Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely baby daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.
The Barking Lot is a regular weekly feature of this just in…Written by my lovely wife, Jennifer and me. It opens with the weekend dog walking forecast followed by the main blog from dog lover, Jennifer. Then it’s DOGS IN THE NEWS and our close. Enjoy!
THE WEEKEND DOG-WALKING FORECAST: We grade the weather outlook for taking your pet outdoors.
TODAY: Tough forecasting today. Rain and there could be lots of it depending where you are. Scattered thunderstorms. Chance of rain is 50%. Normal high of 79, but it looks like a wet Saturday. "C" If you can avoid those storms, "A"
SUNDAY: Mostly sunny. High of 71. "C'
MONDAY: Partly cloudy. High of only 64, far below normal. Won't feel like Labor Day. A decent d dog-walking day, but unseasonably cool... "D"
Here’s my lovely wife, Jennifer with this week’s main blog:
“Sunlight streams through window pane unto a spot on the floor, then I remember it's where you used to lie, but now you are no more. Our feet walk down a hall of carpet, and muted echoes sound, then I remember it's where your paws would joyously abound. But I'll take that vacant spot of floor and empty muted hall and lay them with the absent voice and unused dish along the wall. I'll wrap these treasured memorials in a blanket of my love and keep them for my best friend until we meet above.”
My niece posted this on her Facebook wall just this past Sunday. Her family made the heart-wrenching decision most pet owners eventually face, to have their precious dog Leia euthanized.
I have referenced our dog-in-law Leia many times in The Barking Lot. She was an incredible Yellow Lab whom I did not have the fortune to know as a puppy. I met her when she was around four years old, but even then she still had “puppy spunk.” She loved snatching treats from Uncle Kevin’s hand as much as he loved feeding her. My mother-in-law had a fear of dogs but loved Leia enough to cast it aside and would gingerly pet the top of her head with a couple fingers. I loved being around her even though I needed an extra antihistamine to get me through a visit. And even our sweet little Kyla enjoyed her short time with an extraordinary dog. Despite Leia’s growing list of aches and pains and “old lady tendencies” she never once flinched or snapped when Kyla wanted to pet her tail. She was just an amazing pet to the very end.
As her health deteriorated, my sister-in-law Bernie did everything she could to make her quality of life the best she could. Leia’s bed was moved from the basement family room up to Kari’s room so she wouldn’t have to climb steps. Greg, my brother-in-law, fashioned a ramp so that her arthritic hips would have an easier time going in and out of the house. They prepared food exclusively for her and the menu made ME want to join Leia for dinner! She ate dog bone treats that were specifically for joint problems and they actually seemed to help. If I were a believer in reincarnation, I would gladly come back as a dog in the Fischer household.
Upon learning about Leia’s last hours, Kevin adamantly stated, “This is why I NEVER want a dog. They are with you for a couple years and for WHAT???!!!” Well, we all grieve differently and my steadfast argument of “Because of all the joy they bring you in those years” was going to fall, once again, on deaf ears. Our battle over Fall vs. Summer preference pales in comparison to our opposing views of pet ownership.
When Kari and I were corresponding via Facebook about Leia, she commented to me, “Just think, she can play with Grandma now” meaning my MIL, Kari’s Grandma. I didn’t think twice about that, just simply agreed in my heart. I have always felt that our furry friends will be there to greet us “in the end” and certainly I’m not the only one who thinks our pets go to heaven. As there are no definitive answers about Heaven in any case, I will continue to believe that in some way, I will be joined by everyone in my family after this life.
Leia, you will be remembered with love. You were such a good girl. Wherever your doggy spirit is now, I know you are watching us with your beautiful hazel eyes and wagging your tail.
A Dog's Prayer
By Beth Norman Harris
Treat me kindly, my beloved master, for no heart in all the world is more grateful for kindness than the loving heart of me.
Do not break my spirit with a stick, for though I should lick your hand between the blows, your patience and understanding will more quickly teach me the things you would have me do.
Speak to me often, for your voice is the world's sweetest music, as you must know by the fierce wagging of my tail when your footsteps fall upon my waiting ear.
When it is cold and wet, please take me inside, for I am now a domesticated animal, no longer used to bitter elements.
And I ask no greater glory than the privilege of sitting at your feet beside the hearth.
Though had you no home, I would rather follow you through ice and snow than rest upon the softest pillow in the warmest home in all the land, for you are my god and I am your devoted worshiper.
Keep my pan filled with fresh water, for although I should not reproach you were it dry, I cannot tell you when I suffer thirst.
Feed me clean food, that I may stay well, to romp and play and do your bidding, to walk by your side, and stand ready, willing and able to protect you with my life should your life be in danger.
And, beloved master, should the great Master see fit to deprive me of my health or sight, do not turn me away from you.
Rather hold me gently in your arms as skilled hands grant me the merciful boon of eternal rest -- and I will leave you knowing with the last breath I drew, my fate was ever safest in your hands.
--- Jennifer Fischer
Time now for DOGS IN THE NEWS, canines that made headlines the past week.
We begin with a column based on the story last week about the dog that laid by the coffin of its soldier/owner.
As we often report, the news isn't always good. While she ate Chinese, her dog, left in a car, died.
Dog owner swipes her dogs from shelter during hurricane evacuation chaos.
Quite a comeback for a dog-killer.
Is tough guy actor Steven Seagal responsible for a dog's death?
Should a virtual dogfighting game be banned?
Puppy scam in
The nanny state targets dogs in bars.
Say goodbye to DogiPots.
Dog spotted living alone...you'll never guess where.
How much would you spend to save your pet?
Dogs are on the cutting edge of medicine.
Disaster preparedness plans should include pets.
Is your dog-walker cheating you?
A dog tries to help...a cat?
Happy ending: "He just kind of came out of nowhere."
What's the benefit of dog massages?
This one's just plain nice.
Was it Gordon Ryan or Jake Arnold?
THAT’S IT FOR DOGS IN THE NEWS.
NEXT…OUR DOG PHOTO(S) OF THE WEEK.
I wouldn't mess with Zzarr, a 6-year old Dutch Shepherd and K-9 handler US Army Sergeant Nathan Arriaga (partly hidden by Zzarr) of the US Forces Afghanistan K-9 unit, before leaving the Forward Operating Base Walton to patrol with 1st Battalion 67th Armoured Regiment, Task Force Dealers in the Arghandab district. Zzarr who has a rank of Staff Sergeant is a military working dog trained to detect bombs and improvised explosive devices (IED) and currently deployed in southern
And we close with our closing video. Please, tell a fellow dog lover about us. Your comments about Jennifer's very personal blog are most welcome.