With Christmas only a few days off, I wanted to share a pretty cool experience that my mom, Eugenie, had this week. She was driving to work in Malibu when traffic suddenly ground to a halt. She glanced across the highway to the lush Pepperdine University lawn where she saw a dozen deer charging down the hill, followed by a free roaming dog. Just as the deer reached the edge of the highway, the dog’s owner appeared and called him off. Poised on the edge of the blacktop, Rudolph and company about-faced and headed back toward the mountains, where a fat dude in a red suit was waiting beside a cherry red Camaro. Really.
|A nativity scene was erected in a church yard. During the night, workers can across this scene. The dog…a Shepherd|
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About MABEL, a pit bull rescue from the Central Coast, north of Santa Barbara. She’s in need of a great home and this video shows just how lucky whoever steps up will be. If you or someone you know wants to adopt this ray of ‘Sunshine’, get in touch and we’ll connect you with her volunteer caretakers.
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Since we’re spinning yarns and touting great dogs, here’s an excerpt from GIMME SHELTER about my first Christmas with Lou and Eugenie. Enjoy, and Buon Natale, Feliz Navidad, Joyeux Noel or just have a Merry! – “There’s magic in the scent of a real Christmas tree. One whiff of a Scotch Pine or a majestic Douglas Fir and I’m seven again, scouring the Sears Catalog, scribbling Christmas lists, and baking cookies for Santa. Dogs aren’t quite that nostalgic. For them, a real tree is just a handy porta-potty. With that in mind, we skipped the walk down memory lane and settled for an unholy fiber optic “tree,” a cross between a Chia Pet and a Lava Lamp. Tanner watched from his bed while we hung the ornaments and garland. We lugged a small mountain of gifts from the garage, dusted them off (thanks to Eugenie, they’d been wrapped since our Solvang trip in October), and deftly arranged them under the polyester bush, creating the perfect Hallmark moment. Then we left to have a glass of wine with some neighbors. We came home to a scene from The Terminator. The tree was askew. The floor was littered with ornaments. Scraps of soggy wrapping paper were strewn about the room like confetti. In our brief absence, Tanner had clawed his way to the bottom of the pile where we’d stashed some plush dog toys.
From day one he’d been gentle, even nurturing, with his “babies.” Lately, however, he’d started savaging them at an alarming rate. The carnage began one evening when we went to a movie. He was fired up and wanted to play. We thought about bringing him along, but weren’t sure he could handle staying in the car alone. And there was always the puking thing. As we closed the door, he glared at us, annoyed at being left behind with so much fuel in his tank. We returned to find his bed had been ransacked, the sheepskin throw torn to shreds. In the past, he’d accidentally ruined a few toys. With his shark-like jaws some collateral damage was inevitable. This was clearly intentional. And he wasn’t finished. In quick succession he gutted Duckie, decapitated Blooie, and mangled his new bear, nicknamed Un Occhio since he was now missing an eye. Sharpie somehow survived the rampage, but was so disfigured that he could star in Phantom of the Opera. Hoping to stem the onslaught, we bought Tanner a Konga, a thick, rubber toy the pet store clerk called “indestructible”. He promptly trashed it…and four subsequent replacements. When I complained, the saleswoman threw up her hands.“You might want to skip the toys,” she said, “and just buy him an old Buick.”