Rescue Yorkie

Just as every child is different, so is every dog. In my previous Her Life Dog Sitting post, I wrote about Fiona the Pug. Everything Fiona is our yorkie Stitch is not. Where Fiona is confident and down right pushy, Stitch tends to be timid and laid back. Fiona always seems to be calculating her next move, Stitch not so much. One thing that is especially different about Fiona and Stitch and most other dogs I know, is that he’s not a kisser. I’m always expecting kisses, but it’s just not his thing.

Many of the personality differences may be breed related, but their early lives were very different. I had been dog sitting a fair amount of yorkies and I got it in my head that I wanted one too. I looked around and asked people who had a yorkie (most had two) where they got them and the answer was always a store, and that they paid thousands. Well, my husband didn’t like that scenario, so he suggested we check out one of our local animal shelters.

One Friday early January 2016, we went to the local shelter, we walked passed the large barking dogs in their runs, and came around a corner, and their in a dog run was Bacon the Dachshund and Oz the Yorkshire Terrier. I stopped dead in my tracks and said, “I’ll wait here while you get someone to help us.” We were told that Oz was a puppy mill rescue dog, 1-3 years old, and that he was an A/R- animal returned. Since it was early January, we guessed he was probably given as a Christmas gift and was unwanted, so they returned him.

We instantly fell in love with him! We loved everything about him, except his name. Oz was never going to work especially since it wasn’t a Disney name. We eventually agreed to call him Stitch from Lilo and Stitch. We thought he was the cutest thing. We had no clue how poorly he was groomed. Stitch’s beautiful brown eyes were all we could see.

When we took Stitch to the vet the next day we were told based on his growth plates that he was still a puppy, not 1-3 years old. When I looked more closely at his papers, it said that he was born in June making him 7 months old. Who would of thought that we would end up with a cute, little Yorkshire Terrier puppy from a shelter?

Stitch got along great with our chihuahua Gabby, they became great friends-little cuddle buddies. They snuggled together everywhere and soon became inseparable. Stitch also liked the yard like Gabby, and they enjoyed barking at the neighbor’s cat together. Barking at the neighbor’s cat is Stitch’s favorite thing to do. Unlike our chihuahua, we were able to teach Stitch to walk on a leash and loves taking walks around our local neighborhood on the quiet streets, (he doesn’t like the loud streets) or at Old Westbury Gardens on Dog Days. He doesn’t do so well in the car so we tend just to walk him around nearby.

We eventually discovered The Spaw Pet Salon in Westbury. They don’t put the dogs in cages which is great for a puppy mill rescue dog. They just kind of hang out at the spaw. We were very pleased when we found them because yorkies need to be groomed regularly, but we soon figured out that not everyone knows how to groom a Yorkshire Terrier. We bring Fiona and Stitch together to the groomer. Fiona marches in announcing her presence. Stitch reluctantly agrees to be handed over to the groomer, but then he relaxes. He loves getting a bandana each time he’s groomed, and he actually wears it until his next appointment. My husband always says,” Who’s a handsome boy?” He really is gorgeous with his beautiful brown eyes.

Stitch doesn’t have a mean bone in his body. When my chihuahua was diagnosed with congestive heart failure and a leaky heart valve, Stitch was by her side till the end. He laid with her like he was a sick old dog too. When she went over the rainbow bridge, he was lost without her. He remained like an old dog just kind of lying around. The only thing he really enjoyed was having his head rubbed. He’ll let you do it for hours and if you stop he’ll beg for more. He does this with anyone that comes to our house.

We now have a new chihuahua who we also adopted from a rescue and Stitch definitely loves having Andy around. (Andy as in Andy from Toy Story) He loves being a big brother to him, and Andy definitely looks up too him. They only know each other for a few months, but have become the best of friends. Stitch is very happy to have an eating buddy again, and a cuddle buddy too. Andy is good for Stitch because he makes him more active, and he makes him realize he’s not really an old dog. I never thought I’d get another chihuahua, but Andy and Stitch are good together!

Having Stitch is really a blessing. Stitch is our sweet, handsome boy, and we love him. It is true what they say about rescue dogs being the best dogs. They teach you the true meaning of unconditional love. We can all learn a lot from our dogs about kindness and compassion.

Dog Sitter Life

Life with Fiona the Pug

Her new life dog sitting will be a page where I will feature dogs. The dogs may be my own, or dogs that I sit. Now that I am retired, I am a full time dog sitter and would love to share heart-warming stories with you. My first featured dog will be our very own Princess Fiona the Pug. We are an avid Disney family and name all our dogs after Disney characters.

My daughter was going to be leaving for college for the first time and I got in my head that a pug would fill the hole in my heart. We had a pug years back that had died young of pancreatitis, and I wanted a fresh start with a new pug. I had been in search of a rescue pug, but had no luck finding one in my area. When my daughter was officially off to college I decided that perhaps Canine Corral the store where we had gotten my soul dog Gabby the chihuahua had pug puppies. It turned out they did, but my husband was adamant that he didn’t want to have 3 dogs again, but I tend to have the knack of getting my way.

When we got to the store they had brother and sister pug puppies- a black male and a fawn female. After watching them play and cuddling them, I knew we were going to have 3 dogs again, the question was whether it was going to be a black pug or fawn pug. We ended up with the female fawn because that was what my husband wanted. I was getting a pug like I wanted so I didn’t protest too much about my preference.

Pug puppies are notoriously cute, and Fiona was no different. She fit right in with her new siblings and her friendly personality made her instantly loved by everyone, especially my husband. The man that didn’t want a third dog was suddenly more enamored with Fiona than pretty much anything else in life. His constant devotion and the inability to believe that Fiona could do no wrong was very apparent.

Fiona is like most pugs in that she is very food oriented. She eats alone so that she doesn’t eat all the other dog’s food. She loves her treats and will go outside just so she can bark and in turn I have to beg her to come in. She has trained me to give her a treat or she will stay outside and bark until I do. Fiona also wants everyone else’s treats too and will bark in protest.

Sharing toys also isn’t one of her best traits. To Fiona all the toys are hers, especially the toy another dog is playing with. She does keep herself occupied playing with toys (which I’ve read means she’s intelligent), and she loves a good game of fetch.

All our holidays are more special with Fiona. Whenever it’s someone’s birthday we say it’s Fiona’s birthday again because she always seems to become the center of attention. Halloween is usually pretty funny, unlike most pugs, Fiona is not crazy about clothing. She just likes to wear her baby girl headband that I buy through Amazon. They make great decorative collars for Fiona who doesn’t seem to have much of a neck. Christmas is great taking pictures in front of the tree and of course Fiona thinks all the presents are for her. On July 4th Fiona loves to celebrate with a party hat and flag cake.

Our lives are forever enriched by Fiona. She sleeps in the arms of my husband every night, wakes me very early every morning for her breakfast and keeps us smiling throughout the day. We love Fiona the pug and could’t imagine life without her!

Dog Days at Old Westbury Gardens

Strolling Through Life Together

Old Westbury Gardens has “Dog Days” which are dog friendly days, usually the last weekend of the month. They are closed in the winter months. You can bring your leashed dog for some exercise and fun. A good time is had by all and your furry friend will thank you!

Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.

_ Rodger A. Caras

Retired Teacher

Throughout our lives we will be guided by others, but we ultimately, make the decisions about the way we will live our life. When I was young and I would ask my dad for advice, he would say,” I can only give you suggestions and try to guide you, but you have to live your own life.”

It’s the same with God. We look to God to guide us and there may be signs on the path we should take, but God gives us free will to make our own decisions.

When choosing your career, you will only be truly happy if you do what you want to do, not what others think you should do. When you do finally choose your career, you have to be you. As a teacher you are given a curriculum but each individual will present the information in his/her own way. If you you try to teach like someone else it won’t be authentic and kids have a way of sensing this. It’s the same with all parts of life. You need to be with the partner that’s right for you, live in a place that suits you, and explore interests that make you happy.

I made a promise to myself a long time ago that when my heart wasn’t in it anymore, I would retire from teaching. I believe all teachers should do this for the benefit of the students. Many of my colleagues said I still had a lot to offer and a few good years left in me, but that wasn’t the path I wanted to take. My husband and my children thought I should work a few more years but my heart wasn’t in it. I was ready to lead my happy retirement life, and the road is mine alone to walk, although I’ll always want to have others to walk it with me.

Living a Happy Retirement Life

Last year started off pretty slow and painful for me due to a horseback riding accident, but taught me how strong I was, that people are genuinely good, and you should take nothing for granted. February brought the loss of Gabby my chihuahua which makes me feel very sad, I thought we would retire together. News soon spread that I was retiring from teaching which I knew was the right decision. As stated in Paul Coelho’s Alchemist , “Dreams make life interesting, when you want something all the universe conspires in helping you achieve it.”

My last days of teaching at a school I spent my whole adult life at was very satisfying. I hope I inspired people to always finish strong and at the top of their field. Most importantly, that time is moving very quickly and life is always a matter of waiting for the right time to act, but don’t wait for the perfect time because it will never come.

Well, now life is different and sometimes so full I don’t know how I managed to do all the things I did with a full time job. Dogsitting keeps me busy and I feel blessed how that all worked out. Once again, when you want something you can achieve it. I spend a lot more time outdoors these days. I always loved summer but I don’t think I ever fully appreciated the beauty of the season of fall before this year. I love planning trips because it’s always good to have something to look forward to. I’m forever browsing sites looking for new adventures.

So here’s to my new life. Month and a half into the new year and a new decade and I have to say this was the best January in a long time. I went on a vacation with my daughter in January for the first time in my life, and I was sure to make day 1 of the vacation the day I would have to return after winter break. I go to the gym most mornings, and do other things when I want to, or not. I don’t stress over the weather report and having to commute on the Belt Parkway because NYC schools hardly ever get snow days. I don’t spend my nights writing lesson plans and I watch dogs when I want to or not. I still tend to have about ten tabs open in my brain and still need to learn how to slow down and relax.

I have many things planned for this year and look forward to and believe the best is yet to come in my new life!

Living my new life!

Retired Life Blog

Hi I’m Jen, and I’m a newly retired 3rd grade teacher. 55/25 is a wonderful thing! I was told it was a good option to have, but for me it was the only option. I’ve known for a while that I wanted to retire young because life goes by so quickly and I want to live a happy retirement life.

I’ve been a Dogsitter for about 5 years now which enables me to earn some side money and do what I like best- hang out with dogs. I love to travel, especially utilizing all inclusive vacation packages for the ease of mind and simplicity. (Who knows maybe my next gig is to become a successful travel blogger?)

My goal is to see one beach at a time. I’m always planning my next vacation. I try to stay fit because without your health you really don’t have much in retirement. So… my latest venture is Momrockzz Her New Life Living a happy retirement life!

I hope to inspire others to live their retirement life to the fullest by sharing my stories and starting a conversation. I would love for you to join me on this journey through my new life!

One day you will wake up and there won’t be any more time to do the things you’ve always wanted. Do it now. – Paul Coelho

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