Saturday, February 23, 2013

Movie Day

We had some miserable weather last weekend. What better way to spend time inside than to watch a few movies. We watched (again) the first two Twilight flicks. Yes, I am an adult male that is into the Twilight series.
OMG! Bella is so cute!

While we were watching the movies, Rim laid down in front of the TV and watched the goings on with interest. It was pretty funny. He would turn his head from side to side as the dram unfolded.

This guy is a Vampire!
I think deep down he was rooting for the wolves. You can see Gypsy could care less about Twilght. She is into Soap Operas....more drama.

STORMI (Dog Whisperer)

Stormi, the rescued feral cat, really likes the dogs. She gets down on the carpet with them and hangs out. Gypsy allows Stormi to get closer than Rim. Strange dog.

Rimmer and Gypsy Progress

Rim is getting BIG. He is at least as tall as Gypsy if not a bit taller and out weighs her by plenty. He is such a good puppy, very well behaved and well mannered for the most part. He does have a side of him that we never saw in Gypsy. He is food driven like no other dog I've seen. I guess he might just be normal and Gyp is the strange one. When we let them out into the back yard, he tries to get Gypsy to play, nipping at her legs or trying to body slam her. Gypsy is all about business when she goes into the back yard, looking for intruders and making sure everything is in order. I guess he is just being a boy and Gypsy is a true Diva. She has gone through times where we could tell she just didn't want him around. Around the time he slammed into her and she hurt her tail was terrible. She basically stopped eating and was obviously depressed. She seems to be dong better now, enjoying our group walks and even getting closer to Rim. Last night she actually nosed him a few times and they exchanged a few licks on the nose.

I have to be careful not to side with Gypsy all the time. Rim is just being a boy, full of energy and curiosity and Gypsy is such a quirky little DIVA. Rim wants to be friends with everyone. Gypsy will have to lighten up I think.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

The cats basically ignore the Poodles. They just go about their own cat business, looking out for birds or NOBELLS. And they always keep an eye out for Sandi.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Walking With Two

Ah yes, these were the days. About 7 years ago and we just had the one quirky poodle to deal with. Walking was easy then. Just pick out the perfect stick, put Gypsy into her favorite Harley hat, and away we go. High stepping, searching for bunnies, and keeping an eye out for anything that moved.
Life was so easy in the old days!
Walking quickly became Gypsys' most favorite thing in the world to do. I became known in our neighborhood as "the poodle guy." Not a very macho nickname is it?

And then Rim came along.

We knew we would have to make some adjustments to our walking schedule with the two dogs. Gypsy likes a nice long walk, and Rim, being a pup, didn't need as much walking. We decided that it would probably be a good thing if we walked them apart from each other. Giving each of them some time alone and one on one with us. Sandi has trained Rim to be an all star on the leash. He does not pull, sits when she stops, and is very well behaved when people come up to greet him. As Rim has grown, we feel he needs a bit more exercise so, we started walking them together more often.

We purchased one of those straps that tether the two dogs together and connects to one leash. They walk side by side, Gypsy still high steps, searching the neighborhood for intruders. Rim kind of lumbers along, hoping to find a cheeseburger that someone dropped.
I could be so lucky!
At first, Gypsy wasn't very fond of the side by side walking. Rim kept nosing her trying his best to get her riled up and she wanted no part of that. When we walk, Gypsy is all business. After a few times out, they are doing great walking together. Rim is still a "little brother" doing whatever he can to annoy Gypsy but, she basically ignores him.
He can be so childish!

 We went out for a long walk this morning before the rains/snow come in. From the time we left the house we could hear the geese squawking away. When we came up to the field, we saw hundreds of them.
Drop the leash! Drop the leash!
They are hard to see in the photo but, Gypsy and Rim would have had a great time running through the middle of these guys.

We will still give them the one on one time that they need and walk them solo as often as possible but, I think they really enjoy walking side by side now.

Of course this is the benefit of walking your dog. A walked dog is usually a good dog.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Quirky 24/7

I don't know if it is just Gypsy, or the Standard Poodle breed in general, but Gyp is a quirky gal. I think that is why I've connected with her as much as I have. She has these quirky little habits that kind of make her endearing. I thought I'd try to run down a typical day of quirkiness.

First thing in the morning, Gypsy reluctantly gets out of bed with a groan. Every morning she does the Poodle stretch, front legs way out in front, butt high in the air. Then walk front legs out in front and lower butt, arching back.

We then make our way to the stairs. She is not the most graceful dog on the steps. She has been known to fall up the steps and/or down the steps from time to time. She walks to the steps and peers down, focused on not slipping. She then scampers down on three legs. She keeps her left rear leg raised, off the steps for the most part. Not sure why she does this.

When she gets to the bottom of the steps, she does a wide right hand turn, checking out what is going on the the family room. This is something she does every time.

We then go outside for the first time of the day. She used to leap out of the back door, sometimes going 4 feet high; but with age, she is not leaping out the door as much. However, she does go to all four corners of the yard, patrolling for illegal aliens, or at least bunnies. She then will run a few laps around the yard, always in the same pattern, and then she will search the sky for big black birds or other things invading our air space. Ready to chase them off.

We then come in and have breakfast. It's been documented that she is a picky eater. We've tried all sorts of different foods to entice her to eat. She just isn't very food driven. One thing for sure, she eats much better if I am close by. So, right now I fix her a bowl of her dog food mixed with cheese and turkey stock (homemade) and I then get my own bowl of cereal. She has been doing OK with this system for awhile now. As long as I'm in the room with her.

If she only eats half a bowl of food and Chloe happens to walk by, Gyp will get up and finish the bowl. We started telling her, "Chloe's gonna get it" and she gets up and eats more.

We then take a walk. Her most favorite thing to do in the world. Even at her adult age, she still prances. She high steps, tail up high, head up high and on alert. Looking for bunnies. She can spot a bunny at 50 yards. As we walk by, she turns her head to keep an eye on her prey. A few times, while looking behind her at a bunny, she has walked into a parked car. Very embarrassing. Gypsy has a keen prey instinct I think.

At the age she is now, she sleeps a good portion of the day. She has always been a very good dog inside the house. If we allowed her, she would look out the front door, searching for bunnies or other things to bark at. She knows this isn't a good thing but sometimes can't help herself.

When I come home from work, she has to stay in her bed until I get in the house. She then can't help it, she prances over with a big smile on her face. She usually has happy feet going on too and jumps up to greet me. This isn't great behavior but I like it.

After dinner, we settle down for some TV. She is good about laying down in her bed, relaxing while we sit and talk or watch the tube. Occasionally during the night, she will get up and come over to me and lay her head in my lap. Then, if I let her, she will put her two front legs up on my lap and have her front half up in my lap. Again, not great behavior but I let her get away with it.

Finally, it's bed time. I let her out for one last time. She patrols the yard and all is safe back there. We come in and she usually will finished any leftovers in her bowl. She peers up the steps, focused on not slipping. She uses all four legs going up the steps. We make it into the bedroom and she lays down in her bed (she has an upstairs bed and a down stairs bed) with a groan. Once I lay down, she gets back up and comes over and lays her head down on the bed next to mine. She does this every night. I give her a few strokes on the head and scratch behind the ear, she gives me a smile and then with that, off to bed. That is all time best habit.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Car Rides

Sandi was running some errands the other day and had both the dogs with her. Gypsy has always liked to ride and thankfully, Rim does too. It makes so hard to live with a dog if it doesn't like to ride in the car. Gypsy, being the great hunter, is always looking out the window for cats, dogs, rabbits, or just about anything else she can get excited over. Up to this time, Rim has been the dog that just lays down on the seat and settles in for the ride. However, he has been picking up a bit of the "on the look out" habit from Gyp since he is finally tall enough to see out the window. Sandi came across these animals (I guess they are Llamas?) during her errands. She pulled over to the side of the rode and put the windows down. She said both the dogs eyes were wide open, peering at these strange animals.
What the heck are these things?
Not sure but they are wearing beautiful sweaters!
The rough and tumble Poodles showed no mercy on the llamas. They got growled at from both Gypsy and Rim. By the way, Rim's growl is becoming deeper like a big boy dog. I don't think the llamas paid any attention to them.

The dogs really do like to go for rides with us. You never know what you might run into.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Rim Gets a New Toy

Unlike Gypsy, Rim plays with toys. Gypsy plays with Dino and that is about it. Inside the house Gyp will on occasion play with a rope or something but not very often. Rim has had this little duck that came with him as a puppy but the duck was getting a bit worn out so Sandi decided it was time to go toy shopping for Rim. Actually I think that she felt guilty because Gypsy got a new collar this weekend and Rim came up short. So anyway, Sandi and Rim went off to the local Pet Smart and Rim picked out the nifty toy he is sitting with below. We don't keep many toys inside the house for the dogs. Maybe one or two at the most. Rim will lay down and keep himself occupied for a good period of time with a toy. Gyps will mostly sleep.

We'll see how long this toy lasts. He seems to like it.


Nervous Nelly Gets a Collar

If you've read the last few blogs, you might know that Gypsy has not had a good go of it recently. I was out of town for several days, throwing her entire universe off kilter. Prior to that she was body slammed by Rim aka "Meatloaf" injuring her tail and hurting her feelings in general. She has lost weight and we're desperately trying to get her to gain a few pounds. I'll keep you posted on that later. So, what better way to make a girl feel good about herself?
Yes, that is correct. We decided to add another collar to Gypsy's vast collection of collars. Sandi picked out the collar above thinking we'd give Gyp a bit of a retro look.

Here she is in the new collar. I think she is starting to feel a bit better. Her tail is up more and wagging. I haven't seen her patented smile yet but it will come.
Just keep that "Meatloaf" from body slamming me!!!

All we have to do now is to get her fattened up.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

More Snow!

We woke up this morning and had a few inches of snow. We wake up early in our house. You can see the sun isn't up yet. Anyway, it was very pretty to wake up to.

Rim and Gypsy ran a few extra laps in the snow. Rim is beginning to figure out that snow is fun to play in and not just for eating.

One thing we especially like to do during a snow day is to torture the cats. We sprinkle some bird seed up close to the back door on the snow. The little birds come up to feast and the cats line up, stalking the birds. They will do this all morning long, tails swishing and an occasional paw batting the window. I think they discuss what a bird would actually taste like if they had a chance to open the door. "Hummm tastes like chicken!"

After he gets bored with bird watching, Moose like to relax with a visit to the spa. Nothing like a facial after some serious bird watching.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Nervous Nelly (again)

Gypsy has always been on the nervous side I would say. Anxious to see what is going on outside. When outside, anxious to see what is going on inside. Are birds invading the air space over our yard. On the lookout for rabbits, squirrels, or anything fuzzy. Checking all four corners of the fence for illegal aliens. Most of all, according to Sandi, she is always on the lookout for me. Last week I had to spend a few days away from home for meetings. Gypsy immediately went into a hunger strike. She is thin to begin with and I've tried to document her lack of food drive before. She refused to eat much of anything for the first few days I was gone. Didn't drink much water either. We really don't know why she does this. Sandi says it is because Gypsy goes into a state of depression when I'm gone. Not sure if I go along with that one or not. All I know is, her weight is down to an all time low. She was eating pretty good when we first brought Rim into the mix but, I think she is now getting a bit overwhelmed by his presence. I got back into town after midnight the other night and brought Gypsy down from the bedroom to say hello. She was very excited to say the least. After a quick trip to the yard she came into the kitchen and had a midnight snack and drank a big bowl of water. Her life is again back to normal. We'll have some good times this weekend and I will do a google search on how to make a poodle fat.