Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Sharing Toys

Guilty.  I didn't find some golden nugget of information about how to teach our dogs to share their toys with other dogs.  But I did just add a gadget that will help Winnie and I share our favorite toys with you!  I've finally collected some of the books and dog stuff I've talked about for months in one place... Sharing Toys.  Just under the blog archive to your right.  

It has my name on it!  How great is THAT?

Speaking of new toys... here is a photo of a new dog bed my mom made for Winnie.  She was so happy to get it but thought it was a huge chew toy instead of a bed.  Needless to say it didn't last long and has thus become a big push for the famous stuffing less Skinneeez!

Bed?  What do you mean bed?  I sleep on the couch.  This must be a chew toy/canopy. 

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Corgi Flop

A friend showed me this video of a "Corgi Flop" on youTube this week.  It cracked me up because Winnie has what we call the "Corgi Leap."  I couldn't get a good clip of the Corgi Leap but this is good enough to stand alone.  Enjoy!

The truth is... those stumpy little legs are just funny no matter what their doing!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Winnie Come!

A few weeks ago I posted a heads-up about the Patricia McConnell DVD sale.  I didn't really know what I was getting into but I knew I loved her book The Other End of the Leash so I took a chance on a DVD.  I ordered "Lassie Come!  How to get your dog to come every time you call" because although Winnie comes most of the time she dosen't come all of the time and let's be honest... chasing a dog around the back yard because they won't come inside when you're late is only fun for the dog.   

In a nut shell... I loved it.  McConnell was thoughtful and encouraging and easily understood.  It was also great to see her model what she was talking about. 

Here's a clip of Winnie and I in a short "come" training session.  Today we're in the house but we've been doing it in the back yard and on walks and I think we'll soon move to the dog park for a bigger challange but for now we're having lots of fun! 

One of the points I took from the video was this: The more control you have over your dog, the more freedom your dog has. It sounds silly but makes a lot of sence. If you know your dog will come, you don't stress about letting it run outside to greet people... and so on. I found a YouTube video of McConnell doing an interview and talking about a different DVD.  They don't talk about training "come" but I thought it would be nice for you to see some of what I'm talking about from the horses mouth.  Enjoy!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Smart Dogs Need Smart Toys

So one of the down sides to having a smart pup is convincing them to use their smarts for good rather than evil all day.  Chewing bones is good.  Chewing trash is evil.  Chasing balls is good.  Chasing cats is evil... and so on.  Needless to say I'm always looking for new ways to help Winnie use her brain for good.  We get lots of exercise, go new places, see new people, learn new tricks, and best of all play with new (or rotated) toys! 

KONG Wobbler Dog Toy, RedAbout a month ago our fellow corgi blogger Kelly from Corgi Butts reviewed a new toy called the Kong Wobbler.  I liked the look of it because it's bigger than most toys we have for the win-monster and dispenses food in a completely different way than her other toys.  (I like to be tricky and put a little less food in her dish so she can work at getting the rest of it out of a toy... it keeps her problem solving for good, not evil.) 

I decided to try it and here are the results:

Like, Gibson, Winnie at first was a little scared of the wobbler.  She guessed it was going to be fun but wasn't sure how it worked.  After I swatted at it myself for a minute she got the idea.

(Sorry for the shaky camera and kinda long video... this was my first time doing all of this.  I'll get better, promise.)

It's easy to use (the top and the bottom unscrew so it's easy to fill and clean) and both Winnie and I like it.  We've been playing with it for a few days now and I'll likely put it away for a week so she doesn't get bored but at the end of the day it gets two paws up.  :-)

And as far a "food" toys go we also like the Premier Pet Busy Buddy Twist-N-Trea and the Omega Paw Tricky Treat Ball.  For a plain-jane puzzle toy the Kyjen I-Qube Puzzle Plush Interactive Dog Toy was a big hit!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Pet Rescuers

First, let me say that Winnie does not need rescuers.  But if she did, I would seriously rally the troops.

I'm talking about the "Pet Rescuers" from Home Again Recovery, the company that microchips your pet. 

We got Winnie micro chipped the same time we got her spayed.  What really convinced me it was a good idea was that the service isn't just reactive - it's proactive.  Sure, I would seriously hope that if anyone found a lost cat or dog that they would take them to the vet, humane society, or at the very least keep them around for a few weeks and put up FOUND PET posters.  But let's be honest, not everyone even has a eye out for that sort of thing. 

What this micro chipping company does in addition to making your pet identifiable (even if she loses her collar) is that it alerts the "Pet Rescuers" in the area you are from and the area that your pet went missing.  It's great! 

Every so often (thankfully, not more often) I receive an email with a PDF attachment.  The PDF is a ready made LOST DOG (or cat) poster complete with all the necessary information:  pet photo, pet name, medical information, distinguishing marks, size, etc.  If a dog is lost in my zip code I know to keep my eye out and I print the posters and put them up in my local pet stores and dog parks.  I don't know these dogs but if Winnie ever did run off I would really want someone to do it for me. 

Why write a blog post about it?  Because you don't have to subscribe to this service to be a Pet Rescuer.  You can sign up to read the pet rescue tips and receive the emails for free.  Why not?  You'd be doing a good thing.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Unlikely Toys

Isn't it funny that we can take special trips to the pet store... lavish car rides and new toys on our furry friends... and while that's all fine and dandy their favorite toys are still things like ice cubes and near-empty peanut butter jars???  It cracks me up.  And keeps me guessing. 

"It's not Halloween?  Then what am I doing with this clown nose?"

A few months ago I picked up this big red ball on a whim at the local home improvement store.  It's the sort of ball you played kickball or foursquare with in elementary school.  I knew it was way too big for Winnie but since it was a whopping investment of $3 I brought it home anyway. 

"It wasn't me, promise.  The chipmunk popped it."

She has since spent hours pushing it around the yard (as fast as she can keep control of the darn thing) and popped it so she could carry it around.  What do you think?  Maybe next time a basketball?  What are some of your pups "ad-lib" toys?

"Ok, it was me."

"But now we can do THIS!"

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Corgi Calendar Contest

My fellow corgi blogger Kelly from Corgi Butts is putting her graphic design skills to good use.  She is assembling a "Dogs with Blogs" corgi calendar full of submissions from corgi bloggers like us.  It's free to submit photos (and you can send her as many as you like) as long (as you have a dog with a blog) but the deadline is coming up soon.  Follow the Corgi Calendar Dogs with Blogs 2011 link for all the details. 

Look at that good looking fellow on the cover.  Way to be a handsome devil, Gibson!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Ruffel Your Feathers...

...down feathers to be specific. 

"Down Feathers"
It suddenly occurred to me this week that maybe Winnie was struggling with the heat because she hasn't had a proper brushing in a few weeks.  Boy did she need it! 

"Shedding Blade"

I use this great brush called a Shedding Blade that totally does the trick.  The photos here were actually taken the day after I really brushed her out (because I forgot to grab the camera the first time).  And still, look that that fuzz! 


I'd like to think it's helping this pup beat the heat a little now that she's free of some undercoat.  And look how happy she is!  Not only is she cooler but I'm less hairy, too.  And her coat is dust free and shiny even without a bath!  Everyone wins today.  :-)

"All Smiles"

Sunday, August 1, 2010

McConnell DVD Sale

Okay, you heard me say it over and over again.  Patricia B. McConnell, dog behaviorist and author of The Other End of the Leash: Why We Do What We Do Around Dogs (among a bazillion other things) is great.  I'm slowing realizing that I just need to let go on my own lazy ways and become her dog disciple.  At any rate, there is a 50% off sale on any of the DVD's via her website http://www.patriciamcconnell.com/.

I've ordered, "Lassie Come! How to get your dog to come every time you call!" because, as previously stated, I have an issue with this.  And it was the cheapest DVD available at $15.00.  There are others like: Dog Play, Dog Aggression, and how to deal with a multi-dog household.  They're not cheap but I love her books so how bad can the DVD be?  I'm hoping it will be even more helpful because you don't have to try and translate actions into words like in a book... I can just watch her DO the stuff she's been talking about. 

I'll make an update when it arrives but for now, if you are as in love with this author, as I apparently am, I wanted you to know about the sale.