Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Perfectly Goode: Full-time RVer and Artist Debbie Goode

Debbie Goode with Cosmo and Belle.
Photo provided by Debbie Goode.
On a recent visit to Colorado Springs, Colorado, Gene, Mac, Molly and I had the pleasure of staying at the Mountaindale Cabins and RV Resort. This 45-acre property is situated in the beautiful Pikes Peak region and we heartily recommend it for its beautifully maintained grounds, level campsites, helpful staff and nicely-sized dog play yard.

Almost immediately upon our arrival at Mountaindale, we had the additional pleasure of meeting our next door neighbors, Debbie and Bill Goode, of Lafayette, Indiana. These full-time RVers share quarters with two wire-haired fox terriers, Cosmo and Belle.  Debbie took note of our Mac and Molly and asked if she might photograph them. 

Photo provided by Debbie Goode.
I came to discover, through the chats that followed, that Debbie is a pet and wildlife artist – a marvelous one at that – and she deemed Mac and Molly good subjects for an artistic rendering.

In Episode 13, Debbie discusses her life as an artist and as a full-time RVer. What inspires her? What makes a good subject? As an artist, how does she see and how does she carry what she sees to her canvases? What is her process and why does she focus on pets and wildlife? All that and more in this episode of ON THE ROAD WITH MAC AND MOLLY.

Photo provided by Debbie Goode.

You can follow Debbie's process and see more of her work at 

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Threats to Pets in the American Southwest

Photo by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
In Episode 12 of ON THE ROAD WITH MAC AND MOLLY, I visit with San Antonio, Texas veterinarian Rae Dishinger, of the Alamo Dog and Cat Hospital, who introduces us to some of the “Threats to Pets” specific to the American Southwest.

As Gene and I have been moving about the country with Mac and Molly, we have had to be on guard against potential perils all along the way. Here, in the West, we’ve been on the look out for rattlers and copperheads, coyotes and bobcats, feral hogs and even birds of prey. 

On occasion, we’ve been too late to keep Mac from rolling in burro poop and to keep Molly from eating cow pies. We’ve had to have both of the dogs treated for kennel cough even though they’d been vaccinated against this respiratory illness in the east. We discovered that, just as there are numerous variants of human flu, there are many strains of kennel cough and you can’t vaccinate against them all.

Rae tells us what wild animals and toxic plants may be encountered in the Southwest and offers advice on dealing with climatic changes (particularly the intense heat and humidity in this part of the world). She also shares the story of how her own beloved dog succumbed to the bite of a rattler. One other surprising note: Lyme Disease, which is of such concern in the East, has now reared its ugly head in some parts of the Southwest.

In future episodes of this multi-part “Threats to Pets” series, which will be interspersed through shows on unrelated topics, I’ll be speaking with veterinarians in other regions of the country who will discuss ways to protect our pets from threats specific to each of those regions. As noted in the launch of the series, we’ll learn from these folks about external and internal parasites; infectious diseases; insects, wild animals; plants; toxins and poisons found in and around our homes and in various places we may visit while traveling on the road.

For more on our adventures as "Rubber Hobos," visit http://www.rubberhobos.com.