Archive for December, 2011

Chesters Gregor and Hazelle Hawthorne

December 31, 2011

Pulled: Friday December 30 2011 from Richmond County Animal Shelter

Adoption commitment for Gregor: Wednesday January 28 2012 by Jen Fowler and Kevin Richmond

Adoption commitment for Hazelle: Saturday December 31 2011 by the Headley Greenlaw family

Meet Chesters Gregor and Hazelle, fosters #59 and 60:

Chesters Edwards and Forest went to their new homes today! Hurrah! Conveniently, Edwards’s/Frankie’s new home is only twenty minutes from the Richmond County Animal Shelter, so I thought it only polite to pay Allison a visit. As soon as Allison saw me, she said that she had the perfect foster: a 3 month old Chihuahua/Feist  male pup. “Perfect!” I said. And, indeed, he is. See teeny tiny Gregor, below:

And, no, there aren’t any “G” towns/cities/counties in SC named Gregor. Naming fosters after towns/cities/counties is so 2011. With a new year comes a new system of naming fosters: I will go down an alphabet of literary characters. I told friend Rebecca Pomeroy to choose the name for my “G” foster, since I used her donation to pay his pull fee. She sent a list of truly fun and funky “G” names, but I fell in love with the name “Gregor” — probably because it made me thing of Suzanne Collins’s The Underland Chronicles, featuring none other than Gregor the Overlander as the young hero. Yay for literary associations! — although Grace Hagood: I promise to name a foster “Easley” at some point, just for you.

And, yes, Gregor is wearing a Christmas collar with a bell. You can just see the corner of it in the photo. Why did he come with bells on, literally? For the same reason that Daphne BordeauX had a bow on her head. Richmond County Animal Shelter employee Ashley always adorns her favorite shelter dogs.

Of course, I couldn’t pull only one puppy. A puppy needs a puppy friend — or he’ll cry at night and keep us awake. Enter Chester3 Hazelle. In the perfect literary world, Gregor would be paired with Luxa. But, I needed an “H” name, so I settled on a Suzanne Collins’s character from a different book: The Hunger Games. Hazelle Hawthorne is Gale’s mother in the series, and is a minor though resilient and therefore admirable character. And her namesake is resilient too:

You kind of have to be when you’re alone at 3 months in a shelter. Gregor and Hazelle aren’t from the same litter, though they look alike in some ways (small ears, short snout). Hazelle is listed as a Cocker Spaniel mix; still, at three months, she isn’t much bigger than Gregor. So, perhaps she’s a Spaniel mixed with a smaller dog, like a Chihuahua?

What I’ve noticed about the newest additions so far:

Gregor’s best feature: an underbite and a tail that curls above his back

Hazelle’s best feature: one eye with eyeliner, and one without

Gregor’s best personality trait: he’s feisty. Very. He barked at and chased my mother’s much older and larger dogs. And he won.

Hazelle’s best personality trait: she’s sweet. Very. Gregor would rather play, and Hazelle would rather cuddle; so each annoys the other. However, when Hazelle reaches her breaking point, she never fails to “pin” Gregor, Lion King style:

Good girl, Hazelle.

Contact me if you’d be interested in adopting Gregor or Hazelle!

And now for a memorable mishap:

This is an old memorable mishap, actually, but it’s appropriate since it involves both rescue dogs and Gregor the Overlander. Earlier in the year, I was coming back from the Dillon County Animal Shelter with some fosters (Paxville and York maybe?), and I was listening to an audiobook, as I often do on long trips. I was so engrossed in the story that I didn’t realize I was still driving in the left-hand lane on the interstate, and slowly at that. Someone who was wanting to pass honked angrily and then gesticulated wildly once I changed lanes and he was beside me.

My response? Like a dork, I pointed at the cd player and mouthed:

“I’M SORRY! I’M LISTENING TO GREGOR! HE JUST BRUSHED LAPBLOOD’S FUR! IT’S VERY MOVING!”

All that to say: Gregor, I think, is a very fitting name for my first literary-themed foster. Well chosen, Rebecca!

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Edisto vs. the Zhu Zhu Pet

December 30, 2011

I love being facebook friends with Chester Edisto‘s Mom, because I get occasional updates about my favorite Wonder Dog.

The latest? Edisto has decided that Lindsey’s Zhu Zhu Pet is his new nemesis. See him, below, engaging the Zhu Zhu in a staring contest that he’s destined to lose. Poor Ed doesn’t understand WHY that damn rodent doesn’t blink. Obviously, it means that Zhu Zhus are pure evil.

One of Lindsey’s facebook friends predicts that, eventually, the toy “will just make an annoying noise” and Edisto will “run away.”

He knows Edisto well.

Happy Holidays from Fisk Fosters! And a Merry Christmas Memorable Mishap . . .

December 30, 2011

I’m back to blogging after a much needed Holiday break! Here is my attempt to recap the month of December, in list form. But, before I do that, I’d like to post photos of Christmas Craftiness 2011, Nicole style.

For each person fostering for me (or donating regularly to the cause), I printed and arranged photos of their foster/s.

For Sandra Keller (featuring Chester Lexington) and John Muckelbauer (featuring Chesters PaXville, James, and McBee):

For foster-in-crime Trina Shealy (featuring Chesters Duncan, Fairfax, Chance, Williston and DalZell):

And for Ashley Smith, whose $50 monthly donation keeps Fisk fosters fed and entertained with squeak toys (the latter has to be replenished as often as the former, since Morven can destroy anything):

This frame features some of Ashley’s favorites: Chesters Hilda, Kincaid, and Quinby.

And, last but not least, for Scott, the reluctant spouse:

I told Scott he should hang the frames in his shop, which has weathered (along with Scott) puppy pee, poop and vomit.

And the best part? All the puppy gifts came from the The Animal Rescue site. So, a portion of the profit was donated to shelter dogs.

Yay for me! Seriously. I am *NOT* a crafty person, so I’m ridiculously proud of myself. And, now, for the recap:

1) At the beginning of the month, I brought home Fisk fosters Edwards and Forest. And, I still have Fisk fosters Edwards and Forest. Edwards is currently sleeping at my feet; Forest is currently sleeping at Scott’s feet.

Edwards, renamed Frankie by his adoptive parent, will be going to his new home this weekend. Penny Pickrell fell for Frankie as soon as she met him, but she needed several weeks to pet proof her house and to get home from Holiday travels.

I’m glad I’ve had the extra time with Frankie, though, since he taught me two important lessons in the meantime — well, I should say that he reminded me of a couple of things I already knew:

Lesson, the first: do not put two unaltered male dogs in the same space and expect them to get along. Frankie and Forest, before their neuter surgery, did not get along.

Because Forest is the smaller dog, he was allowed in, and poor Frankie was kept out (in the fenced-in yard, with Scott’s heated shop as his apartment). Frankie was fine with this arrangement at first. But, then, we had a cold spell. I hate cold weather. So, I’d dash outside to tend to Frankie and rush back inside, not giving him the attention I normally would.

Frankie stopped eating. I couldn’t figure out why at first. I finally, despite the cold, sat down outside with him. I petted him. I put his food beside him. While I continued to pet him, he devoured his food, as though he had been starving.

Lesson, the second: Dogs, like humans, need to have their basic needs met, but they need more than that too. They need kindness. If not, life doesn’t seem to be worth the living. Needless to say, now that Frankie and Forest have been neutered, they’re both inside getting the necessary attention.

2) I falsely assumed that I would be able to place more Fisk Fosters over the Holidays. Instead, I had more trouble — especially drumming up any interest in Forest. So, we decided to take Forest with us on our Holiday travels, to McBee and to Charleston, and to try to get photos of him along the way. Maybe, we thought, we should be creative with our photography. See, below, a photograph that emphasizes Forest’s eyes . . .

. . . and another that emphasizes his fabulous whiskers.

You can see, below, that Forest enjoyed himself very much. Here he is in McBee, trotting around . . .

. . . and here he is, in the best shot of the day:

I’m happy to say that the handsome boy has a date with a prospective adoptive parent tomorrow! And she hasn’t even seen the photos yet.

3) Special thanks to friend, Rebecca Pomeroy Shores, whose generous Christmas donation enabled us to travel as usual over the Holidays. We used part of the money from Rebecca to hire a pet-sitter for Frankie and Roo (John Mucklebauer’s foster). Because pet-sitters charge by dog, though, we took Emma, Mr. Knightley, Forest, AND Morven with us.

Yes. We still have Morven. See him below, at the Fisk’s in Charleston:

And here he is, with his pal Forest:

Thank you SO much, Rebecca. We couldn’t have done Christmas this year without you. Even with four dogs in tow, Mom said I was “pushing it” with the overnight visits. And, I even have some money left over for what will be Chester G, cubed. Shh. Don’t tell Scott.

4) The merriest Christmas news is that sweet Chester Lexington has been adopted! Hurrah for Lexi! Foster Mom Sandra sent me the following message on Christmas Day:

“My parents would like to adopt Lexi! She’s been so good and loveable that she won them over. 🙂  She has been very sweet here, playful with the family and gentle with my grandmother. She would be an inside dog, but they do have a fenced-in backyard where she can chase squirrels to her heart’s content.”

Best Christmas present ever. Thanks to Urs and Kathleen Keller for falling for this sweet girl, and thanks to Sandra who fell for her first.

Sandra: let me know if you get lonely without Lexi. As Casey said, my glass is always half full of puppies, and I’m happy to introduce you to a new four-legged friend.

5) And now for the Merry Christmas memorable mishap: I may have pleasantly surprised myself with my Christmas craftiness, but I’ve proven to be a complete disaster with my new scheme to save money for Fisk fosters: couponing.

For Christmas, my parents gave us a $50 gift certificate to Earthfare. I got a book of coupons, complete with discounts on dog food and carpet cleaner, which we need, unfortunately, because of the dogs. I spent an hour, at least, in the grocery store. The total: $200!

Me: “I just don’t understand, Scott. I used COUPONS.”

Scott, pulling out a pack of Izze Sparkling Apple naturally flavored juice beverages: “What the heck is this?”

Me: “I don’t know, but I had a coupon for it.”

Scott: “You don’t get stuff we don’t need just because you have a coupon for it.”

Me: “But maybe we’ll like it.”

Scott, pulling out Sarabeth’s Legendary Spreadable Fruit: “What the heck is this?”

Me: “Jam. I had a coupon for it.”

Scott, rolling his eyes: “You don’t buy the $10 jam with the $1.00 coupon. You buy the $4.00 Earthfare brand jam.”

Me: “Oh.” (What can I say? I lost my ability to do math — and to pay attention to anything related to it — long ago). “But, this jam is legendary.”

Scott: “You’re dumb.”

He spent the rest of the night pulling food out of the bags (and I got a lot of food — and two different kinds of hand lotion), and saying sarcastic things like, “Goat tongue! Just what we needed! So glad you had a COUPON!”

So, Scott was not impressed with the hour I spent at Earthfare, going through the coupon book like I was on a scavenger hunt. He was even less impressed when I told him that I got really upset when I couldn’t find the food item advertised in the coupon (“WHERE are the darn Blue Horizon Wild crab bites?”); or that I dashed around even during checkout, when the cashier pointed out that some of the coupons were buy 2 (not 1). And, no, he was not impressed with the Earthfare dog food. I’m not allowed to go couponing any more — unless Casey, competent member of the Nicole Support Staff, goes with me.

Whatever. Morven, Forest and Frankie LOVE their Earthfare dog food. Also, I’ve already had to use the discounted (though apparently still expensive) carpet cleaner on the rug.

And it is nothing less than bottled up magic.

Chesters Edwards and Forest

December 4, 2011

Pulled: Saturday and Sunday December 3 and 4, 2011 from Richmond County Animal Shelter

Rescue commitment for Edwards: Friday February 3, 2011 by Dog World Rescue

Adoption commitment for Forest: Friday December 30, 2011 by Ifae of Pet-Sitting by Denise

Meet Chester3 Edwards:

and Chester3 Forest:

Recently, I got two first-time donations: the first from Ashley Smith’s mother (thanks Mama Pam!) and the second from Sandra Kellers’s parents (thanks Mama Kathleen and Papa Urs Keller!). That meant I could pull two new fosters to replace Ariel and Beaufort, who both went to rescue!

My “E” foster is named Edwards, after Pam’s family from South Carolina. And I’m so glad that Pam had a name request, since poor Edwards was mistaken for a girl at the shelter and named “Shelley.” I can definitely identify with the mistake, since such a luxurious soft and shiny coat should belong to females only. I still slip up occasionally and refer to Edwards as “she,” which really confuses Scott.

Edwards is a 1-year old Collie mix with the most gorgeous golden eyes (Lexi like) and a spattering of freckles across his nose.

He’s a smart boy, having already mastered sitting and fetch, AND (knock on wood) he *seems* to be house-trained. Of course, I hesitate to declare a dog house-trained, after an early memorable mishap. Still, Edwards has surprisingly good inside manners for a 1-year old, only standing on his back legs occasionally to beg for a treat.

Other favorite things about Edwards? — his fabulous curly tail and the fact that he prances. Yes. Prances. Like a horse.

Edwards met a prospective adoptive parent today, and good boy that he is, they hit it off. So, in a couple of weeks, he’ll be going to live with new mother Penny Pickerell and two feline siblings. A red-head herself, Penny and Edwards (who will be renamed Frankie) will be quite the handsome pair!

Forest, the Kellers’ pull, is still available for adoption, however.

Poor Forest, 4 years old, was in such a state when he arrived at Richmond County Animal Shelter that they didn’t even know he was a Schnauzer. Allison said that he looked like a dirty grey mop. But what a difference a good groomer and a holiday kerchief make!

When I committed to Forest, I didn’t know whether he was heartworm positive or negative. Allison guessed negative. Her reasoning? Forest’s hair was so thick and matted that an infected mosquito wouldn’t have been able to get near enough to his skin to bite him. And . . . she was right. He was tested today: heartworm negative! Yay for being unkempt!

Favorite thing about Forest? He tap dances. Seriously. Video coming soon.

And Scott? He can’t say a word, since the donations from Pam and Kathleen and Urs funded this pull. And . . . he said that he was okay with three fosters at a time — although, really: I don’t know why we’re still calling my love “Marvolo,” who is sitting behind me in the kitchen chair while I type, a foster.

I AM considering a new haircut for Morven, though. I’m wondering if he wouldn’t be Forest’s twin, if cut by the right groomer . . .

Morven makeover pics coming soon.

Thanks for everything, Pam and Kathleen and Urs! I wish you could see how happy Edwards and Forest were to break out of the slammer. See Edwards, below. I was standing in the kennel behind him, trying to get him to  look at me and smile. Instead, he turned Pointer and stared at the kennel lock, as if to remind me that the goal was to get both of us OUT of the kennel. Silly human.

As for Forest, he was shaking so badly that I didn’t have the heart to make him pose for a photo. So, at the end of the weekend, we have two happy pups and a happy Allison, because two kennels are now free for more of her four-legged children! Merry Christmas, Allison! Love and thanks from Edwards and Forest. And from Morven!