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finding a hobby or a job… for the dog

4 Feb

So my high energy dog needs a hobby or a job. Behavior training is just not enough. He has been there, done that and is ready to move on.
I investigated around town for specialty training and it is a tie between nose tracking and agility. I am not sure which one will be better, I hope one will work.
It is hard to know what to do exactly as he won’t tell me his preference. I am going to give him a shot at both. I think the other dogs will like it too, they will train along side of him at home.

Hopefully I will have an update.


Stubborn and smart

20 Nov

So I have a dog that is very stubborn.  They all are in their own way, but this one has a strange sense of independence.  He refuses to do his business in my yard (which is several acres).  He wants to go on anyone else’s property. 

Problem…he is a small dog, 10 pounds, and is mostly an inside dog.  He is leash only outside as he likes to run off, do his business…and then keep running.  So that means I have to walk him or else…a no go.  When I take him on a walk he goes in the exact same yard.  No matter what way I walk, how long it takes to get there he will wait. I have tried mixing it up, and walk in other directions. I have even tried jogging and not just walking.  I thought that would work for sure.    He wants to go there.  He will sit and refuse to go home until I go that way.  He has lived here a short time, but has been determined to control this.  If I am unable to walk him for a day he will hold it.  It makes me nervous so I am careful not to let him ‘hold it’ for more than a day or so.  You would think that he wouldn’t give it a second thought, but apparently it is big on his mind.

Always fun, you never know what will happen with these guys.  I love my dogs.


Calculating dog to human age How old are they really?

12 Jun


It always seems to me  like a dog ages in behavior/personality (capacity?) in the following way:

0 – 6 months upto a human 1 year old

6 months – 2 years – human toddler (2 – 4 years old)

2 years – 5 years human teenager

5 years – 9 years human adult

9 years on – human senior

 What have you found?


This is an excerpt that I found from an excellent and fun article.  Gayle did a nice job on this. 

By Gayle Hickman

Aging is much faster during a dog’s first two years but varies among breeds. Large breeds, while they mature quicker, tend to live shorter lives. By the time they reach 5 they are considered “senior” dogs. Medium-sized breeds take around seven years to reach the senior stage, while small and toy breeds do not become seniors until around 10.

Many veterinarians agree that a pretty good guess on the age of pets can be made using the following formula. Although still simple, it is much more accurate than the seven-year method.

Assume that a 1-year-old dog is equal to a 12-year-old human and a 2-year-old dog is equal to a 24-year old human. Then add four years for every year after that. (Example: A 4-year-old dog would be 32 in human years.)

Since this method takes into consideration the maturity rate at the beginning of a dog’s life and also the slowing of the aging process in his later years, Martha Smith, director of veterinary services at Boston’s Animal Rescue League, feels that this is the more accurate calculation formula. Here is a chart, for easy reference:


A dog’s average lifespan is around 12 or 13 years, but again, this varies widely by breed. The larger your dog is, the less time it will live. Female dogs tend to live a little longer.

My dog is afraid of thunderstorms

2 Mar

So, if you read my blog you will know I have 4 dogs.  One is a friends, and three are mine.  I have a well-behaved pack.  Once in a while there is a small issue, but we work on it and resolve it rather quickly. 

There is one issue I have not been able to resolve just yet….storm anxiety.  Of course off all my dogs, it is the biggest and strongest that is afraid.  The other dogs are fine, and just look at him like “dude – really?”

I have tried the medicine, and honestly all I get is a big dog with anxiety that is now drunk.  I have to worry about him falling and hurting himself.  He won’t fall asleep, he just runs and panics on the meds.  Sooo, I threw them away.

I put on background noise to help distract and over ride the storm, but thunder is loud.  It works a bit.  I have exercised him hard on the days of a storm so he will be tired and sleep deeply…denied a victory there too. 

At night-time, when a storm hits,  I will have him jump onto the bed and put my arm around him and I fall back to sleep.  He will sleep sometimes and it works, or if it is super aggressive storm he jumps down and runs in circles. 

He has a bed, a safe haven to go to, but it is not a winner during storms.  Play time during a storm is doesn’t happen either.  It is funny that it is the dog bred to hunt lions because of the irony.  It is sad because he trembles and is feeling real fear. 

I have spoken to trainers and taken their advise.  So far nothing has really worked.  I keep looking, I would love to see him sleep right through one at some point.  Especially now that spring is near and storms are a brewing!

Dog emergency – Poison

4 Jan

Well, fun times for the holidays.  I went out to have lunch with a friend.  As the crazy times of the holidays were in full swing, I unfortunately had to cut my luncheon short due to an appointment that was rescheduled at the last-minute.  So as I returned home, and I walked in through the door I looked around and saw the family puttering along and the dogs lounging throughout the room.  I looked down on the floor so see a mutilated yellow box that I know contained mouse poison! 

Oh no!!!! I have a real challenge here.  No one saw which dog it was, no dog was confessing, the door bell was ringing, the kids were beginning to understand this situation, I got the vet office on the phone….chaos insued

The first thing I was told to do in induce vomiting in all dogs.  I had no idea which dog it was, so they all needed to be checked.  How do you accomplish that task?  Have them drink a tiny amount of hydrogen peroxide.  So as fast as we could, we all grabbed a dog (4 of them) and began to have them ingest the peroxide.  It was difficult to say the least.  I didn’t know a dog could spit…but they can.  We got the appropriate amount into each of them, and then put them in the back yard.  I spent the next 10 minutes following them around so when they did up chuck I could look at it to see if there was evidence of the poison.  3 of the 4 dogs got sick and all 3 were free of any poison.  The last one, the smallest, refused to throw up.  I call the vet back and they said to run him and gently shake him.  So we did.  We,  as gently as we could,  shook him like a soda bottle and ran him up and down the drive way.  He is only 10 pounds.  He would not vomit.  So, as a process of elimination I grabbed the empty box of poison and the dog and went to the emergency vet clinic. 

Within minutes they were able to induce vomiting with a single injection.  He was the guilty party, he ate the entire contents of the box.  Fortunately he only had it in him for about an hour, so there is no harm.  We were all Blessed for the timing of everything and that he didn’t hide the container.  The vet said that most dogs come to them when the symptoms begin to manifest, then it can be too late.  We were given medicine for the next few weeks and a bill of health. 

Wow, crazy stuff and I am glad it is over with a happy ending.  Now I know what to do if it ever happens again.  Also I have eliminated any other mouse poisons from my house!

Christmas for the doggies

21 Dec

Seems kinda like they have Christmas all year.  At least on their terms.  Walks, belly rubs, back yard inspections, fence barking, chasing anything in their domain, and not to mention full run of the house.  There are bones, table treats, cushiony things to lay on…or chew, and of course so many markings….so little time.

Regardless of all that fun, and endless sleeping times, I feel compelled to get the canine companions a Christmas gift.  I certainly don’t want them to feel left out.  I can’t have that now…

So as I look at the stores and what they offer I begin to thing – hmmmm perhaps something home-made would be better appreciated.  Afterall mommies loving hands made it.  So I go to the other store and look at what it takes to make a cushion, all the parts and pieces and then add up the time.  Then I think…dogs don’t have the ‘its home-made from you -so I appreciate it more’ gene.  They have the I want to ‘sniff, lick, then gobble’ gene. They also have the I want to ‘run with, chase, bark, roll, and tug’ gene.   Or the I want to “sniff, mark, destroy, then bury’ gene.  So my gift needs to be more fitting.

So more rope, rubber tires, chewy yummy (home made) dog treats, and a blanket… again.  They don’t know why they are getting it, or why the house is turned upside down with human activity…but they are happy as can be to get what they have received.  Now if they would just leave the christmas tree upright and the ornaments in tact!


post surgery cones

14 Nov

So is there anything funnier than the canine post surgical head cone?  That funny shaped plastic protection. 

I know it is necessary and it actually does protect the surgical site.  My dog’s eyelid had a procedure, so it is very important to protect the suture.  But…..I can’t help but giggle at the sight of that cone.

He bumps into everything.  He tips the water and food bowls over every time.  I am happy to clean it up without complaining.  (not big enough not to laugh).  He drags it on the ground while smelling things, looks like a vacuum hose when he is face down to the ground. 

He went outside and enjoyed the nice weather, sitting stoically on the ground…with the cone.  HAHAHAHA!! He was sooo cute. 

It does drive him nuts.  I can tell his frustration from hitting into the walls and stairs as he is walking around.  He bumps into everything, and it has to be tiring for him.  He is being good-natured and is just moving forward…so to speak.    I am happy his surgery went well.  I am glad he is healthy.  What a blessing!!  I can tell you that it is a bit funny, knowing that he is ok, so watch the cone of healing.