11 April 2010

Cold Nose, Warm Heart.....


~~~My Love for animals is endless~~~

Each day I learn something new from them.
And each day, they give to me....
Unconditional love,
compassion,
Thousands of reasons to laugh,
smile,
&
great joy.

Since I was a child, animals have been
such an important part of my life!
Now, as an adult, it is no different.

I absolutely can not
imagine
living my life without
our little
Family!

Just like we all have a story to tell,
they each have their own story.
How they came to be a part of our family.

And how each one of them holds a special place
in our hearts!

The only one who was "planned",
is Zeke!

All the other cats and dogs?

We always say that
God tells the little strays,
"Go to that house. They will care for you."
And we do.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
But, we are at our limit!
Cats just seem to show up.
Either dropped off or looking for food and shelter.
Dogs are often left here
because people figure it is a farm.
What is one more....
(I am sure this what they think!)

In the past 5 1/2 years since we moved here,
35 dogs have been dropped off on our property!
(One night we had five Beagle pups
put out onto our front yard. argh!)

Sadie Louise and Baby Girl
were the first two.
We were able to "adopt" them.

The other 33 have gone to our
wonderful shelter.
The shelter began a program that transports
dogs and cats
(in a dontated, specially equipped van!)
to counties in states that have virtually
eliminated their "stray" problem.

It is a HUGE undertaking.

These counties
had very few animals for people to adopt.
So our little homeless, southern dogs and cats
get to move to new states.
Where loving families are
waiting! 

It is an amazing program!

Both J and I volunteer
for the SNAP program.
"Spay/Neuter All Pets"

Vouchers for participating vet clinics
are given out to anyone to have their cat or dog
spayed or neutered!
Through grant funding and donations,
this program is very successful :)
We also do education about the reason why
it is so important.
Last week, we did a voucher clinic and gave out
122 vouchers!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Now, on to our family!






Bo


Bo came to us on a Sunday morning.
It was about 7 a.m.
The dogs ran onto the front porch barking.
They were trying to let us know that
we had a visitor!

Bo was sitting in the front yard.
He was a little fellow. About 8 weeks old.
I walked out and scooped him up!

Bo is such a sweet little guy.
He is very timid.
But loves to rough-house with us
and his buddies!
He sleeps on my pillow each night...




Brutus



Brutus was born on our property, in the old livestock barn.
His mom, Chloe showed up, already with child.
I mean, kitten.  :)

He had five sisters and brothers.
They all got wonderful homes.

Brutus is our "jelly-belly klepto cat"
He is a big, furry, ball of love.

He adores Bella and Bo.
He is scared to death of tractor noise.

He is a THEIF.
He is silly, goofy, and has a huge purr!

***We are currently missing***
eye glasses
sports watch
roll of bubble wrap
pack of tissues





Bo and Brutus are best buddies!
They are just a few months a part in age.
Bo was so happy when Brutus finally came in the house to live!


Bella


Bella came to us on a Sunday evening, last June.
She was no more than 5 weeks old.
We bottle fed her.
She slept between us, in bed, in her "baby basket"
for 3 months.

 
She chirps and coos.
She just learned to meow.
She carries everything in her mouth!

Everyone just loves Bella.





Bo became her surrogate mommy!



Zeke was raised with cats.
He knows that cats rule the world!




He will whine and cry for us to move her,
if he wants to get down off the couch.
I guess he wants to make sure he doesn't hurt her.



We kept this bunny tucked in her basket,
so she would feel the weight next her.
She still carries it around the house by its' ear.





Bella at eleven months!
Happy and healthy.

She is a little ball of fire!
Loves jingle bells.

A chow-hound...
***Will eat***
asparagus
strawberry waffles
pasta

tries to steal peanuts and popcorn when J is snacking!




Zeke

Zeke was a gift from a neighbor,
when we lived in Florida.

He came home with us when he was just 6 weeks old.

J was so excited to finally have a dog,
who would go fishing with him.
And swim in our pond!

He is incredibly smart.
Loving.
Big.
 (weighs in 140lbs.)
Has a great sense of humor.
Adores children.
Loves his "brothers and sisters."

***Is petrified of***

Large UPS drivers
pizza boxes
and WATER!

no fishing or swimming for this pup!


 



Bo is our "comfort" cat.
He loves quilts, blankies, sheets,
and "tents."

And of course, warm laps!




Presley and Lucy
Ages 16 and 15
Our two senior citizens!

They still miss their buddy Maverick, who passed away
two years ago at age 22!

I found Presley, as a kitten, in a trash can.
Her eyes were not even open yet...

Lucy was about three months old, when she found her way
to my home.
Lucy is now deaf.
They love one another :)
Lucy is in love with Zeke!


         Zeke and Baby Girl. Puppy love....
And Sadie Louise
Sadie was also dropped at our home as a 3 month old.


      Baby Girl was put out of a car in front of our home.
      We were on the front porch and saw it happen.
       *open door, set dog on road, drive away*
        My heart just broke for her.....


Sadie Louise

She is so fast,
funny,
best friend to Idgie, our cat,
loves rawhide bones,
will set on the deck for hours
and scope out deer!

Zeke, Sadie Louise, and Baby Girl
Like three peas in a pod!
The love they have for one another is
incredible!




When Brutus was just a few months old,
he decided to jump on the kitchen counter.
He knocked over a jar of honey.
And proceeded to ROLL in it!

CAT + HONEY = BATH


Oh, he was so very, very mad!
Look at that sour puss face!

(we laughed so hard my gut hurt!!)

 


Brutus the jelly-belly klepto cat!
Do not trust this sweet face!



Chloe
Mother of Brutus

She is a sweetheart.
Playful.
Huntress.
Likes to be outside as much as in.
Keeps Brutus in line!




Mother and son
during supervised play outside.
(Brutus needs supervised, not Chloe!)

 


~~~~Five minutes in the Life of Zeke~~~~















I hope you have enjoyed getting to know
our little family
a little bit better!
(and this isn't everyone!)

I can be quite silly when it comes to my animals.
I love each and every one of them so very much.
My life just would not be the same if they were not in it.

I need them as much as they need me.

Our little family.....

Have an amazing day!
And don't forget to give a kiss to the one with a cold nose :)

xo,


P.S. I found the bubble wrap!
He hid it under the bed...

33 comments:

Sydney said...

Wonderful family you have there Misha. I have a cold nose (not including barn cats they are furry faces to rub), Savanah, my neurotic spaz of a dog. Shes got some emotional issues, barks waaaaaay too much but keeps us in stitches with the things she does.

Oh I also love kissing cold horse noses, like on a cold winter night.

Paint Girl said...

Your cats and dogs are so adorable!! You are so like me when it comes to animals, they are my kids, and are treated as royalty!
That picture of Zeke and Bella is just precious!!
I can't believe how many animals have been dropped off at your farm. People make me so mad!! So many people out there shouldn't even own a pet, but that will never change, unfortunately.

Amy said...

You have a beautiful family with such interesting and funny characters. I often say our animals mirror our family so well and perhaps yours do also? :-)
It's terribly sad that people think because you are an animal lover you'll take any animal they don't want- sounds like you volunteer for a great shelter. There are no animal shelters in Norway- although there are some private organizations who take dogs and then place them out. But it's nothing like in the states.
I love to see cats and dogs in harmony- Old mamma heidi was the cats mamma here but now that she is gone they haven't found a dog who will cuddle with them...only chase them...so things have changed yeah...
Thanks for sharing your family with us and yeah, you have horses so I figured this wasn't everyone!! Like I say- the more the merrier right? :-))
Belly scratches and ear scratches to the gang from all of us in Norway and hugs to you :-)

Ann On and On... said...

Each time I finish reading your post it's like leaving a friends house after a great talk...I'm smiling and excited for the next visit.

I love getting to know you and your furry friends.

Lisa-Color My World said...

I just love your family! We are a dog and cat family, too. We lost 3of ours in the last year. So, so sad. I will have to post pictures soon. I'm new to this posting thing, but I am getting better at it. I can certainly tell the animals that have found you have found a warm, safe, 'heaven on earth' place to call home. God bless!

Sherry@Ties2ThePast said...

Truly LOVED your story about the pets!! I understand & relate to all you said. We have 6 in our house 3 cats, 3 dogs. I work at a Harley-Davidson dealership (marketing) & we had an pet adoption day for our local Humane Society yesterday as well as free rabies shots. So much fun! We adopted out 3 dogs & gave ??? shots. Love animals more than most people...most of the time!! Thanks for sharing the great stories & for the love you give to all your babies!!

Karen said...

I feel the same way you do, and love this post, how adorable, each of them. It's heartbreaking, how people consider their pets disposable. You and your man are good eggs :-)

Mountain Woman said...

I can so relate to this post. We call our dogs our "Kids" and we couldn't imagine life without them. They live with us, travel with us and share our lives in every way. I don't know why people dump animals. We have that problem too but it seems to be cats who get left in the woods to fend for themselves.
I loved the pictures of your fabulous family!!

The White Farmhouse said...

Such a sweet family. So very kind of you to take in all those strays. I think that some people can be so cruel to animals. I guess they don't realize they have feelings too. I couldn't imagine just dumping our dog off at someone's door like that. Or leaving her to fend for herself. It looks like they have found a very loving home with you though.

Lucy said...

Wonderful post! I, too, have this inward relationship with animals and always have had. My father hated cats with every fiber in his being and I well remember the times when he was more than cruel to them. So now, when I see him at age 100 with a cat named Clifford on his lap sleeping while he is stroking him fondly, it is hard for me not to say something to him that I just proably do not need to say. Life is funny.

Donna said...

I LOVED this introduction to your precious animal friends! All their personalities are just amazing. Zeke and I would be best buds - we both know how to do champion chill-outs, LOL.

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Just terrific! I love animals too. We have one dog, Gertie, & one cat, Miss Kitty. Miss Kitty is an outside cat because she can destroy furniture & carpets in a New York Minute! She has to be well supervised when indoors. Gertie has to be supervised when outdoors 'cause she likes to visit around the 'hood. I love them both.

Shirley said...

What a lovely post! You have some very special critters sharing your life.

Maura @ Lilac Lane Cottage said...

Hello Misha! What a wonderful post this is...you're such a big hearted loving couple to take in all these furry sweeties. It's so good to learn that they all love one another and there's a few characters in the bunch..you've got to have at least one of those! Zeke looks like he's loving life...on the couch..what a snuggle bug and I love the way he calls for you to take the kitty away so he can get up. What a sweet dog. I hope you have a wonderful Sunday...give your babies a hug and scratch from me. Best Wishes....MauraXX

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Oh thanks Misha for introducing us to your NOT-SO-LITTLE family.... Wow---that is so neat. Sounds like you have a great group of critters in your midst.

I love Zeke... He is the biggest ---but seems to love all of them. How special is that...

I'd love to have seen the honey incident!!!! Yipes!!!

Thanks for sharing.
Hugs,
Betsy

~Kim~ said...

What a wonderful (and beautiful) family you have!!! I have really loved getting to know them and reading how they came to you!! How very kind of you to open your heart and home to them! God was right to send them to you!

Heart2Heart said...

Misha,

I loved this post and getting to know your family even more! We too have a little kitten, the youngest in our family named Bella too and she is simply the sweetest thing so much like your Bella!

Love and Hugs ~ Kat

Catherine said...

i love all your animals ,Misha, they look so happy in your family.So cool like mine! have a nice week, catherine

Julie Harward said...

I love all your animals...rolled in honey?! Oh my! They are each so sweet. I too have felt like animals are sent my way who need someone to care for them. We could swap stories all day my friend...you are awesome! Come say hi :D

Feral Female said...

What a wonderful family you have Misha!!

Rural Revival said...

You do know how much I love your family right? And how much I wish I could babysit for you, all the time?! They are all so sweet and precious Misha, they're perfect! Please give them all a big a hug and kiss from me!

35 dogs wow! That's an awful lot, I would have loved to have seen the five beagle pups! My first dog was a beagle and they have a special place in my heart. I am putty in their paws as soon as I pet those soft ears!

It's been almost a year since our Chloe has been gone and I do really miss having two kitties in the house. For the time being, the vet bill that comes along with a new addition is not in the budget, but how I do wish a stray would wander towards the old farmhouse and stay, for, well, forever! : )

Then the Artist would have no choice but to agree. He is just a softy, especially where dogs and cats are concerned, after all.

Hugs ~Andrea~

PS. Was that your pink kite I saw today? ; )

Flat Creek Farm said...

Misha, what a wonderful family you and J have! I so enjoy reading about each and every one of them. And the pictures... I could hug them all up. 35 dogs - just amazing. Those driveaways just break my heart. (Special hugs to Baby Girl!). And hugs for you and J for volunteering for that wonderful cause! Bless you both, and your entire beautiful family :) -Tammy

Flat Creek Farm said...

Misha, what a wonderful family you and J have! I so enjoy reading about each and every one of them. And the pictures... I could hug them all up. 35 dogs - just amazing. Those driveaways just break my heart. (Special hugs to Baby Girl!). And hugs for you and J for volunteering for that wonderful cause! Bless you both, and your entire beautiful family :) -Tammy

Flat Creek Farm said...

Misha, what a wonderful family you and J have! I so enjoy reading about each and every one of them. And the pictures... I could hug them all up. 35 dogs - just amazing. Those driveaways just break my heart. (Special hugs to Baby Girl!). And hugs for you and J for volunteering for that wonderful cause! Bless you both, and your entire beautiful family :) -Tammy

Growing Up A Country Girl said...

I love this post -- and all your animal family.... it is so much fun how they become a family member :) Sounds like the word is out when litters get dumped on the doorstep :)

The Lone Star Queen said...

Zeke is such a gentle giant. I love that he won't get off the couch without you moving the kitty. Your love for animals is amazing and they are blessed to have you as you are them. Your posts always make me feel good. We have always been dog people and have had some wonderful ones in our family. Sadly I found out about a year and half ago that I am alergic to dogs. We really miss having a dog in the house. We spent the weekend in the country with some horses and a team of mules. It was great to be around animals!

April Mechelle said...

You little babies are all beautiful !! I am a animal lover too. !!!

Growing Up A Country Girl said...

Misha - you are tagged. If you want to take part post your 10th picture in your first album or photo file and blog about it. This is all for fun... If you don't want to take part - it is OK.
See my blog post for more info.

Cheryl said...

Thank you for sharing your family....they are all wonderful, great photos! I have two 2year old "kittens" that were left on my doorstep in a box, they make 5 cats in my small house but would not give them up for anything. Where would these little family members be without caring folks like you!!

Country Dreaming said...

You two are very tough or just nuts about animals. I love Zeke he is soooo funny and I love your horser stories too. The cats would make me sneeze but they are cute too.

Have a great day!

Melinda

Donna said...

Misha,
You have made me smile! I love all of your animals! You sound like me with the cats. I have taken care of several "babies" who needed to be "bottle fed". I went out on the deck the other morning and there were 5 babies greeting me :)
Blessings,
Donna

Jeanette said...

What a wonderful fur family you have! I just linked over from another blog and now I am going to bookmark you for future reading!

Mary @ Neat and Tidy said...

Cute kids!