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Take your Moby to Work Day

February 18th, 2014 | Posted by Emily in Doggies! | Fostering. | Moby Wonderdog - (8 Comments)

Foster Mom works at an animal shelter helping homeless dogs and cats find forever families. But since Foster Mom has never actually BEEN a homeless animal, she enlists my expertises from time-to-time so she can be better at her job. I’m basically a consultant.

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I have to show the shelter dogs how to do their best “adopt me” faces and try to show the kittehs how to not look mean and scary (why are kittehs so scary?!) and help Foster Mom with her postings of cute puppies and kittehs on the Facebooks. Helping Foster Mom do her job is hard work! I usually have to take a nap to recharge my brain.

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I’ve also offered to lend my face to the shelter’s retail store, where they sell all of my favorite things like Chuck-Its, Kongs, and Z-Bones! And the best part? I get to do the product testing All of the proceeds go to help shelter pets!

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Now I am sure you must be thinking – why are you lending your expertises and face to help shelter dogs when you are homeless yourself?! And I’ll admit, I thought that too when Foster Mom first asked for my helpings.

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Are you CRAZY, lady?!

But then she reminded me that I have a home while I’m looking for my forever home. These puppies and kittehs have to live at a shelter. A really, really, reeeeaaaalllly nice shelter, but still a shelter. They don’t have foster parents to snuggle them all night long or a comfy couch to lay on or foster brothers to take the blame for their toots! So after she told me that, I committed myself to giving ALL of my expertises and energy to help them find their forever families as quickly as possible. I’m even working overtime!

Well, sorta.

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And who knows? Maybe my future forever family is looking for a dog who is the face of a retail store or a dog who is really good at the Facebooks. Or maybe a dog who can come with them to work? The way I see it, I’m just rounding out my resumé, which will make me even more adoptable! Oh, and Foster Mom pays me in noms, which ain’t too shabby, AMIRIGHT?! XOXO, Moby Wonderdog

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Oh hey, Foster Mom, can I get an advance on next week’s paycheck?

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One Year.

February 3rd, 2014 | Posted by Emily in Doggies! | Fostering. | Moby Wonderdog - (14 Comments)

“We’ll just evaluate him for four days and then he’ll go to another foster house.” — Foster Mom speaking to Foster Dad 365 days ago about me, Moby Wonderdog. Ha ha ha… yeah right.

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Foster Mom predicted in her very first bloggings about the Mobisher that I would be adopted in just a few days… well… that wasn’t exactly in my plans. You see, the Mobisher came to Foster House from a house where I used to be kept in my crate A LOT. And at Foster House, I get to be out of my crate and with my people almost all of the times… which is my favorite.

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But also, I had a lot to learn at Foster House before I was even READY to be a forever dog. You see, sometimes Foster Mom or Dad would reach for me really quickly or I felt like they were getting too close, so I would show them my teeths to show them that I was tough so they wouldn’t mess with me. But guess what? I wasn’t actually tough, I was scared. I just showed my teeths so they would THINK I was tough. But Foster Mom and Dad figured out that my toughs were actually my scareds, and so they worked with me to show me that when they put their hands near me, it is for GOOD things like lovings and pettings and noms. And until I felt safe for lovings and pettings, they gave me a long cord so I could keep my distance from them. They are pretty smart, huh*?

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Foster Mom and Dad have worked tirelessly to give me lots of confidence. They took me to the Sea of Potatoes, where I dock dived and stick deathed and boat chilled.

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They took me to all of the dog-friendly culture places, like the Nelson-Atkins Museum Sculpture Park, so now I can speak confidently on arts and cultures.

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I reduced my flat-chu-lance and became a better walking buddy (with help from my bro Bullseye).

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I lent all of my handsomes to Sirius Republic so I could become their number one super model show off all of their coolest collars! I even let Sirius Republic out me as a super hero.

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I’ve answered all of your questions (twice!) and taken more bathies than I’d like to admit.

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I’ve Chuck-ed It and disc dogged and posed for selfies with Foster Mom (well, sort of)…

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I’ve learned to cuddle #likeaboss and made more progress than Foster Mom could have ever dreamed.

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But here’s the thing… while I luuuuurve doing stuff and learning things with Foster Mom and Dad, I know they aren’t my forever peeps. They are my for right now peeps. So even though the last 365 days have been pretty awesome, I am about ready to move on to my forever. And Foster Mom tells me that some things have developed on that front, but I have to be patient… so I’ll work on my “wait” like I do with my noms. Thanks for following my story all these days… you are awesome! XO, Moby

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* Foster Mom says that she actually got help from her friend Aleksandra about the cord, so she actually borrowed her smartness on that one.

While Part One of Daniel’s super secret birthday trip included lots of historical landmarks and wandering city streets, Part Two took a decidedly more relaxed turn…

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We spent two days in and around Fajardo, which is on the East Coast of Puerto Rico. We spent the majority of our time at Seven Seas Beach, which is a couple miles of pristine beach, part of which backs up to Las Cabezas de San Juan Nature Reserve (which I will talk more about later). With the exception of locals enjoying the weekend and a few local fisherman spear diving, we had this pristine beach to ourselves. The water was clear blue, there were bits of coral along the beach, beautiful Great Egrets gracefully flying around, and if you looked really closely into the forest that hugs the beach, you could see giant iguanas.

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We couldn’t come to Puerto Rico and not experience the famous bioluminescent bays, but we had heard that some of the more tourist-y companies that run tours can be damaging to the ecosystem, so we opted instead for an educational tour at Las Cabezas de San Juan Nature Preserve. Our tour started with a trip to the Fajardo Lighthouse to learn about light pollution, how it affects the local sea life, and what the city of Fajardo is doing to reverse its effects (such as making sure all lights in the city face downwards so as to not confuse the sea turtles who follow the moon to lay eggs on Fajardo beaches).

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We also were taken to a mangrove forest with a walkway that took us out to a bioluminescent lagoon. It was a New Moon, so we couldn’t see the bioluminescence super well, but when we put a stick in the water, it looked like a magic wand when the water started to glow around it (no photos of this – sorry – I was too excited about my “magic wand stick”). We ended our tour with a moonlit walk along the beach… pretty cool, huh?

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The other unique attraction in Puerto Rico is the United States’ ONLY rain forest, El Yunque.

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Daniel and I got in a major workout visiting El Yunque, as we chose La Mina Falls Trail, one of the more difficult hiking paths… and of course we walked down first… which meant after we were already tired we had to walk the hour back UP the path. Luckily, the scenery was beautiful, so we stopped often so we wouldn’t die from lack of oxygen to take photos.

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My favorite part of El Yunque was the 360 degree view from Yokahu Tower.

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I could have stayed up in that Tower for hours just taking in the view… but the beach (and lunch) were calling Daniel and I back to civilization, so we headed back out to the beach for the rest of the trip…

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So that’s basically it. Some city time, some beach time, some time in the rain forest. All in all, Puerto Rico did not disappoint, and I suspect we will be back again in the future. Now, back to reality and back to what this blog is all about… dogs!

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I kept a secret from Daniel for nearly two months. I booked a trip to Puerto Rico back in October to celebrate Daniel’s 30th birthday (which falls just after Christmas). I planned the entire thing behind Daniel’s back and didn’t tell him until he’d opened a series of gifts that hinted at the trip (beach towels, new flip flops, a beachy ornament for our Christmas tree, and finally, two guide books for Puerto Rico). When he opened the box with the guide books inside, all of the secret keeping was worth it for this face…

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Daniel is rarely surprised… so I rarely see this face.

So one week after Daniel’s birthday, we hopped on a plane from 20 degree weather in Kansas City to 80 degree weather in Old San Juan! I found a cute little loft on Home Away right in the heart of Old San Juan, which allowed us easy access to cute little restaurants and shops.

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Our street for the week

We spent our first full day in Old San Juan… mainly checking out the two large forts, Castillo de San Cristóbal and El Morro and walking around the city. The views of Old San Juan from both forts were totally breathtaking, and you could easily spend hours just wandering around looking at everything. We paid $10 total for access to both forts – so cheap!

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We utilized the Puerto Rico Day Trips website to figure out what to see – it was very helpful and pointed out some destinations that we may have missed if left to our own devices… and it was how we found out there is a free trolley that will take you to all of the main sections of Old San Juan, so even though this area is totally walkable, we took the trolley when our feet got tired of walking on the cobblestone…

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We hit up a few really good restaurant, namely Pirilo Pizza Rustica (ask to eat upstairs!) and Waffle-Era (cream cheese mini waffle – yuuuuum!), both of which made me wish there was a way I could transport them to KC so I could eat them whenever I wanted. Actually, one of my favorite memories of the trip was sitting by the window at Waffle-Era watching a storm roll over the harbor.

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One thing I really didn’t like about Old San Juan (and Puerto Rico overall) was the huge number of stray cats and dogs. There are over 250k stray dogs on the island of Puerto Rico and only 5 shelters to accomodate them. It was hard for me to concentrate on having fun when I saw so many animals in need… and people would just walk on by like they weren’t even there. I think Daniel was a little annoyed with how often I would get sad about a stray dog begging for food or when a cat would follow us and brush against my leg for attention. Or when I would make him go look for the homeless lady with three dogs so I could give her my leftovers… or my umbrella. Basically, my crazy animal lady-ness came out in full force in Puerto Rico.

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Overall, I really enjoyed the liveliness, color, and history that Old San Juan had to offer… but what really made me fall in love with Puerto Rico was when we got out of town and did some exploring… which I will share more about next week….

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