I was trying to get in a post before midnight, and I just managed to erase half of my post. Fresh start:
We give the five Westies baths in the bathtub every couple of days and sometimes every day. Westies easily develop allergies to food or items in their surrounding. The stress our rescued Westies have endured in previous years leave them very succeptible to skin issues.
A bath with Epsom Salts not only kills any fleas, it lets their skin soak up Magnesium, soothes their little arthritic joints and dries up skin issues. Yes, Westie skin can dry with too many baths, but Epsom Salt leaves dog skin and human skin soft and moisturized. I don't know the chemistry of Epsom Sal+ Water = soft moisturized skin, but it works.
For these family baths, we've worked out a system.
I get in the tub (the Epsom Salt soaks are good for humans too) and wash the Westies in the tub with me. Gordon's role is to find, catch and bring the dog to me. They love their bath time, and they are SO playful when they are first out of the tub, but they also like to play Hide and Seek from Gordon before the bath.
These are a few shots of Lillibeth and Maisy getting their bath. From their expressions you would think I was torturing these babies. Not. Maisy Mae enjoys her bath so much that she tucks up her hind legs, props her chin on my tummy and floats in the soothing water. NO, there is not a picture of that!!!
This is a close up of the tatoo in Lillibeth's ear from the puppy mill. Charlotte has one too. All of the puppies we rescued from that blankety-blank puppy mill in 2007 had tatoos in their ears. They did not have names, only numbers.
This old deep cast iron bath tub with its butter yellow tile in the bathroom upstairs has become a Happy Place for me. These pictures, taken at night with the strong overhead light have such a vintage feel. They bring back memories of my childhood, playing with the plastic tug boats and yellow duckie. Somewhere we still have those bathtub toys. The yellow duck has a place of pride atop the towel cabinet.
More to share about the fabric binding on the wash cloth...in another post, hopefully tomorrow! If you are already my friend on Facebook, then you are ahead of my blog postings.
Here is a link to send the Philadelphia Eagles an email with your thoughts about them signing Michael Vick (Atlanta Falcon quarterback disgraced by huge dog fighting operation).
He was signed for two years at $1.6 million dollars for the first year. He may have spent 23 months in federal prison, but that does NOT make up for what he did to those dogs (torture, killed the losers, etc.)
Please share this with all dog lovers so that the Philly Eagles will know how the general population really feels about their hiring of Michael Vick!
Jenny B came to live with us here on the farm March 21, 2009. She has long since captured our hearts, all three humans. (Heck, she captured my heart in the first five seconds.)
Jenny B is busy being Jenny B these days.
She and Mackie have formed a very close bond. Anywhere Mackie goes, Jenny B is right behind him. Anything Mackie does, Jenny B is his shadow.
Sometimes they look like a tiny team of furry white horses the way they run together, as if they were in invisible traces.
Every morning, Jenny B wakes me up by licking my face, especially my nose. I've GOT to find a resource that tells why a dog wants to lick around a human's nose and mouth.
I don't want to stop her licking, but I do not like the face licking.
She is so cute when she licks away my tears. They must taste very different because she stops and studies my face before resuming her self-appointed role as tear-annihilator.
Jenny B is a Mama's girl, but she also flirts and plays with Gordon and Unc. Gordon has discovered that she can't stand for him to lightly blow in her ear...like he might blow over my ear...light and ticklish. Those two have turned it into a game of hide and seek among the pillows on the bed.
Gordon blows across her ear. Jenny B hides among the pillows. Gordon finds her and blows. Jenny B wriggles all over and scurries around on the bed to hide behind me or burrow under another pillow. It is quite a delight to see them play like this.
Jenny B patrols the back yard with Mackie, every time. During all this rain, she has come in soaked and muddy, just like Mackie. She brought in just as many seeds in her fur during those weeks it would not stop raining enough for Gordon and Unc to mow. I'm sure she wonders why the Westies here get so many baths!
It's past time to give her a little trim, and I am deliberating whether to cut those adorable little tufts of hair around her eyes. They look SOOO cute. We have been brushing her every day and working with her to get her more accustomed to being groomed. We don't want to create any anxiety in her sheltered little life.
Jenny B is so tender and trusting and loving. As I mentioned before, she was hand-raised by a breeder who knows how to prepare the vibrant terrier personality for loving homes. Jenny B would be fabulous around children, and terriers are not always recommended for households with children.
You know there will be more photos and blog posts about Jenny B and all of our Westies! Until then, here are some Jenny B posts you may have missed:
Today was the third day of beautiful, glorious, blessed sunshine!
Gordon caught these quick photos of the Westies sunbathing this afternoon.
was so bright that even the appropriate camera adjustments could not
adjust. But then, little white Westies are not easy to photograph in
planted basil and bell pepper seed in the cold frame this afternoon. He
has a nice little garden started in spite of the rain. That is for
another post with different photos.
Gordon and I are working
steadily at our various projects. Plus the dogs. Plus Rosalie (who is
missing at the moment...not unusual of her, but it still gives me
anxiety until we find her.) Unc is great help with housekeeping and
I have not blogged much this week. Not by choice. Just busy. This is part of the reason: That little Jenny B is an angel in a fur suit! She is in season, so we are following her around inside and outside like her own private militia!
As soon as she is out of this enforced quarantine, we will be taking her to Dr. Duncan for a snip snip.
My sweet, lovable, adorable, TRUSTWORTHY, precious, loyal Westie boy, Mackie!
When we traveled deep into Arkansas to pick up Jenny B, the new ray of sunshine in our family. I somehow managed to bring only one toy with me, Mackie's beloved Louisiana Lou.
It was THE little squeaky toy, part of a set, that Mackie fell in love with when he lived with Westie Foster Mom Vickie Claflin in Louisiana, before he came to the farm to be my Big Boy! Vickie sent Louisiana Lou to live with Mackie forever on the farm.
Now, two-and-a-half years later, you may remember that we spent a week washing dog toys and preparing for that trip to pick up Jenny B. Somehow the clean dog toys did not make it into the van, but Mackie's one toy that I try very hard to keep just for him, DID make it into the van.
(I can't remember if I have ever blogged about and Louisiana Louand Mississippi Miss. If not, I'll try to get around to it soon.)
The poor little tyke probably thought we were taking him to give him away. In hindsight, I feel terrible about causing him one nanosecond of concern!
Mackie had a last minute shower with me that morning because Gordon finally said "yes" to letting him come with us, thanks to the wise words of Westie Foster Mom Martha Beck in Alabama. My requests had fallen on deaf ears, but Martha apparently said some magic words that Gordon heeded, and Mackie made our trip much more enjoyable, sitting on my lap, in the front passenger seat, the full 4.5 hour trip, one way.
Anyway, back to my Big Brave Boy!
Mackie's demeanor changed into this "John Wayne" character when we started home with Jenny B. You remember how John Wayne was always a bit put out at silly females? A bit irritated, definitely grumpy and crusty? Underneath it all, though he respected women and felt a strong sense of duty for protecting them.
Mackie turned into Mackie "John Wayne" Fikes the minute we pulled out of Judy Young's driveway with Jenny B, Mackie and me in the back of the van! He was a bit irritated and grumpy, but not vocal about it. He let the little frisky lass try to play with him, but he just avoided her where possible.
I could just feel him asking in exasperation, "MOM! WHY do we need ANOTHER female? Could you not have gotten me another guy to help protect this pack of girls?"
Now, a week-plus later, Mackie is romping and playing with little Jenny B. He is showing her the little mole holes and field mouse sites in the back yard.
Gone is John Wayne Mackie, and gone, too, is any lingering doubt that this farm is home forever for my Big Boy!
Oh, and Louisiana Lou is in a very special place that only Mackie and I know. She will stay there just for Mackie and me to play with.
Somebody's gonna be in BIG trouble! I hope it is the English Shepherds!
Somebody's been digging...not in the back yard, but a fenced in yard beyond the back yard. Just look at the first two pictures and all that dug up ground! Unc called it the "garden". Maybe that is a yard just for dogs to dig in and roll in and have fun like a big playpen for dogs?
Mama said the English Shepherds are dogs too and that they are here to guard and protect all of us, including a beautiful Westie lady like me. She said I should not growl or bark at them just because they are so tall and have such ridiculous long legs.
Mackie said under his breath where Mama could not hear him that HE is the Pack Leader because of his rank as Major Mackie of the Westie Special Forces, and the English Shepherds follow his orders.
Then Lady Lillibeth reminded Mackie that Mama and Daddy are the top, top pack leaders, even if Mackie is the dog pack leader.
Phew, it is a lot for me to try to keep up with. Charlotte just lets me play with her. She is cool, and she only fusses when something startles her awake. Mama and Daddy and Unc laugh when she gets startled. They say she sounds like a braying mule. Is that another kind of dog?
Anyway, the English Shepherds are ok, I guess. I have to bounce up a couple of steps to look at them eye to eye. They don't fuss at me, and they let me check out their individual food bowls without too much fuss.
Daddy says it is not ladylike for me to check everyone's food bowl before I eat out of my food bowl. We get fed twice a day around here which I do like. Mama also gives me an "after school" snack of a piece of banana and sometimes an orange slice. There is a big watering hole in the kitchen and one in the den where Mama and Daddy live.
I've had two baths since I got here, even though Mama said I was not dirty. The first one she wanted me to have a shower with her so that I would smell like the other dogs. Charlotte got a shower too so that I would not be scared.
A shower bath was a bit weird at first, but It was ol, and afterward, Daddy made a game out of rubbing me dry with a towel. I liked that part.
The next day I stood too long on top of a fire ant mound, and Daddy grabbed me up to give me another bath in the sink. He ran into the house with me, and he and Mama were scared I would be bitten by the fire ants.
I was not bitten anywhere because the ants could not get through my beautiful fur before Daddy washed them away. Gee, it was a lot of fuss over nothing, if you ask me. How was I to know fire ants are bad for young Westie Ladies?
Then Unc took poison outside to take care of all the fire ants that had decided to build a mound in the back yard. None of us could go in the back yard until the next day.
Mama and Daddy really laughed hard when I got Unc to dance with me! He is 83 which almost 12 years in dog years, and he danced a short jig with me while I was standing on my hind legs, no holding paws. Have these folks never seen a puppy dance on their hind feet before?
Mama and Daddy say they want me to do this again when they have a camera or video camera ready. Silly people!
Somebody reading this, please let Mama Judy know that living on the farm is going to be fun, but I still love her first. Then someone send a bark message to my sister Fizz to let her know that all is well here. I'd love to get a bark messsage from her to know she went to a good home too!