Healing the heart after the loss of a pet

It will be 4 weeks tomorrow at 4:30 pm that we lost our precious Marcus. He was our first dog. I didn’t want to use the word “was” because that means he’s not here anymore. I still sob when I think of him and how adorable, fun, energetic and amazing he was. There’s that word again……….Was. Ugh. Cancer in dogs is so common. I joined a facebook group dogs with cancer and I was shocked at how many dogs are affected by cancer. Is it the food we fed them? How about the pesticides used on the lawns? Even if YOU do not use them, maybe your neighbors do. Their precious little noses are always sniffing the ground and inhaling the toxic chemicals used for pest control and weed control. Could it be genetic? Over breeding?

How do you heal your heart and move forward? Should we rescue another dog? Is it too early? Would I love the new rescue like Marcus? Would it make me feel better? How would bringing another dog into the house so soon affect the other dogs we already have? The only way to answer that question is to move forward. And so we did.

I know Marcus would like us to honor his memory. He is the one who inspired us to rescue dogs. We started in 2009 rescuing dogs and donating time and money to the shelters because of his sweetness and fun personality.

Here is the newest rescue. His name is Prince Harry. We adopted him from a local breeder that is retiring the dog. They were very picky (as they should be) in who they gave him to. We were luck enough to be chosen. I here by announce the new member of our household….Prince Harry, King Charles Cavalier

He is so different than the terriers that we have rescued. He is more calm, has a bit of separation anxiety however he is getting much better with each and every passing day.

I know our Marcus would be proud of us for helping yet another dog. I will miss my boy forever and 2 days. And yes, I am crying now .

My Best Friend Marcus

I can’t believe it’s been 11 years since we first met. I remember December of 2008, seeing you in an enclosed area with your siblings. 3 adorable puppies; 2 females and 1 male. I smiled viewing the puppies and I said out loud “Which one of YOU wants to go home with US?”

Marcus as a small puppy 10 weeks old.

You looked up, and walked cautiously toward us. You put your little tiny paws up on the enclosure and licked my hand. I picked you up and you snuggled inside my coat. It appears you have chosen us to be your humans. You were so tiny I could fit you in the palm of my hand. You slept close to me snuggled in my coat for the 1 hour ride to your new home.

We named him Marcus. He is a Morkie which is a hybrid breed. It’s a cross between a Maltese and a Yorkie. Morkies have beautiful hair. They are small dogs that are jam packed full of energy with a ton of personality. He is the king of the house.

He has the best doggie life any dog can imagine. He goes everywhere with us. The beach, Gramma & Papa’s house, rides to the gas station and so many walks I can’t even count the miles. He can run so FAST. He is like a mini lightening bolt. He even sleeps with us every night. He snuggles up behind my head on top of my pillow leaving me about 1/4 of the pillow.

The best thing about Marcus is he lead to us rescuing 4 other dogs. You see he was bored with us humans after a while and needed some 4 legged friends to play with. We rescued Riley, Amber Rose, Charlie and Pumpkin all within the 11 years we had Marcus.

Marcus has had his fair share of health issues. His first one was gastritis. He was only 2 years old. He recovered from that but continued to have digestive issues on and off. The second issue was a cough. He was diagnosed with kennel cough a few times then at one point it was realized he had a trachea collapse issue. He was 9 at that time.

Why am I writing about Marcus? I am writing this tonight as our Marcus is very ill. He has been diagnosed with cancer. He has a mass in his abdomen that has spread to his lungs. His heart is enlarged too. He is on steriods and a diuretic to keep the fluid from building up inside him. We are keeping him comfortable; however the past few days he has shown us he is not going to get better and is deteriorating. He will no longer jump onto the couch, walk up the stairs or scratch at the door to go out to pee. I carry him outside to go to the bathroom. He is eating less and less. He is so sweet and is still wagging his tiny little tail when we talk to him and pet him.

I purchased a dog stroller to take him for walks because he can’t make it to the end of the driveway without sitting down and resting. He LOVES the stroller and really looks forward to his 2 walks a day with me. I also snuggle him up in his pet bed and I walk with him outside in my arms talking to him. I cried alot over the past 6 weeks. I cried when I held him, talked to him and when it was time for bed I cried.

I explained to him that he is very sick and he needs to get better or he will be going to heaven. I told him several times a day how much I love him and how much I will miss him when he is gone. I could see it in his eyes he knew his time was limited. I cried way more than I should have holding him and talking to him, but I couldn’t help it. He’s MY boy.

I can’t imagine my life without him. I am thankful he is still with us and I am enjoying every day like there is no tomorrow.

That no tomorrow came on Thursday July 25th. He wouldn’t take his medicine and decided he didn’t want any more food. We called the vet and she said to bring him in. I walked him out into the back yard holding him in my arms. We stopped and smelled the stargazer lily’s we both loved to smell. I explained to him what was going to happen. I asked Marcus if he would come back to me and tell me his was okay. I said, “Show me a cloud shaped like a dog, or come to me in a dream and tell me you are okay, please baby boy give me some kind of sign so I know you made it”.

We got into the truck with Marcus’s favorite blue bed and he snuggled with me for about 20 minutes into the 1 hour ride to the vet. I was petting him and talking to him. As I gazed down at him, I felt him leave. He was not breathing and his temperature dropped. I looked at my husband with tears streaming down my face and I said “He’s gone, our boy is gone”. I placed my fingers over his eyes to close them. I told him I LOVE YOU MARCUS and I will MISS YOU.

Just like the first day we met him and he picked us out, he left the same exact way. He passed away snuggled in my arms.

I cried the rest of the way to the vet’s office. I opened the door to the vets office and walked him in. I held him so close for the last time and kissed him goodbye.

1 day later I saw this in the sky. On the right hand side just above the puffy cloud is a terrier like looking dog. Maybe it’s my imagination or it is really Marcus telling me he made it.

I will miss you forever times forever into infinity. Thank you for picking us to be your humans

Honda CR-V Break and Rotor Problems

In 2017 I purchased a new 2016 left over Honda CR-V with no miles on it for my daughter. It’s been a dependable and reliable form of transportation for over 2 years. It’s great on gas and it has plenty of room.

In June of 2019 with ONLY 21,000 miles on the vehicle, there was an issue with rear brakes. I recently noticed a scraping sound when applying the brakes. I took it into the dealer to have it checked out. It also needed an inspection sticker so I figured I’d get both done at the same time.

The mechanic told me that I needed a new rear rotor, caliper and brake pads. He said the caliper seized causing premature damage to the rotor and the pads. I asked him why does a caliper seize and why didn’t any of the others seize? The mechanic rattled off many reasons why this would happen. #4 is my favorite reason. Really? Bad luck? No one I know that has a Honda CR-V ever had any issues with brakes or bad luck. Here are the reasons I was given:

#1. Excessive Break Dust

#2. Driving with the emergency brake on

#3. Vehicle sitting for too long

#4 Bad luck

#5 Poorly lubed brakes

#6 A rock or stick got caught in the brakes causing them to seize.

#7. The mechanic said he sees this all the time and he suggested I have the brakes cleaned & lubed every 10,000 miles to prevent this happening in the future.

I asked to see the damage with my own eyes. I viewed the damage and it was in fact damaged. My question is WHY did the caliper seize up? I wasn’t convinced all the reasons the mechanic was telling me. The vehicle only had 21,000 miles on it and I DON’T drive with the emergency brake on. I mean really, who does that?

After a long conversation about warranty and defective calipers, I lost the battle and had to fork out $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ to pay for the full repair.

Being unsatisfied with the outcome of the dealer, I called Honda directly. I was on hold the 1st time for 18 minutes. Finally someone answered and asked me my name and then the phone got disconnected, like someone hung up on me. I called back and the same thing happened. I was not happy! After 20 more minutes, I was able to speak to someone who told me that the seized caliper was normal wear and tear and not covered under warranty. I asked the customer service rep WHY would only (1) caliper seize if it was NORMAL wear and tear. She had no answer for that. At least she didn’t say it was BAD LUCK! I know many people with Honda CR-V’s who have 124,000 miles and guess what? NO BAD LUCK with the calipers. A few of them have the original brakes! I also spoke to several mechanics who stated that’s extremely abnormal; however the dealer mechanic I went to said he sees this all the time. If that is true, why wouldn’t it be covered under warranty or a recall? Doesn’t seem right does it?

Does anyone else out there have a Honda CR-V or any Honda with rear caliper issues? Please respond.

Auto Immune Disease In Dogs Genetic Correlation? Puppy Strangles

Strangles. What on earth is that? Auto Immune Disorder

It is an autoimmune disorder in puppies. Symptoms occur between 3 weeks to 4 months of age. If left untreated it results in severe scaring and in rare cases, even death. Breeds susceptible to the disease include golden retrievers, Mini Daschshounds & Siberian Husky’s. It is not contagious and unlikely to recur once treated properly and quickly. With the combination of prednisone and an antibiotic, it will give your puppy the best chance for a full recovery.

The disease is also called juvenile cellulitis. The symptoms are as follows; swollen face, eyes, muzzle, sores on face, inside ears, mouth, and in severe cases it affects the anus and genital area. The sores may burst and crust over. If it involves the puppy’s ears, they will smell very foul. The puppy’s lymph nodes are also affected. Other symptoms are fever, poor appetite, and lethargy. Your puppy may also experience joint pain.

When diagnosing a puppy with strangles, It can sometimes be tricky because it does look like a staph infection which is a bacterial infection. To get an accurate diagnosis make sure your Vet takes a swab of the areas infected and examine it. Make sure it’s not mites, ringworm or any other skin issue or allergy.

8 Week Old Lab/Doodle Puppy. She had sores everywhere! Ears, nose, eyes, and all over her “private area”.

SONY DSC

Treatment involves aggressive autoimmune drugs, antiobiotics, to prevent secondary bacterial infections, and its very important to keep all lesions clean and dry. Ask you vet about a hydrogen peroxide diluted solution to keep the infected areas clean.

When your puppy is on the steroid, they will experience stronger than usual hunger. It’s a side affect of the medication. Some people will give them a little more food than usual, but NOT ALOT MORE. It’s important to keep him/her comfortable after all they are just babies and so dependent on their new owners. Keep the cone head on when ever possible. Excessive licking only adds to the problem.

The more I research this “RARE” issue in Labradoodle, the more I see people posting the same type of stories, so how rare is this actually?

This particular dog is much better now. She is 8 months old now and feeling and looking much better. She is no longer on steroid or any medicine. The condition was caught very early.

Hypertension High Blood Pressure

My B.P has been normal to low for all of my life.  I am very active and eat relatively healthy.   However, for the past year my blood pressure has been slowly creeping up.  The top number went from 120, to 130, and a few weeks ago 136/100. 

At age 54 it concerned me.  My family has a history of high blood pressure.  My father, sister and aunt all have it and are on medication.

How did I know my blood pressure was high?  I had a few symptoms that were bothering me.  I had frequent headaches, where in the past I have had zero issues with headaches.  I was constantly tired and I had to take a break when walking up 2 flights of stairs.  That’s not usual for me seeing I run twice a week.  My heart kept pounding and my pulse would race for NO apparent reason.

Last week I was feeling particularly anxious about work and all the things I had to get accomplished.  I felt so overwhelmed and my heart kept racing.  I also felt dizzy.  I ended up stopping at CVS and walked over to the blood pressure machine that is in the back near the pharmacy.   I read the very easy instructions and put my arm in and let the machine do it’s work.  I almost passed out when I read the final result.

I ran out of there quick and went to the emergency walk in.  They referred me to the ER where I checked, explained my symptoms of 189/94 BP.  They had me put my finger in a finger pulse oximeter.  They didn’t say much except  “Take a seat over there and we will call you when it’s your turn for triage.”  At that time it was 4:30 pm.

I sat down thinking it would be about 15 minutes or so until I got called.  Boy was I wrong.  They called name after name after name.  After 1 hour passed they finally called me into triage.  I told them the same thing I told the registering desk person.  The nurse took my temp and blood pressure.  It was 159/94.  She then asked me to go back into the waiting room and wait for my name to be called to see the doctor.  Now 5:45 pm.

I’m thinking to myself, my blood pressure is pretty high, doesn’t anybody care?  What if I have a stroke?  My blood pressure is usually in the high 120’s.   I was just shoved back into the very crowded waiting room, which was standing room only.  People were hacking and coughing so hard, almost to the point of throwing up right in their seat.  I ended up doing a lot of walking around and not staying next to any sick people for too long.

After about 2 hours (7:45 pm) I was getting a bit anxious.  You see I had been waiting for a total of 3 hours now. I overheard a woman on her phone telling her friend that she had been there for 8 hours.  She was just about ready to leave and go home when they called her name.   She was one of the people that was coughing so hard and throwing up.

I was staring around at all the sick people around me and was trying to guess what was wrong with them.  Then one of the solid doors that says “No entrance” opened slowly.  A man in his 70’s came out sobbing.  He was on the phone.  He said to the person on the other end of the phone; “She didn’t make it, your her closest friend and I wanted to call you and tell you”, and he began to sob uncontrollably.  I got up to console him but by the time I made it through the crowd, he had gone back through to locked doors he had came from.  No wonder I am waiting so long.  Behind those doors were some really seriously sick or hurt people. 

While I was waiting I was able to view all the snacks everyone was buying from the vending machines.  Peanut M&M’s were a big hit along with plain lays chips (yellow bag), snickers, hot fries, skittles and a lot of soda and water.  The machines were so busy that at one point many things were selling out and the change mechanism wasn’t working correctly.  It wouldn’t take $5 bills anymore.  That was most likely because the machine was out of $1 bills for change.  I saw one man struggling to put in a $5 bill.  He did it like 10 times.  I walked over to him and explained the issue and gave him  5 $1.00 bills for his $5 and said try the single dollar.  He just stared at me with confusion.  I put the $1.00 bill in the machine and the machine sucked it right up.  He looked at me and smiled.  I finally realized he didn’t understand English.   In my very, very bad Spanish I think I sort of told him the cinco dolares no trabajo  solamente $1 dolares.  He nodded to me and smiled so he understood and said gracias.  I say  de nada.

I continued to pace the floors waiting and wondering when they would call me.  I looked around at all the very sick people with the flu, broken legs, arms, and one pregnant woman came in too.  She was 8 months along.  I jokingly thought to myself,  “Well there goes all of our places in line”.

It’s now 8:30 pm.  I have had enough of the waiting.

I walked up to the check in desk and asked how much longer for my name to be called so I can be seen by a doctor.  The nurse looked at the list and she said,  “Hmm let me see.  You have 8, 9, 10, nope 12 people ahead of you.”  That equates to another 3+ hours waiting.   I wish I had a picture of the look on my face when she told me that.  As politely as I could possibly be at this time of night I let her know I was leaving and to take my name off the list.  I also mentioned to please not send me a bill because I will not pay it.  Of course she had nothing to do with billing but I felt better saying it.

I walked out of the ER feeling just as lousy as I did when I walked in 4 hours prior.  I drove home, drank alot of water and a tea, then got in my pj’s, hugged my husband and the dogs and went to bed.  I slept okay despite the fact I thought I was going to die in my sleep  (LOL).

I followed up with my primary care doctor today.  When I arrived my BP was 159/80.  We waited a few minutes, took the BP again, and then it went down to the 139 range, which is still high for me.

We talked for a while and the doctor advised me to cut back on the salt, stress, red meat, sugar, alcohol and to exercise more.  She realizes I am only 115 pounds so it’s not weight that is causing the high BP.   High blood pressure does run in my family.  She wants to see me back in 3 weeks or sooner if I do not feel better. 

I had followed up with my primary care again as asked. She diagnosed me with anxiety.  Huh??  What??  Anxiety can cause your blood pressure to spike like THAT?  I was in disbelief.  The Dr. gave me some lorazepam to take as needed when I felt anxious however you CAN’T drive with that so I didn’t take any.   I have stopped by CVS several times this past week to take my BP and each time it was no lower than 139 on a good day.  It registered as high as 160 some days.

I called my Dr. back several times and they continued to dismissed it as anxiety.  Finally I pretty much had to demand an appointment and was seen by a nurse.  She took my BP and it was 139/84.  Still high.  She said she will let the Dr. know it’s still a bit high and someone would call me the next day.  No one called me back.   A few days later I went to get my allergy shots and it was still in the high 138 range.

I decided to do some research and here is what is slowly working for me without medication (so far).

I drastically reduced my salt in take, reduced alcohol consumption which was a glass or 2 of wine each night.  I am only having an occasional glass, no more every night sipping.   I also made sure I was getting 10,000 steps each and every day and started lifting weights at home.  I am attempting to do some yoga, meditating and stretching.  Meditating is harder than I thought.  My mind is so busy!  I need alot more practice at that.

I also purchased a home blood pressure machine from Best Buy or it’s also available on Amazon.com   It’s the Omrom 10 series.  It works GREAT!  I take my BP 3-4 times a day.  The first week I was taking it, it was high in the 150 range.  After 1 week of the changes I implemented my BP went down to the 130 range on a pretty regular basis.  This morning when I took it, my BP was 126/72.  In the late afternoon it shot up again to 135/86.

Even with the diet change there is still an issue with blood pressure. Time for another visit to my primary care to discuss medication.

Allergies, Celiac and Food Intolerance


Ever since I can remember I have had allergy and sinus problems.  When I was around 8 years old I can remember being teased for “sniffing”.  I remember everyone saying “Go blow your nose, go get a tissue”.  My nose was stuffed up all the time.  This was back in the 1980’s. I finally went to see an ENT specialist who put me on a steroid nasal spray.  Wow, did that work like a charm.  I was so grateful.  I could breathe through my nose and the congestion was gone.  Nor more sneezing and pressure!! That lasted for about 3 months and then it came back.  I was put on another round of steroid sprays which worked again but it was short lived. 

I also had eczema in every nook and cranny possible.  I had it so bad on the inner part of my elbow and up and down my forearms that I wore a sweater to cover it up.  That sweater acted as my shield against all the comments like..”EWWWW, What’s that gross stuff all over your arms”.   I specifically recall one time itching my skin so bad I got impetigo.  I had to take oatmeal baths and put this heavy paste on my skin each time I got out of the bath tub.  I was not allowed to go swimming either.  The water from the pond or a pool was not good for my skin.  That was torture to a small child.  I recall sitting on the side of the pool or on the beach not being able to go in. 

As I got older, we were able to get my eczema under control.  That was done with steroid creams.  With all these steroids I’m surprised I’m not a hairy, women like lady with a voice like Arnold.  Around the age of 21, I was working for the Government and I finally had INSURANCE!  I went to the allergist to get “scratch tested”.  They injected my back with a bunch of allergens.  The tests came back that I was allergic to dust, mold and rabbits.  Rabbits????  Oh geeze, now how on earth will I ever be able to eliminate rabbits from my life?  Those hairy bastards  LMAO!

I was given an allergy pill to take as needed when I did encounter the dust, mold and those darn rabbits.    Around the age of 30, I started having issues with my stomach and constant lose bowels and urgent, explosive, diarrhea.  Now there are 3 words you don’t want to hear together in a sentence. (UED)  At times it was bloody.   I again, went to the doctor who did blood tests and found nothing wrong in the blood work.  That is when I had my first (with 3 more in my future); colonoscopies. That test showed I had proctitis. I looked at the doctor and said “I have WHAT?” I know the suffix “I T I S” means inflammation so now I have to figure out what a PROC is?  The doctor began to explain:

Proctitis is defined as inflammation of the anus,  OH GREAT, I have a broken Anus.  The opening and lining of the rectum (lower part of the intestine leading to the anus). I feel like such an ass.  Symptoms of proctitis can vary greatly; which is no news to me…One may at first have only minor problems. Proctitis affects the last 6 inches of the rectum and can cause the following:

  • Pain during a bowel movement
  • Soreness in the anal and rectal area
  • Feeling that you didn’t completely empty the bowels after a bowel movement
  • Involuntary spasms and cramping during bowel movements
  • Bleeding, and possibly a discharge

Proctitis can last a short time or become a chronic condition (last for weeks or months or longer).

So now the million dollar question.  I asked the doctor,  “How did I get this? “ 

He rattled off a number of causes; Excessive Antibiotic use ,Autoimmune Disorders and the most bizarre one was  “Foreign objects in the rectum”   I cracked up laughing and said “ Umm, we can rule out that last one doctor”.   

To make a long story even longer, I was once again put on steroids.  This time the steroid has a special twist to it.  I was given a rectal suppository.  Refer to previous paragraph where I thought that was SO VERY FUNNY about objects in the rectum causing my affliction.  Yeah, not so funny now is it ?   The thing was the size of a magnum 44 bullet.  I briefly flashed back to the movie Scar Face where he says  “Say hello to my little friend”.. YIKES. 

I was on the suppositories for 2 weeks and felt SO much better; but with any steroid, it only lasts so long.  I relapsed again…………It was a vicious circle………Cramps, fatigue, and the 3 words again I don’t want to hear together…. Urgent, Explosive Diarrhea.  I pretty much gave up and accepted the fact that I am sick and I will just have to live with it.  I kept an emergency kit in my car for when I traveled.  Unlike most emergency kits, it didn’t contain fix a flat, or flares,  It contained, baby wipes, a clean pair of underwear. 

It wasn’t until my niece Kara was born that I realized what was going on and the importance of  healthy, organic, wholesome and a GLUTEN FREE diet. 

You see, Kara, our little angel, was born with Down Syndrome.  I remember hearing the news.  I remember feeling so sad for my sister and so sad for Kara.  That’s when I had a reality check.  I held that beautiful, little baby in my arms I thought; “Why am I feeling sorry for anyone?”  This little baby girl is beautiful, kind, sweet and loving.    Kara looked up at me and gave me the first of many of her bright, heart warming smiles.  It was the kind of smile that says “Look out world, here I come”.  http://lettucethrive.com/category/fitness/

She has brought so much joy and laughter into our lives.  On top of the Down Syndrome, Kara has Celiac Disease.  I had never heard of this before.  My sister Wendy filled me on the subject and she suggested I do some research on my own.  I looked up all the symptoms of Celiac and they did sound very similar to all the issues I was having.   Then I thought, the doctor said I didn’t have celiac and he wasn’t sure what was wrong with me or why I have proctitis, but here TAKE THIS MEDICINE and come back and see me in 3 months. 

I told you this was a long story.

http://lettucethrive.com/category/general-health/

I started following a diet that was similar to Kara’s.   I eliminated Wheat & Gluten.  Within 2 weeks, my intestines felt a little better.  My aches and pains were slowly subsiding.  My fatigue was lessened.  I had more energy.  I actually felt normal for a change.  Thank you Kara.  http://lettucethrive.com/category/main-dishes/

I do have days where I cheat and have gluten.  30 minutes later I feel lazy, sluggish, crampy and a fogged brain and yes, the U. E. D.  

If your feeling sick all the time, try an elimination diet. Take out wheat, gluten, corn, dairy and soy from your diet for 3 weeks. Note how you feel. Do you feel better or the same? Keep a food journal. Plan, plan, plan your meals and make sure you have plenty of food in your house that does not contain the 5 items above. You may find it very difficult at first however it’s pretty easy once you get the hang of it. Limit sugar also and take out all the GMO products from your diet. That is a large cause of inflammation in your body. Eating wheat and gluten or things that are inflammatory can also irritate raynaund syndrome which I also have.

On that note,  I am going to grocery store to replenish my gluten free supplies, organic veggies and snacks.  I have also taken dairy out of my diet. I switched to coconut yogurt. Chobani has a delicious selection of flavors. It’s the consistency of a pudding instead of the thick greek I was use to eating.

A great site for recipe ideas and GF treats along with our beautiful Kara. 

http://lettucethrive.com/category/desserts/

http://lettucethrive.com/?s=bars

https://www.specialolympics.org/

Home business, profits go to my 5 rescue dogs  

Autoimmune Disorders

So many doctors with out any answers on what’s going on here. Is it an autoimmune disorder? Food allergy?

Symptoms of patient: Toes & feet turn purple, with cracking skin and brittle toe nails, numbness in feet, Raynauds, tired, no energy, weight loss, swollen nose, rashes behind neck, swollen lymph nodes in neck, deja vu frequently, body is randomly cold then hot. Right ear turns bright red and hurts. Symptoms for 1 year. Progressively getting worse.

Autoimmune disorder?

Note the black is nail polish, I advised the patient NOT to use that any more.

All of the blood work taken from the primary care and the rheumatologist came back within normal range. How can that be? Patient prescribed a very low dose of blood pressure medication in the mean time. She has normal blood pressure and is in her mid 20’s Symptoms point to Lupus however tests came back normal

I have been listening to this book on audible by Susan Blum, MD, MPH. It is filled with a great deal of information. I just have to convince the patient to try the elimination diet for starters. The Immune System Recovery Plan.
https://blumcenterforhealth.com/

Feed back greatly appreciated. Please comment.

New Puppy And Small Dog Dangers


When the weather gets warmer and we are all outside walking our dogs and spending alot of time enjoying the warm weather and sunshine, be mindful and aware of your surroundings.  Spring time brings out many new predators for our small dogs and puppies.  Ticks, mosquitos, coyotes, fisher cats, fox, hawks, falcons and owls. 

I see so many new puppies in the neighborhood over the past week. I also see them tied to trees as the owners rake their yards or see them running around the invisible fence.

What is to stop a predator from snatching a small puppy out of the yard while the owner isn’t paying attention. An invisible fence can be deadly to a puppy or small dog. Predators can get in and the dog can’t get out or escape. It’s trapped.

One predator that is especially vicious is the Fisher Cat. They are from the weasel family and are increasing in numbers in the United States. THEY WILL ATTACK YOUR PET. They also target chickens.    Photos of fisher cats:
https://images.search.yahoo.com/search/images;_ylt=AwrJ7JbltbFcHiYAAIVXNyoA;_ylu=X3oDMTB0N2Noc21lBGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNwaXZz?p=photo+of+fisher+cat&fr2=piv-web&fr=mcafee
Strange how the name of this animal is fisher cat.  It’s neither a fish or a cat.  Where did it come from?  It came from the word fitch which is a European pole cat.

To keeping fisher cats away, remove food that will draw them to your home. Fisher cats are predators that are attracted by food. They eat berries and fruit when it’s available.  However, the fisher cat favors meat, but also might be attracted to bird feeders, seed beneath the feeders, or water sources in the yard.

Fisher cats are extremely vicious predators.  Your small pet will not be any match for them. Fisher cats have been known to stalk and kill house pets.
It has been know that fisher cats go after and kill cats.  Keep your cat indoors, as well as any small dogs.  Do NOT leave any pet unattended. Larger dogs may actually keep fisher cats away. Remove decaying organic materials from your yard. Fisher cats will nest in this, such as logs, stumps & brush.

Trim your brushes and trees. Mow the lawn regularly so that they have fewer hiding places.

From 2011 however a good read





IPE Deck Cost

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Our old pressure treated wood deck was badly damaged by a tree that fell on it a few years ago.  It was over 26 years old and made out of pressure treated wood that was splintering.  We didn’t want to rush into getting just any deck so we took our time and did a ton of research.  When I say “WE”, I mean my husband who is amazing and patient when it comes to finding the best of the best.  We wanted deck material that was durable yet good looking with low maintenance.  We also wanted a reliable and talented contractor. IPE Deck Cost is well worth the price.

We decided on IPE (pronounced EE-PAY).  This material is indigenous

webster.com/dictionary/indigenous to Central and South America.  It is one of the toughest and long lasting decking material available today.  IPE is very low maintenance. You do not have to worry about it growing mold and it will naturally fade to a silver color over time.  If you want to preserve the original color, apply IPE oil to the deck.

Instead of the traditional railing we chose Atlantis stainless steel cable rail system.  It looks AMAZING!  Cable Rail Pics.  We also decided to go with a mahogany lattice finish across the bottom which looks gorgeous.

Here are a few pictures of what our old deck looked like.  We were so very lucky that the tree didn’t destroy our sun room.

Let’s fast forward to after the clean up, design, demolition and reconstruction of the NEW deck.

OLD DECK

BEGINNING OF DEMO

The contractor that designed the deck was Ken from  https://www.hancockdecks.com/

We are extremely happy with all the work he did.  He was always on time, respectful, honest, and the communication was great.  Each day he would clean up what was taken down and didn’t leave any unsightly debris behind.  The project was started and completed in the timeline we were given even with a few rain/snow days.  Yes I said SNOW in New England in April.  If your looking for a new deck, this is the company to contact.

Now, bring on the sunshine so we can enjoy our deck!