Friday, July 31, 2015

FFHT - Phod's Annual Check Up

Today is Murphy and Stanley's FFHT. For this post you have to use one sentence, it will be in red in the story.

Yesterday was Phod's annual check up at the vet. Step one was getting him into the car. He went outside with me happily enough, but when he realized Hailey wasn't coming too, he went by a tree and made himself as flat as possible. I had to carry him to the car. I couldn't lift him all the way in, so I put his front paws in and stood behind him until he jumped in. This took about 5 minutes and I wished I had someone tape it.

He did well on the drive. He was happy to look out the window. He drooled but was not sick. It was the first time he ever had eaten that day and not thrown up in the car. Mind you I only gave him half his breakfast.

Phod was a champ at the vet. He was a little nervous, but in control. Friendly to others and cooperative during his exam.

Here is the summary of Zaphod:

Weight: 75 lbs (34 kg) - he is perfect and needs to maintain this
Teeth: A little wear but great (Man was worried)
Ears: Has a yeast infection again. We will clean it up and then make sure we are cleaning his ears at least 2 times a week. Shepherds have a lot of ear infections.
Joints: I have noticed some stiffness, especially in his hips. Woody did a full exam and didn't notice anything.  He said it is hard to tell just from feeling and listening in a large dog, but he isn't too worried. He suggested that since it is an always occurrence we don't do any more tests on it now. He said to try some glucosamine. He said it may or may not work, but there are no real side effects so worth trying. He gave us the dose and said to go to Costco because it is cheaper.  The Man wants to take some, so we will pick some up for the boys in our house!
Overall: He is great!

Now on to the Hailey talk:
First, I had noticed that a lot of foods say adult to age 6, so my first question was, should she start senior food in the winter?  He said no - she will be fine until she is 8 or 9.

Next anxiety - we talked about our options and ended up with prozac. We will pick that up tomorrow (hopefully our little drug store will have it) and try it for 30 days to see it if it helps. The main side effects are weight gain and overeating. We will watch her carefully.

This visit was very much a dog focused visit, which is totally different from Hailey's visit in the spring where we just chatted about the family. (Woody and I have been friends for 21.5 years now, so my visits are social and medical).

Tomorrow cousin Emma and Uncle Chris are coming for a visit, yay!

Catch up with you all soon!

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Home Again - by Lady

After a few days at my parents we have returned home. The drive there is about 9 hours one way and both pups did really well in the car. Phod still doesn't love it, but he wasn't sick in the car (we did give him his pill to help). He was sick when we got home. I think he may have drank too much water too quickly as he threw up water. (It was the hottest July 29 since 1892 at 34.3 C/94F + the humidex). Overall they were great! (We will see how Phod does today in the car as I have to take him for his annual check up later today . . . . . . . )

This is the name of the cottage
My parents live in Point Clark, Ontario. They live in a renovated and winterized version of a toll house that my great grandparents had moved to this sight in the 1930s. The "cottage", as I will forever call it, has been in the family for about 85 years. My grandmother, who is now 93, believes she was 8 or 9 when her parents got it.

I grew up near the cottage and have many fond summer memories (as it was only winterized 10 years ago and moved from true cottage to house).  I love sharing this place with my dogs.

Barley, he really thinks he is a lap dog

Zaphod enjoying an early morning swim 

Tendra, drying off on the deck

Hailey, watching it all happen

Tuesday, July 28, 2015


We are late in posting this as we had 10 hours of guests yesterday and just didn't have time to get to the computer. Family and friends came in what felt like the droves to see us! It was nice to catch up with everyone.

Even without all those visitors we have been really busy at the beach.

First there was some rolling in goose poop that had to happen.

And some shaking

And some swimming and playing fetch (Tendra left, Zaphod right)

 And some running after the ball that Grandma threw.

Some more fetch (Zaphod and Tendra)

And of course waiting for snacks (Barley, Tendra and Zaphod)

The time at the beach is lots of fun!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Mischief Monday - Beach Edition

For the most part my pups and my parents labs, Barley and Tendra, have gotten along swimmingly and have all done really well with the craziness of having 4 dogs in the house. The boys occasionally make sure the other is in check, but nothing major. As I am writing this post they are having a growling match over a chew, neither wants but they don't want the other to have. That is a little mischief! 

Even though they are mostly good, this doesn't mean that there hasn't been some mischief.

All the following have been taken on phones or iPads. We will get some nice pictures tomorrow (put pressure on me to remember to bring out the actual camera!). Here are some other examples of mischief. 

Example 1 

If you sit on the couch, which is Barley's, he will sit on you. That is me under his 90 lb frame (petting Zaphod who was also on the couch). It is all fun and games until Barley sees a bird out the window and jumps off you. Fortunately he usually give a little grunt sound before the jump so you can protect parts of you. 

Example 2

While we have access to a beach at home, it isn't right out the front window. There is a small fenced area to keep my parents dogs in. During his last visit Phod discovered he could jump the fence and take himself for a swim. There have been several times Phod has clearly thought about going for another swim alone. He has been good and not done it . . . . yet. Here he is looking longingly at the lake. 

Example 3 and the Mischief Winner

No surprise that my girl wins the award for mischief. Our first night at the lake . . . the Man and I were exhausted as we were up before 5 am and drove for 9 hours. We were excited to be going to bed and just as we were settling in when the fireworks started. Hailey became very anxious. We tried all the usual things and nothing helped. She even tried to dig her way into my parents room (fortunately they didn't hear her as apparently they were very tired). Finally, we did the following: Turned on the lights and played classical music.  This seemed to help. After some time we were able to turn off the lights and music. The next day she was very tired.


For those who had questions about Iceland, I will answer them this coming Saturday on the part 6 of the adventure post!

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Lady's Birthday Adventure Part 5

Today is about fire. Iceland is one of the newer land structures on this planet and is continually growing. There is a rich geological record of previous volcanoes too. There are currently 22 active volcanoes in Iceland. You all may remember in 2010 when a lot of flights all over the world (for 6 days I believe) were grounded because of an eruption.

All this volcanic activity does effect how people live. They have seismic activity almost daily (we didn't feel any). We met travellers who were monitoring it constantly (we figured if something happened, someone would tell us!) They have emergency plans for what to do in the event of an eruption, especially in the south where most of the major activity is (read about it in one of our lodgings).  Iceland is the leader in geothermal technology. We stayed in several places where the water and heat was from a geothermal source. Also, they love their hot springs and heated pools. The most famous being Blue Lagoon. We didn't go there, we went to the big hot spring near Myvaan. Almost every town we stayed in had a pool and hot tubs, often using natural water as the source.

We did not see any lava on this trip (guess I am saving that for my trip someday to Hawaii as it is a bucket list item), we did see a lot of signs that there was thermal activity going on underneath the ground.  Here is a sample.

The first place we saw it was at:

These are the types of signs you see around the "hot spots"

This next picture, we aren't sure what type of geothermal activity we are seeing. It was across the lake in Thingvellir National Park. 

Then of course there are geysers. The original geyser, which all others are named for, is in Iceland. It  use to erupt very frequently, but now it rarely does. 

The name fit as that is how big it is!
This is the most active geyser in the geyser park. It goes off about every 10 minutes. We saw it "erupt" at least 4 times during our visit.

This is what the geyser "pool" looks like between eruptions.

The next picture is on the glacier in Eyjafjallajokull.  This is near volcano Kalta, a sub glacier volcano. According to our guide, scientists expect a major eruption from Kalta. It has been showing signs of activity since 1999.  If you look close at this picture on the rock at the back in the middle, you see what looks like an antenna. This is a volcano monitoring system.

Next up, we had our visit to Mars. It is just what I pictured the red planet looking like. 

This is near Mytan. It appeared to be a natural "hot spring" (no swimming aloud) that had geothermal pipes near it. 

We didn't see lava but we did climb 3 volcano craters. The first Hverfell:

I admit it was much further up then I expected! 

At the top!

Next up:

It is interesting to me how different the rock formations are around very similar geological events! 

Finally, Saxholl. This is where I sprained my ankle. We were walking and I stepped on a loose rock and rolled it. The first words out of my mouth were not HBO ones but rather, "I didn't just sprain my ankle!". Fortunately it was the second last day of the trip and was a minor sprain that only was a problem for about 2 weeks.

That is a look at some of the fire or hints of fire we saw. I will share some of the cool lava rock formations in a later post about rocks. Come back next week for a ice and snow and one of our favourite places. 

Friday, July 24, 2015

Feline Friday - Remembering Bagheera and Changes

Yesterday was one year since Bagheera died peacefully in his sleep.

He was the first pet the Man and I had, and we shared just over 19 years together. He was a grumpy but loving boy, who truly thought he was a panther.  He knew what he liked and didn't and wasn't afraid to tell everyone.  As I mentioned last week, I still see him around the house in shadows. I am not surprised he is the one who haunts me as we had a special relationship.

It has now been just over 3 weeks that our house has not had a cat. There have been a few changes in the house. First, it is the first time in about 15 years that there has not been a gate that needed to be moved to get into the laundry room. The laundry room has served as a litter room too. To keep those pesky pups out of it, it has been gated. I must admit this is a change I like as I am not having to put the basket down to fiddle with it.

Secondly, I am now use glass cups and not plastic ones far more often. When I am at home I usually have a glass of water on the go. For years I shared this water with 2 cats. They would jump up and put their heads in. Because my water got knocked over often enough, I switched to plastic, so at least I wouldn't be dealing with glass and spilt water. Now there is none to share with, so glass it is. While I really prefer drinking out of glass, I do miss sharing.

Bagheera - Taken on his 17th birthday

Tomorrow will be Lady's birthday adventure part 5 - all about fire. While you are all reading that, we will be jammed into the car heading to visit Grammie and the Big Guy and Tendra and Barley for a few days at the lake. Last year, Lady and Phod went alone. This year, all 4 of us are going. We are sure we will have some great adventures! 

Thursday, July 23, 2015

The Look of Fear

Last Sunday was a sort of stormy one for us. I, as always, was excited for a good storm, and slightly disappointed it wasn't actually much of a storm. 

Hailey on the other hand was not happy. She was extra unhappy that the Man left the house. He seems to bring her more comfort than I do. She didn't go into her cave but spent much of the day in the games room on her recliner. When Man did get home, she was glued to him (and constantly in the way while he was making dinner).

Tuesday night was windy again, and Hailey found comfort being locked in the closet, so we all got some sleep. 

Phod's vet appointment is in a week. Hopefully our vet will have some helpful suggestions. 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Tasty Tuesday - Bones

We are very careful which bones we give our pups and when they get bones for our dinner, the generally get to chew them while the Man holds them. Phod hasn't figured this out and doesn't like it. Hailey on the other hand is totally into chewing on the bone.