Thinking of Mocha

My calendar pop-up reminds me today that Mocha died on this date in 2018. I so miss that sweetheart of a brown dog. She was always eager to please, looked directly at you to see what you wanted. Never harmed anyone or anything in her life. (Ok, I still have tooth marks on the handle of my Swiss army knife, and she did snatch a (not inexpensive 52 Bowman) baseball card off the floor where I’d dropped it (and had to buy a replacement). But she was just a puppy then and didn’t know the rules yet. Went on to puppy training classes and then AKC Canine Good Citizen, and greeted everyone and every other dog with calm and happiness. Mocha, come home!

Posing at the campground, 2015
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Please support Ukraine

There are not two sides to this event.

Razom means “together” in Ukrainian. Razom also is a charitable organization, one of the most reliable ways to get money to Ukraine for multiple uses. Right now, obviously there is a desperate need to support the tens of thousands of Ukrainians who have been displaced because of the destruction of the Kakhovka Dam. I have given $10 or $25 at a time. You do not have to be a megadonor to make a difference. Please contribute to Ukraine’s and Ukrainians’ profound needs. Go to Razom to contribute. Do it now. Thank you.

UNITED24 is “a fundraising organization created by the Ukrainian government that has collected over $350 million since the war began” (reference), and is the “official fundraising platform of Ukraine.” Please give. It’s easy to do. It matters. You matter. The people of Ukraine matter.

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We Miss Kai

Too soon another loss. Kai left us Thursday, April 13. He was 17 years old. He faded quickly during the two weeks or so before that, and it was clear he could not stay anymore by that last day.

Mr. Kai as I liked to call him, had as much attitude and personality (catitude?) than most any cat I’ve ever known. And a voice! He’d yowl during the night loud enough to wake the household, and chattered and purred a lot during his days. There were times it seemed he thought he was a dog, going out and coming in with his best friend Flash, and his alpha cat/dog Mocha, for years before they left. It was obvious he missed them both when they were no longer with us. He taught both of them how to hunt varmints in the back yard. He was fearless, his own person-cat. We are so sad at his passing, and so greatful for the years he gave us. We adopted him (really, it was more like the other way around) 12/26/2011. He was five years old at the time. He raised a ruckus in the dog-filled household where he was being fostered. He took some time to get used to his new home – he found the highest out of the way spot on top of an almost 8 foot high bookcase to hide out on for days, before deciding it might be safe to come down and check things out. Within time he became a loving part of our family, and was with us everywhere in our home.

Goodbye sweet Mr. Kai. We will always think of you.

Here are just a few pictures of his adventures with us.

Hiding Out
Kai & Flash. “My dog bed.”
Kai & Mocha. “We love naps.”
Stalking the back yard.
On the front porch of his new house. “Must try all things, all mine.”
Overseeing the garden
Back from neighborhood patrol. “It all checks out to my satisfaction.”
“I think I want to go out.” (This was just 2 days before his last day).
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Three years today

I still miss you Flash, every day. My world is not the same since you had to leave, but my world will always be better for the time you were here.

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Flash my sweet friend I miss you

Your yard is empty without you. It is waiting for you. I am waiting for you. My heart is empty without you. This has been such a hard year without you. I miss you today as much as I missed you the morning you had to leave us. Saturday was a sunny morning like that last morning you had with us. I think you made the sun shine again. Thank you my friend.



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Thinking Of Flash – Anniversary Of When He Came To Us

Twelve years ago today, Flash came to live with us. He was about ten months old. He had been in training with the Wisconsin Academy for Graduate Service Dogs (WAGS), but did not complete the program. He was a loving family dog, but it seems he hadn’t wanted to be a working dog. Still, in his later years, he watched over Mocha and, without our ever having encouraged it, would alert us when she was moving around or seemed to be in any distress. He would come to us instantly if any of us seemed to be in need, even just doing exercises on the floor. He would hide when our voices got too loud, and we would have to stop.

We miss Flash so much.

Here is a picture with his trainer when they came to check us out and see how the adoption might be, two weeks before we were allowed to take him in to our home. He is listening intently to his trainer even though there was so much to be distracted by. A big yard. A new dog. Two new people. And Mocha listening to the trainer also, as she always did, wanting to please and do the right thing. She soon became the lead dog though when Flash came home.

And this is from his first camping trip, still with a puppy face.

By his second camping trip, two months later, he was pretty comfortable with the whole idea. We hadn’t counted on needing three chairs.

Flash, I miss you so much. It has been so hard to be without you especially during these terrible times. You would have had your paws full comforting and taking care of us. And we could have taken care of you.


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We Lost Flash Today

Our lives, our home, our family are irretrievably changed today. We lost Flash today, our beloved black lab who came to us as a 10 month old pup in 2007. We are heartbroken.

He had a routine visit to the vet earlier today, but had worsened breathing problems after that, and never quite recovered. In his last moments he wanted to be out in his back yard, which he certainly considered his domain and where he loved to be no matter the weather. It was cool today but sunny, and he left us in the warm sunlight.

I can’t write anymore now, I cannot see the screen because my tears are too heavy. But here are some pictures from an album we made for Flash in 2015. My heart is broken. I miss you so much.

Look at Flash’s album from 2015:

Let’s Play!

My portrait at Happy Dogz 2014

Flash and Mocha at Happy Dogz 2014

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