Monday, July 18, 2011

New Scaly Additions

We are proud to Welcome "Big", and "Bradshaw"; our newest members of the family. Here's to hoping these two healthy pythons live long and prosperous!!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Why Dogs Make Better Friends Than Humans

Things dogs will do as friends:
Lapse into Attention Deficit Disorder.
Visit you unannounced.
Take over your bed.
Give unconditional love.
Bark at ghosts.
Carry dingleberries into your home.
Run away when Billy Mays is pitching on TV.
Expose their private parts for all to see.
Have good manners.
Stare at you.
Forgive and forget.
Clutter your house with half-eaten chewies.
Live for today.
Bring you dead critters for presents.
Go nuts with elation when you give them a present.
Slurp when they eat.
Follow you everywhere.
Let you know when they don’t trust someone.
Protect you.
Bite their fingernails.
Show appreciation when you do something for them.

Things dogs won’t do as friends:
Stink up your bathroom.
Try to make a point with silly, inappropriate hand gestures.
Talk about you behind your back.
Talk incessantly about trivial nonsense.
Keep repeating themselves even when you tell them you already heard that.
Keep repeating themselves even when you tell them you already heard that.
Be anal-retentive.
Leave pee on your toilet seat.
Become closet smokers.
Be control freaks.
Give ludicrous excuses for not wanting to do something.
Become obnoxious know-it-alls.
Make money and material things their main reason for living.
Be cheapskates.
Refer to acquaintances as “buddies”.
Let Ladies go first.
Clutter your house with chotzkies.
Give absurd rationalizations for rude behavior.
Live in the past.
Insist their way of doing something is the only way.
Tell strangers your personal business.
Make sarcastic remarks.
Brag about their exploits.
Lie about their exploits.
Take advantage of your friendship.
Complain, complain, complain!

Monday, May 23, 2011

10 Reasons not to trust a Pit Bull

10. They will steal your spot on the couch while you are up getting a soda.
9. They will take the treat you give them and bury in the back yard like a paranoid crack head hiding their stash.
8. They will jump on your bed with muddy feet. Making you do the laundry…again!
7. They will lick visitors with an uncontrolled passion only they understand.
6. They will cause children to smile.
5. They will make you feel horrible for not walking them by looking at you with deep sad eyes.
4. They will look at you like you committed a crime against them if you don’t let them lick your ice cream bowl.
3. They will cause wide spread happiness in large group settings.
2. They will crack you up by shaking their butts so hard you think they are going to snap in half.
And the number one reason why you can’t trust vicious Pit Bulls…
1. They will steal your heart like a thief in the night, showing you complete and pure love that only a Pit Bull can show.

Monday, May 16, 2011

"If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. It is the principal difference between a dog and a man."
    -Mark Twain

Friday, May 13, 2011

"The Pits"; The ups and downs of having a bully breed.

My son, a 1 year, 10 month old Boxer/Pit mix, is my absolute heart and soul. I couldn't imagine life without him. What would I worry about during the day while he's at daycare? If other dogs are being nice; if he's learning bad habits. Who's poop would I examine when he seems to not be feeling well? Who would I buy the most expensive food for? Who would only allow me minimal space in my king-size bed? I don't remember what it was like before him, nor do I even want to imagine what life will be like after him. While he is half boxer, his looks (other than the obvious Brindle stripes), are very pitbull. I love it. I think he looks regal and strong, with those pitty-almond eyes.

There are those, and there are many, who see these traits as evil and vicious. Bristol doesn't know vicious. He's never seen anger or felt pain. He is pure love and affection.  Even still, the stigma is there and rears it's ugly head now and then. Whether it's looks while walking him, or breed discrimination in communities, even laws that give dogs like him a smaller window for "pick-up" if he's lost and taken to a shelter.  Bogus!  You know it's bad when your own vet tells you that if people ask, say he's a boxer.  This was when we lived in Arkansas, the law in our county was they only give you a few days to pick up your bully, or they Euthanize.  Nice.  Also, you can't "own" one within city limits. I quote "own" because I don't feel as if I own him, he's my family.  Luckily, here in Virginia, I can proudly say he's a bully.
I've always had a huge soft spot for unappreciated animals.  I love Pittys and hope to one day have my own rescue for them.  I'll allow this thought to segue way into a little story about an orange and white pit who took up real estate on our porch one day.  He was nameless, I think we called him buddy. He was probably about 2-3 years old. He was your stereotypical Pit. A big-headed, stubby guy who looked like he had been in a few brawls in his life.  We walked out on our porch one morning and he was there, laying in a box we had put there to go to the dump. He perked up when he saw me and naturally, I was startled. My love for strays overcame that quickly. I didn't let him in the house just yet- Bristol was only a pup and I wanted to see how he acted first. I went inside and brought him out a plate of food. He ate it in about 3.5 seconds. I served him another and again, it was scarfed down.  He wasn't skinny so I knew he hadn't been lost long.  He had a collar, but no tags. The collar was too tight for him. He wasn't neutered and I had a bad feeling he had been used for fighting with all of the scars on his face.  He became attached to me immediately, and so began our short, but close relationship.  I gathered from our time together that he was a bit aggressive, so I continued to feed him outside. Over the next few days I would come out in the morning and he would be there sleeping.  I'd feed and water him and then go about my day.  He would wander the neighborhood but anytime I opened the front door he'd come barreling at me from somewhere and try to "nose" his way in the door.  He knew no commands.  Eventually I let him and Bristol meet and they played perfectly. Yo could tell bud was fond of him as B was a puppy. So, being weak, I started letting him in the house, couple hours at a time.  He would mostly eat and sleep but played with Bristol some too.  He would crawl up in my lap (he was not small), B would get jealous and crawl up too, then I'd be laying there on the couch with two beasts on me.  We put ads on Craigslist for his owners (even though part of me didn't want him going back to wherever he came from).  We called local shelters to see if anyone had reported him missing. Nothing.  We talked about keeping him but with a pup, not even a year old, we had our hands full already.  I went to a local rescue and got some free meds for worms and ear mites and put a flea collar on him.  He let us give him a bath with no problem.  Now that he was clean and healthy, we let him stay the night a few times. Needless to say, my husband and I were NOT the primary occupiers of space. All of this happened over about two weeks.  We were basically fostering him until we decided what to do.  We put up an ad to find him a home.  A small adoption fee was required, to chase away those with bad intentions.

During these two weeks he became very protective over us and the house, even Bristol.  One afternoon, things went South.  While we were walking B, buddy came along and followed as he had since we met. No leash, no commands, just came along.  He has, in a way, claimed us.  We ran into some neighbors who had a little Yorkie and a Terrier mix of some sort. The Yorkie was very pushy and wore "pants" that were WAY too big for him.  He got up in Bud's face and before I could blink, Mr. Pitbull had Mr. Yorkie by the neck and was shaking him furiously. My husband jumped on his back, trying to get him to drop the dog.  After a few seconds, he did.

That was the end of him coming into the house, only because of Bristol.  Even though I trusted him.  He would let Bristol bite him, get in his face, even play-fight. But it still made me nervous, B was my baby after all.  We continued to feed him outside and he would sleep on the porch. Every time I opened the door, he would try to push his way in.  he would stare through the window and it broke my heart.  Another incident happened when the neighbor, with the now hurt Yorkie (who ended up with puncture wounds but was okay), came to our door to discuss his concerns about the wandering Pit in the neighborhood. At the moment I opened the door to greet him, Mr. Pit ran expeditiously around the corner, baring his teeth at the man.  The man took a few, very large steps back, holding his arms up in the air as if at gunpoint.  Bud stood between our house and him until he left. I've never seen such protectiveness from a dog.

Well, unfortunately his point was taken. I wasn't afraid of buddy, but I didn't want neighbors calling animal control and him being put down as a result. Luckily we had a few calls on him.  The first few I didn't trust, they sounded shady, especially the man that said he wouldn't neuter him (I can only think of one reason as to why). *Click*.  Finally a lady called, she came over and buddy seemed okay with her as long as I was around. I told her if things didn't work out to please bring him back to us, not to call the shelter.  We never saw him again. I hope he is somewhere happy and healthy, defending his territory.

So you see, even battered and bruised, neglected and maybe even angry and defensive, bullys know when they are loved.  That's all they ever want in life.