Blame It On The Media

chihuahua dog pet adopt

I used to watch the Noon News Hour on Global, almost daily. I would give equal time to Randene Neill, and to daydreaming. What always snapped me back to reality was, of course, the ‘Adopt a Pet’ segment. The animals were so cute to watch, and it was often quite amusing. As per usual, aside from the couple of farm animals, who were also cute, I wanted to bring them all home. This particular lunch hour, I saw the sweetest, most adorable dog, sitting on Randene’s knees. They had named her Perdida (lost, in Spanish), and said that she was rescued from a puppy mill, run by an old woman. She had lived in a cage for two years, and already had two litters. She looked so frightened, and that just pulled at my heart. I wanted to snatch her up in my arms, she was just so little. Out of all the other animals, I felt a connection with her. Don’t ask me what or how, but I did. So, I hemmed and hawed for a day or so, told the family about her, then got on my laptop to have a closer look.

chihuahua dog pet bone

At this point, it’s pretty much out of my hands, and going to happen. Perdida was in a foster home, had been for about five weeks, when my youngest son and I went to visit her. Pretty shy, which I expected, but immensely improved since her stay with the lovely couple fostering her. We met, I believe, another two times, and then it was time to seal the deal. She took to my son for the first while, and then started latching on to me, she now knew where her food was coming from.

The first few nights were tiring, as she did some whining. Both my dogs sleep in crates, and it didn’t take too long for her to become accustomed to the routine. They know when it is their bedtime, and they happily go inside their crates, I lift the little one into hers, as it sits on top of McKay’s. I suppose, it’s partly the fact that they know they will get a treat and it’s also cosy with all the blankets.

Her name is no longer Perdida (she is not lost anymore), her name is Tia. As you can see, she has made herself quite comfortable.

sleeping chihuahua dog pet pillows

I can’t help but notice how cute her little, little nose is. Even I’m not quite able to believe she is considered a ‘dog’. My kids used to have a couple of rats as pets, and I have to say that Tia’s hair smells the same as the rat’s hair. No joke. So she could actually be the missing link–from rat to dog?? When she is focused on trotting alongside me, I look down and swear to you that her snout, with the whiskers sticking out, look just like a mouse. Some serious cute going on there.

tia chihuahua beach west vancouver

I would take her and McKay to the dog beach, when I lived in N. Vancouver, and she was very brave to be walking with the big dogs. Didn’t seem to bother her until one day, she got in the way of a big dog by accident, and got smushed against a rock. The yelping sound was horrible. The owner’s of the other dog were horrified. Tia was fine, just shook up, and rightly so. Since then, she hasn’t forgotten that and tends to keep her distance from the bigger dogs. Probably in her best interest.

What I notice the most, is how she races around the house, leaping from couch to chair, and back again. I can see her joy at being able to race around, her joy at the freedom she now has. Still, at times, I can tell she is frightened from some memory. I’m working on getting her used to the broom. Whenever a stick-like object is brought out, she disappears. I don’t want her to be afraid. One day at a time.

Tia is smaller than Graysee (the cat), and Graysee will bat at her, as she runs by. Too funny.

chihuahua dog pet profile

She is not a water dog. I know this, she knows this, my guy knows this too. Despite this, my guy likes to drop her in the water, so she has to swim a little to the shore. Yes, she can swim. Yes, she is much happier once she has cooled off, but I think she would appreciate a different way of going about it. Once again, something to work on with her, getting her to choose to stand in the water, so I can cool her off. My guy and Tia have a funny relationship.

From what I’ve heard, Chihuahua’s can be nippy. Tia has such a wonderful, gentle, nature. The only time she feint nipping, was when my guy had his face in her face, making noises. I would’ve nipped too. When she is playing and using her mouth, she is so gentle.

She regularly assumes her position in my lap, or beside me, touching of course, and she will push off her front legs so that she leans in to me. Her tummy is now positioned for rubbing. She nearly always gets what she wants, because she will peer up at me, and shift her position to better accommodate me.

Such an amazing addition to our family! I’ve stopped watching ‘adopt-a-pet’, for fear of needing to adopt another one. Since my guy is allergic, he knew what he was getting into, we are good for now.


Letter To The Editor

I am writing this letter, to offer a different perspective on the rapid phasing out of the Board of Directors of the BC SPCA, in favour of being bought out by one Cruella de Vil. As a voting member, I am strongly opposed, along with a list of 79,735 others, including members and the general public. There will be many more to come.

The BC SPCA prides itself on their mission: To protect and enhance the quality of life for domestic, farm, and wild animals in British Columbia. This will be lost to the cruel and devilish ways of Ms. de Vil.

She has been out of the public eye for quite some time now. What has she been up to? Well, several workers from a puppy mill in Southern B.C., came forward a month ago, stating the debilitating conditions of their workplace; not only for humans but for the puppies as well. “…appalling and dreadful,” one woman said. “It is gruesome, what I overheard of one of de Vil’s phone conversations,” said Jack, the spokesperson of the group.

In the west, a group came forward after witnessing de Vil mistreating a dog. The rest of the statements and proof of noncompliance of the Prevention of Cruelty To Animals Act, will be included with the written documents.

Cruella de Vil may not be the face of these mills, but she is the brains behind them and plenty of others. More people are coming forward with statements of her cruelty. It won’t be long before she is officially shunned by the public. We only ask that you postpone the sale of the BC SPCA, until that time, for the sake of all animals.

To all readers, please send your message of support to;

Jay Walker

Writing 101

Because She’s Gray…See?

gray kitten pet adopted

I adore animals. If I could, I would adopt them all, but it’s just not practical. So…

Quaker, my first dependent, had been gone for a while and I thought–as I do–that getting another cat would be delightful. So, with my youngest son in tow, off we went to a BCSPCA. It took us about an hour to get there. I had heard that they had some kittens, and I was hoping for a kitten. 

Of course, I wanted to take all of them home with me, but there was one Calico, I believe about a year old or so, who I fell for. She was friendly, showing her personality, and walking to and fro in front of me. I gave her some love and she responded immediately, seemingly unafraid. My son however, spotted a little gray kitten at the back of a cage, –and he fell for her. I guess you could say, he chose our next cat.

It was settled. Heartbreaking to take this little kitten away from her mother, but we thanked her for her gift. The ride home was filled with the tiny mewling, coming from the cardboard box. She was just nine weeks.

gray kitten pet adopted

We were told by the vet, to watch how our beagle/ coonhound reacted to her, as they have a tendency towards making meals out of small animals. It took only a few days for McKay to grow fond of her new sister.

I like to tell the story of how I named our kitten, because of how my boys roll their eyes and shake their heads at me. It makes me laugh. I decided her name was to be, Graysee…because she’s gray…see?

There was no question who Graysee’s mom was. She slept on my hair most nights, and I carried her around with me for weeks. She would crawl up under my chin, and proceed to fall asleep. I crafted a sling out of a blanket to keep my hands free, and because she was getting heavier. Inconvenient? Yes. Exasperatingly cute? Yes. She took to relieving herself, on my husband’s side of the bed. Annoying as that was, I was thankful it wasn’t my side. It was only when she was spayed, that she wandered further away from me. I remember picking her up from her appointment, and how, when I called her name, she came right to me and crawled up onto my shoulder. She knew she was going home, even through her dazed and off-balance state.

It wasn’t long before she would spend most of the warm, summer days outside, popping in a few times for a meal. It was morning, and through the window I saw her with another cat, sitting at the end of our driveway. She came inside for a snack, while the other cat remained at the end of our driveway. When Graysee went back outside, they left together. I wish I knew where they were going, and what they were saying to each other. I’m not sure we humans, are supposed to see stuff like that.

gray cat beagle coonhound pets family

Graysee and McKay are great friends. Graysee greets McKay, always with a few kisses, as McKay sniffs away, trying to find out where Graysee has been. She will even bat her paw at McKay playfully, making the dog run around a bit. They are sweet together. As you can see, McKay even let Graysee share her food.

gray cat pet familyGraysee was loved by all our neighbours in North Vancouver. Apparently, she would go into their homes to get some extra attention, and probably some treats. I didn’t know this until quite a bit later.

She once went missing for five days, and we were all horrified at the notion that she may not return. One morning, my husband came into the bedroom to wake me. He told me to come and see something. There the brat was, on the kitchen island, as healthy as ever. I was so relieved to see her. Our pets are just like the kids, they grow with the family.

Unlike Quaker, Graysee is loved by all my family. No one is afraid of her. She is calm, gentle, and knowing. Such a wonderful addition to our family, human or otherwise. When this photo was taken, she was our resident fly-catcher. Thank you Graysee!


Doggone It Anyway!

beagle coonhound dog pet

I’m not sure what spurred on my decision to get a dog. Maybe it was the kids, and my thoughts of how wonderful an experience it would be for them. Maybe it had just been on my mind, and finally forced its way through the sludge, to the forefront. Maybe it’s because, when I decide I want something, I don’t stop until I get it. Maybe, it was ‘Adopt A Pet’, from the noon news hour on Global, desensitizing my brain to any negative aspects of getting a dog. I’m gonna go with the last one; blame it on the news hour.

I knew I wanted to check out the BCSPCA, and I knew I wanted a Beagle. I searched online, through the few dogs that they had pictures of, and my eyes came to rest on one that sang to my heart. I could not believe, I had found a Beagle/ Coonhound mix. We left on our new adventure, to meet the dog. When we got there, I was told that another family had filled out the adoption paperwork. I was horrified! The lady said it was never done before, but, I could fill out a form, and they would take into consideration, both families. I filled out that form with determination. There was no white space left. Obviously, I would be the best choice! I think it was the next day, we received the phone call, letting us know that we were the proud new parents of a dog.

beagle coonhound dog pet hiding face




I did find out that she had been returned to the BCSPCA, two times. She did a lot of escaping, and I guess the other owners were not too keen on that. We were lucky, she was house trained, but, she was a runner. And could she run…whenever that front door opened, she made a break for it, and my son, who is also a fast runner, was sent out to get her. Eventually, she began to settle in, and the escape artist within, began to fade. She still likes to escape on occasion, however, she returns on her own, knowing where her family is. At least, I like to think it’s more than just the food, that keeps her coming back.




beagle coonhound dog pet wet haired boy

As illustrated in the photo above, you can see how we became her family. I knew the moment, when she knew, she was home for good. We were always greeted with such joy and happiness, but this time, her ears turned all the way out. It took over a year for that to happen. I will never forget that moment.

beagle coonhound dog pet regression

A little regression, maybe a bad hair day, not sure what message she was sending there. Super-cute though! McKay is her name, and she has brought us so much joy; I’m sure now, that is the reason I wanted to get a dog. Just like the kids, whenever she does anything cute, all the aggravation from the un-cute stuff, is gone. Lately, we have had to put a child lock on the cupboard door, which houses the garbage. (see Mischief & Sidekick) Not cute, very un-cute, but, so cute. I can’t help it.

beagle coonhound dog pet snow

I love how comfortable she is around us all. I know all of the things that bother her, make her hide, make her bark. Sometimes, she will do her best to get the last word in, and it will be accompanied by a ‘look’. Always makes me laugh! She has taken to loudly, voicing her opinion, while doing a little bouncy dance, and turning her head to the side, so she can look at you out of the corner of her eye. I blame my guy, for getting her riled up. I love how she runs to greet Graysee, (our cat). I love when I get out her favourite treat, the way she responds, I can tell she’s smiling…and that warms my heart. She is getting quite gray now, like me, but she can still bounce around, and act like a pup. Young at heart. Yes, that’s snow on her nose.



I would love to hear about your pet stories. Please leave some comments, and some links for me to read.


Kid’s Can Too; The Travel Checklist

colourful suitcases travelI am a list maker. It gives me confidence. Freeing up a little space in my brain is a definite plus. When my kids were little, and we were planning a trip, I found myself searching online for a packing list. Something that my kids could easily follow, ticking off items as they laid out their belongings. I found a couple that were, ‘just’ satisfactory. Not one seemed complete, to me. So, I made my own. This is not the same list, from years ago, but, a much better one. I love organizing, so this falls into the category ‘FUN FOR ME’!

I have created, the one and only list, you will ever need for your pre-travel, packing, purposes. If your kids can read; they can pack. As the every time winner of, ‘Who’s Doing the Packing’, I delegated. I think the kids even thought it was fun, having such responsibility. Of course, I still did the final checks, just to be sure.

This list is geared towards a family (with kids), who’ll be leaving the comfort of their home. You are more than welcome to alter, adjust, add, subtract, scribble, draw on, recycle, or whatever else you fancy doing with the list. You might also find it useful, just the way it is.

Family with Kids Travel Checklist

Since I love lists, here are a couple more examples from Word & Excel, that might be useful. I have saved them as a PDF; if you have any issues, please let me know.

Business Trip Planner

Camping Checklist

Please let me know if I have missed something of importance. I like to think I’m perfect, but alas, that is not always the case. If you have a great list to share…do it!

If you enjoyed this post, leave your comments below, and do have a peek at the rest of my blog.

My First Dependent

lynx point siamese tabby pet cat

I adopted a beautiful kitten, whom I named Quaker, after searching in encyclopaedias, (yes, it was that long ago), for a cool, and unusual name. Accomplished! My first pet, as a independent, working, woman. She grew up in my apartment, and therefore, was an inside kitty. Unfortunately, for all of my family, she became a cranky kitty, with an attitude. I never had a problem with her. She didn’t scare me.

In the corner of my living room, I had a ginormous dieffenbachia, (no joke), in a ginormous pot. A lipstick plant used to live at the bottom of the dieffenbachia, but, eventually died, leaving visible dirt. It did not matter what I used to deter the cat, she would stir up that dirt, making a mess on my carpet. Of course, this was done while I was at work. After several store-bought, trial runs with disincentives, and failing, I had one left to test. Some sort of twist-tie with a deterrent attached, was tied to the bottom stalk of the plant. When I came home from work, I found it chewed up, by the front door. Years later, someone told me I should have put large rocks at the base of the plant. Shoulda, woulda, coulda!

My friend would cat-sit for me, when I went away. Quaker would race around on her quilt, and put little picks in it. Needless to say, she was not very happy about that. I thank you, friend, from the bottom of my heart, for looking after my kitty.

lynx point siamese tabby cat pet

When we moved to North Vancouver, she went out in the backyard. She didn’t venture very far, as she was getting older, and was a bit sickly. Her weight increased, and she had bad arthritis. She was still cranky though, but, not to me, nor to repair men. A weird attraction to repair men, she had. Quaker was diagnosed with diabetes, so she went on a diabetic diet, and I had to test her blood, and give her insulin. Oh, joy. Her health was not improving, and one lady vet, suggested to the girl at the desk, that owners should not be overfeeding their pets. I should have, in no uncertain terms, given her my thoughts on that. However, at the time, I was completely taken aback, and had no response.

The next vet I took her to, was a naturopathic vet. She decided that Quaker was allergic to the diabetic diet. (Huge, sigh). I put her on the ‘raw food diet’, and within a week or two, she was off the insulin, and losing weight. Her arthritis improved quite a bit, but, her kidneys were getting the best of her. There was always a wet mess around the cat box.

lynx point siamese tabby cat pet with beagle coonhound dog

Quaker had new life in her, and she got another three years of a somewhat healthier life. She was happier, she lost all her extra weight, was more content, could fold her paws under, and didn’t sleep on her back anymore. Happier that is, until we adopted McKay. Notice how they are keeping a close eye on one another. They eventually got used to each other, but, were never good friends. McKay knew her place, Quaker was Queen.

Then comes my first experience, of taking a pet to be put down. She was hurting, and I could see that. Her litter box couldn’t keep up with her, as her kidneys were worsening; from the diabetes and such. I drove her to the naturopath, to have this done. She gave her an exam, and then told me that she would not do it. Quaker could take some pills and have a dramatic recovery. Honestly, I could have screamed, had I not been so emotional, and teary. I marched her off to the other vet; to my relief, they agreed with me, and they put her to sleep.

A gut-wrenching experience, that I know I will have to repeat at some point. In the end, Quaker looked so very peaceful, no more pain, and that made me happy. I know she keeps an eye on me, my beautiful girl.

Just a head’s up, for anyone wishing to get on my nerves: with years of experience under my belt, I will, in a calm, assertive manner, give you my thoughts.

As always, comments are welcomed, and encouraged.