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R.I.P. Parker Jo Buhdoo (2002-2014)

The last known picture of Parker.

The last known picture of Parker.

A.K.A. Monsieur Parkere and Senior Porkchoppo

October 31, 2002 (estimated) – August 23, 2014

Parker Jo Buhdoo was a German Shorthaired Pointer picked up as a stray.  My husband and I found him at the Lenawee Humane Society, then going by the name of Archer.  My husband was very interested in owning a purebred sporting dog.  I looked at him skeptically and  replied, “You want THAT dog?!”

That is pretty much how our relationship with Parker went.

Parker ate many things.  Styrofoam, crayons, plush dog toys, string cheese wrappers, the seat off a child’s potty, bath soap, etc.  It made picking up his poop more interesting, I guess.

Parker, thinking about asking to go out to poo

Parker, thinking about asking to go out to poo

Parker could easily hold his urine for 8 hours in a stretch if no one was home.  If you were home, it was a different story.  He would whine and pace about every 2 hours to be let outside.  If he just drank the entire bowl of water, then he would need to go out again in 20 minutes.  If it was getting close to dinner time, he wanted to go out every 10 minutes in hopes of being fed when he was let back in.  If you called his bluff and refused to let him out, he would pee on the floor.  He once peed on our mattress right in front of me just because he was mad.  He peed on the floor probably at least once every two weeks, but sometimes 3 times in one day, for most of the  years we owned him.

Parker asking to go outside to pee

Parker asking to go outside to pee

He was an asset in a hundred year old house in our drafty bedroom in winter.  My husband and I worked different shifts, but Parker was a great source of heat and a good cuddler.  It was one of the only times he was not pacing the floor and whining.  Although he did occasionally howl in his sleep while dreaming.



Parker loved to run.  We had a special leash and harness to hook him up to our bikes.  My husband would always take Parker, because he was too fast for me.  He would literally pull the bike.  He would run until his feet bled.  He once did that when he ran away.  He ran away probably about 12 times in the 9 years that we had him.  The best investment we ever made was his dog tag.  The second best was when we extended our backyard fence to include the back door. Once, after a Pure Romance party at my house, he ran away.  My theory is that the products with the pheromones in them turned him on.  He usually ran away on cold, winter nights when it was freezing raining.  Once, on a hot day, he went for a swim in Lake Adrian.  He crossed 223 at least once.  I always expected him to return with a broken leg or worse, but he never did.  We only found him ourselves on one occasion.  We clocked him doing 18mph down the sidewalk.  Luckily, the smell of a nearby baby possum caught his attention long enough to slow him down.

Naughty dog

Naughty dog

Right when my husband and I were both returning to the workforce after lengthy bouts of unemployment, Parker managed to skewer himself on a metal fence post in our yard.  The vet was concerned that he may have punctured his lung, but he didn’t.  She said he was close to nicking his main leg artery, in which case he would have bled to death before I could have gotten him there.  The vet’s office sewed up the wound twice.  He popped the stitches twice.  We made bi-weekly trips to the vet.  He still went on to fully recover from that wound.

What did I do to myself?!

What did I do to myself?!

Parker was so excited to go for a car ride that he was not a very good passenger.  After one incidence where he saw a wild animal and tried to crawl out the window that was rolled halfway down, we learned to only give him a few inches to sniff.

On a family camping vacation to Port Clinton, that bird dog went crazy when he saw an ostrich at the drive thru safari park zoo.

He was such a difficult dog that our best friends could no longer stand to dog sit for him.

Parker was a challenge every day, in every way.

I have a theory that Parker may have been a cat reincarnated as a dog.

Here are some excerpts from Sunday’s post:

Yesterday was our 11 year wedding anniversary. The day started by us saying our first goodbye to one of the furry children of our union, Parker. We think he suffered a stroke a number of months ago, could be going blind, and has exhibited a change in behavior. We had him in our lives for 9 years. I have always hated that dog. Now I hate him for making me cry at his absence.   He was such a challenge to live with in every way. Although, I have to believe that maybe he was sent to us to prepare us for the trails that M, our son, would present to us. Maybe Parker was the opening act.


His velvety head

It was so hard yesterday, to pet Parker knowing it was the last time. Knowing we would never feel his velvety brown head again, or his short hair, that was course when it was dirty and soft when it was clean. I am sure I will continue to find it stabbing me in the cups of my bras though. It was easier yesterday when he was gone. But then harder again this morning. Yesterday he was still in our lives, that stupid, miserable dog. Today will be our first full day without him in our home. I am sad that it seems empty. But I am comforted in my belief that no other family would have put up with his whining and peeing on the floor consistently for 9 years. And it is a much more peaceful and calm atmosphere already, without having to fight with the Parker over everything.

We always theorized that he was previously owned by an elderly couple.  He liked older people, and people in wheelchairs.  He hated thunderstorms, and always sought refuge in the bathroom.  We thought maybe the old couple kept him in the bathroom a lot.  We figured one person died, the other would go off to the nursing home.  Then the kids would come and just open the door, and Parker would run.  Because that is what he did best.  Always.  Even with stitches in his leg.  Then they wouldn’t have to try to find him a new home.

Running.  Always running.

Running. Always running.

Maybe he needed more obedience classes.  Maybe he needed more exercise.

Rest in Peace, Parker.  You definitely made yourself an unforgettable part of our lives, and our family.

Just sleeping here, not dead

Just sleeping here, not dead

Dave Finds Her Howl

Dedicated to my favorite puppy, Dave D. Canine, who we brought home exactly 9 years ago today.

Dave during her first few days with us (Don't worry, we totally fattened her up.)

Dave during her first few days with us (Don’t worry, we totally fattened her up.)

Dave was a sad little puppy
Sitting in a cage at the shelter all alone.
More than anything,
She wanted a forever home.

A place that smelled like
Human food & fresh laundry.
A place with something soft to lie on
And people who loved her.

“If I were to find a home like that,
I may just explode with happiness,” Dave thought.

Then a man & woman came by.
The woman was very interested in Dave.
Dave wanted to play with them,
But she wanted to look out the window too.

Dave was put back in her cage
Just like always.
But then a strange thing happened.
The man & woman came back.
And they loaded Dave into their car!

Dave loved to ride in cars.
“But where are we going?” Dave wondered.
They took her to a big backyard
Where she sniffed around,
Her orange fluffy tail in the air
And her orange head to the ground.

Then they led her into a building.
The shelter had burned her nose,
Smelling of ammonia & bleach.
But this place smelled. . .homey.

Dave sniffed all over the house
It didn’t seem like any other dogs were here.
She even found some stairs
And climbed up, without any fear.

But there was a problem.
“How will I get back down again?”
No one had ever taught Dave
How to get down the stairs.

She stood there pondering for several long minutes.
Maybe, if I go slow
Putting one paw in front of the other. . .
And next thing you know,
She was downstairs again!

Over the next few weeks,
Dave learned that she loved the stairs!
She could chase a ball up them
And race back down again.

She learned that the man was called Jason
And the woman was called Jennifer.
They would brush Dave & take her for walks.
One night they even all laid
on the thick carpet floor together to nap.

Dave hadn’t been this happy
Since she had been in her puppy pack.
Why, maybe this was some kind of new pack
She could be a part of.

Dave was so happy, she couldn’t contain it.
She felt all her love & all her happiness building inside.
It rose from her tummy & went to her head.
She threw back her neck & opened her mouth,
And “HOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWWWWLLLLLL” is just what came out.

Jason & Jennifer looked stunned,
“Was that a howl of anger,
Or a howl of happiness?” they asked each other.
But they soon learned it was happiness,
When Dave smiled & howled again.

Dave found her howl that day,
And her forever home too.


(from the author of Hogwart Discovers Christmas)

Ferocious attack animal!  (Must rub belly to pass)

Ferocious attack animal! (Must rub belly to pass)

Personal Development

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In my spare unemployed time, I have been working on personal development. It wasn’t a conscious decision. I just have more time to find out about these opportunities being offered. And I don’t have to rush home from a job an hour away to get to them on time. And I am not too exhausted from working 40 hours a week, commuting 10 hours a week, and running my mom’s errands, and doing housework to attend.

I have gone to meetings about genealogy. One was about the basics, which I am already beyond. But that meeting did provide me with the suggestion for the new software I am currently using. The next one I went to was a tour of genealogy resources at the Lenawee County Historical Museum. It helped, but I would need to dive in myself to really understand what is there and how it is indexed, organized, etc. But it was very nice to get out of the house child-free and spend a few hours with other adults who talk about adult things. Of course, recently I haven’t had time to work on my family tree stuff. Spring cleaning is taking up all my time.

Last week I went to SKYWARN weather spotter training. The website says that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s “National Weather Service (NWS), part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, established SKYWARN.” When I went I wasn’t even sure if it was to be a weather spotter, but it turns out it was. If you read Tuesday’s post, you know I have an interest in severe weather. I don’t feel any more knowledgeable than before I went, but they gave me an awesome weather booklet and the secret spotter call-in number. They spent a lot of time on storm cloud formation. Which is good, except I live in the city and am surrounded by trees and other houses. By the time I see a cloud it is usually directly overhead. So, I feel like I could be a more useful spotter if I lived out in the country, but whatever. It makes me feel important.

I love how the booklet says things like “Personal safety is the primary objective of every spotter.” But then the booklet is filled with awesome photos of tornadoes people took while driving around in their cars in weather they shouldn’t be out in. It is like they give you the disclaimer so that they won’t get sued, but they know if you are a weather spotter you have an interest in this and will probably be out in a storm anyway.

One thing I always said I would do if I had free time was to volunteer at the Lenawee Humane Society. But I can’t really do that right now because I would have to take my son with me. Plus, I am sour on LHS at the moment (not their dog care skills or facility, just how they run their fundraising events). And I am sour on dogs, because Parker is becoming unbearable to live with.

My husband is doing personal development too. He has never been confident in his reading/writing skills. He believes the public school system failed him, and I think he may be right (more about our complaints about the school system in a future post). I knew this, so last fall when I saw an ad in the newspaper about free tutoring opportunities, I showed it to him. He got very excited. He called a few days later. Normally he would procrastinate and probably never call at all. Over the years, he has tried buying workbooks, etc., to try to teach himself, but with no real success. They gave him a test at the literacy center. He actually tested high enough that he wasn’t eligible for the program. But one of the tutors was nice enough to agree to help him anyway. See, he reads and writes well enough to get by. But with his new job, it would be great if his skills were elevated to say, what you should know when you graduate high school (which he did). Details are important in his new job. I am hoping the tutoring helps him with that.

All this and raising an almost 18 month-old too. Oy. I guess if you are positive (as in attitude) about the things you like, opportunities to expand your knowledge of them will come along. Who knows, maybe this year I will get to attend Word Camp. (That would be awesome!)

I’m not stalking you. is NOW ON FACEBOOK! “Like” that I’m not stalking you and get an update when there is a new post to read. (It is sort of like YOU are stalking ME.)

Feeling Strangled by a Pink Ribbon

Am I the only one bothered by the pink breast cancer ribbons on every product known to man? I have multiple problems with this campaign.

1. I try to believe in the Law of Attraction. What you think about most you will attract into your life. I don’t want my most prominent thoughts every day to be about cancer–any form of it. I do not want to attract cancer into my life in any way. This is the biggest reason this marketing bothers me.

2. I do not believe that all the proceeds from licensing the pink ribbon onto these products are going to cancer research. There are millions of products our there with the pink ribbon slapped on them. It seems like with so many robust funds being raised, that they could have found a cure by now.

Companies think that by slapping a pink ribbon on their product, it will increase the number of people buying it. That has the opposite effect on me, as I will go out of my way to find a different product to buy. If you want to support breast cancer, that is fine. Send your money to an established organization directly, so that you know they will actually receive and use your money. You can also use it as a tax deduction, instead of the potato chip company or the gardening glove company getting all the tax benefits. Or do the Avon 3-day (is it still called that?), where you can raise money for your cause and get physical benefits as well.

3. I choose which charities I support. I like to support the Lenawee Humane Society. Dogs are cute. And it is the humans’ fault that we have pet overpopulation, not the animals. I have been known to support a local food pantry. I just went shopping in support of Pajama Rama 2011, taking place Saturday, October 22nd at the Adrian Mall in Adrian, MI. Is there a better cause out there than collecting underwear and tolietries for homeless kids in Lenawee County? I don’t think so.

So, as you can see, I have my own charities that I support. So I don’t like being tricked or bullied into supporting others as well. I am not trying to be super-cynical. My mother & gramma both had (non-breast) cancer. I know it sucks. But I’m saying don’t fool yourself into thinking you are doing something good by buying a “Save the Ta-Tas” shirt. Try making dinner for the family of the closest person to you with the disease. It could mean a lot to them.


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Pathetic Parker at the Lenawee Humane Society

To continue from last week’s blog, here is how Dave got her name. I always wanted a “dog named Dave.” I think it may have come from Laverne & Shirley, because Shirley would talk about wanting to marry a doctor, have a boy & girl, a house with a white picket fence, and a dog named Dave. I also always knew I wanted a girl dog, because that is what I was used to. In high school, I decided someday I would have a dog named Dave D. Canine, because it sounds like a real name & then I could scam credit card companies into giving a dog a credit card. I never knew what the D stood for until we got her. She looked like a dingo (australian wild dog), so that is what the D came to stand for. We started calling her Daveweena. So her real full name is Daveweena Dingo Canine.

After we had Dave for a little over a year and gotten her reasonably trained, my husband was itching to get a dog of his own. Unlike myself, he made weekly trips to the Lenawee Humane Society before finding the dog that was right for him. He found a noisy, jumpy German Shorthair Pointer named Archer. Archer had been a stray, so the Humane Society had held him for a week. My husband spotted him the first day he was available for adoption. I infamously said,”You like THAT dog?” I stand by that statement to this day. We took Archer in the room to play with him. He was overly friendly, trying to sit in my lap the whole time. My husband was sure that was the dog for him, so we took him home. He was renamed Parker.

Parker on duty

Once home, Dave walked around plastered next to Parker’s side for a week, trying to dominate him & get him to play with her. He is not a very playful dog. We have hardwood floors, and Parker did not lay down on them for over a year. We took him camping. He refused to lay down. However, he was very fond of the couch. It is interesting how the couch was a doggy no-no zone until Parker came along. As we couldn’t keep him off of it, Dave was then allowed to lay on it as well. (The rule of the house is that animals have to move if humans want to sit on it, though. Dave is the guard dog of the house. I always say that Parker’s job is to hold down the couch, because gravity is very weak right there:) Parker only got a month of dog obedience training, whereas Dave got 16 months. It shows.

We learned that Parker is actually very cat-like. He can go lay on the bed & sleep for hours & you won’t even know he is there. But if it is dinner time, watch out. He will start begging & whining like 2 hours before feeding time. He also goes out to the bathroom more than any dog I have ever met. Part of that is due to the fact that he can drink an entire bowl of water at one time. But I really wish he wouldn’t. He is so whiny, that our best friends who used to dog sit for us, have said they will only continue to watch him if they can freely complain about him. Needless to say, he is going to be boarded on our next out-of-town adventure.

Parker is a giant flight risk. I can’t count the number of times he has runaway. He finds an open gate or he skinnies out between the fence & the house. I find it truly unbelievable that I have a nicely fenced backyard & I still have to tie my dogs up on leads, because otherwise they will escape. Once Dave broke her lead & jumped over the fence, all in the time it took me to take a wizz in the bathroom. Parker usually runs away in the middle of winter during an ice storm. But he once ran away on the first hot day of summer & was found after swimming in a lake. (Ew, stinky dog). Once, that we know of, he has crossed the busiest road near our house. Just the thought of that scares me. I think one time his running away could be partially blamed on my friend who threw a Pure Romance sex toy party at my house. She was making everyone sample lotions & perfumes with pheromones in them. Parker was shut in the other room, but making a God-awful wailing. Shortly after I think he escaped & went looking for love. His dog identification tag is the best investment we ever made. We now have him microchipped as well.

Oh, and as soon as we got Parker & he leaped into the back seat of the SUV with no problem, that is when Dave said,”Well, hell. If he can do that, so can I.” We never had to lift her up into the backseat of the car again.

Parker’s full name is Parker Jo Buhdoo. “Buhdoo” is a great word that I believe my friend invented. You want the definition of buhdoo? Look at Parker’s picture from the Humane Society.

Parker today

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