Queen V

Howdy blogaroos! Squirmy here on a holiday Monday. What holiday? Why it’s Vicky’s birthday!!! OK – to be more exact – it’s Queen Victoria’s birthday. Although she died a long time ago, people celebrate because she was alive once. And for government workers, and banks, and schools – it means a day off. And the unofficial beginning of the white pants wearing season. Which don’t stay white very long in this house.

But back to Queen V. I decided to check out a bit about her – and although I didn’t know her personally, I think I like her. Why? She was a crazy dog person- just like the Warden! OK maybe not JUST like the Warden – I mean in her lifetime she had something like 38 Pugs, 35 Pomeranians, 2 Border collies, and at least one Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, an Italian Greyhound, a Deerhound, a Pekingese, and a Skye Terrier. She even showed 6 Pomeranians at the very first Crufts dog show in 1891!!!! Even though she didn’t own a PON or Picard – we won’t hold that against her. Here are a bunch of articles about her relationships with her canines:

https://www.rct.uk/collection/themes/trails/royal-pets

https://royalcentral.co.uk/features/queen-victorias-king-charles-spaniel-dash-107550/

https://fiveminutehistory.com/queen-victorias-pomeranians/

http://www.bordercolliemuseum.org/QueenVictoria/QueenVictoria.html

She had paintings, sculptures and photographs done of her dogs. Which is just one of the many characteristics of a crazy dog person.

I see one of her dogs was named Dash. I like that. I think I should have been name Dash. It suits my personality. Although I guess it doesn’t sound very Polish. How about Dashaski – with Dash for short?! Nah. I’m just starting to respond to Wojtek (as well as some names I can’t print here) so I’ll stick with that.

Here’s a bunch of fun facts about her – although these aren’t that much fun because they don’t mention dogs. Still – I guess they ARE interesting.

https://www.townandcountrymag.com/society/tradition/a14510744/queen-victoria-facts/

Anyway – Happy Birthday Queen V. Extra treats all around to celebrate! I’ll celebrate anything if it involves treats.

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.

World Fiddle Day

Howdy blogaroos! Squirmy here on a super Saturday. Sunshine, greening leaves and black flies. Spring IS here.

So according to the crazy calendar, today is something called World Fiddle Day. A day to celebrate a musical instrument that is very popular here in Nova Scotia.

But before we get to that kind of fiddle, did you know that for us dogs, the word fiddle has a different meaning? Did you know that with us canines that fiddle behaviors are things that we do when we’re anxious, or we’re “collecting information from the environment as to how we should behave to stay safe.” For example, we might pant – even though we’re not hot. Here’s a good chart of fiddle behaviors:

https://vetbehaviourteam.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/VBT-Fiddle-Behaviors.pdf

Now all of the things listed are normal things that we dogs do – I mean who doesn’t yawn if they’re tired? But it’s when these things occur out of context that they are considered fiddle behaviors.

Here are a few articles that go into this topic in a bit more detail;

https://www.k9ofmine.com/dog-calming-signals/

https://www.welfare4animals.org/blog/the-4fs-of-fear-fear-responses

The key is to be a good observer – and to not ignore these behaviors in your dog.

On a less serious note, and in keeping with the fiddle topic, I found a dog who fiddles a real fiddle! Check him out!

https://youtu.be/0ANRGT5IkAA

I want a drum set. More my style. Can you imagine…

And lastly, as a Nova Scotian, I would probably be deported if I didn’t give you a sampling of some fiddle music by the Queen of Nova Scotia fiddling – Natalie MacMaster. Natalie is Nova Scotia born and raised and is amazingly talented. So – Natalie went and married a King of Ontario fiddling – Donnell Leahy. If you have some time and want to hear some interesting info about fiddling in Canada – you can listen to their TED talk from 2003. You also get a pretty good idea of how talented this couple is:

https://www.ted.com/talks/natalie_macmaster_fiddling_in_reel_time?language=sv

Well that was 2003. Today the couple has 7 children. And guess what? All of them play the fiddle! I think it’s called genetics. Here are 5 of them from a few years ago….

https://youtu.be/68_ivaqCPOI

Those kids have almost as much energy as I do. Almost.

OK. Enough fiddling around. Time to walk and roll.

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.

“Holey” terrors

Howdy doody blogaroos. Squirmy here on what is forecast to be a sunny Thursday. Good times! Despite the fact that, rumor has it, it might be a mowing day. Ho hum. The woman in the bug suit will be out huffing and puffing as her three supervisors inspect her work from the comfort of the deck.

What’s new around here? Everyone is feeling fine – no more random urky gurkies. The Coyote ate all his meals and he’s back on blueberries again. Darn- fewer for yours truly.

What’s in the news? And I mean GOOD news. I skip sad stories – those are sometimes too plentiful and easy to find. I like to dog around for a treasure. Just like the story of this guy:

https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/ollie-blackpool-puppy-digs-8k-coins/

I knew those dogs hunted for truffles, which is pretty lucrative- but that guy REALLY found a jackpot! That’s what the Coyote and I are doing in the backyard- digging for treasure. We call ourselves the Holey Terrors. Get it? The Warden doesn’t know what to do about the land mines we have created. She said they are worse than the holes that the moles dug a few years ago. Wonder whatever happened to them…

As for The Warden’s dilemma – she thinks if she fills the holes with soil, we’ll just dig them out again. BINGO – we will. If she fills them with big rocks, it makes lawn mowing that much more “enjoyable”. It’s right up there with cleaning grout. The Warden was secretly hoping the mower might have had a heart attack over the winter so she could justify getting a new one. This mower runs on gas but is NOT self-propelled. Must have been one of those end-of-season bargain mowers that was a steal. It was a steal because nobody in their right mind would buy one for a lawn larger than a bathroom. But the Warden did. And the work horse started on the second pull of the ripcord this season. Besides – why buy a new one – that money is better spent on bully sticks which we can enjoy while supervising.

Tomorrow I have class. I like to go to see my peeups. That’s peeps and pups combined. We all get along great. Plus the treats are good. If you’re not on Facebook, you might not have seen this photo taken by one of our peeups of me and the Warden last week.

Don’t I look adorable. I am looking so lovingly at the Warden. Stars and rainbows in my eyes. Showing that expression that screams “I love you.” Truth: I knew she had treats in her hand.

Aren’t I funny?

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.

Urky gurkies

Howdy blogaroos! Squirmy here on a terrific Tuesday. After a slightly worrisome weekend…

Before I begin, I need to emphasize that everyone is fine. OK, maybe the Warden’s blood pressure is up a few notches, but we canines appear to be in good shape.

It all began with some urky gurkies which the Boss had the other morning. He seemed fine, had loads of energy on his walk, but before he had breakfast he threw up some bile. First thing in the morning. Empty stomach. Blech. But he was fine otherwise, had P3 (picture perfect poop) and wolfed his breakfast as usual.

In the meantime, the Coyote seemed fine and ate all his breakfast. Which can sometimes be a 50-50 shot.

And me? Vacuum dog. Feel free fine.

Anyway, about an hour after breakfast, the Warden announced that it was grooming time for the Boss. He knew what was about to happen, so he hightailed it out the deck door. She went to get the instruments of torture ready in the grooming torture palace aka garage and then called the Boss. He didn’t come. So she looked outside and saw him eating something on the lawn. As fast as he could. The Coyote was also examining something in the lawn, while yours truly was in the house. The Warden ran down onto the lawn to see what the Boss was scarfing down – and realized SOMEONE had barfed. We dogs are helpful cleaners and we also believe in recycling – so when someone barfs there is no need to worry about a mess. It’s gone in seconds. Of course, though, humans have a different view of bodily functions, and she immediately started shouting “no!!!” By this point, most the clean up was done.

But now the question- who did it? The obvious suspect was the Boss, since he had the urky gurkies earlier. So he was on health watch all day. But he seemed fine. Perky, happy, hungry…. Still – she figured it was him and she was a bit concerned. Never ask Mr Googly about dog vomit. You get WAY too much information- most of which will totally stress you out. But, despite the worry, the day passed with no other problems. Until about an hour after supper….

The Warden was in the other room and she heard the telltale scurrying of feet – which either signals wildlife in the yard, a home delivery – or something else. She ran in – and there was the Boss – again enjoying a recycled treat. BUT- this time the Warden identified the pukee. It was the Coyote. How did she know? Kibble size. She had given the Boss a different food and it was teeny weeny kibbles. These were big kibbles. Meanwhile, the poor Coyote proceeded to provide another small sample – just to confirm her diagnosis.

Now he seemed fine otherwise, and was quite happy to have a treat. Or two. But of course, she kept an eye on him and slept with one eye open, keeping him in check all night.

Nothing can drive humans who are owned by dogs more crazy than poop or puke problems. It’s a sure fire way to make them bonkers.

Anyway- the good news – yesterday the Coyote was fine. All meals stayed where they were supposed to stay (he ate everything) and he had P3. Why did it happen? Maybe too much birthday excitement? That’s my diagnosis. Who knows. And as for the Boss – no urky gurkies for him either yesterday. So all was right with the world.

Picture perfect poop and no puke is a beautiful thing. Oh how you humans worry….

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.

Mauled

Yo. Blog people. Elroy here to report on the birthday gig thing. I think the title, although true, might be what they call clickbait. But hey – I don’t write as often as the Imp, so I’m entitled.

So yeah, I was mauled. When I went out on my birthday shopping trip. First stop – the pet store – to collect my free birthday biscuits. For some reason (probably because of my unique surfer dude shaggy laid back appearance), I attracted staff like dog noses to a fire hydrant at the start of a dog walking trail. They were my adoring fans, and frankly, one in particular mauled me. She kept petting me and hugging me and plying me with treats (which I surprisingly took). Her Highness watched to make sure I was comfortable with the mauling – but hey – I love attention. Unlike the Imp, who doesn’t exactly demonstrate my overly friendly demeanor. At least not until he gets to know someone.

Next stop – the home supply store – Canadian Tire. Yeah – for those reading who are not from Canada – the name doesn’t really represent what they sell. Suuuuure – they sell tires. But LOTS more things as well. Including dog stuff. Go figure.

I walked into the place like I owned it. Me. The guy who didn’t go to obedience classes, walked in on a loose leash and sat whenever Her Highness told me to. OK, maybe she DID have to say it more than once, but I DID sit. OR if she asked me to lie down while she was looking at something, I complied. I was quick to hit the nice cool tile floor. While we were waiting in the lineup to pay, she would move forward and get me to lie down. I was perfect. And while she was working the self checkout, I was right at her feet- just watching all the people walking around me. Seriously- I was the classic example of what a well-behaved dog should be in public. Me. The guy who never responds to his name, and who is the biggest flight risk on the planet. Take me shopping, and I’m a gem. I have found my calling. Shopping Assistant Dog.

After the Tire place we hit another pet store. This one included two wild Boston Terrier shoppers, one of whom was wearing a cone of shame. We steered clear of them. This store sold fish – and I found the aquariums rather interesting- but Her Highness said no fish – despite my pleading look. Her Highness didn’t really NEED anything at this store – but we did do some Kong comparison shopping for the mops.

After that we headed home where the very jealous Imp, had to sniff me all over to see if I had met canine friends or if I was carrying hidden treats. Neither of which were true.

I did share birthday biscuits with the mops – the same ones that the Imp got on his birthday. And for supper, we were all treated to a food topping thing – which I quite enjoyed.

So the birthday gig was good. Except for the hat part, which thankfully only lasted like 2 minutes. I got over it.

Today the weather forecast is calling for rain – so Her Highness mentioned something about wallpaper. Not quite sure how that would work if we’re not sequestered outside. Could be entertaining.

On the other hand – it could be another shopping day. I THINK we might need more dog food from yet another pet store. If that’s the case – count me in.

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.

Birthday 6.0

Hey blog people. It’s Elroy here. On my special day. It’s my 6th birthday. So I get to wear a birthday hat. As you can see, I’m thrilled.

Yup, another trip around the sun. That translates to 365 morning walks, 365 days of guard duty – protecting our household from birds, blowing leaves and dandelion fluff in the air, and at least 730 biscuits. Not that I necessarily ate every one.

In the past year I have become quite attached to the Imp. As soon as he finishes his Kong (after breakfast) , I am ready to begin our wrestling match. I still do not understand why the mops enjoy chewing on rubber hunks to obtain a few pieces of kibble and frozen yogurt. No thank you. Too much work, and I still feel, overall, that food is overrated.

Anyway, when I attempt to initiate wrestling immediately after breakfast, I am discouraged from doing so by Her Highness. Some nonsense about allowing our food to settle. When that happens, I simply begin to squeak. Non-stop. In a high-pitched un-oiled door kind of manner. What’s cool is that I’m like a ventriloquist- I never move my mouth and keep my jaw clenched. I do it until Her Highness can no longer stand the irritating sound – and she finally lets us out to roll, hump and run. Good times.

One of my favorite parts of the day is when Her Highness takes me down to the lake – all by myself. It can be rather peaceful without the Imp running and slamming himself into yours truly, who is always on leash. Speaking of on leash- this past year I only had one or two escapes – one of which was caught on the neighbors’ security camera. Remind me that if I escape in the future, don’t go to their yard.

But back to my morning lake walk. Her Highness and I go down and we just watch for loons. Or geese. Or any other wildlife. It’s usually so calm and relaxing, if one can ignore the non-stop distant sound of Einstein shouting that we had better hurry up, because he is STARVING for his breakfast.

I had a quiet year. Unfortunately no sheep herding lessons were available with the plague. Although Her Highness suspects that our teacher may have felt a Picard was not really in her “wheelhouse.” Picards are not border collies. We did find another trainer, but she has been out of commission for a bit due to a health issue. We’re hopeful that perhaps this year will be my sheep year. Or not. I’m fine with whatever.

I understand I may be going to the pet store today to get my free birthday biscuits. I suppose I’ll have to eat one- to be polite. Mind you – it IS MY day, so I should be able to do whatever I like. Which includes biscuit spitting.

Here are some of the obligatory photos taken of yours truly over the past year. I’m not big on looking at the camera – so you have NO idea what is involved in getting many of these shots. Many a rock, stick and toy was thrown to get my attention for many of these shots. I should qualify – the items were not thrown AT me. Although, no doubt Her Highness has probably thought about it.

Let the wresting begin!
My favorite pose…
Cool. Me. In the woods. Looking all free and wild. Cleverly tied to a tree…
“And then she said, who’s a good boy?” what a hysterical joke!
My sentiments about holiday dress up
My second favorite human on the planet – Aunt Sue.
It’s tooooo tight….
Taken yesterday.

Time to get this birthday thing rolling.

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.

Eeeeeeeewwwwwwe

Howdy blogaroos. Happy camel day. Better known as hump day.

Had a couple of good days of GBH. And the tracksuit is keeping me stick and branch free. My feet sometimes still get dirty, but it just means a quick rinse in the dog tub. Usually…

So the other day, I came home with brown feet, prompting a quick ped-a-poo. That’s a foot shampoo. The Warden just dried my feet with a towel, and a quick blast from the jet engine dryer. I looked splendid for my breakfast dining – white fuzzy feet and a bramble-free coat. Stunning. Just after the Warden was finishing her breakfast, a friend called to chat. She moved into the DFZ to relax on the sofa. Meanwhile, the deck door was open, giving us canines free access to the backyard. Where unbeknownst to the Warden, the Coyote and I have begun yet another excavation project. We’re having a hard time deciding where we want the fish ponds, so we just keep digging in different areas. Our attempts look like the craters on the moon.

Anyway, we didn’t work very long, when I decided to go in the house to see if the Warden was off the phone. She took one look at me, and groaned.

She excused herself from the phone call, and whisked me back into the garage for Round 2. She rinsed my feet in the tub and plopped me onto the grooming table. It was obvious that not only had I been doing excavation work, but I had been practicing my gymnastics tumble routine as well. My coat had bits of leaves and grass, and a weird golf ball sized clump of hair on my back. She figured my hair was just wet from the morning dew, and she went to separate the clump. And what did she find stuck in my hair? A SLUG! Eeeeeewwwww. Talk about gross. She figured the slug was minding his own business on the lawn, when yours truly rolled on him. That’s almost worse than rolling in bunny or pheasant poo. Eeeeeewwww.

Anyway after much eeeeeewwwing and a wad of paper towel to remove the vagabond, I got some spritzing and brushing, and I again looked fabulous. When we came in from the grooming torture palace, she shut the deck door. Free access to the moonscape was over – for the morning anyway.

That’s the news from here. Oh – we’re getting the house ready for the big party. SOMEbody has a birthday coming up on Friday….All I can say is that he better share any biscuits he gets…stay tuned.

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.

“All athletes wear tracksuits” she giggled.

Howdy blogaroos. Squirmy here on another Manic Monday. The start of another wild week. I hope yours is PONtastic.

Meanwhile, MY life had quite the upset this weekend. OK. Relative to many peoples’ problems, perhaps “upset” isn’t the best word. Let’s say I had a new “experience” this weekend. Another one of those bright ideas by the Warden.

As you know, on some mornings I go on a GBH. That’s a golf ball hunt. And I like to go deep into the woods to find my quarry. The problem I have encountered, though, is that when I emerge from thick brush, I bring most of it back with me. Combine that with mud – and well, after three successful retrieves, I look like one of those feral dogs that lives in the woods. But wearing a cow bell.

Last week, it took the Warden over a half hour to make me somewhat presentable when we got home. Meanwhile, the Boss was shouting that he had been waiting for breakfast for HOURS and the Coyote was standing with his legs crossed because he hadn’t had his walk yet. The Warden had to remove about a thousand tiny little branches from my chest and my legs. And then she needed to wash my brown feet.

So- on Saturday she had an “idea.” I could hear her in the garage rustling through boxes. Then I heard a “yay” and the garage door was flung open and she invited me in. Now I’m used to being groomed – but I thought it a bit odd that she was plopping me onto the grooming table at 6:15 AM – before my walk. And then I saw “it.” A strange looking contraption with a zipper and reflective markings. She told me to sit and took my paw and slid it into the leg of the contraption. I thought “what the .. ?” After all my legs were in, she zipped me up, being careful not to catch my hair. The contraption is aptly called a Hurtta – which is perfect because when I stepped out of the garage wearing it, and I saw the look on the faces of the other guys, well, it hurta my feelings. The Warden giggled and said “All athletes wear tracksuits.” I didn’t know how to move. I nearly fell over while standing still because it felt so weird.

She put on my leash and stepped out the door for my morning walk. I took five steps and couldn’t move. Where was that swishing sound coming from? A few more steps – walking like a cowboy who just finished a really long trail ride – and I realized the swishing sound was me. The fabric of the contraption made a sound as I moved.

The Warden coaxed me forward and I ran as if to get away from the swish. But I couldn’t. I began to panic- how was I going to pee and do my business wearing this thing? Then I realized the designers of the contraption put holes in all the right places. Phew.

So down the road we went. With me looking like some kind of Fraggle.

By the time we got to the trail, I was trotting along fairly normally- with my fuzzy butt and nibby tail protruding like big puffballs.

https://youtu.be/iU56YizCmgs

You can hear my bell in the Warden’s pocket. I’m not subjected to wearing it until I begin my GBH.

At first when I was let free, I did this weird run – because the swish sound was intensified. But I did get used to it – sorta. Here you see me on a return, and you’ll notice I look back quickly to double check there is no swish monster behind me.

https://youtube.com/shorts/PGmKetbmtSQ?feature=share

Yesterday it was a repeat performance. But I was no longer worried about the swish. In fact, I was feeling pretty proud of my attire – thinking I looked like some kind of Olympian. The Boss said not to let it go to my head.

Well it’s almost time to get suited up. I wonder if these things come in different colors. Hey – I wonder if they come in camouflage? I’d REALLY be cool hunting in the woods. No balls could get away from me. Although, the bell would still give me away….

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.

Stuff

Howdy blogaroos! I hope you are having a sensational Saturday! The forecast here is sunshine, so we are expecting a perfectly perfect day!

So what’s new here? Well- the Boss decided to test out that new blood pressure medication that the Warden is on. He wanted to see if it really works.

It was two days ago- and it started bright and early. In our usual routine, when we first get up, before our morning walks, we go out the back door onto the deck, and then down the steps to have a quick pee. Yours truly usually grabs a toy to take out, the Coyote also runs out, and the Boss must be convinced that he actually needs to pee. If the Warden goes down the steps, he’ll go. Otherwise he stands and barks at her – shouting that he doesn’t need to go. Anyway, the Warden told him to go down, he started down, she walked away from the steps and she heard a clunk. She walked over to see what happened and when she looked down on the lawn, he was having a pee, and all seemed fine. Until he came back in the house and he was holding his front paw like it was broken. She felt it and he seemed OK, but he didn’t want to step on it. So needless to say, no long walk for gimpy.

Now once upon a time, the Warden would have whisked him in the car to the Vet. But – the more dogs you have owned, the better you are at assessing the need for urgent care. She also considered the fact that the Boss is a drama king. By the end of the day, he was using his leg, with a limp. By the next morning, the limp was barely visible. And by last night he looked completely fine. She knew from the moment he came in the door that if it had been really serious, he would have been QUITE vocal if he was in real pain. I mean think of the guy when he’s being groomed.

Anyway, it all ended fine, but was enough to send her blood pressure into the red zone. She has canine induced hypertension.

Hey – so I read that there’s a new dog related Guinness World record. A two year old Great Dane by the name Zeus, just won the record for tallest living dog on the planet. He’s 3 feet 5.18 inches tall. Get this – he eats 12 cups of dog food each day. A PON dream come true. But something tells me I’d be 3 feet wide, rather than tall if I ate that much. The record for the tallest dog ever was another Great Dane, who also happened to be named Zeus (go figure) and he was 3 feet 10 inches tall. We’d have to get a bigger car.

Plus in keeping with the Great Dane theme, coincidentally (I think ) – a new cartoon was added on Netflix yesterday. It’s called Marmaduke, and if you need a little chuckle, check out the trailer:

https://youtu.be/wDXYjxxnALU

Looks like a pretty typical dog-show-badly-behaving-big-eating- farting dog movie. A theme many people can relate to – no matter what breed they own.

I went to class yesterday, and my performance was average. Passing, but average. There was a new dog in class, so my head was rattled. So many questions in my mind. Who was he? Where was he from? How old was he? What did his pee smell like? How could I perform while all that was rolling through my brain?

I did have some moments of brilliance, like with my stand for exam, which was great. On the other paw, my sit stay and down stay involved a great deal of unwanted floor sniffing. And I kept staring at the newcomer, which is not the preferred behavior. I was just trying to see what kind of collar he was wearing. It looked nice. More “stay” homework this week. Yawn.

OK. Almost golf ball hunting time. Have a super Saturday!

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.

https://youtu.be/wDXYjxxnALU

Citizen Scientist

Howdy blogaroos. Squirmy here. Just watchin’ the bunnies bouncing and the leaves popping. Spring is in the air!

And with Spring comes more golfers. Which means I’m extra busy hunting for balls. Boy oh boy- some of these people sure need lessons. I’m finding balls WAY off in the woods. It’s kinda hard to picture how some of these shots end up where they do! There are so many balls in the woods The Warden only allows me to hunt on like 2 or 3 holes. I run like crazy, and she basically stands around waiting for me. She has to put me on a leash because I won’t stop!

Not much new here, so I resorted to looking at the news. And that set off a whole chain of things..

Here’s some news about a study that says our type of breed only accounts for like less than 10% of our behavior. Although genetics do play a role in about 50% of behaviors. I think that’s how I understood it. Kind of interesting research. They still have lots more to do. Give it a listen:

https://youtu.be/FcwccBY-xrQ

I like the idea of Citizen Scientists. Now of course surveys aren’t always perfect – but they are an interesting way to gather lots of data. So of course, after we saw this, the Warden HAD to go and register. It’s free. And you get to answer a bunch of questions about us canines. Now as I said, surveys DO have their weak points- and sometimes she came to a question where her answer was “it depends.” But that wasn’t an option. But still – many were spot on. Like asking questions about Frodo and food. Those were simple!

Plus a question about how often I enjoy life- she answered ALWAYS!

There are 25 surveys that you can complete about your dog. The surveys are short and simple. And just think how you can be contributing to canine research. Check it out:

https://darwinsark.org/

Back to school tomorrow. I’ve been doing my homework, but anything can happen when I get to class. Plus I wonder if I get extra credit because I’ve been doing my science homework too…

Have a good one. Peace and paws up. Stay safe.