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Ten promises to your dog

I found these Ten Promises on the Salty Dog website and couldn’t resist sharing. Salty Dog Rescue is the group we adopted Gracie from one year ago. Here is the blogpost if you missed it: Made in Taiwan.

Note to those who have emailed me… Yes, I noticed that they are phrased as statements from the dog rather than as promises to the dog but that is how they have them on the website and I think they are all really good points so I didn’t want to change them, Enjoy!

Ten Promises To Your Dog

1. My life will last from ten to fifteen years. Any separation from you will be painful for me.
2. Give me time to understand what you want from me.
3. Place your trust in me…it’s crucial to my well-being.
4. Please remember: You have your friends, your work, your entertainment. I only have you.
5. Talk to me. Even if I don’t understand your words, I understand your voice.
6. Be aware that however you treat me I will never forget it.
7. Before you ever strike me please remember I have teeth that could hurt you but I do not bite you.
8. Before you scold me for being lazy or uncooperative, please ask yourself if something might be bothering me.
9. Take care of me when I get old.
10. Go with me even on the most difficult journeys.
Everything is easier for me if you are there…remember that I love you.

And just because, here are some pix of our dogs, past and present…

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The continuing adventures of Camper Bob and Gracie Coleman

Because we have the good fortune to have a wonderful house sitter, we were able to take the dogs camping this weekend. We like Olympia Campground because it is wooded and close to where we keep Chinook, our boat. We don’t plan dog activities as such, they just lie around, chase pinecones, beg snacks, bark at stuff, really the same things they do at home but it is more fun because they are outside. I spend most of my time inside, this trip I’ve been working on my tattoo-story that I’ll have posted soon. I took a break this morning for some exercise, left Scott and the dogs at the campsite and drove to the state Capitol to walk the trail that circles Capitol Lake. It is partly paved, partially gravelled and busy without feeling crowded. However, it was crowded enough that the only blackberries that were ripe were too far away to reach. All the easy to reach vines were picked clean. I did see lots of tiny ducklings but I am bummed that they don’t show up in the photo, sorry about that. I made an extra loop downtown to lengthen the walk a bit  and then stopped at Taco Del Mar to bring home tasty vegan burritos for lunch, yum!

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Click here for the official page: Things to see on the Capitol Campus.

Click to see my route: Plus3network.com


Avoid wearing a white T-shirt in the rain…

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Yep, that is my coaching tip for the day. You can file it under, “advice I thought of after I had already gone too far to go back home.” I waited all morning for a pause in the rain and when that sun-break happened, I rushed out the door. Now go ahead and predict how long it lasted… three blocks! Read the rest of this entry »


I won, I won! Thank you Pluggz.

Pluggz sandals

I entered in a give-away on My Yoga Online  and won 2 pairs of Pluggz. The give-away consisted of a drawing from all who responded to this question on the MYO forum, the question was: How do you ground yourself?

I responded: I keep grounded by slowing down, focusing on one task at a time and reducing media inputs. And… my name was drawn! So now I get to try a really cool product that I never would have heard of otherwise. I was going to get 1 pair for Scott and 1 for me, but their men’s sizes stop at 12, so that means I get both. He doesn’t really wear flip-flops anyway so he wasn’t exactly heartbroken in case you were concerned. So far I like them, I’ll give a full review in a week or so.

Scott has our Chinook, the boat, not the dog, up at the Center for Wooden Boat’s weekend boat show. She looks great with all the other wooden boats and it is a fun crowd. There are some classic Lake Union Dreamboats. The weather has been great (fingers crossed) and the little kids are all attracted to our boat. If you are in Seattle make sure to stop by and see her. We’ll be there periodically and a friend will be showing her the rest of the time.

Chinook, A Devlin Design

Chinook dog


Dogs in Clothes?

I have always insisted that I would never dress one of my dogs in clothing. Now I did dress my schnauzer in baby clothes when I was very young and she never seemed to mind but to take a dog out in public like that just seemed wrong. Fast forward to Gracie.  Read the rest of this entry »


Made in Taiwan

Her name is Gracie Cupcake Duncan and she is a 6 month old Formosan Mountain Dog mix, from Salty Dog Rescue. She was flown here to Seattle, spayed and put into a foster home. We met her at an adoption event at Immortal Dog Pet Supply and Bakery.  Scott has advocated for a puppy for a long time and started sending me puppies from Petfinder a few weeks ago. Scott and Rob met a Taiwan dog and heard all about them at the cigar store in Vancouver and was very impressed with the “breed.” I had to admit he was right about the timing on a puppy, Rob is the perfect age to enjoy one so we took him to Immortal Dog to do research. Research only. Well, you can see from the pictures how that turned out. Her call name was Cake. Since we always change names when we take in a new beastie, we named her Grace, from the Latin gratia  meaning  “favor; blessing”. Read the rest of this entry »


Puyallup Fair

Remember the old slogan, “Do the Puyallup?” Well, Rob did the Puyallup this weekend. He did his bit to represent TDI, Therapy Dogs International, with his buddies Nala, a Havanese, and Rowdy, a giant teddy bear in a St. Bernard suit. Clover, a lovely Dalmation, joined us later for the next “shift.”  I played chauffer and Scott acted as his valet but this was his show and he did us all proud. He met more people than I could even keep count of and he actively engaged each kid who petted him with a sense of wonder while enduring the adults who heavy handedly patted him on the head. We didn’t get to go to PawsWalk because it was the same weekend but next year, I’d like to get a team together to walk PawsWalk under a TDI banner.

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Rob loves Grandview Park!

I have mentioned Grandview Park to several dog-owners lately and I was surprised that none had heard of it. Grandview is a 37 acre off-leash dog park at 3600 S. 228th St in SeaTac, WA. This is Rob’s favorite place, even rating slightly above The Natural Pet Pantry and Horizon Pet Supply. It has grassy fields, gravel trails and in Winter, a wet muddy area that just begs dogs to stomp through it. On the weekend or a warm evening the park gets crowded and it is wonderful to see so many dogs playing together. It is fun to see how the little dogs pair off and Rob usually find one or two dogs his size to wrestle. This morning there were only about ten dogs and Rob played with every single one. His favorite was a lab-mix who engaged with him at a level I’ve never seen before. They were growling, snarling and doing wolf- jitsu moves on each other, grabbing neck and flipping each other over and then breaking apart, play-bowing and then starting over. The other dog’s escort looked as startled as I was. He said his dog almost never plays with other dogs. I can’t believe they can mock-battle like that without anyone getting hurt. It is like watching stuntmen executing a tightly choreographed sequence without any rehearsal or even having met one another before. One couple I greeted said they don’t even have a dog but love to come to the park to walk and watch the dogs run. The view of Mt. Rainier on a clear day is a real bonus.

Link to a map of Grandview Park.

Click for Dog Park Usa’s website.

Click for SODA’s website.


Welcome to Lagomorph Palace!

We have adopted three angora rabbits from Rabbit Haven in Gig Harbor!

Yes, they are fluffy.

Yes, I am going to spin their fur. Actually, I already have.

Yes, you can come and see them.

They were part of a batch of 80 animals that were dumped outside Kitsap Animal Control in liquor boxes and left all weekend. These three survivors were taken in by Rabbit Haven. A friend who has adopted rescued rabbits before told me that they had three strikes against them: 1. they are angora, 2. they are matted angora, 3. there are three of them and Rabbit Haven wants them kept together. Well, Scott and I took that as a challenge and called to take a look at them. I think Sue was stunned when we said we’d take them. She even warned us that they are the messiest  rabbits ever! Their names are Autumn, Spring and Summer and we decided to call them Rosie Autumn, Ivy Spring, and Angus Summer. He is named after our Angus Kitty, click the link for a pic.

I got some library books about angoras and rabbits in general and some angora fiber to take on our cruise, since I had never spun any before. It turns out that they are Satin Angoras, a breed much prized by spinsters, and prime angora fiber exceeds the per-ounce-price of silver.  I was not at all surprised to find that angora is my new favorite fiber to spin. It is silky, warm in the hand and requires no preparation. That means that every 12 weeks or so when they are shedding, you can sit with a rabbit in your lap and pluck and spin their fur directly. I love it when they are all standing up listening and they look like baby wallabies. Scott says they are picking up messages from space with their rabbit-ear antennae.

Cartoon: From a Rabbit’s Point of View.

Stay tuned for part II


Rob’s Surgery Update, or It Has Been a Long Four Weeks!

Put some pants on!

Here is my update for everyone who has asked. On March 23rd, Robert had surgery at All Creatures Veterinary in Arlington, WA. Why all the way up in Arlington? Because that is Dr Tim Cavanaugh’s clinic. Dr. Tim was Freya’s vet and did her elbow surgery years ago. Because he was the vet who was involved in her original rescue, he was also the only vet who was nonplussed by her horrible clinic manners. We referred to her annual exams as her scare-the-vet trip. Even with a muzzle on she was an intimidating beast.

Rob sees Dr Hetrick in Burien as his local vet and she diagnosed Luxating Patella on his left knee 2 years ago. It is a fairly rare occurrence in a large dog.  She referred us to a surgery center nearby but we never had any notion of trusting anyone else and asked Dr Tim to do it. The surgery was perfect and Rob has been as active as if there had never been an issue at all. I was cautioned by both vets that this problem was likely to be bilateral but the right knee seemed fine. That changed at the end of February. Here is an article about the condition: Luxating Patella: A Knee Problem in Dogs.

I kept him as quiet as I could until we could get the surgery scheduled and then the recovery recommendations included 8 weeks of restriction. This isn’t one of those hop-up-and-be-as-active-as-you-can surgeries because the cartiledge and bone have to be kept quiet and allowed to fuse. We picked him up the day after and he was all woozy and didn’t want to go down the back porch steps so Scott took him out the front steps. The next morning, when I took him out the front again, he dashed down the stairs and across the road to greet the kids from next-door as they passed on their walk to school.  They both looked pretty startled to see this dog running at them all shaved and with a huge cone on his head. I figured that if he felt good enough to do that he could certainly negotiate the back steps into his confined dog yard.

We tried having him sleep in his bed in our room but he’d wake several time a night, disoriented because of the pain meds, and start squeeking and bashing his cone around the room.  I ended up sleeping, or not sleeping, out on the living room couch until the stitches came out and the cone was finally dispensed with. It didn’t take long for him to realize that he could herd people with the cone and everyone who visited found themselves scooped into the kitchen facing the treat jar. When thought we could give him a break from the cone and take it off for a few minutes,  he pulled out his drain — DOH!  I was able to keep the knee draining with hot packs and keeping the holes open but it sure was harder. I’ll stop for a moment to recommend Bach Rescue Remedy. I gave him drops in his water and rubbed the cream on his razor bumps — LOL.

Between the hot dog pieces I stuffed his pills into, the carob treats and the rawhide chews we gave him to keep him occupied, the Dr was afraid he’d gain weight so I had to cut his food ration by half which he did notice. He is looking good though and finally getting back to normal. Although he is still confined to home, he’s playing and moving around well. Coming soon — walkies!


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