Saturday, June 20, 2009

Birthday Wishes!

I'd like to wish my newest girl, Sami, Happy Birthday today. She turns 2! Yes, she is still a puppy and it shows!

One of my other girls, Lucy, also has a birthday today. She is now 5!! Hard to believe.

Tonight after the dog wash and after a nice dinner of turkey necks, they’ll enjoy some cinnamon/banana cake and ice cream!! They also received new alphabet charms for their collars from Brighton and hopefully, their new collars will arrive today. And then later tonight they will both get manicures and pedicures!

Happy birthday, my sweeties! Enjoy the day watching golf while I’m helping to bathe 60+ of your cousins, Aunts and Uncles! Pin It

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Who knew?

My friend Kim Morris and I were chatting yesterday when out of the blue she mentioned a story on Fox News about minature cow farming. Minature cows? My first thought is that you can't really trust Fox News so it was probably a hoax. Honestly, I had never heard of such but yes, after one Google search, I found many minature cow farms ie and just to name a few.

Apparently mini cow farms are quite the rage, especially amongst women farmers because they are easier to handle. As well, with rising feed costs, it obviously is more economical to own and feed a herd of mini cattle as opposed to their larger cousins.

There are also other benefits. As this article in the LA Times states, "Their miniature Herefords consume about half that of a full-sized cow yet produce 50% to 75% of the rib-eyes and fillets, according to researchers and budget-conscious farmers." The dairy cows can produce 2-3 gallons of milk per day. It's a little hard to milk them since you basically stand on your knees, but the dairy farmers say its well worth the effort.

"Minicows are not genetically engineered to be tiny, and they're not dwarfs. They are drawn from original breeds brought to the U.S. from Europe in the 1800s that were smaller than today's bovine giants, said Ron Lemenager, professor of animal science at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind."

There are now more than 300 mini-Hereford cow farms in the US. That number is dramatically higher than in 2000 when there were less than 24 farms. You can now purchase a heifer for about $800 and a bull for about $1200. Phenomenal is all I can say.

I wonder how many mini-cows would fit on my 1/2 acre? :)

PS - I stand corrected. Kim Morris commented to this post reminding me that the topic of mini cows came about when I complained to her that I was addicted to my virtual farm on Facebook. Duh? That's where it came from. And no, I don't have mini-cows on my virtual farm. Thus far, I only have one cow, four horses and one rooster.

PSS - If these had been mini-moos, perhaps this might not have happened. Poor woman! Pin It

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

A Sign of the Times

On the way to Five Points on the bus this morning, I observed something very disturbing. We always pass by a church on Central Avenue called Church of the Immaculate Conception.

I usually see 2-3 homeless folks sleeping on the steps of the Church most every morning but not today. Today, I counted about 12 men sleeping out there or it could have even been more.

I wish there were something I could do to help these folks. There are plenty of soup kitchens downtown and I know there are shelters so I wonder if there is no more room there for these folks? Or perhaps they are comforted more being near the Church?

I dunno but as the days progress and the economy seems to be in quicksand, I see more and more homeless folks (men and women) in the downtown area. It's very sad to say the least. Pin It

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Cool Memories

As I sit here trying to cool down after 3+ hours of yard work, I can't help but reminisce about our recent trip to Gatlinburg where the mornings were cool and crisp. It was very refreshing.

A few of us traveled there the last weekend in May to attend an annual event known as Mountain Hounds. And yes, it involves Greyhounds! It's just a weekend or rather about four days, set aside for Greyhounds and Greyhound people to socialize, play games, shop, and generally just have fun.

We rented a cabin not far from downtown Gatlinburg where the festivities took place. It had three floors with a bedroom and private bath on each floor. A full game room on the lower level, decks surrounding the place, flat screen TVs, fireplace, gas grill, etc. It truly was a beautiful place and oddly enough, is owned by someone in the Atlanta metro area. Here is a view taken from the front deck. Isn't that just beautiful?

We drove up through the Smoky Mountain National Park. What a beautiful drive that was. The road paralleled the Nantahala River. Watching the rapids and rafters made me so badly want to make another weekend trip to do just that. It is so much fun!! And that water has to be the coldest on earth! Just beautiful!

The weekend was filled with many wonderful events, both for the Greyhounds and for their humans. One such event was the Luau held that Saturday evening. Most of the Greyhounds wore Leis and some even went so far as to wear grass skirts. There were hamburgers and hotdogs complete with all the fixings as well as ice cream treats for the dogs. Everyone had a wonderful time!

Another highlight of the weekend was a presentation by Dr. C. Guillermo Couto who is Professor/Chief, Oncology/Hematology/Transfusion Medicine, in the Greyhound Medicine Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences at Ohio State University. Wow, that was a mouthful, huh?

Dr. Couto is a highly respected Greyhound veterinarian who's speciality is oncology. He has also led numerous research studies, all of which will eventually lead to better veterinarian procedures and medicine for our Greyhounds. His staff and clinic are wonderful and as I told someone after the seminar, the Greyhound breed is very lucky to have someone as knowledgeable and dedicated as Dr. Couto in their corner.

The weekend was soon over and it was time to head back to Atlanta and to reality. It was a wonderful weekend and I definitely plan to go again next year!

As the days get hotter and hotter as we progress into summer, I will continue to reminisce about the cool, refreshing mornings of Gatlinburg. Pin It

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

We're In a Prison

Well, not quite yet, but we will officially be moving five Greyhounds from the Birmingham Race Course/Southern New England Kennels, to their home for the next three months, Gadsden Correctional Facility, on Thursday, June 25th. Gadsden Correctional Facility is located in Quincy, Florida and has a little over 1,500 beds. It is an all female, minimum/medium-security prison that has been managed since 1998 by Corrections Corporation of America.

This particular facility currently is home to a canine companion training program and in the past they had a canine bomb sniffing training program. With that being said, the facility, staff and inmates are accustomed to having dogs in the facility and training these dogs. They already have a large turnout/training yard and the in-house knowledge to bring in another program. It's an ideal fit for us and for them.

So, watch for blog updates on our Available Greyhounds page for those Greyhounds in prison. They will be represented with an orange icon - which you can't miss! Of course we are very excited and are looking forward to seeing and hearing how this program benefits the women as well as the Greyhounds. Pin It

Friday, June 05, 2009

Another One Bites The Dust . . .

Well, yesterday after I had come home from work I let the girls out to go potty. Everyone was muzzled, however, foster girl Sami doesn't have a poop guard in her muzzle like the other ones do.

Anyhoo, I looked outside to see if they were done and lo and behold Lucy and Sami were pouncing on something on the ground. I rushed out to see what it was, thinking it must be a squirrel, when Remi then got in on the action.

Once I was closer, I realized it was a bird - poor thing. It was upside down on the grass, wings spread wide and breathing hard. Feathers were everywhere. It was intact which amazed me as they were giving it a pretty good beating with their muzzles.

I ran inside to get the camera (sadistic person that I am) and when I came back, the bird was sitting like this. I thought it must be a miracle - he was going to live! I tried to shoo him away but he continue to sit just like a little bird statue.

I let the girls out again to eat their chicken backs and the bird continued to sit just like he was, under the hedge. They never saw him!! I thought he was going to make it but when I checked on him later, he had, indeed, died.

I am wondering if I have Greyhounds or if they are actually bird dogs? Perhaps I should change their evening meal up a bit and give them a bit more beef and rabbit and lay off the chicken? Perhaps they've acquired a taste for fowl due to all the chicken I've been feeding them? Perhaps the birds are sick which is how they are able to capture them? Who knows?

I also wonder if they should be unmuzzled. At least the kill would be quicker and the critter wouldn't suffer. Suggestions anyone? Pin It