Friends At Last?

Or just a convenient pillow?

Relaxing Rogue

Another Month Older

Rogue is now 9 months old!

It’s hard to believe that in just three more months, we’ll be celebrating her first birthday.

As of today, Rogue is 21 and a half inches tall, 19 inches long, and weighs 56lbs. She is now the same height as Cessna, but an inch longer and weighs just seven pounds less.

I’m not sure she will grow any taller or longer, but Huib is guessing she’ll end up a bit heavier than Cessna because she seems to have more of a compact build. Cessna is dainty, whereas Rogue is small, but not so small-boned.

I’m glad she has ended up at least as tall as Cessna because if she had been any shorter, I’m not sure she’d work out for guiding since I’m quite tall for a woman. Right now, I use a 19 inch long harness handle with Cessna and do not think I’d get enough information from a longer one.

For Rogue’s nine month birthday, I thought I’d share nine Rogue-isms.

1. When Rogue is nervous, she finds comfort in climbing onto the back of the couch to hide behind me. She will lay her head on my shoulder and watch the world around her.

2. If Huib, my sister or I say hi to Rogue in an excited voice, no matter what Rogue is doing, she’ll run full-force towards us and give us tons of kisses, while wagging her tail wildly.

3. If Rogue gets cold at night, she’ll burrow her way under the blankets and sleep there for hours.

4. When it’s mealtime, Rogue knows that she must be in either a sit or down before we will put her bowl down, so she’ll immediately get into position and quiver, trying to control herself.

5. If Rogue wants to play, even when the others are fast asleep, she will silently stalk them and then pounce! – Huib loves watching her do this.

6. When it is night time and we’re all settled down in the living room, Rogue must always be able to lay next to me, or she will pace and make moaning and groaning noises until I make room.

7. When playing with a toy, Rogue will shake it wildly and make little growling noises.

8. Rogue absolutely hates being dressed up. She has no issue with wearing her winter coat, collar, puppy in training jacket or vest, but if we try to put a Halloween costume, booties or the Newtrix on her, she’ll hide and sulk for hours afterwards.

9. Even though Canyon growls when she climbs into his crate with him, or Cessna growls when she tries to snuggle up beside her, Rogue is not deterred, she’ll just give them a look and settle in for a nap. She doesn’t understand why canyon cares whether or not she uses his bed when he’s not, or Cessna dislikes her attempts to cuddle.

As you can see, Rogue provides us with hours of entertainment.

Life just wouldn’t be the same without our little Hurricane.

Resolutions vs Goals

As soon as Christmas is over and New Years Eve approaches, people start talking about the resolutions they are making. Rarely do these New Years resolutions continue much past the first few weeks of the new year, but people still find it necessary to create them.

I can’t think of a time when I actually sat down to plan New Years resolutions. Maybe I realized the futility from a young age. Or maybe I just had no interest in planning out the changes I wanted to do in the new year.

This year, I still won’t make New Years resolutions, but would like to set out some goals for me and the rest of the ruled by paws gang for 2012.

Our 2012 Goals:
I, the primary human of ruled by paws, would like to work towards leading a more healthy life. Last year, during Lent, I completely eliminated pop/soda from my diet. This year, I would like to work towards eliminating processed foods. This does not mean I will no longer eat junk food and things that are considered unhealthy, but it means that if I am not willing to take the time to prepare something like macaroni and cheese from scratch, then I will not grab a box of Kraft Dinner from the pantry.

Since the canine members of ruled by paws cannot really set out goals for themselves, I will plan a 2012 goal for each of them.

Aspen really hasn’t been expected to learn and behave like the other three canines of the family. She is not a poorly behaved dog at all, but her and I do not really see eye to eye when it comes to her obedience and training. Therefore, my goal for Aspen this year is to start working through Sue Ailsby’s Levels with her from the beginning and by the end of the year, I would like us to be approaching the point of passing either the Old Levels three or if I get an opportunity to purchase the New Levels books, then I want us to be done or ready to pass the New Level two.

Cessna will be 9 this coming October and close to retirement, so I would like to continue teaching her new tasks that she can do around the house. This past year, I taught her to close cupboard doors and have been working on teaching her to close drawers. I would like to continue expanding the use of this task, so that she will be reliably doing it for me at other people’s houses as well. By the end of 2012, I would like to have taught Cessna to also open cupboards and drawers, as well as, being able to turn on and off light switches she can reach. In our current home this means we will need to create switches at more of her head level. I do not require her help in any of these areas, but Cessna really shows pride in her work and loves feeling helpful, so I think these new tasks will give her some satisfaction during retirement.

As everyone knows, Huib and Canyon entered their first conformation dog show this past week. My goal for Canyon is to enter more shows and work on achieving his Canadian Championship title. I would love to say my goal is to have him obtain his title by the end of 2012, but the show ring is political so who knows how we’ll do each time we walk in front of a judge. In addition to working on Canyon’s title, I would like to have him earn his Canine Good Neighbour certification. Other than these two achievements, I would like to continue working through Sue Ailsby’s Levels with him and hopefully be well on our way to having him doing a proper formal retrieve by the end of 2012.

Finally, we come to Rogue. Rogue will be a year old in April, so we will have her eyes tested to make sure her sight is good enough for guide work. I would love to say my goal for her is to be ready to take over, at least part-time, for Cessna by the end of 2012, but we all know how things can change in an instant. Therefore, my goals for Rogue this year, are to first obtain her Canine Good Neighbour certification. Then, I would like to continue working through Sue Ailsby’s Old Levels (unless I end up purchasing the new books) and have her at least doing some of the non-tension related guiding tasks. This means that I am not expecting her to be guiding in harness, but that she is well on her way to being able to confidently leash guide me in familiar areas that do not require intelligent disobedience, busy road crossing or complex obstacle work. I would like to be able to say whether or not Rogue will be able to fulfill my needs by the end of 2012, so that I have some time to decide on another plan of action, if she cannot take over for Cessna.

As you can see, the goals I have set for 2012 are broad, but achievable. I have tried to stay realistic so that I will hopefully look back and feel a sense of accomplishment instead of failure.

2012 is going to be our year, I can feel it!

Pictures with Santa

Today we took the four dogs to get their pictures done with Santa. The money was going to a local rescue group so we thought it was a great opportunity to get some cute pictures.

Canyon was probably the best poser of all four dogs. He did exactly what Huib asked him to do and even gave us a smile to go along with it. aspen was also smiling, but she took a little more effort to get into place.

The labs were not so eager or easy to pose with the Jolly old fellow. they weren’t afraid of him, but they were also not interested in sitting beside him while there were tons of other dogs and wonderful smells to investigate.

Rogue The Jester

According to my Google searches – “Jesters are all about fun…reawakening the fun-loving spirit in everyone”.

Sure sounds like a good description for this little caramel puppy, don’t you think?

8 Months Old

RLR’s Babe In Total Control (aka Rogue) is 8 months old today!

It’s hard to believe that just six months and three days ago Huib and I laid eyes on our little caramel hurricane for the first time.

Here are 8 things I love about Rogue:
1. I love the noises Rogue makes when she’s stretching, unhappy about something or just wanting us to know she’s there. They aren’t noises that a typical dog makes, but more of a noise you’d expect from a human, bear or sometimes even a cow lol!
2. I love the way she shivers from nose to tail in excitement, when she’s asked to “wait” and is trying really, really hard not to move.
3. I love the way Rogue teases Canyon. She’ll grab his toy and take off running through the house so that he will chase her.
4. I love the fact that Rogue will play tug with Cessna. The two of them will get so vocal and animated trying to win. Cessna loves having another lab to play tug with since playing with the goldens, just isn’t the same.
5. I love the way Rogue shakes her stuffed toys and growls at them.
6. I love the way Rogue gets so excited when she knows it is time to get up and tries smothering us with kisses.
7. I love the fact that Rogue does nothing like a “typical” puppy. She never followed the pack, she climbed enclosures that should have kept her contained, she wrestled with the big dogs from day one and she has never been interested in pleasing anyone.
8. I love the fact that Rogue makes her opinions known. When she was spayed, the vet asked us to come pick her up over four hours early because she was crying and screaming in the back and they had to assign a staff member to sit with her. Or when we are driving in the truck and she is with the others in the back and cannot get to us, she will start making her moaning and groaning noises in protest.

It has been a very adventurous six months so far. I can’t wait to see what the next six months has in store for us all with our little caramel family member.

So for now, Happy 8 Month Birthday to Rogue and her siblings – Josie, Ruby, Snickers, Cody, “Flower” and “Coal”!

Roagie The Red Nosed Reindeer

Is really hoping her friends won’t laugh and call her names…

Oh, the embarrassment one must endure being a member of the ruled by paws gang 🙂

Tis The Season For Shopping

Over the past week, we’ve had the opportunity to get Cessna and rogue out shopping. Cessna isn’t the most excited shopper, but Rogue is always enthusiastic about seeing new places and to meet new people.

Rogue’s shyness and odd reactions to people seems to have resolved itself – which is a relief! She was startled briefly by a man’s suit jacket – it sort of moved weird above her head – and by a tablecloth – it swished unexpectedly – but after a few minutes of Huib showing it to her, she was no longer showing any nervousness.

Here are a couple of pictures from our day in Timmins.

We haven’t really gotten too much of our Christmas shopping done yet. Every time we go somewhere, we always seem to end up buying more things for ourselves than for others. In Timmins Huib bought me two polar fleece sweaters for my birthday and I bought a really, really cute brown corduroy stuffed reindeer for Canyon and pink corduroy rabbit for Rogue. Huggle-Hound makes these really cute corduroy animals that squeak, crinkle, grunt and have dangly limbs for shaking. Aspen really likes soft stuffies so we got her a little gingerbread woman that squeaks and Cessna likes toys she can tug and shake, so we got her a rubber ball thing that has long nylon ribbons that go through it. In addition to these things, we got a few other toys that were on sale at Costco and Pet Smart to put into their stockings, but we haven’t decided who will get what yet lol! I have also put together a list to order from Pet Edge because I want to get Cessna and Rogue a Premiere Easy Walk Harness like canyon has and they are like half the price through the website, compared to what we will pay in a store here. of course there are toys on the list as well, since it just wouldn’t be right to order only two items lol!

Huib has some more time off coming up, so hopefully we’ll get a little more shopping for others done then.

May Contain Nuts

***Just a quick note to apologize for the politically incorrect wording***

Sometimes you just need to take a moment and pose with friends…