Friday, December 7, 2007

Chewies..

So. I took away the raw hide because he was eating it way too fast for my liking (ate one knob and a half of the bone in less than a week) and gave him a pig ear. He ate that way too fast too. It took him less than 10 minutes.

Finally, I dug through all his old toys and found a nylabone that my aunt got him a while ago. I thought those things were supposed to be ultra durable or whatever. Nope. I found one of the knobs separated from the bone and Loki chewing on the knob just 5 minutes ago. Augh. I might have to get him one of these.

I think I'll stop by petsmart today and see if they have any ultradurable plushies. He already ripped apart all of his, and I think he's getting a bit sad over not having any toys.

On a good note, since our husbands are out in the field for 2 weeks, my friend has been coming over with her dog every night. The two puppies go at it for 5 hours, then sleep through the night. Or at least mine does. Loki and I slept in until 10:30 today. And yes, he's been sleeping with me every night and hogging up the bed. He figured out that staying under the covers = warmth this morning, so he completely hogged the blankets as well. Hrmph.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Okay, now this is getting ridiculous.



Excuse the quality. The pictures were taken on my cell phone because I knew Loki would move if I went to get the camera.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Holiday Parade

We took Loki to the holiday parade today and most likely scarred him for life, heh.

We didn't factor in all the loud noises and such, so Loki tried to run away each time the marching band approached and the sirens came on from the firetrucks and police cars. He was also a bit freaked out by the motorcycles. Near the end of the parade, he started getting a bit more used to everything, so that's a good thing.

It was pretty bad when Loki started dragging Jason in the middle of the MC Band playing the Hymn (he was standing at attention, and all the sudden nearly fell over because Loki decided he wanted to get away from the drums).

At least he had fun with the other dogs that were around. There was this adorable tiny V mix (had way too much white on her to be pure V) but Loki paid no attention to her. He opted to play with the big dogs instead =)

Friday, November 16, 2007

Doggie Daycare

Jason and I wanted to explore Myrtle Beach today, so we decided to put Loki in doggie daycare... It turned out surprisingly well, and I think all 3 of us had lots of fun today.

Apparently, Loki had fun going to the dog park, being told off by a tiny Yorkie and playing with just about every single toy in the place. Silly pup.

Oh, and he got his cammie collar in the mail today. We got them from here. He looks good =)

Marine Corp Ball and Loki

Well, Jason and I had to go to the Marine Corp Ball yesterday at Myrtle Beach (2.5 hour drive from our place/base) and decided at the last minute that we were going to stay overnight. Since it was way too late/expensive to board Loki for a night and since I don't really like boarding kennels (too many dogs in cages, little to no time out of the cage, etc), we just decided to take him...

It was also too late to book a room at the Sheraton for the group rate, we decided to stay at La Quinta which I think was the only other pet friendly hotel in the area (as in, no extra fee to have Loki with us)

I would've preferred the Sheraton for $79 a night rather than La Quinta for the same price.. but oh well. I'm thinking there would've been nicer stuff at the Sheraton for Loki to destroy, so La Quinta was a good choice. But next year, we're definitely doing the Sheraton.

I don't know if I really want to bring Loki next year. He didn't want to sleep all night, and kept running around the room carrying stuff onto the bed (think, his food bowl, stuff he pulled off the tables, toilet paper, etc.). He also chewed up a remote control and a whole roll of toilet paper (which left a HUGE mess). He's not usually that bad at night, but I guess last night was just bad because he was in a new place and we had to lock him in the bathroom for about 4 hours while we were at the ball.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

TABLE

LOKI JUMPED ON TOP OF THE KITCHEN TABLE TODAY TO STEAL MY WALLET!!!!

I'M NEVER GETTING A PUPPY AGAIN!!!

Friday, November 9, 2007

...



So. Apparently Loki thinks it's appropriate to stand ON TOP of his kennel now.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Oh man...

I know I haven't been blogging alot recently, but I have a good reason. On Halloween night, 9 PM, I was taken to the ER due to an asthma attack. I was there until about 2 in the morning on various breathing treatments, and really learned the value of oxygen. Seriously. I've been recovering since, so I haven't gotten a chance to play with Loki or really do anything worthwhile with him.

Unfortunately, the doctors seem to want to blame my cat and Loki for the asthma attack. They say it was an allergy attack that led to an asthma attack. My main doctor advised me to give the two away, but I just can't. Not after living nearly 5 months with the two of them. They're literally family now. I have to stay away from Loki (in the sense that I can no longer cuddle on the couch with him, or let him sleep in the room while Jason's on a "business trip"), but the allergy medicines are really helping out in terms of still allowing me to breathe.

I currently have two inhalers (one to twice a day, and one to use when I feel an onsetting attack), 2 allergy pills, and a nasal spray. I was also on steroids for 4 days to keep my lungs open after the breathing treatment in the ER.

I'm at a loss as to what to do with Loki and Glitter. I can't give them away, but I also can't keep risking the attacks. I'm hoping that with all the allergy medicines, I'll be able to eventually build up enough defenses against the allergens, but I'm also sort of hoping that my doctor can offer me allergy shots sooner or later. I've lived with all sorts of allergy problems since young, and I'd love a quick-fix.

(Loki's been great all week with Jason - the two of them did really well in classes in terms of staying for distractions. He's also been losing his hyperness, but I think that somewhat has to do with the energy that I've been giving off recently.) I guess Jason should be the one blogging about Loki, but I'm the computer one, and not him.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Loki the Wonderdog

I went out today for dinner with my friends, and when I got home, my parents looked completely frazzled and tired.

Apparently half an hour ago, my mom went to let Loki out for a run, and my dad opened the house door while the garage door was open. The cat decided to dart out of the house and run towards the main street. When Loki saw this, he decided that the cat wasn't going to act up on his watch, and darted right after her. My parents got scared for a minute because the two of them were running towards the street, but suddenly the cat stopped, and Loki decided to slowly stalk her. He finally got right on top of her and stood on her until my parents came over to retrieve her.

Basically, he tracked her across our yard, the street, and to the edge of the neighbor's house. I'm impressed. He saved my parents ALOT of grief from having to run across the main street to get her (and also probably saved her from getting hit by a car). Good dog... Very good dog.

(On the subject of good dog, bad cat... the cat somehow dunked her entire butt/tail into a pot of pork shoulder that my parents had cooked last night. There was still like, 4 days of leftovers in that pot. Then, she sat on a green bag, and somehow got her entire backside dyed green. Finally, she ran all over the house, leaving grease streaks and green spots on everything, from the piano top, to the couches, to my mom's formal dining chairs...)

I think my parents are about to kick the cat to the garage and allow Loki to stay in the house, haha.

NJ update/Delayed vet rant

Wowza. I didn't realize feeding Loki would be so expensive in NJ. I'm used to buying a 10 pound bag of 47 cent/pound chicken quarters and spending less than 7 dollars for a whole week of meal. Over here, I'm paying close to 87 cents per pound for a whole chicken and having to split it. I'd rather go with the quarters, but they only sell brand names like Tyson's and for over a dollar a pound! At least he's getting to try different parts of the chicken like the neck and the ribs. He's still doing fine on the raw... much to my vet's disappointment I guess. He's chomping down the bones like a pro, and loves meal time. He also doesn't shun his food at all, no matter what time I'm feeding him or how off schedule I am.

Oh, an update on the last vet trip before I left for Jersey... I made an appointment while we were still on the kibbles regarding the diarrhea. By the time I was able to see the vet, Loki was already on raw for a week and a few days. I gave her my normal complaints about the kibbles, then mentioned that we're on raw and that Loki was having the normal diarrhea from transitioning to a new food. She immediately gave me all the bads against raw, and advised me to switch to their prescription food again. This time, she wanted me to try a low fat/carbs kibble. For some reason, she couldn't understand that I did NOT want to stay on regular manufactured kibbles, and would feel MUCH better about going completely grain-free. I honestly don't think she understood how important the phrase "grain-free" was to me, because if she did, she would have been able to find me a high-end brand of kibbles that were in fact grain free. (I know they exist. Why? Because I was already looking into it before going to raw).

I paid for everything she wanted me to... the fecal test, the metrinidolzole and took her two prescription cards (useless because I wasn't going to buy them anyway) just in case I ever wanted to adopt a rescue and needed a vet reference. But I left extremely unhappy and wishing that my vet could focus MORE on my own concerns instead of running in her own direction and trying to change my mind on everything. It seemed almost as if she was combating me on everything and not trying to be supportive at all, even when I said I would consider staying on kibbles, if she could find me a grain-free one.

Anyway, back to Jersey. I went out yesterday to get him a few toys since I forgot all his toys in NC and he was getting very bored in his crate. I made goood choices I think =) I got him a Bad Cuz which is just a tough rubber squeaky ball with feet and tiny horn ears (really cute... too bad Loki already chewed off one of the pointy ears) and I got him a Bungee Dog... just a regular stuffed animal that has a bungee cord in it instead of stuffing. I figured I had enough of picking up stuffing after he murdered a toy, so I'd try something new. Today, we're headed to Petco for their Halloween contest, which I'm hoping we'll win! If we win, he's definitely getting a new toy with the gift card.

Oh, and I found a site that sells exactly what I've been looking for for a while - digital camo collars. Now Loki and his daddy can match! Or maybe Loki's daddy will just think I'm insane. Who cares. He already thinks I'm insane enough. But he's stuck. He married me. Ha. Sucka. (Alright, so maybe this rainy and cold weather is driving me a bit batty...)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Dogster Contest

Trip up

Well, Loki didn't do so bad on the trip, but Glitter did. I stopped every hour to let him out and stretch his legs. There were no accidents on the ride either =) Near the end of the trip, he started getting restless and started whining and pawing at my arm (not a good idea - I couldn't help but swerve since I drive with my right hand up high and he was pawing at a weak spot in my arm).

The cat... well... let's not get into that. She's just a spoiled brat who thinks it's her holy right to be perched up on my shoulder while I'm driving. When she was 1.2 pounds and a tiny kitty, that might've been acceptable. Now, she has claws, weighs significantly more, and has STRENGTH enough to move my head from its original position. I didn't want to let her up on my shoulder while I was driving because the weather conditions were already horrible enough. It was 6:30 AM, the sun still hadn't come out, and it was pouring out. I ended up pulling over because she kept pushing and pushing, putting her in her carrier, and letting her out to roam the car only while I was walking Loki and not driving. She protested. Loudly. Didn't stop meowing for 9.5 hours. I'm amazed she still has a voice.

Loki loves Jersey, or at least he loves my parent's backyard/front yard. I don't blame him. There's lots of things to chase around and lots of room for him to run around in. Plus the grass is fresh, and there's no dog poop hidden at all. We're going to have a fun 4 days =)

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Going to NJ

Well, wish us luck. I gotta get in the car alone for a 10 hour drive up to Jersey with Loki in the front seat harness-belted in and the cat roaming around. I have half a mind to stick Glitter in her carrying case, but for some reason, I don't think she'll take to it well. Hopefully Glitter has the common sense to stay away from the dog and avoid getting her head bitten off.

I've been trying the pennies in a soda can trick though. I gotta say it works REALLY well to get the two animals to stop fighting.

With Jason gone so often, sometimes I really think I need a break from these two. Then I get reminded of how well they help me deal with him being gone and how much faster the time goes by. The something bad will happen like Loki getting into his treat bag and flinging it all over the room. At which point, I escape to a friend's house. It works out well in the end. I keep my sanity.

Well... Loki and I are off to bed now. I think I'll pack up his crate in the car tonight and let him stay in the room. We'll see how he does with the whole attacking the cat deal between now and when I finish packing the car for our trip.

Right now, Loki's stalking the cat. He's in true hunting dog mode with his tail and nose stuck in a straight line and walking very slowly towards the cat. He also keeps looking at me as if he's looking for approval for eating the cat. Nuh uh. Not gonna get it here.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Leave it

Doing leave it with Loki is hilarious. I'll set a treat in front of me and tell him to leave it. He'll leave it, but he'll walk away causing a huge racket. He'll bark, howl, whine, yell, everything. Then he'll come back, sit in front of the treat, and cause a bigger racket. Again with the howling, backing, whining and yelling. Finally, when I tell him to come get it, he'll dart forward like he's never had a treat in his life, but has heard how great they were. What a weird dog.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Halloween... pictures!

Whoa. I have NOT updated this thing in a while. I guess I got too caught up in Halloween and Jason coming home (after being in the field for a week). Well anyway, this year I went all out on Halloween... probably because it's my first significant holiday with my new family - Jason, the dog, and the cat. 3 of us got costumes (I DOUBT the cat will let us put a costume on her.) We decorated (about 100 dollars worth of decorations) and we bought 30 dollars worth of candy in the form of king size bars (can you tell I REALLY want trick-or-treaters?!)

Here's pictures of Loki in his costume. We ordered it two weeks ago, and just got it today. I'm very happy with it =)

I got the costume here if anyone is interested. I'll just add that their customer service is GREAT!

Onto the pictures:



How cute =)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

A joke to cheer me up (after realizing my puppy lost his spunk)

To all Pet Owners


To be posted VERY LOW on the refrigerator door - nose height.

Dear Dogs and Cats:

The dishes with the paw print are yours and contain your food. The
other dishes are mine and contain my food. Please note, placing a paw
print in the middle of my plate and food does not stake a claim for
it becoming your food and dish, nor do I find that aesthetically
pleasing in the slightest.


The stairway was not designed by NASCAR and is not a racetrack.
Beating me to the bottom is not the object. Tripping me doesn't help
because I fall faster than you can run.


I cannot buy anything bigger than a king sized bed. I am very sorry
about this. Do not think I will continue sleeping on the couch to
ensure your comfort. Dogs and cats can actually curl up in a ball when
they sleep. It is not necessary to sleep perpendicular to each other
stretched out to the fullest extent possible. I also know that
sticking tails straight out and having tongues hanging out the other
end to maximize space is nothing but sarcasm.


For the last time, there is not a secret exit from the bathroom. If
by some miracle I beat you there and manage to get the door shut, it
is not necessary to claw, whine, meow, and try to turn the knob or
get your paw under the edge and try to pull the door open. I must
exit through the same door I entered. Also, I have been using the
bathroom for years -- canine or feline attendance is not required.

The proper order is kiss me, then go smell the other dog or cat's
butt. I cannot stress this enough!


To pacify you, my dear pets, I have posted the following message on
our front door:

To All Non-Pet Owners Who Visit & Like to Complain About Our Pets:

1 They live here. You don't.
2. If you don' t want their hair on your clothes, stay off the
furniture. (That's why they call it "fur"nature.)
3 I like my pets a lot better than I like most people.
4. To you, it's an animal. To me, he/she is an adopted son/daughter
who is short, hairy, walks on all fours and doesn't speak clearly.


Remember: In many ways, dogs and cats are better than kids because
they:

1. Eat less
2. Don't ask for money all the time
3. Are easier to train
4. Normally come when called
5. Never ask to drive the car
6. Don't hang out with drug-using friends
7. Don't smoke or drink
8. Don't have to buy the latest fashions
9. Don't want to wear your clothes
10. Don't need a "gazillion" dollars for college.

And finally,

11. If they get pregnant, you can sell their children.

Energy loss

This is really weird. It's almost as if Loki has lost all energy. He doesn't pull on his leash like he used to do, he spends more time lying on the floor than he does running around the house, and he seems to sleep alot more. I don't know whether it's the effects of the neuter, or if it's the change in his diet... I'm going to monitor this for the next two days before calling the vet. I gotta say though, this is a huge change. I was just getting used to my hyper monster too...

Monday, October 15, 2007

I think I should be glad

I'm really grateful that Loki likes to clean up his crate by himself after he eats (i.e. licking all the juice off his pan).

Thanks pup, but I still have to clean out your pan after you're done!

Vet visit

Well, big surprise - my vet doesn't support raw feeding (or at least that's the official position of Banfield Animal Hospital). Salmonella dangers and all that. Well, if she could give me a better alternative to having my puppy constantly diarrhea, then I'd love to hear it. I don't see the merits in spending $2 a day feeding Loki "prescription" food (where's the medicine in the prescription food, huh? The main ingredient is egg yolks - great. I'll give Loki egg yolks as part of his raw diet), and I definitely don't see any benefits to keeping him on kibbles and having him puke at least three times a week and having him come down with diarrhea every other day.

Just my rant.

I didn't even get a chance to speak with the vet today - they were too busy. There were at least 5 walk-ins when we got there for our 2:00 appointment, so they just took Loki to the back. They said he looked "great", which makes me really wonder... didn't they just say he had an INFECTION 4 days ago?! How does an infection look great?! I mean, I can tell the infection is there so it's not as if it's cleared up. So again. How can an infection look great. The least they could've done was tell me that the infection was still there. If I didn't clarify with them what they meant by "great", I would've just gone home and stopped feeding him the antibiotics. Hell, if he's great, he doesn't need them.

I'm thinking we need a new vet. I'm going to ask for suggestions when we start our new training class in January. I wish we never signed up for this Banfield Wellness Plan. It just makes my pet matter less to them because they know I'm bound by contract to pay, regardless of if I use their service or not.

Oh yeah, and when I left, I was so flustered by the visit that while putting Loki in the car, I left his lead on top of the car. Imagine my surprise when halfway out into Western Blvd. which I guess could be called the main shopping strip in my town (think, 55 mph, 3 lanes each direction, multiple traffic lights), I heard a loud clunk and saw something greenish flying into the middle of the street. I had to stop, turn around, park my car on a slanted shoulder, and run into the middle of the road to grab the leash. No way was I leaving that thing there. That's our second $15 lead. Needless to say, I got it, but I also got a number of strange looks from other drivers.

No more kibbles!

Well, we got rid of the last of our kibbles today. Gave away the rest of the bag of Farmstand Selects to someone who lived in our area.

Loki's really enjoying the raw food. It forces him to eat slower, which is great because he LOVED to inhale the kibbles (and puke it all up afterwards). The bones in his food actually lessens how much he teeths on everything else... The only problem I'm having is getting him to eat his liver. What I'm doing right now is cutting it up into little bits and slowly introducing it to his food. I force him to eat it because I pile all the little chunks on top of the chicken. For some reason, Loki's not smart enough to push the liver aside, haha. So, he'll just eat it all before starting on the chicken.

I don't know what to do about his neutering cut getting infected though. He's been on the antibiotics, and we've had the e-collar on him, but it's still infected and won't clear up! I'm afraid that we're going to end up spending another $20 or so on medicines today... Ugh. The last time we went to the vet, she guilt tripped me about putting the e-collar on him. Now, I'm probably really gonna get it from her.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Intermediate class

Well, dog training classes are starting to get a bit more fun, haha (and funny now that we're friendlier with the trainer). We've been working on commands with distractions, which is really fun because the trainer just goes around throwing balls, squeaking toys, tossing treats and whatever. We also get to go out in the store with people passing around, carts rolling, and other animals not being trained crossing in our paths while training.

We learned yesterday that we can train Loki with a ball instead of with treats. Which actually works a bit better now that we've switched him to raw and can't use the processed treats anymore.

He did really good yesterday, most likely because he was so tired out from the afternoon walk. He listened to everything we said, stayed close with the loose leash walking, and started learning the other things quickly.

I guess he's only a bad dog when he's hyper.

Expenses - To be Updated

Loki - $670

Weekly Expenses

Raw chicken, organs, etc. - $10.00/wk

Monthly Expenses

Banfield Wellness Plan - $21.95/mo
Heartworm/Advantix - $21.00/mo

Quarterly Expenses
Training class - 8 weeks - $109
2 Classes Paid For - Puppy Kindergarten, Intermediate Obedience

Random Expenses - To be Updated - Estimates, Not Exact
Initial puppy package including small bag of food, week of canned food, crate, leash, collar, treats - $150.00
Purina Puppy Chow - $20.00 (waste - couldn't settle in Loki's stomach)
2 Doggie Seatbelt - $20.00 each
Dog Bed - $50 (Jason picked it out.. not me..)
Gentle Leader - $21.95 (not used. Loki can't stand it.)
Toys, toys, and more toys - $30.00 (most of Loki's toys are recycled stuffed animals from my childhood)
Towels - $10.00
Doggie shampoo - $10.00
New collar - $9.99
E-collar, new bone, new 6' lead, treat pouch - $55
Puppy "Cologne" - $10
Turtle Costume - $40 (I had to! It was too cute!)

Medical Costs
Neutering, Pain Meds, Microchip, van Willebrand test - $60
Antibiotics - $20 (his neutering cut got infected)
Tapeworm medicine - $40.00
Stomach medicine - $20.00
Ear medicine - $20.00
Ear cleaning kit - $20.00
Prescription I/D food - $40.00 (2 weeks)

Loki's Damages
Laptop A/C Adapter - $40.00 (and an electric shock to me)
Cheap part of Laptop A/C Adapter - $10.00 (probably a blown artery due to anger on Jason)
2 Motorola Chargers - $20 each
3 stuffed animals - $10 (a cow and two stuffed dogs... only money was spent on the cow. The dogs were already mine)
2 pillows - priceless - a gift from a friend
1 Leash - $10
1 Doggie Seatbelt - $20
1 freshly printed homework (not a big deal. I just reprinted it)
1 set of handwritten class lecture notes (I was ready to cry)

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Starting on the raw

Well, we started Loki on the raw food today, and so far, there have been no complaints from him.

Unfortunately, he's food aggressive with it (again). Which leaves me in a position where I'm going to have to really just work with him on it. He had 3/4 pound of chicken breast this morning and currently, he's munching on a pound of chicken quarters (bone and all).

My time at Walmart picking out meat was a bit awkward. I just sorta picked out a 10 pound bag of chicken quarters nonchalantly and dropped it in the cart. Then I walked over to the chicken gizzards/heart and picked out a package of that. I was going to get some beef liver, but I couldn't. One of the bags broke through, so there was liver juice all over the place. I need to probably work on figuring out a bit more what to really feed him so that he'll stay healthy, but it doesn't seem that intimidating anymore.

He's having a bit of difficulty getting through and eating the bone. He's already spent about 10 minutes munching on this leg... I'm just hoping he doesn't take much longer otherwise the bacteria will really start to populate. Oh well... at least he's doing it in his crate so raw chicken doesn't get everywhere...

GREAT Day

Loki had a GREAT day today. I've been e-mailing this lady who lived in the area recently about raw feeding Loki. She gave me lots of advice, and when I mentioned his energy level, she asked if I wanted to be part of a dog group. We ended up meeting two grown Ridgebacks and one 3 month old Ridgeback at ... Harrier landing field (?) on base. The 4 of them spent about an hour off leash walking a trail, splashing around in a little stream (you should've seen Loki go headfirst into a deep section of the stream... he figured out how to get up quickly, but the look on his face when he got out was hilarious) and wandering around the woods. He kept getting little burrs in his foot which he wasn't too happy about with, but the other dog-parents helped me out with him.

This is something we're definitely going to do again - it sure beats just taking Loki to the dog park and letting him run wild amongst 20-30 dogs at once who might not necessarily want to play. With a smaller number of dogs (that I trust), I can probably let loose a little bit more and depend on the older dogs to teach Loki some manners.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Links

Someone showed me this really nice link about tug-of-war while on Dogster. I just got around to reading it this morning, but needless to say, my mind is changed about tug-of-war.

Here it is.

This other link is just plain funny. Maybe my sense of humor is too crude though, haha. If you have kids around, make sure they can't read!

Last night

He peed on the bed =(

Looks like I was dead as a rock and he's not fully potty trained. Dang it. Back to square one.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Hahaha...

Now his bites don't hurt at all! I just slip my finger through the two holes in his mouth now from the 2 missing bottom canines. Now think how great it would be if he lost the top two before the bottom two grew out! Then I could easily put my finger in his mouth and slip it through to the other side!

(Then he'd probably need all his food blended too...)

Aand he lost another canine

Now he looks like an old man without teeth, hehe. I always know when my pup is about to lose a tooth cause he acts like a little kid about it - you know, "wiggle wiggle tooth, must get out, must not let mommy see so I'll just wiggle it with my tongue"...

Gave him some ice and he's chewing on that nicely now. Before, he was trying to grab everything in the house to chew on.

Tuesday/Thursdays

I hate Tuesdays and Thursdays because it means the following things:
  1. I have to wake up for class at 5:45 AM
  2. I have to drive an hour each way to get to class
  3. I'm taking 5 classes from 8 in the morning to 3:15 pm back to back
  4. Loki's in his kennel all day from 6:30 am to 5:00 pm
  5. I have to allow a stranger into my house to walk Loki around noon
  6. I don't get to see my pup all day =(
  7. He's lonely =(
  8. I feel like a bad parent

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Puppy 500 Relay

I wish I had my camera right now... Loki is going insane running around the house, grabbing things out of his crate, running around with them, dropping them, picking up something new, running, dropping, etc.

It's so great seeing him miss picking something up while mid-run since he growls at the thing when he misses. Honestly, I don't think it's safe for him to be running up and down my couch and coffee table, but even if I wanted to, I couldn't stop him.

Raw Feed

Does anyone have their dog on the raw feed diet? If so, can you email me or leave me a comment with information such as how much my dog should be getting fed, what he should be getting fed, how much you spend per month on raw feed, and how much preparation time goes into it? Thanks.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Halloween!

Just picked out Loki's Halloween costume today and ordered it.
Hopefully Jason doesn't kill me. Hopefully Loki doesn't kill me for humiliating him...

Loki the Monkey

Auuuugh, you try chasing a 30 pound puppy around the house who is currently collarless and see how easy that is! I got a free sample of Greenies in the mail today, and the cat kept knocking it off the table. I didn't realize, and went to take Loki's collar off to adjust it.

The second he realized the biscuits were on the floor, he took off and grabbed the packet. I ended up chasing him around the house SEVERAL times before I finally tackled him. AUUUGH. I'm all sweaty and he's all happy and panting. Evil monkey.

Why...?

Why oh why oh why is my dog trying to eat bugs flying around in the air?!

Weekday craziness

I swear, every Monday morning, Loki goes crazy because he realizes that Jason is no longer home to play with him all day. Yesterday, he didn't go insane cause Jason had the day off, but he's in for a shock. He woke up this morning probably expecting his usual rough and tumble, but no Jason. Unfortunately for him, there's not going to be a Jason until Friday night. Poor little guy. At least he gets to sleep in the bed all week though.

He met a few new people yesterday... Jason's uncle/aunt/cousins from New York. The little guy just had to go and embarrass us by grabbing their shoes and running around with them at any given chance. Eventually, since he wouldn't be quiet in the kennel, and because he kept causing trouble around the house, I had to leash him in the house and interrupt the conversation every two seconds to take the leash from his mouth. Theres no way I'm going to allow him to chew through another 15 dollar leash.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Another Dog Day

Yesterday, Jason and I decided to give the puppy a "puppy day". So, we planned out a day where the pup could be with us all day with all of us having a decent amount of fun. Since this area of NC doesn't seem to be very doggie friendly (with the exception of Petsmart, which he already visits twice a week), we decided to take him out to Wilmington, NC where there's a dog park, a dog friendly restaurant, and where the beach has recently been opened to dogs.

So around 3, we headed to Wilmington which was an hour away. Got to the dog park and watched Loki pick on a number of dogs that were bigger and older than him. He was definitely the least uncoordinated dog at the dogpark... let's just say that I've never seen a dog do as many faceplants as him...

After that, we headed to South Beach Grill in Wrightsville Beach, NC and had a GREAT dinner. Jason got the Shrimp Scampi while I got the Filet Mingnon. Loki had a good time staring at everyone and trying to eat the bush next to us. Go figure.

Finally, we went to the beach to show Loki the water. Since he just got neutered the other day, we didn't let him in the water. But it really didn't matter... he seemed to be afraid of the water anyway. Oh well. He had a great time digging holes in the sand which I had to cover up since it was dark and there were people walking on the beach.

That's about it. He passed out in the car and came home and went straight to sleep. Silly doggie.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Last night...

We wanted to see if Loki was really potty trained, so we kept him in our room with us last night. From about 11 PM to 3 AM, he chased the cat around the floor, around the bed, and over us. At around 4:30 AM, Jason tapped me to show me that he was sleeping on the pup's body and that the pup's head was resting on his shoulder (toooo cute). At around 6 AM, Jason tapped me again to show me the puppy and the kitty sleeping peacefully together at the foot of the bed. Finally, at 6:30 AM, I woke up to find the puppy sleeping between my leg, with his head on my thigh, dead as a log.

At 7:30, he started sniffing around, so I took him out. At 7:45, we came back in to say good morning to Jason, who grumbled and rolled out of bed. Finally, at 8 AM, we all left the room, but before we did... Loki JUST had to prove that he couldn't have a peaceful night, and so he puked twice on the bedroom floor.

What a weird first night.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Graduation

Well, he graduated from Puppy Class today. Moving on up to Intermediate (or maybe the Azalea Training Club class... not sure yet).

Here are some pictures. It was pretty nice. They got goody bags stuffed with treats and toys and they had recess for nearly the whole time. He was the ONLY dog that tried eating his graduation cap. Silly dog.




Friday, October 5, 2007

Back to normal

Chewing up the house, chasing the kitty, counter surfing, and being a general demon. Yep. Loki's back.

Changed

He's a depressed dog... he won't run around, chase the cat, wag his tail, lick my hand or any of that stuff. Man... what'd I do to my puppy...?

Out of surgery

Well, just as I expected, Loki didn't have van Willebrand. He's out of surgery now, and he's waking up well enough that I can pick him up at 2:30, instead of the estimated 3:30-5:30 range. Thank god...

Just dropped him off

Well, this morning, I got a nice greeting while waking up. I asked Jason to get Loki ready for the vet's office while rolling out of bed. Two seconds later, there was a panting and wagging tail Vizsla nosing my hand. I screamed. I don't know why. It was probably way too early in the morning to see a big giant puppy standing by me.

Anyway, he followed me from point A to point B as I got dressed and ready, then I started whining about taking him to be neutered. Jason has always been against it. I just don't want Loki to be an illegitimate baby-daddy (or deal with the aggression.. the running away.. etc.) But I couldn't do it this morning. I just felt so guilty, and the worst part is that he had no idea what was to come. He walked into Petsmart happily (or more like dragged me in... I'm still working on the pulling issue with him. Still not perfected) and greeted the ladies at the desk.

But yeah. I left him there. They tried to convince me I needed three tests or whatever to test for van Wildebrand. One was $20, one was $40, and the other was $200. I know our pup doesn't have van Wildebrand - first, he's had his dew paws removed, his tail docked, has gotten open cuts many times from the kitty, and has played too rough with Jason to the point where he somehow cut his gum and was bleeding. Each time, he was fine - he didn't die. Now, I agreed to pay for the $20 test as a precaution. But, there's no way I'm spending $260 to test for the same thing over and over. The first test would be that they'd draw blood and see how long it took to clot over. The second was that they'd draw blood from the gum, and the final one would be a full blood panel to be sent to a lab. If they find problems with the first one, then sure, I'll send away for the blood panel. But again. Not testing 3 times for the same thing... I love this pup, but there's better things to spend money on.

That's one of the things I hate about Banfield. They try to sell you more products than you need. Whether it's prescription medicine (we went through three different medicines with Loki's upset stomach... and not once did they take take a fecal sample/test until I told him that we found worms in his feces. If they did, they would've found his worms sooner than I found them, and I wouldn't have had to buy those first two medicines. Oh. The fecal test? It's free in my plan. Of course it makes sense to pursue the costliest options first. Making the owner pay for a plethora of prescription medicines just to test them out.) or prescription food. I was never once advised that I could feed Loki chicken and rice instead of the I/D food. I went online and sought advice for that. The chicken and rice worked so much better than the I/D.

I'd definitely recommend Banfield if you're not one of those owners that worry too much about your pet's illnesses - if you just want the normal spaying/neutering and puppy shots. But in terms of ripping you off for anything not covered by your plan, they won't hesitate.

I'm definitely just getting him on a regular pet health insurance plan as soon as our Banfield plan expires. Unfortunately, that won't be until next year.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Neutering

Well, Loki gets neutered tomorrow. Poor guy has no idea what's coming. At least he graduates puppy class on Saturday, and gets to make new friends at a new puppy class on Tuesday though. I just hope he feels well enough to go to both...

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Someone's in HUGE trouble

So. I just went to wash my hand. Loki followed me. He then walked away, and I ignored him because I thought he just went to chase the cat or something. No such luck. I found him standing on top of the coffee table eating ALL THE HAMBURGERS. Good thing I separate his training dish from the rest of the prepared treats!!!

Some pictures

Loki sleeping as a teeny tiny puppy.

Look how little he was...

He was definitely a sleepy pup.

The start of a very unhealthy relationship between Pong ^2 and Loki.

He can sit still long enough while awake for me to take a picture!

Is it time to play yettt?

CHEEEEEESE

Mouth open.

"Okay, I can be serious."

Haha, look at the cat's shifty eyes.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

The hamburgers

Loki didn't do anything really interesting today, but Jason and I nearly burned the house down trying to grill hamburgers indoors. As a result, I had to play tag with the animals, herding Loki out to the backyard where he'd have fresh air, and the kitty to our bedroom behind closed door. In the process, the animals switched place, with the kitten attempting to scale the fence in a break for freedom, and Loki running out of the bedroom with my underwear in his mouth.

Finally, I got the two of them to their respective places, we finished grilling the hamburgers, and cut up a few pattys to use as training treats.

Human food, I know, is horrible for animals. But it seems to work so much more effectively than any treat he's ever had, and it's not as if we overfeed him. Even if he's getting more calories than he needs in a day, he's so active that those calories burn right off, and he stays the nice, muscular, lean doggie he always has been. The chicken breast isn't that bad since he only gets about five 1/2 inch chunks a day (not even half a breast), but the hamburgers might be. I'll make sure to note any changes in his behavior, exercise, weight, and fitness. His primary diet is still doggie chow, and we substitute the meat for his treats.

Monday, October 1, 2007

The dog ate my homework

I know he's a puppy and all, but imagine how pissed off I was today when Loki took off running through my house with all my class notes from the beginning of the semester to now (for the only class that really matters right now... the one with a 10 page paper due at 8 am tomorrow), tripping over the papers, ripping them, and chewing them to little bits.

I couldn't get him to stop. Not even with the chicken. He was having way too much fun, and I was about ready to cry by the time I caught onto him and convinced him to drop the papers. I still am ready to cry. You try writing a 10 page paper heavily based on class notes from memory.

The evil being is currently sitting in his cage doing a bit of interior decorating with the towels I just gave him, and chewing up his bone. Odd. He's recently begun eating his rawhide bones. I think I need to get him smaller ones otherwise the bigger ones will collect lots of bacteria and viruses.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Off-lead training

Last night, Jason and I had chicken alfredo for dinner with lots of leftover chicken. Since the chicken didn't touch the sauce, and was simply grilled, we decided to cut up the rest and save it for the dog. I figured that such a great treat would work much better than anything else for off-lead training.

Since Loki is a sporting dog, he tends to stay close to me, unless I command him to leave. However, when something catches his attention such as another dog, an interesting smell, or a giant pile of dirt, I can't for the life of me get him to return. Yesterday, I reinforced Loki's "come here" command with a high pitched smooching noise at the end by sitting on the couch and letting Loki roam around the house. Today, nervously, I took Loki to the giant field in the backyard and let him roam. He was doing good at first. Didn't want to wander far from me. However, as he grew more confident in his environment, he started roaming away.

I learned today just how fast our dog runs, and how clumsy he is at times. Our dog might as well be a greyhound in my opinion. The only problem is that he has no idea how to stop. He'd prefer running straight into my legs as a way to stop. I had to nearly fend him off by turning on my side and holding up my leg at an angle.

Basically, for about an hour today, I let Loki off-lead and paid him no attention until he left my side. Once he did, I'd call him at random intervals (usually when he was about to get himself in trouble by wandering into someone else's yard or something). It'd be the same command as yesterday, the "come here Loki" with a smooch at the end.

It worked GREAT. When other dogs came around, he'd make a beeline for them, but the second I called him back, he'd turn around. If he was currently sniffing something, he'd also come back. He found a great big pile of freshly dug dirt in the yard, so he spent most his time playing around and digging in that, but the second I called, he'd leave it.

He was exhausted by the time I took him in (also VERY dirty). But hey I learned today that this dog has lots of potential for training.

Loki's Big Day

So yesterday, we decided to go to a dog day that the county's park services was offering. It wasn't what I expected it to be, but Loki ended up making a few new friends, and Jason and I both got great advice regarding puppies and Vizslas.

I can't really remember all the dogs that Loki sniffed, but I can remember a few. There was this giant slobbery Great Dane that Loki went after as soon as we got to the park. He ended up sniffing a few Dobermans that were being shown as guard dogs too. A guy with a Weimaraner came over to pet Loki, so we took Loki back to meet the Weim, but then we got distracted by a full grown Vizsla, which Loki had lots of fun playing with. Finally, it was time to go, but before we left, Loki met a big giant black dog (I forgot the name of it, but it was 200 pounds) and stared up a few Dachshunds. We stayed for two hours and let Loki just play around. Then, we had puppy class to go to.

He couldn't concentrate at all during puppy class. I couldn't even get him to do a simple sit down stay. The trainer blamed the treats we were giving him, so she gave us some of her's. That seemed to do the trick. At the end of class, Loki and the two Boxers had recess. It was great seeing the three of them tumble around and play fight. Loki was smart - he stayed low and went for the neck.

After puppy class, we went to a car show to see Jason's Ssgt's car. Pretty cool - Loki managed to meet a Pekingese and a Chesapeake Bay Retriever while there. Had to hold him for most the show to ensure that he didn't go scratching any cars. After the first 5 minutes of holding him, I realized that holding a squirming 30 pound puppy was just not going to happen. So, I handed him over to Jason, and let him take over.

Loki fell asleep in the car on the way back and when he got home, he just sort of paced around, before I put him in his kennel to sleep. He then passed out for 4 hours before dinner time.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Problems within the last two months

Loki has had a crazy two months since coming to his "forever" home. He's had one main health issue that has been plaguing him forever (but seems to be getting better now).

Loki came to us from a pet store. This is a problem that will most likely follow Loki throughout his life. He came into life the wrong way for the wrong reasons, was traumatized for a week before ending up with us. Don't get me wrong - there were no diseases with him then, nor have there been any inherited problems (we still need to run a full blood panel to determine this, but he does not have the von Willibrand disease which causes them to bleed excessively). However, because I did not buy him from an ethical breeder, I can't help but think that I could've had a Vizsla with a better temperament.

Since we got him, he's had a very sensitive stomach. With the first food, his stomach problems were blamed on the fact that his food was an empty brand-name food. The main ingredient was corn, and it was causing problems with digestion. After that trial, we had to had him on some sort of prescription food (Hill's Science Diet - I/D - the only wet food that does not give him diarrhea) . A week, and 20 dollars later, we switched to Nature's Recipe Farmstand Selects at the advice of our trainer. Loki seemed to be responding to that really well. Until last week, when he somehow picked up tapeworm despite being on flea prevention. A week of puking, diarrhea, $20 on a weeks worth of food, and a $40 pill for the tapeworm, he was back to normal.

Unfortunately, because of those stomach problems, he has had issues with food aggression. He gets especially aggressive around the I/D canned food. So aggressive that next time, we are not going to give him the wet food, but instead the dry I/D. I have had my wrist chomped down on so hard to the point where my hand went numb and my cat has been nearly hunted down and killed. During those bouts of aggression, we decided to handfeed him, but he hasn't made much progress with that method. Hopefully, Loki can stay healthy enough for his body to absorb nutrients like it is supposed to, and so that he isn't constantly starving. Honestly, I blame his aggression on the fact that he was so hungry. I would still like him to get to the point where he will not snap at anyone regardless of how hungry he is.

Our puppy is a fairly aggressive dog. He constantly challenges for dominance and has that entitlement attitude. He will growl and will snarl if unhappy. I have been growled at before when attempting to reach for him while he was under the coffee table. There also have been times where he was extremely possessive of a certain toy. The food aggression shows very clearly that he believes himself to be the dominant dog at times. I have been working with him on these issues, but I see very little improvement. I probably need to look up new training methods.

I honestly don't know at times who is the Alpha in this house. It could either be my husband, or the dog at any given point. I understand that it should always be either my husband or me. The reason why I am unsure is because Loki recognizes us as the leaders. We have set rules, and are consistent about them (not allowing him into the bathroom where the kitty litterbox is located) and he does follow them. We make him work for his food and treats. He never ever ever just gets something. He will always have to do a sit and stay, a wait, or a recall. However, the aggression mentioned before shows that we are obviously lacking somewhere.

I started this blog because I wanted to begin writing down my experiences with this dog. I'm hoping that by reading previous entries on this blog, I will realize what actually works, and what I just think works. Hopefully before he is full grown, I will be able to clearly establish my dominance. Otherwise, his behavior will even harder to correct.

Starting this blog

I decided to start this blog for my own records - I wanted to record what hopefully will be the evolution of bouncy puppy to star hunter.

My dog is Loki, an AKC registered Vizsla. We obtained Loki June 28th, from the Jacksonville Mall Pet Store (more to come on that later). His litter date was May 24, 2007. He was finally registered with the AKC on September 22, 2007. His main veterinarian is Banfield at Petsmart, and he takes obedience class through Petsmart as well.

I'm not quite sure what to say about this dog, except that I will never get a puppy again. Don't get me wrong. I love dogs. Big, small, short, tall - I don't discriminate. But, I just can't deal with the energy level of puppies.

Loki, at least, needs to be engaged for at least 2 hours a day before he'll "settle down". By settle down, I just mean not using my house as the Talladega Raceway. Engaging Loki is simple - he just needs to spend at least 2 hours a day being trained. This could be basic obedience training in the house, or it could be a long walk with him learning how to walk on a loose leash. A simple walk is not enough for him. Either way, I end up devoting two hours or more each day to the dog. It's frustrating to say the least, but he is a fast learner and very eager to please.

This puppy was bought as a companion dog, but he has shown his ability to be a great sports dog. He will be graduating puppy obedience school next Saturday - and he has learned everything he needs to learn, except for loose leash walking. It's in his nature though, to be able to wander. So, we'll just have to continue teaching him.

We're looking to get him involved in a dog club/get him more advanced dog training. Right now, however, we have no idea which section we wish to get him involved into. Agility will definitely challenge his mind and rid him of some of his energy. I've heard that too much obedience can ruin a great hunting dog, so we are most likely not going to continue with it (and pursue rally obedience). Field training would be ideal, but unfortunately, my husband does not have enough time to spend hunting with the dog, and there are no trainers nearby. It looks like we might just end up training Loki for agility with field as a hobby. It's all potential though - Loki might just want to be a couch potato after he reaches maturity, and we won't be able to stop that.

In the next few posts, I hope to be able to describe Loki's temperament and document the problems that he has had these last two months. I will also apologize profusely for buying a puppy store dog, and will begin documenting Loki's more exciting days.