Wednesday, July 20, 2011

If Patience is a Virtue...

...then G is one virtuous girl!

Here I was quietly explaining to G her vacation plans, including all you can swim swimming time, and boy did she have a reaction (I don't call her my Portuguese Water Pit Bull for nothing!):

"Swimming, you say?"

"When do we go??"

Monday, July 18, 2011

Inspector G: Stick Detective

On our Sunday walk, G did her best Inspector G impression and constantly sought out amazing sticks to chew on!

Hunting around in the grass (no suspects located yet):

Spotted! Stick (or should I say tree branch) with suspicious intent:

The second solid stick suspect makes an appearance:

It's exhausting being a professional stick detective!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A New Daycare?

I've mentioned a few times how busy work has been recently, unfortunately making my posts a bit more sporadic - but stick with me, I promise, I'll keep posting!

This past Saturday morning, G, my boyfriend and I went running together in Riverside Park. We happened upon a group who were handing out the 2011 UWS Dog Care Directory by the dog park. I almost didn't take one, but my boyfriend convinced me and off we went. When we got home, I cruised the daycare listings, knowing that I had very long ago exhausted that search!

To frame this, as I've mentioned before, since April 2010, G had been in daycare, the past six months of which were at a small daycare here on 86th Street that had been open for close to 25 years. Imagine my shock (devastation, really) when I went to pick up G in mid-April and there was a sign on the door saying they were closing their doors at the end of the month.

I researched other daycare places in my neighborhood and they were astronomically more expensive than the one she had been going to. I gave up (reluctantly - remember the separation anxiety post?!) and hired a highly recommended dog walker 3 days a week.

My dog walked is fantastic and, while it's been great for my piece of mind, my concerns about not having daycare anymore have been growing. She needs a lot of exercise and daycare simply exhausted her. While a 45 minute walk is great (in addition to the walks we go on when I get home), I'm not sure it's fulfilling her 'doggy' side - really, she needs an outlet for all that information. I just remember when G would come home from daycare, she would literally sleep for the next day.

Further, G's been getting a bit sassier with dogs on leash. She's never aggressive, but has been barking more and I want to get her back into a situation where she's surrounded by a controlled pack and has to interact with many different types of dogs.

So anyways - I was so happy and excited to see a new name in the daycare listings I hadn't previously. The new location is right over on 94th Street (so much closer!) and has been open for about a month now. G has a meet and great in the next week and I'm really hopeful it goes well. I'm thinking of trying 2 days a week to see how it goes (especially with G's limp now controlled by Rimadyl, I'm also hopeful that issue isn't exacerbated).

Basically, I'm hoping that by getting G back into daycare, I get a bit more of this action at night:

But let's be honest, I'd settle for something more like this, too:

Thursday, July 7, 2011

About a Leash

I've discussed G's winter fashions before, but I never really got into the leash side of her closet. I could probably fund a small country with the amount of money I've spent trying to get just the right collar/leash set so that I had the utmost control and G had the utmost style.

When she was a 4-pounder, G started out with a standard, over the back harness. I knew I wasn't going to use the harness for training purposes, but I wasn't about to put a neck collar on a beanie baby. Once G hit ten pounds, I moved her to a teeny-tiny black martingale collar (her sister L had the same one - action shot of the two of them playing below):

I liked the Martingale collars and for the most part I stuck with them through her early and mid-puppyhood. Around a year old though, G went through her teenage, rebellious phase and I tried some other options: a crazy harness that looped over and around (honestly, I don't even know what it was called, but it was touted as no pull - to this day, I know for a fact it would still take me 20 minutes to get the darn thing on her), the Cesar Millan collar (eh), and ultimately the Gentle Leader head collar a la L in this picture:

For the most part, I also really like the Gentle Leader. It gave me more control and was pretty easy to use. The down sides were a) people constantly asking me why my dog was muzzled, b) where the snout strap went across her face, she lost hair - so even when she wasn't wearing the collar, a ghostly reminder was always there and c) even after almost a year of wearing, invariably every time i put it on, there would be a brief session where she tried to take it off.

Finally, I caved and went back to martingale around 2 years old (see above shot). That being said, now that she was fully grown and filled out, G's ability to pull toward an object was noticeable stronger with a simple martingale. Finally, I bit the bullet and purchased a Gentle Leader harness:

For G, this is a miracle contraption. Not only does the light tan harness (and matching leash, duh) complement her coat perfectly, I get the maximum amount of control I need without yanking her neck around all the time (I'm a baby about dragging my baby).

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

SO Excited!

As a New Yorker, I love to have things delivered. Food, furniture, clothes, food, sundries, oh yeah and food.

One thing that I've found doesn't typically get delivered however is pet food and supplies. Well, correction, they get delivered, but you have to pay an astronomical shipping or delivery fee in order to have anything sent (think kitty litter or 40 lb. bags of dog food). Because of this, many an evening you can find me dragging a 25 lb. box of litter back from the local Petco (granted, it's only about 5 blocks away, but G can make that walk excruciating as she likes to take her sweet time).

Recently, the creators of and sent out a notice that they were planning on setting up, which would cater specifically to pet owners. Well, today is the day apparently and I am SO excited! The thought of having the brand of litter of my choosing delivered to my door (usually on the same business day!!), with the possibility of free shipping honestly makes my heart skip!

Further, the thought of paying a slightly better price for these supplies (ie not NYC-standard cat litter prices) also brings a smile to my face.

G, per usual, is also very excited:

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Home Again

After a whirlwind trip upstate to celebrate the Fourth of July, I arrived home last evening to a very excited pup! After 10 minutes of yipping (the Cit collar made an appearance), running in circles and presenting me every toy she has to her name, G finally parked it on the seat next to me and got her Serious on.

Despite her excitement, I am extremely lucky to have a wonderful puppy (and kitty!) sitter who stays with G and the kittles when I'm away. Although, invariably, I have irrational anxiety about leaving her (What if something happens? Is she behaving? etc.), it always turns out fine - especially when you consider G was walked over 6 miles between Saturday and Sunday, it's no surprised she was sort of pooped out last night!