Friday, July 19, 2013


Eventually my blog will return to other subjects...but for now it seems to have gone to the dogs. Cooper is six months old now.

Cooper at six months: one part dog, one part worm.

Dude is seriously gangly.

It blows my mind how quickly he's grown. Cooper loves small, tight spaces to nap, and has long outgrown most of his usual spots: the small china cabinet for my teacups, our wood buffet cart, under the hassock or under the beds. Of course, our bed is his favorite place. If he pushes off the wall with his back feet, he can still wedge his body under the frame of the bed. This would be fine - except once Cooper squeezes under there, he can't get out by himself. 

Momma, I'm stuck...again.
Our vet recommended that we wait to neuter him until he matures a little more (physically, obviously). She said that it doesn't really hurt to wait until he's almost a year, and there's less health risks to waiting than a there would be for a female dog.

This is the complete opposite to what the puppy class trainer thinks: "Cut 'em off! He's a total punk, and all he is thinking about is sniffing butts." The trainer is completely right, so the people pleaser in me is struggling with my inner rule-follower. It's a dilemma.

Regardless, Cooper is completely obnoxious. Aside from the constant gratuitous looting of items that don't belong to him, Cooper is a total shit. He is a terrible bully to Riley, and highlights of last night included Cooper being hauled off and sequestered in a time-out in the kitchen...twice. It's like our early childhood days with the kids all over again. 

Components of what used to be my pen.

Also? Dude REEKS. He's emitting these nasty, funky pheromones and if it's been longer than a week since his bath, I have to wash my hands after petting him. He's the most physically affectionate dog I've ever owned, so this means I'm constantly hand-washing. 

I consider this a quality problem, obviously...but it brings new meaning to being so 'stinking cute'.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Bird Dog

I'm finding it impossible to believe that 7 months ago we put Cafe down. I actually found myself angry about her loss the other day, as if my recent struggles were because her constant vigilance isn't around to protect me anymore. There are weeks that pass and I don't think about her at all. It's not because I don't miss her - nothing could be further from the truth. But, with two teenagers and a busy household, there's not tons of extra time for insightful reflection or feeling sorry for myself.

One of the things that keeps me busy and moving forward through my loss is Cooper. Recently, when trying to determine if our on-the-cusp-of-being-too-old puppy should be kept in puppy class or moved into the Novice class, I had this conversation with the trainer:

Trainer: So, tell me about your new baby?

Me: He's a Labrador retriever. 

Trainer: Okay. I'm deducting maturity points for being a Lab...and also for being a boy. We'll put him in the puppy class. 

 At five months old, he's moved past the adorable puppy phase and right into bratty adolescent. He's either sleepy and endearing, or full-on Asshole Mode. 

In an effort to get away from Cooper's overwhelming attentions, Riley has taken to jumping into my lap. This would be fine - if he didn't weigh almost 100 lbs. It also doesn't work, because if Cooper feels like Riley is inaccessible he becomes frantic to get to him...and then their are two dogs wrestling in my lap. *sigh*

It's in everyone's best interest to keep Cooper occupied (read: exhausted). Here are photos of today's walk around the lake, and Cooper's first experience seeing ducks:

There's not a whole lot of complex thinking at work here...just happy thoughts!

This is one of my favorite places to go running.

Vigilant look-out bun, keeping an eye on the dogs.

Bird dog...seeing ducks for the first time! Um, intense much?

Monday, July 1, 2013


This is a game I call Animal Kingdom. Unfortunately, the game always seems to take place in my lap.

There's generally lots of teeth and sneezing. If you listen closely, you'll hear the clicking of teeth...sort of like doggie castanets.

Riley and Cooper: Animal Kingdom