Chirpy chirpy cheep cheep

Where’s your mama gone?

Anyone who homes an unwanted dog is, in most cases, unlikely to see how they looked when they were a tiny ball of fur.

After taking Snowy, we never saw his rescuer again, but we’ve sent the odd few emails to each other. I sent some of Snowy at a year old, and she sent some to me of him as a tiny pup.

Except I lost them in the sheer volume of emails that swamps us all, so, I determined to find them again, and record them for posterity on the interspheres.

A quick reminder

Puppy Snowy was chucked out at a few days old, by/or in a rubbish bin. The detail is irrelevant, he was discarded as rubbish.

Rocio took him in temporarily, contacted her vet, who is also ours, and he put us in touch with each other.

By the time we took him, he was four or five weeks old. He’d survived being thrown on the street, no mother, no siblings, and continued to thrive with us, well under the age when pups normally leave their mum.

The quote about you can often judge a nation on how it treats its animals is often ascribed to Gandhi, although researching around, it seems to be mythical.

Today, yet another inevitable story arises about problems with dead animals in supermarkets in the UK. Chickens, not for the first time, are full of campylobacter. Or almost full, I add hastily, in case the supermarket libel police are lurking.

Chicken story

The usual arguments abound:

  • Cook chicken thoroughly to eliminate all nasties (and dry chicken out so it is inedible)
  • Do NOT under any circumstances touch or wash said chicken
  • Buy chicken from M&S which now comes double wrapped so, praise be, human fingers and dead chicken flesh shall never meet in mutual contamination
  • This is all down to greedy livestock farmers, slaughterers, producers and supermarkets wanting more profit and cutting costs
  • No! This is all down to mean consumers who want the cheapest products available
  • Organic food is better
  • No! It’s got even more horrible dirty diseases
  • If you were all vegetarian you wouldn’t have these problems
  • Smug, sanctimonious vegetarians, what about soya and mung bean sprout contamination? And your food is handled by these same chicken producers. [maybe us vegetarians need a disclaimer if there is cross-contamination of meat and veg eh?]
  • And, on cross-contamination, the old one about not mixing raw and other meats

Talk about re-inventing the wheel. I have little patience with these stories.

  1. People are in business to make money. That means maximum profit at minimal cost. If you don’t understand that, well, I offer my sympathies
  2. Organic farmers are in business to make money. They may want their chickens to have a healthy happy life, but they still kill them at the end of the day, or send them to a slaughterhouse
  3. Buy a cookery book. Mastering the Art of French Cooking is a good start. Although I’m not sure they advocate buying the double-wrapped germ-free chicken from Markses
  4. Take responsibility for your own life and your own food. I’ve managed half a century of mixed diets and not suffered from food poisoning. And that includes—shock, horror—using the same board/knife for raw and prepared meats and vegetables
  5. It’s not a time to bring out the same old arguments

But, if Gandhi’s quote about treatment of animals isn’t proven, here are a few others.

Rousseau, because I like him, even though he think he was slightly whacky. Some of what he said was good:

In consequence of the sensibility with which they are endowed, they ought to partake of natural right; so that mankind is subjected to a kind of obligation even toward the brutes. It appears, in fact, that if I am bound to do no injury to my fellow-creatures, this is less because they are rational than because they are sentient beings: and this quality, being common both to men and beasts, ought to entitle the latter at least to the privilege of not being wantonly ill-treated by the former.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Discourse on Inequality (1754), preface.

So, don’t throw your puppies/dogs in the rubbish bin.

Shelley, because the Romantics were an interesting bunch:

It is only by softening and disguising dead flesh by culinary preparation that it is rendered susceptible of mastication or digestion, and that the sight of its bloody juices and raw horror does not excite intolerable loathing and disgust.
Percy Bysshe Shelley, in A Vindication of Natural Diet (1813).

That will be, make sure you buy your animals in plastic wrap so it doesn’t actually look like dead animals.

and

If the use of animal food be, in consequence, subversive to the peace of human society, how unwarrantable is the injustice and barbarity which is exercised toward these miserable victims. They are called into existence by human artifice that they may drag out a short and miserable existence of slavery and disease, that their bodies may be mutilated, their social feelings outraged. It were much better that a sentient being should never have existed, than that it should have existed only to endure unmitigated misery.
Percy Bysshe Shelley, On the Vegetable System of Diet (c. 1815; posthumously published, 1929).

That’s a difficult one. I think it’s no to factory farming at the minimum.

And, finally, the last word with Tolstoy:

A man can live and be healthy without killing animals for food; therefore, if he eats meat, he participates in taking animal life merely for the sake of his appetite. And to act so is immoral.
Leo Tolstoy, Writings on Civil Disobedience and Nonviolence (1886)

Quite.

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107 comments on “Chirpy chirpy cheep cheep

  1. I like all those quotes. I have only read Shelley’s Necessity of Atheism. To your list, I will add two more

    “…the moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; those who are in the shadows of life; the sick, the needy and the handicapped. ” ~ Last Speech of Hubert H. Humphrey

    and from Gandhi

    “A nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members.”

    In his treatise against war, Desiderius Erasmus, argues that men found it so easy to kill one another after they found joy in killing animals for fun.

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  2. I’ve long believed that there’s no crime in killing animals if you’re going to eat what you kill. I understand others may disagree but too many today think meat (and fruit and vegetables) magically appear at the grocery store. That said, to kill something and let it go to waste is a moral crime, at least in my book.

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    • I’ve probably been on every side of the fence (if it were possible to have more than two sides) in these discussion areas. To add to lack of awareness about food, I read something about children today not knowing that chips came from potatoes …

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      • I can add to this. We had a family from Manchester stay at The Ark’s spot for a short while a few years back and the Missus served beans one evening. The couple’s young son asked why they were green as he thought that beans were orange and came from a tin. He had never seen them in their natural state before! He seemed astonished when the missus took him up the garden and showed him. He was eight (?) at the time.
        Oh, and on the doggy front, he had never played with animals either, yet he taught our first boxer, Brunel to sit. He was quite a kid.

        Nice photos – especially the large one with the Coke Can.

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        • I think I’ve heard about the bean story elsewhere too. To be fair, small oval haricot beans slothered in sugary tomato sauce don’t bear much resemble to fresh green beans out of the garden.

          Our first (family) boxer was called Bruno. I don’t remember him as I was a mere babe in arms when he died. I’ve taken the easy way out with training Snowy. A bag of treats works wonders. The only one I’ve not managed is stay. I can see the thought process bubble coming out of his head: ‘Why should I stay here when she’s over there with TREATS?’

          I like the elegance of his little feet on that one, he looks so poised. It was nice of her to send me them, shouldn’t imagine she thought I’d put them on the Internet. Still I did © them for her.

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          • I think the bean story is more an indictment of the Fast Food era and unless one has a it of soil in the garden where dad or mum plants a few things many kids will be in a similar boat.

            Get this … our first family dog was also a boxer …. and he was called Bruno. My parents had to find a home for him after he began bringing home chickens!
            We lived in Ramsey near several small-holdings.
            He ended up near where my gran lived with a lady who owned a pub.

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          • Come to think of it, I don’t think I knew where tinned beans came from although I knew what green beans were because I didn’t like them. The two foods I was exempted from eating were mushrooms and runner/broad beans. And the only type of fast food we had was fish and chips, in the days when Brian would spend all morning peeling and chopping the chips.

            Get this too, at the back of us was the local milkman and family and they had a smallholding … But we had super-high fencing so the dog couldn’t escape. When I was young they had horses and pigs and pigeons and chickens. Later they converted into a nasty battery farm although old Granny still had her own chicks. No battery ones for her. She looked about like the one out of the Beverley Hillbillies.

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  3. there is also a clear link (apparently, but I have not confirmed this) between animal abuse as children and violent aggression (and even serial murder) as adults.

    I have really mixed feelings about eating meat — and occasionally can’t bring myself to buy any. However, I still do, and I still enjoy eating it. So far. Some of the things I buy are screened (such as eggs — I only buy those that come from free-range (not simply free-run) chickens, because of the horrible living conditions of most egg chickens. And I have taken a liking to organic chicken — but can’t afford it often. Animal abuse is rampant in this part of the world (in the agricultural, food production quarters).

    As for Snowy, I love the pictures of him as a wee pup. Good for you for taking on a rescue. There’s a dog rescue group in California that has been posting rescue videos, and through them raising more money to rescue more dogs, and I love watching these rescues. The “before” and “after” pictures of the dogs are phenomenal. (The organization is Hope for Paws, if you want to take a look)

    My beastie cat is also a rescue. My young niece and her friends were walking down a busy street one day when they saw a man carrying a big green garbage bag — that was moving. He told them he had a bunch of kittens that he was going to throw in front of a bus. The girls asked for the bag (and he gave it to them) and each one took home one of the kittens (I think there were 4 or 5 of them). I got my niece’s because her mom didn’t want another cat in the house. Because the kittens weren’t quite old enough to leave their mom, my beastie has had some socialization problems (and bullied my old man cat mercilessly — perhaps not intentionally). However, I am still fond of her. She became a much nicer cat once my (wonderful) old man was no longer around.

    I am very grateful that there are animal rescue organizations, and people who adopt said rescued animals.

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    • I’ve not read factual studies, but I’ve certainly read about it in gory fiction, and presumably the authors had done a tiny bit of research. And Mak’s reference to Erasmus above would bear that out, ie that it’s easier to move on from killing one species to our own.

      We actually stopped eating meat for health reasons. There was a lot on the radio in the eighties about how too much red meat was bad for you. So we cut it out of our diet, but stuck to (free range) chickens and fish. Then the motivation became blurred as I read more and more about the cruelty and horrible conditions involved so the chicken went too. And finally the fish. By this time we’d become pretty proficient at knocking up decent vegetarian meals so it was easy. I’ve made unintentional stupid lapses like ordering ravioli out totally forgetting it had meat in! Picking the meat out of ravioli is no fun 😀

      It’s always nice to hear the happy tails ;) but for me it’s counterbalanced by all the dogs and cats still awaiting homes and continuing to be abandoned, and worse, abused. There are some horrific and totally sick stories around.

      My neighbour volunteers at a cat rescue place here in Gib. For some reason she ended up with two small dogs and luckily managed to find them a home/homes as I think she got a bit of a shock realising you can’t just put a litter tray in the bathroom for them! She’s taken a couple of kittens/young cats now from the shelter.

      Snowy’s got socialisation problems too. Fine with Pippa, but in the street he was always frightened of other dogs. Now he’s older, he tries to frighten them … I’m sure he thinks he’s a person 😉 he never lies with Pippa, although he used to originally, he wants to be next to one of us.

      I think the people, like my neighbour and another one upstairs, who do the work at the shelters are wonderful. I couldn’t do that, but when we can we give a rescue dog a home. There are so many unwanted ones out there.

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    • People have very different attitudes towards animals. If one is culturally brought up to treat them as worthless objects with no regard to them being sentient, then that view is just going to continue unless something happens to break it. We’ve seen attitudes change in our village to a slight extent. We were the only ones to actually walk our dogs on a lead originally. Now, loose dogs ie just being chucked out on the street to exercise themselves, are the exception rather than the rule. We’re not the only ones to pick up after our dogs. Our neighbours have a bitch and a dog, and he’s recently been neutered.

      But, there will always be people won’t take that responsibility, hence the bitches end up pregnant, the pups get thrown out and it’s left to others to exercise some compassion, if they can.

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      • I’ve known of people who will allow their cat to get pregnant again and again and again. They don’t keep the kittens, but simply try to give them away. Some are given away, some become wild and I don’t know what happens to others. Some end up dead on the side of the road, of course. Like you said, it comes down to responsibility, and some people have no interest in exercising any at all.

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        • Our next door neighbours out the back seemed to have a great run of ginger kittens. They seem to have stopped. Found a truly feral cat in our trastero once with her one kitten (hence feral, couldn’t support more than one) and she had made such a comfy nest. But when I next visited, she and kitty were gone. Shame. I wouldn’t have disturbed them had I known. She had no need to fear and leave.

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  4. If I remember rightly Rousseau was not too hot on bringing up his own children…….
    I lost my pics of Tot when she arrived here….so small I could put her in the palm of my hand…stumping along from goodness knows where.
    She now resembles a well blubbered seal.

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    • I remember Rousseau’s personal life was not exactly that of a fine upstanding male role model too. I found it strange that he could so eloquently philosophise while having personal morals so at odds to his lofty idealism.

      That really is tiny Helen. I guess Snowy was pretty similar when Rocio found him, cos I seem to remember holding him in both hands when she brought him. I can’t see him ever getting to seal size. You don’t usually see fat hounds, and he’s not remotely greedy. He refuses to eat at set meal times, which I can empathise with, so we just leave (dry) food down for him to eat when he’s hungry. He does have a demanding habit of barking for treats though. I can ignore him at the finca but not in the flat. So I have to give him some in the morning before he gets that cantankerous look on his face. I’m sure it’s like children, you give them more leeway the more you have.

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          • The poodle is picky…and Tot gathers up all she leaves….Arthur, who was abandoned, isn’t greedy either – but he and Tot go hunting together. They are going to miss the Costa Rica King Charles Corgi as he used to flush out their prey for them.

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          • I’m sure Pippa and Snowy would love the chance to go hunting together and would no doubt be happy to stand in over at your place. We’ve seen Pippa kill, which is so at odds with his gentle temperament, but not Smowy, although I’m sure he’d be right in there. I think one of our neighbours used to have a couple of Podencos for hunting, and another couple go out at weekends with two or three dogs. I should imagine a King Charles corgi would be quite adept.

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  5. :D :D :D For the first time ever, I went to my reader and the FIRST POST actually sucked me in! Yes, I’m on about this one! :D :D :D Grabby grabby grabgrabs!!! I can hardly contain myself, Good thing I wasn’t there! He was no bigger than a coke can! OMG!

    Question… how can you put this with a post about chicken? Now, for the HEARTLESS CRUEL BASTARD(s) that put him in the bin… any word? God that pisses me off! Poetic justice would be someone finding their body in a bin. (Ok… deep breath…)

    I keep scrolling back up for another look… I’ll never get done with this! :D

    I forgot what I was going to say nex… ah that’s it. Chirpy, Chirpy cheep cheep… you know where I have that. :) Going around on the train at Thornwick Bay. :D

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    • That was only fluke about timing. Reader is funny. It never uses the featured image if you have other photos/gallery/vid. All puppies are unbearably cute to me but of all the dogs we’ve had, these are the only really puppy ones I have although obv I’ve got some from when we first had him which I’ll now have to go and look at over on Pippa’s. Sssh, don’t say it, I know, where are his blog posts? I need to use the laptop and the keyboard’s playing up :(

      The chickens were a) so I could use the song title and the first line and b) because I’d read about yet another boring UK food scare story and c) because I could make a general link about how humans treat animals. There’s always a logic to my posts even if it’s not apparent to anyone else.

      Did they have music on the land train?

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          • I keep a master list of blogs I like saved so I can find people once I realize they are MIA. WP has been fiddling with code for several days now making it very quirky. Noticed the usual signs while working on a post yesterday, and this morning,there was no “publish” button there…and all my previous posts were apparently published on Feb 20, 2014 according to the list. Never ending source of fun and amusement

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      • I know exactly what you mean about reader… I have created my own favs cat on there so I do get to see more of the ones I… Favour. :D

        Anyway, lol you don’t have to explain about the chickens, I was just messing about. I always know where you’re coming from. :D (Well… almost always… err, sometimes? Nevermind!)

        Where’s Pippa’s blog posts? (Couldn’t resist!) Excuses! :P

        Logic? Oh, that’s what you call it! :D

        Now you mention it. I can’t remember if we were singing along to the wireless or not.

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    • Ha! Apart from when he goes grrr if you want to sit on the sofa and need to move him.

      I’m not defending it for a millisecond, maybe they hope someone will pick it up? No-one they knew would take it? The rescue homes were full? they usually are in Spain. Or maybe they just are cruel, callous, unfeeling bastards. Who knows?

      Cwtch :)

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    • Indeed. I don’t know why the old woman with twenty cats stereotype is so mocked. One gets far more sense out of animals. Dogs want somewhere to sleep, some food and water (although keep the beer out of Snowy’s way), and to go out a few times a day. If only I had more ground and enough money …

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  6. Love Snowy! When we rescued Lulu she could fit in a shoe. But she was very sick and spent 2 weeks on a drip at yhe vet. If you look at her today you will call me a liar. We seldom eat meat and even less chicken.
    People are really mean and cruel beings, i prefer animals.
    XXX for Snowy.

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    • Hello melouisef

      Where’ve you been hiding? We were lucky with both Spanish dogs. Pippa had some war wounds from his street dog days, but I bathed his ear and the bloodied fur around his neck came out, and when we took Snows in to see Pedro, he said he was fine. :) he loves Pippa because the big dog is so gentle, but I think he prefers little dogs. He seemed captivated with Snowy, plus he’s rare because he’s albino and pure bred, and when I took him for his chip and rabies jab, he didn’t flinch.

      If I hadn’t stopped eating meat and chicken years ago, I’m sure I’d have stopped by now with all these crazy food stories that regularly appear.

      You sound like Sonel! (and me) I keep my people contacts to the polite minimum. But lengthy conversations about nothing? I’d rather talk to the dogs.

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  7. We once lived at the end of a road and the number of people who would abandon their dogs there was just mind boggling. What makes people so evil?

    Anyway, glad Snowy landed in a soft spot. And, of course, the lovely Pippa.

    While I’m not against meat eating (although I am against the animal torture that is meat production for human consumption), I’ve given it up. I don’t care for the taste of meat but I also don’t like the thought of eating a once living being. Haven’t made it to vegan though — need to kick my cheese habit for that.

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    • Gosh that must have been depressing. Because we’re on the edge of the village we’d often see packs of stray dogs running around. Or lone ones like Pippa. Less now interestingly. Unless they are being rounded up for the pound, which is time limited I think. Doesn’t bear thinking about.

      When I ate meat I enjoyed it. But now I don’t eat it, and I certainly don’t miss it. When I’ve eaten it by mistake – stupid ordering out on my part, or at a Greek lunch party once – I can’t say I enjoyed it. I agree with you about the inhumane conditions that is usually livestock rearing, plus the inefficient slaughtering that goes in, and, to myself, I can’t justify that something should die because I think it tastes nice when I can eat well without causing that death. Each to our own.

      I’m no longer fond of cheese. It’s bought, along with butter, by him because he likes them both. I can live with making him a mozzarella salad and I’ll have a different one. You’re probably both alike on that score.

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        • What I find is that it tastes too rich and sort of claggy. Like a lot of things, it’s probably easier to just cut down. He bought a pack of feta a while back. Not sure why as he likes mozzarella at the moment. It probably also depends on how you use it and when. I bought some goats cheese for Snowy as a pup, so I had some of that, but otherwise I don’t buy it for me. Well, I don’t buy anything right now as I’m still avoiding shopping duties. But not buying it is a good way to start. However, if you need to buy it for other people …

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  8. I am an atheist but I do like some of the pearls of wisdom one finds in the Good Book. Judge not lest ye be judged is always useful, as St Matthew so often is when making a point. Then I look to GK Chesterton and remind myself that Christianity has been found hard and not tried. Which is just as well really as I am not charitably inclined to those who buy dogs instead of rescuing them, and vegetarians who tell me not to eat meat. For the latter I would love to try vegetarianism one more time and the two of us be locked in a room without gas masks. You will ply me with meat to restore digestive equilibrium in the event. I hope that the meat eggs milk and carrots will all have been raised cruelty free.
    Are the meat eaters of Gibraltar doing anything interesting by the way?

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    • My favourite religious quote is about accepting what I can’t change, having strength to change what I can – and the important part – the wisdom to know the difference.

      I think most vegetarians don’t go out of their way to proselytise. So, should we unfortunately be locked in a room together, I would suggest a few beers rather than a meal 🍻

      No idea what’s happening in the outside world. I must catch up.

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    • But would you know you were eating it? Pretty much like people discovered horse meat had been used in mince in the UK. Or, that when I was a kid, local poachers were selling skinned cats as skinned rabbits …

      Coke is only to be resorted to in times of extreme desperation, ie when one is driving and there is no other non-alcoholic drink available, and even so it needs to be very cold to take away the taste. Or were you referring the ethics of the company rather than the product?

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      • Well, we don’t eat out much, and if we do, we seldom order meat.

        I suppose it could have happened, but it’s highly unlikely. Regardless, let me rephrase it . . . I won’t knowingly eat dog meat. I won’t freak out if I later find out I did (again; highly unlikely).

        As for Coke, the only pop (or soda, depending on your naming preference) I drink is Canada Dry Ginger Ale; 3, maybe 4 cans a year.

        . . . nothing against the ethics of the company; like all companies (and governments), I assume they have no ethics.

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        • When we first cut down on meat, and later chicken and fish, eating out was one of the few occasions when we did eat non-veg. It seemed silly to pay high prices for a few veg. Anyway, we don’t eat out now, so that’s easy.

          Pop. I used to drink dry ginger occasionally. Haven’t had it for years. I did have a ginger beer the other week.

          That’s a fair observation, but some companies are more unethical than others. It’s the sort of ‘least worst’ choice rather than a ‘best’ choice.

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  9. So many messages about food… what to eat, what not to eat, how to prepare it, and how not to… you’d think that with all the information about food we’d be better at it but no, people are too fat, malnourished, have eating disorders, are getting sick from it or not doing it well in many ways.
    So far this year Australia has had the Hepatitis A berry debacle, imported berries from China frozen in Nanna’s packaging making people ill. Surely if it’s called Nanna’s it’s trustworthy… And just this week dodgy tinned tuna served at Soul Origin cafes… trustworthy name too and not their fault, it was suspected scromboid contamination in tins of John Bull tuna sourced from Thailand… now that’s more like it!
    For me, it’s about awareness, asking questions and caring about what I eat & its provenance. It shouldn’t have to be as difficult as what it is to make good food choices. Food and how it gets onto our plates shouldn’t be only about convenience and profit… nor far too many other things that are. Snowy, your happy ending is a case in point.

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    • Indeed. This is problem. There is so much information, why are people getting it wrong and dying from eating dodgy chicken? It beats me. Why are the same messages being churned out over and over, the same bandwagon comments appearing, and nothing changes as yet another food scare hits the headlines. Your Australian examples just bear that out. And of course, if all sourced locally and stopped wanting imported and/or cheap products life might be different. Or maybe not. When we were in an organic box scheme I liked the way I had to think of ways of using whatever was in season rather than nipping to the SM for some exotic goodie. But it’s all about adapting too, eg this isn’t in season, or not in the fridge so I’ll leave it out of a recipe or use something else. There again, if people aren’t cooking their own meals I suppose it’s not relevant.

      You might be aware and ask questions but others have no interest and never will. And they’re the ones who keep the global food businesses in riches.

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  10. Raw chicken is just iffy and scary to me. Lack of concern by establishments concerning food prep means we out less and less – and avoid the big fast food places with cheap food. Necessary precaution with partner’s weakened immune system.
    Wish there could be some way to shut down factory farms – but the profits. Big farm/food processors making decisions and running politics. Would be better if all school had to visit factory chicken farms and feed lots. And read Sinclair’s Jungle – which convinced many in the 70’s to eat their veggies (we just pretend those don’t scream, too.)
    It would help everything a whole lot if people just ate less. Only eat the amount you need and what your body needs to stay healthy (which varies with individuals). Disturbing how much food is trashed – and how much perishable food those giant stores toss. If there was ever a sin, that’s bound to be one. So many hungry and food being tossed.
    Timely quotes. Never said enough
    Molly was right – should have gone to run in the fields yesterday during the hour of warmer sun. Bitter cold and grey again…not that it bothers her, just staff is less inclined. Snowy sounds like The German who is always distraught and confused when put with dogs instead of humans. Molly has tried to tell her to enjoy the beneficial behaviors of both populations, but no. German is firm that she’s a person. Paw waves and dog treats for all

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    • If I hadn’t stopped eating chicken (and meat) years ago, I’m sure I would now with all the hygiene scares. And that bizarre story about seeing chickens to China and back for processing or whatever. Bizarre. As you say money drives illogical behaviour. Illogical to rational people that is. The logic of ‘others’ is the bottom line. People are their own worst enemies though. Everyone wants cheap, so that’s what companies provide. And what happens? No local jobs, as things are outsourced halfway around the world so then there is the societal cost of unemployment and all the add-on miseries that includes.

      Snacking. People are always snacking eating junk. Why? In Spain when the supermarkets throw out produce the local homeless and gypsies usually raid it. At least it gets used. What profits are needed to build in that waste? Of course small shops can’t afford to do that. Small food shops take home what’s left and eat it for supper. Or they used to. It works both ways. There were more than a few occasions when customers would come late and we’d packed everything away, so they ended up getting our food that we’d put aside for us to take home …

      Snowy thanks Molly, but agrees with the German that he is most definitely a person. He eats toast and sleeps on the bed and sofa, so that makes him a person, surely? Pippa is an honorary person in our pack but all other four-legged creatures are regarded with deep suspicion. Snoozes and shared treats, Snowy sends some vanilla bones (Pippa has decided he’s not keen on them).

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      • Did you know there’s a small community of nuns in the CO. Rocky Mts that raise a small herd of organic cattle/garden. There’s a huge waiting list to get on their buyers’ list. The nuns were surprised- and quite amused. They say simple farming keeps you grounded.
        (More fog drizzle and cool – cold coming back shortly…None of it is a reason not to go out and play according to Molly…I have no dry shoes. Molly is tossing Snowy some local palm “nuts” that fall off the trees here – they make wonderful clacky noises in the teeth and she plays catch with herself with them…and chase as we try to grab them before she sneaks them into the house…when the brown oval “nuts”are well mouthed she spits them out and them we blame the cat for leaving her stuff in the wrong place…the dogs hides and laughs about that, we are sure. A few sunny days sure would be welcomed…a few. No endless summer yet, please)

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        • Nothing wrong with growing food. Seems to be a lost thing.

          Snowy says thanks for those. Sounds like chasing biscuits around the flat. Such fun. So warm here. Well, looks like it is. You can share our sunny days Molly, happy sunshine spring weather. Hmm, no ticks or mosquitoes required though.

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          • Mountain goats? Even Pippa was one in his youth. Would bound from rock to rock up the peñon near the finca. Rather more sedate now. But little one? Oh yes. You name it, he’ll jump on it. Admirably graceful though. Can’t help but be impressed. Mountain goats are all asnooze now though zzzzzs Molly zzzzz

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          • Molly’s in from run, had a rinse off, and crashed on the couch. During the recent cold snap with strong winds, she was delighted and was springing straight up like a lamb bouncing with straight legs. Really funny – except it was so cold.
            I can imagine Snowy pouncing like a ballerina – so hard to believe he had such a hard beginning. Certainly landed safely now. No doubt Pippa does get some amusement watching him. All together now time to zzzzzzzzzz.

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  11. We got our Max at eight weeks old, but Berkley, our Westie who passed away in October, came to us at age 9. We always wondered what sort of a puppy he was and what happened to him in his life to cause some of his eccentric behaviors. Such a lovable and devoted old boy he was. I joke occasionally about my imaginary dungeon into which people would be tossed for minor transgressions. But dungeons are too good for animal abusers. There should be a special place in hell for the lot of them.

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    • I remember reading about Berkley. I so felt for you, it never gets any easier. And, when we take on older dogs, it’s often harder (for us) because they are with us for less time.

      And yet, older dogs need homes just as much as cute puppies. When we homed Snowy, we said to our vet, we’ll take any dog that you know of who needs a home. Regardless of age, gender, breed, blah blah.

      A favourite breed is nice, we all have them. But, by homing snowy, we learned about a different breed, and unexpectedly, we enjoyed the fun and cleaning up of a puppy.

      We like to think we support animal rights. It was something of a test to say, we’ll take what turns up.

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      • We would take on an older dog in a heartbeat. We’re not actively looking for another dog right now; it’s kind of nice just having one with our travel schedule. But living where we do, it’s only a matter of time before the next abandoned dog comes wandering onto our land, exhausted, thirsty, covered in ticks. And BH is now doing that Pilots N Paws effort which is immensely gratifying.

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        • We thought by getting a younger dog, they would learn from Pippa’s gentle ways (apart from chasing cats) and quiet temperament. How wrong could we be! I think nature has beaten nurture in this case. I was surprised when we took Pippa in that he wasn’t covered in fleas and ticks. Probably the time of year, cooler and not wet in January. Of course, it’s harder to see them on a long-haired dog too. It’s a never-ending task trying to home rescues. I think anyone who volunteers in any way to help is a good person.

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  12. My brother and I found our first cat in a bin. I was 4. We kept her. My Mum got our second cat from a friend whose cat had just had kittens and since i left home we’ve been owned by two more cats who were both rescue cats.

    When it comes to eating meat, I, personally, will not eat anything if I don’t think i could kill it and dress it myself. Interestingly, though, id we end up in some dystopian society where we all have to fend for ourselves I suspect we would eat far less meat because a constant supply of eggs, cheese and milk is far more valuable than a single delicious stew. :-) interestingly, in animal husbandry, while a good male is prized, generally a female is worth far more to people than an male. I wonder if that’s where our long history of sexual inequality comes from… Some kind of over compensation. Phnark.

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  13. Love the photos of Puppy Snowy. It took me a minute to understand why the Coke can was in the photo, but then I realized it was useful for a point of reference in judging how little Snowy was.
    As far as eating meat, I have real issues with it. Unfortunately I am surrounded by extreme carnivores in my family (two massively tall teenaged boys, trying to ‘get the gains’ – their words, not mine), and as I am the primary food preparer in our house, I am stuck. We buy all our meat at Whole Foods, organic, antibiotic free – and all that other stuff. When I prepare it I find myself apologizing to the chicken before I put it in the oven or pot. When we prepare fish, I hope the fish in the aquarium don’t figure out what I am doing. I know it sounds kind of demented, but there it is.
    Thanks for the post.

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    • Thanks. I assume that’s why it was there, I don’t know, I never asked. Or maybe someone forgot to move it?
      Rather you than me. I’d def struggle preparing anything that was once alive and killed for the purpose of ending up on my table. I think it’s quite sweet of you to apologise and worry about the fish. I’m surprised you don’t drop a cover over the aquarium! We try and buy organic, but the dilemma there is that the non-organic food is fresher nor does it come plastic wrapped. Life is never as simple as it should be. The trouble is, we live in an agricultural area (used to be under the sea so it’s very fertile) and see the workers spraying the crops regularly, so I peel everything. Not even sure that’s good enough. Just wish I could grow more of my own.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Great blog…The birds and the water come together to form a small meditation of their own which makes me even more certain that the chain of cause and effect has placed me on this perch and it is my task to make the best of it. Keep writing.

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  15. Awwww, I love the little Snowy shots. He was and still is such a cutie and so adorable. I still can’t get over the fact that he was ‘thrown’ away like that. I don’t call people like that humans and hate them with a passion! I am still glad he found you. In my next life I want to come back as a dog and live with you in Gib. :D

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      • Even grown up, I still go Awww when I see Snowy. He is just the sweetest! :D

        LOL! No way! I will sleep on the floor then. hahahahah

        How’s that ankle of yours and how are you doing? ♥

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        • He’s cute when he’s curled up asleep like he is now next to me. He can be a demanding monster when he gets an idea in his head. I want TREATS and I will BARK if I don’t get them. I want to go out NOW. Then we get digging for Australia on the sofa and a few quick circuits of the sitting room with flying leaps on and off the sofa and/or the person sitting on it.

          Thanks for asking Sonel. Better than it was but still rickety.

          Liked by 1 person

          • hahahaha! He is adorable and when Simba was younger, he was like that. Now he’s getting blind and I watch him all the time, especially when he goes outside.

            Oh, I would love to see a video of that for sure. It can only be fun watching. :D

            You’re very welcome hon and I am glad to hear that. Hang in there. ♥ Hugs ♥

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          • The best is when he actually lies between our legs and puts his head on a thigh. So nice and warm and comfy. Poor old Simba, but he’ll be ok with you looking after him.

            I really need to vid it. Trouble is he’s so fast, I’ve missed half of it by the time I’ve clicked on the iPhone!

            Thanks Sonel ❤️

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          • And the best feeling ever. Simba loves to do that as well, but then both of us start getting hot and then he wants to lie on the cool tiles again. In winter he loves to snuggle and lie in front of the warm fireplace. :D

            I do hope you get a chance. It would really be fun watching it. He is so adorable. :D

            Yes, my darling little man will be 17 this year. I don’t move the furniture around anymore and I’ve made a path for him to go outside so he can feel/half-see where he is walking. It breaks my heart to see him like that, but I know about lots of other blind dogs that are coping very well. As long as Simba have a healthy appetite and everything is working the way it should, I am happy. :D ♥

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          • Snowy is fine in winter but in summer, and even now, he is fidgety moving in and out from under blankets/covers.

            Seventeen is a good age though. Our dogs have lived into teens but not 17. We’ve had Pippa 11 years, and he was anywhere between 2–4 when we got him, so tough wood, he’s doing ok. I have NSAIDS for his arthritis but he’s not needed any since summer which is pretty rare, he’s usually had a flare up every few months. So I’m sitting on a stash of flipping tablets!

            Liked by 1 person

          • That sounds very familiar. Simba sleeps in front of his little cooler in the summer.

            For a medium little man, I think it is. He also still has all his teeth and not a single one bad or missing.

            That is very good to hear. I usually give Simba No. 8 tissue salts for his aches and pains and I am glad Pippa doesn’t need the tabs now. Let’s keep it like that. :D ♥

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          • A little cooler? !! Pippa flops on the tiles, and even Snowy has been seen to lie on them. Big difference in fur though. Or lack of, in Snowy’s case.

            Simba has been well looked after :)

            I tried chondroitin and my vet said it could work on younger dogs but unlikely to have much effect on Pippa. Not heard of No 8. Will look it up. Although as I’ve got plenty of supplies in they might as well get used first. Snowy once found Pippa’s cimicoxib, which are chewable and tasty, so raided the pack …

            Liked by 1 person

          • Yes, it’s one of those ‘kalahari tv’s’ as Carl calls it and uses water. He loves it. :D

            Now that’s what I call a good combo. LOL!

            He is one of my kids, so I sure did my best. :D

            I’ve never been crazy about nsaids and the only thing Simba ever used was his ear drops. He used to get a lot of inflammation in his ears but it got better. No. 8 is one of the 12 tissue salts from Natura. It’s Mag Phos but you can read more about it here:

            http://www.alive.com/articles/view/18931/the_twelve_tissue_salts

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          • Hmm, can’t be any hotter there than Spain. Simba is spoiled. I will make sure Pippa doesn’t read this. I don’t like drugs at all. So I dont like dosing my dogs, but NSAIDS have worked for Pippa, as did doxycyclin for tick disease :(

            I’d already looked up the tissue salts cos you’d mentioned it but thanks for that. I’ll check that out too. Right now, I’m happy nothing is needed except, food, water and walks. He was stopped today by some Americans wanting to take his photo :D

            Liked by 1 person

          • hahaha! I think everyone thinks their place is hotter and we have the right to spoil our babies, don’t we? I can see Pippa and Snowy are spoiled as well, but luckily they aren’t brats. LOL!

            I don’t either but if it works and if it doesn’t have nasty side-effects and they need it, we can’t do anything else Kate. The MobiFlex I give Simba works well too. Tick disease is terrible and we had a boerboel/mastiff who got it every year as the parasite stayed in his blood. I can see you feel the same way as I do about meds. Sometimes we need to use it but it doesn’t mean we have to like it. :D

            I am happy for all of you as well. It’s the same here, except for the walks. He can’t walk that far anymore. :(

            Awwww, I don’t blame them. If I was there I would have done the same. :D ♥

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  16. Having done the obligatory, ‘Aww, CUTE!’, why should he have been favoured above an abandoned skunk? Why do humans believe that they are more important in the great scheme of things than a cockroach? Who is to say that vegetables are not equally imposed upon – how does one really know they are not ‘sentient’?
    Like it or not, the whole development of all organisms is based on eat and be eaten.

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