Conversational Advice on the Care and Maintenance of your Senior Pooch

Good Old Dog Book CoverIn between owning BooBoo and ultimately taking Rusty in, I questioned whether I had done enough.

Had I done the right things? Was it enough?

I was pretty sure that I did. At least I thought that I did the best that I could.

I picked this book up just to make sure and to prepare myself for the next time that I would adopt a senior dog, because I was certain after caring for BooBoo for the time that we had, that there would be another senior dog in my house the next time I ventured into the world of canine companionship.

Good Old Dog is a great book for the layperson who is interested in what it takes to care for an older dog.


A Big Day for the Big Dog

Rusty and I were interviewed by Lillian Cox at Coast Magazine News today.  We're both exhausted with all of the attention that we got while sharing stories of pets of all types that we've owned.  I'll have more on this within the next week.

He's sleeping off all of the extra attention that he got, including many photos snapped by Lillian.  Larry Abgarian, Rusty's foster dad, introduced us and provided all of the back story of Rusty's adventures before he came to live at Casa Jeff.

thumbnail Putting a treasure trove of loving adoptable pets at your fingertips

For my last two canine companions, I've gone to to start my search.  From what I can tell all of the shelters and rescue organizations have some presence there.  In addition to making it incredibly easy to find exactly the right type of pet that is right for you, they also have great videos on selecting your ideal pet and what to do when you get home.

They boast 17 million adoptions in 15 years of existence, which is no small feat.  Consider that each adoption frees up an additional spot at a rescue that gives another animal a chance to get adopted and the numbers really start becoming astounding.


Up on deck: Book Reviews

As an avid reader, I've read my share of books on dogs, their care and feeding, training, stories, etc.

You get the picture.

Over the next couple of weeks I'll be posting reviews for books that were as informative as they were interesting.  Your mileage may vary with these, so you might find the information presented as too basic, or way too advanced.

Please share what books that you've found most useful and why in a comment.

Pet Foster Parents: Being there when it's most important

Rusty, Larry, and Wendy
One person might not be able to save all of the dogs in trouble, but there are those folks whose generosity reaches beyond what normal people believe is possible and use their creativity to find hope.  This sort of hope comes in the form of lending their voices and hearts to dogs that need it the most.

I'm talking about those men and women who take on the responsibility of taking in supporting a dog until  they can find that forever home.  This post is dedicated to those courageous folks, and in particular, Larry pictured here, who was Rusty's foster dad for a year.

If you think fostering is something for you, there are a lot of rescue organizations that are looking for this sort of help.  One such organization down here in Southern California is Coastal German Shepherd Rescue, which has a web page set up to explain the options and how to get started.  In Northern California, check out San Jose Animal Advocates Foster page for a thorough description of the difference that you'd be making by helping out dogs (or other companion animals) during particularly stressful times in their lives.

Stylin' some new threads

Boo Boo with his favorite bandanna
The only comment on Boo Boo's chart when I brought him home from the shelter was that he came in with a bandanna and that another dog took from him shortly thereafter.

I picked up this bandanna a week or two after bringing him home and he frequently received a lot of praise for his style.

Kudos to the folks at Pacific Petcare, who always would give him one of their holiday bandannas, one for Christmas and another for Halloween, during our many visits.

Site Updates - Fifty percent more fluffiness

 Over the last couple of weeks the site has quickly been picking up steam.  Thanks to everyone that has taken a moment to reach out to post a comment, or write, or give their suggestions and well wishes.  Over the past week I've been working on a few updates that went into place today.  Namely:

  • The URL - We're still a Blogger hosted blog, however, I picked up the domain name and hooked it together.
  • A New Banner - With a little bit of elbow grease and measuring, I updated the banner to allow everyone to see more of the content upon entering the page, by reducing the logo height.
  • Linked to the Twitter Feed - More on why we needed a Twitter feed later, but the short of it, is that there's a lot of complementary work that I'm starting to do in the Twitterverse in order to get the word out about senior dogs in need.
Also, you'll also now be able to contact me via the domain @ jeff@ (remove the space in between the @ and  This is an old trick to make it more difficult for the spammers to mine the page for email addresses.)

Thanks again for all of your kind words and support.  I'm inspired to grow this site into something that makes a difference in the world, while continuing to report on the adventures of Rusty and the other senior pooches that touch our lives.

Brain Games

I find that just like with people that dogs who are stimulated mentally on a regular basis are more happy.

Here, Rusty is playing with his Kong ball, trying to figure out how to get the treat out.  Having tried the brute force method (aka eating the ball or chewing it to pieces) he's starting to move it from side to side to get at the treat.

Boo Boo, on the other hand, had a routine that he used to go through: picking up the ball and flinging it in the air, picking it up and shaking it from side to side, rolling it around, and finally banging it against the wall.  The steps that he took were impressive and hysterical to watch.

Weighing in - Reigning in the LBs

Congratulations to my pal, Rusty on dropping a couple of pounds.  As a larger dog, I've learned that it pays to keep an eye on his weight so that it doesn't take as big of a toll on his joints later on down the line.

He could still stand to lose 2-4 more pounds, so I'll keep him on his current diet until everything stabilizes.

Previously, I thought that I was giving him the right amount of food for a dog 75 lb dog (he weighed 80), but it turned out that the 2 cup scoop I picked up from Petco actually measures out 2.5 cups of food.

Adopted! Dog: Hunter - English Springer Spaniel (Vista, CA)

Updated: Hunter has been adopted into his forever home, including several furry family members!  

I'm called Hunter, and I'm searching for my forever home. 

Hunter is a senior English Springer Spaniel, but you'd never know it to look at him!  Playful, and energetic, he has a very loving personality with people.  He weighs 57 pounds.  Hunter must be an only dog.  He is house-trained, neutered, and microchipped.  Good on a leash and great in the car.