I woke up this morning and did not remember right away, even though it is in my calendar with ‘repeat event for eternity’ selected. Then I opened my email and saw the reminder. And immediately burst into tears. Three years on and its still too soon for me to be able to actually celebrate Codie Rae Shepherd Day, the day you left us. You were one of a kind, one in a million. A fierce, bright spirit, blinding as a supernova. I am so grateful that fate brought you to us and that we could give you the life you deserved, instead of being relegated to a life in the backyard, or the junkyard. I am forever grateful that we shared our lives for 14 years.
Codie Rae Shepherd, you will always be in my heart.
Dang, people! Obviously I never shoulda left y’all for the Bridge exactly one year ago today. Because pretty much the minute I did the world done spun off its freakin’ axis! I guess my Regulating Powers were waaaaay stronger than anyone thought! What a dumpster fire last year was for youse. Seems like the hits never stopped coming; plague, fires, floods, locusts, and don’t even get me started on politics! And ruh roh, this year seems to be right on track with more of the same but … worse! And all because I had to leave for my new job … Dudes & Dudettes, I never woulda taken it if I had known what would happen! So here’s the deal. I can’t regulate things for y’all from here. Y’all are gonna have to help yourselves. Ya know us dawgs are descended from wolves. And the power of the wolf is the pack.
Every member of the pack works for the common good of the pack. Its simple as that. That’s my lesson for today, y’all need to get over yourselves and start working like you have never worked before, for the common good of all beings! Kinda like you do here on Tripawds! I know y’all can do it!!
So life ’round here was getting kinda boring. Eat, sleep, stroll. Eat, sleep, stroll, sunbathe. Then it got kinda hard. My dang back leg gave out on me awhile ago. And then a couple of weeks ago this lump I had in my mouth went apesh*t. That sucker was growing a mile a minute. I was losing my ability to do my job here in Oaktown effectively and that just d’int sit right for a first class, A-1 Regulator like me.
So I got out the want ads to see if there were any job openings over the Bridge and Holy Tripawd! They were looking for a LEAD SHEPHERD-only experienced need apply!!!!! I applied then and there and guess what everypawdy! They HIRED me!
So Maw is channeling me ’cause they don’t have ‘puters over here (thank dawg, what a waste of time!). Don’t be sad, ‘K? I lived life to the fullest on three every single day. My Maw and Paw loved me with all their hearts and I loved them back with all of mine. And now I am living my dream – no more regulating pesky bubba dawgs and bicyclists, I get to be a full-time freakin’ SHEPHERD! Gotta say, its SO much easier on four legs-those sheep don’t stand a chance :).
I love all you tripawds out there and don’t worry, I’ll be back from time to time.
So a coupla weeks ago me and Paw loaded up the truck and took off on a ROAD TRIP to Santa Fe! Just the two of us!!! NO BUBBAS ALLOWED!!!!! I was in HEAVEN!! I didn’t know why the heck we were going but DANG was I hoppy to be on the road again. We drove and stopped to pee and drove and stopped to stretch our legs ‘n eat and drove and stopped to pee again all day long for three days. We denned at Motel 6’s all along the way ’cause they are so cheap and dawg friendly (Pro travel tip: take lots of carpet runners ’cause Motel 6 no longer has carpeted rooms!).
We visited historical sites.
We botanized here and there along the way so Maw wouldn’t feel left out 🙂
We stopped in quaint li’l towns. This one had a fun solution to bring folks back in to town after the Interstate bypass destroyed their downtown economy.
We crossed the Continental Divide but I am SO over it. Been there done that. Besides it was so flat there was no way the water could go in two different directions!
We got to Santa Fe early on the third day so we decided to take in the sights. We went to the Basilica of St. Frank of Assisi. He was this cool old dude that really liked animals. Before I met him though I ran across this beautiful indigenous woman who blessed me! Then I met St. Frank and he blessed me too! A 13.5 year old tripawd girldawg just can’t have too many blessings piled on her head 🙂
Little did I know those blessings would come in handy the very next morning when my red tripawd truck rolled up to the vet clinic. Waaaait a freakin’ minute! WTF??? At first it was great–everyone was SO nice ‘n the floors weren’t slippery ‘n there was a LEATHER COUCH just for meeee to hang out on! EVERY vets office needs a dawg couch! I got to meet the famous Dr. Kelly who turned Jerry G. Dawg on to metronomics chemo and helped Maw and Paw back when Travis Ray had his soft tissue sarcoma. She was awesome! Lookit us just chillin’ together! I LOVED her!!
She and Paw talked a bit and before I knew it they were whisking me off to the back. I was just starting to think ‘Ruh Roh’ and then….the lights went out.
Turns out this was the whole reason for the trip. Maw and Paw had been carting me around to different vets for two months back home and no one would listen to them except Dr. Kelly. Ima let Maw tell y’all about that over in the forums so stay tuned. All I know is I had these lumps in my mouth and now they were gone! Woohoo!
We stuck around for a day to see how I felt after surgery and I got to hang on my couch again ’cause I needed fluids, what ever those are.
You kin see I wasn’t having nearly as much fun as before but I did really well, all things considered! Dr. Kelly has the touch! The next day we hit the road again with home in our sights. Dang, I love a road trip!
Drove home in two days so we didn’t do much sight seeing. And the rest is history, whatever that means….Gotta take a nap now–lots of healing to do back here in Oaktown!
OK, OK, no excuses, I KNOW its been a dawg’s age since I barked around here! Figured its ABOUT TIME!! So, there’s a ton to catch y’all up on but this post is all about the Oaktown Pack’s NEW RIDE!! We LOVE it but we will love it BETTER when we are done installing the low rider conversion kit so we can REALLY ride in East Oaktown style! Ima turn over the ‘puter now and let my Paw tell ya more about it ’cause I’m not exactly technically oriented. My skill set is in regulating not engineering!! So here he goes:
As with older dawgs, the aging members of the Oaktown Pack can’t walk as far as they once did, and the result is the silly humans who walk with them were getting a lot less exercise. Codie Rae is now 13, having been a Tripawd since 8 months of age. Between her rear leg amputation and her age, she is no longer able to walk the 2 miles a day she once did. Austin was born with the bad hips so common in German Shepherds, and after losing one of those rear legs and having arthritis in all his legs, the length of his walks are even more limited than Codie’s. Last year we tried Austin in a cart, but his orthopedic issues are so extensive that it was not a viable solution. A cart won’t work for Codie Rae either. Therefore, the next best alternative to allow us and the dawgs to travel farther on our walks was a stroller. After researching dawg strollers ad nauseum, we settled on the large size Solvit HoundAbout II™ Pet Bicycle Trailer with the optional Strolling Kit. This stroller has the largest cabin we came across–Codie Rae is the smallest of our dogs at about 55 pounds, while Austin is closer to 70 pounds, necessitating the large size stroller. Even 80+ pound Travis Ray will fit when he needs it!
Assembly out of the box was no problem and the instructions were easy to follow. Some of the reviews for the stroller mentioned the bottom of the cabin was not as strong as some would like and their dogs sometimes struggled for footing. Not good for a tripawd! So we cut a piece of one-quarter inch plywood to drop in the bottom for reinforcement and to give the dawgs more stability on their rides (19″ x 30″ was almost the perfect size). The stroller comes with a pad for the bottom, which goes on top of the plywood. When I first used the stroller I found the handlebar to be a bit low for my 6 foot 2 inch self. By raising the handlebar as high as possible I find the position acceptable. The full stroller weighs about 30 pounds. The Houndabout II™ has an aluminum frame, which is lighter than the original steel framed trailer. We have a pickup and the stroller rolls right in the back, but it barely fits so I usually remove the front wheel assembly to make it easier to fit in the back of the truck. If you have a smaller vehicle the stroller can be fully broken down for travel.
Three OP members are now spending most of their “walks” in the stroller, and they all enjoy the ride! Codie Rae was the first and she took to it without any problem, while Austin was a bit reluctant. Prior to his first ride we put the cabin unit on the floor in the house and used treats to get him in through the rear door. Now Austin gets excited to see the stroller and steps into it through the rear door, often with no coaxing. Codie is small enough I pick her up and drop her through the top of the stroller and then hook her to the internal leash that attaches to a small D-ring on the inside. Smokey is the least enthusiastic but seems to enjoy his rides in his own way.
The HoundAbout II Stroller pushes with ease and did I say the dawgs love it? Besides me getting the exercise I desperately need, the dogs get the mental stimulation of watching the world as they travel around. And, if needed, the large diameter wheels allow us to go off-trail and over irregular terrain. But the best part might be the reaction of people to seeing a big dawg in a stroller. Priceless! As one young observer noted, it’s the epitome of walking the dawg.
SO … I bet ya didn’t know I’m a foodie, didja! But hey, I grew up in the Bay Area where any self respecting dawg knows their terroirs and their sustainably grown locally sourced meat and veg (and fruit!). Sooooo, here’s what my paw made me for my 10th ampuversary! He sez its a farm to table, crispy pork belly encrusted, grass-fed steak tartare topped with a farm fresh, free range quail egg and organic parsley! Mmmmmmmf, sooooo gooood! And best of all it was ALL MINE!!!! I di’nt have to share one single bite with the bubbas!
Yo Everypawdy! Its my 10th Paw Day today! Exactly 10 years ago I lost my leg and I STILL haven’t found it. And I’ve looked freakin’ EVERYWHERE! Bwahahahahahahahaha!! Oh well, who needs that pesky 4th leg anyways …. just gets in the way if ya ask me …
Soooo, its been a quiet year. We haven’t been on a roadtrip since we went to the Other Place last year, our fave vacay resort for dawgz.
Dawg, that was way back last November. Whattup Maw and Paw? We need a road trip dudes!
Otherwise life has been the same ol’ same ol’. Eat.Exercise.Sleep.Regulate.Eat.Exercise.Sleep.Regulate. Don’t get me wrong, I ain’t bored with life, oh no! Livin’ with the 3 bubbas is a daily challenge of the regulatory variety, no doubt about it! And then there’s the flies that get in the house and the rats and cats in the yard and the dawgz on the street and the bikes on the trail. A girldawg’s work is never done!
So I am hopin’ y’all will celebrate with me once again! We had a neighborhood fireworks show last night! All for meeeee! Don’t know what we’re gonna have for dinner tonight but I bet its gonna be fantastic! So … steak, cake, and watermelon for all … and pawtay on Tripawds Nation!!!!!
Yo! Everypawdy! Yesterday was my ninth Paw Day! Yup, I’ve been livin’ large on three for nine years! We celebrated here in Oaktown with lotsa watermelon Wooooohooooooo! I pretty much R.O.C.K. don’t I???