Saturday, October 10, 2009

Human Food for Pets

Dr. Karen Becker's video is "Spot" on with my way of thinking.

I have been feeding my dog, Lucy, a 100% whole food, human diet for a number of years now. She is thriving on it. No more yeasty/gooey ears, hair loss, red spots on her belly or diarrhea. Instead she is a shiny-coated, energetic fur ball of fun!

Her diet consists of organic protein and produce. She eats the pulp when I juice wheat grass and other greens, cabbage, carrots, yellow and red SWEET apples such as Delicious, Fuji or Gala.

For a snack, Lucy will gobble up a sliced apple or banana (with a bit of peanut butter or coconut or coconut milk). She has a bottomless tummy for blueberries too!

Lucy's favorite veggies are green beans and sugar snap peas. I give her a handful of them in their whole form to whet her appetite, which ALWAYS seems to be in "more food please" mode, and puree the rest for better absorption and easier digestion. "Yummy!", she says.

I NEVER feed Lucy any of the following foods due to the potential of poisoning, even to the point of killing her: grapes, raisins, chocolate, onions, leeks, chives, garlic, citrus, tomatoes, macadamia nuts, avocados, rising bread dough, corn cobs, chewing gum, products containing xylitol, processed foods.

I do not feed her grains either--oats, wheat, bread, pasta, etc. They convert to sugar which spikes insulin production producing gas, diabetes and an overweight pooch.

Each and every night before bedtime, I brush Lucy's teeth with an electric toothbrush topped with a little bit of baking soda. She has beautiful pearly whites and awakes anew in anticipation of her next homemade meal!

Monday, September 21, 2009

BOOK: Food Pets Die For by Ann N. Martin

I located this comment on a social networking thread regarding the above video: "The woman is full of baloney!"

My response: NOT! Read her book, Food Pets Die For (Ann N. Martin). She worked for a pet food manufacturer in the past. There are some brands of pet foods she recommends in her book that are "cleaner" than others.

Also, if you watch the show "Dirty Jobs", Mike Rowe does a piece on an animal rendering facility where he picks up dead, diseased farm animals. It shows the DISEASED animal being processed for animal feed.

I don't believe there is much nutrition after grains and dead animal remains have been baked to a hard nugget. Same goes for eating the same food day after day. Remember the saying "You are what you eat?" The fuel our pets eat determines the outcome of their lives. Why not give them a higher quality meal to extend their life expectancy?

I don't feed my dog PROCESSED foods. She eats whole human food. Her allergies went away from a cleaner diet.

If you haven't tried an unprocessed whole diet for your pet, don't knock it 'til you've tried it. You have nothing to compare it to without trying it. That being said you have to know what foods to and not to feed your pet.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Vegan or Non-Vegan, Plant A Row for the Hungry

My vegan friend, Kerrie, wrote this post in her blog, A Peas of My Mind, on Monday, September 14, 2009:

Define irony

One of the most aggressive, opinionate and judgemental (dare I say fanatical?) vegans I know online has posted this as a FB status:

"It's sad that as someone who thinks veganism should be our moral baseline, I can't even suggest this idea without being labeled fanatical."

It was hard to resist pointing out that they, themselves, are part of the problem and that I have personally witnessed this person attacking, in a very stabby way (yes, that is the word of the day) people who don't agree or have issue with the aggressiveness of some vegans.

My reply: "I don't think it is sad. I think the mentality and actions of many vegans have made it so. The 'fanatical' label didn't create itself... someone earned it on behalf of all of us."

So thanks, fellow human in compassion, for making a bed that we all have to lie in and then complaining about the unsavory conditions.


I tried commenting on Kerri's post. Unfortunately, I'd press "post comment" and poof! it was gone. Here are my comments:

Greetings Kerri,

I was following E.C. on two social networking sites to learn about the vegan lifestyle. Needless to say his posts were insulting to me, a non-vegan. I wrote back several times indicating his attitude was pompas, self-righteous, judgmental, and fanatical. And yes, I even compared him to a religious zealot. I understand passion; however he is out-of-bounds; overly aggressive and disrespectful towards non-vegans.

This man is openly gay and asked me up front if I had issues with it. I don’t. People cannot help the way they are born. He talks about discrimination and intolerance towards the gay community and yet, treats non-vegans the same way. Irony defined! (see title) Well, not really, he’s doing what he was taught. Eventually, I grew tired of his abusive comments and removed him from my lists.

I have vegan friends, like you, Kerrie, who are great examples of veganism (Is that a word?) by living their lifestyles without passing judgment on non-vegans. When the subject arises we talk about it knowing we cannot change the other person. People change at their own will and terms.

Even though I am not vegan, I enjoy sharing fresh juicing and other raw food recipes with vegans. We all have the same commonality: food--plain and simple. It is my goal for all of us to band together peacefully and focus on growing fresh organic produce by planting a row for the hungry rather than snubbing our noses at others for being different.

We do not live in a “one-size-fits-all” society. That would be boring! By coming together for the betterment of society in a program such as Plant a Row for the Hungry, we can end hunger and promote tolerance.

Plant a Row for the Hungry is a nationwide program. I participate locally. Lucy loves it when I come home with a piece of blemished produce that was not quite up to par to donate.

(Lucy eating a green bean, one of her favorite veggies)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

PROJECT: A Million Little Pictures

During the summer of 2009, one thousand artists from around the world documented their lives in 24 frames using a disposable camera.

On September 25th, 2009, an exhibition housing over 24,000 photographs will be constructed to take you on an adventure through the lives of these artists at:

Art House Gallery
309 Peters Street
Atlanta, GA 30313

On January 10th, 2010, a second exhibition is scheduled from 5-10pm at:

111 Minna Gallery
111 Minna Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
(liquor laws require you must be at least 21 years of age to enter the venue)

I was really excited to participate in this project. Upon taking my camera in for development, I learned the film in it was bad. Ugh, there were some hip photos on that roll!

Okay, so I made lemonade from my lemons by taking from my computer stash. Click on the photos to enlarge them. If you have any questions, give me a shout.

(self portrait for graphic arts course)

("Who Farted?" front)

(Vail Village, CO)

("Catching 'rays")

(Ivana Hump-a-Lot Susan & Swinger Steve--Halloween)

(My art @ Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta Airport)

("Indian Corn")

(Lucy sitting on chair)

(1st Place Watercolor Painting Award)

(Sardi's Restaurant, NY city, "Shortstop", 1st Place Watercolor)

("Mummy Dearest", 1st Place Printmaking)

("Reigning Cats and Dogs")

(Baby Lucy)

("Fur-ever Friends" exhibit, Sandy Springs, GA)


(Teton's final resting place among the poppy flowers)

("Ginger"--Wanted: Domestic Fairy Godmother)

(My studio)

(Steve & Lucy)

("Jade"--In Search of Chocolate)

(The Cheesecake Factory, Cumberland Mall)

(Betty Ford Alpine Gardens, Vail, CO)

("Come Fly with Me")

(Lucy's birthday 2008)

Above images copyright Susan Calvert, all rights reserved

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Puppy Mill Owner Setenced to Jail

By Marla Pretty, Lake Oconee News

Eatonton, GA -- More than a year after Putman County Sheriff's Deputies closed a puppy mill along Reid Drive, its owner-operator has been sentenced to jail time.

Barry Davis was sentenced Tuesday to one year in jail and nine years of probation on 12 counts of misdemeanor cruelty to animals in connection with his July 2008 arrest.

According to Putnam Count Sheriff Howard Sills, Davis will serve the entire sentence in the Putman Count Jail. He is required to pay restitution of more than $4,000 to Putnam County for the care of more than 180 puppies, as well as court fines and fees. Once out of jail, he will be required to work 40 hours of community service.

Detectives, state Department of Agriculture specialists and a local veterinarian, showed up on Davis' property July 16, 2008, after complaints from neighbors about dogs barking. They found scores of animals sitting in stacked cages in a small building behind Davis' home.

PCSO Detective Tracey Bowen said more than 30 of the animals were in need of immediate medical care.

"The conditions of this place were horrible." Bowen said. The farther we go into the mess, the worse the animals conditions were. They were stacked up on top of each other in metal cages."

Davis told officials he purchased the dogs from a breeder in the Savannah area. Bowen said most of the puppies were not up-to-date on inoculation or rabies vaccinations and had heart worms.

Within two weeks, the puppies, including Chihuahuas, Yorkies, Shitzus, Pugs, and Poodles, brought into Putnam County Animal Control for evaluation were cleared and sent to local humane society groups to be adopted out. None of the animals were euthanized. However, two puppies died shortly after leaving - one of a congenital problem and the second from infection.


Humane Association of Georgia, Inc.
A statewide coalition of humane societies, animal control and rescue groups and individuals.

HAGA is known for the Animal Protection Act of 2000 that makes some acts of animal cruelty a felony and the Dog and Cat Sterilization License Plates that and the Dog and Cat Tax Check Off to fund statewide spay/neuter projects.

Our formation allowed Georgia to be the first state by law to allow animals in disaster shelter. We were formed to support good animal legislation, provide education about good animal stewardship and help animals in times of disaster. HAGA is a member of the Georgia Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster.

Please join the Humane Association of Georgia. Our membership fee is $25.00 per year. Donations are appreciated. Please make your check out to Humane Association of Georgia, Inc. and mail to the address above. Please let us know if you or anyone you know would like to be added to our email alert list about animal issues,

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The (completed) 10,000 (people interpret one word) Project

Earlier this year, I signed up to participate in The 10,000 Project hosted by the Art House Coop. My project is now complete. Yippee, another one bites the dust!

The word given to all participants to interpret was "chair". I had so many ideas rolling around in my mind. Ultimately, I selected that warm, fuzzy feeling where my passion lies: Lucy-dog. Yes, she rides again!!!

My submission for The 10,000 Project is entitled "Chair Trilogy"--three pictures of Lucy on my patio furniture.

(click on photo to enlarge)

I picked Lucy up and carefully placed her on each chair. She stared at me with those big brown eyes saying: "Mom, are we done yet? Okay, I will pose for food."

Back to that warm, fuzzy feeling... It's all over the house--Lucy and her fur! I love my puppy dog and wouldn't change a thing including her black fluffs of fur adhering to the legs of all my chairs.

PS: You and your family are invited to attend the exhibition of The 10,000 Project on Friday, December 11, 2009, from 7-10pm at the:

Art House Gallery
309 Peters Street
Atlanta, GA 30313

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

When it Comes to Vaccinating Your Pet, Less is More

If you are a pet guardian, please click on this article below and read/listen:

When it Comes to Vaccinating Your Pet, Less is More

I have been getting titers done for Lucy since after her core puppy shots. In GA, rabies is a mandatory vaccine. Unfortunately, I have to do it even though her titers are well within the limits. I board her when we are away & it is required @ all facilities. Sadly, I have not located one place that honors the titers even though they know about them from being vaccinated themselves. Too bad, money over rules our pets health!!!!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The (Completed) Canvas Project, Volume 2, Part 2

It's official! The Art House Coop sent notification they received my 5 paintings for participation in The Canvas Project, Volume 2.

For this project, I received 5 @ 3x3" canvases with 5 randomly selected user-generated words to interpret as I deem fit with my art. At least one of my canvases will be published in a book entitled "The Art House Encyclopedia VOL. 1" and one canvas will be on display at the Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

The goal of the exhibition was to create a visual encyclopedia using mini canvases from artists from all over the world. The project closed on July 1, 2009 with over 1100 participating artists.

The exhibition locations & dates will be as follows:

July 31 - September 4, 2009
Atlanta Airport Atrium Gallery
6000 North Terminal Parkway
Atlanta, GA 30320

September 25, 2009 (Opening)
Art House Gallery
309 Peters St
Atlanta, GA 30313

My 5 words were:

Heavy, Foe, Over, Greeting and Series

As promised to my friends on Facebook, below are my paintings including my favorite:


This is my favorite painting. It says Lucy all over it as she lays looking like she has "heavy" thoughts happening in that noggin of hers. I wish I knew exactly what she was thinking. I'm sure it is probably something like this:

Pet me, food, (*sniff-sniff*), potty, take me for a walk, (*lick-lick*), sun bathing time..., (*slurp-slurp*), food, nap, pet me, potty, roll in the grass, pet me again (*bouncy-bounce*-the ball) ride?!!, food, potty, tv time, scratch my butt, please, pet me more and I'll pet you in return by washing your entire face (*kiss-kiss*).

So what do you think? Sound familiar? Does that say it all in dog language?


This is my second favorite painting. The vivid colors work well together, don't they?

I recalled the saying "fighting like cats & dogs". Cats do seems a bit more persnickety than dogs at times. I painted the kitty with a halo so everyone would realize I was just kidding given the title "Foe".

Also, Halloween is my favorite holiday. Cats and Halloween go hand-in-hand and this one reminded me of a Jack-o-lantern. What do you think--Jack-o-lantern or not?


The command "over" was more of a challenge for Lucy to learn. I painted a poodle, one of the smartest dogs, giving it a scholarly look with a faux mortarboard and glasses. I remember Lucy looking at me funny when learning the word "oooooooover". Hence, the circular mouth expression.


Whenever we arrive home, Lucy greets us with her ears up and back, her eyes like swirly spirals practically popping out of her head, a big smile and lots of french kisses. Oh yes, and the words, "Got food?"


This is my interpretation of the word, "series", using Retrievers--Yellow, Golden, Chocolate and Black. I'm paying homage to one of my favorite pop artists, Andy Warhol.

There you have my story about The Canvas Project, Volume 2. Thank you to all who participated in my Facebook poll telling me your favorite painting. If you did not have the opportunity to participate, by all means leave me a comment at the end of this post. It will be fun tallying them up at the end to see the most popular. Until then.....Lucy says "woof!"

These paintings are available for purchase on my website:

Friday, June 26, 2009

GA Cat License Plate Tag

Feline Friend Plate Now Available
The Cat Tag is Out of the Bag

“The Cat Tag is out of the bag!” says Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Tommy Irvin.

He is referring to the Feline Friend license plate (also known as the Cat Tag) which is now available at tag offices throughout GA. Proceeds from sales of the license plate directly benefit the Dog and Cat Sterilization Program (DCSP) which helps pay for spay/neuter procedures in GA.

The Feline Friend plate depicts a black-and-white tuxedo cat. The design was selected last fall in a statewide contest. “This license plate will appeal to animal lovers or anyone interested in supporting this important program,” says Commissioner Irvin. “And, it will look good on any vehicle.”

Georgians may purchase the Feline Friend or the program’s two other license plates (Buddy and Animal Friend) from county tag offices for a $25 one-time fee. More than $22 from each license plate sold directly benefits the DCSP. These funds are allocated only for spay/neuter procedures and educational outreach on this healthy choice.

Since November 2003, the DCSP has helped fund 47,185 spay/neuter surgeries in all 159 GA counties. 1,033 veterinarians currently participate. Any GA resident may benefit from the DCSP regardless of income. All funds earned through this program stay in GA and benefit pets here.

“In addition to improving a pet’s health, spaying or neutering decreases the burden on overcrowded animal shelters and saves taxpayer dollars. By buying a Cat Tag Georgians are helping stop pet overpopulation and the sadness associated with it,” says Irvin.

Sent by:
Humane Association of Georgia, Inc.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

FUNDRAISER: Good Mews for All

Oh my, it's been a long time since I blogged! Where has the time gone?

First, I want to thank all of my customers from my April shows, TICA (The International Cat Association) and The Big Shanty Festival. Thank you all for supporting my artistic endeavors. I hope you are enjoying your new art.

Second, another big thank you to the ladies who have visited my studio this month and purchased art. It was a pleasure sharing pet stories with you. I so appreciate each and every one of you.

Third, I'd like to mention a last minute opportunity I just learned about for pet-loving folks, especially cat lovers, in the Atlanta area. (Oh and if you don't live in Atlanta but know someone who does, please forward this to them. It's a good cause.)

The Good Mews Cat Shelter is having a FUNdraiser for their shelter at California Pizza Kitchen tonight. Yes, you read it correct--TONIGHT.

So, here's the deal (which is good on all orders--dine-in or take-out): See this flyer below? You'll need to print off a copy of it and bring it with you to California Pizza Kitchen. They will, in turn, donate 20% of every order (with the flyer) to the Good Mews Cat Shelter. It's that simple!


Here's a recap of the info for tonight:

Wednesday, May 27, 2009
California Pizza Kitchen
Pine Straw Plaza Shopping Center
4250 Roswell Road
(corner of Roswell Rd and Johnson Ferry)
Marietta, GA
(Click here for a map/directions)
4 - 9 pm

Again, this is for both dine-in and take-out. You can pick up a pizza and freeze it for a later date.

Here is Nancy McDonald, a volunteer from Good Mews Cat Shelter, modeling her t-shirt she purchased from me at the TICA show which says "Cats will know your name in heaven".

Friday, April 17, 2009

EVENT: 33rd Annual Big Shanty Festival

I was just notified this evening (EEK!), I received a vendor booth at the Big Shanty Festival in downtown Kennesaw, GA, this weekend April 18 (9:30am-6pm) and 19 (12-5pm), 2009.

The festival features over 200 hundred crafters, artisans, and vendors as well as live entertainment on two stages, a Civil War encampment, children’s activities and 30 food booths. It all starts with a 9:30 a.m. parade on Saturday featuring local high school bands and over 1,000 young marchers. Admission is free.

My booth space is #1 where I will feature my cat & dog art; prints, stationery products and t-shirts. Hope you will come out to have some fun.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Legislature Adjourns Without Voting on Bill to Protect Pets From Domestic Violence

I received the following email from American Humane today:

In an effort to stop abusers from harming or threatening to harm companion animals, House Bill 429 would have encouraged judges to include animals in domestic violence protective orders. A protective order is a legal order issued by a court that requires one person to stop harming, stay away from and/or cease contact with another person or, in the case of this bill, that person's pets as well.

Unfortunately, the bill did not get a House floor vote before the legislative session adjourned. American Humane will continue to pursue this issue.

Friday, April 3, 2009

PROJECT: New Art T-Shirt Design

On Tuesday of this week, I read Sunday’s newspaper (running late again) and noticed a cat show this upcoming weekend, April 4-5. Lucky me, there was ONE booth space still available. I’ve been scurrying like a chicken with my head cut off getting ready for this show. I came up with this new saying for my cat and dog t-shirts and decided take the risk in creating a few of them.

Hubby says it won’t sell. I say YES it will (thinking pawsitive) ‘cause I think it's hilariously funny. Everyone poops and everyone farts, even our pets, and after, they're still our little angels. Here’s my previous blog post entitled "Who Farted?" on the subject.

Another inspiration for this saying came after a conversation with Justin at Nature’s Corner Market located at the corners of Kennesaw Due West and Acworth Due West Roads in Marietta, GA. I’ve shared with him I feed my dog, Lucy, a human diet of meat and produce.

Justin gasped upon hearing this and asked if Lucy farted from it. Fortunately, she doesn’t because it’s an unprocessed diet free of sugar and grains.

(*pause*—Lucy just arrived with two tennis balls in her mouth for me to play with her. She always seems to know when I’m talking about her. But when aren’t I talking about her? We have a love affair going on with her in our household. She’s such a beautiful spirit…)

Where was I? Oh, unprocessed human diet without sugar and grains for Lucy. Yes, that's right. I know what you're thinking...hear it all the time...

Where do you think pet food comes from? That’s right, from human food. For a real eye-opener on the subject, read the book entitled "Food Pets Die For" by Ann N. Martin. (Also, should you give your pets human food, some are toxic to them. One word: RESEARCH.)

So, for the third time, I feed Lucy a whole food diet. Yesterday, her meals consisted of:

Fuji apple
Flax seed
Coconut milk
(supplements: colostrum, probiotic)

Sugar snap peas
(supplements: multi-vitamin, fish oil)

Fresh turkey (neck, back, giblets)
Green beans
(supplements: glucosamine & chondroitin)

Lucy does not fart on this diet nor does she “scoot” her butt along the ground trying to express her anal glands due to being constipated. It’s pretty much the same as I’m suppose to be doing. No, I didn’t mean scooting my butt across the ground! I was talking about the diet--eating protein and non-grain produce.

Back to the original subject...Let me know what you think about my funky t-shirt saying:

Whiff this!

PS: Got a new t-shirt color for spring: Sky Blue.

(Should have bet the old man on this one--cha-ching!)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

EVENT: The International Cat Association Show

View hundreds of cats from around the world at this show sponsored by the Hotlanta Cool Cats Club & The Fayette County Humane Society. A cat agility course has been added this year and my art will be available for purchase.

The Atlanta State Farmers Market
16 Forest Parkway
Forest Park, GA

Date & Time:
Sat, April 4, 2009, 10am-5pm
Sun, April 5, 2009, 10am-4pm

Adults--$5 ea
Children, Students, Military --$4 ea

For more info:
Hotlanta Cool Cats Club

Show office:

Come out and enjoy some fun this weekend at this show. See ya there!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The 10,000 (people interpret one word) Project

I just received my info to participate in the:

10,000 People Project

In the spirit of social experiments, the Art House Coop decided to create "The 10,000 Project".

You sign up, they send you a sheet of paper with a word on it and then you create a visual representation of the word. The catch is that 10,000 other people are doing the same as you. How many different ways will tens of thousands of people interpret the same word?

When they reach 10,000, the Art House Coop will host an exhibition at their gallery in Atlanta showing off what everyone came up with. Oh, and the thousand best will be published in an Art House series book too.

Click here for details to participate.