Monthly Archives: January 2008

Doggie Howser…

Ten year old Courtney Oliver is a certified genius and certified Veterinary Assistant… 

Leave a comment

Filed under vet

dog catching fish… part 2

something weird happened with the dog catching fish video on youtube, will try again…. 


1 Comment

Filed under all you need is a dog, dog catches fish

Dog catches fish… fun places to visit near Carson City, NV

Several weekends, when we did not want to travel far, but wanted to get away from the smoke from the fires that burned Lake Tahoe, we drove to Markleeville, CA (about one hour from Carson City), Bridgeport, CA, and Mono Lake, CA area. You can get to Yosemite by driving down Highway 395 until you reach Highway 120.

Also, Topaz Lake is on the way down 395 from Gardnerville, about 20 minutes… I was disappointed when I went there because a wonderful beach that I used to be able to go to has been closed off, so now you either have to pay to go to the beach or live there on a beachfront property. Perhaps if you stay at a motel/lodge there, you get access to the beach. But we drove around and around and could not find anything but a boat launch area and no parking everywhere.  

When I lived in Carson City, from 1998 to 2002, Topaz Lake was easily accessible. And when I lived here then, I did not explore these towns, did not have a dog and was very busy working all the time. Having a dog leads to new travel adventures. When you want to take your dog to different places to run around and go crazy off leash. It was fun to visit all of these places nearby that I had never gone to.I always love going to Davis Creek in Washoe Valley, which is north of Carson City about 10 minutes. There are wonderful trees, also a little pond and you can camp out there. I just go for the day and took Cici there also. Until it started getting too crowded with school busses filled with kids, other people with their dogs, and tourists. She loved running around chasing squirrels and other wildlife…

Just above Davis Creek is a little store that sells all kinds of goodies, homemade and otherwise. Unique gifts, hot jams and jellies, cactus and all sorts of fruits and veggies, pies, cookies, sweets, etc.There’s a Chocolate Nugget Candy Factory above Davis Creek, as well as a Chocolate Nugget on the way to Virginia City off Highway 50.

Virginia City is a really fun place, a place set back in time. Cici loved social butterflying herself around, meeting people. We visited some of the stores that would allow me to bring her inside. The cool thing about Virginia City is that it is a replica of an old gold rush town, with museums, gift shops and taverns. It’s one of my favorite spots to visit near Carson City. There’s a Mark Twain Book Store, mines where you can dig for gold and gemstones, the Virginia and Truckee (V&T) Railroad and several museums including the Mark Twain Territorial Enterprise newspaper Museum and a Gambling Museum. I also remember some kind of a honky tonk show place where you could dress up like a hooker, but I don’t see that listed on the website… 

Did not visit the Grover hot springs in the park in Markleeville, but it seemed like a nice place. We just meandered around town looking for a nice park or place to cool off. Found a little respite a few miles east of town finally. Not a place to let Cici off leash. A librarian told me about a school on the way back out of town, towards Woodfords, where I was able to let her run around.  I spotted an overnight campground place on the way into town, and tried to let her offleash there and got yelled at by the caretaker.  Overall, it seemed like a nice town.  Good for hiking, camping and taking a dip in the hot springs. 

On another occasion, we drove down the 395 for two hours and arrived in Bridgeport, CA. Another very small town, expensive accommodations, at least that is what people told me. And Cici enjoyed chasing after skateboarders. We ate turkey burgers at a local joint and inquired about places to let her loose. Not much. We were directed to a few campgrounds. Cici loves fishermen, too. And she splashed around a bit in the water. She tried to catch some fish which was hilarious to watch.After awhile, we decided to head further south to find a beach where Cici could run off leash near Mono Lake, to no avail. All were crowded, campgrounds were filled up and there were just too many dogs and people.  

The Visitor’s Information people were very helpful and called up the Virginia Settlement people and got us a camping tent site for the night for about $12.  Thought that we might be able to get a covered wagon but the tent site was all they had available, they just had a cancellation so we were lucky to get it.  The Virginia Settlement is about five minutes south of the town of Bridgeport, 5 miles south of Bridgeport on Highway 395, so we drove back up from Mono Lake. The settlement has wireless internet, a nice restaurant, it’s like a tiny little community. If you blink your eyes, you will miss the place. The people were very friendly and accommodating there. The only thing that I did not like was it was too smoky from the campfires and a bit crowded.  

But the tent site was amazingly spacious, private, surrounded by trees and bushes, and each has a campfire pit and water. Cici slept in the car because she was just too jazzed up about all of the other dogs. Plus, this family across from us also had llamas. I slept on the grass in my sleeping bag. The guy even gave me a padded mat to make it more comfortable. Cici befriended the folks across from where we stayed. They were sleeping in a covered wagon. Seemed nice and private and very small, basically a bed but the price was only $22, $10 more than the tent site. They also have cabins and a motel there.  It was quite cold at night and the stars were beautiful to behold.  A lot of people come here to fish.

More about the town of Bridgeport…

This looks like a nice dog friendly place to stay, nearby. an RV park…

Leave a comment

Filed under AAA, Adventure, all you need is a dog, auto club, beach, belly rubs, big dogs welcome, CA, California, camping, chocolate, dog catches fish, dog friendly, doggie camp, dogs, four paws up, funny, K9 approved, K9 travel, keep pets safe, mutts, Nevada, pet care, pet friendly lodging, pet travel, travel, travel with dog, travelwriting, women travel

Good news for the Michael Vick dogs: loving human beings

Several animal organizations have taken on the task of working with the Michael Vick pit bull dogs to get them new loving homes… Best Friends, Bad Rap and others, to name a few. And the dogs are so sweet and loving, says Bad Rap, it’s been easier than they thought.

lBullie Buddies of Las Vegas reported that in a series of dog temperament tests conducted by the American Temperament Test Society, Pit Bulls had a passing rate of 95 percent. These tests put different dog breeds through various situations. Some tests involved the participation of strangers. Any sign of aggression and stress from the dog resulted in a failure of the test. The American Kennel Club believes Pit Bulls are the ideal family pet and recommended the breed as an especially good dog for children.

FYI, Pit Bull Awareness Day is Oct. 20. 

Now here’s a beautiful story of how a loving individual person can make a difference in a dog’s life and in the life of others…I have a 1 year old female red-nose pit I ‘rescued’ from my neighbors. They got her as a puppy and were very infatuated with the idea of having a puppy but not taking care of it. The dog was a lonely and neglected puppy. Countless times as a puppy she’d be left outside leashed to their porch at night. I had to save her once as I heard a yipping sound and came outside to see her choking while dangling from the raised porch.My neighbors aren’t exactly well off, As the dog grew older she started digging under the fence that separates our yards to come play with our two dogs. I’d send her back though since it wasn’t home for her.A few times I saw the neighbors with the dog and they would hold her by the neck in the back of a pickup truck and stick her face into another dog to instigate aggression. This happened on many occasions and it saddened me greatly, it made me mad actually.

I saw that they had plans to make her a fighting dog, and it’s no wonder as Dog Fighting is a fairly large underground pasttime here in Hawaii. Even the laws here are too lenient on participants.

I turned that anger into an orchestrated plan to save her. I’d show her both sides of the fence. If fate worked it’s magic, if she’d at least see there could be something better, something more loving, maybe she would choose.So as the dog would make her digging excursions to our house next door, I stopped sending her back right away. I played with her and my dogs. I let her inside the house after a good bath and started loving her. After awhile she learned where the food was and ‘how things worked’ from our other two dogs. The calls, commands, tricks, pack mentality along with solid leadership that all dogs crave, and the most obvious…attention…We had a permanent hole setup between the houses.

During the day the pit bull would be over at our house until our neighbors came home. She’d always rush anxiously to meet them, crawling under the fence quickly up to them just to be dismissed as they went inside the house and passed her by. She was getting big, she didn’t have that ‘cute’ size factor that people love about puppies.The pit bull continued to grow and grow while this kept happening. She had sad eyes… all the time, except when she was over here.

After some time she just kind of starting living with us 24/7. We’d have guests over and she’d be playful and lick everyone, even the kids, which we have over all the time from my fiance’s HUGE family. As her training and age progressed, she developed a sensible guardian mentality. Which was very good for us in our neighborhood, there’s a certain shady element around here, but this was good as the dog certainly had a very developed presence.One day during a weekend BBQ, we had a party in our front yard with family. Our dogs were social with everyone and were well mannered.

Then our neighbors pulled into the driveway next door blasting their bass intensive stereos. the pit bull dog started barking at them. The looks on their faces was curious, but then stupefied. They then walked quietly inside their house. I had a feeling from this .. and many family members at the party picked up on the vibe too. It suddenly became the topic in our ‘talk stories’ as hawaiian slang goes. There was a large agreement and unison as to why this dog was with us, and how she was home now.

Our discussion was discreet as not to be obvious we were talking down on them, but the feeling shot right through the walls.A week passed, and I thought of ways to make things official for this pit bull dog being with us. Confrontation on their part would be… interesting, to say the least. I would have to point out the reasoning of why we wanted her thus exploiting their own shortcomings. I decided to just keep showing the love and Aloha. So I did.

Another week passed and it came up suddenly in small talk with the neighbors, they asked humbly if we would take her since she lives over here so much now. I just looked in their eyes saying “I will, Mahalo, she’ll have a good life here don’t worry.”

Since this happened there’s been less loud music, gambling and a shady element on their side of the fence. My neighbors have taken small steps in the right directions as well. They still play with her through the fence, but I can tell… it still hurts them. I can tell though they’re working harder to get out of whatever hole they’ve dug themselves.Hmmm, maybe I should let them in too.

That’s it. I should have seen that earlier. Well, I’m off to re-open some holes in the fence.

Cool story, huh…

Now here’s a bunch of pit bull friendly sites with great info on adopting a pit bull… being a responsible owner, keeping them safe and happy as well as overcoming prejudices.



Leave a comment

Filed under all you need is a dog, All you need is love, animals, ASPCA, belly rubs, Best Friends, bigotry against dogs, breed specific laws, dog friendly, dog parks, dogs, end dog racism, end dogfighting, four paws up, Hawaii, K9 approved, keep pets safe, legislation against dogs, Michael Vick dogs, mutts, nanny dogs, pet rescue organizations, pit bull, polka dot discrimination, prejudice against dogs, random acts of kindness

California Gold Country, no dog left behind…

from Ukiah we decided to head east instead of going south. A mistake but we were adventuring and sometimes you error on the side of trying something new… the path we took was extremely twisty and windy for 20 miles, I would never take it again. We ended up in a pretty good place though. And checked out Marysville, Yuba City and other quaint towns along the way back to Carson City, Nevada. It was too hot and we wished we were back at the beaches.

Cici mostly sleeps in the car except when she has to go potty. It finally dawned upon me that the reason she gets restless and jumps around in the car is because she needs to make a pit stop. Otherwise, when she is all made in the shade, she just rolls up into a fur ball and rests her weary dog eyes and dreams about her next adventure. She loves driving in the car and discovered the pleasure of an open window while we drove. Aaaahhh, wind in my face. Coooool breezes, yummy.

The Gold country is interesting for humans and maybe for dogs… lots of trees and furry animals to chase. Further south of where we traveled at that time, we have stayed in Jackson, Placerville, Colfax, visited Mariposa, Calaveras and Nevada City and LOVE Grass Valley and Auburn.

We even visited Susanville, a VERY small town about an hour north of Reno. In fact, we originally headed from Eureka to Susanville to look at a place to live that did not work out. We stayed a few days over July 4th in Susanville and then decided to go back to see the redwoods (Avenue of the Giants) again. I thought it would be kind of fun to stay in a town named Susanville, since my name is Susan. Cici managed to eat a pair of magnifying reading glasses of mine there. And the motel was very nice especially for the price. Many small towns are higher priced than bigger cities since they don’t get as much traffic.

There is a very lovely highway that takes you from Susanville up to Mt Shasta. There were rumors of road work but we only encountered a couple of stops. We stopped at a few rest areas, some were extremely nice and dog friendly. Others were pathetic, little tiny patches of dirt. Cici enjoyed herself nevertheless. She is usually pretty easy to please. Give her a few bones, some treats or food, a few feet to lick and dogs to play with and she’s good to go. From Shasta, we went to Oregon, then across to the beach and down 101. The 101, as I said before, is very twisty windy above Ukiah.

Right before Shasta, we stopped at a gas station and asked about a place to have a cool refreshing puppy picnic. The manager there told us about a place. We drove about 25 miles plus some more miles looking for a real place. The place she told us about turned out to be a boat launch ramp, no sand, a few boats and no place to have a picnic. I was po’d and drove back and told the woman off. If you do not know what you are talking about, don’t give tips/advice. Someone else told me of a number of campground park type places that would have been more suitable, free and a few miles down the road from where we were. Instead, I drove to the KOA where we had reservations. Turned out that there was a misunderstanding so we drove up to Weeds and got a motel there. It was adequate and good to get out of the heat of the day.

Cici kissed me, wagged her tail and told me all was ok… we had chicken at the coffee shop and she was a happy camper.

It would have been nice to check out Mt Shasta but it was too darned hot… Here’s a few sites with info about the aforementioned places we visited…

No Pet left behind on this site…

Top 10 California dog hot spots

California has gone to the dogs



Leave a comment

Filed under AAA, Adventure, all you need is a dog, Arnold, auto club, B&B's, belly rubs, big dogs welcome, CA, California, camping, dog friendly, dog kisses, dogs, drive, driving, food, four paws up, funny, Gold country, how much is that doggie in the window, K9 approved, K9 travel, Mt. Shasta, mutts, Nevada, Oregon, pet care, pet friendly lodging, pet travel, travel, travel with dog, travelwriting

Dog friendly beaches… from Oregon to California…

ok, getting back on topic, traveling with my dog this past summer…We loved Ashland, as mentioned in my post about Silly Rabbit way back when. Medford was ok. The drive from Ashland to Brookings was very scenic, although the temperature was hot hot hot. 

We found a nice lake in Ashland near Dagoba. The folks there were gracious, gave us a few samples and directed us to a place to cool off. Cici jumped right in the water and splashed her little heart out while I watched. There was not a good place for me to be in the shade and the water was too muddy for my taste but refreshing for my dog who had been in the hot car. Splish splash.

Just north of Medford, in Grants Pass, we stopped at Cary’s, known for its English Toffee. Delish !  We received a warm welcome and free samples. They had just been featured on Rachael Ray’s TV show.  The deep dark chocolate toffee is fantastic so I was a happy camper. Cici had to stay in the car, so she waited patiently and sulked.

Brookings, Oregon was just plain strange. It was a relief to get to the cool ocean breezes and Cici was anxious to meet some doggie friends on the beach. But first, we stopped in at the Travel Center at Harris Beach State Park. They have a campground with four yurts and there is a beautiful rest area (the best we have ever sniffed anywhere).  It took some convincing and asking several people for permission to visit the yurts, but we managed to view a yurt that they use for kids. The other yurts were occupied by campers. The campground was brimming full of people, too claustrophobic for my taste. Isn’t the point of camping out to get away from everything, including people? 

The beaches from Astoria to Brookings are havens for dog lovers and their four-legged companions, who happily swim in the ocean, dig in the sand, and nap on the beach, according to the hype. The day was cloudy and overcast but we endeavored our way down the stairs to get to the beach. Cici sniffed the entire way, licked some feet of passersby, and we made it onto the sand. The coolness was invigorating and there were a few dogs with their humans. Cici wanted to play with all of them but settled for a large dog (mixed breed). The two pups rassled and chased one another across the wet sand and into pools of water while we humans chatted. Boring. 

Afterwards, we got a bite to eat at three places, a health food place, friendly people, ok carrot juice, and an Italian place, had a sad chicken parmesanlike sandwich. The third place is not even worth mentioning, that’s how bad it was. We had high hopes for chocolate but there were no venues worth mentioning. We were going to rest our sleepy heads in Brookings but the place frankly gave us the creeps. I love small towns and thought that the rest area would be safe. It was still daylight. The motels were not dog friendly and expensive. So it was not to be for us to stay overnight. There were a lot of restless adolescents (gangs) who seemed to be looking for trouble. So spur of the moment, we decided to head south.

Driving back down the coast is extremely twisty, windy on the 101 and on top of that we had weather to contend with. Thunderstorms with litning to boot. It quickly became dark and country dark, which is the darkest dark there is. Tiny towns with no accommodations, either. No place at the inn for me and my pup.  Sure, most people plan ahead  but me and my dog were flying by the seat of our paws. When you do that, you get a mixed bag. Wonderful discoveries and odd happenings. 

If I had done some research, could woulda shoulda found out about other places. We were going to go up to Gold beach but changed our minds. Oh well, another time…

Imagine, B&B’s that allow pets…

and Pet friendly vacation rentals

Finally, after much prayer and supplication for somewhere to rest for the weary, we found a youth hostel in the middle of nowhere. It was full to capacity and then some but we were able to camp out near their parking lot. They locked the gates so that no one could get inside and we felt safe at last. Cici slept in the car while I grabbed my sleeping bag and got some shuteye on the ground. 

The next morning, early, they opened the gate for us ahead of time, and we were off. We flew down past Arcata and Eureka, checked out the wildlife along the way,and the city of Ferndale, revisited the Avenue of the Giants and hunkered down for the night in a Redwood Forest. If you have never been to the Giant Redwoods, go immediately. The hushed forests are enchanting and magical.

The next day we headed down to Garberville, revisited new friends at a friendly gas station there, had a fabulous brunch, got on the Internet at the library. G-ville is a hippie enclave town, much like Sebastopol near Santa Rosa and Bodega Bay.  We checked out the parks, they were pretty small.,_California

According to wiki, The first settlers arrived in 1853 to what was then named “Dogtown.”

We checked out the One Log House… This tiny house was made out of one log and has an eating, sleeping and living area, sort of like a train compartment, only bigger. There is also a cafe where you can get on the Internet for free there. Cici sniffed and ran around on the grass.

After awhile, we made it to Ukiah, back to the Motel 6. But first, we made some friends at the Real Goods Solar Living Center in Hopland.  Cici enjoyed her usual run around and meet people, sniffing and licking feet every step of the way.

Tours of the Solar Living Center allow people of all ages to learn about solar and wind power, environmentally friendly building materials, passive and active solar design in architecture, and organic gardening and permaculture. Office hours are 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM Pacific Time. Self-Guided Tours of the Solar Living Center are always available during business hours. Stop by the office to pick up a free self-guided tour brochure.

U.S. and Canada Beach Guide for Dogs

There are about 270 of 1,500 beaches nationwide permit dogs…

Top Ten Dog Friendly Beaches


1 Comment

Filed under AAA, Adventure, all you need is a dog, auto club, B&B's, beach, Bodega Bay, California, camping, chocolate, chocolate tours, chocolate travel, dark chocolate, dog parks, dogs, drive, driving, eco tourism, four paws up, K9 approved, K9 travel, keep pets safe, mutts, Oregon, pet care, pet friendly lodging, pet travel, Solar Living tours, sustainable travel, swimming dogs, travel, travel with dog, travelwriting, women travel

luxury pet resorts for pooching on the ritz …

I thought it would be fun to research LUXURY pet accommodations, from the outrageous to the sublime… and what I mostly found was a lot of places call themselves luxury dog care when they clearly are not. Kuranda beds and cots do NOT make pampered pets feel spoiled.  Just having comfy sofas do not either. Most places charge between $20 and 50 a night. There is a pet hotel in Las Vegas that charges $70 a night but does not look like its services and accommodations are worth the extra expense. Charging people that much, the place should be truly spectacular, in my humble opinion. A veritable Doggie Palace fit for royalty.  People don’t want to pay extra unless there is glitz, bling bling and glamour involved, people.  Just to say that your dog or cat stayed in a pet hotel in Las Vegas, is that worth the additional cost?   

Here are a couple of places that actually live up to the name luxurious and do not charge exorbitantly for the privilege. 

And if you are interested in starting your own doggie daycare business, here are a few pointers. 

and a doggie castle



Filed under all you need is a dog, animals, belly rubs, big dogs welcome, dog friendly, dog spa, doggie daycare, dogs, Don't worry be happy, four paws up, K9 approved, keep pets safe, luxury travel, mutts, pet care, pet friendly lodging, pet travel, puppies, spoil your dog rotten, spoiled brat dog, travel with dog