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Saturday, April 30, 2011

Happy Birthday Annie

Five years ago today, Annie was born. She would spend the next three years in a puppy mill, being bred continiously to produce basset hound pups. The continous breeding would eventually lead to herniation and she was sent to a dog auction to be sold off for whatever money could still be wrought from her body, normally for medical research. She was rescued through the good people at the Washington Basset rescue group in Spokane Washington, USA.

I have begun a blog: , dedicated to her and her story of survival, and rehabilitation, as she makes the journey from puppy mill survivor to domesticated human loving hound. I hope the story will provide advise and assistance for people who may rescue puppy mill survivors, as the demands and issues are unique to this group of dogs. For the most part we have researched, talked and generally learned as we went. I am hoping this blog will be a good stopping point for people dealing with the sometimes frustrating issues around rehabilitating a survivor. It is hoped that the blog will also bring yet one more much needed light on the horrible business of puppy mills.

Thanks to my "beta readers" as I began to put the blog together. 

Happy Birthday Annie!!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Colour of the Day

I had noticed that some of the hotels here have staff in company shirts (well almost every hotel and retailer has a "uniform" polo shirt of some type). But I was curious of how the coloured shirts changed daily and everyone seemed to be in the same colours, no matter what business I went into.
And so my friend at CC Blooms hotel explained that there are colours associated to the days of the week here.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Waving Flags 7

Welcome to the newest reader countries to the blog; Indonesia, Mexico and Sudan. Given my previous work in Sudan (Juba) and recognizing there are different views, I am posting the flags of both Sudan and Southern Sudan. Thanks for visiting!!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter in Thailand

This will be the second Easter here in Thailand. Last year of course we had just arrived, and with settling in and organizing, Easter sort of came and went un-noticed. Being this is a primarily Buddhist country, Easter is not something you see or hear much, if anything about. Back in Canada it was always a guaranteed 4 days off of work, with Good Friday and Easter Monday. Here it is just another day. The Australians this year have it pretty good, they get the Friday and Monday PLUS Tuesday for ANZAC day, so if you play it right you can actually end up with 10 days off work for taking three days of holidays. I look at Facebook and see the postings about chocolate, eggs, ham and turkey dinners and the one that irritated me the most HOT CROSS buns.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Strolling Basset Style

Dixie,Grace,Annie and Byron

Living with basset hounds, you tend to learn very quickly that their sense of smell is the predominate driving force. It is classed as the second most scent sensitive dog breed in the world, with over 4,000,000 scent receptors. Everything you see or read has one common fact. Once a basset's nose is engaged, the brain and all commands become non-existent. I have become adapt at monitoring this, as they have a series of predictable actions. Normally they wander about, nose to the ground and not much in a hurry at all. Then they will stop dead, if in a halter and on a lead, the sudden stop will jolt you every time. They become immobile. The tail goes up and the nose works overtime. At this point in time, the strength and power of a close to the ground 25kilo's of hunt dog launches into 5th gear and bolts.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Jet Ski's and Taxi's

This is a bit of advice for people when they visit Phuket. I will keep it short and simple, there are many reference links on the internet to support my advise. The issues presented here are not exclusive to Phuket, and every city in the world has it's share of issues. But for the visitor, it is better to be forewarned about what is known.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Waving Flags 6

For those unfamiliar, as people from a country log on and read the blog, on visits of more than twice, I recognize the country in these little Waving Flags sections. By now this should be up to date and I tend to wait for at least three new countries before I post. If you are viewing the blog and have not seen your flag posted. let me know. In the meantime, I welcome readers from

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Get Wet in Patong

And so Songkran has arrived. Probably the most festive time in Thailand. Traditionally it is the Thai New year, as we enter the year 2555, in accordance with the Buddhist calendar. The festivities are scheduled around April 13-16 every year. Traditionally many people make their way to their family towns and homes. As a result many businesses are closed and many native Phuket people fill that vacuum with their arrival back to be with family and friends. Songkran is probably best known as the water festival. In Malaysia, they celebrate similarly and refer to it as the Thai Water Festival.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Suk-San Wan Songkran

Suk-San Wan Songkran is the Thai expression for Happy Songkran. This is the Thai New Year, celebrated the 13-15 of April every year, and marks the start of the year 2455 in the Buddhist calendar. It is also the hottest part of the year, which is probably why most of the activities are centered around water. This is the time of the year where in celebration, people engage in large public gatherings of throwing and spraying water on each other. It is probably the biggest celebration time in Thailand.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Pancake Goes To The Vet

Pancake, post-surgery with the TV remote

When Pancake picked Clive up on Moo 2 in December, the first concern, well okay one of the concerns I had, was that as a girl cat, there would be the issue of going into heat and then of course new baby kittens. I received some great advise from John of the Soi Dog foundations when I posted about Pancake. One of the points he made was for getting her spayed.

When we moved here to Rawai, the issue of the need to get spayed became more evident, as the new neighbours have a collection of cats. In fact they had kittens shortly before our arrival. And the cats they do have roam the neighbourhood freely. And there is a big nasty looking bob-tailed black Tom cat who makes a neighbourhood patrol with the pleasant tom cat howl at all hours of the night. He had taken to staring me down and then urinating across for my gate, and I caught him at one point all lined up to christen my motorbike.

Waving Flags 5

Welcome to the following countries where the blog has been read; Brunei, China Saudi Arabia and Spain. Now being countries 41,42,43 and 44. Thanks for reading!!


Penang Rickshaw
Prior to leaving for Penang, I had done my usual pre-trip planning and packing. An essential piece of equipment I have come to rely on very much is my cell phone. Unfortunately, we had also upgraded our power bars and gone all upscale and got one where we could turn the power off and on to specific outlets. More than once I had made the mistake of plugging in the phone only to discover, usually as I was about to head out the door that I had not turned the power on to THAT switch. And this day was no exception, so I had headed out with the cell phone power on the red line, but had packed my power supply, so I planned to just charge it once I was checked in. For some reason it had not occurred to me that while the power may be the same, the power outlets would not be.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Google Analytics!!!!

I have noticed that many of my browsing has been slowed considerably because of the launch of a marketing software by Google called: Google Analytics. As I understand it, it is for marketing purposes and employed by some web sites to monitor traffic. The issue is that it slows your connection speed to a crawl and my ability to post here is greatly hampered because it put the blog editing into a loop. I have managed to find a way to shut down this intrusion, and will be fixing the add-on for my web browser this weekend. Frankly the frustration of being able to do anything on the blog while it hogs my bandwidth, even to write draft blogs, is just too much.. Unfortunately I cannot include the link here yet, as it was sent by email through Yahoo's new super-dooper magical mail service, that is crashing as well. I love it when they rush a product onto the market, watch it crash and then try to fix it!!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Getting to Penang Malaysia


Sunday I began my trip to Penang Malaysia. It was a place we had discussed seeing, and at one point even discussed making Malaysia our destination instead of Thailand. Certainly the incentives by the Malaysia government make it much more attractive with their Malaysia My Second Home program.