Monthly Archives

May 2011


Work work work like a jerk jerk jerk

That’s what we used to chant when we were teenagers cleaning our big ancient old kitchen, where eight kids were fed every day and we never had a dishwasher that worked for more than a month or two (we killed them all, in quick succession, no doubt by washing horse buckets and chicken feeders in them when my parents weren’t paying attention). My dad would sometimes put down his Hebrew translation and come over and join in and we’d do a little quick-step around the butcherblock.

I am working like a jerk, my friends. I have some extra pages that will let me put a hundred dollars into the Honour Puppy account so my head is down and I’m flying. I’ll be back up for air after Tuesday. See you then.


If you’d like to help…

A few people have asked if we need help getting Honour this puppy. The answer is that Honour is GETTING this puppy, no question. I have confidence that when we need the money it’ll be there. However, I’d be lying if I said it would be easy; the purchase of the puppy is actually only a small part of what it means to start a new service dog off on the right foot. Little Puppy X and Honour will need to be mentored and trained from day one and we’ll be in a much more formal training regimen than we generally do with our Cardigans. The psychiatric service dog groups estimate that the first year will cost around $4,000, largely because of the training involved.

If you feel moved to help Honour get and train her dog, our paypal is That’s also where we take donations for rescue, so indicate it in the subject line if you would like us to put it in the “service dog” pot instead of the rescue pot (which, by the way, is currently at $50; anything in the fund will be donated directly to Hartford if we decide we won’t be able to do an actual rescue this summer – we don’t use a penny of the rescue fund for anything but rescue).

Thank you. We know that you have given us far more than money could ever buy – your love and support has been felt throughout this whole thing, and we love you all right back.


Service dog puppy news!

If you read my prior post, you got a peek at what we’re hoping is a very good thing.

As you know, I threw the “FIND US A PUPPY!” gauntlet down, and Sarah (who has a service dog herself and is in fact starting to teach service-prep classes this summer) took it up.

As far as I can tell, Sarah knows every human who shows dogs in the Eastern Hemisphere. She immediately had fantastic people for us to talk to about Pekingese and Papillons and half a dozen other breeds, but she most particularly wanted us to talk with her friends with Tibbies.

So on Saturday we went to meet Kitty and Kathy, who are professional handlers who travel with a household of Tibetan Spaniels all over the East Coast. All of their dogs are used to travel and to handling, and all of them are solid, affectionate, funny little dogs. We talked with them for at least an hour and Honour got to hold every single one of their dogs, from ancient oldsters to adolescent puppies. They all just sat quietly or washed her face and wiggled very gently. It felt very, very good; the vibe of the dogs is exactly right.

When we were walking away after the long conversation I asked Honour if she felt OK – she said, “Yeah,” and then was quiet for a while, thinking, and then said, “Before I held them my hands felt really dirty but they actually feel cleaner now. It’s like those dogs are a bubble of goodness.”



Meeting a lady.

Hello. I am a Tibetan Spaniel.

I am very lovely and I don’t have any trouble admitting that.

I am also very special because I travel all over the country with my family. I go to shows and to events and I expect adoration and love from all. I am what they call “extremely socialized,” but I prefer to think of it as my due. Because I am so lovely.

There is another thing you should know about me – several weeks ago I had a Very Embarrasing and Personal Incident and now I am pregnant. It is the first time anything like this has ever happened to me but I am a civilized lady and I am rolling with the punches.

As you can see, I am what can only be described as a luscious caramel color, but my puppies may not look like me.

They may in fact look like any one of these distinguished spaniels, who also live and travel with me. In fact, we and our older relatives are all one large and extended family of ancient and dignified lineage. All of us have proven our perfect temperaments and our calm but social nature. Except for Puffy up there – the cream one. She’s terribly UNdignified but we’re all hoping with age she takes on the mantle of austerity instead of her current mantle of screaming screaminess.


At any rate, I’m introducing myself to you because on Saturday we all got to meet a very shy girl with red hair who held us all and got a silly smile on her face for the first time in a very long time. I have no intention of going anywhere, but I am told that one of my children-to-be may be going home with that girl.

Which sounds good to me. Yes?


Yes. Very good.


Sumer Is Icumin In

New England is finally turning the corner toward June.

The first buds are opening on the crabapples.

The poison ivy is peeking out from under the rocks.

And microscopic dogs descend on the Maine coast.

We had a very lovely and relaxing show weekend in Scarborough – Friday went RWB (reserve winners bitch) to a 5-point on Saturday, which was nice, and I got to see a Best Puppy group with Toy entries that kept trying to hide under blades of grass and get into wrestling matches with small moths. The angle is awkward on this Pom because I had to wait until the judge moved the toe of his shoe, because before then all you could see was a little ear behind a shoelace. Sigh. I love puppies.


The whirlwind is in the thorn trees.

My standard answer when someone asks me if we can know when to expect the Second Coming is “Christ could return before I finish this sent–” and then look around really wildly.

Should the Lord tarry, I’ll be at the Cardigan club meeting tomorrow and hopefully back with some fun pictures by Sunday. Hope your weekend is rapturous in the lowercase sense.

And just because I love you:


Slightly less able to be carried in one hand

From November

to May.

This is our flock rooster, Big Bottom. He’s Tabitha’s chicken; she named him the first week he was here. He’s survived all the rooster culls and he’ll be here forever if I have anything to say about it. At over ten pounds he’s a massive, cartoonishly large boy who is nowhere near done growing and is going to end up the size of a small turkey. He has thirteen wives and takes beautiful care of them; yesterday I watched him pick a single blade of grass and take it to a hen. He laid it in front of her, stepped back, and excitedly clucked, looking from her to the grass until she (with an air of resignation) finally¬†swallowed it. He gave a triumphant wing dance and ponderously trotted off to go attend to the next girl.

This is Eight, one of his wives. She’s been laying for a month now and has a couple in the incubator making us the next generation.

Love chickens. LOVE chickens. Somebody needs to make me the next Avedon of the poultry community.

OK, the FIRST Avedon of the poultry community.