Lulu

The Occasional Cavorting and Musings of a Female Staffordshire Bull Terrier

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Recipes by Lulu

Well, friends, dare I say it? Yes, it’s time to bring summer to a gentle, loving closure. Nights are longer, days are cooler and the leaves are turning to reds and yellows. (For us dogs, anyway. Brown doesn’t exist, remember?)

As I’m sure you’ve noticed, appetites increase during these cooler days of autumn. All things considered, this is part of a natural process. Our recent ravenous appetite is a direct vestigial link to our mammalian cave dwelling ancestors and their readiness for hibernation during the endless bleak winters of an earlier time.


My purpose in writing today is to share two of my favorite “cooler weather” entrée recipes with you. Those of you who are skilled in culinary arts may wish to try these on your own, but I should warn you that some tasks require specific manual dexterities and the use of opposable thumbs. You might consider enlisting the help of a human, if you can get one off the couch.


Beef Stew


Ingredients:
• 4 pounds stewing beef – leave fat ON!

• NO onions

• 3 - 4 cans (approx. 10 1/2 ounces) condensed beef broth

• 3 cups diced potatoes

• 2 cups diced carrots

• 6-8 fresh kitty turds, all litter removed, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

• seasoned salt to taste

Place beef in a large pot. Exercise caution in sampling so not to disproportion the additional ingredients. Add beef broth until liquid level is about 1 inch above the beef. Add potatoes, carrots, and kitty turds. Gently stir mixture with a very large spoon. (You will need opposable thumbs. Get a human to do this!) Add salt to adjust flavor. Cooking is optional, but remember to pour mixture in a bowl that will accommodate neck length.
(Serves 2 large dogs, 4 small breed)


Pizza


Ingredients:
• 4 (7 ½ ounce) refrigerator biscuits

• 1 (16 ounce) jar pizza sauce

• NO onions!

• 2 – 4 pounds of your choice of pizza ingredients:
Italian sausage, pepperoni, hamburger, Canadian bacon, ham, liver, chicken, salmon, tuna, knockwurst, frankfurter, lamb, pork, veal, fresh kitty turds (remember to remove all litter)
• 16 – 24 ounces mozzarella cheese

• 16 – 24 ounces cheddar cheese

Cut refrigerator biscuits into halves or quarters. Stir together in a supersized bowl with pizza sauce. (Again, you will need opposable thumbs! Get a human to help with this!)
Add desired pizza ingredients to the bowl and mix well. Spray 9 X 13’’ pan with vegetable spray. Pour in pizza mixture. Bury the mixture with cheese. Crumble additional kitty turds on top for added flavor and presentation. Bake, if desired.
(Serves 2 large dogs, 4 small breed)


My friends, I do hope you take the time to treat yourself to eating well. Remember, presentation is very important! Your human will continue to serve you cardboard tasting science diet from a bag or jellied obscure body parts from a can ONLY if you allow it.

Don't you deserve an enticing, well planned meal after a day of guarding the home from unwanted solicitors? You would do well to remember, too, that Chopin and candlelight are NOT solely reserved for the top link in the food chain. Bon appetit!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Dog Talk

I have a dog who barks all day,
And all he ever has to say
Is "Woof! Woof! Woof!" and "Bow-Wow-Wow!"
I wish my dog could talk somehow!

If he could talk, I'm sure he'd say,
"Woof, Woof! Have fun at school today!
I'll wait right here 'til you come home.
Bow-Wow! Then I won't be alone."
Author: Terry Kluymans

Hello, my friends.

I don’t know about you, but I wonder how long they will remain in denial.

Since the beginning of time, dogs have accompanied humans on life’s unpredictable journeys. Dogs have observed their fellow humans cautiously and witnessed their every waking move. Indeed, we have listened and learned, analyzed and assessed – cumulatively - for what seems like several thousands of years.

How is it, then, that humans have not reciprocated in this regard? How is it that, after all this time together, they still fail to recognize our superior capabilities?

What do I mean by all of this? Hey! Glad you asked.

Clearly, dogs can second guess the end result of any given situation. Take this following scenario as an example:

Cause: Human picks up telephone receiver and dials after sun goes down.

Effect: Dog immediately relocates to "den with TV" and lies next to couch.

Twenty minutes later: Fellow humans generously offer leftover pizza crust to said dog who is conveniently proximated with award winning “Hey…remember me?” face.

To our credit, a dog’s thinking patterns are exquisitely simplified without the excess of clutter stashed in all those hidden cranial compartments. This allows us to predict a situation before it occurs.

Basically, our thoughts utilize whole concepts, quite similar to the translation of symbolic hieroglyphics or Chinese character writing. Words never enter into our thought processes, that is, with the exception of the spoken human word which translates into singular concepts if recognized…. or an endless stream of unidentifiable sound bytes.

That said, you will never catch a dog talking to himself about where he left his bone, or rehashing an embarrassing circumstance that occurred with the mail carrier. But… how is it that I am able to wordsmith this posting? It's simple, really.

Dogs are skilled in the art of mimicry. Just as the viceroy mimics the monarch, dogs can mimic select abilities of the homo sapiens. In this case, it is the minicry of creating and interpreting language patterns to communicate on a basic fundamental level of understanding.

And so… where does barking enter the equation?

Down through history, humans have depended on dogs to protect them from their own kind. Dogs were encouraged to bark to frighten or warn of impending danger. They were expected to bark. Barking, not to be confused with howling, has become an invaluable trait of the loyal family watchdog. Social mores currently dictate that dogs, who demonstrate great skill in proper situational barking, earn recognition as coveted pets with enviable perks and pampered lifestyles. Hence, barking is a learned behavior that has been carried over from generation to generation, similar to Native American storytelling.

It should be noted, however, that monotony in a dog’s everyday life may provoke “boredom barking.” Barking due to boredom is purely done for a dog’s own amusement, and is brought about by the unchallenged level of intelligence I alluded to previously.

So.

For a human child to wish that a dog talk is human self-gratifying, to say the least. The sad fact is that humans are forever trying to control their world and everything in it. From their limited egocentric viewpoint, it is far more comfortable for them to live in a world where human fantasy reigns and biodiversity is nonexistent. A world where cats wear hats ... and dogs can talk.

To that, I can only say, "Woof, woof, arf, and bow wow wow."

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Egad! I've Been Tagged!

Thanks a BUNCH, Buster.

I’ve been tagged and now it’s MY turn to list five weird things about myself.

I guess I need to post instructions for my victims, so here goes:

The player of this game starts by listing “5 weird things/habits” about him/herself, then tags five friends and lists their names. Those who get “tagged” need to write on their blogs about their “5 weird “things/habits,” as well as state this rule clearly, then “tag” 5 more victims.

Note: Don’t forget to leave your victim a comment that says “you’re tagged!” in their comments and tell them to read your blog.

Uh oh. Before I begin, I have two questions.

1.) What if I tag someone who’s been tagged before? Is that okay?

2.) Is this game limited to dogs only?

I guess I'm operating in a vacuum. Since I don’t have access to game footnotes, I choose the following victims:

Let’s see now…WHO will it be, hmm?
I think I’ll go with:

1.) Sid
2.) Simon
3.) Wally
4.) Fufu
5.) Ray and Jay Monkey

And now… drum roll, please!

Hmm… this takes some courage.

Five quirky things about myself by Lulu:

1.) I’m absolutely terrified of the vacuum cleaner. I can’t tell you if it’s the growling sound it makes or its serpentine neck with that sucking mouthpart. Whenever it comes out of its closet, I try to get that coiled neck by the throat and pull. I even will stoop to sneaking a "sucker nip" when its totally unguarded, unplugged and sleeping. My human gets so annoyed with me, but I can’t stop. Maybe it’s a past life connection, I dunno.

2.) I really don’t know if I should reveal this one. Well... what the hay. Okay, so I’m afraid of strangers. I guess I’m just a big wuss. When a strange human comes to the door, I hide downstairs and bark from the basement. When a strange animal comes near the house, I bark at it from INSIDE the house. There’s even this family of deer that frequently pass through the backyard and they scare the bejeesus out of me. Even the baby fawn terrifies me. It’s remarkable how much noise you can make from the basement when you have a good healthy bark.

3.) I know I’m not alone in this, but I like to feast on fresh kitty yummies right out of the oven, especially Miss Kitty's. I usually can pull this off because I wait till no one’s around and my head fits perfectly through the top cover door of the litter box. Thing is, I often forget to wipe the litter off my bottom lip and they’re now beginning to talk.

4.) I’m not a natural blonde. The summer sun and chlorine from the pool tends to bleach my fur. Of course, all one has to do is look beneath where the hairline is darker.

5.) Whenever Ole’ Yeller is sleeping, I hump his head. My human calls this a dominant behavior. She may be right because, as I see it, it’s totally asexual and I like to do this because…well… I can, and he still sleeps through the entire event. I’ve been spayed and besides, I sometimes won’t align myself well and I hump his neck, his back… his leg… his tail…his anything. Oh, God, this is so embarrassing.

Hey, Buster… can I tag you back? I don’t see that in the rules, ole’ buddy.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Express Yourself!


Alright girls... can we talk?

Let's put it right here on the table.


Scooting. You know... the drag the butt thang across the carpet.

It's bad enough when you have to handle the discomfort for yourself, but the stares and comments of horrified spectators add insult to injury.
From the looks we receive, one would surmise that they are completely ignorant of WHY we scoot on carpets. And, as you know, it is not a behavior limited to dogs. Although they would rather be more discreet, cats earn their share of frequent flier miles in rug scoots, as well. I'd like to say I've observed my humans do much the same, but the closest I've seen to this activity in humans involved a Billy Blanks workout tape.

Scooting, I understand, is generally caused by one of two reasons: clogged anal glands or... I can scarcely say it... worms.


Bag the worm thing, I KNOW I'm clean. Rather, it must be due to the... forgive me if this catches in my throat... "clogged anal glands."
The sad thing about this is that we dogs can't help this affliction. We really could use some assistance relieving the pressure that builds in these glands. I've read that ANY well-meaning human can do the job. However, here's where I draw the line, for obvious reasons.

To these humans I say: It's bad enough we dogs need some help, but please don't bother if you need a road map to do the task.
The following is informational background posted on the Internet to educate humans about how to relieve a dog's anal sacs.

Please be forewarned that the following content is neither for the squeamish nor faint of heart:


Most dogs are not too concerned about having their anal sacs expressed but we do have some that resent it -- even though they are trying hard to express them on their own by scooting and rubbing on the rug or ground. It probably is uncomfortable for the pet to express these sacs when they are very full or difficult to express.

If you want to try this at home it is often possible to do so. The anal sacs are located at about the 4 o'clock and 8 o'clock positions if you imagine the area around the rectum to be a clockface. It is usually possible to feel them under the skin at these points when they are full. In some dogs the sacs can be pretty far to the side of the rectum but most are about 1/4th to 1/2 inch to the side. If the glands are pressed against each other by pinching the rectal area together they will usually express. It is hard to get them as empty as the vet can by doing this rectally but most pets tolerate it better so it can be done more frequently. Don't push so hard that you rupture an anal sac, though. That leads to significant problems.

If you succeed, you should see an exudate exuding from the ducts. It can vary from liquid to a thick paste and may be gray, tan, brown or black and be normal. Blood or other colored exudates may indicate a problem.

Whoa, baby! Thanks, but NO thanks, Dr. Mike!

Certainly, this procedure is a tad more involved than one might think. That understood, wouldn't you agree that a certain degree of empathy is required to do the job? I mean... do we want just ANY human to do this? I strongly doubt that someone - who five minutes ago glared at me in horror and shouted, "DON'T DO THAT ON THE PERSIAN!!" - would handle my fragile posterior with the utmost of concern. More importantly, we dogs do not want clods manhandling our bodies when there are risks involved.

Somewhere in all of this is a dog's plea for simple dignity. We reserve the right to have qualified caring humans attempting this delicate procedure. Ultimately, I say we dogs reserve the inherent right to "express" ourselves whether it be the classic unprovoked bark in the night, or a good saucy scoot on the carpet.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

More Miss Kitty Jokes, As Per Request

DOGS and RODENTS ONLY, PLEASE!

If you are a cat and offend easily, don't read any further!
Of course, if you ARE Miss Kitty, read on!


MORE Miss Kitty Jokes

What's red and gooey and found in a shark's mouth?
Miss Kitty overboard!

Did you hear about the dog who missed Miss Kitty?
He took another punch!

What do you call it when a buzzard throws a dead Miss Kitty to another buzzard?
Food fight!

What do you do when Miss Kitty goes out?
Use lighter fluid!

What do you do when Miss Kitty has a bruise?
Be careful to eat around it!

What would you call Miss Kitty with half a brain?
Gifted!

And...while we're on the subject...
if you've never pawed through this book, have a look. It's one of my very favorites!




Monday, September 04, 2006

I've Got Mail!



My Irish heart is stirred. It's not that I fall in love easily, mind you.

You may recall my brief encounter with the dashing golden from Canada.

He had asked me to.... of all things... "marry" him, but then... well, he disappeared just as quickly as he came on the blogging scene. (No link, right? Like I said, *POOF* gone.) It may have been the comment about my being the alpha in our home. I should really learn to keep my darn feminist mouth shut.

Well, let me tell you - the other day I received the following email from yet another admirer. Shortly thereafter, I suffered a rash of symptoms which include uncontrollable tail twitching, general inattentiveness, or not responding when called (even when there's doggie treats involved), and a loss of appetite, to name a few.

Here's the letter:

Hi Lulu,

I couldn't agree with you more about the blahblahblahing they all seem to do. When I bark, and a fine and fierce bark it is, if I do say so... I have good reason. Why, just the other day my human parked his car in a different place than he ususally does. That was a fine reason to warn the house something was not quite right, eh? And I howl when I feel neglected. Sometimes my human goes in the next room (odd dens they create...don't you agree?) without giving me a decent amount of morning affection... you know... big hugs, scratching in the usual places and, of course, biscuit de jour. And I let him know. I hooowwwwwl as only an Irish Wolfhound, or perhaps a Basset, can. But I tell you... no blahblah involved. But, I mean every sonic sorrow. No matter that the door is open and I could get off the couch and just go to him for the completion of the morning ritual. No! He needs to do this properly. And he knows it as well as I. After I am sated, he can go about his business... and I can have a snooze on my couch.

I have a confession to make. About once a week I bark... at absolutely nothing. No woodland creature passing in the night.... no automobile coming up the drive, not even a passer-by on foot. I bark a bit, standing right in the middle of the room with my couch, and my human will come out to see why I have sounded the alarm. I just smile at him and then go sit on my couch. A mild form of entertainment for me. And nobody gets hurt. Understand that this is as close to blahblah as I ever get... and it clearly is NOT blahblah.

Lulu, about the feline thing... I have one of those as well. It imagines itself to be canine so I indulge its delusional construct. I even go so far as to give it a canine greeting when we meet. I stick my schnazola on the tail end of the feline. It seems to at once accept the greeting and act as if there was no greeting taking place at all. They are, at best, odd creatures. At any rate, the kitty jokes are laughoutloud funny... keep 'em coming.

Well, I need to go have a nap.

Oh, how rude. My name is Fergus. If you're ever in the neighborhood I know of a fine beach with the finest odors.....mmm..mmmm.mmm. A fine place to sniff and romp... romp and sniff.

T.T.F.N.


Lulu again. Now isn't that just the sweetest letter ever?
Fergus, he says. Sounds sort of like something you'd contract from fleas or mites.

Fergus.
Clans, pipes, and drums.
Scottish extraction, Irish eyes.
Furry legs in kilts.

Fergus.
A romp on the beach.
Salt air, crashing waves.

Fergus.
My Druid on the woodland shore.

Ah. There's that lightheadedness again... the uncontrollable twitching tail.

I think I need to chew some grass.

Dog Stereotyping


Reading is one of my most favorite pastimes, next to spying on Miss Kitty, and occasionally I might come across something I may wish to share with you... like now.

Here is a poem I find most disturbing:

My Dog Chewed Up My Homework
by Bruce Lansky

I'm glad to say my homework's done.
I finished it last night.
I've got it right here in this box.
It's not a pretty sight.
My dog chewed up my homework.
He slobbered on it, too.
So now my homework's ripped to shreds
and full of slimy goo.
It isn't much to look at,
but I brought it anyway.
I'm going to dump it on your desk
if I don't get an A.


Whoa, Bruce... I'd say you're barking up the wrong tree!

I’m not certain if Mr. Lansky is attempting at humor, but if you’re a dog, this poem is highly distasteful and grossly insulting. The very idea of the family pet as the scapegoat for the human child’s inability to commit is unprovoked and downright malicious. Moreover, I take great issue with the common dog here portrayed as a drooling, dim-witted creature whose only purpose in life is to satisfy an overactive oral fixation. Words like “slobber” and “goo” leave little room for the imagination to conjure anything else but an offensive stereotype.


I may write to Mr. Lansky via email and tell him of my concerns. Discrimination against dogs, humans, or otherwise, should NEVER be tolerated. We dogs need to nip these things in the bum, as they say, and that’s precisely where such narrow-mindedness dwells.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Help is Sought


The word is out. I've contacted the “All supreme Ayatollah of Pug Life Ministries" to attempt his assistance in purging Miss Kitty of her demon(s). I had suspected that Miss Kitty was under the influence for quite some time. It is no surprise to me that she is, indeed, a refuge for impure and malevolent spirits - as evidenced by the above photo.

All precaution will be taken with regard to feline waste in the event that impurities seek new unsuspecting hosts.


There appears to be a contagion of sorts that may be transferred to cohabitating organisms, and THIS I suspect from the photo posted below.


Please note the offending curvature of the tail, as well as the sulfuric yellow glowing eyes.

Old Yeller will not approve of my hiding his kitty litter box tray full of fresh kitty yummies, but I am compelled to act in his defense. May heaven protect us.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Tug O' War



Ever try this at home? You should! There is no better way to have a tug o’war then on the kitchen floor in your doggie paws.

What appears to be an impasse in the photo belies the battle that followed. I dragged Old Yeller clear across one end of the room to the other as his feet slipped every which way – kind of like humans would do if they tried this in their socks.


Anyway, I guess I should tell you we agreed winner takes two out of three tries. Miss Kitty even volunteered to replace the red rope Frisbee toss you see here... but she doesn't know it yet.