Overall productive week for us but never the less complicated. We've had car problems and one of our parrots had to be taken to a specialist in Vancouver (shout out to the Nighthawk Bird Hospital, the wonderful staff there and Dr. Anne McDonald who was simply amazing). Thankfully little Gin - the happiest of all sun conures - is doing considerably better. After two separate incidents, our vehicle seems to be doing much better as well (but we are still very annoyed with it). We can only hope that the emotional roller coaster that was this past week is mostly over. My brother has been playing catch up with his own work. Although he'd been planning to get in a blog post over the past weekend , I'll give him a bit of a break considering the stress he's endured with the vehicle and other things.
I was sitting on the couch this past Sunday, working on the computer, watching The Good Fight (amazing) and caught this wonderful little moment:
Notice the illustrious Lucy, slumbering away in the comfort of her doggy couch. I was struck by the beautiful juxtaposition of colours and shapes in our living room. The painting on the easel is the latest portrait Peter is working for a competition. It is a portrait of his best friend Bibi. She is positioned near another boxer, Nicki. It is a family portrait in every sense of the word. Nicki is Lucy's mama! Nicki is also rescue dog (who was rescued via a covert mission by the ever resourceful and brave Bibi). It is truly a lovely portrait, mostly complete, and heartwarming since we have the reach of another family touching ours so intimately. We never asked for Lucy. She was part of an unexpected litter. She stayed with us for two days and dug her way into our hearts, despite our many protests. As I'm sure you can tell, both mama Nicki and Lucy have a lot in common. Most striking is the sad expression they use to manipulate their humans. We have very obvious "goo" happening around the jowls. The "goo" face can also be attributed to a dog whose "lips are melting off" (I refer to a certain Portlandia episode when I mention this). It is a very serious affliction. It requires a great deal of care and attention. "Goo" face dogs are part of a category that includes St Bernards, Great Danes, bloodhounds, bulldogs and other similar breeds. "Goo" face is a big problems in the puppy community, in that they attract humans with their siren songs and distract them from doing any work.
Sidenote: Notice how our boxer doesn't have her ears or tail clipped. We disapprove of these sort of modifications. We know it happens, and it can be reportedly be done safely, but we don't see a point for it except vanity. Lucy has been fixed as well in order to prevent future baby "goo's" from happening (as lovely as that sounds). We strongly support curbing unnecessary breeding. Nicki has also been fixed since the last unexpected litter (so no more brother and sisters for Lucy).
I also thought I would touch on the subject of parrot ownership. Please take into careful consideration the fact that parrots are very difficult animals to take care of. They are incredibly routine based, become heavily attached to their humans, require a lot of stimulation such as toys and attention (as all animals do). They can easily become depressed if we fail on any of these points (including diet, housing and other factors). The current stats seem to indicate that a parrot will be re-housed 4 times within their lifetime. My smaller conures can live up to 25 years. I welcomed them into my life with the intention of giving them the best life. This is their forever home. I do a lot of research into diet and behavior. They are not decorations. They are not toys. Their job is not to talk for us or perform tricks (though yes, they can trained in a number of fun ways). They are lovely and complicated animals and they deserve a home that is deserving of them. In short: They deserve our time. There are a lot of bird adoption centres which we encourage people to frequent. Take the time to talk to bird experts and people who own birds (I'm sure they will be the first to say that it is a lot of work). We have a fantastic local BC shelter called Greyhaven. Look for similar centres in your area.
Having said all that, we'll get back into the discussion of illustrations during the next post. I guess I was in the mood to talk about animals....what can I say? They are a distraction. See you all later this week :)