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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Shih Tzu Day 44: The Rest After Grooming School

groom­ing school is over

So, maybe I can see a little better without hair in my eyes.And I think my paws feel better too!It feels nice to have the grooming school over. Granted, John and I still have to go through the groom­ing school videos, and Flower still needs a lot of groom­ing, but it’s still a relief, and I feel like I’ve accom­plished some­thing. My plan is to work on Flower lit­tle by lit­tle. Dur­ing groom­ing school, Lia at the Gen­tle Groomer advised that I groom Candy and Dot­tie once every two weeks or so, to get them used to it, but that I groom Flower more often than that. I have to fig­ure out what to do about a groom­ing table. Ama­zon and Pet­Edge sell sev­eral types, includ­ing some small ones that rotate. How­ever, they look a lit­tle too small for the shih tzus. We’ll have to give that a lit­tle more thought. I also have to fig­ure out if I want to keep the refur­bished clip­pers I bought for the groom­ing school, or if I want to try to buy some that have a good case and are a lit­tle qui­eter. I know it will save money in the long run, but get­ting all the equip­ment def­i­nitely is an investment.

As soon as that is under my belt, I have to fig­ure out how to get the girls, espe­cially Flower, some train­ing and some “peo­ple skills.” I enjoy our lit­tle shih tzus, but it would def­i­nitely be nice if oth­ers could see why I love them so much.

pump­kin for breakfast

I need to get as far away from that pumpkin as possible. Ick. Maybe the groom­ing school tired out the shih tzu sis­ters, because they didn’t come upstairs until John got up at 5:30 to use the bath­room. I played with them a lit­tle from the bed and they left, but then came back. I think I got up about 6:30.

Can you hear me now?


I am try­ing some­thing new with the dogs’ break­fast today. I haven’t bought any more Nat­ural Bal­ance or cot­tage cheese, so I have been sup­ple­ment­ing their dry food with yogurt. When Lia was dis­cussing express­ing dog glands dur­ing groom­ing school, she also said we needed to give Dot­tie pump­kin for her leaky anal glands, so I bought some at the store. My thought was that the dogs would like its taste and the fact that it was col­or­ful. Hmmm. I added a heap­ing table­spoon into their dry food and mixed it up a lit­tle. The shih tzus sniffed it dis­dain­fully, took a few bites and backed away from their plates. Shiloh went ahead and ate his, but he didn’t steal it from the girls’ bowls, like he nor­mally would. I ended up throw­ing it out and giv­ing them their yogurt and dry food mixture.

the scary vac­uum cleaner

Candy con­tin­ues to be more socia­ble. She came up to me on the porch to be pet­ted. How­ever, she flew up the stairs quickly when John got the Bis­sell Pro­heat vac­uum cleaner out to box up (we opted for the Hoover Steam­Vac instead). It doesn’t even need to be on to scare her.

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Shih Tzu Day 42: Kicked Out Of Dog Grooming School

dog groom­ing school practice

Dottie went yesterday. Who's going today?I might have a hard time com­pos­ing myself to write this, because I had a very hard day! It’s all the fault of Mom and that lady named Lia at Gen­tle Groomers. And maybe it’s even Candy and Dottie’s fault! I know it’s not mine. I didn’t decide to go to stu­pid dog groom­ing school!

The day didn’t start out all that bad. We had our yummy food out­side, and then Dot­tie and I went inside. Candy likes to be by her­self, so she went and sat under what the man calls a trailer.

You come near me with that water, and you will live to regret it!Later, the man went and brought her inside. Mom said since she couldn’t fig­ure out how to watch the videos from dog groom­ing school, she’d have to do her home­work by mem­ory, with his help. She got that obnox­iously loud thing and cut fur off of Candy. The lady named Lia at the dog groom­ing school said she had to cut fur off of her paws and her “woo-hoo.” Gig­gle. Her woo-hoo! I guess that’s where we have to wee-wee. Any­way, I’m glad it wasn’t my woo-hoo they were trim­ming for dog groom­ing school. I like my woo-hoo as it is.

Didn't I warn you!!We decided we weren’t going to spend much time with Mom today, because of this dog groom­ing school thing. Plus, I don’t like the fact that Mom makes me drag this leash around behind me. I don’t know what she thinks she’s going to accom­plish that way. Some­one told her that if she did that, we’d learn how to walk with her on a leash. No way!

dog groom­ing school dropout

I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti! Silence of the Shih TzusMom made us get in the car again and took us to that strange place again. Hav­ing to take the car ride was bad enough. Then, this time, instead of get­ting Dot­tie out of the ken­nel, they got me out. It wasn’t funny! Mom let that lady set me up on that table. She put that thing on my neck that she told Mom would keep me from jump­ing down. She told Mom that she would do “half” of me and Mom would groom the other half. I sat there patiently for a while as she clipped me, but I didn’t like it. Then, she did some­thing that didn’t feel good, and I decided that I’d had enough. I started fight­ing them, until Lia put a “seat belt” around me, to make me stay on the table. I really don’t like this woman!

I pre­tended like I was get­ting calm to make them take the seat belt off me. After they did, I got even. I waited for my chance, and then I jumped up, pulling my neck out of that noose, and jumped back­wards off the table. You should have seen their faces!

Thanks, Flower! I bet they would have left me alone if it hadn't been for you!Mom and Lia tried to catch me, but they couldn’t. I was angry, but I was a lit­tle afraid, too, and, well, you know what I do when I’m afraid. I can’t help it. I heard Mom say she’d get a paper towel and pick up the poop off the floor. Lia told her I needed a bath, because she couldn’t fin­ish groom­ing me. Good! I didn’t want to be groomed anyway.

Lia put me in this tub and put some­thing around my neck so I wouldn’t try to jump out, but I was sick of her touch­ing me! I jumped and fought and scratched and kicked — except I guess I wDo you think you could blow that another way? Like towards Flower?as fight­ing with myself. Lia and Mom just stood there watch­ing me. Mom got con­cerned because Lia told her I bit my tongue. I did, and it hurt! It also hurt when I hit my head on the tub, sev­eral times. I thought if I kept bang­ing it against the tub, Mom would come to my res­cue. What’s a dog sup­posed to do when they don’t want to be groomed or take a bath?? I wish I could talk to some­one about ani­mal abuse, but Lia said I was doing all the dam­age. Well, I guess I was, but it really was their fault.

My shenani­gans, as Mom calls them, worked. Lia said I didn’t have to get groomed after all. In fact, she rec­om­mended Mom take me to obe­di­ence class and gave her some names. That will be the day!

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Shih Tzu Day 9: Dogs Gone Wild

John got up early this morn­ing and went down­stairs. He isn’t used to hav­ing to watch where his feet land, and took a few steps before real­iz­ing he was track­ing poop.

Can you do this with your tongue?When I came down­stairs, our shih tzu sis­ters were giddy with excite­ment. They danced around crazily, bump­ing against the side of their Super­yard. They waited impa­tiently while I put together their break­fast: a mix of dry dog food, Nat­ural Bal­ance and a table­spoon of cot­tage cheese, which they love.

They stayed in their playpen until John left, as usual, and then one by one, started wan­der­ing around.

Bar­bara called after John left for work and said she could come over and do some groom­ing for Dot­tie. When she got here, I could tell that they remem­bered her. They didn’t growl or bark.

As far as the dog groom­ing went, Dot­tie sur­prised me. Joey, our Yorkie, trem­bled and shook when­ever she had to get groomed. In fact, she trem­bled any tiYou think this Bird is Angry!me she got in the car. As a result, she only got in the car if she had to go to the vet­eri­nar­ian or the groomer, which rein­forced her fear that some­thing bad was going to hap­pen to her. But Dot­tie sat there very calmly while Bar­bara trimmed her, with the clip­pers and scis­sors. She wasn’t so calm when it came to her face, but she was able to trim some of it. With her face trimmed, she reminds me even more of the faces of the Peace and Gar­cia Ty Beanie Babies I used to collect.

Flower sur­prised me even more. Although Flower likes me to pet her, she still bolts when I try to pick her up. This time, she tried to get away, but calmed down as soon as I picked her up and went to sit by Bar­bara. She han­dled the groom­ing almost as well as Dottie.

Candy was a dif­fer­ent story. She strug­gled to get away once I picked her up and sat down on the floor by Bar­bara. Bar­bara was able to trim her more than she had been able to pre­vi­ously, but Candy fid­geted quite a bit. Bar­bara said she could tell the girls trusted me, or they wouldn’t have been as calm as they were.

After Bar­bara left, I real­ized how much the trim affected Candy. She went out­side by her­self and sat in the cor­ner of the exer­cise pen near the house, where I couldn’t see her. It had been raiI told you clippers freak me out!ning, so she got lots of mud on her paws. Bar­bara had just cut the mud out of the pads of her feet and I didn’t want the new mud to harden, so I washed her paws in the sink and sat her back down.

She went and sat down out­side the indoor pen, against the wall, so I knew she was still feel­ing threat­ened. I shouldn’t look at Milo’s chicken jerky as the cure for every­thing, but I gave her a piece. About 10 min­utes later, she came around and got back in the pen with her sis­ters. I took the oppor­tu­nity to take a group photo that included one of their Angry Birds dog toys.

I was con­cerned when it started thun­der­ing this after­noon, but the shih tzu sis­ters didn’t seem to notice it. I thought it might scare them. I guess if the noise comes from out­side, it’s not a threat to them, even though Candy in par­tic­u­lar is afraid of most things, includ­ing her shadow.

Men still ter­rify them. They didn’t growl or bark when John got home, but the three shih tzus ran for the back­door when my step­son, Gabe, came over. In fact, Flower was so afraid that she ran into the kitchen and stood near my feet until I picked her up. That is the first time Flower wanted me to pick her up — she was that frightened.

I went out­side with Flower, Dot­tie and Candy and stayed there for about 15 min­utes. Flower sat qui­etly in my arms most of the time. Their fear, in par­tic­u­lar towards men, makes me won­der what they went through at the puppy mill. It also could just be from other males they have been around, or maybe they are just more used to women. We will never know.

Things are a lot dif­fer­ent than I thought they would be. When I first met these furry dar­lings, I thought Candy and I would bond the most, but she is the most aloof, and Flower seems to rely on me the most. She con­tin­ues to nudge me to pet her if I pet either of the other dogs.

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