puppies, he was just sitting on the corner watching his siblings play and I thought, he will be a perfect companion for our super hyper Jack Russell Terrier, Champ.  He was always observing other dogs which attracted me the most.  His mild demeanor was what drawn me to him.  

Things that we will miss about Bolt ;

Best Walking Buddy

We are going to miss him terribly especially on our walks.  He love to go on a walk, he was official my partner in walking.  He knew where the leash was.  When hears the words walk, go, leash, or let's go, he gets so excited.  We love taking him on a walk because he never bothered anybody.  He won't bark unless he feels threatened.  

Best Family Dog Model

When we would take family pictures, he would always pose in front of us and it was like he knew.  We always thought that maybe he was a model in his previous life.  Our Jack Russell doesn't really get the photo shoot thing but Bolt was always on it.

Best Porch Sitting Buddy

My husband loves to unwind in the front porch after a long day at work and Bolt was always with him.  When my husband is outside and he is inside, Bolt let us know that he wants to be with Dad.  I feel bad that this Father's day will be one of his saddest, we be able to celebrate it with his buddy.

Best Hugger

Bolt loved to hug, he would hug us every chance he gets.  He woke me up last night and was just sitting in front of me so I got up and went down the bed.  I just hugged him tight and rubbed his belly until he fell back to sleep.  This last few days was the worst he has been.  He couldn't get comfortable.  He would walk around the bedroom and woke us up.  Sometimes he would throw up and most of the times whimpering.  I will miss his side hugs.

Great Judge of Character

I mentioned earlier that he is the most mild and well mannered dog.  He doesn't bother anyone but from time to time, he would let us know not to trust someone.  They say, dogs can always  tell whose bad and whose not.  He got along with all of neighbors except one guy, which says a lot.  We're not judging, we just thought that Bolt was warning us about him.

Quirky Things He Does
He always protects his other paw when he laid down.  He doesn't want this left paw be held either.  I always admired how he always put his two front paws like this.  

Another thing I will miss about him is his "Happy Tail", it was always wagging when he is with us.

Farewell Bolt, watch over us and thank you once again for all the memories you spent with us.  You will be missed greatly but glad you are no longer in pain.  We love you Buddy!

Thursday, April 22, 2021

Bonding with our Guinea Pig, Georgina

 Three of our pets passed away last year.  Our male guinea pig, Dunkin, died during the summer season and two of our rabbits Molly and Rosco)  died in the fall.  They were very good pets 

When Dunkin died, we paid close attention to Gigi (short for Georgina), we didn't want her to feel lonely not having somebody with her anymore.  The kids were always busy with school stuff so they seldom  bond with the remaining pets.  I am glad they played with Gigi for a while.
Gigi is not as social as Dunkin so when you first try to pet her, she runs away.   I miss Dunkin because he actually greets you when you go to their cage,  
Gigi was very small when we got her but now she's bigger.  Her hair is multi colored and they grow very fast so I have to keep trimming it so it won't get tangled.  
She doesn't like her nails cut but I do it anyway because if you let it grow, they curl up and it looks painful.
During summer time, I give her a good bath but during colder months, I don't as I wasn't sure if that would cause some health issues.  
I can't wait till the weather gets warmer again so she can run around in the yard.  I put her in the backyard when I'm gardening so she could eat fresh grass.  She seldom eats the fresh grass but its good for her to  exercise her legs by running around.  Most of the times, she stays in a hidden part of the garden.  I think she's scared of the dogs.
Guinea pigs are cute little animal to have as a pet.  They don't require much time to take care of.  Their food is a little expensive on the side but like I said, they're cute pets especially if you have little kids.  I think my kids are gradually staying away from getting excited with these pets anymore.  They do love our dogs though.
Last year, we let a family adopt Gigi but they returned her after a day.  She said, their daughter was too rough to have a tiny pet.
The  only issue with having pets is when you travel, you have to find a place that can take care of them for the time being that you are away.  It can be a pain in tush when  these places are full, you don't get to go.  I remember one summer, we didn't book the kennel early in the Spring, we just focused on reserving our travel reservations so when we finally  call the place, there were no available space for our dogs so we had to  cancel our previous plan and adjust the time that we can go.  
I would love to live in a farm  where the animals can freely roam around and not get cooped up in a cage.  Living in a city is tough especially if you want to raise  some livestock like chicken.  We tried to have chicken before but it did not last.  I miss having the fresh eggs in the morning and it's awesome to have  chicken, they are friendly animals.  We had one that we kept as long as we could but she disappeared one day, I am not sure if a bird or any type of animal got to her but I definitely miss having Blue (that's what we name her).
Anyways, back to our guinea pig, Gigi is such a gentle soul.  She isn't vocal like Dunkin was, she only make a noise when she doesn't have a hay anymore.  She love her Timothy hay.
What I like about Gigi is that she's beautiful to photographed.  she's one of my favorite subjects when it comes to taking photos of our pets.
The hair on top of her head gets very long and it gets n the way of her eyes so I trim it constantly.

We've had Gigi for a couple of years now.  Dunkin only lasted  few years with us and then he died.  The hard part oif having pets is when they passed on.  You get used to having them and when they passed, its like  part of you gets so numb.