Photo by Mary Ellen "Angel Scribe"©
Happy Boo Day!
Happy HOWL-O-Ween! Jim and Karen with Hoyer Accounting's furry mascot, Jasper, who is sporting his Halloween hat and Trick 'r' Treat scarf to celebrate his boo-day! On Halloween Jasper turns 2 years old. Jim and Karen considered naming their new white puppy Casper after The Friendly Ghost, but chose Jasper The Friendly Dog because he was born on Jasper-Lowell Road.
Jasper's good looks are a result of his 3/4 Bichon Frise and 1/4 Toy Poodle blood line. His lower protruding jaw resembles a permanent smile which only adds to his adorable looks.
"Prior to 1966, there were no Bichons in America" explains Karen. "Originally they were bred to entertain royalty. The dogs easily walk on their two hind legs making them entertaining and a popular choice for circus dogs. After the two World Wars the breed was nearly destroyed. Then a family moved from France to the USA with 4 dogs. In America, nearly every Bichon is a descendant of those 4 dogs! This breed is also popular because they have hair, not fur, making them hypoallergenic. They do not shed like other dogs and cats. They are high maintenance and Jasper is groomed every 3 weeks so his hair doesn't get curly and tangle."
"Bichons are known for doing the "Bichon Buzz," laughs Karen, "Out of the blue, they begin running in circles, as fast as they can, growling."
Jasper's best friends are Shadow and Nikki, dogs belonging to Karen's and Jim's daughters, Charlene and Michele.(sorry; trying to figure out the best way to structure and punctuate
this sentence). "Charlene lives next door and if we don't keep Jasper on a leash he runs over to play with Shadow. Jasper sits at their patio door staring at Shadow, who is staring at him from the other side," said Jim.
Hoyer Accounting is the oldest accounting business in Cottage Grove. The family business was opened in 1943 by Karen's grandfather; her father owned and operated it; and now Karen owns the company. Jasper is their official greeter.
"Jasper has severe separation anxiety, so he goes everywhere with me," said Karen. "He greets all our clients and he has his favorites. He jumps in their laps and both seem to have neverending smiles on their faces. Jasper has one exasperating habit: I can't walk directly into the office until he has done his ten minute stroll from the back parking lot, down to the river's edge, around the park, and into the front door. If he doesn't get his walk, he pitches a fit, and there is no peace for the staff until we go for his walk.
The first time a client arrived with a baby, we were concerned, but Jasper gently reached out his paw to the baby. It was adorable. No one is a stranger to Jasper, he loves everyone."
As Karen drives by in her red convertible Pontiac G6-- wave at Jasper sitting on the console. "He lays his head on my right shoulder while we are driving," adds Karen.
"This is the first time we have had a male dog, and there is a huge difference. Jasper has to pee on everything! I mean everything! On a twelve-minute walk he peed 12 times! It seems impossible that he has anything left in his tanks to mark one other thing!"
"There is one thing that will stop Jasper dead in his tracks. As soon as a dog appears on TV he comes to a stand still and watches the dog until it is off the screen before resuming whatever he was doing," chuckles Jim.
"Children have their favorite blanky and Jasper has Skunky, a long stuffless toy with a squeaker on each end. Each night, we have to steal the toy after Jasper goes to bed to give it its bath. When Jasper wakes up, if he can't find Skunky, he heads to the dryer and sits in front of it waiting for his toy to emerge."
Knowing the value of Skunky, Karen has several more in reserve. There are two more at work, and two at home.
"Jasper has a toy box that sits up on a wooden chair," said Karen. "In the morning he puts his paws between the wooden slats, lifts out each toy, and tosses them around the house. Once he has redecorated our home, he is happy, and goes and sits on his favorite spot on the couch. He sits like a human watching us with his intelligent eyes."
"At home and work, when Jasper wants to go outside he hits bells on the door with his paw to alert us. At the office, he has the entire staff at his beck and call," laughs Karen. "Our clients love the fact that we have a friendly dog who welcomes them."
Looking to attract clients, customers, or patrons? In 1987, Spencer Iowa's Public Library was given an unexpected boon to their business. They did not have to pay for advertising. One evening, Dewey Readmore Books, an orange kitten, was deposited into their book drop. In two years, library patronage increased from 63,000 to more than 100,000. Today, his little orange protégée Page Turner has taken over kitten library duties.
Dewey's "presents" increased book circulation, patrons, and tourists to the library. The warmth of a pet adds to business. Read the best selling book, DEWEY- The Small-Town Library Cat who Touched the World by Vicki Myron. The book is, of course, available at libraries and bookstores in large and small print.
Pet Safety Treats
- Fake sinewy cobwebs stretched across windows and doors can clog pets' intestines and kill them.
- It is best not to walk pets in costumes. Most pets think costumes are annoying. Costumes are unsafe when pets run and should not constrict their natural movement or hearing, or impede their ability to breathe or bark. Be alert to small, dangling, or easily chewed-off pieces of a costume that pets can choke on.
- Pet costumes should not obstruct their vision. Even the friendliest of pets will bite when they can't see.
- Never leave a costumed pet unattended. They may eat the costume or get hurt trying to take it off, or trip while running in it.
- If you create your pet's costume, use safe nontoxic paints
- Reflector strips are a good precaution for leashes/costumes.
- Some people set off fireworks on Halloween, causing pets in yards to jump fences and those on leads to run and become lost. Keep your pets protected inside on Halloween.
- Pets may be fearful of Trick-or-Treaters in costumes. Keep pets indoors or bring them inside before children come calling. This also protects Trick-or-Treaters from pets that become aggressive when frightened.
- Frightened animals can run away; while opening doors for Trick-or-Treaters, keep your pets in the back of the house behind a closed door, behind a baby gate, or in their crate or carrying cage and turn on a radio or TV to soothe them.
- For Halloween, some pet owners use the homeopathic pet remedy Pet Calm or TFLN to help their pets stay calm.
- Have pets ID'd with a collar and tag or microchipped, so they can be returned to you.
- Chocolate and raisins in all forms are dangerous for dogs and cats. Also, tin foil and cellophane candy wrappers are hazardous when swallowed. Keep family pets out of the room while children inspect their collected Halloween candy.
- Halloween pumpkins and decorative corn are relatively nontoxic, but they can cause gastrointestinal problems or intestinal blockage if an animal ingests large pieces.
- If you suspect that your pet has ingested a potentially dangerous substance, call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (888) 426-4435.
- Keep electric lights, wires, and cords out of reach of pets. If your pets chew them, they can damage their mouths from shards of glass or plastic, or receive a life-threatening electrical shock.
- Keep pets in the day before Halloween and on Halloween to protect them from pranksters.
- Place candles up high, so pets won't knock them over and burn their noses, whiskers, paws, or tails! Use glow sticks or battery-operated tea lights instead.
- Keep pets away from jack-o-lanterns that have candles in them. Use a small penlight or Christmas lights in jack-o-lanterns to protect active dogs from bumping them and curious cats from putting their paws or themselves in them.
- When walking a pet on Halloween, keep it on a leash so it won't run in front of vehicles, or in fright, attack a strange-looking costumed child.
- When walking a pet, be courteous; use a sandwich bag to pick up after them.
Boo-T-ful Cats Swimming on TV!
Mary Ellen & Miss Wings
Miracle Author & Pet Columnist
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MARY ELLEN "Angel Scribe"
PO BOX 1004
Cottage Grove, OR
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