Monthly Archives: August 2014

Dog Rules

We’ve all seen these rules posted on Pinterest, Facebook, etc., we’ve all uttered them, but mostly we’ve all wished “they’d” just live by them.  And yet, look what I came home to recently.  It was quite surprising that I didn’t even disturb ‘His Highness.”  Usually he comes bouncing toward the door like a pogo stick.  You think he’s comfortable?  I suppose I should be grateful; he hasn’t had any loud drunken parties with the neighborhood dogs yet…that I’m aware.

Lounge Lizard

Lounge Lizard

DOG RULES [with my thoughts]

1.  The dog is not allowed in the house.  [Ha, Sam is in the house ALL day long except when we’re on our walks or at the hospital]

2.  Ok, the dog is allowed in the house but only in certain rooms.  [As if that can ever be enforced]

3.  The dog is allowed in all rooms but has to stay off the furniture. [um, yeah…see photo]

4.  The dog can get up on the old furniture only.

5.  Fine, the dog is allowed on all furniture, but is not allowed to sleep with humans on the bed.  [I’ve had to resort to closing the bedroom door during the day lest Sam make himself comfy in the middle of the bed-I’ve seen the ‘nest’ as proof]

6.  Ok, the dog is allowed in the bed but only by invitation. [or open door]

7.  The dog can sleep on the bed whenever he wants but not under the covers. [thankfully I haven’t had this problem-though he is the biggest bed hog I’ve ever seen and ‘burritos’ me in when he does sleep on the bed-usually only on bath day-and that bugs the dickens out of me because I can’t stand being basically tied up in bed covers by the dead weight of a sleeping dog notwithstanding him smelling awesome]

8.  The dog can sleep under the covers by invitation only.

9.  The dog can sleep under the covers anytime.

10.  Humans must ask permission to sleep under the covers with the dog.  [I’m surprised we don’t have to ask for permission to sleep in the bed…period!]

Henceforth this shall be known as Dogs Rule, not Dog Rules.  😄

Hot Dog!!

Hot Dog Safety Tip

Hot Dog Safety Tip

No, I’m not talking about the common ballpark food, I’m talking about dogs left in cars, a recent phenomena which seems to have risen in epic numbers judging from social media reports.   This latest story however, proves I can no longer be silent about this terrible trend.  WHAT THE &#@% IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE???????

Sheesh, it’s bad enough when I see people taking dogs with them out to dinner in my neighborhood only to (a) leave the dog tied up to a parking meter or worse, (b) leave the dog in the car while they nosh and yuck it up over drinks and a meal in one of the many trendy restaurants in our ‘hood with their equally clueless friends…their poor pet languishing on hot sidewalks at the mercy of strollers rolling over paws and tails or getting tangled up with people walking the area.  Not to mention those dogs who act aggressively toward their manacled brethren (or vice versa) or the ones suffering alone in a car that is anywhere from 20-40 degrees hotter than the outside ambient temperature with no water or ability to control the heat.  This is animal cruelty people, plain and simple!

Then there are those who just can’t seem to help themselves by taking Fido shopping with them.  I mean who in their right mind takes a dog shopping???  I love Sam dearly and want him with me whenever possible, but I have the good sense to leave him at home when I go shopping.  It seems ridiculous to take him to the grocery store, yet I can’t tell you how many times I’ll dash off for some milk and see dogs sitting on the back riser baking in the sun or hanging their heads out of a partially cracked window desperately seeking relief.  Which prompts a terse visit with the store manager for an announcement over the PA for the owner to come forward.  I’ve left notes on windshields using not so lady-like language to those cretins and been seconds from calling the police when the idiot owner arrives and gives me the what-for about minding my own business.  Talk about doubling down on bad behavior.  Yikes!

Is it that people just don’t realize the consequences and exactly how hot it gets in a parked car?  On a 78-degree day, the temperature inside a vehicle can easily reach 100-120 degrees in mere minutes.  On a 90-degree day, it can reach 160 degrees in less than 10 minutes!  Dogs do not have the ability to cool themselves down as easily as us uprights and once overheated, can suffer organ damage, heatstroke, even death in as little as 15 minutes.

So the next time you’re out and about, please leave your pup at home. It’s more than a bad idea, it’s cruel and can be a chargeable offense. You might as well just put your pooch in a hot oven and bake cookies. It’s better to leave them at home when you have shopping and errands to run, unless you can always bring him inside with you.

What if you see a dog in a locked car and cannot find the owner?  The ASPCA recommends calling animal control or 911.  Maybe a few more broken windows will wake people up.  I know it seems ridiculous to have to say this, but spread the word and sign the Hot Car Pledge.  Surely the only reason people that do this is because just don’t realize the dangers associated with leaving dogs in cars.  And if your municipality doesn’t have laws prohibiting pets from being left unattended in parked cars, start lobbying for one.

Whew, I know I got really worked up over this issue, but when I see it happen or read yet another story about it, it’s hard for me not to get worked up about it.  Okay, now I’ll climb off my soapbox and enjoy a nice hot dog (but a vegetarian version :)) that is the quintessential summertime food and try to stay cool during the Dog Days of August. Just don’t get me started about runners with dogs on hot pavement!

GPS or…memory?

My other dog knew our walking route better than I did.  When we came to the appointed street, she’d make the turn before I did.  I began to realize she was smarter than me on our walks (then again she was smarter than me in general about a lot of things but that’s a topic for a different post).  What made these dogs remember these incidents.

Recently Sam and I encountered a kitty along our walks.  Ordinarily cats high tail it away from us since Sam is a high energy boy and exudes his bouncy nature along the way.  Plus I think he has a fairly high prey drive (just ask the neighborhood fox).  His last owner warned me that he wasn’t “good around cats” and because I’m allergic, it didn’t seem like this would be a problem I’d ever need to deal with anyway.  But Sam is nothing if he isn’t full of surprises.

We were walking recently and I spotted a tabby cat.  I figured it would take off shortly once it that saw that Sam was at the end of the leash.  But it just sat there.  I slowed Sam down so as not to freak out the cat and have him tear after her with me being dragged behind but she still just sat there.  We came right up to her and she actually let Sam sniff her face without any hissing, scratching or horseshoe-ing in to that ‘scaredy-cat’ Halloween stance.  She just purred, twirled around his legs and sniffed his butt and he then did the same thing! Ok, well, not purred but his tail was wagging furiously back and forth and he did sniff her butt.   His posture was super erect as if he’d been pumped up with air. He was very excited but not sure what to do next.  I figured the kitty would tear off into some nearby shrubs but instead she kept circling around and in between his legs and mine.  Sam was in 7th heaven (though I wonder if he had any idea what this charming creature was)!  Finally she sauntered off and we continued on our walk.  The next day, at the exact same place, he looked for her.  Around the shrubs,  toward the stairs to the house, all around.  And the next day.  Same spot, same search, every day that we passed there.  It was nearly two weeks before we saw her again in the alley behind the house where we originally encountered her.  I looked down the alley and lo and behold next to the dumpster, there she was!  Sam was just elated.  From then on he began to search whenever we approached that alley to see if his new BFF was there. If she wasn’t, I’d tell him, “sorry buddy your little friend isn’t out yet this morning” and disappointingly he’d resume his pace though he did often look over his shoulder to see if perhaps she would come out from behind something to greet him.

Whenever we do run into her, Sam is as happy as a clam at high tide, bouncing  up to her like a jack rabbit.  She patiently watches and waits till he comes to her and they do their ritual sniffing. He does however tend to move on fairly quickly these days and the cat has taken to rubbing against me more than Sam now (what IS it about cats that they seem to know who’s allergic to them?!).  So can anyone tell me if this story is a case of super canine GPS or just a case of good memory that kicks in every day that Sam hopes to meet up with his new friend, exchange meaningful sniffs and then continue on his merry way, because I’m totally baffled.

Sam's new friend.

Sam’s new friend.

Has your dog ever done that?  What do you think…is it GPS or memory that guides them?