Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Electile Dysfunction

Is anybody else sick of this election season with still two months to go?

Today I need to rant about the never ending polls. Every day and sometimes several times a day, we're all treated to the newest, latest, most important ever polls, even if they're exactly the same as the ones that came before. Here in Missouri, we're apparently considered a swing state at the moment, so my phone rings at least once a day, and often two or three times a day, with someone doing a poll.

Usually the voice on the other end is automated and I'm asked to respond by touching my keypad, but occasionally there is a live person on the other end of the line. In the case of an automated call, I may or may not respond. When a person is attached to the phone, I often wait to hear what they'll ask.

I've learned that the questions asked can be framed to get whatever response the polling party is looking for. Usually by the third question I know where they're trying to lead me and I may or may not hang up at that point. I have learned from this that the poll results that are served up to us daily are anything but an accurate picture of the electorate.

Two days ago I answered my last poll of this season. It was so ridiculous that I wished I had a cradle phone so that I could have slammed it when I hung up. Here's how it went.

I answered on the second ring. The live person on the other end told me what group she represented, which I paid no attention to at the time. She asked if I had time to do a short poll and I agreed.

The first question was, " How likely are you to vote in the November election?"
The choices were:  1 very likely
                              2 somewhat likely
                              3 somewhat unlikey
                              4 very unlikely
                              5 not going to  vote
My response was "very likely"

The second question was, " How enthusiastic are you about voting for Donald Trump?"
The choices were:  1 extremely enthusiastic
                               2 very enthusiastic
                               3 haven't heard of Donald Trump

I waited for more options, but the woman said nothing else.
I replied " none of the above".
She then repeated the question and the three acceptable choices.
Again I waited, but there was silence.
I responded " I will not vote for Donald Trump"  
She then repeated the question and the three choices.
At that point I lost it completely and screamed into the phone that I loathe Donald Trump, I despise Donald Trump.
She then repeated the question and the three choices.
I hit the disconnect button and wished I had been able to slam the phone on her.

The minute I hung up, the phone rang again and when I stupidly answered, I heard that awful voice saying, "This is Donald Trump.." I couldn't disconnect fast enough.

I walked upstairs talking to myself and waving my arms around. The dogs got all excited and started barking. Rob asked what had happened and when I told him, he started to laugh. Once I calmed down, I laughed, too.

I am done with polls and campaign calls.  Obviously polls can't be relied on for any sort of accuracy. Just let's get this awful mess over with and vote and get on with our lives. Enough is enough.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

What's In A Name?

Last year we were introduced to a dog food that we'd never heard of and it had a memorable name. When Morgan was refusing to eat we tried Weruva and it was a big hit with the picky old girl. At that time we tried some of their canned food and Morgan loved it.
Because I'd never heard of Weruva, I had to do some research first and I learned some interesting things. First, the name Weruva is a combination of the owner's pet's names, WEbster, RUdi and VAnessa. Next I learned that though Weruva canned food is made in a plant in Thailand, it is a human food facility that doesn't produce any other dog food brands, so no cross contamination. They have had no recalls and that's a very good thing.

When Miss Sydney, at Chewy, told us our review options this month, I was pleased to see another Weruva food. This time is was dry food, Caloric Harmony.
I chose New Zealand Venison and Salmon Meal. I was impressed by the ingredient list which started with venison, venison meal, salmon meal, herring meal, oatmeal, barley, whole eggs, pumpkin, split peas, chickpeas

On the Weruva web site, the countries of origin are listed:

No Chinese Ingredients
Chicken/ Chicken Meal & Turkey/ Turkey Meal - US and Canada
Salmon/ Salmon Meal - US,  Norway and Canada
Venison/Venison Meal & Lamb/ Lamb Meal - New Zealand and Australia
Legumes - US and Canada
Taurine - Japan

Quality Control
BRC Approved Facility - First in Canada
Moisture, Protein and Fat Levels Monitored Every 30 Minutes During Production
Traceable and Sustainable Ingredients
Toxin and Peroxide Testing of Incoming Ingredients

When our Bag of Harmony arrived, I had to make a decision. A 4 pound bag of kibble doesn't go far with nine dogs, so I chose Lola and Bailey to be our reviewers.
 The pieces are a nice size.
 The food does smell quite fishy, but my dogs tell me that's a sign of good food. The smellier, the better. I topped their regular kibble with the Weruva.
 So, what did the girls think? Well, they ate it so fast that I could only get a shot of Lola eating. But both girls licked the bowls clean, then licked each other's bowl, so it must have been good. When I asked if they wanted it again the next day, they twirled and bounced around the garage.
I was as pleased with dry Weruva as I was with the canned food. We hope to try it again in the future.

Chewy sent us a bag of Weruva Harmony at no cost to us in exchange for our honest review.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Chewy = Yummy

It's been four years since we got hit with that horrible crypto infection that left us struggling. All my girls have gotten past it with no lingering effects, but all three boys were left with intestinal issues. All three are on special diets, but of course, three different special diets. Fudge eats duck. He has duck kibble and gets a topping of canned duck food. Unfortunately, he gets bored, so I tried ordering a different duck canned food to alternate and now he's happy again. The new food we tried was Whole Earth Farms Hearty Duck Stew. Fudge was the only one who ate it.
But that was about to change. This month Whole Earth Duck Stew was one of Chewy's review choices. I thought it would be fun to see what the rest of the group thought about it.

Sebastian and Mackey eat together. They don't go to the garage to eat like the rest of the pack. Instead, Rob feeds them in the kitchen or on the porch. We do this because Mackey doesn't like to let Rob out of her sight and Sebastian is on a special diet.

We thought that Sebastian had pancreatitis, but testing showed that he didn't have it. He did, however, have a vomiting problem. We don't know exactly what's wrong, but with medication and diet, we've controlled the vomiting and now he's able to eat more foods. For a month he ate only rice and sweet potato. Once the vomiting stopped, we started adding in some shredded pork. We buy a big pork loin, cut it up and slow cook a portion for him. When it's well cooked, we shred it and mix it with his rice. We did that for another month and now we've added a small amount of duck kibble it. He hasn't vomited since the beginning of July.
Yesterday we decided to see what Mackey and Sebastian thought about Duck Stew. I fixed their dinner of kibble, rice and pork, then I opened the stew.
 It has peas and carrots and big chunks of duck.
Let's take this onto the porch and see what they think.
 Looks like they're both interested.
Ready, set, eat!
No complaints so far.
They're licking the bowls.
Looks like they liked it.
Whole Earth Farms makes stew in other flavors such as beef, lamb, turkey and chicken. They're made in the USA and they state on the site that there are no ingredients from China.

Chewy sent us a case of Whole Earth Farms Grain Free Hearty Duck Stew at no cost to us in exchange for our honest review.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Lost And Found

My dogs are all microchipped for safety, but they also wear ID tags on their collars. For years I had problems with the tags. First, my dogs are experts at losing the tags. It seems that the little split rings holding them on the collars were too dainty for my crazy pack and were always breaking. I was always hunting for lost tags and often reordering tags when I couldn't find the originals. I've never understood how a dog that has been either in the house or the back yard all day can make the tags totally disappear.

The second problem I had with tags was one of convenience. I sometimes like to change the collars for various reasons, maybe for a holiday collar. When I took dogs to class, tags were discouraged because of the noise factor, same during competitions. That meant breaking fingernails to remove them and put them back on again.

Then I discovered Taggits. They made my life easier because they just snapped onto the collar and made changing collars easy, no broken nails. At class or competition just remove the Taggit and stick it in my pocket. Then afterwards reattach it to the collar. No more messing around with tags.

There remains one problem. The split rings  attaching the tags to the Taggit can still break and tags can then disappear. This happened earlier this week. Norma Jean climbed up on my lap one evening and I noticed that her tags were missing. I removed the Taggit from her collar and the ring plus both tags were gone. I looked around the house in her favorite spots but no luck. The next morning Rob and  I walked back and forth across the yard, no tags.
I was considering sending an order for new tags. Then last night after dinner I called the dogs in from the yard and my special little helper, Bailey, came up to me with Norma Jean's ID tag. She handed it over and I gave her an extra treat. Later Rob took the dogs out and Bailey brought him Norma Jean's rabies tag.
This isn't the first time Bailey has helped us find lost items. She has brought back tags and collars and even a bolt from one of Rob's projects. If Bailey comes across something that doesn't belong in the yard, she brings it to us.
 She's a handy girl to have around.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Bringing Home The Gold

Hi Everybody,
I'm sure you're all aware that the Blogville Pawlympics are currently going on. Mom and Dad have been watching the human games on TV. I don't know why our games aren't televised, they're much more interesting than watching those peeps try to compete. 
We wanted to compete lots this year, but Mom just can't seem to get herself organized and she missed out on entering us in a lot of the venues. She did, however, manage to get some of us into a couple of important competitions and here they are.

First was the swimming event. For Water Dogs this is about as good as it gets, so we entered our very best swimmer, Miss Norma Jean.  
She did great and came home with the GOLD.
Then I entered the boxing event. I LOVE boxing because I can find lots of goodies when I'm boxing. See...
And I got GOLD.
Finally, Sebastian also entered boxing because he has an entirely different technique than mine.
And Sebastian also won GOLD.
How about that, a clean sweep. Keep watching the Pawlympics, there's plenty to come and everyone is doing a great job.
Your pal, Fudge

Monday, August 1, 2016

Back To Kindergarten

A few days ago a friend and I were chatting and the conversation came around to the craziness now going on in this country. My friend, a wise young woman came up with a suggestion that I thought was wonderful and I've been giving it a lot of thought since.

Her idea is that starting at age 30 and every ten years thereafter, all adults take a mandatory kindergarten refresher course. I think that is a remarkable idea and would go a long way toward solving some of the idiotic behavior going on these days.

Robert Fulghum wrote a poem that most of us have read or at least heard of:

All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten
 by Robert Fulghum

Most of what I really need
To know about how to live
And what to do and how to be
I learned in kindergarten.
Wisdom was not at the top
Of the graduate school mountain,
But there in the sandpile at Sunday school.

These are the things I learned:
Share everything.
Play fair.
Don't hit people.
Put things back where you found them.
Clean up your own mess.
Don't take things that aren't yours.
Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.
Wash your hands before you eat.
Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
Live a balanced life -
Learn some and think some
And draw and paint and sing and dance
And play and work everyday some.
Take a nap every afternoon.
When you go out into the world,

Watch out for traffic,
Hold hands and stick together.
Be aware of wonder.

Since the poem was published, he has come up with a few more ideas such as :
It doesn't matter what you say you believe - it only matters what you do.  
Don't worry that children never listen to you, worry that they are always watching you.

My friend and I came up with a few more such as:
Say please and thank you.
Don't shout, use your indoor voice.
Don't push.
Listen when others are talking.
Wait your turn.
Stop on red, go on green.
Help others.
Don't run with scissors.
Words hurt, think about what you're going to say before you say it.

Maybe if all adults had to go back over the basics every few years, some of them would sink in. Being rude and mean isn't being politically incorrect, it's being rude and mean.