Likes: Early morning snuggles, car rides, going to other people's houses, her friends Rio and Diego, jumping hurdles, stalking squirrels and best of all playing tug with a Katie's Bumper toy, launching her body up at me to grab and bite her tug toy.
Pet-Peeves: Not being allowed to say hello to EVERYONE, not being allowed to chase squirrels, nail clipping and baths. Ick.
Favorite Toy: Her Katie's Bumper tug toy (thank you Katie!!!), the Bad Cuz, Orbee balls, and an old kitchen towel from Crate and Barrel, BOL!
Favorite Food: Raw!! Well, more specifically, organ meats, beef hearts, whole jack mackerels, lamb shanks, goat, green tripe, eggs
Favorite Walk: Any walk, BOL! We walk daily, twice a day, to either of our local parks where we can go offleash during the sanctioned hours. She especially loves when we sneak off leash in the wooded areas, and running around the open fields in the parks.
Best Tricks: Wave, Jump, Speak, Under (weaving), Come, Front & Finish (jump heel), Hi 5, Round (spin). She can jump through my arms! The best thing is she recalls on a dime even in midplay.
Arrival Story: I met Summer at an outdoor adoption event outside of Petco at Union Sq in Manhattan. I had been thinking long and hard about adopting a dog, and initially, I had wanted an older male dog, so I went there to speak with someone about a future adoption. A very sweet woman who runs a fantastic foster organization came up to me as I waited at the adoption table, and she said that they were always looking for foster homes. I told her I was thinking of adopting, and she was ecstatic. Then I told her I was looking for a large dog, which made her even more ecstatic. Before I could even say anything, she said, "I have just the dog for you..." and ran off to her van parked curbside. She came back out with a wriggly blackfaced, all ears monkey puppy and plopped her in my arms and walked away! Good strategy! This little puppy pie placed a large puppy paw on either side of my neck and licked my neck and dug her wet nose into my hair, and I was sold... The woman came to my apt that night for a home visit, and that's how Summer came home with me.
She was only 3 mths old, and NOT a male fella, and she caused me some worry and heartache at times, but I wouldn't have it any other way.
Bio: Summer went to puppy kindergarten which was a near-complete disaster. The clicker caused her visible distress and the other dogs were too much of a stress level for her. I decided to hold off training until she was slightly older, and then found a fabulous drive trainer who taught us all these games and exercises to allow her to use her drive in appropriate ways. He taught us to interrupt and redirect drive and she learned to focus better.
Months later, I went back to training with her properly, when she was about 2. We found another trainer who also likes using a dog's natural drive, but he taught us more strict obedience exercises. In one month he thought she was ready for her CGC, so we took the test and she passed!! The evaluator's assistant told me as I filled out the completion form, that she performed really well!
Currently we're training to take the first leg of the CD test.
Summer can be a little spazzy at times, with some weird issues, but she is a great girl. I can definitely say I trust her off leash. Nothing makes me happier - to be able to enjoy a certain outdoorsy lifestyle with her, and allow her to fully be a dog, and yet feel confident that I can trust her.
She is also a rawfed dog - started her at 15 mths. We feed a raw prey model diet, and can't imagine ever wanting to feed any other way again.
My new puppal Jasmine, my sister in ears BOL and her lovely mama and her wonderful brother tagged me this morning! What fun!!
Name four jobs that you've had.
1. Obedience training. Mama says, "It's time to work!" and I must heel to her left and we do a couple of rounds of obedience exercises. Really the job is as PR spokesperson for mama's trainer. I've gotten him about 5 new clients because people want to know how I've been trained!
2. Policing rowdy dogs. When I see a tangle of dogs I want to run in there and break it up. Especially if they involve one of my friends. Mama says it's not my job to do that, but what does she know?
3. Alerting mama to "strange shapes and monsters" on the night time walks. The streets of Brooklyn can be tough, yo, I have to protect my family.
4. Toe warmer. Sometimes our building's heat shuts down when it shouldn't and mama's tootsies get cold on the sofa so she digs them under my belly. They tickle a little, but I bear with it, because, you know, I'm cool like that.
Four places where you have lived or stayed.
1. Carroll Gardens in Brooklyn - when I first came home with my mama, she lived in a small two-bedroom ground floor apt. She had a roommate who had a cat named Fester, but we called him BoBo. I was so scared of BoBo but I really did love him.
2. My then dad's apt in Prospect Heights Brooklyn. Mama and her then boyfriend spent a lot of time at his place, and I would stay there with them. It was a big apt, but man the downstairs doggy Mr Fluffy was MEAN to me! He was the biggest pomeranian I've ever seen, and he would run out of the apt to the landing and yell at me. I would squeal and run away.
3. My current apt in Clinton Hill Brooklyn - I love it! It's just me and mama now which is nice! It's small but it's sunny and comfortable. The only thing I don't like is that our neighbors across the hall and the ones upstairs have these tiny dogs who hate me. They bark all day, it drives mama crazy...
4. My auntie Sharon's house in Clinton Hill Brooklyn - Sharon walks me during the weekdays when mama is at work, in the afternoons. When mama had to go away for two weeks to visit family, I stayed with auntie Sharon and it was nice! She fed me raw like mama asked and she has a giant backyard! She took me to the park every morning and night so I could still play with one of my best friends there.
Four places where you have been.
1. Prospect Park in Brooklyn - all over! Sometimes mama sneaks me off the leash up in the wooded hill area even though technically we can't go off leash there. I'm good and romp around the pathways. I chased a bunny in the long meadow once at night, and I disappeared into the green belt off the meadow for a minute which scared mama but she called me and I came running back out.
2. The Manhattan Bridge! Sometimes mama takes me to work with her, so we have to walk over the bridge into the city. Wow the view from up there is amazing!!
3. Fort Greene Park. It's a nice park a bit small but we can go offleash during the sanctioned hours. One of my best friends lives near there.
4. Union Square in Manhattan. That's where mama first met me!! I don't remember the place much - it was very busy and there are a lot of smells! But that's where my foster auntie took me one saturday and mama found me that same day! Go figure!
Four places you'd rather be.
1. Upstate NY or somewhere in PA hiking with mama. She says we have to go this summer, since she's never had the chance to go hiking with me. I can't wait!!
2. Can't imagine where I would rather be. Somewhere where it's nice and sunny and cool and breezy with lots of rolling hills and grass and some trees to run around. Mama says one day we will leave NYC and go live in the country, with other Malinois, and I hope it happens!!
3. In a car, any car. Did I mention car? I love cars.
4. Dozing at the foot of our sofa resting my head on mama's lap while she watches a movie.
Guess I'm IT again, BOL!!! But since I don't have opposable thumbs, you DO realize that my diary entries have been kindly transcribed and typed by my mama, who HAS opposable thumbs... So mama says, OK Summer, I can't play anymore, I'm at work, so your tag games will have to resume at another time. Sorry pups! Mama is so dull...