Sunday, March 17, 2013

Skyler's Scoop: The Poop on Puppy Power

My Aussie Pup is Growing Up
By Cal Orey

Today, it hit me. Skyler, my blue merle Australian Shepherd is going to be four months next week.  He looks bigger and I'm beginning to notice many milestones that make me smile because my puppy is morphing into a handsome dog with soulful hazel eyes...

1. I can sleep six hours instead of four through the night.
2. There are no more hisses or growls by my Siamese Zen and Brittany Simon...Skye is part of the pack...
3. ...He grooms kitty in the AM and before we go to sleep. And my Aries Zen cat loves the attention.
4. Simon has seemed to get his mojo back... he wags his tail, chews his bones and all of Skyler's toys. (While we both greatly suffered the loss of our beloved Brittany, Seth, 6 and grieved) life and energy from Skye has helped us go through the healing process.
5. Skyler can now sit, sit up, and definitely shake upon command. He comes and fetchs balls and walks with me at the campground. We're working on the herding my pants leg.
6. He loves going on errands and smiles when the wind blows through his double coat. He's a pup on a mission and gets it when we we're ready to go do it.
7. Potty training is a minor issue...he lets me know when he has to do his business and we've got it down about 80% if not more.
8. He is loving. He is smart. He is energetic. 
9. I love having two dogs (again). There is balance in the household.
10. My fur child is growing up so fast...and I am falling in love (again).

P.S. I don't know how to break it to Simon (40 lbs) that his new brother is going to be bigger. He likes little dogs. It makes him feel secure. Maybe he won't notice and think it's in his head? Or perhaps he'll think, "Skyler needs to go on a diet?" Or maybe just maybe he'll feel like he's got a protector when the tourists let their dogs off leash!

(In memory of Seth, the dog who stole my heart and soul.)

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Skyler's Scoop: The Poop on Puppy Power

These Eyes

What color of eyes will my Aussie end up sporting?

I'm obsessed with my Australian Shepherd pup's eye color. His mom has ice blue; dad amber. At 3 1/2 months Skyler has hazel eyes. But is this the final color?

Nobody seems to know. I've contacted psychics, vets, Aussie breeders, intuitive friends--everyone says something different. One trusty psychic says one of each color. I'd be thrilled. A group of folks say amber. Happy again. One astrologer insists brown. 

So, each day I go out into the sunlight and on non-sunny days I use a flashlight and look at my boy's eyes. I know. Then, I take pics and zoom in to look at the hue. This has become one heck of a job. The dog probably senses I'm neurotic. Well, I predict by six months old I will know the end result. One of each? Amber? Hazel? I give up. Time will tell..."Skyler? Let's go outside. Mommy wants to see your eyes again."

The thing is, I should be putting more energy into training this energetic fluff ball. When he sits upon command I do get to see his hazel eyes. And last night they were hazel when he watched me discover the small hole in my waterbed. How can such a small pup and hole make a big mess on each corner of the  waterbed liner. My muscles ache from blotting up water with towels again and again. I was lucky to find a new patch kit that saved what could have been a disaster.  
But no reprimand for my teething puppy (who has 20 or more toys) because I didn't catch him in the act but he is the puppy monster with very big eyes--whatever color they end up to be-- that still melt my heart.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Skyler's Scoop: The Real Poop On Puppy Power
By Cal Orey
It's a Bird, It's a Plane, No! It's Puppy Monster!

It's March 3, and it's been one month since I've been blessed with the puppy moves of my blue merle Australian Shepherd Skyler. I admit change has its ups and downs but this young Aussie's energy is exactly what this house needed. There's new life and we're all feeling it--a canine-type hurricane, tornado, earthquake has hit our home with a p-u-p-p-y! And the aftermath is in the air...
Zen, my fearless, laid-back Siamese-mix cat has accepted this ball of fluff that keeps going and going. (After all, he gets his ears licked in the morning and night by the new dog.) And Simon, my senior Brittany? He's warming up to his new canine friend.  Hisses and growls are no more.  Car rides, snacks, and squeaky bones/balls keep these two docked tails wagging (and my tail, too) and noses sniffing each other in private parts that I don't go.
I don't know who coined the phrase that adopting a puppy will keep you younger. What were they thinking?  But, looking at the photo above I'm thinking, "I am the big 60. So, what am I doing with a monster puppy? Is it residue from the Seventies era of drugs?"
Thanks to Skye's 4:30 AM wake-up calls to go potty, eat, drink water and, "Hey, let's play hard!" I've tried to go with the flow and keep up with this four-legger young enough to be my great grand kid.
Read: I've been dealing with the hardship by going to bed earlier and back at the resort pool to swim/hot tub at 7:00 ish AM every other day to keep sane. Monitoring a 13 week old pup (now 16 pounds) is like having an infant-toddler around and you cannot be sedentary.
We're working on the word, "Drop!"(not so easy; my hands have red bumps that look like measles) and "NO!"  but he's got "Sit" and "Sit up" down. And he walks on a lead like a TV show dog (sort of). The multi-colored fluff ball keeps me active as well as helping to brush up on the forgotten word--patience. I think his double coat needs brushing again. The thing is, we all like this energized bunny rabbit of sorts, especially when he's calm--not herding us from room to room. 

Flashback to yesterday. It was the third round of puppy shots. It seems like the ordeal whooped him and me. He is a perfect canine gentleboy in the vet's waiting room. I asked the vet tech, "Will it hurt?" I got a quick "no." But then, I heard LOUD crying in the back room that lasted 10 seconds, reminding me of the World Series quake in '89. When my furry bouncy boy returned to me I asked, "Was that my little Skyler yelping?" Yep, evidently one of the shots burns... 

Welcome to Puppy Monster
On the upside, the night was peaceful in the waterbed having two calm, cuddly dogs curled up at me feet while watching "Turner and Hooch" to make me feel better while watching another human deal with a puppy monster who has a huge heart.
So, do I regret my choice to be a puppy mom? Pregnant pause. For the most part, it's all good in between the potty accidents, chewing my rugs, comforters (fave is shredded), sweaters, books (horoscopes gone thanks to the energized Sag), and there is a small scratch on my beautiful Siamese pussycat's nose. My life consists of baby gates, a dog box, toys, and household clutter. Would I do the puppy ordeal again? Ask me when the puppy stage is over.  Welcome to the real poop on puppy power. "Skye?" "Where are you?" Quietude with a pup is not a good sign. "Skyler!"