Thursday, March 26, 2009

Juniper loves her rawhide

Juniper is a bit of an odd duck, er, dog. She is a very serious dog, with a serious job. Part of her job is to make sure no one has too much fun. She has little sense of humor and a strong sense of what's right and wrong (in her opinion.) After two + years, she is still greatly concerned about Chuck's behavior. She tries to keep me between her and Chuck, and when that is not possible, abases herself in front of him as before her god.

But there are signs that she is loosening up- She has started to play at the dog park, especially if there are puppies. If Chuck has food, she approaches him with enthusiasm. Even if he has no food, she will creep up to him and give him a little lick on his outstretched hand if he asks for a kiss. She will shake hands with him- that's a trip to watch- she sits as far away from him as possible, turns her head away from him and then extends her paw.

But she LOVES her rawhide. She loves her rawhide with all of her heart, and with an abandon that exceeds all belief.

Chuck will give each dog a rawhide- the kind with a knot on either end to look like a bone. Boodles will set to, and gnaws hers up without pausing. Juniper, however saves hers. She hides it until Boodles has finished hers, and then she brings it out. She tosses it in the air and catches it. She throws it down and rolls on it in a torrent of ecstasy. She carries it with her every where she goes, although she won't take it outside, and she flaunts it in Boodles' face. And she rests with it between her paws.

If it's just me at home with them, Juniper's rawhide is pretty safe from predation. Boodles waits until Chuck is around, and Juniper's attention is divided, and then steals it. She quickly retreats to safe space, under Chuck's desk, where she chews it up.

The Dog Age tip of the week has to do with Giardia, a waterborne parasite that can infect your dog if he or she drinks from puddles or other water sources that are infected.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Working dogs?

My dogs don't work. My friend Pat, whose dogs don't work either, pointed me to this amazing video of some dogs who DO work. Wow!

Yes, the sheep and the guys work too.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Mission Accomplished- 4 dog walk successful!

Yesterday I posted about walking my friend's dogs for them, and said we were thinking about introducing our dogs to the mix today. Well, we did- pictorial results below.

We accomplished the 4 dog walk with no problems- a little posturing at the beginning (Juniper acting like a bitch, you know) and Chessi didn't think any part of it was all that hot an idea, although she went along with it. But all in all, everyone enjoyed, or at least tolerated, the walk. There was a spate of barking at the very beginning- strangely, from Rufus and Boodles, not the two I expected. Juniper did a little chest bumping with Ruf, to let him know she was in charge, but Chessi and Juniper pretty much ignored each other. I actually thought any trouble would be between those two.

Boodles and Rufus wanted to play, and we had to remind them that leashes suck all the fun out of the world. He'll have to come to the dog park to really get to play!

Side by side, the ways these two are dissimilar are more apparent than the ways in which they are similar.

This was from Chuck's phone camera. I thought it was an interesting arrangement.

And here's a little slide show. I know the differences are subtle- this was about 1 minute of quick snapshots- I love the way Chessi is sitting in the background, Boodles is being a space cadet, and Rufus is making up to the ladies. This was our last day, although we would do it again any time.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Dog Walking Infidelity

Chuck and I were unfaithful to Boodles and Juniper today. And the horrible thing is, we will repeat that adultery tomorrow. Yes, it's true. Our shameful secret-We walked another couple's dogs.

Some friends of ours have a new baby, who had open heart surgery on Monday. The baby is doing well, came through surgery with flying colors, but there are still logistical matters to be worked out. Chuck and I volunteered to walk the dogs while the family was in the hospital, to take that concern off their minds. I remember when I was in the hospital having my first son, I worried about the dog I had taken to the vet that afternoon, just before going into labor- it is strange the things the mind seizes on to worry about.

We had met Chessi before, but had not met Ruf. I had seen pictures of him as a puppy, but nothing since. When we went over on Sunday to acquaint ourselves with the walking routine, we were amazed to see how much he looked like Boodles.

There are differences- Ruf is bigger, and much heavier- thicker bodied. His head and face are different- no pseudo-St. Bernard here. Rufus is redder. But the feet, the feathers, the tail with the black bar and the white tip, even the bad toupee appearance on his back looks a little like Boodles. He will be 3 in April, and we think Boodles is just over 2, so they aren't littermates. It is remotely possible that they are siblings, but very remote- Boodles was found in the next county over. Rufus came from the local shelter.

Chessi shares some similarities to Juniper, beyond her coloring. Notice she walks as far from Chuck as she can get!

Boodles and Juniper forgave us our transgressions. Perhaps tomorrow we will take Boodles along for the walk. I don't know about Juniper- our friend tells us that Chessi doesn't like other dogs. We'll see.

Monday, March 16, 2009

It seems like we do nothing but go to the dog park.

But it is so much fun. Right now temperatures are moderately comfortable, and the spring rainy have not started. We can take the dogs to the dog park without too much fear of mud. We will take advantage of it as long as we can!

There were old friends at the park- everyone was glad to see Gus-

And there were some new friends to meet as well- some were large, and slower-

Some were small and faster.
Personal information was shared.
As always, there was a lot of curiosity about who might be arriving

And everyone took turns watching the baby...
Actually, Gus and Bailey, the black and white puppy, had quite a long game of tug-of-war with the stick. There is a slide show of those pics at the end of this post.
Juniper always likes to play with the puppies.

These pictures were taken on Sunday 3/15. We took our dogs up Monday, 3/16, and there was no one else there. Both Juniper and Boodles were wondering around, sort of droopy, when a car pulled into the lot. As soon as Boodles heard the crunch of tires on gravel, she ran flat out up to the fence to see who was arriving. To her great disgust, the occupants of the car went on by and over to the Rails to Trails portion of the Township park. They parked the car about 100 yards away, and got out with a dog. Boodles sat and watched them with an air of disbelief. I could almost hear her thinking "Surely they are going to come over here now. Well, maybe now. No, no, NOW."

Thursday, March 12, 2009

More tales from the dog park

The nice weather brought a lot of folks to the dog park yesterday. There were the obligatory "getting to know you" exercises.
Some secret planning went on.

Someone saw something interesting and had everyone ready to go look.

Boodle's good friend Gus was there;

Daisy and CJ had some fun,
Gus, CJ and a puppy named Zumba (?) did too.

Even Juniper deigned to play a little, with the pup.

Boodles and Luke had some one-on-one,

Daisy thought it was funny, apparently. Luke had to leave soon after this. He forgets his size sometimes. More likely, Boodles forgets how big he is!

No dogs were hurt in the filming of this.

I did notice an odd thing- A dog arrived who was too timid to come into the big dog area. This dog had cut his foot on some glass the day before, and had his foot bandaged. Since there were no dogs on the small dog side, his person took him in over there to give him some off-leash time. When he was near the fence, Juniper came over, and stuck her foot through the fence while whining. I have never seen her do anything like this before. She is often interested in the small dogs when they are on the other side of the fence, but I have never heard her whine over anything before.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Tales from the Dog Park

Lucky finds out Juniper is not that much fun.
Juniper is an odd dog. Around here she is also known as The Killer of Fun. It seems her highest purpose is to keep others from playing with a toy, or otherwise having a good time.

We took advantage of the good weather Saturday to go to the dog park. Juniper lurked at the edges of the fun, and then would run out when anyone looked like they were enjoying themselves. There was never any barking or biting, she's just a big old wet blanket.

She gives them the hairy eyeball, and everyone wonders off to some other side of the park. Probably to talk about her. Actually, I think she really wants to play, but since she was not well socialized as a pup, she just doesn't know how.
Actually, everyone did have a good time, despite Juniper's disapproval. Here's a meet&greet.

A quick game of tag,
Boodles protecting her virtue,

And Boodles resting up.

This guy wasn't nearly as worried as he looks.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Dog Walking Wednesday

copyright 2009 W. M. JesseeThe inner wolf comes out in shadow

copyright 2009 W. M. JesseeThe dog-eating hedge

copyright 2009 W. M. JesseeBad dogs are never cute. Neither are dogs who think they can walk the other dog better than Chuck.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Automatic Squirrel Dispenser

Aren't dog's memories interesting? Some things they can't remember from one minute to the next- like that they aren't supposed to find things in the trash can to eat. Other things get stuck in their brains and can't be removed.

One time, early in her life with us, Boodles went out into the backyard. She had her nose to the ground, as usual, and failed to look up. Had she done so, she would have seen a squirrel on the sunflower seed feeder. A squirrel on the feeder is not unusual, they suck down huge quantities of seeds. But usually they spring off and run across the yard as soon as the backdoor opens. This squirrel must have been either a little deafer, or a little braver than the other squirrels who hang out on the feeder. He cut his exit a little short, jumping down, and either landing on or just missing her head- it was too quick for us to see. She was totally surprised, the squirrel was fast, and lived to eat seeds another day.

She remembers this as if it happened yesterday. While in the house, she keeps a sharp eye on the feeder, positioning herself so she can see through the window over the sink. When she spies a squirrel on the feeder, a noise that would frighten a banshee rises from her- a high pitched scream that I could sell to horror movies for a tidy profit. She then runs to the back door where she stands up on her back legs to bark out the window, the banshee scream now a big dog bark. And when she goes into the yard now, the first thing she does is stand under the automatic squirrel dispenser and bark, hoping to trigger it to drop another one on her head.