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Favorite Video Friday – Let’s Get Ready to Tumble!!!

February 27, 2015 3 comments

It’s Friday and the weekend is about to begin. What could be better than two Maltese puppies playing? In slow motion? Hell yes!

Here’s a little puppy cuteness to make your day.

Happy Friday everyone!

Favorite Video Friday – Puppy + First Snowfall = ADORABLE

February 19, 2015 6 comments

It’s been a tough week for us and for many of our doggie friends this week.

Daisy had surgery to remove a cancerous tumor on Tuesday and ended up spending an extra night in ICU. Our friend Mya, unexpectedly spent a few nights in the same ICU when her gallbladder burst and she was given a 50/50 chance of making it. Another doggie friend had her lymph nodes removed to confirm she had what was suspected to be cancer, and yet another doggie friend (and fellow Sheltie) was diagnosed with a carcinoma on Monday. She undergoes surgery Friday morning (please send her a little love and healing light her way please).

Fortunately, we also got quite a bit of good news too. Daisy is finally home and seems to be on the road to recovery. Miss Mya may not have a gall bladder anymore, but she has her life and is doing well. And, Jazzy’s lymph node biopsies came back negative for cancer. Yahoo!

We are really hoping the trend continues for our friend Malibu.

Given the tough week and the good news we have had so far, it seemed only right that we celebrate with a fun, light-hearted, cute little video of a puppy enjoying her first snowfall. We all need something to smile about this week.

I hope you find it just as fun and joyful as we did.
Happy Friday everyone!

Favorite Video Friday – A Romantic Dinner for Two

February 12, 2015 4 comments

If you already saw this posted on my Facebook page, I apologize, but I just could not resist sharing it once again. After all, it IS the day before the most romantic day of the year.

And, what could be more romantic than an Italian dinner at a restaurant with the one you love? Did I mention the gondola ride beforehand? Ooo la la!

I hope you all have a Valentine’s Day as romantic as these two. Just don’t stuff all the food into your cheeks, okay?

Happy Friday everyone!

Favorite Video Friday – Static charged dogs

February 6, 2015 2 comments

Today, when I hung my jacket up at work I got a shock. A quick static charge to my finger.

Yesterday, it was so dry that my hair was standing up all over the place. I couldn’t make it go down.

To say it has been dry this winter would be an understatement. Usually snow brings some moisture to the air, but we’ve barely had any this year. Thus, I have had the humidifier running almost constantly.

I think that’s why these two short videos resonated with me. If I can’t escape the dry static-y weather, I might as well laugh at it. Right?

Have a great weekend!

What sort of enrichment activities do you do with your dog?

February 4, 2015 24 comments
I'm going in #Daisy

Daisy goes swimming

My dogs are spoiled. I fully acknowledge that fact.

They get daily hour-long walks (unless it is too cold outside). They have lots of friends and get to play with them often. They have a large yard and can run and play and stretch their legs. They are allowed on the furniture and have plush beds. They get tasty treats (like cheese and chicken) and bully sticks and lots of love and attention. They have a good life. And, I am proud of that.

Hello turtle! #nature #sheltie #turtle

Cupcake meets a new friend

I like knowing that they have good lives and that it is fun and exciting and different every day.

It wasn’t always like this. Yes, I took my other dogs for walks, but I never did all the sort of enrichment activities with them like I do with my three now.

I think Daisy is the one who changed it all for me.

When Daisy first came to live with me, she was so frightened that I worried whether she would ever be able to be a “normal” dog. Seeing her like this made me want to give her the best life possible.  I made her a promise that I would do everything in my power to make her happy.  Not only that, but I would give her the chance to do all the things other “normal” dogs did, and more.  My goal was to give her the kind of  life any dog would be envious of (if dogs can feel envy). That promise was the beginning of a great journey together.

Finding activities that would enrich Daisy’s life became my mission. Anything that would help her grow her mind and her confidence was part of the deal, this included praising her whenever she took a step outside her comfort zone.

So Daisy got bones to chew, ice cream to eat, and toys to play with. I let her dig holes in the yard so she could experience the pleasure of digging (luckily, she only dug under the lilac bushes!). She learned how to use her nose to find the treats I threw out in the yard for her, and she went on walks all over the city and experienced the excitement of exploring new places. She walked into water for the very first time and then learned how to swim.

In other words, she learned to “live” life and not to fear so much. Seeing her joy and happiness gave me great joy and so we sought out more things to do that would be fun and new and exciting.

When Jasper and Cupcake joined our little family, I continued to look for enrichment activities that we could all do together.

Photobomb. Courtesy of Jasper.

Jasper is exploring new places

They now have several dog games that challenge their brains and they get to play them on a regular basis. In the summer time, we go to the lake or walk along the Mississippi River or explore a new park. When the snow melts, I hide treats in the yard and laugh as I watch them follow their noses to all the little treasures. Daisy has accompanied me on many dog walking appointments and even stayed with me on one pet sitting date. Cupcake and Jasper have participated in several Sheltie playdates, and Jasper and Daisy have gone to nose work classes. Jasper has even tried sheep herding.

Providing my dogs with enrichment activities has given me great pleasure and it continues to do so. It’s a joy to see them smile as they work and play and explore.

So now I am curious, do you have enrichment activities you do with your own dog(s)? What are they? What things do you do with your dog that gives you both a great sense of joy? I  would love to hear about them.

In  the meantime, here is a video that highlights an enrichment activity that is easy and fun to do. this is one both you nd your kids can do with your dog. Don’t have a dog that can “stay” like this one? No worries. My dogs don’t have a great “stay” either (although they should), so I use a baby gate to keep them in one location while I hide their treats around the house or the yard. It’s so much fun seeing them run from place to place trying to find them. 

Favorite Video Friday – Sheltie snow romp

January 29, 2015 3 comments

I look out into my backyard and see only the remnants of snow. Little frozen patches of ice now sit where snow once rested. It’s odd to see little bits of grass poking up between the patches of ice in what is usually considered the coldest month of the year. I know it sounds crazy, especially to those on the east coast, but I miss the snow.

I miss the big huge flakes falling down around me, and the magical silence that comes when one walks through the woods during a fresh snowfall. I miss watching my dogs frolic in the drifts and join the other dogs in a game of chase.

I think that is why this week’s video appealed to me so much. There is something so magical about watching Shelties play in the snow.

Of course, the music might have something to do with it too. :D

Happy Friday everyone!

 

Dog Body Language – Test your skills

January 25, 2015 3 comments

I don’t know about you, but I have been seeing (and reading) some really great articles on dog body language and dog behavior lately. It’s really exciting to see so many of them out there and so readily available to dog owners who want to better understand their dogs.

Even though I have some education in understanding dog body language, I always like to learn more, and I especially like being able to practice my skills whenever I get the chance.

Reading dog body language is a skill that must be developed. You can’t just watch a video and suddenly know it. Even the best trainers practice their skills whenever they can. Understanding dog body language not only helps you to better understand your own dog, but it also help you to know what another unknown dog is saying, especially if it is in a dangerous situation.

You can see a full list of the articles I have been reading below, but I thought it would be fun to share a few photos with you today and see if you can tell what these dogs are saying. Give it a try and check back tomorrow. I’ll share my observations then. (The results are in. Head on over to the blog post that contains my observations.)

Picture 1: Lab and St. Bernard

  • Take a look at how these two dogs approach one another. How do they greet one another?
  • Where are their heads and bodies in relation to one another?
  • Where are their tails? Their ears?
  • What else do you see in this picture that can tell you more about these two dogs and what they are saying to one another?

Well hello big guy. #dogpark

 Picture 2: Sheltie

  • What is this dog telling you?
  • Where are her ears?
  • What do you notice about her eyes? Her mouth? Her body?

Maggie gets this close for chicken. #sheltie #puppymilldog
Picture 3: Husky

  • What do you notice about this dog?
  • Where are her ears? Tail?
  • Does her mouth look relaxed or hard?
  • Is she leaning forward? Back?

Husky says hello

 

Picture 4: Lab Mix and Shepherd Mix

  • What do you see in this picture?
  • Where are each dog’s ears? Feet? Body?
  • What do you notice about their eyes?
  • What else do you see?

Millie crashes. Big dog waits for her to get up again.

 

Reading List: 

These next five are all by Ann Bernrose of Woof Work Blog:

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