Tag Archives: pets

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Texture

Texture – according to Cee this week is about: “This first week is texture which is a touchy feely type sensation to me.”

There is nothing more touchy feely to me than an animals coat. So here are a few textures I love to feel under my fingers.

And a few other textures I found while roaming around Katikati on my walks with Chevvy.


Ever thought of becoming a vegetarian ? Do you have a friend that is looking in to becoming a vegetarian ? Well, here is a great little book written by Fea O’Shea [a lovely Kiwi lady who happens to be a vegetarian] that will help you make the decision. There are some great tips in it. If it isn’t for you maybe this would make a great gift !!!

“Why be a Vegetarian: Debunking Your Excuses” is available now at Amazon. Just click the link. And for the first 48 hours you can get it for $0.99 US.

Now I realize that the topic of this book: “Why be Vegetarian” may not be to your thought pattern, please, rest assured I’m not trying to convert you to vegetarianism. This book is targeted to those who want to be Vegetarian, but have, what they feel is, a valid excuse, so the sub-title is “Debunking your excuses”. – Fee O’Shea

Because they loved me…

Isobel is holding a Pet Remembrance Day at her blog in memory of Cat, her beloved moggie that she lost three years ago. She has inspired me to tell you about some of my dearly missed and always loved pets.

The first pet I remember was a budgie. When he died I horrified my mother when she came home to find the kitchen smelling rather funny. I was eight at the time and I put his cold wee body in the oven. No…not a cremation, I was praying that if I warmed him up he would stop being cold and still.

The next pet was a puppy named Penny. She died way too young when she fell asleep under my brother’s car and he ran her over.

Penny and I
Penny and I

Then there was Tiny. I came home one day to find Tiny gone. After my mother died I was living with my brother, who took an intense dislike to her…I heard from family friends that he took her on a trip and dumped her.


It wasn’t until I grew up that there was another dog. Her name was Tia. A staffordshire terrier I rescued from the pound. She had distemper, and it was a long battle to save her but we did. When I went overseas Tia went to live with another brother. A much kinder one.

Me with Tia on a road trip to Queensland. She loved ice cream.
Me with Tia on a road trip to Queensland. She loved ice cream.

While living in Holland my ex and I had Jab. He had a funny habit. No male could put his hand in Jab’s cage. He attacked every time. But females were always welcome.

Jab and I checking out the camera together.
Jab and I checking out the camera together.

It wasn’t until I was married and living back in Australia that I had another dog. While living in Queensland the ex and I went to a Jack Russell breeder and both fell in love with one puppy. We were sadly told he had already been picked by someone else. So we decided to wait. One day I spotted and ad in the Courier Mail for a male Jack Russell puppy that someone was selling because they were moving.

Sep and Tia
Sep and Tia

Turned out that puppy was the same little male we had seen at the breeder. The ex was in hospital at the time, so I arranged to have the breeder pick him up and put him on a plane to Bundaberg and me. The ex was a bit put out, but I had Sep, and that was just meant to be.

Sep was my Houdini puppy. When we moved to Napier, he escaped once and the lady we got him back from was full of stories about how he took on her rottweiler and refused to back down.

One day this trait he had of wandering would end his life. I found him after another escape laying on the road. When I picked him up he folded like a book in my arms. My only consolation was that it would have been quick. When I buried him under a rose bush our other dog took to sleeping on his grave.

Sep and Tia
Sep and Tia

Our other dog was Tia. A kelpie cross, she had had a hard few weeks of life when we got her. Raised in a cow barn, she was a tiny ball of fleas. Tia was with me for 17 years. She had such a wonderful temperament. When her time came it was the hardest thing I have ever had to do.

Sep and Tia
Sep and Tia

Not long before Tia passed I also had to make a similar decision for Katie. Katie was a maltese terrier. But she was so inbred that her life was short. Just 18 months. She had Cushing’s Disease. My post ‘The Capacity of Katie’ is about all the things this wee darling taught me in those scant 18 months, and the legacy she left me with.

Katie and the daughter
Katie and the daughter

So…to these beautiful souls, I say thank you. Thank you for being part of my life, Thank you for your love, your joy, your being. Each one of you have left your mark on my heart and in my soul. I will forever be grateful I knew you, that I loved you, but most importantly…that you loved me.

The Secret Life of the Cat

So we have had dogs and their secret lives. A few of you mentioned wanting to see what cats are about…here you go.

For one week 50 cats were armed with cameras and GPS systems to show what they actually get up to when they go out their cat doors. It was one heck of an operation getting all the data together to paint a picture of these cats and what they get up to.

I was fascinated. Cats are changing how they behave. But why ???

Related post: The Secret Lives of Dogs

We do have some certifiable people here in NZ. And certifiable when backed by millions tends to make these people even more crazy in my opinion. They think they know the answer to everything.

Take our Mr Gareth Morgan. Now that he has loads of money he has decided to tell NZ what to do about a whole range of issues, because of course, he knows ALL the answers.

One of his nutty ideas is to rid NZ of cats. No…I kid you not. He has his own website dedicated to educating the dumber NZers on why this is a great idea. Called…wait for it…Cats To Go.

According to Mr Morgan: “That little ball of fluff you own is a natural born killer.” Mr Morgan asks us to imagine a NZ without cats.

Imagine a New Zealand teeming with native wildlife, penguins on the beach, Kiwis roaming about in your garden. Imagine hearing birdsong in our cities.

Sure, we are seeing more tui and kereru these days, thanks to some good work on rat and possum control in some areas. But many other species are still endangered; such as the cheeky kaka, beautiful kokako and curious weka. These birds once ruled this land. Some species can’t coexist with cats and rats at all, such as mohua, saddleback and robins, so they rely on a few pest free refuges for their survival .

The returns are not just beautiful but there are also economic advantages as well. New Zealand has an image of being 100% pure. In reality this marketing tag line could not be any further from the truth and the world is finding out. In order for us to continue being a premium clean, green tourism destination we actually need to start making steps in this direction. Whilst there are many issues to address, getting one step closer to being a pest free New Zealand would most certainly be a step in the right direction.

What Mr Morgan doesn’t mention is that NZ also has rats, stoats, hedgehogs, possums and mice. Now I am not sure if the local moggie could take down a hedgehog, but they can and do keep the rat, stoat and mice population down. In areas where previously some fool has worked on offing the cat population, decimation of the local bird population has actually increased. Completely getting rid of one ‘pest’ species changes the balance that nature has adopted.

Yes, we do need to address the feral and stray cat problem in NZ. But it needs to be done in conjunction with other pests that harm our wildlife.

The simple truth is that introduced species do affect the balance of an ecosystem. But the horse has already bolted Mr Morgan. There is no way to go back to a New Zealand free of introduced species. If that were the case then we also need to eradicate all humans from these islands. We as a species do more harm, with our introduction of farming animals and practices that rape and pillage native forests, than any other species around. We humans have forever changed New Zealand. FOREVER !!!!

We have torn down forest to build cities and towns, our waterways are polluted from farming and industry. One small town in New Zealand is going to have to boil their water for the next 12 years !! The video on this page will shock you ! So maybe we should start by eradicating humans from New Zealand before we do any more damage.

After watching this video I actually think it may not be too long before cats change so much that they lose the natural hunting instinct to such an extent that this might no longer be a problem. But if Mr Morgan has his way…the moggies of NZ will already be gone.

Oh and BTW…we do get penguins on beaches. This idea of having Kiwis in our gardens though…God saves us from fools who spend too much time in the midday sun !!!!

Just to really cheer you up…what about Kevin Bacon and some dancing. This 55 year old still has it as far as I am concerned.

Can you believe

  1. that it is 30 years ago the movie FOOTLOOSE came out
  2. that a 55 year old still has moves like that

Related Articles

Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside


In another time

not of her making,

something grew quietly and

insidiously, taking over until it rang out her

death knell, she knew no fear as she listened to the rhythmic pealing

eventually, he had told her, we all seek our intrinsic selves


Now this week’s weekly photo challenge was for capturing something/someone inside something. I think this fits.

Girl in a plastic bubble


This weekend the fur babies and I stayed inside due to Cyclone Lusi…which though bringing wind and rain to the area was not too bad.

At times Charlie and Chevvy thought it was all too much having to stay inside for so long…


But for the most they and Jack and Crash amused themselves. While I watched movies and read.

And this little guy thought it was much better to be inside…


Now the sun is shining so I am off to finish harvesting those potato tyres. Might be good for dinner tonight !!!!

Small Stone #30 January 2013…and a Chevvy update.

a wet nose

a paw on my chest

a sloppy lick

love expressed more eloquently than I ever could

fox terrier

Update: Chevvy’s lump is a lipoma. It is not going to be a problem hopefully. It’s a start at least.

Speaking of dogs…this video made me weep for Sonya. First from sadness, then from joy. I hope you’ll watch and maybe share and I hope Sonya will find the forever home she deserves.

Small Stone #16 January 2013

in darkness the burglar roams

a definite target in mind

silently padding over the linoleum

searching the shelves

I imagine a pleased smirk

that my carelessness

and an open door

resulted in a treasure found

when I encounter the evidence

left perhaps intentionally

that I would know I’d been bested

pet treats

Small Stone #11 January 2013

Mum and Dad are away for the weekend. In a house where a little fox terrier is growling at her from under the bed, Shiraz is begging me with her beautiful green eyes to explain what she is doing here and why. She misses her German Shepherd buddy and the two cats who play with her.  Only Charlie makes her feel at all welcome, I feel useless to ease her confusion. We will go for a walk soon. I hope that makes her feel better.

pit bull

Taking it ALL in...

Travel Theme: Soft

Yesterday was change the bedding day. Jackie’s favourite day of the week.

My Jackie is just about the softest cat I have ever been lucky enough to have deign to let me cuddle them. So when I hear the word SOFT…Jackie is what I see.

These may not be the clearest images of her, because not only is Jackie soft, but she is incredibly fast when I am making the bed. I have the claw marks to prove it as she zooms around trying to catch me out.

Ailsa has plenty more SOFT posts for this week’s Travel Theme so go on…pop over and have a look. Heck join in with the rest of us. It’s loads of fun !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Mine

Ever since my girl Jackie got sick she has been different. Oh she’s still grumpy as all Hell, but these days she’s become a snuggler with her Mum. The grumpiness is reserved for anyone who comes too close to what Jackie now considers hers and hers alone.

“How many times must I say it? These legs is MINE !!!!!!”

“And if we could have a little quiet please !!!”

Weekly Photo Challenge: Mine

Flowers Red

Sunday Post: Morning

As I age I find that I am becoming more of a morning person.

It has a lot to do with these guys.

[click on the images to enlarge]




Jack and Charlie start my morning early by demanding to be let out….often before the sun is up.

Which means I get to see sights such as these as I start my day.

The view from my front door

Chevvy is never far behind the kitty cats because after being let out comes one of her favourite times of the day…breakfast.

Chevvy’s soulful “please get up’ look

Then it is time to uncover Crash and mix his warm mash for the morning.

My pretty boy Crash

Now as it is Sunday [and remember the sun has only just woken herself] I crawled under the covers with a large coffee and answered comments on my blog, checked e-mails and played around with an image that is the ‘Technique Challenge’ over at Photoblog Challenges. The technique is called Pop9. Apparently you can get lenses to do it for you if you have more money than sense. Me however, I did it myself.

What do you think ? This is Sparky…you’ve met her before. She is my artist friend’s kitty and I thought she’d be perfect for this one.

Thanks Jake for this week’s Morning Challenge.


On a totally different subject.

Starting tomorrow you can get your copy of

for the amazing price of $0.00 for two days only.

So don’t miss out.

Click on the book cover above to take you to your next great read folks.


Dyeing to be something else.

I am a pet owner.

And I love my animals looking good.

This means I brush them, bath them if they roll in gross things. I feed them good healthy food. I walk the dog to keep her exercised (both physically and mentally). I play with them. I have a second mortgage to pay their vet bills (you think I am kidding?).

I have put funny hats on Chevvy, much to her dislike.

She even has a cute T-shirt to wear when it gets colder.

Not that I would ever try that with the cats…they both have quick reflexes and sharp bits.

So…I do what I can to keep them at their optimum.

But…there are some places I will NEVER go. And for good reason.

When I first these…I laughed. Thought it was funny.

It is the latest craze in China.

To turn your pet in to a wild animal through clipping and dying.

Places like the Ruowen Pet Spa will turn your pet in to any animals you want…for a price.

“If you can dream it, we can make it come true,” Sun Ruowen owns the spa and has been working in the pet industry for 10 years.

Sun charges upward from $7 to dye one ear to $300 for more permanent dyeing and trimming of larger dogs. Most dye jobs last six months before the hair grows out.

Not that China is alone in this insanity.

Dyeing pets is popular in other countries as well.

This sort of lunacy makes me a little angry.

Because it is the same mentality that docks puppies tails and reshapes their bodies through breeding to make them in to something they are not.

In this photo taken on June 14, 2010, “Spiderwoman,” a 4-year-old female Bichon dyed to look like the Spiderman, looks up from a plastic cage near other dogs dyed to look like a tiger and a zebra at the Ruowen Pet Spa in Beijing where half a dozen dyed dogs on display.

There appears there is nothing you can’t achieve with clippers and a bottle or two of dye.

Some people claim it is good for your dog. Improves their mental well being.

That their self confidence rises with all the attention…

Especially when it comes from members of the opposite sex.

I can understand that I guess. What burly he dog wouldn’t want to mate with a female that looks like a camel ???

Or a tiger ??? It has to be good doesn’t it ? I mean what kitty doesn’t dream of growing up to look like a panda ???

Seems to me though…that this guy might end up on the couch discussing his identity crisis.

If I left the hairdresser like this…I would have asked for my money back.

So…we all know that countries like China (sorry but it’s true) don’t have a great record with using natural products for most anything.

It begs asking the question. What damage are all the chemicals doing to these animals when used over and over again ?

And who is really getting the self esteem boost by all the attention ??

One last thing. This looks cute – right ??

Did you know these cute baby birds aren’t dyed after hatching. No – these babies are injected with the dye as embryos, inside the egg.

The eggs are injected with chemicals such as hydrogen peroxide and ammonia, while others use “harmless” food coloring. Many chicks die before hatching so that a few can make it out in to the world as a novelty item.

And they call us the intelligent species ??

Related articles:

Sunday Post: Pet

I am a little late with this one but life sometimes has a way of getting you sidetracked.

Pet – what a theme.

My first pet was a budgie. I lived with my Auntie Rita and she thought that something small would be the way to go. As with all animals the budgie died. That is probably the saddest part about sharing your life and your home with animals…their short lifespan in comparison to ours.

Yet for all the tears and physical pain I have felt at their passing, the joy of their willingness to love me and be part of my life has always surpassed those dreadful days.

I was quite young when my budgie died. I came home from school one day to find him lying cold and stiff on the bottom of his cage. At nine I figured that if only I could warm him up everything would be all right. So in to the oven he went. I was back living with my mother by then and she came home to a kitchen smelling of burnt feathers and a tear sodden child who was convinced she had murdered her bird by fire.

Cremation. The family oven is NOT the best place for that. It was a wonder I did not burn down the house as the budgie caught fire.

Life at Mum’s place was filled with animals. Birds, dogs, ferrets.

My favourite brother Ian has a special way with animals. It has fascinated me since I was a child to watch the way they respond to him. He would spend hours in his room under the bed covers with a bird until it never left his shoulder.

He had a ferret (my brothers ALL had ferrets), but Ian’s spent hours tucked against his belly under his shirt. We had a para poll in one of our houses, and one of the ways Ian would exercise the ferret was to let him have a swim.

He asked me one day to give the ferret his swim in the pool. Silly silly boy. I put the ferret in the pool and as young children are wont to do I got distracted. When I remembered the ferret the poor animal was clinging exhausted with his claw hooked in to the plastic trying desperately NOT to drown.

I really hope Ian is NOT reading this post…I never told him about my almost killing his pet.

We had births, and deaths, and I learned many things from these companions.

I learned it is also possible to dislike an animal.

For some unremembered reason we had a Shetland pony at one stage. It was the most evil tempered beast ever born and terrified me.

I learned that they are faithful.

Skipper taught me that. Skipper was a blue cattle dog that was another brother’s pet. When my brother was away from home for a time Skipper did something that I still find remarkable. Another brother…who was also a rather evil tempered beast drove Skipper hundreds of kilometres from our home in Sydney and dumped him.

Skipper found his way home. Bloody and tired he lay down on our front porch, still willing to lick the hand of the monster who had put him through all of that.

I learned that death is painful for those left behind. But that there is always a part of your heart that can love even when it feels broken and shattered. You just have to let it.

I share my heart and my home with four animals these days.

But those that have passed through my life are still there. Their photos remind me of their faces…my memories remind me of their souls…and my heart reminds me of their love.

Some have stayed with me for years…others just weeks.

ALL have left a mark that I will carry with me for ALL of my days.

And I am grateful for that gift.

These are a few of those amazing souls…the souls that have taught me about selflessness, compassion, and the gift of unconditional love.

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Jack wants some air time.

I realised that lately Charlie and Chevvy have been getting a lot of exposure.

Jack is the big momma in our house.

A real lady…with a streak of don’t mess with me thrown in to the mix.

So…rather than get on her bad side.

Here is my girl.

Jack's favourite place when it is cold - the hot water cupboard !!


Isn't she lovely !!!!


She reminds me of an Egyptian God.


My Beauty...as I call her.


Turning Jack in to a work of art !


Her...I can't be bothered with all this attention pose.


Enough of that...back to the cupboard for some peace please.


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Thank you for all your support.


Related posts about the animals in my life.


The beach, ice cream, and one Demented Fox Terrier…

The Demented Fox Terrier and I went for an outing to Waihi Beach.

This is a spectacular beach about 20 minutes drive from my home.

It goes on forever…

To enlarge - click on the image.
Go on.
I am rather proud of this one.

And when the walking is done…the Demented Fox Terrier and I head to the corner shop for a treat…


This is worth enjoying with your eyes closed !


Keep it steady damn you !!!



Don't anybody move !!!