These are random musings of my life journey, the people, animals, places, and events which have woven, and continue to weave, a tapestry that is me. We all know there is no real destination, only the ongoing experiences which blend together, creating the trail. Each step gives a glimpse of what is to come, without allowing me to see the end result. It is exciting. I have a home base that is mine, that gives me a place to rest. This is it. This is where my heart is, no matter where I journey...................

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Today's Advenutures in Small-Dog Land

This afternoon I got the deck ready for The Little Guy. Some of you might remember that I started a project a long time ago when Ali was pulling Houdini's on me. He had found a way to get off the deck and would take off into the woods for an hour or several, scaring the peewaddling out of me. So I bought some chicken wire to put on the inside of the uprights. It turned out that he was actually squeezing between some uprights that were loose, so I checked them all and fixed the ones that needed it. I had put the wire on about 1/3 of the deck, the part where he was escaping, just to be sure.

Then today I was considering taking our newest family member to the deck for some R & R, but I was nervous about it because he is enough smaller than the others that I was afraid he might fall. One end of the deck is just a couple feet off the ground. That's where Ali was getting out. It's secure. But the part of the deck that is not wee-doggy safe is about 12 or 14 feet above the ground! If he didn't realize the height and decided to slide out .... well, I don't even want to think about it. So I finished the job today.

The bonus is that I can now take toys out for them and not worry about them falling off the deck. I threw a ball for Ali today, and he loved chasing up and down the deck! Little Doofus liked running after Ali, too, but I haven't been able to get him to chase a ball or toy on his own.

Little Lightening was moving fast!

He seemed to be wondering what was out there. China was looking for the most comfortable spot to rest.

Ali said OK, that's enough. Whew! Damn I'm gettin' old!

Little One seemed to enjoy his time out there. He wasn't sure about it all, but he laid down and rested several times, and was relatively relaxed. He almost came in without being carried, but he wasn't sure about the door and me all in one place at one time!

I watered my yuccas, Spanish broom, and fountain grass today, and all the plants on the deck. Squirt Blossom couldn't figure out what the heck I was doing. He was curious, but kept his distance. Or maybe he was keeping distance from me! He still is wary. Right now he is curled up on the bed a foot away from me, but if I leave the bed, he's not so sure about me.

Last night he left the bed for a while and I heard him slurping water. Good!!! And he ate the food I left for him. I'll be glad when he gets relaxed enough to enjoy the simple things of life ... like eating and drinking without hiding.

My other biggest concern with him is that he dribbles. When I try to pick him up, most times he dribbles, and especially when he is on the floor. I try to not "chase" him. That makes it worse, but to get him outside, I have to carry him. I'm going to have to shampoo my carpet when this is over! Meanwhile, I'm buying a gallon jug of Nature's Miracle at the vet's tomorrow. Maybe two!

I'm reading about training a shelter dog, which has almost always been subjected to abuse of some kind. Everything I read says it is essential to use a training collar and leash to help them learn what is expected. The reason they act timid is because they are confused about what is expected of them. That makes sense, but I'm struggling with it, too. I'm going to talk to the vet tomorrow for reassurance. You know how it is, I know something is right, but I want to hear it from the professional.

I noticed some spots all over him today, and when I looked closely, they were ticks!! I must have pulled 20 or 30 off him! The groomer mentioned to me that he has "sand fleas," and said that she sprayed him lightly with insecticide. She said she just sort of scratched the fleas off. I didn't think about it, although I saw some specks on his legs. Well, when those specks filled up with blood, they were huge! When I squashed these things, ick, blood everywhere! I didn't want to start flea/tick treatment until we see the vet tomorrow. Now I wish I had! I've checked A & C, and I don't find any on them, but I'll stay on it.

Hmmmm. I'm beginning to be really glad I didn't bring three dogs home at once. Go figure!


  1. Gah - I hate ticks! It sounds like the little guy is adjusting well. And maybe too it is good that you brought home one so he kind of has to be braver (better for him in the long run) than hiding with two other dogs.

  2. What a great playroom they have now!

    I hate ticks, too. They're so disgusting!

  3. EWWW!!! I hate ticks! If I haven't told you before, I love your deck. Such a great place for people to relax and little ones to play. It will be interesting to see what the vet has to say.

  4. Everyone, I agree ... ticks are just odious. Ick, yuck, gag, ptooey!!!

    Julie, I agree. I mentioned before that I don't wait well, and I just want us to be "normal." I actually think he is doing well, considering his past.

    Jenster, isn't it the best playroom in the world?? He seemed to be relatively well at ease there.

    Daisy, I think you commented on the deck, but I don't mind hearing it again! It is a great area for all of us.

    I'll update after the vet visit.

  5. Ewww..sorry about the ticks but I'm glad you've noticed them and are on top of it.

    And yes, can you imagine having brought home 3 dogs?!? You'd be calling in the troops for help!!

  6. Tell the little guy that I totally understand about the tick thing. Would you believe I still have a huge mark from where that one tick was on me.

    He is so cute and he will come around and it sounds like he has already made so much progress. He is very lucky to have found you.

  7. Cherie, yeah, sometimes the Higher Power makes us back up into the reasonable mode of operation. It's hard to remember that at times the answer to prayer is "no," and that is not a bad thing. My problem is what I've already stated ... I just want to save them all. :')

    Caroline, I thought of you when I was picking the nasty things off. Aren't you glad you didn't have 20-30????

    Yeah, I think he will be fine. I just want him to be fine .... *right* *now*!!! We're both lucky. :)

    All this "tick talk" has me itching!!!!

  8. As I read these posts, one thought is repeating in my mind. He is trying to figure out YOUR role in this family. Ali and China have been a part long enough to know; yet, while you are making every attempt in showing the new guy kindness, he is not learning you are the "Alpha". With this in mind, you may try some small illustrations and then watch his behavior.


  9. Additionally, I have trained a few dogs, obedience and agility, and if you would like some added input to your books- please feel free to ask.


  10. Reach, I'm sure you're right about that, but I'm not sure yet exactly how to go about that. Tell me what you mean by "small illustrations." It might be easier to email me at, especially if the response is long. I will absolutely, happily accept any input.

    I've trained dogs to be obedient pets, but that was starting from babies and in a positive environment from the get-go. I'm certainly a novice in dealing with animals such as this one, an older dog coming out of abusive/neglectful situations. So again, YES, any input is appreciated!!

    BTW, since my other two dogs are seniors with significant hearing loss, I have to raise my voice to get their attention at times, but this seems to alarm the boy. Any suggestion on that?

    Thanks big time!

  11. Hi Lynilu, pardon me for getting on my bandwagon here but since you brought up ticks - my old friend, who lives back east, once with her neighbors was determined to get rid of all the wasps nests and they hired a professional to come in and do it.

    Once it was done they breathed a sigh of relief - no more worries about wasps. And then all of their dogs and other animals started getting ticks and they couldn't figure it out.

    Well it turns out that wasps eat ticks and the wasps are the reason that dogs and other animals hadn't had ticks ever as far back as they could remember.

    So I don't have to tell you now - they're "beatin the bushes" trying to encourage the wasps to come back.

    I'm not saying you ought to rush right out and find a wasp or two and ask them to build a nest in a nearby tree or on a wall someplace or a corner. They like to put a nest up high someplace but it's good to remember if you happen to see them around - give them their distance of course but also recognize that they might just be doing some good that we don't see them doing.

    Okay, I'm gettin off my bandstand now. Goodlife.

  12. Hey, Robert, I actually do have some wasps around here! I haven't seen many, but occasionally one follows me long enough to make me nervous. Sounds like I might want to leave them to their own business! Thanks!

  13. Ewe-ticks. That is DP's job! I will hold the squishing tissue, but won't touch them.

    Addie has begun using a training collar, and she just seems so confused as to why NOW we have started to make her walk by our side and make her do things. We hope she adjusts soon.

    Little dog is so freaking cute. Though I know I have already said that!

  14. Beans, I don't like the ticks, but I can manage it. After all, I don't have a DP to do it for me!

    Let me know how the training collar goes. I'm hoping to avoid it, not because I think it's mean or wrong, but I just hope he comes around. We'll see. Addie was a shelter pup also, wasn't she?

    I know! He's adorable!!


If you have something to say about it, just stick out your thumb, and I'll slow down so you can hop aboard! But hang on, 'cause I'm movin' on down the road!!! No time to waste!!!