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Saturday, December 22, 2007

Everybody Loves a Good "Chase"

This is Sammy's motto.

Is it the motto of every 6 month old puppy? I don't know, but it certainly applies well to life with Samson.

This is a lesson I learned all too well on Friday night....Get ready, you know what's coming: a long....involved....animal story.

SO, Mr. Sammy-Whammy, being a pup adopted from the Kent County Animal Shelter, has a mysterious background which is unknown to everyone but Samson himself. Since he has yet to learn English and therefore cannot explain life pre-Heemstra family to me, I decided that it would be a good idea to get his medical records (from his stay at the shelter) to the vet, and make sure that we are all up-to-date on vaccines and boosters. After much debate, it was decided that Samson did not need further vaccination at this point, but my awesome vet wanted to see him for a “puppy wellness exam” to make sure that he is healthy and all systems are a go. Most of you might say this is just a way to get more money out of me, but being a doting animal parent, and considering we know nothing about this dog's background, I figured it was a good idea to do it just this once. (I also get a great discount from my vet since I am an adoptive parent of one of her rescue kitties from Crash's Landing, so my vet bills are never very high (http://www.crashslanding.org ))This all sounds fine and dandy right? Take the new puppy to the vet for a little puppy exam- we get in, we get out, and Ho Ho Ho, Merry Christmas we're all set.

Right? Wrong.

Here's why: Mr. Whitaker is due for his rabies vaccination and needed an appointment as well...I, being the confident pet owner that I am, decided that it would be best to just kill two birds with one stone and get them both in at once. (whats one cat and a dog when you've worked at a Ranch with a herd of fifty horses, four goats, three mini horses, a gaggle of chickens, kittens, bunnies, one sheep, and llama?).

Um, I guess I never tried putting them all in a car.

Here was my plan that I worked out on the way home from work: I'd run in the house (I was running late, of course), let Samson outside to pee, grab Whit, throw him in the cage, cover the cage with a blanket, put him in the backseat of the car, gather up Samson, throw him in the front seat, and we'd be on our merry way. This should have worked fine. HOWEVER, I did not take into account the broken cat kennel or the fact that Whit would begin yowling the moment the cold air of the outdoors hit him smack in the face. By the time I got Samson in the car he had a pretty darn good idea of what was under that square-shaped blanket in the back and he knew that it was his first and best chance to get a really good look at one of those elusive cats.

Our ride to the vet was spent with me steering with one hand while holding Samson in a choke hold by the collar in the other. At stop lights I'd reach back and try to shove Whit back in the cage by the face while Samson inevitably knocked the car into neutral or park. Oye.

When we reached the vet I let out a big sigh of relief and gathered up both animals to head inside...until we reached the front door. Whit, terrified as he was, had apparently been plotting his escape during the entire car ride and while I opened the door to the vet's office and was greeted by the nurses, Whit made a run for it...Followed by Samson.The next few seconds where punctuated by my screams and the sound of crashing bushes. Poor Whit- my big old fat cat – was tearing helter-skelter along the side of the building while Samson barreled after him with a big grin on his puppy face. All I could see was the blobbule that is Whit running, followed by a streak of black and tan.

I lost sight of them until I reached the back door where I found Whit cowering by the glass door, no doubt thinking: “Let me in- this thing is gonna murder me!!” followed by a string of obscenities, and Samson a few feet away preparing to do his business. (Good Boy, go potty:)

One of the nurses came skidding around the corner just as I was scooping up Whit. She grabbed Samson and it was decided we better just go inside through this door. The lot of us paraded through the entire office; surgery rooms, kennels, exam rooms, while I blushed furiously and muttered something about how “they aren't quite used to each other yet.”

No kidding.

I have to say, Whit actually took the whole thing quite well. Being a past stray, I think he did not like the prospect of life as a street cat and therefore headed for the nearest door. If it had been Louis, I'm pretty sure I'd never have seen him again. Once in the examination room Whit sat quietly on the table while Sam bounded up and down trying to see the cat, then perched precariously on an old scale (all four feet on the little square foot of space. 43 ½ lbs, mind you), and the vet grinned at me like this is totally normal. (it probably is for her.)

When all was said and done I had one terrified kitty who sat quietly in his cage the whole way home; freshly vaccinated, and one large puppy; who's nails it took three people to clip, passed out on the front seat.

So, for those of you that think you'll lose your mind when your kids are “fighting like cats and dogs,” take to heart the fact that they actually are NOT cats and dogs. :)

From now on, it's separate appointments for all!!!

Merry Christmas!!
The Heemstra Family.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Offering a Helping Paw

I know, I know. It's been too long. But life has been hectic and I rarely have the computer! Since my last post we have gotten new windows (yay!), had a couple of random pet-peeing incidents, and about twelve Christmas parties. Samson has also grown and is getting smarter by the day.
The best story I have of Samson is that he has now learned that if a toy "wanders" into the bedroom, he is allowed to retrieve it. So now, rather than the occasional rolling ball followed by Sammy tentatively picking it up in his teeth and backing out of the room, toys of every shape and size often come flying into the bedroom "of their own free will." Sammy, acting coy, sneaks in after them and pauses to sniff around. This is happening more and more frequently and I've now caught him on several occasions nudging toys covertly into the room.
Oh the joys of having a smart dog!!!

Today he helped with picture hanging by bringing Dad the hammer. Here are a few highlights:

and the finished product! ignore the nail hole...