Sunday, 22 January 2012

My Dog: The Goat of the Canine World

Hubby, son and I are the perfect dog owners!!  We've read every book, watched every Cesar Millan episode, even uploaded every Youtube funny we could see on PWD's.  In short, we've tried to do everything right!!!  Never, ever having had a dog before, somehow we found ourselves giving advice to people that had grown up with dogs!!!  (What the heck were we thinking!!)

But, there is one thing we did wrong....through no fault of our own.  But, we'll get to that later!

So, back to being perfect...faithful readers of this blog know that we walk our little 9 month old pooch a lot.  We've come to believe that we are the 1st PWD owners in history that can actually tire out the dog before we even get tired.  We try to walk and run him as much as possible.  We also have him very socialized.  He knows how to play with other dogs very well.  He can be rough when the Berneses  whack him with their giant paws, or he can be gentle when playing with the littlest Bichon Frise in the neighbourhood.

Inside the house, I have begun to encroach upon Lord and Master status.  He does listen to me MOST of the time.  However, I have noticed new baseboards being eaten up when I'm not on him 24/7.  He only eats the wood in the house when I'm home alone with him.  He does this because he associates me with wood.  Huh? You ask?  Well, I am definitely NOT lord and master on our walks.  Far from it.  When he's not biting the leash or pulling me down the icy street, he always has wood in his mouth.  In fact, he chews so much wood when he's with me, that he just sees this as normal.  Of course, the only reason I let him chew wood is because if his mouth is full of wood, then he does not bite the leash.  I know, I know, this is a terrible reason to encourage his love of the branch, but I have to tell you, at 52 lbs, he almost broke my pinky finger biting and pulling the leash.   Somehow my finger had got caught in the loop of the leash and when pup pulled hard, my finger either broke or got sprained.  Either way, it HURTS!!

So, back to the exercise.  We live in an area with many green spaces.  Now, green spaces mean lots of places for pup to run about in, but it also means a lot of vegetation.  Different types of vegetation from fir trees, to low lying shrubbery.  Now somehow, this low-lying shrubbery seems to be a favourite of my puppy. He walks up to the bushes and sniffs, tries to bite, and jumps on them.  Problem is, a lot of this shrubbery that he likes to jump on is covered in burs.  Well, take one curly coated Portuguese Water Dog, add a bush full of burs into the equation, and that equals 1 1/2 hour worth of trying to brush out all the needles.  Luckily, pup is used to being groomed because hubby brushes his coat and teeth nightly.

Now....earlier in this blog, I mentioned that we did one thing wrong through no fault of our own.  That one thing we did was use the WRONG brush on our pup.  Because pup is out a lot and gets full of burs....because pup hops through the snowbanks like a bunny....because he's always wrestling and tumbling with other dogs, and most importantly, because his puppy fur is now slowly weaving into the adult fur coming out, our little pup, the one that is so meticulously groomed every night, that same pup had to be SHAVED.  Had we used the proper brush, we would have averted this.  His belly was so full of knots, the groomer said he'd look ridiculous if she trimmed his locks but had a shorn stomach.  So, all the fur is gone.  He looks like he has a buzz cut.  Luckily, the groomer left the little poof at the end of his tail (the only tell-tale sign that he's a PWD).  So son comes home from school that day, takes one look at pup, and says, "Ugh, he looks like a goat!"  And you know, after hubby and I heard this, we've come to realize that not only does he look like a goat, but my little pup also has goat-like tendencies...eating the house room by room.

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