Up to my chin

Oh me, oh my, Oh how the snow grows tall... (Image: Sandi Martinez)
Oh me, oh my, Oh how the snow grows tall… (Image: Sandi Martinez)

by Sandi Martinez

Oh how the snow grows tall

I wag my tail and it drags

Across the frozen ground

Oh, my coat is covered in snow

And my paws too

How to get warm,

And stay warm?

Please, give me tons of blankets

A sweater and coat

And those cute snow shoes

Just because I’m a dog

Doesn’t mean those I couldn’t use

Oh, and a nice massage

Yes… right there near the shoulder blades

And around my belly

Thank you my dear human

I am all ears as you tell me your troubles

And you rub me behind my ears and remember

To fill my bowl with unfrozen water

And a bit more food too…

Why? Because that’s what humans do

For their animal counter-parts and because I love you too,

Thank you for extra love and kisses because this winter hasn’t even begun

And the snow is up to my chin!

A small rescue with HUGE results

I wonder who actually rescued who on that Saturday. (Image: Sandi Martinez)
I wonder who actually rescued who on that Saturday. (Image: Sandi Martinez)

 

 

By Sandi Martinez

The weekends are days we usually take care of things that get backed up during the week, things we forgot to do during the week, and things that we do just for weekend’s sake! In the midst of going, going, going, and gone… we sometimes run into a bit of a surprise along the way.

So on my way home after running errands on a fated Saturday, September 27, just last month, with the help of my mother, we spotted a tiny dog trying to cross a busy interstate, in a small line-up of villages called, Chile. You Chile lovers out there, I’m talking about Chile, New Mexico… And yes, for your information, there is plenty of Chile that has been harvested, roasted, and prepped to sell in pounds, Ristras, and… Oh, wait, I’m talking about my small rescue!

So, my mother gasps, and says, ‘Poor little dog, it’s going to get run over!’ and I say, “What? Where?” I’m driving, mind you, so my mind is on the road, yet, it’s not – because I just didn’t see the dog. So she points across the median, where the brave little dog has made it safely and barely across successfully – alive. Worse yet, it could have been me that might have taken her life.

I finally see the little dog, zig-zagging around the median trying to figure out what to do next. I make a U-turn at my next opportunity, swing around, get out of my car, and walk carefully over to the sweetest little brown and white-spotted Chihuahua I think I’ve ever seen. I call to the pup (I can see the dog is still very young) and call out softly and reach down to pet comfort the frightened dog. By some miracle, she stays still. I am able to pick her up and carry her over to the car where my mother gently holds the darling pup. Before we drive off, we ascertain the pup is female. I point my car towards home; the dog is coming with me.

She is terrified; shaking and somewhat sluggish either from exhaustion and trauma, hunger, or thirst, or all of the above.

I wait a few days, and take the pup in to the local animal shelter to see if anyone has tried to claim her by putting up a flier. No one has claimed her, she is not chipped, and so therefore, on that fated Saturday, after seven months of pining away in grief for my dog Samson, who I lost back in February of this year, I now have a new companion, who I never expected and have fallen deeply in love with, Azra.

I wonder who actually rescued who on that Saturday.  RMSAAM wants to hear your rescue stories, so please, share them with us!

Thunderstorms Oh My!

By Deandra Walker

We have been having an unusual amount of rain in Colorado this summer. With rain comes thunder and lightning, and the reminder of how much anxiety it can cause our dogs (and ourselves as well). And everyone has his or her favorite thunderstorm story. In many instances, dogs that are fearful of thunderstorms also experience stress with other loud noises like fireworks, gunshots, garbage trucks, and airplanes. The good news, however, is that dogs can benefit from calming therapies in these instances. For example, soft music, flower essences, and acupressure and massage can all be helpful in alleviating your dog’s stress in these situations.

Both acupressure and massage are effective tools in soothing and relaxing muscles and they work well in conjunction with soft music in a quite, peaceful, and safe area of the home. A good place to begin is by gently stroking your pet from head to tail in long, slow, strokes to relax them until they feel comfortable enough to lie down. To massage, create small, circular movements from head to tail along the sides the spine making sure to massage either side of the body equally as well as the base of the skull for energy balance. Acupressure is also a great choice to help calm a distressed and frightened pet. After massaging, apply light pressure to the area in the center of the skull between the ears.

It is essential that you remain cautious when working with animals that are scared as even the sweetest pets can act on impulse in situations that cause them anxiety and stress. Approach your pet gently and slowly and always pay close attention to their body language.

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Tumeric for Pets

By Deandra Walker

If you cook, you probably have heard about turmeric; a staple in Thai, Indian, and Persian dishes. Tumeric is an herb largely known for its deep orange/yellow color. However, you may not realize that turmeric has been such a remarkable natural remedy for people for thousands of years that it is certain pet owners will be compelled to try it for their pets as well. But is turmeric an effective treatment for pets? And most importantly, is it safe?

Curcumin, which has potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, is the most active ingredient in turmeric. Researchers have speculated that the anti-inflammatory effects of curcumin show promise in the prevention and treatment of a variety of diseases and conditions. And yes, it is found to be safe for pets!

The recommended dosage is 1/8 to 1/4 tsp/day, for every 10 lbs weight.

Tumeric is a simple and easy, yet effective everyday home treatment to compliment regular massage sessions for animals. Regular consumption of turmeric in the diet can ease stiffness and reduce pain and joint swelling in pets!

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Pre-throw: A guess… where will it fall?

Perthro is a rune of stirrings… new beginnings, mystery and a bit like unwrapping a present on Christmas Day.
Perthro is a rune of stirrings… new beginnings, mystery and a bit like unwrapping a present on Christmas Day.

by Sandi Martinez

You avid footballers may actually get this quicker than us, ‘non-footballers’ – one football team, say, the Broncos… have the honor/advantage of the first kick-off in the game. The auditorium is howling in excitement and suspense. Which way will the ball fall, or rather, which team is going to be ahead of the game and catch it, breaking into the full run and toss that sets the game into motion?

Perthro, the image above, is one of those runes that set a similar tone in our lives. (Those of you whom are just now for the first time reading about runes, they are an ancient form of alphabet used by the Norse peoples of long ago; they are now used often for intuitive guidance.) Every morning, we awaken to a new day, and a new purpose. We forget that however, because we become immersed in our daily and repetitive lives. We stop seeing magic everywhere, and new opportunity; it has become replaced with apathy and unawareness.

Perthro is a rune of stirrings… new beginnings, mystery and a bit like unwrapping a present on Christmas Day. What’s in the package? When we’re off to work in the mornings, what will we encounter on the way? Might we have an unexpected chance at being a Good Samaritan somehow for a person or animal that may need some help? Might we hear something on the radio that resonates with a challenge or issue and miraculously helps solve a problem? Might we suddenly get an urge to surprise loved ones with a gift, or flowers, or? (Use your imagination folks!)

This rune for this week 8/18-8/25; speaks of such unexpected and unknown opportunities and chances that we should prepare, and open up for. It’s a time of great surprises, and showering gifts, unexpected rewards, and/or delving into challenges that look muddy and ruddy, only to be wiped clean again. So, while not all of us are part of the Bronco’s team, we are part of wide community throughout the world, and we too will have chances for a great kick-off!

Volunteering at Longmont Humane Society, RMSAAM Scholarship Student Emily Tronetti Tells Us About Her Experience

Big Mac I had two sessions with Big Mac before he was transferred to a rescue organization to be fostered. While Big Mac is extremely dog aggressive, he absolutely LOVES people. He enjoyed his massage more than any dog I’ve ever worked on! He would roll over into my lap and soak it all in. I was also told by staff members that he was very sleepy and mellow after our sessions!
Big Mac
I had two sessions with Big Mac before he was transferred to a rescue organization to be fostered. While Big Mac is extremely dog aggressive, he absolutely LOVES people. He enjoyed his massage more than any dog I’ve ever worked on! He would roll over into my lap and soak it all in. I was also told by staff members that he was very sleepy and mellow after our sessions!
Calle
Calle was transferred to LHS by the ASPCA after being rescued from a large dog-fighting bust in the south. She was a bait dog, and she has some significant anxiety at the shelter. Calle and I have had seven massage sessions together, and I have loved getting to know her. She hates being in the shelter, so I try to always take her to the park nearby for her massages. She has been challenging at times, but during our last two sessions, I’ve tried Merlin’s Magic by Frogworks, and I truly think it helps! While massaging her has taught me how to remain grounded and calm, I’ve found it difficult not to let her break my heart. She has been as the shelter since last summer and deserves a loving home so much. Please spread the word about this girl, so she can find her forever home!

 Written by Emily Tronetti

As a part of my scholarship to RMSAAM, I have been massaging dogs at the Longmont Humane Society since April 11th.  While working with the dogs at LHS, I have learned so much—not only about massage but about myself.

 

Here is a bit about the dogs I’ve been blessed to get to know and learn from.

If you ever have the opportunity to work with shelter dogs, go for it! It may be emotionally difficult for some people, but I promise you, it will be worth it.

 

 

Calle cuddles
Calle cuddles!
Cedric gives me kisses!
Cedric gives me kisses!
Cedric
Cedric is a big man with a big heart, and I’ve loved working on and learning from him the past three weeks! He has severe skin allergies and judging by his scars, I think was never treated for them. I hope massage can help relax this guy and ease some of his discomfort!
Kitty
Kitty I massaged Kitty for the first time last weekend. While I don’t know much about her history yet, I can tell that Kitty the little pittie has been through a lot in her mere year of living. She has had at least one litter of puppies, and she is very timid. She was a challenge to massage, because she has a difficult time with feeling like she is being restrained in any way. I could even sense her anxiety increase if I had two hands on her instead of one. Massaging Kitty will be a work in progress, but I feel in the hour I spent with her she grew to trust me if even just a little bit more. I was able to perform some effleurage, and she happily took treats from me. I even got a kiss on the cheek at the end of our session. I can’t wait to continue to work with her!
Marilyn
Marilyn has been another dog to test my ability to breathe deep and remain a calming force. She is a very smart, sweet girl but she can also be very stubborn! However, the more sessions we’ve had together, the more she settles right into her massage!
Sadie
Sadie was very anxious and restless in her kennel. I remember during our first session, I was so sure it wasn’t going to work. She kept trying to jump at me (playfully) whenever I would try to sit down next to her. I tried very hard to keep myself calm and grounded. Eventually, I was able to sit down next to her, and perform some effleurage. Within just a few minutes, she was literally sitting in my lap, letting me work on her! It was amazing. We only had one more session together after that before she was adopted!

Time

It ticks  as if it never was time – who were you before you... (Image: Sandi Martinez)
It ticks
as if it never was
time – who were you before you… (Image: Sandi Martinez)

Contributed by Sandi Martinez

 

A time not so far away

painted across your face

lanes of highways

Zigzag

Do I know you

from before?

Lines of time drawn across my face

tucked beneath a moment,

a minute,

second

It ticks

as if it never was

time – who were you before

you ran your fingers through

my

whiskers?

who are you now?

Have you touched the

deepest recesses of your soul?

Have you seen me

In you,

You in

Me?

Time is as we time it folks… now’s the time to turn your dream into a reality, and become the animal practitioner you were meant to be!