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Life With Sharon, or, How Much Can a Dog Take?

(Page 3 of 10: Viewing Diary Entry 21 to 30)  
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January 28th 2012 9:17 pm
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She's here and we like her! Dinah arrived yesterday and we liked each other at first sight! She's reservedly friendly - just the personality type I like. Someone who's not too much into my business. We've even shared the same bed and I think we'll get closer as time goes on. She reminds me a little bit of Tanner, but a more feminine, dainty version. She has the most wonderful wide,toothy smile that makes her nose crinkle. It makes Mom laugh! We had kind of a rough night last night with three in the bed. Mom says we may have to work on different sleeping arrangements tonight. Mom is very excited that she learned to use my potty right away. It saves lots of trips downstairs. She's settling in pretty well, but isn't totally relaxed yet. I'm trying to help her with the elevator - she's pretty skittish about it. It is pretty confusing when you go into a little room,there are strange noises and then you come out in a different place. I'm an old hand at things like elevators - all kinds of transportation, actually. So I can help her with a lot. Like when we go outside, for example. She's a little nervous and has to stop and look at things a lot. I show her there's no need to be nervous - I just show her where the good sniffing spots are. She didn't want to eat at first, so I shared one of my favorite treats with her - cottage cheese. That whetted her appetite so she started eating dog food. We have a couple of things to work out, but she's fitting in pretty well. I'm glad for the company and the increased activity.


By Popular Demand

January 18th 2012 1:37 pm
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My pals Coco Rose and Puff requested an update on what's been going on here - your bark is my command! Actually, not much, which is why there hasn't been a recent diary entry.
Thanks for asking about Poochini. She's back on all four feet again and feeling fine. She and her mom are back to their usual long, brisk walks. She doesn't seem to have any PTSD which is amazing.

We have snow, ice and northeast wind here and Mom had some virus after Christmas for a couple of weeks, so I haven't been out much. I persuade Mom to play bunny a couple of times a day, but that's the extent of my exercise, ergo, I've packed on a couple of pounds. Now Mom is rationing my food again; hope I don't have to go swimming again.

Mom tells me someone is going to be joining our family next week. She's a retired greyhound named Dinah. She's already buying beds and other things to get ready for her. I've been enjoying the bed in the meantime - it's HUGE! and I really like it. I don't know how I'll feel about giving it up. Maybe she'll share it with me. Mom thinks I'll like her - she remembers how much I loved Tanner and how much I missed him when he went to the Rainbow Bridge. Dinah is the same age that Tanner was when we lost him, so it's like life continues. Mom will post a picture of her when she arrives.


Sign Language

December 17th 2011 7:20 pm
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I've noticed lately that Mom can leave the room without my noticing it. Sometimes she's been in another room for some time before I wake up and see that she's gone. Then I have to race around from room to room to find her. Also, there are times when she has to say my name really loud before I hear her. She's noticed this too, so when we do my tricks she's started adding hand signals. I can sit, lie down, turn around, high five, high five with the other foot, stand from a sit, do push-ups, and wait. Now I can do all those things without words, just signals. Today we were practicing come, sit, wait, repeat - just with hand signals. I get it pretty well, but wait is always the hardest for me. Mom says I have trouble with impulse control. So much trouble that she always has to grab my harness before she opens the van door or I would bail out onto the concrete way, way below. ouch. Well, even if I can't hear her very well anymore, I can still feel her hugs and caresses.


Merry Christmas!

December 16th 2011 2:56 pm
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This is our first Christmas in our new condo. Because it's pretty small, Mom wasn't sure whether she wanted to put up a Christmas tree or not, so she went looking online to see what the choices were in artificial trees. She was shocked to see how expensive artificial trees are, so that made this decision even more of a problem. But after hours of looking she found a quirky little silver, pre-lit tree that was just the thing. It's just right for our space and its off-beat look fits right in with our non-traditional style. We don't have a fireplace, so my stocking is hung on the storage closet door with care and all my favorite things are in it. I know because they fell out of the sack before Mom got them home and I nabbed one. There's also a mystery present - a silver box with a gold bow. I wonder what it is because it doesn't smell like food. Hmmm...will I like it if it isn't food?

Speaking of food, have any of you had a cow schnozz before? OMD, they are good! Mom bought it for me and gave it to me, but then before long she TOOK IT AWAY! She said it smelled like I was chewing on the other end of the cow! She was afraid she'd never get the smell out of the house. I thought it was the best thing I'd ever tasted! She even made me have a whisker bath. Then I smelled like a cross between cow schnozz and coconut shampoo.

My friend Poochini will have a happy Christmas after all. She's had her stitches out and is healing well, but she still isn't using her hurt leg much. It doesn't slow her down though - she's a tough little mutt.

Merry Christmas to all pups! Hope your Christmas stocking if bursting with goodies!


Poochini vs. the Pit Bull

November 26th 2011 8:32 pm
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Something terrible and scary happened yesterday! My friend Poochini was out with her mom taking their morning walk and a pit bull rushed out of a back yard and attacked her! Her mom tried to pull her up out of the way but the pit bull latched onto her front leg and ripped at it. Fortunately the owner was able to get the dog to release Poochini from its grip and a passerby took Poochini and her mom to the vet in his car. At the vet, they rushed her in and hooked her up to an IV to stabilize her until they could assess the damage. Then her mom called my mom and we rushed over there. We had to wait for hours to find out how bad the wounds were and if Poochini would be all right. Poochini is a yorkie-poo and weighs less than five pounds, so we were all worried that she wouldn't survive this attack. When the vet finally came out to tell us the outcome this is what she said: The bite extended from her chest underneath and around the front leg and back up to her shoulder - the leg was almost ripped off. The lung wasn't punctured which was good, but the muscle was severely damaged and a bundle of nerves was exposed. The bone wasn't broken but only a strip of skin on the front of the leg was holding it on. The vet had to piece together the muscle and skin and stitch it up. She tried to clean it out as much as possible, but so much hair and matter had been chewed into the mangled flesh that it was impossible to clean it all out.

Poochini will live, but it's not certain that she will recover the full use of her leg and we have to wait and see if there will be nerve damage. Hopefully there won't be any infection. She'll have to go back to the vet quite a few times. The owners were stand-up people and are doing the right thing about paying the bills and they are very apologetic, which makes things a little easier for Poochini's mom. But there will be difficult days ahead.

When will people realize that pit bulls are dangerous dogs? All you pit bull fans can say whatever you want, but these dogs were bred to fight and kill, and as mellow as they might seem around family, they are dog-agressive. They are hard-wired to attack what they view as prey and can do so unexpectedly, and when they do there will be disastrous results. Their muscular jaws exert a vice-like grip that can't be broken once their instinct is engaged. Their unpredictability is what makes them so dangerous because no one knows what will set them off. People who own high prey-drive dogs need to ensure that their dogs are ALWAYS under their PHYSICAL control and/or muzzled, and they (the owners) should be educated about properly socializing their dog.


Let's See,

November 21st 2011 10:45 pm
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what have I been doing...Not much, with bad weather here to stay for a looong time. Mom and I took a very chilly walk down by the bay one afternoon. It was sunny but very cold. All us dogs had our warm coats on and I had my mesh harness on over my fleece coat. Mom wanted me to wear my Doggles because the sun was very bright, but I haven't gotten used to them yet, so I kept trying to rub them off. I still don't get the purpose of them other than another way to torture me. Apparently the eye doctor told Mom I have an eye condition that keeps my pupils from contracting in bright light, which is why I squint so much, but I haven't noticed that the Doggles help and I feel stupid wearing them. Mom thinks I'll want to wear them when I go in my bike trailer to keep the bugs out of my eyes when the top is down, but I don't think that will be a problem - she can't ride that fast.

I like having my teeth brushed. At first, I didn't like it at all and wouldn't stand for having to open my mouth, but then I tasted the toothpaste. It tastes like PEANUT BUTTER! Mom let me lick it off the toothbrush and then gradually she started putting it farther into my mouth so I started chewing on the brush. Now I'll not only let her brush my teeth, I beg to have them brushed. When she gets out her toothbrush to brush her own teeth, I put on my pleading look and wag my tail really hard. Then I get my teeth brushed, too. Yum!


New Wheels!

November 6th 2011 6:51 pm
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I have a new ride! Mom bought me a trailer for her bike and now I get to go wherever she rides. It's just the right size and fits me perfectly. I didn't have any trouble getting used to it - as a matter of fact, as soon as she took it out of the box, I got right in. Before the wheels were even on. It's lower to the ground than my stroller, and, although I can see Mom, I'm behind her and she can't talk to me so easily, but I like going where she goes. Today we rode on a trail through the woods not far from our house. In order to get to the trail, though, we had to ride through a congested shopping area. Mom's still a little nervous on her bike, but it all went smoothly.

Tomorrow I have to go to the eye specialist. I'm not seeing very well out of my right eye. My vet didn't know if it was old age sclerosis or a cataract, so we're going to find out if something can be done about it. I still see well enough to play with my bunnies, though.


New Potty

October 16th 2011 1:19 pm
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Mom is ecstatic! And I'm pretty pleased, myself! She was tired of having a pee pad with wet spots on it right inside the door where it's the first thing anybody sees when they come in. Personally, I thought it was better than having random wet spots all over the condo, but she thought it was "unsightly." She looked at the trays at PetSmart that have fake grass in them, but thought that the area looked a little too small, and she wasn't sure I would use it after she spent $40 on it. One of my complaints about the pee pad on the floor is that it slips away from me and I end up doing the splits before I'm finished. One of Mom's complaints is that I track "wetness" onto the wood floor when I walk away. So Mom decided she would make something herself that would be cheaper, just in case I didn't take to it. She found a 2' X 2' plastic tray meant for rabbit droppings and 2 feet of artificial turf (which came in a nice beigey-brown color like the floor). Then she stacked several layers of pee pads in the tray (for convenience and easy removal) and put the artifical turf on top. When I pee, it goes through the porous top layer onto the pee pad below. The tray keeps the layers from moving around. When the pee pad is saturated, Mom removes it and throws it away and she can hose off the artificial turf in the shower when it needs it. It doesn't smell, it doesn't track, I like it because I can keep my footing, and Mom says it's much more attractive. WIN ALL AROUND! And it only cost half as much as the commercial one. Mom says she loves it when things work out as planned.


You CAN Teach an Old Dog New Tricks!

October 11th 2011 1:06 pm
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This posting was not my idea. I'm too modest to brag about my accomplishments, but Mom said I had to write it. She's teaching me tricks. Her idea is not so I can perform for an audience, but it's a bonding activity, she says. Like I could be bonded any more tightly than I already am. Anyhowl, I have learned to "turn around." It still needs a little finessing, but I do go around all the way... slowly. In a BIG circle. Mom calls it "going around the block." I'm starting to catch on that the treat will be waiting for me where I started from. Sometimes I forget and look for it on the way around my circle.

I'm also learning to "high five." This one was a little hard to catch onto. Mom showed me a couple of times how to do it, and then she showed me the treat and said "high five!" I wasn't exactly sure what to do so I had to sit and think about it for about a minute. Mom said she could see the wheels turning in my head. Finally, I figured out she was waiting for me to move my foot, so I lifted it a little way off the ground. OMD, she got so excited! She praised me and hugged me and patted me all over. Well, I thought, that must have been it! So the next time she said "high five," I was a little bit faster to respond (but not much. I still have to process it slowly). She told me how proud she was of me, and next time we're going to try for a little higher - apparently I'm doing more of a "low five."

Update on Maddie:

Maddie won't be coming to live with us after all. She came to meet us and I actually didn't find much to dislike about her. Mom thought she was very sweet, but she's really a special needs dog. Her dry eye was very severe and would require much care. Mom discovered she needed dental work very badly, she had not been treated for fleas and her ears were very dirty. She hadn't had any blood work done and she drank copious amounts of water. She really needed a lot of health care. Mom felt so bad that she couldn't keep her that she offered to pay for the dental. The foster parents took her right to a vet who estimated the cost to be about $900! Whoops! A little more than Mom had thought. So the foster parents went back to the shelter vets who told them they could apply to the Angel Fund for the cost of doing her dental. They agreed to pay it all, and we are all so happy that she's going to get the care she needs. They truly are Angels!



September 29th 2011 6:40 pm
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Today I was stung by a yellowjacket - right in my own house! How he got there, I don't know, because we live in a third floor condo with screens on all the windows. Mom had her back turned and heard me scrabbling on the slick floor. When she turned around to see what was going on she saw me holding up my left front foot with a puzzled and distressed look on my face. I didn't even know what had happened, but she saw the yellowjacket crawling across the floor. She grabbed some paper towels and grabbed it and squeezed it to death and then grabbed me and called the vet. They said to give me antihistamines which she did and then she put a wad of white stuff (baking soda poultice, she said) on my paw pad. I didn't want her to do it and wiggled and complained, but it did help my paw feel better. My poor paw was trembling, it hurt so bad. I'm glad I'm not allergic to bee-stings, but it still hurt for a long time all the same.

Mom is thinking about adopting a sister for me. (Sorry, Teddy) She's at Old Dog Haven, where I came from and she's a shih tzu, too. She's 11 years old and mostly blind, but she can see shadowy shapes. Our condo is small, so she could probably learn her way around pretty fast. I might like her because she wouldn't be able to see my bunnies and steal them. She might also be kind of low key and not get into my business. If she couldn't go on long walks, that would be OK because I don't like to go on long walks either. I'm not sure how I would feel about sharing my stroller with her - we'd have to work that out. At least she'd be better than Rudy!

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