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  • August 15th, 2008 | 7:53 PM
Friday Five - the Cassie edition

Cassie has been with us almost 3 weeks now so I thought this edition of the Friday Five should be about her. Or maybe I just wanted to show some pictures of our beautiful little girl. :-) She loves the camera so I have to try and sneak up on her when I want a picture of her doing something cute otherwise she likes to pose.

#1     We are still working on separation anxiety. She has super-bonded with my husband which is both nice and sad. It is nice because of course I like to see both him and Cassie happy but it is sad because I want her to bond with me. She loves me, but since he is home with her most all day it is different. When I am home with her and he is gone she whines for a long time and sits in the dining room facing the front door. It is getting better but it is a lot of work on my part to build the relationship. I am the person with the best (translations - stinkiest treats) and I'm the only one who feeds her scraps of meat that she gets to take from my mouth. I do a lot of the play/training with her so hopefully it will all add up. I realize we may have this who thing in reverse when we get a male dog down the road.

When we are both gone she has to go in the crate. This does not make her happy.

She does not like the crate at all. The trainer suggested we set up a video camera to see how long she freaks out when she was in it so we know how serious it is.

#2     Things happen for a reason. Remember all those big piles of dirt and decomposed granite in the backyard? Cassie loves them. She loves to climb to the top and dig in like a pile of sand. She likes to take a stick and lay on the top of the hill. She likes to crane her neck back so she can watch the planes go overhead. So now we are replanning our backyard design so that we can make a hill for Cassie.

For the longest time that was about all she would do outside, run to the hill and sit down. Now she is learning how to play. Outside she likes to gather sicks and run puppy races. When we first brought her home she really didn't know what to do with many of her toys. She liked things that squeaked though so we got this little beehive that has three small bees inside. They all have a different kind of squeak. She has to get them out of the hive. She loves it.

The trainer that we are working with told us that we should add tricks in now, at the same time we are working on obedience, and Cassie is loving it. She isn't 100% consistent yet, but she is getting there on SHAKE, SPIN, and CRAWL. She is also learning to ring the bells hanging on the door to let us know when she wants to go outside.

#3     She does not like the ocean at all. We took her to Aptos to see the ocean and this was as close as she would get and she wasn't happy about that. There were dogs all around her racing into the water but she squirmed away. She does however like her wading pool in the backyard. She won't go IN it but she likes to dive underwater and pick up things on the bottom of the surface. And she likes to remove all the leaves from the pool. We are surmising that someone used a hose to scare her in some way because whenever I water the plants she moves away. We are working on me having the hose on the ground next to me and having her come close for being touched. Tonight I was watering in the courtyard and she actually walked over to me of her own even though water was coming out of the hose. We are constantly amazed at how quickly she is progressing for a rescue dog.


#4      She loves meeting new dogs and is wonderful with all of them. She met several new dogs at the beach. She meets new dogs on her daily walks and is great with all of them except for the little yappy dogs, like daschunds, that come toward her. Those she is afraid of which makes us think the probably with the people who adopted her from the pound were the little dogs. Sigh. We were charged by a Beagle, barking and growling and ready to bite and Cassie just sat down and waited.

Her favorite playmate is her cousin Crice, my brother-in-law's three-year-old Shepherd. They love to play chase.


#5 She loves going everywhere with us, even out to dinner. We went to Ma Maison in Aptos for dinner and they allow dogs on the patio. They even brought Cassie water in a porcelain bowl, the same kind of dishes we had on our table.


We just gave her a bully stick and she was happy.

I'd forgotten how much work a puppy was, even an older pup like Cassie. She sleeps all night but gets up way too early, no matter what we do and someone always has to have an eye out for her so I can't ever relax. But I wouldn't trade a minute of it.

In the midst of all the crazies going on in my life right now, most especially the waiting at work as the merger goes forward with plans to close toward the end of the month and the layoffs in huge numbers due to come as soon as possible after the merger closes, well, puppy kisses make it all bearable. 
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( 20 comments — Leave comment )
August 16th, 2008 04:13 am (UTC)
She's so beautiful!
August 18th, 2008 03:41 pm (UTC)
Thank you.
August 16th, 2008 11:08 am (UTC)
Hey, I'm thinking of you through this up and down time.

Hang in there, and your Cassie is lovely :))

My dogs did better in an X pen vs a crate when I had to leave them when they were younger, since it is more open and more room. You can also get a top for them if your dog will try to climb it or go over the side with a leap. :))
August 18th, 2008 03:42 pm (UTC)
Good idea, Meg. Thank you! I have a feeling she will do better in the house when we can finally leave her out but right now she is puppy curious about anything she can reach to put in her mouth and she can reach a lot of things. :-) I'm loving every minute of it though.
August 16th, 2008 11:35 am (UTC)
She is the sweetest thing!
Othello...well, he was young when we got him. He hated the crate at first too - would whine all night long until someone went to lay down beside him. Seriously, one of us slept on the floor for a week.

Then he got used to it, and he loved it. Whenever we'd go out, he'd run in there and lay down until we got home. Even when we left him out, he'd stay in the crate with the door open. When we had Ry, it was his sanctuary away from the baby.

Such a weird dog.
August 18th, 2008 03:44 pm (UTC)
On the German Shepherd forum there are a lot of people who say they sleep next to the crate with their new dogs. We don't crate her at night though. She is a doll at night. She just comes upstairs and goes to her bed. She doesn't get off of it all night, just thumps her tail when someone gets up.

My last dog loved the crate for many years.
August 16th, 2008 11:46 am (UTC)
Susan, it sounds like you got a great dog and are helping her beautifully. Puppies are so much work -- I especially dislike that loss of sleep part! The oldest of our two dogs is turning 7 and that is when we've liked to introduce a new dog, when they're still young enough to want to play and enjoy it, and can teach the pup some good things. But after a year of getting up for an old dog, and before that getting up for a puppy, I'm not sure I'm ready for that loss of sleep. Maybe in the spring.

Even the bonding with your husband -- I'm sure that can be annoying, but how great he bonds at all, given his past; and some dogs can be just one-person sorts, no matter how much affection is lavished on elsewhere. That can be their nature. At least you are getting dog kisses! Glad she is bringing joy in your life.
August 19th, 2008 03:11 pm (UTC)
I know I couldn't have an eight week old puppy again. I did that in my 20s and that was enough. Cassie being an older pup is perfect. We're going to look at a second dog this weekend, an 18 month male. We figure maybe we'll just do all the adjustments at once.

It is okay that she bonds with my husband. He deserves it as he takes such good care of us. And Cassie loves me too. I'm the only one who feeds her right from my mouth. I give her the stinkiest treats. And I get to do the fun training sessions with her where she is learning to spin, shake and crawl. It all works out.
August 16th, 2008 12:15 pm (UTC)
She is so adorable. :)
August 18th, 2008 04:59 pm (UTC)
Thanks! We sure think so. :-)
August 16th, 2008 01:18 pm (UTC)
Sweet puppy! This brought tears to my eyes. She is so beautiful.
August 19th, 2008 03:12 pm (UTC)
Thank you.
August 16th, 2008 01:25 pm (UTC)
She is obviously a smart, smart girl, which is helping her to learn lots of things quickly. She will soon figure out that Daddy comes back after he leaves, although she may still keep him as her primary bond (Wally is firmly bonded to my husband; he was "all mine" for the first 3 weeks we had him, but then I went away to a conference and when I got home, he was "lost" to hubby. That said, he doesn't respect hubby the way he does me, since my hubby acts more like a pack member and less like alpha). It still feels like a small loss to me, though, even though it's been more than a year, so I know how that feels.
August 16th, 2008 01:47 pm (UTC)
She's gorgeous! Tell her that not all people like the ocean, either :) I took oceanography and once I found out how Deep it was, I totally freaked out. Beaches are good.
August 19th, 2008 03:12 pm (UTC)
LOL. She is liking the wading pool where the water doesn't move.
August 16th, 2008 07:25 pm (UTC)
Echo didn't like his crate, and we spent all night on the floor beside him for the first week. He learned how to break out of a locked crate on his fourth night with us!

When we leave the house and crate him (so we can use our security system) we dim the lights in his room and play classical music, and give him a special treat and toy. He calms down within a minute or two and takes a nap.
August 17th, 2008 01:45 pm (UTC)
I love hearing all about Cassie! She is adorable and I love that you are giving her this wonderful life. It looks like she is making great progress in her new home.

August 19th, 2008 03:38 pm (UTC)
Thanks Barb! We are like a couple of new parents, getting so excited at every new thing she does. LOL.
(Deleted comment)
August 19th, 2008 03:44 pm (UTC)
That's what I'm hoping too!
August 23rd, 2008 07:11 am (UTC)
she is sooooooo pretty susan. what a lucky dog she is.
( 20 comments — Leave comment )

Who am I?I was born on the Cancer/Leo cusp and share a birthday with Ernest Hemingway and Robin Williams. The similarities don't stop there as I can go from depressed to ecstatic without ever passing go. I feel scared most of the time though my friends call me brave and I find it easier to believe in my friends than to believe in my own abilities to make what I want out of my life.

Who am I? A wife, a mother, a daughter, and even, gulp, a grandmother.

Who am I? A writer who never gets tired of playing with words, even when the words are hard to find. A writer of books for children and articles for grown-ups and many things in-between.

Who am I? A motivational speaker, writing instructor, workshop leader and full-time follower of dreams.

Who am I? Read and find out.

Susan Taylor Brown

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