What a Ruff morning!

YearningHufflePup likes his routine.

Wake up at 12 am and 2 am, ask Ma for water.
Wake up at 7 am and emerge from crate, shaking and jingling tags. Be ignored and roll over on your side for another hour of sleep.
Go for a morning walk w/Da, come back and sleep next to Ma until she wakes up, then go watch TV.

~ ~ ~

This morning, Da was running late so I offered to do his morning walk. This was, apparently, the worst idea in the history of ideas, made worse when we came back to see Da leaving for work.

He staged a twenty minute protest.

1. Refused to come inside as he stared longingly after his Da for 3 minutes.
2. He got on the elevator, then immediately ran off it.
3. We’ve been practicing “place”; he’s supposed to come to the door and turn around in front of it, standing to let me wipe his paws.  He took advantage of the freedom he’s given (I don’t hold his leash) to RUN back to the elevator.
4. He stood by the elevator and refused to come back, digging his heels in when I picked up his leash.
5. Then sat down in protest.
6. Finally got him back to the door and we ended up halfway across the hall nearly in front of the neighbor’s because instead of standing for his paw wipes, he sat down, ignoring me, then kept trying to creep back down the hall while I was wiping each paw.

I wasn’t a very effective disciplinarian, laughing at him at each point, when he’d make that sad face at me: I know he’s that way, Ma! Let’s go get him, Ma!


Vacation Fatigue

Squinched Eyes

Poor HufflePup. He’s always so eager to hop in the car and ride with us ANYWHERE that sometimes we forget that he really only cares about the ride and much less for the actual destination. He came with us to visit relatives for a while but the novelty wore off when he ate something that made him sick for HOURS.

Flopped Over, Hanging on the edge

We ended up in the waiting room at the emergency vet at 1 am and got x-rays. Unfortunately, Ol’ Feller was too full of gas to see anything clearly so we couldn’t be sure he wasn’t sick because of an obstruction.  We ended up taking a bit of a wait and see attitude because he was too keyed up at the vet’s to see whether he was feeling better or not.

An anti-nausea injection helped him stop retching, but then he went on food strike for three days, forcing us to serve up the tried and true chicken and rice bland diet.

About a week of worry later, we saw the vet again. This time, we added pumpkin to his special food to help his gut, fiber’s good, y’know, and he started on the path to recovery.

Until we started on the road home and he started whining with pain when we helped him in and out of the car. That both hurt my heart and scared me silly – I’m terrified that he’s slipped a disc again. The last time he badly hurt his back, he had to have serious surgery and took over a month to get back on his feet. We’re working on a high-rest, low-excitement regimen right now, hoping that will help him because he really doesn’t want to either get in the car again or go back to the vet again.

Stress Management, by HufflePup


The Fourth of July’s been a bit of a rough holiday since HufflePup came to live with us. He really doesn’t like loud noises, and objects to even moderately loud noises like dropping dishes or slapping a pan on the stove. You should have seen him when I first turned on the BluRay player, it was as if a demon had grabbed his tail!

Our first Fourth of July, we were eating a later dinner and missed the segue into nightfall. The fireworks  started up in the distance, and the next thing we knew, only his two little eyebrow pips were still visible from behind the bed. He’d crept away quietly to find a safe place and stayed huddled in the corner until we realized he’d gone missing.

The next year, it was just the two of us so he and I sat in the corner together with my arm around his shoulders as he silently resented the Scary Booms.

This year, he weathered it much better. We planned a night in with dinner and a movie to cover the sound. His coping mechanism: staying as close to our feet as possible. One particularly loud Boom sent him tiptoeing from my protection over to his dad’s in the kitchen.

Poor guy. They carried on with the fireworks shenanigans for another six days and he was nothing  like happy about it.


To add insult to injury, we had to go to the vet this week too. He’s usually pretty excited about meeting other dogs, and exploring the office, but eventually he realizes we’re actually there for a reason.

Then the curiosity kicks in.

headtilt I believe there are people out there.

headtilt I .. think they’re talking?

headtilt About .. us?

Lookback Ma, I think we should go now.

Unfortunately it looks like he’s got a growth on his gums that may need to be removed and his teeth need to be cleaned. The estimate runs, including a discount, near a thousand dollars.  We’re also trying a new medication for his slight plumbing leaks and hope-hoping that it’ll work.

I do believe that uses up this old guy’s allowance for the year!

Feature Friday: Original or Blonde?


What’s your favorite Oreo flavor? Or … DOG.

HufflePup’s always been pretty easygoing but he was extra-confused when his Lab cousin leapt up into his car space. And sat on his leg.

They eventually sorted themselves out, coordinating so that there was ALWAYS at least one, if not two, furry heads blocking my view in the rearview. Y’all are lucky you guys are cute, boys.

Feature Friday: BrainyPup’s lessons continued

HufflePup’s slowly picking up lessons from his cousin, BrainyPup.


Even though it’s slow, and it doesn’t seem like he’s really paying much attention, Huffle is absolutely paying attention to the dogs and humans around him and taking his cues from both.

He learned Sit while in seclusion with us humans, but he’s learning bit by bit just watching and processing: running alongside, checking for treats, seeking affection and attention from his person. Also he’s learned that his humans are very slow when it comes to taking him out so probably don’t lose your mind when they go near or touch the leash.


Like this, Brainy? Is this how we do it?

I wonder what the dynamic would be if and when we get him a puppy.

From past experience, older dogs only teach the new dog their bad habits and none of their good ones.

Oldest dog taught Mama’s Pup to be his accomplice in breaking out of yards, to steal paper from the bin and how to shred paper and bedding.

Huffle’s such a blank slate, I’m betting he’s going to be picking up some interesting traits from the new kid.

I guess we can’t tag desirable behaviors and ask the dogs to pass them on, can we?