pet health and safety

Keeping our pet healthy and safe anywhere – at home or out of it – is a concern to all pet owners, especially if we have just acquired a new puppy or kitten.

Recently, I received an email from a lady who had just bought a new puppy and was looking for more information on how to look after him properly. In her online search, she came across my website which contains lots of advice about pet health and safety anywhere – whether in the home or out of it, and her email was primarily to thank me, saying how informative it was, and that many of the articles were relevant to her situation of getting a new puppy. Happy me! Thank you Sandra.


pet health and safety


In her search, Sandra said she had come across another website which contained a page all about pet health and safety, and their well-being  which she also found very helpful, and worth sharing.
The article talks about what kind of food we are feeding our pets, how safe our home is for them, the dangers of poisonous plants, safety in our backyards, at the park or when traveling, and the fact that not all toys are pet-safe.

I think any information that gives advice on pet health and safety or how to look after our pets, helps to make us better pet owners – and quite often, we come across something new that we didn’t know before.


Safe Stars Website

The site is actually about the safety and well being of kids, teens and adults through education, support and guidance, but it has a separate page all about the safety and well being of pets; I found it very informative because it discusses everything we all need to know to keep our pets safe and healthy both in the home and when we are out and about with them – and the information is all in one place!

The article is definitely worth checking out, just click below to continue reading.


Pet Safety – A Review of Pet Safety at Home and Out of Town

Early Bird
Are you an early bird or a night owl?
When do you do you get most of your jobs done, morning or evening? It doesn’t really matter, it really comes down to whatever suits us best, whatever works for us.
Today’s Daily Prompt is ‘Because The Night’ and Krista from WordPress has asked us what our most productive time of the day is and when do we do our best work.

I am an early bird.
I love mornings – really early mornings – 5 o’clock kinda mornings! It’s the best time of the day, and when I am my most productive. Feeling refreshed after a good night’s sleep, I’m ready to roll! Because I live in a hot climate I like to get all my work done (especially in the garden) in the mornings before it gets too hot to go outside.

early bird catches the best sunrises

Magic sunrise

My shadow Poppy is right there with me, whatever time I get up. (I caught her out this time, she was still fast asleep with her tongue hanging out), she looked so cute! She trots after me into the kitchen, I give her a little dog treat whilst making the coffee then we go and sit in the garden to watch the sunrise together. Magic!





these guys are early birds

Early birds, oops, I mean kangaroos!


Once in a while we see these guys hopping down the street to get to the paddock behind our yard; they are early birds too – for the same reason I am. Kangaroos come out to feed at dawn and dusk when it’s cooler. Wise fellows those kangas!






So now you see why I’m an early bird and love mornings.
Of course, it helps living in the sub tropics but when I lived in the UK, I still got up early, even in winter when there was snow on the ground. I love the sound of silence in the mornings. The Carpenters nailed it with their great song “There’s a kind of hush, all over the world”, and it sure does make us feel GOOD!

So what about you – are you an early bird or a night owl?


Dog looking up at lady

The following was written by a friend of mine whose life was completely changed the minute she adopted a rescue dog from our local Animal Shelter.

What my friend wrote so touched my heart that I felt I had to share it, and by doing so, hopefully it will give a true insight as to what it is really like for dogs who are abused by thoughtless and cruel people who use them to produce puppies time after time after time – which they then sell for big profits. All driven by the mighty dollar of course, with no thought to the welfare of the poor animal who they allow to become malnourished and are left to live in unimaginable filth.  

Take it away Kaye

lady, man and a dog

Thank you one and all.  Kaye, Thomas & Reika

Here-under is a short story written by my sweet little rescue girl Reika.
he implores that people be aware of animal abuse, and urges you to support the cause by either donating a little of your time, your finances, or by adopting a refuge animal from your nearest Animal Welfare Centre.

(The story below is fiction, but there are some very accurate accounts of the background Reika had before she was rescued)”




A RESCUE DOG’S ACCOUNT OF LIFE: By Reika Edwards-Crandall

 My first memory is of a place that was dirty. It had dog faeces and urine everywhere and a very tattered piece of blanket for a bed. The water dish was empty a lot of the time, and you had to be quick to get any food from the meagre amount given out to 6 dogs (including my mother) who were locked in a small pen in a backyard.

I was taken out occasionally for a walk, and sometimes the children would play with me, as long as they didn’t get bored. I remember being tossed in a blanket playfully when I was only 6 months old, and caught by the children, only to be thrown up in the air again, terrified they were going to miss me and I would land on the ground.

My life until I first came into heat was smitten with dribs and drabs of attention, but when I came into season for the first time, I was taken away from the rest and placed in a yard with another dog I had never seen. I was left with him for the day and the mating was complete. I spent the next months in the pen starting to feel my belly swell and the puppies come to life.

There were no special treats, and each day ran into the other. I was occasionally allowed into the house which I adored, but if I made a mess of any kind, I was kicked and thrown back in the pen. I soon learned not to mess in the house.

My First Lot of Babies

My babies were born, 3 in all, and I loved them. I was still a puppy myself, and it was a very painful experience trying to feed them and keep them all happy. They drained me of my energy, and I didn’t get any extra food to supplement my weakness. I had no energy as it was being sucked out of me. At 5 weeks my babies were taken from me, and I was thrown back into the communal pen. My mother was no longer there, and I found out later that she had died of malnutrition as she could not conceive again and was not useful any more.

The same thing again, sometimes with the children, (whom I loved) and occasionally in the house (which I loved) and then I started bleeding again. I was only 18 months old, and already on my second lot of babies. My body was so thin my backbone was showing and my nipples extending so far they almost reached the floor.

My Second Lot of Babies

Only two this time, and I found it difficult producing milk to feed them, and they sucked at my nipples until they were red raw and so very painful.

I became ill, and then was taken into the house and put into a box in the laundry, and for the first time I tasted milk. The lady of the house tried to open my mouth to put tablets in, and I didn’t like it, so, she tied my head to a post and forced my mouth open with a rasp and put the tablet in, leaving me tied up for punishment.

I vaguely remember the next few weeks, coming in and out of consciousness, and getting up only to drink some water, then sleep again. I had lost so much weight, and I could barely get the strength to walk.

Finally, I managed to get some food into me again, and I regained a little strength. In all this time I had never seen a “doctor” and only got the occasional love from the children, but when I wasn’t playful, they soon tired of me.

When I could walk again I was thrown into the yard. For the first time I was not locked in the pen. To me it was freedom. I could explore all over the yard, the exciting things in the grass, the different smells, and for the first time I felt some happiness in the freedom it allowed me.

Pregnant Again

I bled again. The third time in my life, and I was in the yard. Before I knew it, I was looking at this HUGE dog coming toward me. I was terrified. He ran over to me, and with one paw he could knock me over.  OH MY, how it hurt.. and I was left torn apart and laying in a pool of blood.

It took me a long time to start to have some feeling. In that time my belly started to extend to an abnormal size, and it kept growing and growing. The size of my tiny body was massive, and the pain and discomfort in walking was excruciating. When my mistress saw that I was so extended, I heard her saying that I was having mongrel pups and they would be no good for selling.

My Third Lot of Babies

My body was so swollen and I could barely walk. When it came time to deliver, the babies ripped my private parts to pieces. I pushed and pushed, and I can’t explain the pain. Finally, I delivered two puppies, almost half my size each. My mistress came out and saw me laying next to them, unable to give them milk to nourish them. My body ripped and my small frame emaciated. She was with my master, who I seldom saw, and I heard her say, “she is no good to us any more, we may as well be rid of her”.

Thrown away like a piece of garbage

 He agreed, and that evening he came and picked me up and put me into the back seat of the car. We drove for about ten minutes while I was shivering in pain. I felt him reach over the back and pick me up… Oh my goodness, human contact, it was so nice.. I wagged my tail and wanted to lick him all over. Suddenly I felt a cool breeze on my face, and the next thing I know I was thrown out the car window right in the middle of a street full of cars going every which way. My master drove off, and that was the last I saw of him.
I was terrified, and ran through traffic, cars screeching and swerving, and I managed to get to the side of the road. I remember leaning against a fence. My heart beating so fast and my fear so great that I had forgotten my pain. All I could do was sit there shivering.

Daylight came. And as I looked down there was blood in a pool where I was sitting. People were walking by, and I wanted to get up and run, but I could not move.

Someone Cares about me!

Suddenly, a pair of hands picked me up, and I don’t remember much else until I came to and found myself with a lot of people in a clinic with people fussing and talking to me like I was special. There was a lovely man saying sweet things to me, and the gentle pats and love I felt for the first time was overwhelming.

I remained in this place for a few days. I was put to sleep, woken up, and felt these hard pieces of nylon in my tummy, but all the time there were lovely people around, cuddling and talking and ever so gentle. I was taken from this clinic and put into a pen with a few other companions my size. We had plenty of food, water and visits and walks and drives in the car, and love.

After a couple of weeks of this, I was shifted to another place, with 2 companions surrounded by other pens.. There was a lot of barking, and a lot of people coming up and down the aisle outside. Every day there was companionship and love given. I started to become a little trusting again.

A few days went by, and each day was better than the next. I got on with my mates, and always had the attention of what they called “volunteers” who would pick me up, talk to me and love me. Oh how I gave back the love with heaps of tail wags and kisses.

I Meet My New Family!

One day, (I will call it the best day of my life), I remember feeling very ill with a cough, and sitting at the back of the pen, when I saw this lady and man looking at me. She was in a chair with wheels, and she was pointing at me, talking to the man. They left for a very short time, and were back again. The pen door opened, and the girl who had given me cuddles came in and picked me up.

two ladies and dog on lap

Love at first sight

She placed me in this lady’s arms, and when I looked at her face, she had tears running down her face. What could I do but lick them all off and cuddle into her to make her feel better. When I looked up at the man, he wet me with his tears falling on top of me.

Silly humans, they were saying they were so happy, and that I am THE ONE, and all sorts of jibber jabber while they were crying and laughing at the same time.

My name is Reika. I have a past. My past does not matter.
Today, I have a future

I have a future with love, with care, with everything I never imagined possible, and how can one little dog explain what it feels like to have a heart that is bursting with all the love I have to give my new mummy and daddy.

I am one of the lucky ones. And I would love everyone to be able to give one of my fellow canines or felines, either a new home, or at least some hope for medical attention and the chance of a new life with a new family.

From your friend always,
REIKA xxxx

cream dog with toy and gray and white dog with toy lying on rug

Good pals share their toys

Thank you Kaye and Reika for sharing your story with us.
It’s been three years now since Reika was adopted by my friend and her husband, and it was the best thing that happened to all of them. In spite of being treated so badly by humans in the past, Reika has regained her trust in humans and just hangs out to be loved – and she gives it back in abundance! She is beautiful, fits right in with her new family and we all fell in love with her. She is also a lively playmate for Poppy when we visit and take them both walkies in the park.


Please – Adopt, don’t Shop.
You can make a big difference to the life of the dog (or cat) that you choose


statue of dog outside Greyfriars Bobby's Bar

Greyfriars Bobby – Fact or Fiction?


skye terrier sketch

Of all the dogs throughout history that have mourned for their deceased masters, Greyfriars Bobby is, by far, the most famous.
Just to give you an idea of what Bobby would have looked like, this is a sketch of a Sky Terrier, much like Bobby.


This little Skye Terrier supposedly spent 14 years guarding the resting place of his owner John Grey, a night watchman for the Edinburgh City Police. Bobby died on 14 January, 1872 and was buried just inside the gate of Greyfriars Kirkyard, not far from John Grey’s grave.

The accuracy of the story has been challenged many times, but in spite of that, the story has held fast and Bobby has become very famous. In 1872, a life-size statue was made by Sculptor William Brodie and paid for by a local aristocrat, Baroness Burdett-Coutts. The statue was unveiled on 15 November, 1873 and sits on the corner of Candlemaker Row and George IV Bridge in Edinburgh.


Friends Visit Greyfriars Bobby

Lady at Greyfriars Bobby FountainTwo of my friends from Australia were traveling through Scotland last month, and knowing I am Scottish by birth, sent me lots of photos of my hometown of Peebles in the Scottish Borders.


Man rubbing nose of Greyfriars Bobby



They also went to see the legendary Greyfriars Bobby in Edinburgh, and sent me these lovely photos of their visit. Thanks guys – I will treasure them all!




Apparently thousands of tourists rub Bobby’s nose ‘for luck’, erroneously claiming it to be an old Edinburgh tradition and this has led to the statue’s nose becoming shiny and worn, and is continually having to be repainted!

A plaque on the base of the fountain reads “A tribute to the affectionate fidelity of Greyfriars Bobby. In 1858, this faithful dog followed the remains of his master to Greyfriars Churchyard and lingered near the spot until his death in 1872. With permission, erected by the Baroness Burdett-Coutts”.


Bobby’s Headstone

greyfriars bobby headstone


Bobby even has his own gravestone just outside the gates of the Churchyard, not far from John Grey’s grave. The headstone reads “Greyfriars Bobby. Died 14th January 1872 aged 16 years.

Let his loyalty and devotion be a lesson to us all”.


Although this is the most commonly known story, the exact details of the Greyfriars Bobby story have been lost over time, so we will never know the true facts.

Fact or Fiction?

You decide!
What we do know and love about this particular story is that this endearing little dog is an everlasting tribute to the loyalty and affection shared between dogs and their owners everywhere!




Close-up. When I first photographed this Pavlova, I stood on a chair and captured the entire cake looking down on it. But when I crouched down to table level to get up close and personal, this circle of meringue, cream and fruit transformed into a luscious, glistening pile of jewels heaped on a pillowy bed. The first version was nice but flat, whereas this one created a mood — all because I changed my angle.

Day Sixteen: Treasure and Close-up


Any object or experience that is deeply meaningful can be a treasure.
Items, places, people — we all cherish something, or someone.

Is there a twinkle in his eye?

Is there a twinkle in his eye?

Man sitting on beach holding dog

Two more treasures











aussie bum written on back of trunks

Aussie Bum

I saw this at the beach recently and it made me chuckle. I couldn’t resist snapping it – close-up!

I’ve met a few of these…..






……….bet that got you smiling!



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