Monday, November 30, 2009

Flu Shots & French Kisses

I'm introducing a new category of "That's Gross." We went to the vet's office today to get the booster for Brodie's flu shot. He does not do well at the vet's. He has a lot of anxiety and whines, etc. The lady came in to give him his shot. He was sitting on a chair freaking out. I bent down for some reason and he got me. Brodie kissed me right on the mouth. And my mouth was open. We're talking a good licked the inside of my upper lip. That's so gross!!

While there we weighed Bradley and he was 52.1 pounds at only 5 months old. It's official. He's a middle-weight now.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Addictions

Bradley has a funny addiction. He loves paper products. He started with the toilet paper off the roll, of course. Then graduated to stealing tissues out of the trash can. He pull napkins off counters. Remember the dog food bags he consumed? Well, he actually pulled the plastic liner part away from the paper outer part and only ate the paper. So maybe he's a little smarter than we give him credit for, right?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!


One of the things I am so thankful for is our neighbors. We live in a cul-de-sac which is great for kids and dogs. So sometimes I let the dogs out in the front yard with me because I don't have to worry about traffic as much. But. . . sometimes they get a little wild. We lose the ball in the neighbors backyards, they go into their garages to explore and they steal milk and juice jugs out of recycling bins because to them they are toys. And, yes, they poop in the neighbors' yards. (But I always pick it up.) And worst of all, unfortunately, Brodie only knows one way to greet people. Charge at them while barking. This can be very scary when you're not expecting it or even when you are. I'm constantly yelling "come" and "sorry." But our neighbors are gracious. And the children in the cul-de-sac play with our "children" which for me is the biggest delight. The neighbors' know the dogs names. They let us go in the backyards to retrieve balls or even throw them back over for us. During one of my apologies Al even said "Don't worry, to us they are like another one of our boys." That just spoke to my heart. This is a great place for us to live. Not just because of the location, but the people. We are so thankful for our neighbors. Remember to say "Happy Thanksgiving" to your neighbor.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Eating

Trainers recommend making the dogs work for their food. After all, in the wild they have to work for their food. This is another way to reduce behavioral problems. So we started Brodie out as a puppy on the Giggle Ball. He is so smart that he learned very quickly how to use it. And as long as I could hear the giggling noise I knew he was not getting into trouble. Then we graduated to the Tug-a-Jug which my all time favorite. This one takes a lot more reasoning skills. Again, Brodie took right to it and amazed our friends with his skills. This is still the "bowl" he eats from to this day. Occasionally we will use the Buster Cube. It's good for traveling and camping because it's a little easier to use on grass. Bradley, not being so bright, had learned to use the Giggle Ball and the Buster Cube. But it sounded like the house was falling down and food flew everywhere. Not to mention he couldn't pick up either one, being a puppy still with a smaller mouth. I wanted him to have his very own "bowl" that had never belonged to Brodie. This way Brodie knew for certain that it was not his to take. We got the Omega Paw Tricky Treats Ball. It has worked the best for Bradley. He can pick it up, it is quiet, food doesn't fling out across the room and get under stuff. So when we get read to eat I ask Brodie "Where is your jug?" or "big green ball" referring to the Giggle Ball. But this morning I asked him to find Bradley's ball since I had not found it yet. AND HE DID! That's my boy! He's so smart!

Of course, you can read my full reviews on all of these on PetSmart.com. I'm listed as BrodiesMom.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Great Pilgrimage

Poor Bradley had the hardest time learning to jump up onto our bed. Brodie would be invited up and then Bradley. But he just couldn't make it. Here is a video of Bradley trying to get on the bed. It is an old video. He has since learned he can jump up if he comes running down the hall first. Also, he has learned to jump up on the cedar chest at the foot of the bed, over the foot board onto the bed. Down, same way. I tried to stop him, "This isn't a stairway." He uses it anyway.

video

Friday, November 20, 2009

What are you eating?

My dog has just consumed three dog food bags. Not bags of dog food, but the actual bags that the food comes in. And he's become quite the dumpster diver. We have one of those really big trash cans in the garage where we occasionally throw things away. Bradley has pulled out the last three bags that his dog food have come in. Big bags-hold 40 pounds. He did this without ever even knocking over the trashcan, that's how big he's getting. He also discovered that I had thrown away some stuffed animals that were stinky from being left in the rain. He thought those should come back out too.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Share

Brodie has learned a new command. Share. He can be selfish like most children can at times. When we get a new toy, or better yet an empty milk jug, he wants to play with it all by himself. Bradley runs around barking his high pitched puppy bark while Brodie plays with the toy and growls at the same time. I don't remember exactly how I taught Brodie to share. I think it went something like, I made him give the toy to me and then I gave it to Bradley. Or I gave the tug toy to Bradley and then encouraged Brodie to grab the other end. However it happened, Brodie has added the word "share" to his rather large vocabulary. It usually goes like this. "Brodie share." Brodie stands next to Bradley with the toy touching Bradley and cuts his eyes to look at me like, "Is this good enough?" Then a big sigh. I say, "Good share." And they are off playing. Today, however, it went like this. Both dogs sit anxiously waiting as I rinse out a gallon milk jug and dry it off. This is part of our reduce, reuse, recycle plan. I throw the jug between the two dogs. Since Bradley has not yet learned to catch, Brodie grabs it and runs for the living room growling as Bradley tries to join the game. Brodie continues to crush the jug for recycling. I hear Bradley yelping and know that he has not had his turn. So I yell from the kitchen, "Brodie, share." I go to the bathroom to get ready. Yelp! Yelp! "Brodie, share." Distance shuffling draws near. I turn to the doorway to see Bradley on his back, belly up. Brodie has him pinned to the ground using the milk jug. Brodie looks at me. I ask, "Is that your idea of sharing?" Big sigh. Brodie allows Bradley up AND lets Bradley have the milk jug to finish the crushing for recycling.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Fetch Your Own

As different as salt and pepper, so far. Brodie is obsessed with fetching the ball. Bradley does not fetch. Yes, he's a retriever that does not fetch. Yet. Maybe he's just not old enough. I remember teaching Brodie I guess before his natural instinct kicked in. If you throw Bradley a ball, he might go get it, pick it up, drop it and run back to you. Or gets to it and then gets distracted. But Bradley loves to steal the ball when Brodie retrieves it and lays it back at our feet. Then he prances around with it while Brodie freaks out. Bradley really knows how to push Brodie's buttons. But fetch, no no. Two reasons that I see: 1) Bradley's not all that into running. He rarely runs. He watches Brodie running back and forth with the ball like, "You want me to run?" 2) "why would I go get the ball when I know Brodie will bring it back for me.?"

On the flip side. Bradley will go outside and get a stick to bring inside to eat. Finish one stick, go get another. Brodie will lie in wait for the perfect moment to steal it. Bradley yelps. Brodie knows how to push Bradley's buttons. I tell Brodie to give it back to Bradley and he does, of course. But I also tell him, "If you want a stick go outside and get your own." He looks at me like, "Why would I go outside and get a stick when I know Bradley will bring in one for me?"


In the picture is Brodie playing with a stick when he was a puppy-August 2006
BTW Brodie went to the vet twice as a puppy for having a stick stuck in his teeth. And I mean sideways, across his mouth, not just between the teeth.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Stairway to Heaven

What is heaven to a dog? Their human's bed. Our dogs are not allowed on our bed without an invitation and not when without us. Brodie understands these rules, of course. Bradley does not. Brodie will actually come tell me in the shower that Bradley has jumped on the bed. He sticks his head in the shower to alert me to crisis. I stick my head out and don't see Bradley. I call him and thump he jumps off the bed to come greet me. I admonish him. He doesn't understand. I thank Brodie for his help. He understands.

Leaves Anyone?


This is a picture of our neighbor's little boy, Gramm, feeding Bradley leaves through the fence. So cute!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Mug Shots

So, for those of you who don't know already, let me fill you in on our dogs. We have two, Brodie and Bradley. Those are both labs, one yellow, one chocolate. Or as we sometimes refer to them, peanut butter and chocolate. Brodie is a way too smart. When he was a puppy I had to remind myself that he was just a puppy because he is so smart. He did weirdly smart things. He was easily trained. Housebroken in two days. Likes for me to play him songs and read him books. No kidding. He has more energy than any dog is existence and his favorite game is fetch. He is in great shape. The perfect weight and build for a lab. Vets and trainers around will unsolicitedly tell us that he's a perfect weight and it's so nice to see a lab that is not obese. But Brodie is a major tattletale. That's how I thought of the blog title. He wants to make sure that Bradley is obeying the rules. He will come and get us if Bradley is doing anything wrong or has had an accident or anything. Bradley is his complete opposite. He's so laid back. He's not that bright. He's not as easy to train. We're still having poop-a-doop accidents about once a week in the house. He loves to sleep. But when he's not sleeping he is wild. And did I mention HUGE? He is currently about 4 months old and 45 pounds. He is gaining 2 pounds a week, 10 pounds a month. I asked Rob the other day if he's 4 months and 40 pounds, ten pounds for every month, when does it stop? Rob said he hopes it stops at 100. I have to remind myself that Bradley is just a puppy because he is so big. I expect certain behaviors and then remember, he's just a baby. Just a really big baby. Oh, and his favorite game is to steal the ball when Brodie retrieves it. Not so funny to Brodie. Brodie considers his fetching to be work. It's serious business. So, they couldn't be more different. And sometimes it's really funny. Sometimes sweet. But all the time tales worth telling.

The Telling of Tails

I've decided to dedicate a blog to my dogs. Why? I write so much about them in my blog already. Everyday they do things that I want to write about. But I think the stories are either not important enough, funny enough or big enough to put on my blog. And besides, my blog is about me and us. yes that includes my dogs. But not every blog is a dog blog. But here it is. So I no longer have to subject everyone to so many stories about my dogs. If you're interested. Great! If not, you no longer have to endure. Well, maybe just a little.