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Kitty Gunderson the Younger will be very disappointed to hear that not every day is National Pet Day. However, she will be comforted by her knowledge that every day is wake mommy at 4:30 to feed me day. 

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Little Girl has developed a very annoying new habit to try to get me to wake up to feed her. She jumps up on the dresser, which is a no-no in the first place, and then paws at the mirror that hangs over it. It has hooks on it, and I have things hanging from the hooks—a mini wind chime, a necklace and some ornaments. So there's the sound of the mirror scraping back and forth across the wall as it swings and the tinkling of the things hanging from the hooks. It's HIGHLY annoying.

Hoping it would change her habit, I put some tape upside down (sticky side up) along the length of the dresser and across the width at one part. The next morning, I heard her walking on it (schloop, schloop, schloop) and eventually jumping back down because she obviously didn't like the feeling of tape on her feet...until the next morning when she did it again. And then she found the one spot on the dresser that was not taped and just big enough for her to fit and paw at the mirror.

Cats. They will outsmart you no matter what.

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9 minutes ago, bilgistic said:

Cats. They will outsmart you no matter what.

You're not kidding. Luna, who had started the unfortunate habit of hiding under my bed and then jumping up and getting in my face at 3:45 AM has for the most part given up on trying to do that to me once I started closing my bedroom door earlier in the evening to keep her out. A couple days ago, she decided that she was just going to start pawing at my door at 3:54 AM and meowing. That escalated to jumping up and hitting the door handle. I am relatively certain she was attempting to open the door. 

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22 minutes ago, JTMacc99 said:

I am relatively certain she was attempting to open the door. 

She's part raptor

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I'm not sure why all you cat-owned people are surprised when your cats want feeding at 4:30 AM or thereabouts - that is prime cat hunting time (just before dawn my big hunter tom always exited the house to get the literal jump on the local prey - ground squirrels and jackrabbits about to poke their heads out). Its entirely instinctual for cats to want to be up at that hour and looking for food. So, no there is not much you are going to be able to do to "train" them out of it. My current Louis, not having anything to hunt here, just attacks my feet from outside the covers and the more I squirm away the more he pounces. Its inconvenient and adorable all at the same time. He usually settles back down for a further snooze until his actual breakfast time of 8 AM.

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1 hour ago, bilgistic said:

Little Girl has developed a very annoying new habit to try to get me to wake up to feed her. She jumps up on the dresser, which is a no-no in the first place, and then paws at the mirror that hangs over it. It has hooks on it, and I have things hanging from the hooks—a mini wind chime, a necklace and some ornaments. So there's the sound of the mirror scraping back and forth across the wall as it swings and the tinkling of the things hanging from the hooks. It's HIGHLY annoying.

Hoping it would change her habit, I put some tape upside down (sticky side up) along the length of the dresser and across the width at one part. The next morning, I heard her walking on it (schloop, schloop, schloop) and eventually jumping back down because she obviously didn't like the feeling of tape on her feet...until the next morning when she did it again. And then she found the one spot on the dresser that was not taped and just big enough for her to fit and paw at the mirror.

Cats. They will outsmart you no matter what.

I had a beautiful piece of overlay glass with crystals hanging from it on my dresser. It was a gift from my mother. I used the past tense because little girl got mad at me for not hopping to it to feed her one morning. She got up there and slid it off with her paw. I’m glad my mother (who hated pets) wasn’t alive to see it and harp on me about how destructive etc my kitties are. Otherwise I’m very sad to have lost my Mom and guess who helped me through the grieving process? Of course it was my cats. 

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I'm very lucky to have had cats who like sleeping as much as I do.  Every once in a while in his last year or so, Baxter would try to pester me into getting up to feed him (it didn't work, and he'd eventually flop back down next to me with a big sigh), but at least it was only occasionally and more like 9:00 than 4:00.  But usually he just stayed in bed until I got up.  Maddie would sometimes get up earlier than us, but to go sun herself, not to ask for food.  And Riley doesn't like to eat until about 1:00 in the afternoon at the earliest, so I definitely don't have to worry about her waking me for food!

When I cat-sit at my parents' house, it always takes a few days for the boys to adjust to my schedule, because my parents get up a few hours before I do, so they're used to eating earlier.  So at first I have to deal with Chester licking my face every half hour or so starting at 7:00 a.m. and Bandit howling at me, but after a few days they're synchronized with me.

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Captain tries to wake me up before 8am by an hour or two when wanting his morning noms. He gets fed a 3oz can 2 times each day at 8. So he's usually really hungry leading up to when it's time to eat since he can't have dry food. To wake me up he'll try to knock stuff off the table beside my bed, if there's nothing there to fling he'll start knocking the lampshade on the lamp on that sits on that table back and forth. If those methods don't work or if he wants to try his other method first he'll get on my and start rubbing his face on the front of mine so the tickles of his wet nose will wake me up.

He got really bad with trying to wake me up quite a few hours before 8am for awhile so I got a water bottle and would wake up enough to give him a light spray that usually hit in the face to get him to stop. After getting sprayed he'd go back to sleep or would go in the other room until it got to be 8 or later so I'd be able to go back to sleep. I can't shut my door due to rooms in this house getting kinda stuffy if cross ventilation can't happen. I don't spray Captain for any other reason and after a couple weeks of it when I first started he toned down the dramatics a lot. I still have to spray him occasionally but not nearly as much. It works better then having to wake up enough to yell "No" at him and mumble not so nice things to myself. 😄

Edited by Jaded
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Shadow, Killer of Blinds, says Happy National Pet Day!

7A77B389-E8B6-4FEB-83B4-2F92C8536934.jpeg

Edited by smittykins
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40 minutes ago, smittykins said:

Shadow, Killer of Blinds, says Happy National Pet Day!

7A77B389-E8B6-4FEB-83B4-2F92C8536934.jpeg

To be fair that blind looked like a dick.

I side with Shadow....

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3 hours ago, smittykins said:

Shadow, Killer of Blinds, says Happy National Pet Day!

7A77B389-E8B6-4FEB-83B4-2F92C8536934.jpeg

My blinds look the exact same way! 

I used to own a cat that knew how to open the door. I remember one time I was really sick with the flu and came home and just passed out on the couch. I woke up hours later to the door wide open and the cats having the time of their lives running in and out of the apartment. I had forgotten to lock the door behind me. I can only imagine that people walking by must've thought I was some passed out drunk or something. Cats.

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I caught the cat-cat chewing on my silicone bottle brush. He managed to chew off some of the 'bristles' (silicone). I'm so irritated because 1) now I have to worry about him and 2) that thing wasn't cheap but it was cheaper than constantly replacing regular bottle brushes when they get gross.

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I had to take Chester (my parents' polydactyl tuxedo kitty) to emergency last night and poor little guy is hospitalized.  Based on x-rays and blood tests, it's probably "just" a major flare of his IBD and we will need to change his medication (possibly just an increase of the budesonide - steroid that causes fewer problems than prednisolone - but probably a switch to the pred and possibly even putting him on the chlorambucil, which is used to treat small cell lymphoma of the intestines - which IBD can progress to, and he's had IBD for about six years now - and severe cases of IBD), but it was a good bit more serious than his previous flare (when we had to start him on the budesonide; for years prior his symptoms had been controlled just by [raw] diet).  So we're going to do an ultrasound this afternoon to see if there is anything else indicated (e.g. a mass on another organ), and that means we can't give him the appetite stimulant until after that, because the ultrasound will look better on an empty stomach.  So he needs to be on IV fluids until he eats, thus the hospitalization. 

I got to my parents' house last night, intending to have a friend over for a Netflix night with the boys (neither of us have Netflix at home, so we watch when I'm cat-sitting), and instead found two small puddles of blood on the floor - about a sand dollar sized one in the kitchen and a silver dollar sized one in the hallway, with blood diarrhea (mostly blood) in the litter box.  I found Chester on the bed, and when I checked his feeder saw he hadn't eaten anything since I'd left him 24 hours prior.  He'll occasionally have a spot of blood in his (normal) poop if his intestines get inflamed, but never anything remotely like this, so off we went.

Thankfully, he is not anemic, so he's not losing a bunch more blood internally.  In fact, all his blood tests are normal - electrolytes, organ values, etc.  So we probably know what we're dealing with, but he's still kind of fragile because he's so tiny (six pounds at best), and he's at least 14, so best to err on the side of caution.

He's never had to be hospitalized, and now Bandit is looking for him.  Bandit has anxiety (and if that gets bad, it manifests as idiopathic cystitis -- he can't pee) and whenever Chester comes home (hopefully this evening, but perhaps tomorrow if he doesn't eat until then), I'll have to be here - to keep an eye on him, obviously, but also because the mirtazapine (or, as I call it, meowzapine, because of how it makes them endlessly vocalize) will make him constantly ask for food.  So, between the two of them having an increased need for my attention, for a few days I'll be basically living at my parents' house and visiting Riley at mine.

Here's a recent picture of the boys napping; as usual, Bandit was there first, and Chester came along and tucked himself in.  It's so weird not having one of them here (I catch myself starting to look for him when I pass by one of his usual spots), so I hope we get back to this very soon!

The boys nappinga.jpg

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Sending hugs and headbonks to Chester. Boy howdy, do I remember being in that situation. That picture is precious. I love kitties that cuddle!

Little Girl decided to puke up the entire contents of her stomach (all that expensive food!) yesterday. She acted fine and was hungry afterward. She woke me up puking this morning, but it was a giant hairball, so I'm hoping that was the source of her discomfort because lord knows the last thing I need right now is a vet bill! She ate breakfast afterward and is passed out on the cat tree, so I pray to the cat gods that all is well.

Edited by bilgistic
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I just talked with the vet who'll be caring for him today, and he did well overnight, tolerating his fluids just fine.  She told me the same thing the tech did last night -- they all find his "thumbs" adorable.  He has the most-defined "thumbs" even most of those who are familiar with polydactyls have ever seen, so it gets attention.  Anyway, she agrees with last night's plan, so I'll hear from her again after the ultrasound - around 3:00 - and, if there's nothing alarming on there and he eats after they give him the stimulant, I can bring him home this evening.  We decided to do a few additional tests to check again some things that were negative when he was first diagnosed but can later develop in cats with IBD -- covering all our bases, in case there's anything else we need to target medically at the same time we adjust his IBD treatment.

Of course he has to do this on my watch, but, really, I'd have met my mom at the hospital and my parents would ask me to make the decisions based on the vet's findings and recommendations anyway, since I'm more knowledgeable about veterinary medicine than they are.  So all it means is the logistical inconvenience of having to be based out of their house until he's back on track.  Which is a pain, but also a no-brainer; I love these boys like they were my own.

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@Bastet I’m really praying for Chester. You always sound so knowledgeable and I am confident that you will do the best with whatever is available. Purrs from the Mindthinkr kitties. 

Stupid Question: My kitties are 14 and in my last home they had a cat door and no litter box. Here I have coyotes and can no longer give them free rein without possible consequences. What I’m wondering is: could they adapt to wearing a harness for walks and going outside on a leash or: 

1) Are they too old to change?

2) Would that just be a tease and unfair to them? 

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All good thoughts to Chester and little girl bilgisticat.

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2 hours ago, Mindthinkr said:

@Bastet I’m really praying for Chester. You always sound so knowledgeable and I am confident that you will do the best with whatever is available. Purrs from the Mindthinkr kitties. 

Stupid Question: My kitties are 14 and in my last home they had a cat door and no litter box. Here I have coyotes and can no longer give them free rein without possible consequences. What I’m wondering is: could they adapt to wearing a harness for walks and going outside on a leash or: 

1) Are they too old to change?

2) Would that just be a tease and unfair to them? 

You can try but even if it were successful, it would be risky with the coyotes. They can sneak up on you and snatch the kitty harness and all.

It would be better to litter box train them and if you want to give them outdoor space look into a giant kennel or kitty yard to keep them safe and also let them outside

https://www.paws.org/library/cats/home-life/outdoor-enclosures/

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Sigh.  I hate the part where a cat given meowzapine (the mirtazapine appetite stimulant) has had the anxiety effect kick in, but not the hunger effect (at least not yet enough to overcome the nausea, despite anti-nausea meds); especially having anxiety, and having had full-blown anxiety attacks, I find it particularly heartbreaking to watch Chester so agitated because I empathize.  He is settling down a little bit, and I know how this works, but I just want to wave a magic wand and have him feel better.  He's so sweet, and the onset of this disease is probably why he got dumped - at eight years old, the average age it kicks in, and he had all the symptoms from jump - at the shelter by his first owner, and he's been such a good boy about taking his meds (he doesn't like the pills, but once you pry his surprisingly-strong jaw open, he complies, and he doesn't even blink when we stab him in the thigh twice a month with B12 injections), I hate to see him not feeling well.

Yes, Chester is home, even though he hasn't eaten; the vet readily agreed with my plan to see how he'll do in a comfortable environment, and syringe feed him baby food until he starts eating on his own -- the ultrasound joined the other tests in showing nothing amiss other than IBD, so he doesn't need intense monitoring, there's nothing that's going to make him suddenly crash, etc.  We need to figure out a new treatment plan going forward - we're very much on the same page as to what we're leaning towards now, but we will have all outstanding test results within three days, so will make a decision then - but the only thing necessary to avoid additional immediate problems is to maintain at least the minimum necessary hydration and nutrition.  With many hours of IV fluid therapy under his belt, I can do that at home, so he's better off here than in the hospital.  I'm giving him a couple more hours to settle in, and then I'll fix up ye olde feeding syringe and start a little bit at a time.

I've already emailed in "I'm off tomorrow unless anything urgent and specific to me comes up about Case X; taking care of a sick kitty" because I am not going to get much sleep.  Thankfully, my boss, assistant, and most of my co-workers are all pet parents (most of them cat ladies), so no eye-rolling.

Oh, and when I pulled Chester out of the carrier and onto my lap, Bandit thoroughly inspected him -- and then played with the compression bandage (a cute purple polka dot one) I took off Chester's IV leg as if it was a catnip toy.  Cats.

Edited by Bastet
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14 hours ago, theredhead77 said:

It would be better to litter box train them and if you want to give them outdoor space look into a giant kennel or kitty yard to keep them safe and also let them outside

They are now litter box trained and really good about it. I just wanted them to be able to go out for some fresh air and to check out their surroundings. I do have a large sunroom where they can see the bird feeders and deer. 

It’s not worth risking their lives so I’ll just have to be content with them being inside all the time. Not that they have a bad life inside mind you. 

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1 minute ago, Mindthinkr said:

Not that they have a bad life inside mind you. 

I've only ever had indoor kitties. They have it made. Beds, couches, kitty trees, kitty toys galore, sun, windows to nature, pets, litter box, food, laps and no predators.

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3 hours ago, Mindthinkr said:

They are now litter box trained and really good about it. I just wanted them to be able to go out for some fresh air and to check out their surroundings. I do have a large sunroom where they can see the bird feeders and deer. 

It’s not worth risking their lives so I’ll just have to be content with them being inside all the time. Not that they have a bad life inside mind you. 

That's interesting, that they're content with staying inside after formerly being allowed outside. You have nice, mellow (& smart!) kitties😸

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9 hours ago, annzeepark914 said:

That's interesting, that they're content with staying inside after formerly being allowed outside. You have nice, mellow (& smart!) kitties😸

I attribute that to the fact that we had to live with my daughter and her family for 6 weeks while the people that I brought the house from moved out. Then we were in a 14 X 24’ room. If they went downstairs they saw 3 barking dogs. I kept them separated at all times , but I thought letting them see the reason I kept their door shut might keep them from howling and scratching at it (it did). So then when we moved in they had all this new space. At first I didn’t keep the door open to the sun porch (lack of heat and a/c). It became a treat to go watch the squirrels, deer and birds. Now they are allowed in there as long as I’m at home. Security issue. Sorry this was long winded, but that’s why I think they did ok from being outdoor to indoor cats, but yes they are mellow as long as their butler (me) has done their job properly lol. 

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@Bastet Thank you!  Now I know why Lily was so frantic and confused when she came home from the hospital post-thyroid.  They'd given her an appetite stimulant because she wouldn't eat. 

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HE ATE!

We still have a ways to go before he's eating enough on his own that I can stop syringe feeding, and then it will be another milestone when he's eating his normal amount, but Chester is finally eating a little bit on his own today (very little at a time, and about 1/4 his usual intake total, but that's a hell of a lot better than nothing).  He's still uncomfortable (gas and cramping), but I don't think painful, and the inflammation has gone down because he made a normal, blood-free poop today (first output since he came home from the hospital). 

He purrs and gives kisses, and when he gets back to doing his "fainting goat" impression and falls over for cuddles, I will weep with relief.  Right now, he's still almost always in "meatloaf" position (where they look like they could be picked up and stuffed inside a meatloaf pan, rather than lying on their sides, curled up, or sprawled out - it happens frequently in sick kitties).

All his tests came back normal/negative, so it's "just" the IBD and possible GI lymphoma (which is small cell, which is easier to treat and has a much better prognosis -- if your cat ever has to have cancer, that's the one you want).  It's really not an option to scope and biopsy (because of his overall condition, but also because the steroid therapy he's been on can skew the results, so we're not even guaranteed a clear answer), so we started him on prednisolone tonight (instead of the budesonide he'd been on since July) and we'll do that alone for two weeks, and then consider adding the chlorambucil (chemo, but with relatively few/minor side effects, and which is used to treat severe cases of benign IBD as well as cancer).

Whew.  We're still just on the road to recovery, and this is hitting him a lot harder/taking longer to bounce back from than the flare that caused him to go on medication last summer, but I am such a bundle of nerves - and punch drunk from exhaustion - I'm significantly relieved by this progress.  Hopefully we'll both get some better sleep tonight.  And hopefully I don't have to wait until my parents get home Sunday to start spending more than a couple of hours per day with Riley/in my own home. 

Thanks for the good thoughts, purrs, and head bonks.

Edited by Bastet
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It's been a tough few days for Jake the Aussie.  GF and I both started new jobs this week, so he's home alone all day, and since he's a big, exuberant, year-old Aussie, we keep him in his crate when he's home alone. 

Tuesday night, we brought him up to a local pet supply place for a visit.  A couple of groomers are there Tuesday evenings, doing nail trimmings, for a donation to a local animal rescue. We used to take Denali there every three or four weeks.  As amazing as she was, she would forget all her manners when she went in there, because it was all about the treats she would get after her nails were done.  We've brought Jake down the past three weeks, not that he needed his nails done, but just so he gets used to the place, the ladies, and the noise and feel of the Dremel tool she uses.  He's been pretty good about it, he's getting used to the Dremel little by little.  This week he was amazing - this is the dog that loses his mind when he sees a bunny when we're out for a walk.  While we were waiting, he mostly just sat at our feet quietly, he didn't get all crazy when he saw other dogs there, and was well behaved when we were in with the groomers. We stopped for ice cream afterwards, at a small shop in town.  We had ice cream, he had a "pup cup" of vanilla ice cream with a dog biscuit, and got loved on by a number of people, including a little (2 year old?) girl - he was incredibly calm and gentle with her.

Tonight, we took him to a local dog park for the first time.  I don't know that he's been to one before, and he absolutely loved the chance to run off leash and play with the other dogs.  There was a guy with a German Shorthaired Pointer who was throwing a ball around, and Jake would chase her as she went after the ball and brought it back, and a couple of times beat her to the ball and brought it back himself. He burned off a lot of energy and had a blast!

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He made a bunch of new friends, although he did knock this German Shepherd puppy down a few times.

JM_2019_04_17_Dog_Park_001-XL.jpg

JM_2019_04_17_Jake_the_Aussie_006-XL.jpg

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Diamond is so rude. She has a whole bed to share with Ella and chooses to purposely sit on Ella's hindquarters. I wish I could be as relaxed as Ella is when my personal space is invaded like that.

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LOL, my cat Lily is like that with our other cat Mitsi. Lily's very, very possessive, be it of a particular spot or getting attention from my mom or whatever, and will just shove her way right on in, no matter what. 

Sometimes Mitsi just rolls with that, other times, not so much :p. 

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2 hours ago, ABay said:

@bosawks, is that her audition to be the Cadbury bunny?

It was and you’d think after we went through the trouble of matching the ears to the tongue she would’ve been a shoe in.

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Looks like Ali has some competition in the festive puppy category!

I give them both 1,000,000,000 / 10. Will boop (and pet)

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18 hours ago, Moose135 said:

It's the Easter Aussie, Charlie Brown!

Jeez, Jake looks to be approaching this Easter Bunny job with a certain grim determination.😄

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13 minutes ago, ratgirlagogo said:

Jeez, Jake looks to be approaching this Easter Bunny job with a certain grim determination.😄

There is a job to do and Alli only covers water based places but that leaves the rest  of the world that needs to get their chocolate bunnies and peeps....

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32 minutes ago, ratgirlagogo said:

Jeez, Jake looks to be approaching this Easter Bunny job with a certain grim determination.😄

16 minutes ago, bosawks said:

There is a job to do and Alli only covers water based places but that leaves the rest  of the world that needs to get their chocolate bunnies and peeps....

I assumed he was preparing himself for all the screaming children.

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Quote

Iris has a buddy to help show her the ropes — a golden retriever named Letty. It was thanks to Letty that Iris moved from her crate to the bed.

“Letty can also fit up on the bed with us and help bridge the gap between myself and Iris,” Rocke said. “Iris definitely gravitates to Letty. She trusted her immediately and moved to the bed from the top of the crate to be closer to her.”

I've said it before and I'll say it again: animals are amazing.

Ohhhhhh. Poor baby :(. Bless that woman for taking her in, and I'm glad that Iris is slowly adjusting and feeling a little more comfortable and safe. Hopefully with time she and Letty will be running the place together :D. 

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I wish there was a way to block The Dodo from my existence. I have them blocked on Facebook but can still see when my friends share their posts.  Between Buzzfeed, Facebook and now in the pet thread I guess I need to just exit the internet to avoid them.

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2 hours ago, theredhead77 said:

I wish there was a way to block The Dodo from my existence.

I'm not familiar with them.  What is the problem?

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10 hours ago, Moose135 said:

I'm not familiar with them.  What is the problem?

They are an animal focused website and a source of super sad (and often distressing) animal stories with click-baity headlines highlighting the super sadness (like the headline in the link upthread - its to MSN but it came from The Dodo). I never click on their links. Ever. But reading their click-baity headlines is also super distressing.

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I hope this is the right place to type this.

I know I'm being selfish, but since my complex doesn't allow pets, and so, don't have any fur babies, whenever I see doggies on the Metro, I just want to ask if I can pet them. But I can't, because they're not pets. Most often than not, they're working--they are seeing eye dogs. But the one I saw this morning, a black lab, just looked so sad. And he snuffled and sniffed my ankle before leaving the train. Did that mean it wanted a stroke or pat? I dunno.

Yes, I have doggie envy. And it's been two years since I saw my grand-nephew, Ralphie. The Husky. I have to content myself with watching his pictures, since my niece, his mum, created an instagram account for him. I'm hoping to visit him later, when summer starts. Drive up to Jersey.

I'm a terrible, needy, selfish wench.

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@GHScorpiosRule if you are on the metro and they are 'resting' while the owner is sitting (vs working) you can ask the owner if you can pet their dog. They may say no to avoid the hassle of others coming up and petting without asking, but they may say yes. 

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6 hours ago, GHScorpiosRule said:

Most often than not, they're working--they are seeing eye dogs. But the one I saw this morning, a black lab, just looked so sad. And he snuffled and sniffed my ankle before leaving the train. Did that mean it wanted a stroke or pat? I dunno.

The general rule for seeing eye dogs is that when the square harness handle is up and in the person's hand, the dog is working.  When it's down it's okay to ask if it's okay to talk to it and pet it.  Really you should always ask first whether it's a service dog or not.

Are you in a position to be able to volunteer a couple of hours a week or so at a dog rescue?

Edited by ratgirlagogo
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I used to time trips to Petco to coincide with dog events like vaccination day or training day just so I could pet other people's dogs. I would tell the cats it was to give them exciting new scents to smell on my clothes and hands.

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