Saturday, June 30, 2007

It's Here!

All my stuff came in!

Moxie's jumps and weaves are PAWSOME! Easy to assemble, light weight, and came with decorative tape so they have been stylized! I set them up in the living room tonight and Moxie did fab! She is going to have incredible weaves in no time, now that we can practice every day.

Her new therapy dog cape came in and I have affixed her patches so we can go to our visit on Tuesday in style! The leash tab I ordered came in also, but isn't quite what I thought it would be, so I don't know if it will work for my purposes. The patients at the hospital tend to want to hang on to the very end of Moxie's leash where they don't have much control and Moxie isn't sure what they want. I was thinking a super short leash would do the trick, give the patients control and give moxie the freedom to move when they let go (through the tunnel and chute). I think I may have to make one myself.

The only total bomb of my recent shopping spree was the i-click. Obviously, this is not the clicker that I encoutered at agility class a few weeks ago, as Moxie had no reaction to that clicker, but completely shut down when I started using this one. She can't stand the sound of the clicker. She was shaking, hiding, running away, pretty much acting the same way she acts during a thunderstorm. I don't know why she hates the clicker so much. I've tried to introduce it to her three times and the same reaction each time. She just shuts down and acts like she is terrified. I don't get it.

I have ordered this as a last ditch effort. If it doesn't work out, I guess I have a whole mess of clickers available for the next ruffdogs charity auction.

One week to my next paycheck and I can get my last two wanted items. I just got a huge promotion and raise at work. I'm head of veterinary nursing now, with a dozen of so employees under my purview. I'm nervous and excited at the same time. I have alot of added responsibility and pressure, but I think I can handle it. Plus more money equals more dog stuff, more dog shows, more dog classes, and some stuff for the cats too.

Pictures tomorrow!

Saturday, June 23, 2007


I need to figure out how to join DWB's officially.

Anyway, here is Moxie's Meme

1. Your age? - 7 years and 11 months.

2. Your age when came to live with your people? - about one year old, give or take a few months.

3. What color is the collar you’re wearing right now? - Bright green with white and pink daisies.

4. Who is your favorite person other than the people you live with? - Um, everyone! Especially if they have cookies, or they pet me, or they might have cookies, or pet me.

5. How much do you weigh? - 28 pounds

6. Most expensive thing you’ve ever chewed up? I have never chewed up anything I wasn't supposed to. I'm a good dog.

7. Do you like other Dogs? - Yep, I am super sociable!

8. Who is your best non-human friend? - Derby, Aspen, Boomer, and Jally.

9. Squeaky Toys or Tennis Balls? - BOTH! I like the squeaky tennis balls.

10. Do you like to be brushed? - NO! I hate it. But mommy brushes me all the time.

11. Peanut Butter or Cheese? - Um, Cheese is easier to eat. But Peanut butter is good frozen.... I'm going to say, both, please!

12. Do your people cut your toenails? - Yes, all the ding dang time. I hate it.

13. Any formal education? - Yes, tons of obedience training, agility training, therapy dog training, and I've even trained to rescue people in the water!

14. Couch potato or Energizer Bunny? - I can go from 0 to 60 in no time flat!

15. Five nicknames your people call you - Muffin, Lambchop, Pumpkin (notice the food theme)Moxiemoos, Pupperdoodledog

16. What is your best trick? - Whisper.

17. Do you like kitties? - I am the personal guardian of a flock of cats. I take my job very seriously. I rule my cats with an iron paw! Mommy calls me the enforcer.

18. What did you have for breakfast? - Breakfast! I hardly remember. My mommy never feeds me! *send treats*

19. Can you hunt (aka have you ever killed anything living)? I killed a baby duck once when Mommy wasn't looking. I also tried to kill Mommy's love bird once. Oops.

20. When & why was the last time you went to the V.E.T.? - I go all the time. My mommy works there. I just got my boosters last week.

21. Where do you sleep at night? - On my bed, or on Mommy's bed, I go back and forth.

22. Do you like to swim? - I love water! I can swim for hours!

23. Can you make puppies? - No more puppies for me. I had puppies before mommy got me, but she fixed me and I've been puppy free every since!

24. Your favorite place to visit? - The lake.

25. Do you give kisses? - To anyone who asks!

26. Can you potty on command? - Yep, I respond to "go potty" and "hurry"

27. To Cuz or not to Cuz? - I don't have a cuz. Mommy, buy me a cuz!

Read on to find out what Mom's been up to!

Shopping Spree!

Well I was having a good day. I went on a therapy visit this morning, then out to lunch with the ladies from the therapy pals group.

On the way home I got a call from Shawn, he made it safely to Boston, but did not take his cat, Hazelnut, with him like I thought he was going to. Hazelnut is Mocha's biological daughter. Shawn adopted her from me when she was a wee kitten. Hazel is family. Shawn left Hazel with his sister, who adores her, so its fine, except her room mates are allergic to Hazel so she is with Shawns parents now. Shawn's Mom loves Hazel, his Dad, not so much into cats. The future does not bode well for Hazel. There is absolutely no reason why he couldn't take her to Boston, so I'm slightly miffed about that, pets are for life.

But what hurts worse is when I posed the question of bringing Hazel into our home to my Mother, she exploded on me. This isn't just some Random cat off the street, this Hazelnut, this is Mocha's daughter, this is Tyler's sister. This cat is a huge part of my heart because she is so much of her Mother and Brother now both at the bridge. When she said (read screamed) no, it was like losing Mocha and Tyler all over again. I won't stand by and let that cat end up in the shelter. I can't stand the thought of it. I don't know what to do. This isn't my home, but I moved here to help my Mother. I didn't move here to be treated like a twelve year old. I'm thinking of finding a house or duplex here in town to move into. That way I'm nearby to help, but not living here. I can't believe she would really let Mocha's daughter, Tyler's sister, go to the pound.

This is Hazelnut, with Mocha. Hazel is about 6 months in this picture.
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This is Mocha with Tyler the same day. (Also 6 months old) Can you see the family resemblence?
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All of this on top of some really stressful news on the work front make for a weepy afternoon. I just want my Mocha back. Thats the long and short of it. :(

So to ease my pains, I went on an internet shopping spree. It started with the need to replace Moxie's therapy dog cape, which was lost in the Mexico fiasco.
I got her a red one. She was given a nice Therapy Pals patch and I'll get a new Delta Patch and get her all official again.

Her cape will look something like this. It's a medium.
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I got this at If you have never been to, I recommend a visit. I found everything to be quite affordable.

I also got a new travel crate for Moxie, because, you guessed it, Moxie's was lost in the Mexico fiasco. When I said I lost everything I owned, I meant it, and everything Moxie owned too, including some of her favorite toys. :(

Here is the crate. It was a great deal.
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I also bought some of those coil wristband to hold a clicker, when I realized, I still don't have a clicker for Moxie, so I headed over the and bought a five pack of
Karen Pryor i-clicks.

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So then, inspired by Boomers new weaves, I surfed onto Affordable and dropped a load of money on some
and weaves .
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I had to stop there, but these things are still on my want list:

A forced air dryer
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and a cordless dremel
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I thought these were both reasonably priced. Will have to get them on my next pay check.

So do I feel better after my spending spree. Not really. But I think once I get all my goodies, the training time with Moxie will be very therapeutic. ;)

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Therapy Dog Extraordinair

One of the good things about living in the U.S. again is getting to do all these things with Moxie that we used to do. One of those being Animal Assisted Therapy, where we go into therapeutic settings, hospitals, nursing homes, juvenile prisons, etc and work together with the therapists, using Moxie to further some therapeutic goal.

I've done this with Moxie since she was 2 years old, and she was born for it. She intuitively KNOWS when to be bouncy happy Moxie, and when to be soft, sweet cuddly Moxie. She is the consumate Therapy Dog.

Well Moxie and I had to get recertified but we finished that process and went on our first visit with Therapy Pals tonight to University Behavioral Health, a Mental Health Hospital. We spent an hour with a group of adolescents, and the second hour with a group of adult patients. Moxie was an absolute star! We got there first and spent about fifteen minutes with the kids Moxie went up to the girls, rolled over on her back, snuggled up in their laps and gave kisses on command. When the boys came in, Moxie got to show off all her tricks. Some of the boys "taught" her new tricks (with me standing behind them giving her hand signals) and were pleased as punch with themselves and all smiles. I had some treats for the kids to give her and one of the boys actually asked me, "Don't you ever feed her? She's STARVING!" Moxie is awfully convincing with her poor starving and attention deprived puppy dog routine.

The whole group was in the gym and the rest of the "Therapy Pals" team arrived. Amy, a 4 year old Golden Retriever, Sam, a two year old Yorkie, Cosmo, a six year old Havanese, and Dale, a ten year old Boxer Mix. We set up an obstacle course; some cones to weave through, a tunnel, a chute (soft tunnel), several jumps and a tire. We introduced the dog and talked a bit about dog training, about having a positive attitude, communicating effectively, teamwork, etc. Then we had the kids run the dogs through the course. Well they had a blast, dogs and kids both. The therapists were on site to make the connection with the kids between what they were doing and how it applies in their lives. We got some great feedback from the therapists about some of the kids in particular. They had had a really rough day, but seemed to really relax and open up during the session. I was so pleased with Moxie. We both had a great time.

The next hour we worked with adult patients, we did the same thing and added in some obedience work. We did sit stays and down stays and had the patients try to distract them and get them to break their stays. They really enjoyed it, lots of laughter and joking and fun. One lady came up to me afterwards and said this was the highlight of her week. Moxie was the favorite of some of the athletic young men who loved to run with her through the course. One lady was a little shy of dogs, so moxie laid down about four feet away and belly crawled every so slowly closer and closer, stopping periodically and flopping onto her back to show the lady how nice she way. At the end, the women was laying next to Moxie on the floor, loving all over her. Everyone participated in the activity, even the patients with mobility issues had a turn.

I thinks its the rare dog indeed that can combine something as exciting and high energy as agility with something that requires the self control and awareness that therapy work requires. All the dogs in this group had that rare ability and we were all more than happy to share them with these people during a difficult time in their lives. It was a very fulfilling evening for both me and Moxie. I can't wait to go back in two weeks.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


I got Mocha's ashes back today from the pet crematorium.

I cried.

I've cried every single day for the past week, since Mocha first got sick. I'm starting to get that sick, hungover feeling you get after you've spent yourself crying. I just miss her so much. Every time I think about her, which is all the time, I just ache with her loss. Everything reminds me of her. I hope that the pain starts to fade soon.

Kobie is also in mourning. He is very depressed, poor lad, he spends all day up in his cat tree. When I come home he is stuck to me like glue. Thurston seems a bit confused by everything, but is taking it all in stride. Moxie was more bothered by her run in with a baby kangaroo than with Mocha's death. After all, in the beginning there was Mocha and Moxie. They were rivals for my affection every day of their lives with me. No wonder Moxie doesn't seem to miss her. She is upset that I cry at night. Its always bothered her when I cry.

I know that I am not alone in my grief tonight. Big cyber hugs to my friends, Kim and Marie, who are also mourning the loss of their beloved pets. May we all take some small comfort from our mutual understanding. Run Free Clark, Daisy and Mocha. Wait for us at the Rainbow Bridge.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Tribute Video

Rest in peace dear Mocha

Mocha took a turn for the worse in the night. She struggled all afternoon but her blood sugar was dropping hourly. When she began to seizure again, I knew it was time to let her go.

Run Free at the Rainbow Bridge my dear Mo kitty. You were the sweetest cat I've ever known. I could always count on you for a love and a cuddle anytime I was feeling low. I loved the way you wrapped your arms around my neck, nuzzled up under my chin or in my hair, and purred and kneeded and snuggled for hours. You were always such a love. You would have preferred to be an only child, but you begrudgingly shared me with Moxie and the others for eight years. You were a green eyed stunner, looking up at me with wonder. It saddened me the most at the end, when you couldn't see at all. I hope that you can see me now, from the bridge, and know how much I love you. You were always such a lady. Too prim and proper to join in the with boys rabble rousing and rough housing antics. You did have your guilty pleasures; your cat tracker, your ten cent mouse, your starlight mints in the cellophane wrappers. I have so many fond and fun memories of you my Moki, I know I will never run out of them. I have cherished these last few nights together, cuddling close in the wee morning hours. I hated having to poke you with all those needles. I wanted so badly for you to get well. Thank you for holding on for me, thank you for letting me down easy. I got a second chance to say goodbye. I will never forget you Moki-moo. I love you baby!

Wait for me on the other side.

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Cuddling with Grandma last night.

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Napping with her daughter, Hazelnut, circa 2000.

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Gorgeous green eyes!

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Close up!

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With her buddy, Kobie.

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Taking care of Moxie

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Pretty Girl

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With Mommy.

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Together with her son Tyler at the Rainbow Bridge

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Rest in Peace my love

Thursday, June 14, 2007


Tuesday about noon I got a phone call at work from my Mom. She said I had to come home right away, Mocha was sick. I arrived home to find my nine year old tabby cat unconscious on the floor. Her breathing was ragged, her pulse thready, I rushed her back to the clinic where my coworkers stood by to save her. By the time I reached the clinic Mocha was near death, but the vets and techs worked quickly to save her. I was completely beside myself and of no help whatsoever. With the medications the doctors administered Mocha came out of her coma and began having cluster seizures. Her body temperature was dangerously low as was her blood sugar. When I transfered her to the Emergency clinic that night she was completely unresponsive, and the prognosis was grave. It was a long night. Mocha is a little fighter though. She made it through the night and was able to roll over and hold her head up by morning. She was stone deaf, blind and severely neurologically impaired as a result of her brain being deprived of oxygen for such a long period. The doctors all agree that the damage is probably reversible, and I need to give her time.

She improved steadily all day yesterday. Her body temperature returned to normal and she was able to swallow on her own so we began syringe feeding her. Her blood sugar levels were all over the place though, and she was still having seizures. My vets were optimistic that she would pull through. Back at the E-vets the doctors painted a darker picture and I cried all the way home. However, this morning, Mocha could hear me and was responding to my name. She has improved drastically from this morning to this evening and her blood sugar is still low but has leveled out at just below normal. I was able to take her home with me tonight on a dextrose drip. She is still blind. She isn't really sure where her paws are. She can't quite get the lick-swallow thing down so she can't eat without help. But she KNOWS she is at home. She lit up when I set her down in the living room. She spent most of the evening sitting in my lap watching TV, just like a normal night.

She still has a long way to go, but for a cat that was dead two days ago, she is looking pretty darn good. Thanks to everyone who has been praying for her and us, your thoughts and prayers have really helped. Keep thinking of Mocha as she continues down her road to recovery. Moxie has volunteered to be Mocha's seeing eye cat until her sight returns. Kobie had missed her but is very unsettled by the Mocha I brought home this evening. He won't go near her. Thurston is curious about it all. I am very tired, but very happy to have my baby home with me again. I will never take another moment with my fur kids for granted. Mocha can steal my french fries, sit in my lap and kneed her paws on my neck anytime she wants and she'll hear no complaints from me. I'm just happy to have my Mokiki back.

I will keep you all posted on her progress.

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Thursday, June 07, 2007

Work pics!

Thought I would share some pics of the gang at work.

Parker opens a special delivery "Mox Box"
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The girls in reception get down with Moxie
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The staff works together on a kangaroo with a tail abscess
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I got the best part, holding the Joey!
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Doctor J busts a move in treatment. Its a very fun place to work!
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Its been a busy day off for me. After the photoshoot at the clinic, Moxie and I went to the dog park and played for a while. Then we went and toured the doggy day care facility. Its very nice and I affordable. I think I will start bringing Moxie in once a week or so, and I will use them when I get my puppy. After that we went to Petco and bought cat food and litter. Back at home I did some light cleaning then sat down to sort out my photos from today. Moxie and I have agility tonight at 7 after which I will hopefully, finish cleaning the house.

Maybe I'll get some good pics tonight at class.

UPDATE: Class went really well. We got about 30 minutes of practice in before class so she was just tired enough for me to keep up with her on the courses. Our last run was clean and fast. I am very pleased with her progress. I am going to give Moxie a previcox tonight though, as a preventative. She did an awful lot of running today.

Tonight at class, one lady had this whisper quiet clicker. I borrowed it and used it with Moxie and she didn't react (negatively) like she always does with clickers. I'm so excited! I think I am going to order a few of these and retrain Moxie to the clicker now. I never could use one before because she hated the sound. I'm at a point in training her that I need to be more discerning about marking her behaviors and I need to use fewer treats. I think using the clicker now will really take us to the next level. So, off to order a Karen Pryor clicker.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Dog is Love

I sucked it up and went to Rally class last night with Moxie, even though I wasn't feeling well, and I'm so glad I did because my old dear friend Kathy was there with Moxie's pal Jally! I was thrilled to see Kathy. Moxie was less thrilled to see Jally. She's much more interested in other people than other dogs. They played for a while though and Moxie showed off a little for her.

We worked on the Send dog out over jump returns to heel owner runs by. We have a little work to do with this because I have to teach Moxie to differentiate between an agility jump and an obedience jump which will be difficult. I would rather lose ground in agility than obedience because Moxie was and is primarily an obedience dog. She is good at agility, she's fast, but she's not controlled. She (and I) really need to hone our skills and we just don't get enough agility practice to ever be really good at it. Hopefully this summer I can join TWANG (Texas Working Agility Novice Group) and get some more practice time in. I guess at the end of the day, I really need to teach both, because I will want the puppy to do both also.

There is a new doggy day care open now in Denton that I will be checking out tomorrow. I talked to them today on the phone for a long time. I'm hoping it will be a suitable place to stash the pup on my long work days. I'm hoping for quality stimulation and socialization. I may have Moxie do a test run and see how she likes it. I think she would be more upset about me leaving her someplace strange, but then thats my perception of a human emotion that Moxie my child might have. Moxie my dog may have other plans entirely. I'll just have to try it to see. You know I've never left her with strangers before, ever. I think if I start with the puppy young, he will be a more well rounded, better socialized dog for it. I don't want a dog with issues. I will do everything in my power to avoid that. I want to do everything right with this one. No mistakes. Thats alot of pressure. Raising dogs really is like raising kids, especially for someone who will never have kids.

In other news, we are treating a mother Kangaroo and her Joey for an infection at the clinic. She is staying there all week. I am taking my camera up for pictures tomorrow. The Mom looks like a deer almost. The Joey is SOOOOO cute its unreal. I've been tossing around the name Joey for my puppy, since he is a baby roo!

Well I've rambled on long enough. Let me just end this by saying, I WUV MY MOXIE!

Saturday, June 02, 2007

The Comeback Kid

Its been a year this month since Moxie's accident. I was just sitting here with her tonight, marveling over just how strong she is, and how much ground she has covered in twelve months. I have a lot I could learn from this little grey dog.

I made this little montage in tribute to Moxie, my comeback kid!