Dixie Dawg

Written by Michael LaRocca

Continued from page 1

Dixie was watching us work. One of her hobbies. And, naturally, running aroundrepparttar yard. When she sawrepparttar 148153 bicycle pass in front ofrepparttar 148154 house, way up front alongrepparttar 148155 street, she took off like a shot. She didn't bark, though. She didn't want to scare it away.

I think that bicycle moved faster than my old truck. Clint and I fell onrepparttar 148156 ground laughing. It was all I could do to catch enough breath to whistle. One single whistle was all it ever took. Dixie came back, smiling and wagging her tail.

Meanwhile, I think ofrepparttar 148157 woman onrepparttar 148158 bicycle. She was a large woman, what folks down south would call a "corn-fed woman," simply out for a bit of exercise. She had to pass my house again to get home, since there were no other roads leading that way. I don't know how she got home, but it wasn't by bicycling along that road. Maybe she called someone to pick her up.

Not much of a story inrepparttar 148159 telling, perhaps, but it was hilarious to see.

After Clint and I finished our work, I turnedrepparttar 148160 remains of that dirt pile out back into a garden. It was common for Dixie to run intorepparttar 148161 garden, pull out a white radish, and eat it leaves and all. She never damagedrepparttar 148162 other vegetables, though, and I'd grown far too many radishes, so that was fine with me.

I had a lot of gum trees, and she loved to eatrepparttar 148163 spiny balls that fell from them. I told a co-worker about it, and she replied, "Oh, and I'll bet she chews tin foil too." As a matter of fact, she did.

A few months after I adopted her, I picked up Dixie fromrepparttar 148164 veterinarian after she was spayed. She was so full of drugs that she threw up inrepparttar 148165 car and passed out onrepparttar 148166 way home with a loud thump. I carried her, seventy pounds of dead weight, intorepparttar 148167 house and laid her onrepparttar 148168 floor.

Atrepparttar 148169 sight of her, Witchie ran like heck towardrepparttar 148170 kitchen. Same as always. Then she realized she wasn't being chased, and checked on Dixie to make sure she was all right. It was very touching, as well as surprising. A few hours later, Dixie woke up and growled at me. This wasrepparttar 148171 one night she didn't sleep with me. She didn't want to climbrepparttar 148172 stairs and she was too cranky for me to bother carrying. The next night, Dixie slept with me again as if nothing had happened.

At some point, Lisa decided that Witchie and Dixie weren't enough. She wanted another Siamese cat. I didn't mind at all. I love animals. We wanted a boy this time, knowing that owning two female Siamese simply isn't possible. For Christmas, we visited a Siamese breeder.

As we looked atrepparttar 148173 kittens, we agreed that we neededrepparttar 148174 meanest, toughest little monster they had. Witchie would hate him at first, and Dixie's reaction was anybody's guess. The whole litter looked pretty aggressive, fighting and wrestling and scratching and biting. But one kitten always ended up on top --repparttar 148175 smallest one. It was a boy. We took him home.

When Witchie sawrepparttar 148176 new kitten, she let out a mighty howl and charged at him with fire in her eyes. Dixie quickly ran over to them. One swat of a massive paw sent Witchie reeling. While Witchie looked on in rage and utter confusion, Dixie lickedrepparttar 148177 tiny kitten. He wasn't much larger than her tongue.

Imagine a seventy-pound dog sitting onrepparttar 148178 floor. Facing her, an undersized eight-week-old kitten is standing on a coffee table. They are batting each other's faces, him aggressively and her like a gentle giant. They're biting, mewing and growling. Her tail is wagging. She opens her massive jaws and seems to swallow most ofrepparttar 148179 kitten. Like a cartoon,repparttar 148180 only part sticking out of her mouth is his tail. He wraps his claws around her tongue and bites down into it. Her mouth opens, andrepparttar 148181 batting and biting resume.

The kitten quickly became known as Taz. He loved to run up and downrepparttar 148182 stairs making weird wild noises likerepparttar 148183 Tasmanian Devil cartoon. Dixie was his mom, protecting him from that evil Witchie. Taz slept on my chest every night, surrounded by a big black dog paw.

Witchie wasn't completely evil, though. Once in a while, she sniffed my hair and bit it, then climbed into my lap and purred contently. Much like Dusty, she preferred me to Lisa.

The only other person she ever purred for, and this surprised me, was Cousin Clint. She did that on his first visit. Okay, so maybe animals aren't such excellent judges of character. (I hope Clint's reading this.)

When Taz first arrived,repparttar 148184 house contained several large plants. Some were two or three feet tall. Within three days, they were gone. The leaves were food andrepparttar 148185 soil provided a lovely natural litter box. Byrepparttar 148186 time I discoveredrepparttar 148187 effectiveness of a squirt gun, it was too late.

We quickly decided that, as long as we owned Taz, all plants would remain onrepparttar 148188 porch. As Taz is still alive and well, we obviously never kept plants inrepparttar 148189 house.

Taz also loved fish. When I say this, I'm not referring to food. I'm talking about aquariums.

Beta fish, also called Siamese fighting fish, are known for being tough, able to survive anything, so mean that you can't put them with any other fish or else they'll kill them. But alas, a Siamese fish is no match for a Siamese cat.

Fish Number One lived in a small tank shaped like half a sphere, mounted high on a wall between two windows. After a week or so of careful planning, Taz ran uprepparttar 148190 blinds and grabbedrepparttar 148191 fish. Then, unsure how to cope with success, he watched it flop around onrepparttar 148192 carpet. He was staring atrepparttar 148193 corpse when I got home from work.

Fish Number Two lived in an identical tank. It was mounted high uprepparttar 148194 wall onrepparttar 148195 landing betweenrepparttar 148196 first and second floors. Taz spent hours perched onrepparttar 148197 railing, staring at it, wondering. He never found out how to catch that fish. I found it floating inrepparttar 148198 tank, dead. I assume it died fromrepparttar 148199 stress.

Taz spent hours staring at aquariums, trying to devise a way to capturerepparttar 148200 fish. Years later, I took great joy in building a tall scratching post, complete with caves, and positioning it so that he had a fine view ofrepparttar 148201 fish that he could never quite reach.

Most intriguing to him wasrepparttar 148202 large albino Oscar. Oscars are meat-eaters, and Taz especially loved watching my Oscar at feeding time. Whenrepparttar 148203 Oscar grew too large forrepparttar 148204 twenty-gallon tank, I moved it to a fifty-gallon tank. Taz sat inrepparttar 148205 empty tank daily until I finally sold it.

When Lisa and I separated, she took Taz and Witchie to Florida. At age seven or eight, Taz still looked and acted like a crazed kitten. I presume he always will. He has a special place in his heart for black dogs, because that's what his Mom was. Big Dixie. Woof!

Michael publishes a free weekly newsletter, WHO MOVED MY RICE?, which is dedicated to proving that you can't eat grits with chopsticks. http://www.chinarice.org

Pet's Records Can Ease Travel, Play, and Stays

Written by www.PetFriendly.ca

Continued from page 1

5. Emergency contact information. This can include both an alternate number where you may be reached, such as a cell phone number... as well as a trusted friend or family member's name and telephone number (be sure to ask them for permission first so they aren't taken by surprise!).

6. Any additional documentation that you may require. For instance, if you are travelling out ofrepparttar country you may need to get supporting documentation for your pet (more information is available at http://www.pawsitivepets.com/traveltips/ ).

Keep two copies of each piece of documentation. An easy way to manage your pet's records is to pick up a couple of folders at any office supply store and insert one copy into each folder. That way you'll have one copy for yourself, plus one extra. Placerepparttar 148152 folders in an easy-to-remember place and just grab one when needed!

This article is provided courtesy of The PET FRIENDLY Canada Directory, featuring pet-friendly hotels, businesses & services ... for pets and the people who love them! http://www.petfriendly.ca

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