Giving Thanks, Year 2

December 2015

Last year, we asked you to click click click to make a pup’s dream come true.  This year, we’re just asking you to share.

We’re very excited to introduce you to Bud and Diamond.  These wonderful dogs have been looking for homes for well over a year.  We made friends with the folks at Alley Cat Rescue, who told us all about them.  We’re hoping to make things a little easier for them.

peanut butter & cheese is proud to sponsor the adoption fees for Bud and Diamond.  Check out this guest blog.  Share their stories.  Share their pictures.  Let’s help these two find a furever home– they’ve been waiting for a long, long time.


Alley Cat Rescue is a nonprofit and no-kill rescue organization, located in Mt. Rainier, MD. As the organization name would suggest, our main focus is on cats, but over the years Alley Cat Rescue has also helped many dogs to find homes as well. The staff at Alley Cat Rescue are lovers of all animals, and when we see a dog in need we just have to step in. As a cat rescue, we do not get in a lot of foot traffic in search of dogs, so we have two dogs at our facility that we have really struggled to find homes for. Bud and Diamond are fantastic dogs that just need someone to give them a chance! So this week Kari is letting us share their stories with all of you, in hopes that this post will help them to find their forever homes or a temporary foster home that will get these two out of kennels while we continue to search for a forever family for Bud and Diamond. Kari has also generously sponsored Bud and Diamond’s adoptions, so there will be no fee to adopt either of them.

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Diamond is an American Staffordshire terrier and Pointer mix. She is about 2 years old and weighs about 60 pounds. Diamond has been at Alley Cat Rescue’s facility for over a year and a half. Actually, as I write this post, today is day 556 that Diamond has been at our facility. She is sweet, loving, and energetic. She does well with other dogs and children of all ages. She is a true nanny dog and loves to interact with children. However, she does not do well with cats.

We have been working on basic commands with her and she knows sit, paw, roll over, and lay down. She is currently working on learning to stay and leash training. She can be very active when she is outside, but as soon as she gets indoors she becomes a couch potato. Diamond was found outside of the animal hospital Alley Cat Rescue partners with when she was about 6 months old. She wandered up to their door one day and Alley Cat Rescue agreed to help her find a home. We suspect that she may have been abandoned at the animal hospital by a former owner who hoped the animal hospital would make sure Diamond was safe. It has now been a year and a half since Diamond arrived at our doors and we are desperate to find her a loving family.


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Bud is a lab mix. He is about 5 years old and weighs almost 100 pounds. Bud has been at the Alley Cat Rescue facility for 397 days today. He is extremely loyal, loving, and playful. He is a very people oriented dog, and he doesn’t care for other dogs or cats; he would rather have his people all to himself! Once he gets to know a person he will follow them anywhere and try to be as close to them as he possibly can. Bud is the perfect name for this sweet boy, because he really just wants to be everyone’s best friend! He can also be protective of his new human friends, so we think it would be a good idea if his new human family exposes him to as many people as they can, as often as they can once they bring him home.


Bud loves to have a toy with him and he will carry a toy in his mouth as long as you let him, he loves to bring them on his walks! He gets so attached to his toys, that he can be toy aggressive. So we think it would be best if he went to a home with older children. We have been working on his toy aggression and he has improved some, but we would encourage any adopter to continue working with him. Bud is fantastic with training! With a little time, you could teach him any trick your heart desires. We have worked with him on sit, stay, lay down, roll over, and he is learning to play dead. He does well on a leash with a no-pull harness, but he can become startled by loud buses or large groups of people approaching him while on his walks.  When this happens he just needs to be reminded that he is safe and changing the direction you are walking with him often helps.

Alley Cat Rescue pulled Bud from a high kill county shelter early last November where he was set to be euthanized the same day that he arrived. An Alley Cat Rescue staff member was at the shelter pulling cats off of death row and saw Bud and just had to intervene. She recognized that Bud was terrified of the shelter environment and deserved a chance; so she packed up Bud along with 5 cats into her car and got them to Alley Cat Rescue where they would all be given an endless amount of time to find their forever families.

                                                                  – – –

Both Bud and Diamond are spayed/neutered, up-to-date on all vaccines, and micro-chipped. And thanks to Kari’s generosity their adoption fees have been sponsored! There will be no fee to adopt Bud or Diamond. Check out Bud and Diamond’s profiles on Petfinder for more information on these two dogs or any of the other animals available for adoption from Alley Cat Rescue .

Bud and Diamond are really great dogs; we have just not been able to bring in people who are looking for dogs to our facility. We are happy to care for Bud and Diamond until they find their forever families, but they have been here for far too long and we want a better life for them. Please consider adopting or fostering Bud or Diamond. If you are not local to the DC/Maryland/Virginia area, that’s okay! We are willing to transport Bud and Diamond anywhere it takes to find them their forever families! We would also be happy to set them up with a foster caretaker and cover all food and medical expenses while they are under foster care. If you are not able to adopt or foster, please consider sharing their stories for us and help them find the forever families they have been waiting for. Help us make this holiday season their best ever!

Day Dreaming

August 2014

Sometimes, I catch myself gazing wistfully at the pups. I rewind the ticker-tape of my brain and pick up the most astounding threads of half-thinking. They usually go something like this…

Don’t you look so peaceful when you’re sleeping. Except when you kick my leg when you’re doing that grumbly, twitchy thing. What are you seeing? Are you dreaming? Are you reliving a memory?

IMG_0027.JPGI know you’ve been gazing at the corner of the room, watching something intently and mouthing off at it. I don’t see anything there. Are there ghosts I should be worried about?

photo 1

Why don’t you bark when we come home to you instead of barking at the outside when we’re in the house? Are you trying to protect us? You don’t have to. Except when I’m sleeping. You may bark to alert me then.

Taking turns licking the bottom of my right foot is making me uncomfortable. Switching to my left one isn’t any better.

Do you realize you’re flirting with your own reflection?

Is it weird to be jealous of your turnout? Because I am. No amount of stretching will help me; I know because I’ve tried.



Daddy doesn’t appreciate the gifts you leave in his shoes.  Especially when you freak out because you can’t find the toy you’ve left behind just moments after you left it… I’m not criticizing.  Out loud.



I don’t know when you became part cat and decided to drape yourself over the back of the couch.  I think it’s hysterical.  Don’t tell dad.



How about you all?  Any whimsical puzzles or observations cross your mind as you look at your furbabies?

Cabin Fever

January 2014

Well, it’s cold.  It’s winter and there’s snow and ice and salt and it’s cold.  Other than Zozo, no one is particularly interested in romping around outside in the bitter, biting air.

Unfortunately, between the chill and renovations in the house, there’s not a lot of room for the dogs to burn off energy.  Poor timing on our part.  Oops.

Sure, we’re getting our investment’s worth in our toys, including ones they’re usually not interested in, because now they’re new and exciting and something to do.  (This must be how my parents felt when my sister and I became restless during snow days:  Let’s play Risk!  Why not watch “Bedknobs and Broomsticks“? But I digress.)  MJ, though, will hoard them, leaving Zozo to retreat to one of his favorite flopping spots to sulk.

Mama, the little girl won't share!

Mama, the little girl won’t share!

We’re playing exploring games like “Go find the treat,” in which we hide biscuits and let the dogs hunt for them (“Find It!”). Sometimes we hide them in treat toys, but the pups tend to get too aggressive in their pursuit of the yummies.


We’re working on refreshing our trainings: SIT!

"Lady's first, Doodle," says MJ as she physically pushes Zo to the back of the treat line.

“Ladies first, Doodle,” says MJ as she physically pushes Zo to the back of the treat line.


We’re finding new ways to burn off steam, sort of.

We may or may not be tolerant and/or cooperative about snuggling to keep extra warm.

IMG_1074 IMG_1073


And no matter what, we’ve got two extra shadows stalking around behind us.

Whachoo doin' Mama?  Makin' a snack?

Whachoo doin’ Mama? Makin’ a snack?


-We like snacks very much Mama. Don’t forget about house rules!

But let’s be real.  We’re going stir-crazy.  We need something new.  Anyone have suggestions?


May 2013

We’ve finally had nice springtime weather after several days of gross, spritzy rain.  What a fantastic opportunity to run the pups  (and humans) around the yard to burn off some cabin-fever energy.

On May 6, I read a great blog post from celebripup Johnnie Cash’s fostermom, in which we were introduced to quite possibly the greatest yard toy ever imagined: the flirt pole. Our dogs like to run in circles and chase things.  We’ll try it!

James, being the handy hubby that he is, happened to have all of the ingredients (he called them materials) necessary to make our own.  Got some PVC? Rope? Fancy Duct Tape?  Puppy Lure?  You’ve got yourself the makings of a flirt pole.  He toiled long and hard in the garage (35 minutes!), surfacing with a pseudo-fishing rod taller than moi.

So, two dogs, two humans, and one flirt pole bounded out the back door and into the sunlight.  Here we go!

Attempt 1:  MJ saw a squirrel running along the fence.  Squirrels are far more interesting than Daddy today, so she’s off hunting.  Zozo is being a great boy, sitting and waiting to play…(pardon my giggles)

Attempt 2: The little girl catches on.  Zozo still hasn’t quite figured things out yet, but he sure is interested in the tennis ball at the end of the pole.  Again, stupid giggles.

Attempt 3: All in! And more giggles!

Ok, so my laugh is sort of annoying.  My bad.  But here’s what we learned:

1.  Zozo is singularly focused on tennis balls.

2.  Someone shorter than 6′ tall (ahem) may manage the flirt pole, but at the peril of being tackled by an 80lb Pupper-Doodle.  Thankfully, there is no video footage of this pummeling.

3.  MJ is an excellent jumper.  Maybe we’ll try a frisbee.

4. Easy and rather inexpensive to make, the flirt pole will keep even the most ADHD’d dog’s attention (unless there is a squirrel, naturally).

100% worth the effort.  I mean, who doesn’t enjoy a little flirting?



Things I Never Expected to Say

Furparenthood can be challenging.  You work on manners and good behavior.  You reinforce.  You spend a small fortune on treats and toys (which you know will be destroyed in minutes).  You adjust routines and plans and coordinate a fleet of people who can serve as willing back-ups when things get crazy.  You read and you listen and you attend training classes and vet appointments.  You go to play groups.  You make play dates. You think you’re prepared.

And then one evening over a very grown-up dinner of a brie wedge and leftover birthday cake, you hear yourself utter the following words:

“Stop licking your brother’s butt.”

And it’s all over.  In those five little words, you have humbled away years of acquired dignity in rescue-dog companionship.

You’re an educated person.  You like to learn from your mis-steps.  Perhaps you and your spouse can use this as an opportunity to reflect on some of the more outlandish things that have escaped your lips.  And so, we proudly bring you,

Stuff we say to our pups, or where have we gone wrong?

  • Stop humping your sister’s head.
  • Don’t eat his ear.
  • That’s not your food.  I’m not even sure what that is.
  • Thank you for burping in my face.  Twice.
  • The cat is not a chew toy.
  • Why are you green?
  • Stay.  Please, sit still for 15 seconds.
  • Your impression of a Dinosaur screaming is charming. 
  • I cannot feed you faster if you step on my feet.
  • Is that snot on your face, or were you licking your nose?
  • How in the world is that comfortable?


  • Why does your breath smell like poop?
  • Why do you smell like skunk?
  • Drop it. Dropitdropitdropit.
  • Don’t step on Dad’s squishy bits.
  • Don’t kick Mommy’s boob.
  • Armpits are not gourmet treats.
  • Must you race me up the stairs?
  • Must you race me down the stairs?
  • You’re barking at your own reflection.
  • You wouldn’t like it if I sneezed in your open mouth.
  • May I have some room on the couch, please?


Have you caught yourself saying anything “strange” to your furbabies?


Throwback Thursday: baby MJ

Things are a little hectic this week, but I couldn’t leave you without a helping of PB&Cheese!  Please enjoy this oldie-but-goodie, taken April 13, 2011. 

At the time this picture was taken, MJ had been with us for all of one week.  It feels like she’d doubled in size since she came home.  She’s very much a puppy… but more on that later!

I will sit still for 6 seconds.  After that, I make no promises.

I will sit still for 6 seconds. After that, I make no promises.

How I Handle My Newfound Celebri-pup-ness… or -hood… or… SQUIRREL

hi. this is zozo.

my mom has been writing some embarrassing things about me, and i asked her to give it a break and let me write something. of course, she’s typing for me because that’s one of her jobs. her other jobs include people-food-sharer, tennis-ball-thrower and snuggle-upper. she also keeps the kibble and medicine and hugs (when i get scared). dad does these things, too, plus we share a nightly spoonful of peabut-nutter and he picks up my poop in the dark. he wears a headlamp. it’s weird.

i thought i would start off my first post with a joke. i love jokes. i’m a comedy pup. here’s one of my favorites:

what’s brown and sticky?

think it over long and hard. what is brown? and? sticky?  here, you may look at this cute picture of me while you think about the answer.


Give up?


A STICK! get it?! it’s brown and it’s a stick, and sticks are brown and… you were thinking number 2s, weren’t you?  i’m a gentleman.

life here at the house is pretty great.  i have a bed and a cot and a couch and a cat.  well, the cat thinks she owns the place, but i know that i’m in charge.  there’s rawhide bones and bullysticks and toys and peabut-nutter and pizza crust and sunspots and good humans who love me even when i’m having a bad day.  there’s also a ninja squirrel, who is my arch nemesis.  i am also betrothed to chloe, who is an australian cattle dog.  she’s beautiful.

i know my mom and dad were worried about getting me– that maybe they weren’t home enough and it would be unfair or something.  but the truth is, we’ve all made it work.  sometimes i see dad more, sometimes mom.  sometimes they see more of me and the cat than each other.  but that’s ok.

know what would make it even better?  if they’d let me sleep on the bed.  i’m working on it, and i’ll keep you posted.

HA, another joke!  posted!  and this is a blog!

well i thought it was funny.

i’m off to nap.


sloppy kisses on your toes,

zozo bean f—–

or pupper,

pupper doo,

and doodle (if you’ve been reading)