Friday, March 27, 2009

Fake cheese eating dog

It has been ten days since my last post. Louise was a bit confused on Tuesday as she still couldn't find Greg or Viearn, so she tended to sleep at my desk a lot. Or rather, she slept on Greg's desk by my computer, sometimes getting a bit carried away, kicking over the phone receiver, etc. These are things a dog has to do sometimes to just get comfortable.

The weather around here is slowly warming up. I notice it a lot as I ride my bike in the mornings and still need several layers and gloves to stay warm. The only time Louise seems to mind is when the rain is coming down hard. Luckily here in Vancouver, that's not an issue very often.

Of course, that means the flowers are starting to bloom around here and that means I have to be on my guard as we go for our walks. Louise just LOVES to trample fresh flowers. I don't know why, but I usually have to be careful to steer her away from them and hopefully point her toward some fresh grass instead. I am mostly successful at this.

Oh yeah - last night we tried Sheese for the first time! Now, I'm no vegan, or even vegetarian. My wife says we are 'flexitarians' because we are flexible. The bottom line is I'll have a cheeseburger one day and grilled tofu with salad the next. My point is this: I like cheese - a lot. I can say that this Sheese product was the most cheese-like of the lot. We have tried many disappointments in this area so I was happy to try something that was this convincing. As it turns out, Holly dropped a small piece on the floor as she was passing me a cracker and sheese. This stuff is expensive so we knew we weren't going to waste it. Louise was only to happy to come to the rescue and she affirmed that sheese is good! It all happened so fast that I wasn't able to get a good photo though, so you will just have to trust me when I say our dog ate it. At least it wasn't homework.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

The sun is back, baby!

I got to get Louise out for a walk after my morning ride today, and it was quite nice - not yet warm, but at least sunny. We ran into all sorts of interesting characters on our journey down to the waterfront (one of our favorite destinations) and also stopped along the way to let my legs rest up a bit.

Louise didn't mind though, she would just hop up on my lap and then proceed to get silly, rubbing her face into my knee, etc. This of course attracted a small crowd of children and their parents at times.

We were also at the dog park earlier and we met up with this fantastic looking bulldog named Tony. Louise thought he was alright, but when he started to snort she figured that was the signal to start barking. So she did. We didn't stay long at the dog park though - we never do. But it was nice to see they put down some fresh gravel for the new spring season. At least it won't get so muddy like last year.

And yes, the person in the background of the third photo is wearing a bumble-bee coloured sweatshirt. I had to do a double take. I didn't actually notice this person until after I took this photo - I was focused on keeping the dog in the frame and somehow was late in snapping the photo. Finally, we end with a shot of Louise running along the water.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The green eyes of jealousy

Okay, I admit that I am not sure wether it was envy or jealousy that had green eyes associated with it, but today we had another dog in the office and Louise wanted desperately to meet her. The other dog, Kayley, is much younger and at first wasn't too sure of her surroundings so Louise had to wait.

And wait.

And watch other people come over and play with Kayley, and not with her.

I had to move my filing cabinet to the other side of my chair so Louise could keep a closer eye on the pup. It wasn't until almost 4:00 pm that the little dog took an interest in Louise. What a happy moment that was. Almost no barking as the two were able to interact without interruption. With such an age gap between the dogs there wasn't really much of a power struggle so they just fell into their respective roles and got along.

For a while, at least. After about half an hour, Louise was surprised to find Kayley trying to sniff her, and she was not amused. A short staring match and quick snarl later found Kayley back in her owner's lap and Louise at his feet. I had to be a little stern with Louise to get her to give them some space but all was well. Heck, her tail was wagging the whole time, so she clearly wasn't that upset. It just happened to all go down next to Tommy's desk and well, he's not the most comfortable around dogs so hearing one growl unnerved him a bit.

Five minutes later and it was all but forgotten. Louise was back asleep on her perch and Kayley was on to other things. Just another day at the office for these working dogs.

Oh yeah - happy Saint Patrick's day!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Staffing Changes

Trips to the office are not going to be the same anymore. Yesterday was the last day for the people who were laid off, some of whom were very fond of Louise. I'm not quite sure how she will react when she realizes they aren't there.

If I find myself working late, I hear from my wife how Louise mopes around the house, waits by the door, etc. until I come back home. The same generally applies when I am home if my wife is out overnight. Louise doesn't like losing track of her people, it seems. So this Tuesday when I bring her back into the office she will discover that Uncle Greg, Viearn, Jo, Bill and Andy are all missing. I half expect her to wander around the office for a while looking for them, and then to mope a bit as she puts it together.

Luckily we still have a lot of other great people in the office and I am sure she will start interacting with them more. But it will be an adjustment. I wonder if the other dogs will react the same?

Sunday, March 08, 2009

I am not sure who is feeling more tired - me or Louise. Well, it's probably me because right now I'm still awake, while she is snoring away on Holly's lap. I have been giving Louise shorter walks lately because I have been feeling tired from the biking I'm doing (as always, you can donate to my ride here.) So today after my ride (and a gentle reminder from my wife) Louise and I set out for a longer walk.

Oh, and as an update, Louise has been doing very well with her recovery. No limping, no side effects, no problems. Basically, she is back to a normal, healthy pug who gets lots of attention for her 'gray hair' and friendly smile. Unless there are moving cars around, which means she would be getting attention for being 'feisty' or 'small, but mighty'. Basically, no matter what she does, the people around here like seeing her as we walk.

So if this second photo looks a little strange to you, it's because Louise has decided to 'shake' her coat off, which she seems to put a lot of effort into. There is quite a bit of excess skin around her neck so when she does shake, this skin moves around a lot - that's what you see on her right behind her head - her neck skin. Usually, she shakes so much that her hind legs lose their footing a little.

And yes, this last shot is how you can officially tell when a pug is having a good time. Rolling around on the grass at my feet was the highlight of the walk for Louise.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Getting the legs walked off of ya

Louise and I have been extending our walks lately in part because she is back to walking normal but also because I've decided to participate in the Ride to Conquer Cancer. This charity ride will have me bike from Vancouver, BC to Seattle, WA. I have a lot of donations to raise, and a lot of training and preparation to do for the ride.

No, Louise will not be tagging along in a trailer.

If you are interested in following my progress in this endeavour, feel free to follow the above link to my Rider page - they let me have a 'mini-blog' to document my progress. It even has a depressing thermometer progress meter that reads 0% of my donation goal has been met.

But back to Louise. She had a pretty busy day today, what with a walk to the local pet store for some food and another long walk this morning down along the water. This has left her pretty tuckered out now, so she has been finding the warmest lap to cuddle into. Couch laps are warmer than computer chair laps, so she isn't interested in sleeping on me at the moment.

This last photo in today's post is one I found entertaining because of the look on her face. She was in the middle of either yawning or barking, I cannot remember which. Still, it looks like one of those photos that is begging for a caption - feel free to insert one if you like.