Jul 312009
 

to Part 2

And with that, our moms decided to pull us apart again.  But then I heard “Let’s go in this direction” and off we went, Rosie first and me following.

We were letting Rosie set the pace.  I, of course, wanted to race on ahead, and so my mom had to keep pulling on my lead to slow me down. The idea was to keep space between Rosie and me so that Rosie could get comfortable with me.  Between the two of us, I want to be friends with everybody and she’s a little more protective, so the moms decided to keep the space as  Rosie felt more comfortable.  But my mom was working very hard and it was getting exhausting for her so she said, “How about if Joey and I go first, and Rosie and you follow.” That was agreed to and this system worked pretty well.

We kept this up all around the block and ended up back home. There we stopped.  Mom said,” I need to go inside and get Joey some water.” Rosie’s mom said that she had water with her.  Off I went into our home to drink.  Unfortunately my mom had to say “Joey, drink” because I was too excited to know to drink. But I listened to her.

Soon I was ready for another lap around another block.

Off we all went, my mom and me first, then Rosie and her mom.

Here’s a photo of us when a neighbor was walking by and said “Oh, two chocolates!” Our whole group stopped while the moms and the neighbor talked and talked.

two chocolates!

two chocolates!

It was shortly after this when we continued our walk toward home. Our moms decided for us that this was enough for our first walk together. I could have kept on going but it looks like I wasn’t the one making the decisions here.

At one point I kissed and licked my sister, telling her how much I liked her. She wasn’t much in the mood for being kissed right then and the moms decided to respect Rosie’s wishes, and that’s okay.

Once in front of our home again, my mom got out her bag of treats and gave me a treat and said “Good boy.” Then Rosie’s mom gave Rosie a treat and said “Good girl.”  Then my mom gave me another treat.  Then Rosie’s mom gave Rosie another treat.  Then mom mom gave Rosie a treat and said “Good girl”.  Then Rosie’s mom handed me a treat that she dropped on the ground but that Rosie got to before I could. Then she gave me a treat and said “Good boy”.  All in all, there were a lot of treats given and eaten, and Rosie and I were happy dogs, and a happy new extended family!

Here’s a photo of my newly-found sister and littermate, on the day of our reunion!

my sister, on the day of our first reunion

my sister, on the day of our first reunion

Oh, and of course when my mom and I got back inside our home, the first thing she did was to go into the kitchen, to where I followed her, and said was “Joey, drink water!”  And I did!

***
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Jul 302009
 

This post is a continuation from part 1.

Who would have believed that after getting hit by a car and being so injured, a dog could have such a wonderful morning as this one!

We all remained like this for a few minutes, with Rosie on the sidewalk with her mom and me on the front steps with mine.

Just then, one of our family friends came by. He loves and understands dogs and he loves and understands me and I love him and “Lucky” is his black Labrador Retriever (and I can always smell Lucky all over Al when Al comes over and besides, Al always knows when to give me a treat) so when Al heard that my sister was here and he saw her, right away he went over to her and they made friends. This made Rosie feel more comfortable, too.

our friend Al introduces himself to Rosie.  Rosie and Al make friends.

Our friend Al introduces himself to Rosie. Rosie and Al make friends.

After Rosie seemed relaxed with Al and  I was okay with sitting and looking on, our moms decided it was time for me to get a little closer to Rosie.

Somehow I got the signal from my mom that it was okay to go a little closer. Maybe she let out on the lead a little; maybe she said “Joey, come”, I’m not sure. But we were able to communicate just fine.

This time, I was allowed to go right to the sidewalk but my mom kept me a few feet away from Rosie. Honestly, this is very difficult for me because I wanted to get close right away, but my mom held me back. (Actually, she gave my lead to Al, who is pretty strong and knows me and knew exactly what to do to keep me a few feet from Rosie .)  It was only for a little while though, so it was okay.

Rosie and I are exploring each other still from a distance but closer

Rosie and I are exploring each other still from a distance but closer.

You can see in the photo how much I’m trying to get closer to Rosie but Al has to work hard to restrain me. Rosie is interested in me too, and her mom has to work hard to restrain her. At night my parents said things like “We were smart in waiting to get Rosie and Joey together so far after his surgery and after his bandages were removed because he was putting a lot of pressure on his leg, pushing on it to get closer to Rosie, and in these last few weeks his leg has gotten strong enough to handle this.” I guess they’re right. And I’m not complaining. This is a great day – any day!

After a few minutes, our moms decided that it was time to allow the next big step! We both were eager for this next step.

nose to nose

nose to nose

This was really a fun moment.  It was also a good moment.

Shortly after that, Rosie allowed me to lick her face a little. This was my way of inviting her to play and to tell her that I like her and want to take care of her!  Rosie let me lick her face for a moment and I heard “That’s good enough for now.  Let’s maybe start walking soon. We don’t want to do too much too fast. We have lots of time; let’s not push it.”

And with that, our moms decided to pull us apart again.  But then I heard “Let’s go in this direction” and off we went, Rosie first and me following.

I’ll tell you more about our first reunion tomorrow; please enjoy these photos!

*****Now you can go to Part 3. ***

Jul 292009
 

It pays to stay calm.  Sometimes life after a trauma is better than it was before!

The day that I never thought would arrive has arrived! My mom must have been pretty good keeping secrets from me – almost as good as I am keeping secrets from her! Rosie has accepted our invitation to play and my mom has decided that I’m strong enough and healthy enough to now go for a walk around the block with my littermate.

Last night my Mom said something like “Go to sleep, Joey. Tomorrow will be a big day. We’re going to see Rosie!” but I didn’t really get what she was saying.

This morning I was inside and my mom was outside. I knew something big was going on outside but I couldn’t see what.  Still, I could hear it.  What had happened was this: A car had pulled up to the sidewalk outside our home and Elisabeth, Rosie’s mom, had gotten out then Rosie had gotten out.  Elisabeth and my mom had decided to keep me inside the home while Rosie got comfortable in a new place and with new people.

But when my mom came inside, I could smell Rosie all over her hands and arms. I kept sniffing for more and more information: Where was she? Would she be happy to see me? Could we play soon? It was wonderful! I could barely contain myself and if I had been a water balloon I would have exploded. This was Rosie, my littermate; we were born together ten years ago!

Soon my mom put me on my lead and slowly allowed me to go outside. First she had me sit on the front step of our home for a while, while Rosie remained on the sidewalk. Rosie and I just looked at each other and got comfortable like that for a while. It was pretty difficult. I wanted to get up but my mom would say “Sit” so I remained, according to her instructions.  You can see from the photo, from how perked my ears were, that I wanted to head straight for Rosie. But I obeyed my mom.

While I was there and Rosie was their, our moms were saying things like “Good boy” and “Good girl” so that each of us felt loved and comfortable in this new setting and situation.

Then things got even better!

I’m going to write more about our exciting morning later but I want you to see photos of me and of my sister and littermate those first moments, the first moments of our reunion.We see each other for the first time in ten years!

Life is getting back to normal – slowly but surely. Actually, life is better than normal! Today started with a big surprise – a good one. It’s great and exciting to have my sister back in my life after all these years!

We get used to each other little by little

Now please go to Part 2.

******************************

Jul 012009
 

Here is the topic that many of you have been asking about.  what happened here

As the weeks go by, my new coat is growing in and the bald spots where I was shaved are disappearing.  I never pay any attention to these areas of baldness. They don’t mean anything to me.   I’m not one to pay attention to looks. When I meet a person or a dog, the first thing I do is to sniff and see if the scent is attractive to me. With people, I sense if this person is friendly and most people I meet are friendly so that I’m happy.  I never care what another animal or person looks like.

Also, when my parents are out walking me, people stop and stare – fewer now than in the beginning. That didn’t mean anything to me either. When I’m out walking, other things are much more important to me.

But my mom says that it’s time for me to write about this this issue of my bald spots. So here goes:

I have a number of separate places where I was shaved and toward which people point and then ask, “What’s that?” or “What happened here?” And usually I have to stand still so my parents can explain each spot, which is really annoying to me but which I’m getting better about standing still while people talk about me. But let me get back to the story that you want to know.

I was shaved on two occasions. The first time was the first day that I was admitted to the hospital as a patient, right after the accident.  This is where I received the large square you see, the bald patch closest to my neck. I was shaved here so that the doctors could apply a patch that contained some medicine so that I did not feel pain. That patch remained on my skin for maybe two weeks.

In addition, the  emergency room doctors shaved all around my leg because I had many wounds to my leg that had to be cleaned up and have antibiotic creams applied. One area of my leg had an open wound which Dr. B closed surgically; by that I mean he stapled the skin closed. So my whole leg had to be shaved so that the emergency room team could patch me up.

The next time I was shaved was one month later, right before my ankle surgery.  Here the surgeons really went to town shaving my leg. I think they left me some coat – but not much.  The whole area had to be clean and sterile for the surgery.grounded

There is also a rectangular spot in the middle of my back, above my tail. This was where I was grounded so that, during the surgery, I did not receive an electric shock.

This sounds strange to a lot of people. I don’t understand any of this so don’t ask me; ask my parents. Actually, don’t even ask my mom because she doesn’t understand about electricity either. Understanding electricity is, to my mom, kind of like my understanding why I cannot dig my way out of the garden: Neither of us gets it. So maybe you can ask my dad. He understands electricity.  Or maybe a doctor or veterinarian will make a comment onto my blog and explain it to you. All I can tell you is that it was done to protect me so that I was safe. And that’s the most important thing!

The best thing about telling this story, from my point of view, is that after my mom took the photo of me that you see to the right, during which time I had to stand perfectly still, she said “Good boy!” and gave me a treat.

Jul 012009
 

Hello, friends.

Many readers of my blog do not have the time to go through the comments to each post and page.  You are occupied with walking your dogs, purchasing dog food for them, taking them to the veterinarian, feeding them, and, hopefully, taking them to dog parks and off-lead dog areas! At least once a day, you get in your cars and drive away (or walk away) and leave us dogs at home, and go – where? And then you come back home to us in the evening, and spend your evenings at home with us.

So my mom and I have decided to help you by summarizing the comments that the readers of my blog have sent to me.

I started my blog in April, after I was hit by the car.  Blogging was good because I could not meet new dog friends due to my injuries (unless I was making friends in the animal hospital).  In May, from my blog, I made a lot of new friends.

One of my new friends from the month of May was Rachel.  Rachel, in my post “read my ears”, wrote about her beagle Mason and about how good his sense of smell is.  She wrote how Mason uses his ears to help him smell!  It is important for dog owners to understand just how good our noses are, because, as Rachel noted, dogs will just follow a scent when they are outdoors and not pay any attention to where the scent is leading them.  The scent could lead us off of the property, and it could lead us right into the street. And with our noses down, we won’t see anything like cars and other moving things in the roads.  This can be bad for dogs if we are off-lead. Read this post and comments for more details.

In May, I also made friends with Ellen. In my post “dogs don’t look both ways”, Ellen wrote about a cockapoo named Julie.   She says that Julie, an intelligent dog, knew how to look both ways for traffic, and to stop and wait until the traffic had passed. I am not so sure about this: Even if Julie sits down on the sidewalk and moves her head, I’m not sure if she understands what she is looking for, and understands the danger, and to wait.  My mom says that given the number of dogs who are hit by cars each year, it’s safer to assume that the dog does not know and understand.  On this point, Rachel said that Mason has to be on the lead at all times when outside, or she will pick up a scent and disappear in an instant.

Other friends who I made in May are Jerry, and Jamie, and Mike. All of these friends wished me well, and liked my blog and the photos, especially the photos of me and my bandages.  They asked a lot of questions, such as “How long do you have to keep the cast on?“. That was an interesting question, because she asked it right around the time that I started chewing on my splint and had to start going for bandage changes more often. For more details, read my post, “i’m definitely getting better“.

In one of my posts, “designer bandages“, I wrote about a dog’s perception of colors. Raviva also expressed the idea that “I never knew that people and dogs saw things differently“.  She is a good reason why I am writing this blog:  Most people, including my mom (at least, before I was hit by the car) do not understand that dogs and humans perceive colors differently, and I am hoping to educate them a little.  Actually, I never understood that people don’t see as well at night as we dogs do, and don’t smell as well as we dogs do. What a shame!

So this is a little summary of my new friends who wrote to me back in May, right after I was injured.

Thanks, pals, for writing to me and becoming my friend!

May 182009
 

Can you tell what a dog is thinking by reading his ears?  Learn to read your dog’s ears. This is especially important if your dog is sick or injured.

These days I’m pretty relaxed.   I’m feeling better, the sun is shining, and the children in the neighborhood still want to come and visit me.

relaxed

They like to come and say “Hi, Joey” and they like to come give me a pet.

Because I’m still injured and Jane doesn’t want me to get too excited, I will sit down and then Jane will allow the children to come over to pet me, one at a time.

It’s important for the children to understand when I’m relaxed and when I’m nervous.  How can children know how a dog wants to play?  I can’t tell them with words, but there is one easy way for them to know how I am feeling: They can look at my ears! They can read my ears.

My ears are very important for a lot of reasons.

Of course, I use them to listen.

I also use them when I am trying to smell something!  Since my ears are large and floppy, I can use them when I’m trying to smell the scents of dogs, and food, to cup the odors.

Here's a photo of a dog's ears when the dog is being attentive. Here, I am looking in the direction of the dog that lives next door to us, a black Labrador Retriever.My ears are also an indicator of my mood.  You can tell when I am relaxed, when I am excited, or when I am nervous or afraid. When children want to pet me, they need to make sure that I am relaxed, and not nervous or afraid.

Here are so photos of my ears. Can you read them?

using my ears as a cup when I'm following a scent

Can you tell which is the best time to come pet me, and which is the best time to leave me alone and let me be by myself?

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