Saturday, August 31, 2013

Achooo, Sniff, Sniff

Well, it's certainly been an interesting year weather wise. After having snow in May we had our first ever flood last month. Following two and a half weeks of non-stop rain, we're back to hot and dry. We actually kick up dust just waking across the yard. The plants aren't quite sure what to do. They're full and lush after all the early rain, but now the leaves are curling up from the 90+ heat each day.
One thing for sure, the pollen count is out of sight. Every time I walk out the door I'm hit with it and I start sneezing and my eyes won't stop watering. My throat is so bad that I speak in a croak. Rob has been taking the dogs outside for the past two days so that I don't get any worse.

His is not an easy job because while the older dogs know the routine and go out to do whatever, they come running right back to the air conditioning. Sydney and Mac, however, are still in training.We were set way back by the two weeks of fireworks followed by two weeks of thunder storms. We had to start all over with the girls.

They are both tethered to us most of the time so that they can't find a quiet hiding place to relieve themselves. Mac does pretty well as long as we get her out on a regular schedule. Sydney was having a much harder time of it. She seemed to be urinating far too often so I had a chat with Dr B and took in a urine sample for him to examine. Though nothing obvious showed up, her urine was much too dilute. We gave her a course of antibiotics and she finished them yesterday. Her urine looks more normal and she isn't going as frequently, so looks like she may have had a bit of an infection. She's even ringing the bells to go out now.

Good reminder, if house training isn't going well, check for a physical problem before deciding that the dog is dumb as a rock.

Sebastian's wound is healing very nicely. He had a visit with Dr B last week to make sure we were on the right track. The incision is closing and it looks like we may be able to remove his cone of shame in a few days. That'll be a big relief for him and me. Have you ever tried knitting with a seventy pound dog wearing a plastic cone on his head lying across your lap? Try it some time.

While I'm confined to the house awaiting a rain to cleanse the air, I've been cross stitching and knitting. I'll have some things to show soon, but for now this is all that's finished.

This is a pattern by Julie Williams. I've been following her blog "Little Cotton Rabbits" for years. She finally released a couple of her rabbit patterns and I couldn't resist.

Now let's see how productive I can be this weekend with a large dog on my lap and two small ones tied to my leg. Allergy pills, anyone?

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Joke's On Me

There are some things that annoy me but there's one that has annoyed me since I was a kid. That thing is people who say that dogs don't think. These so called experts have obviously never lived with or even spent much time with a dog. Sorry, you so called scientists or researchers, or whatever you wish to call yourselves, you are just wrong.

Dogs think and they feel emotions and they have good days and bad days. They feel love and feel grief. They can be sneaky and silly and they can exhibit guilt. And they have a sense of humor, too.

Portuguese Water Dogs are well known for their sense of humor. We read and heard about it early in our Portie days. Bentley had a crazy sense of humor. He liked to play tricks on people and other dogs.

Tsar liked to play jokes on me. He had several but his and my favorite was one that he often played on dark moonless nights.
Being all black, Tsar would disappear into the night when I let him out for our last call. All the other dogs would come in when I called but Tsar would still be outside in the dark. I would walk into the yard and stand at the top of the hill to call him, but he didn't come and I couldn't see him. I'd call again and again, then suddenly he would nudge me from behind. He had walked around behind me in the dark and would give me a pretty good push to let me know that he was there while I was calling him. After the first time he did this, when I probably let out a yelp, I would always pretend to be surprised and we would walk into the house together, both laughing. He thought it was a really funny trick to play on me and I swear I could hear him laugh.

Last week my Portie girls started playing a joke on me. The four girls sleep in crates in the TV room at night. The first crate is Norma Jean's, next is Bailey's and Tess and Lola sleep together in an extra large crate. They've slept in the same crates since they were young pups. I leave the doors unlatched during the day and when we come in from last call, they each walk into their own crate and stand there till I give them their cookies and latch the crate doors.

One night last week, we came in at bedtime and they got into their crates, but when I went to give them their cookies, Bailey was in Lola's crate. I stopped and said, "That's not your house". She charged out, got in her own crate and Lola walked into hers. I wasn't sure what was going on, so I didn't think too much about it.
The next night when we came in Norma Jean was in Bailey's crate. I shook my head and again said, "that's not your house". She ran into her own and Bailey settled in her crate. Now I knew something was up.
The third night Lola was in Norma Jean's crate. We repeated the ritual and I knew they were all laughing about how they had tricked me.
Tess is a wonderful, beautiful dog. She's sweet and gentle but she's not the brightest bulb. Each of the three nights Tess stood by and watched but didn't participate. Things settled down for a couple days then over the weekend we came in for bed and Tess was standing in Bailey's crate. She was playing, too. I laughed and shooed her to her own crate and gave them all extra cookies.
I'm sure we'll all play this game again soon, maybe they can confuse Rob with it. I know they are all enjoying it and I'm sure I can hear them laughing.

No, you dumb "experts", you are very wrong. Dogs do think.

Monday, August 26, 2013

What A Day !!

Bow Wow, is this ever an important day!

Today, August 26th is National Dog Day. That cracks me up because we all know that every day is International Dog Day. Or maybe even Inter -galaxy Dog Day. Around here we observe Dog Day every day of the year and we bet most of you do in your homes, too.

But that's not all. Today is also Women's Equality Day. I'm not really sure what that means. Does it mean that today all women are equal to us dogs?  No, Mom says it's to celebrate when women got the right to vote in this country. That's just plain silly. Everybody knows that women are the smartest creatures on Earth and should have always been able to vote.
Anyway, you can see how special today is. We're sorry that Dad doesn't have something special to celebrate today but Mom says he can have pizza for dinner so he's happy.
So to all our dog friends in Blogville, have a wonderful day today and give your Mom and any other women in your house a big sloppy kiss and tell them you love them.
Your pal, Fudge

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Fudge's Furry Tales - The Dog That Cried Woof

Hi everybody, are you ready for another story?
Today I'm going to tell you a very good story that Mom says has an important lesson. I'm not so sure I agree with her, but you can decide.

Once upon a time in a faraway place lived a little striped dog named Spot.
Spot lived with his family of peeps and other dogs and birds too, I think. It was a big happy family like ours, but Spot thought he needed to be a super watchdog and warn his family of everything that came near their house.

When the big brown truck made a delivery Spot would race to the door barking, "Woof, woof, woof." His Mom would say "Be quiet Spot, that man is just bringing good stuff like new chew toys." 
But Spot took his job seriously and when the white truck came with a delivery, he ran to the door barking, "Woof, woof, woof." His Dad said, " Stop barking Spot, that man just brought a box of dog treats for all you dogs."
But still Spot barked at every sound. He heard the big noisy truck that came to take the trash away and barked, "Woof, woof, woof." Mom and Dad both together said, "Quiet Spot, that's just the trash truck. We don't need that trash anymore."
Then Spot heard another noise and started barking again. This time it was the nice mailman bringing cards and letters and even dog treats, but still Spot barked, "Woof, woof, woof."

Even the other dogs in the house were getting sick of Spot's barking at every little sound. They just looked at him and thought, "Shut up, Spot."

Still Spot couldn't seem to control it. He even barked when the silly squirrels ran around on the deck. "Woof, woof, woof." 
Mom and Dad had had it with all the barking and they didn't even bother to look out the window when Spot barked. The other dogs just buried their heads in their pillows and went back to sleep without even running to the door to check. Poor Spot, nobody paid any attention  to him.

One night Spot ran to the door and started barking, "Woof, woof, woof." Nobody came to see what he was barking at. He barked some more, "Woof, woof, woof." But Dad just grabbed the remote and turned the sound up on the TV.  Mom kept on knitting and counting and the other dogs ignored him. But this time it was important.
A cat burglar sneaked in and stole a whole tray of dog cookies cooling on the counter. When Mom went to check on them and put them in the cookie jar, she was surprised. Spot was dancing around and barking and telling her what happened. 
Mom said, "Spot, you tried to tell us about the cat burglar, but because you bark so much at silly things, nobody listened. From now on you should try to think before you bark and we'll try to listen to what you're telling us. OK?"

Spot thought about what his Mom said and decided it was a pretty good idea and he tried very hard not to bark too much. But it sure wasn't easy.

Well, that story made me sleepy, so I guess I'll take a snooze in this chair and think this barking thing over in my head. Noah barks at everything so maybe this would be a good story for him to think about. Maybe Mom's right after all.
Your pal, Fudge

Monday, August 19, 2013

Exciting News

Hi everybody,
I have some very exciting news for you. We found out today that our cousin Bo Obama has a new little sister. Her name is Sunny and she was born in June of last year.
Our Mom is trying to find out if she's a cousin to us too. We'll let you know when we find out.
We're really happy for Bo. Now he has someone to play with every day. That's important to us dogs.

Your pal, Fudge


We heard that August has been designated Senior Pets Month. Even though August is half over, we need to pause and think about all the senior pets that we know. Though it amazes us, we even have several seniors here in our pack.
Our most senior dog is Miss Morgan Magoo. She'll be fourteen in November but don't mention her age to her. She runs and barks with the pack and is sure she can do anything any other dog can do. Sure she has some extra aches and pains and walks a little slower but that doesn't stop her.
I know what it's like to wake up with aches in my joints and I have to smile when Morgan stretches and springs up to go out before breakfast. Rob and I both laugh when she does her slower than slow walk to come in the house. We've seen her run down the hill to bark at a squirrel on the fence. If it's something she wants, she can move. If it's something she isn't thrill about, she can barely move. That's my girl.
Fudge is our next oldest. That one is really hard to believe because Fudge still acts like a silly stupid puppy most of the time. He can't walk down a flight of steps, he has to spin down them. He jumps and dances and acts like a doofus, but he can also has a serious side that shows up now and then.
Fudge loves to do his obedience routine and was soon as I give the command, his whole persona changes. He gets a serious look on his face and does his best to comply with all my commands. Fudge is a very good boy and though he does occasionally get into trouble, I can usually rely on him. Fudge is eight years old now.

Finally, my puppies are seniors. How did that happen? They will be seven in October and we recently switched them to senior dog food.
I can believe it. I remember the night they were born so clearly and all the following days when we introduced them to new experiences. Where has the time gone?
Hug those seniors.

Thursday, August 15, 2013


Rockabye Sydney
Asleep on Mom's lap.
Four feet in the air
 As you take your nap.

Mom used her clippers 
On each little toe.
She said that those sharp claws
Just had to go.

Syd never woke up as I clipped her nails. Playing with her feet as she sleeps has paid off.
Too bad Mackenzie is such a light sleeper. Actually it's hard to even catch Mac sleeping at all. That is one alert little dog.
Sebastian is doing well. He's a very good boy and lets' me do most anything to him. All the dogs seem to enjoy warm compresses when I need to use them. Fudge loves it when I put them on his eyes. I haven't seen anything solid come out of Sebastian's wound and can only hope that whatever it was came out in the first big gush of yuck that shot out when the doctor opened it.
Now we're going to let the wound close and heal and see what happens. It it starts swelling again, he'll need surgery to remove the scar tissue. Let's hope it doesn't come to that.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A Perfect Day For A Run

The rain stopped. Yesterday it didn't rain but it was hot and humid and the grass was still very wet. But today is perfect. The sun is shining, the temperatures is 73 and the grass is relatively dry.
Bailey is checking out the situation halfway down the hill.
Lola is scoping it out from the top of the hill.
Tess is just waiting for the reports.
Tess couldn't wait any longer and went down to see for herself.
She gave a go ahead bark and the they all raced down to start the run.
Sebastian is confined to a leash  while his wound is open so he didn't participate. Sydney and Mac were both too busy hunting for lizards.
But Morgan and the Porties ran back and forth across the back yard till their tongues were hanging out and they were reduced to walking back and forth. Finally they climbed up and came inside to rest for a while. It's been too long since they had a good run and they needed it.
Morgan is going to feel it tonight and may need something for pain before bedtime, but it sure felt good at the time.

Monday, August 12, 2013

We're Making A Comeback

We had a dry weekend. Despite the forecasts, it didn't rain on Saturday or Sunday. Yesterday everyone on the street mowed their lawns. The grass was really too wet to mow and is tracking in on everything, but the recent heavy rains have made it grow fast and it needed to be cut back. This morning we woke up to dark clouds and around 10 the thunder started followed closely by heavy rain again.

The basement is still dry though we're checking it every couple hours to stay on top of the situation. We haven't moved the furniture back yet. We'll wait till this weather pattern has moved on just to be safe. It's a little difficult working around the office with things all out of place, but it could be worse.

The dogs are getting used to getting wet every time they run outside. Even the little girls are going out in the rain without a big fuss as long as there's no thunder. Sydney has started ringing the bell and the accidents in the house are fewer than a couple weeks ago. We're making slow progress.

Lola is feeling great. She's eating with enthusiasm and running around with her sisters. It's good to see her acting like herself again. The other Porties are all doing well. We think Morgan may be having hot flashes. In the corner of the bedroom Morgan has the big dog bed. On the end of it is a medium sized dog bed that she dragged over there and on top is her small soft basket style bed. Besides that she has the big stuffed dog and a large stuffed rabbit. Every night she arranges her pile of beds and animals until they're in exactly the right position, then plops down on them to sleep. Over the weekend she started pulling them all away from the wall and sleeping on the air vent. Every time we put them back in place, she moves them again so she can stay cool as she sleeps. Strange.
Remember several months ago Sebastian had an area on his hip that was full of scar tissue and the vet thought there was a foreign object inside the area left from an old injury. We thought he might need surgery, but the injury calmed down and hair started growing back and it hasn't bothered him for months. I check it once a week to make sure it's still OK, but Saturday it had started swelling. We put a cone on him to keep him from licking and chewing on it and this morning I called Dr B as soon as the office opened. He said to bring him in.
We put him on the table and took a look. It was the size of an egg and bloody pus was spurting out in several spots. Dr B said we couldn't wait and needed to open it up. When he cut into it a lot of messy red nasty glop came pouring out. He cleaned it and poked around inside the area but we didn't find whatever is causing the problem.
He sent Sebastian home with the area open and oozing. He's taking strong antibiotics and I have to apply warm compresses several times a day to keep the spot open and draining. We're hoping that the foreign matter finally works it's way out. Keep your paws crossed that this thing comes out by itself and Sebastian doesn't have to have more surgery. He's being a very good boy though he'd like to get rid of that cone and fix the spot himself.

I'm going to try to get back to blogging and checking in on all your blogs to see what we've missed. It's good to be back.