Browsing Tag: pets


    First Snow of the Season!

    November 21, 2010

    It’s snowing!!! Look at our front yard:



    Since I really can’t stand winter, this’ll be the only night that I’m excited to see snow. After this, spring and warm weather can’t come soon enough. But for one night, it’s cool to watch and see again.

    There’s actually one other fun thing about the first snowfall of the year: Watching Sparky go outside in it for the first time. He gets this total WTF????? look on his face for about a minute. It’s priceless. That should happen in an hour or two when I put him out so he can take care of …ummm… business.


    We’re a One-Dog Family (Again)

    October 16, 2010

    It didn’t work. Early this afternoon, we took Rocko back to the family that adopted him a week ago. (Coincidentally, they live about 500 yards from us right here in West Richland.) So we’re a one-dog family again.

    It wasn’t so much a problem with Rocko, or with the two dogs together. They were doing pretty well — although I was surprised to see Sparky get mean and aggressive towards Rocko at feeding time; we had to feed them separately.

    The problem was with mainly with me.

    After we got home with Rocko yesterday, I had all kinds of feelings of guilt for the rest of the night — guilt about taking someone else’s dog. The other family adopted him last Saturday. The first couple days were rough, with Rocko being too aggressive and the kids not doing too well with him. That’s when we contacted the shelter and learned he was with another family. Then a day or two later, the shelter called and said the family was struggling a bit with Rocko and they knew about our interest, so they wanted us to see if he’d be a good fit at our house. When we went to pick him up at the shelter on Friday, the mom explained how rough it was the first couple days, but also mentioned that every day had gotten better, and how her daughter was excited that there were no problems at all for two days in a row.

    Rocko was settling in with them when we came to take him. And I couldn’t shake that feeling all night while he was hanging out with me and Sparky on Friday night. Felt horrible about taking someone else’s dog, even though they were willing to let us.

    Secondary to that was learning that I’m a one-dog guy. I’m more attached and loyal to Sparky than I think I realized, and even while Rocko was laying down at my feet for most of last night, I wanted Sparky to be there. I realized that I’d never love Rocko the same way I love Sparky … and that wouldn’t be fair to Rocko.

    There was talk of waiting a day or two to see if the guilty feeling would go away, but I think the best thing was to get him back to the family that he’d been with for the past week. Get him back to what he was getting used to. So, the two-dog era is over. We won’t be doing that again. Sparky is all the dog we want.

    Bye Rocko … thanks for visiting. (On the bright side, he lives right near the park where we sometimes walk Sparky, so I suspect we’ll see him again.)



    Meet Our New Carbon Copy

    October 15, 2010


    Can you tell which one is Sparky? If you need a refresher on what Sparky looks like, try here, here, or here.

    We got a new dog today! He’s a carbon copy of Sparky in a lot of ways: male, black lab mix, between two and three years old. I was at the pet store last week buying food for Sparky, and one of the local shelters had placed one-sheet flyers on the carts. I thought I saw Sparky’s picture on one of the carts! Looked a little closer, and the sheet said his name was Rocko (yes, both dogs have somewhat U2-related names). So I went online and found him on, listed as still available.

    Unfortunately, after contacting the shelter, they said Rocko had just been adopted by another family.

    Then, a couple days later they contacted us again to say that Rocko and his new family were struggling a bit, and the family wanted us to have him if we were still interested. So, we went off to pick him up today and brought him home to Sparky.

    It was a little dicey at first; Sparky was very interested in defending his turf and didn’t like it at all when Rocko got near his outside house/bed, his water, etc. They played and barked and chased each other all over the yard for a couple hours, smelled each other’s butts, ate dinner, and now they’re inside and seem to be getting along just fine. Both exhausted. In fact, as I look over now, they’re both sound asleep. And full of cute.

    Oh. That’s Rocko on the left looking at me as I took the photo. Rocko is about 10-20 pounds heavier than Sparky. He also has white spots on all four paws. And he’s definitely all black lab, whereas Sparky is kinda black/brown. So we’re already finding it kinda easy to tell them apart.

    And as long as they get along well over the weekend, we’ll be telling them apart for a long time to come.


    Happy Birthday, Sparky

    April 7, 2010
    Birthday Boy

    Sparky turns two years old today! Well, we don’t know exactly when his birthday is, but we celebrate it on April 7th each year. We brought Sparky home on July 4, 2008, and took him to the vet on July 7th. They estimated that he was already three months old then, and listed his birth date is April 7, 2008.

    We rarely give him any human food, but tonight he’s gonna get a little steak to celebrate the big day.


    Merry Christmas, Sparky

    December 21, 2009

    We got Sparky a new bed today because his old one was getting too flat and he’s been struggling to get comfortable on it for a little while now.


    You may be wondering, Gee, Matt, does he like it?

    Yes. Yes, he does. Aside from dinner-time, he hasn’t gotten off the thing in seven hours.


    61 lbs. of fun

    March 17, 2009
    I fetched ... now what?

    Here’s goofyhead’s latest photo. He loves to play fetch, but seems to forget that he’s supposed to give me the ball back.

    Took him to the vet a few days ago and learned that he weighs 61-flippin’ pounds now. 61! Sure enough, I almost threw my back out on Saturday when I tried to lift him into the tub.

    BTW, T doesn’t even weigh 61 pounds.