Tuesday, January 29, 2013


I received a call from Olivia's daycare this morning letting me know that they'd just finished a potty break and Olivia had worms. The attendant that was with the dogs was sure it was Olivia's and she had collected the poop for me to bring with me when I took her to the vet. I hurried to pack everything, grab  Griffin and get into the car. I did a quick google search but there are MANY types of worms that a dog can get and without knowing what she had, it was difficult to narrow down how she got it or how it was affecting her. I made a vet appointment while I was driving to pick her up and I tried not to panic as I rushed to get her.

When I got to daycare, the very nice receptionist tried to comfort me, saying, "she might have just eaten a dead mouse or something in the backyard."


Olivia is not an eater. She is the snobbiest dog I've ever met. She knows how to eat off a fork. She has a taste for quality cuts of meat (filet being her favorite). I bring a water bottle to the dog park because she won't drink water out of the communal water buckets. There's no way that dog ate a dead mouse.

Griffin on the other hand, well, remember this- http://bulldogbrigade3.blogspot.com/2011/08/update-on-patient.html. Griffin eats random things and no matter what I do to prevent it or how horrified I am by it, Griffin loves eating poop.

Which of course meant that if Olivia had worms, Griffin also had worms. And that bracelet that everyone thinks is cute but silly ("I kiss my bulldogs on the lips"), yeah, that's not sarcasm, I had kissed Olivia on the lips a few hours earlier when I'd dropped her off. (on a side note, I probably need to stop doing that.)

I was sick to my stomach by the time the manager came out with the bag of poop. She squished it to show me the worms- except, that it wasn't worms. "I'm like 99% sure those are green beans" I said. I put green beans or other veggies in their food every night and sometimes they don't fully digest. I know that because the first time I saw a pile of poop with mushy green beans through it, I freaked out and thought they had worms. I distinctly remember finding a stick and crouching down on my hands and knees in the backyard to examine the poop (unfortunately not the grossest thing I've ever done since becoming a dog mom).

"Oh... now that you say that... I wish I'd known... I'm so sorry to make you come all the way here... yes, look at the texture, now that you say green beans, these are definitely... you are right." She looked a little embarrassed and definitely felt bad for the false alarm, but I was so relieved that Olivia wasn't sick, I nearly burst into tears.

I'm thrilled that they are paying such close attention. I am happy that they take the dogs' health that seriously and react so quickly. It made me feel even more confident in the care she is receiving. And THANK GOODNESS she doesn't have worms.

She went back to playing and I headed back to work.

Crisis averted.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


During the summer at camp, we try to upload 50-100 photos each day. Parents are able to see what their campers are doing and follow along with their camp adventure for the week. Parents appreciate it and I think it is a good service. However, there are a few headaches that come with the photos.

We get complaint calls about the following issues- 
  • when we don't upload often enough
  • when there aren't enough photos or a parent doesn't see their child in enough photos
  • when a child doesn't appear happy in a photo
Whenever a parent calls to complain about the photos, I always think, "seriously? Is this really a big deal?" I think of the photos as a fun extra, but not that important. 

And then the dog daycare started posting photos on facebook and I immediately understood every camp photo complaint I've ever gotten. 

The daycare she attends has three different sites. Despite attending 3 days a week, they never took pictures at her location on a day she was there. After weeks of no photos, I asked if there was a schedule and they told me that it was just sort of random. So I was patient. But weeks later, they were posting photos several times a week but never her site when she was there. So I made a comment on facebook about how much it would make my day to see her. 

At camp, sometimes parents think we are bigger than we are because pretty much every comment (phone, email or facebook) gets back to me, so if someone complains about the photos, I make sure that we follow that kid around for a few hours until we get some good shots of him or her smiling. I assume dog day care is smaller than I realize and that someone finally said, "make sure we get some pictures of that fat dog before her crazy mother complains again!" (For the record, I was very nice both times I asked). The next day, there were three pictures of Olivia on facebook, and I was happy to be able to sit in my office at work and see my baby at "school".

Except that she didn't look like she was having fun. As I debated whether or not I should call the day care to ask how her day was going, I had an "ah ha" moment while flashes of parent calls about our camp photos came rushing back to me. I finally understand what it must be like to look through photo after photo, hoping to see your baby, only to see her not looking like she is having fun. 

In all fairness to the day care, Olivia almost always looks slightly disgusted or like she is judging something or someone, so I'm not sure why expected anything different. I decided not to call and just to be satisfied that there is a picture of her. She is excited whenever I tell her she is going to "school" and I am confident that they are taking good care of her. She comes home at the end of the day tired and happy. I would love to see some action shots of her running around, playing with other dogs and looking enthusiastic, but for now I'm satisfied that she was featured and I will save that request for another time. And from now on, I won't be so judgmental when the parents call about their campers...

Saturday, January 19, 2013

I kiss my bulldog(s) on the lips

Well, he finally gave in. It took multiple suggestions (perhaps some begging), but he finally decided to give me the jewelry I wanted most in the world-

"I kiss my bulldog on the lips". Is this the most wonderful bracelet you've ever seen? I have a fabulous bracelet that my brother gave me a few years ago that says "bulldog mom" and I love that one too, but this one is just about the most fabulous thing I've ever seen.

Check out the tiny detailed bulldog charm at the end of it.

Nate tries not to allow me to be a crazy dog lady, but sometimes he gives in and let's me be ridiculous.

I love him for that and so I try not to kiss my bulldogs on the lips before I kiss him on the lips (for the record, sometimes it doesn't work out in that order, but don't tell him).

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Crabby Dog

Olivia didn't go to daycare today and despite a trip to the park, she had a lot of energy . Nate and I were trying to have a nice quiet night and enjoy some after dinner Scrabble, but there was a screeching bulldog flinging her body around the room.

Eventually Olivia threw enough of a fit that I let her share the chair with me. This is her looking disgusted by us. I think she was silently thinking she could come up with better words if we let her play.

Cute dog. Really, very cute...

Monday, January 7, 2013

Still Recovering

Griffin is still recovering from pneumonia and will be done with antibiotics on Wednesday. He isn't coughing anymore and he seems to be feeling much better. Actually he seems to be bored and I feel terrible that I have to leave him home every time I take Olivia to the park. But I'm not taking any chances with him, so he can't go to the park yet and he can't go to daycare. If the vet clears him, we can go back to normal, but until then, he'll just have to be bored.

Olivia goes to daycare 2-3 times per week, and I can't imagine how guilty I would feel leaving Griffin alone all day. So Griffin has been coming with me to my office. Olivia came to the office every day for the first year of her life but this is new for Grif. He's actually doing really well though. He has some chewy things to keep him busy, a bed, and a water dish. He really likes under my desk best, so that's where he's been most of today.

For the most part, he sleeps or chews on stuff and is pretty calm. He enjoys greeting the mailman, my co-workers and other people who work in the building. And he comes with me every time I make a copy or go to the bathroom (yes, a 70 pound bulldog CAN fit under a bathroom stall door). I'm very hopeful he can go back to daycare soon, but this isn't a bad alternative.