Shih Tzu Day 106: Nigel’s Night in His Dog Bed

Peo­ple Bed vs. dog bed

black and white shih tzu in black and white dog bed.Nigel has slept with us every night since he got here. Most likely, he slept with his last humans and he is just used to it. Last night, how­ever, I think he slept in his dog bed. Usu­ally, he hears us get­ting ready to go upstairs and jumps up from wher­ever he is and fol­lows us. How­ever, he was lying in his dog bed when we went upstairs and didn’t budge.

shih tzu asleep in dog bedHe must have slept in his dog bed all evening. When I went in the bath­room at 5:30, I heard a sound out­side the door and opened it to find him there.

I should put a dog bed in the hall, since Dot­tie sits out­side the door for a while wait­ing for me to wake up each morn­ing. I don’t know if she’d use it though. I have some blan­kets folded up there that Candy used to use when she escaped upstairs all the time. I have a feel­ing Dot­tie just stands guard in front of the door until I open it, so lying down in a dog bed while she waits prob­a­bly wouldn’t suit her.

shih tzu in blue and white dog bed.Our York­shire ter­rier, Joey, never would sleep in a dog bed. She slept with us, and when we were home, if John was sit­ting down, she sat on his lap. She also liked to lie on the car­pet. Our girls don’t get that priv­i­lege, since they still pee on any car­pet they come in con­tact with. They get plenty of use out of their dog bed king­dom in the corner.

Shih Tzu Cen­tral is empty a lot more now than it used to be, though. Dot­tie sleeps in her dog bed every night, but I think Candy and Flower go between their dog beds and the couch. Dur­ing the day, Candy spends a lot of time going between the var­i­ous dog beds, but she also still likes to go in her cor­ner in the din­ing room.

Flower spend a lot of time in their var­i­ous dog beds, but she is get­ting more and more com­fort­able with sit­ting on my couch. Today, sev­eral times when Dot­tie jumped down, she jumped up next to me. Dot­tie only vis­its her dog bed occa­sion­ally dur­ing the day. She prob­a­bly spends a lot of time in it when I am gone, but when I am here, she mainly sits with me.

The girls’ day

I didn’t hear any bark­ing until 7 a.m. The shih tzus must have had some party last night.

a shih tzu rests on couch arm. The munchkins have started to play Nigel’s game. Today one of them stole a treat out of his bed and he was agi­tated. When Flower steals some­thing, she jumps up on her couch with it, since no one else can jump that high.  Today she stole Nigel’s green dog, and he snorted his dis­ap­proval. It will wind up back on the floor tomor­row, and every­one will have lost inter­est in it.

Nigel would be able to reach Flower’s couch if I put dog steps there, like I have at our couch, but I think it’s best if he can’t get up there. That is Flower’s per­sonal king­dom, includ­ing her refuge when she doesn’t want to play with him. But since she smug­gles treats that don’t belong to her up there, when she has gath­ered enough, I redis­trib­ute them.

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Shih Tzu Day 104: Dog Bone Wars and Dog Bed Relocation

Dog bone Redistribution

three shih tzusa shih tzu dancingOnce the girls started bark­ing this morn­ing, Nigel started stir­ring. He sleeps so soundly that through­out the night, you would never know he was there, except for the lump that is his body. It was dif­fer­ent with Joey, because she had a ten­dency to snore. Occa­sion­ally, though, he will sigh. I’m not sure why, but it is very cute.  When John got up to go to the restroom, Nigel wan­dered up to lay on my pil­low. Well, he actu­ally lay down on my head, which was on the pillow.

three shih tzus at bottom of stairsthree shih tzus at bottom of stairs.I kept the dogs occu­pied for a long time this morn­ing with var­i­ous dog bone and chew things. Of course, although Nigel had more than enough, he went to Shih Tzu Cen­tral to steal the dog bone I left on the dog bed for Candy. Flower also had two red and white rawhide minis, but she had to take Candy’s too, so I had to do bone redis­tri­b­u­tion again.

three shih tzusDot­tie isn’t much of a thief. She usu­ally just takes what Mom gives her and chews away con­tent­edly. Even after the redis­tri­b­u­tion, Flower went and took the dog bone Candy was chew­ing on and Nigel boldly pranced into Shih Tzu Cen­tral and came out with a mini rawhide to add to the col­lec­tion in his dog bed. I had to shush every­one when the bark­ing over dog bone prop­erty got a lit­tle fierce. Later, though, Nigel left a half chewed dog bone on the couch and Flower stole it. He watched her walk away with it with­out charg­ing at her. That’s a good sign.

Bologna thief

The back end of a shih tzuI had a bologna sand­wich today, so I gave each of the dogs a very small piece. When I got to Candy, how­ever, who was in her dog bed, Flower ran up and nipped it out of my fin­gers before I could do that. When she sprinted away, I blocked the entrance of Shih Tzu Cen­tral with my legs so she couldn’t do that again and Candy could get her piece. I also shared some of my apple with Nigel. He is the only dog still inter­ested in apples.

Dog bed relocation

two shih tzus greeting dad.shih tzu in a lap.I saw a very cute video a few months ago of a small dog drag­ging its dog bed all over a room. Nigel was doing that today. I don’t know what he was try­ing to achieve, but it was fun to watch him. Another thing I haven’t been able to fig­ure out is why Flower likes to lay behind her bed, against the wall, instead of on one of the dog beds. Candy does that some­times too. I thought maybe it was because the floor was cool, but it hasn’t been that hot lately.

Flower did aban­don her wall to sit between Dot­tie and me on the couch for quite a while this evening. Once John got home, Nigel was con­tent to sit in his lap for most of the night.


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Shih Tzu Day 90: Kitty Invades Shih Tzu Central

Muddy Bud­dies

shih tzu with muddy feetshih tzu with towel on her headWe woke up this morn­ing to the sound of Spot Collins meow­ing in the bath­room. Shortly after that, the dogs started bark­ing. I headed out the bed­room door to greet the dogs, and John picked up Spot Collins to take him downstairs.

shih tzu with towel on her head

When the girls came back from romp­ing in the grass after break­fast, I real­ized it was bath time for the dogs. Grass and mud cov­ered all of their paws.

Dot­tie and Candy are bet­ter at baths than they are with blow dry­ers or clip­pers. They both shook, but we bathed them with­out them get­ting too trau­ma­tized. Flower was very good.

I took the dogs upstairs sep­a­rately, beween baths, to blow dry them. As unex­pected, they all tried to run, but they couldn’t go far, since the doors were shut.

Wher­ever they went they were close enough where I could point the blow dry­ers at their bod­ies at least. I left their faces alone.

Spot Collins Vis­its Shih Tzu Central

shih tzu with towel on headWhen all of the dogs were fin­ish­ing dry­ing at Shih Tzu Cen­tral, Spot Collins wan­dered over, drank a lit­tle of their water and then jumped onto the dog bed occu­pied by Dot­tie and Flower. Dot­tie stared at him a few min­utes and then decided to get in another dog bed. Flower just kept star­ing at him like he was from another planet.

two shih tzus and a kittenSpot Collins is bet­ter. He drank lots of water and ate his kib­ble. When John took a shower, he set SC’s car­rier nearby, so he could get his pre­scribed sauna. He is still sneez­ing quite a bit.

shih tzu with kittenWhen John left, SC kept crawl­ing up on my lap. I let him stay there for a while. Flower stayed away from the couch. Dot­tie wanted up, but instead of sit­ting on the couch, as usual, she sat up on the arm.

shih tzu and kittenFlower started get­ting more aggres­sive towards Spot Collins after John left. She was growl­ing at her, so I ended up putting the kit­ten back in her car­rier for awhile. When I let him back out, Flower was too busy chew­ing on her bully stick to notice.

Flower jumped up on the couch for her massage-scratch-petting ses­sion. As soon as I started pet­ting her, Dot­tie showed inter­est, too. Their fur was so soft after their bath this morn­ing. Flower just sat next to me, so I could scratch her chest and haunches. Dot­tie, how­ever, rolled over on her back for a tummy rub.

Candy never comes up for pet­ting action. How­ever, when we were watch­ing Danc­ing With The Stars, I sat her between John and me. She actu­ally relaxed and lay down, one paw on my leg, and stayed there for prob­a­bly twenty min­utes while John pet­ted her.

Google Alert

I have Google Alerts set up on words involv­ing my work, as well as words that will pull up arti­cles to tweet about, such as puppy mills and shih tzus. I also have an alert for the Den­ver Dumb Friends League, because I like to tweet info about ani­mal shel­ters and res­cues. Today, my Google Alert gave me three arti­cles on the Dumb Friends League; one was my post on Day 77, telling about Mom’s adop­tion of Panda and Spot Collins. It was a pleas­ant sur­prise, because I never expected to get an alert on my own articles.

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Shih Tzu Day 81: People Visitors Again!

Kib­ble Scav­enger Hunt

Last night before we went to bed, we rolled up the liv­ing room rug to pre­vent any­one pee­ing on it dur­ing the night. When I came down­stairs this morn­ing, there were three spots all in a row on the two train­ing pads I placed together. Some­one who has never had three dogs with train­ing issues won’t under­stand how happy that made me.

shih tzu in child's lapEver since the shih tzu sis­ters have come to live with us, I have had to keep Flower from gob­bling down her food and then scur­ry­ing to Candy or Dottie’s bowl to help them eat there. I recently started giv­ing them a lit­tle less kib­ble in their bowls, and I take what I keep out and give it to them later. When Flower is done, I give her one or two pieces at a time, to make her eat slower. When they are all done, I sprin­kle kib­ble bits near them, like food scav­enger hunt. It keeps them busy. I just have to make sure they all find equal amounts.

Human Birth­day Party

child trying to give shih tzus treatsWe had a birth­day party for our grand­daugh­ter, Rema, this after­noon, so Dot­tie, Candy and Flower had to put up with nine vis­i­tors: Rema and her four sis­ters; Leti­cia, their mom; and Gabe, his girl­friend Crys­tal and her daugh­ter, Avi.

I sent the dogs out­side when every­one first showed up, and we put their plas­tic gate back in their cor­ner so they could feel secure behind it. When I let the dogs back in, Flower and Candy went straight to Shih Tzu Cen­tral, but Dot­tie seemed con­fused. Rema, Junior and one of the other chil­dren were sit­ting on the couch where Dot­tie and I always sit. Dot­tie was ner­vous, and jumped up, try­ing to sit on Rema’s lap. Rema thought she did it because Rema held her on the way back from the groom­ing class last month, but I think it was prob­a­bly that Rema was sit­ting where I usu­ally sit, and Dot­tie just got con­fused. I think that because her move­ments were kind of like the time that John did some­thing that scared the dogs and they all jumped up on the couch.

shih tzu watches child give treat to other shih tzuAfter every­one had been at the house for a few hours, I ush­ered the dogs back out­side and gave Rema treats to feed them. Flower and Dot­tie took one, but Candy kept her dis­tance. Later on, I told Ori­ana to go inside their gate with treats. She was very timid and they wouldn’t respond to her, so I asked Evita to try. Flower and Dot­tie took a small treat from her, but Candy wouldn’t.

Com­pared to how the dogs reacted the first time the chil­dren and grand­chil­dren came over, I think shih tzus have come quite a way. I don’t recall any of the dogs growl­ing at any of our vis­i­tors, so that’s a big improvement.

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Shih Tzu Day 63: Just Another Shih Tzu Day

Early A.M. with the Shih Tzus

We have no con­trol over our furry, shih tzu alarm clocks. Flower came up at 4, accom­pa­nied by Dot­tie. Sure would love to ask Flower a lot of ques­tions, includ­ing why she thinks we would want to get up that early in the morn­ing. Wak­ing us up early had the oppo­site effect of what she wanted, though. I slept inter­mit­tently between her bark­ing spells, and didn’t get up until after 6:30.

Although I men­tion food a lot, I always for­get to men­tion “how” these dogs eat. At meal­time, Flower gob­bles her food down as quickly as pos­si­ble, jump­ing back at any noise, no mat­ter how slight. When she is almost done, she rushes over to Candy’s dog bowl.

I have started trim­ming off a lit­tle each quar­ter cup of kib­ble, and hold­ing it back in reserve. When Flower makes a move for Candy’s bowl, I call her name and lure her to me by hand feed­ing her pieces of the dry dog food, one at a time, to let Candy fin­ish her meal with­out inter­rup­tion. Dot­tie is nearly as slow as Candy, because she is miss­ing some of her front teeth. When she eats, a lot of the pieces fall out, and she has to search for it on the porch. Once Dot­tie and Candy do fin­ish eat­ing, I feed them the kib­ble bits I have left over, so they don’t feel left out.

Candy and the Groom­ing Table

Shih tzu being groomedAfter the girls ate, I went upstairs for some­thing and found dog poop and a urine spot on our bed­room car­pet. I had heard Candy jump­ing around up there ear­lier, and should have known she was doing her “after poop­ing” dance she does after eat­ing. They were out­side for at least twenty min­utes after they ate, so I don’t know why she did that. I cleaned it up and announced to John that she was the shih tzu going on the groom­ing table today.

Shih tzu face.Although she was try­ing to nip at the dog clip­pers at first, she relaxed enough for John to clip quite a bit of her body and to even clip a lit­tle of her head. Since our goal is to just get her used to the groom­ing table, we stopped when we thought we were ahead. I tried to give her a Vienna sausage as a reward while she was on the table, like I had learned in dog groom­ing school, but she wouldn’t take it. She also wouldn’t take it from John when we sat her down on the floor, but she came back and took it from me.

Candy stayed in the liv­ing room for longer than I thought she would, after fac­ing the groom­ing table, but she did run upstairs to regroup. She had to sit in the hall, though, because after she used our bed­room as a potty box, I closed both doors.

More House­break­ing Contraptions

While we’re on the sub­ject of dogs who aren’t house bro­ken, my lat­est train­ing con­trac­tion hasn’t worked out either. This one was a sim­ple tray that you put a train­ing pad on. Then, you snap a “frame” over it that is intended to hold the train­ing pad in place. No one used the train­ing pad while it was on the tray. How­ever, one of the shih tzus was inter­ested. I caught my plas­tic lover, Flower, try­ing to gnaw on the edge.

I still have a few options. I can try a dog train­ing spray that is sup­posed to tempt them to do their busi­ness where you spray it, or the spray that is sup­posed to pre­vent them from doing their busi­ness where you don’t want them to. I also need to inves­ti­gate dog lit­ter, which I saw at PetS­mart. (If any­one has any sug­ges­tions, I’d love to hear them!)

After­noon with the Shih Tzus

When I came back from gro­cery shop­ping, one of the shih tzus had pooped on the train­ing pad. That almost makes me feel that we are get­ting some­where in the bat­tle to house­break our doggies!

The girls didn’t come alive this after­noon, like they some­times do. Candy stayed upstairs for awhile. Dot­tie sat beside me, but Flower spent most of the after­noon in the Safe Zone. It’s pos­si­ble it’s because the hard­wood floor keeps the dogs cool.

So Happy to See You!

Shih tzu jumping for treatWhen John came home, Candy didn’t just wag her tail; she nearly wig­gled her butt off. Flower barked like he was an intruder. Candy let him hold her after treat time. I am happy about that. I keep remind­ing them that they should be nice, since he sup­plies a good deal of their dog food and treats. Flower con­tin­ued to stay dis­tant, going back to her cor­ner imme­di­ately after get­ting her night-time treat.

I stopped by to visit the girls on the way upstairs. They were all so adorable, lying in their dog beds, I had to scrunch their faces between my hands and sing a cho­rus of the Ste­vie Won­der song, “Isn’t she lovely, isn’t she won­der­ful,” to each lit­tle dar­ling dog.

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