Life and Pets

Happy New Year to all!

Hope your year ahead is pleasant and healthy and prosperous. If you are reading this blog, we must have some level of friendship, mutual respect and/or love. Sending bigs hugs out, especially to those who need improved quality of life in 2019 and beyond.

We were awakened by folks in distress at our door, at 3:30 this morning. Their dog had eaten chocolate, was unconscious, and the closest vet was unavailable. All I could do is recommend that they get back in the car and drive to Prince George 150 miles away, attempting to contact a an emergency vet while in transit. They had left home without their cell phone and had to backtrack first. I think if I was a better person, or if I thought fast enough, I would have quickly dressed and jumped in the vehicle, taking my cell phone. It didn’t occur to me. I might have helped more. Perhaps I can keep some P.G. vet clinic numbers handier. I even wondered if oxygen would help the dog, but who keeps oxygen handy?

I went back to bed and to sleep, but woke up wondering about the frantic family.

We have a quiet, content, small crowd of canine clients for the next couple of days, and we’re heading into the typically “slow” season of … more of the same. I am complimented (and a bit surprised) by the numbers of folks who remark, “That’s been a good little business for you!”. Indeed, it has been my joy, my calling, my career for almost 35 years now. It seems like yesterday we had a 30th anniversary for the Pet Hostel; I might host another open house this summer.

We still have a receptionist committee, and hopefully they will remain savvy enough to, you know, stay alive a long time:

Skipper and Lolly:

Snow Dog ‘Buster Brown’:

Buster ran around excitedly while I operated the snow blower. He didn’t wait for a path/racetrack to be ploughed around the inside perimeter of the fence.

I just went out to the building to check on the guests. For the first time in his life and many stays at the Pet Hostel, Festus has chewed a huge hole in the chain link fence. I asked him WHY? without any word or gesture of rebuke.

Festus still looked sheepish for his portrait. He was not locked out of the warm building, but for his own reasons, wanted through the large kennel into the huge exercise yard. When he saw me, he wanted back through the hole he had made. I examined his mouth to ascertain that he had not damaged himself.

Where animals are involved, one can expect the unexpected, therefore, almost anything is expected. Sort of.

Just got a phonecall from someone whose dog I haven’t seen in two years, for boarding overnight tonight. I pride myself on being flexible, understanding, and available on short notice. Before Christmas, I had some last minute cancellations, and though I try to be empathetic about people’s changes of plans, clients don’t realize or acknowledge that I can not always fill those spaces. To have a “wait list” works only to a point: folks who get turned away can’t wait too long before making other arrangements. Some boarding kennels charge for reservations cancelled on short notice.

We went out for a New Year’s Eve party. Even from the invitation, it seemed like “our kind” of party … from 7 to 9 pm.. I’m self conscious in any clothing, all the time. I made an attempt at dressing up and putting on makeup, even donning trampy red nail polish. I did not feel elegant. A beautiful friend and I ended up laughing over our attempts to “glam” when we don’t usually wear any cosmetics. As our skin gets thinner and has a few wrinkles, it is difficult to get eye shadow and liner on correctly. It’s truly challenging to apply mascara without bright light or daylight. When I was a girl, I thought “ewww” when I heard that older women worried about fine lines showing up around the mouth when they applied lipstick. Yes …

But the visits and giggles overcame the self consciousness I felt. Add alcohol and the finest of hearty hors d’eurves all evening, and a good time was had by bashful and bold , young and old alike.

Above, old Smudge is waiting for his treat.

I groomed this little fellow yesterday, a client I had years ago who had moved away with his family. This is Turbo:

Turbo’s owner reported that nobody in her large town will groom him, and when they did, it took two groomers and a muzzle. She told me this after Turbo had his spa treatment, although I had heard her say beforehand, “Do what you can, I know he can be difficult.” I didn’t remember the little guy being any trouble before, I just remembered him running joyfully flat-out in the sunshine while boarding. Now, evidently, he’s old and crotchety and has a itchy skin condition. He was a bit matted. I managed all Turbo’s issues without him losing his cool or needing a muzzle. His owner might “save” his grooming for me, for when she visits family in McBride. Am happy with that.

This month, I’ve rented my old house in town again. I truly want to sell it, but it was listed and shown by a realtor for 10 months, with little interest. Rather than have it vacant through the rest of winter, I am renting to two youths, brothers who live and work locally. They are not party guys. Perhaps I will have better luck renting to people who are self-sufficient and probably not difficult “socially” either. The home can still be for sale privately, but I told the boys that I would not advertise the house until spring, at soonest. I wish they would buy it!

Not right now, but at night the hot tub calls to us:

Doesn’t it look inviting? I admit to being a bit chicken about disrobing and scampering out to the “spa”. We’ve had som brisk winds, even if the weather has been unusually mild. Once I’m there, I forget what I thought was so great on the television or what task was important in the house. This is a salt water tub, and feels and smells like mineral hot springs. Ahhhhhhh.


~ Ann


One thought on “Happy New Year to all!

  1. You look fabulous – and yes – eyeliner and lipstick after a certain point in time is too much work, LOL! I love the pictures of Buster Brown, and wonder what went on in Festus’ mind. I also totally admire your hot tub – it looks like heaven. A Happy New Year to you, my Blogging pet Friendly Pal. I hope the wonders and joys are beyond number.

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