Sunday, March 22, 2009

Petey in the Sun

John turned the soil in the garden yesterday and messed up Petey's warm leaf bed. Not to be deterred Petey turned to the neighbors yet again. Here he is flopped out on the mulch in a little garden bed between our driveways.

He tried the blacktop, but apparently it isn't quite ready. I'll get a shot of that soon. Maybe my shadow won't be in the corner!!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Petey Loves the Sun

Petey does not like to be cold. Temperatures below about 75, are cold to Petey. This time of year Petey really has a hard time. The sun is shining and it looks nice outside so he wants to be out in the sun, but then he gets cold and has to come back in. During the last few weeks we have had some high temps in the low 70's, so he knows it can happen. Even on those days, however, the early morning and evening hours are much cooler. This is very distressing to Petey, he really, really wants to be outside. It looks so warm and inviting, but it isn't warm - not to Petey.
John was home on spring break this week. Petey wanted to be outside with him while he's outside but it just isn't quite warm enough for him. John couldn't/wouldn't run back & forth letting Petey in and out, so Petey had to make a decision. Petey must be with his peeps, when it is at all feasible. It is part of the Petey code. He had to stay outside. So, he made himself a nest in the leaves on our little garden area. It was sunny and the leaves must have held some heat. He laid there for quite some time 'supervising' John.
Just wait until July, though, Petey will be in his prime!! Our neighbors have a blacktop driveway that gets direct sun. To the rest of the world that is hot. To Petey, it is just right. He'll lay smack dab in the sun on the driveway for hours. He gets a little perturbed with the neighbors when they need to come or go and he has to move. Luckily, they think it is funny and don't mind Petey laying smack in the middle of their driveway. The longer he lays there the flatter he seems to get. It is as if he's melting into the pavement. After a while, he'll come in the house panting like he's run a mile. He'll cool off for a while and then go right back out! I'll get a picture this summer to post.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Smelling Game

John has two panaceas that he keeps on his bedside table. There is not a lot in this world that can go wrong with you that can’t be cured, or at least helped by either Absorbine, Jr. or Vick’s Vapo-rub. He uses the AJ for muscle aches and discovered that is also helped acne. I don’t know how; that discovery predates me. But he is often willing to suggest that AJ will help some physical ailment I have. The Vick’s is more for clearing up sinus or chest congestion. He has also tried it as an anti-snoring device. So it is important to keep these two items close at hand.

Petey was on the bed one day when John was medicating himself with one of his two favorite cure-alls, Absorbine Jr. Being the true supervisor (nosey) that he is; he went over to investigate (sniff) the situation. John pointed the bottle towards him so that he could get a good sniff. Petey started leaping around on the bed and barking like crazy. After a few moments of this, he went back over for another sniff. John let him have it. Again he jumped around, barked and dug at the sheets. John wasn’t sure if this was a happy dance or an upset dance, so he didn’t let him smell anymore that night.

A couple of nights later, John was again applying Absorbine, Jr. before bedtime and Petey came to check things out. John pointed the bottle at him thinking that if Petey didn’t like it he would remember and leave it alone. AJ has a very strong smell; you do not have to get your nose right up on it to smell it. Petey marched right up, got a good whiff and started the ‘dance’ again – lots of jumping, barking and pawing at the sheets. He would also run to the far end of the bed and back. Every time he came back, John would let him have a sniff and Petey would do the whole routine again, again, and again. Thus the smelling game was born.

Petey would get on the bed and walk to the corner where John’s bedside table was, and start sniffing. When John saw him there he would let him have a whiff of the AJ. In time, John let him smell the Vick’s, same reaction. Then he let him smell perfumes, potpourri, after shave, whatever he could find – all got the same reaction. He went around looking for things for him to smell. It didn’t matter, Petey reacted the same way.

One day John picked up a small decorative item on his night stand, and held that out for Petey to smell. I don’t know why, probably because he had trotted out every thing else in the house for him to get a whiff of. Petey did the same thing – lots of high pitched barking, jumping, and carrying on. That didn’t last very long however, after a while Petey realized there was nothing there to smell.

The best we can tell Petey is having fun. He keeps wanting to do it. He doesn’t act all strange afterwards like he’s gotten a buzz or anything like that. As long as he likes it, they’ll keep playing.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Another Lemon Poppy Seed Muffin Update

Petey summarily rejected the LPSM this morning. He was back to his old routine of getting under the cover. I tried to coax him into a nibble, but that was somehow offensive!!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Petey's Eating Habits

Doing the posts about the lemon poppy seed muffins made me think of Petey's eating habits in general. Petey is a finicky eater. He is the most picky eater of any dog I have ever known. I think that is the problem - all the other dogs I knew understood that they were dogs!! The other dogs I knew always ate whatever was set before them with great gusto. Not Petey. It hardly matters what is put in his bowl; he won't eat it, at least not initially. He'll go sniff it and turn away as if we've put poison in his bowl. He will even walk along the other side of the room from his food bowl, perhaps thinking that the food will jump out on him if he gets too close.

I am of the opinion that Petey is a dog and my only job is to make sure he has food in his bowl. When he gets hungry he'll eat. John does not hold this opinion. John will save the 'juices' from meat that we've had for supper and pour over his food. He's chopped up bits of fat trimmed from the meat and stirred it into his food. He's even heated Petey's food in the microwave. All this is to no avail. Petey will turn his nose up at whatever is offered. He begs shamelessly while we are at the table eating, but will often reject even that. The vet says he is at a good weight, so we aren't worried. He does eat eventually. Most of the time it is after John has thrown the old gross dog food out in the yard in order to clean his bowl. He'll eat that like he hasn't eaten in days. Go figure. It wasn't good enough for the 24 hours it was in the house. We've even taken his bowl outside. It doesn't work.

Petey's drinking habits are just as odd. He has a couple of water bowls in the house, but he prefers one over all the rest; the one in the master bathroom. We can only surmise that Petey drinks once a day since we aren't home during the day. In the evening, he'll drink half the bowl of water. We fully expect one day to see a camel hump arise on his back!! If that wasn't odd enough the thing that triggers his marathon drinks is John going to the bathroom. We haven't figured out that connection. Perhaps the sound of running water reminds him that he's thirsty!!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffin Update

This morning John brought me his usual Sunday morning lemon poppy seed muffin. Petey came along too. Since Petey stopped eating the muffins several months ago, he just snuggles in under the covers while I enjoy my muffin. This morning, however, he took the position on top of my legs so that he could look directly into my face. He got as close to my face as he could with the plate between us. He stared intently at me as I ate my muffin. I thought he might want a bite so I put a little crumb in my left hand, since I didn't have the throw pillow, or the the extra plate, he gobbled it right up. We continued this way until the muffin was gone. He ate a good third of the muffin. Then he had to like the plate, twice!!

John and I don't really know what to think of this, other than Petey is reading his blog while we're at work. Then he sets out to make us look silly. John's doing a search now to see if he's hit any doggie porn sites.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Petey & Plumbing

My mother discovered a small leak in her toilet around Christmas. Today John installed a whole new toilet!! John and I went over there this morning to work on it. There was damage to the subfloor under the toilet that required John to do some work in the crawl space under the house. I went along to provide support from the upper side while John worked on the under side. We took Petey with us because we both knew that we had some other things to do today where we could not take him, and leaving him alone too many times is a major infraction of Petey Rule #1. Besides, Petey likes Mama's house.

Upon arriving at her house. Petey immediately secured the perimeter. It is part of the Petey code to ensure that all of his surroundings are safe at all times, and those within his realm are safe from all harm both real and perceived. Today this required Petey not only to pee on everything in the yard, he had to bark at some dogs that were outside. He then entered the house to ensure our safety there.

While Petey was busily keeping us safe from all harm, he missed the fact that John had gone under the house. John was in position under the opening where the toilet belonged, and I was in the bathroom talking to him through the hole, when Petey discovered me. Just as he entered the bathroom, John said something and Petey just stopped. He cocked his head to the side and listened intently. He could hear John's voice, but could not see him. I described the scene to John, so he started calling Petey. Petey went over to the hole and saw John's face - or as much as he could that wasn't obscured by the big pipe coming up from the center of the hole. Petey ran from the bathroom like someone had set his tail on fire. He was truly frightened. In a bit, he crept back in to the bathroom and peeped down in to the hole again. When John spoke to him, he tore out of the bathroom again. We spent a good bit of time with Petey creeping back in to the bathroom and running out, although he did not seem quite as frightened. His fright seemed to turn to puzzlement. I don't know how many times he'd run in and out of the bathroom before I noticed that he was going in to the bedroom which immediately adjacent to the bathroom. His little doggy brain thought that he could see John from that room, but when he went in there, no John was there to be seen.

Once I realized what was going on, I took Petey outside and showed him the hatch where John had entered the crawl space. Crawl space is a generous term for the space under the house. If you're more than about 10 years old, it is not possible to actually crawl in that space. It is damp, has a dirt floor and a musty smell. The bathroom in question is about at the exact center of the house, so John could not actually be scene from the hatch. I tried to coax Petey in to the crawl space with out actually entering it my self. Petey and I were in complete agreement that neither of us wanted to go in there!! So we resumed our support positions inside the house. Petey would routinely check the hole, then the bedroom, then need to get in my lap. We continued in this manner until John was ready to come out from under the house.

When John said he was finished under there for the moment, Petey and I went outside to await his arrival. I don't think I have ever seen Petey so happy to see John as he was when John emerged from the hatch. Petey's joy was short lived however, because John started sawing and noise is a bad thing for Petey.

Petey and I had to leave soon thereafter so that I could get on to my next appointment. Petey couldn't go and we didn't think it was a good idea for him to stay since he had such issues with John being under the house. I took him home and went on with my day.

We are all home now. Petey is jammed up next to John in the recliner, I'm sure ensuring that he never leave his sight again. All is right with Petey. I wish I could say the same for the toilet.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Petey & Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

John has a long standing tradition of making lemon poppy seed muffins for breakfast every Sunday morning. This tradition predates both Petey & me.

When we got married John started bringing me a warm muffin on Sunday mornings. It was a very nice way to wake up. I would have a leisurely breakfast in bed prior to getting up and getting ready for church.

When Petey moved in, it didn’t take him long to figure out the Sunday morning muffin routine. Instead of being awakened by the aroma of a warm lemon poppy seed muffin at my bedside, I was awakened by Petey galloping down the hall. This, as in everything else in the world, was all about Petey. He would jump on the bed and walk across me to John’s vacated spot. If I wasn’t sitting up in about 3 seconds, he would walk back across me to sniff the muffin because you can’t be too sure how long something that delicious would stick around. Then it was back to John's spot. John thought this was funny and would sometimes get Petey to walk across me 5 or 6 times before I was able to sit up.

I would give Petey little pinches from the muffin, once I was in a sitting position. I had a small throw pillow that I would put the little bites on to keep from getting crumbs in the bed. As time went by Petey began to demand more & more of the muffin. It was not acceptable for me to put a small pinch on the pillow every few bites. He wanted a bite for every one of mine. John, being concerned for my nutritional welfare, starting bringing Petey his own muffin. It was still on ‘my’ plate, but I would give Petey little bites of it on to the pillow as I ate mine. This worked for a time.

One Sunday, Petey galloped back to the bedroom with John, jumped on the bed, walked back & forth across me the requisite number of times, and then refused the muffin nibble when it was put on the pillow. In fact, he was highly offended. He got up and moved to the foot of the bed with his back to me. In true Petey fashion, he looked back every few seconds to make sure I knew he was mad. John couldn’t coax him in to the bite either.

We were stumped, although I must confess I wasn’t really upset. I didn’t care if he ate the muffin or not. It was just very surprising. I really don’t know why I did it, but I picked up my muffin in the napkin, and crumbled Petey’s on the plate. This alleviated his problem and he happily came over and gobbled up the rest of the muffin.

So…the next Sunday, John came in the bedroom with two plates! Once Petey got settled into his eating spot, I crumbled his muffin on to his plate, and ate my muffin in peace. This continued for quite some time as well.

Just like the plate pout mentioned earlier, one Sunday Petey wouldn’t eat the muffin even from the plate. We really didn’t know what else to do. Petey doesn’t use napkins or drink orange juice, which were the only differences between his breakfast and mine. As before, I really wasn’t worried about Petey not eating the muffins. It was a little sad to see the end of an era, but neither John nor I had any remedies. Who knows, maybe Petey was going to have to have random drug tests and heard that the poppy seeds would create a false positive. That is just as likely as anything else with that dog.

Here’s a shot of the lemon poppy seed muffin days…

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Petey Watched the News

John, Petey and I went to my mother’s house for a quick visit yesterday. Petey likes to go to Nanny’s house, just like a preschooler going to Grandma’s. He roams around, looks for things to sniff, and rolls around on the carpet. All the fun things a dog likes to do. John, Mama & I were in the living room chatting and the TV was on. Petey came in and jumped up in John’s lap, directly across the room from me. He was calmly sitting there as we visited. In a little bit, I noticed that Petey’s posture had changed dramatically. He was ‘sitting at attention’ with his ears straight up in the air listening intently to the news. I pointed it out about the time both John and my mother noticed. There was a news story on the television about some dogs that had to be removed from a home where they were not being cared for properly. The reporter was interviewing someone at the shelter, where the dogs had been taken. There were dogs barking in the background. We all wondered if Petey understood the barks. We all watched Petey, watch the news. As soon as that story was over, Petey went back to his regular, more relaxed posture. Draw your own conclusions…