meet ladybug

Home Up Sidney dundee

she's my oldest and my hairiest friend!

 

OK, so I have a lot of hairy friends. I grew up in the Middle East for God sakes! LOL. But Ladybug is by FAAAAR the hairiest of all the hairy, fuzzy, wookie like people I know. She's got hair, she knows how to spread them ;)! Oh, and did I mention she also has four legs? And yes, she knows how to show them, too ;). 

You have guessed it, Ladybug is not a person. Or is she? They say like owner like dog, and over the years (18 of them to be precise), her and I have (by osmoses) morphed into one another. So much so that I dare you to figure out who is who in the photos below (click on any photo to see the full version)

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see?

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Not only do we look alike, but in many ways we act alike. We both are petite, feisty, funny, selective, calm, loyal and we both play with our food before we eat it :). Oh, and we are both a lot older than we look (hehehehehe). We both shed platinum blond hair ;), and we both have dark brown eyes. We both are pretty deaf. We both are resilient, cautious and noble. Oh, and we both look kinda funny when wet. LOL.

A sad story turns into a happy one

So how exactly did Ladybug come into my life? I remember that day like it was yesterday. She was only one year old then. I had a chiropractor appointment (following a bad car accident) and the doctor was running late. Bored, I walked out and wandered into the next door shop (a pet store). They also groomed dogs by the way. I stepped in and immediately a little dog, laying down in a crate caught my eye. She looked SO SAAAAAAD. She had her head flush with the ground, her chin on the floor, and only her little eyes where moving, following my every moves. She was so beautiful I had to ask what breed she was (I had never seen a dog quite like this before). The nice saleslady said: "She is a Lhasa Apso. She is abandoned and needs a home, do you want to see her?". Who could resist? Of course I immediately agreed. The lady proceeded to let Lady our of her cage and told me her sad story. A man (A BAD BAD man) had dropped her off to get 'groomed'. What the store didn't realize is that what he really was dropping her off for was to get 'dumped'. He never intended to come back to pick her up. Weeks went by, and they tried to track him down, but the number and address he had provided were false (duh). Poor little Lady had been waiting for 3 weeks in this tiny crate. Waiting and waiting and waiting and waiting for a man who never returned. (Bad Karma).

The door of the crate opened and Lady came rushing to me, wagging her tail and greeting me like I was her mommy, and had always been. It was love at first sight. The store really needed to find her a home, they no longer could keep her. Say no more, she already had found a special place in my heart. So I bought a leash and a collar, and Lady and I walked out of this God forsaken place together right there and then, side by side. Like two peas in a pod. She would never leave my side for the next 17 years.

Wait. There is more. A few weeks later the pet store woman gave me a call to check up on how Lady was doing and she confessed that Lady did not like anyone at the store and had tried to bite just about every single one of them. But she loved me and was a sweetheart to me. That was a sign. Her and I belonged together. It took her a few months to adjust and start to relax. She was very scared of everything and everyone. Especially men with canes. She would growl at such apparitions and I concluded she had been abused. Furthermore she hated kids. And was terrified of other dogs, regardless of how small. Even tiny puppies would make her bolt away. Eventually, after years of love and nurturing, Lady (who then became LadyBug), changed and became more trusting and peaceful. To this day though she only trusts one person: ME.

A funny little pooch

Poopie sure is a cute little doggie. She is the ' comic relief' of the household. Face it, the kid is a natural. She's funnier than hell and she doesn't even know it. Although I sometimes feel a bit guilty about laughing so hard, I just can't help it. For example, she has the uncanny ability to always be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Say for example I am sweeping the kitchen. LadyBug could be sleeping in one spot ALL DAY LONG, without moving an inch. As soon as I am sweeping (no matter how quietly I do it), she's right between my legs. No matter where I try to place my pile of debris, Ladybug is sure to find it. Since she is half blind (or more), I conclude the dog has a debris radar in her head. She will go straight to my neat pile (BEEEP BEEEP BEEEP) and walk right through the middle of it, scattering everything with her long hair!!!! Now a day, I watch for her appearance before she has a chance to reach the pile. Gently, I reprogram her radar by turning her around and sending her the other direction (any direction that Goes AWAY from the debris pile). Invariably she comes right back and straight to the pile. Is my dog part boomerang???

One of the funniest thing she does is her 'electrocuted doggie' trick. She rolls all over the carpet, rubbing her back, sides and especially her muzzle on the carpet fibers. Once 'charged' she jumps up and give you that  ZZZZZAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAP   look, you know, the look where her hair is literally standing STRAIGHT UP like she has been zapped at 500,000,000,000 volts!  

That look, my friend is why I love my dog so much! 

Her latest stunt: Saturday, I hear this strange noise. Frooooosh, froooooosh, froooooosh... Puzzled, I tried to identify the unfamiliar and oh so very peculiar sound... Froooooosh, frooooosh... Was it coming from the living room? I walk down the hall and there it was: Ladybug was talking a walk with a 'pet' plastic grocery bag. I'll explain: I had (oh so very temporarily) left one empty bag lying on the floor and of course leave it to poopie to manage to somehow step right inside the handle of the bag as she was walking down the hall. Bag gets around her ankle and she drags it all over the house, completely unaware it is there (cause she can't hear). Light as it is she didn't even feel it around her paw. So there she is, like a white ghost dragging its chain and bowl, dragging the grocery bag ALL OVER the house, making the mysterious noise "Frooooosh, frooooosh, froooooosh". I laughed my head off.

botanical dog.GIF (167109 bytes)Then she also has the "let's remodel the apartment" trick. Doesn't matter where I put her doggie bed, it just is never right. Mrs. Poopie has the uncontrollable urge to relocate. At any time of the day (or night >8(  ), you can see her pushing her bed around. I wake up the next day and she has moved it from the bedside all the way out into the hallway. Go figure. "Where is she going?" Oh, and did I mention it is never on the right side? She always ends up flipping it around (the bed is always softer on the other side LOL). Lately she added yet one more weird trick to her repertoire: she now sleeps "underneath" her doggie pillow. In other words, she is now a pillow for her pillow LOL !!! I tell ya, this dog is getting more and more entertaining as the years go by ;).

Remember what I said? We both look a lot younger than we really are :). Poopie is now 18 years old. And I wouldn't give her more than 5. Granted, her breath has turned into a real biohazard, a deadly weapon: One small sniff and you DIE. ;).

Over the years, Lady became LadyBug, then 'Poopie' and then also 'Terminator' and even Lazarus. Lazarus? Yep. Lazarus. Wondering how she inherited this new name? Wonder no more: Get the whole scoop right here, right now. You'll see, it's worth it.

Poopie drowns, dies and comes back from the dead

Of all the adventures my dog has had in the last 18 years (and she has had quite a few - see below), this one is by far the most impressive. In 2002, I left my Burbank apartment and Mr.181and I moved to a nice home up on a hill in West Hills. Finally I could enjoy a nice garden, a Jacuzzi and yes, a pool. I was enchanted. Which is more than I can say about Poopie. At her old age (17), the change of scenery was more than she wanted to deal with. She started sulking, became confused, trying to escape out of the rose garden through the fence. But the bars were too close to allow her body to go through. In her (somewhat senile) mind, she was not home. Home was Burbank. So she probably wanted to go back there. At any rate, after about 3 months of sulking, and not wanting to eat anything, she wasted to nothing. I was really worried that the end might have come for my Poopie. :((((. Was she going to die on me? Yes. As a matter of fact, she was. But not quite the way I was expecting. Poopie is a very creative little pooch. So she lost just enough weight to finally squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeze herself through the fence, out of the garden and into the pool area. It was a Wednesday morning. I was at work. No one was home but her and Berlin (the rottie) (more on that later). Poopie, who has become pretty blind, proceeds to walk straight to the pool and PLOUF. You guess the rest. She falls head first in the water, struggles to get out, can't and finally, exhausted, drowns. As in drowned DEAD.

Meanwhile, up in the heavens, God, who always keeps an eye out for her, told her guardian angel: 'Roll up your sleeves buddy, you got some work to do!'. So off the angel went (wheeeeeeeeesh) and lady learns to swim.JPG (35299 bytes)
inspired our pool man to coincidentally show up just in time. And the pool man only cleans our pool once a week. So he arrives and finds little Poopie floating about the pool on her side, lifeless. He fishes her out. She is motionless. He rubs her belly for a while. Finally, she moves. Out of the tunnel she comes, escorted by her guardian angel: "Your time has not come yet - he said" (how do I know? She told me) ;). Yes, believe it or not, at 17 years of age, my Poopie drowned and came back to talk about it. Granted she was a bit shook up but when I rushed home (my landlord called me to let me know what had happened), I was surprised to find her 'up and running', walking around, although a bit lopsided (she had water in her inner ear). After 3 days of lopsiding :), she returned to her normal self. Needless to say I decided to enroll her in swimming classes (see photo to the right) (yop, I told you we both look funny when we're wet) and got her to learn how to climb out on her own. We also immediately placed a trellis at the base of the fence just in case she ever was able to squeeze out through the fence again. Now this will never be an option. 

Lady has had many other adventures. Some of them worth telling. 

Here is a good one: She was stolen once and managed to chew on her make do leash, escape and find her way back home. Of course that was a long time ago, when she could see and hear very well. Now she can't find her way from the bedroom to the backyard sometimes!! LOL. Anyways, back to our story. I remember that day very well. I had to stop by the store and tied her outside just for 3 mn. 3 mn is all it took me to get what I needed. It was in a quiet type neighborhood in Costa Mesa, where I then lived. Seemed very safe. Came back and she was gone (yop, I learned my lesson). 3 mn is all it took 'them' to steal my pooch. I looked for her everywhere, asked everyone, went to the police. You name it, I did it. Still no dog to be found. I was devastated. By night fall I had to give up my patrolling the neighborhood. But I did not want to give up on hope. So I put food in Poopie's little bowl as though she was still there and prayed (and cried, too). Would I ever see my doggie again? Midnight rolls in and I hear a familiar bark that wakes me right up. I jump to my feet. Where is it coming from? I immediately plan to get dressed and roam the neighborhood to try to locate the origin (location) of the barking. Well, I didn't have to go very far. It was originating from my front door LOL. I opened the door and to my surprise and delight found LadyBug, filthy, wet and completely out of breath, on my door step. A piece of bed sheet, cut to simulate a leash, still tied to her neck, covered in car grease and chewed up. Seemed my Poopie had ate her way to freedom! We jumped in each other's arms (sorta speak). Where she came from and how she found her way back remains, to this day, a mystery. No matter, she was here and safe and this was a happy happy moment. It took almost an hour for Ladybug to stop hyperventilating. Needless to say, dirty or not, she slept on the bed that night!! And no, I never EVER left my dog unsupervised for even one second again. (Please note she was tied very securely with her chain, right in front of the store, away from cars and should have been safe as can be, should someone have not untie her and ruthlessly stolen her - I bet you she bit them hehehehe). 

Poopie the botanical dog

Very recently, Poopie gave me another scare. We went camping (as always) and all seemed fine. About 10 days later she started acting funny, and felt warm to the touch. I started keeping a very close eye on her. The next morning her belly swelled up like a balloon and felt hard as a rock. YIKES! I rushed her to my vet. $650 later, many shots, an IV and a night at the vet hotel, my Poopie was released and in my arms once again, weak and sick, but hopefully out of danger. At her age, such an infection could have been fatal and the vet was at first very cautious about giving me false hopes. But Poopie is a resilient little thang and she hang in there. For the next three weeks, I would nurse her and clean after her and feed her yummy meats and pray for her. We were not sure what was wrong and assumed we were dealing with a spider bite, possibly a brown recluse (although rare in California, they do exist). The abscess was huge and wouldn't get better. Ulcers kept opening up, leaving big holes (well, big for my dog size) and puss and blood kept ooozing out. Poopie slept all day and barely moved around. A second visit to the vet made her even worse. Now she stopped eating altogether. She didn't like having a metal thing dig a hole in her belly to drain everything out. And I don't blame her. Eventually over the following two weeks, the abscess decreased in size until it was only the size of an egg, than a wallnut, then a chestnut.  

Then came the surprise: Poopie's abscess surrendered a huge foreign object. Looks like Poopie was doing weird botanical experiment inside her body LOL. Coming from my dog, why should that surprise me? She is a weird one! Meanwhile a whole tree came out of her belly and I planted it in the backyard (a Poopie relic). OK, so maybe I am exaggerating a hair bit, but only a hair. A whole foxtail seed, perfectly preserved, immerged out of Lady Bug. And it finally made sense> This is what really happened: When we went camping at Easter, she must have sat down on one of these seeds. They have a very pointy, sharp head and hair like thingies (you can tell I am a real botanical expert here LOL) that cause them to cling, poke, stick and sting everything they come into contact with. So the foxtail planted itself inside Poopie's skin fold near her little female organ. Unable to shake it loose, cause it was in the skin fold, Poopie kept sitting on it and pushed it further into her flesh. Meanwhile, her mommy was unable to see it since it was inside the fold. From there, the seed entered deep into the doggie and decided to take a road trip (on account that it is summer and all) and traveled into her thigh. Liked it there, and decided to spend the summer. Caused a huge abscess, at which point mommy stepped in and started messing up with the seed's vacation plans. 3 weeks of antibiotics, incision and drainage (and $650 in vet bills later), the seed finally gave up. Decided to go back to wherever the heck it is it came from. I charged it for room and board, but not sure if I'll ever see the money! LOL. The departure of Mr. Evil Allien Seed marked the beginning of Poopie's full recovery!! An experience like this gives a brand new meaning to the words "bad seed". LOL. (wonder if grass would have eventually grown inside my dog?). 

Once again, Poopie, at 18 years of age, was to make a full recovery after a very close call. (Guess she has a real good Guardian Angel ;) ). 

Well, enough scary stories. Those of you who own dogs are going to lose sleep now. Or perhaps the above accounts will inspire you to never give up, never surrender!!

So on the lighter side and to bring this Poopie webpage to an end, let's talk about Poopie's new found 4-legged buddy, BERLIN. As I said, my dog has always been TERRIFIED of other dogs. She liked cats plenty, but dogs? No way Jose. In a strange twist, life was to change that. When I met Mr.181, one of the things I liked about him was that he loved dogs. Even had one of his own. A BIG one. What I did not realize at the time was that if our relationship should blossom we would eventually end up living together (duh), Mr.181, me, Poopie and Berlin the 140 pound Rottweiler. Thank God Poopie is now very old and doesn't see much at all anymore. She probably never figured out just how big Berlin is. So Poopie went from being terrified of Maltese puppies (and I'm not even joking) to hanging out with a huge rottie LOL. The two of them make an odd couple, and primarily ignore each other royally. Poopie (who navigates primarily via radar these days) sometimes accidentally bumps into Berlin (the wall) or worse yet, steps on Berlin's head inadvertently. I must say the rottie has been very patient with her. Now and then she snaps sorta like saying 'Hey! Watch where the #@*&# you're going grandma!" LOL

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"i think I'd better go around her, 
this time"

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my furry kids

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the odd couple

Well, I could go on and on about Poopie but since all good things must come to an end, so must this page. In closing, if you currently do not own a dog, adopt one!! And if you do own a dog, LOVE it with all your heart and remember to hug, kiss and caress it A LOT. Be a responsible owner and a good mom/dad. If your doggie ever gets sick, spend the money and do what ever it takes to heal it. After all, you are the only one who can save your furry friend. Never give up on it! And always, always be grateful for everyday you are given to enjoy your dog. Cause life is short and shit happens. 

Always ask God to protect your companion. I know He will.

Special thanks to all of you who prayed for Poopie's recovery when she recently got sick with her botanical abscess. We both are very grateful and send our love and blessings.

 

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Sunday October 17, 2004  Ladybug died

I am so heartbroken I don't even know what to type. I loved that little dog with all my heart and for so many years I can't believe she is gone. She was almost 19 years old and over the last few years had been struggling on and off to stay alive, but her and I always gave a good fight and cheated death each time. I had a feeling she would not live to see the new year, so I had prepared myself mentally (or so I thought). The last 3 days, I saw that she had started having some internal bleeding and I knew that she was going to die. And that it was probably going to get kinda ugly for the both of us. What I did not know is that it would be a rather fast death, and not one due to her illness. I guess God wanted to spare the both of us a lot of suffering and heartbreak so He figured a quick accident would be best. And Him, who had miraculously saved my dog so many many times (so much so we had called her "Lazarus"), allowed this to come to be. At least that's how I felt when I found her dead. We had a house guest and he forgot to latch the pool gate securely. We left for lunch. And for some strange reason, me, who was always so anal about it, failed to double check before leaving. And for some strange reason, Ladybug who had not wandered back there in AGES decided to push the gate open and walk to the pool while we were gone. When I came back Ladybug was nowhere to be found. Then I saw the gate and then I had this horrible feeling. And so I ran out back and I found my little dog dead, floating in the water with her head pointing straight down and right there and then I knew that she was GONE. Forever. This is by far the most traumatic thing I have had to go through and I don't think I have ever sobbed so hard and so long in my entire life. I think I stayed there for along time, holding her in my arms and sobbing. Cole was trying to get me to surrender the body but I didn't want to. Even Berlin, the rottie was crying. In the end, Cole took Ladybug inside the house and we had a wake for her. He covered her with rose petals (that was so sweet) and bought her flowers. I was too busy crying my eyes out for the rest of the day to think straight. We wrapped her in a lovely snoopy fabric, placed flowers everywhere in her little coffin and I wrote her a letter and placed it in there with her. At dusk, we laid her in the ground in the rose garden, where she liked to walk.  

It rained straight for days, after Ladybug passed away.