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Current blog look inspired by and dedicated to Chance, Blaze, Fiona and Zappa who all kicked ass against cancer and liver disease.

Brut Quote

Brut Quote

Friday, January 31, 2014

Fiona, Zappa...Leave It!

 So what do you have today MOM?
And how soon are you getting up?
It all started with January being Train Your Dog month and Pamela's dog training challenge to bond with your dog while your dog learns.

We are going through a rather intense life changer so my energy has been taken up mostly by that, making it hard to focus.  So when I needed to start playing indoor games with the dogs because of the weather, I realized I could concentrate for short amounts of time and still reap many benefits.

Zappa and Fiona are the dogs I'm still getting to know and bond with.  They have lived a different life than everyone in the house.  They were born here, grew up here and have never been abused.  Unlike the other dogs who have all been through something that makes their live different from Zappa and Fiona.  Neither Mark or I can relate to them on that level either, but have cherished their special lives for their pureness.  And when all the "problem" dogs stole most of the attention Zappa and Fiona weaved in and out this mess, patiently waiting their turn.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

A Summer Splash!

While most of us are bundled up trying to keep our butts from freezing off.  Why not turn up the heat for a few minutes, get yourself a cool one and feel the warmth of Chance and I playing with water hose on a hot summer day.  

Don't worry.  Those days are coming back. 

The countdown is on!

(or watch on YouTube)

Feel better?

hopefully that will hold you over for a few more months.  

And you can visit this video as many times as you need until we are all out enjoying the water hose with our dogs again.  ☺

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

How Winter Durable Is Your Dog?

Before Chance came back to us, his previous owners had him on a short tether and kept him outside with some sort of shelter and it was winter.  We couldn't pick him up the day they called and said we would come back the next day to get him.  I remember that it was going to get down to zero degrees (-17.7C) that night and all I could think about was I hoped he'd was going to be OK.

When we brought him home, he had no aversion to the cold.  Still a puppy at a year old, he wasn't phased by the bitter temps when we would play outside at night.  He was also persistent about waiting on those nights sitting at the corner of the fence waiting for his boy to come and get him.  Chance was not deterred by the weather one bit. 

About a year later I noticed a difference.  The colder it got the more sensitive Chance became to the cold.  Holding up his paw or paws in that uncomfortable awkward position with a look on his face that was screaming in pain. 

 I don't have to pee. I don't have to pee.  I don't have to pee.

20F (-6C) and above suits Chance just fine.  He loves the snow, running, chasing and jumping, until it starts to dip to about 17F, 16F, 15F (-8.3C, -8.8C, -9.4C)  then it gets a little ify.

And anything below 15F (-9.4C) is bathroom time and that's it.

Chance is my most sensitive dog to the cold temperatures.  Brut is my toughest and everyone else falls in between.

We are going on on second week of no walks due to the freezing temperatures and quick potty breaks.  We haven't even been able to just go outside for while.  This winter is one of the harshest we've been through and we're not out of the woods yet.

So how does your dog fair with the cold to frigid temperatures?  Do you have some dogs that are more sensitive then others?   

Saturday, January 25, 2014

The Weekend is Here!

Hanging Loose for the Weekend.

We'd like to thank everyone for their well wishes, comments, thoughts and prayers.
Mark and I appreciate your support.
Life is tough right now, but knowing you're out there makes it better.
Thank you again.

Have a great weekend!!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Ready to put this day to rest!

It's just after midnight, Thursday morning and I am so ready to put this bad boy of a day to rest. 

It all started with finding out that when Brut attacked Silver yesterday, he did leave a puncture wound near her ear.  To which Dr. Brut took an excessive licking to which in turned aroused him because Blaze will be coming into heat soon and in Brut's world any blood that Silver may have is an invitation.   

I ended up having to separate them. 

Which meant our sleeping arrangements were all screwed up as Brut sleeps with Silver in the living room.  So instead we are having Silver sleep with Zappa and Fiona and everyone was more than confused with what was going on, as they couldn't go out for their last potty break all together.

And last I saw of Brut, he was licking the couch raw and any place that Silver's wound may have touched to fulfill for his blood obsession.

Then we learned a friend of ours died yesterday. 

All while we are going through one of those big life changers.

Yeah, I think we can call it day.   

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

In that Moment

This is one of those times when I really need the dog blogging community.  I'm a bit scattered, so bear with me.  Brut went after Silver.  Silver's shaken up, but is OK.  I on the other hand am a jumble of emotions.  I can't be perfect when it comes to Brut, but the dogs pay for it when I'm not.  I can think about three ways I screwed up, not thinking anything about it at the time, when those tiny muscle movements and nuances tell me Brut is going to attack and then I am too late.

And then we reacted, instead of responded.

In that moment, I'm hurt, scared, and angry.  I want to scream at Brut.  I want to beat the aggression out of him.  Instead, I am stern with my words and ignore him, until he comes to me for forgiveness.  He lowers his head with remorseful eyes and I stroke his face and we say we are sorry to each other.  Our trust in each other a little broken.  He isn't one to forget very easy and neither am I, but we always forgive. 

We've had so few incidences that I've gotten kind of lazy on my perception.  I wonder if it was easier when the fights were happening all the time.  Like forgetting how to ride a bike.

And it hurts, like a punch in the gut.  What happen?  How were we there and now we are here?  How did I see the signals and still stood hoping you might do something different this time?  Instead of really seeing your cry for help while I did nothing?  And let that ugly side exploit itself?  Why did I just stand there?  How could I forget everything you taught me about yourself?  

And I'm disappointed.  In you.  In myself.  Your puppyhood.  Life.  Instinct.  Protection. 

And I think about when you are gone and there will be a sense of relief.  And I think you know that too.

And I am sad that it is like that.  All of it.  Sad for so many reasons.

But I still love you.  You are and will always be my heart dog.  Because we understand each other.  

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Brut Embrace

I took this picture on Brut's Gotcha Day (Nov. 22) and every time I see this picture and look at it I just want to crawl behind him, lay down and hold him ever so gently.  It would have to be done slowly and quietly for him to stay laying with me.  Because this giant beast who can be so fierce and tough is really a scared little puppy who just wants to be comforted.  But it's tough for this big boy to shed that grandiose exterior and let himself be held.  But when it is done in just the right moment and in just the right space he will let go and let me touch his soul.  

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Back Dog/Front Dog Observations

For new readers we have two packs of dogs, the Front pack and the Back pack.  The Front Dogs consist of Chance and Blaze.  The Back Dogs are Brut, Silver, Fiona and Zappa.  We separated them when Chance and Blaze were returned to us (two pups from Brut and  Silver's litter) as the Back Dogs wouldn't accept them into their pack.  You can read more on the Two Packs HERE.

I had a little incident with Brut.  It was totally my fault and don't worry, nobody even made contact with each other.  It was over food (of course) and I watched how leery Brut got when I got the treats out.  He became so edgy and ready to strike which got me thinking later how the Front Dogs (Chance and Blaze) give me an opportunity to see what life is like without a dominant leader hovering over their every presence.  While there is only two of them, male and female, they are the leaders of their pack I don't know how they would act with a third or fourth dog 'underneath' them.


Between the Front Dogs there is only a slice of food aggression.  It does happen on occasion that there is a fight, but it is very rare.  Maybe once a year.  Chance has been known to push Blaze's buttons many a time during play and again on a rare occasion he pushes too far. 

Since they are only two dogs and only have each other, I really wonder how they would act with another dog added to their pack once they got past the accepting stage.  I don't know.  Hard to answer. 

Because one thing the Front Dogs don't have is Brut.  They don't have him controlling them to keep in his line.  Chance and Blaze don't have to worry or watch every step they make, like the Back Dogs.  The Front Dogs are constantly able to come and go with each other, with only each other to answer to.  They essentially have more freedom and less demand, which I think gives them their playfulness with each other.  Chance and Blaze are nothing short of playing chase games and bantering with each other.  While the Back Dogs under Brut's guise are more conservative and reserved.  It is like all the stars have to be aligned to have a game of chase.  Or maybe they have just grown out of it.  Or maybe there is something else I don't know going on.  Since I never had more than three dogs at a time, I've never experienced such a degree of pack mentality like I do with the Back Dogs.  It blows my mind sometimes how the Back Dogs can be so relaxed just exploring the backyard or sit and listening to the sounds.  There is an air of experience among them and in many ways they have outgrown the Front Dogs mentally.  It's something I can't really explain, there's just something different that is collective as they have learned to work together under Brut's throne.  Like pulling all the directions of the wind together and upwards.  Powerful.

One of the best things that happened was when the tarps blew down on the double fence that was blocking the two sets of dogs.  My biggest concern was when Blaze went into heat this past summer.  I was afraid there would be more fighting between the boys and there wasn't.  In fact it went almost unnoticed.  Which has help to create a bond between the two packs on a more physical level, seeing each other and interacting together.  When Chance and Blaze were playing one time in front of the fence, I saw Fiona do a playbow to them!  It was so cool.  This past year there has been less threatening barks and more of excitement, play and curiosity.  They have never howled outside, but it would be such a joy to see if that ever happened.

Slowly we are moving along and moving together.  And while I didn't plan it that way, nor did I think we were going to move along so slowly, I wouldn't have it any other way.  Each step is a step closer to something I'm still not sure will ever really happen.  Merging the two packs.  And even as I say that, I still see signs of hope that it will.  One paw at time, things will happen in their own time the way they were meant to be.  And that is just right with me.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Today we are supporting that whiny cat Boxer who claims WE take up too much of Mom's time. 

Can you imagine that?
Yeah, aren't we cute??  NOT!

Anyways, if you want to you can read about the cry baby Boxer HERE.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Pet Blogger Challenge

We're joining the Pet Blogger Challenge.  This is our first time doing it.  I wasn't that interested doing it before as sometimes I just go anti-social, but I felt like this year I'd like to join in.

I've been blogging for three and half years.  My husband Mark kept talking about blogging and making money.  I didn't see how it could happen, nor was I interested after all the criticizing I got on the dog forums I used to go on.  The last thing I wanted to do was write about my two packs of hardly socialized  dogs, a litter of puppies we had two years prior, a male and female who weren't neutered or spayed (and still aren't) and an aggressive dog with every bad dog behavior possible.  And being a rather private person, I wasn't comfortable just throwing that out for the world to see.  But eventually curiosity got the better of me and after starting my own personal blog, I finally created the 24 Paws of Love blog and was hooked.  And now I write about everything that I feared and have never gotten any negative comments or criticism, always just the opposite, support, encouragement, or no comment.

We started with the intentions of making money as well.  We signed up for Google Adsense and Amazon, but the ads took over the blog and eventually I only left one ad for Google Adsense up.  I did everything to customize the ads towards dog related issues and when an ad for "Boob Cream" showed up I got rid of Google Ads as well.  After three years and making $50 on Google that I can't get, (you have to make $100 to receive a check) we'd given up on the money issue long before and making money became a last priority.  It was all about the dogs!

I've done some reviews for treats and toys for the dogs.  It nice getting the free stuff, but I felt like the reviews just took up my valuable space.  And this year I decided I'm not doing reviews either.  Again I just want this to be about the dogs, our lives together and sharing our experience that dogs are more than just dogs.  Which has been our only goal since we wrote our first post back on June 30, 2010.

I think the thing I've gained is confidence in myself while blogging.  It can be stressful for me at times, especially when I have writer's block and I can't get myself out.  That's when I recently turned to vlogging.  Which has opened up a whole other avenue.  Considering I don't like being on camera, talking out loud or the fact that anyone will see me, it has been quite liberating.  And since my fear of being on camera, I don't have any video or very few pictures with the dogs and I together, so these will be great keepers for when the dogs are gone.

Don't do much with social media except we do have a FB page.  I would like to do more, but really this is my husband's area.  We are hoping for him to come on board real soon.  He has so many ideas and crazy things he's like to do with the dogs.  I keep telling him FB is his place!

So anyways, that's how we started and got to where we are now.  I think the idea of making money threw me off in another direction, it stopped being fun and that's what I want is to enjoy what I'm doing and without selling my soul to do it.  It isn't worth it.  Now I'm doing things they way I want to and in a way the dogs would love it if they were online too.  At least I think and hope they would be proud too.        

Thursday, January 9, 2014

The Next Step of Our Challenge!

Thank you so much for your comments, suggestions and own personal stories with your dogs.  Just that alone makes me feel better and it is nice to know I'm not trying to figure this out on my own.

No one has ever asked to pet or come close to Brut.  (Gee, I wonder why!  lol)  But I want to be prepared for the possibility.  I'm using winter walking as a way to springboard for summer when more people and dogs will be out.  Plus Brut and I are working on our leash manners.  I've let him slide for the most part and have always kept tension on the leash and well, it's just getting to be too much on my shoulder and lower back.  And I'm horrible about giving in with him.  I know, if you've followed me for a me, you know I've said these words before.  lol  But really I've worked out most of the kinks with all the dogs except Brut.  And he's been responding well.

Since there are so few people out in general where we live and Brut is not socialized, it becomes a BIG deal when someone is out.  95% of the time I deviate away from other people and dogs.  Neither of us can handle it, but there are those few times where I can't and those are the ones I want to work on especially while we are having this pause of people and dogs because of winter.

I'm not expecting to change Brut, but I'd like to find a way to gain more of his attention when he's around others and maybe, now this is a long shot, but maybe find a way for Brut to tolerate other dogs just a little. A little.  Still a long way's down the road, but I can dream!  :)

This all centers on the suggestions you gave me for helping me find a way to say, no, if someone ever asked to pet or come near Brut.  I didn't realize I didn't need to give a reason.  I always felt the need to explain and I didn't know what else to say.  So now that I can take your suggestions and roll them into something I can use for Brut's sake and mine, because Lord knows I'm not going to change over night and Brut and I can work on our anxieties together.

Just your suggestions of what works for you has cut the anxiety rate and my problem in half.  Your answers make my next step workable and doable.  Thank you for responding.  I really needed to hear your words.

And I think this is what I'd like to do for Pamela's Training Challenge.  Work with Brut on better walking manners and running into people and dogs.  It's not only going to challenge him but me as well and we are quite a team when it comes to anxieties and being around people, so it will be a test for us both!

January is National Train Your Dog Month.  If you haven't heard of Pamela's Training Challenge, click on the link above to find out how you can train your dog and develop a stronger bond between the two of you.  The link will give you all the info about the challenge.      

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

I need suggestions, please.

Brut's actions walking on a leash while passing people usually deters anything more than maybe a wave or a nod from other people while I do my best to settle him down as we pass.  Even though running into people is a rare occurrence, when we do, Brut will lunge toward the person.  He doesn't growl, bark, or snarl, just lunges and jumps directly in that person's direction.  While we've had some minor improvements on his behavior, there have been a couple of times he totally caught me off guard and was calm, cool and collective, with little action from me.

My question is:  If ever asked, what could I tell people who ask to pet or say hello to him?  Especially children without scaring anyone?

I tend to get anxious around people as it is, but I'm doing much better at being calm.  But I panic when I see someone up the road that they will want to get close and/or pet Brut.  I understand that I'm not helping out Brut's behavior and that he is likely reacting on my fear to protect me, but I think it would help to be able to have an assertive, yet plausible line to tell someone who would like to get close.  It would really help me calm myself down.

My backup plan was saying that Brut was in training and couldn't be petted.  But here's my problem, I can't lie, it only adds to my anxiety.  The days I may be really training him, I could say that, but out for a regular walk, I don't know that I can do it.  What can I say that is the truth, without having to say he's aggressive or reactive or something along those lines?

What do you say when you don't want someone close or petting your dog when you and your dog need space?  How do you handle situations like that?

Thank you, I could really use all the suggestions I can get.  I am plum out.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

How to Make Dog Food Dispensers

I have always wanted to use dog food dispensers for mealtime, but just didn't have the extra cash to do so.  After reading Success Just Clicks post, How to effectively Ditch the Food Bowl it got my creative juices going.  Here's how to make some simple and inexpensive dog food dispensers.

Click here for YouTube

**To take it up a notch of difficulty, I tape a piece of paper around the PVC pipe poked out a couple of holes and let them do the rest.

It worked great.  More food in the beginning with less holes to start, then as there was less food, more holes were exposed by the ripped paper.** 

Saturday, January 4, 2014

A Love Story in the Making: Blaze and Boxer the cat

On YouTube

*We are back to Blogger comment forms at the moment as Disqus didn't transfer to my new template.  I hope to have that fixed soon.  Until then feel free to use Blogger*



Thursday, January 2, 2014

Happy 6th Birthday, our little ones!

by Mark (a.k.a Daddy)

 40 tiny paws of love

New Years Day has come and gone and everyone celebrated the beginning of a New Year.  Is it any wonder why or any coincident that the very next day is one of the most important days of our lives?  Six years ago today, the birth of the family of the 24 Paws of Love was born.  Which really started as 40 tiny paws at 2:45 in the morning.   (If you want to be exact we had 48 paws with Mommy Dog and Daddy dog)  Oh, how blessed we were from God that loved us so , that we were blessed with so much love at one time.

I will never ever forget that day in which Silver started giving birth from Zappa until the last one Fiona came forth into this world.

Sometimes (at times) it seems like it was just a dream.  A dream that came true.  Matter of fact I don't think I could have dreamed anything before that day of anything that could come close to the day of those ten births that morning when the 40 paws were born.

To watch them grow each day, little by little into the grown up dogs they are today on their six year birthday.

Each one of them have become my personal trainers.  Each one of them have their own special way to help me make it through the day and life, which can sometimes really knock you down.

So no matter what happens to me in the course of the day, the highs, the lows, the good and the bad;  no matter what I what I have to deal with all the people I deal with like people looking down on one another or people being mean to one another.  The only thought that comes to my mind is Thank God I have my 24 Paws of love at home waiting for me when I get home.  Soon as the car pulls into the garage and before the door starts to close I hear everyone singing, Daddy's Home, Daddy's Home!  Music to my ears.  When I open the door to the inside they are all standing there waiting  for me to give me hugs and kisses.  Except for Fiona, she mostly lays on the sofa knowing I will come over and her a hug and kisses.

I just want Brut, Silver, Zappa, Fiona, Chance and Blaze to know how much I love each and every one  of them.  No matter how many years go by they will never know how the 24 Paws of their love means to me.

Let me tell you everyone out there in blog world and beyond, The Paws in our house are the most real thing in our whole life.  God willing and creek down't rise, starting this month, in this new year I will try to post once a weeek sharing in what way everyone of The Paws help me through thick and thin.

My first post will be about Daddy Dog Brut, my "Battery Charger."

So until next time, please take good care of yourselves and your pets, and please keep us in your prayers.

 Happy Birthday Kids, We love you!

Love 24 Paws of Love,