Back at the Children’s Hospital

Hello my dear friends. I am blogging again, BOL. BTW (which I found out means By The Way), BOL is Bark Out Loud, the dog equivalent for LOL  One has to know these things when one blogs, you see. And even more-so when one texts. Will someone please tell me what texts means? Talking about blogging reminds me that I have an e-mail account now, and I can get attachments, and still, no one has sent me any treats or biscuits of any sort. What’s up with that?

I still haven’t figured out what is going on with Mom, but I can’t continue to dwell on that. My life is much too busy with things like breakfast, snacks, treats, and therapizing. Speaking of therapizing, Mom drove me to the children’s hospital this morning so I could therapize all the sick kids. It was good today, with lots of kids needing my special attention. One very little boy, still in diapers. who used to be scared of dogs, but now has gotten used to us and even likes us. He has two older sisters who liked me a lot too, so I was on the floor surrounded by children petting me, just like in the old days at the theater. What good memories…

Then there was the little boy – toddler, really – who declared he was a-scared of dogs, so I thought I would just stand out in the hallway and look in at him with a smile on my face. He saw my pretty smile and made a dash for me. I guess he forgot to be afraid, because he pet me real good until it was time for him to take a ride in a big plastic wagon.

There was a big family in the hallway who didn’t seem to know what a therapy dog is and wondered why I was in a hospital for people. So my good friend Lois, who always walks around with us and gives me treats before and sometimes during and after my job, explained it all to them, about how I was tested and passed and come to make kids happy. I think she could have added because I am so beautiful and have a scintillating personality. (Do you like my new word for myself?  I have to bark four times to get that one all out. That is one bark plus one bark plus one bark plus one bark. Whew!) Mom indicated to Lois to give the one of my calling cards so that just maybe, if they read my blogs, they will understand better.

We are home now and my people brother has ordered pizza. I saw the delivery person and now I smell it downstairs, so I have to go.

Lexi, the scintillating therapizer

Why is Mom home?

Mom has been home a lot lately. She isn’t jumping – or crawling – out of bed before daylight and putting on clothes and makeup and leaving me here at home without her. Something suspicious is going on. On the good side, she is taking me for more walks and we are going places together in the car, like the bank and the hardware store. The tellers at the bank all were looking out the window at me and thought I was so adorable that I got three – count them, three! – biscuits instead of just one. Mom tried to hide one in her purse, but when she turned her head I grabbed it and went as far away from her as I could to eat it. I took and ate it for lots of reasons: 1. I wanted it; 2. I hadn’t had any lunch; 3. It smelled good; 4. I don’t think Mom should eat it; 5. My tummy wasn’t full to bursting yet; 6. It was mine; 7. I wanted it.

Don’t you think those were all good reasons for me to take the biscuit? But I was talking about Mom being home, wasn’t I?

Sometimes she stays home when she is sick, but she doesn’t seem sick. The first two days I did therapy on her, staying close by her side, because I could tell something was wrong. She has been using her computer a lot, and she says she is ok, but I can sense something. She did go into work today – I could smell it on her – but not at her usual time.

She is eating a cookie now, so I have to go stare at her.

Lexi, the puzzled schnauzer

Big surprises at the children’s hospital

April 17, 2013
It started out similar to any other day at the children’s hospital except, since it was the week before Easter, many of the children had left or were preparing to leave. After quickly making the usual rounds, we headed up to the outpatient section on the third floor. As we stepped off the elevator I saw two nurses standing outside the doors of a place I had never been called the IC Unit. They oohed and awed over me as most people with any taste and sense do. Now, please don’t think I tire of such adulation – to the contrary, I live for it. Mom says that is why I am so good on stage. But I digress. They told us to come into the unit, but I think they were worried because they were looking around like I do when I want to snatch some of my brother’s food. I wasn’t worried, though. What’s the worst that could happen? I have certainly been thrown out of nicer places. And worse, come to think of it. So in we went, and I visited with only one person, but it was sure worth it. She asked me to sit in the bed with her while she pet me like she really knew what she was doing. She grinned from ear-to-ear and said I had made her day. I could tell she really needed me there so I settled in for the long haul. When I finally had to move on, she smiled at me until I was out of sight. I heard one of the nurses say she had been crying because her family didn’t have any gas to come and visit her. I sure hope Mom never runs out of gas. I am not sure what it is but it seems like something that is really important to have.

From there we went into the outpatient unit where I visited with only one child. As we were leaving a doctor stopped us and asked if we would wait for his patient to wake up but Mom said she had better get back to work. Then, as we were waiting to get on the elevator, someone from a place called ABC stopped us and asked if they could film me with one of the patients. Mom whipped out her cell phone and called her boss to let him know we were going to be a bit late and why. It was real quiet for a minute and later I found out that her boss didn’t say anything for a while. Boy, wasn’t he surprised! Then he said it was ok, so we went back in and I did my therapy thing for the camera. It was a little hard to do though, because I normally do therapy as a reaction to what the patient needs, and this patient didn’t really seem to need me. Dang, if I had just had some warning I could have gone into acting mode and oohed and awed everyone. I got bored with the whole thing and went to the bottom of the bed to get a better look at the camera, and so it could get a better picture of me. The people were real nice to me and told us that it would air on ABC National during some Children’s Miracle Telethon in the middle of a golf tournament. Mom explained that meant I was going to be on TV where hundreds, no thousands, no – thousands of thousands of people would see me. Woohoo! I wish they
could all give me treats and ask to have their pictures taken with me.

The doctor showed up again and asked if we could come see his patient because she had really wanted to see me before she fell asleep so he could do something called an operation. She was still asleep, but her family said that was ok, just put me up close to her in the bed so they could all take pictures to show that I had come to visit her. I posed some more while everyone’s cell phone flashed.

On the way home, Mom called Mary Gardner – who had forgotten about coming to take me to the hospital – and said, boy, did you ever miss it today! He, he, wasn’t she surprised!

Pet Therapy Day

December 28, 2012
Hello my adoring fans. Once again, pet therapy day arrived. Why do people always ask if I am going to get therapy? Do they think I need it? Surely not! I am going to GIVE it. Ughh. People can be so frustrating when they aren’t petting me and giving me treats.

First thing in the morning Mom plopped me in the sink and gave me a bath. Good grief, can’t I at least wake up a bit more before the torture begins? I endured it for the sake of the children. I love the children. I love seeing them smile. I smile at them, too.

Then Mom found out that our friend, Mary Gardner, couldn’t take me because she had company and something about rats. Mom said, no Mary Gardner didn’t have rats. Mom claims M.G. just SAID “rats!” as in, “Rats, I can’t take Lexi today.” But I still think she had rats and that is why she couldn’t take me. If she had just come and gotten me, I could have helped her out. I am a ratter breed, you know. That, by the way, is why Mom won’t get a guinea pig. She thinks I will… ummmm… yep I probably would. Yummy!

So Mom ended up taking me to the hospital and the kids and I smiled at each other a lot. I sat in their beds and presented my rump and they knew what to do. I can tell who has dogs at home because they are the best petters. They know which spots to hit and how to hit them juuuuust right.

I guess that’s all I have to say today. Everyone stay warm. I have my own natural winter coat since mom doesn’t shave me in the winter. Please try to not be too jealous.

Lexi the warm schnauzer

Back into Freestyle!

 May 30, 2010

Today Mom and I started back into Freestyle. Mom calls it doggie dancing. Dad says it is coordinated movement. I just call it fun! I get lots of treats and “good girls”, and that makes me smile a lot. They play my favorite music, Split Rail Fences by the hammered dulcimer player, Dan Landrum. I can really get going to that music. Everyone said such nice things about me, like I am smart and beautiful and a natural at this. Of course it is all true, and I already know these things, but it is still nice to hear them.

Oh yes, I did want to mention something that Mom thinks is really neat. Last week we went to the children’s hospital to make kids smile. I am really good at that, too, by the way. So the lady who takes us around and opens the kids’ doors for me (I think everyone calls her Lois) said, “Let’s go to room 316.” I forged ahead and stopped at that room. When we were done there, she said, “Now we are going to room 319.” Again, I went on ahead and stopped at that room. Mom and the Lois lady don’t know how I knew which room. He, he. I don’t think I will tell them.

Keep on woofing!

Lexi the dancing therapy dog

Therapy and Agility

August 25, 2009

Hi friends, especially all my new friends at T.C. Thompson Children’s Hospital. I got to visit with some cool teens yesterday. You guys really know how to pet a dog and scratch the best places. I wanted to stay and visit longer, but Mom only had an hour, so we had to leave. Although I want to come back soon, I have to wait until September 24. I really like Fifi, too. She is the person in charge of the pet therapy department. I bet she got that job because of her name! Fifi gives me good treats. I saw where she got them, so I jumped on the chair next to the treat jar to try to save her the trouble of getting me more. I stretched as high as I could, but couldn’t quite reach it. She saw me trying and helped me out. She’s a good one, that gal. I like her, too.

I went to my agility class last night. I keep my eyes on where the treats are so I can skip the table and jumps and stuff and go right to the treat. Mom says I am not supposed to do that, so I try to do all the obstacles in between. Sometimes, though, I just can’t help myself!

Next Monday is my final class in this series, and my dad is going to come watch me run the course and get my certificate. I hope this time I get something better than a tasteless piece of paper! It’s pretty boring around here tonight, so I think I will go to bed and wait for my night-night treat.

Lexi the sleepy dog

Therapy for kids

May 29, 2009

Mom took me to a hospital for really sick kids yesterday. They didn’t look all that sick, not puking or coughing or anything. But they were in bed with their jammies on and needles with tubes stuck in their arms and all that. So I will just believe Mom when she said they needed a lot of Lexi love. Their Moms were all with them, and they all smiled and seemed really happy to see me too. I went from room to room and jumped up on the bed with the little person (sometimes Mom had to lift me up cause the beds were really high). They went from looking sad to happy when they saw me, and most of them pet me a lot. One even started to cry when I left, so I went back in to see him. Gee, he wasn’t much bigger than me.

I liked it lots and want to go back soon, but Mom said I can only go once a month – that’s the rule because there are so many other dogs that want to come get pet by the kids. I wish some of them would find somewhere else to go so I could go more. Oh, and Mom got a calling card made with my beautiful picture and information about me on it. She gave one to each of the kids, and they smiled when they looked at it. It aid I love treats, so maybe next time….

Lexi, the Therapy for Kids Dog

Still Therapizing

April 14, 2009

Hi ya’ll.  I have gone and done therapy twice now at this Siskin Rehab Hospital place. You want to hear something funny? When Mom tells people what I do, sometimes they ask if I am getting therapy. And this is even after she has told them where I am doing it, at a people hospital. So she said next time, she will say, you know dogs can have health insurance now, so the hospitals have to treat them. It’s part of Obama’s stimulus plan. Then she’ll sit back and wait for them to get it. I they really thought I was going to Siskin to get therapy in the first place, I think Mommy is going to be sitting there waiting a long time.

I think she needs to say I am a therapy dog. That would clear it up right away. She thinks the other way will be more fun. Anyhow, I didn’t mean to go down a bunny trail. Although usually I do mean to, ’cause I can smell them. Since both sessions were really uneventful, Mom says I should tell ya’ll about the second session I did a year or so ago. It was at Siskin, too. There was this young fellow who couldn’t seem to move real well. I sat on a stool next to him and made him pet me. You know what I mean – I kept scooting my nose under his hand so he didn’t have much choice. Every time he stopped, I scooted my nose again. I did that for about 15 minutes, and would have gone a lot longer, but Mom said that was enough. As we started walking away, I heard the guy’s therapist say, that was really good – you lifted your hand! Wow, he must have really like me!! Keep barking! Lexi the Therapy Dog

“Good work if you can get it”

March 20, 2009

I have started my work again as a therapy dog. Mom says I should tell about how my first session went almost two years ago. So here goes:

A big man who worked at Siskin asked if he could pet me. He pet me a lot, which I thought was the patients’ jobs, but he seemed to need that. When we walked away, I heard the boss tell Mom that this therapist had never before touched a dog there. Then another therapist, a woman, came up to us and asked Mom if she could take me over to her patient. As I was walking away with her, I could hear the boss tell Mom that this therapist avoided the dogs and had never done this before. On our way out, after I was finished spreading the love, the big man stopped us again and asked if he could hold me. He said there was something really special about me. Duh…we all know that!

Anyhow, I really liked doing this, but didn’t get to go back for several months. I will tell you about my second trip there tomorrow. Gotta go help Mom fix some chicken now.

Be good, and if you can’t be good, don’t get caught!

Lexi the Therapy Dog

Christmas 2008

Me and Father Christmas - I later chewed u him up
Me and Father Christmas – I later chewed
him up

January 4, 2008

Wow, this Christmas thing is really nice. It sneaks up on me every year, but this year I knew there was something in one of the pretty bags just for me – I could smell it and Mommy kept telling me to leave it alone. Sure enough, it was a new chew bone filled with rawhide! And I got a new Quack-quack. The quacker broke in my old one, but this one works really good. I was so excited when I got it I wiggled all over.

Christmas Eve I went to the nursing home to see my Grandma. Grandma fell again in her apartment and broke her hip. She had an operation to make it better and went to something called physical therapy in the hospital. That was supposed to help her be able to go back to her new apartment where she has lots of people around and help if she needs it. But every day when she went back to therapy she couldn’t remember what she had learned the day before. It was like starting all over again. That doesn’t make any sense to me. How can you forget what you just learned the day before? I always remember what Mommy teaches me and we have a grand time dancing new steps together or doing new tricks or, well, you see what I am saying. Mom says it is because my Grandma is 89 years old – wow, that is something like 623 in dog years. People used to live that long –  623 years – in the bible times but not anymore. Anyhow, the hospital finally sent Grandma to a nursing home to keep trying to learn to walk again, and that’s why we are here visiting her. Mommy put up a little Christmas tree in Grandma’s room and the lights are very pretty. It reminds me of the Grand Illumination and makes me smile my little schnauzer smile.

We had pizza. It was good. I love my Grandma.

My people brothers stayed all night on Christmas Eve and I got to jump on Adam Christmas morning to wake him up. He was sleeping on the couch and didn’t want to get up. So I wiggled and stood on him and dug in next to him until he finally succumbed to my charms. In the middle of it all I had to stop to run in and tell my other big brother Andrew that I was busy with Adam and I would be back to get him up, too. He didn’t wait for me, though.

The day after Christmas I went to Siskin Hospital to work. They call me a pet therapy dog. It’s really lots of fun. I sit next to people and let them pet me. These are people who come and learn to do things like walk again, just like my Grandma. I like some people there more than others, and when I find them I won’t let them stop petting me. They smile and I wag a lot. Mom says it’s good work if you can get it.

Lexi, the Christmas Schnauzer

My first trip to a nursing home

March 20, 2007
It’s been a while since Mom has helped me write in my diary. She started working at a place where she is doing accounting. I keep hearing her say she hates it. I don’t like when Mommy isn’t happy. She doesn’t play with me enough. I think if she played with me more she would feel better. I think she should just stay home and take me to the park. The weather is nice and I could run, run, run. Then we would both feel better.

Mom came home early on Friday and took me to a nursing home. At first I thought I was going to see my Grandma who lives near there, but I got to see lots and lots of other people who are old like my Grandma. Their rooms all open out to hallways, too, so they wouldn’t be able to let me stay all day either. They all talked to me nice and petted me. Mom told everyone about me being Toto in the Wizard of Oz. The bling on my collar was the button with me and Dorothy on it. I think they liked that. I felt very proud. There were a lot of cookie crumbs and I cleaned them up for everyone. I am a good helper. Mom says I am a therapy dog now. I hope I don’t have to learn a new name again, like I did for the play. I got really thirsty and whined and Mom said we could go. She promised to bring me water the next time we visit. It is really hot in there, and smells funny too, like stuff I am not allowed to do in the house.

Saturday I get to see my good friends Piper and Marley. We are all going to get tested to be therapy dogs for hospitals that take care of children. I like all the children petting me. I am sooooo sure I will pass whatever the test is. I hear that Marley is a little worried about this because she never liked kids. I think I will talk to her about it. After all, I never liked kids either until the Wizard of Oz. I will let her know they are really ok. And they usually drop food, so it’s good to hang around them.

Lexi, the nursing home dog

The Elevator

February 6, 2007
I had my first ride in an elevator. Mom carried me onto it. It started to go up and when she tried to put me down I clung onto her like crazy. No way was I going to stand on this thing that was moving under us. She caught me with her knee as I was sliding off her and she saved me. The doors of this elevator thing slid open and we stepped out into a hallway. Then I got to visit my Grandma in her new apartment. I was so excited to see her and she was excited to see me too. When we were done visiting Mom held me on the elevator ride back down.

A few days later I went back to see Grandma and had to go on this elevator thing again. Mom tricked me – just walked right onto it with me on my leash. I was looking at this person that I thought would pet me and wasn’t paying enough attention to where I was going. I could feel it begin to move, but I kept my eye on that bright metal circle in the middle. I think that was the thing making it all happen. We made it up ok and I was so happy to see my Grandma again. Grandma had a piece of toast all ready just for me. Mom thought she tricked me again when we left, but I knew that as long as I watched that circle thing, it would be ok. Now I know to just watch the circle and I will be ok on the elevator. I just wanted to share that with all of you so you would know to just watch that metal circle and you don’t need to be afraid to go on an elevator. The elevator will take you good places, like to see the people you love.

Lexi, the brave elevator-riding schnauzer

Can’t go to Grandma’s anymore

February 2, 2007

Grandma moved out of our apartment (hers and mine) and I am not allowed to stay all day with her anymore. Where she lives now, there’s only a hallway on the other side of her front door, and she can’t tie me out anymore when I want to go outside. I heard Mom promise her that I could still sometimes come and stay for a little while. I wish my Grandma didn’t move. She’s been getting very confused, but she still knew who I was and always smiled and talked nice to me and gave me toast. I heard that she fell down in our (hers and mine) apartment in the middle of the night and pulled the TV down on top of her. I heard that she lay there all night because she couldn’t get up. I think she would still be laying there if Mom had not gone over early the next morning. She said she got up to go to the bathroom and got confused and turned the wrong way. Then she lost her balance and when she reached for something to steady herself the TV fell over on top of her. I hope Grandma doesn’t hurt. I wish she didn’t have to move. Why didn’t she move somewhere that I could stay with her all day? I think she misses me. I love my Grandma.

I am going to see my good friends Jennefer and Piper and Marley on Sunday. We are going to go see my big people brother Adam who lives in another city almost an hour away, and go to the pet store. I bet we all get something good. I should, since I am a very, very good girl. Afterward, there is something called the Super Bowl. I wonder if that is a great big bowl full of yummy food. Mmmmmm. I am starting to drool. My beard is getting wet.

Everyone have a good Super Bowl Sunday and don’t get a tummy ache. Woof, woof,

Lexi

My friends got a puppy

November 15, 2006

I didn’t get to go to help teach dance last week, and Mom came home smelling like new puppy. I tried to ignore it so she wouldn’t know I could tell, but she stank of it. Then she confessed that my good friends in Dunlap got a new Schnauzer puppy from my breeder, but that they still love me too. If they love me, how could they find room in their hearts for another Schnauzer – I truly do not understand. I feel cast aside, betrayed. The next thing will probably be the new puppy getting her own web page!

O my gosh, I just found out the new puppy got her own web page and asked me to be friends. What could I do?! Mom said I should be nice and accept, so I even sent a nice note.  Her name is Sadie. Maybe we will get to play together sometime. That is, after I show her who is boss. Mom said the classes are over for the year, so I won’t get to see those friends for a long time (unless they come to Chattanooga to visit me!).

Mom says I am going to get to go to places called assisted care and nursing homes to visit with old people. I know how to do that. I wonder if they will all give me toast like my Grandma does. They are going to pet me lots and I will be real nice to everyone. I wonder if I will have to have a new name like I did for the play. I will let you know, so everyone knows what to call me when they want to give me a treat!

I have started going back to the park on the weekends because the weather is nice and I don’t go to the theater any more.  I love to run, run, run…

 

Woof, woof,

Lexi

 

More antics at the theater

October 12, 2006
So there I was near the front of the stage and I was getting a bit bored just standing there with my good pals – no one was feeding me or petting me or singing to me – and out of the corner of my eye I saw the wicked witch sneaking across the back of the stage. Thinking it would be great fun, I turned and ran after her, barking as loudly as I could. She kept stopping and motioning with big waves of her arm to go away. The audience started laughing so of course I kept it up until she was clear off the stage. What a great time that was! I tried it again the next night to see if people still thought it was funny, and they did, so I am just going to add it to my part. Won’t the wicked witch be surprised!

LexiToto the witch chaser