While taking some pictures at the house, my parents and I decided to try and get one of us with Sophie. 
For those who haven't read about Sophie before- she's quite the character. She's a senior dog, so basically she does what she feels like doing, when she feels like it....
This is us trying to get her to turn around for the shot.....
And here's Sophie's reaction.
Seriously dog?
Yesterday Bonnie and I whizzed down to the always lovely Liz Bradley for Bonnie's official Hopeful Hearts pictures. Here's a peek at what I was sent this morning :)
Here's what I love. Liz is our 'go to' for pet pictures (and also some family shots. More to come about that later). When Bailey first joined us, we had some shots taken of her. Bailey and Bonnie are almost the same dog, just different colour. Take a look at these two pictures. Maybe they're long lost cousins!
Super jealous of these pictures? Well, guess what? You don't need to be! You too can have some amazing pictures of your pets taken by Liz and elizabeth&jane photography :)
Happy Tuesday y'all!

Why- hello there! I'm Kimmy and as Chelsea's best friend I've been asked to write a guest blog post about Abbey. I am taking care of my brother’s gorgeous puppy Abbey for three weeks! This little cutie-pa-tootie is a 5 month old golden retriever, with beautifully dark red coat. She has giant paws (which means someone won't be staying so small), and big floppy ears that just make me melt. Quick heads up- my photos were taken with my iPhone, so the quality isn't the greatest But hey- the cute puppy in the picture makes up for it ;)

Abbey has recently learned how to play fetch, and now it’s her absolute FAVORITE game. There’s just one problem… she doesn’t understand that in order for me to throw the ball for her, she first has to drop it. So, the command “drop it” has been my little project for my brother’s return. I’m hoping that “drop it” will also be useful for, say, garbage on the street, or someone’s sock that they’re trying to put on (oh, didn't I mention- she’s obsessed with socks!).

I'm coming Auntie Kimmy!
I got it. I GOT IT!!!
Did you want this?
Another fun 'Abbey trait' is that when we play fetch, she insists on dropping it under the couch where she can't reach it.  I’m starting to think she does this on purpose for attention......

Hey Ball! Whatcha doing under the couch?
After a vigirous training schedule, which included lots of praise and oodles of treats, Abbey has mastered a new trick which we like to call 'Leave It'. She waits patiently for her food until you say “ok, Abbey”. She’ll wait for 10 minutes or more. Not too shabby for a 5 month old puppy.

The minute she says okay, you're mine food!
One of the great things about being a dog aunt is I get to spoil Abbey rotten......so naturally I took this girl to PetSmart and shopped till we dropped. She was pretty pumped about Halloween too, so we opted to go for some holiday themed toys.

It tough work, being this cute. After a long day running like crazy at the dog park, this dog is ready for her nap.
And with that, Abbey and I would like to say (*yawn*) Good Night!

I’ve been doing a lot of reading lately into what it means to be a foster, and all the emotions that go along with. Bonnie has been with us for nine days or so and it’s safe to say she is finally arriving at a point where we can seriously begin to look at forever families. It’s a bitter sweet moment. While I’m beyond thrilled that this girl has reached a point where is a happy and loving animal, it means my time with her is coming to an end.

I would be lying if I said I didn’t consider adopting her. I wanted to keep her the minute we brought her home. She and I bonded quickly- and for me it made the mere thought of sending her away unbearable. What if she thought we were abandoning her? What if she thought our home was hers too, and was the light at the end the tunnel? What if it broke her heart?

The reality is, we’ve given this girl exactly what she needed. A roof over her head, a warm bed to sleep in and to see what it felt like to have humans care for her. Yes, I want to keep her all to myself. But that is selfish, and I refuse to let the one selfless thing I’ve tried to do be tainted with the need to keep Bonnie. We brought her to Canada with the intention of helping her find her forever family, and I’m determined to do this.

Of course, I always add the disclaimer “If we don’t find the right family, then she stays with us”. But let’s be realistic- she’s an amazing dog. Her family is out there waiting. We just have to find them. Or- let them find her.

I have loved fostering, and hope that I will get to do it again someday. It’s been pretty cool- this whole experience. I didn’t realize how much I would have loved watching this dog become the dog she should have been from day one. All she needed was people to love her. Even if just for 9 days. It was all she needed.

Oh, did I mention she’s kid friendly? I know…just another awesome quality to add to her list. Her official bio has been sent into Hopeful Hearts & her official ‘pawtrait’ will be taken sometime in the near future. Basically, Bonnie is on her way to finding her home.

If you know of someone looking to add an AMAZING dog to their family, please mention Bonnie :)

Every once and a while you come across someone who doesn’t understand why you love dogs. Sure, when I see a dog, I see a little personality beaming out, an adventure and maybe the most incredibly story someone could ever experience. Others see dollar signs, an unwanted commitment and a waste of time. Typically I can put up with this, because clearly if that’s your outlook- you’ve never owned a dog.

My friends make fun of me- hardcore- for being as obsessed with dogs as I am. Bailey is my life, and I pay the price among friends. I even get asked how I can live in a zoo. Um…did you see a Zebra? This ain’t no zoo! It’s a house, with residents, and for me that includes pets. It's a home because a family lives in it. And yeah- family means pets too. Although- a Zebra would be pretty cool......

I’ve become accustomed to people judging my love for dogs and my need to be involved in rescues. I’ve been volunteering with Hopeful Hearts since January and have been loving every minute of it. Sure, sometimes it means dedicating my night to driving to someone’s home as a part of the adoption process. But for me- it’s the way I can help dogs get to their forever home. If spending some time in the car means a rescue gets a home for life, well I think some driving is the least I can do.

I had been keeping track of Bonnie on the Humane Society of Cozumel website for a long time. Each time I went back to the site I desperately hoped her face was no longer under the ‘adoptables’. It was obvious that if I wanted to see this girl get adopted, I was going to have to take action. Going into it, I braced for impact from family and friends. I KNEW people would immediately question why I was doing this. Why would I want another dog in the house? I don’t even KNOW this dog- what if she didn’t get along with our pets? With us? I barely knew anything about her. And this was before I told them that I was having her flown in from Cozumel! People just didn’t understand.

My contact with the Humane Society of Cozumel was awesome. I wanted to jump up and down for joy when she said she could get Bonnie on a plane to Toronto. THEN the lovely people with Hopeful Hearts told me Bonnie could go into the HH program. THEN a lovely volunteer with Loyal Rescue in Toronto offered to pick Bonnie up from the airport and take her overnight while I drove to T.O. to pick her up. All of these people, these wonderfully lovely people helping me get a dog from Cozumel; a dog I had never met. This whole sequence of events restored some faith in humanity, and gave me the reassurance that not only am I not crazy (thank goodness!), but there are other people out there who want to help others out of the complete goodness of their being. How amazing is that?

I’m a gut instinct person. If that little voice in my head (the good kind) is telling me to follow my instincts, I listen carefully and put my faith in it. I had no other reason for wanting to get Bonnie here other than I knew that I had to do it. I had this feeling that she was worth all this trouble. Worth a 10+ drive to pick her up. Worth all the criticism I got when I said I wanted to have a dog flown in from Cozumel so I could foster her. And you know what? I am so unbelievably happy I did it. As much as you want support from friends and family, sometimes you need to just support what you believe in.

We’ve been fostering for the last week and I’ve been enjoying every minute with Bonnie. I’d be lying if I said I was looking forward to her leaving, because the reality is this dog is one of a kind. I will miss her TERRIBLY when she goes. But for now I’ll focus on the transformation I’m witnessing on this pooch. I suppose I finally understand why people do this. Why people open up their homes to pets they’ve never met to give them the chance they’ve been desperate for. I’m thankful  for what dog rescues like Hopeful Hearts has taught me, and wish this lesson on anyone. If you’re considering adopting or fostering, know that  it might be one of the best decisions you’ll ever make. Don’t allow yourself to focus solely on puppies or breeders- open your mind to the idea of an older dog that is just as worthy of a home.

It is so worth it.

Bonnie and I have just returned from our first vet trip. We received good news- heard all the things we wanted to hear. She has great teeth, muscle definition and is considered to be at a good weight. She's been spayed and is up to date on all of her shots. All in all, she's healthy, so I'm happy.
Going to the vet I knew that I was going to be given the opportunity to gain some insight into what her life might have been like before us, before the humane society. Within her life time, she's had puppies. I'm torn, because part of me wonders what happened to them, whether any of them survived or made it into a good home. The other half is still beyond happy she's here safe and sound. The bottoms of her feet are the most sensitive area for her. I'm assuming that she spent a good chunk of time on concrete, and because of this has sensitivity in the pads of her feet. We attempted to have her nails cut at the vet with no success. That's okay though- baby steps.
From what I can tell, she's a sweet dog. She was AWESOME on her  leash this morning during our walk. Put Bailey to shame. Naturally, the dog who took part in leash training can't heel properly, yet the unclaimed dog from Mexico is doing it like a pro. 
She is very gentle, in particular when taking a treat from your hand. I've been waiting to see some food aggression  between her and Bailey (even her and the cats) but so far there doesn't seem to be any signs. 
She LOVES to rip around the backyard (which they are doing as I type). She and Bailey seemed to be matched up quite well on energy levels. Bonnie is able to sit, stand up and slightly give a paw. Considering it's only day two of being in Canada, I think that's rather impressive.
She is timid around men, which has made the process of her getting to know Scott a little more difficult. Thankfully, Scott's one of the most patient and understanding people on the face of the earth. Last night, after a few hours of the stealthy sniffing, Bonnie finally fell asleep with her head on Scott's leg. I just love progress!

Just a quick FYI- it's really hard to take a picture of dogs eating. Yes, I get a perfect picture of the floor, their dog bowl, maybe even perhaps a rogue kibble on the ground... But trying to catch a shot of them chomping away is very, very difficult. And kind of blurry.....
Bonnie and Bailey have managed to completely tire each other out, which-not going to lie- I LOVE. 
Bonnie also just learned that she's allowed on the couch. Yes....that's right.....she's allowed on the couch. We live on the edge here at our household :)

This post will be on the shorter side. I'm sitting at my computer, with this adorable little white and orange dog at my feet. We arrived home from Toronto about an hour ago, and have been in love with Bonnie since. Not only are the cats completely okay with our new house guest, but Bailey seems beyond thrilled to have a buddy to chase around the backyard. This little mexi pooch hasn't left my side, and to tell the truth, I'm kind of loving it.
We brought back another pooch named Negrita from Toronto to Ottawa. They were on the same flight from Cozumel, and our contact from Loyal (who is awesome and took Bonnie for the night) asked if we could give Negrita a lift to Ottawa to meet up with her foster. They were so well behaved the entire ride (5 hours!) and barely made a peep. Bonnie, Bailey and Negrita had a few minutes to run like mad around the backyard and engage in a serious tournament of ''bitey face" before Negrita's foster mom picked her up.
Both Bonnie and Negrita will be available for adoption. Please check back for more information regarding temperament, personality and availability!

Up top is Bonnie in her crate when we got into our car. She was riding in the 'trunk' of the jeep, while Negrita (below) was in the back.
After the necessary introductions, Bonnie came into the house and began to explore. I think she's used to having pictures taken, because she was definitely  hamming it up for the camera!
You can't say no to that face!
I love my pets dearly. And I mean, I love them more than life. We’re pretty lucky- Bailey is an incredibly well behaved dog. Zoe is an absolute angel. And Rascal, well he’s a riot. BUT, is seems as though over the past few weeks our Rascal has been doing whatever is needed to live up to his name. Fun right? No. Not at all.

Now that we’re living in a house, I was worried about the cats trying to get outside. We had a little experiment to see what they would do if they were to get outside. Turns out Zoe is so disgusted by the outdoors that she took one sniff, and turned right around and went back inside. Rascal on the other hand seems to like going out onto the porch and rolling around on the concrete. I’m assuming it was the scratchy goodness that caused the worm like movement. Whatever floats your boat I suppose!

Since that initial experiment, Rascal has graduated from staying on the front porch to running around the front yard. To clarify- they are NOT outdoor cats. They are not allowed outside. So, as you can imagine my stress level goes way up when I see that little orange butt sneaking out from underneath my feet and running outside. It’s become a part of our daily morning freak out. Scott and I are rushing out the door, completely unaware of the fuzzy orange face hiding behind the front door waiting for his great escape. Just shoot me now.

In addition to his morning break out, Rascal has picked up a BAD habit that I had foolishly thought was broken months ago. For some reason, he runs around the house SCREAMING at the top of his lungs. It’s like this. MEOW MEOW MEOW MEOW MEOW MEOW. No breaths in between. I don’t know how he gets oxygen. This morning, he had me up at 1:30 AM freaking out. He meows for food, I lie in bed cursing his name trying to ignore his vocal abilities, and after an hour of wanting to pull my hair out get up and feed him.

5:00 AM. Meowing again. Excessive meowing. Now I’m thinking about how I might lock him up in a sound proof room. Except I don’t have a sound proof room. Damnit!

6:00 AM. Now Scott is yelling at Rascal, and I’m pretty sure Rascal is yelling back.

6:30 AM. The meowing is closer to me now. I open my eyes, and Rascal is sitting there staring at me. It’s scary, and I debate waking Scott up.

7:00 AM. The only time where Rascal opts to be quiet, which means I get some sleep. But wait, aren’t I supposed to get up at 7:00 AM?

8:00 AM- Leave house, have to park at work because cat is insane and is trying to kill me. Death by meow. That’s a real thing, right?

This funny little schedule has been going on every morning for the past week. Needless to say, I am at my wit ends. I could always spray him with water, but he loves the sink and to get his fur all soaked so I am doubtful in the success rate for that route. I could give him up. JOKES. Clearly not a choice. I think I’m left with the Thundershift for CATS. That’s right! For cats! I’d like to thank Google for bringing me to the Thundershirts for cats webpage, and the Thundershirt company for being so super duper and offering some slice of sanity during my night time sleeping. Woot woot for sanity!