Sunday, October 28, 2012

Halloween Party :)

Here comes Halloween, Here comes Halloween...Its that spooky time of year again! Most years we don't do much for Halloween. The last few years we haven't even been able to go to the haunted house :(. This year we decided to do something and had a Halloween get to together. We dressed up Candy and Molly in doggie costumes, stayed up late into the night watching horror movies, and ate ghoulishly yummy foods. It was so much fun.



















 If you are thinking of having a Halloween party here are some creepy buffet ideas to get you started:




DEM BONES


Ingredients: Pretzel Sticks, Mini Marshmallows, White Chocolate Chips


take pretzel sticks and push a mini marshmallow onto each end of the stick. Melt white chocolate chips using double boiler (or a glass bowl on top of a simmering pot of water if you don't have a double boiler)


Then simply dip each pretzel stick in chocolate and set on wax paper to dry. If a few bones break while pulling them off of the drying rack or wax paper, serve them up too they add character!




SEVERED FINGERS


Ingredients: String Cheese, Almond Slivers, Marinara Sauce

Take string cheese and rip in half with your hands (don't cut because you want them to look like torn ligaments etc). Using a paring knife shape the un-torn end of the cheese. Add almond sliver for nail. using a butter knife add knuckle indention's, then place on platter and cover the severed ends with marinara sauce. Here is a link to a helpful video: http://youtu.be/gb3JRoQGOQM


SPIDER EGGS



Ingredients: Eggs (made as deviled eggs) and Whole Black Olives

boil your eggs and make them into deviled eggs (however you like your deviled eggs) If you don't know how to make deviled eggs here is a link to a recipe; http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/traditional-southern-deviled-eggs-recipe/index.html. Cut olives in half, place olive half in center of deviled eggs, then cut remaining olives into slices, cut slices in half and use as spider legs.


MUMMIES


Ingredients: Hotdogs and Canned Croissant Rolls

Cut croissant rolls into strips and wrap strips around hot dog. Bake according to canned croissant roll directions. (you can add mustard eyes but the mustard will dry out really fast which is why we didn't do it)


SPIDER DIP


Ingredients: Refried Beans, Salsa, Sour cream, Cheddar Cheese, Olives, Tomatoes

on a large circular platter layer, beans, salsa and sour cream, then top with cheese, olives and tomatoes. Add remaining sour cream to piping bag (if you don't have a piping bag a Ziploc will work just fine, push the sour cream into the corner then carefully cut off the tip off of that corner of the bag), then simply pipe on the web start by drawing the star then add the circles, if you can remember add a washed plastic spider (i had one but forgot to put it on)


SCREAMING SLIDERS


no real recipe here, just make homemade sliders however you like. Then get a Halloween cookie cutter and cut the sliced cheese into neat shapes. We find that Kings Hawaiian Sweet Rolls work great as the buns for sliders. 


And that's pretty much all the food, we also made some ghastly sandwiches with Halloween ghost shaped cookie cutters but i didn't get any close ups of them. I hope you all have a safe and happy Halloween! If anyone makes these or any other Halloween dishes feel free to share pics I would love to see how they turn out!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Halftime for Gamers ;)

So I am a total LSU fan but I came across this Halftime show on YouTube by The Ohio State University Marching Band and it is truly epic.  

I recognized tributes to galaga, pokemon, tetris, mario, halo, zelda, and pacman (pretty sure I missed a few since there were a few i didn't recognize ) but my favorite moment is the running horse at 6:00. 

enjoy :)



Sunday, October 7, 2012

Do we need more banking regulation?

So I came across an article on ABC news that comes from the credit.com blog talking about how banks were still raking in massive profits using overdraft fees despite the new regulations. The article is calling for increased regulation on banks stating that, "these fees have fallen disproportionately on the people least able to pay them: seniors, the young, minorities, the disabled, and military families". and that "High overdraft fees are pushing millions of Americans out of the banking system entirely and into things like payday loans, which have significantly higher cost and significantly lower protection for consumers".   The articles author continues on saying that "The Fed's 2010 opt-in rule was a good first step. But banks have figured out ways around it to keep their pipeline of easy money flowing, with no regard for how much it hurts consumers --- or which consumers get hurt". The regulation that he would like to see enacted are: a ban on all overdraft fees for debit and ATM transactions, lower fees, overdrafts by paper check cannot be declined, post transactions in the order they are made in, and to treat overdraft fees as short term loans and inform consumers of the APR they are getting.

I can understand the need for the original legislation because we should have the option to choose whether we want overdraft protection. However, although some of the ideas above are not bad, i dont believe that we need additional legislation.

Its time for people to start taking responsibility for their actions and stop looking to blame someone else for their problems!  Every single person that has a checking account at the moment has CHOSEN whether or not they wanted overdraft protection. If you chose overdraft protection and you overdraft then you are being extended the COURTESY by the bank of covering your mistake. It is YOUR responsibility (not the banks) to keep your receipts and to record on a daily basis how much you have spent versus how much you have available in the bank. Every single person needs to be on top of their finances, it should not matter what order purchases post in if you are keeping track of how much you are spending.

If you are over 18 then its time to grow up and act like a responsible adult, handle your bills, handle your business, and handle your responsibilities.  Race, age, disability, etc should not matter. The bottom line is, that if you are capable enough to be legally responsible for your actions then you have no one to blame but yourself if you mismanage your money.

At age 17 I was living on my own and yes I made mistakes and I have paid quite a few overdraft fees in the 13 years since then, but I am not whining about it. I know I messed up.  Heck most of those times (although it was a struggle to pay the fees) I was glad that I had the leeway to make those mistakes.

As for payday loans, I truly doubt that overdraft fees alone are pushing people to obtain payday loans. I do agree that they are a terrible option and that they leave many people struggling to pull out of an ever growing sinkhole of debt. However, these options exist for the people who cannot obtain a traditional loan. Things inevitably come up in life and I am sure that in the moment the fees for the payday loan seem reasonable.  I do think that the interest rates for payday loans  need to be adjusted because 390% is just ridiculous. Then yet again it comes down to being a responsible adult. If you go in and sign for a payday loan you are given the terms and you agree to them. You need to have a grasp of your own finances so that you can figure out how you will repay that loan.

The consumer groups pushing for more legislation should be instead be pushing for education. Teach basic finance starting in middle and high school (more than just one chapter in a text book) or offer free courses at adult education centers on how to handle finances and the dangers of payday loans. Pour all that money and effort that is being spent to push legislation into efforts to truly help those who do not understand how to balance their finances.



Thursday, September 27, 2012

ThunderShirt = Epic Win

This piece of awesomeness right here is a Thundershirt:



In case you have no clue what I'm talking about, The Thundershirt is a shirt for dogs who suffer from anxiety brought on by basically anything (fireworks, storms, the vacuum, car rides, etc). The shirt works by applying gentle calming pressure to the dog.

The other main way to treat anxiety in dogs is through medication. My mothers dog Roxy was prescribed by the vet, what basically equates to Xanax for her anxiety during storms. The medication does work, but you have to catch it just right, (up to an hour at least before the bad weather starts). If its not timed perfectly, she will  run around panting and terrified.

I had been eyeing the Thundershirts at Petsmart and had visited the website a few times because of Molly. Molly freaks out so bad during Thunderstorms that she will whine and yipe as loud as she can until the storm passes. Needless to say, we have had plenty of sleepless nights and miserable days waiting for storms to pass while trying to comfort her. I didn't want to go the medication route, so finally as part of our storm prep for Hurricane Issac I picked up a Thundershirt for her.

I was weary of paying $40 for a dog shirt but it was THE BEST $40 I HAVE EVER SPENT! Molly loves her Thundershirt, in fact she actually gets mad at me when I go to take if off of her lol. As soon as I put the shirt on, she calms down and usually she ends up in her bed asleep. We weathered Issac without a single whine or yipe, as well as several thunderstorms since then. Also I discovered that it also works great for car ride anxiety, Molly was a terrible rider, until I put her Thundershirt on and now she is an angel. I am planning to get another shirt for Copper (he is terrified every year by fireworks at new years and the 4th of July) and for my moms dog Roxy.

If you have a dog who is suffering from any type of anxiety, the Thundershirt is worth a try! I know it seems kinda unbelievable that something so simple could work but somehow it does. I am a believer, and if it works for your dog(s) the way it has worked for mine then it will be the best $40 you will have ever spent as well! :)


Molly in her Thundershirt:




Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Our Candy!

November 11, 2011 My husband and I had gone to Petsmart to pick up a few treats for our other dogs. As fate would have it the big adoption event was going on. We decided to go have a look. We walked around with the intention of LOOKING only, we moved past several dogs and puppies and as we were leaving we caught a glimpse of Candy in the very back of the tent. Somehow that one look from her melted both our hearts, and we had to adopt her! We spent our last $100 to pay the adoption fees and to get her a bowl and a harness and the rest is history. 11/11/11 Will always be a special day  because its the day that our beautiful Candy captured our hearts.

Candy had been with us for almost 11 months now and she fits very well in our pack of pups. With Candy we now have 4 dogs and a bird! Wowza that's a lot of pets! Haha I never thought I would have so many at one time but I wouldn't have it any other way now.

Candy Cane is the sweetest dog that you will ever know but she is also a little terror! She is actually the most destructive dog that we have ever had. She loves to chew and to pull the paper out of Kahunas cage bottom, shred it, and eat the seeds. She has de-squeekered and un-stuffed every toy that has ever come into the house. Its kinda sad when she brings me a toy, what was once a cool looking toy is nothing but a pathetic little rag full of holes. I try and buy one toy every two weeks and it lasts about 10 min max before its a rag. The super durable toys last a little longer (up to a week or two) but eventually they become a rag toy and I don't buy those often because they cost so much more. We have had to get items for Candy that we never had to have for our other dogs like a crate ($80) and extra tall dog gate ($50). Also Candy has cost us thousands of dollars in destruction of things around the house.

To date the things lost to Candys jaws of steel are:
  1. Karl's headphones ($100) 
  2. My favorite pair of leather sandles ($120)
  3. The wires that connect the mouse and keyboard to my computer ($50 for a new wireless set)
  4. Karl's flip flops ($10)
  5. Countless pairs of socks and undies ($60?)
  6. My brand new bra ($30)
  7. The pillows to our couch ($?)
  8. The back of our couch and oversized chair ($1200)
  9. 2 Crate pillows ($40 each)
  10. 1 pair of King Sized Egyptian cotton sheets ($100)
  11. The bottom of the stair rail ($ ? I guess we will find out how much if we move one day?)
  12. Karl's TMJ brace ($600)
Even with all of her destruction we still love her, that face is so cute and sweet that we cant stay mad at her for very long!

Here are some pics of our Candy baby:



















Candy and Molly love to play with the sheets that I use to cover Kahuna with. 
Its a nightly ritual to play with the sheet:

 

Candy is busy destroying a new toy:

 



About this Blog

So, I know its been forever since I wrote anything on this blog. I just haven't felt much like writing. I'm going to try and start getting back into it. In fact I am REALLY in the mood to write today. I'm on a roll. I finished my last post (which had been sitting as a draft for over a year) and I have three topics written down on a sticky note just begging me to blog about them! I know few if any people read my blog but that's not why I am writing it. I enjoy writing and sharing my thoughts and if I can provide a little entertainment to even one other person then I will be happy. Besides this is something I need for me, something I can always turned to and Its way past time for me to back to it ;)

Its the end of the world as we know it ....or not lol



***note*** I started writing this on May 21, 2011 (only wrote the first paragraph)
I came across it today and decided that it was worth finishing, enjoy :)

So the time of the supposed May 21 2011 Rapture has come and gone... Yes that's right... in case you haven't heard yet, at 6pm today 200 million people were supposed to float magically up into the air on their voyage towards heaven whilst the rest of the world would be subjected to 5 months of hell on earth before the world is completely destroyed...............

Haha where do these people come up with this stuff?  Sure, sure, the bible and all, but I mean to really actually believe it, and put all your money and your life on hold waiting for some tragic end to humanity requires a special breed of gullibility.  Perhaps they watched one to many disaster movies, or happened across the Zombie Apocalypse guide from the CDC (pure awesomeness right there), or maybe they just secretly want the world to end because the thought of living in heaven is much prettier than the messiness of everyday life. What ever the reason it seems that we as a global culture are obsessed with the demise of our own species. Every couple of years there is a new scare that threatens to bring the end of the world as we know it.

Remember Y2K?  The Millennium bug,was supposed to shut off any system running on a computer, so that means utilities, banking, etc were all just going to stop at midnight on Jan 1, 2000 sending the world into a literal dark age again. Y2K is not nearly as unbelievable as the Rapture and perhaps it would have happened if governments around the world hadn't spent billions upgrading their computer systems. Or perhaps it was just another end of the world scare, either way, lots of people were terrified that this was truly going to end the modern world.

The next disaster that should be ending the world will be of course on December 21 2012 (12/21/12) at the supposed end of the Mayan calendar. Seriously, the Mayans were awesome and all, but I really don't understand how people can believe that the world is going to come to some crazy tragic end. I mean the Mayans lived thousands of years ago, yes they were great at astromomy and math (so are we today) but In order for them to acurately predict the end of the world they would have to be more like psychics and prophets than astronomers and mathematicians.

I think the bottom line it that it is fun to sometimes fantasize about the end of the world (hehe yes, even I have made a zombie contingency plan) plus there is no denying the fact that our doomsday fascination has made for countless hours of quality entertainment in movies and books. However, if you cross the line from using Armageddon as entertainment to believing that this will soon be the new reality then its time to go and get your head checked! :)




Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Miss Molly

Meet Molly the newest addition to our family. She is a 11mo old Shih Tsu. We adopted her from my sister-in-law (thanks Janet). Molly has spent a large portion of her life in a kennel because her previous owners were unable to bring her on their frequent business trips. They were going to bring her to the pound if Janet hadn't of rescued her. Janet had fully intended to keep Molly but was unable to, due to a disagreement with her husband over taking in another pet. We decided to take her in and she is just the sweetest little thing that you have ever seen. She is so snuggly. I love to cuddle her.

We have a little bit of work cut out for us as she is not fully potty trained yet and has had several accidents. We are working with her and she seems like she has been improving a little each day. She also has the ability to find and try to eat stuff that we had no idea was on the floor or within her reach. On Monday we found her eating a silica packet and we have no idea where it came from. She ate all the silica beads and left the paper. Naturally we were worried about her, It was around 10PM so we called the emergency vet, and they told us to just watch her closely and give her lots of water. They said that her stool may be hard for a few days but unless she starts to refuse food and water or starts acting lethargic etc then she will be fine. She is fine. Its been 10 years since we have had a puppy in the house and i have forgotten how close you have to watch them. It really is in alot of ways like having a baby.

Molly also has some special needs. When we got her we thought her eyes didn't quite look right so we brought her to the vet. The vet said that she has an infection in her right eye, also that she has a condition where her eyes are too large so she cannot close them and that she is at high risk for her eye popping out. We have to give her an antibacterial drop in her right eye 4 times a day and artificial tears in both eyes 3 times per day. The same day we brought her to the vet we had her groomed and we had all the hair covering her eyes cut away. We go back to the vet this Saturday and I can see a huge improvement in her eyes over the past 2 weeks. I think that the hair over her eyes was a contributing factor to her condition and may have been preventing her from closing her eyes. We have noticed that she has no problem closing those eyes to keep the drops out (lol). Also her eyes are not as large as they were before, I think they were swollen both from the infection and hair. Definitely we will be having to keep her hair short especially around her eyes. We will see what the vet has to say this weekend.

Molly seems like she fits in really well with our crew and I am so happy to have her. I love that little girl and I know that we will all have a happy life together. :)

Molly before her grooming:




Molly after her grooming:









Here is some video of the pups playing and Molly playing with her favorite toy:
(Sorry for the video quality it is from my cell phone)



video


video


video

3/6/11 Update
We brought Molly back to the vet yesterday for her followup, he said that her eyes look 100% better but that she has permanent scarring in her right eye. Her vision may not be very good in that eye and also she will always have a light whiteish patch in the center of her eye. I'm glad that my little girl is ok, but I'm also so angry that her previous owners (the ones who gave her to Janet) allowed the infection to be in her eye for so long that it caused permanent scarring and a loss of vision. Some people really should not have pets, their neglect of molly was abuse pure and simple. She is such a sweet dog and it really upsets me that someone would just ignore the problem when we brought her to the vet the second day after we got her because we recognized that something wasn't right.

In other news we got her microchiped, just in case she ever gets lost.They say that 1 out of 3 pets gets lost, I pray that doesn't happen to any of my pets but its always better to be safe than sorry later. I am amazed at how affordable micro chipping has become. I remember 10 years ago when i looked into it for my other babies it was over $100 dollars and not every place had the technology to read it. Now it only costs $35 and every vet and shelter has the equipment to read the chip. Also I was impressed at how easy it was, the vet just takes a syringe and injects it into them like they would a vaccination. It was very little pain, about the same as a vaccination or having blood drawn. If you are interested in getting your pet microchipped check out this website: homeagain.com or ask your vet.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Epic 9 Day Traffic Jam

Here is the link to the article: China's 9 Day Traffic Jam




Yeah, so i just read about this on yahoo news...and wow I thought the traffic got bad here sometimes...

It says in the article that the Jam stretches 100km which is approx 62 miles, and that " the jam between Beijing and Jining city had given birth to a mini-economy with local merchants capitalizing on the stranded drivers' predicament by selling them water and food at inflated prices."

The whole thing is a nightmare. I feel so bad for the poor people trapped on that stretch of highway. I feel even worse for the ones that had little to no money on them, because they are stranded out there with no food or water. No to mention them not being able to get to their jobs to earn money, have a bed to sleep in, or a place to use the bathroom. They said that the reason for the jam was because of massive amounts of goods and people passing through the area combined with road construction....Um yeah, that is just poor planning and not a very good excuse. I can just imagine the public outrage if this was occurring here in the U.S.

From now on when ever I find myself stuck in traffic I will think of this and I will just take a deep breath and think to myself that things could be worse.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Homemade Cheesecake

One of our favorite desserts is cheesecake. Usually when the craving hits us we head to the place in Baton Rouge that has the best cheesecake you can buy, Copeland's Cheesecake Bistro. If we are looking to have more than once slice each then we will get a cheesecake from Whole Foods since they have the second best cheesecake in the city. This weekend we both wanted cheesecake but we decided that we wanted to give making one a shot. So we made a homemade cheesecake with fruit topping and it turned out wonderful, It was better than Cheesecake Bistro! We definitely will be making our own in the future especially since its much cheaper than buying it ($5.99 per slice at the bistro and $30.00 per cake at whole foods) and it tastes better than either place.

Here is a picture of our beautiful cheesecake:



Mmmmm...makes you hungry doesn't it? I Wouldn't show you that picture without including the recipe (that would just be mean) so here are the directions on how to make your own homemade cheesecake.

Ingredients:
Crust:

2 cups finely ground honey graham crackers
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 stick butter, melted

Cake:
2 - 8oz blocks softened cream cheese
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
8oz sour cream
dash of vanilla

Directions:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees

Crust:
In a mixing bowl combine crust ingredients with a fork until evenly moistened. Lightly coat the bottom and sides of an 8in springform pan with nonstick cooking spray. Here is a pic of the pan in case you don't know what kind of pan to use.











You can buy a pan at Sears, Target, Walmart, etc.

Pour the Crumb mixture into the pan and using the bottom of a measuring cup, press the crumbs into the base and 1-inch up the sides. Refrigerate for 5 min.

Cake:
In Bowl beat softened cream cheese with electric mixer on low speed for approx 1 min until smooth and free of lumps. Add the eggs 1 at a time (mixing between each egg) continue to beat slowly until combined. Gradually add sugar and beat until creamy 1-2 min. Add sour cream and Vanilla and mix, the batter should be well mixed but not over beaten. Pour the filling into the crust lined pan and smooth the top with a spatula.

Set the cheesecake pan on a large piece of aluminum foil and fold up the sides around it. Place the cake in a large roasting pan. pour hot water into the pan until water is 1/4-1/2 the way up the sides of the pan. (the foil keeps the water from seeping into the cheesecake) Bake for 1hour -1hour 30 min You want the cheese cake to still jiggle just a little but not be liquidy. Let cool in pan 30 min then place in refrigerator. Chill in fridge, loosely covered, for at least 6 hrs, but preferably overnight.remove from pan and top with topping of your choice.
~~~~~~~~
For our first cheesecake we went simple and just used different fruits for the topping. The fruits we used for our toppings were peaches, bananas, strawberrys, and grapes drizzled with a little bit of honey. All of the fruits were delicious on top of the cheesecake, however my favorite of the fruits was the banana. Next time we make the cheesecake we are going to try and do a banana foster topping. I will update pictures and recipes here as we try making different toppings.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Grandpa Gaga

This old guy has got some epic moves!! I just love him and I bet he is a hit with all the older ladies! Go Go Grandpa GAGA!!


Friday, May 28, 2010

Pet Awareness

I was browsing through yahoo news today and I came across an article talking about pet safety. It had a link to the ASPCA site which I checked out and it is a really great with lots of useful information for your pets. If you have pets you should definitely check the pet care section of the site out, here is the link: www.aspca.org.

There are so many common things out there that we don't realize are harmful to our pets. Any time I find any useful info out there, I try to pass it on because the best defense against a lot of common pet issues is knowledge. The Animal Poison Control Center is another great resource from the ASPCA here is the link: www.aspca.org/pet-care/poison-control . Alot of the stuff I knew already but some of it was surprising. My thoughts on a lot of the food items were that my pets would never eat most of those things. However when we have a new puppy sometime in the future they might be like Roxy who will snatch up and eat anything that falls on the floor and who loves to chew on plants. Below is a list from the ASPCA poison control center showing several things that are toxic to pets.

Toxic Foods:


Chocolate, Coffee, Caffeine

These products all contain substances called methylxanthines, which are found in cacao seeds, the fruit of the plant used to make coffee and in the nuts of an extract used in some sodas. When ingested by pets, methylxanthines can cause vomiting and diarrhea, panting, excessive thirst and urination, hyperactivity, abnormal heart rhythm, tremors, seizures and even death. Note that darker chocolate is more dangerous than milk chocolate. White chocolate has the lowest level of methylxanthines, while baking chocolate contains the highest.

Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages and food products containing alcohol can cause vomiting, diarrhea, decreased coordination, central nervous system depression, difficulty breathing, tremors, abnormal blood acidity, coma and even death.

Avocado

The leaves, fruit, seeds and bark of avocados contain Persin, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs. Birds and rodents are especially sensitive to avocado poisoning, and can develop congestion, difficulty breathing and fluid accumulation around the heart. Some ingestions may even be fatal.

Macadamia Nuts

Macadamia nuts are commonly used in many cookies and candies. However, they can cause problems for your canine companion. These nuts have caused weakness, depression, vomiting, tremors and hyperthermia in dogs. Signs usually appear within 12 hours of ingestion and last approximately 12 to 48 hours.

Grapes & Raisins

Although the toxic substance within grapes and raisins is unknown, these fruits can cause kidney failure. In pets who already have certain health problems, signs may be more dramatic.

Yeast Dough

Yeast dough can rise and cause gas to accumulate in your pet’s digestive system. This can be painful and can cause the stomach or intestines to rupture. Because the risk diminishes after the dough is cooked and the yeast has fully risen, pets can have small bits of bread as treats. However, these treats should not constitute more than 5 percent to 10 percent of your pet’s daily caloric intake.

Raw/Undercooked Meat, Eggs and Bones

Raw meat and raw eggs can contain bacteria such as Salmonella and E. coli that can be harmful to pets. In addition, raw eggs contain an enzyme called avidin that decreases the absorption of biotin (a B vitamin), which can lead to skin and coat problems. Feeding your pet raw bones may seem like a natural and healthy option that might occur if your pet lived in the wild. However, this can be very dangerous for a domestic pet, who might choke on bones, or sustain a grave injury should the bone splinter and become lodged in or puncture your pet’s digestive tract.

Xylitol

Xylitol is used as a sweetener in many products, including gum, candy, baked goods and toothpaste. It can cause insulin release in most species, which can lead to liver failure. The increase in insulin leads to hypoglycemia (lowered sugar levels). Initial signs of toxicosis include vomiting, lethargy and loss of coordination. Signs can progress to recumbancy and seizures. Elevated liver enzymes and liver failure can be seen within a few days.

Onions, Garlic, Chives

These vegetables and herbs can cause gastrointestinal irritation and could lead to red blood cell damage. Although cats are more susceptible, dogs are also at risk if a large enough amount is consumed. Toxicity is normally diagnosed through history, clinical signs and microscopic confirmation of Heinz bodies. An occasional low dose, such as what might be found in pet foods or treats, likely will not cause a problem, but we recommend that you do NOT give your pets large quantities of these foods.

Milk

Because pets do not possess significant amounts of lactase (the enzyme that breaks down lactose in milk), milk and other milk-based products cause them diarrhea or other digestive upset.

Salt

Large amounts of salt can produce excessive thirst and urination, or even sodium ion poisoning in pets. Signs that your pet may have eaten too many salty foods include vomiting, diarrhea, depression, tremors, elevated body temperature, seizures and even death. In other words, keep those salty chips to yourself!


Toxic Plants:

Lilies

Members of the Lilium spp. are considered to be highly toxic to cats. While the poisonous component has not yet been identified, it is clear that with even ingestions of very small amounts of the plant, severe kidney damage could result.

Marijuana

Ingestion of Cannabis sativa by companion animals can result in depression of the central nervous system and incoordination, as well as vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, increased heart rate, and even seizures and coma.

Sago Palm

All parts of Cycas Revoluta are poisonous, but the seeds or “nuts” contain the largest amount of toxin. The ingestion of just one or two seeds can result in very serious effects, which include vomiting, diarrhea, depression, seizures and liver failure.

Tulip/Narcissus bulbs

The bulb portions of Tulipa/Narcissus spp. contain toxins that can cause intense gastrointestinal irritation, drooling, loss of appetite, depression of the central nervous system, convulsions and cardiac abnormalities.

Azalea/Rhododendron

Members of the Rhododenron spp. contain substances known as grayantoxins, which can produce vomiting, drooling, diarrhea, weakness and depression of the central nervous system in animals. Severe azalea poisoning could ultimately lead to coma and death from cardiovascular collapse.

Oleander

All parts of Nerium oleander are considered to be toxic, as they contain cardiac glycosides that have the potential to cause serious effects—including gastrointestinal tract irritation, abnormal heart function, hypothermia and even death.

Castor Bean

The poisonous principle in Ricinus communis is ricin, a highly toxic protein that can produce severe abdominal pain, drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst, weakness and loss of appetite. Severe cases of poisoning can result in dehydration, muscle twitching, tremors, seizures, coma and death.

Cyclamen

Cylamen species contain cyclamine, but the highest concentration of this toxic component is typically located in the root portion of the plant. If consumed, Cylamen can produce significant gastrointestinal irritation, including intense vomiting. Fatalities have also been reported in some cases.

Kalanchoe

This plant contains components that can produce gastrointestinal irritation, as well as those that are toxic to the heart, and can seriously affect cardiac rhythm and rate.

Yew

Taxus spp. contains a toxic component known as taxine, which causes central nervous system effects such as trembling, incoordination, and difficulty breathing. It can also cause significant gastrointestinal irritation and cardiac failure, which can result in death.

Amaryllis

Common garden plants popular around Easter, Amaryllis species contain toxins that can cause vomiting, depression, diarrhea, abdominal pain, hypersalivation, anorexia and tremors.

Autumn Crocus

Ingestion of Colchicum autumnale by pets can result in oral irritation, bloody vomiting, diarrhea, shock, multi-organ damage and bone marrow suppression.

Chrysanthemum

These popular blooms are part of the Compositae family, which contain pyrethrins that may produce gastrointestinal upset, including drooling, vomiting and diarrhea, if eaten. In certain cases depression and loss of coordination may also develop if enough of any part of the plant is consumed.

English Ivy

Also called branching ivy, glacier ivy, needlepoint ivy, sweetheart ivy and California ivy, Hedera helix contains triterpenoid saponins that, should pets ingest, can result in vomiting, abdominal pain, hypersalivation and diarrhea.

Peace Lily (AKA Mauna Loa Peace Lily)

Spathiphyllum contains calcium oxalate crystals that can cause oral irritation, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty in swallowing and intense burning and irritation of the mouth, lips and tongue in pets who ingest.

Pothos

Pothos (both Scindapsus and Epipremnum) belongs to the Araceae family. If chewed or ingested, this popular household plant can cause significant mechanical irritation and swelling of the oral tissues and other parts of the gastrointestinal tract.

Schefflera

Schefflera and Brassaia actinophylla contain calcium oxalate crystals that can cause oral irritation, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty in swallowing and intense burning and irritation of the mouth, lips and tongue in pets who ingest.



What To Do If Your Pet Is Poisoned


Don’t panic. Rapid response is important, but panicking can interfere with the process of helping your pet.

Take 30 to 60 seconds to safely collect and have at hand any material involved. This may be of great benefit to your vet and/or ASPCA toxicologists, as they determine what poison or poisons are involved. In the event that you need to take your pet to a local veterinarian, be sure to take the product’s container with you. Also, collect in a seal-able plastic bag any material your pet may have vomited or chewed.

If you witness your pet consuming material that you suspect might be toxic, do not hesitate to seek emergency assistance, even if you do not notice any adverse effects. Sometimes, even if poisoned, an animal may appear normal for several hours or for days after the incident.

Call The ASPCA Animal Control Center or call and head out to your vet (if after hours go to a 24hr emergency vet).

The telephone number for the ASPCA is (888) 426-4435. There is a $65 consultation fee for the ASPCA service.

Be ready with the following information:

  • The species, breed, age, sex, weight and number of animals involved.
  • The animal’s symptoms.
  • Information regarding the exposure, including the agent (if known), the amount of the agent involved and the time elapsed since the time of exposure.
  • Have the product container/packaging available for reference.

Please note: If your animal is having seizures, losing consciousness, is unconscious or is having difficulty breathing, telephone ahead and bring your pet immediately to your local veterinarian or emergency veterinary clinic. If necessary, he or she may call the ASPCA.

Keep the telephone number of the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center—(888) 426-4435—as well as that of your local veterinarian, in a prominent location.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Lady Bird

Introducing the newest member of our family,
the beautiful, Kahuna
.

She is an Umbrella cockatoo who is approx 20 years old. She originally belonged to Karl's Uncle. Karl's parents have been her caretaker for the last few years since his death. About two weeks ago we inherited her since his parents could no longer keep her.

Her name is defined by Merriam Webster as
ka·hu·na
Pronunciation:\kə-ˈhü-nə\
Function: noun
Etymology: Hawaiian
Date: 1875
1 : a Hawaiian shaman
2 : a preeminent person or thing

But Karl says that she was named Kahuna after the surfer "the Big Kahuna" which was probably Duke Kahanamoku.
He was the only surfer associated with the name that I found in my internet search. I also found references to a surfing school, a water park and 1999 movie.

Regardless of how she came about her name it is truly appropriate. In the short amount of time we have had her, Kahuna has bewitched my heart and has quickly become a beloved member of our family.