Tag Archives: ma

Holidays = Chaos?

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I know, chaos may be an exaggeration, but for most people holidays tend to be pretty busy and somewhat stressful.  What I like about holidays, of course, happen to be the food “we” cook,  I am using we very loosely since Cynthia is the one that cooks, while Abby and I end up being the “critics”.  I know, what a hard life we have, but hey, someone’s got to do it.  Right?

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Along with all the food we are planning to enjoy, comes plenty of relaxation and/or sleeping, which Champagne gladly demonstrates for us all the time.

 

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Abby, “Mom, did you remember to pack my food?”

And then we have those that will be traveling to visit family.  That won’t be us this year, but for those that are traveling my suggestion would be: have patience; carry food and water; take your dog with you; and above all, enjoy your family.  What plans do you have for these upcoming holidays?

 

Veterans Day 2017

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Whether you are going to explore new places like Abby…

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Or making new friends, take a moment to remember this special day.  Thanks to all those who served and their families.

Is Dog Behavior Modification Fast, Easy, And Simple?

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If anybody tells you that dog behavior modification is fast, easy and simple to do, that person would be lying to you.  In order to modify the behavior of a dog, you really need, at a minimum, 3 weeks.  Whenever I am going to work with a dog, I do a meet and greet to make an assessment of the dog and the expectations of the pet parent.  Abby, a 2 1/2 year old Beabull, ate so fast that she would toss her cookies right after she inhaled her food.  I tried a lot of different things, including a funny looking dish and at the beginning it worked, but later on she went back to puking on and off.  Because of that, I changed the way I did things with her: she started by eating in her kennel; I did not talk to her at all, no commands, nothing; I was the only one feeding her; and all I asked from her was to give me eye contact right before I put her dish down.

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So, how is Abby doing right now?  She hasn’t tossed her cookies in a long time and I no longer have to use the funny looking dish I got for her unless I want to.  What I was doing with Abby was behavior modification, and I can tell you from experience that it takes time, consistency, patience, repetition, and a thorough knowledge of dog body language that most pet parents lack.  For that reason, I’d recommend that you find the right person to help you.  Ask a lot of questions, and don’t buy the, “I can fix your dog in 1 week for only $1,800”.  If you find someone like that, don’t walk, run, and run fast.  Behavior modification takes time and depending on what you are trying to change it can be quite complex.

Abby in Salem, MA

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Since Nina, one of Abby’s friends, believes that there are ghosts in Stoughton, MA, Abby decided to take a trip to Salem, MA and see if she could find some witches.  You know what?  She did.  The statue behind us is that of Elizabeth Montgomery who played Samantha in Bewitched.  When I was a kid in Ecuador, I used to love that show.  And by the way, that’s the reason why I have a smile from ear to ear.  I got to “see” Samantha.

salem22017The day was gorgeous, sunny and warm, and so we walked and explored.  Aside from that, Abby got to work on behavior modification.  How?  By meeting people while being calm, and also seeing a few dogs and not pulling us to meet such dogs.  She is also getting used to walking amongst crowds of people.

salem32017Another thing I got Abby to experience was walking slowly on a bench.  What’s the big deal?  Well, this bench had a lot of space between boards and Abby had to learn to position her cute paws and walk on it without much hesitation or fear.  You see?  A nice outing while working on behavior modification.  That’s what I call a win-win for our pack.

My Hard Working Abby

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Were you wondering what Abby was up to this morning?  My hard working girl was walking this gorgeous pit bull, Champagne, and they were both gracious enough to pose for this picture.  Ok., more like a miracle.  I took this picture when we were into our 30 minute walk.  By the way, they are both wearing a Gentle Leader.  Great tool.

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What happened to Champagne after our walk?  She was out like a light.  And that was all Abby’s doing.  As you can see, Abby is an excellent member of the pack.  Why?  Because she showed Champagne how to walk next to me without pulling me all over the place.

Busy Dog = Happy Dog

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This morning I told Abby, “We have to go to drop off some mail at the post office.  But, this time you, meaning Abby, will be carrying all 30 envelopes”.  She looked at me with a surprised look.  Yes, like the one above.

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Since Abby “agreed” to carry all 30 envelopes, I decided that as a reward she could smell the flowers – I know there are no flowers in the picture – which she loves to do.  Let’s remember she is part Beagle.

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Abby was so good that she even posed for this picture.  I do my best to give Abby a job.  Why?  Because as a pet parent, I need and have to make sure that her needs are met.  Going to the post office took us almost an hour.  Once we got home, she drank some water and fell asleep.  Like I said, “Busy Dog = Happy Dog”.

Dog Backpack And Its Benefits

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I’ve been asked many times by pet parents, “What can I do to drain some of my dog’s energy?”  One of the things, there are a few, that I recommend to use is a dog backpack.  Here are some of my reasons:

  • A backpack will give your dog a job to do
  • It will drain your dog’s energy faster than just walking
  • It can hold treats, bags, water, etc.  (Please don’t over load it)
  • Your dog will look adorable

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Before you go out and get a backpack, please remember the following:

  1. Ask your vet if your dog should wear a backpack.  Senior, puppies, sick and dogs that are recuperating from an illness or surgery should Not wear one until your vet gives you her ok.
  2. Do not overload the backpack.  Start with nothing in it and then add light objects.
  3. Make the walk shorter until your dog gets used to walking with a loaded backpack.

Abby, in my opinion, looks adorable, but then I am her mom.  Does your dog wear a backpack?