Brodie here. All is swell that ends well.

Yesterday was 10 days post-surgery of my “snip-snip”. The procedure was simple and mine was “textbook.” Whatever that means. I came home on drugs and had them to ease my pain for 5 days. I tell you I was doing some California Dreaming on Tramadol, even though I was smack dab in the middle of Northern Virginia. Laying low was the vets order and believe me, those pills made that all possible. Further, I never had to wear that silly thing, the “ZenCone, Soft Recovery Collar” because I left myself alone. I sailed through all of that.

So 10 days later, Sheshe took me to the vet for the removal of my stitches. The vet said that I was healing nicely, just one thing. Swelling of the scrotum.  What?

I was aware of different feelings back there but I did not know what to call this. The vet recommended warm compresses several times a day to alleviate this little complication. Sheshe does this for me and I cooperate.  When sickness comes or surgery is necessary, we all want and need an angel to care for us. Animals especially need help because they cannot help themselves and must rely on caring humans.  My wish is that all animals great and small have angels surrounding them when they need them.  I am grateful for my support people, including my skilled & caring vet and for St. Francis of Assisi.

Just wanted you to know that all is swell.

Go to: to learn more about common complications after surgically neutering your dog.

Brodie here. Commentary and Contemplation 3… What’s happening?

What’s going on out there? Collusion, collusion, collusion …no one seems to know the definition…Siri, the Apple lady voice…is sick of repeatedly answering the question…Trending …Geo-fencing…go ahead… Google it. Trending…coming soon precast wall sections easy to assemble, available in heights up to 30 ft., free shipping within the United States (just kidding, but how far-fetched is this?) Fetch, did I hear fetch?

What’s going on out there?

Is a Super Pac a backpack brimming with tons of money that flies out of control, cannot be caught, found or tracked? Imagine a backpack that tells the person wearing the pack what to do and where to go? I’m confused. Trending…the family dog’s bucket list; Why not? Cats are next. 1237…close to 1237…what’s in a number? Should it not be 1234? Drone-selfies flying around; Ears up for the good while ignoring the bad stuff…Bathroom bill…bathroom policies…bathrooms banned…bathrooms creating anxiety…public bathrooms out/holding it…. is in…

What’s going on out there?

Around for millions of years, Pink Himalayan salt touted as being the purest salt in the world…all of a sudden…really…after millions of years? Question: What is a political camp? Answer: A fluid group of like voters in upscale tents that never run out of shenanigans while eating the other camps s’mores? (Would love to put my lips on some warm marshmallows.) Headlines read… Seeking VP…first qualification…candidate must carry own personal Hot Chili Sauce; (I personally enjoy a little spicy Bern (sp?) While still another VP got the job but has no job….as yet.

This is exhausting.  Remember….  Sleeping in is good, just be sure you can get out.

Dandy Weeds – Lion Face Flowers –Dandelions

I grew up with dandelions. Each spring my father would get out the push mower and sharpen the blades. Then, by hand, he’d start digging up the dandelions. Attack weeds, cut, attack the dandy weeds. This was his thing all spring and summer.

There were dandelions in my grandmother’s yard. She allowed dandelions. She lived in the country. She’d pick the young leaves from underneath the yellow flowers and make dandelion salad throughout the spring and summer.

Easy recipe: dandelion greens, topped with a light dressing of white or apple cider vinegar (no balsamic then) and a pinch of salt and some sugar. The bitterness of the greens was complimented by her simple dressing. Bitter greens and homemade biscuits worked.

Time moved on. Dandelions are all but gone, thanks to the spreading of pesticides & weed killers. Suburban dwellers want and pay for well-manicured landscapes and solid green grass lawns. I get that.

It’s the end of April. We have a few healthy dandelions growing here and there along the fringes of our suburban community. I took pictures of these lovelies before the lawn service arrived for the first killer application.  I’m emotionally attached to dandelions.
I am a Dandelion
I am a flower disguised as a weed
Upon your lawn I will stampede
I am a weed disguised as a flower
My leaves and roots have medicinal powers
I am 3 celestial bodies in one
I awaken each morning to greet the sun
I sleep in the evening and dream of the moon and stars
Which are 2 of my other avatars
Upon the wind my seeds are blown
Carried for miles around
But on this lawn I cannot hide
And I’ll soon succumb to pesticides
By Joseph May

Google search offers many of today’s foodie versions of  Dandelion Salad.

Brodie here. Commentary and Contemplation 2… What’s happening?


What’s going on out there? Bound and unbound delegates?…Is someone going to untie these people? No more “Purple Rain”? We all needed those musical and meaningful water drops. In baseball a team can “sweep” another team? How do they sweep with a bat? What happened to the broom? What’s the opposite of trans fats?…trans skinny? “Spot-on” as opposed to “spot-off?” Where is Spot? Question: What distinguishes the front of the new $20 dollar bill from the back? Answer: She’s on front. He’s on zback?
Have you tried a donut sandwich?…be honest now. Question: What’s the difference between rye and whiskey and bourbon? Derby day is coming up… will you care?

What’s going on out there?
Some are going on a sea-cruz while others choose to run the table with the trump card. Still don’t forget the people that are adding kasha, (Is that the correct spelling?) to their diets, hoping for some unbinding…just kidding. Question: What is a “Brokered Convention?” Is that when the release of red, white and blue balloons is not permitted and no cake is served? If that’s the case, then count me out.

What’s going on out there?
Why is Earth Day only one day? Should it not be everyday? robot vacuums flying off store shelves; phone Robo Scam Caller liars with their pants on fire; forget the bad people; remember the good that surrounds us all. 1.5 million cars on recall for driving away once the human driver leaves the car…good luck on getting those cars back…try shouting “Puppy, Puppy Cookies…that gets me back every time I try to bolt. Pronouns…are they superior in knowledge and ability when compared to simple nouns? That pro part is disconcerting.

Thinking about this is exhausting. What’s happening?

Brodie here. Commentary and Contemplation…What’s happening?

Brodie commnetary

What’s happening?

Bathrooms that advertise “Everybody” (good for families); kindergarten becoming the new first grade; cute little kindergartners flunking out, not being allowed to matriculate to the for real first grade; super delegates crowning the queen or maybe a king;  independents excluded here & there; aioli appearing in just about every food concoction in hipster/foodie restaurants; (I love dog friendly establishments.) exquisite taste equating to how long one waits in a line; meme litter everywhere…rhymes with team…what is a meme anyway? Teachers needing to secure 1 maybe 2 part-time jobs so they can pay their bills and taxes while still finding the time to multi-task at home late at night, baking cookies for their students while searching through Teachers-Pay-Teachers for those exciting and engaging lesson plans. (Love to the teachers.) Hard root beer taking off; (Is that opposed to soft root beer?) Airlines permitting, you name it animals from turkeys to pot-belly pigs to be on board, in flight, sitting in a passenger seat with the intention of calming their seat mate/owner during flight (therapy animal house.)

Seriously, what is happening?
Car-manufacturing liars with their pants on fire; supercilious car drivers taking it easy in the passing lane while texting or perhaps clutching a fast-food cheeseburger; Question: What is the 4th of July? Answer: We have a parade & then a hotdog picnic? (Love the hotdog.) Barbers who need to take handwriting courses so they can skillfully buzz names on kid’s heads (block print of course, cause cursive is out.)

What’s happening?
Dog poop that lives where it was deposited & remains through the deteriorating process of becoming dust. Question: “What is Mount Rushmore? Answer: A water park?” (I want to go to the great state of South Dakota.) “Feeling the burn” once referring to a cardio workout now refers to a certain person who frequently displays the pointer finger; (I feel the heat.) Needing to practice ordering java prior to ones arrival at “S Coffee” less one presents like a fast food flunky coffee drinker. (Hold the java for me, please.) gluten free gluten; restaurant macaroni and cheese with everything in it but the kitchen sink; the possibility of drinking two crafted beers with an alcohol content so high that it could put one under the table or have one throwing up in the kitchen sink; “The House of Cards” looking more and more each season like a reality show; social media headlining ad nauseam processed foods being retrofitted into something other than what “it” was intended, pop-it, cut it, add real food ingredients, add herbs, then layer it with something like shredded cheese or melted chocolate, bake it or slow cook it & finally plate it “foodie-it”. Why start with an it? (I would, however, definitely eat “it” if given the opportunity.)

Commentaries are exhausting. What’s happening?

Patio garden says “Scat Mosquitoes” & Butterfly Bushes scream “Come Hither Mosquitoes”

We are outdoor people and can be found on our patio enjoying life, weather permitting on a year round basis. Each spring we enjoy preparing our flowerbeds, selecting the flowers, planting & preening, then stepping back and enjoying the bounty. This year our planting criteria has changed, all due to the growing concerns about the mosquitoes, specifically the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which carries the Zika virus.

After reading up on the 2016 dreaded mosquitoes, it became clear that if we were to enjoy our patio we needed to make every attempt to illuminate these potentially harmful insects. There was plenty of available research and existing common knowledge to help make this happen. There are ways to deter these horrible creatures and it’s simple.

First, eliminate any standing water. Even a teacup containing still water can attract female mosquitoes. The Aedes aegypti, especially likes man-made containers of any kind to lay its eggs. We don’t have a birdbath but if we did, we’d need a bubbler of some sort, a schedule for scrubbing the bowl every two days, then changing the water to attract the birds.

Next plant flowers/herbs around the patio that are actually known to repel mosquitoes. Insects in general rail at the smell of marigolds, ageratum, geraniums, scented geraniums, eucalyptus, pennyroyal and citronella grass, as well as lavender, lemon balm, rosemary, peppermint and basil.

We selected the following plantings that say “Get Out” to mosquitoes:


Scented Geraniums







Additionally, lantana is so effective in warding off mosquitoes it’s recommended that you plant them near doors that are opened frequently. The last things you need are mosquitoes inside your home. So this year lantana will be in a large decorative pot by the door.

Of course, there are other flowers/herbs that I would prefer to plant in the patio area; especially ones that are vibrant with color and loaded with nectar that would naturally attract butterflies…but this year we’re planting defensively, at least around the patio area.

Speaking of butterflies, in my research I found an interesting article about the beloved butterfly bushes and how science has discovered that these lovelies, while they attract butterflies with their yummy nectar, they also attract mosquitoes. Mosquitoes are drawn to these bushes just like the butterflies. The source of the article is quite credible and can give pause to those of us who have these bushes planted in our yards. The article states that research is underway and….go to: for more details.

Our “scat mosquito” landscaping will be planted soon. Look for updates.

Is there a “bitch” in heat around here?

IMG_7445My life as a content, young, golden retriever, changed drastically almost overnight. How does that happen? What happened? How did my routine, my playfulness, my “got it together I know my stuff” simply leave me. Yes, leave, goodbye, gone. What was happening to me? Let me explain.

I started, they said, tweeting or chirping quietly. This within days progressed to whining.
I whined and stood at the window. I whined as I followed Sheshe around. I whined.
On my walks I started intensively focusing on spots in the grass, repeatedly licking the areas. Licking, licking, seeking new licking locations. I started frequently marking everything in site. My urine began to emit an odor. I heard repeatedly that my penis, a.k.a, my ding dong, my sperminator, my thing smelled like skunk stuff, whatever that is. We needed answers and we needed to figure this out. So off we went to the vet, again.
The vet, I love her, gave me the full body examination, after I calmed down. Ears fine, eyes clear, mouth fine, heart fine, lungs fine, anus fine, paws fine, legs fine….all fine. I provided a urine sample. Then came the question that I had heard twice before within a two week period…..”Could there be a bitch in heat in your neighborhood?”
Sheshe said, “Brodie’s trainer and dog behaviorist asked the same question. I suppose it’s possible. There are so many dogs in our community.” Diagnosis then delivered.

My vet, that I love, said “Brodie is probably hormonal.” We’ll test his urine and let you know tomorrow the results. It’s probably negative. Your boy is just simply a “young mess” right now. They then discussed in front of me setting up an appointment the following week for my neuter, my snip-snip, if my urine was fine.

I am scheduled for my neuter next week and I must say I want it, I need it. I am one miserable golden. I want my routine back. I want my mind back. I need to calm down and chill out. I am so lucky to have such great people in my life making good decisions for me.

We dogs depend on our humans. We put our lives in their hands and we trust. We are forever grateful.

Go to: to read more about how far the smell of a female dog in heat can travel and the possible progression of diminished behavior on the part of intact male dogs that experience this phenomenon.

Holy Grail please come quickly


Brodie here.  My snip, snip is coming this summer

We visited our family vet yesterday.  My ears have been really itchy and the itch seems to be very comfortable staying where it hides.  Sheshe had used eardrops  that had to live in the fridge and for months things seemed to improve.  But then the weather turned warm and the itching came back.  I am finding the need to flop myself on the now coming up fresh green grass and dive bomb my head into it, pushing myself along with my front paws, sliding on my side.  Sheshe thinks it’s funny.  She also thinks I might be doing this to rub my ears.  So back to the vet we went and got some new ears drops.

These drops are called ZYMOX and according to our vet, they cover a broad spectrum of possible problems such as bacteria, fungi, yeast and such. That sounds really creepy.  This “Z stuff” I believe does not contain steriods, but contains three natural bio-active enzymes which are really huge at fighting most ear infections.  The part I REALLY like is that I only get these drops once a day and I cannot get water in my ears.  Yes, that is right, I cannot go swimming.  Yes, I am a golden retriever, however, I do not like to swim.  I instinctively know how to swim,  but I presently am choosing to limit my  water experiences to the bathtub.  But what does that have to do with “snip snip?”

While Sheshe was talking with the vet, who I adore by the way, she said that “we” needed to talk about neutering.  We?  WE? Really?  Yeah, they had the nerve to talk about this in front of me, while I just laid there with my golden smile face.   I listened carefully with my back legs crossed and came away with the following.

There is no ideal time recommend for male cats or dogs being neutered.  School is still out on that.  There are many theories, wait, don’t wait, don’t do it, the minds of those with the information have yet to answer this most important question.  So I did my own research and want to share.

Go to the above if you’d like to  know about the possible future of the possible injection (non-surgical, injectable sterilant for male dogs verses the “operation”.  This option is already working in other countries and sooner or later, maybe,  just maybe the FDA will give its approval.  But when?

I am thinking “NOT” for me.  No silver bullet, no Holy Grail.  Actually, I will be biting the bullet and having “It” done.  Sheshe told the vet that this late summer would be the best time, working around vacations and such.  There’s that “and such” thing again.

Come on Holy Grail….I am running out of time here.