Pictures of us

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
Another picture slideshow by Smilebox

Saturday, December 24, 2011

God Bless Us, Everyone!

It's Christmas Eve! We are just awakening from our nap and can't wait for Santa to come tonight. We have a full house, so tomorrow should be fun.

There are two foster (dog) siblings with us and our family!  We hope you are all settling in with your family and friends for your holiday traditions and remembering the reason we celebrate.

Tiny Tim (our foster brother) just got adopted, but is staying with us through Christmas since he has to finish rehab. He had a BIG surgery and was limping really bad. He is doing great and can run, play, and go for walks with us now. His new family has renamed him Tebow. He got the best gift....a forever home for Christmas!

We thought Chicklette was getting one too, but she did not! The family wasn't ready to make a commitment, so she will be with us a little longer. Maybe someone will want to adopt her for New Year's.

We think this is both of their first Christmas' as Tebow is only 10 months and Chicklette is 11-12 months.

Our human brother is finally understanding Christmas, so it has been fun watching that too....he gets some great toys that we all keep our eyes on!

Today it was in the 80's outside. Too hot for Christmas! This time last year we were packing up the car getting ready to go see snow for the first time. Today we talked about going to the beach....

Merry Christmas to all of our friends...canine and human alike!

With love,

Abbey and Bode

Friday, December 9, 2011

Not a normal Friday

Friday mornings are usually one of our favorites. Tara stays home in the morning and we work at night with her. We usually run errands, play in the yard, practice our training, and get some fun time in with our human brother.

Today is not a normal Friday! We had a new foster brother last night. He was really nice and we both really liked him (so did Chicklette, our current foster sister). Tiny Tim arrived around dinner time and things started to seem different. Tara turned our room (AKA the laundry room) into a cozy area full of blankets and dog beds. She took out our beds and food bowls and put up a baby gate so we couldn't go in. That was the first time we knew something was up! We were locked out of our own room!

Dad got home soon after and he had Tiny Tim with him. They placed him in our room and we noticed he wasn't moving so well. We all got to greet him and the humans went in the room with him to cuddle. We heard Tara making plans for the morning and learned that Tiny Tim was going into surgery in the morning.

Early this morning, Tara and our human brother loaded Tiny Tim in the car and came back without him. We  are wondering when he will come back! We didn't get to play with him, but got to see him and stay near him. We know something is wrong and wanted to give him comfort. We all don't seem to have the energy to do our normal Friday things. We are worried. Even Chicklette, who has more energy that most dogs! She is still a baby (11 months), but is also laying around with us. When the phone rings, we listen to see if Tara will say Tiny Tim's name, but not so far!

Tiny Tim has now been at the vet for over four hours. The vet said his leg and hip-ball-joint were in really bad condition and the surgery was going to be extensive. This could have all been prevented, but instead he was left to sit, untreated, in a kill shelter.

The phone just rang again, but it wasn't the vet....We will keep you updated! Please pray for Tiny Tim!
~~Abbey and Bode

Thursday, December 8, 2011


Our office is growing and this is causing Tara much stress. It is a good thing, but finding the right person is a hard task. Today we had some interviewing to do. Abbey and I were able to be a part of this.

Some of them went really well and have qualities that could work with the other amazing staff at our office...others, not  so much! We did all we could to let Tara and Kayla (she helped with the interviews) to know our thoughts. This included first impressions and during interviews.

I surprised Tara at one point as I was able to "turn on" some of the skills I use during counseling sessions and let her know something wasn't right. I am not sure if the candidate was lying or if she was nervous about the question, but her energy and changes in her demeanor gave me all sorts of red flags! Abbey was not in during that time but gave her feelings before it started.

Let's hope we are able to finish these interviews and find the perfect new administrative assistant...especially one that Abbey and I are comfortable with!


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Cookie Exchange...

We write this blog together. We love this time of year. There is a pretty tree inside...yes, inside of our house...we put lights and colorful things on it to make it even prettier! There are lots of people visiting, lot of songs being sung, and outside the houses all have extra friends in their yards. We are still trying to figure out which are real and which are not!

There are lots of parties. Most of which we don't get to go to! Last night there was a cookie you know that there we no dog cookies here? We could smell so many delicious many had peanut butter in them. Yum!!

Everyone was sharing about their businesses (Tara calls it networking) and we were enjoying the attention from our friends and meeting new friends. Most people knew us, but we didn't know them! We are celebrities...just kidding! Abbey hates when I say that!

I think we should propose a canine cookie exchange for next Christmas. Who is in?

The cookies Tara brought home...

With hunger,


Sunday, December 4, 2011

I'm Forever....

This picture could not sum up more! Tara was thrilled when she found it, as are we! We are so blessed to be in our forever home with never any doubt about "until". We have been through many ups and downs, but our place in this family has never been questioned. We hear a lot of people tell Tara their stories and they are sad, but didn't you know when you go a furry kid that we are forever? Would you get rid of your two legged kid just because you got married, had another child, moved, etc? No, you wouldn't...why are we any different? Our foster siblings often have stories like this and it's not their fault, yet their life was almost ended because of the "until" thinkers"

Speaking of "until" owners...that's what they are...they aren't family, they just own a pet like they own their car and other items. It's a different mentality than the family thinkers!

Tara was at a charity event last night and was soooo mad! They were auctioning off a puppy. Yes, you read that correctly. There were people walking around with a puppy attempting to get people to get ogle of her cuteness and bid.

We have seen what happens to a lot of these "impulse buy" puppies....that's right, they get fostered in homes like ours because they are told to find a new home when something new comes around....their family wants to travel more, have more kids, move, the new dog doesn't like them, etc.

Does this charity not know they are causing doom....or death? They do such great things for humans, but not puppies? Just because it was cute baby shih tzu and they "won" her, doesn't mean it is a good thing. Impulsively getting a dog is one of the worst things to do! They are all cute and adorable, but they grow up and they need attention and love and training and time...yup...time...oh and money, which they can't make themselves! We need your time! We need your money...we can't pay our own bills! We are not humans, but need to know how to live with you humans.

How does this "auction puppy" get a someone wanting to flaunt their money and be the winning bidder. No one checks out their home; if they are going to gift the puppy to someone; if they take care of their current pets, etc. Just because someone has money doesn't make them a good dog owner.

We know the goal was to raise money to help others, but why at the cost of an animal? It is unethical and inhumane. Once the novelty of the "win" wears off, what is the "winner" going to do with a puppy that needs walked, fed, potty trained, obedience trained, spade, medical appointments, shots, micro-chipped, etc? Are living animals now equal to stuffed animals that are given away as prizes at fairs or carnivals?

I will get off my soap box, as Bode has gone to bed while I am writing this, but agrees with what I have said. Please do not support or encourage the auctioning off of animals and remember those same animals may turn up in your local rescue (which could use your help!).

We would love to read feedback on this and realize it may cause some difference of opinions, but let's save some lives!

Until next time....

Friday, December 2, 2011

another fitting much as we want to be like you...we aren't! Just like toddlers need rules (we are learning this with our human brother) do we!
This is us! We hate to admit it, but life has caused us anxiety around these people...especially those with their dogs off leash or on a retractable leash.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

We have missed you...

Have you missed us? We sure have missed you! Life can get ahead of us pretty quick and since we need help to type these, we are also dependent on Tara's schedule!

We are so thankful for all of you that read this and the amazing emails we get along with comments at events and the random comment here on the blog. Please continue to follow us and share our blog with others!

We now have our own email address! You can reach either of us or any of the therapy dogs at it: We prefer to communicate here though!

Let's recap since our last post...
It has been over two months. Wow! Again, sorry! Well our foster siblings have all been adopted and we are taking a week to regroup. Did you know that we have had a total of 19 foster siblings in three years? We are blessed to be able to keep in touch with several of their families and see them grow and learn.

We have had so many great events at our office and in the community where we are spreading the word on the benefits of dogs in the therapy room and in individual homes.

Over Thanksgiving, one of our canine co-therapists, Somer, and her new puppy sister Lexi stayed for a few days. That was really fun since we usually only get to see each other at the office.

Today we decorated the inside of the house for Christmas. It smells so good with that tree inside, but we are keeping our eye on it--you know, trees are supposed to stay outside, however this one usually has gifts under it for us at some point!

We are setting a weekly reminder (at a minimum) to have Tara update this blog. Talk with you soon!

Abbey and Bode!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Hijacked blog....

Hi, it's Kelley...I "borrowed" the blog from Abbey and Bode to tell you more about me!

I have been living with Abbey and Bode for quite awhile. I am only 1, so I am still getting out of my "toddler" phase. I love, love, love to play!! Let's cuddle, wrestle, tug, and more!

There is a human kid my age at his house and we have so much fun together. I would love to go to a family that has more of those!

I don't know how to share a lot of my past and don't really want to as I have so much future in me now! I was rescued by Brooke's Legacy Animal Rescue. The shelter I was at had me on this list, which I have now learned meant I was going to die, and the wonderful people at Brooke's came to save me! They  brought me back to Naples and found out I had these very bad bugs inside of me and that something was wrong with my front paw. I went right to the wonderful vet at Mission Hills Veterinary Clinic and they started by "bug" treatment. It was not a fun thing to go through and it took a lot of work to get all those bugs out! For 30 days I was not allowed to do very much (no walks, no playing, etc) because the bugs could attack my heart (they were heartworms) and then I could die. They checked my leg while I was there and learned that it was an injury I got a VERY long time ago. It doesn't bother me very much. I can still run, jump, and play; I just rest it when I can!

I came to this house two weeks into my 30 days of no play and began to learn the ropes! Abbey and Bode are working dogs. I didn't even know this was possible. I worked really hard to learn as much as I could because I wasn't allowed to play with them, so I would just watch. I showed Tara that I already knew some things. My previous owner didn't take care of me but taught me to sit, stay, and shake.

Since then, I have been working on my manners and learning to "work" too! This therapy thing is pretty need, but I get tired fast from the energy in the room.

I am a guard dog and will let you know if anyone is near your house that should not be there. I have a lot of loyalty to whoever loves me!

I don't like to share my food with other dogs, but if you are human, you can take it. Tara is working with me on this, but I just LOVE food!

Spread the word that I really want to find my forever family! I have been at this house for a long time. Don't get me wrong, it is great here, but it is not mine!  My foster sister got adopted last week, so I hope my time is coming soon!

Ok, Abbey just caught me typing on here so I better go! Spread the word about me! Oh and I will be at some place called the Shell Factory tomorrow to meet new people for Wienerfest! Hope I am not the biggest dog there!

With Love~~Kelley

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Teaching them young...

There is so much hype about dogs and kids, especially  babies, but you can teach them (human kids) how to interact with us so there are less "bad things" that could happen. We know not all dogs are like us, however it is possible to learn the signs and protect everyone!

Our humans went out of town without us last weekend....we can't fly on airplanes...and we heard them talking about some of the dogs they met. Our human brother has learned how to properly approach a dog and was praised by dog owners for knowing just how to greet a new dog.

He is not even two, but knows that not all dogs are as wonderful as we are :). I think the fact that we have so many foster dogs that come in and out of the house helps, as he has to learn how to greet them and learn their behaviors as they learn (most of them for the first time) what a toddler is.

With me, he knows I get more nervous when he is around me if I am tired or hungry, but Bode loves him being around all the time. Tara has taught him that he must ask or have her ask before he approaches a dog and can get close enough to pet (or as he says pat).

He always puts his hand out, palm up, where the dog can sniff it and if the dog shies away, he doesn't approach. He always approaches  from the side and Tara keeps an eye on calming signals (stress signals) the dog may give off.

It is important to learn how to greet dogs properly and teach children---this is a part of every counseling series we offer, as we are not allowed in a session without the children first learning to interact with us!

Learning calming signals is also very important!

Let me know if you have any questions!


Sunday, September 11, 2011

Today we remember...

There was a lot of anxiety felt today and we really didn't understand why. You see our human family went out of town for the weekend, so we got to stay with our grandparents. We could tell there was a lot of emotion going on with everyone around us, but we didn't quite understand why.

We now know that today is the 10 year anniversary of something horrible happening in our country. We weren't alive, but we can sense the emotion that, even 10 years later, all the humans that were alive felt.

We decided to do some research see what we could learn about other dogs that were involved in the rescue efforts and found the following links to share with you:

The resiliency of the rescue dogs is shown int his article:

Dog therapy used at "Ground Zero" (see, it's not a new concept at all!):

Kinsey's experience:

Take time to read these articles as they show another view of help some working dogs provided to those in the depths of this horrible event!

We are breathing easier as Tara and the rest of the family flew safely home today and we are all snuggled up together for bed. Their flight was delayed, but that was all! We had no problem waiting an extra hour for them, we are just so happy they made it home safely!

With love,

Abbey and Bode

Monday, September 5, 2011

We keep hearing clients, our family, and others talking about September 11, 2011. We weren't born yet, so we did not personally experience this horrific event, however we have recently come across a story of a fellow canine who was involved in helping many people. Check out her story!

The Unsung "heros" of September 11th

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Did you see this?

Loyalty goes a long way!

We love this picture! It shows how much love there is between us furry folks and you, humans! Check it out!

Friday, August 19, 2011

A sample of what we do....

It has taken me some time to really gather my thoughts to write this blog post. Tara puts a lot of effort into training us, but our focus is on children and individually. On Tuesday I got to try something new: I taught a public workshop! "The Whispered Word of Suicide" was present by Tara and I to a group of Stephen Ministers at a local church. I must add that I had no idea we were doing this. I am sure Tara told me, but I was not paying attention---don't tell her but I do that a lot! I had been at work with her most of the day and slept in the work room for the last two clients, so I thought we were going home, but we didn't!

When we got there, we were able to get set up. I sniffed around and greeted the people in the room. I was a little unsure of the different floors we walked on as they changed as we walked through the building to get to our room, but I was more than happy to see carpet that I knew in the room we were teaching in. Tara carried one of my beds in and told me to go on "place". It was hard to listen because other people kept saying "Abbey come".

As 6:30 rolled around the meeting started. They were talking about some church things, prayers, praise, etc. I decided to sit on Tara's lap and just listened. All of a sudden this woman walked in and I just knew something was wrong. I kept trying to tell Tara but she wasn't getting it and was telling me I was being rude and to calm down so they could continue their meeting. I don't usually have a leash on and forgot that I was wearing one and Tara pulled me back. I kept tagging her and telling her that I HAD to go see this lady. Finally the lady started to cry and I gave Tara the "I told you so look". I could tell Tara was surprised, but she still wouldn't let me get to her.

I don't really know what was said, but the lady started to cry harder and everyone, except for Tara because she made me sit with her, got up and started praying for the woman. Once everything calmed down, we were introduced and I went and sat with the woman who was crying. Tara talked for a minute about my job in counseling sessions and how I gave her the signals something was wrong, even before it was disclosed.

Once I knew that lady was ok, I walked around the room to get a good read on everyone. A very nice man in the front took of my leash and I then went fully into "work" mode. I visited with a couple of people who were struggling with hearing Tara talk so easily about suicide. She does talk about it with ease, but after all, that is the point of her presentation. If we don't talk about it, then how are we going to save lives?

After the more intense portion of the workshop, I started to focus on the door and window. I chased a lizard that was outside and listened to the people outside the door who were talking. People thought I had to go potty, but Tara knew better. She told them it was because of the lizard and people talking, but I took on too much emotion and was ready to call it quits. I finally went and laid down, but made sure Tara knew I reached my limit and could not visit with anyone any longer.

Many people do not realize that in our work, we don't have to know what people are saying, we take on the energy of the emotions. I slept good that night and know that I helped the one lady and probably others in the room.

Tara praised me like crazy when we got outside and I got some special attention from her. I was so excited to come home and tell Bode about it, but he was sad he didn't get to go too.

I love what I do and I am so glad to share it with you too!

Off to bed....

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

We rescued Tara...

Abbey and I were shown this by a friend and it is so true! Did you know that we are both rescues? Well in reality, we rescued Tara :)

Paw and Hand
Her eyes met mine as she walked down the corridor,
peering apprehensively into the kennels.
I felt her need instantly and knew I had to help her.
I wagged my tail, not too exuberantly,
so she wouldn’t be afraid.
As she stopped at my kennel,
I blocked her view from a little accident I
had in the back of my cage.
I didn’t want her to know that I hadn’t been
walked today.
Sometimes the shelter keepers get busy
and I didn’t want her to
think poorly of them.
As she read my kennel card,
I hoped that she wouldn’t feel sad about my past.
I only have the future to look forward to,
and want to make a difference in someone’s life.
She got down on her knees and made little kissy sounds at me.
I shoved my shoulder and side of my head up against
the bars to comfort her.
A tear fell down her cheek
Gentle fingertips caressed my neck;
she was desperate for companionship.
A tear fell down her cheek,
and I raised my paw to assure her that all would be well.
Soon my kennel door opened and her smile was so bright
that I Instantly jumped into her arms.
I would promise to keep her safe.
I would promise to always be by her side.
I would promise to do everything I could to see
that radiant smile and sparkle in her eyes.
I was so fortunate that she came down my corridor.
So many more are out there who haven’t walked the corridors.
So many more to be saved.
At least I could save one.
I rescued a human today…

Monday, August 15, 2011

I caught her...

Abbey loves to steal our human brother's car seat after we take him to school or before we pick him up. It always makes Tara laugh and she tells Abbey that she is such a "Drama Queen". Here she is proving she is queen!

She (Abbey) is always complaining that she can't see anything because she is so little. Sitting in the seat, she gets the same view I do from the car. Abbey, being the people watcher that she is, must know what is going on in the world around her! Surprises make her anxiety increase and this way she can easily keep track of life.

Do you feel like you have to always know what is going on? Does your anxiety grow when you can't see what is going to happen next? Some stress and anxiety management tools may help you! Abbey is learning some herself and finding ways to cope with her anxiety in life!

Until next time...


Thursday, August 11, 2011

A day in our life...

so, we have decided to share with you a typical day (if there is such a thing) in our life!

-6:30-7am: Hear our human brother wake up and pretend we are still asleep

-7:30am: Reluctantly go outside as fast as we can and come back in where Bode attempts to go back to sleep and Abbey takes a seat on her couch to keep an eye on the neighborhood

-8am: Hear Tara fill our bowl, walk out to make sure it is enough food. Abbey eats, Bode decides to graze throughout the day

-8:45am: Get our work "clothes" on and pack up the car

-9am: Take our human brother to school and say hi to all the other families in the parking lot

-9-9:30am: Arrive at the office, take a walk around the inside and outside to make sure nothing has changed since we were last there. Bode finds bunny and ensures he knows where it is and no one has touched it. Abbey claims the large dog bed in the work room.

-9:45am: Remind Tara that we know where she keeps both treats (the good ones from Pawsotively Purrfect are in the fridge and the "others" are in the big playroom)

-10-5ish: clients, clients, and more clients...our favorite!! We go out and play in the yard a few times; play tag with each other; run around with the the other therapy dogs; drink water and nap

-5pm: Return to the school to pick up the little human and again, greet everyone we can see! We get so excited when he gets in the car and tells us hello!

-5:30pm: Home and run around the yard with the family, play inside, walk, many things to do!

-6:30pm: Here comes dinner!! We are ready this time and eat it all then off we go to play in the yard.

8pm sharp: We put ourselves to bed! Abbey sneaks into the closet and pulls down clothes to make a bed on her bed. Bode sprawls out across the king size bed and attempts to claim it without sharing!

Sometime after that, Tara attempts to relocate us (and our foster sisters). She claims that beds are for humans, but we think that we should all take turns on the floor, dog beds, and that huge, cozy, king sized cloud...I mean bed!

That is our life...most of the days vary in times as there are some mornings Tara makes us get up early or we go in later because we stay at the office until late (bed time) in the evening!

It is now 10 minutes past our self prescribed bed time...good night world!

Love Abbey and Bode!

Our Foster Sisters....

We have not been keeping up with this blog as we have two foster sisters from Brooke's Legacy Animal Rescue and they keep us so busy!

Please spread the word about Kelley and Dulce!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Help save a life!

It has been brought to our attention through one of Tara's animal assisted play therapy groups, that there are some dogs up in Michigan that are going to be put down and it's just not right!

Another blogger has posted the story and the videos that were used in court for the judge's ruling. We wonder what your thoughts are on this. We wish we could save this dog!

You can sign the petition here:

Please spread the word and help save lives! The behavior we see here is not aggressive, rather a very friendly pup who wants to play and be around people and other dogs!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

We have missed you!

Abbey and Bode here..yes we are back! Sorry for the delay in updating you on happenings with us and the practice, but time escaped us! Abbey is finally feeling better and no longer sick. What a relief as it was scary for both of us! She still can't eat everything, but has learned what she needs to avoid.

We have been busy getting used to sharing the clients and Bode is catching up on some much needed rest. Bode wasn't so happy to have one of his clients chose Abbey over him in a session last week and Liz (one of the human counselors at the practice) caught a photo of it but it won't load right now to the blog!

We have had lots of foster dogs here the past month. Zoey was adopted, then we went to pick up Priscilla and she got adopted, Max was with us for a few hours and got adopted, then Cam was here for a week and now we have Connor who has been here almost two weeks. We are so happy they are all finding forever homes but really like getting to know them and showing them our training. None of them have understood "work" and get confused at our excitement in going. We forget to help them when we are at the office. When we go into work mode, that is all we think about!

We will try to do better and updating this!

Abbey and Bode!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Getting your "angries out"

It is ok to get angry, but it is not ok to hurt someone else with words or touch when you are angry! Today a client and I practiced getting our "angries out" and she taught me how to use the bop bag to do so. It was so fun! I was smiling and wagging my tail. 

I bet you are wondering what could make me angry. Well for starters, sometimes it is just a bad day and the little things get to me. Other days, like today, I get angry because Abbey is sick and I don't know what to do to help her. I know I shouldn't get angry, but it is frustrating. I love my sister so much but I don't know how to help! Tara and I had to run to the vet in between clients to pick up more medicine to try for Abbey as she yet again relapsed. I heard Tara tell the vet that it is every 7-10 days. They are hoping this medicine works, because if it doesn't they have to do something Tara called "invasive tests". 

It was a long day as I had five clients all by myself...well with Tara there too as Abbey is on sick leave again!

Night, night....


Friday, April 8, 2011

From our Aunt Ezzie...

Love, laugh, sing, play.
If you want to heal your mind,
do these things every day,
and there will be very little left to heal.


The following was found posted very low on a refrigerator door.
Dear Dogs and Cats:

The dishes with the paw prints are yours and contain your food.

The other dishes are mine and contain my food.. Placing a paw print in the middle of my plate and food does not stake a claim for it becoming your food and dish, nor do I find that aesthetically pleasing in the slightest.

The stairway was not designed by NASCAR and is not a racetrack.  Racing me to the bottom is not the object. Tripping me  doesn't help because I fall faster than you can run.

I cannot buy anything bigger than a king sized bed. I am very sorry about this. Do not think I will continue sleeping on the couch to ensure your comfort, however. Dogs and cats can actually curl up in a ball when they sleep. It is not necessary to sleep perpendicular to each other, stretched out to the fullest extent possible. I also know that sticking tails straight out and having  tongues hanging out on the other end to maximize space is nothing but sarcasm..

For the last time, there is no secret exit from the bathroom! If, by some miracle, I beat you there and manage to get the door shut, it is not necessary to claw, whine, meow, try to turn the knob or get your paw under the edge in an attempt to open the door. I must exit through the same door I entered.
 Also, I have been using the bathroom for years - canine/feline attendance is not required.

The proper order for kissing is: Kiss me first, then go smell the other dog or cat's butt. I cannot stress this enough.

Finally, in fairness, dear pets, I have posted the following message on the front door:


(1)   They live here. You don't.
(2)   If you don't want their hair on your clothes, stay off the furniture. That's why they call it 'fur'-niture.
(3) I like my pets a lot better than I like most people.
(4) To you, they are animals. To me, they are adopted sons/daughters who are short, hairy, walk on all fours and don't speak clearly.

Remember, dogs and cats are better than kids because they:

(1)   eat less,
(2)   don't ask for money all the time,
(3)   are easier to train,
(4)   normally come when called,
(5)   never ask to drive the car,
(6)   don't smoke or drink,
(7)   don't want to wear your clothes,
(8)   don't have to buy the latest fashions,
(9)   don't need a gazillion dollars for college and
if they get pregnant, you can sell their children

Monday, April 4, 2011

Abbey's Birthday Celebration....

Well, again, we fall behind on our blog. Thursday was Abbey's sixth birthday, but she ended up getting really sick again and Tara took her back to the vet. We saw all the yummy birthday goodies Tara bought at the Dog Bakery, however the vet said Abbey was on a restricted diet, so Zoey and I had to wait too!

Today we sang Happy Birthday and got our yummy treats! Zoey had never had one and was so excited to get a peanut butter paw with frosting on it. I got one that looked like a birthday cupcake with lots of frosting and sprinkles and Abbey got a carob brownie since she isn't supposed to have wheat right now.

A dog and his baby....

Check out this amazing four legged friend! We love our human baby and would do the same; not all dogs want to hurt children...many of us want to protect!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Abbey received the all clear!

Bode here...again! Let's hope Abbey feels like writing again soon! Here we are at work yesterday...we cuddled together while we waited for clients!

After work today, Tara took her back for a follow-up appointment with Dr. Monte. Abbey was so scared that she told me she kept trying to find a way out of the waiting room. I heard Tara say that she was hiding under chairs and shaking.

They took her blood again and found that her temperature was finally gone. After what Abbey said was a LONG wait, they came back and said everything is back to normal range and no more medicine for her!

Tara asked if they could put a name to what Abbey had and the doctor shared that it was an infection of her bili-system that caused her white blood cell and bilirubin counts to go so high and the fever to struggle to fight it off.  She finally said it was some sort of rare, non-contagious form of hepatitis. I am so glad to have my sister back to being healthy!

Good night and sleep tight...I will tell Abbey to write soon!


Saturday, March 12, 2011

An update on Abbey...

Sorry for the delay in updating you on Abbey....

She came home Wednesday night, but it was a long rough night. I got home from work and she was already here and was sitting in the laundry room shaking. She let me say hi to her, but then she let me know to give her space. She wanted Tara to sit with her for awhile, so we all let them have their space.

I heard Tara say that Abbey has a lot of medicine to take and that they still were not sure what was wrong. Abbey was so nervous she had trouble holding her bladder. Tara convinced her to come sleep in the bedroom with the rest of us, but I don't think she slept much. She whined and moaned all night and didn't want anyone near her.

Thursday morning she was not moving around much and did not want to eat or go outside. Tara took us both to work, but I had to see all the clients because Abbey was just there so we could keep an eye on her. She laid on the dog bed at the office and really didn't move the whole time we were there. She didn't want to eat, drink, or go outside.

Tara then took her back to the vet and she came home feeling a little better. They think she had a reaction to her medicine. I heard Tara say that Abbey's blood work looked better, so that was good. Her temperature was still a little high, but not worrisome. The vet said Abbey had to come back if she still didn't eat or move around much.

Jenn (the nanny) told Tara that Abbey wasn't moving around much Friday, and honestly, she wasn't. She was better by the time Tara got home, so they talked to the vet and agreed to wait before going back.

Today Abbey is eating and actually barked (for the first time all week) at someone outside. She isn't herself, but getting there!

Tara and Abbey said to thank everyone for the calls and emails.

Hopefully the medication will continue to work and our next update will be from Abbey when she is feeling like herself!

Off to bed....

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Abbey is in the hospital

Yesterday was a hard day at our house. Abbey was hospitalized and she is still there. I am not really understanding all this, but trying to. Here is what I know...

Sunday night Abbey was up most of the night sick at her stomach. Monday morning she still wasn't feeling great but then just seemed tired through the day. Monday night she got very, very sick and Tara took her to the vet yesterday morning.

Tara came home without Abbey but had her leash, so I got really scared. I didn't eat all day and just kept listening to what was going on. I miss my sister! I worked with Tara by myself, but the  clients seemed to be able to tell I wasn't myself. They  kept asking "where is Abbey?"

I heard Tara tell the kids that Abbey was very sick and was at the doggie hospital where she was being given really good care so she could get better and come back to work soon. 

Tara said that Abbey had a fever of almost 105 and that her white blood cell count and something called a bilirubin were really high. 

When we got home from work, I was so tired that I went to bed and Zoey (our foster sister) came to sleep with me too.

This morning we were all up early waiting for the vet to call. I cuddled close to Tara all night as I really  missed my sister. Zoey was all over the place and restless. Thankfully the baby slept all night! The vet called a little after 8am and said Abbey was doing a little better but not "in the clear and not close to 100%". Her temperature came down slightly to 102.5. 

Abbey's Red Sox blanket was on the couch when Tara left a little while ago and now it's gone too. I heard that Abbey has it at the hospital with her. That should make her comfortable, she loves that blanket! Tara said she saw Abbey and that Abbey ate a little bit when she saw her, but she was scared and very warm to the touch. She still has her IV in and the nurses were taking good care of her. Abbey is so nervous all the time that I bet she is scared!

Tara wasn't gone long and said Abbey was crying while she was there. I think Abbey was crying because she wants to come home and doesn't understand why she can't. I can smell Abbey on Tara's blue jeans and so can Zoey. We are staying close waiting to hear what is next.  

I wish I could tell time...I hear that the vet is supposed to call around 3pm again....

I better rest up since I get to work with all of tonight's clients!


Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

Wishing everyone a Happy Valentine's Day! Remember it is about spreading love to all you know, not just a significant other/spouse. Don't forget about friends and family! As Shakespeare said, "If music be the food of love, play on."

Dogs Trust Vintage: 4 ways to improve your relationship

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Happy 5th Birthday, Bode!

Bode turned 5 on Tuesday! Even though it was his birthday, he insisted on going to work with Tara and I, so we celebrated at work and when we got home! Here he is the day he came home and now.

At work, the clients loved singing to him and one made him a birthday crown to wear. I posted a picture below. It says "Bode I <3 U!"

When we got home, we got the yummy goodies from the dog bakery and then we were exhausted. I can't birthday is next!

Bode says thank you for all the Facebook birthday messages!

With love,


Sunday, January 30, 2011


Having someone to lean on is so important. You can have mentors in each aspect of your life or one for everything you do. This week we had some ups and downs and were thankful when Tara decided to call one of her mentors, Jill. Tara usually has the right idea, but gets such support by hearing validation for what she is doing from Jill. 

Bode and I are not sure who we consider our mentors. Tara has another Play Therapist that specializes and educates in pet-assisted therapy, so we probably would pick her and her dogs. Rise Van Fleet is so knowledgeable and experienced with what dogs can accomplish in many ways, but most importantly in the therapy room. 

Who is your mentor? We would love to see some posts here about our followers and your mentors!

Onwards to a great week!


Monday, January 24, 2011

Priorities....How do you set them?

Today my priority was to sleep, as was most of us in the house, but Bode and I are the only ones that succeeded. The baby is, as Tara says, "cutting teeth". I, as a dog, do not understand that but see him biting more things. I guess human babies aren't born with teeth. 

Anyhow, now that I am well rested, I thought we should talk about family priorities. These come up often in sessions, more so lately. Who decides and who should decide do not always match up! Should the kids be involved (what about the dogs?)? I say yes (to both) and Tara agrees! 

Sitting down as a family for a planned meeting to prioritize needs is helpful to a successful family schedule.  Are family meals a part of your schedule? What about family fun or game nights? These should take precedence over anything else....after all, the family that plays together, stays together!

Are adult and child sports or extra-curricular activities taken into consideration? Are you making your child play soccer because you did (do) or do they really want to? Have you thought about volunteering or attending community events together? Does everyone agree? Is saving money a priority? What are you saving for? How can everyone in the family be involved? 

Do you notice a theme? Communication is key! Ultimately the parents are in charge, however by including the children, you can't help but have success by making them feel included!

In our house, there are many trips and places that Tara goes that we cannot go, but she always makes up for it by ensuring we take a trip we can attend. Sometimes this is just to the bank or like our December vacation, to North Carolina as a family!

I hope you take time to set your family priorities...make it your priority!


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Monday, January 10, 2011

It's not about your rights....

It's been on my mind for awhile and I haven't had time to sit down and write about it, but here it goes....

Bode and I hear a lot of the phone calls and parent meetings Tara has and there is often a theme that bothers us. Parent's often think it is their right in a custody situation to see their child, but the truth is that is has nothing to do with them. Do they not realize that it is the children who are hurting and the children who have a right to see both parents?

Let me explain with an example. A parent vents to Tara that they don't like the new love interest of the other parent, therefore they are restricting visitation time with the children as a punishment to the other parent. The children are the ones being punished, not the adults. The adult who isn't seeing the child(ren) may feel punished, but ultimately it is the children who are losing out on valuable time with both parents.

In the eyes of the court (based on trainings Tara has attended), the children have rights to see both parents unless there is risk or evidence of abuse (emotional, physical, or sexual) or neglect. Parents need to put aside their lack of ability to have a relationship with one another and focus on the fact that no matter what, they have a child(ren) together.

Here are some rights Bode and I came up with (at least through our eyes). We know there is more, but these stand out to us:

*Children have the right to see both parents without being subjected to arguing.
*Children have a right to know and have a relationship with both of their parents.
*Children have a right to be a kid and not know all the adult information (this includes court information)
*Children have a right to be free from hearing others talk badly about either parent.
*Children have a right to have their parents attend school or extra curricular events without causing a scene or putting the child in a position to chose one side or the other.

Can you think of other rights children have?

I can think of many, but for now I will call it a night!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Sometimes there is negatives about us pups!

Tara saw this article today and is not happy....neither are we!

Fido's No Doctor....

It is one thing to report research, but one must be responsible and post reliable and valid research that has appropriate measurements for what they are reporting. There are so many articles that show the positive results of canine companionship and word in therapy.

We may seem biased, but we know we are making a difference in the lives of our clients. We shared this article with some friends and here are some responses we received.

"For myself, the animal human bond is about quality of life and that's not so easily measured. In my case, it's how I feel when I go home at night and my dog greets me with a huge smile. And how I feel when I've settled down for the night and hear his big "I'm drifting off to sleep now" sigh. To me that's as close to heaven as I can come in this life. I know that without my dog, I am a sadder, less effective person, so the research can say what it wants! If it doesn't agree with me, oh well, guess I'm just an outlier then!
LOL (A very happy outlier)"

"This author needs to read a book on the scientific research of the healing powers of canines. I recommend "Made for Each Other" by Olmert.

"The look on a child's face when they come into the therapy office and there are not any dogs is saddening; however when they come in and find a wagging tail, you can see how much it eases the anxiety of anything they are going to process in the therapy session."

Monday, January 3, 2011

Saying thanks again and again....

Do you remember to say thank you when someone surprises you? We do! We love getting packages in the mail and our friend at NASW sends us goodies every now and then. We have never met her, but she celebrates our work with us by sending yummy treats! In this picture, we are sitting and waiting for Tara to open the package so we can try some. They were delicious!!!

We have had a week and a half off work and ready to get back! We start back tomorrow and can't wait to work with all of our clients and hear about their Christmas and New Year's.

Thank you for following our blog!

Abbey and Bode!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy New Year!!!

Getting cuddly by the fire
Welcome to 2011! Are you as excited as we are? There are so many things to be thankful for and to be excited for in the next year.

We ended 2010 with a new adventure...we saw snow! We (the whole family) drove to North Carolina and got snowed in. We didn't know what that meant until Tara tried to take us outside to go potty and we learned there was this white stuff (snow) all over the ground that was cold and sticky. Even when you come inside, you fight for a place by the fire to warm up! It was so high that Abbey had to walk in shoveled areas and when Bode went into the snow, it came almost up to his belly.

Bode running after the sled

Abbey not sure about leaving the porch

Bode playing football in the snow
We are back in Florida now and warmed up to the point that we were able to do one of our favorite things this weekend: Sunbathe in the yard! Our time in the yard allowed us to reflect on our goals for this year. We keep hearing Tara talk about resolutions, but we prefer the word goals. We will share them later this week. Until then, here are some pictures of us in the North Carolina snow storm.