Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Santa Barbara and Rose

We recently took in a little beach time in Santa Barbara, one of my favorite 
spots on Mother Earth, staying at the Flagship Motel 6 just a block from
East Beach.  Global climate change has altered the weather there, just
like here in Sonoma County and, well, every where on the planet.  Last
June and July Santa Barbara recorded temperatures the coolest ever
at that time of the year.  This year the rain fall there is 10” above the
average.  During our nine day stay we had sunshine, wind, clouds, fog 
and pouring rain during which we took in Woody Allen’s latest movie 
Midnight in Paris which we enjoyed.

And Rose has been gimpy, favoring her left rear hind leg.  She negotiated
the stairs up and down to get to our room.  However mostly she enjoyed 
viewing the beach from our bed.  As you can see from this picture the
view is spectacular.  She could see the pod of dolphins, hear the barking
seals, watch the sea gulls and skimmers flirt across the sand.  At first
the train whose tracks run quite close to the area of Santa Barbara and
whose noise was disturbing to her, but once she saw the train you
could see her filing the picture with the sound into her memory.

The Saturday Farm Market in Santa Barbara is a treat.  Many, many,
many local, small farmers bring their produce.  The younger generation
(can I really believe I am writing this?  no matter how true it is!)
of farmers are focusing on caring for the soil in the least toxic manner,
presenting absolutely gorgeous Italian heirloom artichokes, potatoes,
carrots and much, much more.
Tuesday evenings in Old Town, aka State Street, the event is repeated.
As we walked along looking and tasting, we were amazed at the
numbers of persons buying, eating and chatting.  The contrast to
the local farm markets in Sonoma County that we frequent is huge:
no what I call “doodad,” aka handmade goods, booths, no prepared
food booths with the exception of fresh baked breads and jams, just
a vast array of farm produce.

Breakfast on East Beach at the Carrillo Beach House is just a lovely way to experience 
beach life.  Rose was fascinated with the coming and goings of people, birds and other 
creatures of the water.

A walk along the bike path to the Bird Refuge was enjoyable.  Across the street is an unusual and fascinating sculpture made partly from pottery shards.

On the other end of the expanse of sand from East Beach is Ledbetter Beach with fabulously beautiful sandstone creations.

Tropical vegetation abounds everywhere amidst the Mediterranean architecture.
Flowering trees with and without leaves, bushes, vines present color and lightness,
all translating into feel good relaxation drawing visitors from across the globe.

Even exotic birds live on the beaches of Santa Barbara.  Here’s a couple of pictures Dwight took of these Skimmers, unfortunately on a foggy morning, on East Beach.

Upon returning to MuRefuge we were greeted by these sunny faced, flowering Tidy Tips which are native to Sonoma County vernal pools.
A few days after our return, Rose’s gimpyness became more pronounced
and she became unwilling? unable? to put that left back paw onto the ground 
nor to bear weight on that left rear leg.  A visit to Rose’s doctor revealed, much to 
the surprise and upset of her unsuspecting vet, a tumor on the head of her tibia,
the biggest bone from the hip to knee aka stifle.  A second opinion from a trusted 
radiologist confirm Rose’s doctor’s diagnosis of osteosarcoma.  

The good news:  no visible metastasis seen on further x-rays and completely 
normal results on a vast array of blood studies.
Rose’s doctor recommended amputation and chemotherapy.  For those of you who 
know me, the latter’s not an option for me nor my animals.  I have had previous 
and positive experience, however, with treating cancer with herbs.  This past 
Saturday Rose started her herbs and by Wednesday she showed signs of 
liver detoxification which is crucial for keeping cancer cells in check.  

Rose is scheduled to have her "gimpy" leg removed tomorrow morning, June 23.  
She is ready turn the page and move on in her life as a three-legged dog.  Recovery 
from this operation takes only 1-2 weeks for dogs. As we have discovered, there are 
many dogs out there who have had a similar malady living lives with only three legs.
So all of us here at MuRefuge have been preparing (using the web for researching 
and obtaining more information, consulting with Sandy, the interspecies communicator, 
numerous conversations and discussions with herbalists for organic herbs to keep in 
check the malignant cells in Rose’s body, cooking more easily digested food for Rose, 
identifying and instituting specific Flower Essences for Rose) for the loss of Rose’s
limb.  Rose’s Auntie T made a special trip from Point Reyes Station to BE with Rose, 
adding her lightness and positive outlook for a speedy recovery from the removal of 
her “cumbersome appendage”.  Her Auntie Vickie and Uncle Jason brought her a rose 
quartz heart to accompany her to the Animal Hospital as well as their comfort and love.

Rose's Auntie Fang and Auntie Petra are both sending loving and healing.  And Sandy
holds a place for Rose as she goes through the surgery and returns to her "amazing
life journey this time around." 

Dwight, Rose and I thank all of you for your incredibly loving support during this life
Rose’s doctor has been most supportive, loving and informative.  Rose just loves 
Nicole and all her employees at the Animal Hospital. We are trusting of optimal care 
for her so that one day soon she able to once again run at top speed on Dillon Beach.


with us


  1. Hi Cathie and Dwight,
    I will be thinking of Rose, and hoping for her quick recovery. We lost our Pepper last summer (only 7 years old). A lump we spotted on his leg we very fast moving. From diagnosis until he died was only a week! Sounds like Rose has better prognosis

  2. Very beautiful!! I really enjoyed your experiences! This continues to be a wonderful journey - always full of new chapters and many learning opportunities with you, Dwight and Rose!
    Thank you!
    Dr. Nicole