Bitter sweet doggy days

31 01 2012

Happy New Year to all of you and your dogs

New Years Eve
As I told in the last entry, Pandora spent her New Years Eve together with two of her best friends. Neither one of them showed any fear or anxiety when the clock turned midnight. The two friends were asleep and Pandora went outside with me staring at the fireworks, and if she could have shrugged she would have. It was perfect for all three dogs.

Visiting the wolf boy
Some weeks ago we went to Saarloos Wolfhound Loup and his family’s house in Jutland together with the Tamaskan Matsi.
It was great fun. Loup lives together with 7 Husky’s.
It was so funny as we arrived and turned around the corner, Loup stood there with the seven Husky’s behind him. And though they were behind a fence, he knew he was cool and superior in dog power compared to his two visitors, Pandora and Matsi.
It was a wonderful day. The seven Husky’s had their own area for the day so only Loup, Matsi and Pandora played together.
And I must say, Pandora fell completely in love with Loup, and this time he was not uninterested in her. He had got so much self-confidence since last time we met him and as he was feeling at home and comfortable he had a lot of energy. It was really great.
Pandora on the other hand, was not very comfortable near the seven Husky’s. It was a little more than she could handle.
Matsi, as always was playfull and crazy-happy and she has grown into a beautiful girl.
A warm thank you to Loups family for having us that day. We hope to see you again in the summer time so we can enjoy the dogs outside for more than one freezing hour 🙂

Loup Saarloos_wolfhound

Loup bragging about his Husky friends

Infected womb
Pandora went into heat in the end of November.
In the beginning of December she was quite tired and seemed a little sad. Then I smelled a certain odour from her. I went to the veterinarian and she had a blood test. Then a scanning.
She had a beginning infection in the womb. It is one of my most feared illnesses as it kills several dogs every year if it isn’t treated very fast.
Luckily it was a small infection and Pandora had penicillin for 10 days, and then she was okay.
But I wonder what would have happened had I waited till Monday the following week.
Always pay attention to you female dog’s odour, even though it’s very rare that a young dog get this infection.

Czechoslovakian_wolfdog_Pandora smiling

Pandora smiling

Training season
We started training the 7th of January. And I must say that there is a major difference from last year even though it was in November.
Pandora did all, and I mean ALL of her tasks.
Of course she walked fine in her leash, she can do that pretty well now, but she also did the jump and did NOT run away on the other side but returned on my command (or begging).
She DID the ‘fetch’ thing three times. Not with enthusiasm but she did it, and she DID come back with the object every time.
I was thrilled at first.
Then I was surprised.
Then I got a little scared.
I know, I was an unthankful bastard, but really. Was my little girl done with the fun?
One night she returned to me three times, when I called. One of the times we heard a dog bark, but she chose me and not the barking dog. Fascinating, but it worried me.
I didn’t know whether it was because or the ending heat, the former infection in the womb or just plain maturity.
It turned out to possibly be something completely different.

Allergy
She started scratching herself all the time. I woke up at night because she was scratching herself.
We went to the vet and had blood test and pills to calm the iching skin.
Now I’ve got an answer:
She is allergic to house dust mites and flour mites.
The pills worked and last Sunday the snow had fallen and that med Pandora so crazy-happy at training, that she ran away a few times, but she also did her tasks, so I was okay with that.
Now she doesn’t get any kind of flour or corn, gluten and stupid fillings in conventional dog food, event goodies. No problem as she is BARFing, but we also have to do something seriously about the dust. For starters I bought two anti-allergy duvets.
A got a scary scenario from the vet explaining that the treatment might be prednisolone and that the affection could wear off over time and then there would be only one way. Death!
This gives me the bad feeling, but hopefully that’ll never be the consequence of the allergy. We’ll try everything before that.

BARF and the killer food
Before Pandora was diagnosed allergic I started to search for things in her food that could be cause her tiredness. Perhaps too little Carbohydrate?
I never considered that as she is a BARF dog, but a friend of mine said: Oh but she needs carbohydrates or she’ll get very ill!
It turned out to be wrong. I knew, I just forgot.
The less carbohydrate there is in your dog’s food the better the quality.
Less than 20 % Carbohydrate is recommended and it should never come from:
Corn, maize, wheat or soy.
Preferable from potatoes, fruit and greengrocers.

Oh why do we spend money on such bad quality food for our dogs!
All these so called quality brands with a little mark on the bag saying:
Now with fresh maize and wheat for you dogs health!
Get out of here. Why pay for it?
It is known that especially maize, corn and Gluten, are the main reasons for food allergic dogs.
Is it completely rubbish to think, that if a dog doesn’t need these substances in their body, they get allergic? And fat?
The body has to do something with these unusable things that enter the system and the dog cannot process carbohydrates very well. A reaction must come, and then it comes in the form of allergy.

I get more and more anti ‘processed food’ as the only ones who really get something out of processed food are the dealers. Not the dogs.
Well that was my religious input for today 🙂

Czechoslovakian_wolfdog Pandora between oak trees

Pandora camouflaged between trees

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Happy New Year 2011

3 01 2011

First of all:
A very happy new year to all of you.
It’s been a while, I know, but Pandora the Wolfdog is behaving so good that there’s nothing to tell.
Yeah right!
Well actually, she is becoming a great girl. The frustrations are getting smaller, and you shouldn’t think it was possible, but the enjoyment is getting bigger.

Winter
The winter came early this year.
Last winter was long and hard, this time it began even earlier. In the end of November.
It’s tough for people, but great for a little wolf.
Pandora loves the snow, but this year the temperatures has been falling to -18 degrees Celsius ( – 65 degrees Fahrenheit). The cold made Pandora limb.
First we thought it was the salt used on the roads to melt ice and snow, but even in the snowy meadow she had problems. It froze her feet and she didn’t know which foot to lift from the ground. Paw wax didn’t help either.
Now we are all getting used to the cold and she doesn’t limb any more.

Czechoslovkian wolfdog in snow

Pandora in the snow

Children
For those of you, who have read this blog for a while, know that Pandora has been a little afraid of children.
In December we went visiting some friends with small children.
Pandora spend the whole night trying to make them interested in her. None of these children were used to dogs, so we had to keep an extra eye on Pandora, but she was very good and kind.
Also this new-year eve, she spend the night playing with a little girl and her dog, and licking a small 1-year old boy in the face.
And concerning the fireworks:
She didn’t notice a t all.
We went out around midnight and had a fantastic view to the fireworks in the horizon. Pandora couldn’t care less.

Elegant teenager
She is now 1,5 years old and she is getting more and more elegant.
The way she moves is so fascinating. She never walks, she dances.
Occasionally she has a nervous period, lasting a week or so. In this time she gets afraid if anyone raises their voice. Then she needs to be petted and caressed.
Two days later, she won’t react to the same thing, at all.
She still has not been in heat.
Pandora fears nothing, except the broom, the vacuum cleaner and the fan heater.
She doesn’t fear the lawnmower, the hair dryer or the car trailer!

Intelligent
I’m always feel indifferent talking about animal intelligence as humans measure intelligence in their own (stupid) way. If a whale can’t divide 264 in four it’s not intelligent. I wonder how intelligent humans would seem to be if the whales judged us based on our ability navigate via sonar.
Anyway, the measuring of a dogs intelligence is based on the ability to understand movements, for instance.
If you drop a ball on a table, the ‘smart’ dog will know that it lands on the table. The less smart dog will look under the table expecting the ball to fall through.
The smart dog doesn’t expect the dogs on TV to appear behind the TV screen as they leave the picture.
If you roll a ball under a sofa, the smart dog will run to the other side of the sofa to reach the ball. The less smart dog will only try to reach the ball from the side where it disappeared.
Pandora, well, she goes to the other side of the sofa all right, but if she cannot reach the ball she moves the sofa.
I think it’s smart, but a little annoying when she redecorates the entire living room when she’s alone.

Training
Because og the snow we havn’t been training in the club for about 5 weeks. But it doesn’t mean we don’t train.
I have made one deal with myself: I will NEVER take a walk with Pandora without havng goodies with me.
And it has help. She has improved very much when it comes to the call back-exercise.
I still cannot compete with other dogs or a potential quarry like a dove or a hare.
But at all other times, she’ll come back when I call and she’ll get at gooooood goddie. The goodies are changed every week to stay interesting.
And it works.

Personality
She is developing more and more personality.
Like when she is waiting for my husband or me, or sees a car coming into the entrance, she’ll stand on her hind legs looking out of the window.
She has gotten at crazy liking for tooth paste. In the evening as we brush our teeth, she’s standing on the hind legs, observing the sink if any tooth paste should drip from our tooth brushes.
Human tooth paste isn’t good for dogs.
And why on earth does she like strong peppermint but hates ALL vegetables and fruits?

Czechoslovkian wolfdog Looking out

Pandora waiting for mom

Czechoslovakian wolfdog looking out

Pandora waiting for dad

She still gets a whole lot of compliments and her facial expressions are so clear and sweet.
I guess she must be one of the most loved dogs in the world.
Every time we pass by her on the floor or on the sofa, she gets a kiss, a pat or a tummy rub.
As we make dinner she sits in the middle of the kitchen floor and we constantly have to walk around her to get from the stove to the sink, to the freezer to the table. But it’s okay, we just take the extra detour and every time she gets a little pat on the head.
That is what love is all about 🙂