Sunday, 25 December 2011

My Christmas Sweetheart


Oh how I dreaded the thought!!  No, not the thought of having 15 very loud relatives over...not the thought of all the cooking, cleaning and preparations I would have to, no, no.  I dreaded the thought of how pup would behave after everyone was gone!

Please, let me explain.  Last October during Thanksgiving, pup had behaved like a dream.  It wasn't until everyone had left, and my overnight guests were getting ready for bed, that pup decided he didn't feel like sleeping.  He actually kept us awake all night, barking from midnight to 8am every hour on the hour.  Well, this time, the only overnight guest we had was my mom, and I certainly didn't want the poor lady to be kept awake.  Hubby decided that today we would do everything the complete opposite of that fateful October day!!

The day started like any other.  We got up, we walked the dog in the morning.  Then, hubby and I proceeded to clean the house and start up the cooking...but, learning from our mistakes, we tried to keep to pup's routine as much possible.  At lunch time, I dropped everything I was doing, and took pup out for a walk (he's used to me coming home at lunchtime every day, and I kept to the same route).  After we came home, I continued my cooking and cleaning, and pup took his usual midday nap (man that pup sleeps a heck of a lot!!)
As hubby and I continued our work, we put on soothing Christmas music instead of the upbeat rock we listened to during our cooking last October.  Pup seemed good with that as he lay on the floor and had a deep, deep sleep.

Around 4pm..roughly an hour and a half before the guests would arrive, son took pup out for another walk.  Once again, pup is used to son walking him after school, so once again, in pup's mind, he was just following his usual routine.

Once the guests started arriving and the noise got louder and louder, hubby and I exchanged nervous glances..but it was OK..pup wasn't too excited with all of this.  He was just happy to have new people around him showering him with affection.

As we sat at the dining room table, carving the turkey, pouring the wine, and everyone talking above everyone else, pup just sat and looked at us..perfectly happy with all this life and activity in the house.  At one point, I asked hubby if he knew where pup was (as I had noticed he wasn't in his usual spot).  One of the guests told me that pup was under the table, sitting on one of the guests' bare feet..keeping them toasty warm.

I have to say, after 7 months of putting up with his biting, pulling, growling, jumping, leash-biting habits, this was the first time that pup really felt like the family pet.  He was just wonderful.  A real pleasure!!

Finally, once all the guests were gone and the dishes cleared, hubby took him on his last walk of the day.  The snow had started falling heavily at that point, and, as I looked out the window, I could see pup frolicking out in the snow, trying to grab snowflakes out of the sky.  I finally felt something that had been evading me for 7 months.  I finally started feeling a warmth spread over me as I saw how happy he was.  Yep, on that Christmas day, my pup gave me the greatest present of all....pup gave me the gift of love.

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 18 December 2011


Our wonderful little puppy was born on April 1st, 2011.  We brought home our little April fool on May 28th, 2011.  All of 8 weeks old.  We went through a challenging Spring together, and an easier Fall.  However, this is everyone's 1st Winter together.

When we used to go for walks in the dead heat of the August sun, Winter was barely on anyone's mind.  Our quest to look for sprinklers and water fountains pushed the menace of winter further and further out of our minds.  Pup, of course, would have absolutely no idea that this white stuff even existed!!  As Summer faded slowly into Fall, and the days got shorter and the wind got brisker, we'd throw on an extra sweater and laugh at how pup would put his nose up in the air to smell the unique aromas that Fall brings.

Then it happened!!!  The weather started getting much colder.  Now, to be fair, I have to say, it's December 18th and we still haven't had any snow on the ground.  But, it has gotten considerably colder.  At first, I felt kinda sorry for pup.  I went out and bought him boots so his little feet wouldn't be too cold.  I put them on him, and the poor thing hated them.  He kept walking on his ankles.  At one point, he had the strap of his front paw in his mouth.  There he was, walking on 3 legs with the other leg at a right angle, foot in mouth!!!!  All this before he had reached the end of the driveway!!!  Needless to say, I took the boots off him.  He seemed much happier, and, get this, the cold didn't seem to bother him at all!!!  He loved it!!!  It was as though the cold air made him come alive!

My husband has a theory.  Although my little Portuguese Water Dog's roots are in southern Europe, this breed was originally bred to carry messages from boat to boat in the rough seas of the Atlantic.  That's gotta be some seriously cold water!!  So, although they are moderate climate dogs, they love the cold.  At first I laughed at this logic, but the more I saw my little pup frolicking on the cold frozen ground, the more I realized that this pup will really give me a run for my money when the snow starts falling.  My fantasies about sitting in front of the fireplace with a glass of wine and the dog at my feet are now shattered.  I foresee a long cold winter, me dressed in layers upon layers of clothes...nose and eyes watering in the cold...while pup will be running up snow-banks, digging tunnels, getting drenched in the cold, cold snow, and crying when it's time to go inside!!!!

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 11 December 2011

The Allure of the Wood

My 8 month old PWD loves WOOD!!!  Lots and lots of WOOD!!!  He doesn't care how big, small, rough, smooth  wet, brittle, treated it is...he just can't get enough WOOD!!

When he was just a pup, our walks would be very frustrating because his nose was so low to the ground, that absolutely everything would go in his mouth.  Rocks, paper, grass, mud, really didn't matter.  However, as pup started getting older, his tastes became more refined.  Sure, he still likes to kick back with the occasional used Kleenex, but his real passion lies in wood.  Twigs, branches, tree bark, long as it once belonged to the tree family, he's in!!

Every lunchtime walk starts out the same.  I put the leash on him, up goes the garage door, pup waits for me to lead the way!!  He's an angel.  Right up until that first pee 4 seconds later!!  Once he's been properly relieved, he begins his never ending quest for that perfect twig.

At any given time, I look down and he's got a small branch in his mouth.  He chews on it until it's almost gone, spits it out and continues the hunt.  The next branch might be much larger.  He loves dragging humongous branches, with all sorts of off-shoots, and all the leaves still in place, down the street!!   Most times, the branches are larger than he is, but that only makes it more fun!!  Many times, I'll be walking him, when all of a sudden, I'll feel a whip like sensation across my shins.  I'll look down in pain, only to see him carrying a skinny twig, about 4 feet long, happily in his mouth whipping everyone on either side of him (Mostly me..of course). Getting the wood out of his mouth is never an easy task.  The stronger I pull, he more he resists.  The more he resists, the more excited he gets.  The more excited he gets, the harder it is to pull the wood out of his mouth. Actually, I've found that the only thing that works to get him to drop the stick, is to entice him with another stick!!!  My 14 year old thinks I'm nuts.  He's sure pup will choke on the wood someday.  I'm not so sure, however.  The appeal for more and more fresh wood is enough to keep him alive forever!!

Last week, during one of our walks, I let him onto a lawn to relieve himself.  He grabbed what I thought was a skinny twig.  I was wrong!!  Turns out the people who lived in that house must have been winterizing their front yard....chopping down bushes, covering plants, etc...  My pup came back with a 4 foot rose bush twig!!!  I knew I couldn't pry it out of his mouth because he would swallow, or get hurt by all of the thorns.  Let me tell you, he was not going to let go!!!  I tried everything I could think of.  I tried to be authoritarian..make him drop the twig.  Hah!!!  That wasn't gonna happen.  I tried to gently pry his mouth open, trying hard not to stick him with any-more thorns...fat chance of pup letting go!!!  I tried to entice him with more wood, but pup was really happy with this new flavour and sensation in his mouth so that wasn't gonna happen either.  Then, in desperation, I thought of the only thing I could.  I started running with him...we ran really fast, we ran for over 3 blocks!!!  My rationale was that if he started panting, he would eventually let go of the bush!!  What a sight we, holding onto a leash, running like the 8 month old pup, tail wagging, running beside me...a rose bush branch firmly embedded in his mouth, whipping my legs, and the thorns tearing into my pants!!!  Needless to say, this plan did not work!!

Finally, after all that exercise, pup sat down and in the time it takes to blink your eye...I had taken the branch and flung it across the street.

I'm OK with wood as long as it's outside of the house, but today, as I was dusting my living room antique coffee table, I noticed a corner had quite a few teeth-marks in it.  I wondered if that wonderful antique table was made from rosewood :(

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 4 December 2011

The 10 Minute Demolition

10 minutes!!  That's all it takes for anything to last in my home once pup's been at it.

Before we got our Portuguese Water Dog, hubby and I did lots and lots of research.  We knew that PWD puppies were notorious chewers, and, because they are classified as "working dogs", we knew that unless they had lots of stimuli, they got bored really easily.  Unfortunately, in a PWD's case, boredom = destruction.

So, because we knew all this, hubby and I went out and bought him every toy we could think of.  We bought him squeaky toys, balls, unstuffed animals, stuffed animals, kongs, and strong braided rope-like toys.  Well, let me tell you, it doesn't matter what pup has in his mouth, he will destroy it in 10 minutes or less.  We have had pup for exactly 6 months now, and absolutely NOTHING lasts.  Every toy he gets is ABSOLUTELY RUINED before the 10 minutes is up.  How could he be so fast?  Each toy we get him is "designed for the serious chewer".  However, nothing, but nothing lasts.

It would be great if the story ended there, but alas it does not.  As I mentioned, PWD's are working dogs so they constantly need something in their mouths.  Now, since the toys didn't last very long, my pup started dragging the cushions off the sofa.  So, I've started putting all the cushions in a closet.  I have to remember to take them out when people come over.  So, no cushions, equals no chewing..right?  Wrong.  Now pup sees the sofa as his empty canvas.  We've had to take 3 of the seats to be reupholstered this week.  The guy at the shop told us there was not much he could do, so he's just kind turning them around and flipping them over.   Sob!!!

Does the story end there?  Of course not.  Since pup has chewed up all his toys, cushions and seats, I've taken to giving him used bits of clothing.  An old running shoe that doesn't fit my son any-more, an old T-shirt that's got a couple of holes in it..the list goes on.  Each time, pup gets a hold of the new article and it is DEMOLISHED  in less than 10 minutes!!!  My 14 year old son, who has more sense than I do, pleads with me to stop giving pup clothing.  That we are helping him develop a whole new set of BAD habits.  Deep down I know he's right, but I just can't help it...pup's gotta chew and I have to be able to leave him out of my sight for a few minutes to get ready in the mornings.

When it was warmer outside, I use to tie him up in the backyard while I got ready.  Well, after he chewed through his 4th leash, I started using a bike chain.  No, not the metal ones, the ones that are coated in plastic and are pliable.  He couldn't chew through them and I felt confident he wouldn't escape the yard.  Well, now in December, it's started getting colder.  Although we still don't have snow on the ground, I feel uncomfortable leaving him outside.  So, being the conscientious (doormat) owner I am, I started putting him in the vestibule (a little foyer, if you will, between the front door and the inner door to the house).  I figured he'd like it there, 2 large windows to look out of, and lots of space.  Well, in the 2 times that I put him in the vestibule, I started noticing that my baseboards were shrinking!  Yep, that's right.  Not only has he eaten his toys, clothes, cushions and our wonderful 8 month old dog has started eating the HOUSE!!!  By the way, yes I feed him enough food, yes it's very good food, yes he gets plenty of exercise!!!  He just loves to chew and chew.

So...last week, hubby and I went out and bought "bitter apple" spray.  This is "supposed" to deter dogs from chewing on furniture and baseboards, etc..  The smell makes me gag and I certainly never finish my breakfast or coffee after hubby has sprayed the furniture.  My son gets up from a deep, deep sleep and closes his bedroom door to block out the putrid smell.  Pup, on the other-hand, walks over to the remaining frame of the sofa...his tongue out, as he licks up every last drop of that wonderful spray....

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 27 November 2011

My Dog is Trying to Kill Me!

Yes, it's true.  My loving 7 month old pup, the one I feed, walk, pet, play with, and enjoy, is trying to kill me.

Last week, as I was walking down the stairs, he darted out in front of me and I almost missed my step.  I narrowly grabbed the handrail to keep myself from plummeting down to the main floor.  I had a few bruises on my shins.

Yesterday, as I was cleaning my house, he ran in front of me..I fell face first into my dining room chairs.  I put my hand out to break my fall and now I have a huge bruise on my hand.

This evening, I was taking him out for his evening stroll with my son.  We walked wonderfully until we came upon what I call "Devil's Stretch".  This is an ordinary stretch of land..about 2 blocks long.  On one side of the street are typical suburban homes, on the other is a park.  Well when hubby or son are walking the dog along this stretch, he behaves beautifully.  However, when I'm holding the leash...HE GOES NUTS!!!  He pulls away, bites the leash, growls at me, and barks up a storm.  He runs back and forth yanking me and the leash with him.  Then, once the stretch is over, he goes back to calmly walking beside me...weird!!

Well. this evening, I had the leash as pup, son and I went by Devil's Stretch.  Pup started up as per usual, but, he now weighs over 45lbs!!  He started running back and forth, turning somersaults in the air (quite the agile puppy!)  At one point, he ran behind me and yanked my left arm straight out behind me.  Then he jumped up so my arm went up.  He then yanked back and I fell, on my left side, right into the muddy grass in the park.  He then must have seen a squirrel or something, because he kept on running until I was completely flat, face first in the mud, with my arm stretched out straight out in front of me.

It took me a few minutes to roll over and get my bearings.  I was covered in mud on my left side.  It was a miracle that I had never let go of the leash.  I looked up at my son and asked him if he was planning on helping me.  He told me he would as soon as he stopped laughing!!!

So there you have it...pup throws me down stairs..he flings me into chairs, and he drags me through mud.  When I walk him tomorrow, as a precaution, I'll wear my son's hockey helmet!!

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 20 November 2011

The Social Butterfly

My pup has lots of friends.  Lots and lots of friends!!!  Everywhere we go..a new friend pops up!

Sadly, however, it wasn't always this way.  In the beginning, when our 7 month old pup, was only 2, 3, or 4 months old..he didn't have any friends.  It wasn't from lack of dogs in our neighbourhood, oh no, not at all.  It was because our pup hadn't been fully socialized yet.  He didn't quite understand "canine" language.  Other tiny pups understood him.  When he jumped up and nipped at their ears, they let him.  Occasionally, they would bite back and a full out Sharks/Jets rumble would break out.  They would fight till the other owners and I would have to pull them apart.

But, when my little pup would come across an adult dog, well then the rules would be completely different.  Adult dogs would have no time for him.  They'd turn their back on him, or just growl, saying "Back off pup..can't you see I don't want to play with the likes of you?!"  Of course, being a young pup, and therefore, completely clueless, my pup just wouldn't take the hint.  He'd jump at and yap at the adult dogs..ignore the fact that they were ignoring him, he'd nip at their ears...just long enough for the adults dog, with lightning speed, would pin him down until the yelping started.  The other owners would apologize to me and try to get their 70 lb dogs off my 11lb puppy.  As soon as the dog was off, my pup would start up again until once again he'd be pinned down.  Actually, I didn't mind it one bit.  I figured the best teacher to teach my pup the ways of the canine world, is another dog.  And so it went....

Now my pup is 7 1/2 months old.  I gotta tell you, he learns fast.  Now, he has so many friends...pups his age, and dogs 10 years older than him.  He plays really really well with everyone.  When we come to a soccer field, baseball diamond, or a dog park, he's out there playing with everyone.  He's got his regular friends that he sees every day, and he is constantly making new ones.  He loves and plays with all dogs...except...he doesn't really care for very young pups.  I occasionally find myself trying to pry him off a 2 month old that he has pinned down...he has no time for them.

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 13 November 2011

The Vet

Being first time puppy owners, we take our pup to the vet...A LOT!!

"Honey, do you think pup has a limp?"
"Honey, does his right eye look normal to you?"
"Honey, do you think we're feeding him (enough/not enough/the right food)?
"Honey, do you think he gets (too much/not enough) exercise?"
"Honey, do you think he's gaining enough weight?"

The list goes on and on.  I've got the Vet on my speed dial.  They roll out a red carpet when they see us coming. I'm pretty sure that in the 5 months since becoming puppy owners, we've sent 2 out of the 4 vets to Hawaii, and the other 2 have had major renovations done in their homes.

The funny thing is that I don't even like doctors.  But pup does...A LOT!!  Pup looks forward to these trips.  From the moment we walk through the glass doors, to the moment we leave, our pup gets treats....lots and lots of treats.  The Vets tell us that it's better for the dogs so that they have less anxiety.  I think that giving a pup treats for 1 solid hour has proven Pavlov's theory tenfold.  Hubby and I just have to spell V.E.T. and pup begins to salivate.

Vet is walking distance from our house.  Whenever it's time for a walk, pup begins by wagging his tail and leading the way to the vet.  When we change direction and turn left instead of going straight, pup begins to pull and pull.  Pup can't believe that we're NOT going to the vet.  The further from the vet we go, the louder pup whimpers.  He's mad and sad and I can almost see the betrayal he feels just by looking into his eyes!!  He can't believe his loving masters aren't taking him to the vet...why it's only been 3 days since he was poked, prodded, and could his masters be so cruel???  A pup's gotta have treats...just gotta!!!

And so it goes, every walk the same...till we get to that point mid-month when, "honey, do you think we're feeding him enough for his weight?" kicks in, and off we walk towards those glass doors.

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 6 November 2011

The Phantom Poop

I am a very conscientious dog owner.  I've had my 7 month old pup for 5 months now.  In this time, he's been professionally groomed 2ce.  He gets monthly pedicures.  We've home bathed him half a dozen short, we've done everything by the book.

We walk him several times a day...morning, noon, late-afternoon and evening.  And, let me tell pup is REGULAR.  I've had entire dinner (!) conversations with hubby about the regularity of our pup.  We talk, size, weight, and consistency of the poop.  We talk poop bags (regular or lavender scented), poop bag holders (the kind you clip onto the leash, or the kind you carry in your purse), and of course, we talk poop..lots and lots of poop.

And, because as I said before, we are conscientious, we always, always, always pick up after him.  Noon and early afternoon walks are easy.  In broad daylight, it's very clear to see where pup has gone.  Sometimes, I'll be picking up his poop from a neighbour's lawn, only to find the neighbour at the window..sighing with relief that we didn't just dump and run.  We would never do that.  I hate getting up in the morning, only to find that someone else's dog has gone on my lawn and no-one cared to pick it up.  Therefore I would never do that to anyone else.  In the early morning and at night, hubby and I always have a flash-light with us.  We do this out of respect for lawns everywhere!!


Having had pup since June 1st, this is our 1st Fall season with him.  The Autumn leaves were very pretty in October when they started changing colours.  Yellow, orange, gold, red...I just loved them all. Now, in mid-November, they are kind of a dull brown.  If they're dry, they crunch underneath our shoes.  Pup loves the sound and runs through them.  He tosses them in the air, and bites at them.  Sometimes they get stuck on his snout.  He's perfectly happy with all this..and we love to watch him play.  What we don't like are the leaves that are all wet.  They just kind stick to the bottoms of your shoes, and stick all over pup's face and legs. (sometimes his back if he's rolling around in them).  Also these brown wet leaves look very much like a certain something that belongs in a poop bag...which brings me to yesterday.  Yesterday, hubby was exhausted.  He had done yard work for most of the day, winterizing the house, raking up out the garage, etc...Being a loving, wonderful wife (!), I suggested to hubby that he stay home last night to relax, while son and I would walk pup. (I should also mention at this point, that we are in the transition stage in puppy food.  Pup is now slowly going from puppy food to adolescent food).

Son and I took a few poop bags with us (just in case), and the flash-light (of course).  Off we went on our evening walk.  Well, we came upon a house and pup took his usual stance (heaven forbid pup wait until the park that was only 1/2 a block away!).  Pup had to go and he wanted to go NOW!!  As I said, he took his stance and began.  He went and went.  Son and I began to give each other nervous was gonna be huge.  Pup, unphased by our body language, just kept going and going.  He got up at one point, went a few feet further, and continued to go.  What felt like an eternity, but was probably only a few minutes, the pup finally got up and walked away.  I gave son the leash, took out 2 bags (I knew there was no way all that could possibly fit into 1 bag), and I took out the flash-light.  I searched and searched...and searched some more.  I scoured every inch of that lawn, but all I could see were yucky wet brown leaves.  I looked least 10-15 minutes.  I'm pretty sure I found the needle in the haystack, but the phantom poop was nowhere to be seen.  I took back the leash and gave son the flash-light.  I figured his 14 year old eyes were better than mine.  He combed through that front lawn with the precision of a CSI agent.  The poop was gone!!!

I feel really bad about this.  In 5 months, this has never happened to me.  But I just know, that when those folks woke up the next morning, they had the same reaction as I did when I found poop in my yard.  They thought we didn't was a poop and run...they thought they'd NEVER do that to anyone!

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 30 October 2011

Kleenex....the Final Frontier

So here's the scoop.  My pup will be turning 7 months in 2 days!  He's been in our life for 5 months now.  Over this time, we've bought him squeaky toys, balls, elk antlers, plush jacks, Frisbees, stuffed animals, pull toys, braided toys...the list goes on and on.  Each and every time, the toy lasts about 10 minutes in our home, and then it is completely demolished.

Last week, we went out and bought him toys "designed for the serious chewer" (HAH!!)  These toys actually lasted less time than the regular toys.  PWD are notorious chewers.  Early on, when we first got him, we learnt this real fast.  All our shoes were either locked away in the garage, or they were stored on top of the dryer.  Pup did ruin a couple of shoes...just flip flops and sandals that were left by the back door, but they were never big ticket items.

Pup, did, once inadvertently destroy a pair of my husband's slippers.  How, you ask?  How does a puppy destroy something without setting out to destroy it in the first place?  Well, to make a long story short, pup and I were in the garage.  I was getting him ready for his mid-morning walk when I noticed that pup was eyeing hubby's brand new slippers (barely 3 days old).  Thinking quickly, I put the slippers on the trunk of my car.  I then took pup out for his walk.  45 minutes later, we were back in the house.  I put him in his crate and got ready to leave (a girl's gotta go back to work!).  Later that day, when hubby came home from work, he called me wondering where his slippers were.  "I don't know where you left them" I answered indignantly. Honestly, I thought, does that man rely on me for everything!!!  Then, it dawned on me.....his slippers drove away with me that morning.  I had never taken them off the trunk!!!!  Yes, I know, I'm the one that put them there...however, I blame pup for that one!!!

Besides footwear, pup loves Bounce sheets, toilet paper, lint, straws...but above all...he loves Kleenex (especially the used variety found on the street).  Every day, sometimes as much as 3 times a day, I can be seen on any given street corner trying to pry pup's jaws apart while pulling out bits and pieces of used Kleenex from his mouth.  I do this with my bear hands, all the while telling myself that the Kleenex that's coming apart ever so slowly was not really a used one.  In fact, I concoct an entire scenario in my head.  This is a clean Kleenex.  It was carefully folded and put in someone's pocket.  As this person reached into his pocket to take out a bus pass, the very clean, pure Kleenex fell out of his pocket.  Pup scooped it up immediately before it even touched the ground.....Yes, as my hands rip out little pieces, I imagine that the Kleenex is of the purest's the only thing that keeps me sane.

Why Kleenex??  Why not leaves? (so pretty this time of year)...why not treats? (yes it's true, we never encouraged our pup with treats, but maybe some of his puppy friends at the park have told him about the wonders of liver, chicken and beef flavoured goodies)  Why, why, why...Kleenex???  I'll never know!!!  But for the time being, I'll have to remember to bring gloves on our walks.

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 23 October 2011

The Harness-At last, Happiness I have found you!!!

So here I am, a full fledged puppy owner for just under 5 months now.  I've taken pup to training classes, I've tried positive reinforcement, I've ignored the dog, I've tried to be dominant, but every single time, the "walk" has always been a nightmare.

When we first got pup, he weighed in at 11 lbs.  He was light enough to drag around on his leash, but he never made it easy for me.  He would turn his back on me.  I would try everything to get him to turn around, but he wouldn't budge.  As he got older, he would firmly plant his front paws on the ground.  I couldn't pull him even if I used all of my strength.  Believe me, at 130lbs, I was sure I could outweigh a pup.....oh how wrong I was.

Then as he started getting bigger and bigger, he not only pulled me down the street, but if he saw another dog and got excited, he would pull away on his leash so much that he would make choking noises with his throat.  Of course, being the conscientious owner that I was, I would loosen my grip in order to not "damage his vocal chords".  Of course I would never damage them, hubby knew it, son knew it, heck, even puppy knew it.  However, pup would play the choking card just so that I would run along beside him and accommodate his wily ways.

For a while, the walk got better.  Pup would walk very well with me.  Occasionally, crazy-eyes would come in and he'd put every Kleenex (used) he could find on the road into his mouth...but those frustrating times were few and far between.   Then a crazy thing happened.  Pup turned 6 months old..and all the training, walking, disciplining that we had done in the last 4 months kinda flew out the window.  Pup no longer came when he was called, he started biting his leash again (we bought yet another one-#7 I think).  He continually pulled us and tried to get onto every lawn in the city.  Absolutely EVERYTHING went into his mouth.  In short, our lovely 6 month old pup became that 2 month old brat again.  The only difference, however, was that pup was no longer 11 lbs.  Weighing in at over 41 lbs, pup was getting harder and harder to control.

"This can't be happening", I cried to my husband. " I feel like we're going backwards instead of moving forward".  Hubby quickly got on-line and discovered that pups go through a rebellious stage at 6 months.  Call it "terrible two's", call it "rebellious teens", all I knew was that pup was getting harder and harder to control.

Now, two things happen when you're walking down the street with a demon-dog.  Either, people look at you with sympathy and try to console you by telling you he'll grow out of it by 2 years old (what!!!!!!), or, they give you unsolicited advice. Hubby and I seem to get a lot of the latter.  People have told us to control pup with treats...(yeah, like demon-dog needs more sugar in his system).  People have also told us to use the "soft-pull" muzzle.  So, hubby and I went out and bought one.  Of course we probably didn't put it on right and pup had chewed right through it in the time it took for us to close the garage door and make it down to the end of our driveway!!!

I refused to walk him for a while.  It was just too frustrating.  Pup, pulled and pulled.  I was always prying garbage out of his mouth.  Just 2 days ago, he jumped up and put his head in a trash bin by a bus stop.  He came out with a pack of empty cigarettes!!!  I got bitten several times as I tried to pry open his jaws. I pulled the pack out piece by piece.  It was horrible.  I kept imagining my dog taking up a terrible habit!!!!

Then, just yesterday, I turned to my hubby during our morning coffee and suggested we get a harness.  He gave me a "what do we have to lose?" look, and off we went to buy one.  As soon as we came back home, we put it on pup.  I took the leash and led the was the walk from heaven!!!!!

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Who Shot the Dog?

Those of you who have been following my posts for the last 12 weeks, know what a high-energy puppy I have.  Superman has nothing on this pup.

Superman: Faster than a speeding bullet.
Pup: So fast that pillows get humped, towels get mauled, and toilet paper gets ripped in the time it takes for me to take a second sip of my coffee.. What was once a clean house, now looks like a tornado hit it in a nano second.

Superman: More powerful than a locomotive.
Pup: So powerful that when his leash is firmly clenched in his jaws, there is not a single thing I can do to pry his jaws open.  He's so powerful, that when I take his 41 lb body for a walk, he can pull me down the street and I can't stop him.

Superman: Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound.
Pup:  Pup can jump from couch to couch...he can jump up in the air and find that slipper on top of the dryer.  He can leap straight up in the air, grab his leash hanging from a nail, and gallop off into the horizon.  And of course, pup can run down the stairs and fly across the room, skipping the last three steps.

Look up in the sky!  It's a bird, it's a's Superpup!!!

That is...until he falls asleep!!

When pup is in a deep, deep sleep, he lies there, on his side, with his legs stretched out in front of him.  He looks like the letter "E".  In fact, I've been told that eye doctors have used pup as an inspiration for their Eye-Charts!!

When pup is in his crate, he really lets loose.  He loves his crate because he can squish up against it, all the while putting his paws through the bars.  He lies on his arm out by his side, the other thrown over his chest.  (I swear he must have been a T-Rex in his previous life).  While in this pose, he takes his right leg and rests it half-way up the bars..his left is slightly higher and his resting comfortably through the bars.  He looks like he's in a bad western..."I'm shot...tell ma hunny I'm a gonna miss her"...he lies there for hours..all the while dreaming of his next foray using his Superpup powers!!!!

For more blogs, please visit and

Monday, 10 October 2011

My dog...the ultimate turkey!!!

I was very excited this weekend.  Excited because we would be hosting 15 people for Thanksgiving Dinner.  Excited because my (out-of-town) sister and her family, as well as my Mom, would be staying overnight with us.  Excited because I was going to be trying out different recipes on my finicky family...but most of all, I was excited to see the reaction of my six month old pup in the midst of this commotion.  The sights (different faces), sounds (my family is one loud bunch!), the smells (pies, turkey, ham), might be too much for him.

I wanted to make his day as normal as any other.  Unfortunately, not one iota of his usual routine was followed.  I wasn't able to go on the morning walk with him as I had some last minute cleaning to do.  He did not nap between his morning walk and his afternoon walk as hubby and I were in and out of the house.  I was preparing hors d'oeuvres, while hubby was out back mowing the lawn.  Pup had to walk with our son.  After their walk, pup didn't experience peacefulness and quietude, as the music was on as hubby and I laughed, prepared, and stuck the turkey in the oven.

Besides, how's a pup to sleep when you have all these delicious aromas wafting by?  How's one to pass up licking the floor when so many crumbs have fallen off the cutting board just waiting to be gobbled up by someone who's nose is about a foot off the ground!!  Pup was really happy!!!  Never having given him "people" food before, he was entranced by the different smells and flavours.

I was nervous when the doorbell started ringing, and, as the hoards of family members piled in, everyone was instructed to ignore pup for the 1st 5 minutes of their arrival.  This being done, pup was totally cool and relaxed with everyone.  He was a dream dog...never jumped up, never came to the table, sometimes lay down and played with his bone....but he was never a pest.  Not once did we have to ask him to leave the room.  Not once did he bark, or get hyper.....what a dream dog!!!


It was time for bed.  All the dishes had been washed, the extra chairs and tablecloths had been put away.  The guests were gone.  We sat in the living-room, the out-of-towners, my mom, hubby and son.  Pup sat dutifully on the floor by our side and never said a word.  He seemed to be perfectly OK that he had never napped during the day, nor that it was already over an hour past his bedtime.

Hubby and I brought his crate up to the living-room (from the basement), while sister and her family inflated their makeshift beds, cleared a space to put down the mattresses.  We put the last wine glasses in the dishwasher, hugs and kisses were in abundance, and we all went to bed.

Woof....(5 seconds)...woof....(4 seconds), woof...3 seconds...whimper, whimper.  Upstairs, my husband and I tensed up.  After all, although pup is extremely high energy, he never, ever, barks.  What was wrong?  Woof, (louder), woof-woof-woof (whimper).  I got up, went down the stairs and stared at him.  His tail was wagging and he was super excited to see me. (by this time, close to midnight).  I took him outside and brought him back in, put him back in his crate, and upstairs I went.  Woof...woof...whimper...  "Don't go downstairs" I pleaded with hubby.  "If he gets use to us running down to him, he'll never want to stay in his crate again!" (BTW, he's been crate trained for 4 months, and he absolutely loves it)

Woof, woof, woof, louder and more agitated.  Trying to ignore him, I put the pillows over my head.  I knew that sister and her family couldn't possibly be sleeping with all the commotion.  I felt really bad for them as I knew they had a long drive ahead of them.  Woof, woof , whimper...All of a sudden, mom comes out of the guest-room.  She's gone over to speak to pup.  I can hear her trying to reason with him.  She's telling him it's late (around 2am by now), that people need to sleep.  As the dog gets more and more excited by her presence, she starts telling him what bad owners hubby and I are for giving him a place of his own to sleep in.  I try to ignore this, hoping mom will come to her senses and leave pup alone.  Woof, woof, woof, pump, splat.  Yep, pup puked in his crate.  Somehow, I guess ham juice, turkey, apples, and dog-food didn't mix.

Down come hubby and I.  Out come the rags and the cleaners.  Sister is sitting on the stairs holding her head. I imagine that the circles under her eyes mirror mine exactly.  We clean up, take pup out one last time, put him back in his crate..and off we go back to bed (around 3am by this time).  woof, woof, woof, woof....then it hits us.  Hubby and I have an epiphany.  Pup has no problem with his crate at all.  Pup is upset because we "moved" his crate to make space for sister and her family.  He was upset that he was inconvenienced.  I don't know this for a fact, but I'm pretty sure he didn't give a second though whether or not he was inconveniencing us!!!

And so it went.  At 6am, he was still barking..7am, same. (Keep in mind there was always an hour interval-pup would wait until we were blissfully back to sleep before starting to bark again).  Hubby and I finally got up at 8am after having had a combined total of 3 hours sleep.  We got up and tried to make pup's day as "normal" as possible.  Pup took a long nap after that 1st fact, he never looked so rested and refreshed!!

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 2 October 2011

I'm ignoring you!!

Dogs are weird!!
That's it..nothing else.  They are really strange.

So here I am, my puppy just turned six months old yesterday...I couldn't wait to hug him, pet him, love him.  All I wanted to do was shower him with affection and love..after all, he's half way to becoming a grown dog!!!

So what does my pup turning six months old have to do with dogs being weird?  Well, here's the thing...if I show love and affection to my dog, then all he wants to do is dominate, or bite, or bark at me.  He'll jump up, and at 40 lbs, when his paws hit my stomach, I actually get winded.  Therefore, I had to make a solemn oath to myself to completely ignore him.  I came home from work and just walked right past him.  I've been doing this for 2 days now, and I gotta tell ya, our relationship has never been better.  He hasn't bit or jumped up at me at all.  When he walked into my room, all I did was snap my fingers and point to the door, and he just listened to me and walked out!!!  This has been the 1st time in 4 months that he has actually shown some respect towards me!!!

I thought, "Treating someone like a dog" had negative connotations.  But now, I know that dogs LOVE being treated like a dog!!  Their little tail wags, they sit when they are told to sit, they look up at you with adoring eyes...and all the while, I look the other way and pretend he's not there.

Like I said, dogs are weird...but maybe when he's not looking, I'll sneak a peak at him...and casually pat his back.

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 25 September 2011

The Leash : Public Enemy #1

So here's the scoop.  My dog walks 4 times a day.  Lots and lots of exercise.  One would think that after almost 4 months of daily walks, pup would be used to his leash by now....sadly, no!

Most of the time, he's pretty good.  He knows the "sit", "stay", "down", and "heel" commands pretty well.  Most of the time when I'm walking him, the leash is loose and he's walking right beside me.  Sometimes he'll quicken his step, but all I have to do is say "heel", and he slows down until he's walking beside me.  Most of the time, when he ventures onto strange lawns (to sniff around..not do crucial bodily functions), all I have to do is snap the leash, and he's once again by my side.

Most of the time....

Then there are the times that "crazy-eyes" kicks in.  There are the times when pup becomes possessed by the idea that the leash must be eaten.  He will not let go of the leash.  He will bite it, growl at it, and pull at it.  Puppy, now weighing in at almost 40 lbs, makes snapping the leash out of his mouth really difficult.  Because I  never stop walking..don't want to go back.. for the next 30 minutes, "crazy-eyes" is growling, walking in front of me and pulling, barking, baring his teeth...all the while holding the leash in his mouth.  I desperately try to remember what the trainer had told me.  She said to try to snap the leash out of his mouth..the logic being that if the dog finds it unpleasant, then he will stop doing it.  Well, it's been 4 months of unpleasantness, but pup doesn't seem to mind.  In fact it's become somewhat of a ritual.  The trainer had told me to poke the pup..take my thumb and 2 first fingers..create a cone (if you will), and jab the dog on it's side.  The idea is to "snap him out of it".  Yeah well, either I'm doing it really softly, or the dog thinks I'm massaging him for his efforts, because it makes absolutely zero difference in his life...he hasn't even noticed.

Because pup wraps the leash around his snout and then puts it in his mouth, when I snap the leash the only result I get is either dragging pup closer to me, or making him jump high in the air.  He loves this...the higher he jumps, the more excited he gets...the more excited he gets, the tighter the leash around his mouth......the tighter the leash around his mouth, the higher he's a vicious circle.

Every now and then, a police car or a fire-truck will slow down to look at us.  Sometimes, I will see the pity in their one feels sorry for pup, oh no..he's in full control.  They feel sorry for me!  Every now and then, they'll turn their siren on..just long enough to distract pup..and, once distracted, we go on our regular walk as if the last 30 minutes never happened!!!

The ones I feel most sorry for are other people walking around us.  While pup is growling, pulling and jumping up high, I'll see mothers gather their little children and cross the street.  People waiting at bus stops will either enter the shelters, or go behind the shelters.  Sometimes, people will give me a wide girth so I can get by with demon-dog (aka "crazy-eyes").  All the while, I look at them with a forced "nothing wrong here" smile.  I tell them, "Oh don't worry, we're fine, it's all good!!!"  They just nod at me with the same forced smile all the while crossing the street.

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 18 September 2011

The Walk

Those of you who have been reading my posts for the last 9 weeks, know what a dedicated dog owner I am.  I give pup only the best food there is, no snacks or people food,  I make sure he gets plenty of love at home, I make sure he gets lots of socialization (with other people, other dogs, etc.)...and, I give him plenty of exercise.

Pup walks 4 times a day, roughly 8km per day.  This pup will never be overweight (not if I can help it!).  PWD's are notoriously energetic.  Believe me, if you are the type of person that likes to relax at the end of a long stressful day, kick back, put your feet up and turn on the TV or read a book, then a Portuguese Water Dog is not for you.  These dogs are extremely agile, hyper and full of life.

So, because I do like to kick back at the end of the day, what do I do?..I walk him, and I walk him a lot.  I run him when I can, school-yards, dog parks, you name it.  I walk him early in the morning (what else do I have to do at 5am anyway), I walk him at lunchtime (who needs to eat at wonderful restaurants with co-workers, when you can chew on a Power Bar in the car on the way back to work).  He gets walked in the early afternoon (thank goodness that one's not mine), and I walk him after dinner.  Do I look good in a skirt?  You betcha!!  However, do I wish I could wake up an hour later, eat lunch down-town and put my feet up after dinner, oh YEAH!!!

But I do this for the express purpose of tiring out a very high energy pup.  Does this always work?.., no.  Some evenings he puts his head down and doesn't wake up until it's time for bed!!  However, when hubby (aka Pup's lord and master) is not home, it doesn't matter how long or how hard puppy has been walking.  He has enough energy to tear through the house, tear up the cushions, chew up the shoes, and take a few chucks out of me.

And me....I just kick back, put my feet up, read a book, and put myself in my "happy place"

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 11 September 2011

His Bite is Worse than his Bark

So here I am, week 13 of being a full fledged puppy owner.
We've been through 2 crates (he's grown so quickly, he was out of the 1st crate in 5 weeks!!)
We are currently on leash number 6 (chewed through the 1st 5)
His new toys barely last him one hour (he completely demolishes them)
He's gone through 6 weeks of puppy training school.  Passed with flying colours.

But here's the thing...although I am the only one who feeds him, and I am the only one who walks him on 3 out of his 4 walks (yes 4!!  Darned pup walks 8 km/day), the one who picks up his poop, takes him to the vet, and pets him, this lovely sweet gentle puppy BITES me.  Yes BITES.  I'm not talking gentle playful nips.  Full fledged bites.  There have been times when I'll be standing with my back to him.  He'll come up behind me and take a chunk out of my leg (usually my thigh).  It HURTS.

Usually, the biting pattern begins like this...I'll calmly be reading on the couch.  The 2 other males in my home will not be in the same room as me.  (Pup would never dare try this behaviour with so much testosterone in the room)  So there I am, calmly reading on the couch, not even aware that pup is around.  Pup puts his paws on the couch (he knows he's not allowed on the he does this on purpose).  I remove his paws from the couch..he puts them back on.  He thinks this is a game.  I stand up to show him my authority (hah!). PWD's are notoriously agile.  Pup stands on his hind legs for about 10 seconds..all the while pawing at me.  I push him down.  He crouches, starts barking, and begins to bite my ankles.  I try to use canine body language, try to ignore him (hah!)  He sneaks up behind me and tries to take chunks out of my arms and legs. I give him a chew toy to distract him, he spits it out and lunges.  I try to go back to the couch, but he's way ahead of me..he's jumped on it and proceeds to annihilate the cushions.

I don't want to put him in his crate, but the temptation is too strong.  I feel it is the only way he will calm down.  In the 13 weeks that I've had him, I've been bitten more often than a lifetime of mosquito bites!  Because I don't want him to see the create as a punishment, I start tossing all his favourite toys in there all the while faking a smile and moving closer to the door.  I want him to see it as a happy place (hah!).  Once he gets close, I nudge him in and lock the door behind him.  He's got all his toys in there and is super happy. He immediately lies down and goes to sleep!!  Yeah, after a good meal I like to sleep too!!

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Mua ha ha....we're alone!

Pup turned 5 months old this week.  That means, I've had him for exactly 3 months now.  Long enough, one would think, to have bonded with him.  Long enough for him to see me as alpha, long enough for him to listen to me.  Oh, how wrong I've been...

Every morning we have the same routine.  Pup goes out for a very long walk with hubby and me.  He walks like a dream.  He gets pooped!  Once inside the house, pup finds a comfortable corner where he curls up and "pretends" to  take a nap. Hubby then has his coffee, a quick kiss goodbye and he's off to work.  I'm alone with pup.  Then the fun starts.  Pup runs into the kitchen, takes a quick look around, notices no hubby, and he smiles (I swear it...I see the glint in his eye).  Pup quickly runs upstairs, takes a look around.  Sees 14-year old son still sleeping..and he smiles again.  He runs back to the kitchen and the dance begins..every morning exactly the same.  He grabs the dish towel that's hanging from the stove.  He takes it to the living room and precedes to annihilate it.  I grab the towel from him.  Pup then starts running run through the house in circles.  The open concept suits him well.  He runs from kitchen to dining room to living room in one complete motion.  He moves so fast it is a blur.  This goes on with me chasing him for about 10 minutes.

Once he's sufficiently tired, he goes under the coffee table in the living room.  The ONLY place he's not allowed to go to in the house is on the living room carpet.  He never goes near it when hubby and 14-year old son are around.  With me, mua ha ha..we're alone!!!  He looks at me from under the table knowing I can't get at him.

I then go to the laundry room to get his leash.  He follows me.  As a much younger puppy, he always chewed on our shoes.  2 months ago, we started putting our shoes on our dryer to get them out of the way.  Well, now at 5 months old, puppy is long enough so that when he stands on his hind legs, he has no problem at all getting to the shoes.  This is our routine..every darned day.  He grabs the shoes while I'm getting his leash and runs with a Croc back up to the living room carpet.  I walk over to him, put the leash on him, and take him outside.  I tie him to a railing with a long enough leash that he can play, pee, or sleep without ever becoming uncomfortable.  Once inside, alone, and before son wakes up, I too, get to finish my coffee.  The one I started with hubby 1 hour prior to my daily ordeal...

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 28 August 2011

The Dog Park

So here we were, last class of puppy school.  We would be mastering the Dog Park.  I was completely looking forward to this as I wanted to see my tough guy owning the park...showing the other pooches who's boss.

We got to the Dog Park.  Puppy's buddies/classmates for the last 6 weeks were with us.  Non of these guys had ever been off-leash.  What an experience this would be.

Not the experience I had expected at all!!  First of all, there were 2 other dogs in the park.  A scruffy little 11 year old mutt...cute as a button, and a 2 year old Rottweiler.  This was a very calm Rottweiler.  Owned by an 87 year old lady that had been raising Rottweilers for 55 years.  Very well behaved, well trained, and BIG.  I was terrified.  I refused to go into the park.

I know, I know, all my dog loving friends will lose respect in me.  They will tell me that if a dog is properly trained, there is never any danger...that all dogs are good dogs (it's the owners that create bad dogs).  Ya, OK, I know, I get it.  However, I was not prepared for my reaction.  I did not (could not) enter the park.  I knew there was no danger as I was perfectly comfortable letting my 14-year old in there NO PROBLEM.  It's not that I was even afraid of big dogs.  While on the outside of the fence, I met a woman with an 11-month old Great Dane.  Not properly trained yet and still tugging on the leash, but I was perfectly OK.  This dog stood at almost my height (5' 4").  Yet I was fine.

Anyway, on the outside looking in, I saw something that I could not believe.  All the dogs, minus mine, were all off leash, smelling each other, running around, interacting.  My little guy had gone to a corner of the park and stayed near the fence.  He stood by the woman who runs the park.  He had absolutely no interest in interacting with the other dogs.  I was quite disturbed by this until our class trainer told me that, as this was his first experience off-leash around other dogs, he simply did not know how to react.  Almost as though he felt his safety net was gone. In the meantime, the 6 pound schnauzer was chasing the 150 pound Rottweiler all over the park.  My little guy just sat there.  At one point, the Rottweiler got wind of my puppy.  He went up to him and preceded to nudge him and chase him.  My little guy was crying and whimpering, but the trainer told us not to intervene.  The Rottweiler was not aggressive at all, just a 2 year old wanting to play with a new friend.  By using his nose and body, Mr Big Guy was TEACHING my little guy HOW to play.

I have to admit, I was very scared for the little guy. The trainer then came up to me and told me that my pup was feeding off my negative energy.  He sensed that I did not like Mr. Big and therefore saw him as a pup to steer clear of.

That's when it all clicked.  Training isn't just about commands.  It's not only about teaching a dog not to chew on the carpet.  It's not just about what you say to him.  That's only 50%.  The other 50% is training via your body language.  Training yourself to remain calm.  Training yourself to remain assertive.  Had I been calm and entered the park, my pup would have had the time of his life...but, because I stayed out, I gave him the feeling that there might be danger around.

At this point, I made a vow to myself that I would pay more attention to the silent cues.  Whenever possible, I will steer clear of negative energy.  I will not allow my fears and phobias to taint a wonderful puppy experience.  I want puppy to play with all dogs, big and small...and hopefully, I'll be on the inside of the fence with him.

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Forever a Part of Me!

It has been said that in order to grow your vocabulary, you have to use a new word in 5 different sentences.  That way, it becomes deeply embedded in your psyche, and you leave and breathe your new word.

Well, I've noticed that this works with phrases as well. Case in point, words like "sit", "stay", "heel", "down", "good boy", are said so many times during the day, that my day is not complete without them.  However, I've also noticed  it's the phrases that I mutter over and over again, that have made me wonder about the meaning of life

Ever since becoming a new puppy owner, there are phrases that I use dozens of times during the day.  These phrases will forever be a part of me.  Phrases I never thought I would ever mutter:

1-Where's the other half of that slipper? (Toe is missing)
2-Stop biting me!
3-I need to know the size of the poop.
4-Get your head out of the garbage.
5-Where did that kleenex come from?
6-What's in your mouth?  (As I'm trying to pry open his jaws on our leisurely walk)
7-Anybody see where the dish towel went?
8-No...not the Persian rug :(
9-I'd like to buy some biodegradable poop bags please.

Thanks to my puppy, these phrases have now become a huge part of me.  Excuse me now.  I have to sit, stay and watch my little puppy grow up!

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 14 August 2011

My puppy...Lucky to be Alive!!!

I always had the misguided notion that nature took care of itself.  That animals had a survival instinct.  They are born knowing how to communicate, how to walk, and short, animals know how to stay alive.

However, I've come to realize in the last week alone, that puppies were last in line when that big light in the sky was handing out the survival instinct.  Maybe they were too busy running around, or yapping too loudly, but puppies don't realize how lucky they are every day, breathing, running, living.

Case in point:

Monday: Puppy ate rocks, sticks, and tufts of grass....he's lucky to be alive

Tuesday: Puppy discovered the garbage bin in the laundry room.  He ate lint, kleenex, paper hand towels, and gum wrappers...he's lucky to be alive

Wednesday: Puppy gets a fresh bowl of water 5 times a day.  However, he's discovered puddles of water left by rain, car washes, sprinklers...loves to lap it all up (soap and all!!)...he's lucky to be alive

Thursday: Puppy discovers a water bottle while I'm running him in a schoolyard.  Only, it's not an entire bottle..just a broken shell of itself..he's lucky to be alive

Friday: Puppy runs over to the only piece of trash in the whole yard.  A Styrofoam cup must have blown over.  Puppy loves the millions of pieces it becomes in his mouth...he's lucky to be alive

Saturday: Puppy is playing with his bone.  He loves his bone.  He's going at it with an enthusiasm I haven't seen since he was 8 weeks old.  He's at the bottom of the stairs.  I'm at the top.  I praise him for being such a good puppy.  I tell him he's a good boy.  I come down the stairs to watch an episode of Entourage I had PVR'd.  I'm looking for the remote..but all I find is the puppy's bone.  Yep, you guessed it, I praised him for 10 minutes for chewing on the remote.  When hubby came home, hubby reminded me that puppy was lucky to still be alive.

Sunday:  I'm sitting in the home office writing this blog.  I hear a noise behind me.  I turn around.  There's puppy, chewing on my Anne Klein red wedge (left foot).....oh yeah, puppy is sooo lucky to be alive!!!!

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Coming to terms with "Doggie Terms"

So,here I am, I've been a new puppy owner for exactly 2 1/2 months now.  In this short time, I've come to realize that I am not the only clueless person around when it comes to dogs.  I've begun pondering all the phrases and idioms that include the word "dog" and I've realized that none of them make any sense at all.

To wit:

1.  It's a dogs life.  I wish.  Dogs have the best life ever.  They sleep all day, get pet constantly, food and fresh water is readily available, they get monthly pedicures, plenty of exercise..what's not to like???

2. Dog eat dog.  Yeah right.  A dog will eat anything (slippers, mud, sticks, rocks, grass, furniture, stairs), but other dogs?? way!!

3. At the end of my leash.  Supposedly it means exasperation, however in doggie terms it just means that Master is not walking him fast enough...too much to see and do..not enough time

4. Dog tired.  What the heck do they have to be tired about?  They sleep 14 hours a day.  Expression should be changed to "refreshed as a dog", or "dog lazy"

5. Dog days of summer.  Yeah, best time ever!!!  When else does puppy's dutiful master take him out to every water fountain in the city?  Let's him run around splashing and swimming, lets puppy get thoroughly soaked, while master constantly wipes the sweat from her brows cursing that she forgot, yet again, to get herself a water bottle :(

6. Let sleeping dogs lie.  No way, you'd  never get anything done!!  (Please see No. 4 for reference)

7. Barking up the wrong tree.  No such thing.  According to my puppy, all trees are the right trees.  He never met a tree he didn't like.

8. In the doghouse.  Yes that would be a bad thing, if the dog house wasn't actually a split level dwelling with central air.

9. A dog's breakfast.  Supposedly meaning a vast smorgasbord.  Alas, in my puppy's case, he only eats one type of food...really healthy if you happen to ever bump in to him, please don't mention the people-food thing!!

10. Every dog has his day.  Only one day!!  No way, my puppy has captured my heart for life!!!

For more blogs, please visit and

Sunday, 31 July 2011

Puppy School-The Real Truth

So here we are, half way through a six week puppy training course.  Four dogs in all.  A very snobby poodle (with an even snobbier owner with a very bad perm)...a tiny little shitshu-havanese mix that barely reaches the ankles on my 5'4" frame (Her owner is a very lovely older lady who, in my opinion was probably a doggie-doormat in her previous life), and lastly, a very adorable bulldog (with a young married couple as owners).   All of us owners have never, ever had a dog before.  We've bonded!!

My little puppy has been passing with flying colours so far.  He sits when told, stays, lies down and walks fantastically. He is the star of the school.  That is...until I noticed that he never stares at the teacher...just keeps looking at his lord and master!!  Who is this lord and master?  Let me back up a bit..just to give my faithful readers full understanding into my puppy's psyche.  There are 3 humans in my family.  There's me, "the human chew-toy"...there's my 14-year old son "second in command." ( That kid will not take any poop from our puppy)....and lastly, there is my husband.  An ordinary fellow, nice, kind, good husband...but none of that means anything to pup.  My husband, the only member of the family that does not particularly care for the husband, who 2-3 times a week threatens to give back our little husband, who has no emotional attachment to the pup has somehow become our dog's reason for living.  When the pup sees him in the morning, he lights up.  My husband has become the pup's reason for living...the sun, moon, stars all revolve around hubby.  Pup eagerly awaits hubby every morning...will stop halfway through eating just to make sure his lord and master is alright.  In short, somehow, my seemingly ordinary husband has become the air in my pup's lungs..the beat in his heart...the blood in his veins.

So now, back to puppy school...Pup behaves like an angel.  But, yesterday I noticed that he only looks at hubby when in class.  To prove my point, I suggested that hubby leave the room.  There I was, with other doggies and trainers in the room, holding pup's leash, when hubby got up and left.  In the nano-second it took for the door to close behind him, pup had the leash in his mouth, facing me with shoulders squared , feet planted firmly on the ground, and growling at me.  An Olympian would kill for that kind of time!!!!  "Use the leash to correct him" the instructor would say.  I couldn't find the leash!!!  He had it so tightly grasped in his jaws that I couldn't find any "give" so I could hold the leash.  I just dropped it and watched helplessly as my dog turned his back to me.  My son started saying something about the dog not respecting me...the other owners gave me smug looks knowing their pups weren't so bad after all...the teacher tried to give me some reasurrance that all I had to do was make the dog understand that I was the boss....but the truth was, pup knows who the boss is.  His lord and master...his bright light in the sky....laughing hysterically at me through the window!!!!!

For more blogs, please visit and

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

10 things I've learnt in the 8 weeks since becoming a puppy owner

Hello and welcome to CluelessPuppy's 1st blog.

Never having had a dog before, I was in for a real treat!!!  I had heard that Portuguese Water Dogs were warm, loving and easy to train.  Hmmm, I should have listened to the warnings of my friends.  It wasn't so much the the tone in which they said seemingly innocent statements:

Me: "I'm geting an 8 week old puppy"
1st Friend: "'re getting a puppy puppy"
Me: "Huh?"

Me: "I'm getting an 8 week old puppy"
2nd Friend: "Oh...why not get a 9 month old instead?"
Me: "Huh?"

I should have listened.

Well, it's been 8 weeks now and these are the 10 things I've learned since becoming a puppy owner:

1. Apparently, it's OK to bite the hand that feeds you (repeatedly).
2. The size of the dog is not proportional to the size of the poop.
3. Puppies are never finished pooping when you think they are.
4. A 4 month old puppy can go through 4 leashes in 8 weeks.
5. A puppy will follow you around for about 40 minutes till feeding time.
6. Puppies are smarter than most MENSA members.
7. It takes 3 family members to tire out 1 puppy.
8. Puppies are fearless...especially when it comes to adult German Shepards, Pitbulls, and Berneses
9. Puppies are cute on keeps them alive.
10. Pecking order in my home..Husband/14 year old son/4 month old puppy/ME!!

Still, I love the little guy!!  He makes me feel...Oops, gotta go...someone wants out NOW!!!

For more blogs, please visit and