Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Enjoying a few moments in the sun.


Its official, Summer here has lasted all of 96 hours (so far). Personally, I can't stand too much heat so I'm not sorry we are now having Spring-like weather in the mid-70s during the day and 50s overnight. But I did manage to grab my camera after my wife sat down in a chair by the front door with her ever-present protectors. This was one of the last days when we had near 90 degrees outside. That's probably why their tongues are hanging out.


Wednesday, July 2, 2014

A new lifting chair for Mom and a new headrest for Ruff.


Maybe I'm getting old but my back is taking a toll trying to lift my wife off the couch every day. Its one of those side effects from her Alzheimer's that I have to live with but not after today. I spotted a powered recliner chair that lifts the person from a sitting position to standing straight up. I knew the moment I saw it that I had to have it. And within a few hours Ruff found out it makes a very handy headrest so he can lay a bit closer to his Mom. Check out his new sleeping spot. Meanwhile, Axl has been voicing several complaints.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

It has been very quiet around here lately. Now I know why.


It has become very obvious that with the passing of our girl Sassy that something else has also gone away. No one has barked at anyone walking down the street or coming up to our door any more. I used to think of Sassy as our Early Warning System because she was the one who let everyone else know that "danger" was coming. Now it seems no one else cares. When Sassy sounded the alarm the two boys would instantly arrive to back her up and we'd have three Rottweilers standing guard inside the front doorway. Now, if I'm lucky, Ruff goes to the door with me out of curiosity to see whose there but he doesn't make a sound. Of course we have a full glass storm door so when I open the front door his huge presence is very obvious. Maybe he doesn't have to bark and maybe that's a good thing. I used to try and get him to be a "Stealth Rott" but I thought it wasn't working out right. Now that we are missing our little instigator (or cheerleader) Ruffin has become the stealth rott that I always wanted.

We are still looking to fill the vacancy in our lives. I have several people watching out for an adult, female Rottweiler that need a good home. I think Axl and Ruffin need a new leader and I have told a few people that we have a management opening here.
P.S. Summer is here and so is the outside work that comes with it. Soon as the cleanup is done I'll be posting new pictures.

 

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Watching the Belmont Stakes horse race with Ruff and remembering old times.


This has become something of an annual tradition. Ruff has a fascination with horses. Always had since he got to kiss one when he was about two years old. So every year we seem to watch one particular horse race together, the Belmont Stakes. Well this year we were rooting for California Chrome hoping it would win the Triple Crown, but it didn't. I'm glad Ruff didn't bet any dog biscuits. I did manage to get one decent photo.
OK, for those who may not have seen them yet, here are the pictures that forever changed Ruff's opinion about horses. And makes him charge at the TV screen whenever he sees another one.
Here is how it all came about. We took Ruff over to the horse farm where his father lived to meet him. I spotted three horses in the pasture and asked if it was alright to take Ruff out to meet them. The horses were used to Rottweilers since the farmer owned about 6 of them. When the horses spotted us one began to slowly walk toward us and Ruff kinda lost his nerve. Especially when he realized how big it was. Anyway the rest is history. Here is the whole group of shots.
And then the clueless dingbat dog did what every other dog does, he went around to sniff the horses butt.
That's when the farmer told how lucky I was that the horses were used to Rottweilers. If the horse was skittish he would have instinctively kicked back at Ruff. Lucky I yelled at him as I took the picture.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Sassy - one last time.



For a little Rottweiler who I sometimes referred to as being anti-social because she kept to herself in her later years, Sassy has made a deeper impression on my life than I would have ever thought. And from the way Ruffin looks when he lays on her bed it seems that her passing has affected him as well. I just finished designing her headstone and will be ordering it next week and I came across a few older pictures of her when she was not quite 2 years old.
 
 
Sassy wasn't a champion or anything fancy like that, she just received a medal for entering the Parade of Rescued Rotts. But we were still very proud of her and she looked very proud of herself. That's the way it was when she was young.
The title of this post may be incorrect. The tears are welling up in my eyes again as I write this. I don't think I can ever forget her. Rest in peace little sweetheart and wait for us at the bridge.

 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Ruffin is still in mourning.


After our little girl Sassy passed away one of the first things I did was to move her bed out of the family room where it had been almost all of her life. She actually had more than one bed in this same spot over the years and this one was about five years old. I took the bed and stuck it in a corner of the living room so it wouldn't keep reminding the two boys about her since they both spend most of their time in the family room with their Mom. I was mistaken. On several occasions I have now found Ruffin laying on her bed, something he never did when Sassy was alive. He doesn't sleep on it he just seems to be laying there thinking about her. I realize now that he still remembers her and misses her very much and this is taking much longer that I expected. I took this picture tonight and the look on Ruff's face tells me he is still in mourning. 
I just realized it has been a month since I posted the sad news about Sassy. I think we have all been in the dumps around here so it isn't just Ruff who misses his little girl. I have asked several people who are involved with Rottweiler rescue to keep an eye out for a mature adult female Rottie about 5-7 years old that I could adopt. We have always had a female Rottie in our house since the day in 1995 when I got my girl Mocha and it seems very strange now without one. 

 

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Remembering our little girl Sassy with some more pictures.




 Yes, sitting on Casey cat, her best friend.
Taking a nap with her best friend.
 Having dinner with her best friend.
When I bought baby Ruffin from a breeder in January 2007 our old girl Mocha was already 12 years old and even though she readily adopted him as her new baby it was Sassy who stepped in and helped with the training. You might say that Ruffin had two Moms and his life was dominated by females but everything seems to have turned out all right with him and I was grateful to have the opportunity to document Sassy's motherly instincts. For the rest of her life Sassy always ruled the house with our much larger males Ruff and Axl. She kept a low profile until their misbehavior or rough-housing called for her to step in and put a stop to it.
Teaching baby Ruffin discipline.
He was a slow learner.

I don't know what Sassy was teaching Ruffin in these pictures. They were just tongue kissing.
But this was very obvious. 
Good Bye, Sweetheart. I will never forget you.



Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Once again, the sadness has entered our life. Our little girl Sassy has died.


I had to put Sassy to sleep today. As she closed her eyes for the last time her face was wet with the tears that had fallen from my cheeks. She was a brave little fighter but there was nothing the Vet could do to fix the problems with her kidneys and liver that suddenly overcame her only a week ago. She was our little sweetheart for 11 years and filled our lives with joy every day. Tomorrow she will be buried next to her adopted mother Mocha at the Highland Pet Cemetery in Fort Mitchell, Kentucky. 

We adopted Sassy when she was only 7 weeks old, she was born in a Humane Shelter on January 15, 2003. She was the offspring of a pair of Rottweilers that had been picked up by the Kentucky State Police in 2002 during a drug raid near Bowling Greene, Kentucky. The drug dealer though the Rottweilers would protect his property but when the police came they greeted them like company coming to visit. Those two dogs were so gentle the police turned them over to the shelter for adoption and while there Sassy was born. Her mother and father were placed on a farm in Indiana. Here are some photos I took of her over the years.
This is Mocha on the left with Mo's father Nikko on the right.
 
Sassy had torn both ACLs when she was young and had surgery to repair them but over the years the repair caused her more problems which resulted in a long-time pain management program. All the while during her life she had a unique way of greeting everyone with a loud, happy Woo Woo call and I started calling her my Woo Woo Girl. 
Sassy's adopted mother Mo was our full-time papergirl and Sassy often accompanied her when she went out to pick up and bring in our newspaper. I thought that Sassy would follow in her mother's footsteps but she did not. Mo died in 2008.
May 20, 2011 seems so long ago.
And happier times, just rolling in the leaves.
I will miss you my little sweetheart and your sad expressions that always touched my heart.


Sunday, May 4, 2014

A beautiful day for a walk.


Finally got a chance to cut the grass in the back. The Sun was out and the weather was warm and all the rain last week sure made the grass grow. Then it was time to take the boys out for a long walk. They haven't been out for several days because of the rotten weather we had. So, of course, they had to explore.
All of a sudden Ruff started looking over towards our neighbors property because he heard something. Sure enough we had visitors coming. Maggie and Rommel must have heard them and walked over for a visit.
It always amazes me how much they listen to conversation because at this point we had been out for some time and we had just started heading back to the house so after Maggie and Rommel had been here for a few minutes I told Ruff and Axl that we had to go home to take care of Mom. With that the two German Shepherds turned around and heading home.




Sunday, April 27, 2014

Close-ups, Axl and his Mom.


Call it the look of love. I don't think he would rather be any place else but by her side.

Sunday morning, after church.


The crying started as soon as I locked the front door. I could hear it all the way out to the driveway as we left to go church. It was 8:15 AM when we left. I hope it didn't wake the neighbors. When we got home it was almost 10:30 AM and our nervous crew was waiting for us at the door. They all came outside to greet us and make sure their Mom was alright so I had my wife sit in the chair on the porch to get some sunshine while I went in and grabbed my camera. Axl had done a quick pee and came right back to sit by his Mom. Ruff took his turn on guard duty while Axl finished his business then he came back with Sassy for a group photo.
Then we all went inside and had breakfast.

 

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Axl's story. I could write a book about what this picture doesn't say.


This is our old Rottweiler Axl. Look at this photo and the expression on his face and let me tell you what was going on:
The one thing our Rottweilers love most (besides food) is going for a ride in the car. They get excited even when they overhear a conversation that inadvertently mentions the word "go". The other day I had to move my mini-van down the driveway so I could get my other car out of the garage so when I had Ruff and Axl outside with me I asked them if they would like to go for a little ride. Ruff immediately ran over to the van when I opened the door but Axl walked back to the house and sat where you see him in front of the front door. It only took me a moment to realize why. He thought we were going someplace and his Mom was still in the house. He knew he could not leave her alone.

I was extremely fortunate to have been able to adopt Axl 6 years ago even though he was 7 years old at the time. Carey, the woman who sent me the email saying he needed a new home, was the person who bought Axl as a puppy. She owned him for a year and then sold him to a handicapped woman who had trained him to be her companion. I had met Carey when we once belonged to the same Rottweiler club. The handicapped woman's house burned down and when she was forced to move she couldn't take him with her. I have mentioned before in bits and pieces that Axl has been devoted to my wife since the day we brought him home. My wife has Alzheimer's and even then he realized something was wrong with her even before the symptoms became obvious. From the first day in our house, Axl's forever home, he stayed close to her and even used to jump up on her bed at night and sleep next to her. He is almost 13 years old now and for the past two years he hasn't been able to jump on her bed so he has taken to sleeping outside her bedroom door.

During the day I don't spend constant time in the same room with my wife and whenever she used to get up and move around, Axl would come to me and give me a worry sound. I can't describe the sound he makes but it definitely tells me he thinks something is wrong and he is worried and I must go with him and check it out.

This is how Axl spends his day. He may be napping from time to time, more now as he gets older, but he wakes up whenever my wife makes a sound. He seems content to just keep watch over her.
Every once in awhile Axl will come into my den when I am working on the computer and he lays his head in my lap and looks at me with his sad eyes. I have come to understand that he simply needs some hugs and kisses and ear scratches to recharge his batteries. I have lived with old Rottweilers before and we tell everyone that from my experience when they get old their mush bucket (I pronounce it "moosh bucket") begins to leak and they need some love to refill it. I can assure you that Axl gets more than he needs. He is a beautiful, gentle and loving animal and I find myself depending on him as if he were a human baby sitter and I hope and pray he lives a long life. I am forever grateful for the lady who helped me get him.