Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Christmas For The Kids

It was a pretty low key Christmas this year, but we did make an effort. Before the holidays I tackled this trio. They were fun to knit and I fell in love with them as they took form. They're all big solid guys, a rabbit, a bear and a deer. I think next year I may make them again in shades of gray, dressed in blue and white.
While I was knitting, Rob was busy in the garage building dog houses for Sydney and Mackey. Syd lives in the garage and likes to cuddle in a nest of blankets to sleep, but also likes to watch out the window for the next squirrel invasion. This is a double decker house that fills all her needs. Rob even made it white with black spots, just like her.
 When he showed it to her, she jumped on top to look out the window.
She seems pretty happy with her new house.
Then Rob decided that Mackey should have a house, too, even though she sleeps in the bedroom. Hers is a smaller model.
 Here she is checking it out.
She wants to be sure that her blankets are all there.
Of course, all the others had to look it over, too.
It passed inspection.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Holiday Prep

Pre flu I was trying to get ready for the holidays. I did some holiday stitching earlier in the year.
This was the first one finished.
This may become a stocking one of these days.
I've wanted to do this piece for a long time and finally found the pattern.
 This was my masterpiece this year. It took much longer than usual and is sizable. It measures almost 16" by 20".
 To give you an idea of the size, you can see that Santa's hands are almost as big as mine. I just love this piece because I'm sure Santa loves puppies and would spend his spare time playing with them.
Tomorrow, a couple of special gifts.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

My Best Christmas Present

Hi, I'm back. Although I had my flu shot in September like a good girl, the experts who decide what strain to vaccinate  for each year really blew it this time. There's a flu epidemic here and in many areas of the country. It wasn't the way I planned to spend the holidays but......  So for a couple of posts I'm going to use the Blogville time machine and go back to just before Christmas and catch up the time I missed.
 On October 1st, Rob and I took Fudge to visit Dr B. He was having trouble walking, was falling a lot and wasn't his normal happy self. I had convinced myself that he had bone cancer in his left front leg. The doc examined him and watched him struggle to walk, then we had a long talk.

He said he couldn't rule out cancer in that leg but it was also possible that Fudge had either broken a bone or torn a ligament in the carpal region. There was a lot of swelling and pain. He also observed that Fudge was not acting normally. We opted to give him pain meds and take a wait and see position.

The next few weeks were difficult for me. Fudge didn't want me out of his sight, so I tried to accommodate him. We kept him confined to the living room during the day and the bedroom at night. We helped him down the front steps when he needed to go out and only walked him a few feet, then back to the living room. One day Rob walked him as far as the neighbor's house, only a few yards and Fudge slept all the next day. That little bit of exercise exhausted him. We started preparing ourselves for the possibility that Fudge wouldn't make it to Christmas.

The pain medicine helped and Fudge became more alert and started moving around a little more by himself. The swelling in his leg went down considerably and with some help he could climb onto the couch to lie next to me.

Then one morning at the beginning of December I was reading my email and I came across  one about joint pain in dogs. The veterinarian who had written the article mentioned some supplements that she uses for arthritic dogs. Most of them I recognized and already use such as glucosamine chondroitin, fish oil and tumeric. Then she casually mentioned one that I'd never heard of, moringa.

I looked up moringa and was amazed that I'd never heard of it. It's a tree native to India and grown in the tropics of Asia, Africa and South America. It's widely used by humanitarian organizations to combat malnutrition and has been used for centuries for it's medicinal value. Several articles listed scores of health issues that moringa is supposed to help. The one I was interested in was arthritis and joint pain.
I ordered a bottle of moringa capsules from Amazon and decided to try them myself before using them on Fudge. After two wrist fractures and four hand surgeries, I have tendonitis in my hands and wrists and arthritis in my fingers. I wanted to test our my new discovery and see if I could detect a difference. Recently my arthritis has made my fingers stiff and painful. I can only knit a couple of rows, then have to soak my fingers in ice water and rest them for several hours.  This would be a good test of the supplement.

I took one moringa capsule each morning for three days. On the  fourth day I woke up without any pain in my fingers and they weren't stiff at all. I put them to the real test. I picked up my knitting and started. Three hours later I was still knitting and I had absolutely no pain. OK, it was Fudge's turn.

Fudge has been taking moringa daily since then and he is getting up and down with no help. The swelling is almost gone in his leg and his front legs no longer turn inward. He can do stairs by himself, though I limit his use  of stairs. He still has a limp and always will from the stroke he had two years ago. Now Fudge joins the other dogs for meals and sometimes wanders around the back yard on his own.

Fudge can jump onto the couch now without help and when he gets excited he does a funny little skip instead of running.

My Christmas wish came true. Fudge was with us for Christmas and he's feeling good. I bought Rob some moringa seeds and he's building a greenhouse to grow our own trees. He and I and all the dogs take it daily now and our quality of life has improved.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Holiday Dinner # Chewy Influencer

Hi Everybody,
Mom is sick so she asked me to do our Chewy review while she relaxes. She says she has lots of holiday posts to catch up on, so she'll be back in a couple days. 
Even when Mom is sick, we pups have to eat. This year instead of cooking Christmas dinner for us, she relied on Chewy to give us a special holiday meal. They sent us this Victor Grain-Free Turkey and Sweet Potato Stew.
 This is really good stuff. It's made with turkey, turkey broth, sweet potatoes, peas, egg and flaxseed.  It helps with healthy digestion and muscle health. Plus the flaxseed is a source of omega fatty acids that are important to keeping our coats healthy and shiny.
We had never eaten Victor food before so Mom did some research and says that it gets excellent reviews.  It may not exactly be Mom's home cooking, but this tastes really good. In fact we're having it tomorrow for New Years, too. It's that good.
Chewy sent us a bunch of cans of Victor Turkey Stew at no cost in exchange for our review. You can take it from me, Fudge, you'll like this food.
 Now all of us want to wish all of you a really, really Happy New Year.
From your pals:



 Norma Jean




 and me, Fudge
 We'll see you in 2018.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Happy Holidays

Sorry we've been AWOL. Someone gave me the flu for Christmas. We'll be back soon.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Umm Umm Good # Chewy Influencer

I'm always looking for something to help my boys with their intestinal problems. So far I've been fortunate with Fudge and Sebastian. They're both eating well and the output is good. Noah is another story. Just when I think I've found the magic potion that will help him eat, have normal stools and put on weight, we find ourselves back at the starting line.
I've resorted to making his dog food and making kefir. They both help him, but I learned about another item that also seems to help.

I first read about bone broth on the Wild Dingo Blog a few years ago. After reading her post, I tried making it for my dogs. It was easy to make and they all loved it. But in our modern life, we don't have a lot of bones. I buy boneless chicken and beef and even boneless pork chops. The one item that has bones is turkey and we usually cook two or three turkeys a year.

Just before Thanksgiving I read an article on the Dog Cancer Blog and it reminded me that I should make some more bone broth. When Rob cleaned the turkey, he put the bones in the crockpot and I followed the directions in the article. The broth came out great and after feeding it to the dogs for a couple days, I froze a few containers.

My dogs like bone broth and it is supposed to be good for them but I don't always have bones to use in making it. Now the problem is solved. Our selection from Chewy this month is  The Honest Kitchen Turkey Bone broth with Ginger.  
 This couldn't be easier to use. Just add the powder to hot, not boiling water and stir. Then serve to your dog either as a nourishing warm drink or over their kibble, as I do.
My dogs thought this was absolutely great tasting. We've liked everything we've tried from the Honest Kitchen and this is no exception. It's made with turkey broth, ginger, kale and lentils. It saves hours of cooking and straining and I don't need to take up freezer space.
Is it helping Noah? Well, it's not harming him and he gets to have a little variety in his meal.
Chewy sent us a container of The Honest Kitchen Bone Broth at no cost to us in exchange for our honest review

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Special Wishes

We wish each of you a safe and peaceful Solstice.