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Animals

Tetanus? I’m good for another ten years

Ah, Mommy Cat. We have two cats. They’ve lived with us for more than 13 years. Originally there were five but the three boys wandered too far and unfortunately were lost to cars on a nearby road.

Mommy Cat, the matriarch of all she sees, brought her kittens to us way back in 2009. The only girl of the litters she bore is Hoppy, so called because she’s missing a part of her back foot. It doesn’t slow her down though. When she wants to she can run like the wind, or hunt silently and bring us “gifts” to the back door.

Mommy Cat is still half wild. After all these years she will barely tolerate us touching her, and only while she’s eating cat treats. For many a year she would sit on the window sill, rain or shine, hail or snow, looking into the kitchen. She would never come in unless the back door was left wide open.

Until a few weeks ago that is. Much to our delight she came in and didn’t flinch (too much) when I slowly and quietly closed the door behind her. She ate some food. Looked around. Wandered through the legs of the kitchen table. Sniffed the legs of the chairs. She even went over to the dog’s bed, and lay down, watching us through lidded eyes.

We were amazed. At 15 or 16 years old she realised she didn’t have to run out the door when we approached. She realised it was nice and warm inside and she was safe inside. After a while she went out again into the night, and her bed outside in a kennel.

Things only got better and better. First thing in the morning she came in with her daughter, meowing in a croaky voice. Slightly unsteady on her elderly feet, but she still has an appetite.

Soon enough she was staying in the bed all day until I coaxed her out, but then she started staying in all night. She obviously has good bladder control as she had to be pushed out in the morning!

This continued for the last two weeks but she’s the worse for wear. Her fur is matted, her paws are yellowing. We could see she was doing better being inside in the warmth but one morning we smelled something nasty. Her matted fur was the source. Out she went again and my wife washed the dog’s bed, adding bleach to help get the smell out. We decided something had to be done.

Later that afternoon we acted. Mommy Cat needed to be brushed down and cleaned. I now wonder what the hell we were thinking we could do since she was half wild. Our attempts lasted all of about two minutes. Wearing kitchen gloves, I slowly crawled up to her, put my hand out to catch her. Quick as a flash, she twirled her head around and bit down hard on my finger!

Mommy Cat ran out the door and blood pumped out of my finger as I ran cold water over it into the sink. It slowly stopped but was very sore to the touch.

Of course I had to then get a tetanus shot. The last time I got one of those was in the mid-nineties. Thankfully this time it was in the arm. I have a dose of antibiotics to take for the next week, and my finger is all bandaged up. It’s still very sore but hopefully the infection won’t go anywhere.

On the way back from the doctor we stopped at the local vet to get a trap. It’s a small cage, about a metre long with a panel that slides open at one end to put the food in, and a door at the other end that swings up and is held up by a spring loaded catch. When the animal steps on a plate the door swings down behind them. Our vet knows how to handle cats. They’ll be able to clean her up and check her health.

Mommy Cat? Thankfully she didn’t take off. She came back later in the day looking for food. This morning we put out the trap. Hoppy had to be kept out of the garden because we knew she’d go into the trap without a thought for any food. Mommy Cat is smarter. She must have been starving but she never went into the trap, even though we put tuna and cat food in there. I think it’ll take a few days for her to become used to seeing it. We’ll leave the trap out for the next few days and hopefully we’ll be able to get her to the vet.

She’s in again tonight. It’s cold out. Best place for our elderly cat.

Categories
Animals

A Dog Named Beau

Today is the day I first heard actor Jimmy Stewart read his poem about his dog Beau. You should hear it too. It’s beautiful.

A dog named Diego

I can’t post something about dogs and not include a photo of my dear little Diego. His muzzle is a little greyer than in the photo above but he’s still a puppy at heart, loving to play and go for walks. He’ll also happily accept cuddles, sit on your shoe for comfort, or curl up in a ball on top of you if you’re relaxing on the couch.

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Animals

Magic for animal shelter dogs

To help dogs find their forever home an animal shelter performed magic, literally!

I love how the dogs react. 🙂

Categories
Animals

Mindbomb – the beginning of Greenpeace

I’m going through my backlog of podcasts and this episode of Undone stood out. It’s about the beginnings of Greenpeace when a group of people in their twenties sailed a boat around the Pacific Ocean hoping to confront a fleet of Soviet whalers.

Near the end of their supplies they heard Russian voices on the radio and spotted the ships. The rest is history but the story is fascinating.

While looking up “Greenpeace mindbomb” I came across this article about a movie on Greenpeace called “How to Change the World” which covers the same subject. Here’s the trailer:

Unfortunately the podcast Undone was cancelled after one season but I’ve downloaded the rest of the episodes and look forward to listening to them!

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Animals

Denali – a tribute to a friend

I’ve said goodbye to two dogs in my life, and neither time was easy. If you’re a dog owner watch this only somewhere where you won’t mind being seen bawling your eyes out. It’s a beautiful tribute to a dog called Denali and his owner.

Via this post and John Finn on Facebook.

Categories
Animals

RIP Oscar

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Oscar, a rescue dog who came into our lives just two weeks after we married, who was an ever present fixture in our son’s life, was put to sleep after suffering a serious injury to his eye tonight.

We had fun, we had scrapes, we played fetch until we learned his heart was dodgy, but he still survived for years! He was a fighter.

“Where’s the ball Oscar?”

He was our beloved dog. He’ll be missed.

Categories
Animals

Cat saves boy from viscious dog

Well, you’ve probably seen this already but it’s still worth posting here because it’s so amazing. A cat defended a young boy from a viscous dog that was attacking him by ramming the dog and chasing him off. It’s incredible to think the cat flew at the dog like that.

I read last night that the dog has been put down but can’t find that information anywhere now. That was one lucky boy, it could have been so much worse. More on the story here.

BAKERSFIELD – A cat came to her best friend’s rescue Tuesday when a young boy was attacked by a dog in his driveway in Southwest Bakersfield and it was all caught on video.

The surveillance video shows the boy, 4-year-old Jeremy, playing on his bicycle. He was coming home from school when he wanted to fly a kite. Jeremy has mild autism.

The neighbor’s dog, an 8-month-old labrador/chow mix, sneaks up behind him and bites his leg.

The family’s cat, named Tara, rushed the attacking dog and chased it away.

(Quoting the news story because I guarantee the link will die and in a few years time I’ll be wondering about it.)

Categories
Animals

The loss of a dog

Spring

Some of you, particularly those who think they have recently lost a dog to “death”, don’t really understand this. I’ve had no desire to explain, but won’t be around forever and must.
Dogs never die. They don’t know how to. They get tired, and very old, and their bones hurt. Of course they don’t die. If they did they would not want to always go for a walk, even long after their old bones say:” No, no, not a good idea. Let’s not go for a walk.” Nope, dogs always want to go for a walk. They might get one step before their aging tendons collapse them into a heap on the floor, but that’s what dogs are. They walk.
It’s not that they dislike your company. On the contrary, a walk with you is all there is. Their boss, and the cacaphonic symphony of odor that the world is. Cat poop, another dog’s mark, a rotting chicken bone ( exultation), and you. That’s what makes their world perfect, and in a perfect world death has no place.
However, dogs get very very sleepy. That’s the thing, you see. They don’t teach you that at the fancy university where they explain about quarks, gluons, and Keynesian economics. They know so much they forget that dogs never die. It’s a shame, really. Dogs have so much to offer and people just talk a lot.
When you think your dog has died, it has just fallen asleep in your heart. And by the way, it is wagging it’s tail madly, you see, and that’s why your chest hurts so much and you cry all the time. Who would not cry with a happy dog wagging its tail in their chest. Ouch! Wap wap wap wap wap, that hurts. But they only wag when they wake up. That’s when they say: “Thanks Boss! Thanks for a warm place to sleep and always next to your heart, the best place.”
When they first fall asleep, they wake up all the time, and that’s why, of course, you cry all the time. Wap, wap, wap. After a while they sleep more. (remember, a dog while is not a human while. You take your dog for walk, it’s a day full of adventure in an hour. Then you come home and it’s a week, well one of your days, but a week, really, before the dog gets another walk. No WONDER they love walks.)
Anyway, like I was saying, they fall asleep in your heart, and when they wake up, they wag their tail. After a few dog years, they sleep for longer naps, and you would too. They were a GOOD DOG all their life, and you both know it. It gets tiring being a good dog all the time, particularly when you get old and your bones hurt and you fall on your face and don’t want to go outside to pee when it is raining but do anyway, because you are a good dog. So understand, after they have been sleeping in your heart, they will sleep longer and longer.
But don’t get fooled. They are not “dead.” There’s no such thing, really. They are sleeping in your heart, and they will wake up, usually when you’re not expecting it. It’s just who they are.
I feel sorry for people who don’t have dogs sleeping in their heart. You’ve missed so much. Excuse me, I have to go cry now.

I realise the entirety of this post is copied from elsewhere but I have nothing else to add. From this Reddit comment but I think this post is the original source.

The source is a friend of mine, whom I asked if I could share it after he posted it on facebook. I share it because I think it is beautiful and helps those who have lost a pet.

Edit: Spring, the dog pictured above, was our family dog growing up but she died 11 years ago leaving a huge gap in our daily lives. As with any death, time is a healer but it never fully mends.

Categories
Animals

Cows Loose on the River Martin

The river that runs through Blarney is the River Martin and there’s a nice walk next to it near where I live. There’s a field close by where horses and cattle graze from time to time but I don’t remember ever seeing the animals straying from the field.

You can imagine our surprise when we saw a group of cows walking up the river last night, and then jumping up the bank and off towards Waterloo on the public path. I wonder if they were going to the Waterloo Inn for a refreshing drink?

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My wife rang the Gardai who said they’d deal with them. Cars flew up the Waterloo Road at their usual speeds but thankfully we didn’t hear the crunch of metal or skidding wheels while we were down there…

Categories
Animals

Anyone in Blarney missing a dog?

Anyone in Blarney recognise this dog? My wife found him wandering around the park a few minutes ago. A woman she met said the dog had been around since last night.

He’s a very friendly dog but we’d prefer to hand him back to his original owners!