I’m still here

Getting into the groove of the New Year has been a bit of a struggle.  I’ve really wanted to be out walking with the dog, and I have been doing that quite a bit, but my right foot/ankle is really giving me trouble, so I don’t know how much walking I’ll be getting in.  My Fitbit stats were supposed to be showing up on a weekly basis here, but since the last time they appeared was the 6th, I think something has gone wrong there.  The other thing that went wrong this week was a bit of a mishap on the trail.  Ozzie and I have worked our way up to about six miles a walk.  We’ve been on the paved paths through the park for a good portion of our walks, because the new bark is so thick and soft, it feels like walking in quicksand.  As I said before, we’ll wait till some of those swift gazelles pack it down a bit before we go back to bark.  Sharing the paved bike trail has never been a problem.  After all, it’s only me and a little dog.  You see many folks out with their kids in a stroller and they take up quite a bit more room than we do.

Anyway, on Monday afternoon, Ozzie and I were very near the far easterly end of our walk (see below on the map)Monday walk

It’s a bit more than three miles from the car and I was already out of gas, wondering why I was so very tired, when Ozzie decided he wanted to sniff something over on the left side of the trail.  Dogs do sniff — especially male dogs.  If they smell a rival or some hot babe, they have to mark and leave their scent, just as their little calling card or Facebook post, as it were.  So, I went over with Ozzie and I saw a bike coming towards us down the trail, so I stepped up off the trail and pulled Ozzie close, tightening his leash.  The bike rider continued straight at us, and I mean straight at us, in a forced collision course.  I finally yelled “HEY,” and he yelled back that I was on the wrong side of the trail.  Hmmmm.  Mr. Rules, how do you know the direction in which I was traveling?  And, since the trail is about 10′ wide there and there was no one else around, what the hell difference did that make?  At any rate, I yelled back, but I won’t repeat what I said here.  I may not venture down in that area again until the pepper spray I ordered arrives in the mail.  If he tries that again, he will get a face full of it.

Most folks are so friendly and kind.  I guess it takes a real jerk like that to make you really appreciate the nice people.  I will say that I did appreciate the adrenaline rush I got from the fight or flight experience.  It did propel me all the way back to the car.  I had been worried that I didn’t have the energy, but in the end, I had more than enough.

Some dogs . . .

are just a bit too big for their own britches.  When Ozzie wants to play with a stick, he’ll settle for half the tree.

Ozzies stick1Pardon the picture quality, we were at the end of our 5.5 mile walk yesterday, and I didn’t have the camera, just the cell phone, so I did the best I could.

Unfortunately, being a tad too big for his britches also comes with the desire to misbehave or not pay attention when I’m talking to (or yelling at) him.  Ozzie has a grain allergy – he eats grain free dog food.  But, yesterday on our walk, he decided to eat a road apple, even though I told him to drop it and leave it (many times).  By last night, he was in obvious distress.  Breathing hard, scratching up a storm, and panting a bit.  I was ready to take him to the emergency vet, but decided to try some Benadryl first.  Fortunately, it evened out his breathing, settled him down, and a good lie down in the cool leaves in the back yard seemed to really help the itching.  He’s doing very well today, but he really gave me a scare.  I got very little sleep.  He’s a very smart dog, but I’m hoping that he’ll be able to put together that horse poop is something that makes him very, very ill.  I’ll be more vigilant in the future.

Cats stealing dog beds

Have you seen that video making the rounds of the internet lately?  Poor dogs tossed out of their beds by the kitties of the house who steal their beds:

Cats Stealing Dog Beds

Well, we’ve had a bit of that going on here lately.  I got Ozzie a new bed from LL Bean, as he loves the one out at his cousin Kalli’s house.  He seemed so excited when the box arrived.  I got it out, put the slipcover on it, and put it down on the floor.  He climbed right in and was so comfy.  Well, until this happened.

Vince and SadieThis seems to occur a couple times a day, but every now and then, we get back to the way it should be.

The way it should be

 

Playing (or not) with the big dogs

The rain returned to Eugene overnight.  Not a lot of rain, but it’s wet and intermittently cloudy.  We were totally out of dog treats here at home, so I told Ozzie that if he’d go with me to Costco, I’d take him to the dog park on the way home.  As you can see, it was a lot less crowded today than yesterday:

dp oct7

 

Costco was a whole lot more crowded than this!

Anyway, shortly after I took this picture, I heard the gate bang and another dog and owner came in.  Havoc (appropriately named dog) is a huge German Shepherd, but she is really a sweet dog and likes to run around after Ozzie.  Well, a lot of the dogs like to chase Ozzie – especially the herd dogs (Australian Shepherds, Corgis, Blue Heelers, etc).  They all think he’s a small sheep.  Today, Havoc’s owner (nice man to whom I have spoken several times, but I don’t know his name) threw his dog’s ball at about the same time I threw Ozzie’s.  Ozzie ran to get the ball, but got Havoc’s instead.  This would not have been a problem, but he took exception to the fact that Havoc took his ball, and he decided he was going to get it back!  A fight ensued, broken up by two very worried and embarrassed dog owners.  Havoc probably has a good 60-80 pounds on Ozzie.  She’s a BIG dog, and he only weighs 20 pounds.  He ended up being okay, just totally terrified, nearly jumping into my arms when it was all over.  We’ve had a discussion about playing with our own ball and dogs of our own size, but I don’t know how much of an impression that made.  I think we’ll do our best to avoid Havoc in the future.

My boy can SWIM!

Who knew?  What a day to be without my good camera.  Well, I did have the camera, but took the SD card out of it last night to upload some photos of Mt Hood and Mt St Helens yesterday and forgot to put it back in the camera.  We took our morning walk around the pond and met friends of my sister’s who were playing with their own Australian Shepherd.  They were throwing the stick into the pond and Ozzie, who never lets anyone beat him to a ball at the park, decided that no one was going to beat him to the stick either!  With his very long and skinny legs, he doesn’t really dog paddle, but does the full stroke.  I thought for a while that I was going to have to dive in to help him, but he did just fine.  I got a few snaps with my Droid camera — not the best, but you get the jist.

Ozzie Swims 2

Ozzie Swims

My crazy little dog.  I sure do love him.  Oh, and here’s a picture from about a week ago that I forgot to post.  Ozzie and his cousin Kallie, or, as we like to call them, the Kickbusch Branch Managers!

Kickbusch Branch Managers