A blog about my life with dogs.......

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Oh boy! Oh boy! Oh boy! Oh girl!

nap time
     Oh, the heat is dreadful. All animals in my house, myself included, are making up for all the times through-out the year that we don't have time to nap. It is just too hot! Poor Comet pants and drools after even the shortest of walks. Poor guy, I know he really wants to run. The good news is Wonder Dog is encouraging all the boys to play, play and PLAY! The lot of them wrestle the evenings away in the living room. We take short walks in the morning and after dark. Also I'm working on some obedience and trick training. Frankly, after watching the video below, I'm feeling like a realy lazy dog trainer! Look at what this dog can do! I've got to get to work with my crew!

    After sharing this video with a friend I was led to another great blog SmoothSailinAgility. This blog is a great example of awesome dog stuff going on in my area. Thanks to my friend Rilda for sharing!

    Speaking of awesome blogs if you don't read Patricia McConnells blog The Other End of the Leash(and you should!)she has had a few great posts lately that I wanted to share. The first was guest written by Karen London and talks about both dogs and humans feeling that runners high.The second is by McConnell herself  writing about a new product on the market that automatically electrocutes your dog!!!!

More on.....

     Wonder was born on September 8th 2011 and was given to an animal shelter as part of an unwanted litter. She was adopted by a family in November of 2011 and kept crated for many hours as the family was busy and had small children. She was loved, but the family realized they did not have the time she deserved they gave her up to Protege Canine Rescue(Some of you may recall that I have fostered and volunteered for Protege here and there over the years). Protege, found out that I was considering adopting a female terrier and suggested her as a good fit for me. I fostered her for a short period and then decided to adopt her.
Wonder choosing to nap in her open crate. Notice the crate bed, which fits her crate exactly.       
     Little Wonder had the same fate of so many unwanted puppies,....being taken in by a family when she was cute and young, then as she grew, the family realized the level of care and responsibility required by a dog over it's lifetime and decided to give her up. She is, like so many young dogs, a reminder of how much thought SHOULD be put into picking the right dog for you. And how easily our brains can get flooded with those happy hormones when we see that baby face and wagging tail looking eagerly up at us.
Every puppy becomes a dog and every dog needs a loving home, proper nutrition and (arguably) a fair amount of training!  :) ( I bet, if you are reading this blog, you agree,...right?      :)
Investigating the cupboard after Purr-C cat had been napping inside.

Wonder has been running with me! We have run a few 3 miles runs and she is doing great. We are working on staying beside me, but despite her vigerous enthusiasm she usually keeps to one side or another.

     When Wonder arrived she regularly dug and kicked out the bottom pan of her crate. She also pawed at and bit the crate doors in an attempt to escape. I observed that she regularly chose to snuggle in Captains crate which has a washable bumper pad/bed inside. So I bought her one and the behavior of digging out her crate pan has stopped. I also leave a small blanket in her crate so she can "dig" that around if she likes. No doubt more exercise and spending less time in the crate overall is also helping this issue. The first few days she would bite and paw at the doors furiously, even breaking an extra clip I had added for security. I decided it in the best interest of all parties to NEVER open the door while she is behaving like that, I ask her to "sit" and when she does I open the door. I still have an extra clip on her crate door, but she knows sitting politely gets the crate door open. Also, as she becomes accustomed to our routine I think she is feeling more comfortable, more secure and thus less crate panic.

     So far (knock on wood) Wonder has been the easiest dog I have ever switched to raw. The first night she was here, I didn't know what brand of kibble she had been previously eating, so could not slowly transition her. I was out of back up kibble at my house and so I just gave her a small piece of chicken back which she ate with gusto. I continued to feed her small portions of raw for a few meals until I was comfortable she wasn't about to explode with diarrhea.(occasionally some dogs need to transition slowly to raw diets or may become stricken with diarrhea until their systems adjust) Wonder Dog takes it all like a champ and has now transitioned from chicken to beef. Good girl!

Wonder Dog eating a beef trachea
In other adventures...

     This week Wonder and I ran into another brown snake or DeKay's snake after a run. They aren't poisonous and if they do bite it is unlikely to cause more harm than a small puncture.......I'm starting to wonder if I've got the guts to just go ahead and pick up the next one I see. Why not take a closer look, right?

     Other firsts this week included handling injured hawks at the raptor center. If this doesn't sound dangerous to you, then you haven't seen a Red-Tailed Hawk inches from your face and you clearly haven't seen its talons. No worries, the Red-Tailed Hawk did me no harm nor did I do any to him. At this stage in the game moving these injured birds from dirty cage to clean cage, a task done daily for the injured birds at the clinic, is a learning process. I know that positive reinforcement works wonders, so I'm working hard to do things the right way and be proud of myself, instead of doing something the wrong way and getting a talon to my soft human skin to learn from. Eventually, some bird is going to get me, that is a risk I'm willing to take and part of the job. Learning the hows and whys of wild bird handling is a skill I'm pretty satisfied to be building in myself. How many people can say they have held an owl in their hands? Or a hawk?
      Later this week I will take part in an educational program where I will present a Saw-Whet Owl. Is it too early in this new job to pick a favorite bird???? Because this little owl could easily be my pick at this point. Oh, and I can't forget to mention that, an American Kestrel landed on my head at the clinic AND that when I mentioned to one of my new bosses that I had adopted a 4th dog and could thereby be known as a whack-a-doodle dog lady my boss responded by saying that until I adopt 7 dogs she will hold that title because she has 6. 3 Dachshunds and 3 Italian Greyhounds. Clearly I am in good company!

Why not add a video about Italian Greyhounds then........

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