Sunday, August 16, 2009

Gardening

Who knew chihuahuas like to garden?? They were VERY helpful and got a long overdue bath afterwards. Good job girls!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Safety First

One of the final major improvements to our 4th-story balcony are safety wires for our girls. Mark has about half of the galvanized wire installed - will probably finish the rest today if his hands are up for it. The girls' heads and bodies are just about equal in width to the gaps in our balcony rail - not a good thing. The wires halve the width of the gaps, and look surprisingly cool with our other improvement!
Currently when we open the door to go out, we have to be very careful to net let one of them slip out. Both girls LOVE to sit on the balcony with us, especially Abbie. Most of the time we hold them. Occasionally when I'm here by myself, I put their harnesses on and leash them to one of the chairs.
Hopefully in a few more days, Ginger & Abbie can safely enjoy lounging harness-free on the balcony with us. Yea!!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Drama Queen

Abbie is SUCH a drama queen these days! When we come home from being away for more than an hour, she goes nuts! If she was a human child, there would be tears and "MOMMY, DADDY, I MISSED YOU SO MUCH! Please don't leave any more! Oh I'm so glad your here, but why did you do that to me. I MISSED YOU!!" To the untrained ear, though, it just sounds like pitiful - very pitiful - whimpers and cries combined with celebratory jumping and kissing. Pitiful.
Also, Abbie used to be the cool one when it was time to cut toenails. But now - oh my goodness - you'd think we were poking her with a red hot stick! She lets us cut a few just fine. But once she figures out what's going on, we can't even touch her feet without a painful scream (again, pitiful). I think we looked at her feet wrong once tonight & she screamed.
And the award goes to......

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Bad news....

     Ginger has been limping off and on for 2-3 weeks.  She doesn't seem to be in pain when she limps - she always plays, loves, eats, etc ferociously, she just does it with one leg in the air sometimes.
     We took her to the vet Wednesday:  her knee cap pops out (Patellar luxation).  Any of you who know Jerry W....... yes, same syndrome.  Apparently, it's a combination of the groove it sits in not being deep enough, and the muscles pulling at not quite the right angle to hold it in.  
     No treatment really, unless it gets to be where it's out the majority of the time; then we'll probably have surgery to deepen the groove a bit.   For now, we just let it pop in and out as it will.  Try to monitor her play when it's out so she doesn't twist it wrong.  Other than that, we don't have to restrict her activity at all - we can let her be her crazy little Ginger self.
In fact, last night we walked 2 miles at Radnor Lake - she didn't limp once!  Occasionally, other walkers would stop to pet the girls.  EVERY time, as we were walking away, Ginger would bounce up and down like, "Yea!! Somebody loved on me!! Life is wonderful, I'm so happy and so cute!!!"   I think the walk really helped us realize she'll be ok - whatever happens.
Other vet news: 
-Ginger weighed in at 4.0 lbs, and Abbie at 4.7 (the paper says 4.3, but Mark's pretty sure he heard the nurse say 4.7 when they were being weighed).  Doc says they're probably done growing....we'll see.  
-We started them on heartworm meds since we've been going to the dog park.  Better safe than sorry.
-Doc says it's still ok for us to leave there food down 24/7. The biggest reason (other than weight control) to do schedule feedings is for scheduled potty-time.  But since they can go in the box whenever they want, we can let them eat when they want.  All four of us are spoiled!!!!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Roco and Chico

We met a few more chihuahuas last night at the park.  It's the first time G & A have met dogs their own size - it went pretty well.  Roco & Chico are very small, super stubby-nosed (freaking adorable), 7 year old chihuahuas that rule the park.  Chico hit it off especially well with our girls, but Abbie will never admit it.  The coolest thing was when we were sitting near a bench, Roco & Chico stepped between our little timid girls and the 4-5 dogs running energetically towards them.  They're heros!!  :)  

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Social Progress

         They've always been good with people.  Well, most of the time.  But NEVER with other dogs. This afternoon at PetSmart, after just one visit to the Dog Park, G&A were SOOOO chilled out!!  No, they did not run to meet any of the other dogs in the store, but they did not run away either!  No fearful yelping, no "mommy, save me!!", just "Hmmm.  Pretty sure I don't like that other four-legged creature but, whatever."
          And, also a new development, they approached mutiple strangers to say "Hi, who are you?  Will you love on me?"  Previously, they were usually good when someone wanted to pet them.  But they typically did not approach strangers on their own.  
     ALSO, what we've all been waiting for............an update on the Big Blue Monsters (see the Big Blue Monsters post for the background story):
Today, for the first time, Abbie was more interested in the people behind the monsters than the creatures themselves.  We walked right by the 4-wheeled beasts without hesitation.
ps. Apparently Ginger DOES look good in pink IF it's paired with brown.  

When daddy's away, the girls will play!!

The girls were used to Mark being home every night, and home all day during the week.  So when he left for the first of 2 long trips this month it really took some adjusting.  The first night was the worst - Ginger just insisted on not coming to bed.  She was so distraught and confused.  I ended up barricading them into the bedroom & going to sleep myself.  After a while both girls joined me in bed, but neither slept well (so I didn't either).  Rough night.   We've had a few restless nights since, but nothing like that first one.  
    Most days I can come home for lunch.  But on the days I can't, they are just so excited to see me by the end of the day.  It's not an issue of needing to go out - they use a litter box - they're just not used to being alone for so long  :(
    I tried to make it up to them today by taking them to the dog park.  Actually, it was more for me.  I want them to be more comfortable around other dogs.  Neither one likes other dogs, but Abbie is especially terrified.  The few times Gizmo visited, it was Ginger (if I remember right) who warmed up the most.  I've heard from so many people that the dog park is a great place to socialize pups with other dogs.  Mark has been reluctant to take them to the dog park because there's so much dirt - we just can't imagine our sophisticated little city girls being that dirty.  But daddy's away, so the girls will play!!
    Centennial Dog Park has separate areas for big and small dogs.  The limit for the small-dog area is 25 lbs, but I don't think we have to worry about that!
    As always, both girls were excited to jump into the cage to go bye-bye.  And, as usual, they did great on their leashes as we made our way to the gate.  But then.....  screeching halt.  "Mom, you don't really expect us to go in there?!?!?"  Another dog even came into the leashing area to try to get Ginger & Abbie to come play.  Boy, that did not help.  They pulled and yelped to get back out to the parking lot.  The other dog soon lost interest, and I was able to coax the girls into the park.
      I sat on a shaded bench, and put water & a small blanket under the bench for them.  Once they realized I was NOT going to hold them on my lap, they calmed down a bit and laid/sat under the bench. Other dogs would periodically come by to chat, but were greeted with unfriendly snarls & barking (mostly Abbie).  After a while, Ginger began to shyly follow the dogs away, but quickly ran back to me if they turned around. 
    Once the initial shock of the thing wore off a bit, I got up to walk around.  Of course, they followed close.  Bit by bit, I think they started having a little fun.  There were no other dogs in that particular area, but they were close enough to see.  Even so, Ginger would occasionally lag behind to get a good smell of something, then rocket around (like she loves to do) to catch up.  Both pups ventured away from me periodically, and even had some nearly-positive, non-traumatic interactions with other dogs.  They LOVED the other dog owners and often would run away from me to visit with them.
    All in all, it was good.  When it started getting too warm, we came home and had yet another "first" - baths!!!  I put a towel in the bottom of our kitchen sink & filled it half-way up with warm water.  One at a time I scrubbed & rinsed the girls.  The sprayer is very helpful, but I wasn't thinking, and had it full blast at first.  I got wetter than Abbie did!!!  Both did great with the bath & I can't wait to do it all again.  Maybe one more time before daddy gets home???

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Thanks for the new clothes, Aunt T!!!!

(sorry for the poor quality pics - the only camera I have at the moment is the one on the computer, and it's awfully difficult to set up a good shot with it!)

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Memorial Day weekend

They did it!!!! They pottied on the grass!!! We were traveling to Indiana, a 7-8 hour trip, stopped at Wendy's, and Woo-Hoo!! Traveling longer distances with our refined little city girls just became an option.
We started at Mom Sunnie's place where the girls LOVED the back yard. Their retractable leashes gave them a bit of freedom to roam and run. Ginger was hilarious - she kept rolling in the grass. Not just in one spot, but everywhere! And not just one or two rolls, but over and over over again. Several times her body and/or legs got wrapped up like a yo-yo. Very funny. Grandma enjoyed the girls but, as the picture shows, was a bit hesitant to let Ginger go crazy kissing her face. And the more she resisted, the more Ginger tried.
That first night we also visited Rod, DeLila, & the kids. After a walk in the backyard with Lindsey and Mark, Wasabi and Ginger ran 100 mph circles inside the large carpeted house.  All was good until they hit the one patch of linoleum - Abbie turned soon enough but, with the momentum of a freight train, slid sideways into the closet doors.
Next was Dad Sonny's where our quiet girls became barkers.  Wow.  Bruce's kids and Christopher were there and were very patient, taking turns petting them.  Jackie and Ginger built a special little bond - Jackie knew that all it took was a little tummy rub and Ginger was hers for at least five minutes.  Chris & Andrew pretended to be dogs in the basement & got the girls all riled up - they loved it.  And sweet Katie just wanted to hold one of them; but since the dogs are bigger than her lap, it was just tough! 
Reunion at Grandma Millers was fun, too.  The girls were startled at first by another dog, but soon calmed down.  They spent most of the time on our laps, but did make a few laps around the yard with various nieces & nephews holding their leashes.  They walk so well - always want to be side by side, and like to walk right by my side.
Last stop was Mom Miller's.  Again with the barking.  Actually, they were ok until Monday when Barb & the kids showed up.  Ginger had gotten herself locked in mom's office, so she was in a tizzy anyway.  Abbie heard Ginger's tizzy, and that got her into a tizzy.  Together they completely tizzied-out when they saw Bard. And despite her excellent efforts, they never did completely warm up to her. (funny, because Barb was their favorite over Christmas!)    We took a walk around the pond while the grandkids were wrapping up the fishing contest, and came face to face with some cows.  Fearful curiosity on both sides of the fence, but the cows were much braver (size and numbers on their side).  
And, thanks for the new profile pic, Barb!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Abbie Chasing a Mouse

video

Ginger Keeping her Figure

Here's a clip of how Ginger eats......and how she keeps her figure. video

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

No Puppies for our Puppies

It's been nearly one week now since the girls were spayed, and they seem to be fine. It was nearly impossible to keep them under "restricted activity" for the prescribed 4 days! But they are back at full speed now. Bouncing up and down and all around.... YEA!!!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Cute girls



This is shortly after they got done being silly with Photo Booth. See their pictures in my Facebook album. (You can see them even if you don't have a FB account. Just click the link above.)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Happy Birthday, Uncle Bubba!

As we expected, the girls were enthralled with Uncle Bubba (our dear friend, Brad Brown). What we didn't expect was that he would come bearing gifts for them. He showed up Tuesday afternoon (HIS birthday) with a sack bigger than the two dogs combined, filled with specialty doggy treats from an Indianapolis bakery. Everyone was gracious enough to wait for me to get home form work to start the show.

First up: the red truffle. We broke half of the truffle into bite-size pieces, and put it on a plate for Ginger & Abbie to share. By the time Abbie smelled around & ate her first piece, Ginger had devoured most of the rest, and was cleaning up the crumbs. In the spirit of fairness, we broke up the second half, and held Ginger long enough for Abbie to get her share. Maybe we'll try the yellow truffle or a cookie tonight......

Brad and Ginger had a few things to work out. Ginger is very much an in-your-face dog. Brad is very much a protect-my-pretty-TV-face guy. The conflict is quite understandable: I usually have at least one visible scratch on my face or neck at all times - the engineers I work with just don't care. But that just wouldn't work for him. Besides that issue, everyone got along splendidly.

We'd only had one overnight guest before Brad since we got the girls, so it's still a bit new for them. They got startled once in the middle of the night & barked when Brad was stirring, but it didn't take long for them to remember we had a guest. They quickly jumped out of bed, ran into the living room, and tackled him on the couch. "Oh yeah!!! We have company!!! We're so glad you're here!!! We love you, we love you, we love you, and we don't care that it's the middle of the night & you're trying to sleep!!! We want to love you, and kiss you, and play with you!!! YEA!!!!!" After a while, they joined Mark & I back in bed, but periodically went out to remind Brad how excited they were to have him.

The pictures are frames from a funny little video (Mark should be posting the video soon....)

Monday, April 6, 2009

Typical weekend

These pics represent a pretty typical weekend.  Napping, basking in the sunshine, hanging out at the courthouse park, and PJ's on Sunday night.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Just a phase.

Thankfully, the fearful-puppy thing was just a short lived phase.  Ginger seems to have overcome ALL fears of the concrete & the steps. 
They are back to sprinting loops around the house.  Up & across the couch, off the end into the dining room, through the kitchen, into the bedroom, up the steps onto the bed, 1 or 2 loops on the bed, down the steps, around to the other side of the bed & into the bathroom, through the other bathroom, back into the kitchen, under the dining room table, weaving in and out of the chair legs, around the back of the couch, around the end & back up on top....  All of this 2 or 3 times happens in a matter of seconds it seems.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

slippery concrete & sisters

Ginger started slipping on the floor once in a while, especially in the “hallway” between the front & back of the house.  As a result, she’s timid in that area now.  It’s pretty sad. She gets stuck on the kitchen rug, not wanting to proceed to the bedroom or into the bathrooms.  Last night we put a small rug in middle of the scary-zone.  It seems to help (most of the time) by breaking the area up & giving her some refuge.

Her new concrete fear also made the new bedroom-stairs difficult.  With enough coaxing, she’d go up.  But it was VERY tough to get her to come down & have to “land” on the concrete floor.   Abbie was actually helping her – it was AWESOME.  Ginger would get half-way down & freeze, Abbie would get right up beside her & show her sister how to take the next step.  She would do it going up & and down.  A small rug at the bottom of the steps helped this too.

This morning, Abbie helped Ginger across the concrete abyss.  Beautiful.  Both dogs were running from the living room into the bedroom.  Abbie climbed the stairs to be in bed with Mark & noticed that Ginger hadn’t kept up.  Abbie climbed back down the stairs, returned the kitchen rug, and laid down beside Ginger.  It looked like she whispered something to her, then they stood up together & slowly made their way, side-by-side, across the abyss into the bedroom & up the stairs into bed.  It was SOOOO cool.  

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Karaoke

Ginger was a Karaoke star today! After the girls wore us out at the courthouse square, we took our regular 2nd Ave-Broadway-5th Ave walk.  A girl on stage at a 2nd Avenue karaoke bar stuck her head out the window & asked if she could see our dogs.  When she saw that Ginger was so friendly, the girl grabbed Ginger out of my hands (I still had hold of her leash) and held her up in the air for all of the bar patrons to see.  Yes, she was on stage, inside the bar.  Ginger just played it cool & sang a few lines of Folsom Prison Blues.   Rock on!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Teefers

They both been losing baby teeth like crazy. Both have a lower "fang" about to fall out.
Update: Within an hour of taking this picture, Ginger lost the tooth shown above & Abbie a huge molar.  We've been able to find & save a few, but most get lost. Or maybe eaten???

Abbie

And of course, Ginger, being the ham she is, just had to be in Abbie's pictures.

Ginger

Big Blue Monsters!

We made our standard trek to PetSmart yesterday with 3 goals in mind
    1) Find a clearance sweater or coat for Abbie
    2) Expose the girls to a variety of people
    3) Expose the girls to other dogs
   We found an adorable sweater, lots of people pet them, and we had  a few successful interactions with other small dogs. What we did not anticipate was a run-in with the big blue monsters.  
   Let me back up: During one of our first trips to PS, Abbie freaked out when a shopper & his huge blue shopping cart (or buggy, as it's called here) rounded the corner.  I didn't think of the incident again until yesterday.
  Yesterday we were making a lap around the store, both dogs on leashes, me and Ginger leading the way.  About half way around, I looked behind me & Mark was struggling to get Abbie to take another step.  Then she turned & ran the other way!  It was then I realized that she would have had to walk between two big blue carts.  Apparently, she's still terrorized by that first attack.
   Next weekend's PetSmart To-Do list
       1) Find a tank-top for Ginger
       2) Conquer the Big Blue Monsters

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Grass & Car Accident

Last weekend, we were planning to introduce the girls to grass.  Yes, they are 4 months old & have not yet seen grass (except Abbie for 30 seconds one time on a road trip - we were trying desperately to get her to go, but she was perplexed).  Anyway, Saturday was mid-70's so we though it'd be a good day to check out the dog park in Centennial Park - I heard there's a small dog section.  We made our way through the park & were ready to find a prkg spot when we were rear-ended.  Fortunately, the girls were in their cage which is strapped into the back seat.  They got restless waiting for the cop to get there, but other than that were fine.  Whew!
Too shook up to continue with the dog park adventure, we went home & just walked them to the courthouse park.  It took a little while, but they seemed to enjoy the grass.  Though they never did figure out what to "do" on the grass.  They are doing great with the leashes!  They even walked part way home.  We picked them up about half way back so we can ease their pads into this "outside" thing.
Another downtown resident was there walking their chihuahuas at the courthouse.  Ginger & Abbie want NOTHING to do with other dogs yet.  They love people, but we've really got to work on socializing them with other animals.   We've got a few ideas.

Friday, March 6, 2009