Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Troy — Unspoken, noble. Hero.

Photo courtesy Hampton Police Division
Strong and noble heroes walk among us every day.
We don't always see them.  They are among the most revered members of Tribe Dog — the K-9s. Trained to work with police and other law enforcement officials,
these dogs have unique and remarkable jobs.

Some are trained to apprehend and detain suspects; others to detect illegal substances, or find explosives; arson dogs to pick up the scent of an accelerant.  Search and Rescue dogs are trained to locate missing people. Cadaver-sniffing dogs are trained to find corpses and human remains. Their job may seem sad, daunting, but untold families world wide are grateful to these dogs.

The first image you may have for a K-9 is a German Shepherd Dog or a Belgian Malinois,  but other breeds are used as well.  Only in the days following 9-11 did working K-9s come to  national prominence as SAR dogs from all over our country came to ground zero.

Troy is one of these majestic and noble dogs who protect and serve.  A Dutch Shepherd, he arrived at the Hampton Police Division in April 2006, origin the Netherlands.  He was two years old.  Troy had already received five weeks of intensive training with the American Society of Canine Trainers.  He then received an additional three weeks of ASCT training with MPO Angie Dipentima — MPO stands for Master Police Officer.  MPO Dipentima has been with Hampton Police Division since 1999.  She is also an instructor for HPD, training officers to work on the Crisis Intervention Team.

Certified as a Master K-9 handler by ASCT on May 5, 2006, she and Troy were on the job the next day.  He accompanies her to work five days a week.  Troy's specialty is narcotics detection.  A typical day in their lives includes random inspections in the business districts of Hampton in hotels, restaurants, bars, parking establishments and warehouses.  Troy receives sixteen hours of training each month with MPO Dipentima.

I first saw Troy in a video from a PBS special called  The dogs are alright:  The Vick dogs make a comeback. 
To me this video is  mesmerizing.  All fourteen minutes and thirteen seconds — a story that sent shock waves across the country in 2007.  The story continues, but now it's about grace and redemption.  Inspiration.  Troy appears in only the first :32 seconds but he steals the show, in the very best sense.  Take a look.  You'll see.  He was then and is now a star.  Every day that Troy works in the city of Hampton, Virginia the citizens can rest easy.  He protects and serves, 24/7.

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Sunday, December 9, 2012

Safe — Twenty dogs in Hawkins County Tennessee

Photo courtesty FAMILY TAP.  Not from this fire.
Monday, November 19:  "By the time the sun set Monday evening,  the Hawkins County Short Mountain forest fire — which started Thursday afternoon — had scorched about 2,200 acres west of Rogersville."  

Sunday, November 18:  "While fighting the fire on Sunday, crews came across a property where about 20 dogs were chained to vehicle axles that were buried in the ground. They called the Hawkins County Sheriff's Office, which sent deputies to investigate."

Firefighters in the Tennessee's Division of Forestry and deputies in the Sheriff's Department of Hawkins County.  Heroes.

The Sheriff's Department's deputies evacuated the dogs down the mountain to safety .  Took about nine hours.  "The fire was coming across the ridge, and they (firefighters) were worried that if the wind hit the right direction that it would put them dogs in danger," Allen [Chief Deputy Tony Allen] said.  "As a matter of fact, that place did end up burning Sunday night."

All 20 dogs are safe.  Confirmed.   Charvez Franciso has been charged.   Detective John Pruitt is investigating the case.  I believe he is a man who does not back down.

These dogs — as their 65 brothers over in Ashland County over Thanksgiving —were surrounded by fire.  They're real grateful to the firefighters, the deputies, and the people in four counties taking care of them.  So am I Sphere: Related Content

Monday, December 3, 2012

star light star bright

kit fox - san joaquin co california

Star light star bright, first star I see tonight.  Wish I may, wish I might, have the wish I wish tonight.

I wish the 20 dogs in Hawkins County TN to remain safe and sound. Tonight and all the days and nights to come. Move away from fear and toward peace.  Namaste little guys. Holding you close to heart.

Looking now at most wonderful of wonderful white dogs. He's keeping you close to heart as well.

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Sunday, November 25, 2012

like giant search beams in the sky

like giant search beams in the sky there are always other pictures.  just keep scrolling.

Animal Rescue Corps - photo by Amiee Stubbs
Funny thing about holidays.  If you have family you go wherever they are.  If you can.  If you don't have family - maybe someone invites you to their home.
If you've lost someone holidays are  unsettling. Wisps and unruly tendrils of conversations and pictures and afternoons and laughter blow across your face and refuse to be tamed.  When the distractions and the people who've opened their homes and hearts to you fade to black those wisps become splinters.  And the blue gray maya landscape of denial protecting you flies out the window.
Yesterday a little after noon I read about 65 dogs in Tennessee.   No amount of inside chores and outside Edna-ing picking up sticks in my leaf engulfed yard could stem the tide - 65 dogs in Tennessee rescued from a suspected dog fighting operation.  65 dogs in Tennessee surrounded by a brush fire on Thanksgiving.

But then as almost always now when walking through the valley of the shadow of - I remember Nigel.  Nigel Buggers.   A Decade of Nigel.   Because in moments like these the only thing to do if you don't want to drown is turn to those far flung stars that light up life like giant search beams in the sky.  Like Nigel.  And Life With Dogs.  Because his stories make you laugh. Sometimes flat out howl like a Basset and snortle like a female pig going to ground for truffles. Because Life With Dogs tells stories of love and hope and  inspiration.  Stories that may not always have a happy ending but always have a reason.  For being.  For shining.  I thought about how Nigel and Life With Dogs would tell the story of the 65 dogs in Tennessee.   And waiting for that story I am smiling at the most wonderful of wonderful white dogs whose picture dots Facebook whenever there's a new LWD story or photograph.   Dear God how we do love stand up guys, don't we, Nigel?  Thank you Cheatham County Animal Control,  Animal Rescue Corps, New Leash on Life, Agape Animal Rescue, The Nashville Zoo, and the Tennessee Highway Patrol.

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Sunday, October 28, 2012

Music. Crickets. And Lady.

Reflecting again today on the healing power of music.  For dogs. For their two-legged guardians.  Remembered Machu Picchu Impressions, with a background of environmental sounds digitally recorded by Rusty Crutcher. During the harmonic convergence in Machu Picchu, Peru. August, 1987. He just had to go. I, we, are so very glad he did. "This music is dedicated to all earth's creatures who make up our living orchestra." Rusty Crutcher

It's a tough sell to convince a traditionally modeled shelter that dogs in one or more buildings would benefit from adding a six CD boom box with music  — Native American mostly, some Deva Premal, Love is Space.  But if you provide the necessary elements and no cash is needed someone will let you try it. The results are amazing. For the owner surrendered dogs in shell shock. For the strays once city property now transferred in, once beloved by someone. Before they were picked up by an AC van, taken to the muni shelter, then to the not so muni shelter.

The crickets singing on two tracks of Macchu Picchu Impressions recorded multiple times on a 90 minute CD]-- will put dogs in a daycare setting to sleep in about three minutes. First one then another drops down to Sphinx position, signaling their brothers,  who in turn also lay down, then one by one they all slowly drop their heads and stop. Rest. Nap. Sometimes we two-leggeds forget to do the same. Stop. Rest. Regenerate. Let our hearts beat with all things bright and beautiful. When I forget to do that Lady takes it upon herself to solemnly and oftentimes most mischievously let me know I am just too damn busy with matters of great importance. As spoke The Little Prince. Saw a heart stopping picture of a fifteen year old beauty named Sally swimming in a lake a month or so ago.  Made me remember that matters of great importance are never as important as they seem. And by the way, Darren husband of Michelle and father of Tori and Alex you are a prince among men. Truly. Namaste. Sphere: Related Content

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Paradise found.

When we show our respect for other living things, they respond with respect for us.  - Arapaho 

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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

One lady and 28 Rottweilers — Alabama

Story —  33 sentient beings were to be euthanized, by order of St. Clair County District Judge Alan Furr issued on October 2nd.  One lady decided this was just not gonna happen on her watch.

She hired an attorney and filed a motion Wednesday October 3rd in an attempt to  keep these dogs from being euthanized.  Her motion was denied on Thursday October 4th.  The judge ruled she had no standing in the case;  only Birmingham-Jackson County Animal Control, the DA or the original owner could file a petition with the court.

So.  She went to BJC Animal Control where the dogs have been housed since September 20th.  After she reached an agreement with Animal Control — Dr. Rachel Nelson would assume financial responsibility for housing the dogs, approximately $250 per day, and find a certified animal behaviorist approved by BJCAC's attorney to evaluate the dogs— her attorney drafted a motion and presented it to BJC Animal Control's attorney for approval and filing.  BJC Animal Control then asked the judge to reconsider and allow the dogs to be evaluated individually. 

Dr. Larry Myers of Auburn University provided his services at no charge to Dr. Nelson.  He made the two hour drive from Auburn to Birmingham on Monday October 8th,  evaluated the dogs,  his findings given to the court.  On Thursday October 11 Judge Alan Furr ruled that BJC Animal Control would decide the fate of the 28 remaining Rottweilers seized from a home in Leeds on September 20, reversing his previous order.  Five had been euthanized for aggression and medical issues which would have prevented potential adoption.

The staff at BJCAC have worked tirelessly with these dogs — giving them time, space and love.   On October 12th nineteen of the twenty eight Rottweilers left the building Eleven went to Crossroads Animal Hospital, two are staying at Chelsea Animal Hospital and six are staying at  2-80 Animal Medical Center.

After medical evaluations by Dr. Nelson and the other veterinarians working with her these guys will be transferred to rescue and adopted out.  Spay/ neuter surgeries being performed this week.

As the eleven at Crossroads find homes or go to rescue the remaining nine at Birmingham-Jackson County Animal Control will be transferred to Crossroads.  And then they too will find homes.  Damn fine day in Alabama.

If you would like to make a donation to help the Leeds Rottweilers go here

Dr. Nelson and the folks at Crossroads Hospital are taking pictures of these guys every day.  Stay tuned. 

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Sunday, October 7, 2012

Dog biscuits and a pink folder — Vick owns a dog again

Michael Vick apparently has a new dog

Chris Chase, USA TODAY Sports
2:28AM EST October 7. 2012

Photo courtesy Crossing Broad via @MikeVick

" - Unless somebody in Michael Vick's house has an interesting palate, it appears the Philadelphia Eagles quarterback is back in the dog-owning business."

[This link provided by USA Today Sports]
Michael Vick has spent $29 million since filing for bankruptcy

"Vick posted a Twitter picture Thursday night of himself and his daughter hard at work at the kitchen table. Dad was looking at game film on an iPad. Daughter appears to be doing some homework. And sitting on the table, in plain view, is a box of opened Milk-Bone dog biscuits. (It's next to a pink folder with puppies on it.)"

"It's not hard to connect the dots from there.  The picture was quickly deleted and replaced by a similar, biscuit-less one, showing Vick has enough sense to realize his dog ownership is a matter that's best left private (for now at least).  Luckily, the good folks at Crossing Broad caught the first tweet and saved the picture.
(We added the arrow.)"

"Vick was not allowed to own a dog under the terms of his probation. That three-year sentence ended in July, freeing him to own an animal.   The fact that he evidently took advantage of this surely won't sit well with some people; I'm not one of them. Vick paid his debt and is rehabilitated in the eyes of the court, and that's good enough for me. Where would the "he should never own a dog" faction like it to end? Restraining orders from PetSmart? An electronic tracking bracelet that alerts authorities any time he walks past a dog park? A V-chip that prevents him from watching Animal Planet?"

"What bothers me most is the negligence of leaving that box on the table. Someone went to the trouble of blurring the screen of Vick's video playbook but couldn't slide the biscuits six inches to the right? That's terrible Twit-planning

— unless this is some sort of brilliant viral marketing by Milk-Bone, in which case, I doff my cap."    52 comments thus far on the USA Today carried a more comprehensive story yesterday.  Please do click and read.   Mike Vick apparently owns a dog again  This story initially used the same picture as the one above.  Early this morning the photo had been replaced.  Hmm. tweaked the headline a tad.  Four paws up.  Four hyper links in this story.  Interesting reading.

As of 7:41 pm today 750 people "like" the NBC story on Facebook, story has been tweeted 87 times, and there are 99 reader responses.   750 thumbs up by readers,  392 thumbs down. 

Backstory.  2007.  NFL star indicted over dog fight
"According to the indictment, dogs that didn't show enough fighting spirit, or that lost matches, were put to death by a variety of methods, including shooting, drowning, hanging and electrocution. Prosecutors allege that on one occasion earlier this year, Vick participated in killing eight dogs."

2009.  Second Chance for Vick?  Another story.

Swimming pool shadows -- Michael Vick

(Photo: Crossing Broad via @MikeVick)

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Monday, August 27, 2012

All things move in a circle

Everything the power of the world does is done in a circle.
The sky is round and I have heard that the earth is round like a ball
and so are all the stars. The wind, in its greatest power, whirls.
Birds make their nests in circles, for theirs is the same religion as ours.
The sun comes forth and goes down again in a circle. The moon
does the same and both are round. Even the seasons form a great
circle in their changing and always come back again to where they were.

The life of a man is a circle from childhood to childhood, and so it is
in everything where power moves. Our teepees were round like the
nests of birds, and these were always set in a circle, the nation's hoop,
a nest of many nests, where the Great Spirit meant for us to hatch our children.

Black Elk, Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux 1863-1950
Blessings to soytumoza and her fotos blog.

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