Skip navigation

My rescue friend Katie called me Sunday morning to tell me about this abuse case from another county, he had been stabbed, a pit mix, deaf and if he didnt find a home that day, he would be put down.   The shelter is poorly funded and over crowded, the least adoptable dogs get put down first.  Katies rescue was full to the brim and couldnt take him……she called me because she knew I had pits over the years and I owed her a favor. 

He has been here 2 days and we are working on hand signals and learning how to communicate with eachother…..he is catching on quick.  So quick the teacher needs to study today and learn more signals.

He is a strikingly beautiful dog who has sky blue eyes, they remind me of our friend Stellar’s. 

 

He is of good body weight, but was stabbed with something that went completely thru his neck not once, but twice.  Below is a photo of the “out” side.

I dont think I will EVER understand people and the foul things they are capable of doing to animals. 

Now Z is safe and no longer on a list to be put down, he is in a home, on the mend and he and I are learning… together.

Often time people know how much I travel and say stuff like, “I sure wish I could do that”……….bla bla bla………they act like they have NO idea how I can go anywhere………..

So I remind them of two things;

1.  I happen to remember daily that you only live once and you better make a good go of it this time around! 

2.  I always travel on a really tight budget.

Now this last trip just sort of happened to fall in my lap.  My friends Tina and Paul were getting a time share place for a week in Florida……Key West to be exact!  (My favorite place of all time)………so one thing lead to another and I ended up going with them.  The day Tina asked me to go, I found a round trip ticket for $242!!  Yes!!

Was this a good time for me financially to go on vacation right now?  NO, but I did it anyways and loved every minute of it.  The new washer that is needed can wait……..so can the tires that I need for my truck……..It ALL can wait, I needed a rest.

And what I got in turn was 4 days in paradise, a few days to let my hair down and have fun after working my rear end off day after day.  The week prior to leaving, I was working 15 hour days……….I was exhausted and it was such a sweet thing to get off of that plane in Key West and not have to worry about reality for a few days…….really, I headed straight for the condo and didnt look back…..I had a BLAST!

So I guess the moral of this story is, if you want to do it………whatever it is, do it now….dont wait!!!  We just dont know what tomorrow might bring!!  Live for the moment!

I know I sure do!  🙂

JUST LOOK AT THAT FACE!!!  How cute can one little dog be???  OK, so he came home from the Vet’s office looking a little more like a little rat than a poodle, but they had to clip him all the way down to get the mats out………. now he just looks like all eyes………..and he is so darn tiny.

I will soon be trying to place him in a loving home where someone can dote on him.  He SO adores being held and spoiled…..I just need to find the right person who will love him for the rest of his days…..

He is SO darling, scared and tiny…..how could anyone dump him at the shelter?

Just a random moment from this week at the State Park with my youngest daughter and Fuzz, but I had to post this photo…….Lil Fuzz is SO happy to go anywhere with me but LOVES to hike and anything that has to do with the water, just look at her face.  Pure bliss!  That is one happy dog

I remember loving cameras as a really young child……….and let’s just say back then camera’s were very different creatures. (uh-hem, they had film for starters)  lol

I remember my Mom having  a “Brownie” camera and me begging her to use it.  The only thing I ever wanted to take photos of was my dog Dino….. sometimes she would let me take me take an entire roll of him, drop them off to be developed at the little photo hut and then the day would come about a week or so later that we could take our little paper slip in and exchange it for an envelope stuffed full of glossy photos…….it was like magic to me.  I couldn’t wait till I got home to rip open the envelope and look at each photo, I had to rip open the envelope right there in the parking lot!

Who knew 30 some years later I would still be snapping photos, but now making money at it…….

Photography is and always has been a love of mine.  Not only do I love to take, develope and edit my own photos but I can sit for hours looking at someone elses photos that capture my attention; for instance my favorite blog : Zach Aboard Cindy takes simple, beautiful photos that I adore. I can and DO, look at them for hours and hours…….checking her site daily for a new story and or photo or two…….

As far as my own photos go, they are evolving…..this craft for me is and always will be a work in progress but I have finally decided it is time to get paid for my work…..trust me, it is a strange step to go from doing something JUST because you love it and for FREE, to doing it because you LOVE it and getting PAID.  Sure the paid part is great, but it also puts a huge amount of responsiblity on me to make sure my clients are happy.

I worry about that continually, but so far so good. 

My Mom fostered my love for photography and always viewed it for what it is, an Art.  My Mother was an artist to the core, teaching dance and painting in her youth and always creating and crafting and knitting as she got older………as a child she encouraged ANY ounce of artist in me buying me sketching books, paints and pastels. clay, etc and always stimulating my imagination………

However it was that camera of hers that I begged to use, that would ultimately bring out my creative side.

By the time I reached High School an elective class was “Photography”, however you needed a 35 mm camera to participate.  The fact I had NO 35 mm camera didnt discourage me………I signed up and showed up for class like one was supposed to magically appear. 

It didnt……not for nearly a year anyways.

Mr. Goss (God love him) allowed me to remain in class and use a “loaner” camera for an extended period of time…..these “loaners” as he called them belonged to him personally, not the school and he was so gracious to allow me to drag that thing all over tarnation with me while I learned to shoot and develop photos from a master (Mr. Goss) and while my Mother worked and saved to make this big purchase. 

My Mother saved money untill she had enough to purchase the specific camera Mr. Goss recommended we have.  A Olympus OM10.  The day I got that camera it was as if the heavens opened up and shined down on me………I really was THAT happy and here many, many years later…. in 2010, I remember that sunny day in 1979 clearly. 

Not only did my Mom purchase the camera and lens but she later saved and purchased several other lenses, a camera bag, a tri-pod, etc……Mr Goss told her that I had promise and he thought I should go on to College for photography.

I was in Pho-tog heaven.  I LOVED that camera and took photos of everything and everyone around me,  I shot with that same camera until about 4 years ago when it along with my car that it was in the back of, was stolen.

I was sick, I mean SICK.  I was more devastated by the loss of my camera than the car being stolen that only had 26 thousand miles on it.

That camera was so important because it was from my Mom and it represented the love of the Arts that my Mother has fostered for so many years…….I knew how hard it was for my Mom to save and purchase that camera and I knew clearly she did it because she loved me.  Then in a flash, it was gone………..

I knew that even if the car was ever recovered (and it wasnt) that I would never see that camera again.  Considering the age of the camera and condition it had actually grown in material value………but to me it was priceless.

To console my broken photographic heart about a year later I purchased a digital point and shoot type camera.  It was great and it allowed me to capture images of the kids, vacations, the dogs, etc but it wasnt the same………hell no camera would ever be the same but I knew that I NEEDED a 35 mm camera again.

Years passed and this last year I told the kids that when I buy myself a new 35 mm camera I was going to start doing photography work again…..and this time as a business. 

The problem is, I never could manage to squeeze enough extra money out of my budget to make it happen.  I would go to the camera stores and look……..and drool, and dream……..and then come home empty-handed.

I read review, after review of camera’s.  I KNEW what camera I wanted  and I also KNEW it may only happen for me at tax time, or if I hit the lottery!  🙂

~~~

The morning of June 28th started like any other………however this was the morning of my 46th birthday, my girls were home from school and we all planned of skyping with my Marine who is currently in Japan to start off my day.  The girls let me know they planned on cooking me dinner and that I was not allowed to raise a finger that day………(Hey, they didnt have to ask me twice!)   Queen for the day, I’ll take it!

I found Acacia on Skype bright and early and the other kids slowly trickled down the stairs……Sierah toted a blue gift bag and a long box wrapped in paper…….I opened them…..a tri-pod and a camera bag.  Yay!  I was thrilled!   Now I only needed to buy myself the camera and I would be set.

“Wait Mom….there is one more” …. !!??!! ….. As Sierah came out of the kitchen with yet another gift bag…….

As I opened it, then heavens again opened up and shined directly down on me………a camera.  No wait, not just ANY camera…..THEE camera I had been dreaming about for years……

I cried………and cried……..and was SHOCKED.  Seriously shocked.  To this day I have no idea how they pulled it off, however I am SO grateful  for my children doing so……….just as my Mother had done so, SO many years ago……

So to thank them, and my Mom I have kicked this “photography thing” into full gear…….

Here it is, a labor of love…….   Body As Art Photography by Laura Moore

Thanks to My Mother and all of my children…….for seeing the Artist in me!  🙂  (and for buying my broke ass a camera!)

Some days nothing goes as planned…….the last few days have been like that, and the day I took Kiwi to the Vet was no exception. 

Problem #1 is my Vet of 15 years is retiering…..well, he sort of is and in his place he has 4 or 5 vets who rotate in and out of his office to cover for him.  The fact he is almost never there, the staff that are left are often either rude or simply seem to have no clue what is happening; has made me look elsewhere for a regular Vet.  (Last week when I was there, they charged me for services that I didn’t receive and sent me home with a rabies certificate when I had a heart worm test done)  I have been dragging my feet on finding a new Vet for almost a year, but it is time. 

The visit PRIOR they claimed they didnt have me on the schedule at all, then when I went to buy flea meds for the dogs a week ago, the girl gave me the pills for the wrong weight sizes…….I had to drive back to get it squared away.  UGH

It has been a source of frustration and disappointment for me.  Watching his health deteriorate broke my heart, this was the Vet who would get right down on the floor with the dogs when they came in…..  I LOVE my old Vet, Dr Kerley.  I mean, I could call him at home if need be and he would have (and DID) come to my house in the middle of the night if needed.  They just dont make them like that any more…….Having him as my Vet and a friend for all of these years has been a blessing.

Now in his absence, I let them rotate me thru the various Vet’s covering for him and doing so, I found one I truly loved……..

Dr Kruse….she is by far my favorite of all of the Vets I have seen there……since meeting her she has helped me numerous times with my rescue dogs, giving me a deep discount or not charging me at all for office visits, just meds.  I appreciate her so much for this.  She truly loves the animals she cares for and she takes plenty of time to examine them and talk with the human.   (Not one of those rush you in and rush you out Vets.)  BUT the only problem is that she is only there a couple of times a month.  (that stinks.)  She books up way in advance so I seldom get to see her.

So…..She examined Little Kiwi last week within 24 hours of him coming home with me………we sort of set a plan of action up for him and as soon as I left the office I set the plan in motion……

BUT THEN….

I dropped Kiwi off the other day early in the morning for phase one of Kiwi’s new life and about 3 hours later I get a call from a Vet…….but not one of the Vet’s I was familiar with.

He was concerned about Kiwi, he had given him a brief examination prior to giving him a shot to sedate, him and heard a slight heart murmur.

The Vet explained that due to Kiwi’s age and health he would rather him only been knocked out once for ALL of his treatments he needs, that he would give me a discount on the neuter (charging the same cost of the low cost spay and neuter place I had an appointment at) and take care of all of his other problems at once………they however needed to do pre-surgery lab work, a heart worm test, etc PRIOR to surgery………$$  Cha-ching!!  $$

I said, “They already did a HW  test and it was negative”………..he says, “I have no record of that”……..

Grr….here we go again with the missing paperwork….ugh, those girls at the front desk……….!! (*%$&^%)

~breathe~

So now we have moved on to “Plan B”………..knock him out and take care of grooming, teeth cleaning and pulling and neuter all at once……..my little guy is going to be a new man after Wednesday…..um, maybe a little “less” of a man….but he should feel lots better none the less!  🙂

Surgery is never easy, well for me it isn’t anyways….but this last one was a doozie. Seriously it knocked me for a loop. I knew shortly after my surgery a year ago that I had caused myself to have a surgical hernia, I had simply done too much too fast…..the reult was a “broken belly”; a big ole’ hernia. (yes, I really was out mowing the grass 2 weeks after surgery; when I had my belly cut wide open and a giant tumor removed…. and thought everything would be fine….Oy!….) 
 
I put off having another surgery as long as I could, then finally the discomfort became too bothersome. By the time I finally decided that maybe I would go talk to my Doctor about it, I scheduled an appointment ~ and I was having surgery just a few days later. 
I didn’t even have time to panic……No time to say, “Woah, wait a minute”….. 
Just like that….. Boom, bam, I was in the hospital in post opp with Sierah by my side (and we had Acacia there with us on Skype) just shy of a week after stepping into my Doctors office. 

   

Like most people, I really dislike hospitals…… so don’t you know those famous last words of my Doctor, “You’ll probably be home the same day” crap didn’t happen………..one day turned into two, two turned into three, three turned into four…..  

  

You get the picture.   
Surgery didn’t go as expected, I stopped breathing during surgery, my oxygen levels wouldnt rise in the days following surgery, my blood pressure was too low and then the fever came….the pain following surgery was emense….worse than my “big” surgery a year prior. I woke up from surgery feeling like someone had torn the muscles away from the left side of my pelvis. (A subsequent trip to the ER 2 weeks after my release would show a seroma that was 6 inches in diameter. Let me tell you, it hurt like a Mother ~{bleep}~) er. …oh yeah, did I mention the kidney infection.  ~grr~  

I felt so damn broken. I just wanted to go home. I missed the dogs and my comfortable bed….that old house of mine was calling me.   

After the summer home, the girls were headed back to College that week. I was so disappointed in the fact that I was unable to help them go back to school, I couldn’t do for them what I had planned, they all had graciously juggled coming up to the hospital to stay with me and for the first time in my life I truly felt like a burden to my children.   

Broken AND a burden, neither are good to feel.   

Then Kathy called from the shelter……..”Laura, I’ve got a little dog I hope you’d take”……..I said, “Any idea what type of dog?”(not sure why I asked, as it never matters to me as long as they dont try to eat the cat!)………”I dont know, maybe a poodle mix, he was the worst matted dog I have ever seen, the Vet gave me something to knock him out with so I could try to get some of the mats out, he is tiny, and had so many fleas on him that the bath water ran red when I gave him a bath…..he’s really scared, but really sweat.  Do you think you can take him?”  

……..I paused and said, “Okay, I’ll be to get him”………  

So here he is!  Lil Kiwi.  

  

All 6.5 lbs of him.  Seen here with urine stained legs and still really matted on his lower half……..He is love!!  Is he not the cutest thing ever??  I love his tiny little face.    

He has been to the Vet, has been working on putting on some weight, dealing with bath after bath to get the urine out of his little legs and belly, suffered seizure after seizure till I switched his food and that has now subsided (thank goodness)…..and tomorrow will be knocked out at the Vet and be groomed.   

I cant wait to see him all fixed up!   I KNOW he’s gonna feel better!

People that do this to ANY dog just PISS ME OFF. 

She came to me broken…….physically and mentally.  Kathy from the shelter called and asked me if I would be interested in taking this little grey dog that was in bad shape.  She said that she thought she had “lost her eye”…….it was now a pocket of puss there.  (Please note the photo above, YES that is puss in her right eye.)

When I got there, she was perfectly still, stoic, maybe in shock, in pain…..I don’t know, but she was clearly “broken”…She didn’t want anyone to touch her or pick her up, aside from the puss filled eye, she was all bones, matted at the base of her hair and the mats created sores all over her body, nails that were growing out sideways……..she wanted nothing to do with ME or anyone else.  It was as if her mind had taken her to another place…a place far away from the pain and suffering she had endured before ending up at the shelter.

 

Once I got her home, she seemed uninterested in the dogs and certainly untrusting  AND uninterested in humans.  She just sort of sat back and watched me from afar.  She hid for days and then a few days later she followed me from room to room, however she didn’t actually come close to me on purpose for weeks and weeks. 

After a trip to the Vet the meds cleared up her horrible eye infection and her eye was actually came out unharmed, so we then focused on helping this little malnourished creature put on some weight…..A few days later the groomer tried grooming her and all of her hair started falling out.  That crazy hair fell out in large clumps, once she started cutting the mats out, everything just started coming out, clump after clump.  She was left with very little, really thin, strange hair, some totally naked parts of her freckled body showed through and then you could really tell she was a bag of bones….ribs, spine…everything showing now…….a trip back to the Vet proved she was malnourished, full of worms, had a thyroid condition that she would need to take medication for the rest of her life BUT on a good note was heartworm negative.   (So we had at least ONE good note!)

Nothing the Vet could give me, would help her regain her trust in humans, however I did everything in my power to show her love and help her to learn to trust again. 

As I would go about my daily business in the house, she finally drew closer and closer…..even learning how to go up and down the stairs to follow me.  She learned the sound of the treat jar lid opening meant a dog bone with peanut butter on it was waiting for her, she found rays of sun that landed on the wood floors to lay on, she quickly learned to be house trained, she decided at some point she was going to be the boss of the other dogs,  and then she decided at about week 3 that just maybe she might like to sleep on the bed with me.  (She no longer wanted to sleep on the fluffy blanket on the floor next to the bed.)  That day somehow seemed to be a turning point for us, she jumped up on the bed when I was half asleep, sniffed all around me face, made several turns, dug a little bit then laid down and let out this huge sigh……Maybe, just maybe at that moment she realized she was going to be okay.  (Or at least that’s how it “felt” to me)  She was healthy for the first time in God knows how long, had as much food as she could eat, she was clean and growing beautiful hair in placed of the freckled skin, she was living indoors and finally had a human who really loved her…….not much to ask for, but evidently more than the previous person EVER provided for her.

She was going from a blank, broken dog to a happy dog…..slowly

 

Weeks turned into months and she finally started trusting and loving me.  After several months she even decided she wanted to “play”……After months and months, she has grown into the most loving, loyal little dog ever.  She loves going anywhere I go…it doesn’t matter if it’s by car or by foot, she’s ready. (I’m coming with you Mom!)  I can’t leave the house without her slipping out the door with me and then spinning in circles of joy because she knows we are “going bye-bye”.   She has traveled to IU a couple of times, been camping…..on more road trips than I can recall and she is the perfect travel buddy.  I cant explain what a 360 this little lady has done, I really cant.

 

Recently I took her to the State Park to walk at the beach to soak up a beautiful sunny day we were having and see what she thought of the water….she LOVED IT……she was in pure bliss, she was zooming around, running in and out of the water and had this HUGE smile on her face the entire time we were there.  She LOVED it and seeing her little soul so happy made my spirit soar……..It seriously was one of the best days of my life.  I so clearly made such a difference in her world……..

Seeing her run and have so much fun that day, I couldn’t help but think back to the dog I picked up at the shelter that day defeated and broken…the dog who was vacant…she was certainly no longer that same broken dog…that dog is long, long gone.

So you see, this is why I do what I do……For the love of a dog…….she here I am, still trying to change lost dogs lives, one dog at a time.

I love you Fuzzy-wuzz…

I decided a few weeks ago that I would begin to blog again……..I miss writing, I miss getting my creative juices flowing and telling a story or two…. however as I sit here wanting to write my first post, the curser is blinking and I am staring blankly at the white page.  Uh Nothing…..*crickets chirp….I’ve got nothing!  Blank……..lol……..

Uh-hem…..get it together Laura……..Okay…

Well, I guess I cant start where I left off because too much water has passed under the bridge in the last few years.  The kids have grown and moved out of the house…….(all except one) and everything in my life has changed…..strange, but it has really, except for the constant stream of rescue dogs, little different furry faces all in need of new homes, various treatments, medications, good food, a warm place to sleep and lots of love………For every one I choose to take home with me, the memory of at least 5 more (that I wanted to take) left sanding at the shelter as I turn down the country road and head home……..burns in my brain for days, if not weeks after I leave….it breaks my heart. Sometimes I NEVER stop thinking about that (or those) dogs that I left behind.

The things I have found hardest to deal with during all of these years of rescue work are the people……..the people at the beginning and the end of the rescue equation.  The stupid people who have abandoned or abused them as well as the many stupid people I have to deal with to simply find a home for ONE dog……..

The idiots out there are endless. 

One day while at the shelter picking up a dog, a guy came and inquired about dropping the two dogs off that he had in the car.  The guy that runs the shelter explained that he couldn’t take the dogs because they were from a different county……..the guy left… pulled down the long driveway, turned down the county road and drove for about 300 yards and stopped the car, opened the door and put both dogs out.  Then promptly drove off.  One of the two dogs was so old he had cataracts in both eyes and his muzzle was completely grey.  Neither dog knew what to do and stood and watched the car drive off….. The emotion that rose inside of me (even more than wanting to go scoop up both dogs and bring them to the safety of my home) was me wanting to jump in my car and ram the back of this idiots SUV!  (Freekin idiot!!!) 

So despite the idiots…….on both sides of the equation……I continue to do what I do…..one (well, maybe sometimes 3) dogs at a time….

So meet Fuzz, one of my latest fuzzy faces in need of some new digs…..her story is the one I shall tell next.

Not your run of the mill, typical dog farts.  She has the, everybody in the room… one by one, hold their hand over their mouth and shout “OH MY GOD!   WHAT IS THAT?” as they run out of the room…….farts.  Anyone who happens to remain in the room covers his or her nose with their shirt pulled up and over their nose and feverously fans the air while they shoot Lola a look of total disgust.  ~ And I know what they are thinking, “How can something so small and cute produce such a stinking, rotten stench?”  All the while she continues to stroll around the house as if she is blissfully unaware of the disgusting odor she is leaving behind.

I would classify Lola’s gas as, “zoo farts.”    ~ No further explanation should be needed.

It’s bad people…very, very bad.

Now, I am not sure if I could be classified as a dog fart expert, (urr, maybe I could) or if any such expert exists but what I can attest to is the fact that no matter how many rescue dogs have came thru my doors in the last 15 years, sick, healthy or otherwise…none have EVEN came close to the little Lola and her extremely FOUL flatulence.  I mean, were not talking normal doggie gas because I have given them some cooked liver or some hard boiled eggs than morning……..I mean it’s totally unsolicited, super duper, FOUL gas.  (My eyes water just thinking about it)  In all actuality it clears my sinuses and makes my throat feel as if it’s contracting; if she happens to be on my lap and lets one fly.

Her and this bad gas is rather ironic because the day I brought her home from the shelter I decided to read some resources on the Internet about Pugs.  (I had never owned or rescued a Pug…so I thought I would get versed in some Pug ~ dog-info)  The FIRST webpage I came to summed it up… rather perfectly……  They said, “If you think you want a Pug, be prepared because they whine, snort, snore, belch and fart, more than your typical dog.”  Errr, something to that effect. …….. as I rolled my eyes, laughed out loud and said to myself, “Ha, how bad could it REALLY be?”

I found out……Bad.  Very, very bad.

She snorts, snores and farts so much you would think that my temporary roommate is a cross between a farting troll and the little creepy naked guy from Lord of the Rings. 

                                  

She is without questions the foulest smelling little thing THIS side of the Mississippi!! 

 

So now I’m wondering when I put an ad for her in the paper to rehome her, along with her photo and all of her doggie stats, should it also come with a disclaimer? 

 

 

“Caution, combustible contents may be explosive and hazardous to your health.”Confused