Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Who's a Winner?

I DID IT! I passed my Canine Good Citizen test! I KNEW I could! Mom says this is just the beginning for me, but for now I'd like to take a break from school I think. I'd still like to go out a lot and see people, but I need a break from the rigors of academia, just for a few weeks.

I should catch you up on my life lately, and then tell you all about test day!
It has been raining a LOT, almost every day. I am very sick of rain.
Rain means that we don't go out as much, even though mom bought me that dumb raincoat and said we'd go out anyway. I still get to go places in town most of the time.
But mostly we lay around and wait for it to stop raining. It's very boring. Mom has lots of things to do inside. But we don't. Sometimes mom goes out alone. I'd rather be taken along.
I visit the yarn store every week, and last week I got to go to a new store. It is called Good for the Soles, and they sold mom these cool new shoes she has. She had a question about her shoes, and Jill and Tim let me come right into the store! I was very good. I laid down next to mom, and even walked with her when we were testing out the shoes. The shoes are called minimalist shoes. I don't wear shoes, so I don't know what all the fuss is about. Mom doesn't wear shoes much either. I guess these shoes are sort of like being barefoot, which seems to make mom happy. Anyway, I liked Jill and Tim a lot and I hope we go back there some time. I got to ride with mom to take Nana for errands, and this time I got to sit in the back with my crate instead of being stuck in front with Nana. I like it in back better, I think. I can go in my crate and lay down, or I can stand in the middle between the seats and watch traffic. I don't wear my harness, but my leash is bucked into a seat belt for safety.
Last weekend mom was gone a LOT. On Saturday Girl and Gerbil came and got her and took her away for HOURS. It was for a thing called a bridal shower for Shannon. I have met Shannon, and I liked her, but I don't see why she needed people to give her a shower. Mom gives me a shower and there's no audience, and no presents. Well, except for a piece of kibble if I am good. Anyway, mom was gone for HOURS. Then on Sunday she took off without me again - this time to teach a knitting class. This really made me mad. She came home smelling JUST LIKE the YARN STORE. I do not understand why I did not get to go! Monday she went away and bought a new refrigerator and left me here.
When mom comes home after days like this I prefer it if she sits in her chair and knits, or lays down with me on the couch.
I don't really like it if she decides she has "things to do" that don't involve me. Sometimes I get very angry. Sometimes, to let mom know that I am angry, I do bad stuff.
Someone named Kimberly, who is called somebunnyslove by some people, was coming to see mom today, so yesterday and this morning mom was all about chores and cleaning. She cleaned inside of the house. She cleaned part of the barn. None of this had anything to do with me. So this morning, when she dropped some yarn while she was tidying up and "putting things in their right place", I stole it.
And I made sure she knew I was not happy with her.
It turns out the yarn I took is not just any yarn. It is called Artyarns Cashmere Glitter, and it is very expensive. Mom used it for a design, and this was a leftover ball. "...almost a whole SKEIN!" is what mom yelled when she caught me. I didn't much care. I just went on with my business. Serves her right. She goes off without me all weekend, and again on Monday, and then she cleans and tidies and is out in the bar on Tuesday. But she seemed pretty angry about this yarn.
She tried to fix the yarn before the Kimberly girl came. That just meant she was ignoring me even more. I got kind of pouty. This was supposed to make her notice me MORE, not ignore me so she could fix the yarn! Finally she gave up on the yarn, but she still didn't talk much to me.
Kimberly came and I met her and she was nice to me. I liked her. She and mom sat at the table, which was also NOT ABOUT ME. I whined and paced and said I needed to pee, when really I didn't need to that much. I just wanted attention. Maybe I should have been nicer to them. Because look what Kimberly did!
She FIXED my mess. In the end she made a nice neat ball of yarn out of it! Mom was MUCH happier after that.
But then mom LEFT again! She said she had an interview with Auntie Kathy, which makes no sense to me. We see Aunt Kathy almost every week! What made today different? Mom said it was "radio". Then she changed her story and said I could not come along because I was grounded for killing the yarn. I think she lied. I think the radio place doesn't like dogs. I got left behind AGAIN!
When mom came home from the radio thing I went out and went potty and helped her do chores. She said we would go for a walk, but then she didn't take me and didn't take me and didn't take me, and then all of a sudden it was 5:30 and dad was home, and it was almost time to leave for school. Mom said we would go early and take a walk around town before my big test. I wasn't sure how I felt about that, but it was alright.
Here's what I saw on my walk:
First I saw a very big, very loud truck that scared me.
Next I saw people going to eat at Hope and Olive. The lady said I was very well behaved.
I laid down on Main Street, and mom made me do a couple of turns, left and right.
I saw a man who said I was a fox.
Then I saw a lady on Main Street pushing a little shopping cart just like the one at school and the one Nana has. I stopped and sat down so she could bend over and pet me. She said I was very handsome, which I am, and she rubbed my ears and said they were soft. Next I saw a shifty guy who made me nervous, and mom said she agreed, he made her nervous too.
Then we went down Bank Row, and I saw a strange dog at MagPie. I sniffed the air, but didn't even try to stop to say hello.
I had to cross the street in front of Village Pizza. We walked back up Bank Row by the Town Hall. There was a loud funny-acting lady with a cigarette and a big bright bag on a bench there. She asked if she could pet me, so mom brought me over and she petted me. I sat and did not jump up. The lady acted very funny and kind of scared me, but I sat. Next we walked past a group of young people that mom called "sketchy", but they liked me and I wagged and was polite anyway. I sat and stayed in front of a place mom called Clark's even when a motorcycle stopped to let us cross. I HATE motorcycles, but I went anyway and was not afraid. I jumped a little when the motorcycle drove away. We crossed Federal Street behind another sketchy young person - there's a lot of them in Greenfield now, mom says. We walked to the library and crossed the street again and I got to head back to the car and dog school. I had to lay down on Hope Street outside of the church where people were going in and coming out for some kind of meeting. I had to see that loud truck again, and it did not scare me as much, but I also didn't want mom getting any ideas about laying down in front of it, so I encouraged her to walk faster. We got back to school and mom gave me a drink and let me rest for a while.
All along the walk I had to stop at every intersection. Mom would say "halt", and I would sit down and wait until she said forward. We practiced some turns, and some laying down and sitting.
The reason why I am telling you all of this is because when we got back to the car mom patted my head and said something really, really important. She said "You are an amazingly good boy, and even if you don't pass, you are still the BEST canine citizen in the whole world. It's OK with me if this test doesn't go well, because I KNOW you are a Canine Good Citizen!" That made me feel good.
We went inside before testing time and mom did some paperwork. I was a little nervous. There were a lot of dogs. The new CGC class, and the beginner class and a puppy kindergarten were all there. That is a LOT of dog smell. When the classes were over, I got to take my test again. I had some bumpy spots, I wasn't perfect, but I did what mattered most, and I passed!
Tomorrow strange men are coming to deliver the new refrigerator. And then on Friday I get to go to the yarn store and tell EVERYONE that I PASSED!
I remember when I came here I was scared. I didn't need to be. This is right where I belong - with a mom who loves me and believes in me, even when I am not perfect. So who's a winner now? ME!
See you soon!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Epic Fail.

Uncle Steve calls me "EF" (that means Epic Fail) and dad referred to my class last night as GED Prep. I don't think this is a compliment. Mom got mad and said she had a GED, and a college degree, and what did dad mean, exactly? Dad looked kind of worried for his safety after that. That made me feel a little better.
Mom has made me do a ton of things since my bad night. We go into town a lot more. I have to lay down all the time, and especially in front of distractions. I have to lay down a lot. Last night I had a class that mom said would decide whether I could be retested any time soon or not. I tried my best. It was really hard. There was a German Shepherd who barked at me. He still has his boy-bits, like me, but I think he may be older than I am. He ignored most of the other dogs and barked at me all during class. I tried really hard to be good, and I was good, mostly. I had a couple of moments. It is hard to be good when someone is trying to get you to respond to them. There was also a Rottweiler, a pitbull, and two Old English Sheepdogs, two children, and new strange people. They all seemed much nicer than the shepherd. I did ok, mom said. Not perfect, not horrible. She says I can try the test again, but if I fail I have to go back into the class with the shepherd. I hope I pass.
I definitely have a different attitude about things now. Mom says that she thinks the bigger my testicles get the smaller my brain gets. I don't know if that's true. I do know that I feel different now. I feel something I don't really understand. Mom says it's called hormones and I'd better get used to it.
We went to the vet last week, not for me but to get medicine for Boo. He has arthritis in his hips and mm gives him a shot once a week to help. it helps a lot. Maybe too much, because now he wants to steal all my stuff. Before he didn't care what I had, he just laid around and sighed and panted a lot. I got on the scale. I weigh 23 pounds.
We went for a walk this week in New Hampshire. I got a tick. The last tick I had was actually biting me. This one was just walking on my leg. Mom does not like ticks, I guess. She ground it up with two rocks into tiny pieces and all it did was walk on me. Mom has issues!
Before our walk mom went shopping at two stores and left me in the car. It was raining and dark and I had my crate and the windows were open. Mom went very fast. It was not hot. Mom says that soon we won't be able to do that because it will be summer. It bothers me that I can't go in ALL stores! I like being with mom on errand day. After mom did her errands we went to Petco. First we walked around the big building where Petco and some other stores are. It's in a city with noise and cars and people and dogs. Mom made me lay down right there next to the city noise and traffic. Then inside Petco she made me lay down in front of a lady with three little kids and a shopping cart. I had to stay until they went by.
I do think mom would be easier on me if I had just done what I was supposed to during that stupid test. I don't know if I like hormones very much if they make me do stupid things.
I did well and mom let me pick two toys out of the clearance bin. I fell asleep on them as soon as we were in the car. Shopping is very hard work!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Crime Doesn't Pay

And neither does messing with mom. Since my decision to NOT lay down during my CGC test, here's what's been going on.
Mom makes me lay down with Boo.
She makes me lay down in the powder room when I follow her in.
She makes me lay down in the kitchen when I follow her there, too.
She makes me lay down next to her chair when she's working.
I even laid down under the table at The Green Bean in Northampton.
There's a bunch of other places too. All day long, all I hear is down, down, down. Sometimes she gives me a treat, most of the time she does not. It's like when I was little and she was teaching me all of these things. She thinks I am STUPID and a BABY and don't know how to lay down!
Maybe I made a mistake. I don't think I am very happy with the outcome of messing with mom.
I hope she doesn't make me repeat the whole class again. I could have passed. I just didn't want to!

Thursday, May 12, 2011


Remember when I said I had a trick or two up my sleeve? Well I did! I totally failed that dumb test! TAKE THAT MOM! I am seven months old and I do NOT have to do what you say! So there!
I don't get why she won't give me my chicken gizzard now. She's looking kind of annoyed at me. Maybe I should reconsider and work on being good? I should think about that. But for now I am enjoying being bad. It's FUN!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Banned? Never!

Mom has been so busy with her new book coming out that she has no time to help me blog.
I have been up to a lot lately. We were going for long walks every other day around the pond, but then the mom got worried about the Rottwielers. Apparently they are loose in the woods while their person works. Apparently they don't like other dogs. When they drove past our house and I was walking on the road with mom, they tried to eat the windows to get at me. I totally could take them. Mom is being silly. So we haven't walked for a few days, first because of the dogs and second because mom killed a whole bunch of chickens this weekend and was "too busy". As if anyone could be too busy for me! I like it when she kills chickens, though. I get livers and hearts and things as treats sometimes. I want to kill my own chickens, but mom says no. I had one the other day, but it was already dead. It still had feathers, and it was a nice bite-size. Mom had set it down on top of a grain bin, and I got it! She thought I was too far away on my dog park. Can you believe she has a dog park in the barn?? The door is closed. I am not going anywhere. And she has a HOOK she sticks my leash on. She says it is so I cannot get into trouble. But I find trouble anyway. I shook that dead baby chicken as hard as I could. Mom and dad were working and at first no one knew what I had done. Then mom figured it out and I got in BIG trouble.
Every morning I help mom with the chickens. She opens the door and I sit and watch them come out. I am not allowed to move. I have to sit very still and not chase the chickens. It is VERY hard work. Owen gets to just wander around and sniff stuff while all of this is going on. He doesn't even wear a leash; he could kill a chicken, and he DOESN'T! He's kind of dumb I think.
Tomorrow is my Canine Good Citizen test. I will pass because I am me. Mom says that is not enough. Today we went to the yarn store for a last practice before the test. She told me to lay down and I said no. She told me again, and I still said no. We did that for a while. She made me, and I stayed down, but I was mad. We sold some fresh chickens at the yarn store, and then we delivered some to a school, the same school that hatched out baby chicks last month for mom. That was fun. Then we went to The Arbors to visit Nana. There was a lady in the lobby with Nana. I went to see her and she said "down" and pointed at the floor, and I laid down like I had known her forever. I hope mom gets the point. She is not the boss of ME! I will show her. Wait till tomorrow night! I have a BIG PLAN! Mom will learn!
Girl has her own place now, so I am taking her room. Mom calls it a guest room, but every night I go in and sniff everything to make sure it is where I left it, since it's MY room now. After I check my room I go with mom into the bathroom. Every night I get my teeth brushed. I really like it now, and if mom forgets I stand in front of the sink and whine.
Mom does a very good job on my teeth, and then she does hers. While she brushes her teeth I get to go into the bedroom and play with dad. The other night Mel got into the bedroom before me - usually he is not in the bedroom EVER. I tried to chase him out, but the door was closed. He ran under the bed, and I chased him under it. Dad let Mel out, but I kept going under the bed in a big circle; door, bed, door, bed, over and over. I go under on dad's side and pop out on mom's side, and then run to the door. It is SO much fun! Mom laughed at me, but I think really it was with me.
On Saturday I made a new... well maybe it is a friend. Really I am not sure what it is. It's small. Very small. And it smells very funny. Sometimes it pees when it walks. It is, mom says, 4 weeks old, and part Beagle. It lives with my "brother" Eric and his fiance Rachel and my nephew Aidan.
Mom says that Jack, this small thing, will be my friend when he is bigger.
If we are going to be friends, there need to be some ground rules. Actually, only one rule.

I will try to get mom to let me post about how I do on my test tomorrow. I am SO going to mess with mom! Stay tuned!