Sunday, November 15, 2009

Finding Fun around the House and the New Trainer

Hi Friends! Skyler and I have had a ton going on. We apologize for the silence, but don't think the craziness has quieted. I've been really busy with school work and preparing for our move back to Massachusetts. So, for the past two weeks, we haven't had time for much of anything. We have our morning walks and Ryan and Skyler have their night walks, but no Frick. That's right ladies and gentlemen, no frisbee, no tennis balls and no free reign squirrel chasing. It's been driving Skyler nuts. 
       At times like these, the little angel finds his own fun with socks, shoes and my collection of Brides Magazines.
       By this afternoon, I think all three of us were getting a little tired of sitting on the sofa doing work. Sitting between my fiancee and I typing on laptops is not Skyler's idea of a fun afternoon. So, we played hide-and-go-seek. My fiancee and I were the hiders and Skyler always the seeker, but you'd be surprised to learn how long this went on for before it got old. 
       We talked to another trainer back in Massachusetts. We'd like to bring Skyler and my parents new puppy to classes each week. Upon our first discussion, the trainer established that I'm making some pretty significant boo-boos with the munchkin. 
       In his eyes I shouldn't be:
       1. Sleeping with Skyman: He said this diminishes my power as the alpha. He said Skyler should be sleeping at the bottom of the bed or even on the floor, but that we should definitely not be spooning. And while I can see his point, I don't think the sleeping situation is going to change anytime soon. We have to draw the line somewhere and snuggling is a top priority.
       2. Skyler shouldn't be fed by hand anymore. Now, this directly opposes our last trainer's method. But we'll try it.
       3. Limit the snacks. He said that giving your dog snacks all the time is not something that happens in the dog world. He said a dog typically gives another dog their food when they're intimidated by that dog. I'm not sure if I buy the intimidation deal, but I do believe in dog obesity and I definitely don't want to be faced with that someday in the future. So we'll monitor the snack giving. I'll admit I share dinner sometimes. This is a behavior I have to work on. 
       Doggie opinions anyone?

Skyler Solves the Case of the Missing Person Video

Check out Skyler's most recent antics. New Video!!  

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

A Crazy Man Day

I don't know what's gotten into him today. He's finally napping, so let us just cross our fingers that the rest of the day goes by smoothly. 

I woke up this morning with plenty of dishes to do. So, I put my ear phones on and while singing Tiny Dancer started my scrubbing. (Little did I know, Skyler had also started on his own "project.") Soon later, looking at an almost empty sink, I got that excited "there's only a few spoons left" feeling. "Finally," I thought, "I can sit down with my coffee." 

Well, Mr. Man had different plans for Mommy and it wasn't long until I discovered a living room of toilet paper scraps. An entire roll to be more exact.

While I finished vacuuming up the tiny pieces, he destroyed a pencil he found on the table. And he did all this before he had me chasing him around the apartment with the movie Ryan and I rented last night in his mouth.

I put in his favorite movie and this kept his attention for a short bit:

But a loud truck clunking around outside lured him to the bedroom window and sure enough he started with his "I'm the boss of this place" barking routine. This is a fairly new routine that Ryan and I really have to work on. It's the first time in a while that Skyler hasn't been enrolled in classes. So, I've been searching around online for some advice on addressing this new behavior before it gets too out of control. I did find some great advice for big mouth doggies. And while I don't agree with leashing him and giving him a yank when he barks, I do agree with the concept of distracting him and giving him something better to do. He'd still much rather train and get treats from Ryan and I than bark. So my homework for a few weeks will be to try this method out. Anyone have any other ideas?

He's napping now. I tried to snap a picture, but he opened his eyes and lifted his head quickly. Terrified that I had woken the monster, I wisely tip-toed away.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

New Video Post

I just posted another video to the right. It's documentation of one of Skyler's crazy "terrier moments."  Check it out!

My Punkin' Picks His Very Own Pumpkin

We picked our pumpkins today! Skyler was a crazy man sorting through the waves of orange.
       I've been incredibly busy with school, but it was a nice break to enjoy the beautiful weather today. We went to a small church on Fifth that had a TON of pumpkins. Skyler was really pushy to begin with. He wanted to suck in all the action. But once he realized he wasn't going to miss out on anything, he calmed down and sorted through the pumpkins. 
      My fiancee and I chose a larger one to carve. Skyler picked out a smaller one with a long stem. (He's been doing some carving of his own since we left the lot. If you look closely you can see the teeth marks!)
     Although I didn't have too much time to play, it was nice to get out of the house. As I type, Sky's rolling his new pumpkin around the living room!

So, now that my family has officially dived into the Halloween-season festivities, I'm wondering about costumes. We only have a week and I'm still not sure if we'll spend Halloween carving or if we'll dress Sky up and go for a long walk. Any ideas for costumes? Shall we get into the great debate about whether or not its OK to dress up our four-legged friends? Skyler doesn't have a thick coat and gets cold very easily, so he already has a hoodie, jacket and Christmas sweater—what's a costume going to hurt?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Separation Anxiety

I had to board Skyler.

I'm attending a communicators conference this until Tuesday and my fiance is back in MA visiting family.
       This wasn't a rash decision. I did my homework and found a great fit for him. He's overnight camping at Camp Bow Wow while I'm gone. They have webcams so I can watch him from the conference, which helps. And they are really understanding and sweet with the dogs. I had to set up an interview almost a month ago. They had a three hour evaluation process in order to clear him for registration. It puts me at ease that they want to make sure all the dogs there aren't aggressive or protective.
       And Skyler loves playing with other dogs. This place is literally a Chuckie Cheese for dogs. Skyler will have tons of other campers and toys to play with. I know I shouldn't worry. I just don't like to leave him. I dropped  him off about an hour ago. I'll admit I was upset. I knew he didn't want to go. He was hiding between my legs and after trying to lure him with treats and noises and even pulling him gently, one of the helpers had to resort to picking him up and carrying him away.
       I realize I sound like a crazy dog lady. To be honest, I was full blown sobbing by the time I got back behind the wheel. I'm doing OK now. I packed him an overnight back with blankets, his toys and some treats. I measured and bagged his food for each meal. He'll be fine. I have to think of the positive. It'll be another great opportunity for him to socialize with other dogs.
       My fiance has already been on the webcams. He said Skyler's doing great and is playing around with the dogs. Check it out! Doggie Cam. Skyler's usually in the Kennywoof room.

Friday, October 16, 2009

New Video

I find bones in my bed sheets, under pillows and in-between my couch cushions. Skyler can be like a secret agent when hiding them. He's very methodical and he whines until he's found the perfect spot. If you walk in while he's hiding.... that's it.... he's off to find a new spot.

Check out the video "Skyler hides his bone" on the right.