Saturday, March 31, 2012

Birthday Boy

Today only!  "Woof" means "Its my birthday and Mom is going to make me birthday cookies!"  ....or maybe it is, "Dad got strawberry pie for his birthday a couple of days ago, but Mom must love me more because mine will have pureed chicken in it. Yummmmm."

"Woof" might also mean, "I was thinking about having a party, but that would mean I would have to share."  Mom has this silly rule that when I'm with friends, if I get something they get it too.  Yes, I know that might sound fair in convoluted human thought, but cookies only stretch so far.  I get two a day until the supply runs out.  Do the math!

So here we go!  I've earned it.  Mom,  get off the computer.  Come on.  Lets go. I did the birthday picture.  That's my part.  Cookies!  Cookies!

It smells fantastic -- boy, Mom must be a great cook.  Humph.  No spills.  What's up with that? She'll let me lick the bowl after she scrapes out the last of the dough if I am really good.  Don't you think that birthdays are really great? 

Friday, March 30, 2012

Bye-bye Hunter

We've lost a buddy.   Hunter was the "grandpa dog" for our extended family.  He was Roger and Karrie's furry boy and he had a great life in his older years on the Toutle River with the folks he loved the best.

Our enthusiastic, hyper-puppy Henry got to visit Hunter last summer.   Hunter was charmingly patient with his zippy little cousin - undoubtedly under orders from his mom and dad.  Hunter introduced Henry to the river and the woods below Mt. St. Helen.  Henry recognized it was just about the perfect dog place.

So that there will be no chance for you think Hunter was the least bit boring, I will tell you an Alaska story.  The tale is that a handsome young Hunter got his name when exploring the bay in a doggie fishing expedition.  He was near Craig Alaska when his prey attached to his snout.  I don't know if his mom and dad managed to collect the crab for dinner - but Hunter got his name.  I think the experience was worth getting such a great moniker.  Great dog.  Bye Hunter.  Happy hunting big guy.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Untapped Energy Source

If the speed and power of the tail wag could be captured, Henry would generate electricity for an entire suburban block.  Doggy joy and enthusiasm is obviously an underutilized resource.  And then there is the itchy chin scratch.  When that leggy piston pumps, it could move a bus! Since Henry is a flea-less beastie, that is a less dependable source of power than the tail wag, but huge never-the-less.

Henry thinks he is cute no matter what he is doing - so he gave me permission to post the scratch video - but only if I cut out the indelicate bottom grooming section at the end of his scratch.  Since I live to serve Henry, I cut the portion, but just saying, it was there.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Crossword According to Henry  
                     (or)  Sue’s Pup’s Vocabulary
2--Remover of my applied “protective” coating
3--Clueless, irritating household pets
5—Canine servants
7--Top bark getter in yard tools
9--What Dad says instead of “Mom” when I don’t quite make it outside (not swearing)
10--God’s nearly perfect creation
11--When Mom waters outside,  I collect _ _ _
13--Chew targets that makes Mom chase me
14--(two words) fluff extraction targets
15--What Dad calls me (hint: I think it might be a tailored to this pup insult)
1--Where I take Mom to keep her in shape: on _ _ _ _ _
3--If I want to keep the computer working for my blog, I should stop chewing this
4--Heavenly lickable Kong stuffer
6- -What Mom thinks I am
8- -This makes my favorite: gerber chicken, powdered milk, ground flax seed, wheatgerm
12--As their guard dog, I attack this with licking abandon 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Henry Getting Into "It"

Henry, working on an art project. 
When the creative juices flow, there is no end to what my Henry can do.  Collecting his materials is an all consuming first step for the boy.

Henry does come by his creativity honestly - baby Steph collected TP too a quarter century ago.  But then, Steph says she would have done it yesterday if she could still get away with it.

He was driven to the TP because his dimwitted Human took his stuffed toys away for repair.  All that work!  Ripping and chewing - one sewing kit later and the stuffing collected and reinserted - Henry has to start all over.  Clueless Human.

TP is all well and good, but the stuffing from the  puppy toys is fantastic.  A real plus is the plastic squeak toys inside.  Not sure how they will be used artistically, but either Henry or one of his puppy friends will come up with something creative. 

That Human did a pretty good job sewing up the toys.  It may take some time to get the material extraction back on track.  Perseverance is what it is all about when you are a pup trying to convince the world that you are a dog.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Baby Girl

This is Arlo : )
Otis ready to adopt.
Ready to stop at the vet on the way home.
Henry was left behind at home and felt very offended - I went to visit Downey Rescue without my boy.  It is a fine place, but I figured there might be some spare doggie germs lurking.

Otis and Dana are adopting a two year old friend for Arlo -  (Arlo being one of Henry's two best friends). He is a bit arthritic and long in the tooth, but still perky enough to race around with my boy, Henry.

The newby looks a bit like a female version of Arlo - but you can tell the difference.  She is a smaller, more delicate version wearing the infamous cone of shame.  NP (newby pup) has two chewed front knees. 

Dana called to tell me that NP got a clean bill of health from the vet.  Next stop - PetCo - with all those tempting doggie goodies.

Here is the problem.   Now I know how to get to the main rescue site.  I know how many gorgeous pups and kitties they have in their buildings.  What do you want to bet the perfect companion for Henry awaits us in one of those cages?  That's not a problem?  Hum.  I don't know if my lap is large enough for two.  Maybe a lap and a foot dog?

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Washed, Groomed and Clipped (part 2)

The deed is done.

"Oh, for heavens sake," whines Henry. "Mom, don't take picture of me naked!   I'm almost a year old - not a pup anymore.  Jeesh. I can't believe you are doing this to me!"

Followed by barking, "OMG on the blog?  Really?"

Friday, March 16, 2012

Washed and Groomed and Clipped

Enough of this!

Henry's beautiful fur has grown to be over four inches long.  It is beautiful.  It is lovely. Henry and I comb and brush at least 1/2 hour a day - working on those inevitable snarls.  His combination of the very baby fine soft undercoat and only slightly stiffer overcoat is a grooming killer.

Henry loves to plunge into the sprinkler, roll in the dirt, then coat himself with the bald cypress hooked nettles.  His lovely charcoal tipped white hair becomes charcoal tipped dingy.

Henry covering his grubby little face.

He still looks precious...but as his hair grows longer we are dealing with more little mats.  They seem to appear from nowhere. No matter how careful I am, Henry does not like getting those mats combed out.

The comb stays next to my chair and between grooming efforts, Henry tries to capture the comb and hide it.  He is frustrated at his lack of success.  There seems to be an endless supply of combs and brushes in this house.

Our last visit with Jessica at PetCo was a success.  She was gentle with the Henry and although he returned all fluffy and girlie, he also returned un-traumatized.  That is a major plus.

Wait for it.  Twelve noon today sweet Henry will be losing his black tips and going down to an inch.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Calling Cesar Milan

Cesar Milan, where are you?  Henry continues to see the rake as his enemy.  Out of kindness to my neighbors I attempt to train the guy to stop barking as long as I think they can tolerate the barking, then in the house he goes.  Ah, the silence.  What is it about a rake, a broom, a shovel, a hoe?  They are good and trustworthy tools.  This is a continuing challenge.  So, someone is not getting the training right .... could that be me?
  1. A viewer reassurance:  No rakes were harmed in the filming of this video.
  2. A viewer warning:  This could be Henry's Blair Witch Project video.


Now he is asleep on the floor next to the fireplace, exhausted from his rake attacks.  I am searching for Cesar during his naptime.  Training help please!  So far today I've emptied his favorite container of healthy treats - and am into the second tier of training goodies.  Cesars "tssss" and poke trick isn't making an impact either.

Maybe rakes really are evil and Henry is right.  Maybe I should not go back outside. Or at least, not go back outside alone.  After all, there is a rake out there.  The dead oleander and the 30 years of mulch accumulated around its base have waited this long.  What is another year or two when considering my safety?

Maybe I'm looking for an excuse.  Oh-my-gosh.  I cannot believe I forgot the skinned raw chicken leg popcicles.  They keep him entertained all the way through defrosting!  Crud.  There went my avoidance reasoning. Come on Henry.  Back at it.

From Cesar:  Sue -  read this over and over until you get it right!

photo credit: Warner Brothers
  •  Correct dog problem behavior and follow through. Tell your dog to stop barking using a look, a sound, or a physical correction. But don't stop there. Your dog may pause and then go right back to what he was doing. His body relaxed, but his brain was still on alert. Be patient. Wait until your dog completely submits before you go back to what you were doing.
  • Stay calm when trying to stop dog barking.
  • Constant barking can be irritating, but you won't be able to correct the dog behavior problem if you are frustrated. Animals don't follow unbalanced leaders. In fact, your dog will mirror your energy. If you're frustrated, he will be, too! And barking is a great release for that frustrated energy. Take a moment to curb your own internal barking first. 
  • Stake your claim to stop the barking. Is your dog barking over and over again at the same object, person, situation, or place? Then you need to step up and claim that stimulus as your own. Use your body, your mind, and your calm-assertive energy to create an invisible wall that your dog is not allowed to cross. Do it with 100% dedication and focus, and the results may surprise you. 
  • Stop the barking by challenging your dog mentally and physically.
  • Excessive barking is often the result of pent-up energy. If this is the case, the solution is simple: release that energy in more productive ways. Does your dog receive a daily walk? Can you make the walk more challenging with a bicycle, a backpack, or by walking on an incline? Can you provide more mental challenges, such as herding, agility training, or simple obedience games? There are many, many ways to increase the challenges in your dog's life. Find one that you enjoy that your dog can participate in safely.
So, I just want to say, "Thank you Cesar."  I read and reread and it was all I needed.  There has been a huge improvement.  Either I finally am doing what I should - or Henry is so tired from barking that he has given it up temporarily.  Either way - I'm going to pretend I'm doing it right.  That allows me to quit for the night with a feeling of accomplishment.

Best Story

This story was forwarded to me by my friend, Maureen.  I don't know where it originated, but it has to be true.  It is too wonderful to be anything but real.

An older, tired looking dog wandered into my yard.  I could tell from his collar and well fed belly that he had a home and was well taken care of.  He calmly came over to me; I gave him a few pats on the head; he then followed me into my house; slowly walked down the hall, curled up in a corner and fell asleep.

An hour later, he went to the door and I let him out.

The next day he was back, greeted me in my yard, walked inside and resumed his spot in the hall and again slept for about an hour.  This continued off and on for several weeks.

Curious I pinned a note to his collar: "I would like to find out who the owner of this wonderful sweet dog is and ask if you are aware that almost every afternoon your dog comes to my house for a nap."

The next day he arrived for his nap, with a different note pined to his collar: "He lives in a home with 6 children, 2 under the age of 3.  He is trying to catch up on his sleep.  Can I come with him tomorrow?"

Monday, March 12, 2012

A Chance Encounter

Henry discovered a handsome ten year old Bishon  Frise while out walking. The Bishon's mama, Becky, and Henry's mama (that would be me) started talking dogs.  Becky is convinced Henry is part Bishon due to the curly tail, the fur and the tummy spotting. That is fine with me since her pup is a darling little fellow.

Here is the lovely but startling story - Becky found a matted, bedraggled and dirty white stray and caught the lost dog.  I think the pup she caught is the pup to the left.  The stray was frightened and nervous, and after attempting to get her cleaned up at a groomer - an unfortunate failure  - (she bit the groomer) Becky turned to Whittier P.D. for help.  They said they would take her to Downey Rescue.  Guess what!  That was one year ago.  Just when Henry's birth mom turned up at Downey Rescue frightened, nervous, matted, bedraggled and dirty. They named her Chloe. I believe a link to Henry's past has been discovered!

It was a pleasure to be able to tell Becky the next section of Chloe's story.  Downey Rescue did not know that Chloe was pregnant (neither did Becky) until the matting was cut off.  It was that thick and bad.  After a radical trim,  it was apparent that there was more to the underfed wanderer than a single dog. Chloe had four pups in her litter: Anouk, Bobboo, Pontouf - and of course, Henry.

I was able to tell Becky about the other pups and about Deb from the rescue. Deb took the mama into her house giving her and the litter their first comfortable home - at least in recorded history. Deb's living room was completely transformed to a dog friendly enclosure.  It was obvious that all the pups thrived in that loving environment.

I see Deb now and then and we both wonder about all those other pups.  They were all adopted.  They were each adorable and deserving of the best of homes. 

A heartfelt thank you from Henry and his human, Sue, to the Debs of the world and to the Beckys too.  Without Becky, Deb could not have performed her magic on Henry's family. 

Finally, to all of you pups out there searching for your story - you never know when it will be completed by a chance encounter.  Keep sniffing those other dogs! Your story is out there somewhere.

Saturday, March 10, 2012


Henry is an only dog.  He has two cats, but they don't really count in the dog world.  Instead of being alone, Henry has decided to adopt an ape.  The ape makes ape sounds when he is squeezed just right - and quite a bit of squeezing does take place.

Concern about a tear along the apes side has made Henry very careful.  To preserve the ape, Henry tried placing it in a cactus that his Mom has on the patio.  The prickles should keep everyone away.
That did seem like a great protected place but the ape started to do its "woo, woo, woo, chee, chee, chee" sound and Henry realized that the prickles from the cactus must be hurting his friend.  So, the ape was carefully removed from the plant.

Henry is currently searching for another spot.  The toy box seemed too public.  Behind the couch pillow worked until the pillow was placed back on the couch.   Under Greg's chair was great until the chair was reclined ... and so the search continues.

It is difficult being an only dog with the responsibility of the physical and mental health of an ape.  With the realization of the enormity of the task, Henry finally appreciates his Humans and their efforts on his behalf.

Well, this is all true except the final sentence.  I believe Henry does love his humans in a doggie sort of way, but he still considers them sadly inept.  His opinion would bump up if more walks, more trips to the dog park, more treats and more ball throwing were immediately scheduled.  Take note Henry's Human.

Thursday, March 8, 2012


Henry does not approve of it when I get off topic - him being on topic of course.  I could not pass this one up though so please forgive me doggie lovers.

If you have not seen this video, you must watch it.  It is such a fantastic three minutes! It covers the rescue of a confused pod of dolphins on a beach with confused human reactions as a sideshow.

It is one of those events where intervention made a difference.  Can you imagine what a fantastic feeling of success those beach goers must have felt?  To touch and rescue a dolphin would be a life memory for me.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Looking For Help!

There are so many challenges in bringing up a pup.  Randy and Misumi in Champaign have sent along a concern in hopes that they can get some advice.  I don't know what to tell them; neither does Henry.    Henry thinks we need help on this one, so please chirp in if you have solutions.

Here is the story: Billy's dog buddy,  Momo needed to wear a cone and that was not popular, so, I'm thinking Momo got a lot of extra attention and love - not that I can imagine Momo ever lacking in either.  Billy, pictured on the right, watched and being a smart dog, learned.  Here is the note from Randy:

When we came home from work today, we did not see Billy. We did see Momo and she was not wearing her cone of shame.  We thought maybe Billy had torn it off of her.  He has been very, very jealous of all the attention she has been getting and for her recent online fame.
We found Billy looking at himself in the bedroom mirror, dressed just like this.
Frankly, we don't quite know what it means, but it seems to be a "howl for help."
Do you have any suggestions for good Redbone Coonhound therapists?
Henry is thinking that maybe just posting his picture here will be enough. We can but hope. In puppy talk, I think I heard Henry say, "Billy needs to man up." Coming from Henry I think that is a bit ridiculous. Come on, you seasoned dog owners.  Help out here.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Super Tuesday

Here is Henry doing his imitation of a fluffy shawl during his nap.  He becomes so cozy and warm I could wish for chilly weather to last for months.  Henry my thunder-shirt.

He is an extremely valuable animal and he knows it! 

No rain, but today Southern California looks like Seattle or Eugene.  Grey-black skies.  Trees whipping and leaves flying about.  We did our walk in the wind and it was lovely.

After the walk, watching the Super Tuesday results come in on CNN is more nap inducing than a UW Husky football televised loss.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Health and Happiness Gizmos

Henry loves the concept of humans taking care of superior dog creatures.  Some things, however, have him scratching his, I mean really!  

A hyper and anxiety prone pooch can't control herself and ends up encased in a thunder shirt?  Now that just sounds scary.  I know we have all read the ads....but Henry awaits news from the Toutle River and Daisy Mae.  Daisy is considering allowing her humans to dress her up in the shirt.  They have purchased it, but she has not given permission quite yet.  Her comment  to Henry is that she'll allow it when her humans try it first.  She promises to send a photo for Henry to post when her humans try the shirt on (but she didn't explain if it would be a picture of them or her).

And then - there is the "cone of shame."  Yes, most of pups have been there at one time or another.  Momo had a growth removed and it really itched.  Well, what would you do?  Scratch, right?  They told her it was a halo. For heaven's sake, Momo is not that gullible. I don't see Momo's humans wearing a big plastic cone!  I don't see them bumping into door frames as they maneuver around the house.  Henry is sure Momo will get even.

As much as Henry likes being taken care of and treated as prince of the house,  he can't quite figure how his human comes up with this junk!  Apparently Henry's cousins, Momo and Daisy Mae are asking the same questions.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Animal Politics

Say what you will, humans are not really the most appropriate or qualified of earth's inhabitants to run the planet.   We've tended to muck things up.  So, in order to  create ... a more perfect union .... there have been new developments! 

Hank could be an answer for our nation! He is certainly superior to some of our senate hopefuls.  He is getting a very early start and would like you to seriously consider his candidacy!  At the same time, please ignore the opposition illustrated in the second link.  They are without vision.  Click on both links for in/complete information.

Hank for Senate Site:

Our pup Henry does not feel he is ready for a senate run in the near future - just not enough experience yet.  He is throwing his support behind Hank.  Henry is, however,  considering a run in the Whittier mayors race on a Dog Park Platform.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

I Want One!

I am thinking it would be fun to walk this dog.  Henry is not a jealous pup but I'm still not going to tell him.  It  would probably be pushing my luck.

On the other hand, Henry would make a great tribble so it just might work!  I'm going to need to keep this idea under consideration.  Joining up with dog cousins might be just what I need to make this happen.

And finally, these important additions from Champaign Illinois:
Click on photo to see the problem! Oh, and probably do not
get attached to the guy in orange.  We don't know his last name.