Where you come for your share of Puppy fun!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Where Did the Time Go?

In two weeks I'll be dropping off Little Dulcie Doodle Doo with Mary. Can't believe that my time with her has almost come to an end. She's such a good puppy. I'm definitely going to miss her. Guess the only thing to do is make the most of the time I do have left with her right? *heavy sigh*

And in three weeks I'll be stepping on a plane to return to Aberdeen for my final year of undergrad. Seriously, where did my summer go? Guess it'll be time to get back to reality soon. Can't really imagine leaving Hilly for another year.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Question for Blogger Users about Pages

Hello there my faithful followers (if there are still any of you left),

I put pages up a while ago for each of my puppies. You know, the "Meet Freya" etc. up there at the top? Right below my cover picture? Yeah, you all know what I'm talking about!

Well, not all of my pages are showing up since I added Frankie and Dulcie's pages. I'd really like them all to show up and I've seen some blogs where there are pages across the top in different rows and such. If any of you know why not all of my pages are showing up and how to make them show up any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks muchly,
Raiser Erin with CC Hilly and PIT Dulcie

Friday, August 16, 2013

5 Months Old

Well, Dulcie turned 5 months old yesterday. It comes as a reminder as to how little time I have left with her and how little time I have left back here stateside. It makes me both sad and excited. I'm ready to be done honestly. But I am pretty excited to see what this last year of undergrad brings.

Since this is my dog blog, this post is meant to be about Dulcie. Dulcie is my easiest puppy so far. I thought I would be really bored with an easy puppy, but she is proving to have her own challenges while still being very easy. And she's got a great personality. She's stable and very eager to please. 

I would definitely call her a confident puppy. Nothing like Freya, but definitely confident. Confidence doesn't mean "not scared of anything". Confidence means being able to shrug off what does scare them and be able to work past it with grace. And that is Dulcie. She isn't startled by much, but when she is she shrugs it off and easily works past it. And it's not even for food which I love. She looks to me, sees that I'm ok and then starts to prance again with her big, goofy grin. I sometimes feel like, with our softer puppies, we pump up their confidence with food alone and for me, if a puppy needs food to be happy while working then they shouldn't be working. And I sometimes feel like we have come to be far too dependent on food. So, I absolutely love that I don't have to fill her full of food. She's such a great, little worker.

She also has a lovely, golden personality. She isn't too needy, but definitely needs her attention sometimes. And she definitely has the "I will be whatever you want me to be" attitude. She loves to please.

So, I suppose it's time for one of those "5 Things at 5 Months". Happy 5 Month Day to Dulcie and the rest of the "D" Goldens!

1. I love her focus. She is very observant of her surroundings, but when I ask for her attention to be back on me, she gives it. She notices things like birds and other dogs, but that's about all she does. There are rare occasions that she is too interested in the other animals, but it is definitely rare. I love that I have an observant puppy, but not a distracted puppy. Of course, this may just be because I have had super distracted puppies in the past and she is a breeze in comparison. 

2. I love her smarts. Now, I really love goldens. They are my favorite breed. But, most goldens you meet are a little...you know...ditzy. I guess this might go along with her focus, but she's one smart cookie. She picks up on things pretty quickly and doesn't often forget them.

3. This might be superficial, but I love her color! I love dark goldens or white goldens. I'm not much for the in between colors. But any dark golden out there can steal my heart in an instant. She's also got absolutely lovely eyes. She has dark eye-liner instead of that pinkish kind. She's actually such a pretty dog and you can tell that she knows it.

4. I love her happy, little personality. She's always just so happy! She has such an expressive face which tells me exactly what she is thinking. When she sits, she looks up at you and smiles like "Did I do good!?"

5. She is such a cuddler. For any of you who have ever met a golden retriever before you know that they can be a little very needy. I have one of my own and you have to pet her until she says she is done being petted...which could be anywhere from 5 minutes to an hour at a time. But Dulcie really isn't all that needy. She does love her attention, but she also likes her alone time. Truly, Hilly is more needy towards me that Dulcie is.

Really, I love this golden girl. I know that I am really going to miss her when I have to go back to school. The good news is that she will be staying with the group! I was worried there for a second that I would transfer her and then never hear from her again until graduation. I'm so happy that I can get constant updates about her while I am across the Atlantic. Here are some pictures of her at our fire station meeting this past Tuesday the day before she turned 5 months old.

Dulcie and Samar (aka Sam) sitting on a fire engine
Dulcie sitting on the fire engine
Dulcie lying down outside around the fire trucks
Duclie (with Galloway) very interested in the truck that was driving around 
Dulcie lying in her frog leg position 
Dulcie being very excited about meeting a fully dressed firefighter

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Fun Day 2013: Part 2

Getting up bright and early Keno, Dulcie, and their two humans went down to the lobby for breakfast. It was just a continental breakfast so it wasn't fantastic but at least there was food right? We got out of the hotel a little later than we intended but got to the parking lot in time to try and catch a shuttle over to the campus. Unfortunately, they weren't using the shuttle buses like in previous years but the training vans they use to take students and their dogs out to routes. So only about 4 or 5 people could fit in one at a time and there was a crowd of people waiting and they were only running them every 10 minutes. So, we decided to walk. One of the people said it would take us 20 minutes because it was 4 blocks and I looked at him and said that I had done the walk plenty of times and it never took me more than 5. Low and behold, it took us 5 minutes to get to campus.

Things were a little different. They weren't giving out littermate books this year which I didn't like and I know a lot of people didn't like it either. They sent out a PDF a couple weeks before, so I printed it out instead. They also didn't have name tags. I always really liked the name tags for some reason so I was a little disappointed that I didn't get to write my name with Dulcie's. Don't ask me why. 

The opening ceremonies were like normal. After you've sat through one you don't really want to sit through another and another and another. So, every other year I'll sit through opening ceremonies but this year we got there a little late and instead we wandered around a little. In my wandering I met Amici's breeder custodian! She said she would have him later on if I wanted to meet him, but I could never find her again. That was a little disappointed, but I guess I should have asked where I could find her later. Ah well. 

Since Dulcie is young her littermate meeting was right there at the beginning of the morning. They changed where the meeting spots were located this year and I had a little trouble finding them. I even asked someone if they knew where they were and they said they weren't near the vendor booths. They were near the vendor booths. *le sigh* But I got there and everything was good! Three other siblings showed up at Fun Day, which isn't my best turn out but is definitely by far not my worst (Freya had one other, Rocco had none, and Hilly had all that were still puppies in training). Something that I think is really cool is that Dulcie's brother Davenport was only a starter puppy and he was being transferred on Fun Day and he was transferred to Belle's puppy raiser! I raised one of her grandpuppies and now we are raising siblings. Pretty cool I think.

Davenport and Danube were fairly light while Downton and Dulcie were both pretty dark. So I guess it might be easier to pick out puppies from the litter photos that GDB posts on flikr.  
Littermate meeting - from left to right: Davenport, Danube, Downton, and Dulcie
Littermate meeting - from left to right: Davenport, Danube, Downton, and Dulcie
Littermate meeting; puppy pile. All the "D" puppies playing together.
Puppy pile. The "D" siblings playing together
Dulcie (back) with her sister Danube (front). They were best friends!

After the littermate meeting I really didn't do much else. This was the first year that our club did a booth so I really helped out the rest of the time. It was weird. There wasn't really much I wanted to do. There were tours of the new dorm, but I had already seen them and I didn't really want to walk through the kennels because Dulcie had just recently started to not react to other dogs barking at her. There were little games, but nothing too interesting. I almost partook in the recall game, but Dulcie and I hadn't worked too hard on that yet so I decided not to. Plus, Dulcie is still so young that I didn't want to overstimulate her. So, I just sort of hung out at our booth in the shade most of the time and spent far more than I meant to at the other booths. Oops.

But overall, it was a good day and I think both Dulcie and I enjoyed ourselves. She was dead tired afterwards and handled all the stimulus beautifully for a puppy of her age.
Dulcie showing off her purple leash (that I made) and the yellow flower for her collar I bought for her
Dulcie making an oh so funny grin at the camera
Dulcie and me on the bench out in front of the gift shop
Dulcie and me on the bench in front of the gift shop with our baseball gear on
I'm so bummed that I forgot to get a picture of her and me in front of the sign out in front of Guide Dogs for the Blind! I hope that means that I will be back before her recall so that I can get a picture of us then.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Fun Day 2013: Part 1

So, this post has been a long time coming but I've just haven't found the time to sit down and write in the past couple of weeks. Been a busy bumble bee I suppose. 

Fun Day is a big event put on by GDB for its puppy raisers, breeder custodians, graduates, etc. They hold one annually at both of their campuses. I have yet to make it to a Fun Day on their Boring, OR campus (in fact, today is the Oregon Fun Day) but I really hope to eventually. I hear the campus is absolutely stunning. Anyway, California Fun Day was a couple of weeks ago and of course Dulcie and I participated. 

Every year a committee puts together a Fun Day theme and this year was MVP. So, yes I wore my baseball jersey and yes I did put a hat on Dulcie for a picture. I only ever do it for Fun Day so there ya go.

Any good trip starts with a car journey. We don't live to far away from the San Rafael campus, but it's still a fun drive. And a drive is always better with company so I went with a friend and her 11 month old puppy KENO! Same friend I went with last year and again it was a lot of fun packing my little mini full of two dogs, two people, two crates, and all of our stuff. Especially since Keno is a little bigger than Hank. But we managed it just fine and were on the road. And luckily we didn't hit much traffic and made great timing. 

The trick for this year was finding a little something to eat. Normally on Friday we have pizza out by the pool with our puppy group and then we all go out to a club dinner on Saturday. This year there was a leader meeting that Friday evening so we all had to fend for ourselves. And thus we start on the funniest story of the weekend. 

We FINALLY decide to try and find this Thai restaurant so we load ourselves and the dogs into the car and put on the GPS since we aren't too sure of our surroundings in San Rafael. It turns out that it was in a little shopping center that was just at the bottom of the hill from our hotel that would have taken us about 10 minutes to walk to. Unfortunately we missed it on the first go around in the parking lot so decided drive out through the back and circle around. So, we get to the exit and there are no cars in the street and I think, Shoot, I can't actually remember which side of the road we drive on in the states. So I say out loud with the hopes that my friend will correct me if I'm wrong, "We drive on the left in America yes?" Getting no response I turn to drive on the left when all the cars start driving towards us and I quickly get over to the right. Apparently she thought I was joking. We both (and everyone else we told about it) had a good laugh about it. And we had our Thai and it was delicious! 

Then we went back to the hotel room, hung out by the pool, and relaxed for the big day ahead of us. Dulcie and Keno played very well with each other and didn't make too much noise or get too rough. Which is a good thing when you're in a hotel room. 

Dulcie in the hotel room with a silly expression.
Dulcie and Keno playing
Dulcie and Keno playing.
Dulcie and Keno playing
Dulcie and Keno playing
Dulcie and Keno playing
Dulcie and Keno playing
Dulcie and Keno playing

Part 2 tomorrow.