Another edition of #ThrowbackThursday for Shelby’s blog. As mentioned, Shelby was born and raised in New Orleans. She’s a Cajun pooch at heart and each year, loved to celebrate Mardi Gras and the rich traditions that came with it. Throughout the Mardi Gras season, there are roughly two weeks of nightly (and day) parades, each getting bigger and better and flashier, leading up to “Fat Tuesday” – the all day party of parades with colorful beads, doublooms and other fun stuff.
Prior to Mardi Gras, is the Krewe of Barkus – dedicated to dogs (and proceeds benefited local area shelters). How could Shelby NOT participate?!? That year the theme was “Elvis”. I decided to make Shelby into a “Blue Suede Shoe”.
Shelby was a great sport as I pulled out the can(s) of blue hair spray paint and went to town trying to make her blue. It took several cans as her fur just seemed to absorb the colors but you can see in the above picture, she was blue. I didn’t spray her face since I didn’t want to get it in her eyes and wasn’t sure about the toxicity. My boyfriend at the time was my partner in crime and he helped hold her still. Shelby was still quite the puppy at the time and was hard to contain. I got her little booties and found all the blue beads that I could in my collection. She hated the booties (as you can see, she was trying to rock the tripawd life even back then, trying to shake them off). We managed to get a few blocks into the parade route before she would shake them off.
Never have I met a more patient dog…. she truly just wanted to be loved. We definitely saw lots of other ‘colorful’ dogs that afternoon but no other Blue Suede Shoes!
When we got home, it was promptly into the bathtub for her and I didn’t think we would EVER get the blue out. I kept washing and rinsing and the tub would fill with blue. I had a brief moment of panic when I thought for sure she was going to be blue for forever. My boyfriend, of course, found great humor in this. Eventually, we got most of the blue out and she was fresh and clean once again. I promised her I would never spray paint her again (and I have not) but dressing her up continued.
That was the only Krewe of Barkus that we participated in. I think the parade took a hiatus for a few years and Shelby and I moved out of New Orleans in 2004. But these memories (along with other Mardi Gras memories – when she ate an entire package of red vine and I came home to see her on the floor in a deep sugar coma, vomiting and pooping at the same time and I had to rush her to the ER vet, fighting street closures due to the parades and having her vomit all over the backseat of my car. She was obviously fine but had to have a saline injection put into her back so she looked like a camel to re-hydrate her. Oh and those red vines she snagged, on the kitchen counter – dog was always a jumper) will remain with us forever.
There are times when I wonder what kind of life she lived before she end up in the shelter. Oh how I wish she could talk and tell me about her Cajun lifestyle before the girl from Seattle adopted her way back when … I have to believe her life has only been enhanced, if not more colorful, by living with me. Between the feather boas, the beads, the tiaras; Shelby has embraced her embellished lifestyle … she really lives by the Mardi Gras motto – “Laissez les bon temps rouler” – Let the Good Times Roll!!! #TBT #shelbystrong