Sunday, July 18, 2010

Abbey at "Summer Camp" 1 Jul - 15 Jul 10

Our trip to Alaska was great. Abbey had a great time with her personal "puppy sitter", Miss Terry. Based on the email and pictures we received from Abbey, we were worried that she wouldn't want to come home---but she hesitantly did come home, but only after each of the other dogs actually came up to Abbey and said good-bye, my gosh that was soooo cute and I wish I had the camera for that event. We'll post an Alaska video (or two) later, but here is Abbey's note and pictures

Hi Mom and Dad,

Sorry this letter took so long to get to you, but the home computer is down due to some mischief I got into with the adaptor to Miss Terry's laptop. All the pool party photos are on that computer, so the photos won't be coming to you until she get a new one...... anyway, believe me, when I tell you, "I had a ball".

Yesterday we took a hike through the woods, it's been pretty hot here so the woods give us a little shade. I loved it, you can't believe the smells that are in there. I also picked up a little buddy while I was in there. Miss Terry pulled a tick off my nose and I didn't even cry. A little fur came out with it, but I'll be as good as new when it grows back. I guess I won't make the cover of "Prettiest Pup" this month. Oh well I have plenty of time for that.

How is your trip going? Do you miss me? I miss you both a lot, but I'm having lots of fun with all my playmates and all the attention I'm getting at Woofs & Whiskers. A lot of people want to take me home, but Miss Terry is pretty firm and says,"there's not enough money in the world", of course that was before I ate her computer cord. You know being cute helps when you're a mischief maker.

I'll see you both next week, you won't believe how big I'm getting? Enjoy the rest of you trip, and know that I am sending you nose kisses and snuggles. I love you guys.

Your Playful Daughter,

....and the follow up email from Abbey

Hi Mom,
I'm sneaking this note off to you. Miss Terry just got a new adaptor and told me I was not allowed within 10 feet of it. She is in the shower, so I have about 10 minutes. I hope you enjoy these shots as much as I did posing for them.
I miss you both very much.
Hugs and Kisses,

Abbey knocked this one down (notice she is in "bark mode")

Abbey lounging on the lounge--what no drinks!

Abbey's first water raft ride

Abbey (and the other two) had a hard "play day"

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Abbey's Racing Stripe

Hopefully you can see Abbey's back fur where she is losing her puppy fur and gaining her "red big girl" fur

Abbey Graduated!!

Well, Abbey graduated "puppy kindergarten" last Sunday and I've attached a video of her doing sit, lay down, play dead, leave it and stay. She is pretty good at all of them and we keep re-enforcing them during her walks and at night. The one skill she hasn't got the hang of yet is "come" and that is part of her "single minded focus" as a hound, plus I think she just likes ignoring us for her pursuit of what ever the "sniffer" is telling her. She is starting to get her "big girl" teeth and is losing the puppy fur, especially on her back and it looks like she has a "racing stripe" down her back, but she will look wonderful when her "big girl" fur coats in. We had her at her "puppy sitter" for two days and an overnight as a trial run before our 2 week trip to Alaska. Of course I went to go pick Abbey up and she basically said "Hi, Dad, can I stay", guess that was no issue for her. Terry (the puppy sitter) just loved Abbey. Enjoy the short video and as soon as Clara gets me the current pictures, I'll post those too (later).

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

15 Jun 10, Abbey Playing

Abbey playing with an 8 month old Collie, Lacey. The play all the time and this time I brought the video camera.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Abbey at 16 Weeks

Abbey is now 16 weeks old and growing like a weed. She still has more energy than we do and she is so much fun. Here are some pictures on her 16 week birthday! Ok, so I threw one in of both Abbey and Patty (the cat).

Sunday, May 30, 2010

More Abbey week ending 30 May 10

Abbey is growing rapidly and has moved out of the baby phase into puppyhood. She now weighs almost 6 lbs and just finished her last shots yesterday. She is all teeth and gangly legs. Always ready to play.

She started puppy kindergarten (her recess video below) and I must admit she is not the star but a winning second (did I mention there are only two in the class?). However number one is a fluffy lap dog breed that sits around and looks cute. MY dog however has a veritable ocean of untapped skills and abilities. If you need any badgers or rabbits hunted, just call on her. No badgers around you say? Well, she could follow a days old underground maze to locate a trapped rat. Not high on my list of desirable traits but it is apparently very highly thought of in the the working dog world. I'm considering training her to do some agility trials with those very high 4" gates. But, she is alert, inquisitive, interested in everything and fearless. Besides that, she has the cutest face you could ever want to see. Unfortunately, interested and fearless makes training a tinsy tiny bit harder. At the "watch me" command she pretty much responds with "why should I, I see you all the time and look at all these other interesting things to explore.". She has "leave it" down cold but once she stops the undesirable action and gobbles the training treats down, she turns right around and goes back to that action. Not what was supposed to happen. She is a champion at the "sit" command however. "Come" and "stay" are not yet registering as any known word, or are merely being cheerfully ignored. Abbey does have a new fun game though. We call it elevator. She has learned to go up the stairs all by herself and is justifiably proud of this accomplishment. Unfortunately, she has not achieved the going down yet. She can manage one stair leading to flat ground by launching herself off of it with all fours going airborne, but this method does not work on more than one or even two stairs. So, she manages to get to the stairway landings just before the larger stair runs and then sits down and barks for us to come get her, private elevator service! She thinks this is so great a game that she will do it several times in a row after finding some minor excuse to go up the stairs, such as making sure the closet door containing the contraband shoes is still closed, or making sure her bed and night time toys are still safely upstairs. Sometimes Bill and I will hear the "elevator call bark" and wait to see if the other one of us responds :-) She has also discovered the game beloved by every dog I have ever known. When she is happily sitting on the couch or bed next to us, chewing busily on a bone or toy, she will move slowly towards the edge until "plop", said toy goes over onto the floor. Then she stares mournfully at you until you stop what you were doing (like writing this blog) and pick it up for her for the 19th time. That game never seems to loose its appeal!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Abbey 13 Weeks

Pictures above---with other dogs at a pet shop in Annapolis--outside picture with big dog is at Port Annapolis Boat yard----

Well, Abbey Xandria is now 13 weeks old, just past the 3 month mark. Boy, she has really grown in this past month. She now weighs 5 lbs 3 ozs and is skinny, skinny, skinny. We feed her but she only eats what she wants and then burns it all off at play. We are trying to guess how big she will get, our best guess is now about 10-11 pounds.

She is a full puppy now, playing, running, jumping, nipping at toes and fingers, and still eating every stick, twig and clump of grass that comes to her notice. She is always running with her nose to the ground following some scent only she detects.

She is still just as adorable as ever, even with the almost daily changes to her features and coloring. The black on her face is now receeding back on her forehead leaving only red behind. But, she still has her little cowlick on the top of her head! The rest of her body is still mostly black. Her legs oversize the rest of her body and she has that awkward puppy look.

She is just a joy to me (and Bill too!) but boy can she exhaust me in a day. We don't have anywhere to let her loose to just run so mostly it is me running behind her flying ears at the end of the leash! I try to give her a chance to burn off her energy. Usually we both collapse for the afternoon nap together :-). (A time I really love!)

Everyone still stops to admire and adore her. We even had a car driving on the road stop dead in the road, roll down the window and ask how old our "baby" was. What fun. She still loves everyone, young children, old people and all other dogs. She is getting better and better going out with me for social outings. We went to the Eastern Shore last week to stroll through a lovely old town and have lunch. I can't say Abbey "strolled" but she certainly sniffed, ran, tugged and chewed her way through town. She went into several stores along the main street and was a perfect lady, never chewing up the merchandise. I confess, I did pick her up in the glass giftware store though!

We try to get out to a town environment about 2 times a week, often ending with lunch at an outdoor cafe. The rest of the time we explore our neighborhood and get to know the dogs here.

She is still a little snuggle puppy when she is tired and I like those times most of all, when it is just her and me bonding together.

We started puppy kindergarten training today; boy, do we have some work to do!

Abbey in the movies at a Pet Fair in Deale, MD.