Pints for Pups

I have a “thing” for animal rescue videos.

Whether it’s saving a dog from a swift moving river, or rescuing an abandoned pig, I’m ALL OVER IT.

Truth be told, if my living situation were more suitable to taking care of animals, I’m sure I’d be hosting a farm of animals in my home.

All my pets have been rescue pets.

From Patches, a kitten I grabbed from a box left at the Strawberry Festival in Los Gatos to Wendy, a formerly-awful turned sweetheart of a white German shepherd.

I’m down to one fur baby right now.


I first met Princess when I was working at a spa in Saratoga.

She had five kittens and was FIERCELY protecting them from anyone who came near.

She lived in a barn and ate out of a dumpster.

But she was BEAUTIFUL.

Princess has cocoa brown face, paws, and tail, a cream-colored body, and the bluest eyes.

Despite her initial ferocity, she turned into the sweetest lap cat imaginable.

She’s virtually a dog, she’s so attached to humans.

This weekend I am going to an event called Pints for Pups.

It’s all about raising money for homeless dogs via beer sales, ceramic sales, and art sales.

I love this event.

Not just because my friends have organized it.


I love it because it finds homes and provides care for dogs being fostered for adoption.

There’s a group called Thulani and they rescue senior German shepherds.

You can imagine how much love I’m going to pour into those dogs when I see them at there.

Which reminds me to invite you to join in the festivities and come to Pints for Pups!

Don’t buy.



Mom to the rescue

I am DEATHLY afraid of spiders.

It’s been this way all my life, ever since my dad INSISTED on catching the spiders in my bedroom in a plastic bag which he SHOOK IN FRONT OF MY FACE before depositing them “safely” outside.

You can imagine my youthful horror.

My mom, on the other hand, is DEATHLY afraid of snakes.

So is The Swede, for that matter.

And just like I’m sensitive to even LOOKING at a picture of a spider, they are sensitive to looking at a picture of a snake.

The other day I was with my mom and we were inspecting the backyard shed, looking for my camping equipment.

It drives me crazy that she RELOCATES all my gear all over the place, but since it’s free storage, there’s not much I can do about it.

So there I am, digging through conduit, pool covers, and tarps when I come across my tent.

Pete (as I like to call my tent) has seen better days.

He’s been to four burns, two unSCruzes, and countless other minor camping trips.

I fear this may be Pete’s last hurrah.

So I haul out Pete lickety split and that’s when I see it. . .

A snake?

A spider?

A mouse?

What was in the shed?

It was a spider.

A big, knobby black widow.


I immediately freaked out.

I told my mom to back out of the shed slowly and I followed her.

She, thinking it was a snake because who would freak out over a teeny tiny spider, backed out rather quickly and asked, “What is it?”

It’s a BLACK WIDOW! I practically screamed at her.

Oh, is that all?

She casually takes off her shoe, steps into the shed, and beats the black widow with her shoe.

There you go!

Just so you know, you can be 44 years old, have two kids of your own, a college degree, and be a relatively accomplished camper and yet MOM STILL HAS TO COME TO THE RESCUE.

Just sayin.

Need a rescue?

Have I mentioned that all my pets, every single one I’ve ever had, has been adopted from the shelter or rescued from the streets?

There are many reasons to adopt a pet rather than buy one from a breeder. The primary reason to adopt is that you when you do, you’ll save a life. About 2.7 MILLION ADOPTABLE dogs and cats are euthanized EACH YEAR in the U.S. 2.7 MILLION ADOPTABLE PETS. That’s a staggering number!

Also, if you adopt, you won’t be supporting puppy mills and pet stores which put profit over the welfare of the animals. Most animals raised in puppy mills are housed in shockingly poor conditions with inadequate medical care. By adopting instead of buying a pet, you can be certain you aren’t supporting cruel puppy mills with your money.

The bottom line is that you can go to your local shelter or contact a rescue group and you will likely find dozens of healthy, well-socialized puppies, kittens, and adult pets – including purebreds – just waiting for that special home.. YOURS!

And just to give a little shout out to my fur babies, here are a few pictures of Wendy (my feisty white German shepherd) and Princess (my adorable Burmese lap cat).

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Wendy, adopted from Tri-Valley Animal Shelter 2008 (and more love than you can shake a stick at).


Not many people know this about me but I am an active supporter of the Humane Society of Silicon Valley.  I donate to HSSV in memory of my son Douglas, who inspired me to adopt my first dog Mac.

My whole life, all my pets have been adopted from the shelter or rescued from homelessness on the streets.

None came with papers or fancy pedigrees. But they all came with a heart full of love and appreciation.

I feel strongly that people who are looking to add a pet to their family should first look at their local animal shelter. There are millions of homeless animals who desperately need homes. Ones in kill or no-kill shelters, and rescue organizations.

I’ve always felt a certain kinship with homeless pets, largely due to my own adoption. Everyone deserves a family and the idea that a loving, feeling animal would be left in a concrete box, waiting for someone to come along and adopt it breaks my heart.

I’ve often thought that given a home with enough square footage and acreage, I would rescue animals right and left, rehabilitate them, and find them good homes or keep them. Indeed, when I was married, I was not allowed to go to the animal shelter by myself because I’d come home with a pair a kittens.

What greater gift can we give to the pets who would love us unconditionally, than to give them a house to call home and a family to love?

If you’re in the market for a pet for your family, please, I urge you, look into adopting a pet in need.

You will be rewarded with love a thousand times over.

Princess, rescued with 5 kittens from a barn behind Harmonie European Day Spa in 2002 (and such a loveable lap cat).