Mutts n' More

A Random Collection of Fur-Covered Happiness

Welcome!

You've happened upon a place filled with animals so cute and furry (or not) that they can brighten anyone's day. Their stories are often touching or inspirational and are sure to make you realize how important the animals in your lives are. Enjoy!

If you're looking for something a little more real and down to earth, then stay and read about the life of a lesbian couple with 14 furry and scaly kids who are just trying to make it through life's craziness together. It has its ups and downs and twists and turns but one thing's for sure: it's never boring!

On A Roll!

So lately I’ve been trying to be more productive. Nikki has been being so good lately! She’s been working so hard on her new design site and it is SO CLOSE to being done! I can’t wait until she gets all the last little kinks worked out and opens it! It will be great! It looks really neat and professional and she has thought of absolutely EVERYTHING! I’m so excited and proud of her. Once that’s up and running she can focus more on making new themes which I think she really likes. I’m really impressed by her. Unfortunately, she’s also sick for the first time, pretty much, since we moved here. The warmer weather was really helping her immune system but something slipped by and knocked her on her butt. Or rather, it should have, but she likes to pretend like she’s Wonder Woman so she pushes herself and makes it worse. Like she said, though, she actually did take it easy today, with only minimal computer time and some knitting.

This past Saturday we went to Knoxville with my grandparents and Winnie. I really wanted it to be fun and some of it was but for some reason, the day was just kind of blah. We went to an Asian market which was cool but it wasn’t the one we were supposed to go to. Still, I bought Nikki and I some candy (Pocky and YanYan or something like that) and some orange drink she likes. We also went to Best Buy and played with the video games while my grandpa picked up his repaired computer. We also went to the pet store that Nikki and I went to on our anniversary/Valentine’s Day (oh crap, never wrote about it) and saw that the blizzard leopard gecko is still there but we didn’t get him. Finally, we ate at Salsaritas (like Chipotle) and went home. Actually, Nikki ended up getting sick at the restaurant so she didn’t eat. Poor baby. On the way back we talked about how the economy is crap and I think that led to us feeling down too. Umm, when we got back we watched some Academy Awards but once my grandparents left I stopped watching because I find that stuff boring. It was nice to play with Brody, though. I miss him.

So with the animal stuff I was talking about in the last post. Well, we decided to get that one girl ferret but when we went to get her, she had been sold ealier that day. It was a big downer. Then I fell in love with a cute little white with dusty ears and nose but we didn’t get it either. I wanted to but I knew we shouldn’t. It sucked, though, because there were stupid boys there that wanted to get the same little bunny and to keep it in a live trap. One even said he promised not to shoot it. Great. But yeah, we decided not to get any animals for now. I really wanted one since I had gotten into that new animal mode but I know it’s for the best. So instead of getting a new animal right now, I decided to spend my money on taking care of the ones we already have. Now, obviously I take care of them, but I mean routine vet care. I decided to go ahead and take the kitties in for their shots so they will be up to date on everything. This means I won’t have to worry about it when Merlin bolts the door and I can start volunteering at a shelter around here and I won’t put my own kids at risk. Spunky is all fine because he had to be up to date so I could work at the kennels. After the cats, we’ll just have to get Rufus up to date and then everything will be great. Umm, also, besides getting shots, I’ve decided to finally get Akima spayed. Now, before you get mad that she’s almost 4 and only now getting spayed, let me explain. Akima came straight from the pound in Ashland, not the shelter, so she wasn’t spayed when I got her. I was going to get her spayed right away but I got a bad feeling whenever I thought about her going under. I’ve learned to listen to my feelings so I waited. Then when I had no more bad feelings, the problem was that I had no money. I finally started making money this past summer but by then I thought I’d wait until we were here since the vets up there are corrupt and money hungry. So that is why she is getting spayed now. Tomorrow morning a little after 7:30 in fact. Queue me getting nervous. I always get nervous when kids go in and have to be put under. Of course I do. You worry about people too. But see, I’m also hanging under this huge cloud of guilt. I feel so bad that I waited this long. This is my baby and I feel like I’ve put her at huge risk because I didn’t just go ahead and do it when she was a kitten, before her first heat. If i had spayed her on time then her risk of mammary cancer would have been reduced by a huge amount. Now she’s just as susceptible as a non-spayed cat. Of course, she won’t be at risk for uterine or cervical cancer anymore but still. I feel like a failure. Nikki tells me that it was good to listen to my feelings but I still should have done it sooner. If my kitten gets that cancer later on in life I don’t know what I’ll do. Anyway, for now, I just want tomorrow to go smoothly with NO complications. Please keep her in your thoughts and send her well wishes? I truly appreciate it. It helped Gracie, after all! So yeah, tomorrow we drop Akima off at 7:30 in the morning and then when we go in to pick her up at 4:30, we also bring the boys and they get all their shots (or in Merlin’s case, start boosters). In total it’ll come to over $300, which sucks, but I want my kids to be healthy and safe.

Okay, now for the productive part. Most of you know, I’m sure, but I worked a lot today on defining and setting rates for different pet care services. (h njj                       ~Zane) If you haven’t already looked at it, I’d appreciate anyone else checking out my Livejournal: forpawz. I’m going to add more as I go along and I’ll be dropping off more flyers around town. Nikki made me really nice looking ones. Then it’ll just be up to the universe to hopefully answer. Anyway, I want to thank all of you for offering me so much support. I do get down and feel like I’ll never do anything but you don’t give up on me and when I put my mind to something, I can get it done.  ^_^

And now for your favorite part: the photos!

Drake Stealing Some of My Desert

Drake Stealing Some of My Desert

Nate Climbing the Bed

Nate Climbing the Bed

My Mom and I Grooming Rufus

My Mom and I Grooming Rufus

Giving Spunky a Manicure - Spoiled Pup!

Giving Spunky a Manicure - Spoiled Pup!

Akima Being Cute and Playing Around

Akima Being Cute and Playing Around

Again, please send Akima your well wishes. Let her heal quickly and be back to her cute little self very soon! I love you, kitten! And everyone, of course!

My Thoughts Are Flooded

Hey everyone! Oh man, have there been some things going on that are yanking on my heart and mind. First, I’ve been trying to make an impact on the world. I want to be someone. I want to help the world become a better place. I guess I’ve been inspired by lots of things. So I started writing a letter to one of my mom’s friend’s a couple weeks ago and finished and sent it to her yesterday. This woman is amazing! She has lived all over the world, in all hemispheres, in North America, Europe and Asia. She has traveled even more places and written for travel magazines and taken amazing photographs. Now she lives in Canada and guides a few safaris to Africa each year. It’s mind blowing! She’s like an embodiment of my hopes and dreams (though I’d also want some more hands-on work with animals). Anyway, if you ever want to check it out, her website is mamatembotours.com. So there’s that.

Then there’s the Dusty thing. It got me thinking. I didn’t like that one site that I showed you since most of the messages were negative. It made me want to start a new site that had nothing but good thoughts and images. Kind of like what I did with mine. Just showing all the loved cats and other animals out there.

Random Thought: I want a hungry! You know, that cute little orange dude from the weightwatchers commercials! He’s got eyebrows just like me! *does eyebrow things just to prove it*

Anyway, I think it would be a good place. You know, kind of like what I wanted to do with this place but it just didn’t turn out that way. People could send in pictures of happy animals and it would put some love in the world. Then that got me thinking about an idea I thought of awhile ago where I wanted to make a site called I Love Shelter Dogs which then became Animals. But yeah. Just a bunch of pictures and stories of animals rescued from shelters. We could have features and obviously link to the ASPCA and Petfinder and other such sites. And I could start a resources page for shelters around the country. I know there’s lists like that other places, but could it hurt? But basically, I think it’d be good because people can talk about numbers and statistics regarding shelter animals but if you put faces to those beautiful souls that were rescued, I think it would have a stronger impact on people. Besides, who doesn’t want to show off their wonderful rescue babies? Anyway, it’s something I really want to do but I don’t have the expertise to make a site like that and Nikki is busy doing real work. Still, what do y’all think?

Then, yesterday we went to the pet store in town that we hadn’t been to before and found the cutest little ferrets. Now we’ve agreed to not get any more little ones but we figured looking wouldn’t hurt. We’ve turned away from plenty of cute babies before. There were 4 ferrets there, 2 light and 2 very dark. The dark ones were TINY (as in too young to be there, really) and boy were they feisty! As in pretty mean. These things were smaller than our girl rats and yet one of them bit the crap outta me. It’s okay, though, because I’m pretty used to ferret bites so when it’s just my hands I can take it (though feet and face will ALWAYS hurt). Anyway, I like the lighter ones and Nikki and I fell in love with this cute little girl. She looked a lot like a lighter Nate and while the other light girl was prettier, she was sleeping most of the time so we didn’t get to know her. We also looked at the bunnies, birds and reptiles there. My mom had this sulfur crested cockatoo totally in love with her and giving her kisses and dancing with us and all. But really, most of the hour and some we spent there was with the ferrets. Oh man did we want to bring her home! But I’m responsible and Nikki doesn’t have the money so we came home without her. Still, we couldn’t get her off our minds. We said no more little ones but we’ve also wanted to get the boys a little sister for a long time. See, I like having 3 ferrets because when the unthinkable happens and you lose one, it’s really nice for the there to be more than one remaining because ferrets get MAJORLY depressed when they lose friends. Drake is around 5 now and Nate is around3 so it’s already time for a new one if you go by my timeline. Plus, it’s not like we’re just racing out on a whim. Our Jingles died in August of last year. I still haven’t talked about him because it was too hard but I’m thinking it’ll be time soon. *sigh* Anyway, we kept thinking about the ferret and so today we decided to go back. We couldn’t decide if we wanted her to be there or not because we knew it’d be hard to leave again. When we go there, the two dark ones had been sold – in ONE day! The lighter ones were still there, though. Funny thing, we fell in love with the other girl today. The one that is, I hate to say it, prettier. Obviously they’re all adorable but this one is VERY light, where her head is almost white and it continues down into a triangle on her chest. And we actually got to play with her today and she was just as sweet and her ruby eyes are so beautiful. Oh, and at one point I dropped her, on hard floor. Okay, so she leaped from my back, but I still felt bad. Seriously, I can still hear that sickening thud in my head. I checked her over and she seemed to be okay. *big breath* Leaving today was even harder. We so wanted to be able to take her home! Of course, we’d feel bad splitting them up, but there’s no way we could afford 2. Hell, we can’t even afford the one. Well, I wish I could spend my money on her but I really just shouldn’t. I wish I had started my dog walking/pet photography/training/pet sitting job already. Then I’d know I had money coming. But, it’s just a bad idea. And that sucks. I don’t know why we’re so attached this time. It just happens like that sometimes. Man, if only. I just know they’re going to be gone before we could get the funds. I just told them I loved them and that I hoped they got good homes.  Meh. Don’t know what else to say about that.

And, I hate watching shows where women, especially big women or non-white women, are so close to winning things and then they lose. Like the Wheel of Fortune I’m watching right now. Why am I so empathetic towards people like that? I don’t know, but this silly old show is really getting to me. I hurt watching her feel dumb/sad. What is wrong with me? Oh YAY! The woman just won $4500 in the speed round and it make me so happy! ^_^

And down goes my mood. I also forgot to mention that earlier I gave the rats some tortilla bits for a treat and then I saw that Morgan was choking on it. I got a little scared and told Nikki to look up what to do. See, I had a hamster die in my hands because he choked to death. That was my little Squirt. It had happened a few times before and I’d always managed to save him but then… I just couldn’t do it again. He died right there because I couldn’t help him in time. Yeah. Anyway, she seemed to get over it on her own pretty quickly but then we got more bad news. I looked at her as she climbed up onto the bars and saw a lump under her armpit. Our little baby has a tumor. I’m almost positive it’s a mammary tumor which is common in female rats and almost completely benign. I had a rat, Liney, who had two and they both grew to about the size of a ping pong ball but they didn’t really harm her. As long as they can still move, it’s best to just let them be. If they get too big for them to function, then it’s time to consider surgery. So yeah, lots of things happening lately. It’s no fun.

But back up again? We’ve been letting Nate and Drake run around our room for awhile for the past 2 days. It’s messy in here so we were worried it wasn’t ferret proof but it turns out that everything is fine. It’s great to be able to let them romp around again. I know they appreciate it. Also, we cleaned all the rats cages today so they all got to come out and play too, even Chunky. Of course, he was a scaredy boy and he hid under the bed and then hopped right back into his cage when it was done being cleaned. But at least he still had an adventure. Okay, this is very much long enough. Good night all!

Nikki Playing With the Girls

Nikki Playing With the Girls

Nate Attacking a Plastic Bag

Nate Attacking a Plastic Bag

Nate Standing Up to Check Out the Camera

Drake Standing Up to Check Out the Camera

Justice For Dusty!

What have I been up to lately? Not much, really. Not much and yet I never seem to find the time to do anything. DA has taken over my life, though I have been learning basic Photoshop and uploading more photos to my account (forpawz, in case you forgot). I’m hoping to become something someday. Very vague aspirations, huh? Well, it’s hard to fail that way. Other random things? I’ve been missing Brody a lot and have been baraged by opinions thrust at me over what I should do with my life. It’s great. *drowns in own puddle of sarcasm*

Anyway, I’ve been meaning to update but I just came across something that made me NEED to write this. I just now found out about the plight of Dusty the cat (as well as another cat) that was tortured by a POS child who should have much worse done to him. It’s a big story, but if you haven’t heard it, then take a look at these:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CuTm6kjKOhA

http://www.kenny-glenn.net/

(EDIT: While the second link is good for providing more information, I don’t exactly condone all the messages it sends. I certainly am appalled by some of the pictures they decided to post.)

Someone invited me to a Facebook group about Avenging Dusty and that’s how I found out. It makes me sad and it makes me sick and it makes me beyond pissed! These pieces of filth are going around abusing their own pet! Can you say future serial killers? I’m not even kidding! Those boys will get off with nothing more than some community service and then they’ll be free to torture more animals before moving onto humans. Not that I feel animal abuse is any less evil than harming humans but that’s all the law really cares about and you know what, it will be too late at that point. I wish bad things upon people that do this. It happens all the time. Even big time sports heroes kill dogs for the Hell of it. WHAT THE F**K IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE?

(EDIT: I forgot to mention when I published this that while this shows some of the darkest depths of humanity, it also reveals something that gives me hope. When you look on YouTube, sometimes all you see is people calling people/videos gay or much worse. But it was people on YouTube and other internet sites that were so appalled by what they saw that they skillfully tracked down these horrible people and turned them in to the authorities. Doesn’t that give you at least some reason to smile?)

This is just another example of why I would always choose animals over humans. And you know why? You know what is going to happen to Dusty? He is going to be adopted out to someone else and guess what? He is going to LOVE that person! That sentence just now brought tears to my eyes. Animals are SO loving and SO forgiving that he will go and he will love his new family as if he had never been hurt. THAT is what makes animals the higher beings. THAT is what makes me stand in awe of them. If ONLY people could be more like animals – the world would be a much better place!

Just think about it.

And – go run off right now and hug your furry kids, if you can. Promise them that they will always be under your loving care. Let them know how grateful you are that they are in your lives. Tell them that someday the world will be as it should be and that you will fight for that end until it becomes a reality. They believe in you, I know it.

Merlin Enjoying Being Outside

Merlin Enjoying Being Outside

Zane & Akima Being All Lovey

Zane & Akima Being All Lovey

Tigerlilly Wrapped Up All Comfy Like

Tigerlilly Wrapped Up All Comfy Like

An Older Photo of Gracie

An Older Photo of Gracie

I wanted to show some very loved kittens to counteract the horribleness of this post’s subject. I wish I had pictures of other the other kitties from my life, but unfortunately they were from before a digital camera. I love you, too, Shakespeare, Screech, Cutie/Gato, Tiger, Little Bit and Noodles. RIP my friends.

Oh My Aching Back!

So since I get so far behind in this blog because I’m slow at everything I do and not given the proper time to finish an entry I’m going to write things in bits and pieces until I’m caught up. You probably don’t care but hey, you can skip it. I want to remember so I need to write it down. It’s already faded. So here we go!

Okay, I never ever have time to write anymore. Which may sound weird seeing as I think I do absolutely nothing anymore. But that’s because I get trapped into wasting my entire day watching TV. The Tivo is an addicting agent, I feel. Seriously! I can use it and it’s cool so you don’t have to watch commercials and can see things you missed but people can become slaves to it as well. Okay, people, is it really necessary to save so much crap on your Tivo that even if you watched it 24/7 you wouldn’t be able to keep up? At some point you just need to let it go. Save your absolute favorite stuff and then everything else, especially the ones that repeat all the time, just try to catch it on live TV and if you don’t then just wait for the next time. I hate feeling trapped by a damn machine. It’s just like with cell phones. Technology meant to free us actually ends up enslaving us!

Enough of that. Things have been up and down around here lately. I love having my family around but it’s also really hard moving back in under someone else’s roof when you’ve been living on your own for 5 years. I want to be in control but I don’t really have any. I’m very particular about certain things (yes, perhaps too much so) and nothing here is exactly the way I’d like it. At least Nikki and I have our own room now. That’s right, we finally got down to work the other day with my mom and moved the couch, chair and big screen TV out of the room and into the living room. We were then able to bring our bed in from the front porch and garage and slept in our very own bed for the first time. It was nice, though I think we’re going to add some padding to it because the futon is slightly harder than we’d like. Anyway, there has been a lot of other moving and rearranging to try and accommodate us and this shuffling of room and while it’s slow going, it’s nice to see the progress. Our room feels more and more like our own space every day and it really does lift one’s spirits to have a place they can call their own. Of course, we still long for an entire place to ourselves (well, a roommate would be nice) but we’re trying to make due with what we have at the moment. I wanted to be here in Tennessee to have family around but it’s not exactly as I’d imagined. I still hardly see my grandparents and Winnie is barely around as well. Plus since we’re basically trapped here with no jobs and no friends, we get irritated with my mom just because we’re together too much. It’s crazy. How does that happen? I guess people, while social, still need time to themselves just to be.

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Okay, so Christmas in Texas, right? Haha, yeah, that thing that happened 2 months ago? Here we go. So we left Tennessee pretty late the day after Christmas because, well, we always take longer than we mean to to pack up and get going. Plus my mom was finishing presents for my nieces and we were trying to watch Speed Racer before we left since it was from Netflix and my mom wanted to send it back. We ended up taking it with us. The car ride down was long and uncomfortable. We took my car but since I have poor driving vision at night (I’m fine in the dark but lights really mess me up for awhile) Nikki and I sat in back with Spunky in between us for the whole ride down. Spunky was pretty miserable and kept trying to make his way into the front seat and eventually ended up curled up in the floor. Yeah, you know how big Spunky is (at least through pictures). I still have no idea how he managed it but he did. Poor pup. The only nice part of driving down was talking with people and having Chik-fil-A for dinner. Their chicken sandwiches are good! So yeah, Nikki and I laid in a thousand different positions trying to sleep and while we did get some rest, it obviously wasn’t the best. We finally arrived in Austin (or rather Round Rock) sometime around 9 or 10 in the morning. We went straight to Courtney’s since we were all together and my dad wasn’t letting us stay with him anyway. He’s got no problem with me or Nikki or anything like that but he said his house was too messy. I think he hadn’t cleaned it at all since his girlfriend died which I can’t blame him for since of course he’d be depressed. Anyway, we got there and I got to meet my second niece, Emerson or Emmy, for the first time.

Isnt She Adorable?

Isn't She Adorable?

She was already 6 months old by the time I got to see her. That’s why I want to move closer. I missed Izzy growing up (she’s SO old at 4.5! ^_-) and I want to be around more for Emmy, plus get closer to Izzy. When Izzy was a baby, she thought I hung the moon. I was the coolest chick on the planet just because I could hold water in my hand. I love little kids and they love me. I think I make a good aunt. Anyway, I met Emmy and Izzy was really excited to see us. Spunky and Mia, Courtney’s dog ran around greeting one another and we were all just happy to be out of the car. We even went so far as to wake up Ryan, my brother. Heh. I called my dad to let him know we were there but we didn’t even see him that day. We just hung out at Courtney’s and played with their Wii and watched Ryan and Harry play some shoot-em-up X-Box 360 game. I’m not sure what we had to eat that night but I’m sure it was good and cost a lot. Yeah, it always happened like that. We ate out ALL THE TIME! Oh man.

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So there’s your little slice of back story. Now for the present. We’ve been doing so much moving and rearranging and cleaning lately. Last week, my mom, Nikki and I were really cool and took down and hooked up the cable in our house all by ourselves. It was tough! We had to go into the basement, pull the cable down from my mom’s room, pull down the cable from the living room and then put the cable from my mom’s room back up through the living room. Tougher than it sounds because the cable in the living room is in the wall, not the floor. This means it had to go through insulation. At one point, the string my mom had been using to pull it up snapped and we thought all was lost but I wasn’t about to give up so I started pulling the insulation out of the wall until I found the cable. It was a good feeling!

Ah Yes, The Great Cable Caper!

Ah Yes, The Great Cable Caper!

Three days ago we moved chests and the sofa and tons of pictures and carpets and this and that back and forth across the house. In the end we had the living room packed in all tight so we could create more space in the new TV room. Nikki’s and my room was pretty messy, though, since all of our stuff got shoved in there to make room. Oh man was it a disaster! Anyway, we went to work on it and it’s now pretty nice. Yesterday my gramma and grandpa came over about midday because my mom had asked my grandpa to come help with a list of “chores”. It was all electronic or fixing things and he doesn’t mind because it makes him feel good and useful. Nikki and I ran around and finished setting up our room so we could show it off. After that my grandpa, Nikki and I went to Walmart (and a couple other stores) to buy some food and supplies for my grandpa’s fixing jobs. It was fun spending time with my grandpa and we kept teasing Nikki because she was practically falling asleep in the store. When we got back my grandpa taught me how to repair the vacuum cord that Brody had chewed through and my mom finished making her spaghetti. We had a nice dinner and after a couple 3rd Rocks my grandparents went home. After that Nikki and I were going to go to sleep but ended up staying awake for like 4 hours. Wanna know why? Because you guys told me to start a deviantART account and I listened. That’s right. I’m sure you all know by now, but my account there is forpawz (surprise, surprise). So yeah, I got sucked into DA and have spent the last many days browsing through tons and tons of artwork, especially photos. Oh man I am so blown away by these other people! They are amazing and I really wish I could learn tricks of the trade from them. The problem with it is that I look at galleries I like and favorite like half the pictures and then I see something really beautiful in those people’s favorites and have to open it which means I have to look at their gallery and then favorites and it’s like the damn Energizer Bunny. *shakes head* I guess you could say I’m addicted. Oh well. Today was nice. Nikki and I slept in a bit then Nikki worked a ton on her portfolio and making a new blog theme and such. She’s so good! She’s amazing, actually. And she possibly has her first client! Go her! I watched some of the Dark Knight and Grace Is Gone, a John Cusack movie so Nikki could have the time to get everything done. BUT! The fun thing today was that we took the puppies on an hour long walk and it was nice. It was warm and the sky was pretty and the dogs behaved really well. We took a different route than last time and figured out some of the back ways around here. We also thought about me trying to start a dog walking job around here for all the old people. That and my pet photography. I need to get better first though. Anyway, I loved the walk and it cheered Nikki and I right up.

Walking the Pups!

Walking the Pups!

Another story to remember from today? So Nikki took the three dogs out and then I hear the most pitiful meowing. I look over and Merlin is in front of the door meowing because he wants to go out and join the “other puppies”. It was such a sad little sound that I got up and took him outside in my arms so he could be happy. Such a silly kitten.

So there it is – a real live update! Now I’m going to go for the night and finish watching House. Good night everyone!

And now for more obligatory cuteness:

Merlin Doing His Best Sphinx Interpretation

Merlin Doing His Best Sphinx Interpretation