Friday, November 30, 2007

The Magic of Snow!

I really wish I had my camera with me today. The five dogs that I have had all week have just not been getting it together. They chase each other for the first few seconds, but after that they just wander around not playing much.

Not today, the snow was falling and it turned them all back into puppies. That was a very fun play time.

So that is why nothing is getting done around here!

To be honest, I haven't been blogging because for the past month I have just been too tired to think straight let along try to be funny and think straight at the same time.

As most of you know, my health for the past couple of years has been an ongoing case of "So what is wrong this time."

I spent this summer dealing with thyroid problem that was so bad that they took my mind off my stomach problem. So when I started sleeping really poorly back in November, I blamed it on that. I was wrong. This newest train wreck is being driven by a baby. Not the project I had planned for 2008 at all.

Surprise, Surprise, Surprise! That pretty much sums up my week!

Baby is due in July, maybe I will be over the shock by then.

Monday, November 26, 2007

I can laugh , now, they have all gone home.

Really, if I wanted that much grief for Thanksgiving, I could have invited a bunch of relatives.

The kennel is deliciously empty and quiet for a couple of days. I just have Chaser and Bella, Chance and Scruffy and Kaizon. Chaser and Bella are a bit much for Scruffy and Kaizon, but I have still not convinced Kaizon that she is actually a dog and that she should like being with other dogs.

Friday, November 23, 2007

I thought last weekend was bad...

but this Thanksgiving has been the worse.

Last weekend that dogs just never jelled. They never seemed to get it together and really has some fun. I kept thinking that the right dog would pull the group together. Sophie showed up and my hopes were all riding on her. No luck, they mostly just wandered around and ignored each other. I am getting a crash course in the psychology of group dynamics. The right dog can make a playtime, removing a dog can improve play time, but sometimes you just can't get them to play at all.

This weekend is is less worrying about them not having fun and more of keeping them from killing each other. Every single dog I have this LONG weekend is a regular. Every single one of them has lost their minds.

I have Tessie and with Tessie you never get a quiet weekend. She is quite the barker, in the kennel she is bad, but out to play she is worse. She barks non stop at all the dogs to get them to play with her. I keep trying to point out that this is not working for her, but she hasn't changed her approach.

I have Sunny, a collie, who is herding all the dogs. Sunny also barks in the kennel and even more when out to play. Sunny needs an authority figure. I work on him every time he comes. I pull out everything I have learned from the Dog Whisperer's show and his books. I can usually get Sunny to tone it down but this time he is just not stopping at the nipping at other dogs. He has actually managed to piss BB off so bad that she has snapped at him more than once. He has not gotten the message.

I will try again to talk to his Dad about how he walks his dog and how the humans need to be the pack leader and not Sunny. Sunny is a severe dog bite waiting to happen. He is going to happily chomp on the wrong tail or flank and he is going to catch hell for it.

As for the rest of them, they all left their manners at home. Chaser and Bella were teasing Jake far too much last weekend and now they are doing it to Smokey Bill. Patches likes to play with everyone, but as soon as it gets to rough on her, her teeth come out and the growling starts. I just never let her play with anyone for too long. Sweetie is just a nervous wreck and she is fully capable of avoiding all the other dogs, normally. This group just can't leave her alone.

Which brings me to Kodi and Bella, two of the biggest dogs and yet the frightenest. These guys bark a big fight inside their run, but then just spend playtime avoiding all the other dogs. They have been coming for years, this is their routine. Bark like killers until let out and then tuck tail and go hang out by the rose bush.

Not this weekend, I don't know what changed but it changed for the worse. They still bark like killers in their run, but now when I let them out Kodi growls at whatever dog he comes to first and Bella puts her whole mouth on the neck of whatever dog she comes to first. As you might guess, Kodi and Bella now have one side of the play yard all to themselves.

One more weekend like this and I quit!

I Have Never Seen BB Hold So Still

She was on point and every muscle was coiled spring. There was a look in her eye and it clearly was not love for my neighbors kitten. I have never seen this pose before. She even had her hackles up. Which for BB, the fur-less wonder, is more of velvet brushed the wrong way. You can only see it as a difference in her normal shade of black.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving! Happy Anniversary!

I opened the Ranch for business in time for Thanksgiving 2002. This is my 5 year anniversary!

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

"Daisy, do you remember KNOCKED SILLY!"

I guess not. Daisy is right back to 'liking big dogs' just like her owner said. I, however, am still a bit paranoid about her running with the big dogs so I keep trying to remind her.

"Daisy, do you remember KNOCKED SILLY!"
"These are the dogs that KNOCKED YOU SILLY!"
"Really, Daisy, KNOCKED SILLY - not ringing a bell for you!"




Remember I How I Said That Daisy Never Stops Moving?

Winning Over the Shy Ones

I love to watch a timid dog get over their fears and just get to be a dog amongst dogs. I had three different newbie go through this transformation this weekend.

The first was Shelby. She wouldn't come out for the first 24 hours - I don't think she even tried the outside portion of her run for a long time. I put the big dogs away and let her out with only Daisy for her first playtime. I wish I had the camera for that first meeting.

(isn't that the way it always goes - forget the camera and miss the best stuff)

Shebly did so good with that first meet and greet that I tried her out with the whole gang for the next playtime. Brave little trouper, she stood for all those big dogs checking her out. I was so proud. By the third playtime, she was chasing Daisy more than Daisy would like and starting to run with the big kids whenever I rescued Daisy onto my lap.

I think a weekend with me and a bunch of other dogs was the best thing that could have happened to Shelby.

As for the other two, that would be CoCo and Tuff, who is clearly not that tough. Once again, I blew my chance to get them on film. I wasn't expecting them to join the crowd. They had both stubbornly refused to come out for days now. Then at lunch on Sunday, out they came and it did take long for them to untuck their tails and start having fun. Shelby and Tuff were a particularly good match and Daisy was particularly happy about that.

Sophie is One Smart Dog!

I had segregated the dogs into big and rambuceous verses small and step-on-able.

Sophie figured out how she could continue to play fetch with me on the wrong side of the gate.

Good Girl!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Narcoleptic's High Holy Day

I hope y'all enjoyed your extra hours of sleep last night.

I don't actually get to celebrate my holiday anymore, the dogs never reset their clocks.

Only 364 days until next I the only one counting?