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Saturday, December 29, 2012

A growing puppy


FLD Dutch looks down from the balcony.

Ten days before Christmas we spent some time at Jen's. Dutch liked playing in the hallway, high above the living room. He was able to squeeze his head through the bannister posts.

Dutch croons.

One week later, he could not.


Friday, December 28, 2012

Close encounter of the feline-kind

Gus lets out a long, deep WOOF! He bounds down the stairs with Dutch hot on his heels. At the doorway Gus puffs up and stops dead at the edge of the carpet. Just beyond, Peanut is dozing on the treadmill.

Dutch careens around Gus. His feathery paws hit the tile floor as he spots the old cat. He backpedals, but slides beyond the protection of his 65-pound buddy. What is that?!

A brown, black, and white mottle cat sits on a treadmill and faces off a large black Lab and a 3 month old Golden Retriever ball of fluff.
Dutch skids past Gus when he sees Peanut-the-cat.

Gus bounces forward with another bark. Peanut hisses and lashes out like Muhammad Ali, her declawed paws popping Gus's muzzle from every direction.

He retreats.

Dutch can't contain his curiosity. He ducks his head and inches closer. Peanut meows a warning. Dutch calmly stares her down.

The cat is on the treadmill facing the camera, in a crouched position looking at the puppy. The golden fluffy puppy with a blue collar stands his ground and looks back at her.
Peanut-the-cat and Dutch have a stare-down.

Before long, Peanut curls up in her cat-bed at the front end of the treadmill; Dutch ventures onto the rubbery surface to investigate.

The cat is curled up in a light brown bed at the far end of the treadmill. The golden puppy is facing the camera at the other end, looking down and to his right.
Peanut-the-cat keeps a keen watch from the safety of her bed. Meanwhile, Dutch sniffs out the scene.

Cat and puppy truce.


Peanut-the-cat lives with Andy's daughter Jen and her husband Jeff. We visited them over the holidays.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

And to all a good night...


FLD Dutch wishes everyone
a very
Merry Christmas!

May you find fuzzy love under YOUR tree!


Friday, December 21, 2012

All in good stride.

Career-changed Gus is super tolerant of young Mr. Dutch.

Straddle his back and chew his ears while he's laying down? No problem. When Gus gets tired of it he gets up and wrestles Dutch to the floor.

Dutch pauses in  his ear-chewing. Who me? I'm innocent.

Grab his rear ankles? No problem. Gus dances his way through the house on light feet and keeps on moving.

Swing from his tail? This doesn't seem to bother him at all.

Gus takes refuge on the couch, where he knows Dutch cannot go. Dutch still has hold of Gus's tail!

By the end of the evening, Gus is ready to relax. Dutch is not. We have to be careful--Gus jumps onto our laps to get away from the youngster, whether we're ready for him or not!

Andy relaxes on the couch after dinner. Gus plans his leap.

There is one thing, though, that Gus won't tolerate...

Keep away from my stick!


Anybody's guess

Andy says, "Dutch is going to make it."
             (He means as a working Leader Dog.)

How do you know? I ask.

"Because if he can stand up to Gypsy, he'll be just fine."


With every new puppy, my crabby old mutt Gypsy makes sure everyone knows who's boss. Lip curled, her worn-down teeth bared, she snarls and growls. This usually causes a new puppy to keep a wide berth.

Not Dutch.

FLD Dutch considers Gypsy's threat.

From a safe distance, he give her a Golden warble back.

Another Gypsy-under-her-breath-snarl and Dutch decides to hightail it out of there!

After a couple of weeks, a growing-bolder Dutch ignores Gypsy's warning to "leave Andy's shoes alone!"



Last night Dutch was curled up tight in a ball, his back tucked against the blue dog bed under Andy's desk.

Gypsy was in it.

And she wasn't snarling.
      (You'll have to take my word on this. When I went for my camera, they both got up and moved apart.)


Gypsy looks at me as if to say, "What's with this pup?"

Dutch sings another Golden tune and works his charms on the old girl.


Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Road trip!

FLD Dutch traveled downstate with me this past weekend. Everything is "new" for puppies, but this trip proved to be filled with exceptionally new experiences for the little guy. Okay, he is not so little--16.9 lbs at weigh-in for his second round of shots at Leader Dogs for the Blind.

An almost-five-year-old blond headed girl (my niece Zoey) holds a fistful of kibble. She just figured out that "Dtuz" will sit on her command. Dutch, a fuzzy 10-week-old Golden Retriever sits in front of her looking up in anticipation. Behind them are coats in a pile and hanging on hooks belonging to family members who came to the cookie bake.For instance, Dutch attended our family's annual cookie bake. Here he is sitting for my niece, Zoey, who had trouble saying his name.

Zoey learned that whenever she called "Dutz" he came running for her! (It might have been the kibble she clenched in her tiny fist.)

The blond five-year-old is sqatting with eyes closed, her right hand reaching for the floor for balance. The 10-week-old Golden Retriver puppy has one front paw on her knee. He might have just given her a puppy lick!
What a giggle erupted after a surprise puppy kiss!

FLD Dutch also hung out at Anderson Music during my niece Elaina's French Horn lesson. His head tilt was the epitome of "My Master's Voice" as her notes came pouring through the bottom crack of the door.

Later, he wasn't too sure about the music that came out of Natalie's tuba.

The fuzzy Golden Retriever puppy has his head inside the bell of a tuba.
What's in there?

The puppy has his head pulled out of the tuba like he wasn't sure what happened. My niece, Nataile is in the background with her fingers on the pads.
Whoa! What was that?!

Natalie is sitting on the floor about to blow her tuba. Black Lab "Rosie" is looking back at the camera with the white of her left eye showing. The puppy is in front of her looking away from the camera and at the tuba.
Natalie prepares to toot her tuba. Cc'd Rosie looks over as if to say, "This is going to be good!"

The puppy is sitting in the corner between a floor lamp and a cabinet. Mostly you can only see his head and his big black eyes.
One toot later and FLD Dutch is hiding in the corner.

My niece Sofia is sitting on the floor with the puppy, who is partially hidden behind a horn case.
Sofia coaxes Dutch out of the corner. He peeks around the horn case to see if everything is okay.


The black lab is licking the puppy's face as he sits behind the tuba, which is on the floor. The puppy's head is stretched back.
Rosie says to Dutch, "It's okay pup, don't be afraid, it's just a lot of air!"

Natalie is to the left and is petting the puppy, who is sitting near the tuba that is on the floor. My other niece, Claire, is sprawled out on the ottoman looking on.
Natalie lets Dutch check out the tuba.

The puppy is pawing the tuba with his right front paw.
Guess this big old horn isn't so bad after all!


Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Puppy photos

Just a few fun shots of my GROWING puppy.

Dutch has gained 3 pounds in less than two weeks!

A close up shot of  Dutch's fuzzy face as he's laying on the floor. His left front paw is holding down an ice cube.
FLD Dutch loves ice cubes almost as much as Scout did!

Dutch and Gus playing in our living room. Dutch has his nose wrinkled up, ears flopping and eyes closed. Gus has a moon eye with a wide open mouth full of big white teeth. It's all in fun, it just looks scary!
Sometimes Lab-wrestling looks scary!

Gus is laying on the floor licking a blue Kong that is between his front legs that are stretched out in front of him. Dutch is sprawled on Gus's back and he's biting on Gus's ear. Gus is too preoccupied to care.
Gentleman Gus puts up with the young upstart climbing on his back and chewing his ear. He has a Kong filled with kibble!

A side view closeup of fuzzy Dutch. Only his front legs and body is in the frame. He is in mid-jump in the snow, kicking it up behind him. His brown leash is under his belly.
First snow! Yippee!!!

A low frontal view of Dutch standing in the snow. He has some snow on his nose from digging around in it. His brown leash runs between his front legs. In the background is our full woodshed and a big oak tree.
What's that on your nose, Dutch?


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

FLD Dutch, week 2

A typical training moment...

Dutch sits and cocks his head, his dark eyes melting my heart. When he doesn't get anything, he drops to his belly and ducks his head looking up as if to say, Will this "down" get me a treat?

Nope. We're working on "mat" this session.

He belly-aches at me and pops up to a "sit." That still doesn't get it. He mumbles. He gets up and circles around and happens to step on his mat against the wall.

YES! Dutch whips his head and trots over for his treat. He repeats with the sits and downs but quicker this time he goes over to the mat. I wait. He turns and sits.

YES! He bounces over for his treat and turns back to the mat, foregoing the sits and downs. At the mat he drops right into a "down."

YES! I bring the treat to him.
 
Dutch inhales the bit of kibble, flips around and bounds out of the room. I follow. He heads right for the back door. 

Yahoo! We're making progress! I clip on his leash and we're out the door to "park."

Gus wants in on the "mat" action.

Good old Gus puts up with the new pup!

Here, Dutch, let me show you how to do "mat."