SO MANY DIFFERENT DOGS

I know, I know. It’s been way too long since my last post, but it’s taken me awhile to research this subject and get pictures to show you what I mean.
Since I’m one of the co-owners of Free Dog, I thought it’d be a good idea to learn as much as I can about dogs. Being a dog myself, I pretty much figured I was already an expert, but as it turns out, there is a lot about dogs I don’t know.

“Do tell us, David.”-Editor/Mom

Actually, there’s so much to tell, that I couldn’t possibly cover it all in one post, so I guess I’ll start with the basics.

“Should I sit down? Maybe make a cup of tea?”-Editor/Mom

Well, that’s up to you, but I’m gonna get started, cause there’s a lot of basics to talk about.
You probably know that people are also known by their Species name, Homo Sapiens, which is Latin for wise man. Since dogs are obviously different from people, it only makes sense that we have our own Species. We’re called Canis Lupus Familiaris, which is also Latin, and has something to do with wolves.
I don’t really know what Latin is, but I’m pretty sure it’s a language that nobody uses anymore, and it’s pretty easy to figure out why that is. I mean, it’s a lot easier just saying “dog” than “Canis Lupus Familiaris”. Think about it, my Mom would have to say “This is my Canis Lupus Familiaris, David.” Or “I have to bring my Canis lupus Familiaris to the Vet. Or “What kind of Canis Lupus Familiaris do you have?”

“Okay, I think we get your drift, David.”-Editor/Mom

Right, sorry. Sometimes I get carried away. But I was getting back to my story when I asked about the kind of dog. Most of us dogs don’t really care about what kind of dogs we are, but since it seems like it’s really important to the humans, I started wondering about how many different kind of dogs there really are. 
So naturally, I asked my friend Aleksa, and Wow, was I surprised! The American Kennel Club, of which I am a Member, recognizes 167 different breeds. I thought that was a lot, ’til I kept digging (Get it? Digging? Hey, dogs like to dig) and found out that The World Canine Organization, also known as the FCI (Don’t ask me why. Probably some Latin abbreviation) says there are 340 different breeds. 340? Yikes! At first I thought it must be a mistake, but then I started looking around at all of my friends at Camp, and the other dogs I see when we’re out and about. And there really are lots of different kinds of dogs.

I’m an English Springer Spaniel, and am considered a medium sized dog. By the way, there are 25 different kinds of Spaniels alone. Waya is a Belgian Malinois, which is obviously a larger dog. There are really big dogs like my friend Looch, whose an English Mastiff, and really small dogs like my friend Bruiser. whose a Miniature Pinscher, and all kinds in between from tall and skinny, to low and long like my friend Willow.

I’m black and white, but some dogs are all black like Retriever Buck, some are all white like Samoyed Tikva, some are yellow or brown like Labs Kelly and Finn, some are all red like Viszla Finley, some are multi-colored like Australian Shepherd Harvey and some are even striped like Khloe the Boxer. And then there’s even more combinations of all of those colors.

It’s not just our size and colors that make us different. Let’s talk about the kind of fur we have. Just from the pictures I’ve already shown, you can see that some have really short coats and some have a lot more fur. Italian Grayhound Radley has hardly got any fur at all, and never needs a haircut, and then there’s Labradoodles Griffin and Sunny, who both have longer fur, only one is kinda straight and the other one is more curly.

Enough about fur, let’s talk about shapes. Like noses and ears. I’ve got a sort of round head and long, floppy ears, and Waya has a skinny head and pointy ears. Then there’s dogs like Stella the French Bulldog and Sophie the Boston Terrier, who have really short noses and small ears.

And the last, but certainly not least difference between different breeds of dogs is that some dogs have tails and some don’t. Waya has a long tail that wags all the time. I was born without a long tail, so you have to look a little closer to see if mine is wagging.

“Well David, you were actually born with a tail that would’ve been as long as Waya’s.”-Editor/Mom

What? I was? What happened to it?

“Ummm, well, when you and your littermates were three days old, you were all taken to have your tails cut off.”-Editor/Mom

WHAT?!? You cut off my tail? Why would you do that? 

“Hold on. “I” didn’t do it. It’s the breed standard. It was decided a long time ago that Springer Spaniels, along with many of the other Sporting Breeds should have their tails cut off, or docked. There are a lot of dissenting opinions about why. Some say it’s purely cosmetic, but many say it’s to reduce the chance of injury in the field while they’re out hunting.”-Editor/Mom

I don’t hunt. I don’t even like birds. Shouldn’t I have had some say about whether I wanted a tail or not?

“Yeah, well, that’s not how it works, and it’s got to be done when you’re really young so you won’t remember it, not to mention, it would hurt a lot more if you were older and your tail was bigger. You’ll be happy to know that people are starting to change their thinking about this practice, though. In fact, if you lived in the UK, they don’t let anyone dock tails anymore unless they prove that the dog will actually be hunting.”-Editor/Mom

I’m not sure that makes me feel any better. I’d just like to go on the record to say that I think it’s totally wrong!

“Well, then I guess we won’t be talking about dew claws any time soon.”-Editor/Mom

Dew claws? What are dew claws?

“Trust me David, you don’t want to know.”-Editor/Mom

HOLIDAY TIME…

I don’t know about you, but I can hardly believe the Holidays are already here. I thought it was still Summertime, but all of a sudden my Mom started bringing out the end of the year decorations and props, starting with my second favorite Holiday, Thanksgiving. This year I got a new tie. 

Since the most important part of the Thanksgiving Holiday is dinner, we all got to fill out what we wanted to eat on our menus. I helped Waya, cause this was her first Thanksgiving, and she didn’t know about all the fixins. I told her to check off everything, cause I knew she’d want to try all of the yummy stuff, and we don’t get to have it very often. I wasn’t too sure about the cranberry sauce, but I figured I ought to at least try it.

Once that was done and Thanksgiving Day was here, all we had to do was wait for Mom to cook the giant turkey. It’s important to celebrate the Holidays with family, so it was cool that Cousin Java was here to have dinner with us. She helped me keep an eye on all of the preparations since Waya was still recovering from her surgery and couldn’t hang out in the kitchen.

The best part of the preparation is that we get to sample all of the ingredients. First Squash…

Then green beans…

Did someone say livvies and gizzies? Yummy!

It seemed like forever, but finally, the giant turkey was done.

Then we had to wait for all of our Boarders to have their dinner before we got to eat ours. I didn’t get it at first, I mean we’ve been smelling it all day, so we couldn’t wait to sink our teeth in, but I guess we wouldn’t be very good hosts if we didn’t let our guests go first. So I tried to be really patient.

And boy was it worth waiting for! Me, Waya and Cousin Java thoroughly enjoyed every last lick of our plates. Waya didn’t really like wearing the “My First Thanksgiving” bib. I told her it was just the beginning. She hasn’t spent a Christmas with us yet, either. She has no idea what she’s in for when she’s feeling better.

I couldn’t wait to take a nice, long, nap after dinner.

Another important Thanksgiving tradition is going for a long walk so the humans can burn off all the extra calories they had for dinner. I thought that was what the nap was for.

So, you’d think this was the end of the Holiday, wouldn’t you? Well, there is still one more thing left to be done. And here’s where it gets worse Waya! Now it’s time to put up all the Christmas lights. We all have to chip in, and I gotta tell you, it would be a lot easier if we had thumbs…

MENTAL TELEPATHY

Seeings how dogs speak a different language than humans, sometimes I find it hard to get them to know what we’re thinking.  Sometimes there are things I’d like to have or do, that I can’t do myself, and I can’t get any of the humans to do it for me. It’s not that they’re stupid, I think they just don’t get it. So, I’ve been doing some research, cause I figure there’s got to be another way to get through to them. With the help of my super helpful assistant Aleksa, I’ve been learning all about Mental Telepathy.

Basically, Mental Telepathy is the process of transferring thoughts from one mind to another. It’s kinda like sending stuff from one computer to another, but a lot harder, cause like I said, we don’t speak the same language like computers do, and I think the humans just have way too much on their minds.
Plus, I guess you have to learn how to do it, which takes a lot more studying. Apparently, there are six key things:

1. Believe in telepathy… Check, I totally believe in it.
2. Eliminate your physical perception… Hmmm, not sure about this. It has something to do with focusing on your thoughts, and they suggest wearing headphones or goggles painted white. I can do that.
3. Engage in energetic coupling… What? I think they mean it’s important to have a bond with who you want to transfer your thoughts to, like you should have something in common with them. Heck, I have stuff in common with everyone I know.
4. Stretch your muscles and exercise.. I do this all the time.
5. Meditate and calm your mind… That’s not always easy cause there’s a lot going on around here, but maybe the headphones and goggles will help.
6. Decide on who will be the receiver and the sender…Well, I know my Mom better than anyone, but I’m not sure she’s the best human to start with, cause she already knows what I’m trying to do.

“Don’t you have to have two willing participants to make it work, David?”-Editor/Mom

I don’t think so, I mean that could be a problem, cause what if you don’t want them to know that you want them to do something?

“That’s not Mental Telepathy David, that’s Mind Control.”-Editor/Mom

Mind Control? What’s that? Is it better than Mental Telepathy? Is it easier?

“Nevermind, forget I said anything. I’m pretty sure it’s harder, and you probably ought to start with simple telepathy first.”-Editor/Mom

Okay, so they say if you do all six of those things, it should be easy to transmit a message, even for novices, which are beginners like me, but that not everyone is successful. And I figure since I’m doing it without them knowing it’ll probably be harder, but with a lot of mental preparation and practice, I think I can do it.

“So, who are you planning on starting with?”-Editor/Mom

I was thinking of starting with Waya first, as a test, before moving on to the humans. We speak the same language, already have a bond, and she’s usually up for anything.
Okay then, time to get started. First I’ll prepare myself mentally.

Then I’ll prep Waya, make sure we’re both on the same page.

Holy Crap, it worked! I did it while we were playing tug with my gator. She never lets go, and I transmitted to her that I really wanted it…and she gave it to me!!! She didn’t even know what hit her.

It was easy. I knew I’d be good at this. Boy, this is going to be great!

“Wow, I’m impressed. So do you think you’re ready to try it on a human yet? Who do think your first victim should be?”-Editor/Mom

“Don’t even think about it, David, or I’ll show some real Mental Telepathy.”-Auntie Jen

I think I’ll try it on Auntie Kristine. We’ve had a bond ever since I can remember, and she’d do anything for me. I can’t wait. I’ll let you all know how it turns out next week.

“I can’t wait to hear about this.”-Editor/Mom

DAVE’S BIRTHDAY INTERVIEW

“It’s hard to believe another year has gone by already. It sure doesn’t seem that long ago we sat down for our last Official Birthday Interview, but it’s definitely time to catch up with our Boy to see if any of his views and insights have changed. Here he comes now, so let’s get started.”-Editor/Mom

“You’re a hard little man to catch up with, David. It hasn’t been easy scheduling this interview.”-Editor/Mom
Well, we could’ve done it last week, but I thought it important to look my best. After all, you’re supposed to dress up and look professional when you go out on an interview, and I couldn’t get an appointment at the Salon ’til last Saturday. 
“I didn’t realize you cared that much about your appearance David, but I have to say, you are looking quite dashing today.”-Editor/Mom
Why, thank you. Like you said, it’s been a whole year since my last Interview. A lot has happened, and I’ve grown up a lot, but I have to tell you that getting groomed isn’t one of my favorite things to do, and I don’t think I’ll ever like it no matter how old I get. In fact, I don’t know anyone who likes it, but our humans think it’s important and sometimes you gotta do stuff you don’t really want to.
“Well, if it makes you feel any better, us humans must also do things we’d rather not. I have, however been looking forward to our Interview, so let’s get to it. You remember how this works, right?”-Editor/Mom
Yup, you ask and I answer. Fire away. And when you’re done, I have a question for you.

Q: Okay, fair enough. So, now that you’re three whole years old, how does it feel to be a big boy, and not Baby David anymore?
A: Feels pretty good. I mean being an adult is a lot of responsibility, but it’s nice to be taken seriously. 

Q: You mentioned that a lot has happened in the last year. Which events stand out in your mind? 
A: Well, I probably oughta talk about how we all elected a new President, cause I know that’s important, but I’ve gotta be honest, it really doesn’t make much difference to me. I was born here, I already have health insurance and my job at Free Dog is pretty secure, so I don’t think any of his new policies will have much affect on me directly.

Q: So what are the things that you feel have had the greatest impact on you?
A: Losing Jazzy. That was sad, and really hard on all of us. It was weird being the only dog in the house. And then we got Waya. She’s totally different than Jazzy was, so that’s been hard getting used to. 

Q: Sounds like a big shake-up in the family dynamics. How’re things going now?
A: It’s going okay. We still miss Jazzy a lot, but it’s better now that Waya’s getting older. And talk about growing up? I went from being a little brother to being a big brother practically overnight. I just wish she respected me a little bit more, but we’re working on it.

Q: What makes you think she doesn’t respect you?
A: Well, she takes all my stuff, kills my favorite toys, and is always biting my ears. The worst thing is she gets really mad whenever I want to hang out with Auntie Jen. It’s like she can do whatever she wants, but I can’t have any fun, and she doesn’t care at all that I was here first.

Q: Well, if I recall correctly, you weren’t a perfect puppy, and since you’ve grown up quite a bit in your three years, she’ll probably come around, too. Don’t you think you should give her a break?
A: When you put it that way, I guess it would be the adult thing to do. Like I said, so much more responsibility.

Q: Well it looks like things are headed in the right direction there. I hear your family has made a substantial recreational investment. How do you feel about that?
A: A What?  

Q: Your new boat?
A: Oh, right, our boat! I love the boat. We all do. Actually, it’s our second boat. We got the first one on the way home from vacation last year, and named it “The Nood” after Jazzy. But since we all decided it wasn’t really big enough after all, Mom and Auntie Jen got us a bigger one. It rides a lot smoother, and can fit all of us. We go out for rides on lakes every chance we get. I’m learning to be a First Mate, and am hoping to someday be a Captain.

Q: Well, that sounds like a lot of fun. Which leads me to my next question: What was the most fun thing you did last year?
A: Hmmmmm, that’s hard to answer, cause I have a lot of fun. Maybe going out on the sailboat ride on the tall ship in Maine. That was really fun. I hope we get to go this year, too.

Q: How about the worst thing that happened last year? Other than losing Jazzy.
A: That’s easy, getting scared by the horse and buggy in Amish country. I really lost my cool. At the time I couldn’t help it, but looking back, it was pretty embarrassing, especially in front of all those people and Auntie Jen.

Q: Just a few quick questions to wrap up today. Your greatest accomplishment?
A: Learning to play Frisbee.

Q: Your favorite day of the week, and why?
A: Saturday, cause we’re all together and sometimes get to do fun things.

Q: Do you have a nickname?
A: Yup, everybody calls me “Schmavid”.

Q: That’s interesting. What does it mean?
A: No idea, but I kinda like it.

“Okay then, that’s all I have for this year’s Birthday Interview. You said you had a question to ask me?”-Editor/Mom

Yup, I’m having a hard time deciding which picture I should use as my Official Birthday Interview photo. The first one really shows off my new haircut and bow tie, but I think the second one with the glasses makes me look older, more like an adult. What do you think?
“Hmmmm, they’re both good photos, I can see your dilemma. I say we use them both.”-Editor/Mom
 

Capital idea. Thanks so much for your help, and for having me in for this Interview. It’s been a lot of fun, even though there weren’t any refreshments. Maybe next year we could have some cookies.

 

 

THE HORSE INCIDENT

I just remembered that I never wrote about our trip to Amish Country. Mostly it’s because we’ve been really busy, but to be completely honest, there was an incident that I’ve been trying to forget about. I don’t want you to think that I didn’t have a good time on vacation, cause for the most part, it was a ton of fun. Our cottage by the covered bridge was really cool. 

It was kinda cold out, so we didn’t get to swim in the river a lot, but there was lots of room to play frisbee, and we went to a farm that makes the Best ice cream in the whole wide world. We got to sleep in late and spend all of our time together. So we all had a really good time, in fact it was just about perfect, except for one thing. 

I know Auntie Jen already told just about everyone, and I really don’t want to re-live the incident again, so I’m just gonna go ahead and admit that yes, I’m a little bit afraid of horses.

“A little bit afraid?”-Auntie Jen

Alright, alright! I’m a lot afraid. But seriously, can you blame me? Do you know how big these things are?? Have you seen them??? They’re so big people ride them!

 I know a lot of really big dogs. My Cousin Sophie is big. Grover and Mojo and Looch are really big dogs that come to Camp. But I figured horses are like, ten times as big as all of them, probably put together. So I asked Aleksa, and I was right. She said that the average horse weighs 1,100 pounds, and that some of them can weigh as much as 2,200 pounds. That means Sophie, Grover, Mojo and Looch all together only weigh half of what a small horse weighs! Not to mention they always travel in pairs, and pull these really loud cart things behind them. It’s very intimidating. Waya didn’t like them either.

There were cows all over the place in Pennsylvania. They’re really big too, but all they do is hang around in the fields. I like cows. They’re not running loose in the streets scaring the Heck out of everybody.

“Horses aren’t bad animals, David. They like a lot of the same things that dogs do. They like the snow, and running on the beach and playing together, which is probably where the saying “Horsing Around” comes from. Maybe you ought to give them another chance”-Editor/Mom

You realize I only weigh 47 pounds, right? One of them is like, 23 times as big as me. How would you feel if you saw any of these things coming at you?? 

What if they all decide to get together and have a stampede? Who’s gonna keep me from being trampled to death then? Nobody, that’s who. So, No Sir-eeee, Bub, you’re not gonna catch me anywhere near any of them.

“Hey, David. If Waya keeps growing at the rate she is now, she might be able to give them a run for their money. She’d save you.”-Editor/Mom

Ha ha ha… You’re kidding, right?? No way she could get that big.

“Yeah, probably not. I wouldn’t worry about it.”-Editor/Mom

 

 

 

 

WORKING OUT

I don’t know if any of you have noticed what’s been going on lately. Take a look at these last few pictures my Mom has taken. What do you see? Don’t know what I’m talking about yet? It’s Waya. Look at her. She’s bigger than me! It happened overnite. 

She’s not even six months old yet. This is totally unfair! It took me two years to get as big as I am, how big will she be when she’s two?

“Hard to say. We’re not sure either, David.”-Editor/Mom

Seriously? Am I the only one who’s concerned about this? She already throws her weight around, and even though I still have a couple of pounds on her, at this rate how long will it be before I won’t stand a chance? Not very, that’s how long.
Well, I’m not waiting around for it to happen. If I’m gonna keep my butt from getting kicked around here I’ve gotta get going. That’s right, time to start working out. Bulking up is the best defense against getting rolled over. I’m pretty sure there’s some gym stuff kicking around. Maybe my Mom will help me get set up.

“Sure thing, David. I’ll help you dust off the gym and set you up with a little work-out room. Someone might as well be using it.”-Editor/Mom

Since I don’t know a lot about working out I had to do a little research. It’s really important to use the right equipment. Mom took care of that, check. Can’t wait to get started. Apparently, apparel is important, too. I’m not sure what the fitbit thing is all about. I mean is it considered equipment? Or apparel? Even though you’re wearing it, I’m thinking it’s equipment, because I guess it can keep track of your footsteps, and tell you your heart rate is, both good to know when you’re working out, cause you don’t want to overdue it. 

“Apparel is important, and I think you’ve nailed it with the tanktop and sweatbands. Looks like you’re ready to get started”-Editor/Mom

Well, the first thing I learned is it’s important to stretch out before working out, so’s you don’t blow out an acl or something. I’ve heard stories about how painful that can be.

“Not to mention, a long set-back to your work-out program, and that Waya’s not getting any smaller.”-Editor/Mom

I think starting out with a few reps on the light weights is a good idea… Up…Down…Up…Down…Up…and…Hold… Phew! I’m already working up a sweat.

“Ummmm, I’m no work-out expert, but I’m pretty sure you’re supposed to actually “lift” those.”-Editor/Mom

What? Lift them? That’s stupid. How am I supposed to do that? 

“You could use your mouth. I bet that would help strengthen up those neck muscles.”-Editor/Mom

Right, good idea. I’ll try that next time. Onto my next exercise, some serious weights. You’d better look out Waya!

“Did you say onto? Because again, pretty sure you’re supposed to “lift” these, too.”-Editor/Mom

Did I say onto? Cause I meant to say on to. But I’m gonna need a hand getting these weights onto the machine, cause I can’t get them off the floor with my mouth. You don’t think this is too much to start with, do you?

“Nah, I think you can handle it.”-Editor/Mom

 

It’s really important to wear a weight belt when lifting. Again, so you don’t hurt yourself. I’ve heard you can get a hernia, and that nobody likes those. It’s also good to have a spotter in case you drop something on yourself. 

“Don’t worry, I’m here for you David.”-Editor/Mom

Really feeling the burn now. I’m totally getting the hang of this. Am I getting a six-pack yet?

“Ummm, not yet, but you’re looking good, buddy. You might want to wrap up soon, it’s only your first day. You’re going to be a hurting puppy tomorrow.”-Editor/Mom/Spotter

Yup, I thought a mile on the bike would be a good finish to my work-out, but that proved to be a little harder than I expected. This isn’t as easy as it looks.

“Yeah, you might want to be careful there. That bike might be a little bit too big for you. We’ll have to find you something smaller. Meantime you could always go for a jog or a swim. Those are both great ways to get in shape.”-Editor/Mom

Did you say Swimming? I love swimming. 
Right now though, it’s time for the best part of the work-out. The protein shake. Where’s that fitbit? Wonder how many steps I took.

“Looks like 5,000 steps. Not bad, David.”-Editor/Mom

5,000. Is that a lot? Cause I’m thinking that since it’s really your fitbit, and you only have two legs, that my steps ought to be doubled. So that means I really did 10,000. Whew! No wonder I’m tired.

So, overall, how did you like your first workout?”-Editor/Mom

I think it went pretty well. Except for one thing. Even with my sweatband on, I felt like my ears were impeding my range of motion. Any ideas what I can do about that? 

“Oh yeah. I think we can come up with something.”-Editor/Mom

Thiis works, and apparently, the full “man bun” is quite a popular hairstyle with Hipsters.

A DECENT EXCUSE

I know I’m wicked late with my Blog Post, but I’m thinking I’ve got a pretty good excuse this time. A couple of them really. Not only is it school vacation week, which means we’ve all been really busy around here, but look at my paws! How am I supposed to type with these?

I don’t know what happened. I didn’t do anything different. I was out playing with my friends last Friday, like usual. Maybe I spent a little more time outside than on a regular Friday. I don’t know, but when I cam in, my paws were killing me. I could hardly stand on either of my front feet.

“Could be because you ran around a lot more than usual with your friends, and the rocks in the yard were wet, and they aggravated your pads. It’s strange, cause you’re not a puppy anymore, and you’re used to playing on our rocks. Your feet ought to be tougher than that, but yeah, they were looking pretty raw. You licking them didn’t help, either.”-Editor/Mom

Well, they were itchy and sore. But I didn’t have much choice after Auntie Jen and Uncle Aaron put all that goopy stuff on my feet and wrapped them all up with bandages, did I? Slippery bandages, I might add. I had a hard time walking on the floor without sliding around. 

“Yup, and that’s why we gave you a benadryl, so you’d be able to rest without them bothering you.”-Editor/Mom

And it worked, cause I took a really long nap on the couch before bed.

The only problem was, when I went to bed I had a really hard time chewing on my bone, but I figured it out. 

Saturday morning, my bandages started falling apart after I went outside to pee, and I was happy when Mom took them off. It was like magic, they didn’t hurt at all anymore! Briar Rose was there, and I was hoping to get to play with her, but everybody said I had to stay inside for the whole day to make sure they were all healed.

It was a long, boring day, but it worked! By Sunday, I was running around like nothing happened, and they’ve been fine ever since. 

“A little rest never hurt anybody, David. And maybe we’ll have to limit your rainy day outside play for awhile.”-Editor/Mom

 

 

 

 

GROWING PAINS

Can somebody tell me how much longer it’ll be before Waya’s puppy teeth fall out? Cause boy do they hurt, and I’ll be happy when they’re gone.

“Well, typically they’re pretty much gone when you reach five months old. Yours were, and we were all very happy.”-Editor/Mom

I don’t think mine were as sharp as hers. Have you noticed all of the little scabs I have from playing with her? I feel like a pin cushion.

“I have to agree with you, David. She’s got the biggest and sharpest puppy fangs I’ve ever seen.”-Auntie Jen

And is it me, or is she growing really fast? 

“Yeah, we’ve been noticing that, too.”-Editor/Mom

She’s already almost as big as me, and she’s still just a baby. How big is she gonna be when she’s my age?? I remember Jazzy was bigger than me, but not a whole lot heavier.

“Hard to say. Jazzy only weighed about 8 lbs. more than you do, but at this rate, Waya could be a lot bigger than her.”-Editor/Mom

Great, I can barely knock her down anymore as it is. At least I can still outrun her. 

“Well, I wouldn’t count on that for much longer if I were you. She’s been closing that gap on you the last couple of weeks.”-Editor/Mom

“Yeah, you’re screwed, Buddy.”-Auntie Jen

So you’re all saying that she’s gonna be bigger “and” faster than me? Boy, I better start working out. The good thing is I’ll always be older and wiser. And maybe she’ll learn to put some of her energy towards other things that don’t involve chewing on me all the time. 

“We can hope, but she really does seem to enjoy picking on you.”-Editor/Mom

Yeah, no kidding. And have any of you noticed that black pitchfork shaped mark on her forehead? What the Hell, I mean Heck, is that all about?

“You might have been right the first time. She “does” seem to have a little bit of the Devil in her, doesn’t she?”-Editor/Mom

“Yes, and speaking of scabs, I can’t help but notice that scar you gave her under her right eye. You’re gonna pay for that later, David.”-Auntie Jen

I didn’t mean it, but I had to defend myself. It’s already almost gone, so I think she’ll probably forget about it.

LANGUAGE BARRIERS

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I don’t know what people are talking about. I know what you’re thinking though, and you can go ahead and laugh, but it’s not because I’m stupid. 

“Nobody said you were stupid. Language can sometimes be difficult to understand, even for us humans. Not to mention, you live in America, which means you speak English, and English is the hardest language to learn.”-Editor/Mom

I agree. I’ve been doing a little research, and the Oxford English Dictionary says there are 171,476 words, and that doesn’t even count old words nobody uses anymore, or slang words, or contractions, whatever they are. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary says there are 1 Million words! 1 Million? Do you people really need that many?? I also learned that the average dog only knows 165. How’re we supposed to keep up? 

 “Actually, it’s believed some dogs can learn up to 1,000 words. I think what also makes it even harder for dogs in breaking the language barrier, is that us people use whole sentences to get our points across, and you dogs communicate using single words at a time.”-Editor/Mom

You’re right! I mean I can pick words out of a sentence, but half the time it’s all gibberish. For example, you might say: “I’m gonna go out and start the car so we can take a ride to the beach.” All I hear is: “Bla blah bla OUT bla blah bla bla bla bla bla blah bla RIDE bla bla BEACH!” I get the gist. You really only needed to say 3 words. I don’t know why you gotta make everything so difficult. 

“Maybe we don’t want you to know everything we’re saying, unless we’re actually talking “to” you.”-Editor/Mom

Okay, that’s fine, but what I’ve had a hard time with is why Waya doesn’t listen when I tell her stuff. Like “NO” when she’s biting my ears. Everybody knows NO, it’s the first word we learn. I thought she was just being fresh and ignoring me. Then I realized that Mom and Auntie don’t use the word NO with her. They say NAY. What the Heck is that all about? Is NAY even a word?? 

“Actually, I think it’s one of those slang words you mentioned before, or maybe just one that nobody uses anymore. Doesn’t matter which, the reason we’re using different words with Waya than you is because she’s going to have a different job around here than you do, and we might want you to do different things at the same time.”-Editor/Mom

So, what difference does that make? A command is a command, isn’t it?

“It is, but if the commands are the same for both of you, what happens if we want you to “Sit”, and Waya hears it and sits when we might be wanting her to do something else? That’s why Auntie chose to have her learn some different commands than yours.”-Editor/Mom

“She didn’t want to just use random English words, so she thought the French words they use to train dogs would be perfect. That’s why we say “Sit” for you, and “Assis” (ah-si) for her. “Down” for you, and “Coucher” (coo-shay) for her. We don’t want the two of you to be confused about who’s supposed to be doing what, although I think Auntie sometimes gets confused herself.”-Editor/Mom

French? What’s French?? 

“French is a whole different language. And if you ask Aleksa, she’ll tell you that there are 6,500 different languages. Think about it David, if there are 171,476 words in every language, that would be, ummmm, 1,114,594,000 words to choose from.”-Editor/Mom

What? My head hurts. And who’s Aleksa? Can I ask her stuff, too??

“Well, you can try, but we speak the same language, and she never understands me.”-Editor/Mom

SMACKDOWNS 101

“So David, how’s about a little update on how things are going between you and your new puppy?”-Editor/Mom

Puppy? You mean Waya? She’s not a puppy, she’s a piranha! Have you seen the fangs on her? She’s not afraid to use them, either. 

“So, apparently you’ve forgotten what you were like when you were four months old. We couldn’t even let you near Jazzy, because all you wanted to do was jump on her and bite her. She wanted nothing to do with you.”-Editor/Mom

I don’t remember that. And hey, I like it when we get to run and wrestle together. Nobody likes a good Smackdown more than me, but boy oh boy, do those teeth hurt when she chews on my head. I figured out the best way to stop her, though. I just grab one of her legs and hold on ’til she lets go. Then I start running so she can’t catch me.

It’s fun when we have toys or sticks to play with, except that she always wants the one I have. We’re learning to share, but it’s better when we each have our own to run with. 

“So, all in all, it sounds like things are going well. We’re glad that you two are getting along, and that we’re able to leave you alone outside together, even if it’s only for short periods at a time.”-Editor/Mom

Yeah, it’s fun taking turns knocking each other down. I just wish she’d learn what it means when I say “Uncle”, and let me go. And have you noticed that she’s getting bigger? Just look at the difference in the first four pictures from the beginning of the week, and these last ones from today. She’s almost as big as me. She’s getting faster, too. I’ve really gotta turn on the turbo to stay ahead of her now.

The most important question of all is: When are her puppy teeth going to fall out? 

“Not soon enough, David. Not soon enough.”-Editor/Mom