Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year!

Mom came home from work and immediately put on pajamas. 
That's our night. She's going to make pizza and promised that we'd get the crusts! 

2013 hasn't been the most awesome year, but it hasn't been the worst either. Being sick took up a lot of the year, then the exam process was really rough. In October, mom lost a dear, wonderful friend, too. In the good column, she did pass two exams so those are out of the way. Tallulah seems to be doing well on Prozac and her poop issues are on again, off again which is better than always on. Isabelle is still going strong. Petunia is still her rotten self but healthy. Mom also got a new job which means she comes home at lunch every day to let us out. She likes where she works which is always a wonderful thing. 

We don't do resolutions but we do have goals. Mom wants to improve her financial health and her physical health. That should include more walks for us. We want more treats, more lap time and more trips to the dog park. Isabelle wants a burger every month instead of just on her birthday and Gotcha days. Heck, she'll be 14, she's earned it!

We wish each and everyone of you a safe and peaceful New Year's Eve. It's supposed to be cold here (for us anyway) so maybe the idiots with the fireworks will stay inside. We are going to snore in the new year. 

Here's hoping 2014 brings you health, wealth and happiness!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you peace, health and joy.

Merry Christmas from the Southern Fried Pugs.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Almost Christmas!

Since we stayed home this year, mom decided to make some goodies for the neighbors. We have a couple of new ones that we need to get to know better. And goodies go a long way to making nice with folks.

Banana nut muffins

Mint chocolate trees
These are kind of a pain to make with several sessions of chilling the dough but they turned out cute and delicious. 

Can you believe mom's never made gingerbread cookies before? Her lack of icing skill is apparent (she told her coworkers that neighbor kids decorated them), but they are delicious! They even stayed soft. 

She's still baking today and will deliver these yummies later on. 

Our holiday foster pug Cosmo is here. 

Not sure how old he is, but he's pretty active still. He has some skin issues and has to have three baths while he's here! That's a lot of baths. Poor dude. He isn't itchy though so that's a good thing.
He has already made himself at home!
In sad news, mom's VHS tape of White Christmas has passed on. 
She got one more viewing out of it but then the VCR ate it. 
It served well for many, many years. Quite possibly more than 20.

The VCR then proceeded to eat Muppet Christmas Carol so it's probably time to dump that dinosaur. 
Both DVDs have been added to the Amazon wish list for next year. 

We hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas! 

Monday, December 16, 2013

Cautiously optimistic

Well, Tallulah has been on Prozac for about six weeks now, and we think it's working.  We did one month at the lowest dose, then increased to 3/4 of a tablet daily. That seems to work for her. The low dose helped some, but she was still anxious.

How do we know it's working? Well, things that may seem small are really an improvement. Previously, if Isabelle tried to use the potty pad in the kitchen, Tallulah would lunge at her. Two days ago, Tallulah just barked and whined but didn't make a move to go after her. She's a tattletale, but we can live with that.

Tallulah would also go after Isabelle if one of the cats cried. This last time, Tallulah did run toward Isabelle but actually stopped short when mom started yelling her name. Didn't even touch her. That is amazing progress.

Tonight, we are pretty sure it's really working for her. The neighbor kept revving up his motorcycle. Now Petunia and one of the cats jumped every time, but Tallulah didn't. For a dog that jumped every time a car door slammed, that's pretty impressive.

And she can enjoy a bully stick without getting into a brawl.

Now, she'll probably stay on the leash for a while longer until we all feel she's really relaxed. We are taking in a foster pug a few days while his foster family goes out of town on Friday. That will test how well it is working. Taking in the foster isn't the ideal situation, but it has to be done. So on leash, she will stay.

Hope everyone is doing well!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Not much going on here

Mom has been such a slacker! Geez, can't a pug keep up with her blog? 

Anyway, we are sad that we won't be seeing our friends this year. No road trip for us. We haven't been home for Christmas in three years. Gosh, we've only been home for Christmas for two out of our entire six years! Mom is going to put up a little tree in the living room where the cats can't get to it. They like to knock the ornaments off. 

Fortunately, we are not getting the nasty weather that is hitting so many of you! We hit 80 degrees today, breaking a record. We expect rain and cooler temperatures, but no ice or snow! 

Stay safe and warm, friends!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Parade day!

We are on our way to the parade right now. Mom's terrible about getting pictures at the parade. It's dark. There's three of us to handle. Blah blah blah.
Plus it's supposed to be raining until right before the parade starts so we won't put on costumes on until right before we get going.

So, in case she doesn't get good pictures, here's Isabelle and her Jeep.

Remember, you can watch it live on WVEC.com. We are unit 25.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Parade prep

Modeling a lion collar for fellow pug marcher, Stella.


Petunia would not put her bully stick down for a picture.

Tallulah says, I can't believe you are forcing me to wear this collar.

Parade is Saturday, starts at 7 PM Eastern. You can stream it live on WVEC.com!
Be sure to check us out! A herd of zebras, a pug safari guide in a Jeep! Plus lots more jungle puggies!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Exam results

Mom got her exam results on Friday. Let's have a partial whoo hoo for her! She passed the two exams that were the weekend long papers. She did not pass the five hour one. 

So that means mom needs to study more and take it again when she's ready. She ordered a lot more books and will be meeting with some professors to get a better understanding of the material. 

While it would be awesome if she had passed all three, she'll take two out of three. These exams were brutal. She would have been really sad if she failed all three. This way, she'll have one area to focus on instead of many. 

So back to her staying put on the couch for hours at a time. We can live with that. 

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Happy pills and other stuff

Tallulah went to the vet last night. She's been extremely anxious and lashing out at Petunia and Isabelle for a few months. After trying everything from rose quartz crystals to aromatherapy to herbal remedies, mom finally decided to try the pharmaceutical route. 

Mom prefers to do things as naturally as possible for her and for us. That's why we do titre testing instead of automatically vaccinating every year. But she realizes that if alternative therapies aren't working, then it's time to try a pill. 

So Tallulah is on Prozac now. We are trying it at the lowest dosage first for a month, then we will increase it if necessary for another month. Meds like this can be tricky so we may have to try a few different meds and/or dosages before we find the right fit for her. 

Miss T has always been an anxious dog and honestly has been a brawler with Petunia since she was six months old. But it's worse now. Fireworks and storms never used to bother her, but this summer was bad. And when she gets too anxious, she redirects that anxiety to fear aggression. Everyone has scars from that. It's no way to live. So we'll try some happy pills and see how it goes. 

In alternative therapy news, mom tried two new things she read about in the Whole Dog Journal. One is called EMT Gel. It's a topical gel to be used on wounds (say like from a dog fight!). It starts out sticky but then dries up. It's like a glue on the skin, so it's flexible. Mom likes this one. It's even safe for birds. It also works on nail quicks. It doesn't sting or stink like Liquid Bandage either. It isn't cheap like Neosporin, but so far, mom thinks it is worth it. She's used it a few times and only uses a smidge each time so it will last a long time. We will always keep a tube in our first aid kit. 
Photo from Amazon

The second thing was Wobenzym. It's a pill that humans or dogs can take. It's supposed to help with inflammation, digestion problems and healing among other things. Isabelle has been taking half a tablet every night to help heal her wounds and to try to ease her arthritis pain. We are using it as a preventative thing for the arthritis before the really cold weather sets in. We'll let you know how it works. Check out the October 2013 issue of the Whole Dog Journal for more info on these products. 

Photo from Amazon

Have you tried something new that works?

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Because of that school stuff, we didn't get costumes or Pugoween or anything fun this year. But this year, mom was able to give out candy to trick or treaters. She had a little help.
This is Count von Candykeeper. Mom made him in Texas a very long time ago. He's seen better days, but mom thought he deserved to come out of retirement.

Isabelle got to hand out candy with mom and the Count. She wasn't thrilled to be sharing the spotlight. 

Seriously, mom? 

Oh well, I'm going to work on this Kong treat. 

There weren't a lot of trick or treaters. 
More candy for mom!

Oh, and we got extra treats since we spent the night in our crates.

Hope everyone got lots of treats and no tricks!

Monday, October 28, 2013

We're back!

Holy pug, that was a long break. But we're back!

If you are interested, here's how the exams worked.
 She picked up a piece of paper and a blank thumb drive on a Friday at noon. 
Had from Friday at noon til Monday at noon to answer the question on the paper in the form of a researched paper. She did that two weekends in a row with two different questions. 
In between, she took a five hour exam in a classroom about statistics and designing research.

tl;dr- tests are hard

It was the toughest thing she's ever done. Even physically, it was stressful. 
Fortunately, no migraines and no emergencies that caused a big problem. 
There's always emergencies, right? 
Like the time her water pillow sprung a giant leak. 
Mom thought Isabelle had peed right on her, she was so wet. 

Or the time that her exam paper wouldn't save 
so she took her whole laptop to turn in before the deadline.

But it all worked out. It's done and she can breathe normally again. 

We were no help at all. 
Mom wished we did more of this.

In fact, we got pretty rowdy and had to be crated a lot. 
Can you blame us? All she did was sit and type or read! 
We missed several dog events (including Pugoween) and two meet ups because of all this school stuff.

Mom said she'll make it up to us by walking us more. 
Sheesh, at least we'll get out of the house more.

The results won't be in for a while, maybe by mid-November. 
So all that walking will help distract her. 

In the meantime, she has to get started on our zebra costumes and turning the Dogger into a safari jeep for the parade.
Isabelle is modeling her new Gripper socks. 

We are still catching up on blog reading, but were really sorry to see that Gracie Lynn and Benny had crossed the Bridge. Our hearts go out to their families and loved ones. 
The blog world mourns with you.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Crunch time

Mom has moved into exam mode. That means all she is doing is studying. No blog, no forums, nothing that isn't related to public administration. Exams are October 18-28.  Wish her luck!
In the meantime, enjoy this Peep diorama of potholes. See you at the end of October! 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Happy birthday to mom!

She's 40 today. Can you believe it? She's celebrating with cheesecake and a study meeting for her exams. It's a big one, but a real celebration is going to have to wait until the doctorate is done. Then we'll party. 

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Scary Sunday

Everything's okay now. But earlier today, it was not.

Mom gives us a rib bone after we get our nails trimmed. She buys a rack of ribs that most people would barbecue and cuts in the meaty area between the bones. She freezes them then gives them to us frozen after nail grinding.

We were all gnawing happily on our bones, us in our crates and Isabelle on her bed. Mom stepped outside to check on the laundry. Then she heard us barking our heads off. If one of us loses our bone through the wires of the crate, we carry on. But it's usually just the one of us. A little voice in mom's head said that she should check.

When she came back in, Isabelle was laying on her side with the bone halfway down her throat, blocking her airway. Her tongue had turned completely gray, an indicator that she was getting no oxygen. She was twitching her legs, her eyes were open and her body was stiff.

Naturally, mom took the bone out right away. Isabelle's was mostly meat which is probably why it lodged in her throat so easily. It took a few horrifying seconds, but she started breathing on her own. Once mom saw that, she ran to get the oxygen tank.

Again, mom made a mistake. She kept the oxygen tank dismantled (there's three pieces to make it work) to make sure it didn't leak oxygen. We have gas for heating and cooking so mom was afraid that a leak would catch fire. She couldn't find the one piece that turned the oxygen on for 20 minutes.

By this point, Isabelle was up and walking around. Her tongue was no longer gray, and she could walk without stumbling. Despite that, mom gave her some oxygen anyway until her tongue was bright pink.

She's napping now. Oxygen makes her uber-relaxed then sleepy. Her throat is probably sore so mom gave her some honey to soothe it.
You can see her pink tongue a little
The lessons here? Never leave your dog with a bone. Mom knows better, but she did it anyway. She won't do it again. And if you have something like oxygen or an epi-pen or some other life saving thing, for pug's sake, make sure it's available to use. If Isabelle's life depended on that oxygen, she wouldn't have made it. Now, the tank is all put together except the key that turns on the oxygen. It is tied with a ribbon to the tank so it won't get lost again.

Mom always wondered if we would alert her that something was happening. This time at least, we did. Mom likes to think that we were calling for help, but she figures that in reality, we weren't. We aren't exactly known for being helpful where Isabelle is concerned. No matter the reason, at least we did make a big enough of a fuss that Isabelle was saved.

So learn from mom's mistakes. Never leave your dog unattended with a bone or chew that can be swallowed. Keep your emergency stuff ready. And hug your guys a little tighter tonight.

Friday, September 6, 2013

September already?

Things have been kind of rough around here. Mom's been depressed which means she doesn't want to do anything fun anymore. We haven't been helping either. We've been really rotten and mean. Probably acting out because we aren't getting the doting attention we used to. Anyway.

Hopefully, that is changing. Mom's started a new blog. This new one is a lot less pugcentric and lot less cheery. But it's how she's feeling right now and that's okay.

In the meantime, she got some training DVDs and a book from Patricia McConnell to whip us back in shape. The DVDs are Dog-Dog Aggression (told you we were mean) and Feeling Outnumbered (this book too). Mom is hoping to learn some positive ways to retrain us to behave like good pugs. Or at the very least, not horrible, hateful little dogs.

*Mom here* I fully admit and take responsibility for their bad behavior. I spoiled them in the worst way. I turned them into entitled, frustrated dogs. So I have to do what I can to fix it. We'll keep you updated on the progress. *Back to the pugs*

Summer really didn't turn out like we planned. The garden didn't produce hardly anything but a few tomatoes, and we ate most of them green. August was really chilly for us so very little swimming. Early Late July/August was pretty neat because Mom officially became an aunt. Our aunt adopted one of her foster daughters, making M a permanent member of the family. Her foster kids are always family, just not always permanent. M is a senior in high school this year. Just like with dogs, the older ones rarely get adopted. We are so proud of our aunt for opening her heart to many children who need a safe and loving home. Biology doesn't make a family, love does. If you think being a rescue dog foster is hard, imagine it with kids. Mom says she'll stick with pugs though.

Anyway, Aunt Mandy came to visit with her three girls. It was a whirlwind four days. They went to the Outer Banks, a water park, Washington DC and Virginia Beach.
Enjoying the Outer Banks
They went and went and went. They took a boat ride, saw dolphins, swam in the ocean, rode a ferry. Walked for hours in DC, seeing the monuments at the National Mall and one floor of the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History. They went to the Holocaust Museum. It was very sad.

Lincoln Memorial

Reflecting pool looking toward the Washington Monument

It was four days packed with adventure. We sat home. Didn't even get a t-shirt.

Now it's September. Mom has started the very intense process of studying for her doctoral exams in October. What does that mean for us? Well, no Pugoween this year. Or costumes. Maybe a pug meet up, but none since June. She really has to study hard for these exams. On the bright side, it means a lot of sitting on the couch for her which equals snuggle time for us. She's going to try to walk us once a week and work on our training 10-15 minutes each day, but very little extra stuff. We'll do our best to make her blog for us. And she'll blog on her other one too.

Thanks for sticking with us. Once this doctoral thing is done, surely life will be better, right?

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Super belated birthday dinner

As promised, we did get steak for our birthday. Just days late.

Steak! One for each of us.

We had to supervise. Mom can burn stuff. 

It was a little warm for Isabelle to be outside, but she wanted to supervise too. 

We made sure that the steaks were grilling right. 

Mom still hasn't gotten us presents to destroy, but the steak was pretty good. 

Here's a little video of us eating. 

Thanks for hanging in with us while mom slacks off on the blog. Her new job is really keeping her busy, and she's studying for exams. Maybe one day, she'll be done with all this school business!

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Party poopers

Well, this weekend was no party. Saturday morning started really early with *some* pugs pooping on the bedroom floor. Then someone peed on the foot of the bed. A great way to start the day. 

After grumbling about that all day and doing laundry (thank pug for waterproof mattress covers), mom was going to grill some steaks for our supper. Unfortunately, Petunia started throwing up. 
Does this look like a sick pug to you?
And she did it all day long. Last time was 5 am Sunday morning. So no yummy steaks for any of us. :(

But it's now nearly 6 pm Sunday and paws crossed, no more vomiting. Petunia got small meals of rice and banana then a little beef broth and applesauce added today. We're thinking it was a stomach bug versus an obstruction. Although, she has been gutting stuffies and chewing the heck out of the squeakers. Or she might have eaten a slug or something outside. Anyway, she seems to be doing better.  

So we'll celebrate next weekend. Mom gets a four day weekend (whoo hoo!) so we can really party! Instead, we did a lot of this. 

Hope your weekend was better!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

We are 6!

Today is our 6th birthday. Where does time go? Mom's been super busy with her new job and completely forgot to buy us presents and noms. She swears she will make it up to us this weekend. 
In the meantime, enjoy our birthday picture!  

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Long time, no blog!

First, we had to get ready for Pugapalooza. Then we did Pugapalooza. Then mom had to rest after Pugapalooza. That took up most of May. Then a crazy, whirlwind happened. 
Mom has a new job! She had to wait until today to let everyone know. She starts on June 17. It's the same pay, but different responsibilities and different people. The best part? It's a 3 minute commute! That means mom can come home for lunch to let us out and actually eat too! 
This is a great thing for mom. She's going to be a lot happier which is always good. 

We promise to blog about Pugapalooza soon. It was our best yet. 

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Broccoli and cauliflower and carrots, oh my!

Mom got it together and planted a late winter garden this year. 
Thanks to the cool weather and oodles of rain, it's doing great!

It's just a little garden bed, 4'x4', but it's got some goodies in it. 

 There's carrots, those lacy looking leaves.
This is the spinach. 

 And broccoli! We even have little heads forming! 
PS. If you see those holes in your cole crops (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage), look for little green worms. They will eat 100% of your plant. Pick them off or use an organic pesticide like Bt (bacillus thuringiensis) or neem oil. Safe for eating and doesn't kill birds or beneficial insects like bees. 

We also have potatoes and cauliflower growing. Hopefully in a few weeks, we'll have a nice harvest of broccoli and cauliflower. Carrots and potatoes will take a little longer. The spinach should be growing better, but there may be too much shade from the broccoli and cauliflower. 

When everything is done, mom will trade these out for some summer crops. We have a summer bed too with tomatoes, eggplant, green beans, zucchini and squash. Mom will plant the same thing in the winter bed so we have more produce all summer and into fall. 

Yay for fresh veggies!
And yes, that fence is up to keep us from helping ourselves to the produce.