Saturday, 31 December 2011

Happy New Year!

Or as we say in our house: Lang May Yer Lum Reek!

The neighbours have been shooting up fireworks all evening. Edward goes to the window to see what's going on, but he doesn't seem afraid. Let's hope it will go well at midnight.

Thursday, 22 December 2011

William is here

Yesterday our son William came home for Christmas. Edward had not seen him since he was a tiny puppy, so we wondered if he would recognize him. We think he did, for he was more hyper than we've ever seen him.
Edward heard the car coming, and took up his usual place by the window in the hall, where he has a full view of everything that's happening. When he saw William, he began to whinge and wail, while his tail wagged frantically. He could not stand still, but ran around himself in circles.
When William came in, Edward suddenly became a little scared. A big young man who threw himself around his neck was almost too much of a good thing, so he piddled a little bit on the floor.
Finally they both calmed down, and we had a quiet evening around the coffee table, where Edward showed off all of his tricks, hoping to get some bites of "smultring".
For the remainder of the evening, Hubby and I were apparently reduced to a part of the furniture. Edward took no notice of us at all, but followed William like a shadow wherever he went.
It will be very nice for him to have a brother and friend around at Christmas.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Christmas Preparations

We really look forward to our first Christmas with Edward in the house. He will probably be the one with the most presents under the tree this year. If he continues to be good, of course ...

Sometimes you get these very funny situations with dogs, and you almost wonder if they understand what you say. That happened one day when Edward was running aroud and playing wildly in the kitchen. He wasn't well behaved at all, I'm afraid. "What are you going to say to Santa, Eddie?" I asked. "When he comes and asks if you have been a good boy." He skidded to a halt and sat down abruptly. His back was so upright he almost tilted backwards. And then he gently gave me his paw. Aww, wouldn't that melt a mother's heart? We got a good laugh too.
Obviously, Edward will have to get his own Christmas stocking, and Husfruen has challenged her knitting skills, and actually managed to produce a sock - with his name and all. It will be filled with dog treats and hung on the mantel piece.

Edward has also discovered another of Christmas' pleasures - baking! Our Norwegian version of donuts proved to be a real hit. I think they might even challenge bacon pancakes as his favorite food.

Monday, 24 October 2011

Ladders and luck

Hello everyone,
I hope there are still some readers out there who drop by every once in a while, even though I have been terribly bad at blogging lately. Those of you who follow Edward on Facebook, will have seen that a few things have happened in his life. I hope to put out some more news soon. For now, here is today's story.

It all began when Hubby and Husfruen climbed onto the garage roof to do some maintenance work.

Edward, who is terrified of missing out on anything that happens, wanted to join us. He stood in the garden, looking up, whinging and whining, while wishing desperately that he could fly.

He realized he had to climb the ladder to come up, but that isn’t easy for those among us with four legs and paws.

However, Edward decided to give it a go.

It didn’t go well, to say the least. Suddenly the ladder started sliding sideways and with a huge crash it fell over, knocking loose a drainpipe on the way. Whoops!
Edward wasn’t the only one who jumped sky high. There we were, caught on the garage roof, with no possibility of getting down, except for jumping. Bad luck, indeed.
It can’t be denied that a few colourful phrases were shouted in Edward’s direction.

He on the other hand, sat at attention, doing his best to look totally innocent and unconcerned, but it was pretty obvious that he knew he was in trouble.

Fortunately, our neighbour was out working in her garden too, so we managed to call for help. She got a good laugh at our expense.
- What do you say, Eddie? Shall we let them down? She asked Edward, who wagged his tail with an apologetic grin.
So, it all ended well, and Edward escaped scolding yet again. Good luck for us all.
However, we learned a lesson: If you are climbing ladders, make sure the dog is securely tied on a leash on the other side of the house. Edward hopefully learned that ladders are not for dogs.

Unless you are Fatty Arbuckle’s dog, of course. Now, there was a dog that mastered the art of ladder climbing.

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Starry eyes

It's been a long while since the last time we blogged, so I thought it was high time to post a picture of our favourite poodle boy.

 Who can resist such gorgeous eyes? Not us, that's for sure.

Have a nice Sunday!

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Fourth Best in Show

After we went to a Poodle Show last Saturday, we were inspired, so when we suddenly found out that there was going to be a show at the local kennel club today, we decided to show Edward. Obviously, we had no hope of winning anything, after all, he has had no show training whatsoever. We just thought it might be fun, and it would be interesting to hear what a judge's assessment of him.

- DON'T TOUCH MY FEET, I don't like that.
Edward had a thorough bath and blow dry yesterday, as well as getting his face and paws trimmed. Something he really hates. I don't know if he is ticklish or what, but he doesn't like us touching his paws at all, so using the clippers on them freaks him out. Tough, but it has to be done, and he is simply going to have to get used to it.

FLUFF BALL. - Are you sure I don't look too girly being fluffed up like this?
This morning we gave him a final brushing before we set off. As you can see, we are total amateurs. We don't have a fancy grooming table or combs or anything. We just put him on the kitchen table and use a normal hairbrush. In time I'm sure we'll acquire all sorts of grooming equipment, but for now we'll get by with what we have.

HELLOOO. - Doesn't anybody want to play with me?
We knew it was going to be an outdoor show, so we had brought warm jackets, comfortable camping chairs and a thermos full of hot tea. All of which we were glad to have as the rather cold autumn day progressed.
Edward always gets very excited when there are children and other dogs around, so he found it very difficult to understand why he couldn't run around and play with them. What's more, everybody was busy with their own dogs, so he got very little attention from people at all, which made him sulk a little.

LUCKY DOG. - I want a little pink girl too.
Edward was very jealous of this American Spaniel who had a little girl to walk around and play with.

FINALLY, a friendly dog who will spend a few moments with me.
When Hubby was walking Edward around the ground so that he could stretch his legs a bit, he talked to a woman with a huge mixed breed dog, mainly Rottweiler. She went on and on about how good and disciplined it was, but suddenly it attacked poor Eddie and bit him. Not seriously, but it was probably painful. Without going in to detail, let's just say that one of Edward's gonads looks a bit worse for wear. We'll have to watch that, in case it gets infected.

FASTER! I want to run.
As we had expected, Edward didn't perform all that well in the ring. Walking to heel is something he hasn't mastered yet. He is always in a hurry, no matter what direction we are going, and pulls hard on his lead. We had been out yesterday and bought him a brand new show lead, but that didn't help much.

HEY! What's going on over there?
Edward's greatest fear is missing out on something that's going on, so keeping him focused is very difficult. He always has an eye out for anything that might be happening elsewhere. It was the same today. There was so much to look at, that his attention was all over the place, instead of on what he was supposed to be doing in the ring.

WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU'RE DOING? - Who is this lady touching me all over?
Edward, who is usually thrilled to bits when meeting new people and will willingly submit to be petted by anyone, was for some reason a bit apprehensive about letting the judge examine him. However, he stood still and let her do her business.

WAITING for the judgement. - What does she think of me?
While waiting as the judge looked at all the other dogs, Eddie finally found his focus. He self-stacked beautifully and stood there so quiet and nice, but alas, the judge wasn't looking then.

BORING. - She is taking her time about it, isn't she?
This is what the judge had to say about Edward:

  • Elegant movements
  • Nice expression
  • Good chest
  • Needs more body mass
  • Good angles
  • Good ears
  • Correct bite
  • Nice lines

A PRIZE! Did I win something?
Since he was the only standard poodle that was being shown today, it was no great surprise that Edward won Best of Breed. Not a real victory then, but for us it was just fun to get a prize.

LOOKING POISED. - This little trifle? Oh, it was nothing really. 
Naturally we had to take a photo on this proud occasion, and Edward suddenly looked very regal wearing his red and gold prize.

For a few seconds anyway...

I WON, I WON, I WON, I WON!!!!!!!
Well, we though that was it. So you can imagine our surprise when we were called back for he Best in Show award, and even more so when Edward was picked out to be in the top four.

A REAL PRIZE. - I am recognized for my beauty at last.
He ended up at number four. The judge said he was a great representative for his breed, but he didn't perform well enough in the ring to get higher up. She would have liked to have seen him show off his attributes better.
We're not disappointed at all. If we can get to fourth place without training, then we have potential. Now we have a better idea of what to work with, so it's up to us to make an effort.

PROUD. - This is what I won today. I think I'll take that cup to bed with me. 
So now we're home and Eddie's back on the kitchen table with his winnings. Two prizes, a towel, four kilos of the best puppy food and a shiny little trophy.
It was a big day for Edward, and it was clear to see that he enjoyed all the commotion. Now he is totally crashed on the rug in front of the fireplace, sleeping blissfully and dreaming noisily. Probably about winning the BIS sometime in the future.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Ticked off

VILE VILLAINS. Ticks are repulsive and dangerous little critters.

Apparently, there were a lot of ticks around this summer. Something we started noticing around May. Edward kept getting a number of these creepy crawlies on him, particularly on his face. That made it easier for us to spot them, but infinitely worse to remove them, since he couldn’t stand it when we tried to use the tick remover. We often ended up having to forcibly restrain a hysterical puppy, to be able to get the damned thing off him.

TICK MAGNET. A puppy that is constantly rolling around in long grass and undergrowth is an easy target for the ticks.
Some ticks carry the bacterial disease Lyme Borreliosis, which is transmitted via their bites. This can cause a number of serious conditions in humans unlucky enough to get it, but these ticks aren’t just dangerous to people. Dogs can also become ill and develop symptoms like aching joints and fever. If left untreated, it can be fatal. Consequently, it is very important to remove the tick as soon as possible.

The tick remover from Clas Ohlson turned out to be quite handy. Once you get the loop around the body of the tick, you can gently pull it backwards and the whole animal comes out, with all its wriggly legs intact.

The only problem was actually getting it in place. The thin skin just above Eddies eyes appeared to be a favourite spot for the ticks to attach themselves, but it was easier said than done to make a puppy sit still long enough for us to remove them. He was thrashing about so frantically that I was terrified of poking his eye out.
Usually we ended up pulling out a fair bit of fur as well, which probably hurt and made him even more apprehensive about the whole thing.

PAINFUL. Getting fur pulled out as well as the tick is probably rather uncomfortable.
This was becoming stressful for both Edward and us, so we asked the vet for advice. She said there was a spray we could use, but since Eddie was given a bath once a week, a tick collar would probably be more practical. It would last the entire summer season.

EFFECTIVE. The collar repelled the ticks from day one.
The Scalibor tick collar proved to be very effective. Edward kept up his habit of crawling through bushes and tall grass, and every night we gave him a thorough check over, but we never found another tick. Even if it said on the package that the collar had to be on for some days to reach full effect, it worked like a charm from the moment we put it on him.

MIXING BUSINESS AND PLEASURE. A belly rub gives you the chance to check if everything is as it should be.
We spend a little time everyday giving Edward an all over check up. He simply loves lying on the floor, getting his belly rubbed, and that gives us a chance to look at these hard to reach places like the armpits and between the toes. We found several ticks that way. If he has any small scratches, we’ll see them too, and that way we can keep an eye on how they heal.

DISCREET. The tick collar is hidden by the fur and is hardly visible.
The tick collar was bright white. (It isn’t anymore. A summer of playing around the garden has given it a distinctly greyish look.) It wasn’t exactly pretty. We thought that it would probably not look very nice on Edward, but since we have let the hair around his neck grow, it is hardly visible. Edward doesn’t seem to mind it in the slightest.

TICK FREE. Edward has been using his tick collar all summer,
and has been protected from both disease and discomfort.
Now the summer is over and we won’t have to worry about ticks for a while. Every cloud has a silver lining. Next year we will buy a new tick collar in April, saving both ourselves and Edward lots of stress and discomfort. 

Saturday, 3 September 2011

Beggars Banquet

First published in Norwegian on 8 April.
It is awfully easy to be an expert on things you have no practical experience of. This includes raising a puppy. Before Edward came, we had thought that there was no way we would allow a dog to beg at the table. Simply never give him anything at the table, that ought to be a cinch. Or so we thought.

YUMMY. Eddie gets his first chicken meatball.
Then reality hits, and you’re worried sick that the puppy isn’t eating enough and that he is getting too thin. The day before yesterday, I was making chicken meatballs and thought that this must be good food for a growing puppy, being rich in protein and all. So I gave Edward one. Then I’d done it. Now I have a black furry shadow following my every move around the kitchen. When we sit down to eat, he sits there watching happily expecting a treat. Hmm, what to do?

PUPPY DOG EYES. Have you got a treat for me?
We really are worried that Edward does not get enough nutrients. So far, he has shown very little interest in dry dog food. He has a bit for breakfast, but the rest of the day he doesn’t eat much, and all in all he probably eats less than half of the recommended daily dose. When it comes to canned food, on the other hand, he has a fierce appetite. It must taste incredibly good, because he almost licks the enamel off his bowl, and always goes back after a few minutes to see if by some miraculous way he actually hadn’t eaten it all up after all. However, the recommendation is that dry food should be his staple diet, and we don’t want a puppy that goes on hunger strike if he doesn’t get his favourite treat for lunch every day.
So now we have decided that he should only get canned food once a day – for his lunch. The rest of the day will be strictly dry food, and hopefully he’ll learn that lunch is the only meal where he can expect something extra.
Maybe we should try to vary the dry food a little? Or is it true what they say that dogs don’t really care about variation?

Could it be that Edward can actually control his food intake himself? Do we really need to worry about this? Ah, all the questions you struggle with as a new dog owner! 

Chew on this

First published in Norwegian on 7 April.
We knew, of course, that puppies like to chew things, so we prepared ourselves with an array of chewy toys before we got Edward home. They have had varying degrees of success. The chewy bones are undoubtedly his favourite. He can lie quietly gnawing on them for hours, and he looks like he is enjoying himself thoroughly. What he seems to like best, is to lie under the kitchen table and chomp away while we are eating.

FAVOURITE TOY. Edward is never far away from his chewy bone.
Sometimes he plays very aggressively with his chewy bone. He takes on a very fierce look, growls and woofs and gives it a proper thrashing. Evidently, his blanket needs a good talking to every now and then as well, and it is violently shaken, before he lies down to chew on it.

SHAKE IT. That blanket has obviously been misbehaving and Eddie is telling it off.
Rugs and towels are popular toys for tug of war, which seems to be very fun. We got the advice that we must never let the puppy win in such games because he could interpret that as having a dominant role in the family. We have to admit we are unsure of these things, but still we make sure we always win. Edward seems to love the game anyway.

THE CHEWY ROPE is another popular toy.
If he tries to chew on something he isn’t allowed to play with, we quickly offer him an alternative, and his attention is easily diverted. Sometimes when he plays with us, it gets a bit out of control, and he will try to bite us or chew on our fingers. If he is too excited a “No” doesn’t have much effect. We grab him around his nose and tell him off, but perhaps not hard enough, because he’ll try again until we ignore him. Perhaps we just ought to stop the game as soon as he starts with this sort of thing?
He also has a tendency to piddle a little bit when he gets very excited, but he has become fairly good at going outside, even though there will be a couple of accidents every day. He pees on the floor if it has been too long since the last time he was out, so it is really up to us to take him out more often. We have put out some newspapers on the floor, but unfortunately he doesn’t go on them, so the mop gets more use than normal these days.

CHEAP TOY. Toilet roll cores make good toys.
Edward seems to think that anything can be played with. Paper is incredibly fun and toilet roll cores are great. That was actually his idea. He just went into the bathroom and helped himself to one lying on the floor.
Today he has learned to shake hands. The problem now is that he sits and gives his paw before we ask him for it. We have to remember to say the command anyway, so that he learns to connect the words to the action.

BYE BYE! That was today’s report from me.

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Dad's home

HAPPY DOG! Edward was all smiles when he saw his Daddy again.
Hubby has been away for more than a week now, and poor Edward has been pining for him. Everyday he has been wandering around the house, looking and sniffing for his Dad in every room. When he couldn't find him he would walk back to Husfruen, flop down on the floor with a heavy thud and sigh. Apparently life is pretty boring without Hubby around the house.

YAY! That tail wouldn't stop wagging when Hubby got down on the kitchen floor to play.
I took Edward with me to the airport to pick up Hubby. When we first saw him coming out of the terminal building, Eddie was a little bit confused for a second or two, then he just jumped on his Dad - smiling widely and wagging his tail. When we walked to the car, he didn't walk, but bounced - backwards, because he couldn't stop looking at Hubby.

PLAYING and rubbing belly.
When we got home the two of them had a long playing and hugging session on the kitchen floor.

BIG BOY. Hubby thought he could see that Edward had grown in the last week.
Now, things have settled down and we're all going to have a nice and quiet evening together.

- I THINK HE MISSED ME, just as much as I missed him.

Monday, 15 August 2011

What a morning

Poor Eddie has been sick during the night. We slept like babies and didn't notice a thing until this morning when we were greeted by pathetic whining and a nasty smell from his cage. He had thrown up and had diarrhea all over the place, poor little thing.
In an attempt to keep it away from his sleeping area, he had put his bottom up against the wall of the crate and sprayed the walls and carpet liberallyMy oh my, what a job we had to get everything cleaned. We even had to break away some skirting boards, because it had seeped down behind them. Fortunately, we have some industry strength odour eliminator with enzymes, which is very effective.
Eddie had to go straight in the shower, even though he had a bath last night. He was not happy, but there was no way around it, unfortunately. The crate had to be carried out on the lawn and hosed down.
We have no idea why Eddie had a bad stomach. As far as we know, he has not eaten anything unusual. However, he could of course have gobbled up something in the garden when we haven't been looking. This is after all a puppy who thinks it's a good idea to be snacking on slugs and rotten leaves.
He was pretty miserable for few hours, but now he seems to have recovered a little, so we'll take him out for a stroll around the neigbourhood. A bit of fresh air will probably do him good.

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Football match

Today we had a football match in the garden between our visiting Liverpool supporter and Edward, who isn't quite sure which team he supports yet. He might be talked into being a Liverpoodlean, but his Dad is a Geordie, so he should really support Newcastle.

Edward loves his football and never gets tired of playing. Even though he wore a leash, he managed to run rings around the Scouse-lover.

Not many people can keep up with Eddie when he's at full speed.

- COME AND GET IT, if you can.
- HMM, you're not in the same league as Solskjaer, are you?
- HA HA, I dribbled him off his feet.
- COME ON, GET UP! Don't sit there and complain.
- OFFSIDE? Never.
Being just half a meter above the ground, and having four legs, probably gives Edward quite an advantage when it comes to football. He managed to wear out his opponent completely, but it was fun while it lasted.