If I Won the Lottery (Golden Retriever Version)

A Word from The Bird

You might have noticed that my humans did not win the lottery. If they had, Tallulah and I would currently be with them in some beautiful remote location with absolutely no internet service. Alas, The Bee and I are still at home and left wondering what if. What if we, a couple of Golden Retrievers, had the only winning ticket for the $1.9 billion lottery? Tallulah gave me the assignment to write this post because I’m good at math. Let me show you:

the number of treats I want < the number of treats I get

So, let’s get started. After federal taxes (whatever that means), we would pocket a lump sum of $706,116,000. State taxes would also need to be taken out. That’s all kind of confusing, so let’s just round off to $706 million. I mean, what’s a few million among friends?

Obviously, we would want to buy some treats. Tallulah and I like Newman’s Own Peanut Butter Flavor treats. First of all, they’re yummy and 100% of the profits go to charity. They’re shaped like hearts and scored down the middle, so it’s easy for the humans to break them in half for us. A bag costs $5.29 (Chewy). If we spent all of our money on treats, we could buy more than 133 million bags of treats. We would share with our friends, of course.

We would also like to go to some obedience classes. Sounds crazy, but we have an ulterior motive. Do you have any idea how many treats you get during a one-hour obedience course? Ok, so it’s not 133 million bags worth, but it’s a lot. A package of classes at Petco costs about $150. That means that $706 million would buy more than 4 million obedience class packages. With that many classes, we might actually learn something.

If Tallulah and I were millionaires, we’d have to look good. Our grooming visits cost about $60, so $706 million would pay for 11,766,667 spa dates. I think that would make our groomer very happy.

We have a lot of toys, but toys are to dogs what shoes are to women: You can never have enough. A Google search told me that the average dog toy costs about $13.50. If Tallulah and I spent all of our lottery winnings on toys, we could buy 52,296,296 toys. We’d probably have to buy duplicates of some toys, because I doubt that there are that many different types of dog toys in all the world.

Tallulah and I would definitely need more beds. Between going to obedience classes and grooming appointments, playing with all of those toys, and eating all of those treats, we’d be exhausted. We really love our Best Friends by Sheri bed. It costs $84.99 (Chewy). (Let’s hope Mommy doesn’t read this because we’re pretty sure she forgot how much she spent on our bed, and she would lose her mind if she remembered.) We could buy 8,306,860 new beds with $706 million. That seems reasonable.

If Tallulah and I won the lottery, we would feel obligated to pay our own vet bills. According to the Internets, vet bills for dogs average $750 annually. Our $706 million would pay for 941,333 years of vet visits. That means that Tallulah and I would each be covered for another 470,667 years.

You know what? No one needs 133 million bags of treats, 4 million obedience class packages, 11,766,667 trips to the groomer, 52,296,296 toys, 8,306,860 beds, or 470,667 years of vet visits. Tallulah and I had a little talk, and we know exactly what we would have done if we won the lottery. We would have helped all the animals and all the humans all over the world who need so much help and who need to know that someone cares about them and wants them to have a better life. That’s exactly what Tallulah and I would have done with $706 million.

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Toy Introductions Day 30: The Ladybug Leaf

Birdie’s Back . . .

Yesterday Tallulah introduced you to her Busy Bee Honey Pot. Today I get to introduce the Ladybug Leaf. Do I look a little perplexed in this photo? I can explain that. The Ladybug Leaf was Harper Lee’s toy. It was a gift from her beau, whose name just happens to be Beau. Beau works with Miles at Geaux Fideaux Pet Accessories and Bandanas. Beau chose the Ladybug Leaf for Harper Lee because Miss Lee was always a lady. Until today, only Harper Lee was allowed to play with the Ladybug Leaf.

My human mommy had to explain how this works. I watched as she stuffed three little ladybugs into the leaf. She showed me the holes on either side of the leaf. Can you see how hard I was concentrating? Then she looked at me and said, “Get it, Birdie!”

Well, she didn’t have to tell me twice. As I pulled that first ladybug from the leaf, I was a little more cautious, slightly slower, and immensely gentler than Tallulah with her honey pot bumble bees. I’m pretty excited about having more opportunities to play with the Ladybug Leaf. I promise to take very good care of this very special toy because it was a gift to Harper Lee, and Harper Lee was very special too.


Toy Introductions Day 29: The Busy Bee Honey Pot

Tallulah’s Turn . . .

Allow me to state the obvious: This toy brings out the crazy in me. It’s a honey pot with three squeaky bumble bees inside. There are openings on either side of the honey pot that are the perfect size for a Golden Retriever snout to reach in and, well, retrieve those bees. Oh my gosh, I’m getting excited again just thinking about it.

This toy is made by the super clever people at ZippyPaws and was a gift to me from my handsome friend Miles who’s in management at Geaux Fideaux Pet Accessories and Bandanas. Miles gave me this great gift because 1) I’m The Bee and 2) I’m his honey. That’s right, boys, I’ve been spoken for by a Golden guy in management.

Back to the toy. The little bees are somewhat delicate (or maybe I’m more than somewhat rough with them; that’s probably it; I’ll admit it; I said this toy brought out the crazy in me, ok?), so they’ve undergone several surgeries at Squeaky Toy Hospital. They always make it back into the honey pot, though, and that makes me very happy because I love this toy.


Toy Introductions Day 26: Cathy the Caterpillar

Birdie’s Back . . .

I love spending time outside. I’m obsessed with lizards. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m better at the hunt than the actual catch. In fact, I have yet to catch a single lizard, but that doesn’t deter my enthusiasm. Maybe if the lizards were as big and slow as Cathy the Caterpillar, I’d stand a better chance. I’ve had Cathy since I was just a tiny puppy. Cathy came to our home with two speakers–one in her head and one all the way at the very opposite end–and some sort of internal crinkly stuff running the length of her body. The squeakers are now dead, and the crinkly stuff has somehow disappeared. Cathy has also been admitted to Squeaky Toy Hospital multiple times to have various injuries repaired. Most toy injuries can be blamed on Tallulah, but I think I may be at fault when it comes to Cathy. Mommy thinks it’s a miracle that Cathy still has her antennae. She should know that caterpillars have weak eyes, and the antennae are essential for guidance. I would never ever want to rip Cathy’s antennae off. Then she’d run into walls and stuff . . . if she ever decided to move on her own. Sometimes I wonder what Cathy would look like if she became a butterfly, but then I’m thankful that she’s never formed a chrysalis so she could spread her wings and fly away. She’s just stayed my Cathy the Caterpillar.


Toy Introductions Day 24: Daffy Duck

Birdie’s Back . . .

Did you miss me yesterday? Not only did Tallulah get an afternoon out on the town, but she also preempted my turn in the blogging rotation. That’s ok. I got to have some special one-on-one time with Daffy Duck. Until earlier this month, I didn’t even know Daffy Duck existed. He’d spent years in the Land of Forbidden Toys, thanks to Tallulah’s less-than-gentle way with toys in her younger days. Daffy’s out now, and I am completely obsessed with him.

Daffy is kind of a tall and skinny guy. I like to carry him around the house. Sometimes I step on him, which completely messes up my forward momentum. The humans are quite entertained by this. I’m just confused. Today, I got to carry Daffy outside. Mommy explained that this was very special and just for a photo shoot and that there are inside toys and outside toys and that Daffy is an inside toy. Whatever. I took advantage of the situation and convinced a lady walking on the sidewalk to play tug-of-war through the gate. I am so good at roping total strangers into playing with me as they walk by.

Carrying Daffy around and playing with him are both fun activities, but sometimes just snuggling with Daffy is the best. I’m so happy Daffy escaped from the Land of Forbidden Toys, and I plan on protecting him from Tallulah.


Toy Introductions Day 23: Out on the Town

Tallulah’s Turn, again . . .

I’m grabbing the blog spotlight two days in a row. I’m the senior dog now, which means I can do that if I want to. It also means that I can leave Birdie at home with all of our toys so that I can enjoy an afternoon out on the town with my humans.

We stopped into Miel, one of our neighborhood breweries. They brew fabulous beer (or so I’m told) and they have an outdoor space that was just perfect for today’s beautiful weather. My daddy enjoyed a sip or two before the humans feasted on lobster rolls from Joel’s Lobster Rolls. I have a tiny confession to make: I am obsessed with butter. Maybe it’s my Mississippi roots, I’m not sure, but I can smell butter from 100 feet away. In fact, the humans call me Butter Butt. It’s ok because it’s true. Anyway, I definitely smelled the butter, but I was a super good girl.

On the walk home from Miel, we stepped into Pete’s Out in the Cold, our neighborhood speakeasy. You ring a little bell to get in, and there’s a great pet-friendly patio in the back. A couple of the other patrons looked like they had been there for a while and that lady behind the outside bar seemed slightly creepy, but we had a great time. I’ll let Birdie get back to the toy introductions tomorrow, but today was a perfect day to get out with my humans and enjoy a couple of fun neighborhood spots.


Toy Introductions Day 22: Olivia the Octopus

Tallulah’s Turn . . .

Very early in our month of toys, I introduced you to Ollie the Octopus. Now it’s my pleasure to introduce Olivia the Octopus. Olivia was a gift from some very nice people at a children’s hospital where I used to be a therapy dog, before I retired and settled into a life of leisure. Olivia is a bit more fragile than Ollie. I must confess that I immediately ripped a few of her arms. Thankfully, they were not completely severed, and she underwent successful surgery at Squeaky Toy Hospital. I promise to be gentler in the future. Well, I at least promise to try to be gentler in the future. Now, I’m not normally one to gossip, but word in the toy basket is that Ollie and Olivia have a little something going on. You might say they’re entwined. Get it? With all those arms? I’m happy for them. Cheers to more toy basket romances, and cheers to a happy Saturday!


Toy Introductions Day 21: Carrot

Birdie’s Back . . .

Meet the biggest toy in our toy basket. Carrot has been with us since Easter 2021, but he almost didn’t get tossed into this crazy salad that I call “my family.” My human mommy went to PetSmart one day to pick up some necessities. She passed a huge display with a bunch of carrots. She was intrigued and looked closely at the carrots. The material was a little flimsy. I was only about four months old, and Tallulah was more of a toy ripper back then than she is now. Mommy decided that one of those carrots wouldn’t last more than a day in our house and she couldn’t justify the expense. Mommy’s cheap frugal and no fun sensible, so she picked up the necessities and walked out of PetSmart without a carrot. And then she just couldn’t forget about that carrot. Several days later, she returned to PetSmart to buy a carrot for us, but the huge display was gone. She was devastated. She wanted so badly for us to have a carrot. As she turned to walk out the door, she looked to her right. There, in a bin by the checkout, she saw them . . .

. . . and that’s how I ended up with Carrot on my first Easter. And, you know what? A year and a half later, Carrot’s still with us. He’s had some trips to Squeaky Toy Hospital, but he’s hanging in there. The Carrot experience taught Mommy a lesson: When you see a toy you think your dogs would really, really like, get it, because your dogs’ happiness is priceless.

P.S. When our mommy finally bought Carrot, she said to herself, “They’ll destroy this toy in a day, but they’re going to have so much fun . . . and it will be the best $5 I ever spent.” Yep, she hesitated to spend $5 on a dog toy. Told you she’s cheap frugal and no fun sensible. πŸ˜‰


Toy Introductions Day 20: Casper

Tallulah’s Turn . . .

Are things getting a little spooky where you live? Birdie and I are seeing lots of scary things on our walks lately: bats, witches, zombies, creepy pumpkin heads. Rex Skeleton has made his annual appearance at our courtyard table. He joins us for the month of October and sips on his beer day and night. He spends the rest of the year in a closet upstairs. So, yes, my humans do have at least one skeleton in their closet.

And this is Casper. Before you say, “What a basic name for a ghost toy. You couldn’t think of something more creative?” let me ask one question. What would you have named him? There are lots and lots of famous ghosts in history, literature, and movies, but only one friendly ghost–Casper. Look at the smile on this little guy’s face. He’s obviously friendly. Like most ghosts, he’s very quiet. (I resisted the urge to write, “He doesn’t say boo.” Haha. Get it?) He used to have some crinkly innards that ran the length of his body. Unfortunately, he went into the washing machine before a gaping rip on his side was repaired and his crinkly innards came out in the washer and disintegrated. At some point, someone also destroyed the squeaker in his head. Why are you looking at me? But Birdie and I sort of like the hauntingly silent type, so we’re happy to have Casper around to celebrate another Halloween with us.


Toy Introductions Day 19: Jughead and His Himalayan Yak Cheese Insert

Birdie’s Back . . .

Tallulah and I have only had one fight. It was a doozy, and it was over this guy, Jughead, and his Himalayan yak cheese insert. It happened this past Christmas. Santa brought three presents: some salmon treats for Harper Lee, Drago the Dragon for me, and Jughead for Tallulah. Obviously, in the spirit of Christmas, all the gifts were meant to be shared, but it didn’t quite work out that way. I walked over to Tallulah, and I stared at her. I was ready to share. She wasn’t. She stopped playing with Jughead, and she stared back. Our human mommy could see what was about to happen, but before she could stop us, it was on. Tallulah and I went after each other like, well, like sisters. If you’ve had a sister or you’ve been the parent of sisters, I think you know what I mean. Mommy grabbed Tallulah. Daddy grabbed me, and it was all they could do to separate us. When the dust settled, they noticed blood on Tallulah’s mouth where I’d bitten her. Fortunately, it wasn’t too bad, because no one wants to go to the emergency vet on Christmas morning.

That’s when Jughead disappeared . . . until today. I could barely contain my excitement as I posed for the photo shoot. While Tallulah was inside, I finally got to play with Jughead. He really is an excellent toy. He’s sturdy enough to stand up to an overachieving chewer like me, and that Himalayan yak cheese insert just might be the best thing I’ve ever tasted. Mommy has decided that Tallulah and I will get to have one-on-one playdates with Jughead. She’s even considering getting a second Jughead so we’ll each have our own, although she’s still not completely convinced that will work. What do you think? Could I play nicely with my Jughead while Tallulah plays nicely with her Jughead, avoiding another sister skirmish and bloody lip?