Shih Tzu Day 216: Poop Patrol

double feeding

John got up with a headache at 6, and since he was going downstairs, I asked him to feed the dogs. I didn’t think I went to sleep. I heard scratching at the door, and opened it to see Nigel, Flower, and Dottie sitting there, waiting for me to get up. John was indisposed, but I assumed he hadn’t been able to get them to go downstairs and outside, so I went to the kitchen and got their food bowls together, threw away the soiled training pad, and went to fill their bowls with water. One still had quite a bit in it, so I filled the other one.

When John emerged from the bathroom, he asked if the dogs had gone outside “again.” I said that they had gone outside, because I had just fed them. He looked surprised, and told me he’d already done that. Oops. Of course, they didn’t tell me they had full bellies. I guess they had eaten and immediately ran up the stairs to wait for me. I must have dozed off for a few minutes, so just assumed they had been waiting for me the entire time and that they hadn’t eaten. They were probably thrilled to get one over on me.

poop patrol

When it’s warm enough, I leave the door open, hoping to tempt the dogs to go play. Candy and Nigel will do that sometimes, which is why they weigh less than Dottie and Flower. I know they need a good exercise program, translate, lots of walks. I am waiting for the weather to be warm enough when John is home so we  can get on the ball again.

I was on poop patrol today, and I am embarrassed to say it had been a while, and we have a pretty big backyard, so I got my exercise. Flower and Dottie trailed behind me, and I’m sure they were wondering why I had a baggie on my hand and was picking up those small, brown blobs and throwing them in a plastic bag. Too bad they can’t help. Another item on my to do list is to figure out how to get them to go in one small area. The good news is that they do go outside, and not inside.

That reminds me how good Flower has been lately. I did find some brown blobs downstairs, and that was either Flower or Nigel, but it seems like an isolated incident. Flower also seems to have gotten over having to poop when she is frightened. John was working in the area today and came home for lunch. She was sitting on the couch and he was petting her. I told him she likes butt rubs, but when he moved his hand away from her face, she bolted, jumping over Dottie to sit by my side. At least that’s all she did. Oh. Her eyelashes have grown so long, and she looks so adorable.

green dog

I just heard a noise and saw Candy jumping away from something on the floor. My first thought was a mouse, but it was actually just Green Dog. She grabbed him in her mouth and trotted out the door. At least she is getting exercise, while Flower and Nigel are curled up on the couch. I also just realized that Dottie is just standing near my feet, waiting for her elevator lift up to the couch.

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Shih Tzu Day 213: Jan. 28 (Sat.)

It’s amazing how the holidays combined with technology issues can throw a schedule out of whack. For example, I have been looking at Candy for days, thinking how badly she needed grooming.

Today was finally the day. We sat her on the grooming table, and she was relatively calm. She did try to pull her paws away from John a few times. Also, she is very afraid of loud noises, and I accidentally knocked the box holding some grooming supplies on the floor; she jumped and tried to scramble off the table. We finally calmed her down enough to continue grooming her.

She had a lot of mats under her hair. The other dogs weren’t that matted, but they don’t lay under the trailer in the dirt and mud like our tomboy shih tzu does. As a result, it took a lot longer than normal to get her in shape. We actually didn’t finish grooming her, although we probably got about three quarters of a way there. She was shaking a little, so we figured we should get her in the sink and get her washed.

She did well in that area too. She is terrified of the blow dryer, and since it took a long time to groom her, we decided to skip the blow dryer and just towel dry her the best we could.

I gave all the dogs some thin slices of Buddig turkey after we finished grooming her. Candy usually hangs back and waits her turn, but either she was very hungry or the grooming had her wound up, because she was acting like Nigel and trying to grab the turkey I was handing to the others. Later, she ran around frantically for a while. We cut her fur very short, so it was probably hard for her to get used to being naked.

I tried to keep her inside to keep her clean for a while, but she slipped out the screen door when I opened it. As I feared, she headed right for the trailer.

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Shih Tzu Day 210

I brought Candy up to sleep with us last night. She curled up on the bed and didn’t peep all through the night. However, at 6 o’clock, we heard her retching. She vomited bile on the bed and on the floor. I haven’t noticed the dogs doing that lately, since I read they sometimes do that if they go to bed on an empty stomach and have been trying to give them a little food before bedtime. She seemed okay throughout the day, though.

Flower follows me down to the basement whenever I go to put anything in the wash. She sniffs around the exercise room and the spare room. I haven’t caught her peeing on the carpet again, but I do try to keep an eye on her when she wanders into a different room. I am glad that she is becoming more comfortable with the different areas of the house and doesn’t seem as fearful as she did a few months ago.

Crazy shih tzus

The dogs have seemed a little lackluster lately, but today, all four of them were jumping each other. Flower was being a little too aggressive with Candy. She acted like she was mad at her. Candy was standing up to her, but I finally said Flower’s name firmly and when she looked up, told her “No!” She came up to me shaking her head from side to side, and I shook my finger at her. She came up further and put it in her mouth, backed away and then came back and put her mouth on my finger again. It was more like gumming than biting. They are way too cute.

Nigel decided it was her turn to be picked on, and tore after her, so she went running. They are getting a little crazy these days. They ran too close to the TV tray stand holding my water and knocked the water on the floor. Thankfully, it was a plastic Starbucks glass with a tight lid.

Later, Flower jumped up on the couch, pawed at me, and then cocked her head back towards the dining room, as if to say, “This way. We need a treat!”

I got my laptop back after being without it for three weeks! Now that I won’t be using a loaner laptop, I need to transfer pictures to it and start putting them up with my posts again. I know they have been very bare without any.

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Shih Tzu Day 209: Old Shih Tzu Habits

Old shih tzu habits die hard

Candy started barking at 4. John turned the flashlight on and pointed it down the stairs to get her to stop. She started again about 5. I ignored it and stayed in bed until 6, when Dottie started whining.

I am learning that just because the shih tzus are getting better, it doesn’t mean that old habits won’t resurface. Flower, Dottie and Nigel often go into the spare room with me when I have to use my backup PC. They wander around, try to find things to chew on, or just sit there and wait for me. No one had been pooping or peeing on the carpet, so I stopped barricading the door during other times of the day. But this morning when I glanced in the room, I saw that someone had done number one and number two. The barricade has gone up again.

When I went downstairs to get laundry, I heard Flower coming down the stairs. I walked out of the laundry room and started to cheerily say, “Hello, Flower!” but then saw her squatting on the floor. She was mid-stream when I hollered her name! Sigh.

shih tzus in need of grooming

I hate to admit it, but the dogs haven’t been groomed since the end of December. We have to catch up, so we decided to bathe one dog and do some grooming on as many as we could. John groomed Nigel’s face and trimmed up his paws and cut his toe nails. He did the same with Dottie and Flower. He was having trouble with the clippers, and I think that’s why he cut one of Flower’s toe nails too short. She was being very good, but that frightened her. Still, she was so much better than the days when she would poop on the table whenever we sat her on it. She just pulled her paw away, but then let us do the grooming on her face.

Dottie wasn’t quite as good, but, again, not nearly as bad as she used to be. I noticed this morning that she appears to have dog dandruff, so we decided she would be the one to get bathed. I have to keep an eye on that and figure out if something is causing it, besides the fact that she hadn’t had a bath for a few weeks.

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Shih Tzu Day 208: The Shih Tzu Bone Thief is Back

Things never seem status quo when you have four shih tzus running around. I have been saying how Nigel has been so good lately, and today I keep getting frustrated. I bought them real bones from the local grocery store, and when I passed them around, he tried to round them all up for him. This afternoon, he keeps going over to Shih Tzu Central, for what I am not sure. Now he looks like he is trying to corral Flower back to her corner, but she escaped and jumped up on the couch, breathing heavily.

I think that the winter is making them bored. I leave the door open whenever I can, in hopes that they will go outside and play, but they rarely do, even though it hasn’t been very cold. They mainly seem to wait around to see when the next treat will be delivered.

Nigel was licking his paw earlier, and I noticed it was bleeding. John was having trouble with the nail clippers, so I might have to invest in a new pair. I’m glad Lea at Gentle Grooming had put styptic powder on the “must have” list for grooming.

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