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Monday, December 30, 2013

Humping dogs and lizards

Fun overnight situation !  A little munchkin of a dog who is a total sweetie (plus likes to hump legs), plus a gerbil and a bearded dragon!  I love the involvement of rodents and reptiles - definitely don't get enough of them.  The pup loves to cuddle and actually let me sleep till 7:30 this morning! (Yay!)  Although I do love their company, I miss my house!  This holiday season has been so busy I have barely been home :/






Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Flood!!

What seems like a simple cat job......is a crazy flooding nightmare!
There are 2 awesome cats that I am watching



Sweet cat kids, food/meds/litter - easy enough.  I was told to watch for flooding in the basement.  It rained, it threw towels down, ta da.  But then, Terry and I heard dripping water.  It was the sound of water dripping into water.  We followed it and found the culprit. The washing machine was dripping water into the basin even though the valves were shut off.  It was almost overflowing.  Awesome.  There is no drain or utility sink, so I had to bring buckets of water up to the kitchen to lower the water level enough to put the washer on the spin cycle so that it would drain.  The next visit it filled up again.  I kept going back to check, it kept filling up.  The client is unreachable by phone, but I sent an email and left a voicemail. Rather than flooding her house, I had a plumber come over on Monday to take a look at it.  He fixed it for now (hero!) but the whole situation was a pain.  I am not only pet sitting, I am house sitting.  If it were me, I would want it fixed, so that was what I did.  It pays to have many contacts in your arsenal :)

Pepper

I am in love with a cat.  It is a new client - and this cat is such a love bug I can't handle it.  She is so pliable and sweet and purry.... plus she is a Rex, which makes her even more amazing!  Got lots of love today, which I needed :)






Christmas

Christmas Eve day!!!  Whoa!  Who knew what a crazy day it would be??
Terry and I started rounds at 7:30 am - our Round 1 was 19 visits.  Things were going pretty smooth... until we got to an apartment and I couldn't find the key on my gigantic key ring!  I had the key yesterday, and it just disappeared.  The only one out of 30+ keys!  Luckily the client lives over a corner store and they are his landlords, so I run in there to see if they have a spare.  They don't, but they said they would get in touch with the landlord.  I gave them my card and told them to call me.  We re-traced out steps and then went back to my house to double check that it wasn't here.  While at home sitting amongst a pile of keys (feverishly looking for this one specific set), my phone rings with a new client asking me to start tomorrow to watch a cat.  He told he that I am already watching a cat in his building.  (Convenient!) I ask what his address and he says 423, but in my crazed brain I hear 403 which is the building that I need to get into.  What a coincidence!  So I ask him if he can get a hold of the landlord, he does and calls me back.  Says the landlord will call me.  I told him that I would meet him once I got this key fiasco over with.

Phone rings again - another new client.  The girlfriend is in California and the boyfriend was leaving in 2 hours to go to Virginia.  Their dog sitter was M.I.A.  I said that I would go to meet him after the key fiasco, and then the other new client meeting.  I hang up with him, and the corner store calls!  They tell me that they have keys for me. YAY!  We rush over there, and they cut keys in the back of the store for me! Who knew?? $4, worth every penny.  We go upstairs to feed the cats while breathing many sighs of relief and feed those kids.

This was the enthused look I got after running upstairs!


So at this point, I am still thinking that the new client is in this same building.  I call him and he says he will come to the door.  I don't see or hear him.  It then dawns on me that I am over tired and stressed and he is in a completely different building.  F*&^(&!!!    So we head on over there, meet him and his cat, etc.  All goes well.  We then rush to meet the new dogs so that this guy can make his train to Virginia.  Sweet, amazing dogs - love them!  I have last minute clients, but never 2 last minute clients on the same day that they are leaving on a major holiday, plus a key loss!  In the 12 years that I have been pet sitting, this is the 3rd time I have lost a key.  Still have no idea how or where the others went.  I'd say that is pretty decent.

After 19 visits, I came home to lay down, entered a deep sleep for 2 hours and then had to wake up to begin round 2.  Oh holidays.... I want to rip my hair out :)




Monday, December 16, 2013

The downside of owning your own business.  Utility Companies.  PECO has been trying to come to my house to change out my meter for months.  Well, I don't have 5 hours to spare EVER, so I have been avoiding them.  They call, they leave stuff on my door, they send letters, and I literally couldn't be here to wait for them.  Well, then they decided to royally screw me and send me a letter stating that they will shut off my service on December 20th if I don't have them come in to change the meter.  AWESOME!  Way to treat your customers who pay their bills on time every month for the past decade.  So, I had to give in and set up an appointment.  They said that they would be here today between 7am and 12pm.  I am having to get Terry to cover morning walks, and possibly lunch walks...  I cannot sit here and do nothing!!  I'm losing money, I'm restless, and I need to get out of this house to do my job!  With my schedule, 5 hours at any time just doesn't work.  So I wait.... and wait.....
Hopefully the litterbox smell in the basement will get the Peco guy to hurry up and leave when he gets here.


Sunday, December 15, 2013

It's already been a snowy and icy winter, and it's only mid December!  These dogs are not having it, especially with the sleet.
Fluffy, fast falling snow:  Good
Thick cold sleet/slush : Bad

These dogs want to just stay in their sweaters and curl up on the couch.  Except for Bailey.
Here is some of this years winter wear



Saturday, December 14, 2013

Why don't people listen??  I am a considerate person who likes to put out a warning, yet people are idiots!  I will explain.  On Friday I went to walk Cali, a very quirky big dog.  She and I are best buddies, I get kisses galore.  She does not like everyone, or every situation.
Actually, her list of dislikes include:
Skateboards
Walkers/Canes
Homeless people
Some black people
Men with long hair (especially those who smell of cigarettes)
Other Dogs
Shady People on the street

When I arrived at her house, there was a man fixing the lock on the courtyard gate.  I told him that I would be bringing a dog through and would probably need him  to move.  He just nodded and ignored me.  I went in to get the pup and we head through the courtyard to the gate.  I get about 10-15 ft away and yelled to him that I have her and asked if he would  mind walking out of the gate until we pass.  The conversation went something like this:

Me:  Hello!  I have the dog, would you mind walking out of the gate so that we can pass?  She isn't so great with strangers?

Fix It Guy:  Oh she's fine!

Me: No, really, she isn't good with new people.  I don't trust her.

Fix it Guy: She's fine!  I'm part dog!  Don't worry, look!  She is wagging her tail!

Me:  Yes, I see that, but really... I don't fully trust her.  She doesn't know you and can be weird with men.

Fix It Guy:  Just come through, it'll be fine!  (as he gets on the inside of the gate and rolls himself back into a bush, basically he looks as if he is in a jail cell )

So I say, ok, and start to walk towards him.  Cali proceeds to bark, growl, and lunge at him.  He gets all up in arms saying, "Whoa!  You weren't kidding! You got her?!"

Of course I have her!!!  I told you to move!!! I told you that I didn't trust her!!  Then he starts asking if she is like this is with me.  Of course not!  That's why I am one of her walkers!  UGh!  The stupidity!  Moral of the story is, if someone tells you to move out of the way of their dog - DO IT!

Innocent face :)  Love this girl

Loving her kong


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

I've been hanging out with these Birds on and off.... trying to get them to accept me as a buddy so that their mom can feel comfortable with me caring for them.  With birds that are so bonded to their owner, it's tough!  Breakthrough this past Monday!  I got a voluntary shoulder perch! (Huge deal!)



Sunday, December 1, 2013

Philly Marathon: Great concept, Horrible travel.

Everywhere I had to go, there were runners.  I get super choked up and emotional watching a marathon (don't know why) so I try not to stand around being a spectator.  I had to cross South St. to medicate a dog and there were literally thousands of runners, PLUS I had a backpack.  I wasn't planning on crossing paths with this event, and I didn't want to be the jackass with a backpack running through the runners with cops everywhere, so I waited.  And I waited... and then I got impatient and told a cop that I had a backpack, I needed to cross and I was going to find a hole to get through.  He seemed to not give a crap, so I found my opening (much like double dutch) and ran through the runners while simultaneously apologizing for doing so.
Stress!!



I can't believe I have been so busy since that my last blog was in August!  Apologies to those who actually follow me :)  I will try to keep up and be more attentive.

A few weeks ago I got a request for grooming.  Now, I am NOT a groomer.  I will shave my own cats (badly), but nothing for money.  Sure a can give a decent bath... who couldn't?  But I hate to ok myself doing services that I do not excel in.  I told the owner that I could do a bath and a mediocre butt shave at best for her 2 little papillons.  How bad could it be?  They equal approximately 8 lbs of dog between the 2 of them.  I took them over to my house and looked over my products.  Since I had no dog shampoo, I decided on Kiehls Amino Acid shampoo and Burts Bees Mango Conditioner (both excellent products)

We did a quick butt shave and into the tub they went.

They were so good!  They just sat there and took it!  Not a peep from wither one of them.  We bathed, we brushed, they got a good blow dry (it WAS freezing out) and then we walked back.  Total troopers, happy mommy, happy dogs :)  I will not add grooming to my repertoire, but small things like this can definitely work!




Post bath hugs - I was exhausted!

The finished product