Monday, January 23, 2012

Observe, Dr. Watson, with Gratitude

I like observing dogs and behavior. I like seeing how they react to different stimuli, be it a tree, another dog, a bicyclist(s) going by or me. Watching them and giving them space, especially as newbies, is important. I try to let new dogs first be dogs as long as they are safe; I lower the boom aka training later.

Molly T. "again the phone?"
Howie met the boom on Sunday. I put the leash on him in his Dogloo; it
was a lovely day for a walk in the yard. I tugged gently and he came unwillingly but he came. I didn't look at him, just started walking. He tried to lay and roll-over. I tugged/released. He got up. "Good boy!  Yeah for Dodger!" No wonder he is confused. We processed in this manner 3/4 of the way around the field; at the same time, I am throwing tennis balls for Molly T. (down to 2 Xanax a day and her Thundershirt) and petting sundry other dogs.

Mami de Gund
Mami de Gund likes to jump up. She is tiny and light; it is not a problem - however, it is rude behavior. To her, I'm doing "OFF" with a sideways sweep of my hand. I then hand cue her to sit - and she does! OK - NOW I will pet you and make a big fuss - good dog!

At the 3/4 mark (so I judged), when Howie did his submissive thing, I leaned down and petted that lovely black belly; he swallowed. Howie/Dodger, I am not going to hurt you. We resumed our walk ending in the house via a new (to Howie) door. He then got to be in a house crate for breakfast: two bowls full! He did a lot of mental work in that walk.

Now it really gets cool because after everyone is fed, I let Howie out. He goes outside down the stairs via the door he knows. As I am letting the other dogs out of their crates, I see his full head poking through the dog door. I turn, move away and look out the breezeway opposite him as he comes into the house on his own. With the rest of the dogs released and in the house, I close the back door and ask Howie to join us.

Howie does just fine. I ignore him, I let him be wherever he wants to be and go about my other business. After an hour or two, I open the back door - and he goes out. However, he is always welcome inside. Good boy, Howie!  "I'll be baaack."

I was "on call" this past weekend - which is why I posted the Saturday hop and not much else. I wasn't called in - for any of our three ICUs! Goodness - this had never happened before. If any of you ever take night call, you know one doesn't sleep well - checking the phone every few hours just to be sure. I snoozed today even though I didn't work.

Gratitude: I'm thanking Pamela at Something Wagging for the two awards she passed to me this weekend: the Inspiration Award (which asks me to forward it to ten blogs; I'm thinking, I'm thinking) and the Noteworthy Archive Blog award due to her listing me on her blog-list page. How clever - and I will second her on the blog-list theme - please, review my blog-list to the right and check out the archives. So much to read, learn and laugh with! Please note Pamela's award for her photography, too :). I try to improve my photos as I see others and take hints but have a long way to go. BTW, avoid the flash camera in the iPhone 4S like the plague - it just makes your animals and people look bug-eyed like from outer space. I miss my 3GS :(.

Uff da! A lot to say on a Monday night - thank you, Pamela and all us bloggers who support, coach and keep one another in stitches of laughter and some for helping us align our blogs just right (Janet, you know who you are).  Thank you! Watch your emails and listings here for upcoming awards being passed forward.

Pooh - I missed getting into Snoopy's Monday Mischief Blog Hop but here is everyone else so hop around and have fun leaving witty, clever comments. 


  1. This is such a wonderful post. It gives such a good look at the challenges you can face in making a rescue dog comfortable in a new setting. No wonder you inspire me. :)

    Yay Howie!

  2. Howie in the house? Yay! You are doing such a great job with him! Congrats on your awards!