Tag Archives: basset hound

Watkins: A story of hope

7 Jun

The online basset world has been buzzing lately with the story of Watkins.

About a month ago, the president of the Buchanan County (Virginia) Humane Society, Stephanie,  was contacted by a neighbor about an abused and abandoned dog who had been dumped in a ditch. Stephanie and her husband went out looking and, when they finally found him, rushed him to their vet.


Although this picture looks idyllic, the dog was in terrible shape and the vet, Dr. Rasnake, felt he might be near death. She estimated the puppy to be approximately 4 months old and a  basset- walker hound mix. They got him on an IV and admitted him to the Buchanan County Humane Society’s ICU. They named him Watkins, after the street where he was found


and started sharing his story. Law enforcement was contacted and the investigation is ongoing.

Watkins has not had an easy time. He had to have emergency surgery for a twisted bowel. He is still on a feeding tube because he is not yet interested in food. But he continues to heal. His FB fans all over the world celebrated when he finally pooped. He spent a few days at the Virginia Tech vet hospital, but has returned to the Buchanan County Humane Society’s ICU. People are finally starting to use the words “full recovery”, though he still has a long road of healing ahead of him.

 Here he is yesterday, with Stephanie.


I deliberately chose to post few pictures of Watkins. You can click on his name above to see his FB page that show pictures of his progress. You might be horrified at how he looks today, but know that he looks so very much better than he did a month ago.

Watkins has FB friends all over the world now. He also has huge vet bills. Fortunately the vets looking after him are not talking about the bills. They are more concerned with saving this little man. If you would like to follow Watkin’s story, you can do so through his FB page, which Stephanie updates regularly.  You can also help by making a donation online HERE or you can donate directly by mail:  Buchanan Co. Humane Society C/O Watkins PO Box 2611 Grundy, Va 24614.

With all the horrible things going on in the world the life of one puppy might not seem like much. I often worry that my dogs have better health care than many people around the world. Watkins is certainly getting more help than many people. Some people might question why so many people care about Watkins when so many people suffer. It is true that many problems in the world deserve our time and energy. Maybe by reaching out to help a puppy we can soften our hearts to the point where we reach out and help humans as well as animals.

So think about it. If you can’t help Watkins, what can you do to help someone, or something that needs help closer to home. What time, talents or treasures do you have that you can use to help alleviate suffering somewhere in this world.

Holiday Postal Traditions: A Slice of Life Story

2 Dec


My goal the week after Thanksgiving is to get the Christmas cards and packages in the mail. All of my family lives in Canada so packages must be mailed by December 10th, accruing ti USPS, but I like things to have time to sit under the tree. We have had years of packages arriving at the last possible moment and that os stressful for the sender.

Yesterday, I mailed off the first packages. I knit socks for my dad & a hat and mittens for my mother. I also sent a package to an online friend in England, who is part of my wider basset hound community. Right now the basset community is going crazy over red trapper hats from Target. Morse the basset doesn’t know this is coming, but I can picture him walking across the fields of  Devon wearing it.

My wackiest holiday postal tradition is the Daily Drool Howliday Card Exchange. Every year the Daily Drool, an online basset list serve, organizes a card exchange. everyone creates a holiday card with their bassets in it. You sign up for on of three lists (full, medium or short) and the are sent a pdf of ready to print  Avery 5160 labels with the names and addresses of the other participants. every year, I get around 100 basset themed holiday cards and decorate my house with them.

What is your wackiest holiday tradition?

Read the Label SOLSC 27

27 Mar

I was standing in the kitchen this morning, waiting for the coffee to brew and marveling at the fact that I’d slept in until 7. As my eyes wandered around the kitchen,they landed on the bottle of Fiona’s new antibiotic.

We finally got the results of the ear culture last Friday. The bacteria in her ears is resistant to almost everything, including the drops we had been using for over a year. Her ear vet prescribed an oral antibiotic, Clindamycin, and drops that had to be mixed up at a compounding pharmacy, Polymixin. Ploymixin is new to me, but I have great affection for Clindamycin because it was my drug of choice when I went through six MRSA infections in my legs several years ago.

As I was saying, my eyes landed on the bottle of Fiona’s new antibiotic and I got to thinking about the size of the bottle. She is supposed to be on the medication for four weeks. Even though she’s been on it since Monday,  it seemed that the bottle looked full. So I picked it up and read the label to see how many capsules were in the bottle. And that;s when I realized my error. The label says “Give 2 capsules twice daily for 4 weeks, with food.” Oopsy. I’ve only been giving one capsule twice daily.

I don’t remember actually reading the label before this morning. And I certainly don’t remember  what was said to me when I picked up the meds. But, from this morning on, Fiona is getting 2 capsules twice a day.


Flycatching SOLSC 24

24 Mar

The beautiful weather of the last few days saw me leaving doors and windows open. This, of course, lets in flies.   Lucy is obsessed and sits on high alert until she catches sight of any intruders.


Once she catches sight  of a fly, she dashes off, running back and forth, in hot pursuit. Occasionally, I hear the SNAP of her jaws as she gets close enough to catch the fly. She rarely succeeds.

I dislike having flies in the house, but use a different technique to get rid of them, putting in almost as much effort as Lucy. Knowing that flies are attracted to light, I turn off all the lights in the house, save those in the kitchen. I unlock  the back door, which leads from the kitchen to the back yard,  and leave it open.  The fly will eventually enter the kitchen. Once it does, I turn off the kitchen light and, with luck, the fly will exit through the open kitchen door, which I close immediately.

Lucy and I about equally as successful. I could get a fly swatter, but success with that tool just makes me gag. Lucy gags, too, if she actually catches a fly. The chase is always better than the catch.

Fiona’s ears SOLSC 14

14 Mar

At 9-1/2 inches, Fiona has lovely long bassety ears.


This photo was turned into the cover for the 2011 Daily Drool Basset-a-Day  desk calendar.


Today we went to the vet because her lovely ears are not well. They’ve been not well on many occasions, but that is a different Slice. Here is a short poem about her long ears.

Fiona’s Ears

Long velvety

pendulous ears

dragging on the ground

whipping up scents,

dipping into the water bowl

while you devour your kibble.

You are patient

while I clean inside

those lovely lobes,

though you’d rather be napping.

Trixie found a new home-SOLSC #3

3 Mar


Trixie was the shyest of the three puppies. And the smallest. But boy, what a difference a week makes. Trixie’s been an only pup since Thursday. Today, I took her to meet a potential adopter. It was love at first sight. He was smitten. She was frisky and playful. Her confidence has grown significantly since last weekend.She explored her new house, ran under the legs of her new brother, a black lab, and snuggles with her new dad.  It as though she is a different pup.

I was a bit of a late bloomer, too. Thank goodness there are people willing to take the time with us, knowing that our potential will blossom, when the time is right.

Puppy Love: A Slice of Life Story

25 Feb

I am a volunteer with Oregon Basset Hound Rescue. In that capacity I do a number of things including home visits for potential adopters or fosters,  intakes of dogs being relinquished, and meet & greets, where families meet a new dog they are thinking of adopting.

Many people who apply indicate that they want a young dog. I get to tell them that we rarely get puppies and mostly get adult or senior dogs. This week was different though. We have three 3 month old puppies. Mom was a big girl, a 60 lb basset. Dad was a chihuahua. That makes everybody smile as they try to figure out the logistics of how that happened. In any case, a good Samaritan in Eastern Oregon contacted us and brought them to the Metro Portland area so we could find them homes.

We didn’t post them. We would have been flooded by well-intentioned people. Instead, we all thought about our previous adopters, especially the ones who, instead of getting the young dog they’d hoped for, took in an older dog. It was payback time.

Yesterday I went to see the puppies with a young couple who adopted from us in November. I got there a little early and had snuggle time with the girls. Here they are in order: Biscuit, Big Girl, and Trixie.




The couple brought their dog, Benny, who is possibly the most laid back basset I’ve ever seen. They met with the puppies for almost 2 hours, knowing they could always say no, yes, but not today, or take one home. They tried each girl out alone with Benny. By that time I knew they’d say yes to someone. In the end they took Biscuit home for a trial period. We always tell people to give it a few weeks before we make things official. So, Big Girl and Trixie are left together, waiting for just the right people to come along. and make them part of their family.



16 Jan

Today is Lucy’s 4th GOTCHA DAY. Four years ago today, she came to live with me.


My dog, Louie, died December 7th, 2009, very suddenly as I was getting dressed for school.

Louie-Just_being Louie

His passing hit me very hard and I had no intention of getting anther one too soon. But, that was not to be. Fiona seemed to be having a hard time as an only dog. And then there was that e-mail from Oregon Basset Hound Rescue, letting people know that the post-Christmas dog dump had begun and they needed adopters. Did you know that lots of dogs get given up AFTER the holidays? OBHR has 6 new dogs this month.

So I got in touch and said that I wanted someone young. My first basset, Clara, had passed away in May 2008. If I got a new dog, I didn’t want to lose it too soon, or have it pass away shortly before or after Fiona. So, I went to meet Lucy. We arranged to have her move in on President’s Day weekend 2010. I had a class in the morning, but would get her in the afternoon. It was perfect because there was no school Monday, so we’d have a little extra time to get to know each other.

I went to my principal and let her know that I was getting a new dog and she told me I should take Tuesday off too. And so I did. Although we had some rough patches at the beginning and had to see a behaviorist, Lucy is a wonderful addition to the family. Even if she is a bed hog.


My weekend went to the dogs

15 Dec

It was all about dogs this weekend – mine & others’.

Yesterday Oregon Basset Hound Rescue ran a “Pet photo with Santa” booth at the PetSmart in Salem. There were a lot of small dogs and one very sweet pit bull. I think though, I got my Christmas spirit when a family came in with their shih tzu and their three-year old son. The son thought our Santa was the real deal. The little fellow’s eyes were big and, honest to goodness, they sparkled. He had such a look of awe and respect. He was a little nervous approaching, but Will, our Santa, is dad to two little girls. I got a little weepy. like you do at a Hallmark movie or commercial. It was great.

Today, it was my girls’ turn. We had a 2:00 appointment with Pauline Zonnefeld, who is going a series called “In bed with Rufus”.


I got my jammies on and the girls & I posed in bed. This is not us, just the promotional photo she uses for the project. The girls also got photos taken alone for Pauline’s Good Old Dog Project. I thought Fiona might be too nervous to cooperate, but she was a pro. Lucy is just naturally photogenic and she loves attention. I can hardly wait to see the results.

It’s Scanfair weekend

7 Dec

I am supposed to meet a friend at Scanfair this morning.

ScanFair pictures

I am hoping to get to do this, but Fiona woke me up at 4:30 and it seemed pretty clear that she has a urinary tract infection. I didn’t go back to bed; she seemed really uncomfortable. Even after she had been outside, she peed in the house and let me tell you,  Fiona NEVER pees in the house. So far this morning, she’s peed in the house 3 times and been outside 5 times. See why I didn’t go back to bed. My vet opens at 7:30 and I will call right away. I probably won’t get to see my regular vet – she is always booked solid on a Saturday.

If you are in town, maybe you can make it to Scanfair. Here are the details:

Saturday and Sunday, December 7 and 8, 2013

Portland Veterans Memorial Coliseum

10am – 5pm Saturday

10am – 4pm Sunday

Adult- $7   Senior- $6    Student (w/ID)- $5    Under 12- FREE

Family (2 adults, 2 students)- $15 

Join us to celebrate the sights, sounds, traditions and tastes of a Nordic Christmas!

LIVE MUSIC, DANCE & ENTERTAINMENT: Enjoy the talents of Scandinavian artists and dance groups from around the Pacific Northwest on two separate stages. Both seating and dance floor available. 

SCANDINAVIAN ARTS & CRAFTS: ScanFair is the only event in Portland where all the beautiful Scandinavian traditional and modern arts and crafts come together in one place for a two-day festival and marketplace.

OREGON LUCIA, QUEEN OF LIGHT: Witness the crowning of Oregon’s Official Lucia at 1pm on Sunday. The Lucia Bride wins a $1,000 scholarship and holds court with the rest of the Lucia applicants for one year.

 JOULUPUKKI, FINNISH SANTA CLAUS: Get your family’s picture taken with Finland’s jovial Santa on a beautiful set complete with reindeer and sleigh, and benefit the Finlandia Foundation’s Columbia Pacific Chapter.

 THE PIPPI LONGSTOCKING KIDS AREA: Children have a special area where they can make traditional Scandinavian Christmas crafts, including Danish Hjerte (woven hearts) and Swedish Julgranskaramel (poppers) to decorate the Christmas tree.

 SCANDINAVIAN DELICACIES: Eat food on the spot or take baked goods home. Enjoy Danish aebleskiver (apple pancake balls), Norwegian lefse & krum kake, Swedish meatballs with lingonberries, pickled herring and flat bread, rice pudding and fruit soup, Vorm Korv (hot dogs) and lots of coffee.

 CULTURAL EXPLORATIONS: Purchase books, meet authors, research your family’s roots with the Scandinavian Genealogical Society, and check out Scandinavian language schools.

 PICKLED HERRING CONTEST: Match your Nordic taste buds and stomach against all comers in the all-you-can-eat pickled herring eating contest!

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