Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A Very Special Animal-versary

Not to take anything away from the 150th Anniversary of Honest Abe's Gettysburg Address, but October 19 is special for another reason. It's the birth date of my brother. Happy 7th Birthday to best little, bat-pig-dog brother that a big brindle boxer brother could ever ask for! We love you, Rog!

General Roger E. Lee, General Newlysses S. Grant and Nurse Clara Barkton

In honor of two special events that occurred on this date in history, I present you with the Boxer Address prepared for the American Boxer Club's 2013 Regional Show that was held in Gettysburg earlier last month.

The Boxer Address

Three score and eighteen years ago our fathers brought forth in New York City a new American Boxer Club, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all Boxers are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great Regional specialty, testing whether that dog, or any dog so whelped and so trained, can long endure. We are met in a great ring of competition. We have come to select the class winners, as a final chance for those who here present their hopes that one Boxer is Best Of Breed or High In Trial or Best Puppy. It is altogether correct and appropriate that we should do this.
And, with a sense of sportsmanship, we can cheer, we can applaud, we can celebrate our grand winners. The beautiful dogs, fawn and brindle, who strut here, have earned our respect, far above our poor opinions to enhance or fault. The dog world may little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it should never forget what our Boxers do here. It is for us the breeders and owners, rather, to be dedicated to the future well-being for which our dogs who compete here have thus far so nobly progressed. It is for us to be dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that along with these winners we continue our devotion to making the Boxer be the best of all breeds - healthy and versatile and with proper conformation - that we here highly resolve that these dogs shall not compete in vain - that this Boxer community shall have a new birth of friendship and good will - and that renewed dedication "of the Boxer, by the Boxer, for the Boxer" shall not perish from the earth.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Remember. Honor. Teach.

Help Roger, Thelma and me honor our vets — and we're not talking about Dr. Weeks or Dr. Pinney. We're talking about Veterans who have served our country and defended our freedom.

Arlington National Cemetery

Once again this year, Dog Scout Troop 161 has joined the Wreaths Across America project as a way of honoring our nation's veterans and their families by placing wreaths on fallen veterans' graves. Wreaths Across America is a non-profit organization whose mission is to Remember the Fallen, Honor those who serve, and Teach future generations about the cost of freedom. Each December, Wreaths Across America holds remembrance wreath laying ceremonies at participating cemeteries to honor both living and fallen veterans. This is an awesome way to let more people know why you care about our veterans and all they have sacrificed for our freedoms. Together we can show our veterans and their families that we will never forget!

In 2012, with the help of thousands of volunteers and 1382 fundraising groups, we were able to honor 420,000 veterans by placing sponsored wreaths on graves at over 800 participating locations. DSA Troop 161 alone sold 81 wreaths that were placed at Fort Indiantown Gap. Several Troop members attended the ceremony and helped place wreaths on specific grave sites. Needless to say, it was a very moving experience. Additionally, we raised $405 ($5 for every wreath sold) which we donated to Susquehanna Service Dogs with the requirement that the funds be used for a service dog for a veteran.

DSA Troop 161 will help place wreaths on graves at Fort Indiantown Gap National Cemetery during the December 14th Ceremony. We have set a goal of selling 100 wreaths. By sponsoring a wreath for only $15, you can help us honor fallen veterans who have served to protect our freedoms and let them know that we will never forget.

There are two ways to purchase wreaths: 1) by secure credit card payment online or 2) by check payable to Wreaths Across America which Mom will be collecting. The deadline for purchasing wreaths for the 2013 Season is December 2. All materials including payment must be received by WAA by December 2 so if you are paying by check, please make sure Mom has your payment by November 28.

This year's national wreath laying ceremonies will be on Saturday, December 14 at noon.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

The best "indestructible" K-9 toy on the market

Finding the right dog toy for your habitual chewer can be a challenge. There are so many options available in various shapes, sizes, and prices.

Crime Scene Photo

After I gutted one "indestructible" stuffed toy after another (see CSI: Brushtown), Mom finally wised up and quit wasting her hard-earned money on them. If she would have kept up with my pace of destruction, not only would she have been in the "dog house" with Dad, but I have a feeling that M&D would have been filing for bankruptcy before long.

Then one summer day while not even in the market for a toy, we happened upon the best indestructible K-9 toy on the market. I remember the day like it was yesterday. Dad brought home a little bat-eared, pig-dog and set him in front of my crate. The rest is history. Not only do I have a bad-ass little brother to blame things on, I have the best indestructible, interactive toy on the market. He was worth every penny that M&D didn't pay for him.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Post Beachdom Blues

I think that Roger, Thelma Lou and I are still suffering from a case of the post-beachdom blues. We had so much fun that we need a vacation to recuperate from our vacation. I'm but a shell of the bouncing brindle boxer that I was last week on the beach.

While I am extremely about "Celebrate the Boxer Day" at the upcoming American Boxer Club Regional Specialty on Monday, October 7, this picture surely doesn't show it. Obviously, I was not "cut out" for the work that Mom had planned for tonight in bed.

But seriously, who brings a paper cutter to bed? To think that she made fun of my Aunt Burt for taking a sewing machine on vacation!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Life is better blonde

Life is better as a blonde. Thelma Lou is not offended by all the dumb blonde jokes because she's neither dumb nor blonde.

Live blonde or "dye" trying!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Shark sighting prompts response by U.S. Coast Guard

Land Sharks sighted on Corolla Beaches

After two species of land sharks were believed to be sighted on the beaches of the Outer Banks, the U.S. Coast Guard at Corolla, NC, was called in to confirm the tip.

U.S. Coast Guard patrolling the beaches in Corolla

The call came in from an anonymous sunbather who reported that the sharks, one an English Bull and the other a French Bull Shark, were spotted on the beaches of Corolla at approximately 5 p.m.

Anonymous Sunbather

"In all my years of living on the OBX, I'm not aware that a simultaneous sighting of both types of land sharks has ever occurred. It's exciting yet unsettling at the same time," said neighborhood watchdog Frank Vocci who was walking his pugs, Greycie and Ollie, at the time.

Neighborhood Watchdogs

Frank's wife Julie is thankful that she didn't have her grandson Dominic with her. "If it weren't for the recent birth of our second grandson, Jax, Dominic would have been with us. Like most curious little boys, naturally Dominic would have been drawn to them, Julie said. While neither the English nor the French Bull Shark is known to be aggressive, they can attack if provoked something that Julie said she'd rather not witness.

Coast Guard on High Alert

With the arrival of the Coast Guard, the beaches in Corolla are open today. Howl-ever, you may want to think twice before catching some rays and z's at the same time.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Happy Birthday to me!

Today I turned 6 years old. Not looking to bad for a middle-aged Boxer if I must say so myself. Actually, with all the compliments that I've receive on my good looks and ripped bod, I really don't have to. Sure, I've started to get a little grey around the ears, but what's a guy to do  ̶  break out a black Sharpie to cover it? Don't laugh, I've seen it done at dog shows already.

Newman on his 6th Birthday

Speaking of dog shows, Mom and I will be at the upcoming American Boxer Club Regional Specialty being held in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania from October 7-11, 2013. The week-long fierce "Battle for the Best Boxer" will commence with "Celebrate the Boxer Day" on Monday, October 7. We hope that you can join us for a fun-filled day of educational activities for all, including a Triathadog course, an AKC Sanctioned Boxer Puppy Match, a costume contest and ice cream social.

Also on tap for the day is an educational handling seminar with none other than Diego Garcia, professional handler of "Scarlett the Boxer," one of the most winning  ̶  not to mention beautiful  ̶  Boxer bitches in the country; DNA testing for degenerative myelopathy; and a Breeders Forum on "The Boxer Head," one of our most defining attributes. Check out the schedule below:

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Life is ruff on the OBX!

We're beginning week two of vacation here on the OBX. The weather has been absolutely gorgeous. Roger and Thelma Lou were having a little bit of a "ruff" time this morning. While Roger is definitely one tough little dude, he clearly does not exhibit the epitome of boxer-strength and fortitude that I possess. During our walk this morning on the Currituck County Reserve, we had to take a little break because he seemed to be having a "ruff" time keeping up with Jasper and me. Of course, his little legs are only about 1/3 the size of ours.

Resting Roger
Thelma Lou also had a "ruff" time. She couldn't decide whether to wear the pink, flowered tankini that nicely accents the pink on her lips or to go with the itsy bitsy, teeny weeny, yellow, polka dot bikini which shows off her girly figure. Me, I just go au naturale.

 Decisions, Decisions

Happy G-Day!

Did you know that today is Grandparents Day? The brainchild of West Virginian natives Marian and Joe McQuade, Grandparents Day was first proclaimed a national holiday in 1978 when President Jimmy Carter signed the bill into law designating the first Sunday after Labor Day as national Grandparents Day.

While some cynics might view Grandparents Day as just another money-maker for the card companies, passionate pups like Rog, Thelma Lou, and I choose to celebrate the occasion with cards and calls to our loved ones. So whether you call your grandparent G-Dawg, Grammar, or Puppaw, make sure you let them how much you love them  ̶  today and everyday.

The sun rises and sets with grandparents

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Got Crabs?

One might ask how it's possible to feel crabby at the beach? The following film footage explains it all. I don't know whether it's because Roger was born in Maryland and exposed to crabbin' at an early age or whether he's just a natural born killer, but Roger is by far the best crabber on the beach.

FYI — No crabs or Frenchies were injured in the taping of this clip.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Oh poo!

The first Monday in September is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

Merriam Webster defines labor as an expenditure of physical or mental effort, especially when difficult or compulsory.

While I wanted to hit the beach first thing this morning, Roger decided that in celebration of his 6th consecutive Labor Day in the OBX he was going to do a little extra labor during his morning walk. Ever since he passed his Dog Scouts of America test at Mini Camp, he's become a little badge hungry and decided to work towards his Clean Up America II merit badge for picking up and properly disposing of 50 piles of stray dog poop. During just his walk from our house to the beach, he found and disposed of 5 piles of stray dog poop.
Logging "piles" toward his Clean Up America II Merit Badge

That's some irresponsible dog ownership especially when two of the deposits were right beside a Pet Clean up Station!!! Cleaning up dog poo is definitely falls within Webster's definition because it's not voluntary, it's compulsory. Just because people are on vacation, doesn't mean that their obligation to clean up after their pets should "go to the dogs" - even when it's Labor Day.

We're more than a little sick of this shit! Someday dogs are not going to be allowed on the OBX because of their owners' irresponsibility. Ok, that's it for my Public Service Announcement today.

Be responsible: If you dog poops, remember to scoop!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Hot Diggity Dog

Every dog deserves its day, including the hot dog, one of America's favorite sandwich. Today and every July 23 is National Hot Dog Day. Forget about your cholesterol and blood pressure! Why not throw a pack or two of franks on the grill and celebrate? 

Not your average Ballpark franks

According to the National Hot Dog Council, Americans eat about 7 billion hot dogs between Memorial Day and Labor Day, and about 700 million packages every year. That's a lot of processed pig lips. Hot diggity dog!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Toadzilla invades Brushtown

Some of you might remember a couple of years ago when I blogged about Tuffzilla trying to inhabit Brushtown. That was, of course, before he tried to take up residence at 1167 Centerville Road and encountered two fearless, snub-nosed beasts.

Well it seems that one of his distant cousins, Toadzilla who is almost the size of Roger, has decided to squat on our property lately. He is particularly fond of the new rock garden that Dad added this year. Perhaps Toadzilla isn't old enough to remember how we took down Tuffzilla, but if he doesn't decide to move on, he's going to find out. Visit Tuffzilla vs. Snub-nosed Beasts to see video of the last gargantuan invader being taken down. View discretion is advised.

In an attempt to drive him out of the area peacefully, I have been singing "Go go, Toadzilla," a take off of Blue Oyster Cult's legendary "Godzilla." For Toadzilla's sake, I pray it works so that we don't have to take more drastic measures.


Lyrics to "Go go Toadzilla"
With a purposeful grimace and a smirk on his face
He lurks among the flowers and rocks at our place.
Helpless Bullies in their own backyard
Scream, bug-eyed, as he stares at them hard.
He picks up a bus and he throws it back down
As he hops through to the center of Brushtown
Oh, no, they say he's got to go
Go go Toadzilla
Oh, no, that was one low blow
Go go Toadzilla (repeat 3 times)
History shows again and again how nature points up the folly of man
Toadzilla! (repeat 4 times)

Blue Oyster Cult - Godzilla

Friday, July 19, 2013

An alluring sport, of course!

I really do hate to bore my readers with drivel like history, but Mom said if I want to blog about my favorite new sport, that I couldn't just show pictures. I had to research and write a little about the history of lure coursing. So here we go.

What is lure coursing? 

A sport that causes otherwise rational dogs to chase a plastic baggie running at full speed around a course for anywhere from 45 seconds to 3 minutes. Lure coursing is based on the ancient sport of live game coursing, or the pursuit of game by dogs that hunt by sight rather than scent. Coursing is one of the oldest of the hunting dog sports. In the Middle Ages, coursing was a sport reserved for royalty; for some time in England, commoners could not own a Greyhound.

Lure Coursing in America

In the United States, the spread of farming to the great grasslands of the West was accompanied by the coursing of jack rabbits and coyotes. Some of the earliest AKC-registered Borzoi were located in Kansas. In the late 1800s, coursing changed from hunting events to competitive coursing events using live game where sighthounds were chased live game in an enclosed area called "closed park coursing." It is no longer practiced in the United States by any organized sports groups.

In the 1920s, a mechanical system that ran along a racetrack rail replaced most live-game track coursing in the U.S., Great Britain and Europe. While that system provides a great test of speed, the tracks eliminate the spectacular turns executed by a hound in pursuit of live game.

Photos by CWP Photography from my first lure coursing to break up the history lesson:

As you will note in the photos, I am wearing both my collar and a harness. Not a wise decision because either of them could have easily gotten caught in the line that the lure "runs" on. I learned that very helpful bit of information during the Dog Scout Lecture "Lure Coursing 101: Orientation and Safety" taught by none other that the Founder of DSA, Lonnie Olson. We were very fortunate to have Lonnie the Lure Meister travel all the way from St. Helen, Michigan to Swanton, Maryland to participate in Troop 161's Second Annual Blue Ridge Mini Camp.

Back to the history lesson on lure coursing in America

In the early 1970s, Lyle Gillette, a California breeder of Borzoi and Salukis, envisioned a coursing system that would be portable, could be set up in a five- to seven-acre open area and was not dependent on the availability of live prey. After much trial and error, he designed and perfected the mechanical lure, where the "prey" is a plastic bag or piece of artificial fur. Run by a lure operator, the mechanical lure consists of a string run through a set of pullies planted in a field to form a course of 600 to 1,000 yards. The arrangement of the pullies allows the path of the plastic lure to simulate the running and turning actions of live prey.

Hounds are brought by their owners to the starting line wearing coursing blankets (bright pink, yellow or blue) and slip leads (quick-release collars). The lure is started and, at the huntmaster's cry of "Tally-Ho!," the hounds are released and the chase begins. By 1973, Gillette and other California sighthound enthusiasts had organized lure coursing under the American Sighthound Field Association (ASFA), but he hoped the AKC would eventually recognize this testing method and institute coursing events, complete with AKC certificates and titles. In July 1991, his vision became a reality when the AKC Board of Directors voted to approve lure coursing regulations and sanction the sport. Note: Much of my research material came from the American Kennel Club's website.

Photos of Roger's Run compliments of Chris Pinney

And finally. Photos of the a natural born killer in action. Roger was absolutely obsessed about catching that plastic bag. He couldn't understand how a plastic bag without legs could outrun him. He threw an absolute first class temper tantrum when Mom dragged him off the course so that the other kids could play. I must admit that watching him "scream" and flail his little legs was a bit embarrassing. Also note that Roger ran the much safer way -- in the buff!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Birthday Bully

 The Birthday Bully

Four years ago today, a big-eared, bouncing baby bully came into this world. As all new parents do, M&D went back and forth about what her name should be. Roger and I were included in the naming game until he suggested calling her Dumbo because of the size of her "sails." That comment went over like a lead balloon and he was sent directly to bed without any chow.

Would you like those ears super sized?

While it was a little crude to be making fun of our new sister, Roger did have a point. Seriously, with all her excess skin, she could have served as her own wrapping paper topped off nicely with a matching bow fashioned out of her own ears.

Even though M&D settled on Thelma, meaning wish or willful, Roger still contends that Dumbo would have been more appropriate. Granted she's not the brightest crayon in the box, but seeing how Mom had been wishing for a baby girl since the loss of Beulah Ruth, Thelma seemed perfect. And she is!

Happy 4th Birthday, Thelma Lou! We don't know what we'd do without you!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Gee whiskers

"Gee whiskers!" If you're looking for something cool to do on one of these hot dog days of summer, consider checking out the musical "Annie" playing now until August 11 at Allenberry Playhouse located in beautiful Boiling Springs, Pennsylvania.

My fellow Dog Scout, Cooper Wagner, is starring in the role of Little Orphan Annie's dog, Sandy. This multi–Tony award winning musical will have you grinning from ear to ear. This is Cooper's second time on stage playing Sandy. Go Cooper! Or should I say Sandy?

For more information including showtimes, visit the Allenberry Playhouse website.

Annie and "Sandy" aka Cooper

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Off the Grid

I must apologize for being so lax in my postings. I promise that I will try to keep you better apprised of my activities. I have been one "howl" of a busy boxer dog as of late.

Roger and I looking handsome for the camera

Last week, Mom, Roger and I were literally "off the grid" while at our Second Annual Dog Scout Blue Ridge Mini Camp. No Wifi or even regular old cell phone reception. Honestly, it was kind of nice. Camp was held at the 4H Camp in Swanton, Maryland again. Roger started to get a little scared when we pulled in to find out that the Maryland Extension Staff had a live bear trap set no more than 20 feet from our cabin. I told him not to worry that I'd take care of business if Smokey the Bear showed up.

Bear Trap set by Maryland Extension Staff

Mom and I are on the planning and execution committee so that takes up a howl of a lot of our spare time throughout the year. But seeing everyone have so much fun with their dogs, hanging with Mom, and doing cool things for a week makes every minute of the planning worth it. The best part of the week was when Roger earned his official Dog Scout title. Mom was especially proud of the Little Man. He also earned his lure coursing, backpacking, and dog grooming and maintenance merit badges. She was most proud of his heeling and "leave it" performances -- two of the hardest parts of the test to pass.

Roger's official Dog Scout Photo

I earned my lure coursing merit badge and took some musical lessons to learn to play the piano. I can play a few notes but haven't been able to master putting a full song together yet. My Aunt Noelle overheard me practicing and said it sounded like I should be playing at a funeral. Quite frankly, I'm surprised that her 6-month old son, Gilbert the Golden Boy, isn't playing Mozart already. BOL! I think that she already has him enrolled art, music, and band lessons. He might also be trying out for the summer soccer team. He's so busy that I can't keep track of all his activities.

Gilbert with his Dad learning the theory behind E=mc2

Well, that's it for now. I plan to post several new photos from camp each day so please be sure to stop back. 

Dog tired after camp

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Let the good times roll!

Let Katandy's Triple Threat pave your way to the top!

Monday, April 1, 2013

No fooling

No foolin'! I'm sure glad the month of March is behind us. Dad and I are ready for nice weather so we can tackle some projects in the garden. One thing's for certain, March came in like a lion and went out like a lamb.

I am bulldog, hear me roar!

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter

After getting home from church, Roger and I peeled off our dress duds quicker than you can say Peter Cottontail. Thelma Lou is a real girly girl and loves to dress up so she jumped from the frying pan into the fire and put on yet another Easter dress. Since the weather is not very conducive to outside actvities, I insisted that we get off our keister and spread some fun in cyberspace. Here's "hopping" you and your family have a nice Easter! 

Some bunny loves you!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Is there a therapist in the house?

Proudly wearing my TDI scarf

Well, it wasn't a full 8-hour day, but I put in my first shift in as a therapy dog at Sarah Todd Memorial Home yesterday. I had a really nice time chatting with the all the staff and residents while letting them pet me. I have a feeling that this gig might end up being as therapeutic for me as it is the residents! In addition to being fun, another perk is that my hours of volunteering will count towards earning my Dog Scout Community Service and Therapy Dog badges.

Community Service and Therapy Dog DSA Badges

Having M&D accompany me to orientation was a little embarrassing, but rules dictate that I must have a human attached to the other end of my leash when visiting. I did find the part when M&D had to demonstrate proper hand washing procedures kind of humorous. They passed with flying colors unlike Roger who recently flunked his Therapy Dog International (TDI) test.

TDI Flunky and Proud of It

While never expecting perfection, M&D always encourage us to do our best. It doesn't matter if we finish last in a race so long as we put our best paw forward. What really upset Mom about Roger bombing the down/stay portion of the test is that he didn't even try. He sat there like a bump on a log — never once  budging when Mom gave him both the verbal and hand signal cue to lie down (not once, not twice, but at least 25 times). Oh well. Maybe in a future test he won't be such a stubborn little bully. Yeah right! That will be the day when bat pig-dogs fly.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Spring has sprung!

While the weather certainly doesn't feel like spring, Roger and I can assure you that Spring has officially sprung in Brushtown. As the video of us in the backyard illustrates, both of us definitely have a little extra spring in our steps.

Backyard Brushtown Brawl
Brindle Beast vs. Bat Pig Dog

Watch closely as the crouching Brindle Beast waits patiently for the Little Bat-eared Pig Dog to make the first move before launches his attack. 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day! We hope that Cupid hits you with an amorous arrow just where you want it.

Roger and I wait to surprise Mom

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Super Bowl XLVII

Just a quick shot of Roger watching the Super Bowl with Dad. As you can see, the excitement is almost too much to bear.

Rog and Dad glued to the Tube

Quite frankly, he doesn't care who wins, he's just watching for the commercials hoping that his little Frenchie friend Mr. Quiggly makes another appearance this year. He thinks that could be his favorite Super Bowl commercial ever.

Go Mr. Quiggly, Go!