Tag Archives: pets

The Killing Spree Comes To An End … I Hope

1 May

I had no idea that I’d grow up to be a killer. I’m a pacifist … sort of.

I do my very best every time to keep the peace, but things don’t turn out the way I planned and I end up feeling bad about the whole situation. I mean I’m a parent, dude. I should know about surviving, and thriving. I can’t be on the most-wanted serial killer list.

But with my track record, I think I am.

Every year around spring time, I see them, young and high-energy, ready to rock the world until they cross paths with me. And then it’s over and I transform from The Guat, mom extraordinaire to … The Guat Goldfish Killer.

It’s been three years in a row that I had to explain to my kids why their goldfish had to be rushed to the fish emergency room at Petco and stay for at least 24 hours before returning home, looking a little bit different. More orange. Longer or shorter tails. Only then to be sent back to the ocean to be reunited with their family a week later.

I think I need an EKG machine. I never knew you could give fish heart attacks, but I’ve become an expert at that, no matter how long I leave the water out when cleaning the tank they always suffer the same fate.

But I thought this time would be different.

Our first fish this year.

Our first fish this year.

I was wrong.

This year when we brought our goldfish home from the church fair, my kids’ fish died on the third day, when we cleaned his tank. I hid the evidence, took my kids to school, and then replaced it with a similar looking one right before I picked them up. Not only was I killer, but a liar now.

But in hopes of ending the lies and deceit, I thought I’d take a different approach.

We got a 10-gallon tank, with pebbles, plastic green plants, and a SpongeBob Squarepants Bikini Bottom Pineapple House. With a turbo filter. But I almost killed it … again.

I thought it might have been lonely, maybe it was death by broken heart or loneliness syndrome. He might want a friend, it’s lonely out there in this world. And both my daughter and son agreed. So I asked the fish guy at the pet store if the small goldfish that my son liked, the one in the tank with plastic ferns, got along with the tiny goldfish in the tank next to him, the one that looked like the one we had.

And he said yeah … sure … of course. They’re both goldfish.

Parent failure.

Never trust the fish guy at the Petco. He knows nothing of the delicate relationships and aquatic balance needed for two goldfish to survive. He’s no Aquaman. The tiny fish stayed in the top-right hand corner of the tank for nearly four hours, while the bigger fish roamed the tank and feasted of flakes.

Apparently there are all kinds of goldfish and it’s probably not a good idea to mix and match the varieties as they get stressed out, which can eventually lead to death.

In order to end my goldfish killing spree, I separated them, and the tiny guppy seems a lot happier. He’s swimming, checking out the whole SpongeBob Squarepants Pineapple House. We’ve decided he doesn’t need friends for the time being, he can be a loner for now.

And my son and daughter are both happy that this fish didn’t have to be reunited with its family in the ocean, we’ve had enough of that here. With this new plan, I think the killing spree has come to an end … the aquatic parenthood failure ceases to exist … I hope.




Weekly Photo Challenge: Surprise

26 Dec


parade floats and fridge 077




He knew she ate in the morning.

He knew she waited anxiously.

He knew he couldn’t open the air-tight dog food container.

But nevertheless … he forged on.

He knew he had to do something.

He stretched, he tiptoed, he reached the kitchen table … he got it.

Surprise Pinta … Cheerios for breakfast.



The Cat Burglar’s Demise

15 Feb

I thought of myself as a great dog owner. Walked the dog three times a day, fed her food infused with glucosamine, gave her baths, bought her Greenies for a fresh breath, and bought her toys. Toys for crying out loud. I barely had toys growing up. I had to play with sticks and rocks, and here I was buying my dog a toy. But I did it for good reason. I figured I would rather have her chew on her toy instead of my couch or shoes. But when the toy fell apart on the first day…what was I to do?

Fat Cat Inc. -- The Cat Burglar

Fat Cat Inc. — The Cat Burglar

Just throw it in the trash?


Times were tough back then…they still are. So I wrote one of my letters in hopes for a coupon or something. But these Fat Cat Inc. Toy People stepped it up a notch….

Dear Fat Cat Inc,

Honestly, I was cracking up in aisle four of PetCo when I saw the Cat Burglar. It reminded of a cartoon character you would have seen on Looney Tunes or something. So I just had to have it!  I knew my dog would love it. She’s funny, like me.

Pinta, my wonderful, clumsy, zany, and beautiful Dalmatian enjoyed it so much on the first day (literally the first couple of hours) that his limbs had been severed and were later found under her doggie bed. A CSI investigation found his right leg a few feet away, next to the KONG rubber toy.

Triple stitching??? Your description says triple stitching and heavy-duty canvas. Are you sure about that? Because the Cat Burglar’s “maximum flop ability” was tested, and he failed miserably. We tried to fix him STAT! But alas, Pinta’s enthusiasm for the Cat Burglar was better than my novice sewing skills. I mean really, who sews now a days? Don’t you just ask mom or grandma? Or take it to the dry cleaners?

Anyhow she squeaked the life out of it and enjoyed doing so. It was just too bad that she didn’t get pleasure from it long enough. She didn’t have toys before we got her and maybe that’s why she was so excited to get one, which resulted in the Cat Burglar’s demise. You know she was like that kid in your building…the one that never gets any toys and then he finds an old discarded Happy Meal with the toy still in it and he’s on top of the world. That was Pinta.

She’d been rescued from the pound. But we’ve known her since she was a puppy. Confused? Let me explain.

You see, my husband’s had her since birth and since he lived with his parents prior to our nuptials Pinta was staying over there. But  once we tied the knot, he moved out, leaving her behind. We wanted to get settled and thought it would only take about two weeks to get everything organized before we could bring her to live with us.

My church going in-laws had a different opinion. Apparently they felt the need to drop Pinta off at the pound without informing us. They felt that their house, which had a front and back yard was not big enough for her. Apparently they felt the need to get chickens. Chickens in the inner city…Well because of these inner-city chickens, our dog had been imprisoned like a felon and I had to drive down to the other side of town to bail her out. I felt horrified and mortified.

I drove down there and found her in a cell about the same size as our coffee table, sharing her space with a smelly, filthy, white fuzzy dog. I told the officer dog guy that’s her. That’s my dog.

The embarrassing part was that I could not tell the Dog Pound People that she was originally my dog. Apparently if we adopted her it would only cost eighty something dollars, but if we said we were the owners and wanted her back, we would have to shell out one-hundred and thirty-six bucks. Punishment I guess for abandonment. But since I was innocent I felt the need to pay the lesser fine.

So there I was trying my best to pretend I didn’t know Pinta, meanwhile there she was smiling and wagging her tail. The sheriff or Dog police was pretty amusing. He said he had never seen this dog take to anybody the way she did with me, but that I had to be careful because they didn’t have any background information on her. She was just dropped off. Owner Surrender is what her file said.

What’s worse was that I was considered a “hero” for adopting a dog. They take pictures of these heroes. I tried to evade the Kodak moment he was so insistent upon, but the dog police guy caught me when I returned for my change. So now my Polaroid is pinned up with about forty others. The heading on the billboard reads: “We Thank Our Proud New Owners … Heroes”.

Pinta’s a great dog that’s been through so much, it surprises me that she doesn’t need Zoloft, but with toys like these she probably won’t need it. The only bad part is that they are a bit pricey and we can’t always afford to get her one, but it seems that out of all of her toys the Cat Burglar was her favorite. She still carries his beat-up ragged body (now just a piece of tattered cloth) out to play. I can assure you that she truly enjoyed the toy, but we were saddened at its 24-hour existence. If only Jack Bauer were here … but since he’s not we’ll have to save our pennies and see what we can come up with in the future. That is unless you can help us with a Fat Cat Inc replacement toy or coupon to ease Pinta’s withdrawals. She’s in need of another Fat Cat Inc. fix.


About a month later we received something similar to The Incredible Strapping Yankers Dog Toy.

Fat Cat Inc. Toys

It was just as awesome. Not as funny as the Cat Burglar, but awesome just the same.

Pinta slept with it.

Don’t Forget to Feed the Dog

22 Jan

She’s a cranky senior citizen now. Barks at her shadow and stares at herself in the mirror just to see if the other dog blinks first. She drives me crazy, but I still love her, even after the incident.

She usually eats twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening. Once cup. That’s it. Apparently she overweight. Complete strangers come up to me and say “Wow a dalmatian, haven’t seen one in a while. She’s overweight isn’t she?”

I feel like saying…”well you’re ugly and you don’t hear me saying anything.”

 I got her on some kind of senior citizen dog food with weight maintenance and glucosamine. Suppose to help her function better although I don’t know if it helps her hearing…she’s got selective hearing. Husbands have that too. And on this particular morning they were both exercising that skill.

Life was hectic as always in the morning when trying to get two kids ready to leave the house. Brushing teeth, combing hair, breakfast time, clear the table, change diaper, prepare bottles, potty break, change of clothes, more diapers, pack the snacks, walk the dog, another potty break, and fix the diaper bag. Ready to go out the door. I check the dinner table and make sure the computer is off. I do a double-take as I got some cash on the table. I was going to put it in my wallet, but decided to leave it at home. You know the rule with cash…the more you got in your wallet the more you spend. Then at the end of the day you open your wallet find a lonely George Washington and say what the hell happened?

So I left the cash on the computer. Three hundred-dollar bills, two fifties, four twenties, and three dollar bills. We had just cashed a check and were going to deposit the funds in the bank, but it was a Sunday…so we thought we’d wait.

Off I went on my adventure with the kids, returning in time for lunch. I place the diaper bag on the table and see the bills on the floor. No money on the table. It’s scattered. I must have dropped it while rushing out the door. I find two hundreds, two fifties, four twenties and three dollars.


Where’s the other hundred? I’ve been known to lose money…falling out of my jacket pocket, dropping it as I pull the keys out of my backpack, falling out of a hole in a plastic grocery bag. It’s all been done and lost. And this time I thought I did it again. 

As I’m searching under the table and in between the couch cushions, my husband walks in and asks me what I’m trying to find. I explain I’ve dropped one of the bills and I’m just trying to look for it.

“Oh. Man. Not again!”

“Dude. Just help me look.”

As we’re both in search of the money the dog gets up and starts sniffing around.  She’s in dire need of a Tic Tac.

“Ugh. Did you feed the dog?”

“I thought you fed her.”


“No wonder she’s so friendly.”

“No wonder her breath smells.”

My husband walks over to her food canister, but stops midway. He sees something. Our dog stands at her dog bowl and starts whimpering.

“Dude. I thought you were going to feed her.”

He walks over to the dog bed and sees a crumpled up bill.

“I found it!”

I smile and turn to look at him. He’s not smiling

“Well at least half of it.”

My Dog...looks guilty right?

We both stare at the dog…out of all those bills this bitch decides to eat the hundred-dollar bill. What is that! There were only three of them. She doesn’t eat the twenties or the ones, but hunderd-dollar bill. I’m trying to get out of this living arrangement here at my parents and she decides to have a hundred-dollar appetizer.  Well…fifty I guess.

We both stare at the dog. I open the canister, my husband pours in one-two-three-four…four cups of food. Screw the weight maintenance. This bill is coming out.

And now I wait.