Tuesday, July 26, 2011

3 Dogs, 1 Toy

One of the unexpected joys of our 3-dog household has been Sadie's sudden interest in toys.  Prior to Hurley, Maggie hogged all the toys and Sadie was A-OK with that.  With Hurley in the picture, Sadie has realized that she can haz toys too.

Toy time generally goes like this:  I entice Sadie/Hurley with a toy, Maggie steals it within a nano-second, Sadie & Hurley chase Maggie to try and get the toy, all 3 engage in tug o' war for a few minutes, Maggie & Hurley start bitey mouth game over the toy, Sadie circles for a few minutes and when Maggie & Hurley are sufficiently distracted by bitey mouth, she steals the toy and zooms triumphantly around the house/yard.  Maggie steals the toy back and the game starts all over again.  I always enjoy this - even when it occurs at 6am in the morning.

 This is seriously the most awesome game ever.  Now if only I could get them to all chase each other's tails in a giant circle, my life would be complete.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

My Predictions for Hurley

1.  Hurley will have emergency surgery because of something he ate at least 2 times, which in my opinion is a conservative estimate. At the tender age of 4 months, he has already tasted the following:

Dead seagull
Horse poop
My razor blade
A steak knife handle
Broken glass from a vase he broke and then paraded around the house carrying said broken glass

No, we are not trying to kill our puppy. I promise we aren't! In all of those instances, we caught him poste haste.  Our watchful eyes are apparently not much of a deterrent.

2.  Hurley will eat the Thanksgiving turkey (prediction courtesy of the Hubster).  You see, Hurley seems to believe we are starving him with a mere 4-5 cups of food per day. He has let us know this is clearly not enough by:

Breaking into the girls' food bin at least half a dozen times.  And teaching himself to open the door to the back room (it doesn't latch most of the time) to get to said food bin.

Since this has only resulted in him gorging himself once, he also has become adept at counter surfing (hence the steak knife handle chomping incident) & I'm pretty sure he figured out today that if he knocks food off without also knocking off dishes, he gets a little more nosh time before we come running.   

3. Hurley will be the reason why I take a hiatus from gardening.
  He has no qualms about digging under or jumping over the picket fence, installed specifically for keeping our dogs out of my garden.  He also likes to dig, poop, romp & chew things while in my dying garden.

4.  Hurley, when not being mischievious, will be the world's laziest dog.  He already struggles in a mere 80 degree heat & really is mostly perfectly behaved at the shop with me.  And by mostly perfectly behaved, I mean mostly in some state of slumber.  

5.  Hurley will not pass his canine good citizen test at a year old.
  I laugh at myself for setting that goal a few months ago. See #1-4 for reasons why.  But he will eventually.  Of that, I am determined.

6. Hurley will be a snorer.  A loud snorer. A wakes himself up from dead sleep loud snorer.  

7. Hurley will get himself stuck in the following places:

Under the bed
Under the futon
Under the back deck
& under anything else 10" or less from the ground or that he can dig himself into, which brings me to my next prediction:

8.  Hurley will dig himself out of the back yard.

It's a good thing he's so darn cute!

Friday, July 22, 2011

3 Months Ago Today!

Three months ago today.  The day NoPo Paws officially opened its doors and the culmination of years of dreaming and months of planning came to fruition.

It also happened to be the weekend Hurley joined our family.

It may only have been three months but it feels like forever - in a good way, a living-your-dream, finding-what-you-were-meant-to-do-in-this-world kind of way.  Working for others, in industries I wasn't passionate about, now seems a hazy memory.  I absolutely love talking to people about their pets, helping them solve problems and getting to meet their precious furry family members.  This is hands-down the best gig ever!

How to be a Dog Tourist Post

Check out my post on Two Pitties in the City's series on How to Be a Dog Tourist.  They are one of my fave blogs - I love their posts about life in Chicago with their adorable pitties. 

And I will shamelessly request that you post a comment - at the end of the summer, the post with the most (comments that is) chooses a rescue organization of their choice to receive a $100 donation.  How cool is that?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Hurley's First Beach Trip

The hubster ended up coming home a day early from his camping trip with Hurley - something to do with rain, wind, and the tent blowing over.  While this meant that Hurley didn't get to experience the beach solo with his pops, it did mean that we all got to go as a family yesterday.  It was a gorgeous day - 65 and sunny - and we found a new spot just north of Seaside where we could drive the Jeep directly onto the beach.  It is nice to be able to drive up to our spot and let the dogs go crazy without bothering any other folks.  And Sadie does go crazy - about 10 miles away from our final destination, she started the "Sadie's going to the beach" freak-out, which consists of heavy panting, whining, pacing and almost hyper-ventilating.   But when we opened the back of the Jeep, her little freak-out turned into full-speed zoomies and a look of complete bliss.   The three of them ran for pretty much the next two hours without stopping - except for the seagull-chomping incident.  I guess Hurley didn't read my letter.

Here are some shots of our excursion.  I posted tons more on our Facebook page - while you're checking them out, you should also "Like" us.  Hurley would appreciate it!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Mississippi Street Fair

I posted this on NoPo Paws blog but wanted to share with Married with Dawgs followers 'cause there are some pretty fantastic pics of Hurley.  He did an amazing job being calm at the Street Fair and was happy to say hello to just about everyone.  You can check out NoPo Paws at nopopaws.blogspot.com and/or nopopaws.com.  On the blog, I post a monthly newsletter as well as product reviews.

We had a fantastic time at this year's Mississippi Street Fair.  It was a successful event for us.  Thanks to everyone who stopped by our booth!  The best part of the Fair?  Superstar Hurley stopped by in the afternoon and was the perfect puppy, saying hello to all the passersby.  We couldn't have asked for a more beautiful day here in Portland - which helped draw an extra 20,000 folks down to Mississippi for an astounding 50,000 attendees!  We'll definitely be participating in the Street Fair again next year.  

Next up on our schedule?  The Overlook Street Fair on July 30th.  This year, the Overlook Village Business Association is closing down Killingsworth for the very first time.  It promises to be a great event and we hope you can make it!

NoPo Paws Booth

This little guy insisted upon drinking out of the big dog bowl!

The Crowd from Hurley's POV
A Punk Rock Chinese Crested stopped by to say hello!
Hurley sneaking in a quick kiss.  I would've kissed her too - she was quite pretty.

Who's the most adorable puppy in the world???
Hurley manning the booth

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Dear Hurley: Your First Weekend Away

Dear Hurley,

I know that you have no idea how awesome your weekend is going to be.  Your first road trip, your first experience with the ocean, your first camping trip.  This weekend is going to be filled with firsts and I'm not going to be there to enjoy it with you.  I know that you and Dad will have tons of fun on your boys trip together but I want you to be good for him.  So that Dad doesn't have to spend too much time teaching you how to behave, I wanted to give you some pointers:

1. A 5 1/2 hour road trip is pretty long, dude.  I know you will get bored.  But please enjoy the chewies Mom is sending with you guys and try not to bother Driving Dad, ok?  Don't worry - he will stop tons of times so you can enjoy the scenery on the way.

2.  The tent is for sleeping.  Please don't pee in it or chew on it.  K?  Thx.

3.  Please don't venture very far into the ocean.  I know waves are fun to chase but they're pretty strong too and you're still a little guy.

4.  Please don't eat any dead things you find on the beach.  There will be tons of driftwood so stick to the sticks and stay away from the gross.

5.  It gets dark at night on those camping trips.  Stay close to Dad and the campfire, K?

6.  Can you keep Dad warm at night?  Cuddling is a camping tradition that I'd like you to enjoy.  I know Mom cuddles best but give Dad a chance.  He's not too shabby.

7.  If you sit nicely while everyone is eating, someone will toss a bit to you, whether Dad likes it or not.  If you're a pain in the rear around food that you normally are, chances are you'll get put away in the tent with your chewies so be wise, young man, and beg nicely.

8.  This is your Dad's friend's wedding weekend.  Please, please, please do NOT be a little sh** during the ceremony and F it up.  Seriously.  Be good.

9.  Remind Dad to take lots of pictures.  Keep bugging him about the guest post on Mom's blog so everyone can hear all about your camping adventures!

10.  Have fun!

I know you and Dad are going to enjoy your trip together.  But don't enjoy it too much - it is much more fun when Mom's around ('cause I always cook bacon and you might not know this yet, but buried bacon grease = doggie buried treasure).

I love you little guy!


Wednesday, July 6, 2011

A Chillaxed Fourth

As happens each year in Portland, summer finally decided to show up (for good, we hope) over the 4th of July weekend.  It was a pretty low-key 4th for us people; with it being Hurley's first, I wanted to chill at home and help him relax during all the bangs & booms.

We also were dog-sitting this weekend and hosted Maggie's doppelganger, Olive.

I told the hubster we should have Black & Tans on the 4th to celebrate our bi-colored pack for the weekend!

Olive was the perfect houseguest.  Olive's an only dog so our house was a bit overwhelming for her.   She doesn't know quite how to play with other dogs.  But even though she wasn't sure what to make of Hurley, she did an awesome job being tolerant of my dogs' craziness.  Her presence also seemed to calm my pack down a bit, which was key on Monday.  Through all the bangs & booms, Hurley napped and wasn't fazed in the slightest.  Maggie & Sadie were fairly relaxed as well - just insisting on laying right next to us through the evening and refusing to go outside at 10pm for their bathroom break.  No panting or pacing here!  Thanks Olive for showing my dogs how to chillax on the holiday!

It was my goal to get a bunch of pictures showing how ridiculously similar Olive & Maggie are but alas, Olive was much happier napping on her bed than partaking in the photo shoot.  Instead, here's some of Hurley torturing playing with my girls.

Friday, July 1, 2011

The Results Are In

Before I get started on the results of the personality test I took for the pack yesterday, there are a few comments/criticisms I'd like to make.  Mainly because this is my blog and I can totally criticize said personality test when it varies from my own most insightful observations of my dogs.  :P

I was a bit surprised that there were no questions regarding leash behavior, fetching and treat motivation on the test.  I had assumed these behaviors would be part of evaluating fight, pack and prey.  So needless to say, my scores on Maggie were a bit off due to the lack of questions in these areas.

The other issue I had was that it seemed the test assumed a lack of training.  No, my dogs do not get into the trash or counter surf.  That's because they're trained not to.  No, my dogs do not jump up on people.  That's because they're trained not to (OK, Maggie sometimes jumps up but we're forever working on curbing that behavior).  If the test were a bit longer, I think these questions would have had a place and my low scoring on both would have had less of an impact on the overall score.

However, it was still fun.  And it is a free online test so I will just make the assumption that it's about as accurate as us people taking an online IQ test.  Here's how my little pack scored:


Drive              My Guess-timate               Actual Score
Prey                 70                                      63
Pack                65                                      64
Fight                55                                      34
Flight               25                                      19

*Not too shabby!  I'm very glad she scored lower on Fight than my predictions but I wish I could attribute it to our rehabilitation rather than the test being limited in scope.
Drive              My Guess-timate               Actual Score
Prey                 65                                      43
Pack                100                                    50
Fight                20                                      41
Flight               60                                      48

*What??  I was most incorrect with Sadie?!?!  Methinks this is because her fear issues affect her ranking in each and every area and the test does not take fear-based behavior into consideration.  I am still in stock over the difference in the Pack scoring.  I think I underestimated how much the test would rely upon people interaction, rather than actual pack interaction in determining the score.  Since she is afraid of new people, this had a significant impact on her score.

Drive              My Guess-timate               Actual Score
Prey                40                                       53
Pack               40                                       53
Fight                20                                      38
Flight               10                                      21

*Woot!  Spot on about Prey & Pack being tied.  I was able to answer more questions than anticipated but many were answered with "but that's likely just puppy behavior".  It will be interesting to take this test again once he's a bit more mature and see where he stands.

What did I learn from taking this test?  Well, I learned that no test is perfect and that at the end of the day, we know our dogs best.  We know what makes them tick, their strengths, their weaknesses.  I can't say that this test showed me anything that I didn't know.  While it was just plain amusing to me, it very well could have more value to someone a little less dog-crazy than myself and who is not as aware of canine behaviors and motivations.