Monthly Archives: August 2013

The 3 Musketeers On The Road: From Michigan to Toronto, Canada

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Well, as much as we liked visiting family, it was time for us to get going so we took some more pictures and headed to Toronto, Canada.

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It took us a couple of hours to get to the border and although, so far, all the Canadians I’ve met have been polite, friendly, nice, etc., the border patrol woman who took care of us was pretty rude.  I told Cynthia, “Let’s look at it as something we can laugh about it later on.”  I am not too sure she bought that.

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We finally got to Toronto, Canada and we were all glad to find a hotel that accepted dogs.  We were given a room on the 7th floor with a nice view that Alex just could not wait to check out for herself, as you can see in this picture.

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We were hungry and tired so we had dinner and then headed for our comfortable bed.

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The next day, after dinner and good night sleep, we all headed to Toronto, and Cynthia caught a glimpse of water so I drove towards it and we found this beautiful place, Lake Crescent Park.

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Our daughter, Alex, was nice enough to pose for this picture.  By the way, she was still only having chicken soup, but no kibble as a meal.

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After taking a couple of pictures, we headed for downtown Toronto.

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We did a lot of walking, and I was a little hesitant since Alex usually walks 30 minutes twice a day and no more than that.  But you know what?  I think Cynthia and I were more tired than Alex.

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I thought DC would be the only place with the most bikes ever, but I was wrong.  Toronto has a huge amount of bikes.  No wonder they look so fit.

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We walked all over and there was some sort of convention going on, so we tried to find places where there was less traffic and people.

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With all the walking we did, we had to take breaks here and there.  I don’t remember what Cynthia was telling me at the time when she took this picture, for all I remember is that I was happy.  Happy to be with my life partner, Cynthia, and Alex, our picky girl.

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Cynthia loves to take pictures of us, but I got this one of the two of them.  We had an amazing time in Toronto, Canada.  Perhaps one day, in the future, we’ll go back and stay a little longer.  Enjoy your pack.

The 3 Musketeers On The Road To Michigan

Cynthia, Alex, and I haven’t been on a road trip for what feels like a long time, so we decided to take some time off and go to visit family in Michigan.

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We left from Maryland around noon and unlike other times I was not stressed out for I told myself that this would be a trip that I’d truly enjoy with my 2 amazing girls.  Alex wore a seat belt made for dogs, not seen in this picture, since it is never a good idea to travel with a dog unrestrained.  Does she look tired?

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Were you expecting to see picture of people?  I know, me too, but dogs are always much more interesting to me than any other being so with that in mind let me introduce to you Alex’s cousin, Hazel.  Hazel is a Shepherd mix of almost 3 years old.  She is very loving with people and dogs and she was madly in love with Alex.

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Ok., now here’s the picture of our family.  Alex got tired of posing so she decided to leave.  I think we were a little too loud for her.  What a picky girl.  Hazel got scared of the camera and since we wanted a picture of all of us together we went outside to take another picture.  This time with Hazel in it, of course.

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All right, now we are all together, except that Alex did not care to pose for this picture.  My daughter is a bit of a diva I guess.

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It was fun visiting family and we hope to see them in the near future.  Oh, before I forget, Alex, my picky eater, decided not to eat any kibble and only had the chicken soup I took with us.  She lost some weight, but you know what?  The same night we got home she ate 1 cup of her kibble, yes, the same kibble she did not touch during our trip, and 1/2 cup of chicken soup.  Yes, she likes her routine along with her own bed and human food.  Oh my beautiful picky daughter.

Exploring Annapolis, MD With Your Furry Friends

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We haven’t been to Annapolis in a while, and some things have changed of course.  Years ago, you could walk and visit the Naval Academy with your dog without a problem.  But this time, we had to wait for Cynthia to go and check if Alex could go in with us.  This is Alex, patiently waiting for Cynthia.

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Since Cynthia always takes longer than she should doing almost anything, yes, I am complaining, Alex and I went around the neighborhood to explore and take pictures.

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As you can see, Alex was quite curious about this big piece of wood moving in the water.  Like I said, we haven’t been to Annapolis in a while.

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This is what we were looking at.  Annapolis is a really beautiful city and one worth exploring with your dog.

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Cynthia finally came out and told us that we could not take Alex to the Naval Academy so we decided to go around Annapolis to walk, shop, and just do some sightseeing.

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Cynthia and Alex walking in Annapolis, MD.  Alex is used to cars, people, bikes, etc., that is why taking her with us is a pleasant and enjoyable experience.  Even though she is used to so many things, we still take her with us whenever we can so she does not forget.  All right, all right, I’ll come clean: it’s fun to walk around with her.

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I could not help but take a picture of this cute dog.  Notice how well this dog is walking even though the one holding the leash is a kid.  Yes, when kids are taught how to walk a dog they do a pretty good job.

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I got Alex to pose for this picture by asking her to sit and stay for me.  Like I’ve told many pet parents, training your dog should be something that you incorporate in your life, and this is a perfect example.  Do I train Alex at home?  Yes, but I do it as part of her every day routine.  Before she eats, I ask her to sit.  Or, if she is going to get a treat, she has to sit for me.  Did I take 5-10 minutes to specifically train her?  No.  At the beginning, yes I had to in order to teach her what I wanted from her, but after a couple of sessions she was good to go.

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Walking a dog should be something that you enjoy, but you need to train your dog to do so.  Take your dog and explore different neighborhoods.  Once we got home, Alex went out like a light.  She was tired not only because of the walk, but also because of the amount of new smells she encountered while walking in Annapolis.  This is a great way to fulfill your dog’s need for exercise.

Mom, Please Change My Bed Sheet

Today, Saturday, after having dinner I realized that Alex did not go to take a nap, but instead stayed in the kitchen with me while I did dishes and put everything away.  She kept looking at me as I moved around the kitchen, as if trying to tell me something.

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Dexter, on the on the other hand, was heading to the living room where I placed their beds for a nap.  Alex kept looking at me with those beautiful brown eyes, but I, the clueless mom that I am, could not figure out what she was trying to tell me.  Anyway, once I finished in the kitchen, we both went to the living room where she sat right next to her bed and started looking, ok., staring at me, and then at her bed.  I got it!  She wanted me to change her bed sheet.  Duh!  As soon as I did that, Ms. spoiled only child inspected the bed sheet and after passing “her” inspection she went to bed.  Alex hates dirty sheets so I change her sheets every other day or as soon as they are dirty, but, I am human after all, and I forgot to do it this time.  Not to worry, she is always on patrol for dirty sheets never-failing to alert me that bedding needs to be changed.

Joint Problems And Walter

The last time Walter stayed with us, May of this year, Cynthia mentioned to me that Walter went up the stairs using his hind legs in unison and I agreed with her since I had seen it myself, therefore I did a bit of research and I found out that some dogs do that when they start having trouble with their joints and that to be on the safe side, since it may just be a dog’s quirk, is best to talk to the vet.  When Walter’s mom came to pick him up, I mentioned this to her and she said that she’ll take him to the vet.

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Walter’s mom told me that the vet advised them to watch him since he is only a little over 2 years old.  Two months later, Walter came back to stay with us, and his mom told me that the vet after seeing that Walter started to have more difficulty with his hind legs suggested to either start with supplements or surgery.  She said that the vet wanted to run some tests first before deciding what treatment would be best for Walter.  Because of that our walks that used to be from 40 to 60 minutes long twice a day were reduced to 15 minutes twice a day.

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Every time a dog stays with us, Cynthia and I talk about their behavior, quirks, likes, dislikes, etc., and if there is anything that seems out of the ordinary, I talk to the pet parent about it.  That is why when a pet parent is coming to pick up her dog, I do ask her to have a couple of minutes so we can talk.

Whether you pet sit, like I do, or have your own dog, please watch him and you’ll be surprised what you can find out about a dog.  One time I did go overboard with Alex though because, no I was not drunk, I noticed a “lump” on her rump so I took her to the vet and to my horror she told me that she had two “lumps” on her rump and they are called Muscles.  I was so embarrassed, my face was red like a tomato, but the vet was so amazing and understanding and she told me not to worry about it with a big smile on her face.  Between you and me, I think she was laughing at me.

Anyway, please send well wishes and positive energy and thoughts to Walter.  He is one of a kind.

Alex’s Furry Friends: Milo and Bella

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We had a couple of days off and I was determined to take Alex for an outing to Annapolis, but it just did not happen.  I’d have to say totally la mia culpa.  I promised to make it up to her the next time she is the only kid at home:)

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These 2 beautiful canine specimens are Milo and Bella.  Our walks with them are shorter because Pugs can overheat very easy, and because they have a short-muzzled face making it a bit harder to breathe.  By the way, I am not saying not to walk Pugs.  Au contraire, walk your pug, but be aware of the weather, your pug’s age, health, level of activity, etc., and if unsure about what to do, please contact your vet for guidance.