Sunday, July 29, 2007

Pardon our indulgence...

Okay so the video is a bit long - but my Mom and I wanted to make something very special for Mac. So in his honor (and if you have a spare five minutes and like U2) enjoy our latest Labradory TV Production!

You will get to see not only me and Mac, but our doggie cousins - Zach and Mollie (Gramma's dogs) - if you think one Lab is good and two is better, wait till you see FOUR in action!

Who loves you Big Mac!! Well, we do!

Saturday, July 28, 2007

We're not lost, we're at Gramma's!

Hello all - not to worry - we are at GRAMMAS!!!!

It was Gramma's birthday on Thursday - HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRAMMA! And between getting the new guy settled and packing to go on our trip out here my human had no time to type.
(From left to right - Mollie, Zachary, Mac and Dory!)

Mom said getting us here was an adventure in itself as she was not only bringing us together in the Jeep - she had a cooler with eight live lobsters in a cooler for Gramma special barkday dinner!!

Those lobsters were pretty snapy and angry when they were in the sink!

But after the humans gave them a bath they were much quieter.

As a matter of fact they didn't move at all after the bath - do you think this is why humans give us a bath???? I HATE BATHS!!!

Anyhow - that is all the news from here, well kinda. The whole family loves my new foster brother (who Uncle Harvey said should be named MAC - and who can argue with Uncle Harvey!). We have been having a great time at Gramma's and Mom promises she is taking lots of pictures and video!

She says the only problem is getting everyone to stand still in the same place!! Four Labs all in one house make for a lot of fun!!!

Love from New York - Dory and Mac

Monday, July 23, 2007

A little update...

We are letting pictures speak for themselves - Pace is big...
He is very cute...
And he loves chew toys...
We have gone through some anxiety, some pacing, panting and whining. He has had a few accidents and doesn't really seem to like the pricey holistic Eagle Pack that Dory eats. But all in all everyone is doing well and keeping very busy - especially me learning the meds schedule for our new boy. We also wanted to say thank you to everyone who has been so supportive, kind and thoughtful in their comments!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Here he is....

So the transport was late - but it was such a nice day with a decent breeze it didn't look like people minded the wait.
There was absolutely a tone of people, waiting for not only labs and goldens, but every sort of dog in between!
Here is our boy at the transport site!
He is a big fella - much taller than Dory.
Tomorrow he is going for a formal Laundromutt bath but this afternoon he got rinsed off with the hose. He is very cute. And has already shown natural retrieving instincts by retrieving my sunglass right off the kitchen table! He is a little anxious and sniffing around but I'm sure by later tonight he will settle down.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Sleepless in Boston

Well our foster dog is arriving tomorrow. The dog beds have been washed, the rubbery toys have been scrubbed. There is a new "boy appropriate" collar awaiting him and we have packed up Dory's traveling back pack with cookies, a lead, extender leash, travel bowl and all the other stuff we tote around when dogs and humans are out and about together.

The water jug is ready to be filled and the transport coordinator called and said he is arriving at 1 PM tomorrow. I did more planning than NASA did went the sent a man to the moon. Did I mention I made sure the camera lenses were clean and the batteries were charged? Everything is in place - SO WHY CAN'T I SLEEP!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Three days and counting...

Mom is picking up our new foster doggie on Saturday afternoon and needless to say the whole house is a buzz. Mom has house stuff and some work stuff to do so she said she might not be able to help me blog again until the weekend!! Imagine!!
Oh well. I just wanted to thank all my readers, friends and family for all the warm wishes, suggestions and comments about our recent posts. You all are always such a great audience and support to my humans and me!
Now some of you said our Pace video made you teary and I will make an effort to get a box of tissues out to you all. My Mom can occasionally throw on the waterworks too and I don’t want any pups out there to unprepared. I told Mom not to use the sappy music, but there is no stopping her once she starts pawing through her CD collection. She seems to have everything from Bach to the B52’s and everywhere in between. There is no telling what music selection she will make next.
We hope everyone has a great rest of the week and an excellent weekend! I will give you a full report on Pace’s arrival as soon as I can!

Love, Dory

Monday, July 16, 2007

Back to Work....

We had a great weekend - full of fun and frolicking, but now sadly it's back to work Monday!

My foster brother's new collar arrived today - Kathleen and Wally Cat are the fastest collar makers ever!! Mom has been rushing around washing dog blankets and bed covers and making sure we have everything we need so when my foster brother arrives he will feel right at home!!

The Labs4Rescue lady, Glenda, sent us a short video clip of my new foster brother and LabraDory TV put the clip together with some music for your enjoyment!

I also have a new video of me enjoying some cookies and the beach, which you can watch at DWB Television - The LabraDory Channel. Check it out!!!

Have a great week everybody - Love Dory!

Friday, July 13, 2007

No Lab Left Behind

Mom loves education stuff that's for sure and when she can talk about education, dogs and children - her three favorite topics, all at once, well there is no stopping her. Mom asked me to say thanks to everyone for their nice comments about her post.

Not only was Mom's post very serious yesterday, she was also very serious this morning during breakfast. She said she had something important to tell me and I have to tell you my friends - I was kind of worried, maybe she was going to send me away or worse!! I kept my paws crossed that the bad news didn't involve bad news about our boat or canceling our visit to Gramma's in two weeks!!

So I sat down and listened to her - and boy was I relieved - it wasn't bad news at all. I think it's kind of good news as a matter of fact! Mom said we were going to be fostering a dog in need. He would be coming to live with us and I would have my very own playmate and friend!

I don't have all the details, but he is seven years old and a black Labrador just like me. Mom says he weighs about 90 pounds (that's good because he will make me look thinner), he was surrender by his owners and he has special needs because he has epilepsy. Here is a picture of him!

I had no idea what epilepsy is but it sounds like this poor guy needs to take medicine every day so he won't be sick. The Labs4Rescue volunteer Glenda said we would love our new friend - he is apparently very nice, loves to go for rides and very social - JUST LIKE ME!

Mom was so excited she asked Kathleen and Wally Cat over at Snazzy Petz to make up a special big boy collar just for him. Mom also said my collars were way to girly for a labbie boy and while we will have to share somethings like our toys and beds, there are some things that can be all our own.

The new guy isn't coming until the 21st of July so I'm sure there will be lots of activity going on around here. I like to share with Mollie and Zach at Gramma's but I have had my humans all to myself for almost a year now. I know it will be hard at first but I promised Mom to try really hard and make our new foster dog feel right at home.

Mom is always talking about No Child Left Behind when she is talking about work stuff and Wally suggested maybe it should be No Dog Left Behind!

I think he is right - we are certainly living the No LAB Left Behind motto! Maybe we could start a movement!!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Soap Box

Dory was kind enough to let me get up on my soap box today and blog about a very special dog, education AND kid related issue.

The other day Wally mentioned this great article in the LA Times about a Newfy who works with abused, emotionally disturbed and neglected kids. Reading the article made me think about my own experiences with at risk children and dogs. I left a comment for Wally about my Lab Emily and her visits with children at the Head Start program and Wally responded and said his Ma was interested in dogs who help children read, which is an area of interest for me a well.

I think Americans are very accepting of Guide Dogs for the Visually Impaired and Assistance Animals for those who have physical challenges but I honestly don't think that the general public realizes that there are so many other ways that animals can partner with humans.

My one wish is that there was more emphasis on the human/animal connection and more research conducted on the topic of ways that dogs can help support and heal children.

I firmly believe that animals, especially dogs can play a more integral role in working with children in a whole spectrum of ways. As an educator who works in the public sector I am constantly reading, hearing or talking about all kinds of educational approaches for the most medically, developmentally and emotionally fragile students. Unfortunately most of my work colleagues are uninformed and often biased against involving dogs in the educational process.

While my dogs were never formally trained in therapy, they were well schooled in obedience and their personalities and temperaments were a perfect match for the preschoolers I worked with. My first experience with dogs in the educational setting was when my Golden Retriever Lucy would come to visit my classroom when I was teaching hearing impaired 3-5 year olds. There was an immediate rapport between Lucy and the children - even they shyest of my students bloomed and became engaged when Lucy entered the room.My other experience is with my Lab Emily. She went into Head Start classrooms with me and became the unofficial mascot of our Head Start program. The Head Start students came from a variety of backgrounds, but the common themes were poverty, violence and in some cases homelessness. Emily was happy to have as many little hands on her as possible. She would walk in a room , sit or lay down and was patient even through poking and tail pulling. The kids drew pictures for her, showed her around the classroom, sang songs to her and cuddled with her.
Many Head Start children come to the program not speaking English, but to Emily and the kids that didn't matter - she spoke the language of unconditional love and tolerance.

Please know that I am NOT recommending untrained/uncertified dogs going into educational settings, looking back I'm sure therapydog organizations would have a thing or two to say about my youthful acts! I am just sharing my experiences as great illustrations of the unlimited possibilities of trained/certified therapy dogs in the educational setting and the positive impact they can have with children.

Therapy Dogs International has great information not only on traditional ways therapy dogs can help people but they also have information on "Tail Wagging Tutors", a program that was happening right in the same community I used to work in, Schenectady, New York and many other communities as well! From TDI's website:

"How Does the Reading Program Work? Libraries and Schools schedule reading hours for children and Therapy Dogs. Children and dogs bond together over a shared story. The children's confidence and reading skills grow in a relaxing environment. It's that simple.

Children who might be hesitant, embarrassed, or shy about their reading abilities feel at ease around a dog who is just there to listen to the story and not there to judge how well he or she reads. As Diane Mitchell, Branch Manager of Richland Public Library in Mississippi says, "More confidence in reading could lead to improved grades and improved grades mean happy children and parents.""

Intermountain Therapy Animals also has a program called Reading Education Assistance Dogs (READ - How cute!). There website says:

"Research with therapy animals indicates that children with low self-esteem are often more willing to interact with an animal than another person. Further, during such interaction they are inclined to forget about their limitations. There are also physiological benefits to interacting with animals, including increased relaxation and lower blood pressure. The premise of the R.E.A.D. program is that children will find reading to an animal less intimidating, a special time for them that is helpful and fun and will become a positive environment in which learning is facilitated."

As with any new idea or concept there are always detractors. There are teachers, administrators and even families who feel animals have no place in schools or libraries. There are people out in the community who feel education should be teacher driven, rote instruction and some who say a human/animal connection is just pure hogwash.

All I know is that even my own life experience gives credibility to dogs being a great tool to help children learn. My fondest memories of childhood all include our Labs. Playing with the dogs but more importantly quiet moments reading or sharing my thoughts with a special furry four footed friend, a Labrador with soft fur and kind eyes who was all knowing and full of unconditional love.
My only hope is that everyone can go out there and support and promote the use of trained therapy dogs in education! As the old saying goes - "read more about it"! This is a great issue that really needs to be talked about!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Rock the House Bloggers

We were humbled and honored by Ruby and awarded us as one of her “Rockin’ Girl Bloggers”. I was so touched I blushed (which I know is hard to detect under all this fur)!

Stika honored Ruby and no it is my turn to honor seven of my favorite “Rockin’ Girl Bloggers”. (Although I have to say it was hard to narrow the field, but fortunately Ruby cover some of my favorites too in her awards)

You can click over to Ruby’s blog to see the official explaination for this award – but we thought of it a little differently. All I can say is these doggie girls make me and my human laugh, smile and so happy to be part of an online community like DWB. They are super bloggers and “RockSo here you go…

Dot – The fabulous and friendly Dalmatian!

Flori РAn international beauty! (Eine internationale Sch̦nheit!)

Kaos – My soul mate sister in Colorado!

Maggie – The airedale with class, style and a hint of mischief! *HAPPY BARK DAY MAGGIE!!!!!!

Opy – The original Rockin’ gruffpuppy blogger!

Samantha – The sweet and sassy super dog lady Bassett!

– Quite possibly the best dressed and sweetest WFT around.

Sophie – My favorite witty starlet blogger from the north!

Yes, I’m a Labrador and do know this list is eight, not seven but we love them all so much we just didn’t care what the rules are! Congrats to all my Rockin' girl friends!

Monday, July 09, 2007

Shout out!!

Congratulations RUBY!!! Ruby and her blog were's MONTHLY BEST DOG SITE for May 2007 - 5/7 The Many Adventuresof Wonder Ruby!!

Ruby Rocks!!

Since my blog was blog of the day on June 6th - we are one of the candidates in the running for June 2007 Best Dog Site - if you have a few minutes to spare you can vote for us at : - just select Educating Liza!!

More later - it's too humid to blog for this black furry girl!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Friday is Dory Day!

Hey there friends! Even though we are technically on vacation this week, Mom and I still had our "Girls Only" Friday afternoon together. Of course we did all the usual things, but we also went someplace very special.

All my friends like Maggie and Mitch have been out with their humans having ice cream so after weeks of begging - Mom finally relented! We headed over to
Treadwell's Ice Cream in Peabody and here is what happened.

Have a happy, happy weekend!!!!!!!!!!

Love, Dory

** 7/8/07 Dory Note: Everyone has been so complimentary on my latest "short subject" (as they say in the biz) video - Thanks!! FYI my human ate her ice cream cone with one hand and shot footage with the other - thus resulting in our less than stellar camera work. Mom managed to eat her ice cream but was nice enough to give me her cone after filming so I could have the full experience. The music is "Laura's Zest" from last season's Project Runway finale. They had the downloadable clip on Blogging Project Runway. My mom thought it was fun and peppy so she suggested it for our video, she also has it on her MP3 player when she goes to the Y.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

The 4th - Dealiest Catch Style

Okay - so July 3rd was lovely, and July 4th started out just fine!
We dropped anchor and Dad put on his "shorty" wetsuit to do a little barnicle scraping around our boat - The Kanaloa.
Mom and I hung out and snapped some sail boats with the new camera!
We were enjoying the view - this is Children's Island, a small island just out side Salem Harbor used by the local Y as a day camp.
Then as the afternoon wore on the rain started falling and didn't stop!! The harbormaster told everyone over the radio that the fireworks were cancelled. As you can see Dad is wearing his Grundens, a staple for all lobstermen and crab boat crews. The sky poored heavy rain on us and we felt like we were on an episode of our favorite TV show - "Deadliest Catch"!!

Well, we raced to the car and got to hear the Boston Pops 4th Celebration on the radio. (Click on the link and you can see the festivities) Mom sang the whole way home and we got back just in time to see the fire works on TV. Boston skies may have cleared but the North Shore just above Boston was very wet. It may have been rainy - but we were all together and had a very happy 4th of July.

I'm thinking since it's the USA's birthday and they had fireworks, maybe I could get Mom and Dad to have fireworks for my birthday - makes sense right!!

Postcards from vacation...

Okay - my Mom said back in the day, alright she didn't really say back in the day... well anyhow she used to send postcards via the mail when she went on vacation.

Postcards sounded like a good idea, but I don't have thumbs to write them all out and that whole going to the post office, standing in line to buy stamps isn't really doing anything for me.

So LabraDory TV practiced using the Windows Movie Maker program on our computer. We put together very new photos from the last few days with some others from this summer and put it all to music.

We hope you like our first try at this, just think of it as postcards from our vacation. We also have posted a live video of Dad pulling the boat to the dock yesterday on DWB-TV - LabraDory TV, so go check that out too.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Happy Birthday United States of America!

We wish everyone, all our friends, family and DWB Bloggers in the USA a very HAPPY 4th of July!!

We will be on our boat, watching fireworks from Salem, Beverly and Marblehead (shown in map) all at the same time.

You may be wondering how that can be and honestly I don't know but Mom says Winter Island (where our boat lives in the summer time) is right in the middle!

These are some photos (from another photographer, not Mom) from a couple of years ago.

Apparently last year was rainy and not good for photos. This year Mom is taking her new Nikon D40 out and is going to try to take some fireworks pictures for herself. I'm just happy when she doesn't have that thing in my face!!

Anyhow - Have a Happy 4th - one and all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, July 01, 2007

The Interview

My Mom has been playing with her new camera and getting up in my face. Anyhow, as you will read, my human wasn’t as cooperative as Ruby’s mom, however I did finally get her to sit down with me and here is what happened…..

D: What is your job? L: I work in the education field making sure public schools are helping children learn and be safe.

D: If you could do any job in the world other than the one you have what would that dream job be? L: I would most like to be an artist working in all kinds of mediums.

D: Mediums? What about larges like me? L: No Dor, the word mediums also mean all different kinds of art forms like stained class, paper art, fiber art. All the things I do when we aren’t playing together.

D: What is your favorite activity? L: Cuddling with you and being out on the ocean in good weather.

D: Where is your favorite place? L: Well any place my friends are, but if you ask me a favorite location I would have to say Seagull Beach on Cape Cod in the fall.

D: What is you favorite food? L:Well Dory I like lots of food, but probably my favorite is angel food cake with chocolate frosting, I have had it every year on my birthday.

D: What is your least favorite food? L: I would have to say califlower.

D: Oh yeah I don’t like that either!! L:That’s not true, I saw you eat califlower just the other day, you eat just about everything Dory.

D: OKAY moving on… what is something you can’t live without? L:Coffee is definitely on the list, I think that and time to be creative are my final answer here.

D: What was your dream growing up when you were a little human? L: I had lots of dreams, I wanted to be a mom, I wanted to work with children and one specific dream was to own a jeep and have a golden retriever.

D: Have you lived the dream? L:Yes, I’m a doggie mom several times over so far, I have worked with young children, owned several jeeps and had a golden retriever named Lucy in my life.

D: Why was having a golden retriever so important? L: I think it was kind of a rebellion thing. My parents owned Labs my whole life and every time I asked for a golden they told me “No, we are a Lab family.”

D: Who is your hero or person you most admire? L:Uncle Harvey’s wife Edna. She really encouraged me my whole life and was very proud that I was pursuing my doctorate degree. She was always said girls can do anything they want to and be anything they want to.

D: So you are saying I could live my dream and be a chef in a resturant?? L: No Dory, you need thumbs for that dream, plus I can only imagine the chaos in the kitchen with you there!

D: Party Poop!! L: What did you say???


D: What do people like about you? L: I think they like the fact that I never take life too serously and I am very patient.

D: What would you like to improve about yourself?
L: Aside from my spelling skills, I agree with Ruby’s mom and would like to procrastinate less.

D: What is a fun fact about yourself?
L: I can roll the sides of my tongue up, which is genetic and I have a small tattoo of a paisley shape on my upper leg.

D: No microchip in case you get lost?
L: No, I’m hoping the tattoo will suffice in finding me if I get lost.

D: What do you trait do you dislike in others? L: Intolerance.

D: What is your secret indulgence?
L: I do one very self indulgent thing – I get a pedicure and manicure every two weeks.

D: What is a pedicure and manicure?
L:That means someone makes my fingers and toes pretty.

D: Oh so do they cut your toes and make you bleed all over like you did to me??
L: NO. That was an accident!!! Next question??

D: Do I have a secret indulgence?
L:Not really you don't have any money to spend on indugences. But I must confess I buy you way too many new collars, a girl can never have too many accessories.

D: Greatest regret?
L: I don’t get to travel and go on vacation as muc as I would like.

D: Proudest moment?
L: When I opened the notice that I officially could be called “Doctor Young”. I am also pretty proud that I have learned how to captain apower boat on the ocean.

D: Scariest experience?
L: Moving to Massachusetts all by myslef, starting a new job and Harvard all at the same time. I was afraid I’d bomb out in school and ha to go home and live with Gramma.

D: Oh I’d love to live with Gramma!!
L: No I just meant I was really afraid I wasn’t brave or smart enough to make it in a tough university in a totally new place.

D: Favorite word? L:Finagle

D: Favorite sound?
L: Ocean waves

D: Favorite smell? L: Fresh mowed grass

D: Favorite dog?
L: Wally.

D: WHAT!?!?! L: Just kidding, I love you because you are the funniest dog I know.

D: Favorite saying? L: “OH MY STARS!” Being an educator I can’t really swear and it gets the point across.

Now Dory I have to say we have a big day of fishing ahead, our vacation starts tomorrow so it's bed time.

D: Really?? No fair. Okay then good night folks, thanks to Mom for being sorta cooperative and hopefully Dad will make himself available real soon. Good night!!