Thursday, November 1, 2012


 If you open up any media website you can find several articles with the latest crime and tragedy. Such headlines seem all too numerous these days. However, among the dark I always seem to notice the light. There are stories with happy endings and miracles. We think we have such a story in our home.

It may sound like a farce because it is no secret that we, or rather, I had much anxiety over the cost of the ACL surgery we thought Africa would need and therefore perhaps you may question my sincerity of our miracle. We had a family member offer to help us with the cost of surgery and were even sent the money. We were super grateful, but still hesitated and wanted to give it time to heal.

It went from bad to worse. Soon she was limping on the opposite knee which we had heard could happen once she started to favor the one. We put her on Rimadyl and Dasuquin to help with the joints and inflammation. We also reduced her food because she is overweight and tried to reduce her movement.

I am happy to report that she is much improved. Miracles do happen even with dogs. Little Jack prayed every night to "please help Africa to get better" and I can tell you that I fervently prayed and not just because there were dollar bills in my eyes. She is walking without any limp and took her first walk yesterday without any consequences. We still don't want her to overdo it and realize she is still susceptible to injury, but thankfully she is happy to lay around and take it easy.

We are grateful to have her well again and I have even seen her running after joggers and walkers in the yard. Thank you so much for your concern and advice. Below are a few articles that helped convince us that sometimes surgery is not necessary and to try other remedies. It may still be inevitable, but for now we be happy with the blessings we have.

Monday, August 6, 2012

A Bum Deal

Actually it is not the bum, it's Africa's knee. It seems that Africa has torn her ACL and now requires a very expensive surgery. Perhaps you can tell from the photo but she is keeping her weight off the back right knee and walks around on 3 legs now. In short, it is a bum deal for her and us.

As much as I would like to complain about the cost, the fact that the husband works 3 jobs as it is, and the inconvenience of an injury like this, I mostly want to complain about how sad it is for Africa.

As you may recall we started our love affair for the breed, South African Boerboel, with our beloved Tonka who loved a short happy life due to Wobbler's Disease. His disease was so rare and tragic that we had no doubt that our next one would be unbelievably healthy and live an active life. This was not the case. Before this injury, Africa has been suffering from arthritis at just 3 years old. She is on glucosamine which helps, but this injury will only exasperate the arthritis and make her essentially suffer for the rest of her life.

For now, she is on anti inflammatories to see if that helps and then we will schedule this really expensive surgery knowing that the stress of walking on the other knee will probably cause the same thing to happen.

I realize that many of you have pets who suffer from long term ailments as well. How do you cope with it? Africa is like our child and knowing she will have a life filled with a lot of immobility is frustrating. How do you cope with surprise costs in an already tight budget?  Any thoughts and similar experiences with this kind of surgery and injury on a large breed dog would be appreciated. In the meantime, chin up! At least that is what I am telling myself.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Every Little Boy Deserves A Dog

Why does every post contain a picture of Africa on our near her bed? Because that is where she spends 99% of the time. Therefore, this is where I capture most of my pictures of her. This picture features my own little creature, Jack. He is the perfect child and makes up for where I am the worst mother.
He has figured out that I am not a morning person and therefore wakes up when the sun is up and cuddles with Africa. Adorable? Yes. Tragic? Perhaps, but I really am ok with it. I would like to take this time to thank Africa for being there for Jack in the morning when I am not available. Usually I find him sitting on her bed just petting her, but on this morning his 5 a.m. "rise and shine" got the best of him. Every little boy needs a dog.

Sweet dreams.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

One Bark and Scary Night

It is 3 a.m. and I am not sure if I am awake or dreaming. A loud bark from Africa confirms that I am indeed awake and this is not a dream, but maybe a nightmare. The husband is away and I think my biggest fear is about to occur.

Africa never barks unless there is a human on or near our property that is not expected or welcome. Typical night sounds, other dogs barking, or anything that usually provokes a dog to bark, does not inspire Africa to needless noise. This trait is fantastic because we all know how annoying barking can be.

It is this knowledge that made me to begin to shake and panic when I was awakened to very confidant barking coming from the main part of my house in the very dark, and early hours of the morning. It got worse when I realize that Africa is even more loud and running across the house towards the garage.

I grabbed my cell next to me and immediately dialed 911. I explained that I was alone, I had two young children, and my dog was barking uncontrollably which never happens. I asked the operator to just stay with me as I investigated. She was ready to send someone, but Africa stopped barking just as I opened my bedroom door.

I checked out the rest of the house and garage and of course didn't find anyone. I confess I am an extremely paranoid person especially after becoming a mom, but I know that if Africa is barking, there is a reason.

I still don't know what that was, if anything. I live in a very safe neighborhood and a community with a low crime rate, but know that anything can happen at anytime. A similar experience has happened once before 2 years ago. It also resulted in nothing, but the that kind of feeling of panic is never far away from my memory. My own personal theory is that if it was someone, without even seeing Africa, her very bark is aggressive enough that she would have scared someone away.

I can speculate and wonder forever, but the one thing I am sure of is that I have an incredible guard dog who was a hero on that night and probably other times I don't even know about.

It is scary out there, but a lot less scary when you have one of these.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Hoppy Spring!

Africa is always a good sport and didn't let the kids down on being the Easter Bunny this year. She brought them lots of candy, silly toys, and deviled eggs for me. We hope spring has been good to you and wish you lots of rain and happiness. If you don't want any rain, please send it our way. Arizona just never gets enough.  Hoppy Spring!!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Definition of B. I. G.

You know you are big when you require two extra large dog beds.

Monday, March 5, 2012

One of These Things is Not Like the Other

Does posting pictures of these two together ever get old? Perhaps, but not in this house. We love this duo. I know I have stated previously that these two critters are only 3 days apart. There are a lot of reasons these two make for such great friends, however, by comparison perhaps it is the differences that bring them together because they have very little in common. Let's take a look.

Africa                                                       The Boy
150 lbs                                                      35 lbs
Potty Trained                                            Still has accidents, but working on it
Sleeps all day on her bed                          Never sits still, even when asleep
Barks (speaks) only when visitors arrive  Never stops speaking even when asleep
Eats two meals a day                                 Seems to eat 15.5 meals a day
Has eaten all her stuffed animals               Has one "lovie" from the beginning that goes everywhere
Only kind of likes me                                 Loves me
Dreams of being sent to time- out              Does not like time-out

drools                                                          drools
loves to catch balls                                      loves to catch and throw balls
Loves the man of the house                        REALLY loves the man of the house
Is loved by us                                               Is really LOVED by us

So you see there are tons of differences, but none of that matters when there is so much love between a boy and a dog.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Mr. Chewy On My Door Step

Is there anything better than getting your dog's food delivered to your door? I think not. This busy mom of two loves any help I can get when it comes to shopping and convenience. I recently tried out Mr Chewy's website to get dog treats and dog food for Africa. It is the best kind of shopping there is. Not only does this site offer Africa's favorite treats and dog food, but it also has free shipping on orders over $49.
Here's the scoop on my new favorite online pet store:
-70+ Brands – Mr. Chewy offers a wide selection and adding new in demand
brands regularly.
-Subscription based ordering for hassle free delivery of your favorite
-Prompt shipping throughout the United States.
-Free Shipping for any order over $49

I'm not sure who got the better treat, Africa with her bag of dog goodies, or me with this new great website. Check them out at :

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Naughty and Nice

It is easy to see how adorable this is. I am especially pleased that the little one went to Africa instead of waking me up at 5 a.m. as usual. There is nothing like a quick little snooze with your favorite horse on her comfortable bed. However, can you spot the naughty in this picture? It seems that one of the subjects in the photo is house broken, the other is not...yet.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Happy New Year! We've Been Busy!

By "we", I mean everyone but the lovely beast you see here. The toddler is in charge around here doing everything just shy of starting the house on fire. The baby is 10 months old and army crawling like crazy. The wife (hey that's me!) is trying to stick to her new year resolution of complaining less and loving more, and the boss/husband/ Africa's lover, is working is tail off like the rest of society for a better future and a little less "pay check to pay check".

What is Africa doing? What she does best. Guarding and sleeping. It isn't a bad gig. She has a new fluffy dog bed not shown here and has given up entirely on laying by our feet on the second class carpet. I don't blame her. Her bed is nicer than mine. She continues to be the best dog ever to our kids and therefore I love her.

I apologize for the repeat tacky plug of our business but we need all the help we can get. Besides being a firefighter, carpenter, and reserve firefighter for another company, my husband has started a longboard manufacturing company in my garage. Gasp! It is as small and wonderful as it sounds. He has been like a mad scientist coming off shift from being up 24 hours running calls to staying up until midnight creating and calculating how to make the best longboard skateboard.

I will spare you the long amazing story that has taken place in the last 3 years (hence my absence), but let's just say we are about 3 years too late getting into the gig because suddenly longboarding became really popular with lots of new companies while we were still in our garage coming up with what we thought would put the rest to shame.

So with lots of pleading and humility I come to you my blogging friends asking if you could spare a link on your link list.. The way to compete with the rest is to move up in the "googling" world (not yet a word). If someone adds a link - with the title or name being : skateboards longboard that would help us tremendously. NO worries if you like to keep your blog clean, but if you see this as no big deal and do help us, we can't thank you enough. Every link helps and makes it possible for people to find our site. If you do this and think it was no big deal or hard to do, I hope you know that just helped make a huge leap in our business venture. Thank you so very much just for your support all this time and for loving your pets in common with us. WE love and appreciate you!

Special thanks to Norwood Unleashed for the huge plug on your blog to our business and for the twitter follow. If I ever do get rich, I am buying you a house.

Sleepy Africa
and Kasha