Where River defends me

Just yesterday, my hubby was away doing his therapy thing and I was deep in a new book (bliss!) when Ocean barked. Now, akitas aren’t barking dogs. So, when they do, it’s important.

I left my book and peeked outside the window and there, in the middle of our front yard, was a strange car. I frowned wondering if it was in trouble but soon enough, a rather large bearded man emerged from the vehicle and it was obvious that: 1. he wasn’t in trouble and 2. he planned on leaving his car parked in the middle of our front yard.

Like most Canadians, I don’t like confrontations. I prefer to bend, be kind and go on my merry way. I’m small and slight, not exactly a threatening size. My face can do funny, kind and sad but it messes up angry. When I frown, people smile back. So intimidating isn’t my strong suit. Still, since the snow had mostly melted and the ground was soft, this car was going to do major damage to our front yard. I had to say something.

That’s when I thought of River.

At a good 20 lbs over 100, my lovely furry boy is on the large side of an akita. Add his lovely, thick fur and you’ve got a good sized dog. The opposite of Ocean who loves every two legged person she meets, River is more interested in food than people. He’s wary of strangers and very protective of yours truly. The result is he usually glares at new comers.

With River at my size, I headed over to the neighbour’s. There was a group of men, all rather on the large end of the scale, chatting, smoking and drinking beer. Giving them my best smile, I held tightly to River’s leash and asked them if there was any chance they might be able to move the car.

“I’m really sorry to bother you, I just worry about our grass,” I added.

The owner of the car turned in my direction and two small, dark eyes focused on me. Canadian or not, there wasn’t a single ounce of kindness in that stare. Then they flickered to River.

“Sure. I’ll move it right away,” he grumbled.

Have I mentioned that I love my dogs? They’re the best!

If we were having coffee…

(credit: wikimedia)

If we were having coffee I’d tell you that Ocean, one of our two super-spoiled akitas, might be a bit sick. She’s been licking herself to the point that she’s irritating her skin, driving my hubby up the wall and worrying me to bits. We have an appointment with the vet on Thursday and I hope they’re on a listening mood because I’m going with all my worries real and imaginary.

I’d also tell you that I finally have an appointment with a dietitian about our recent switch to plant-based food. I have to make a 3-day diary of what I eat and drink and then show it to them so they can tell me how balanced it is or how to improve it. I’m really looking forward to it because I want to know if we’re missing iron or proteins or vitamins as soon as we can so we can fix it. I’m also worried about my water intake. I might be part gecko because I don’t think I drink enough of the stuff.

Finally, before you started to think I was totally normal, I’d moan about our weather. It’s minus 26 with the wind and it’s March. Time for Mother Nature to get on with the program and start easing off. Worse, there’s a massive storm on our way for Tuesday. We already have warnings and special statements online and it’s only the weekend.

I am so not excited about this.

How about you? How is your weekend going?

Credits: Weekend Coffee Share is a meme developed by Part Time Monster and now hosted by Nerd in the Brain

Warning: feral dog ahead

Here’s my protective, watch-dog, River busy guarding our home.

River hard at work

River hard at work

Here’s a close up of the dangerous fiend.

Notice the eyes are half-closed....

Notice the eyes are half-closed….

He’s sadly neglected as well as vicious…

That's my hand trying to wake him up...and not working.

That’s my hand trying to wake him up…and not working.

Yeap. He’s super-dangerous, this one.

Groundhog Day

Notwithstanding what the groundhog predicted, this is the scene outside my window right now…

img_0503

And that is Ocean, one of my two akita dogs who refuse to come inside when there’s a snow storm going on.

Inside? Not now!

I don’t want to come inside yet.

Why have cushions and warmth when you can sit on a pile of snow and ice?

Introducing: Walter

We’re getting a puppy.

Yes, I know we already have two dogs. Yes. I know they’re a lot of work. Yes, my family…ah…No, my family (aka: dog-free parents) doesn’t know…and it would be really good if no one tells them. Try to keep this hush-hush. 😀

(credit: breeder picture)

(Walter at 3 weeks old)

(Walter...a little older)

(Walter…a little older)

That’s him in the pictures. He’s only a few weeks old, so he can’t come home right now. He’s coming at the end of April.

In order to get ready, we’ve already contemplated new fencing, food, toys, blankets, gadgets, and bowls. We also chose a name. Walter.

You might wonder how on earth this little guy came to have such a serious name…Well, I can’t take credit for that one. In a moment of weakness, I told my hubby he could pick the name.

Now we have Walter the puppy coming to live with us.

No matter what his name is, I’m sure he’ll be a lovely, quiet, well-behaved puppy.

I’m sure he won’t pee on the rug or get dirty.

I’m sure he’ll be respectful of guests.

I’m sure he’ll inspire a ton of new posts.

Just for fun, wanna guess what breed he is? I’ll give you a hint. He’s not an akita.

Ocean and the plant

Ocean–our nimble, sneaky, doggie girl who’s just a fuzzy version of trouble–has learned a new trick. She’s learned how to open doors.

I have no idea how she’s learned that. Especially since she still doesn’t seem to understand the concept of not jumping up at people who are all dressed up on their way to work and smear them with dirty paws. You’d think the word: No! And Down! wouldn’t be that hard to understand, but Ocean seems completely stumped as to their meaning. Opening doors, on the other hand, she’s got that pat down.

The culprit trying to look innocent

The culprit…trying to look innocent

Unfortunately, Ocean has a passion for dirt that no amount of healthy doggie food will ease. Some time ago she discovered our poor plant and the dirt on it has become her doggie version of heaven. So, she tries and tries to get at this plant hidden in our office, that’s dying from lack of, you guessed it, lack of dirt. Once there, she eats the stuff until the roots show leaving traces of her snack all around the pot of the plant.

The evidence...clear as dirt

The evidence…clear as dirt

Up to now, I had stopped her from killing the innocent green creature by closing the door…but the last two days, I have woken to find the door open in the morning, dirt all over the floor and, I swear, Ocean licking her lips.

Today, after work, I actually caught her in the act. She had her dinner but refused to settle like the already comatose River, and snuck to the office. I crept after her and, sure enough, there she was, jumping up with unbelievable determination until her one paw hit the door handle and opened the door. Then in she went, to dirt heaven.

So, I think this weekend hubby and I will go get another plant (this one is a pretty past tense thing) and will move the pot and the plant into the living room so that we can keep an eye on it and Ocean can’t sneak around at night and get at it. As plans go, this one isn’t foolproof but its something.

The victim...barely alive

The victim…barely alive

 

I have no idea why she likes to eat dirt. There must be some worm DNA in there somewhere in akitas because otherwise how can you explain that she likes dirt but is very picky about kibble?

On the other hand, its a sad reality is that, in our house, we have to rearrange furniture and plants not according to taste but according to dog habits.

Do you ever…

Recycle posts?

I ask this after reading this wonderful post on Hugh’s News and Views. I’ve never recycled a post thinking that I’d bore my readers. Then I read that post and thought, should I recycle one?

Hm…

Well, I did a little digging and found the most popular posts in this humble blog of mine.

This one: The Importance of Tags: for bloggers is the mother of all posts getting hits even now.

This one: The Amazing Abilities of Akitas, is one of my favourite rants…and apparently yours too.

What do you think? Is it a good idea to recycle old posts? Or should we stick to new material?

Deep Freeze

We’re in a deep freeze. The unwanted and deeply hated Polar Vortex decided to return for a visit this weekend and left its comfortable home in the North Pole bringing with it a deep freeze. It’s minus 35 …but, of course, with the wind things are always much worse. It’s minus forty something with the wind. I can’t put into words the sheer bite of the wind. You get a headache as soon as you step outside which is, of course, your brain warning you that you’re not supposed to be alive at that temperature.

(credit: jlwatsonconsulting.typepad.com)

(credit: jlwatsonconsulting.typepad.com)

The akitas still love it out there. Its unbelievable. Terrified that they’ll freeze into popsicle-dogs, I spy on them from the kitchen window and stare as they run outside. I’m watching for any signs that they’re suffering and run to the door to call them in at the slightest shake. But they’re out there running around, jumping on their rocks as if it was a balmy 20 degrees.

The only time I saw any issue was when Ocean lifted her paws because they got cold. I ran to the door to rescue her but she just lay down and between her fur and the snow, warmed up her paws. It’s crazy. She was back up and running in less time than it takes for me to write this. I still called them in—because I panic. But they were back at the door asking to return outside seconds later.

(credit: rebloggy.com)

(credit: rebloggy.com)

You’d think at these temperatures no one would leave their home but the opposite is true. We do have a Extreme Cold Warning in effect but that only seems to spur Canadians on. They were out there celebrating Winter fest and even doing a Polar Bear dip—a horrifying event where they actually dive, in a bathing suit into the freezing water of the lake and then rescuers try to bring them back to life. Really, who does that? I got cold just watching them on TV. They’re all out there, with runny noses and frozen smiles urging others on to feel alive and enjoy the winter temperatures.

No wonder Europeans think we live in igloos.

Ridiculous doesn’t cover it…

So, we have a dog house. But our dog house is custom-built thing that has shingles on the roof and everything. The entrance is separated from the house but facing the wall so that the rain doesn’t bother our pampered pooches as they enter. It also has a nice, warm blanket inside and treats for our fluffy doggies.

This lovely invention came via my hubby, the therapist, who decided our dogs might be winter dogs but the weather in Canada was too harsh for their delicate constitutions. He also bought them an assortment of toys to keep them mentally motivated while they’re outside. Not to mention the massive boulders they’ve now learned to climb and to use to play.

When I heard he was also looking for a heated water bowl for them, I knew I had to put it on the blog.

But the final straw was what he said yesterday…

He thinks we should get a third dog because two is just not enough to make a comfortable doggy pack.