Sunday, July 29, 2012

Uptown Gal

The biggest mistake we made with Gypsy was not taking her out enough when she was a puppy. We didn't realize how important this is. We have a nice fenced backyard where we like to spend as much time as possible. So we hung out back there with Gypsy puppy for extended times. We also have a great neighborhood to walk in so, we would take (and still do) take her on long walks around the neighborhood. Boring!! We thought we were doing the right thing. She was getting exercise and enjoyed being with us out back.  Little did we know she wasn't getting socialized as much as she should.
Hello, you never take me anywhere!
We did take her to the puppy class with that lunatic trainer guy. Gypsy went totally spastic when we first arrived only to get her head snapped sideways by the fat trainer guy. Not a great experience for her. We've been taking her more places with us and try to find dog friendly places to go. Pretty easy around our neck of the woods. Sandi spends a good amount of time riding around, mapping out bike rides and Gypsy will co-pilot. We take her down to the farmers market on Saturday morning. We have a great farmers market and there are usually plenty of other dogs to meet. Nice music playing too. If it isn't too hot I will take her when I have to run errands. She loves the car.
Yesterday we decided to go downtown for a bit of lunch and took Gyp with us. We sat outside in the shade and enjoyed a nice breeze. As people were coming and going, Gypsy greeted them all and was a very polite girl. We were so happy for her. Maybe taking her out more is beginning to get her a bit more socialized?
I'd like a room with a view please!

We'll continue to work with Gypsy, trying to get her more socialized. I thinks dogs want to be with their owners and want to do whatever they have to do to make us happy. Hopefully if you get to meet her, she'll be a good little poodle for you. 

I Have To Explain

I thought I had better give a bit of an explanation on how this thing is being written. When you see something in pink, that is Gypsy talking. Or at least what I think she might be saying. We feel we can pretty much understand her feelings and thoughts so, I will try to express those to you.

Can somebody tell me how pretty I am!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

This is Gypsy playing with Dino

Dino(s) Arrives

Well, I have to say I wasn't too optimistic about finding any Dinos out there. We had some folks tell us of a few places on-line that had them and we placed a few orders just to learn that they didn't have any in stock.
How disappointing is that!
It was very disappointing. So, we tried our best to get Gypsy to play with KFC the Chicken.

Unfortunately, this is where the Chicken spent most of the time. Out in the yard by herself. Gypsy had no interest in her at all. KFC was chopped liver.
Chickens are for stupid dogs!
Just when we thought all was lost, my relentless daughter gave us one more on-line place to try to purchase a Dino. They said they had them in stock but the other places said that too. Plus these were priced really high compared to the others we found. I think the dog toy companies heard about the lack of supply in the Dino department and were price fixing.
Price fixing a Dino? We should report this!
Sandi placed the order and it went through. A few days later we struck Dino Gold.

We have a virtual herd of Dinos now. Three all the right size and three different colors. We'd didn't want to show them to Gypsy so we kept them out of site up on a tall table. That night while we were watching TV Gyp stood up and started whimpering. I thought great, she must be getting an ear infection. Actually she caught site of the herd of Dinos on the table and was trying to control herself. She was like a little kid on Christmas Eve. I kind of snuck over to the table and lifted all three of them up into a high cupboard, out of site. We plan on rationing these guys with her best we can.
Reunited at last.

I don't know what it is about this little squeeky rubber toy that makes her so happy and playful. She'll be out in the yard by herself, running laps, throwing it in the air, stomping on it, and acting like a total puppy. We're so happy that we were able to find a few of these little guys for her.
Thanks to everyone that helped us get a few Dinos!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Smiley Goes To The Vet

The other day was Vet day for Gypsy and one of the cats. Sandi is always taking a cat to the Vet for one reason or another. Everyone at the Vet's office knows Sandi and the cats very well. They named the new wing of the building in her honor. Actually, we take great care of all our animals. You see so many animals that are abused and not getting them the Vet care they need is a form of abuse. Animals can't tell us if something is hurting so getting them checked out is important. Gypsy goes for check ups and shots from time to time. She likes going to the Vet's office and thinks it's an excellent adventure. Yesterday she met a few other dogs in the front lobby and made friends.  About the most serious problem we've ever had with Gyp has been ear infections. Standard Poodles have big, long, hairy ears that require constant grooming and care. You have to go inside and pluck the hair out and clean the ear. I also use this swimmers ear product that the Vet gave us to keep the inside of the ear dry. This is imprtant during the hot, humid days we are having right now.  I've been pretty good about grooming her ears and feel like a really bad owner when she gets an infection. So, I was anxious to hear what the Vet had to say about her ears and all her other vitals.

She weighed in at 40.9 lbs. We can't get any weight on this dog. She is a bag of bones. I'd like to get her up to about 45 or so but, in the grand scheme of things I'd rather have her slim than over weight. I wish I had that problem.

Ears were a bit hairy but looked OK with no infections going on. This is a good thing. I guess I have to get a bit more aggressive on the plucking. I wonder if they make a plucking tool I could get?

I think I mentioned in the past we (Sandi) calls Gypsy Smiley. Obviously because she is always smiling and has some big, white choppers. You can see them in all the photos. Well the Doc comes back with a report of tarter on her teeth! Yikes, this can lead to all sorts of other issues. We have a neighbor that has an elderly Yorkie that he just adores. The little guy was not doing very well, didn't want to go on walks and just was laying around all the time. We just assumed that the old guy was nearing the end. They took him to the Vet and learned he had several bad teeth that had to be removed. The little guy is now back to his former self acting like a puppy again. So, we have to start a daily teeth brushing routine for Smiley. 

We bought some chicken flavored dogie tooth past with Fluoride. I never even knew such  thing was made. Gave her a good sniff. Smiley liked it.
I hope this tooth paste whitens too!

Getting to the teeth in the back of her mouth is a bit of a challenge. She kept eating the tooth paste before I could get back there.
Hey, this tastes like chicken!

The teeth in front were a breeze. She just sat there and let me brush away on them.

Between the ears, teeth, daily brushing, going to the groomer, I'm going to spend more time grooming Gypsy than I do myself.

The price we pay for beauty!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Summertime Drama

I don't know if it is something in the water or what. Seems like like everyday we are hearing of more drama going on with our friends. Layoffs, breakups, marital issues, medical things, and all the other drama we humans put upon ourselves. The typical job stress, meeting quotas and deadlines. It's easy to get caught up in the whirlwind we sometimes create.

Gypsy, on the other hand, has a totally different type of drama and stress going on in her little dog world.
  • I hope they take me to the Farmers Market this Saturday.
  • Oh look, Dad is getting his shoes on, Maybe we're going for a walk.
  • Hey, Mom grabbed her car keys, Maybe we're going for a ride.
  • I hope they don't leave me alone.
  • Hey, the cats are drinking from my bowl.
  • I hope they find another Dino!
These are big things to Gypsy but she handles her drama quite well.  I think dogs have a short memory and let go of the bad things easily and get on with their life. I think this is a lesson we humans should try to learn from the dogs. Bad stuff is going to happen but try not to dwell on it. Process it and let it go. Who knows what might be around the corner. Maybe a great opportunity.

As I write this thinking of all the drama and stress that can enter into our lives, Gypsy is at my feet (as usual) just relaxing and chilling out. I think I might try to do a bit more of that this weekend myself.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

A HOT Fourth in the Backyard

We spend much of our time sitting around in the backyard or deck. Of course Gypsy thinks this is a great pastime. The Fourth, being on a Wednesday this year, gave me a chance to take a few days off work and have a long weekend. We didn't have much of anything planned except Poodle time in the backyard. We gave it a valiant effort but, it was just too darn hot to do much of anything outside. I guess I shouldn't complain as thousand's of people in the area are still without power from the storm that rolled through a few weeks ago. I can't imagine that.

When it is nice out, we spend hours in the backyard. We have many of our meals outside on the deck, including morning coffee on the weekends. We take Gypsy's food outside and she will munch out with us. Gypsy goes nuts over this treat that looks like chicken jerky. Sandi will bring a handful of those out for Gyp. When she gets one she runs out into the yard so we can't snatch the treat back. Gypsy will also get Sandi to play tag with her. I'm not so sure this is the best game to play but, they both enjoy it. In her younger years, I would bet visitors that they couldn't touch Gypsy while playing tag. No one came close. She is slowing up a bit and I think Sandi might have caught her once this summer. 
After a rousing game of tag Gypsy takes a break.

No tag or meals outside this Fourth of July. Way too hot for that. I hear the hot snap is about to break and we will get cooler weather, just in time to go back to work. 

Friday, July 6, 2012

Gypsy and the CATS Part 2

The cat in our house with the most tenure is Chloe.

Sandi brought her home around 7 years ago. I think around the same time we got Gypsy. Chloe was in very bad shape when we got her. She only weighed 3 lbs and had liver issues. She also has bad allergies and had some skin problems.  We sure can pick them cant we? She came from an abusive situation. Poor thing. Anyway, I didn't think she was going to make it. Sandi did such a great job nursing this poor little kitten back to health.  As you can see from the picture above, not only did she survive, she gained some weight too! Her nick name is "Canned Ham." When she sits down and you look at her from the rear she has the classic canned ham shape. Chloe is the queen mother of the house. She is usually up on the steps looking down and the other cats playing, making fools of themselves. I think Chloe feels she is much too special than to play like a regular cat.

Another reason Chloe is special is because she is the only cat allowed to go outside. Actually she is only allowed on the deck.
There are two reasons why we allow her on the deck:

a. she is too fat to get through the posts on the deck to hop off.
b. even is she got off the deck she is so fat even I could out run her

So, Gypsy has to share the deck with Chloe from time to time. Chloe likes to relax on the deck away from the other cats. She'll lounge on the chair and the rest of the cats will look out the window at her. "Why is she so special?" She really knows how to chill out and make the most out of a lazy afternoon. We have a bunch of bird feeders out in the yard and she'll bird watch with us for an hour or two.

"Hey, crank up the grill, I could use a hot dog!"

Chloe and Gypsy like to relax inside the house too.

Gypsy is so good with the cats. She understands not to mess around with them and will always give way to the cats. If Chloe happens to walk by Gypsy's food dish while she is eating, Gyp will just take a few steps back until Chloe passes by. I know it is hard to think a dog and a cat can be friends but I really think Gypsy and Canned Ham are.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Bye For Now Dino

Well, we took a big step today and decided to put Dino away for now. Not a Dino to be had. Although my daughter did find a small Dino in a pet store in North Carolina. Unfortunately, Gypsy only goes for the medium size Dino. Good try though. So we will see if she decides to go for the Chicken (KFC) or the Dino without a tail (CUZ). Actually I've been reading Jon Katz at and he says not to give an excitable dog too many toys as it will over stimulate them. Gypsy can be a bit excitable so we will see. Anyway, she goes crazy with Dino and I think I will reunite them in several years. For now Dino will remain in a zip top plastic bag to keep fresh in a drawer that Gypsy can get into.

Bye for now Dino, I'll miss you.

It's been a FUN!!!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Dino Dilemma Update

The Dino (or lack of) situation is becoming critical!

 After we put the word out I was swamped with info on the source of Dino. Thanks to all the very thoughtful readers. All I had to do was google squeeky dinosaur dog toy and behold, the original maker web site. Problem solved right? Wrong! they don't make Dino anymore but they do have several other squeeky toys. Sandi found a few other sites that said they had Dino in stock and placed an order, just to have the order canceled due to no Dino in stock.

How frustrating!!!

Sandi did give a good effort in replacing Dino with a little toy she picked up somewhere. Gypsy promptly chewed the thing to pieces. That guy was with us for such a short time I forget his name.

Not the same heavy duty rubber like Dino!

So, as a last ditch effort to keep this spoiled poodle happy, we decided to go with the Chicken toy from the same manufacturer as Dino. It has the same heavy duty Gypsy proof rubber and a similar squeek sound. We named this guy, KFC. Pretty original, I know.

Here is KFC, alone in the backyard. Not a poodle in sight. Gypsy hasn't shown much interest in KFC yet. I think the problem is no tail or feet to hang onto. I'm thinking of taking the last Dino on earth away from Gypsy while it is still in one piece. Save Dino for down the road maybe. Reunite Gyp and Dino when she is an old gal just to make her day. I think that is what I might do.