Bon Voyage! Rescued Pets Movement Is Rollin’!February 20, 2015

Gorgeous animals. Kind people. Smart. Progressive. No bullshit. They love hard, so they hurt hard too. Here’s a glimpse of what Thursday mornings look like at the Rescued Pets Movement facility. Quite the story..

It’s Colorado transport day. 4 huge vans. A veterinarian. Organizers. Transporters. Countless fosters. A photographer. Drivers. Office managers. Assistants. Board members. They all show up because it takes all the parts of this primo engine to work. They all pull their weight. Because they know the alternative is that every single one of these animals would perish in the shelter. All 106 dogs and 15 cats.

There’s just no pretty way to say it. I know it’s hard to volunteer at the shelter. RPM is a great alternative. Their fosters keep dogs for a week or two in most cases prior to their transport. And it saves their lives. Please contact them via facebook or their website if you are interested in learning more about fostering or donating to their cause.

And remember these faces. You just might see them again here. Playing in the snow.

XO,

RA

robyn arouty-8462 robyn arouty-8477 robyn arouty-8482robyn arouty-8489 robyn arouty-8502 robyn arouty-8503 robyn arouty-8510 robyn arouty-8515 robyn arouty-8521 robyn arouty-8523 robyn arouty-8524 robyn arouty-8525robyn arouty-8536 robyn arouty-8548 robyn arouty-8553 robyn arouty-8561 robyn arouty-8564 robyn arouty-8565 robyn arouty-8575 robyn arouty-8582 robyn arouty-8588robyn arouty-8591 robyn arouty-8594 robyn arouty-8606 robyn arouty-8613 robyn arouty-8619 robyn arouty-8622 robyn arouty-8623 robyn arouty-8632 robyn arouty-8635robyn arouty-8647 robyn arouty-8650 robyn arouty-8656 robyn arouty-8658 robyn arouty-8662 robyn arouty-8667 robyn arouty-8676 robyn arouty-8681 robyn arouty-8686robyn arouty-8696 robyn arouty-8704 robyn arouty-8710 robyn arouty-8720 robyn arouty-8729 robyn arouty-8734 robyn arouty-8741 robyn arouty-8745 robyn arouty-8753robyn arouty-8763 robyn arouty-8770 robyn arouty-8778 robyn arouty-8783 robyn arouty-8786 robyn arouty-8791 robyn arouty-8796 robyn arouty-8797 robyn arouty-8798robyn arouty-8801 robyn arouty-8809 robyn arouty-8810 robyn arouty-8817 robyn arouty-8825 robyn arouty-8829 robyn arouty-8834 robyn arouty-8844 robyn arouty-8852robyn arouty-8853 robyn arouty-8854 robyn arouty-8858 robyn arouty-8864 robyn arouty-8868 robyn arouty-8873 robyn arouty-8875 robyn arouty-8880 robyn arouty-8883 robyn arouty-8884 robyn arouty-8885 robyn arouty-8889 robyn arouty-8892 robyn arouty-8895 robyn arouty-8898 robyn arouty-8908 robyn arouty-8916 robyn arouty-8917

The Story of Mr. Rio Bravo. He Was Just A Dog.February 3, 2015

_MG_7485-Edit-2 copybThe Story of Mr. Rio Bravo. He Was Just A Dog.

Just a dog.. of the young Anatolian Mastiff variety who, about 7 years ago, landed in a Georgia shelter where animals are killed to make room for others. They bounced him around from eager foster home to foster home. Despite his striking good looks, he was a huge wild child with no manners and apparently wore out his welcomes a little too quickly. Rio Bravo eventually caught the eyes of Denise & Dell Bryant, a retired couple in Houston, TX. They adopted him. Gave him the love, stability, and training that he needed. Enough to find his purpose.. & become a 150 pound certified therapy dog. (I took the photo above for an art installation at Memorial Hermann Hospital Medical Center in 2012 of the 19 therapy dogs & 1 cat who work in the hospital. I’ve been smitten with him ever since.)Lightroom (rio work.jpg and 14 others)

Just a dog.. who piloted an animal assisted therapy program for down syndrome & autistic children in Houston..of which the Kids Developmental Clinic’s program is based on today. Who worked weekly all these years assisting literally 1000’s of people and children to heal. “I can’t tell you how many stories there are. One time we were visiting a young child who had been in a coma. He laid his head gently on the child’s arm. It didn’t take long. First the fingers moved. And then his little toes. Then he woke up. It was amazing. But that’s just the power of Rio Bravo.” (Most of the photos above were taken by Rio’s proud Daddy Dell Bryant)._MG_7295_MG_7306 _MG_7496

Just a dog.. who dressed in silly costumes to do his work. Because it made people smile. Even when he got sick. And he was very sick. Aggressive bone cancer in his leg sick. He did his therapy work as scheduled on January 16th. His parents were so proud. Unbeknownst to them, it would be his last tour of duty. Helping heal the patients at Memorial Hermann Hospital’s Outpatient Cancer Center. Funny how life works, isn’t it?_MG_7490 4_MG_7364

Just a dog.. who “spoke” on command, but never barked for just no reason to his parents even though it is a common characteristic of the breed. He spoke to them a lot the last few days. Let them know it was time.. But maybe they needed one more sign.. It came in gorgeous rainbow colors of light soon after I arrived this morning.Untitled-1Untitled-2

And then, as planned, Denise & Dell said goodbye to Rio Bravo tonite. Even though their hearts are broken, the Bryant’s are so grateful for all their blessings by way of Rio Bravo & they so appreciate all their friends & those who loved him so. Just a dignified doctor, healer, counselor, soldier. Just a big brave guy with a gentle soul who did so much living & inspiring & kicking ass in his short time here. Popular on foot. No interwebs needed. Just a legend. Just my friend. I love you Rio Bravo. ‘Til we meet again..6

XO,

RA

_MG_7522

Donations in memory of Rio Bravo can be made to the following charities that mean so much to his family:

National Anatolian Shepherd Rescue Network

FAITHFUL PAWS Pet Therapy of Houston, Texas

Rio singing along with the band on the visit to Memorial Hermann Hospital. Dell said the band had a hard time keeping a straight face.

Dear Maximus.January 23, 2015

_MG_9646-Edit

Dear Maximus,

My face is wet tonite. Not the normal kind of wet, though. Like when you watch a super sad movie. No, not like that. I feel happy. But not the type of happy like when you’re getting handed that big fat Lotto check or something. For sure some tiny speckles are on the inside of my eyeglass lenses. So I know it’s real. And it’s about you..

From prehistoric-mini-dinosaur-monster-looking-dude, to unbelievably gorgeous exotic beast, I marveled at your every valiant healing step. From foster home to permanent home, you lived well and loved even better. Each person you met since August experienced your wisdom and presence in seriously profound ways. I tried to be a good gladiator-in-training student too. Here’s what I learned from you Sweet Maximus..

1. Know when to battle & know when to surrender. Be brave for both.

2. Be kind. Even when you’re losing.

3. Feeling vulnerable doesn’t suck so bad. There are worse things.

4. Live large. And with a purpose in mind.

5. Fight for what’s right. Ok, I knew that one already. But you really drove it home.

6. If you love the one who’s in front of you, make sure they know it by the look on your face.

7. Do your job really well. It matters to more people than you realize.

8. Inhale the good stuff. Every day. Love heals and strengthens all things.

9. Honor your angels. They chose you for a reason.

10. Teach only to students who are ready and willing to learn. It’s energy well spent.

11. Ask for help. Make it really known that you need it. Even if you have to look like a prehistoric-mini-dinosaur-monster-looking-dude.

12. Be humble.

13. A safe and peaceful home is everything.

14. Be a gracious houseguest.

15. Make the best use of your time. Come in with a bang and go out the same way.

16. Know your value. Appreciate when others know it too.

17. Let them see you shine.

18. Be scared. And do all of the above anyway.

So, about the wet on my face. Thinking it’s my soul talking. You hugged it in the coolest ways and it cries tonite in your honor and memory. Sleep well. Thank you. ’Til we meet again..

XO,

RA

My Name is Maximus Decimus Martinez. Part One.

My Name is Maximus Decimus Martinez. Part Two.

State of the Union Super Bowl 2015 Sorry For The Wait 2 WTF.January 21, 2015

annie-leibovitz-john-lennon-yoko-ono1

Before facebook et social media al.. I wasn’t sensory overloaded. Didn’t care to understand the every finite move of 1000’s of strangers. Was ok with not being able to know the news headlines & whose bootie was biggest that day every second. Tickers and scrolling and trending, oh my.

I cared that we were friends because we both really earned it. And those friends sought help from real professionals when they felt down instead of blindsidedly pouring their yuck energy over the rest of us. But we chose it. WTF is IT anyway? And who the fuck made up all the abbreviations?

24-7. All knowing and watching and filling our heads with bootieloads of information. Useful? Useless? Before it was just Big Brother watching us. Now it’s Google and Amazon and a million more because they can and we let them and everything is upgraded and upscaled like the rotary phone never needed to be and we buy the shit and feel better and smarter and prettier and faster and more successful and loved and the selfie proves it and the LIKES prove it even more and it’s so exhausting that there is no word I know of that describes the angst and resentment and despair I feel longing for those days none of this shit mattered and you almost always knew the story was true cuz you heard it firsthand and not 32,456th hand.

What’s next? We turn into computers? Fuck. Too late. Cuz I already feel like a robot. Trying to communicate with a bunch of other robot computers. Each on their personal version of an operating system. Not compatible with mine and yours. Wires crossing in the clouds. Interpersonal my ass. Mary J had no idea about the drama that was to come.

No need to pray anymore. All your most important life questions can be answered by The Google God. There’s a Top 17 Reasons..blah, blah article for whatever your heart desires, sweetheart, and you will believe it cuz it glows from the slick screen into your eyeballs and then brain cells and it’s just all so shiny and what was that really important life question that mattered so much to me 9 minutes ago, again??

Maybe I’ve just been amazed too many times. Emotionally rollercoastered by the minute. My fingertips are magic now. For most of my life they were only good for turning pages. And even then they needed a little lick to work that corner of the paper right. I can travel the world and back with them now. In no time. Crazy and amazing. But not sure my robot can care about this much stuff.

When is it enuf? Too much? I want to hold a big vinyl record or a paper photo & cherish it like it was meant to be at the time it was created. Really important stuff. Not take it for granted because there are a bajillion more digital whatevers being spit out at that very same second. By every Jones and Harry and Dick. Of mostly little substance. That I’m trying to top so I will be more loved tomorrow. So I can fill that mystery space that’s empty. So WTF.?!

HFD Rescues Tiny Maltipoo Dog Trapped 48 Hours by Robyn AroutyDecember 28, 2014

HFD Rescues Tiny Maltipoo Dog Trapped 48 Hours by Robyn AroutyWas sitting at iHop this morning, waiting for my friend Teresa from Lone Star Shih Tzu & Lhasa Apso Rescue who was running a little late, when she called to say she got caught on the phone trying to find a foundation or excavation team to come out to Memorial where a little 9 pound maltipoo dog was stuck under a house since Friday.

After she arrived, she said that Adele of Houston Miniature Schnauzer Rescue had got in contact with Captain Langston from the Houston Fire Department Technical Rescue & they were on their way to the house with a team. So we headed that way too..

Wow, those guys totally kicked ass! It took several dog lovers contacting each other through social media to make this all happen. It was cold & this dog is tiny. There was no heavy equipment; it was all done by hand. And did I mention that the homeowners whose sunporch was being torn up were out of town?

The home is on a hill & there was an intricate concrete & beam structure below which created a maze of sorts. They had no idea how the dog got under there or where he was exactly, but they heard his cries.

They removed parts of the deck as needed.

They used a snake with a camera on the end of it to look for Onyx.

Channel 2 News was there to capture it all.

There were plumbers there digging from the other side of the house also.

They kept bringing in containers to haul off all the dirt & leaves they dug out from under the house. Then he said the cries were getting louder.

It was like watching a live birth, I swear.. There was Onyx! And he handed him up to the rescuer above!

Mama was thrilled & they ran him directly over to Gulf Coast Veterinary Specialists.

Last report is he was back home with only some eye irritation from the dirt. Great job everyone!

robyn arouty-

Update:  Video of the rescue courtesy of Teresa below!