Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Almost Wordless Wednesday: The Ruler

Who says I spoil my dog?





Must have been the cat....

Monday, January 28, 2013

How to show a show dog -- Part 2

Welcome to the Florida Bloggers Blog Hop! If you are a Florida-based blogger, no matter the topic, please scroll to the bottom to join up!

To read Part 1, click here.

So Sunday we talked about what it was like to show a show dog in the big ring at the AKC/Eukanuba Championship Blogger Stakes in Orlando last month.

Copper is the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever I showed, and a great dog.

But what would it be like to show a beagle?

My niece plays with Blossom, a 13-inch beagle.
That is Blossom, a champion and grand champion. 
 
At AKC, they typically show two standards of beagles: 13 inch and 15 inch. That is determined from the ground to the back of the base of the neck.

The basics of showing a beagle are the same as the basics for Copper, which we talked about Sunday.


Blossom is a 13-inch beagle.

Her mom, Jennifer Arthington, was nice enough to talk to me about what it's been like to train and show her (Blossom is now retired. Her last show was in December at Celebrate Dogs!).

"Training a beagle for the show ring starts around the age of 3-4 months," Arthington said. "We play with walking on a leash until it becomes second nature for them to be at our side. We also start putting them up on the grooming table so they grow used to trusting us and also how to 'stand pretty' on the table. Treats are always given as positive reinforcement. Some dogs will always be a little naughty when it comes to the show ring but if we start early enough with fun training then by 6 months old they are ready to be a show dog.

Arthington started showing beagles at the age of 10. Beagles were a way of life in her home growing up, so it made the most sense. But it's not always easy.

"Beagles are very intelligent, very stubborn dogs," she said. [Eds. Note: Not dumb, as I've seen in "smartest" breed articles.]

"If you get a dog who loves food (which all beagles do) then training is much easier," Arthington said. "Once they equate showing with the little treats that are hidden in your pocket then showing becomes fun with a beagle." 

Over 30 beagles were shown in the 15-inch beagle category alone in December.
Added to that stubbornness is the rigor of doing a show.

"Even for a little dog like a beagle, there is grooming that needs to occur before we go into the ring," Arthington said. "If our show time is 8 a.m. then we need to be at the show site around 7 to get started. We have a grooming table, grooming supplies, exercise pins, carts to carry it all in, nice show clothes, and usually copious amounts of coffee. 

"Once all of our equipment is set up then the grooming begins," Arthington continued. "Whiskers and nails are trimmed, any white hair is cleaned thoroughly so it gleams, extra hair around the neck and behind is trimmed, and the hair on the back of the tail is fluffed. Once this is done we are ready to walk into the ring. Judging usually only takes a few minutes a dog, unless you win and then it can mean returning to the ring for the prospect of winning further prizes." 

But the dogs have it a lot easier at home.

"A typical day at home for a show dog usually entails sleeping in a big bunch on the back of the couch, eating, and running around in the yard," Arthington said.

So what exactly is the judge looking for? There's the gait, to make sure the body is up to standards. That is when the handlers walks the dog around the ring.

"I also need to put her up on a table and "stack" her out so the judge can use their hands to check her out," Arthington said. "They will look for correct ear set, length of ear, correct bite, does her shoulders "lay back" enough for proper movement, length of back, tail set, and angulation."

Showing dogs is not cheap either. Handlers drive the dogs from show to show -- that means gas, lodgings, fees, grooming supplies, etc., can add up fast. But she also describes it as being like eating potato chips.

"Once you start it's hard to stop," she said.



So if you are interested, start going to the shows and talking to people. Many of the people I met were very friendly and willing to chat.

Jennifer Arthington had one more piece of advice.

"Please, do not go buy a dog from someone because it was "cheap." Cheap usually means unhealthy and not up to the AKC standard," she said.

Never joined a blog hop before? Read this post to learn more!
 PS: I want to make this a weekly thing, and I'd like to start featuring local blogs in each post. If you're interested in being featured, please leave a comment, and include your email address!
PPS: Some Wordpress users are having issues with posting the Blog Hop code. I consulted some folks, and what I learned is it will work if you change a number in the code on the bottom. It will then open the list as a separate page.
Here's a handy image to help. Click the picture to see a larger version:

Sorry for the issue. We are new at this and it's a learning process.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

How to show a show dog -- Part 1

This is Copper.

(Photo courtesy of Eukanuba)
Copper is a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever. And last December, I got to "show" him at the American Kennel Club Championship Blogger Stakes in Orlando, presented by Eukanuba.

It wasn't a real competition, just a chance to see what it's like to be in that ring. And I can tell you, it was a bit fierce.

First, let me say that Copper is an awesome dog. He was fun, and very friendly. He's also a champion dog, though he hadn't been in that ring before. His owner said some people spend their whole lives trying to get into the big ring!

Photo courtesy of Eukanuba)

You come into the ring and walk around it to get into position. You have to keep the leather lead tight and high, so the dog trots exactly next to you (something I had a lot of trouble doing with Copper.). You even have to wrap the lead around your hand a certain way.

 You wait for your turn. Then you do to the judge, who has to check the dog all over.

The judge is also constantly watching the way the dog is "stacked," the way he stands. And he watches the way the dog walks with you. You walk from the judge to a spot diagonally from the judge, and back.This way the judge can check the way he walks. It's not just about the way you show the dog, but about the dog himself and whether he is up to standards.

AND, is the tail up? An up tail means a happy doggy. The tail needs to be up.

This was my first time, and obviously not my dog, so it made me a little nervous. I did not "win" the Blogger Stakes. But it gave me a bit of insight into what it takes to show a dog in the big ring where AKC champions and grand champions strut their stuff.

So what about beagles?


Check out part two here.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Weekend with the parents

Lulu and I visited my parents' house this weekend, which is becoming a haven for dogs. My parents are up to three now: Cappy, Jasmine and Buster.

Here, Lulu lays down on the couch with Jasmine. She's a jack-a-bee, six or seven months old. They got her from SPCA in Pasco County back in November.

 We're going to taking a small break from the blog for the next few days. Real life is a bit crazy. We'll be back this weekend with a new adventure!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Join the Florida Blogger Blog Hop

Calling all Florida-based bloggers -- be you a blogger about politics, parenting, kids, theme parks, Florida life, food, beaches, traveling, pets, health, beauty, and more!
Monday is the day! Time to join the Florida Blogger Blog Hop.



What is the blog hop and how do you join? I've written an entire post here: How to Take Part in a Blog Hop

You don't have to write a special post, or even a post with a Florida theme to take part in the Blog Hop. Whatever post you normally plan to do for Monday, just add the code to that post.

The purpose of the blog hop is for other Florida-based bloggers and their followers to learn about other Florida-based blogs. So act just act naturally. Look at this as a way to maybe increase your visibility in your home state.

The Blog Hop will open Monday at midnight and close Tuesday at 11:59 p.m. You'll be able to get the code there. You will be able to find it on this post! Have fun!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Almost Wordless Wednesday: Meeting a new special friend

From left to right: Lulu, Gnarley and Shelby.
Lulu and Gnarley were playing at the apartment complex park when a new dog came to play.

While Lulu, Gnarley and the new dog played, her parent told her story. He was stationed in Afghanistan, and some children had the dog. They wanted a ball in trade, but he didn't have a ball, so he traded a pad of paper for her.

Now the dog lives in the United States. She was a very docile dog, and Lulu and Gnarley liked playing with her.

I hope we get to see her again.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Florida's Animal Rights ranking -- How we can make it better

Florida has lots of dog-friendly beaches, parks, restaurants and even spas. But we could be more pet-friendly when it comes to our laws.

The Animal Legal Defense Fund released its annual state rankings earlier this month. Florida is in the top tier at number 19, at the bottom of the top tier. Not bad -- but it could be better.

And it wouldn't take much to do either.

The state with the best animal protection laws is Illinois, the worst is Kentucky.
Click on the map to see how your state ranked.
Here are the 15 categories used to determine the rankings:
  1. General prohibitions 
  2. Penalties 
  3. Exemptions 
  4. Mental health evaluations & counseling 
  5. Protective orders 
  6. Cost mitigation & recovery
  7. Seizure/impoundment 
  8. Forfeiture and post‐conviction possession 
  9. Non‐animal agency reporting of suspected animal cruelty 
  10. Veterinarian reporting of suspected animal cruelty 
  11. Law enforcement policies 
  12. Sexual assault 
  13. Fighting 
  14. Offender registration 
  15. “Ag gag” legislation
What Florida does right

 Lora Dunn, one of the analysts at Animal Legal Defense Fund, says Florida has a lot of things going for it.

"Florida does have a felony provision for cruelty, for neglect and for animal fighting," Dunn said.  "And Florida also has mandatory mental health evaluations for convicted abusers."

Florida also has provisions that allow a vet to report an animal who is abused or neglected, and Florida does not have what is called an "Ag Gag" rule, which bans whistleblowers from reporting animal abuses at farms.

Sexual assault of animals is also a crime in Florida. But it's only a misdemeanor. ALDF says it would be better as a felony.

Where Florida Can Improve

Dunn offers some easy changes Florida can make.

"We could make it mandatory in Florida that victims cannot return to their abusers after their convictions," Dunn said. "Currently, even when someone is convicted of abusing their dog, they can regain possession of their pet after completing their sentence. We would like a mandatory provision."

ALDF would also like to make it mandatory that vets report possible abuse or neglect.

"Florida could also improve by making future ownership of animals being banned to convicted abusers," Dunn said. "That ban could be discretionary in terms of its length."

ALDF would also like Florida to make it so that abusers have to pay back shelters who take care of their pets while they are in their care. ALDF also wants Florida to increase the penalties for orders.

Another issue that ALDF would like to see changed is regarding court orders. They want animals to be included when domestic abuse victims go to get court orders. 

What You Can Do

The Florida Legislative session starts in March. Florida's lawmakers only pass new laws during the 90 day session. So far, there are no animal rights laws.

My Florida House.com is the place to find out who your Florida House lawmaker is. Florida Senate.com  is where you can find your Florida Senator.

ASPCA has a whole section on how to lobby your lawmakers. Check out their advocacy center to find out what you can do. 

And if you don't live in Florida, you can find out your own state's ranking and how to make it better. Just go to ALDF and read the report.





Sunday, January 13, 2013

Saving the Astra Zeneca beagles -- latest campaign by the Beagle Freedom Project

 UPDATE: The push to free the Astrazeneca beagles continues. Please continue to email these pictures, and also sign the petition at Change.org.

The Beagle Freedom Project rescues beagles from research labs and finds them homes. Often these dogs have been bred for research, and spent their whole lives in cages and being tested on for everything from mascara to human medication.

The latest battle is with Astrazeneca, makers of drugs like Crestor and Nexium. The pharmaceutical company has a breeding facility in Sweden, and Beagle Freedom Project is trying to rescue all or at least some of the 400 beagles from the facility. But after lots of emailing back and forth, the Beagle Freedom Project says they were denied. Here's the reason, they say, from Astra Zeneca:
“Because these dogs have been purpose-bred for research, the best solution is to continue to utilise them for research at AstraZeneca facilities and by third parties acting on our behalf.” - Head of Corporate Affairs for AstraZeneca in Sweden, in a letter to the BFP.
I've read countless stories from Beagle Freedom Project and other places that prove otherwise. Beagles are very generous and sweet dogs, which is why they are so frequently used in research. They can be adapted to the outside world, as BFP has shown time and again.

So Lulu and I am joining the fight, and I urge others to do the same.


Here is my open letter to the makers of Astra Zeneca, which I will be sending to them via email.

To whom it may concern:

This is Lulu.

Lulu was not bred as a research beagle, but she had spent time in a cage. Lulu was a rescue dog. She lived in a shelter until my parents adopted her. Now she is my dog.

Rescue dogs are not easy. They can come with issues. We, for instance, we told that Lulu was housebroken. Not true. She as tough to deal with the first couple of years. Beagles can be like that. She is also fun, funny, kind and loving.  She was given a chance, and she has grown.

Has she been used in experiments? No, as she been isolated most of her life? No. But she is no different than the beagles you have now in your facility in Sweden. Your beagles can live full lives, they just have to be taught how, just like any dog. The Beagle Freedom Project has made amazing progress in helping research beagles adapt to new lives.

Please, give them a chance to help your dogs find good homes.

Christie Zizo
Blogger
Lifewithbeagle.com

If you with to write a letter to Astra Zeneca, here is the email address to send it to: kontakt@astrazeneca.com

If you have a dog and a story to tell, please include a picture of your dog with this poster:

 


Thursday, January 10, 2013

The Pet Bloggers Challenge: My answers!

I'm taking part in the Third Annual Pet Bloggers challenge, sponsored by Go Pet Friendly.com. It's a way for all of us to get to know each other better. To check out the challenge, head here.

1. When did you begin your blog?
I started my blog, Life with Beagle, in March 2012. So in a couple of months we are having our first anniversary! Guess I better plan something.
2. What was your original purpose for starting a blog?
My original purpose was to dip my toe into blogging and see if I could stick with it. I thought cataloging my misadventures with Lulu might be a fun way to start.
3. Is your current purpose the same?
 Well I stuck with it, so I guess I've achieved my goals! lol But this has also become a passion and something I enjoy. I didn't think I would enjoy blogging about my dog, but I do.

4. How often do you post?
I try to post three times a week. Sometimes I post more, sometimes I post less.
5. Do you blog on a schedule or as the spirit moves you?
The only thing I publish on schedule is my Blog Paws Blog Hop post every week. I have deadlines on my day job, I like having a bit of freedom with the blog. I always try to post on certain days, if I'm posting. So I remain pretty consistent. 

6. How much time do you spend writing your blog per week? How much time visiting other blogs? Share your  tips for staying on top of it all.
Depends on what I'm posting. For instance, my Diary of Lulu in a Thundershirt took maybe a couple of hours in total for the week, and that was 7 posts? 8? They were easy posts to write. Other posts take me a longer time, if they are more in depth. 

As for how much time do I spend visiting other blogs: Not enough. Maybe a couple of hours a week. I don't have any tips really for staying on top of everything, except to schedule the launch of your posts and tweets whenever you can.

7. How do you measure the success of a post and of your blog in general (comments, shares, traffic)?
Comments and traffic. I don't really have a metric for measuring quality. In a way I still live under a fog of uncertainty about it all. What I do know is every month I am able to increase my pageviews by 1,000, and it's rare that NO ONE is looking at a post on my blog now. So that to me is success.

8. If you could ask the pet blogging community for help with one issue you’re having with your blog, what would it be?
I constantly ask for critiques of my blog, just to get a sense of how I'm doing, and where I can improve. Might be a little vague, but I'm not really having any issues at the moment. 

9. What goals do you have for your blog in 2013?
More page views per month, more visitors, network more with bloggers and companies. Write more interesting and helpful posts. And grow my local community.


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

How to protect your dog (and your stuff!) at the dog park

Last Thursday I took Lulu over to Dr. Phillips dog park. I was surprised to find window glass on the ground in the spot I parked in.


On Saturday I learned why.

Park people brought around slips of paper with crime prevention suggestions and urged people to lock up their valuables in their car.

Apparently there have been a number of car break-ins at Orange County's parks, In fact, there was a break-in at Dr. Phillips Park that Saturday morning before I got there.

Thieves are breaking into cars at parks across Central Florida, but especially at presumably affluent parks. They are looking for purses and personal items like GPS systems and iPods. People often leave these sorts of things in the car because they can be cumbersome to carry at a park -- especially if you're with your dog or or kids.

Here's what the slip of paper from the Orange County Sheriff's Office Crime Prevention Unit says to do:
  • Keep all valuables out of plain view
  • Lock all automobile doors and windows
  • Always use your anti-theft device
  • Always let a family member or close friend know your plans and when you will return
  • Always have a charged cell phone with you
Seems like common sense, but you would be surprised.

I would also add to the list:
  • Take only the most basic items with you when you come to the park, which are easily storeable in pockets or a small bag
  • Keep an eye on your dog at all times
 Why watch your dog? Also seems like a no-brainer. But parks are big, and when there are lots of dogs and people at the parks, you can't trust who is there. I am often amazed how many people walk into dog park areas who do not have dogs. Some are well-meaninged, but you just don't know.

This young stranger is petting Lulu, to Lulu's joy. But I'm not far behind.

People often ask why I follow Lulu all over the park. I don't tell them I don't trust them, but that's the reason. And with dog-nappings on the rise across the country, I take no chances. 

Here are some things I suggest:
  • Keep the leash handy. Many people hang it up on the fence of the park. But if you need to extract the dog quickly, you need it nearby.
  • Keep the leash short. Most parks require you keep the dog on a six-foot leash outside off the off-leash area. But make sure the dog doesn't get too far ahead of you, especially if you are using one of those extendable leashes. It's a lot easier for someone to get away with your dog.
  • Don't go anywhere alone that's dark or not well-lit, even with your dog. Parks can have lots of wooded areas and bushes. Who is lurking behind them?
  • Take pictures of your dog at the park. It's the last place you may see the dog. Not only does it give you the latest pictures of your dog, but police may be able to use those pictures to help find possible witnesses -- even suspects.  
  • Never be too far away. Some people let the dog loose, and sit and do homework or talk on the phone. But where is the dog? Do you know?
  • Mind every entrance. Dr. Phillips Dog Park only has one entrance into each off-leash area. But that's not the case for every park. Sanford's Paw Park, for instance, has at least three entrances, with a parking lot at each. That's a lot of entrances to watch.
  • Make sure your microchip info is up-to-date.
American Dog magazine offers some more great tips to protect your dog at home in 2013. Click the link for more.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Countdown to Global Pet Expo -- Orbee-Tuff Mazee Treat Ball

We are counting down to the Global Pet Expo!

This is an older review, but it still holds.

Lulu loves her treats, as we've clearly seen here.

But I don't want to just give her treats. And when I'm working, I also want her to keep occupied.

I looked at all kinds of treatballs, but Lulu's had a few before and never did much with them. Then I found the Orbee-Tuff Mazee from Planet Dog. I mentioned this in my Holiday Gift Guide.

What I liked best about Mazee was that it was clear. Lulu can easily see the treats in there, and that will entice her to keep playing. Also inside -- a bright green maze that she has to navigate her treats through.

The Mazee has two holes -- the larger one is where you put the treats in. Smaller treats are better. I use mini-peanut butter bites from Pookie's Bakery in Winter Park. They roll around well.

Lulu now goes to town, trying to get the treats out, and I can spend time doing chores or -- working on this blog.



PROS:
  •  Made in America
  • Clear plastic and nice and squishy. 
  • Lulu gets her brain working to get the treats out, so it's not just me giving her treats.
  • Lulu loves it, and anything Lulu loves is worth it to me!
CONS:
  • The rubber doesn't always clean as well. 
  • It doesn't roll as well on the carpet.
I bought my Mazee at Woof Gang Bakery in Winter Park for $18, but you can also buy it at Amazon.com, and on the company website. If you buy it from Amazon right now it's only about $13.

DISCLAIMER: I bought my mazee on my own, without any help from Planet Dog or any other company.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Diary of Lulu in a Thundershirt, Day 7 and Conclusion

To read Day 6, go here.

DAY 7

Day 7 was pretty much a wash because of the rain. There simply wasn't anything see. There were no dogs out when Lulu was out, and she couldn't go outside for fun.






Lulu was pretty depressed.

FINAL DAY -- or is it?

Lulu and I went out on our walk Saturday, which is training class day. And it wasn't long before we were having problems.

A lady with a big black dog passed us on our walk and Lulu just lost it. There was running and barking and running and some more barking and on and on. I had to drag her away because I couldn't get her to refocus.

I was all set to throw in the towel on the Thundershirt. It's been generally mixed results, and I didn't want to keep using something that had no effect in calming Lulu.

And then this happened.

That's Lulu, on the floor in training class. That's a treat in front of her. Today, we learned "leave it." She was surrounded by dogs, but she was too distracted and calm to care. She was completely focused on the task, which was to stay and leave the treat alone. It was amazing.

So my trainer wants to stick to this for one more week. One more week of the Thundershirt. We'll see how it goes but, for now, this diary is closed.


Friday, January 4, 2013

Diary of Lulu in a Thundershirt, Day 6

To read Day 5 of the Diary, Go Here.

The first thing we learned today was that Lulu did not have the Thundershirt on tight enough. If you recall, she took it off the first day, so I had to put it on her.

We met with my trainer and he readjusted her Thundershirt. We then walked around two Petcos. Sadly, no dogs at either to test the shirt out on.

Then we took her to Dr. Phillips Dog Park, for some "field testing."

She is usually one of the first to greet the dogs at the gate... waaaaaay on the other end of where she is now in this picture. As you can see, she's found something else she'd rather do.

Doesn't mean that she didn't mix it up either. But it was different. She only howled a couple times at dogs coming into the park. But she definitely met all the dogs by the time she left. And today there were a lot of them.

Great Dane. Luna is SEVEN MONTH OLD!! Yikes.
And when we got back to the car, Best Friends Pet Care was there with free treats! Score! Lulu got a cookie and a peanut butter and banana ice cream. She loved both... and would have eaten more!

One more thing to mention -- Lulu is still barking at noises outside the house. Again, I don't quibble with this. BUT -- isn't that something the Thundershirt should be dealing with?

Thursday, January 3, 2013

How to take part in a Blog Hop

I'm starting a Blog Hop for all the bloggers in Florida, and I got a lot of questions about how it all works. So here's a step-by-step, and at the end people can tell me whether they want to be part of it.

Quite simply, a blog hop is a way for people to get together and learn more about bloggers involved. It's a fun, easy way to network, and to increase your page views.

Step 1:
Find your blog hop. I belong to the Blog Paws Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop.

So first, write your post. For the Florida Bloggers Blog Hop, it doesn't follow a particularly theme. YOU just have to be from Florida.

Step 2:
The Blog Hop tool is created by Linky Tools in this case, and is likely what I will use for the Central Florida Blog Hop. All the pictures you see are of people who took part in the most recent hop.

At the bottom of the list are two links you should focus on. One is how to enter, the other is how to get the code.

Step 3:

When you click Get the Code, it will take you to this page. Simply copy the code in the box. In your blog post, paste the code at the bottom. If you are using Blogger, you'll want to do this in the HTML format where you edit your post. Once you publish this, the list of all the blogs involved in the Hop will appear at the bottom of your post.

Now, if you have a Wordpress.com account, you need to follow something different. Just follow the instructions in this handy picture (click on the pic to get a bigger one):

 

Step 4:

Now all that's left is to formally enter the blog hop. Click the link that says "Click Here to Enter." Then just fill out this handy dandy form.

Now you're in the blog hop. Then you just go from blog to blog that's involved, read their posts and comment.


The Florida Bloggers Blog Hop starts Friday, Oct. 4! Just look for this picture!


Diary of Lulu in a Thundershirt, Day 5

To read Day 4, click here.

Lulu took the morning walk to the park in the Thundershirt and did ok. She whined and barked a little at one of the neighborhood dogs that was barking at her, but nothing major. Oh, and no luck with passing golf carts yet again.

On the second walk I took Lulu in the opposite direction. We did have a little trouble with another neighborhood dog -- a big dog that often barks at her from the balcony.


 Then we went by that house with the dog Lulu met yesterday to the doggy in the window was the other pet in the household, definitely a boxer. The dog followed her around, but she and Lulu -- for once -- didn't bark at each other.

 
   Oh... and another day of grass rolling. This time though... I got video. Enjoy!


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

My hopes for the New Year and for Lulu

I'm not one for resolutions. But I do have hopes for the new year, so I thought I would mention it.

My hopes for the new year:
  • That I can grow my blog through better posts and more networking.
  • That I can grow my status in and around Central Florida.
  • That I attract some sponsors.
  • That I grow the friendships I made this year.
My hopes for Lulu:
  • That she grows in her training, and she finally stops barking at all the other dogs.
  • That she remains happy and healthy.
  • That she gets to have more fun!
 Happy New Year everyone!

Diary of Lulu in a Thundershirt, Day 4

To read Day 3, go here.

DAY 4

More mixed results in the Thundershirt today, but some progress too.

The day started right out with trouble,  in a small package. We walked out of the apartment, and in the place above us one of my neighbor's yappy dogs started barking violently (won't say what kind of dog, because I don't want to upset breed lovers). Lulu did eventually start barking at it, but it didn't last long because the dog's owner grabbed the dog and shut the window.

Walked Lulu to the park, and she didn't have much to get upset at. She did bark at one of the other neighborhood dogs, Zelda. But it was not her crazy bark -- she was trying to get my neighbor's attention. Zelda is one of Lulu's best friends, and she wanted her to come play, but they couldn't.

On the second walk, just as we got outside, the lady with the yappy dogs upstairs came down to walk her dogs. And her pack has grown now from one dog to three! Oy! They came down yapping all the way at Lulu, and Lulu was happy to oblige. I had to drag her in the opposite direction.

As we walked by, one of the other neighborhood dogs barked like mad, and Lulu barked back. But she only barked a bit, and she came along easily.


But here is a positive moment. As we walked, we came by one of the neighborhood dogs. Normally Lulu would immediately bark at this dog, but this time she just watched it, and then went about her business. Meanwhile the dog watched her!


The only time Lulu barked at the dog was when it barked at her.

Other than that, Lulu did ok. She also barked at some noises outside while in the house, but I never quibble over that. It's kinda what she's paid to do.

Another roll in the grass!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Diary of Lulu in a Thundershirt, Day 3

To read Day 2, go here.
DAY 3

I took Lulu back to the complex dog park. She still had her Thundershirt on from the night before, so that's a good sign.

Another good sign -- Lulu walked right past a passing golf cart. Normally she would bark, so it's a good sign.

She did alright at the dog park too... until she saw another dog walk by.

Then she ran in one direction:

Then the other:

Back and forth, back and forth, barking all the way.

When the dog passed, I tried to take her back to home. But the dog and it's owner makes an appearance. Now Lulu does her usually freak out. She wants to meet this dog, wants to know about the dog, but she can't.

That's not a good sign. She doesn't calm down at all. Until she gets home.