starbuck and hampton

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As you may know, Starbuck and Hampton have never met. However, we believe Starbuck's spirit lives in Hampton. After all, Ham was born the day after Starbuck passed. We often wonder what lessons Starbuck might have taught Ham, from one beagle to another. We're sure a head tilt (see comic page) would be on the list.

Although they are similar in the simple fact they are the same breed and in terms of the abundance of love and snuggles they have to give, they definitely have their own personalities. A few examples:

Starbuck was very particular about his cleanliness. He did not like stepping in anything dirty. He would literally tip toe around muddy puddles and very quick to leave the area where he would do his business. He also loved loved loved his baths. We would often find Starbuck sitting in the bathtub just waiting for his 'spa time'.


Hampton is...well not so clean. He loves getting his paws dirty and I have to admit he did have a thing for eating his poop (yuck!). Hampton doesn't mind baths but soon after its all done he is quick to get himself all dirty again.


Starbuck was very particular about his food and treats. Quite unusual for a beagle. We could leave food out for him and he wouldn't touch it until he felt like it. He also liked to inspect the treats that were offered to him. There were some he would take politely and others he would shun away.


Hampton loves his food and treats. He will gobble anything up. Recent evidence is the charcoal we had to give him for the potential exposure to rat poison. He also likes to eat up all his toys. That's why he's only allowed a few minutes with them at a time.


Starbuck was also a very dramatic beagle. He would yelp at the slightest things that upset him. He also was very sacred of bugs. If he saw a spider or fly he would run to straight to me and literally jump in my lap.


Hampton isn't scared of anything. When we first brought him home he was bouncing around and exploring every area of the house. We first knew he was going to be a fiesty one when he went down the stairs for the first time. He didn't want any of our help and barked at us when we tried to get close. He wanted to do it all himself!


Despite these differences I think if they did have the opportunity to meet they would be great pals. I could see Starbuck teaching him the secrets to getting what they want from us humans, just like in the head tilt comic. I think they would have made great partners in crime!

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rat poison - noooo!!!

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I am still really tired from the events over the last few days so I hope this post makes sense as its an important one!

We've always been very careful about not having the pups any where near anything dangerous they could consume. But unfortunately on Sunday while we were out celebrating Lunar New Year Hampton was exposed to rat poison. One of our worst nightmares!

It happened while we were coming back from a walk. I saw Hampton reach for something and at first I thought it was plant fertilizer. He was on a his lead so I immediately pulled him back and checked his mouth. I didn't find anything but wasn't 100% sure that he didn't get any of it. When we found out it was actually rat poison the panic really started to set in. We spent the next 30 minutes trying to get him to vomit. We gave him a tsp of salt...nothing happened. 15 min later we gave him another tsp of salt, that didn't work. We didn't want to waste anymore time so we decided to take him for a drive. Hampton gets really car sick and yup, within a few minutes it all came out. The car sickness is something we've been trying to help him with and this was the only time we were grateful he vomited in the car.

We ended up taking him to the emerg vet clinic as a follow-up. They ran blood tests and checked that the salt didn't do any damage as well. All the results came out positively (big sigh of relief). We didn't get home until about 3am as there was a wait at the clinic (even animals have a long wait in emerg!).

When we got home we gave him a dose of charcoal as directed by the emerg clinic. A few hours later we were up to give him the 2nd and final dose. Luckily, Hampton being a true beagle, just gobbled it all up. We didn't have to do any tricks or give him anything extra to encourage him. If it were ZuZu or Starbuck, there's no way they would go near it without extreme coaxing.

I do admit all of this reminded me of when Starbuck first got sick. They initially thought Starbuck had rat posioing b/c he was exhibiting almost the same symptoms. But I've pushed those thoughts of anxiety away and replaced them with positive ones.

Our vet came by today to take the 2nd blood test and we just got the results. Although they are normal, they are in the high range of normal. I'm not sure what that means exactly but she is going to let us know tomorrow if another test needs to be taken. So we are almost out of the woods!

Hampton is doing great. He is his usual curious, playful self and not exhibiting any symptoms. He's milked his time of being sick by cuddling up with ZuZu (see her post their My Puppy Diary blog).

So a few tips and lessons learned from all this:

1. Always ask whomever you are visiting with about any potential dangerous substances. Especially ask those who don't have dogs as they won't be as aware of what could be dangerous.

Also check with your neighbors about whether they use rat poisoning. Because rat poison can last in the system for up to 3 days without showing any symptoms the rodent could end up bringing the poison into your yard.

2. You can use salt to induce vomiting - 2 tsp max. Salt is generally bad for dogs. I don't use salt in any of my baking and check that its not an ingredient in whatever food or treats we give them. It can cause dehydration, allergies and too much of it can cause major problems like brain damage.

3. Its better to be safe than sorry. Go to the emerg clinic or get your dog to your vet right away even if (s)he has vomited after being exposed to a dangerous substance. Its always best to check than to regret it later

That's all for now. I'm getting really tired and need to sleep. I just wanted to give you an update as its been a few days and I'll be sure to give another when he's 100% in the clear. :)

Nite nite!
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happy heart day!

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You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams. ~Dr Seuss

We can relate to Dr. Seuss today. We're all up late working on a few things for Puppy Jones and just spending some quality time (QT) together.

We have a new valentine's day comic up in our comic blog that basically sums up how we spent our weekend. We're a pretty laid back couple and its true we feel happiest spending time at home with the bb's (except we were pretty happy on our honeymoon in Paris but we did miss them very much). We didn't come up with the comic for laughs but wanted to share something sweet with you and something other dog lovers can relate to.

A heart warming observation today in theme of heart day:
On our walk tonight a car came up the road which separated me and Hampton on one side and D and ZuZu on the other side. I could see Hampton getting a bit anxious about seperating away from D and ZuZu, which I expected. I also noticed however that ZuZu looked a bit anxious too. I was a bit surprised as although I know she looks out for him its not the same bond she had with Starbuck. When the car passed they both ran at each other and touched their noses as if to say 'hi we're back together again'.
Its nice to see the bond between ZuZu and Hampton becoming stronger. She even let him snuggle with her in her favorite spot and she also gave him some kisses as Hampton proudly posted in his blog. Perhaps she knows its Valentine's day and is giving him some extra love.

Hope everyone gets some extra love today!

puppy love

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Don't have anything in particular to blog about today so thought I'd just share some puppy love!



Hampton is just a little over a year now but he still is like a puppy to me. ZuZu will be 9 this year (yikes!) and I still call her my puppy.  Its funny how they still think of themselves as being the same size as they were when they were just a few months old. Sometimes I don't think Hampton realizes how big he has is now by the way he tries to squeeze himself on my lap. He manages to fit but he's just not as small as he used to be! Too cute.

Hope everyone is having a good day today!

p.s. Btw we have a new valentine's comic up. Just a simple story but definitely mirrors reality. I'm also working on another flash and hope to put it up soon. Having fun learning how to use it but no expert by any means so its taking me a bit longer to create.

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starting a new hobby / project

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We're going to be trying out a new project this month - silk screening! Its something I've always wanted to do and with some time off this month we thought it was the best time to try it out. We just need a few more things on our supply list and then we can get started. I'll document on here how it goes! I'm pretty excited about it.

Carrot and Molasses Pupcakes - om nom nom nom

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When Starbuck got sick I really started to think about what type of food the bb's are eating, including their treats. Last Christmas Dave got me a kitchen aid mixer to support my interest in baking for them. And since then I've had lots of fun baking. For those of you who don't know me its amazing that I'm actually spending time in the kitchen. I barely even cook for Dave!

Anyway, here are some pics of carrot and molasses pupcakes I made. These pupcakes are good for our pups as they are high in vitamin A and potassium.

The carrots and molasses:

The next asian martha:


Waiting anxiously:

They are ready!


ZuZu gets first bite, she's older than Hampton and plus it was her birthday that day:

You can add yogurt or cream cheese icing ( fyi - not the low-fat kind for either) but i decided not to as too much dairy isn't always good for puppies.

These will keep in the fridge for 1 week. Let me know if you want the recipe!


Here is the recipe from 'The Healthy Dog Cookbook' by Jonna Anne with Mary Straus.

Prep time: 15 min
Makes about 12 pupcakes

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 cup finely grated carrots
1/2 cup blackstrap molasses
1/2 cup water
1 egg
1 1/2 tbsp vegetable oil

1.  Preheat oven to 350F / 180C
2. Combine the flour, baking powder and oats in a small bowl
3. Thoroughly combine the carrots, molasses, water, egg, and oil in a large bowl
4. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet and mix well.
5. Pour the batter into small cupcake pans and bake for 20 minutes

Note: Store the Birthday Cupcakes in the refrigerator for 1 week.

We'd love to hear from you once you give this a try!

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