Taking a little vacation….

My dog Susie says

My vacation from “barking”

My Big Mommy grew up in Europe where they take every August off for an extended vacation. So, I decided to follow in her footsteps and take a break from barking about my adventures, politics, animal issues, celebrities or anything else that really bugs me for the next month. This is my last blog until after Labor Day, and I really hope everybody has a wonderful and robust rest of the summer!

I’ll leave you with a few tips on feeding your dog healthy foods in addition to their usual “dog food”. Remember that dogs, just like humans are omnivores, which means we like meat and plants.

      1. Fresh Fruits are fine if it’s apples, bananas (contrary to rumors), oranges or watermelon. Be sure to remove the seeds for easier digestion.

      1. Meats should be lean only and thoroughly cooked leaving the bones suitable for treats.     (But never never chicken bones)

                                3.    Cooked rice is a great food and inexpensive as well. I recommend brown rice only.

                                 4.    Vegetables are great treats including carrot sticks, green beans and cucumber slices.

Because I travel so much with my Big Mommy and Daddy, I thought I’d leave you with some tips on helping your pet survive his stay in a “Doggie Motel” if you don’t take them with you. 

                                             1.    Find a boarding facility that you’re comfortable with and that your friends have recommended.

        1. Take your dog there a few times for a few minutes before you actually leave them there. This allows them to acclimate themselves to their new temporary home. Give them a treat.

        1. Walk them around the grounds allowing them to smell their new surroundings. Give them a treat!

                                             4.   After returning from your vacation when you pick up your pet from the doggie motel give them a treat, but try not to make a big deal out of reuniting with them. It’s hard I know, but it really helps your dog if it seems normal, and that you just left a few hours ago. Everyone, of course, will be very happy to see each other.

Lastly, for all of you that feel like you might need a little more inspiration in your life watch the video below entitled, “Doggy Dancing.”  I watch this with Big Mommy at least a couple of times every few months when we need a few laughs!  Also, the canine star of the video looks exactly like moi!

http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=-0jNC_w1tSw&feature=player_embedded

Catch you later in a month or so…

Susie and Sandy

P.S. “Dogs are not our whole lives but they make our lives whole.”

To see previous “My dog Susie says” barks go to: http://sandy-steele.blogspot.com

For information on Sandy Steele’s books, blogs and skin care products go to:  http://sandysteele.com

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A Love Story

My dog Susie says

Who’s the ‘lucky’ one in this story?”

With the trying and terrible events of the past few months, I thought an uplifting story about a woman and her beloved dog would bring a smile to your face. This is a positive but absolutely true story!

 

Lucky Dog….                       

Anyone with pets will really like this loving”tail”, but you should enjoy it even if you don’t have any. After reading this, you may even decide that you need to get a pet in the near future!

 

Mary and her husband Jim had a dog named ‘Lucky.’ Lucky was a real character as dogs can sometimes be. Whenever Mary and Jim had company come for a weekend visit, they would warn their friends to not leave their luggage open because Lucky would help himself to whatever struck his fancy.  Inevitably, the guests would forget and their things would come up missing.                            

 

Mary or Jim would go to Lucky’s toy box in the basement and there the treasure would be, amid all of Lucky’s other  favorite toys.  Lucky always stashed his finds in his toy box and he was very particular that his toys stay in the box.

 

Eventually, it happened that Mary found out she had developed breast  cancer. Something told her she was going  to die of this disease …… in fact, she was absolutely sure it was fatal.

 

She scheduled the double mastectomy, fear weighting down her shoulders. The night before she was to go to the hospital she cuddled with Lucky.  A thought suddenly struck her …. what would happen to Lucky?  Although the three-year-old dog liked Jim, he was Mary’s dog through and through.                                 

 

If I die, Lucky will feel abandoned, Mary thought.  He won’t understand that I didn’t want to leave him!  That thought made her sadder than thinking of her own death.

 

The double mastectomy was harder on Mary than her doctors had anticipated and she was hospitalized for over two weeks.  Jim took Lucky for his evening walk faithfully, but the little dog just constantly drooped, whined and acted totally miserable.

 

Finally the day came for Mary to leave the hospital.  When she arrived home, Mary was so exhausted she couldn’t even walk up the steps to her bedroom.  Jim made his wife comfortable on the couch and then left her to nap.                                

 

Lucky stood watching Mary but he didn’t come to her when she called. It made Mary sad but a deep sleep soon overcame her and she completely passed out.

 

When Mary first awoke from her slumber, she felt something was medically wrong. She couldn’t move her head and her body felt heavy and very hot.  But her panic soon gave way to uninhibited laughter when Mary quickly realized the problem.  She was covered, literally blanketed, with every treasure Lucky owned!

 

While she had slept, her sorrowful dog had made trip after trip to the basement bringing his beloved mistress all of his favorite things in life.

 

He had covered her with his love.

 

Mary forgot about dying.  Instead she and Lucky began living again, walking further and further together every day.  It’s been 12 years now and Mary is still cancer-free. Lucky still steals treasures and stashes them in his toy box but Mary remains his greatest treasure of all.

 

Remember: live every day to the fullest.  Each minute on Earth is a blessing from God.  And never forget …. the people who make a difference in our lives are not the ones with the most credentials, the most money, or the most awards. They are the ones that care for us.

 

If you see someone without a smile give them one of  yours!  Live simply. Love seriously. Care deeply. Speak kindly.

 

 

Catch you later; and a big thanks to Mary and Lucky!!!

 

Susie and Sandy,

 

P.S. When Ulysses returned to Greece after a 20 year absence during “The Odyssey,” his faithful dog Argos recognized him immediately before anyone else did…. including his wife and children.

 

For more barks from Susie go to:  http://sandy-steele.blogspot.com

 

Information on Sandy Steele:  http://sandysteele.com   

When you want a new pet, do you buy or rent?

My dog Susie says

To reduce stress: rent a pet?

I’ve been hearing a lot about how owning a pet can reduce life’s daily stress levels. I saw a university study recently that said if you take your dog to work, it will lower your stress level by at least 11%. I don’t know how exactly they measure it, but it makes sense to me. How many co-workers show uninhibited love and respect for you at your job? How many listen to your every word and follow most of your commands? How many dogs have asked you for a loan or to “go get their coffee”? I rest my case.

Now for those people who aren’t sure about adding a pet to your lifestyle, there is another option to consider. When you buy a car you can either “own” or “lease” it. Well, now you can lease a pet. I kid you not. These Rent-A-Pet services are available throughout the nation via new companies that target dog and cat lovers. My advice is don’t rent one of each at the same time or your stress level will go up!

Because of the lousy economy many owners have had to give up their pets because they can’t afford them. Sad. The benefits of these rental programs are that the dogs, which mostly come from animal shelters, get a chance to spend time running and walking outside in parks or the countryside. To keep these rented dogs from becoming lost, they are outfitted with a GPS location device from the Rent-A-Pet companies. Great idea even for permanent pets… so owners, you should look into this as well. One important point: The fees for renting the cats and dogs are zero. Free!

A couple of months ago I first “barked” about the military dogs who have served overseas and how much they meant to the troops they served with. These extraordinary dogs’ primary job is bomb sniffing. Talk about stress! Anyway, I mentioned a particular German Shepherd named Sergeant Rex who served three combat tours in Iraq. His Marine handler was a lady soldier named Megan Leavey. Wow, I didn’t realize there are women Marines fighting for all of us over there. Good for us girls!

Corporal Leavey was injured when a bomb went off hurting her and Rex. She was eventually returned to the U.S. after recuperating , but Rex was left in Iraq to continue his dangerous job. That was over six years ago. Megan tried for years to adopt Rex but to no avail. She went on TV and other media, but nothing happened until New York Senator Charles Schumer started a petition to allow Rex and Megan to rejoin each other. After 22,000 people signed the petition, the Marines relented and allowed Sergeant Rex and Corporal Megan Leavey to reunite for good at home in America. One veteran Marine said about Rex, “He’s a combat-wounded marine and the person who’ll understand him the best is another combat-wounded marine.”

So stress is everywhere and it makes sense to try and reduce it by adopting, nurturing and loving animals like dogs and cats. It seems to be mutually beneficial for humans and animals. Who could ask for more?

Catch you later,

Susie and Sandy

P.S. Dogs and cats may be better than many children. They don’t ask for money, eat less, much easier to raise, don’t drive, come home when called, don’t do drugs, don’t drink, don’t wear your clothes, don’t go to expensive colleges, and if they get pregnant, and if you chose…. you can always give the results to your friends.

For more “Susie says” barks go to: http://sandy-steele.blogspot.com

For additional information on Sandy Steele : http://sandysteele.com