Nothing can stop The Duke of Earl

Today’s kind of a Friday fish fry.

I got an owner turn in a couple of weeks ago.  I don’t know why someone would not find a way to keep a 7 year old dog.  I really don’t.  And I never will.

People’s perception of what rescue is and what rescue does in reality are two different things.  If you adopt a dog from the local shelter, you did not rescue a dog.  You adopted the dog from the local shelter.  If you adopted a dog from a rescue, the dog is a rescue.  You did not rescue the dog.  If a breeder took a dog back and you adopted that dog, you have a breeder rehome.  Beauregard was a breeder rehome.  His original owner was an Air Force Captain who was shipped overseas and couldn’t take him.  The breeder took him back and called me.  His original name was Max.  If you can’t keep your dog and you give it to a rescue, you are doing a slightly better thing than dumping him at a shelter or just letting him loose to find his own way.  In this country 10,000 pets are destroyed every single day at shelters throughout this country.  If you take your dog to a shelter, there is a slim chance of your dog getting adopted and finding a good home.  If your dog is lucky and gets pulled by a rescue, he might have a chance at a good life.  If your dog is a jerk, because you’re a shitty dog owner, which really if you’re taking your dog to the shelter you have a pretty good chance of being in that category, your dog is going to be destroyed.  You just killed that dog.  Don’t be thinking you did a good thing.  Good reasons that a dog ended up in rescue.  You died and don’t have any family.  Although you should provide for your dogs.  The Brother probably thanks the good Lord for every morning I wake up on the sunny side of the earth, that he doesn’t have to deal with the Hellhoundz.  Another decent reason is that you are dying.  Another decent reason is that you’ve had a child and, wait for it, not what you think, but that child has developed an allergy to the pet.  It happens.  It sucks.

A rescue is an organization that more often than not operates on a shoestring saving the poor souls that dumbasses dump in this country.  They take on the dogs that are bred by backyard breeders who don’t know dick about animal husbandry.  Those people breed dogs with shitty temperaments, bad joints, health issues and they don’t understand that a good breeder always takes back their dogs if they can’t stay with their original owners.   Rescues don’t make money, they lose money.  Some have angels who provide services or facilities, most just make due.

Meet Duke.  He’s my latest bad idea.  He was an owner turn in.  I never really got the full story.  That’s the other thing, people lie to rescues and figuring out the dog’s real story is always an adventure.  He’s seven years old.  His “breeder” is some d-bag out in the valley who wouldn’t take him back.  His owners, well, who knows, they lied to me.  But Duke is very busy right now making my mother happy.  They hang out.  He turned out to be a little more spry than I thought he was, so on my way home every night I stop and take Duke for his evening constitutional.    Sometimes that’s the best 20 minutes of my day.  Duke looks forward to my visits.  Or maybe he’s just looking forward to taking a crap.

The story remains the same if you’d take a look

I’ve got another traveler here.  His name is Prescott.  I REALLY like this dog.  Number one, he’s gorgeous.  Number two, he was trained when he got here.  Number three, he’s a very nice dog.  I already have a home for him, which is a good thing.  His name is Prescott.  In the video he learns not to jump up.  It wasn’t the original point of the video, originally I was just going to show how he moves, but he jumped up a couple of times and the third time I got him with a knee.

Later our hero goes to the vet and comes home with an empty sack.

In other jackassery, last weekend was Sonofabun’s 50th birthday.  And ensuing party.  Sonofabun, like me, spent a lot of time in San Francisco in the 80’s.  He spent even more time at the I-Beam.  And other similar venues.  OK, can you believe the I-Beam has it’s own wiki page?  There is a sort of music that goes with that.  For the most part you had to have been there.  I found a DJ who while he was too young, he wasn’t even born yet, he got it.  I just got the set list last night.  Picking out greatness from an era you didn’t live through was quite a feat.

No Siouxie, but I’ve got Siouxie.

I’m just trying to figure out how we all got this old.

And they snuck right out of the door

Where to start?  This is what happens when I get busy.  Let’s start with the bad and end with the good.

How many times do I have to sound the alarm before somebody figures out there’s a problem?  There is a freaking problem people.  Cops are shooting dogs.  Family dogs.  There has been consistently no repercussion for shooting someone’s family dog.  And a ton of stories about it.    If the cops came into my house or yard, I promise you that one or two or three or even four dogs might be barking at them in a threatening manner.  Did these jackasses ever stop to think that if the family dog is standing them down they probably stood down the bad guys too?  If the dog isn’t covered in blood, there probably isn’t a bad guy in the house.  So why go in and why shoot the family dog?  How about calling the alarm company and asking the homeowner to come home PRIOR to shooting an 11 year old arthritic Lab?  These asshats shot Marley fergodsakes.  When is enough enough?

The family says they don’t blame the Oakland Police for shooting their dog. I do.  And yeah, this story is in the legitimate news, but this link is more fun.  I think OPD is taking out their aggression on innocent animals.   Since when is Bambi a public safety issue?  You don’t have a protocol to deal with deer so you shoot Bambi?  WTF.

Breath in.  Breath out.  Breath in.  Breath out.

I’d been following a tragically starved dog at the Martinez Animal Shelter for almost three weeks.  I’d gone down there and asked to view her and they wouldn’t let me see her.  She was supposed to be off of her hold last Friday.  I called Friday, Saturday and Tuesday to inquire about her status.  She was on a medical hold and I couldn’t see her.  Then I get a call from the rescue coordinator on Wednesday afternoon.  If Doberman rescue wants her I have to pick her up by 5pm the next day.  I run my ass off on Thursday to get everything done and arrive at the shelter at 4pm to pick her up.  And then I go and look at her.  She’s not a Doberman by any stretch of the imagination.  And I know, if I don’t take her she is getting the needle in the morning.  What do you do?  You take the goddamn trainwreck of a dog and figure it out.  Meet Little Sister.

Seriously.  Could you let this little face get the needle?  Me either.  I’m kind of hoping she’s a German Pinscher.  If so, they have room and will take her.  If not, I’ll be stalking Tony LaRussa’s wife in hopes that I can circumvent the system and get ARF to take her.  I named her Little Sister because she’s not a Doberman, she’s a little sister.  And I didn’t have a name.  And I asked my Dad to name her and Sister came right to mind.  That’s what he used to call me.

Dear Concord Police, she’s really cute.  But she’s going to bark at you if you come on premises.  Don’t shoot my dogs.  Thanks.

The Hallocks say they want to know what police didn’t use Taser, mace or pepper spray on the dog instead of going right to the deadly force of a handgun. They say they don’t want to sue the department, but they want the change the department’s policy nobody else has to go through same turmoil their family is dealing with now.

Me too.  Is anyone else listening?

Yes, I’m livin’ at a pace that kills

Well shit howdy!  I am safe.  My kidnappers have released me.  I’d like to thank the anonymous donor who paid my ransom.  This new job shit is wearing me out.  These guys work and they work hard.  I’ve got to say the Cult of Red is one of the most positive, collaborative places I have ever been.  Aren’t the famous last words of the girl in the horror movie “Everybody’s so nice here!”  And then somebody does a Ginsu knife commercial on her ass.  Except at the Cult of Red, they really are.  And while it’s a knock on them on the street, they are not cult like at all.  Just extremely professional and focused.  They have a plan and they work it.  And they’re very successful at it.  One of the underlying precepts of Atlas Shrugged in my mind was the idea that if one were successful, we all could be successful.  Granted I’m probably one of the few people who actually understood what I read, God knows the teabaggers didn’t.  That’s how these guys think, if we’re all successful, then we’re ALL successful.  Of course the problem with Atlas Shrugged is the same as the problem with the theories of Marx and Smith.  Add people and it doesn’t work.  The Brother has said in response to people who complain about attorneys that “if people would act right, I’d be out of work.”  Word.  The same could be said for regulation.  If everyone would act right, we wouldn’t need regulation.  And Socialism would work.  And Communism would work.  And Capitalism would work.  Not at the same time, but they’d all work.  But it’s not in the human DNA to act right.  Our brains are always trying to get one over.  So regulation is necessary in a capitalistic society. 

Sometimes it’s like shooting fish in a barrel. 

I’m certainly glad that the folks that come here are used to my tangents.  Because it’s been a wild week here at The Farm.  The NIMBY neighbors have moved out, soon to be replaced by the really nice man and his really annoying Russian wife.  I did what I could to discourage them.  They came up to talk to me about the neighborhood when they were looking at the house.  Of course I mentioned that I had three large dogs and that I wasn’t going anywhere and if they had a problem with three Doberman Pinschers they should probably just move along.  I went on to say that they are good dogs and not yard dogs, but they’re dogs.  Well, she proceeded to ask me “Do they bark?”  Well of course they bark, they’re dogs.  They aren’t yard dogs, they’re house dogs, but they’ll bark at squirrels and noises and shit.  “Do they bark at night?”  When they’re out they might bark at something but they sleep in the house.  “Do they bark in the morning?”  Sometimes if they’re out.  “How early in the morning do they bark?  Do they bark before 7am?”  Lady, I get up at 4:30am.  If there is a raccoon in the yard they’ll bark at it.  I’m not particularly hopeful that I’m not going to want to string this woman up.  You can imagine the joy when NIMBY neighbor husband mentioned that my eucalyptus had split again and was laying on their shed.  I wanted the broken tree out of there before they moved in.  Last night after a day of yoga, door knocking, open house and Costco I fired up the chainsaw and got that half a tree off that shed before that woman saw it. 

And about Ike.  Bubba lost his mind and attacked Ike a week ago Saturday.  I heard the ruckus, I was shoveling dog shit at the time and had a shovel in my hand.  I was also in the back forty.  I thought it was Rita until I heard the screaming.  Then I realized that Bubba was on Ike and Ike was down and screaming.  I ran across the yard yelling but Bubba wasn’t letting up.  He had Ike by the back of the neck.  Now my family has a history with shovels.  My paternal grandfather, who I never met because he died when my Dad was seven years old knocked a horse down with a shovel for kicking him.  And one of the running jokes between The Brother and I is the cause of Parkinson’s which has affected at least four and probably five of our father’s siblings.  I maintain it’s caused by frying everything in bacon grease and The Brother maintains it’s caused by hitting each other in the head with a shovel during their youth.  Knowing that, when I arrived at the dog fightattack with a shovel in my hand I knew I’d met my roots.  I also knew that if I reached in I ran the chance of getting severely bit.  Naturally hitting them with a shovel was the next move.  I’ve been around enough dog fights to know that if you break their concentration you can safely break it up.  I knew hitting Bubba with a shovel would do that.  I also knew that if I messed up I could kill him.  Hitting him in the head was out.  That left his butt.  I knew if I hit him too hard I could break his leg or his pelvis.  I turned the shovel so that the rounded part hit his ass and smacked him on the ass with it.  It made a loud metallic sound and got him out of his zone.  He wouldn’t let go but he wasn’t on attack any more.  I pulled him off of Ike and shoved him in his crate.  Ike was hurt.  Worse, he hadn’t even attempted to defend himself, he was just down and screaming.  It wasn’t just a scrape, it was a deep puncture/tear.  I poured peroxide over it and irrigated it with my saline solution.  In the end he had to go to the vet but they didn’t stitch him, they just cleaned it up, gave him antibiotics and put a drain in.  The drain came out yesterday and he’s healing pretty well.  And he loves his warm compresses.  And now I spend my days shuffling male dogs so Bubba doesn’t try to kill Ike again.  He’s acting as if he didn’t do anything and they’re buddies but Ike looks at him as if he’s Satan.  And I’m not positive he isn’t.


He’s still high, they didn’t put him under, just doped him up a little.

Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans

Something truly amazing is happening here at the farm.  Ike is getting better.  Seriously better.  This dog should not be getting better but he is.  He’s had two appointments so far with Dr. Karen Rettig at Alternatives for Animals.  That’s it.  Two.  He came home from the second appointment and ran around the back yard.  Granted it was a stiff run, but he’s never run before.  And it was better than his trot used to be.  His trot looked like a child playing with a plastic toy dog.  He now has some lateral movement in his spine and more stability in his legs.  He wasn’t running around the back yard actually, he was chasing Bubba during one of Bubba’s fence running episodes.  He was going back and forth around the tree and the deck and actually giving Bubba a good nudge in the butt.  I’m watching this very carefully because my biggest fear is that Ike gets better and no longer gets along with Bubba and I have to find him a good home.  Ike, not Bubba.  I don’t think that would be that hard, I almost gave him to the office manager at Dr. Rettig’s.  If her home had been a better fit for Ike I would have let him go there.  She’s been caught in Ike’s web.  There is something about this dog.  Something that made the folks at OAS take him on even though he should have been a PTS case.  Something that’s made him come back from the brink here even though he should have been a hospice case.  Everyone that meets him loves him.  She really loves him but wasn’t able to take Ike him due to her hardwood floors, stairs and cats.  It killed me to even offer him, but it was the right thing to do for him.  This woman came into his room and sat and stroked him while he was getting his acupuncture.  She called me to see when he was coming back in.  Not because it was part of her job but because she loves Ike.  He’s great here, but if there’s another great house where he can be an only child, get flooring he can survive on, not have to negotiate steps, and they have to means for his treatments, I have to consider it.  Ike can’t survive in a house with stairs or slick flooring such as hardwood, tile, pergo, linoleum.  That’s why I took him.  I have slate, carpet and just one step to get outside.  I knew he would do as well as possible here.  And he’s reaping the rewards of that forward thinking right now.  And for now, it’s amazing to watch.

Click here to support Ike.  Click on General Fund, once an amount is entered there will be a link that says “Add special instructions to merchant”.  Click that link and type in “I Like Ike”.  Ike thanks you for your support.

The weight of unravelling where we went wrong

I have a nomination for the stupidest guy on the planet.  And I don’t think there are very many people who would dispute this.  Guys like this guy make life difficult for the rest of us.  This guy shouldn’t even be allowed around sharp objects he’s such a jackass.  Steven Hayashi.  Yep.  Steven Hayashi.  He’s the stupid ass that owned the five pit bulls that killed his two year old grandson.  I got a feeling Thanksgiving is going to be a little tense at the Hayashi house in the future.  For the second time in two weeks a ghetto bird circled over my house.  That’s how close these dipshits live to me.  It’s not easy to work with the ghetto chopper circling over your house, trust me.

First off, five dogs is a pack.  The dynamics change when you get to five.  He starts with a bitch who was pregnant and has two puppies.  Now, you’re such an idiot that you can’t afford to spay and/or neuter your dogs so those three make more dogs.  And you’re not smart enough to get new homes for the puppies.  And you’re so stupid that they aren’t fixed either.  And they kill your Chihuahua and you don’t think that’s a problem?  You don’t see the attack but you’re sure it’s just the one.  You didn’t see the attack you freaking moron.  You don’t know what the hell happened.  You only know the result.  You are an idiot.  All the dogs were gentle and friendly except for Kiwi.  Unless of course they were busy killing the family dog or your grandson, then they’re a little temperamental.  I promise you, I would never have a dog unsupervised around children and I would absolutely under no circumstance ever have a dog I couldn’t trust around children.  Anybody who thinks differently than that is a complete moron.  At the end of the day, they’re animals.  Never give jailhouse interviews, it just lets the rest of us know what an idiot your are.

According to Hayashi, all of the dogs had been raised to be family pets and were gentle and friendly except for Kiwi. “I never let Kiwi around my grandchildren because I didn’t trust him,” Hayashi said. About a year before the attack, the dogs attacked and killed his pet Chihuahua, “Ruby.” Although nobody saw the pit bulls kill the Chihuahua, Hayashi said he believes Kiwi was the one that killed it. The dogs had never displayed any aggression toward humans, though, and everyone except Jacob and his brother could handle them without a problem, Hayashi said.

Yeah, not a problem until they killed your grandson and left his corpse on the garage floor.  Or this jewel:

Hayashi described himself as an animal lover who was surprised the animals turned so violent.“I thought pit bulls had a bad rap,” he said. “I’m one of those animal lovers who thinks dogs are dogs. Now I mistrust all dogs.”

No, pit bulls have a bad rap because of stupid guys like you doing stupid things that allow horrible things to occurr.  Get it?  It’s your fault.

I’m going to use one of The Brother’s terms here. 


1. (of an immoral or illegal act or omission) Intentional; deliberate.

2. Having or showing a stubborn and determined intention to do as one wants, regardless of the consequences or effects

Pit bulls, Rottweilers, German Shepherds, Akitas and Doberman Pinschers are willful dogs.  If you are not a strong enough owner to establish yourself as the Alpha, there is going to be problems.  Period.  I get challenged daily.  I do not lose.  I transport these dogs in the cab of my truck, secured with a dog seatbelt more often than not.  I never have any trouble.  Why?  Because I get into that truck and they know to sit down, shut up and hang on.  And they do.  If you can’t look at your dog and they stop what they’re doing, you have no business owning a willful dog.  You or somebody else is going to get hurt.

Now let’s get back to another stupid thing this guy did.  He tied on of the dogs to a tree in the front yard.  From Karen Delise

“Chained dogs have killed at least 127 people. Of the 127 people, 112 were children that wandered into reach of a chained or similarly restrained
dog. Another 11 occurred from dogs who were chained and broke free before attacking.” She also states in her book: “Statistically, chained dogs are more dangerous than free-running packs of dogs.”

That was written in 2003.  The media would like to tell us that there is an epidemic of dog bites, but truth be told, dog bites are down.  Way down from 1971 when I was the right age to get my ass bit and never did.  Here’s another interesting stat from the National Canine Research Council:

There have been 18 fatal dog attacks in Pennsylvania in the past 45 years (1965-2009).  11 different breeds or types of dogs have been reported in connection with these incident.  NONE were pit bull type dogs.

That is in spite of the fact that criminal offenders and drug dealers prefer pit bull type dogs.  Once you get back to the real numbers, there is little evidence that pit bulls type dogs are more aggressive.  There is evidence that stupid people go to a pit bull to make up for what nature shorted them.  And that is a bad combination.

Not everybody can own a pit.  Not everyone can own a Doberman.  Not everyone can or should own a Rottweiler, or a GSD or an Akita.  Not everyone should even own a dog.  I mean, if somebody has an aggressive Chihuahua or an aggressive Shiz Tzu, what makes them think they can raise a balanced willful dog?  Somebody has to say, no, you can’t have this.  And for the sake of responsible dog owners, I wish someone had said that to Steven Hayashi, because he’s a moron.

You want your job you better free that brown eyed man

I have always sang songs to my animals.  If you’ve heard my singing voice you’ll know why they are the only ones who will live with me.  It started with the cats.  I had two great cats.  Broderick Catford and Rayette DiPesto.  Rayette DiPesto was the Karen Black character in Five Easy Pieces.  I lived on Broderick Street and thought if he ever got out I wanted to be able to stand on my porch and yell the name of my street over and over again and have the cat come home.  Neither ever got out.

And of course the song I sang to them was:

Then came Xica da Silva.  She was named after a character in a Brazilian film of the same name.  Back then Bravo was a station that played foreign and indie films.  They would have never considered, actually, I can’t imagine their disgust at the idea of airing a show such as The Real Housewives of Orange County.  Xica da Silva was on heavy rotation.  I can remember laying on the couch at the apartment on Broderick Street watching it for about the 10th time just because.  And when that little black puppy came into my life, I named her Xica da Silva

Did I mention that Miriam Makeba sang the song?  I’m sure the dogs wouldn’t like her version as much and Xica loved mine.

Toby didn’t have a song, but Beauregard has his own song that I sang to him since the day he arrived.

And it was the most fitting song for him.

OK, that was a great version of that song.  Perhaps better than mine.

Rita is a no brainer.  It’s not my first choice but it’s the only one the really works.

Sometimes she gets this one.

Especially when I think of this picture.

And poor Bubba doesn’t have a song.  I can’t believe there isn’t a country song out right now that has a good Bubba reference, but for now the poor dog doesn’t have to listen to my singing.  And he thinks that’s a good thing.

But Ike is another story.  That poor dog has heard nothing but the Eisenhower jingle for days.  And I think he likes it.

Or maybe he’s just bored.

I think right now his answer to Eisenhower or Turner would be Turner.

But we don’t like that Ike.

May you always be courageous

Now that’s how you make a political ad.  No sniping, no crap, just a great little jingle.  And an elephant.

We all like Ike.  He’s wormed his way into everyone’s heart.  He speaks for his dinner, he sits pretty and he flops his big head on my lap.  What’s not to like?

I’ve been working trying to get some help for Ike.  I originally thought he’d be here two weeks and then I’d send him to the Rainbow Bridge.  Well, Ike didn’t get that memo.  It’s two weeks today.  Last week a gentle reader graciously stepped in and offered Ike her kitty’s left over prednisone.  That’s made a big difference for him and I am very grateful for PBE readers.  Ike’s getting better.  And he has the opportunity to get even mo’ betta.

Ike has been approved as a Special Needs Doberman.  Click here and scroll down to the “General Fund” and click on the General Fund.  It will take you to Paypal.  Under “Add Special instructions to merchant” specify I Like Ike.  That’s the important part, you have to specify “I Like Ike”.  Then all proceeds will go directly towards his treatment and together we can get this boy on the road to recovery.  Special Needs Dobermans is a 501(c)(3) non-profit so every penny is a charitable donation.  Our goal is $600 which will get him 4-5 treatments at Alternatives for Animals.  That should provide him the relief that he needs to start living the life he was supposed to live before Wobbler’s Syndrome almost cost him his life.  Dr. Rettig has done work on other rescued Doberman that have Wobbler’s and has had amazing progress.  Every little bit helps this big boy.

Ike would like to thank all of the folks who are making this possible for him.  And I’m feeling a little verklempt.

We’ve got to hold on to what we’ve got

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Ike is doing better.  He’s been getting an Ascriptin twice a day.  I’m working on getting him some help, since he’s essentially a hospice rescue.

I took yesterday completely off, didn’t even fire up the work side of my computer.  I actually read a book in the back yard and didn’t sit out there thinking about all the things that I needed to work on out there.  The dogs ran, Rita slept in the bushes next to my chair.  Ike slapped his big ol’ head in my lap and it was a good day.  His pressure sores are starting to heal now that he’s sleeping on a comforter and not a hard service.  Like Bubba, he needs to know where I am all the time.  He doesn’t need to be there, he just needs to know.  Yesterday somebody was looking at the house for sale next door.  Bubba knew it wasn’t the owners and barked.  Ike stepped up to the plate and had a little something to say too.  I’m sorry I didn’t know this dog before he was so sick.  He must have been a force to be reckoned with.