Sunday, January 26, 2014

Something old and something new.

During our on again, off again Arctic Winter this past week I mentioned in one of my posts about Ruff and Axl at one time a few years ago running across the frozen pool in our backyard. I went back on this blog today to find the pictures and discovered only one of them had been published on February 20, 2010 in Scenes of Winter with our Rottweilers. I had several pictures of them doing this when Axl was still young enough and spry enough to run around with his new best friend. That blue thing in the photo is the diving board which I now remove when I close the pool. Back then the pool was closed up using a solid cover on top of the water to catch the snow melt and rain and the safety cover was laid on top. The safety cover is made with thick bands of material attached to anchors in the concrete sidewalk around the pool but in between the bands is a mesh fabric that can no longer hold the weight of the dogs on it so now I place the solid plastic cover over it which sags with the rain water. This is why the Rottweilers can no longer run across it even if the water below is solid ice.

So here is the best of the bunch along with a few new ones taken today. I just love to watch them run around and play with each other. They always did this in the larger back yard when we went for our walks. These two became best friends from the first day we brought Axl to his forever home. Sassy would not approve of this kind of play.
From February 20, 2010
In all of the past photos of Axl and Ruff running around, before age started to catch up to him, Axl was always the fastest and Ruff could never catch him. But when they jumped on each other in play it also seemed that Axl was teaching Ruffin that he was the older, more senior Rottweiler and Ruff had to learn to respect him. In the third photo down that's Axl on top of Ruff.

And here are two pictures of Ruff taken today with the telephoto lens from the kitchen window. While the snow still seems to be about 4-5 inches deep in other places, it seems to be less than an inch deep in the back. Those little round brown objects are the dried up sticky balls from the Gum tree.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

It ain't over yet.

Well, the weather today went from near-zero blizzard to 34F with sunshine to chilling cold again and the weatherman's forecast for Tuesday is going to be the coldest day this year -12F with wind chills of -30F.

Today started out like this:
Then six hours later it was like this. Yes, the snow had begun to melt on the sidewalk:
And then as the sun was going down, I realized my swimming pool had disappeared:
At least the Rottweilers know where it is. They walk along the outside of the wood I put down to mark the edge. I recall a few years ago when Ruff and Axl were younger, during another severe Winter they were running across the pool's safety cover playing.

For want of another word I'm calling it a BLIZZARD.

At 9 AM this morning, actually less than two hours ago, the snow was coming down really heavy and the wind was causing the flag to stand out straight. We had small snow drifts. The snow was already above the bottom of the storm door so it was about 10-inches at that point. Sassy was the first to go out after I pushed open the storm door and she misjudged the depth of the snow when she stepped out and fell into it. The weatherman said this would be the height of the storm and it was to last until Noon. I went out to look for the newspaper but saw no sign of it in the driveway so I took some pictures and we all came in for breakfast. 
I think Ruff was looking to play with someone but changed his mind.
Ruff followed me out to the driveway and then we headed back to the house.
I think today is going to turn into a real mess. I have plenty of towels by the front and back doors and I hope the Rottweilers don't pester me to let them out every half-hour.


Friday, January 24, 2014

Sub-Zero temperatures remain here for the next two weeks.

I think our three Rottweilers are crazy. We have entered another bout of sub-zero temperatures and it doesn't seem to bother the Rottweilers one bit. Two weeks ago we had one day of -15F standing temperature with wind chills even lower than that and a few more days almost as cold and I was very concerned about the Rottweilers getting frost bite on their toes. I never let them stay outside for more than 5-10 minutes at most and when I called them in they all gave me dirty looks. Then the snow melted and for two days the weather became normal but that wasn't the end of it. Now we have another wave of extreme cold. It is so bad outside that all of the schools in the northern 10 counties in Kentucky have closed because it is too dangerous for children to wait at the bus stops for the school buses. And the weatherman said last night that this looks like it will be around until the first week of February.

And the colder the air the more the Rottweilers enjoy it.

Took this photo out the kitchen window tonight of a beautiful but icy cold sunset.
This is what it looked like this morning when I took the dogs out at around 8:30AM
That's Axl walking through a new snowfall. And more snow is coming again tonight.


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

FRIGID! Winter returns and Rottweilers are enjoying it.

What kind of a Winter you have depends on where you live, obviously, although I can't imagine Christmas in Hawaii. When I lived on Long Island we normally had lots of snowstorms in the 8-12 inch variety and once in awhile even as much as 18 inches but the temperatures seldom approached zero because we were surrounded by water. Out here in Kentucky it is completely different, we live inside the Ohio Valley geological formation that gets lots of cold air from Canada. Even though we are at a more southerly latitude than Long Island we have some fiercely cold winters with many days with sub-zero temperatures and even one day of -24F since we've been here. We have already gone through several days of -10F to -15F and that was only two weeks ago. Now after it warmed up enough to melt all of our snow we got another storm yesterday that gave us 6 more inches and -5F this morning. And though we have extreme cold we don't have as much snow as Long Island. Except that this year we had a half dozen little snowstorms that gave us 27 inches all together, much more than normal for this area.
One little advantage to getting lots of smaller snowstorms is that each time we get them it erases all the Rottie footprints on the front lawn and makes everything look brand new again.
Then there are the Rottweilers. They seem to live for the winter time. The cold air exhilarates them when they go out and when they come inside they act crazy. When the temperature dropped to -10F the TV news casts warned of animals getting frostbite so I did not let them stay out for more than a few minutes at a time. And I got a lot of complaints when I made them come in the house. Here are some recent pictures from yesterday during the big snowstorm and this morning.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Happy Birthday little Sassy. You're 11-years old today.

Our little girl Sassy turned 11 today. She has had a hard life from the day she was born but she has always remained a happy little girl who enjoyed being with her family even if she sometimes earned the reputation of a hermit. In spite of the poor results from her double ACL surgery many years ago, Sassy has always remained in control of her larger and more rambunctious boys, Axl and Ruffin. While Sassy has always been content to just lie in the grass or even in the snow because walking wasn't as comfortable with her as it should be, she always keeps a keen eye on what the two boys are doing. And if they start to play too rough she will immediately go to them and face them down with a very stern look.
Sassy is living proof of just how misjudged the Rottweiler breed have been. Before she was born her two parents had been acquired by some bad drug dealers to guard their property in Southwestern Kentucky. One day the Kentucky State Police raided the drug dealer and the two adult Rottweilers greeted them like company coming to visit. Because they were so friendly the police turned them over to the Bowling Green Humane Shelter to be put up for adoption. On January 15, 2003 the female Rottweiler gave birth to a litter of puppies. I'm told that the shelter had placed the pair together in the same pen and in the turmoil only six puppies survived. Sassy was one of them. A friend told me about the man who was running Southern Kentucky Doberman/Rottweiler Rescue and asked if I wanted to adopt one of the puppies. This man had already found a home on a farm in Indiana for the two parents. We drove down to Louisville to meet him and brought Sassy home with us. She was immediately adopted by my first Rottweiler, Mocha, who raised her as her own since she was already spayed.
It wasn't too many years ago that Sassy was a very strict den mother to Ruff and Axl. I am not surprised because Mocha's mother was the boss of our older house and Mo taught Sassy how. You can see the look on her face as she stares her disapproval at their play. Then in the next shot she has backed Ruffin down when she made him stop.
I hope this picture meets with approval. It is a composite of three other photos. It is very hard to get them all together in the same photo looking in the right direction.
Click the pictures to see a larger view.


Never underestimate the power of prayer.

Ruffin went back to the Greater Cincinnati Veterinary Specialists and E.R. on Monday. He saw Dr, Bruner for a final check up and a new X-Ray. Dr. Bruner said there were no signs of any more chicken bones anywhere. I am very pleased with the thorough treatment they gave to my pride and joy Rottweiler. Apart from toxic chemicals, cooked chicken bones are probably the worst thing any dog can swallow and Ruffin had a very close call. I am convinced that besides the capable hands of Dr. Bruner, a lot of prayers from a lot of people played a part in Ruff's recovery and I would like to pay tribute to all those people we have never met who said those prayers.

A lady named Gloria Pinsker started The Pet Prayer Line several years ago and it has grown to become a world-wide network of pet lovers who receive a weekly prayer list compiled from submissions for prayer requests from pet owners or from some member who knows of a pet in need of prayer. That was the case of my baby Rottweiler Ruffin. My friend Beryl, whom I used to work with years ago, was one of the people I have in my email list that I asked to say a prayer after I found out that Ruff had gobbled up the entire carcass of the rotisserie chicken I threw in the garbage. Beryl forwarded my story to The Pet Prayer Line along with my email address and almost immediately I started receiving messages of prayers from The Pet Prayer Line members from around the world.

Gloria sent me this information about her group.
Hi, Nelson. Thank you so much for the update on Ruffin and your kind words about our prayer line. I formed the Pet Prayer Line in 1999 with a prayer request for my own dog, Sandy. It started with one or two members besides myself, and over the years it has grown to include hundreds of people from all over the world. The Pet Prayer Line is mentioned in the book, Miraculous Pet Recoveries by Les Sussman (available on Amazon), and our official prayer has been published in several other books and publications (I have included the prayer below). BTW, Sandy did recover and we had him until his death in 2003 at the age of almost 15.

The following is the latest email list from this group, and as you can see at the bottom, they offer prayers for people, too. I wish to publicly thank each and every one for taking the time to ask God for help during Ruffin's crisis. 


JANUARY 13, 2014

"If you have men who will exclude any of God's creatures
from the shelter of compassion and pity,
you have men who will deal likewise with their fellow man."
~ St. Francis of Assisi
Please send prayer requests or updates to THE CUT-OFF DATE TO BE ON THE NEXT PRAYER LIST IS 12:01 A.M. MONDAY MORNING. If you would like to respond with a note of encouragement to any individuals on this list, please use the e-mail addresses provided after each prayer request. If there is no address, this means that either none was provided, or the person does not wish to receive e-mail. Please do NOT send your replies to The Pet Prayer Line for forwarding, unless specified. PLEASE NOTIFY ME IMMEDIATELY OF ANY ERRORS OR OMISSIONS ON THIS LIST. THANK YOU FOR ALL YOU DO FOR THE PET PRAYER LINE.

Your signature MUST be included in every prayer request/update (first names or nicknames are okay). If you would like your e-mail address included along with your prayer request/update, please list it under your signature line, or it will not be included.


"A grateful thought toward heaven is of itself a prayer." ~ G. E. Lessing
We thank You, Lord, for all answered prayers,
and for bringing us together on this prayer chain,
allowing us to unite in love to help those in need.
We especially thank You for the following:
RUFFIN the Rottweiler: My friend Beryl sent a prayer request to your group a [couple of weeks] ago for my Rottweiler Ruffin after he ate a pile of chicken bones. Ruffin is OK now, but I was amazed at the number of people who responded with their emails. Thank you. Nelson [You can read updates about Ruffin and view more photos by going to Nelson's blog Living with Rottweilers
This is our Christmas card. I sent a copy to everyone who sent me an email. The big guy on the right is Ruffin.



ELLA, our 5-yo Golden, is very ill with MMM.  All of her head and face muscles are deteriorating. She can no longer chew her food, only drink it.  She is now blind in her left eye. Please pray for her, that she will not suffer and that the disease will not get worse. Thank you. Lark Blum 

Please pray for the animals and cats (and other animals) who are freezing out in the cold.  Here in Nashville, animal control is very, very busy responding to multiple complaints.  People who leave their pets out in this sub freezing weather don't deserve to have pets! Barbara Hunter

UPDATES - Please continue to pray for the following:

KIMBER the dog: Well, we really could use some prayers again.  Sadly, Kimber's cancer is spreading.... there is another tumor the surgeon found when he examined Kimber rectally the size of a marble.   Prayers are appreciated... Kimber is such an angel...we appreciate the prayers.   Thank you... and my prayers are with everyone here in this group Debbie & Kimber, PPLM  

SAMANTHA, BOB & CANDY: I ask our powerful prayer group to pray that my 2 beautiful white furbaby cats, SAMANTHA and her son BOB, to be healed of those nasty allergies on their faces and heads sometimes.   I put on the cortosteriod cream and they get so upset. I know God could and will heal them miraculously. And please pray for CANDY, my friend's Yorkie, to be healed of her bad heart condition. She's a sweet dog and coughs so bad, even taking meds for her heart and Benadryl for the cough. She has a very enlarged heart. God loves all of His other creatures also. Love and Prayers and a happy, healthy, prosperous, blessed New Year to you all and all your beloved pets. Kim  

WILLY, 5-yo cat, and his human family: Willy has been on antibiotics since August.  The longest he has been completely off is one week and the last few weeks he has been cut down to a minimum dose for his cystitis.  Willy began urinating blood again over the weekend.  Please pray that this little guy can get well and get off the antibiotics.  It has been a challenging few months for our family.   I continue to have problems with my immune system even though the EBV and CMV viruses are gone.  It has been 6 months now and I still have multiple food sensitivities and  much  fatigue.  My neurological problems have  also exaggerating again after our car was hit by a hit and run driver in November.  My husband is just getting over a virus  and we are praying that the illness  has not affected his heart.  He will be having his heart tests again in a couple of months and we are praying that his heart has continued to get stronger.  Please keep us all in your prayers for our continued health.  I am filled with great faith and joy that  that 2014 is going to bring much improved health and prosperity for our family.   I pray for the best New Year for all of you too!  Peace, Love, and Joy. Sharon  
TOBY, my 10-yo Standard Poodle, came through his surgery (skin tag removal) fine. He will get his stitches out next Monday. Please pray for a full and speedy recovery. Thanks for your prayers. Gloria, PPLM ~
Toby resting on his bed the day after his surgery

VERNON (This prayer request was forwarded to me by a friend, who received it from a friend of hers):  My sister and brother in law, Vernon, are traveling to Germany for cancer treatment....He has cancer of the throat and tongue and also believes it is traveling to his ear. He fought stage 4 cancer in his lymph gland 6 years ago through natural methods only. He is now very bad, and we are praying he will make the trip. He does not fly well, gets cluster headaches, plus he is spitting up a lot of blood. Once they are in Germany, it is a 3-week program including conventional and unconventional methods.  I feel so helpless, but know through prayer anything is possible with God. Thank you so much and Happy New Year! Paula (no e-mail address given)


We pray for the repose of the souls of
the following and comfort to their families:

The following is the official prayer of The Pet Prayer Line:

Prayer for Our Animal Friends

Heavenly Father, the bond we share with our friends of other species
is a wonderful and special gift from You.
We now ask You to grant our special animal companions your Fatherly care
and healing power to take away any suffering they have.
Give us, their human friends, new understanding of our responsibilities
to these creatures of Yours.
They trust in us as we trust in You.
Our souls and theirs are on earth together to share friendship, affection, and caring.
Hear our heartfelt prayers for these, Your ill or suffering animals.
Fill them with healing Light and strength to overcome
whatever physical weakness they have:
(Here mention the names of the animals needing prayer).
Your goodness is turned upon every living thing;
Your grace flows to all Your creatures,
touching each of us with the reflection of Your love.
Grant our special animal companions long and healthy lives.
Bless our relationships with them, and if You see fit to take them from us,
help us to understand that they are not gone from us, but only drawing closer to You.
Grant that good St. Francis of Assisi,
who honored You through all Your creatures.
may watch over our animal friends until they are safely with You in eternity,
where we hope to someday join them in giving You honor forever.


©Copyright 1999 by Gloria Pinsker, The Pet Prayer Line
May not be reproduced in any way without written permission

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Looks like everything is back to normal.

Well, the big scare is over and we all had a good night's sleep last night now that Ruff is back home with his family. Ruffin acted like nothing happened at all after we brought him home from his overnight stay in the hospital. His only souvenir was the green bandage on his front leg from his IV. He managed to get most of it off by bedtime and I removed the rest of it. He has a return visit to see Dr. Bruner on Wednesday and I'm sure all the girls in the Vets's office will be glad to see him too.
This morning after breakfast I spotted Ruff taking another nap on the couch in the family room. Striking one of his (in)famous centerfold poses. Modesty was never an issue with my baby Rottweiler when he was younger and apparently it never will be as he gets older.
And, Yes, he got more than a few extra hugs and kisses yesterday. Most came from me but I had to add a few dozen more that came attached to all the well wishes he received via email.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Ruffin had a brush with death. He's home now and he is OK.

Thursday night I made a stupid mistake. We had a rotisserie chicken for dinner and I put the bones in the garbage bag and then took the bag out of the can but I forgot to take it outside to the trash bin. I did this because the last time I dumped chicken bones in the garbage can I saw Ruff push up the lid with his nose. I didn't think he would tear open a tied up garbage bag to reach the bones. This was my fault and I am very glad it came out OK but I thought his fan club would want to read the story about his close call.
Yesterday morning after he had his breakfast and I had left the kitchen, Ruffin ate through the garbage bag and gobbled up all of the bones. I found the mess on the floor and got him to our Vet's office, Ft. Wright Pet Care/Noah's Ark, right away.
Our Vet tried to get him to throw up with no success. Ruffin didn't enjoy the experience of having a quart of peroxide solution poured down his throat but he never complained. Considering that he was bigger and weighed more than the Vet herself and was stronger than the two people holding him made that a good thing. But Ruff loves the Vet's office and all the people there. The Vet said Ruff needed to see a specialist and made a phone call and referred us to the Greater Cincinnati Veterinary Clinic. We drove there right away. Dr. Joseph Bruner an Internal Specialist examined the X-Rays from Noah's Ark and told us Ruff should stay the night while he tried to get him to vomit the bones he ate. The X-Rays showed Ruff's stomach was full of food along with the bones so they couldn't go in and remove the bones through the esophagus with a scope because they couldn't see inside with all the food. Getting him to throw up was his best chance and they administered apomorphine to induce vomiting.
Two hours after we came home Dr. Bruner spoke to me on the phone and said Ruff had vomited the larger bones and he would try to get more up with a second dose.

This morning Dr. Bruner called again and said new X-Rays showed nothing left in Ruff's stomach and he had a bowl movement during the night and everything looked good.Ruff was up and around and barking and wanted to come home.

When we arrived to pick up Ruff, the receptionist apologized for taking so long bringing Ruff to the waiting room. She said Ruff had to give everyone kisses. Now as I think about that it may have been that all of the girls had to give Ruff the kisses goodby. But it could be a matter of both, he has that affect on girls. 
This is the way Ruff reacts to everyone so I knew he must be feeling better.
On the way home we stopped at the drive-thru window at the local Kroger Pharmacy to pick up a prescription and Ruff had his head sticking out the car window. Ruff loves the drive-thru's because he always gets a biscuit. When the lady working the window saw him she remembered his photo on our Christmas card and asked me which Rottweiler he was and she spoke to him by name. And Ruff watched the drawer come out with the medicine that had his treat and was leaning over my shoulder while I picked it up.

When we got home his buddy Axl and Sassy were very glad to see him. Needless to say last night wasn't a happy time around here with all the worry. I sent out an email to all of my contacts asking everyone to please say a prayer for Ruff and I got responses from New Zealand and Great Britain and a phone call from someone I had only previously contacted by email who had to look up my number and a lady in England forwarded my message to another list for more prayers.

In the end I can't say Ruff learned any lesson from this but I can surely say that I have. The smell of food, even coming from inside a sealed garbage bag is too much for them to resist. Never leave it alone. Never.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Finally, proof that they don't spend all the time sleeping.

While passing through the family room last night I caught sight of everyone comfortably resting on the couches and they were all wide awake. I quickly retreated and came back with my camera to record this important event. From some of the pictures on this blog you might get the impression that my wife and the Rottweilers spend most of their time sleeping indoors. Well, this should prove otherwise.
Next up is the expected snow storm on Sunday followed by the Arctic blast from Canada that will bring us -10 degrees Fahrenheit temperatures on Tuesday morning. We all know the Rotties love cold air but this will certainly be a wake up for them when they go out to pee before breakfast.
Around here we call that Bippy Freezing weather but I suppose everyone knows what their Bippy is.
Oh, in case you were curious, the pink thing under the couch is to keep Ruff's toys from rolling under the furniture.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

First snow of 2014. The explorers are out again.

Ruff and Axl outside behind the pool enjoying the beginning of our latest snow. Hardly expected to be a storm with only 1-2 inches predicted but they love it anyway. Should I tell them that more is coming on Sunday?

 This is what Christmas Eve looked like. By morning on Christmas Day it was all gone.
We had our normal, uneventful, usual holiday. By that I mean that nothing happened around here.