Category Archives: dog behavior

Thankful to be Back!

Hey All!

Opie here!

I know I’ve been gone for a while. I’ve been busy taking care of my pack – Mom, Dad, the boys. It’s been a really, really, busy time. Lots of stuff has happened.

First of all, I’m fine. I am doing really well. For a while I had a lot of trouble keeping my weight up. That kibble did not just did not taste wonderful to me. I frequently did NOT eat my breakfast or dinner. Now, though, Mom has been adding a little bit of shredded cheese to my meals. I have to say that’s been great. I usually got a little treat of cheese every day, but Mom decided that a little cheese added to my bowl would really add some “Umami” to my meal. Boy was she right!

So, now I am at the weight the vet wants me to be, and I feel great!

Nothing like being well fed and at the correct weight!

Don’t I look great?!


I find that I’m really rather relaxed and mellow now. Amazing what a delicious meal will do, right?

Unfortunately, some bad stuff has happened too. I discovered that I have a phobia of flies.


I hate flies.

I try and kill them every time I see them, but if I fail. I can’t help it. I turn tail and run and to my shame … hide. Think about it — they are not birds or squirrels. They are part of that tribe of flying things that FIGHTS BACK by STINGING YOUR NOSE! And look at this picture of one I found. Isn’t it creepy? It looks like an alien!

I don’t know about you, but I love my nose and don’t want it to suffer any insult! Especially, by that alien looking thing!

As a result of my phobia, Dad is getting ready to install a doggie door so that after I come back in from a trip outside, nobody has to jump up and quickly shut the back door. Sadly, it’s kind of my own fault that the flies got in the house in the first place.

On the upside, my folks are very sympathetic to my phobia and the boys are quite good at killing flies. Gregory nailed one with his basketball shoe a couple of months ago. Mom was not very happy about him throwing his big size 13 shoe in the house, but I had no problem with it. Another fly bit the dust and that was A-OK with me!

Enough about those rotten, moscas!

Good news for all doggies!

THANKSGIVING IS COMING!

What does that mean for us!!!

Well, I don’t know about you guys, but it means great left overs and add- ins to my kibble. Here’s what I’m looking forward to.

Turkey meat, turkey meat, turkey meat and turkey meat!


 

The other thing I get to look forward to is lots and lots of pets and tummy rubs from my grandpa and grandma who come to visit during my most favorite holiday of all time.

I’ll be back soon to tell you how my holiday went. I intend to have some great naps on my very, very, very full belly!

So, Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Your Snorkie Extraordinaire,

Opie


Boys in the Doghouse

Mama says it’s Murphy’s Law that anything that can go wrong will. Regarding us kids (fur and human), she says there is a corollary that says that if there is a big holiday coming up where good behavior is necessary and a good parental mood is a boon, the kids will misbehave in some way.

Yes, Fellow Doggers, that’s what, happened to me and my hu-brothers.

Here we are the day before Fathers Day. Mama has planned to make Daddy’s favorite breakfast, and we’re already gearing up for some really great Alpha dog favorite activities that everyone is going to love and well… we all messed up. … The good thing is that we did it before noon. This means we have the a good portion of the day left to make it up to Mama and Daddy (if I ever get out of this crate.)

What did we do?

It was all the same kind of thing really. We all got an “attitude”. I don’t really know what that means fellow doggers. Maybe your hu-moms and dads can explain it better than I can. I’ll just tell you what we did.

Let’s start with my big brother! Let me just say first that he’s a teenager.

What did he do? Well, he “sassed” Mama one too many times. How many is too many? Once is enough if Mama’s in a bad mood and she’s in one because of the “sass” the previous day. So, he got a big lecture about “attitude” and “long summer” and “lots to lose”… I didn’t’ pick up all of it. Mama was talking kind of fast.

Now my little brother — What did he do?

He was “provoking” – this is something that happens often. Usually, he provokes my big brother and there’s a little tussle. Then, Mama yells at both of them. This time it was me he provoked.

Now on to me – the prisoner.

I was sitting on the couch as usual keeping watch over my street. (It is mine; no one is allowed to walk on it and especially not on the family side of the street! By the way, when I mean no one, I mean no cats, dogs, humans, birds, squirrels, skunks, raccoons, or other vermin and especially no mail carriers!)

Somebody walked by and I was barking at them, issuing my usual threats. Michael decided that I shouldn’t do that, so he grabbed me. I wasn’t expecting him to grab me, so I growled and snapped at him. I didn’t get him. I just let him know I had teeth.

Mama heard me from the back bedroom and asked what happened. Michael told on me. (To be fair he left nothing out.) She called me “naughty dog.” She said that I am never to growl and snap at her puppies – ever. Then she told me to go to my crate for a time out. I’m not dummy. Mama was really mad ( Still in a bad mood from my older brother!) so I went into the crate with my tail tucked beneath my legs. Mama called me a good boy for doing that but said I needed some quiet time to myself. Then she closed the crate up.

At least Michael got a talking to about grabbing me when I’m in my territorial mode. She told him that I’m not supposed to growl and snap at him, but he’s not supposed to do things to make me growl and snap.

Provoking doesn’t get anyone off the hook with Mama. The provoker gets in the trouble and the sucker victim poor innocent provokee gets in trouble for succumbing to the provocation. Everybody loses. I suppose the lesson is that even if you’re provoked, that’s no excuse. I get it, but I’m not happy about it.

Michael and I are both pouting a little.

I can already see that Mama’s “mad face” going away. My older brother apologized and kissed her on the cheek. My younger brother said he was sorry immediately. He’s already quietly enjoying a movie on Netflix while I’m still in the “dog house.”

Hopefully, I’ll be out of this crate in time for all the cool Fathers Day stuff we do tomorrow.

Wish me luck fellow doggers!

Your Pal

Opie, inmate 23157


Opie Gives Voice to His Happiness!


The Evolution of Opie’s sleeping habits – on his back and then his belly!

Hi fellow bloggers,

I’ve noticed a lot of people are interested in why I like to sleep on my back! My mom wrote a rather long blog post about it back in 2010. (Why does my dog sleep on his back?)

 It’s one of the most popular blog posts! Check out the side bar on the left, it’s usually listed as something that people are still reading!

I have my own take on why I slept so often on my back when she got me and why I sleep quite rarely on my back now.

First, here are my reasons why I slept on my back in the past.

Reason #1: Quite frankly, I was exhausted! I was totally stressed out. I had been to numerous homes before I finally got to Mama, Daddy and the boys. I was a little nervous. When they gave me a cool new bed, and tons of tummy rubs, I couldn’t help but drift off into a contented slumber in whatever position I happened to be in. Since I was always getting my belly rubbed, that position was my back.

Reason #2: The other reason that I slept on my back was to telecast that I understood my position in the pack. Hey, I was the new guy. I had to be submissive. I wasn’t too sure if Mama or Daddy was the alpha, but I knew I wasn’t. I think once I figured out the pecking order this reason ceased to be dominant.

I know the pecking order now. First, Daddy, then Mama and then me and … oh yes, my hu-brothers. Honestly, though, I have to admit sometimes I get demoted. Throwing up on Mama and Daddy’s bed will usually get me relegated to my bed on the floor. Of course the upside is that I usually get some magic cheese medicine after such an episode. However, I can also get a promotion. A few months back when Michael was sick at home from school. I was promoted to head nurse. My job was to keep Michael’s feet warm as he lay on the couch. That was a great job! I took a long nap in a prime spot and whether he knew it or not. He actually was keeping me warm!


Do I sleep on my back these days? Well not so often. My favorite position these days is to curl up in a tight ball, usually wedged between Mama and Daddy.


You see I start out at the foot of the bed and then later, when I detect some really heavy snoring breathing, then I tiptoe up to Mama and Daddy and wedge myself in between them. It’s a very cozy spot. My hu-brothers tell me that each of them has slept their over the years when they were little bitty. They still try and wedge themselves in on Saturday and Sunday mornings. Then I’ll admit there is a little power struggle that ensues. Unfortunately, they outweigh me. I usually end up back at the end of the bed.

Now back to snoozing on my back …..

I still do it but usually when one of the boys is playing a video game. Prime spot is right behind them on the couch wedged between one of their backsides and the back of the couch.

That’s a golden spot. It serves double duty. I am comfortably warm from the couch and their back ends and I can safeguard the bully stick that I’ve nosed into the couch crevice. I’m lying right on top of it. I can usually count on them sticking to this spot for about 30-40 minutes, sometimes longer if Mom and Dad aren’t paying attention to how long the boys are playing. LOL!

So I hope this answers your questions more fully about the back sleeping. In sum, I sleep on my back because I feel completely safe and secure. I’m with a pack that loves me. I know my place in it for the most part and that’s a great feeling.

If you ever see a dog sleeping on his back, you know that that dog is completely at ease. It’s a good thing!


The Species Gap – or Human – Snorkie Communications Failure

Hello Fellow Doggers,


I hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving. I did. I had kibble with rice AND turkey. It was delicious. I’m licking my chops just remembering it. I can’t wait for the next Holiday feast coming our way.

However, I’m not going to be talking about that in today’s blog post. Today I’d like to talk about the Species Gap and the problems of communication between Snorkie and Human.

Mom will tell you that it’s a matter of my “crying wolf”. First of all, I object to that politically incorrect term. It is offensive to wolves everywhere. As a direct descendant of that noble breed I am deeply offended. But I digress.

Here’s the issue.

Evidently, my late night barking and trying to go to the back yard between 3 and 5 AM in the morning has been interpreted as some pointless “baying” at the opossums and raccoons that traverse our yard at night. I am inexplicably not allowed to go out between those hours to show these trespassers who is top dog.

However, last night was an entirely different situation. Not only was there a trespasser in the yard, but… more importantly, fellow doggers, I had to empty my bladder.

So, at 4 AM as I barked and whined and scratched to go outside and I heard Mom and Dad mutter “critters in the yard, I guess” and then go back to snoring. I kept this whining and snuffling at the back door going for a good half hour, but then, I am ashamed to admit. I did what I had to do. Yes, fellow doggers. I peed in the laundry room in front of the back door. I knew it was wrong when I did it but what’s a Snorkie to do? I was about to explode. I had done my “dogful” best to communicate my need to Mom and Dad, but they completely misinterpreted my cries of urgency.

I put it to you fellow doggers. Was this my fault?


To be fair, mom was not mad at me in the morning. I think she was mad at Dad because he did not let me out before coming to bed that evening. Mom went to bed early – around 9PM and Dad didn’t come until much later. Very gently, she suggested that the last person to bed should make certain that a certain Snorkie has had a late night potty run. I couldn’t agree more.

However, the deeper problem is our Human-Snorkie Communication failure.

It worries me fellow doggers. How do I educate my mom on the various nuances of our doggy lingo?

How will she learn that snuffle whine, whine means “Dear Mater and/or Pater, please let me outside. There’s a possum that I need to behead with my teeth.”

And that snuffle, whine, whine, yip means, “My back teeth are floating. Kindly, allow me outside to urinate, please. “

It’s a dilemma.

I urge all scientists out there to come up with a solution.

Clearly, technology can solve this grave problem.


(Can’t we have an “App” for this?)

So,


Dear Brilliant Scientists,

Please Solve the Snorkie-Human communication gap.

The floor you save may be your own.

Peace Out,

Opie, The Misunderstood Snorkie


Wordless Wednesday – The Sleep of the Innocent? Or the Consciousless? Your Choice!

After a Hard Night of Barking at Shadows…

 

ZZZZZZZZZZ!

 

ZZZZZZZZZ!

 

HMMMMMMMMMM! ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ!

 

MMMMMMMMM! ZZZZZZZZZZZZZ!


I’m in the “Dog House” or How I Really Stuck my Nose in it!

Hi All,

 

Opie here! I have to take a bit of a low profile around the house. Mama’s a little annoyed with me. Michael and Gregory aren’t too thrilled with me either and I even managed to get on the wrong side of Dad.

What did I do?

Well… uh! It’s not really my fault. Somebody forgot to latch the screen. That’s the first thing that I’ll say about the incident.


This is me trying to keep a low profile

 

Additionally, in my defense it was NOT the usual person or the usual time.

And… (Oh… Mom says I should just get on with it.)

Well fellow doggers, I was being a vigilant Snorkie. I was on my bed minding my own business when that trespasser entered MY territory. He had the temerity to climb MY steps and come on to MY porch and try to slip things into MY mail slot. You know who I mean fellow doggers – the bane of all forthright canines – The Mail Carrier.


I warned him. I barked and barked out the window and then I ran to the front door. I gave him ample warning. He did not respect my position!


See! They even got me a uniform!

It’s not my fault that someone forgot to latch the screen.

I threw my 16 pound body at the screen door and it…. opened. Suddenly, I was staring at the intruder and there was nothing between him and me. I was just about to do what comes naturally when Gregory burst through the door commanding me to SIT! He startled me so much that I –well, I’m ashamed to say it – I ran. I ran down the driveway. But then Mama yelled my name and even though I only come when she calls about 60% of the time, this time I came right back to her. I was still a little scared. Gregory was still yelling at me to SIT. When I got to the porch steps I did just that, but did I get praise? … No, fellow doggers. I did not. I got picked up and given a time out in the back yard. Where is the fairness in that?

I could hear Mama asking the mail carrier if he was alright. I guess Gregory and I startled him a little bit. Mama apologized to him profusely — much to my disgust! Mama offered him water, ice water, juice or something stronger. (I don’t know what she meant by that.) She felt really sorry for him.

He wouldn’t take anything that Mama offered him. He said he was fine. Of course, he was fine – I never got to sink my teeth into him. Mama picked his bag up for him and handed it to him apologizing and offering him calming drinks all the while. He never really said anything to her, and then he continued to deliver the mail as if nothing had happened. When she came into the back yard she said that I was a very lucky dog. I don’t know why I’m so lucky. I think the mail carrier was lucky.


This is me being vigilant in my new uniform. I am so tough!

 

Now, I know how my friend Fergus felt when he bit that caterer setting up for his Mom and Dad’s wedding. Heinously unfair! Here we are doing our jobs – protecting our loved ones and we get into huge trouble!

I think my tail is now permanently tucked behind my legs. Gregory was so mad at me. Mama explained to me that little dogs like me with bad behavior can get a bad reputation and the postman might get mad and not deliver our mail anymore.

And that’s a bad thing? He doesn’t bring that much good stuff. Daddy gets grumpy when he gets mail, and Mom throws most of it into the recycling. It’s the UPS guy  who always brings stuff that people want. Oh sorry, Mom wants me to shut up about that!

You’d think that was enough right – that mail carrier incident, but I seemed to be kind of Accident Prone that day!

Another Incident

I really put my nose in it…

As the evening went on, Mama and Daddy forgave me. Daddy said I was just being a dog and protecting the house. Gregory forgave me as well. Unfortunately, I put my foot or rather my nose in it again later in the evening.

It was 11PM and Dad suggested that I could go outside one more time before lights out. I went out did my usual run, but I don’t know why I did it. I decided to rub my face in some of my old poop. When Mama let me back in, she didn’t notice. She was sitting on the bed and I jumped up and got a head scratch. I walked around a little, and I might have rolled around a bit on Mama’s bed.


They let me roll around in the bed because I’m so darn cute!

 

Then I went to see Daddy who was trying to find a good movie to watch. He’s the one that spotted it.

I had a bunch of poop
stuck on my snout hair. It was stuck well too!

Mama had to give me face shampoo. She was not happy. She was even more unhappy while checking the covers for any little poop crumbs I might have left. When I did my puppy rolls in the bed. Oopsy!

Evidently, this was not a good end to the day for Mama.

It wasn’t so hot for me either.

Now of course I’m in the “dog house.”

They all watch me like a hawk now. And Mama’s trying to find me an earlier scheduled obedience class.

Now this picture is posted over my bed! (Yeah, like I can read it! )


 

Well Fellow Doggers! I have really put my nose in it this time.

Mama is fully committed to this school thing, and I’m on lock down in the backyard during the hours that the mail carriers come.

Mama said something about making them forget we even have a dog!

Wish me luck as this new regime starts up.

Sniffs and Licks,

Opie

Prisoner #5




Not so Wordless Wednesday — Letters from a Doggy Inmate

 

Dear Bloggers,

It’s my first night at Doggy Central. I’ve been here before, but somehow this time it’s different. I really didn’t want to go this time. Once again, Mama happened to mention that the hotel was doggy friendly. She told me that in the fall after I finish up class we’ll pack up a doggy backpack for me and hit the road all together. But for now, I’m trapped at Doggy Jail Central.

.

Yes, the people are nice, but they are not MY people.

It is an all night party here. We don’t have cages at Doggy Central. We are “free” to roam around our little dog area. There are plenty of interesting back ends to sniff.


However, you have to be a bit careful around here– Lot’s of dominating type dogs. I’m really not into that! A couple of my deep growls and that’s the end of that! You have to show everyone who’s the Alpha and then they’ll leave you alone. I’ll bet that Yorkie will think twice next time he tries to jump ME!

I’ve found a cell mate – a pug that’s planning a break out on Sunday. He’s working on a tunnel under the plastic play house. I hear him scratching now.


The dachshund says that he can do a nice tattoo of a mermaid on my belly if I trade him one of my greenie snacks. I don’t want a mermaid. I might like a nice bone or picture of steak. I’ll talk to him more about it in the morning. The poodle is trying to sniff my butt as I write this. He’s okay. I’ll sniff him a bit later. The Dachshund says that Greenies are like gold here. I can get anything I want if I have enough greenies – extra treats, belly rubs from other dogs, extra wet food! I’m going to save mine. Who knows what I might have to trade them for?


I can hear a lonely hound in the big dog side howling a mournful tune.

Wow! He sounds just like Johnny Cash!


Come back soon family!

I’ve scratched the first day of my imprisonment stay here into the wall behind the fake grass indoor potty.


 

One night down! 4 more to go!

AHHH— OOOOOOOO!

Opie

Inmate #007


What do you mean I’m going to school?

 

Hey Fellow Doggers,

It looks like I’m really going to do it. Mama is going to sign me up for school. She’s trying to decide right now if we’ll go Saturdays or take an evening class during the week. She hasn’t called the school yet, but she’s read all of their reviews on YELP and they have more good reviews than bad! So, we’re going to Zoom Room!


Frankly, I think the big draw is that they are right next to Doggy Central, my doggy day care and boarding place. Mama has high hopes for me. She says I’m kind of an advanced student. Unlike the other dogs, I’m firmly on the right track. I just wander off it from time to time. Tee Hee!

You see. I can sit 80% of the time and stay about 75% of the time. Ever since Mama saw Santa and her buddies from I am Santa a Miniature Schnauzer rolling over, she’s been teaching me to roll over as well. I can roll on my back for a tummy rub, but I stop half way. Mama’s a terrible teacher. She gives in when I give her the “Puppy Dog” look (You know the one I mean fellow doggers!) She gives me a tummy rub AND my treat. She’s such a push over.

(The puppy dog look– I can get away with anything with this look!

BOL! )


I’m going to school because mama wants me to be a good doggy citizen. She wants me to be able to go with the family on trips and hang out at outdoor cafes. I’m certainly all for that. I don’t much like getting left home alone. Additionally, as much as I like the all dog partying at Doggy Central, I prefer to hang with my regular pack. If I can learn to get along with folks that aren’t MY humans, not bark too much, and not rumble at men with beards, then that would be just great! We’re shooting for a Good Doggy Citizen certificate!


Mama says I should VISUALIZE my success! Mine will be a little less messy, but you get the idea!

Once my classes start, I’ll be sharing my experiences with all of you.

I plan on being an A student at this school. It’s how the boys in this family roll. Oops, did I accidently brag about my hu-brothers. Oh well! What did you expect? They’re my pack mates – my fur challenged homies!

Do you think I should bring a bully stick or an apple for the teacher?

OR

I’m a little conflicted!

Anyway, have a great week fellow doggers.

I’ll be doing some last minute partying at Doggy Central while Mom and the boys head off for one last little vacation.

Keep visiting my blog. Check out some of my old articles in the archives.

Sniffs and Licks,

Your pal,

Opie


What’s the big deal? It’s my bully stick – why can’t I bury it in the couch?

Hi All,

Opie here!

Mama’s annoyed because she found my bully stick in the couch. I don’t know why she should be annoyed. After all, it’s my bully stick and she found my super secret hiding place.

Daddy bought me a Bully Stick for Mothers Day? Evidently, this was to make up for the fact that the only thing left over from the MD Lunch was spaghetti and meat sauce and for some unknown reason I’m not allowed to have a taste of that. It smells heavenly, by the way!

Any-who, I got a brand new bully stick.

IT IS SO EXCELLENT!

I chewed on it a while, but then I decided to hide it.

First, I walked all around the house looking for a good place to stash it. My brothers went running ahead of me and closed a bunch of doors. I have no idea why. Their room is full of nooks and crannies and a perfect place to hide stuff. I wonder if Michael is still made about that Lego model of his I chewed up. Hmmmm.

I tried to hide it in the laundry basket with the clean clothes. Gregory pulled it right out and gave it back to me. Then the basket ended up on a top of the washing machine.

I tried to hide it in Mama’s new shoes. Obviously, that didn’t work.

I tried to hide in a corner of the living room, but I couldn’t seem to dig up the hard wood floor.

Finally, the perfect spot — Right between Mama and Daddy on the couch! I “dug” into the couch bottom and nosed my prize into the back of the couch. Then I pushed the pillow back over the top of it.

Mama came right back to the couch after bringing Daddy a bag of popcorn and sat right on it. I

I suppose I should have expected that.

Now I have to find a new place to hide it.

I don’t know why Mama is pointing to my crate. My crate?

MY CRATE!!

Gotta go!

Later Fur Friends!

Your Pal,

Opie


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