Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Farewell 2009

Louise has been enjoying her Christmas treats over the past few days. In particular is one 'turkey stuffed hoof' that she keeps coming back to. It's the sort of bone that takes her a solid week's worth of effort to complete. To illustrate this, I've got a few pictures to show her hard at work on it.

Oh yes - the other day we were out walking and encountered a fourteen year old Jack Russel terrier named 'Louis'. At first his owners were concerned because Louise was off-leash and Louis wasn't known to be very friendly to strange dogs. However, she poured on the charm and didn't advance too quickly, which really went over well with Louis. In short order his old tail was wagging and the two dogs had a pleasant little visit. On hearing Louise's name the owner of the other dog commented 'all you need now is another one named George.' This caught me a little by surprise as almost nobody picks up on the pop culture reference to Louise's name. I told him that he was exactly right and that in the past we have toyed with the idea of getting a little 'George Jefferson' to accompany 'Wheezie.'

For the record, we concluded that for now at least, this will be a one Pug household.

Anyhow, we are all looking forward to the adventures to come in 2010 and wish all our readers an exciting New Year.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas 2009

We planned to spend Christmas at home with the pets this year and it has turned out to be nice and relaxing. Louise and I slept in a little bit while Holly was up early to prepare for the holiday feast. As I write this, the turkey is just finishing up. This is how Louise and I are distracting ourselves while we wait to eat - the whole house smells like delicious turkey!

We opened our gifts earlier today - a new tradition was born: gift opening in bed! Louise got all sorts of edible treats and had to give them all a good sniff. There was one stuffed hoof that she was quite fond of, but it seems to have been a bit much for her today. Somehow I think it is because she keeps smelling a 'better offer' and won't commit to the hard work of chewing up a bone no matter how tasty!

After the gift unwrapping it was time to take a mid-day walk. It was sunny and while not warm, still at least 'comfortably cool', which is to say that we had a nice stroll along the Coal Harbour seawall.

Wow, the smell of turkey is a powerful distraction for both Louis and me. She is over by me (as to not be a nuisance in the kitchen) but she's clearly sitting at attention, pointed toward the oven. She's not going to miss anything. Me neither, as I'm signing out here. Time to eat!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Lentil Soup!

The other night my wife made some very tasty lentil soup. It had smoked turkey bits in it and that flavour (along with tasty pieces of turkey) was in every bite. I had to have two helpings myself, which left me feeling very full, but also very satisfied at the end.

My wife on the other hand, wasn't able to quite finish hers, so she decided to give some to Louise as a special treat. Louise went from lazy to excited in about a full second - she knew what was happening before the plate hit the floor.

Needless to say, Louise was also feeling full and satisfied after that. She and I both needed a nice long walk to help with digesting. I suppose we could have gone for a nap instead, but we did opt to be a little more healthy than just sleeping on a big meal.

Thanks for the soup hon, it sure was tasty!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Louise and I were going in to the office this Saturday and she was full of energy. Perhaps it was because it was her first walk of the day or maybe she was just excited because the temperatures are once again above freezing. All I know for certain was that she was quite happy and rambunctious as we made our way toward the skytrain.

Part of the time Louise was walking alongside the stroller
(making short detours to sniff at trees and fire hydrants) and part of the time she was riding in the stroller. While this is normal, today she behaved as if the stroller was her 'command perch' from where she could bark orders and get a better view.

She certainly was enjoying herself.

At any rate, we had an enjoyable walk into the office. Once here Louise knew the drill (settle down and let me get some work done) but before that happened she had to run about the place to burn off some steam. Personally I think she was excited because she knew that I would be buying pizza for the guys who showed up on a Saturday. Louise likes to 'help out' with the crusts.

Oh yeah - as we were entering the skytrain station I forgot to mention: Louise noticed some advertisements for Fido - a local cellphone provider who use puppies in their advertisements. One in particular featured a Saint Bernard puppy and Louise took exception to it. She would bark every time she saw that ad, and lucky me, it was plastered everywhere in the station. I was very happy to see the train finally arrive as she is normally quite subdued once we are inside.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Heat Hogs

Okay so this week I am going to show you how dogs and cats do in fact learn from each other. As I mentioned earlier this month on my other blog, our cat Sophie has started to creep off the sofa a bit and onto the pet stairs in order to place herself more directly into the path of the space heater we use.

We were entertained by this of course, but were really surprised when last night, we witnessed an old dog demonstrating that she learned a new trick. See for yourself. Louise thought that if it was good enough for a cat, then there must be something to it. She started to step out onto the stairs, also to get more heat from the space heater.

In her defence, she had just come in from outside and quite frankly, she isn't really feeling the colder, damper weather. There have been days where she will flat out refuse to go for a walk, or she at least needs a lot more coaxing to get outside. Even when out, Louise will now sometimes 'abort' the walk. She does this little protest where she will not move an inch unless we are going in the direction she wants (usually back inside).

There are a few exceptions to this. I can tempt her to continue if we are headed to Bosley's (our closest pet food store) or possibly to the dog park. But even a walk to the beach is a vain effort if the wind is too cold, or there is a lot of salt on the sidewalks.

Oh don't even get me started on the salt. Every year seems to be worse than the last! Vancouverites are salting walkways in the remote chance that it *might* drop to freezing. I couldn't believe it when Louise's paws started to hurt from the salt already. Normally that is something that happens in combination with really cold temperatures, or at least it used to be that way. We may have to take another look at doggie bootie technology and see where it is at now. (Our last attempts were failures because the booties would slip off after only a few yards.) For now, we walk on the grass for the blocks that are heavily salted.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Season of Darkness

It's colder and darker these days, but that was no excuse tonight. Louise still got a bath. She always goes into such an event with a little hesitation but by the time we are ready to towel her off, she's crazy hyper and looking to fool around. A lot.

Tonight was no exception. Because it is colder we had to ensure that she was walked before the bath, as it would not make sense to take her outside while wet.

I'll have her in the office again tomorrow so hopefully I will get a few more photos at that time. I took this photo while we were on our nightly walk - it's in front of the Westin Bayshore hotel, where I also got a good few shots of a heron about a year ago.