Monday, May 30, 2011

Beach Bums

We are having a wonderful time in the Outer Banks with friends and family. The weather has been great. The water is freezing, but it's still fun to romp in the surf. If I still had my family jewels, they'd be as shriveled as prunes. Poor Thelma Lou was shivering like a dog shitting razor blades after an extended romp retrieving the infamous Tuff Coat II glove stuffed with a tennis ball -- by far the most favorite toy on the beach. We're thinking about patenting it.

It's cool having both Dad and Uncle Mike in the pack.When visiting Grammy Lee, Mom has mistaken other brindle boxers for me. This week she's having trouble telling the difference between Dad and Uncle Mike.

Which twin is hotter?

We are all dog-tired as exhibited by the following photos.

 Roger catches up on his beauty sleep

Not that Roger thinks he needs it, but he decided to catch up on an hour of beauty sleep while the rest of the pack is grilling Porterhouse steaks.

Thelma Lou chills on the cool tile floor while the steaks are being grilled

Don't worry ocean, I'll be back to tackle you again tomorrow

Thursday, May 19, 2011

This week is "Dog Bite Prevention Week"

In case you are not aware, May 15-21, 2011 is designated as Dog Bite Prevention Week. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, 4.7 million people are bitten by dogs each year in the United States, with 800,000 of them requiring medical attention. As a Dog Scout, I constantly promote the proper greeting of myself to my human counterparts, especially children.

Children are most at risk because they often approach dogs without hesitation or engage in rough play or fur-grabbing, resulting in injury. Thelma Lou, who wouldn't bite a flea (and better not have any on her dog because we use Advantix II), has been Troop 161's poster pup for several children's events — demonstrating to children how to properly approach a dog.

Neighborhood watchdog prepared to take a bite out of crime

Actually, it is important to recognize that any dog can bite — even Thelma Lou with her pronounced under bite can still take a bite out of crime or anyone else for that matter, especially if she is injured or feels threatened.

According to veterinary behaviorist Dr. Sophia Yin, DVM, MS, "The truth is that the majority of bites are actually due to fear, and they occur because humans fail to recognize the signs of fear in dogs." Proper training and socialization of dogs as well as training humans how to recognize dog body language and approach dogs in a non-threatening manner is crucial to avoid dog bites.

Dr. Yin has compiled the following public service announcement video on "Recognizing Fearful Behavior in Dogs." We give the video "four paws up!" or "twelve paws up" collectively.

Also available on Dr. Yin's website, she offers tips to recognize fearful dog behaviors and how to approach dogs, which includes a free downloadable poster. Thank you Dr. Yin for this valuable information.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Now I know my ABC's

After having attended the Royal Wedding last month as a guest of the Queen, one would think that I would have had enough pomp and circumstance in my life for quite some time. Au contraire. I jumped right back in the saddle and headed to Kentucky — not for the Derby but for the 2011 American Boxer Club National Specialty Show — commonly referred to as ABC where all the elite boxers compete, including Katandy's Fast Forward "Frankie," who took Best of Opposite Sex handled by Dan Buchwald.

M.B.I.S.S. GCh. Katandy's Fast Forward "Frankie"

There's no requirement that you have to be a Boxer to attend the National ABC show, but Roger and Thelma Lou stayed at home to keep Dad in line. You know the old saying, "When the cat's away, the mice will play." Honestly, I had my doubts about Roger keeping anyone, including himself, in line. Obviously, as the only female in the house Thelma Lou called all the shots because Dad pressure washed and stained the entire deck, hand scrubbed and waxed the floors, and planted all of Mom's favorite flowers while we were gone. He certainly was one busy little beaver, and we all benefit from the fruits of his labor.

Although I missed playing with Roger and Thelma Lou, I must admit that it was really cool to have Mom all to myself on Mother's Day. First, I surprised her with breakfast in bed — a bowl of Kellogg's Cinnamon Pecan Special K. What do you expect? We're shacked up in a hotel room and I had to work with what I had. Then I presented her with a beautiful bouquet of red roses.

Mother's Day bouquet for the best Mom in the world!

We topped off the day with a rigorous 3-mile hike in the beautiful Eden Park of Cincinnati, which overlooks the Ohio River, bringing my current total to 7.5 miles of the 12 miles that I committed to hike for our Hike-a-Thon to raise money for Dog Scouts of America while promoting responsible dog ownership.

Enjoying the view of the Ohio River

Our community hike took place last Saturday, May 14 at Fieldwood Dog Training Center in Carlisle. With the exception of a few pit stops, Roger led the pack for almost the entire 3-mile course. If you would like to support Team Katandy's Triple Threat but haven't yet done so, fear not. There's still plenty of time — you have until the end of May. You can either visit our FirstGiving webpage or remit your cash or check donation directly to Mom. 

 Thelma Lou displays her new Outward Hound Pack

Roger the Rock declares himself "Leader of the Pack"

Note: Backpacks are not required. Roger and Thelma just got theirs and think that they look exceptionally cool wearing them. You know how kids are with new duds.