Tuesday, December 28, 2010

After the excitement on Christmas Day, then came the big letdown.

Our friend Lucy had to go home and she took little Tinker with her. Ruff and Axl saw her leave but they continued to search the house following her scent wherever she had walked. Then after realizing Lucy and Tinker were really gone they seemed to suffer a big letdown. To our Rottweilers, a letdown is an excuse for a nap and so they did.


Saturday, December 25, 2010

A surprise visitor on Christmas Day brought her little dog for a visit.

Our good friend Lucy came for a visit on Christmas and she brought her little dog Tinker with her. This was the first time our Rottweilers had met Tinker and they didn't seem to be bothered by her tiny size. Matter of fact, this little girl was just as bossy with the big boys as our Rottweiler Sassy. Just goes to prove that size doesn't matter in the canine world, the girls are always in charge no matter how big or small they are.

Tinker settled in right away and I got some pictures to share with our fans.
Axl had to wait his turn when Tinker went to the water dish. Our boys were extremely polite and let tinker go first.
Axl stepped away from his food dish for a moment and Tinker went over to help herself, one kibble at a time. I thought she might have had some ideas about eating from the Big Dog dish.
Tinker even managed to trot around the house with the two boys following her everywhere. I think she was enjoying their attention. To see her walk underneath them was very funny but unfortunately I did not have the camera with me every moment.
We posed this picture by placing Tinker on the couch between Axl and Ruff because she couldn't get up there by herself. It sort of reminded me of this next picture I took seven years ago when we first got little Sassy when she was only eight weeks old. Sassy was sitting between her adopted mother Mocha and Mocha's father Nikko.
By the way, this is Tinker when she was only a year old. We had found a shoe scrapper that looked just like her and she was checking it out.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Wishing all our Rottweiler fans a very Merry Christmas.

Here we are, Ruff, Jackie (best Rottie Mom in the world), Axl and me, all dressed up for Christmas wearing our Santa hats. So, from our house to yours, we wish you all a very Merry Christmas.
Click the picture to enlarge.
And we couldn't be complete without little Sassy who joined our family portrait at the last minute. Notice how Ruff and Axl have discovered the pom-poms on their hats. You wouldn't believe how long it took to get those hats to stay on just right.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Goats and Rottweilers love to eat everything.

For the canine species who were raised on meat our Rottweilers love fruits and vegetables just as much. And they each have particular tastes. Ruff and Axl seem to enjoy everything, apples, grapes, melon, oranges and every kind of vegetable. Sassy is a bit more picky. Last night my wife Jackie sat down in the living room with a cut up orange. While she was peeling it to eat Axl and Ruff sat in front of her and began mooching. When they lock their radar onto food they just stare at it and send out thought waves to tell you to share it.
Click the pictures for a larger view.
And, Yes, they did get to have some but I wonder if they would enjoy eating the orange peel, too?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Our first serious snow fall. Guess who enjoys it most?

Last night we had another six inches of new snow on top of three inches that fell a few days ago. With temperatures staying between zero and 25 degrees, the old snow never melted. After what we saw last year, the deeper the snow the more the Rottweilers seem to enjoy it, especially Ruff and his 9-year old buddy Axl. Here are a few pictures taken a little while ago. The first picture was from the snow fall, three days ago. The sky got very bright and clear and Ruff looked like he was posing for a statue. I love the way he gazes off into the distance over the expanse of clear snow in our neighbors back yard where he does not go to explore.
Click the pictures for a larger view.
Then this afternoon Ruff and Axl went for a walk out back, or I should say a run out back because they seldom just walk around and they began chasing each other. Their favorite game was to run around one of the trees after each other. First they would run in one direction for a few turns then stop and reverse direction. 

All this has happened and Winter doesn't begin until December 21st. It looks like the boys are going to have a lot of fun this year.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Hiberbnating through the Winter

Well, not really hibernating, just taking a lot of snoozes through the day. We have had our second snowfall for the season and it gives us all more reasons to stay cozy indoors. Our Rottie's love to take naps and it must be infectious just like when you see someone yawning. We all sat down the other night to watch a movie on television and when it was over I discovered that I was the only one still awake. This is our oldest Rottweiler, Axl, sleeping next to his Mom.
I have always wondered why anything that sleeps 12-14 hours a day could have such a short lifespan. God love 'em, you don't ever want them to suffer from any stress or tension. I just wish they wouldn't snore so loud.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Today we had the first snow of the season. Our Rottweilers are very happy.

The weatherman was wrong but the Rottweilers are happy in spite of it. Today we had our first snow and even though it was a little more than a dusting, Ruff and Axl had some fun checking it out.
After a terribly hot Summer with over 60 days of above 90 degrees temperature and a 5 month long drought, finally the seasons are getting back to normal. Just a few weeks before Thanksgiving we were more than 8 inches below normal rainfall. Then we had three soaking rains that delivered more than 5 inches of rain in two weeks. And following the last heavy rain we had some cold air move in to turn the last bit of rain into SNOW.
Of course, as soon as the boys came back in the house our old man Axl had to take a nap on his mom's lap.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I forgot to tell everyone about the big celebration we had three days ago.

On November 13th my baby Rottweiler Ruff celebrated his 4th Birthday.

Ruff has been the joy of my life since the day I bought him from a great Rottweiler breeder, Theresa Howard. I can't begin to tell you how many times people have told me how handsome and beautiful and gorgeous he is. I didn't make up those words, that is what everyone has said. Ruff loves to meet people and has charmed more women into hugs and kisses with his friendly smile than I could begin to count.
Ruff may be all grown up now, but he still acts like the lovable puppy he has always been.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

The gang says, "Hi!" everyone.

I was walking to the living room and spotted the three Rottweilers all on the same couch, intently watching the television. I quietly fetched my camera and caught this shot.
Then I walked around to see what they were watching. It was a figure skating competition. And when they looked up at me I took a second picture. It just seems like they were all saying, "Hi!".
I love the smiley faces they all had. This was a lucky shot with no second chances. They are a happy bunch.

An old favorite. Mom tells the story of how the Rottweilers came to Kentucky.

I found an old photo I had taken about 6 years ago and it brought back some wonderful memories. Our Rottie's Mom was telling them a story and it happened just the way it looks in the photo. It was their favorite story and they all paid close attention whenever Mom told it. It was how the Rotties (in our home) came to Kentucky. Here is the picture and then I'll tell the story to you.
My wife and I came to Kentucky in 1991 after I got a job transfer from New York with Delta Air Lines. Four years later my daughter Terry on Long Island invited us back for Thanksgiving and we drove our car 800 miles back home. Terry had been given a pair of Rottweilers from a couple who were getting divorced and these two Rotties, named Nikko and Felony, had produced a litter of puppies. Terry sold the puppies but saved one of them for me and we took it home to Kentucky. I named the puppy Mocha (seen in the photo - pink collar on the left, with Nikko and Sassy). Mocha was the first Rottweiler I had ever owned and she was the smartest dog I've ever met. She learned things quickly and loved to do work. Mo would carry things when you told her to and go up and down the stairs and deliver them. From the day she was two years old Mocha went outside every day and picked up the newspaper and brought it in the house. Soon after we got her I started to call her Mo for short. Mo was both goofy and lovable at the same time and she attached herself to me and followed me wherever I went in the house.

When we were visiting my daughter that Thanksgiving in 1995 I got to meet Nikko and Felony. They were both beautiful dogs with a majestic and noble character and an inquisitive nature. They both checked us over carefully when we entered my daughter's house and we made friends with them right away. Six months later my wife got a phone call from Terry saying she had to move and couldn't keep Nikko and Felony. My wife volunteered to drive back to Long Island by herself and bring the two Rottweilers back to Kentucky.

As soon as they arrived home I realized we were going to be very cramped having three large dogs in a small house on a 50x150 foot property. I started looking around for a good home for these two. I searched the Internet and found a Rottweiler group and posted a message putting them up for adoption. The biggest problem was they were almost 5 years old. I soon learned about Rottweiler Rescue groups where people volunteer to transport these dogs long distances to new homes, even connecting with other volunteers who would take then a few more hundred miles. Then one day about two weeks after Nikko and Felony came into our home I happened to catch a look from Felony and I had the strangest feeling that I could no longer give them up. And I was so close to doing just that. I had actually begun to make arrangements for a meeting place halfway with a woman from Wisconsin when I called her to say we had changed our mind.

I have never regretted that decision. Nikko, Felony and Mo became My Three Bears and they filled our home with so much joy and love. My wife told me later that on her way back to Kentucky she would talk to the dogs in her car and tell them they would never need another place to live. I think they all knew this and they worked on me from the moment they walked in the door. In 2003 I created the illustration below of Mo and Nikko and called it Thief of Hearts because that is how I felt about them.

And that is how the Rottweilers came to Kentucky.
Well, the version of the story Mom tells her Rotties in the photo above is a little different than the one I just wrote about. Mom's version goes something like this. "We all got up in the middle of the night and got into my little car (a Ford Escort wagon) and we went for a very long ride. We went over the river and crossed the bridge and through the tunnels and then we went through the mountains. We stopped along the way and had breakfast and then we stopped again and had some dinner. We rode in the car for a very long time. After more than 12 hours until we crossed another river and went over the bridge to our new home in Kentucky. And we all lived happily ever after."

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A very busy month and a lot to catch up with new photos

I haven't posted any news and photos here for almost a month because a lot has happened. Apart from the very important mid-term elections which took some effort campaigning for the people we supported, we had a great time enjoying a week-long visit from our daughter Karen who flew down from Long Island. Karen has owned Rottweilers for a long time and was anxious to meet in person the creatures she had only seen in my pictures. I must say that Karen fell in love with our big baby Ruff, but that didn't happen right away. The moment Karen came into our home she was greeted the same way our Rottweilers greet everyone else. Exuberantly! Yes, with an exclamation point. The first thing Karen said to Ruff was, "I don't want to get my face washed." But I must post some pictures that tell a different version of this.
Karen was trying very hard to keep Ruff off of her. It almost looked like a wrestling match. A few hours later, this is what happened.
I think you get the picture, pun intended. Ruff has a one-track mind and when he wants to do something he works at it until he does. Ruff followed Karen everywhere and then to his surprise, our visitor didn't leave at the end of the day. So Ruff slept on Karen's bed in our finished basement every night she was here.

Karen helped us put a new pool cover on the swimming pool and Ruff was right there with her. By now he seemed to totally infatuated with his new girl friend by the look on his face.
We all went out to dinner at the Hofbrauhaus in Newport. Twenty years ago on our 30th anniversary, Jackie and I flew to Munich, Germany and had dinner in the famous Hofbrauhaus restaurant there. The one in Newport is first American copy and the food and drink are exactly the same.
That is our old friend Lucy in the above picture taken at Hofbrauhaus. Although Karen was here to visit her Mom she managed to find time to do a lot of yard work and play with the gardening tools. She had a lot of fun playing with the leaf blower.
The night before she went home we had a few more friends over for dinner and our Rottweilers favorite couple Bev and Rich paid us a visit. You may say that our Rottweilers often misbehave when we have company but they are so full of love they just get very excited to meet old friends. Bev's husband Rich is the one they are particularly fond of as you can see from these pictures. Bev told me that Rich thinks he is Ruff's boy-toy because Ruff loves to play with him so much.
Everyone is ignoring Bev because they all want to give Rich kisses or is it because she has her arms folded? But wait, Ruff isn't finished yet.
After dinner, when everyone was posing for a final group picture, Ruff pulled a sneak attack on his Aunti Bev. A perfect Gotcha! moment to be added to my collection. 

Well after a fun filled week, Karen had to finally go home and take care of her own dogs (and cats) and Ruff spent the whole day looking for her everywhere around the house. Then the next day she gave us a phone call and we turned on the speakerphone so Ruff could hear her voice.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

We bought a new Rottweiler flag

I got an ad in the mail a few weeks ago for a series of Rottweiler Flags, with a different seasonal theme for each month of the year. With so much of my life centered around our Rottweilers, I couldn't resist adding this to our collection of Rottweiler paraphernalia. When the first flag arrived everyone who saw it said it looked like my 4-year old baby Ruff had posed for the pictures. Here is the ad that came in the mail. If you want to order one see the link below.
You can check out Willabee and Ward's web site at

Now here are two photos of Ruff sitting in front of the first flag we received. I tried several times to get him to smile with his tongue hanging out like in the flag but I couldn't get him to do it. Ruff has been loosing his baby face expressions as he gets older.
I just went back in some of my older pictures of Ruff, taken last year, and found the perfect match for his smiley face grin. Here it is.
Now you can see why so many people said the flag Rottie looked like him. You can even see his dimples.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Mom has biscuits.

You would think that after spending almost all summer indoors because the outside temperature hovered above 90 degrees almost every day that once it got cool we would be outside. Wrong. The weather did get cool and then dropped some 15 degrees below normal daily temperatures and out bodies hadn't adjusted to it. So we continue to spend more time inside the house.

So today my wife Jackie was sitting on the couch with her two favorite Rottweilers, Ruff and Axl and I gave her some dog biscuits to feed her friends. One thing led to another and our little girl Sassy joined in for a few pictures.
Click pictures for larger view.
All's well that ends well. Everyone got some biscuits and I got some nice pictures.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Mysterious visitor

This morning around 8AM I let Ruff and Axl go out into the fenced portion of our property that surrounds the pool for their potty break. Shortly after while I was in the kitchen making some coffee I looked out the window and spotted the dogs at the far end of the swimming pool, and one of them had a tail. In spite of the fact that I had not had my morning coffee yet I knew in an instant that one of those dogs wasn't mine so I went out to see who it was. The dog was a good size, about 60 LBS and was a solid color that was almost black with some reds and browns evenly mixed in from head to tail. I have never seen a dog like this so I could not tell his breed. He also didn't have any collar. The dog looked a bit overweight and he was old. I could see his gray whiskers speckling his muzzle. I guessed by his age and weight that he didn't climb over the fence into our yard and because we have a chain around every gate I thought someone may have put him inside the fence. Maybe someone who knew we cared about dogs and they couldn't take care of him any more so they left him with us. Our visitor seemed somewhat timid but not aggressive and our guys were quite interested in checking him out in their friendly fashion.

I went inside and got a bowl of water and a dish of dog food and left it on the sidewalk in back of the pool. I also took Ruff and Axl back inside so they could have their own breakfast while our visitor could find the dishes I left for him. I saw from the window that he did drink some water and I was very curious how he got in our yard. After we had our breakfast I went outside to find him but he wasn't in the yard any more. I have already checked the perimeter of the fencing to make sure there was no way our Rottweilers could get out of the yard so unless I missed something our visitor didn't go under the chain-link fence. How he got in and how he got out remains a mystery.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Now I know. Deer can run faster than Rottweilers.

We have a wide open back yard almost 500 feet deep beyond the fenced in swimming pool, with a tree lined creek running across the end. All of our neighbor's property on both sides of us are the same. The Rottweilers love this area as it gives them so much room to run around in. Last night after dinner, about 7PM I took Ruff and Axl for a walk down the back and all of a sudden they both took off in a run that I thought was their usual play thing. It was already close to sunset and the light was dim but still bright enough to see the expanse of the property. Then I noticed they had spotted a deer and were in hot pursuit after it. As soon as I saw the white tail of the deer standing up in the air against the backdrop of the darker trees behind it and the deer racing away in long leaps I started yelling for Ruff and Axl to stop and come back. By this time they had only ran about 200 feet across our property and our next door neighbor's property as well. The deer was getting further away by every second. The boys were extremely excited by this whole event and were very much out of breath when then came back. They both were supercharged with adrenalin from their chase and continued to be excited even after we got back in the house. In spite of his being almost 9-years old, Axl was actually running ahead of Ruff during the chase. It was a sight I will never forget and hope to never see again. I don't know how long they would have chased the deer if I hadn't stopped them in time.
I was standing about where the "A" marker is and the red line is the path of our racing Rottweilers.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Axl's adventures at the local library.

Last night we were invited to bring Axl to the local library to be part of the Puppy Tails program where small children sit with a dog and read a book to them. Everyone who has met Axl has been impressed with his very gentle demeanor and a woman who works with therapy dogs told us about this program and invited us to participate. Axl will be 9 years old next month and he has lived with us for the past year. I know the lady who purchased him as she used to be a breeder and Axl is a pedigree Rottweiler. She sold him to a handicapped woman after changing her plans and this woman who also was a dog trainer trained Axl to be a service dog and he lived with her for 7 years until their house was destroyed in a fire last July. I was lucky to be allowed to adopt him and it was only because his first owner put in a good recommendation for me. Axl has been my wife's constant companion since the day he came to live with us.
We brought Axl over to the William E. Durr branch of the Kenton County Library at 6:30 pm and the woman in charge of the program told us how it would work. They had four dogs come in to a large room and sit in opposite corners and each child would sit with a dog for twenty minutes and read a book. The children were allowed to pick the dog they wanted to read to. There were two small dogs and a yellow Lab along with Axl. Jackie and I sat with Axl and as the first group of children came in the room. The first child in the room was a little girl, about 4 years old and she walked right over to Axl and petted him and sat with her mother to read. Axl was a little nervous because he had never been there before so I guess he didn't know what to do. He just sat there and seemed to want to spend more time with his Mom than with the little girl. Axl did manage to give the little girl some licks and the little girl was petting him on his head a lot.
I was more concerned over Axl's reaction to the other dogs but after the first nose to nose greeting with the second dog who entered the room, nothing happened. The next two children that came in for the following sessions were little boys. All of these children had been to the Puppy Tails before and none were bothered by Axl's large size. When the first boy sat down to read, he came in alone without any adults. The lady who ran the program came over and sat on the floor with Axl and got him to lay on the carpet. By this time Axl was not as nervous as he was at first. She petted Axl and he almost went to sleep.
The Puppy Tails program is a serious effort to help get children to read more. Several adults came over to visit Axl including a few who worked with the library. The only concerns they mentioned was his large size and one did mention a concern about his breed. It seems that children do not share these concerns with adults as I have seen many children walk up to our Rottweilers in Petsmart and ask if they could pet them. Some even wrap their arms around them and give them hugs and all usually get a few face licks in return. People do not seem too understand that dogs are not born vicious, they are made that way by irresponsible people. That is why responsible dog owners must stand up to oppose Breed Specific Laws.
When the reading session ended we were told they had one cancellation and the fourth child that would have read to Axl didn't show up so we left the library around 7:45 pm. The woman in charge repeated her concerns about Axl's size and we left with the impression we would not be invited back. I thought the event was very interesting and would like to do it again.
We got back from the Puppy Tails reading to a dog program at the library just before 8pm and saw that my neighbor's two German Sheppard dogs were running loose in front of our house. Rommel and Maggie are two friendly dogs who are owned by a friend I used to work with at Delta who lives over on the street behind us about 1000 feet away. They have both come over for visits before and all of our Rottweilers know them.

Jackie went into the house and I let Ruff and Sassy out and me and the five dogs walked over to where the German Sheppard dogs live. Along the way across the wide open grass back yard they had a great time running around playing with each other.

At first I thought no one was home so I followed the dogs around the house and found the garage door was open with a TV on. The garage was set up as a rec room with chairs and couches. I yelled out asking if anyone was home and heard a woman's voice from inside the house. The German Sheppard's ran ahead through the garage and through an open door into the house followed by Ruff and Axl and me and Sassy right behind them. My friend from work wasn't home but his wife was. I had not met this woman before until last night when we were all inside her small kitchen along with five large dogs. I guess she was surprised to see her two German Sheppard's come home with their two Rottweiler friends. I introduced myself and we had a brief conversation and then we left and walked back to our house.
It was a very interesting and exciting evening, for sure.

Friday, September 10, 2010

After the movie, at our house tonight.

One picture is worth a thousand words or so they say. That would make this a very short post. Our favorite old Rottweiler, Axl, who will be 9 years old next month, spent the evening laying on the couch between me and my wife while we were watching a movie. It shouldn't make any difference that it was a funny movie about animals and that Ruff watched the whole thing from the other couch, and thankfully, didn't charge up to the TV and leave nose prints on the screen. Axl, on the other hand, slept through the whole thing. And did he ever sleep. After the movie ended my wife and I got up from the couch and Axl remained sound asleep with his head resting on the table I made from a slice of a tree, with his front legs dangling off the edge of the couch.

When we came back in the living room Axl hadn't moved one bit so I went and got the camera to record the scene. After taking a few pictures we sat down and watched the 11 o'clock news and then we carefully woke him up so he could go out and do his pees before bedtime.
By the way, this Summer has been one for the record books. We have had a severe drought and more than 60 days of temperatures in the 90's. It has been so uncomfortably hot we have not been outside very much at all. That would explain the lack of more posts and pictures. The weather has just begun to cool off and all we need now is some rain.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Another Ruff adventure at Petsmart.

On Sunday we took Ruff to Petsmart to buy some dog food and it was very busy in the store. Ruff likes to meet people so he really enjoyed himself. Ruff walked through the store like a celebrity and managed to attract several women who all stopped to pet him and a few even let him give them kisses. When we walked into the store there was a young woman working the register who recognized him and knows his name and in spite of having a few customers waiting to check out, she greeted Ruff, got some kisses and gave him a treat. It is that kind of attitude that makes us all look forward to shopping there. The customers waiting to check out all seemed to enjoy the display of friendliness.
On the way out of the store Ruff spotted a young female employee he had not met before so he jumped up on the partition by her register where she was working to introduce himself. She looked like a new hire and was very friendly toward Ruff. With his paws on top of the partition his head was at the same level as hers and he began giving her kisses. Then the girl pulled back and cringed and said, "Agggh, he put his tongue in my mouth." I was tempted to inform her she needed to keep her mouth closed when getting kissed by a large dog but we just left the store, instead.

Even though we didn't bring along the camera to record his visit to Petsmart I keep taking pictures around the house of my favorite subject. Here are two that were taken recently.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Is it Mom or the couch that attracts the Rottweilers?

We all came back from a walk after dinner tonight and sat down to watch our favorite 7 PM television show, Wheel of Fortune, and as usual Ruff and Axl climbed up on the couch. Only difference this time was that Mom had already sat down so Ruff decided the only way he could find room was to become a lap dog again. We all coexist with each other in the house and the Rottweilers seem to take us for granted some times. Axl has adopted Mom as his personal property since he came to live with us eleven months ago so when his best friend Ruff takes over Mom's lap, Axl seems hurt. Luckily, Ruff has a short attention span and soon left. Maybe he realized his 115LB bulk was making Mom a little uncomfortable. Axl didn't waste any time reclaiming his property.

So it goes in a house full of (three) Rottweilers. It's wall-to-wall love and tons of free entertainment.