Tuesday, February 23, 2016

RILEY: ONE MONTH FOSTER UPDATE

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Riley LOVES to fetch, especially his favorite squeaky fish.  His fish can be anywhere in the house and you just have to mention his name and Riley runs to go get him and see what game you will play with him.  He actually loves his fish so much that he carries him into dinner sometimes and leaves him next to his dinner dish.  We play hide and seek and fetch with him and also ask him to wait to go fetch and he can only go when you give him the 'okay'.  He has really good restraint.  You can even say 'good boy' or 'do you want to fetch fish' etc and he won't go until he hears the 'okay'.   In the video he is waiting for me to throw fish.  He sometimes gets his tail whipping around in a circle so hard that he drums his tail on his back. 

Walking at the dog park


Nothing like a good walk to wear you out.


Sunny days are great for a nice leashed walk in Steveston.  Riley gets out in front and leads the way through a crowd.  He is quite sensitive to the slightest leash movement and helps guide him left and right so he knows which way to go.  People smile when they see him walking along as he looks like he has somewhere to be, like a dog with a job.   He has a cute strut and his little ears flop up and down.


'You know I don't want my picture taken, right?'


'okay well I just won't look then'

'treats you say? '


Funny little Riley fact:   Riley is completely unconcerned about the vacuum cleaner...he will fetch fish to my and drop it next to the moving vacuum and wait for me to throw him.  I also discovered that he likes the hair dryer.  He puts his paws up on my leg and lets me run the dryer over him and he closes his eyes and tucks his head down in enjoyment.  Funny dog!   This is a foster first for me.

Monday, January 25, 2016

RILEY - 1 WEEK FOSTER UPDATE



Riley is doing really well.  He has become more settled throughout the week.  He is a bit active at daycare but his play sessions are short.  Mostly he hangs out and tries to catch as much human attention as he can.  As he gets more comfortable there I'm hoping his playing might increase.  Nonetheless he comes home tired.     
We had a really fun weekend filled with good walks.  We met up with my friend and TG dog Bella for a walk at the beach on Saturday.  We're neighbours so all of my fosters see quite a bit of Bella.  Its nice to watch a relationship form between two dogs.  Mostly they kept their off leash time separate from each other but by the end of the walk I noticed them going to sniff the same things and Riley running ahead a bit more to keep up with Bella.  I'm hoping to see them playing in the coming week.
Riley and Bella
Bella Donna - what a great looking dog hey?
On Sunday, it was back to the beach for a walk with two friends and their TG dogs - Ruedi who really seems to have taken a liking to Riley, and Baby Beans (remember Beans?!).   I didn't catch any pictures of Ruedi but I did get a couple with Beans in them.

Riley and Beans
Beans
Beans is starting to go to Rally-O with her mom.  She definitely found the right home with someone to engage that smart brain in a busy little body.

Riley is great with meeting dogs.  He has good 'greeting' skills with dogs of all sizes.   He sometimes will try to monitor other dog's fun.  If they are chasing each other he will run after them to try to break it up, not biting but just barking at them.  On the weekend I was calling him the 'hall monitor'.  He did find a couple of dogs that caught his interest and he ran with them and had a game of chase that he seemed really happy with.   He spends some time exploring but also checks in and sticks very close by.  Sometimes so close that you look around and think he's gone off somewhere only to find him being your shadow, right at your heel so you don't see him at first. 
Still not a fan of the camera - he pretends to look down the beach.
One of the things we will be working on with Riley is socializing with strangers. With strangers out and about he is relaxed.  He sees people walking around, or right past him and he is fine, because everyone is going about their own business.  But, say for example, he is laying down on his dog bed, if a stranger came up and cornered him, there is a chance he might react negatively out of fear.  At the off leash beach on the weekend he would sniff the odd leg of a person and easily let someone pet him while he was busy meeting another dog,  but mostly he just walked past people paying them no attention and not worrying about them either.  If people give him a chance to make the choice to meet them and they don't rush him, he can warm up quite quickly. He's met a few of my friends and it went really well because they gave him a chance to meet on his terms.

At home we've been playing fetch with a few of his favorite toys - all three of which have squeakers in them.  He is so much fun to play with.  I find myself laughing at his antics.  I sometimes can't believe how much energy he has to run and jump.  He can actually jump quite high for such a little guy.   I think he's built with a spring.
I'm enjoying my time with Riley.  He's easy to have around.  He'll tag along for any walk or activity, but he's equally good with being on the couch to watch some TV.  After the weekend's walks and then daycare today he was so tired that he was laying on the couch, trying to look at me but his eyes were involuntarily blinking shut.  He's happily tired....such a good thing : )

Monday, January 18, 2016

THE FOSTER DROUGHT IS OVER - RILEY 2.0

Riley came back to Turtle Gardens just before Christmas but due to a crazy schedule, I wasn't ready for a foster.  But I am ready now, so I picked up Riley last Friday.  I originally fostered him back in 2011 so this is somewhat familiar territory for both of us, but with some changes.  I live in a different home, he has a bit of grey on his face, I have different dog skills than I had back then and he's learned alot about being a companion in the city.   It's fun to let him tell me his story as we go, especially because he's such a smart little guy. 

At the front door after our walk tonight.

Since I'm in a new home I can only chalk it up to his intelligence that when I said "let's go to bed" on Friday night, that he knew to run to the stairs to head up even though we hadn't been up there yet.  He also shows me how he used to get his harness put on because he puts his front paws on my legs, lets me loop the harness over his head and then lifts up his left leg ready to slip into the leg hole and then patiently waits for me to untwist the ends and click them together.  He wags his tail in excitement for a walk.  On Friday he walked ahead of me, a bit detached but by tonight he was walking beside me some of the time and then walking a bit ahead but looking back to check in regularly.  He walks nicely on the leash and is a good walking companion.  He has good endurance and really enjoyed our walk on Sunday with two friends and their dogs.

At home he is still the same playful dog that I remember.  He is so much fun to play with.  He fetches, chases, plays hide and seek and is really agile.  I can throw a toy for him and ask him to wait without holding his collar.  Despite his excitement to go get it he will wait until I release him with an 'okay'.  He has learned quite a bit since the last time I saw him.  He is quick to catch on to things and is happy to listen to what you ask of him.

Tail is a wagging blur....


Riley doesn't seem to bark very much.  He's been clean inside the house and does his business outside when asked so there's no hanging around waiting when its raining outside.  He likes his treats, as you can see from the picture above, but is not overly fond of the camera being turned his direction.   He'll get used to it....he has a foster mom that blogs after all.

So serious....he was smiling before the camera came out
He had a good first day at dog daycare.  He found a new friend and I'm sure as the days go by he will find many dogs to play with.  I'm told he was a good boy and of course they discovered how great of a cuddler he is. 
A tiring day for Riley.....he sleeps while I type my blog.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

THEEYO IS HOME AND LOVING IT

Coordinating for a dog to fly to their home can be like solving a puzzle.  You get a flight but it doesn't work for the people or you get everyone's schedule lined up but the flight is booked too full.  When you finally get the combination of everything right you hold an excited breath and wait to see it all fit together.  You feel guilty leaving the dog at the airport because you're sure they don't understand what they're doing there, but then you could jump for joy when you hear they've landed safe and sound and are settling into their new home.  The end justifies the means.

Theeyo gets a kong with peanut butter in his flight crate the night before

He has no issue with going in and out of the crate...I think he likes it in there

Crate is all ready with itinerary attached to the top, extra supplies, water dish etc
The first leg of his journey was flying Harbour Air from Richmond to Victoria.  I've taken dogs to Harbor Air a couple of times and have always been super impressed by the staff and how they treat their guests - 2-legged or 4-legged.  He was greeted in Victoria by Marie (thanks Marie....you're awesome!) who had him overnight and put him on his flight with Pacific Coastal (also an awesome company to fly a dog with!) to Prince George where he was picked up by Rob.  Unfortunately, timing didn't allow for both of his new humans to be there but Betty-Jo was back home by tonight and anxious to meet Theeyo too.  So they are now all together and I received the update that made me smile and made me happier than happy!

Theeyo - asleep on Rob's lap....looking so content!
Hi Lisa....
Holy cow is he cute! So much smaller than I imagined he'd be....so, so cute! And a sweet little personality. I've been home for 2 hrs, and it's obvious he is a great fit for us. I think he might be Rob's dog....pretty devoted to Rob's every move......its precious.

What a cuddler, he is curled up on Rob's lap, eyes rolled back in his head, he's so chilled out. He's great, we love him, you have nothing to be sorry about. He is our little guy.......

Oh, he's been on 3 off leash walks and seems to love it....did very, very well I'm told. Had some bliss moments rolling in the tall grass and clover, very nice. I look forward to joining them tomorrow!

He is just doing beautifully, we are thrilled and grateful. He and Frankie have been chasing each other and having a blast. Life is good. Happy Birthday to me!!
Betty-Jo


Theeyo has two dog siblings and the dog he has already been running around with is Frankie who is a TG alumni.   Thanks Betty-Jo and Rob for giving Theeyo such a great home...I know he will be well loved!  I notice in the email update no mention of Theeyo's name....perhaps a name change is in the works?? 

Monday, June 15, 2015

THEEYO'S CLOSE TO BEING HOME

Theeyo has an adoption pending and we're just working out the logistics of getting him home.  His journey will include a short plane ride but it will be well worth it. 



In the last week Theeyo has started to change a bit.  He's more settled, walking better on leash, making more eye contact with me, barking at less things, and trying to eat less things off the ground.  He is a great little dog with oodles of potential.  We have continued to change his dinner routine to add more challenge.  I can now ask him to go to his bed and wait for dinner and he won't move until I give him the 'okay'. 

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He has the sit and down hand signals figured out and is getting pretty good at 'stay' too.  He seems to have a bit of a delay and its longer or shorter depending on what you're asking of him.  For example, if you invite him up onto the couch he'll wait about 5-10 seconds and then come up.  You only need to ask once and then ignore him and he will do it.   Sometimes if I ask him to come to me you can see him process it, he pauses and then he'll come.  He does better if you ask once and then give him time to think about it vs. asking over and over.   He is also better about not barking if you ignore him vs. talking to him about the barking or trying to correct him.  If he is more worried about something when he is barking, then I hold him close, no petting, and remain quiet and he calms faster than any other methods.   He hardly barks at noises outside of my home anymore. 
Something caught his attention outside...but no barking ; )

Much more relaxed when he knows its my dinner being prepared, not his.
On Sunday, we went to MacDonald Beach and it was the first time I'd taken him there.  He loved walking on the sand and I was happy to see that he didn't think the sand was worthy of eating.  I was hesitant to let him off leash because so many smells and other dogs were catching his attention.  I don't think he'd run away but I do think he'd get caught up in checking things out and maybe lose sight of me.  We walked one end to the other and he was so happy to be there.  Probably the happiest I've seen him so far.  He was bouncy and playful with some dogs we met and he really wanted to run.  So, towards the end of our walk I unclipped him and he raced back and forth on the sand.  He ran about 50 or so feet away and turned to look at me and I ran the other direction and he caught up and then ran back again with me. I had no problem getting him back on leash and he'd burned off some steam.  It was awesome to watch him run full tilt like that!  

He was hesitant about the water but he followed me in a few times and I picked him up and put him in and he swam a few paddles and then looked quite pleased with himself.   I think he will take to water quite easily especially if he has another dog to follow in and show him the ropes.   He was really relaxed about me taking him in but I didn't push my luck and only went a few feet from the shore.   I wish I had my camera with me for the day but first time to a new place I find it easier to focus on the dog's experience without taking pictures or video.
Theeyo loves the antler.  Its one of his favorites.

And I wanted to take a picture to show just how much Theeyo has come along in the last 7 weeks.  The picture on the left is Theeyore in the first couple of days with me and the one on the right is a couple of days ago. 
Theeyore isn't so much of an Eeyore anymore!

Friday, June 12, 2015

SOCCER ANYONE?


"Does this angle make my nose look big?"
Theeyo has some real soccer potential but only if the ball has treats inside.  His favorite toy by far has been the orange treat ball.  Its been funny to watch him progress with it.  He's getting faster at getting the treats out and he's also bashing it around harder too.  You should see him when there's just one left and he can't get it out of there.  He really has at it then.

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Sunday, May 24, 2015

THEEYO ASKS: 'WHERE'S MY HOME?'


Theeyo has been with me for 1 month now and not a single inquiry about adopting him.  He's an amazing little dog so it baffles me why he doesn't have multiple applications.

He does well with other dogs, he is friendly with people, good with cats, he rides well in the vehicle, he is cuddly (and don't forget he's cute too!), he walks pretty well on the leash, he is happy to go for walks but is not too high energy that he won't sit and watch movies with you too.  He is smart and very treat motivated.  He plays well with toys although you can't leave him with ripped toys or he tears pieces off and might eat them.

Theeyo is losing weight and is starting to look more like his young age.  He came into rescue at 21.5 pounds and is now 18 pounds!! He is eating a raw food that he loves and we add a bit of kibble for treats throughout the day.  Treats are used either in the Aikiou dish or in an orange ball that he has to roll around so they will drop out of the hole.  He seems to like both activities and gets faster each time.  

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Treats are also used when we're walking as we're working on 'leave it' for things he tries to pick up off the road or sidewalk to chew on - things like dried worms, dead bugs, etc. (yuck!).  He is getting much better at leaving things on his own and better at 'leave it' for things he's still too tempted by.


At dinner time he sits and waits for his dish to land on the floor and we've added eye contact to the requirements before the 'okay' signal to eat.   He is also waiting very nicely in the truck to be invited to come and be lifted out.

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We went into Steveston on the weekend and he navigates through the crowd of people really well.  He walks a nice straight line through people and he is relaxed about it all.  If he sees a dog he will meet them nicely but if we keep moving he's fine without meeting too.   If we sit for a bit he'll stand on a loose leash and watch people and dogs go by.  He'll also sit on your lap and do some serious people watching for a while.


He loves the bread store in Steveston as the guy that owns it came out and gave him a chunk of bread....he made me look like I hadn't fed him in days the way he wolfed that down.  After touring the main streets we went down to the docks and he learned to walk across a few different surfaces.  One ramp that he wouldn't go down a few weeks ago he decided he'd give it a try and went all the way down and back up like a champ. 
Theeyo - walkin' the docks

All of the small challenges that he overcomes teach him to be a more confident dog.  It shows in small ways like not barking at as many strange things, approaching more people without hesitation, sitting up to ride in the truck to watch the trip, asking for affection, etc etc.
Again I ask "where's my home?"