Friday, April 18, 2008

Happiness is a warm puppy...

Rump-shot! Bear protecting my folks' backyard from intruders and cats.

...said the ever-wise Charlie Brown.

What to blog about? Food-wise, there's still plenty more to post about our fabulously chow-tastic trip to the Bay Area. We had a great weekend hanging out with D.'s family and I spent some time with Kirkleton and Krazo in beautiful San Francisco.

I could also grouse about wah-ding planning. Oh, if I use the word "w.e.d.d.i.n.g", wah-ding blog bots will link to my blog. I'd prefer to not let that happen, so I'm calling it a wah-ding, like Franck on "Father of the Bride". It's been quite slow (and annoying), all due to the fact that vendors hold their business hours Monday-Friday, 8am-5pm. Gee, that's just dandy, because my company happens to hold the same hours. What could be handled in one day's worth of phone calls and emails is spread out over weeks because I can't exactly plan a wah-ding at work.

With all of that, what's the subject of this post? Bear. Because he's more important than chow or wah-dings. He'd totally agree.

Yes, we all know who the bed really belongs to.

I've been following a few dog blogs lately and I love 'em. I'm not a fan of the overly-cutesy ones, but there are several that give the dogs a great voice with tons of pictures. My top three:

Two Dog Blog (the fabulous doggies of White on Rice Couple)

Nanook and Pooka (I've always liked Newfs, but these two have me convinced that a Newfy is in my future)

Five Happy Hounds (they're a hilarious bunch and I really admire their mom's devotion to rescue pups)

I wanted to start a blog for Bear, but D. thought I was A) insane and B) already too busy to keep up with this one. I disagree with A, but he has a point on B. So, inspired by this post (how cute is that bib with a tie on it?), I thought I'd write a post about Bear, belatedly celebrating his 9th birthday and reflecting on my first year as a dog-parent. It's a bit apropos, since Bear also loves the ocean and is my faithful shadow.

Seagulls, waves, water... oh, my!

Bear's a 75lb. (apparently quite large for the breed) Australian Shepherd who doesn't seem to understand the concept of age. He acts like and has the energy of a puppy. Passerby are often astounded to know he's pushing double-digits. Being a vain pretty boy, Bear is very aware of how gorgeous he is. Turn-ons include cat-chasing, crotch-sniffing, running, supervising (even when you're using the restroom... it's actually kind of cute), snuggling, belly-rubs, herding children, and anything that squeaks.

The handsome charmer.

He came to live with us while D.'s sister, H., was moving. The idea was for him to stay from January until April, then go back to H. Well, that was April '07 and Bear's still here, which I'm thrilled about. It's been an incredible year. I can't imagine life without him nowadays.

On throne #2 (#1 being the bed... ours, not his), where he always likes to have a pillow to rest his head on.

On a cliched and cheesy note, things I've learned:
  • Walks and playtime don't get postponed just because I don't feel like it. Let's face it, they're good for me, too.
  • Old dogs can learn new tricks. Age and bad habits are not reasons to give up on a dog. Or a human, for that matter.
  • Love doesn't discriminate and neither does Bear. He'll love anyone who is willing to offer a pat or a few kind words and he will not judge a book by the cover.
  • Be happy about the little things, like treats and going outside. Not just happy... enthusiastic, dammit.
  • Protect your home and family from any threat, especially that pesky mail carrier.
  • No greeting in the world is as wonderful as the one from a dog. That's because no human is that excited to see me. Hehe.
  • Snuggling makes a good Sunday morning.
  • While dogs are not people, they're living beings with feelings and distinct personalities. My job is to understand and respect the dog that Bear is while maintaining my role as pack leader. That includes continuous training, setting him up for success, and understanding that his breeding dictates a great deal of what kind of dog he is.
  • Patience. I still don't have a lot of it, but I mysteriously have it in spades when it comes to Bear.
  • Sometimes you just have to enjoy a good warm day by going outside and laying on the grass.
  • Meeting other dog owners means that I'll know their dog's name, but no clue about theirs.
Thank you, Bearboo. Life was always pretty good, but having you has made it so much better.

5 bites:

Alice Q. Foodie said...

Awww how cute! Thanks for sharing about your pup - we have two, Bart and Lola, both rescue lab mixes (pit bull and doberman respectively.) They are quite a handfull!

KirkK said...

Hey GF - Bear is adorable....I enjoy that last little item....we know the names of all the dogs in our neighborhood....but can't say the same about the humans.

Meandering Eats said...

Hey Alice! Which one is on your recent blog post (the one about things to do now it's hot again)? Is that Lola? So cute! I love Lab mixes... we have a couple of Lab/Rottie mixes around the neighborhood and they're so cute.

Bear also loves grass, but I think he might be part cow, because he loves to eat it. We had some clover growing in our grass and he thought it was the best treat. :)

Hey Kirk! Hehe, I refer to many of the people in our area as "(Dog's name)'s person". Bear's become a bit notorious for two reasons... there aren't many Aussies around, making him a little more memorable, and he developed some dog aggression issues, so he's been impolite to the occasional dog passing by. So, I don't think it's a stretch to assume that we're known as "That crazy Aussie's people". We've been working with a trainer and it's amazing how far a little work goes... he'll never be a dog's dog, but he's learning the value of staying calm and looking away.

Anonymous said...

Oh Bear is soo cute! Can we trade you our two dogs for him?
Your San Francisco food frenzy is amazing! We wanna go back back there now!!

Meandering Eats said...

WORC, thank you! Sierra and Dante are quite the cuties themselves. Wouldn't "Dog Swap" be a hilarious reality show? I am a little envious that you have two of them. I'd love another one or to foster rescues, but Bear's a very much a one-dog dog. He doesn't like sharing attention. :)

I just posted about Vik's, which I consider the pinnacle of that incredibly fabulous day of food. Five eateries in one day! Whew!

5 bites