Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Goldilocks Crate Mat

Thankfully, Chou Chou has recovered from her setback and is back to bouncy pouncy puppy play. ("More Woof Stick!")

She received two big packages today. The first was dog food. The second box was a crate mat.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Chou Chou's Had a Setback

A few days ago, I noticed Chou panting in the evening. It wasn't warm in the house, but she panted all night, even after I set up the little fan near her bed. The next day, I understood that the panting was distress. 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Friday, December 7, 2012

The WoofStick

Chou's friend, Toffee, had a new toy to show us. It's like a cat toy, only much bigger -- a WoofStick. Other versions are known as flirt poles. 

When the 2 metal pipes are fit together, with rope and toy dangling, it looks like a fishing pole with a lure, except the dog is not supposed to catch it. 

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Rainy, Messy Days

It's rainy season in Sacramento. Sometimes there is a break between the storms, like this morning, so Chou Chou can go walking, but other times it pours and neither of us wants to be outside. Then it's like being cooped up with a toddler. 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

A Day in San Francisco

I took Chou with me to the salon again today. Much better than leaving her home alone all that time. This time we went to the second location of the Joseph Cozza Salon, on Maiden Lane. 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Good News

Chou went to underwater treadmill with laser therapy today. It was the last of her initial package of 10 sessions, so it was time for new muscle measurements, to see if she is improving. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Today's Newspaper

Briards are herders, and even without sheep (especially without sheep), they need a job. One of Chou Chou's jobs is to bring in the newspaper.  ("But no Sundays! Too heavy!")

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

What a Difference a Year Makes

Chou Chou is still a puppy. But she is older and braver. When she came to me, after spending her first 8 weeks in a rural area, she was afraid of the traffic outside my home. 

Friday, September 14, 2012

What Is Bad and What Is Good

Chou Chou's Adequan injections, physical therapy, and supplements seem to be helping her! 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

More Fun in the Pool

Lucky Puppy! My friends invited her back for another swim. This will probably be her last swim this year; the leaves are starting to fall and they will be closing the pool. 

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Chou Chou's Q & A

Q: I read that you live with a cockatoo. Do you like her?

A: ("She's cute... but she won't let me herd her. She hops in circles on the floor and laughs at me. And she barks when the doorbell rings. Barks! That's my job!")

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The Bandages Come Off

The doctor said the claw would heal better if it is exposed to the air, so the bandages were removed today. 

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Third Consultation, and Another Treadmill

I met with the U.C. Davis surgeon on Monday. Now I have the full agreement of the three veterinarians I sought out. All three advise against any surgery. That's good news!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Underwater Treadmill: Second Attempt

This time the vet, who is also a physical therapist, took charge. She got in the tank with Chou. 

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Chou Chou Goes for a Swim

I often go to lunch with my friend, who retired from her career as the psychology department's graduate students' coordinator at CSU, Sacramento. We've been close for many years. As we talked, I told her about Chou Chou's hip dysplasia and the physical therapy. I mentioned that swimming was recommended to me as good exercise for Chou, but I don't have a pool. 

Thursday, August 2, 2012

A Good Idea, But Not Working

In May, I bought a dog treadmill for Chou Chou. Back then, I had no idea that she would need physical therapy. 

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Chou Chou at the Joseph Cozza Salon

It's very hot here this week, over 100 degrees. I was going to San Francisco for a haircut, and I was worried about leaving Chou here all afternoon and early evening with nothing to do for so many hours. 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

We Develop a Plan

Yesterday I met with an orthopedic surgeon. He spent 90 minutes with me, showing me the x-rays, examining Chou Chou, and I asked a lot of questions! 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Now I Know

Chou's x-rays were taken two days ago. They were read by a radiologist who sees a lot of OFA  x-rays. My vet described to me, by phone, what is in the radiology report:

Monday, July 9, 2012


I arranged to have Chou Chou entered in this show circuit. It would not be like Pomona.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

My Need to Know

From the beginning, I could see that Chou Chou runs a little off-kilter. Mimi was poetry in motion; I loved to watch her run. But Chou Chou moves like a bear, she lumbers -- cute, but kind of odd for a briard. 

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Another Temper Tantrum

Chou played in the schoolyard tonight with several other dogs she knew. But her BFF Hugo wasn't there. When she got noticeably hot and tired, I put the leash on her and we headed for the exit ... but she saw Hugo coming into the schoolyard, walking by us on leash. 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

("That's Not Fair!")

I walked Chou Chou around the corner tonight, to run with her friends in the school playground. I got two houses from  home when I realized I hadn't locked my back door. I turned around to go back to lock the door and get my key. Chou did not like that! 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Merci, Chou!

My home is on a busy street, and a couple blocks away, there is a large park. So people and dogs are constantly walking by my fence. 

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Mixed Feelings at the Pomona Circuit

Each day of a show is actually a different show. The entirety is called a circuit. For Pomona, there was the Briard Specialty the first day and then the weekend shows.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012


Chou Chou is entered in the Pomona dog shows, including the Briard Specialty. I had such a good time at the Sacramento show last month, I am showing her again. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Wild Thing

Chou Chou broke away from me at handling class. For an hour, she was jumping, pulling, and rolling on her back and kicking when she should have been standing still... and then, with all her twisting, the leash slipped from my hand and she got away from me. 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Cal Expo, Last Day

I am glad I let Mike do the handling; it's fun to watch and take pictures, but the thought of running around with Chou in front of lots of people is too intimidating to me. I prefer to watch and say, "That's my dog out there!!"

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Chou Chou's Show

It crossed my mind last week to skip the show. As the only briard, Chou Chou could not earn any points towards a championship. But I went for the experience, and I am so glad I did. 

Friday, April 13, 2012

Rehearsing for the Show

Chou Chou met with her handler, and his son who assists, at Cal Expo, to prepare for her shows tomorrow and Sunday.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Graduation Day

Chou Chou has been taking an advanced obedience class at PetSmart for 6 weeks. This course had a goal: to obtain her AKC Canine Good Citizen certificate. Today was the exam, and it's her first birthday!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Another Bed

Chou is out of the upstairs crate and has a new bed. Each bed has been bigger, more elaborate, and more expensive than the one before it. This is another Orvis memory foam bed, a bolster bed. 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Professional Handler

I learned that Chou Chou would be the only briard in the whole Sacramento Dog Show. That's so disappointing. That means she cannot get any points. Still, I decided to proceed, for the practice and it sounded like fun; no pressure to do well, no competition. 

Saturday, March 17, 2012

On a Whim

I registered Chou in a dog show today. It's in Sacramento, in April, 10 minutes from my home. So why not? My briard friends have been encouraging me to show her.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Chou Chou Enjoys Westminster

No, she will never be in that show. But she enjoyed watching it.

Chou Chou isn't allowed to go into the living room/dining room area without me. There is a baby gate keeping her out. My harp is safest without a big puppy to knock it over.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Valentine's Day

It's Sunday, and we went to a dog park on the grounds of Sacramento County Animal Care, a pet adoption center. Chou Chou was playing with a golden retriever who liked to play fetch. Chou didn't care about the ball, but she runs after any dog who is fetching a ball. She's a herder, not a retriever. Each breed has its speciality. 

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Chou Chou Has More New Stuff

Chou has a place where she can lie down in the kitchen, next to the kitchen table, while I eat, read the newspaper, or check email. I bought her an Orvis futon. I'm not sure she likes it. ("Why do you say that?")