April 5th 2007

more dog! now with more towels!

Ana asked for dog pics. So here are some dog pics. Some of these may be old. But they’re all CUTE!

The dog walker appears to be working out, by the way. I’ve been able to stay at school later every day this week and I’ve been able to get bunches done. It’s good!

begging don’t even think about it MINE! pious towel2 looks good in pink hair grippy belly

March 8th 2007

food plus dog plus work

It turns out the exact right number of hard-boiled egss needed for an egg-salad sandwich on regular sandwich-sized bread is one and a half. It’s sort of hard to boil half an egg, so I ended up eating half an egg’s worth of egg salad off the plate, where it unceremoniously fell out of my sandwich.

In other news, I’ve been writing all day, doing pretty well at it, and now I’m ready to take a little break. Take one with me! Enjoy, on your break, these photos of Himself.

Watching the street:

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Giving me the eye:

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Enough with the pictures!

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December 29th 2006

a doggy update

Now that we’re back home, Himself has relaxed back into his normal personality. For much of our Christmas trip to the Angst-in-laws’, he was alternately hyper and subdued, skittish and manic. We’re pretty sure it’s because he thought he was in trouble–no getting on the couches at the Angst-in-laws’, for example–and yet was super excited to have a yard to run around in.

So today he’s been very sweet, and very obedient. He was especially good on his morning walk. I’m glad to see he’s no worse for the wear, and that being home hasn’t been too confusing for him.

[Unfortunately, while on vacation, he picked up a very doggy smell–and I say unfortunately because he had a bath just a week ago! The downside to all that playtime in the yard, I suppose.]

December 1st 2006

a request

Please, people, for the LOVE OF GOD, keep your animal on a leash when you are outside with him or her. Your dog may be the most obedient little ball of fluff in town, but if he or she gets curious and approaches my dog, who doesn’t really like other dogs, there’s no way for you to get your dog back before my dog reacts and tries to establish his dominance.

(On that note, my dog really needs some training in this area, and we are aware of it and looking into it. But when he’s on a leash and other dogs are on their leashes, I NEVER have problems just scooting past trouble. Which is to say that, other, better trained or more submissive dogs shouldn’t get a free pass just because they are better trained and submissive. Or, rather, their OWNERS should not get a free pass.)

November 18th 2006

gotta give the dog something to do, too

I bought Himself a Kong toy today, with some peanut-butter-flavored paste. He is completely enthralled. What is this red rubber thing that bounces and has food inside??? He works at it for a while, then sits back and stares at it. If he stares too long, I ask him, “[Himself], where’s your toy?” and he’s back at it.

Amazing how a teaspoon of peanut butter paste and a little bit of rubber can occupy a dog for hours.

October 27th 2006

so dark. where’s the light??

Every year, I mention how much I hate Daylight Savings, how it completely screws up my schedule when the light changes. (I’m equal opportunity, here, too–I hate it in spring AND fall.)

My complaints were obviously made before I got a dog and assumed the morning walk responsibilities. I am so glad that next week, 7:00 am won’t be pitch black anymore

Seriously. You try finding poop on a bed of leaves with only the yellow streetlights to guide you.

October 16th 2006

dog = perspective

Sometimes all I need is a little dog to remind myself that things really aren’t that bad.

Yes, I was reminded of an assignment due at midnight this morning, and I wasn’t able to get started on it until this afternoon; and yes, I need to be doing research for my comment and actually writing some of the damn thing; and yes, I am about three days behind in my reading for all of my classes.

But I also have a healthy happy dog (who just turned around three times before plopping himself down in the middle of the cushy chair, and I have a yummy dinner in the works, and I have a brand new battery in my computer. I wasn’t really thinking about all those good things today when I thought I was going to completely lose my mind, for thinking of all the work I have to do that I am not getting done. I am now.

That is not to say my stomach doesn’t twinge a little when I realize how busy the next month will be. But I’m hoping if I can get through this semester, next semester will be a little less hairy–and at least I’ll be sort of inoculated to the workload. So for now, I’m going to finish up this assignment and send it on, and then I’ll tackle the next item on the list.

October 11th 2006

a doggy day

This afternoon, I opened the door to take Himself out for his afternoon walk and came face to face with our upstairs neighbor’s dog.

For background, Himself is not great with other dogs–mostly territorially–and the upstairs dog is also not great with other dogs, though I don’t specifically know what sort of issues he has with other dogs.

As soon as I opened my door, the other dog came towards our apartment, and Himself reacted. The two dogs nipped and snapped at each other, all gnashing teeth and growling, right on my threshold. My neighbor pulled his dog off, and I pulled Himself back inside; my neighbor apologized and asked if Himself was OK and I said he was fine. I closed the door.

[I want to make it clear that I am not blaming the other dog or Himself here; as far as I am concerned, the upstairs dog was either intrigued by our open door or by Himself while Himself was reacting territorially to a large dog coming towards his home.]

Himself was shaking and I noticed a little blood spatter on my wrist. Himself had a little blood on his muzzle, so I led him to the bathroom, where there is good light, and looked him over. He had a spot of blood on the side of his mouth, but it didn’t appear to be bleeding actively, so I figured it was either a very small cut or it was blood from the other dog. I wiped his muzzle, calmed him down, and took him out for his walk. While we were out, I stopped a few times to see if he was OK, and noticed a bit more blood, apparently from his gum. I wondered if he broke a tooth or cut his gum. Our walk was short, because I wanted to get a calmed down Himself back home to check him out further.

Upon returning, I noticed something sitting on the carpet outside our door–a tooth. Himself’s tooth! Himself lost a tooth in the tussle with the upstairs dog! This is what the blood was from–the tooth socket! The whole tooth appears to have fallen out, and it didn’t bleed for more than a few minutes, so I am not TOO concerned. I called my vet and they told me to bring him in tonight, but we’re taking him there in the morning, to board for our out of town trip, so I told her I’d bring him then unless he seemed to be doing badly.

So now I’m sitting at home, Himself curled up next to me, and I’m worried about him. Not about his health–I know he’ll be fine–but about his future behavior. I’m concerned he’ll start having even worse reactions to other dogs (though, while on his walk immediately after the tussle, we passed another dog without any particularly unusual reaction, which is to say Himself pulled a bit, but didn’t growl or lunge).

And, OK, maybe I’m a little worried about his health. What’s up with his teeth that one would fall out during a fight? The vet told us he needs to have his teeth cleaned, but didn’t mention that it was urgent or that Himself’s teeth were in serious condition. But he lost a tooth in an 8-second tussle with another dog!

My evening, understandably, I think, has therefore been a little less than ideal. I thought it would be a good evening–I was very gung-ho to get some work done, I had some really great ideas I wanted to start exploring for my comment, and I thought I might even do some pre-packing for our trip. Instead, I’m sitting on the couch, googling “canine tooth loss” and not finding anything helpful. And being very concerned for Himself, while trying not to act too concerned, such that he would get anxious.

Sigh. The perils of dog ownership. The benefit, of course, is that Himself showers us with so much love.

September 22nd 2006

the cute and the sad

One of the funniest things we do with Himself is blow in his face. I know, it sounds mean. But it’s actually quite cute, because Himself smells whatever-he-smells on our breath and tries to BITE THE AIR. He licks and bites at the air and then stops and rubs his eyes because they’re getting dried out. And then he licks us all over, because he loves us.

In other words, I am so sad that we have to board him this weekend while we make a road trip to see some family (who don’t know we’re coming and therefore can’t give us permission to bring him to their house). I know he will make new friends (well, I hope he will make new friends), and will be loved on by new people, but it doesn’t make me any happier. I will miss my little man this weekend.

September 19th 2006

weird dog

Himself is a funny guy. He is totally unfazed by the super-loud neighbors (I should say “was” since those guys are long moved out). He barely reacts to the train going by. He doesn’t seem to mind how loud our floors are (squeaky AND clicky-clacky from shoes).

But one thing he does freak out about: whenever I go into the lower cabinets to get my big saute pan out, he runs out of the kitchen. And then he stands about four feet out of the kitchen, watching me, while I pull out the pan (or lid or whatever). I don’t know if it’s the noise, but he doesn’t seem to react until the pans make noise, not when I just open the cabinet door.

So he’s a strange fellow, Himself is. Absolutely adorable. But a strange fellow.

September 9th 2006

things i don’t like about my neighborhood during baseball season

#72: People will throw just about anything on the sidewalks and the grass, including glass bottles, plastic bags, and things my dog likes to eat that will make him sick.

September 7th 2006

dogs are good

This is what I love about having a dog.

I’ve had a long day. I mean, LONG. I raced home for all of 5 minutes earlier today to take Himself out to pee, but otherwise, haven’t really seen him all day. I am now home, and he is curled up next to me, cuddling on me, licking me, super-excited to see me. And that makes me happy. I am happy to just sit here with my dog, watch my DVR’d Project Runway, and drink a glass of wine.

Of course, I have to leave in about an hour for another obligation. Sigh.

September 6th 2006

i just wish i could be in ten places at once

I feel like a bad dog owner.

Because of a combination of factors (Mr. Angst is going out of town for five days, I have an interview, and need to go meet the judge I’m working for this semester, and have a meeting with the professor overseeing my comment, and a CLASS), I am afraid Himself is going to be home alone for a long time tomorrow.

If I had some foresight, I would have arranged for a dogwalker. But we haven’t even set up with a dogwalker for them to meet Himself, get keys, sign papers, etc., so that’s not an option. I can try and blaze home between things and just let him out to pee, but I’m not actually worried about his bladder. I’m just worried about him.

He loves being with his people so much that, when we get home from being gone, he is just manically excited. Which makes me suspicious that he’s really sad when we’re not here.

I know, I know, I’m reading too much into him. He has his toys and his bed, and cool, fresh water, so he should be fine, even for an extended day alone. But I still feel bad. (And tomorrow, I won’t even be able to make it up to him in the evening, since I have an obligation then, too. This weekend is just the worst weekend for Mr. Angst to be out of town. Or for me to be losing my mind, either one.)

September 5th 2006

well, there goes my balance

So, I’m going to be really busy this semester. Between my classes, my office hours, my comment, my externship, and, oh yeah, trying to find a job, I am not exactly sure when I will sleep, eat, exercise, or blog. Don’t worry, though–I’ll find time to do at least three of the four. At least my classes appear to be good, though it’s hard to say after only one day. I am a bit nervous about one of them, seeing as the prof thought I volunteered to answer a question simply because I made eye contact. And here I thought I was just being polite and listening.

The other thing that will be tough this semester will be coordinating schedules with Mr. Angst. He’ll be in class three nights a week, which, among other things, makes me sad. It also means we have to be careful about Himself–making sure he gets his walks, eats at a normal time, and gets plenty of love. Most tricky will actually be this week–Mr. Angst will be out of town Thursday midday through Monday morning, and I have a packed schedule on Thursday. Himself may be alone for quite a while on Thursday, and I am NOT happy about that. I will make it up to him on Saturday, though, when I plan to spend the entire day home–doing work, probably, but home.

The semester has started…and I’m already tired.

September 3rd 2006

Sunday dogblogging

He’s just SO CUTE. Seriously.

August 21st 2006

too tired to write more

Day One of interviews down. I was gone most of the day. Mr. Angst says that Himself clearly missed me and was waiting for me to get home. Sigh. I guess Himself is “my” dog.

August 20th 2006

dog training

Himself is beginning his crate training.

Don’t get me wrong–he’s fully housebroken, we just wanted him to also be crate trained. He seems to be taking to it well. We have the top half of his crate off, and one of his favorite blankets in the bottom half, and he’s happily sitting in it right now, chewing on his foot. We’ll try putting the top on it tomorrow, and seeing how that goes. Or maybe we’ll put his bedding in it tonight, just the bottom half again, and see if he wants to sleep in the crate. He’s pretty easily trained, though stubborn when he doesn’t want to do something, so I hope this is a something he likes.

Update: We have been lavishly praising Himself every time he gets into his half-crate, and it’s working! He did try to pull the blanket out at one point, and sit on it outside the crate; I promptly put it back in the crate, and he figured out that the blanket goes in the crate and, if he sits on it in the crate, it’s pretty comfy.

So far, we’ve got his half-crate in the living room, so he’s with us when he’s in it. I think in a day or so, we’ll put the top on the crate, and do this whole process over again; and then in a few more days (depending on how things go), we’ll move it into the kitchen, where his bed is, and then replace his bed with the kennel.

August 19th 2006

Saturday morning dog and after-party blogging

We have discovered that Himself is a voyeur. He has always enjoyed sitting on the back of the chair that’s in front of the window; today, I raised the blinds, and he has never seemed happier to be sitting there. He’s perked up, watching the people go by, keeping his eye on the other dogs on the street, making sure he’s keeping us safe.

Far too cute for words, really.

In other news, one of the downstairs neighbors (the one who plays the drums) sort of apologized to Mr. Angst for being so hard-headed last night. Notably, he was not the guy who told Mr. Angst to suck it up; we figure it’s worthless trying to deal with that guy. In any case, they are still moving out by the end of the month, and our landlord has found new tenants who, by description, seem like they’ll be better. Keeping my fingers and toes crossed over that.

Oh, and we didn’t end up calling the cops on the party, since they did turn the music down by 10:30–just enough, really, so that we WOULDN’T call the cops, but I guess that strategy worked for them. (We did call the police to figure out what our options were, and they were supportive of us, so we know it’s an option for the future, right?) Part of me thinks we should have called anyway, just because the one guy told Mr. Angst to “Go ahead, call the cops, I don’t care,” when Mr. Angst threatened that. I am sure he really would have cared if they had showed up at 3 am when the drunk people downstairs were screaming. Anyway, now we’ve handed out what might appear to be an empty threat. Sigh. Eleven days, now, eleven days.

August 17th 2006

doggie update

We are well into week 2 with Himself, and things are going well, I think. We have our ups and downs–for instance, last night, he was absolutely MANIC on his walk, pulling like a complete freak for the entire time. But this morning, he was sort of puny, got a little sick, and then obeyed nicely on his walk. He still snaps and growls at other dogs.

[By the way, can I say to all you dog owners out there–please, PLEASE do not let your dog just walk up to other dogs without asking first. If my dog is doing well, and is fully prepared to walk right past your dog without any problems, but your BIG DOG decides to “be friendly” and walk right up to my little dog, it is hardly my fault if my dog barks, growls, or snaps. Also, don’t be on your cellphone when you’re walking your dog, and have your dog on his leash the whole time, instead of stopping to attach his leash when you see me coming with my dog. Please. And then, when my dog growls, barks, or snaps at your dog because your dog has invaded my dog’s space, don’t give me a dirty look and scream, “JESUS!” Again, not really my fault.]

So, yeah. In some ways, Himself’s inability to play nice with other dogs makes me a little sad; it also makes me nervous every time I see another dog approaching while we’re out walking. I am sure my nervousness is being telegraphed to Himself and, since he’s just trying to protect me, I’m sure that’s only making things worse. But I’m trying. And he’s getting better about obeying. And he loves on us so much.

August 13th 2006

snooze

Mr. Angst is right. We do not have a dog. We have a sleep monkey.