Date: Fri, 23 May 1997
From: Shelagh M. Kelsey
Subject: Bad Dog Bully
Hi. I thought you might like to know about my English Bull Terrier, CH. Sackville Rowdy Man, C.D. Rowdyman liked to get his drinks from the toilet. Guess he figured it was nice and cold...anyway, we used to keep the seat down to try and deter him, but it was a simple matter to flip the lid up a bit, get his head under and get his drink. One day I made the mistake of leaving him in the house alone for a couple of hours uncrated. I usually crated him to keep him from getting into trouble. This time I didn't; my dad was sick and in the hospital, and Rowdy missed him. So, I felt a bit of "being really nice" would help him not feel so bad missing his special human. Rowdy wanted a drink. Rowdy's bowl was empty. The bathroom door was closed. Well, no problem. Not for a Bull Terrier, anyway. A determined Bully simply digs through the wall beside the bathroom door into the cabinet under the sink, pushes out of it into the bathroom proper, and gets his drink like he always does. Then he has a nice cozy rug to lie on, or a nice cool tile floor depending on the mood he's in. Who cares if he can't get back out into the rest of the house 'cause the cabinet door swings shut behind him? Right?
Rowdy Man's long gone now, but I have only heard of one other dog who had a similar sense of getting what he wanted. I rescued a Pit Bull Terrier one year whose owners felt they needed to put to sleep: The father had a new job which kept him away from home until well after supper, and with teenage kids, the other family members also were away for hours during the day. The dog, about 8 or 9, had never had this before. It was not accustomed to having to wait 10 to 12 hours to be taken out for a walk. It was obviously well trained 'cause it was in the process of digging through the living room wall to get outside when the owners got home that day. Apparently it was within 6 in. of success. I found it a new home in the country.
Date: Tue, 27 May 1997
Subject: Dalmatian in puberty....?
I work on feature films and I usually take my Dalmatian (Ross) with me. Some have dubbed him the set mascot and I have even had requests to bring him with me. A few months ago I was on location in Casper Wyoming shooting Starship Troopers and I had to leave Ross in the hotel room because we were filming at a place named Hell's Half Acre and it was much too cold for him to be outside for that length of time.
I was gone for the better part of 14 hours, I had never really worried about or even thought he could do such a thing, but when I returned...the boy had chewed five holes in the walls, eaten all of the phone books which were everywhere, eaten the phone, lamp, 1 chair, curtains, and two CDs. All in all that day cost me over $1200.00. I was not a happy camper.
Date: Wed, 18 Jun 1997
From: K. N. Sevy
Subject: Re: bad dog list
What kind of dog is your master?
We are not 100% certain; we live in a rural area about a mile off a small highway, right where everybody dumps their unwanted pets. In my lifetime, we have never chosen one of our dogs, and only once chosen a cat, and we've never been without either.
Bailey, as near as we can tell, is definitely part Rottweiler; what mom and I disagree on is what the other part(s) is(are). I say German shepherd, she says lab.
She wandered up a few years ago; I got a panicked call from my aunt (her family owns Packer, Bailey's best friend - part chow and part something yellow and big), asking me to come down and run off this 'vicious dog'. Bailey had probably been dumped about two days before, so she was pretty hungry, and she had annexed Shiny's (the dog my aunt owned at the time) food bowl and had been vigorously defending it.
I went down to her place with my .22 loaded with bird shot (if you're not familiar with it, it's only good to sting; it'll bounce off cardboard at 15 ft), just intending to run the dog off. By the time I got there, she had emptied Shiny's food bowl, so she was much more personable. Mom had told me before I left that we did NOT need a dog, right now, so I hollered at the mutt and popped her in the backside with the birdshot, and she ran off. Problem solved.
I moved back to college the next day. When I came back for the summer, who should come running out to greet me but a familiar looking black-and-tan dog. She had showed up at our place the day I left, and Mom had adopted her. Bailey spent the next six months of her life chewing up everything she could reach, including the bed lights from my truck (we had to completely re-wire it, since she had apparently eaten half of the main plug), 100 feet of garden hose, the clothes on the line, all of Mom's garden tools, and the hammock. She eventually grew out of it, and I eventually forgave her for the truck incident, and she forgave me for the birdshot.
I'm still compiling for the Bad Kitty List; you'll be hearing from me again.
Date: Mon, 25 Aug 1997
From: Mark D. Stephenson
Subject: stupid dogs
This isn't about our own dog, but one that we brought over to our house to see how he would fit in; the owners assured us that he was gentle with children, etc. "Doofer" was a Golden Retriever the size of a small pony. He was HUGE! He seemed gentle enough, but when we brought him into our back yard, he followed us back into the house and refused to budge. He was too heavy for us to move. We finally gave up, whereupon he jumped up on our dining room table and stretched out. We had a terrible time getting him down, and he jumped right back up whenever we did. He made himself completely comfortable to say the least. It was kind of funny, until my two year old touched his back. Without growling or any warning, he turned and chomped down on his arm. Fortunately, it wasn't serious, but we immediately drove him back to his owners and said he was not safe with children! My son was able to recover from the experience by understanding that "Doofer" was incredibly stupid!
Date: Thu, 02 Oct 1997
From: Steve Zeigler
Subject: Chaos Story
I'm writing you about Chaos, the most charming, lively lovable creature I've ever known. Sadly we lost him to cancer when he was only a year and a half old, but, oh he loved being alive so much and took such incredible pleasure in everything that I like to believe he got far more than a year and a half of living done!
This story is about something that took place when he was 8 weeks old. He had his first trip to the beach and everything was great fun. He was delighted with it until, while his back was turned a wave came from behind and knocked him down. We rescued him & dried him off while he licked us & shivered. He'd clearly had enough, so home we went.
Once we were home he seemed to have forgotten his scare. He was full of confidence again. Then I heard him in the kitchen. It sounded like he was playing with another animal. Barks and puppy cries and scampering. When I went to check I found him with his water bowl. He'd jump forward and bat it a couple of times, then jump back. I was puzzled, it was awfully cute, but what was going on? Well, yes it finally dawned on me. He was thirsty, but afraid the water in his bowl was going to come after him too!
I tried to show him it was safe. I put my hand in the water, then held out my wet hand. He licked at it frantically, but wouldn't come drink from the bowl. I finally got him to drink from water cupped in my hand---held away from the bowl. It was nearly two weeks before he would drink without me cupping the water for him. (He let me know when he was thirsty, so it did him no harm.) But...once he'd conquered the water in the bowl, he'd conquered it all - water became one of his favorite things!
The end & have a good day!
From: Laura Hassle
Date: Fri, 17 Oct 1997
Subject: Re: Bad Dog List
Well, here the Brazilian Mastiff is actually Fila Brasilieros, just like the shoes, only the shoes were named after the dogs. They can reach up to 200 lbs for males, 100-150 for females, and their main job in Brazil is to catch and take down jaguars. They can hit top speeds in the 50 mph. range, walk with a camel-roll, (like a cat, both right legs move in tandem and then both left legs. They are the only dog that has this strange cat walk), they are made up of three distinct breeds, the Old Roman Mollossos Mastiff, the Bloodhound, and the English Bulldog. They also have the locking jaws of a pit bull, and are the most ferocious sounding little monsters you ever want to hear. My Irish Wolfhound looks out the window ( it's too tall for the Filas' to look out) and raises the battle cry when the mailman or woman, we've had a little trouble keeping anyone regular, shows up a couple of houses away. As soon as the -soon -to- be- retired mailperson steps on the porch the show starts. We have the old type mailbox that leads right into the living room through a slot. The Irish- Connor starts some strange fight with the male Fila- Thor. While my female Fila, Thor's litter mate and make-out partner yanks hard on the mail as the mailman is trying to get it through the slot. Her name is Shiva. She starts all the trouble. Most vets will tell you they are dangerous animals. My vet however will tell you different. They are very protective of their owners and property, and can be dangerous, if not socialized properly. But they would open a vein for their masters, and are big old clowns with family or friends. They must be watched around strangers, since a Fila can pick up your mood very easily, they are not very receptive to strangers, especially if you feel nervous, then they like to put strangers against the wall, or bite. I had my female put 3 cops against the wall by herself, It was 3 am, and they were here about my oldest son. They insisted on coming in to look for him, so I let them in. Then they asked me if I would put the dogs out and I told them it was way too late and the neighbor's would complain and call the cops. So 3 of Denver's finest stood up against a wall, while the Sergeant walked right past them and proceeded to look for my son (now there's the real heathen and animal).
By the way, I have another line for the "Bad Dog List" This was about a Malamute we had years ago. 5 years in obedience school does NOT earn you a Master's Degree in anything except being a Bad Dog.
She was so out of control, she had already graduated once from the people we got her from, and I took her through 4 times. I was talking to my husband about a new school for her, when my husband put down the paper and asked "Do you really think her earning the equivalent of a Master's Degree is going to change that dog one bit?" Enough said, I dropped the whole idea. She was a very bad dog. Well again, thanks for the list. I laughed so hard I was crying. And I thought I'd help someone else smile. Thank you, and God Bless you for spreading laughter.
By the way, if you want to see or learn more about Filas, they have
clubs listed in the back of "Dog World Magazine". And a complete Encyclopedia
of dogs would have them listed, but the AKC does not recognize them, since
they are considered a dangerous dog. But once you have one, you can't help
but fall in love. Plus you have the added pleasure of laughing hysterically
at those home security systems. We sleep with the back door and all the
windows open in the summer. Thank you again.
Laura Haskell Denver CO
From: Philip Salmon
Subject: Escape Route
Date: Mon, 6 Apr 1998
We lived in a Victorian row house in what was once a working class village called Beaconsfield. (Now part of the City of Toronto) The houses were built just before the turn of the century by the Industrialists who owned the nearby factories. They were simple yet stylish 2 storey, 2 Bedroom homes with a packed earth basement floor, the huge, coal burning furness sat on a 6' square of hand-made bricks that just sat on this earth floor. Tasha, a young Jack Russell Terrier loved to dig in this earth floor when she had the chance. She had learned to open the antique latch that was still on a small paneled door that led down the few, worn, wooden steps to this playground. We often came home from shopping to find her peeking through the open door, her face covered in dust and soil. One day we were visiting our next-door neighbours... Tasha was left alone. She could hear us through the wall having a jolly conversation, lots of laughing and loud outbursts of joyous words. She went down into the basement, dug one of her usual holes, created a tunnel to the basement dividing wall, somehow knew where to dig this tunnel because she found a break in the rubble footing, came up on the other side of the dividing wall and started barking at the neighbours' basement door. At first we thought the barks were coming through the dividing wall on the living space level.. but we all commented on how loud it was at we hadn't realized how sounds really traveled from one house to the next. Tasha grew impatient and started scratching at the door... it was at this point we realized that somehow she had become locked in our neighbours' basement... when we opened the door we were greeted by a very pink tongue sticking out from a very dirty face that was attached to a dirt covered body... her normal white hair was now charcoal grey and the face was as black as coal. On investigation we came to realize what she had done... she had escaped the loneliness of her own home and found the party going on next door.
Date: Thu, 07 May 1998
Subject: One for your archives....
One more story, although I don't know how you'd class it. He wasn't exactly a bad boy...
Sometimes the door to our apartment doesn't close properly. If you hit it hard enough it will open up. Sometimes it opens on its own (with a little help from the wind). In any case, as I was getting ready for work, it got open and Samson took it upon himself to um...go do his business? Evidently, he went and walked himself (despite the fact we'd already done that once this morning), saw the complex kids off to school and then took himself the two blocks down the street to the groomers.
I never noticed he was missing. Until I got home. Then I was frantic. Where'd my dog go? Looked all over the apartment. No dog. Accused Tavi of dognapping him. She wouldn't confess. Went down to the pound...no, they'd not seen him. Checked with the kids ... not since this morning. THIS MORNING!!! No telling where he had got to.
Never thought to check the groomers.
They called. Well...he'd come in without an appointment, but they managed to fit him in. Would I like to come and get him?
Geez. Next time I'll just tuck the money into his collar and not worry about being late for work!!!
From: Natalie and Brian Steele
Subject: Dog and Vet Story
Date: Sun, 16 Aug 1998
Forgive me, I'm long winded and you may want to summarize this story. BEFORE finding out that the real illness was cancer... My dad gave our two German Shepherd/Golden Retriever-same-litter-girls Rusty and Mikie two very large venison leg bones to munch on. They were very good at never getting splinters and we thought they'd be OK. Rusty became very ill, no solid bathroom for days and then a full room explosion of the Big D, and vomiting of bile. Poor baby, we took her to the vet and he wanted to do an x-ray. Being a large dog weighing in somewhere in the 80's (after losing weight due to the undetected cancer), the vet decided to put her under so she could be positioned just right and not try to jump off the table. After the x-ray, I was told to go home and wait for her to wake up, they'd keep a watch on her, and they could develop the film. I went back about 2 hours later to see bone shards stopping up her intestines and hearing about the operation my parents were going to have to find the money for. Then dear, sweet Rusty decided that her drug induced nap was too good to wake up from. My 4 year old son and I sat trying to wake here, in the back with the cages and x-ray equipment, for an hour while my son terrorized the very good-humored staff. Needless to say, they sent me home again to wait for their call that Rusty had awoken. After another hour or so I decided to go get her, figuring the clinic had gotten busy and nobody had had time to call. I found my girl still sleeping, with tongue out, drooling, in the exact same spot. Did I mention that a few times she actually stopped breathing until I nudged her? I was very worried, but we all had a good laugh (to ease my tension) over the "sleeping beauty" on the floor. (NOTE: end of funny part)
Unfortunately, when Rusty was taken in to have her bone shards removed (or massaged down?), my dear Dr. Buckley found a large cancerous growth, which was why the shards got stuck in the first place. Ironically enough, if we hadn't broken the rules giving the girls bones, we never would have known that our sweetheart would soon be passing on and been able to make it painless. Anyway, he said he could remove it, but because it was in her lymph nodes, it could have already (and most likely, judging by the age of the tumor) spread. Rusty was put to sleep with family to ease her passing, letting her know how much she was loved, and the entire staff of Killeen Veterinary Clinic sent us a sympathy card. To make the sad ending worse, only 5 months later my beloved cat Smokey, who had loved me for 12 1/2 years, was discovered to have complete liver failure and put to sleep after being found lying in her blood. I had just moved to Germany a month before and it has left me empty and sad (I am more attached to my unconditionally loving animals than any human besides Mom and Dad).
Through all of this hardship, I have kept from becoming too depressed by remembering the sweet, hilarious, wonderful, and even "bad girl/boy" moments that I've shared with those loving creatures, and the others that went before them. Picturing in my mind "Sleeping Beauty" in the vet's office, and remembering the jokes and other good times has made it easier to let go. Nothing in the world can compare to the love of a family pet, and even the hurt of losing them is worth every day of the pleasure of sharing your life with them. If there are any internet-type awards for wonderful service and bedside manner for veterinarians, I would suggest Dr. Buckley of Killeen Veterinary Clinic. He is a wonderful, compassionate vet and understands our pain. He sees that so many people (though never widely admitted by society) feel their pets are members of the family. He has always made us as comfortable with the process as possible (as we have been stricken by old age, disease, and accident alike), and never questioned our behavior when literally saying good-bye to our loved ones. Thank you for letting me share this. I would understand if a sad story such as this isn't used for a humor list, or whatever you use these stories for. I just felt better sharing my story with someone who understands my kind of connection with my pets, and seeing again the humor that accompanied such a sad and stressful time. Thanks very much. Natalie Steele P.S. Rusty's ashes reside on Dad's bar, so he can always be near her. We also have saved Rusty's last and Smokey very first collars. There were so many funny moments revolving around those things that we kept them as mementos. Strange as we are, we know we're not alone. : )
Date: Sat, 6 Nov 1999
From: Shannan Wion
Subject: Okay, the dumb dog.
One evening, Dad had Sam all worked up under the afghan so that if it moved, he'd do a fake attack. Dad goes and Grabs Miha (psycho kitty) and drops her under there with him. For ten minutes he watched that blanket go in ten different directions at once. Then all of a sudden everything's quiet. He peeks under the blanket and Sam is lying on his side facing the end of the couch, and Miha is on her side facing the opposite way-so they are head to tail here. Sam has Miha's tail in his mouth, and Miha has Sam's tail in her mouth and they're both lying there going "we're not going to hurt each other are we?" I wish to high heaven Dad had had a camera!
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