Tag Archives: basset hounds

Princess Me

17 Jul

I felt as powerful as a Queen this weekend as I zipped around town doing last-minute errands in preparation for the 2016 Oregon Basset Hound Games. As you read this post, I am probably on my way to, or already  in, Woodburn, Oregon for the fabulous event and fundraiser for Oregon Basset Hound Rescue.

Adrienne is not a name that appears often in literature, so imagine my delight and surprise when I discovered a series featuring Princess Adrienne, heroine of the Princeless  a Canadian all-ages comic book series by Jeremy Whitely.

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The first volume Princeless Vol. 1: Save Yourself,  introduces us to Princess Adrienne  and her plight.

Publisher’s Summary: Adrienne Ashe never wanted to be a princess. She hates fancy dinners, is uncomfortable in lavish dresses, and has never wanted to wait on someone else to save her. However, on the night of her 16th birthday, her parents, the King and Queen, locked her away in a tower guarded by a dragon to await the rescue of some handsome prince. Now Adrienne has decided to take matters into her own hands!

And so, Princess Adrienne escapes, and accompanied by her companions, Bedelia the Blacksmith and Sparky the Dragon , sets off to rescue her six sisters (Alize, Antonia and Andrea, Angoisse, Angelica, and  Appalonia). Their  rescue stories are told in the subsequent volumes. So far, there are five books total.

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This excellent series  was nominated for two Eisner awards, “Best Single Issue” and “Best Comic for Kids Ages 8-12”, and five Glyph awards, winning the categories “Best Female Character”, “Best Writer”, and “Story of the Year.

If you are looking for good graphic novels with strong female characters, give Princeless  a try!

 

 

 

ER

21 Jun

The gagging caught my interest.

Lucy began gagging shortly after our walk on Sunday and I wondered if she had something stuck in her throat. It stopped and started and stopped and started. And then she started licking air.  That got me up, looking to see if I could see something in her throat. Of course, I couldn’t.

And then she started pacing. Lucy is a 10-year-old basset hound. Walks are always followed by naps. But she seemed to have trouble getting comfortable and that worried me greatly because bassets are one of the breeds prone to bloat, a potentially life threatening condition when a dog’s stomach fills with gas, food, or fluid, making it expand and putting pressure on other organs. In severe cases, the stomach can rotate. I gave her a Gas-X and took her to the emergency vet, hoping I was wrong. As we drove to the emergency room, she drooled profusely.

Portland has a fantastic 24-hr emergency vet hospital called DoveLewis.

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The parking lot seemed rather full when we pulled in. I guessed our regular vet  wasn’t the only one closed on Sundays. When Lucy and I walked in, The waiting room wasn’t packed, but still,  I figured we were in for a couple of hours of veterinary care.

We didn’t have to wait long after checking in. Our vet was Dr. Casey who took us into an exam room. She was impressed when I told her about the Gas-X. I explained about my work with basset rescue and how I follow several blogs and boards related to basset hounds.As she lifted Lucy’s tail, some gas was released, and we had a little laugh. We talked over bloat and having a foreign object lodged in her throat and we decided on a course of action.  She took Lucy back for x-rays and I got to wait.

I had planned ahead and packed a book, but was too anxious to read. As I leafed through magazines I noticed the other people waiting for word on their pets

  • a family consisting of a mom,dad with a young son and daughter
  • a middle-aged couple
  • a single man

While I waited the security guard walked in from the parking lot, helping a frail, elderly woman. He carried her cat carrier and helped her get checked in. She made us all chuckle when asked if she needed help filling out the paperwork.  She said, “I’m slow, but I can do it”. Later, he came back in to check on her because she had left her car window down. He offered to take her keys and roll up her window. Everyone who worked there was so nice!

I listened as the receptionist answered calls. She had two calls about poison and one about negative reactions to vaccines. The most serious conversation seemed to be with someone asking about euthanasia for a dog that had bitten a child. She explained that they did not do behavioral euthanasia, and gave resources that might be helpful. More than once she made sure that the dog had been removed from the home where the child lived.

Finally, I was called back to look at the x-rays. No foreign object showed up in Lucy’s throat, but her stomach was clearly  filled with gas. Although sedating her and inserting a tube down her throat was an option, Dr. Casey didn’t recommend it. Instead, she recommended pain medication, anti-nausea medication and some subcutaneous fluids. I love how the word subcutaneous rolls off my tongue.

I returned to the lobby to wait some more. As I waited, another couple came in with a Yorkie and a woman brought in a pit bull who was going to be a blood donor. She wasn’t giving blood that day, she was an excitable dog, so the owner was training her to be relaxed in the clinic. The family checked out and I learned they were there for their guinea pig. The single man came and went and it looked serious. He was waiting for other family members to come. A woman came in with an old black pomeranian who seemed to have hurt his mouth.

And then I was called for a discharge consultation. Lucy was coming home with no meds, but directions for a bland diet and Gas-X every six hours for two to three days. She had a good sleep once we were home and seems to be healing well. She is almost her perky self again. I worry a little every time I see her tongue come out, fearing that she about to relapse, but, I know I will relax a little more each day.

DoveLewis isn’t a place you ever want to have to visit, but if you do, you and your pet will receive excellent care.

 

 

Of dogs and adventure

11 May

Fiona went to the Bridge 6 months ago today.

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I don’t cry any more, but I still miss her. Sometimes I call Lucy by the wrong name, or nickname. Not often, but it is the little things that make me remember. Lucy gets a lot more attention these days and I worry about her welfare. She has a better life than many people in the world.

That’s why Dan Gemeinhart’s The Honest Truth  made me so angry.

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Mark, the main character is sick and runs away from home with his dog. He is a hard kid to like because of his anger, but it is his reckless endangerment of his dog that had me throwing the book across the room. I almost didn’t finish it because I was terrified about his dog’s welfare. Fortunately, Mark learns the lesson he needs to learn and that made persevering to the end worthwhile, but it was really touch and go for a while. Honestly, the dog was my favorite character.

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Publisher’s Summary:In all the ways that matter, Mark is a normal kid. He’s got a dog named Beau and a best friend, Jessie. He likes to take photos and write haiku poems in his notebook. He dreams of climbing a mountain one day. But in one important way, Mark is not like other kids at all. Mark is sick. The kind of sick that means hospitals. And treatments. The kind of sick some people never get better from.

So Mark runs away. He leaves home with his camera, his notebook, his dog, and a plan to reach the top of Mount Rainier — even if it’s the last thing he ever does.

The Honest Truth  is a 2017 OBOB book, which is why I am reading it. I’ve started my prep for next year’s OBOB season. I also have an arc of his newer book, Some Kind of Courage, which came out in January. I hope I like that main character better.

Three cheers for basset hounds!

10 May

On a Thursday about wo weeks ago, Oregon Basset Hound Rescue received this request and our adoption coordinator sent it out to the volunteers.

Hello,
My name is L*** and I’m emailing for an old man I met who has 4 Bassett
hounds 3 of whom need homes. The man’s health has declined and he needs to
move from his home to a place more suited to help him but he can’t until
these poor little babies find homes…These are beautiful dogs and I want to help them get a life they deserve.

There were 2 males, Barney and Buddy, and a female named Pearl who needed homes. I put on my OBHR superhero cape and went into action.

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Buddy, son of Pearl and Barney,  was about a year old and I had the perfect home for him. I had done a home visit in January for a woman who had an older dog and an adult basset mix and wanted a wanted a younger basset. We had a 1 year old boy available at the time and got several applications on him. I did two home visits for that dog, but they were second & third in line for that young fellow. I always tell people we mostly get older dogs, but, if they can be patient  a younger dog might come along. She was thrilled when I contacted her, excited at the prospect. Check, one dog taken care of.

I manage the Oregon Basset Hound Games Facebook page and our President asked me to post the dogs there to get word out quickly. Within a few hours, there were lots of comments, but two people messaged me. One was a person who had adopted from and fostered for us before. Check….a foster home in case we don’t get anyone else. Maybe a good home for Barney.

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The third was a woman who had lost a senior female in March and was especially interested in Pearl, who, at 4 or 5, had lived a hard life, giving birth to several litters.

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I told her our process and she had her adoption application filled out by the next day. I did the home visit the following Monday, where I met her current dog and looked around her home. Boom…three potential families.

I contacted the woman to let her know we had three candidates and worked out a time and place to make the exchange. They were out of town for a few days and lived 2 hours from Portland. One of the adopters had something on the next weekend. Finally, we settled on Saturday, May 7. The dogs had never been to a vet, and I don’t know what to expect, though the original owner said he got rabies vaccine from the feed store and did his own at home.  With no official records, we decided to make an appointment with our vet, get the three dogs microchipped and vaccinated, and give them a once over.

I thought, calling a week and a half ahead, we would have no problem getting an appointment. Of course, I was mistaken. Fortunately, I spoke directly the vet and she said we should just bring them in around noon and she would squeeze them in.

And so Saturday rolled around. I checked Friday to be sure everyone was still on board. You’d be surprised how often these things fall through. Once again, the odds were in my favor and everyone was still good to go.

When I got to the clinic, I met the angels who had contacted us in the parking lot and finally met the dogs. Oh, they were filthy and their nails were horrifically long. We waddled our way into the clinic and they put us in a room. It was about 1 p.m. Three people and three stinky dogs in a room.

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Barney was going to live with a family three hours east of Portland, so he went first. Pearl and Buddy mourned his departure. For dogs who had never lived in doors, they quickly learned the meaning of the door. He was back before too long, with ear cleaner and drops for a minor ear infection, and I texted his foster family. We’d arranged for them to arrive by two and both they and Barney were good to go by that time.

And then there were two.

Pearl and Buddy each got their turn. Pearl also had an ear infection and got cleaner and drops, but Buddy was in good health. I texted their new moms and they arrived by three. We spent some time in the room, talking over what the vet had said. And then, we all left.

Buddy’s mom sent me some photos Saturday evening. he was settling in nicely.

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Barney’s foster mom said he did well on the drive. We got him up on Petfinder today. This picture ought to get some action.

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Today I heard that Pearl is also settling in well. She was the one my heart went out to her. It was the day before Mother’s Day and I was breaking up her family. To top it all off, her mammary glands were so stretched, they almost dragged on the ground and she was in heat.  But she has a new home with a new mom and a lovely sister and the rest of her life to relax.

I’d spent three hours in that small room. I was exhausted, covered in dog hair and smelled like a kennel. When I got home, I threw my clothes in the washer, had a shower and then a nap. I slept like a baby.

 

 

Conehead

24 Mar

There are good cones:

ice cream cones, party hats, and pine cones.

There are bad cones:

volcanic cones, and traffic cones.

And then there is the dreaded

CONE OF SHAME!!!!

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Lucy has managed to avoid the cone until today. She had a dental cleaning and lump removal on Monday and I’ve stayed home with her for the last two days taking care of her. She’s been a good girl and hasn’t had to wear a cone. But, I can’t stay home forever, so I pulled out the cone and tested it out.

I bought this cone, a soft cone, almost seven years ago when Fiona had a cancerous tumor on her ear. She had almost 100 stitches that ran from the top of her head and down the length of her 9-1/2 inch ear. She had a lot of surgeries over the years and I certainly got my money’s worth. Unlike Fiona, Lucy has been a pretty healthy girl.

I’ve knit a baby sweater and read a lot while tending to my little patient, but today, I need to get out of the house.

Let’s hope Lucy doesn’t figure out how to get out of the cone.

 

 

 

Bath day!

13 Mar

Bassets don’t like water and will do just about anything to avoid it.

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Bath day in a basset home can be tricky. I had to chase Lucy around the house and carry her into the bathroom where I quickly closed the door to trap her inside.

She didn’t fight the warm water I scooped over her or the shampoo I scrubbed into her fur. It was while we were giving the shampoo time to sit that she got antsy and tried to jump out of the tub. I sang “Twinkle twinkle” a few times while holding her head and looking deeply into her eyes. Doggy hypnotism.  She regained her calm for the rinse phase, but, as soon as I’d finished drying her with the towel, she lept out of the tub and did the post bath dash familiar to all dog owners. She chased her tail a bit too. She might be close to 10, but she still has some puppy mannerisms.

I don’t have the heart to tell her she is going to have her nails trimmed and ears cleaned later.

 

 

 

 

Frogging

3 Mar

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the word ‘frog’ has 5 meanings.

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I hate to be a pedant, but they missed a few.

Frog can also describe a basset with his or her rear legs stretched out.

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It is a common term in Bassetdom as many basset hounds find this position very comfy and relaxing.

Frog is also a knitting term. It is a verb of recent origin, said to come from the sound a frog makes. Ribbit sounds like rip it and means to rip out your knitting. Let me use it in a sentence for you.

Realizing I had misread the directions, I had to frog the baby dress I started Saturday.

Alas, this exemplar is also a statement of truth. I started a new knitting project on Sunday. When I found it, I read the note that said “errata available” and actually found the error and correction. But caught up in the ecstasy of a new project, I promptly forgot about it. I was about 1/3 of the way through the back of the baby dress when I realized something was off. I kept going for a bit more, then remember the  “errata available” message. I reread the correction and realized it was unsalvageable, so I frogged it.

Then, I started over, doing correctly. It looks much better now.

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Sometimes a little frogging is all it takes to make the world right again.

OBHR Calling

26 Jan

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“Hi! My name is Adrienne and I am  volunteer with Oregon Basset Hound rescue. Our adoption coordinator forwarded your application to me and I am calling to touch base with you and see about setting up a home visit.”

I’ve made that call 4 times in the last two weeks. It’s been a year since OBHR had an application that called for me to do a home visit. Suddenly, we are inundated with applicants.

It might have to do with this guy.

Sherman

Sherman is the youngest dog we’ve had posted for a while. Most people who have lost dogs want a younger dog who will be with them a little longer than an older dog might. It’s understandable. When I lost Louie, six years ago, I said the same thing, which is why I ended up with Lucy.

Sherman’s adoption is pending. He’s on a visit with a family that, we hope, will be become his forever home, and who will work on his tendency to chew things.

We’ve rehomed one other dog, Ellie, since the start of the year and have another looking for a new home.

Ellie

Walter is a little older and needs to be an only dog.

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And there are probably two more coming in shortly, a bonded pair, that cannot be separated.

2016 might be busy for OBHR.

MLK Day thoughts

18 Jan

On Friday, I talked to the kids about an unpopular opinion I hold. As much as I love getting an extra day off school, I think it is a shame that we aren’t in school on MLK Day or Veteran’s Day. Because we aren’t in school, I don’t think kids think about WHY they get the days off. If we were in school, there might be an assembly, an announcement, something I could do in class to make kids mindful of the holiday and why we celebrate it.The President has called to make MLK Day a day of service. It would be a great day to take kids out of the school to serve the community in some way.

Today, I will be doing the second of two Oregon Basset Hound Rescue home visits for new adoption applicants. We haven’t had a lot of dogs or many applicants over the last year. In fact, my last home visit was in January 2015! But , we have a couple of dogs that have generated some interest.

ShermanThis is Sherman. He’s 2 and loves to chew on things he shouldn’t. He also loves to play hard.

1This is Ellie. She’s 7 or 8 and her family is moving and can’t take her with them.

Other than the home visit, the day will be quiet. I started a new knitting project and a new book yesterday. The book is All American Boys  by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely.

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It seems to be a good book to read on this day, when we should be thinking about how we treat other people.

Publisher’s Summary A 2016 Coretta Scott King Author Honor book.

In an unforgettable new novel from award-winning authors Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely, two teens—one black, one white—grapple with the repercussions of a single violent act that leaves their school, their community, and, ultimately, the country bitterly divided by racial tension.

A bag of chips. That’s all sixteen-year-old Rashad is looking for at the corner bodega. What he finds instead is a fist-happy cop, Paul Galluzzo, who mistakes Rashad for a shoplifter, mistakes Rashad’s pleadings that he’s stolen nothing for belligerence, mistakes Rashad’s resistance to leave the bodega as resisting arrest, mistakes Rashad’s every flinch at every punch the cop throws as further resistance and refusal to STAY STILL as ordered. But how can you stay still when someone is pounding your face into the concrete pavement?

But there were witnesses: Quinn Collins—a varsity basketball player and Rashad’s classmate who has been raised by Paul since his own father died in Afghanistan—and a video camera. Soon the beating is all over the news and Paul is getting threatened with accusations of prejudice and racial brutality. Quinn refuses to believe that the man who has basically been his savior could possibly be guilty. But then Rashad is absent. And absent again. And again. And the basketball team—half of whom are Rashad’s best friends—start to take sides. As does the school. And the town. Simmering tensions threaten to explode as Rashad and Quinn are forced to face decisions and consequences they had never considered before.

Written in tandem by two award-winning authors, this tour de force shares the alternating perspectives of Rashad and Quinn as the complications from that single violent moment, the type taken from the headlines, unfold and reverberate to highlight an unwelcome truth. – See more at: http://books.simonandschuster.com/All-American-Boys/Jason-Reynolds/9781481463331#sthash.e7o6NgFG.dpuf

 

Coming out from the shadow

15 Nov

It’s been a hard week. Saying goodbye to Fiona left me exhausted.

It’s a good thing Lucy is here.

Lucy_sideview  LucySandwich

She doesn’t seem sad that Fiona is gone and, surprisingly, that doesn’t make me angry. It is actually a relief. I always like to say that Lucy was Laurel to Fiona’s Hardy, and she has continued so. She has been very playful and seems to be coming into her own, now that she’s out from Fiona’s shadow.

It has also been a week where we have ramped up our Morris Committee discussions. ALA will announce our 5 finalists on December 1st, so we have some decisions to make before then. During those discussions, I’d noticed a couple of references to Sarah Dessen. It was usually a comment like “This would be a great book for fans of Sarah Dessen.”

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I’d noticed her latest novel, Saint Anything,  was hugely popular, so I decided to listen to it in the car during my, now longer, commute.

Publisher’s Summary:Peyton, Sydney’s charismatic older brother, has always been the star of the family, receiving the lion’s share of their parents’ attention and—lately—concern. When Peyton’s increasingly reckless behavior culminates in an accident, a drunk driving conviction, and a jail sentence, Sydney is cast adrift, searching for her place in the family and the world. When everyone else is so worried about Peyton, is she the only one concerned about the victim of the accident?

Enter the Chathams, a warm, chaotic family who run a pizza parlor, play bluegrass on weekends, and pitch in to care for their mother, who has multiple sclerosis. Here Sydney experiences unquestioning acceptance. And here she meets Mac, gentle, watchful, and protective, who makes Sydney feel seen, really seen, for the first time.

The uber-popular Sarah Dessen explores her signature themes of family, self-discovery, and change in her twelfth novel, sure to delight her legions of fans.

Just like Lucy, Sydney is a good girl in the shadow of an older sibling who takes up a lot more of her parents’ attention. Saint Anything is a quiet contemporary YA that are about friendships, family and ordinary girls (although Sydney is somewhat affluent). This was the perfect read for this week. If you are looking for a great book to read during a rainy weekend that evolves subtly and creates a rich emotional landscape full of small changes, this would be a good choice.

Randy Ribay

YA author, teacher, nerd

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