Friday, March 1, 2013

Off The Chain (I got this.)

All I ever want to do is make a difference.

I didn't select Yogi because he is a pit bull. In fact, I've never even considered having a pit bull. Perhaps even I was misled by the pit bull stereotype. I never did like stereotypes...I've made it a point to break them as much as possible, actually.

The universe has an interesting way of making things happen. 

I was playing around with the idea of getting a pet for about a month. I looked at shelter websites, adoption flyers posted at Starbucks...I even considered getting a cat; less maintenance and less needy--the thought of my couches being scratched to shreds made me shudder though.

Then some time in January I received notice from a colleague that a friend had a litter of 9 puppies. I told him I was interested. "What mix are they? How much?" I asked.

"Staffordshire Terriers. Free," he replied.

Upon some quick research I became conflicted with the high profile and pressure of owning a notorious "pit bull." Not only did my couches come to mind, my shoes, my roommate, my neighbors, my niece--Oh boy. "Please don't eat Lucie." I sent a prayer out into the Universe.

Then I saw this picture ("the males"):

And then this one:

I didn't have a gender preference, but something told me he was the one. Something about that brown eye patch. And maybe because my friend said he was a mellow one.

"Let's do this." I talked myself into it. No yard, not a lot of space, already a lot on my plate, and a list of concerns. Still, "I got this."

The countdown began and I grew increasingly excited to bring home a new companion. I fell in love the instant he was carried into the kennel in the back of my car, parked in a loading zone at Universal City Walk.

"His eyes should stay green."
"His eyes are green!?"

"WTF am I doing!? This isn't a game! This ain't practice! (Practice?!) This is the real deal. Opening night AND the Finale. I got 80 pounds and 12+ years ahead of me! The show must go on!"

And of course I agreed to pick up another one and sit Assata for a month. Either I'm a fool, or...yeah, I'm a fool.

After four weeks of soaking up pee, wiping up poop, mopping and laundry more than ever before, and over $1,000 later, I've learned several things:
  • Get a sturdy, seal-able container for the food and use it immediately.
  • Use rubber gloves; Oxy Clean and vinegar is treacherous on the hands.
  • Reusable sponge wipes and the Bissell Green Machine are gifts from magic elves.
  • People love Staffordshire Terriers but hate "pit bulls."
  • Unconditional Love is scrubbing the bathroom floor 2 times a day.
  • The kennel is their safe space, and my sanity. No love lost, and no more scrubbing the bathroom floor 2 times a day.
  • I fall in love too easily. And I'm ok with that.
  • Routine is alright after all.
  • "Ain't nobody got time for that" is my new theme.
  • "Keep got puppies."
  • Talk about "Living in the Moment." One moment play, next moment fight, another moment pee, grunt, cuss, tail wag, and love. Repeat and shuffle as necessary.
  • Never underestimate the power of Love and a pea-sized treat.
  • Fools fall in love because Love is emotional, illogical, and makes no f'ing sense whatsoever. How appropriate to label those who fall 'fools.'
  • It's all worth it.
"I got this."

As I sit here typing this, the last few moments with Assata are upon me. Her new papa comes in tomorrow and they will be heading up to Sacramento this weekend. She has one last night with me and a day to show off what a sweet, loving girl she is. Something tells me they somehow know. Something about the way they've been extra good lately. To me, and each other. 

I know she'll be in good hands, but I can't help but want to keep her. See her grow up. Watch her antagonize her brother (and me). Witness the miracle of life. Experience her Unconditional Love. Then I think about her princess-diva-like sneakiness. I'm gonna miss her.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

One chapbook, Toilet paper roll holder destroyed; Was a decent day

I'm so exhausted, I don't even know why I'm blogging.

I think there's something meaningful in having a chapbook destroyed today--and how the hell did they [I'm looking forward to next week when I can just blame Yogi...haha...until then they're both guilty] get the toilet paper roll holder off? And WHY?!

I think it was payback for me figuring out how to confine them (Assata) to the bathroom. (Details on this later.) Oh well, no more climbing out and having free will when I'm gone. But I do need to protect my collection of bathroom literature of poetry books.

I thought that today's action-packed series of events would mellow them out for the time I had to leave. We soaked up the morning sun, chatted with Alberto y Humberto, met Chloe and her mommies, went on a 30 minute meditation walk at the field, said hi to Benito...Nope, I was wrong.

At least after coming home from the meditation walk they we're knocked out cold for a few hours. Gave me some time to...I don't even know... doesn't seem like I got anything done today.

Upon waking up from their nap, it was time for the afternoon meal, and the "go potty, go boo-boo, go play" cycle started over again. 

By the time that was over, I had to get going and pray that they don't learn how to eat through walls.

And they didn't. But they did eat some poetry.

And I'm kind of ok with that. (As long as it doesn't happen again.)

We ended the day with a long walk around the complex because I was getting annoyed with them running around the house and doing really weird stuff to each other (don't ask). I'm working on getting Yogi to stop pulling on the leash like he's walking me--No,'re following me; not the other way around. We had to "Stop, sit, and stay" just about every 10 steps, oftentimes even just one step. I was tired, it was cold, and they knew it. They were probably thinking, "Dude! Why are you putting us all through this?! Let's get inside already! It's cold!"

Eh. At least they went straight to the kennel when we got back. (No more running around the house, doing weird stuff to each other.)

"Go nite nite."

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Kennel Break: Doggie Bag

So I get home from a meeting, just after 9pm tonight (gone for about 3.5 hours), open the door, and see something like this:

"Oh, good," I'm thinking. "She didn't climb out this time."

As I open the kennel door to let them out to go potty, Assata stays in the kennel.

"Oh, no!" I thought. I'm hoping she's not sick like Yogi was last week. It's way past dinner time for them and she should be rushing towards the food like Yogi is.

So I get back to the task at hand and proceed to prepare their bowls. As I look over towards their food, this is what I see:
The bag of food open, and laying on the side. (Also notice the ONE kibble on the rug.)

I look over to the other side of the room, towards the kennel, and see this:
Confused, I look around and see a couch pillow on the floor, and then...not one, not two, but THREE piles of what I smelt coming in the door. I totally thought the smell was from the two piles already in the bathroom! (Yes, that's 5 piles waiting for're welcome for sparing you of the pictures.)

So I look over at Assata, now out of the Kennel, and...HOLY CRAP! [pun intended]

Not only did she climb out, play with my slipper, knock down the food bag, OPEN IT, and stuffed her face buffet-style; but she took 3 dumps on the carpet!

AND...she actually climbed back up on top of the kennel, jumped back down into the bathroom and back into the kennel to be with her brother.

Oh wait! There's more!!!!

So after feeding Yogi and taking them both out to 'go potty' (more so for Yogi since Assata had already went 3-5 times!), I'm crackin' up at the situation and getting mentally prepared for doo-doo-duty.

I needed more paper towels, so moved their kennel to get to the closet, and then I see this:
(Relax, that is dog food.) 

Assata Schofield, the Kennel Break genius, not only indulged herself to a plump belly, but she was smuggling food back to the kennel for her brother!!! She must have regurgitated it into the corner and this is what fell through.

Anyhow, how can I be mad at all this? I can't!

I never thought I'd still be in love after dealing with a whole lotta shit.

Look at that GUT!