Not the best time in the world for a basset hound town walk but let’s see what happens!

May 17th, 2012 - 7:07 am KY Time

Howllo Fellow Basset Hound and Walking Basset Hound Club Lovers.

At our last Autumn walk everyone agreed that a spring walk would be fun as well.  So, we are having having one!  This has been on the calendar for about 4 months and posted on our facebook page for about that long.



If you live withing 10 driving hours you should come!  (just kidding)  But really, if you know of anyone in our area that would like to meet and greet please forward this blog to them.  Or you can post this on your facebook wall.

Like I said, it will be up to Emma if I attend.  I never take my kids because of several reasons.  Well, never say never.  I took Emma to the first one and she was scared without Chaps.  Can’t blame her.  But for obvious reasons I don’t take Chaps aka Mr. Grumpster and Emma doesn’t do well without him.

So, I would be surprised if I can’t make it.  Grandma will be here to watch the kids.

I am going to think positive!

More hoping to walk with you later….Cat, Chaps and Emma

PS….if you live in the area please print the flier and post at various dog locations.  Slurp!

About 6 months ago I bought the June cover of Bugler the Basset Hound Magazine!

May 16th, 2012 - 7:07 pm KY Time

Howllo Fellow Basset Hound and Bugler Lovers….

Well, I am working on my deadline for the June cover and I had not decided on the picture until a few days ago.

I want to give the bassethoundtown residents a sneak peek!


I know most of you have seen this, her 8 year old birthday picture.  I also bought the inside cover and I am working on that right now.  I might work on it here but for now I just have the cover shot.  I love the Bugler and it’s founder, editor, publisher, copy writer, researcher, pooper scooper, and everything else that goes along with doing it all yourself – Riche Churchill!

I think it is perfect timing to showcase our Shimlette!

More loving bragging about Shim later….Cat, Chaps and Emma


Emma Wanda Rudert of is famous for the inspiration she brings to everyone who reads her blog. I am her Mom, Cat L. Rudert.  I have documented the journey of her life since before she was born  on April 21, 2004.  The cover photo is her 8 year old birthday picture.  Emma has had her birthday picture taken in front of our Cherry Tree every year.  This is her 1 year old birthday picture.


Emma has had many challenges in her life but has over come everyone of them.  Emma has been blind from primary closed angle glaucoma since age 2.  She has moved through our world with such dignity and purpose.


OK, I am back and had to tell everyone a funny.  Emma of course is on steroids so she is drinking a lot of water.  She always has but now, maybe a bit more.  I was petting her stomach area and telling her she looked like a camel when she lets out a loud burp.  I just burped my baby!  Too cute.  She is under her gully now.

OK now I am back to writing a bit more. (maybe I should have bought the entire June issue!)

Back to inside cover….

Emma Wanda Rudert is a true hound of the Internet generation.  Her life has been documented and photographed every paw step of the way.  She has shared her ups and her downs.  Nothing is off limits as we have our own reality show here in bassethoundtown.

Enter her co-host and reality bonded partner, Chaps Wayne Rudert.  What would she do without him?  Since the first day she went blind he helped her navigate her way. He actually wrapped his tail around her when she was about to hit this chair.


Just today in the park he ran to her side and bumped her in the direction he wanted to go in.  He knew it was where the new dog drinking fountain is. I see this bond every day.  It is a very special bond that a sighted hound has with a blind hound.  It is so touching to watch and learn from such a wonderful friendship.




More later…much more…


Thursday am May 17th

OK, I am back trying to write a few more lines.  My deadline is actually tomorrow.  Nothing like putting this off until the last minute.  I am usually always in the mood to write but we all know howl things have been around here lately.

getting back to the inside cover….

Emma was given her name by her Grandpa.  We were all racking our brains for a name and I had lists and lists.  My Mom and I really liked the name STAR! We presented it to Grandpa and he said, “absolutely not – it makes her sound like a stripper”!  I really don’t think I have ever laughed so hard in my life.  We were all rolling on the floor.  You know that kind of laugh that hurts?

Anyway, Grandpa comes home one day and announces “I have the name”!  Our eyes widen and I am on pins and needles.

Grandpa bellows the name “EMMA”!

“I love it” Emma it shall be.  Grandma agreed!  I asked Grandpa howl he came up with the story and he said that he was walking to the park and a young mother was calling her child.  The rest is history.

I wanted her name to be connected to her Mom, Dawn in some fashion so I came up with EARLY MORNING MISTY AIR.  I just love it. She is a fantastic connection I still have with my Dad.  Everyday he would come down to visit the kids (I have a 2 family) and Emma would jump and jump all over him collecting the crumb she could find on his shirt from lunch.  He also always had some treats in his pockets.


I picked Emma’s middle name which is Wanda.  It is Grandma’s middle name.  I love that name.  One little girl with so much meaning to her name.


more later….

The decision not to get a liver biopsy for Emma the basset hound

May 16th, 2012 - 6:06 pm KY Time

Howllo Fellow Basset Hound and Liver Lovers.  The title of this blog is a bit odd but I wanted others with similar questions to maybe find this posting on the internet.

Emma is doing good today and is on a course of steroids and liver antibiotics.  We know this is not a cure but we will see if it helps her eat and stay happy.

This post is long but I want to make sure I keep all of this together so I can remember what we did for Emma.

I made a decision a long time ago that I was not going to go the route that I went with Chloe and Lily at the ends of their lives with any other future hounds.  I made long shot bad decisions at a time of panic and not much thought.  I didn’t ask enough questions.  I didn’t do enough research.  I rushed along with the surgeons placing my babies in their hands.  From my experience the procedure or surgery is always pushed over the sometimes more obvious choice.

For both of my hounds (Chloe and Lily) it was surgery to biopsy this or remove that.  My decision was made in a panic situation and the vets were more than willing to rush into complicated and what I eventually found out, unnecessary procedures.  Both Chloe and Lily died on the surgical table.  The what ifs still swirl in my head but the lessons learned were invaluable. Do not be pressured into surgery.  Take a deep breath and figure out what is right for your hound and your family.  In most cases there is time to think things over.

So, when we took Emma in for her non invasive liver ultrasound we knew that we were not going to have any invasive procedures.  I just wanted to see what the condition of her liver looked like and see what the alternatives were to us.  I knew the first and fastest option suggested by the vet would be surgery or a biopsy.  Bingo! Enter the stern surgeon with the grave look on her face as she pontificates, all while looking down, and never at Emma…..

“she will need a liver biopsy before we can suggest any treatment. Her liver is lumpy and large.”

My Mom and I sat looking on, the doctor still looking down never touching Emma.

I asked,

“May I see the ultrasound images?” (knowing full well I was not going to get a liver biopsy).

The stern surgeon looked at me with disgust as if to imply with her manner, what the hell do you know about ultrasound images and what the hell are you questioning me for as she shuffled through the black and white grainy images that cost more than a life time supply of Milk Thistle.

I looked at the images and had no clue what they were. I paid for them and I wanted to see them.   The images of our Emma’s large lumpy liver were right there, in front of me.  I touched them and knew in that instant this woman would never touch my girl again. The nerve of this woman.  Who does she think she is?

She turned her steely eyes to mine….

“I can get her in for the biopsy tomorrow morning”, she rattled off, I could almost hear the adding machine tally in her head.

Did I dare ask another question?  I girded my loins and went for it!

“Hum, doctor?  What are the potential out comes of a liver biopsy?”

Dr. Biopsy turned on her heel and said, “Cancer for one!, the dog will need radiation therapy”. I heard more adding machine clicks but not a total, not yet.

*cough*, and in my head, I am thinking, I wonder why she thinks I would even do that. She has asked me ZERO questions about Emma, not a one.  She seemed miffed we were even in the room.  Talk about your absent bedside manner.

The whole thing was surreal and I knew right then that this woman was a hack.  A total money grubber. A real jerk.  But I wanted to be sure.

I tried to ask one more question which was at this point directed at her back as she was walking out the door. I felt like grabbing the back of her shirt and yanking her back in the room.

“Dr., is there any medicinal therapy we could try first?”  My voice echoing down the long hall towards the surgery suites…..

All I could feel was the rush of the air as the door was slamming in my face as Dr. Biopsy clicked and clacked down the hall saying, without looking at me, “No!”. I looked at my Mom and I said,

“Did that really just happen?”

Well, even thought I had made up my mind from previous experiences this confirmed every thing for me.  No way was Emma ever going to get a biopsy.  Again, Grandma and I both knew that going in but we were hopeful that something could be suggested other than major surgery.  Yes, a liver biopsy is major surgery.  The complications are real and many.  Do you think that was ever discussed with me? Never.  Dr. Biopsy did not even ask about Emma or why she was blind. She has clearly had surgeries before.  Nothing was even asked about howl she did as a surgical patient.

Emma is severely allergic to surgical scrub!  Who cares, “what’s your credit card number?”  was the much more important question as the assistants came filing in. “No food or water after midnight” one gal methodically announced.  “How will you be paying?” the next question came with ease. “You can drop her off at 8:00am”.  Keep in mind, I never said I was getting Emma a liver biopsy.

Come on!  Is it getting this bad? I called my vet in dis-belief.  I told him I was not getting the liver biopsy.  He said, “So, when are you getting it?”

So, fast forward until last Friday.  I take Emma in for her blood tests to see if the disease has progressed and howl much. I am worried because she is not eating. I want some suggestions. Surprise, surprise,  I am still being pressured to get the biopsy.  I emphatically state that I am not getting the biopsy and what else can be done?  The answer is “I won’t judge you for not getting the biopsy, let’s wait and see what the blood test reveals.”  Huh? He won’t judge me?

The blood test is about the same and I again ask for something that might help her eat and decrease the inflammation in the liver.  I know it is not a magic bullet but is there anything?


He said he will call the other internist and I insist that he does not call Dr. Biopsy. Can’t stand that woman.

I wait 2 days, nothing.  I finally go off the deep end.  Emma’s vet calls back and he starts off, and I kid you not, “Well, without the biopsy we really can’t do much diagnosing…. are you sure you don’t want to get the biopsy?”

At this point steam is coming out of my ears….

He goes on….

“I talked to the other internist and he said, that he would suggest the biopsy for Emma and he can’t really advise otherwise without it….”

Are you even kidding me?

He goes on….

“The internist is not suggesting this but now that I know you are not going to get the biopsy”….

(translation, now that the internist knows I am not going to cough up a grand in addition to the 500 for the ultrasound…)

“Let’s try a course of steroids and Metronidazole.”

Turns out, this is the same treatment that would have been suggested after a liver biopsy for someone that does not want the hail Mary alternatives such as radiation, transfusions or whatever else they have to offer that will send a chill so deep up your credit card it will crack.

Nothing and I repeat NOTHING was going to change after the liver biopsy for Emma and I firmly believe they all knew that.

Emma is now on her second dose and even just ate a little bit of dog food.  She is no longer shivering and actually had a wonderful walk to the park. She had a good potty and her tinkle was not reddish.

photo 5

We know that this is not a cure but it might buy us some time and her some comfort. She is even starting back on her Milk Thistle.  I have found a few canine liver sources on the internet that I will share if they work out.

I remember being one of those crying folks, rushed into a health care decision and then making the wrong one.  I know this is the right decision for our family.  Everyone has to figure out what is right for them.  Ask all the questions you want and don’t let anyone slam the door in your face.  I had already made up my mind before we went in that I was not doing anything surgical so to have Dr. Biopsy slam the door and walk away from us was just her showing her butt.  I wonder if she has ever heard of word of mouth? Situations like this used to be suffered in silence but not anymore.

I would put a third mortgage on my home if I thought it would buy Emma more years, it has never been about money to me.  It is about the time we have left with her and the quality of that time.

I think the best vets are great diagnosticians coupled with compassion. The very best add some holistic measures into their practice.

I am going to do right by my hounds and feel good about it.  I must thank Chloe and Lily for teaching me that lesson.  Amazing teachers they were.


More girding the loins later….Cat, Chaps and Emma

PS – thank you to the residents for standing with us and offering so many suggestions and support!  WOW!  Just amazing….

I want to update the residents on our Emma:(

May 14th, 2012 - 8:08 pm KY Time

Howllo Fellow Basset Hound and Emma Lovers…Well, we are all one of those!

Sigh…our Emma….sigh….

Herz is not doing too well. I wanted to wait a bit before I did this update.  Everyday you hope that things will turn around.  Believe us, we are still hopeful!

Her liver is in decline and her vet said that her liver disease is “progressing” after doing another blood test.

Grandma and I knew she was not doing well when she started to refuse food.  Not entirely, but she is entirely off of dog food.  She just won’t eat it so, she is getting whatever she will eat which surprising is basically Doritos.

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She turns her nose up at most everything else. She will take a few bites of turkey, pea soup, and tonight she had some chicken.  Not much of anything.

Her patty is now distended and has some fluid in it.

She really enjoys sitting in the sun.

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She is passing a bit of blood in her urine.

Her gums are slightly jaundice.

She now likes 3 blankets instead of one but is sleeping good.

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She is obsessed with her grandma and can’t get enough of her.

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Interestingly, she loves taking short walks and lays by the front door until I take her out.

She has never done that before.  It seems as if someone is calling her….

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Tomorrow and everyday we are walking as much as she wants and as many times as she wants.

Everything is off of our calendars.  Nothing but Emma, which is not very different than any other time but for example we cancelled all appointments this week.

She is not in pain at all.  We won’t let that happen.

More updates later…Love Cat, Chaps and Emma

PS – I still have not turned over April on the Sr. Hounds Abound Calendar yet.

Probably never will.

PPS – Chaps is confused but loving the change in diet.

PPPS – We are crushed.

Happy Mother’s Day to all residents of bassethoundtown! YES!

May 13th, 2012 - 10:10 am KY Time

Howllo Fellow Basset Hound and Mother’s Day Lovers….

Wow what would we do without Moms?

They carry us when we can’t make it….


They keep us warm and safe….


Moms even dream our dreams with us.


Ever present with arms open wide.


Have a wonderful Mother’s Day.

More Loving Moms Later…..Cat, Chaps and Emma

Wow, where have I been?

May 10th, 2012 - 8:08 pm KY Time

Howllo Fellow Basset Hound and where have I been lovers?….

Gosh, I have not been around in our town for a few days.  I have kind of been down in the dumps because Emma is not feeling well.  She is not eating that good and eating is what she lives for.  I will keep everyone posted. I know howl much everyone loves her.

Our girl was up and ready to deliver the fliers for the next Basset Hound Town Walking Club event!  She had a great time getting out.

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We dropped a batch of fliers off at Judy’s home!  She is the co-hostess for the 4th walking event!  Here is the flier…

Click the flier so you can read it.


If you want, you can print it off and post anywhere you want.  We would love to have all of the hounds in the Northern KY, Cincinnati area join us.

After we got home our BFF Janie came over with Pizza!  That will make anyone feel better.  Look at our Emma wagging her tail!  She loves her Aunt Janie!

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More walks and pizza later….Love, Cat, Chaps and Emma

Devoted a life to art – Red Bank’s Evelyn Leavens, 87, is still a work in progress

May 7th, 2012 - 5:05 am KY Time

Howllo Fellow Basset Hound and Evelyn Leavens Lovers.  Well, we here in Bassethoundtown have been fans of Evelyn’s for over a decade.  I first learned of Evelyn, and her work as a children’s book author back in 1995 or 1996ish.  I read an article in the BUGLER MAGAZINE.  I contacted her via a written letter.  I purchased a few pieces of her art.  We have been friends ever since. I was fascinated that she had written and illustrated a children’s book in the year I was born.  I had to know more.  Now, we e-mail almost every day.

A few days ago she had an art show.  Here is an article about it….enjoy…..Evelyn Leavens’ “Self Portrait.’’Evelyn Leavens’ “Self Portrait.’’ / Courtesy of the artist

Written by
Marie Maber


When: 1 to 7 p.m. Wednesdays, Thursdays and by appointment through May 17
Where: McKay Imaging Studio and Gallery, 12 Monmouth St., No. 202, Red Bank, New Jersey.

Info: 732-842-2272At 87 years old, Red Bank artist Evelyn Leavens revels in knowing that her entire life has been devoted to art. Proud of her age and her accomplishments, she encourages all to view what might be her final solo show.Leavens’ exhibition at Red Bank’s McKay Imaging is on view through May 17. Celebrated for her large, representational, realist and abstract works, her paintings are now exclusively nonobjective and small scale. Subject matter of figures, portraits and landscapes has been set aside. Leavens’ paintings now convey her spirit without illustrating her world — they command attention with paint strokes that burst with energy. “I have been doing nonobjective because abstract means it comes from something. It’s just coming from my brushes and my tools now. There aren’t any preconceived ideas — nothing. I use odd things to make the paintings. I use a broken spoon, for instance — my fingers, riggers — very fine brushes to make fine marks — anything broken or different to try to make an original mark,” she says.

An only child who never married, Leavens says her focus always has been on art.“I just recently stopped teaching, a year ago. hat was a big part of my life, my entire income. I was a teacher. I taught young people — teenagers — in my home,” she says. “For 45 years, six days a week, I taught figure modeling, figure painting, figure drawing, oil painting.”Gone are the days when Leavens’ energy could easily conquer a wall-size canvas. Today, her watercolors are easily carried under her arm. With these works, Leavens challenges her audience to come to terms with complete nonobjectivity.

“I feel that people will look at it with great reticence,’’ she says. “They may look at it a long time to try to figure it out. It may grow on them.’’

Her favorite painting on view is a watercolor, “Black Convergence.’’

“It’s the most exciting one. It’s the wildest one I’ve ever done. I love that one,” she said. She is curious as to how this new work will be received and wants to talk with her public and encourages people to sign the guest registry. For information about her life, awards, and exhibition history:
Here is my favorite section of her website…
End of article….
More loving Evelyn later….Cat, Chaps and Emma
For NJ Press Media

Welcome To My Orange Sunday….

May 6th, 2012 - 9:09 pm KY Time

Howllo Fellow Basset Hound and Orange Sunday Lovers….

This morning I was looking in my inventory closet.  I have so much basset stuff I want to put in my boutique, most of it I have had since 2006.

This little orange item made me smile.  Why in the world has this been hidden away for about 6 years?  I love it.

I actually recall buying it and the person calling it a cubist orange basset.

photo 1crying

I just fell in love with it but I always wondered, why the tears?

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This little darling is about the size of a cherry tomato.

Here is the classic basset butt…

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I brought orangeeeeee up to my kitchen while I squeezed some OJ for my Mom and I.

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Then I noticed the T-shirt I bought a few days ago laying on the dining room table. Orangeeeeeeee is there too.

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What is up with all of the orange?  For lunch I had an orange carbonated water and some cheese crackers.

More loving orange later…Cat, Chaps and Emma

PS – no way I am selling little orangeeeeeee.  Love that cutie!  I still wonder why orangeeeeeee is crying???

Howlin’ at the Super Moon – Tonight!

May 5th, 2012 - 9:09 pm KY Time

Howllo Fellow Basset Hound and Super Moon Lovers…

Tonight is some great moon viewing and don’t mean these kinds!

chaps and emma

OK, I just came in from taking a few picture of the super moon rising over the sky across the street.

I first saw it at about 9:00pm.

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Of course the Mayor was watching me watch the super moon!  He was in his super worry bed!

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One more shot of the whole super moon.  It was much better in person but I thought I would super share!

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More loving our super moon later….Cat, and the super kids, Chaps and Emma

You get the popcorn and I will pick the movie!

May 5th, 2012 - 7:07 pm KY Time

Howllo Fellow Basset Hound and Movie Night Lovers.

Back in the day the Mayor used to jump up on the couch and we would watch a movie. Now, he is laying at my feet and we are still going to watch a movie.


We are watching Earthquake on AMC.  Remember that one from the 1970s with Charleston Heston?

poster Earthquake Charlton Heston Ava Gardner  poster2

I remember seeing it in the theater and they had the shaking seats.  It was a hoot!

I made sure to tuck Emma into her pillow nest!

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Then I popped the corn.

Lots of extra butter…

Time to shake, rattle and roll with my dates….

More good movie picks later….Love, Cat, Chaps and Emma

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