Each Step is Up to Me!

Hi Everybody! Zoey here. I was doing great with my leg. Walking and exercising on it every day. Then I ran like the wind chasing Dakota into the backyard. It was like I was 1 again! So strong and capable. When I limped into the house, I felt like I was jumped by a coyote or two. So back to square one.

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Right now, Mommy is teaching kids about writing stories at the school. I’m stuck upstairs. I can’t go down without Mommy or Daddy encouraging me. I am afraid I’m going to fall. Mommy says that all I ever need to do anything in life is within me. How do I find it? Where exactly in me is it?

I shut my eyes and picture my strong legs carrying me down the stairs. Crash! Dakota knocks into me. Well, yes that would happen. But I did it!

I open my eyes and the floor is a long way down. My family can give support, but they can’t do this for me. Only I can. I tap tap down the stairs and am very proud of myself.

One step at a time–every day!

Zoey out!

Starting Over

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After my walk. So tired.

Hey, hey. Zoey here. Mommy is outside with Dakota. She has been walking us separately sometimes so she can focus on strengthening my leg. I needed a few minutes to recuperate. Luckily my front paws work fine, so I can type.

Thank you for your concern. Mommy has been telling me that everyone is asking how I’m doing. Right now we are working on getting me to put my leg down when I walk. It’s not easy slowing down. I am a fast mover. I like to get from here to there in a flash. It’s very hard for me to have to slow down and not be the dog I once was.

When we walk, Mommy reminds me to put my paw down. I do. It hurts and feels wobbly,  but I think I’m getting stronger. Plus it’s wonderful being out in the fresh air. I admit, I’ve been a little depressed. It’s easier to lay in the dark under my daddy’s desk and bemoan the fact that I’m lame. There I said it. I don’t know if my leg will ever be the way it once was and that makes me sad. Mommy makes me comes sit with her in the sunshine.

Dakota can run around and be his same carefree, goofy self. I’m happy for him. He still wants to wrestle and we did a little in the house yesterday, which was wonderful. Dakota gets that I want to be treated normally. I don’t want him to think, “Oh, I can’t play with Zoey anymore, because she can’t run.” He knocks into me and bites my ear whenever he feels like it. I appreciate that.

Mommy rubs my leg every night and stretches it. I do love the attention. I have to do the work, in order to get better. It’s a long road, but with everyone’s support, I know I will get stronger.

Zoey out!

Oh Snap!

Dr. McNaughton testing my leg

Hi! Stephen’s home, and I am so happy to see him. He picked me up and put me in the car this morning for Mommy to take me to my checkup at the vet. 

Now Mommy left to go take care of some business, so Stephen, Dakota and I are chilling.  Here’s the news. 

I tore my ACL. Yup! Just like my Momma. The swelling has gone down quite a bit. It doesn’t hurt too much when I put it down, but it feels weak. 

Doc gave us some options, so I’m relaxing in the sun pondering. 


1. Wear a brace. Not all dogs like this, but it would keep my leg stable. 

2.  Do nothing. Let it heal and do my thing. I have a higher risk of tearing my meniscus, the other knee, and getting arthritis. 

3.  Tight Rope ACL surgery. It was interesting listening to Doc talk about it. It’s like bionic string replacing my knee part that is broken. 

4.  Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy (TPLO). A plate is put on my bone and it changes the mechanics of the knee. Healing with this surgery is quicker. 

Any thoughts out there from my four-legged pals and their parents? I may need to do a kissing booth to raise some funds!!

Zoey limping out!

Oh Man, my ACL!

Hi. Mommy and Daddy are back from their trip to Miami. Mommy left to restock our food supply.  Dakota and I had a wonderful time with Marisa watching us. 

I don’t really know what happened, but when she let us out one more time, I slipped and suddenly I couldn’t walk. It hurt so much. Luckily I have three other legs and was able to get back inside.  Marisa was very concerned. 

Marisa and her friend carried me upstairs. Even Dakota was nice and didn’t run me over. I wasn’t any better the next day, so Mommy called the vet. She has often said that it takes a village to raise a child, and I think she now extended that phrase to her dogs. 

Aunt Colleen came and got me, and just because he’s that kind of guy, our neighbor, Chris, went too. I missed Marisa, but know she had to work. She took good care of me. 

Thank goodness Dr. McNaughton was there! He was so loving and patient. I may have strained or tore my ACL. That’s on my knee. It was so swollen, he gave me medicine to help it. So I need to wait and see what happens. 

Uncle Jason and Uncle Scott watched me over the weekend. They made sure I didn’t run around. 


They were wonderful, but I really couldn’t wait for my Mommy to come home. 

Monday morning Lauren and Owen came over to check on me. 


That made me very happy!

What made me even happier was when my parents came home. I let Dakota go first, because let’s face it–he’ll plow me over when I have four legs!

Mommy hugged me and petted me and rubbed my leg. 


So now I’m waiting. I want to run around and go for a walk, but I can’t. I miss it, and hope I will be all right. Please send me some cheer and well wishes.  We know the power of good thoughts. 

Thank you to everyone who took care of me when I needed it most!❤️

When a Cup is Not a Cup

Hello! Zoey here! Momma is not! She is with Nanny on this beautiful sunny day. Daddy isn’t home either, so I’m enjoying some quiet time. 

Yesterday Mommy and Daddy took us to see Dr. McNaughton for our annual checkup. We were both very good! We each had to have two shots and blood drawn. Dakota tooted, because he was scared, and he smelled the whole ride home. 

Daddy asked about how much food we should eat. Dakota is 109 pounds having gained 9 from last year, and I gained 6 to bring me to 69 pounds!

Mommy explained that she gives us one cup of food in the morning and one cup at night. When Dr. McNaughton asked how much it was, my mom said, “1 cup.”


This is the cup Mommy uses and yes it is a cup. But the question asked was is it really a cup?  Well we know it’s a cup, because you can drink out of it, but is it 8 oz or 1 cup  as a measurement?

That was the question of the day! Now let me tell you something about my Mommy. She is a talented writer and editor. She loves to read and digs history. If there is a typo on an ad, on a menu, on a sign on the highway, she will find it!

However…my Mommy is not very, how shall we say, good at math and measuring. She tries and she does well with basic math and balancing the checkbook. Man! I could write a book listening to her and Daddy’s conversations about running the finances. Yup. You got it. Mommy does it!  Luckily a lot of the time when she screws up, it’s in their favor. Except when she lost that envelope of money.  Yet again I digress!

Anyhoo! Mommy came home, scooped up a cup (ha ha) of food and measured it. And it was–2cups! 

Lucky us! We have been eating twice the amount than we should be eating! Dakota can probably have 1 1/2 cups, but I’m petite, and if that food is there, I don’t have any control!

So now Mommy is slowly weaning us down to a smaller amount. I helped her by drawing a line on the cup. 


Hey, we all have our strengths!

Zoey out!

Holy Poop Batman!

Hi! I’m sending this out as I watch my momma pick up pounds of dog doo in the backyard. She’s looking like she’s ready to go off the deep end. 

I’m hearing phrases like who poops this much and what did you eat and can’t she poop in a pile and not like Hansel and Gretel leaving a trail?

Really Momma! Who would follow that trail? Well maybe Dakota. He loves his poopsicles. But they have to be frozen solid. He doesn’t like the pudding cups that are currently sloshing around in the melting snow. 

You don’t want to get too close!


Uh Oh. Now Mommy has moved up to a bigger bag. The other one exploded and poop is all over the driveway!  No one tell my daddy!

Mommy is screaming at Dakota because he wants a taste!

Now Mommy is gagging while pouring water over it. 


Do you think my Daddy will notice? Probably not. As long as we all keep our secret!

Looks like she done. Man that bag looks heavy. At least 40 pounds. That’s a lot of biscuits and meals!

Just shows how much Mommy loves Daddy by making sure the poop is picked up before the snowfall. Hmmm. Just in time for Valentine’s Day. She’s as sneaky as I am!

Hopefully she’ll recover by then!

Zoey out!!

Daddy is a Softie

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It’s after the holidays, and Daddy is taking a break from packing lights from the Christmas tree. Mommy is catching up with housework since Stephen went back to college. She had a lot of cleaning up to do! Luckily she left her computer in the library so I could sneak in a post.

You may not know this, but my daddy is a softie. Oh yes, some may think he has a rough exterior, because he doesn’t say much, but I get him. He’s a sucker for big eyes. So when he was taking a break and eating some pretzel rods, I knew it was my moment.

I sat in front of him, not too close while he chomped on a pretzel. He ignored me as he watched a show. I sat all prim and proper, good posture, my tail curled cutely to the side. And then I stared. And I stared. And I stared.

OK. Nothing happened, but no one has ever said that Zoena Maria Cucina was a quitter!

zoeysecondsteptopretzel

I inched a little closer and opened my eyes a bit more to give him that “Oh poor me” look. “I’m so hungry and destitute!”

I can be patient. It’s in my DNA. I watch birds for hours, silently waiting for them to get closer and closer. I lull them into a false sense of security and then I pounce! But I can’t do that with Daddy. He’s not prey of course! Just the pretzel in his hand. I’m such a good girl! Notice me!

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Suddenly he does! I wag my tail and shift a little closer. Daddy has the pretzel held out to me. I think he wants me to take it. I come close enough so that I could take it right from him. I latch on, he looks at me, smiles, and then lets go.

Yes! The pretzel is mine!

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I could have stayed there all day, but in reality Daddy is such a softie with all the gals in his life that this was a piece of cake (or should I say pretzel!)