In the doghouse!

This is what I came home to at lunch today. The guts of Louie’s Boots & Barkley bed (that I bought him 6-8 weeks ago) were all over the living room. Within a week of getting it for him, I saw where he had either chewed or scratched a couple of holes in the corners, but he liked to lie on it and I would drag it back to my office for him if I was going to be in there for awhile. But it usually was over there on the hardwood underneath the window.

Nobody's going to be sleeping on this bed!

Nobody’s going to be sleeping on this bed!

So, I spent my lunch cleaning up bed stuffing. I was not happy about it and let Louie know in no uncertain terms that this behavior would not be tolerated as I took the remains out to the trash. He just wagged his tail and looked at me as if to say, “but it was SO MUCH FUN! It was like snow and I just frolicked and frolicked in it!”

It was just the other night I was thinking he was so cute burying a footie in the middle of the bed and trying to push the bed over top of it with his nose. He pushed that bed until it was wedged between the wall and an ottoman. That may have been the issue, I didn’t put it back to where it normally is. Obviously, Louie didn’t have any trouble dragging it across the room.

From another angle, you can see the green stripe around the sock in the bed.

From another angle, you can see the green stripe around the footie in the bed.

I did boot him outside while I got most of the stuffing off the rug and then vacuumed. When I let him back in, I did sit down with him and tell him that even though I was unhappy and very disappointed, I still loved him. Hey, I always felt bad when my dad took that tact with me. Anyway, I’ll leave you with a picture of Louie having fun outside looking a little “wild-eyed.” And I will be calling that dog trainer that I’ve put off calling since the last time Louie ate a bed.

Wild Eyed Louie

Wild Eyed Louie!

“If you live with dogs, you’ll never run out of things to write about.” ~ Sharon Delarose

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Musings and Miscellany

We live in an odd little corner of the world, at least weather-wise. It can be raining cats and dogs (Louie considers this phrase pure hokum) a mile or two in any or every direction, and we may see a few drops of rain in our neighborhood. Even if we aren’t getting much rain, we still hear thunder and see the lightning flashes if a thunderstorm is in the area and that is any given day in Cackalacky in the summer. We’ve had a few big storms in the past couple of weeks. So, Louie has been wearing his Thundershirt often enough for us to give it an official rating of 3.75 paws up!

Seriously people, it does NOT rain "cats and dogs"!

Seriously people, it does NOT rain “cats and dogs”!

The Thundershirt does seem to calm him. Last week there was a storm with lots of thunder and he was fine curled up next to me on the couch. He was underfoot more than usual if I had to get up for something, but he wasn’t a basket case. Yesterday was one of those days when I drove home from work, I ran into a nice downpour about two miles from the house, but it didn’t look like a drop had fallen on our street. I put Louie in his Thundershirt and after about an hour, it did start to rain here at the house. It wasn’t all that heavy, but I was doing some work and the house was quiet so all we could hear was the rain. Even though he was next to me on the couch, he trembled like the end of the world was near.

Not exactly a "profile in courage"

Not exactly a “profile in courage”

After a few minutes of serious spasms, I made him get up and gave him a cookie. A little nosh always makes things better, right? I also turned on the television so it would drown out the rain – the pun is purely serendipitous — and when we settled back on the couch, Louie was fine. I do recommend the Thundershirt if you have the extra $40 to spare. With Louie it isn’t 100% effective, but it’s close enough, so I feel it was worth it.

It hasn’t been all bad weather as you can see from the picture below. Louie enjoyed a nice butcher bone that was about half the size of him! I think he forgot about it, because I haven’t seen him with it in the past few days and I don’t think he’s eaten it all yet. Where it turns up may be the subject of a future post 😉

Louie enjoying a bone!

Louie enjoying a bone!

“The greatest pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with him and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool of himself too.” ~ Samuel Butler



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Arthur, Thundershirts and Salmon?

It’s been an eventful week.  Louie tested the Thundershirt when Hurricane Arthur came to visit last Thursday. Let me say, I have yet to hear any thunder and where I live, my deck barely got wet during the hurricane, but we did have some heavy wind gusts throughout the day. The Cackalaky coast took a beating, but there were no fatalities and I think all of the Outer Banks are open for business again.

Mr. GQ

Mr. GQ

I put the Thundershirt on Louie Thursday afternoon when the wind picked up. He was a little antsy, but he snuggled on the couch with me. There was one point in the kitchen  when he scootched into the corner by the stove and he was trembling, but we went back to the couch and he calmed down. He eventually took a spot on the rug in front of the washer and seemed okay. For this first storm, I’ll give the Thundershirt 2.5 paws up (out of 4 paws). He does seem to like it and for the most part I think it did comfort him.

Go to an interior area with no windows during a storm!

I did toss a bed back there, but he stayed on the rug until I went to bed. He went to sleep on his bed in the bedroom and the fireworks that cranked up around midnight didn’t seem to faze him at all. I think animals feel the change in atmospheric pressure and that bothers them as much as the noise of thunder and fireworks. Dudley was stone deaf the last year or so of his life and fireworks no longer bothered him, but he was inconsolable when a thunderstorm passed through. Neither storms nor fireworks seemed to faze the Z-Queen, she slept through everything.

Now about the salmon. Louie gets high quality dog food and a week or so ago I brought home a new bag of salmon kibble. He’s had this salmon food before and always ate it. It’s more expensive than the chicken, so he usually gets one bag of the salmon for every two bags of chicken. Louie isn’t a gulper, but he generally eats his breakfast and supper all at once. Until last Wednesday when he didn’t finish his breakfast until lunch time and the next morning still had remnants of his supper from the night before. By Saturday, most of his breakfast was still in the bowl at suppertime.

Chewing my bone and all is right with the world.

Chewing my bone and all is right with the world.

Saturday night, I put a pouch of tuna in his dish with the salmon kibble and he gobbled that right up along with a good part of the kibble, but Sunday morning he ignored his breakfast. He’s been perfectly normal in every other aspect; we walk for about two miles every day and he runs around the backyard like he normally does and since Friday, the weather has been gorgeous, low temps and humidity. Maybe he’s becoming a “grazer” or maybe he’s just lost his taste for salmon. This morning, I picked up a bag of chicken kibble and gave it to him after I tossed the salmon out of his dish and he ate it right up. I gave him his normal serving at supper and he ate that up, not all at once, but within 30 minutes of my putting it out. I think he just prefers chicken to salmon these days. Can’t say I blame him. We hope everyone had a happy and safe holiday!

“I believe in integrity. Dogs have it. Humans are sometimes lacking it.” ~ Cesar Millan

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Not Exactly Midas

Mom is in a mood, so I convinced her to let me write the post this week. I don’t know why she’s so miffed, we just had a lovely walk through the neighborhood. A “cold” front blew through yesterday afternoon and it was only in the low 70s with hardly any humidity. That is almost unheard of in these parts at the end of June! First an adorable picture of me, how can one be upset with this face to look at?

Louie being adorable!

Louie being adorable!

She giggled but still is muttering about tech support and judging by her language, some insurance company certainly has not been like a good neighbor! She also keeps saying, “be bullish my eye” and I think that’s calling B.S. on bulls or something. Ba-dum-bum! Mom always likes a good pun so every now and then I perform the “3-Legged Stool” where I find some particularly tall grass and do my “business” while standing only on 3 legs. Get it? 3-Legged stool? I’ll be here all week, folks, be sure to tip your waitstaff well. Thank goodness it’s Sunday or she’d be ranting about the lack of tech support at work.

Always ready to offer wise counsel

Always ready to offer wise counsel.

Wow, the dryer stopped 10 seconds after the washer, how often does that happen? Of course had mom put the fitted sheet in with the rest of the linens that she washed in the first load, she wouldn’t have had to do the second load at all. She didn’t seem too upset about that because it was me who distracted her from the fitted sheet to begin with. As she was pulling it off the last corner of the mattress, I leaped on the bed to help her and also to get a belly rub. We played for a few minutes and she got up and tossed the other linens in the wash without even once looking at the fitted sheet balled up on the corner of the bed.

Sort of like with this week’s blog post; she had originally planned to write about the new Thundershirt she bought me on account of I’m afraid of thunderstorms. But it hasn’t thundered once since she bought it. I have worn it several times and it seems quite comfortable and you must admit, I look smokin’ hot in it! I sure hope it helps keep me from trembling so much during a storm, I’m sure mom will keep you posted.

Too sexy for my shirt!

Too sexy for my shirt!

My advice to mom is to chillax, maybe have a glass of wine with lunch. Really, is the lack of tech support going to be the downfall of America? Hmmm, she’s not convinced it won’t be LOL! We do have birthday felicitations to send to Auntie Nantz who is younger than ever! Please tell Ms. Zen Kitty I said, “woof!!” Then there is mom’s best birthday present ever (I was a Christmas present) her nephew Chase Alan hits the big double digits tomorrow, while mom celebrates yet another anniversary of her 35th birthday ! Happy, happy birthday to everyone!

There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face.” ~Ben Williams

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Ridges & Whorls

The first thing I noticed about Louie when we met 6 months ago was his beautiful topaz colored eyes. The second thing I noticed was the ridge of hair between his eyes and down his snout and wondered how he wasn’t cross-eyed.

See the ridge of fur on my snout?

See the ridge of fur on my snout?

It wasn’t long until I noticed he has little whorls of hair on his front legs. Little spirals of hair growing like some crazy, canine crop circle. He also has little vertical ridges where his hair grows in opposite directions. You can also see the ridge of white hair growing down his chest and belly.

Did aliens create these circles?

Did aliens create these circles?

One thing I didn’t really notice until this last bath was the ridge of hair going down his back. Louie has some wiry hair like a terrier, but that hair is concentrated around his neck and shoulders with a narrow strip going down the top of his back like a Mohawk haircut. The hair on his flanks is very smooth and soft.

My crazy hair and natural Mohawk!

My crazy hair and natural Mohawk!

I went back and looked at the pictures I took when he first came here and it wasn’t really noticeable because his hair was all brushed down plus he needed a bath and lots of brushing. He was shedding so bad back then, I could’ve made three more Louies from all the fur that came off of him.

December 2013, my Mohawk wasn't very pronounced

December 2013, my Mohawk wasn’t very pronounced

It’s amazing what six months of good food and grooming will do for a boy’s hair. I do feed Louie a high quality food and try to give him snacks that were entirely made in the USA. Some snacks labeled “Made in the USA” contain ingredients sourced from other countries and I try to avoid those for Louie. I think when Louie gets his next bath, I will have the groomer trim around his neck and shoulders for a more consistent, polished look. Plus summertime is here and it’s hot and muggy! Getting some of that hair off will make him more comfortable and oh, so handsome!

I wasn't clipped like this, it's my natural hair.

June 2014, I wasn’t clipped like this, it’s my natural hair.

“Dogs are how people would be if the important stuff is all that mattered to us.” ~ Ashly Lorenzana

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Walking with Louie

Louie is an absolute joy to walk with. He walks at a good pace and only stops a few times to do his business. The other day his pace was so fast, we knocked off about three minutes from our 40 minute walk. I think there has only been one day in our nearly six months together that we didn’t go for a walk.

My ray of sunshine!

My ray of sunshine!

I really should take a camera with me when we walk because every now and then he’ll do something totally goofy. One morning we were on a street where there is only 20-25 feet between driveways (this is the burbs, but these lots are particularly narrow) and he dipped his left shoulder down and went into a combination roll/slide down the entire length of the easement. He got up, took a good shake and continued walking as if he had done nothing out of the ordinary. I was hysterical, it was so funny and even if I had had a camera, I wouldn’t have been quick enough to catch that little stunt. He did it again the next day in the same spot, but with a little less enthusiasm. Now, he doesn’t give that patch of grass a second glance.

This toy didn't last long!

This toy didn’t last long!

Another day we were walking around a cul-de-sac and Louie found a black bra beside the driver’s side rear tire of a Corolla. Louie likes to play with bras, he grabbed it and tossed it in the air. Again, I was hysterical trying to get it away from him. I had to quit hanging my bras on the door knob to dry, he’d play with them there stretching and pulling until he got it off the door knob and then drag it out into the living room and chew it. It’s much cheaper to replace toys he chews than my unmentionables.

Two days after Louie came home to live

Two days after Louie came home to live

We’re coming up on six months since Louie came here to live. He certainly has come a long way from the skinny little dog who was sort of shy, but never seemed afraid of anything (except riding in the car, that’s getting better). He’s gained about 12 lbs. despite our walking most every day he’s been here. We probably average half an hour, but there were some cold, snowy days that we pretty much just walked around the block. I’ve always like to walk, but walking with Louie is much more fun than walking alone. And it is easier to take him for a walk than it is to deal with his constant, “is it time to go for our walk” schtick!

“I don’t understand people who don’t touch their pets. Their cat or dog is called a pet for a reason.
” ~ Jarod Kintz

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The Nose Knows

Toucan Sam always told us to “follow your nose” so when this stench began wafting off of Louie 10 days after he had a bath, I starting sniffing him. At first, I thought he had rolled in something, maybe where a cat had sprayed, and I wiped him down with some green tea wipes. He still stunk. I had smelled his ears several times and the smell didn’t really seem to be coming from there, but I caught a whiff of the stench on my thumb after I had just rubbed it on the underside of his ear.  I tried cleaning his ears (and feet, because they also get yeasty) with a white vinegar, peroxide and water solution, but I could still smell the stench Monday, so I called the vet.

It wasn't anything I rolled in

It wasn’t anything I rolled in

Sure enough, he had a little yeast infection in his right ear. She prescribed Mometamax drops for the next week and they seem to be helping. He’s going to need another bath once we’re done with the drops because the fur around his ear is greasy where some of the medicine has drained out while he sleeps. I wipe it with a warm washcloth, but it’s going to take a bath to get him looking handsome again.

I didn't have stinky breath, either

I didn’t have stinky breath, either

I have been quite remiss in posting to the blog. I really have no excuse other than after such a dreadful Cackalacky winter, we are having a very nice spring and I have accomplished a few onerous tasks over these weeks I haven’t posted. Louie has been his usual inspiring self, but I have lacked motivation to come back here and put his exploits into words. I’ll try and do better. I do want to link to this article in the Washington Post about dog play. Scientists are beginning to see what we’ve known all along, dogs  experience different emotions, much as humans do.

Not quite in "play bow" but close

Not quite in “play bow” but close

“Dogs never bite me. Just humans.” ~ Marilyn Monroe

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