From bottoms to Botox & beyond … it’s all here

Tonight I felt like writing but didn’t feel like writing from somewhere deep within.  So, I put it out there to my lovely twitter friends and they came up with the following topics:  Love at first sight, wiping bums, dogs, botox, bottoms, kids farts, childhood nostalgia & raising boys.   I was going to go with the first suggestion I received, however as I received them all I thought I might write a blog post incorporating all of the suggested elements – a bit like a mystery box challenge from Masterchef.   So, here goes (and by the way this is real, not fiction).

You may or may not know that we have a dog.  He is a golden cocker spaniel and his name is Sammy.  He is gorgeous and I love him to bits.   In fact, when the boys and I saw him at the Pet Shop in August 2005, it was “love at first sight“.   Our hearts just melted.  When we asked to hold him, there was no turning back.  We had to have him.  However, we were yet to formulate a plan to convince the Man I Love that we needed a dog.  That we needed an $895 dog no less.  Not an easy task.   We took a photo and showed him often.  Five times a day, every day.  It was gruelling and at times demoralising.  He is Italian and stands his ground. We took him to the pet shop to cuddle the puppy.  He refused to hold him.  We gave him daily updates on the status of Sammy.  Out of desperation we named him already.  Wishful thinking. 

Four long weeks passed and we had taken almost daily visits to the pet shop to see our Sammy.  It was a good thing the Pet Shop was close to home.  Each time we went to the Pet Shop, our hearts in our mouths, hoping that Sammy would still be there.  He was.  This made us sad and happy at the same time.  On the fourth Saturday, Mr 18 (who was Mr 13 at the time) called us to say that he’d been to the pet shop with his dad and Sammy was still there and Sammy was so sad.  I told the Man I Love who replied with a sigh of resignation “go and get dressed we are going to the pet shop”.  Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee (could be heard all over Brisbane).  We had worn him down.  Finally.

Sammy came home with us on the 19th September 2005.  The boys were at their father’s place so they didn’t know we had bought Sammy.  That night they had to stop in to pick up something.  When they came into the lounge room Sammy walked out from under the coffee table.  The look of joy and surprise on those boys faces was priceless.  As I am writing this I have tears in my eyes.  Mr 16 (who was Mr 9) could not speak.  He almost wet his pants with excitement.  Seriously, he almost did.  The smile on his face stayed for weeks.  It made my heart sing with joy to see my boys so happy.


Something magical happened to our family when we got Sammy.  He took our blended family and made it one.  He became the common tie we all have.  My step daughters love him, the boys love him and we love him.  The boys and I have a different surname to the Man I Love and his daughters, so we have given Sammy a surname that combines both our names.   I love to see my step daughters and my sons interact with Sammy.  He is a loving, gentle dog and all of our children are gentle and loving souls.  He brings out the best in every one of us. 

The Man I Love will lie on the floor and cuddle him and you can visibly see the tension drain away from him.  

The boys will come home feral and hormonal, but as soon as they see Sammy they will lie on the floor or the lounge and cuddle him and become loving little boys again.  The girls come in and sit down on the floor and cuddle Sammy.  


He is much loved and the centre of our family.   If you love animals you will “get” this.  If you don’t, you may not.  A family dog can bring so much love and joy into a home.  I never imagined how much a pet would bundle up a blended family and make it whole.  It is amazing. 

Owning a pet does come with some responsibilities, it is not all hearts and flowers.  There are the serious aspects such as feeding, which you need to do daily, like the kids.   Exercise, ideally this should be done daily, like the kids (and the adults).  Fleas – even the cleanest of dogs can get fleas – it’s a bit like nits, only worse.  Kind of.  Blocked anal glands.  Yes you read that right.  The anal gland is, as you would expect, in the dog’s bottom.  It secretes mucus which coats the poo and makes it nice for other dogs to smell.   That is why dogs like to stop and smell each other’s poo.  I’ve never understood this before.  I don’t really understand it now.  Coat it with mucus, coat it with coconut – it is still poo and I wouldn’t want to stop and smell it!!  I didn’t say all aspects of owning a dog were nice!  Anyway, back to the blocked anal glands.  Some dogs have a problem and their anal glands don’t empty.  This causes the glands to swell because the mucus builds up.  We can tell when this happens because Sammy starts wiping his bum on the grass, carpet, concrete – any hard surface really.  We have to take him to the vet to have the glands squeezed.  Often.  That is all I am going say on this matter.

Another bonus that comes with owning a dog is you can blame him for all manner of bad smells in the house and the car.  I am not going to say whether or not I have blamed the dog on something I may or may not have done.  But what I can say is, the kids are very good at blaming the dog, particularly when we are all travelling in the Man I Love’s lovely luxury car and one of the boys will pass wind fart (sounds much better for boys).  This does not go down well with the Man I Love so we all blame Sammy.  He’s happy to take the rap.  Boys fart alot compared to girls and Sammy has come in very handy to cover up for the boys.  Thankfully the boys have better control over their bottoms these days!  But let me just say, teenage boys farts are NOT nice.  I often wonder “what in God’s name they have eaten to smell like that?”.  Some things are better not known.

A family pet, particularly a cat or a dog, can bring so much joy to everyone and plays a big part in raising boys.  It helps to teach them love and compassion.  They can often show tender emotions to a pet when they struggle to show them to another person.  Owning Sammy has enriched all of our lives and makes us all better people.  Sammy brings out the gentle side of my boys.  Last night Mr 16 came home, walked in, lied on the floor and cuddled Sammy and told him he loved him.  When he came in to kiss us hello he said “God I love that dog”.   This makes my day.  

The wonderful memories they will have of their life with Sammy will be something they will treasure.  They will look back nostalgically on their childhood and remember the love they both received and gave to Sammy.  As will I.  

The End.

PS.  I bet you are wondering about the BOTOX?   Me too.  I’ve wondered whether or not Botox would be a good option for me.  As I do with most things, I spent some time researching the benefits and pitfalls of Botox and have decided that I’m going to stay just as I am.  No matter how droopy, wrinkly or otherwise my face becomes – my family and my Sammy will always love me.   I’m guessing if I looked like this I might just give them all cause to “howl” (with laughter) as they walk out the door!  

Ladies you were once stunning – why did you do it?

 Photo credit:…

About Annieb25

A mum to 2 teenage boys, would be writer, thirsty for knowledge, Radio Solution solver on Radio 1116 4BC and so much more!!
This entry was posted in Family, Friendship, Healthy Living, My Boys, Parenting, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to From bottoms to Botox & beyond … it’s all here

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention From bottoms to Botox & beyond … it’s all here | Living Life as Me --

  2. *stands and applauds*
    I am in awe. What a fantastic post. I am not an animal lover and to be honest have never really ‘got it’, but your post FINALLY explained it to me. I get it. I really do. You have beautifully articulated what it means to have an extra, non-human member of your family. A little too much emphasis on the bottom wiping part, but hey, that was my fault.

  3. Katrina says:

    Hahaha! Nice post! I love your doggy, I am a crazy dog lady too and just love ’em. I have been thinking about Botox too… hahaha, but no thanks! Have a look at those scary faces!

  4. kass says:

    You just described my life. I was 20 before I had a dog at home who I loved. When I moved out and got married I had to have a “child”, and my pug Elvis came into our lives, followed six months later by a little girl Sunny. They are our children. Our home revolves around them, as do our sleeping patterns!! But they are the centre of my world (sorry hubby) and what makes me heart happy every day.

    Beautiful post.

  5. prospeter says:

    🙂 I’m now heading out to dinner on Friday night in San Fran reminiscing about my childhood Labby “Goldie” and our current “faithful’ Kayla. Thanks!.. Yes they do bring some magic back to a tough day. .. and Yes, You’re absolutely right about blaming them for those nasty odours that slip out from time to time. Thank Goodness they can’t talk aye!..

  6. a-m says:

    Oh after this post, I so want a dog. Your description, of how your pup has brought your family together, brought tears to my eyes… and he’s gorgeous too! A-M xx

  7. a-m says:

    PS After seeing what clostridium botulinum does in a petri dish at uni, I can’t believe people inject it into their faces. Not me, ever. A-M xx

  8. Maxabella says:

    I’m not especially a dog lover, but I want one now! This is such a beautiful post and has made me realise how important a family pet can be.

    As for the botox, you’re joking right? Please don’t go there!! I like to think that these things are ‘just for celebrities’, not because they’re special, but because the majority of them are pretty stupid.

  9. Beautiful words Annie. I agree with Kerri. Unbelievable the way you incorporated all those disparate themes so seamlessly! You’re a master! My son is begging us for a pet, we are holding off for now as we may relocate overseas for a year or two and don’t want the worry of what to do with a pet if that happens (because obviously they would have to come with us or we wouldn’t go!) I look forward to the day we can experience our own ‘love at first sight’ with our future dog and see that look on my kids’ faces. xx

  10. You writing is like hearing from an old friend – it goes perfectly with a cup of tea and a bikkie (or a bottle of red & a cheese plate when the sun goes down).

    With two small kids, I’m not yet ready for a dog (or even a goldfish for that matter), as quite rightly, they come with big responsibilities. I’ve got enough feeding and poo-tackling jobs already 🙂

    And mostly I love that your dog shares his name with the most gorgeous little boy in the world – my son 🙂

  11. Seraphim says:

    Annie your dog is simply so beautiful. I love him over the net. And this made me cry “He took our blended family and made it one.” That’s perfect. Beautiful post xoxo

  12. ali says:

    Love Love Loved it Annie!
    Esp the Dog part..i am a Dog Lover and im a true believer that every child needs a Dog (pet) and may i say he is just Gorgeous!!
    well written…
    You should do this again x

  13. Jane says:

    magic: your words and Sammy.

  14. I laughed through all this – great post!!

    I too have a cocker spaniel and they are a joy! I also have a choclate labrador who has the anal gland problem too! I say had because he grew out of it (he is now 6) – also we fed him processed bran with his dried biscuits – this was to make the poo swell a bit and therefore push the mucas out on its own. Seemed to do the trick and have you EVER smelled anything worse!!!

    Sorry to anyone reading this who is gagging at the moment but it’s a “I get it” kind of thing!!!

  15. Ms Dovic says:

    Here’s the deal. I just want to read that post over and over. And look at those piccies over and over. And then head to the nearest pets shop.

    2 q’s

    1. What sort of dog is he
    2. Do you think my kids (all under 6) are still to young – ie I should wait?

    Gonna drag my hubby over to read your post – he’s the only one holding us back at the mo.

    PS Such a clever clever post too!

  16. Great post, Annie!

    Oh, I love dogs. They are such special creatures.

  17. Lucy says:

    You have just made me want to go and smooch with our dog. (Perry. Aged 14. Fox Terrier. He is my first love.) Off to have a happy dog loving sniffle into his neck right now.

    Thank you for reminding me how vital dogs are in the whole family mix.

  18. I get every word of this post. Fluffy Pencil has brought a dimension to our lives I never thought possible. There were three of us and when Fluffy came home with us we became a family of four.

    Just as I could never imagine the love I would have for my own child, I could never imagine the love I would have for this dog.

    And Sammy is just gorgeous. Nearly as gorgeous as Fluffy Pencil xxx

  19. Agreeing with Kerri Sackville & Maxabella…even though I’ve not totally “gotten it” before, your post made sure that I do now!!

    Gorgeous post and beautiful dog. Thinking a pet might just help us with our boys…maybe as a celebration gift when we get to Brissie? 😉

  20. Thea says:

    Oh I LOVE this! You are so clever!
    I’ve never been a dog person, but Sammy melted my heart, too.
    Brilliant post. x

  21. Great post Annie. The Twitterverse requests and you deliver.

  22. Naomi says:

    Love this. We have always had dogs as part of our family, and last year said goodbye to our dear old dog. It was very hard. Miss9 did not sleep through the night again until we brought home a puppy some time later.
    Dogs/pets are such a big part of families lives, you write about it so beautifully.
    I’m off to pat my lovely dog.

  23. Bern Morley says:

    Amazing and those photos, oh my, Sammy really is the join that connects you all together.

    I too have to rally my husband for a pet. I think deep down he’s scared of how sad the goodbye is after farewelling pets as a child. I’ve convinced him you can’t live your life like that, better to have lost love than to have not loved at all….

    You have a great heart Miss Annie x

  24. I loved the idea of asking the Twitter universe and then writing as they suggested – and I still do!

  25. Maxabella says:

    Loved it the first time round, love it the second. x

  26. Trish says:

    Gorgeous post …Sammy makes me want to rush and buy new puppies for my little boys today.
    Our 13 yr pooch had to be put to sleep last December …*sob* we got him for Christmas when mr 17 was just 3 yrs old. Poor Patch survived that first day of being tossed joyfully in the air ….& barely caught , then was much loved.

  27. Lucy says:

    This time, as I read this, I have Perry under my desk, lickimg my (sweaty) toes.

    Thank you again, Annie.


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