If we were having coffee

(credit: Natural Health 365)

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I adore my doggies. They’re just the perfect balance of silly and playful, loving and cuddly. I’ve started brushing their teeth and this leads to a ton of new hugs and kisses to reassure them that the brushing is actually good for them. I also give them a treat afterwards (a Dental stick that’s supposed to clean their teeth) and they adore that. I get tons of kisses and hugs, they get clean teeth. It’s a win-win.

I think that they know I’m over the moon with them because, though akitas aren’t supposed to be clingy, these two stick pretty close to me. Right now, as I type, they’re at my feet and next to me. I can just about move my hands but the rest of me is pretty dog-covered. Not that I mind. I find having them next to me a gift that I look forward to every day.

 

If we were having coffee I’d tell you that we’re still having pretty warm temperatures and the mere thought of spring is a drug I’m inhaling every day. The longer days and warmer weather is intoxicating. I can’t get enough of it.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that hubby is slowly recovering from his eye surgery (he had laser eye surgery this week) and now has better than 20/20 vision (owl eyes, that’s him!).

How about you? How was your week?

A huge thanks to  Eclectic Alli for hosing Coffee Share and to you, my lovely reader, for reading!

Where my dogs are confused

I have been pretty honest with my attempt at eating a plant-based diet. I rambled on about what I thought and what I liked and what I struggled with. I thought, if nothing else, it would be a positive influence on me and my eating habits.

I never thought it would affect my dogs.

So, lately, I’ve started to notice changes in our pooches. Like River taking up eating cucumber. He loves tasting what I eat and he is always curious when I’m messing around in the kitchen. It seemed pretty harmless to let him sniff a bit of a cucumber. I thought he’d nose it and leave it. To my surprise, not only did he eat it, he asked for more. Since then, cucumber has sort of become his thing. He loves the stuff. Of course, he still loves peanut butter, apples, chicken, bacon, salmon and other traditional dog treats, but there is no denying cucumber has a special place in his doggie heart.

(credit: RealFoodToronto.com)

Ocean thinks his fascination with the green vegetable is a bit of a joke. She absolutely hates cucumber and simply stares at me when I gave her a slice to try. Instead, her passion are blueberries. Especially if they’re frozen and mixed with her breakfast. She actually jumps onto her back legs and does a little dance when I open their bag. 

(credit:ScienceDaily)

But the most significant change came by only a few days ago. It was early morning (I mean early, these two do not understand the concept of sleeping in), I got up to let them gambol out joyously into the yard and stopped to watch them play. I stared, enjoying the sight of their bounces and runs about when I saw Ocean stopped, sniffed the grass and started to chew it. A moment later, River was following suit.

(credit:Public Domain Picture)

What?

It may be a bit early to predict dire trends but I’m pretty certain that, somehow, my eating habits have influenced my dogs and they’re turning…vegetarian. Since that day, I have been watching my fluffy duo and, sure enough, every day they run out there eager to get their first taste of the succulent green strands.

Maybe it’s time I have a little heart-to-heart with my furry doggies and explain that they are supposed to be carnivores. Before we see other changes.

(credit: pinterest)

Where I’m at war

I fight a war every week. I grab my weapons, a determined attitude and engage the enemy. Unfortunately, I seem to be losing the war.

My enemy isn’t smart and it certainly lacks in weapons. So, you might wonder how it is that it’s winning. The answer is sheer numbers. I’m one. They are many. And they multiply with the ferocity of rabbits.

That’s right. I fight a war against dust bunnies.

I clean the floor and I go behind every corner armed with brooms, swiffers and mops of different sizes and potency. However, nothing seems to make a difference. They fly around, swirling with laughter as soon as I approach.

If there were only one or two of them, I could pretend they didn’t exist but the truth is that there seems to be one in every corner, under every chair and behind every door.  They dance gleefully around as soon as someone moves. And I grab a broom, determined to end their joy.

They’re slippery little creatures. Since ours are made mostly of dog hair, they don’t weigh anything, so they’re incredibly hard to keep still on, say, the duster. They immediately fly away. Still, I don’t want them in my home. I’m a bit of a snob that way.

I’ve tried a vacuum cleaner, but the noise terrifies our two ferocious pooches. So, the war against dust bunnies continues with varying degrees of success. I’ll keep chasing these hairy things while my doggies stare at me from their beds silently producing more enemies for me to battle.

 

 

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?

10 things you should know before you get a dog

10. Dog size doesn’t matter, they will rule the home. One look at those sad eyes and you’ll be toast.

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9. There are many types of aides to stop a dog from pulling when they walk on a leash. Unless you get a stuffed dog, you’ll get to know them all. By name.

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8. Fences are not fail-proof. Dogs can dig or climb their way out of that safe environment you’ve carefully created for them. Mine climbed their 5-foot fence like a possessed squirrel on steroids.

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7. If you don’t have a vet…you will. We know ours by first name.

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6. Guard dogs will ‘protect’ you from intruders… and from the post delivery person and from an elderly lady who’s walking by on her walker and from a snowflake and…

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5. Dogs snore. They also burp and do other things that are disturbingly human. This is particularly true if you have company.

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4. Not all dogs chew shoes. Ours love plants. Especially those accessible on the ground. Don’t get me started on Christmas trees–Lobo peed on ours.

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3. Dog drool is an incredible substance. Wet, it has the lubricating power of grease. Dry, it will adhere to any surface better than Crazy Glue. And yes, it can and will go on walls. When we owned bullmastifs, we saw some on the ceiling.

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2. Keeping a dog clean is an exercise in futility. Aim for semi-clean and embrace acceptance.

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1. Doesn’t matter what type of amazing, holistic, nutritious dog food you give your dog, they’ll want what you’re eating.

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For all the trouble they cause, there’s nothing that will bring on a smile quicker than one look at those loving brown eyes.

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Why…

My dogs eat dirt.

It’s not like they don’t have kibble to eat, they do and it’s good kibble too. Like most doggie parents, we’ve tried every type of dog food from the B.A.R.F. diet to cooking for them, to the super-expensive, to cheap. Finally, we’ve settled on ours and they love it, so all is well. Until they eat dirt.

I don’t understand it. A dog’s nose is something like 500 times more powerful than a human’s. Dirt doesn’t exactly smell great to me. With their powerful nose, it must smell even worse to them. So, why eat it?

They eat it from the plant inside my office. It’s a delicacy they simply can’t resist because every day, the poor plant has less and less dirt. I keep refilling the pot but there’s no keeping up with my two hungry akitas. Now, the roots are starting to show and soon, the plant will die.

I’ve tried explaining things to them and tried positive reinforcement with treats. Nothing works. Apparently, good cheese doesn’t have the appeal that dirt does.

Maybe they’re missing a nutrient.

Maybe they’re trying to tell me something.

Maybe they have prairie dog DNA in those fancy CKC pedigrees of theirs.

(credit: zooborns.com)

(credit: zooborns.com)

River, the writer’s aid

While we adopted both our doggies, River is the latest addition. He had separation anxiety and didn’t like to be away from people so leaving him alone in a different room while I wrote was out. Instead, I encouraged him to lay with me while I worked on my laptop so he’d have a safe, quiet place to be.

Now, months later, River seems to have developed a bit of an attachment. This dog will follow me everywhere. And I mean everywhere. If I’m sitting and get up to add coffee to my mug, he follows. If I go to bed, he’s next to me, if I sit to write, he’s at my side. When I go to bed, he has to be there with me.

The result is that I have a rather large, hairy dog over my foot as I type this. River is under my desk, lying on my feet, sleeping away. If I get up for any reason, he’ll be right next to me.

When I first noticed this trend, I worried about how it would all work out. With cables, plugs and delicate parts, computers aren’t exactly dog-friendly and my Mac is precious to me. The last thing I want is a dog to break it, or harm it in any way.

But River doesn’t want to touch the computer any more than I want him to. He just wants to be near me…and if a human hand should happen to stray away from the keyboard and pet him, all the better.

At the same time, having him near me is incredibly soothing. When I’m upset or something isn’t working right, I grab on to that massive, hairy neck and bury my face in his fur. Then I breathe in and let it all out.

River can take it. He’s a great writer’s aid.

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Please note: That’s not River. He’s much hairier. And doesn’t need glasses.

Dirty dog habits

We have an akita named Ocean. She’s lovely and feisty and for some insane reason insists on waking me up at 6 am every day (yes, even weekends). That might have annoyed some people, we just think she’s quirky and love her more.

We like to think we treat her well. She has good food, treats, toys of every kind and two wonderful cushions to lay on. It stands to reason, among this opulence, she’d start forming curious habits.

To my disgust, Ocean has started drinking from the toilet.

It’s not like there’s no water available to her. She has a water bowl that we personally clean and fill with filtered, clean water. In the summer, we add ice cubes. Ocean has water, she just prefers the one in our toilet.

I’ve tried explaining things to her, tried using positive reinforcements and tried a sharp “No!” whenever we caught her. Nothing worked.

Ocean still drinks from out toilet.

I know. Put down the lid, right? This might appear to be the easiest and most obvious solution but, my husband (with two university degrees to his name) is unable to remember to comply. Once the lid was up, Ocean was back at it.

Maybe she’s going through her teens. She’s almost two, that’s fourteen in doggie years. This could be her version of getting a tattoo. Maybe she’s trying to tell us she’s trusts us as doggie parents. If she’s willing to show us all her issues without fear, that shows a deep level of trust. No?

Maybe she just likes toilet water.

I should probably accept it and relax.

Not as easy as it sounds. After all, Ocean likes to wake me on Saturday mornings by licking me.

(credit:fishinginthedark.wordpress.com)

(credit:fishinginthedark.wordpress.com)