Shih Tzu Week 121: Getting Used to Visitors

Oct. 17 – Oct. 23, 2013

Thursday, Oct. 17 

My intentions were good when I set Mom and her furry friends up in the basement, since she would have her own fridge, bathroom, and plenty of space for litter boxes and food bowls. However, she thought it was spooky, so we moved her and Buddy upstairs last night. She liked it much better. We also lifted the ban on Spot Collins (her Maine Coon) and Panda entering the living room, and they made themselves right at home. I wasn’t sure how Flower would react to cats in her territory, but she seemed to adjust quickly. What a menagerie! Dottie and Flower aren’t quite sure how to act with visitors here. They stayed in Shih Tzu Central all day but came out and strolled around after Mom went to bed. I said Flower seemed to adjust quickly. After Mom went to bed, she jumped up on the couch Mom is borrowing from her to sniff what has been going on there with another dog. Then, she decided to try to chase Spot Collins away by barking/growling at him, but Spot took a seat on a dining room chair and wouldn’t budge.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Nigel and Candy ran after her, maybe thinking there was going to be a scuffle. It did look like a little shih tzu gang trying to scare off a lone, although big, kitty. Spot didn’t seem very frightened, though. Flower couldn’t quite reach him through the chair slats, and he rested on his side, swatting Flower away every now and then. Finally, Spot seemed to get tired of the exchange and jumped down and sauntered towards the stairs.

 Friday, Oct. 18

This morning didn’t start out well. When I let Buddy out, Spot Collins sauntered out behind him. Since it had snowed and I was in my sleepwear, I had to grab a coat and put on my sandals. He had already made his way halfway up our tiered landscape area, so I had to climb over the fence we have there to keep Flower on the ground and chase him down. Then, while holding the giant cat, I had to jump back down. I am considering putting him on a leash like Jeff and Lynda Petersen do with their giant cat.

Saturday, Oct. 19

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Sunday, Oct. 20

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Tuesday, Oct. 22

We have tried our best to keep Spot Collins from going outside, but now he’s figured out how to go out the doggy door, and then how to get under the deck. We went in under one side and out the other. John had to lure him back in both times. Since he has figured it out, I wish he would teach Candy and Dottie to go through it! Instead, we took the doggy door out for the time being. I don’t want to lose him! Mom would be heartbroken.

Wednesday, Oct. 23

I have been concerned about Mom’s things she will be taking to Florida. Sandy is going to have a hard enough time because of her pet allergies. I don’t want dusty items to bother her too. While I was going through some of the newspaper clippings Mom collected, I saw one saying to put an allergic child’s stuffed animals in the freezer to kill dust mites before they sleep with them. Mom’s stuffed cats and tigers didn’t look dusty, but I bagged them and put them in the freezer anyway. I also bagged the stuffed elephants Mom made us when we were children and gave them a turn in the freezer. Can’t wait ’til John finds them and thinks I’ve gone around the bend.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Related Posts:

Shih Tzu Progression

I hate to think when the last time was that I made a post! All I can say is that our puppy mill shih tzus seem to progress daily!

Take today, for example. When we were sitting on the couch this morning, John commented about a time when the female shih tzus would bark whenever he came downstairs, acting like he was an intruder. Now, they act as happy to see him as they do to see me, and they spend a lot of time letting him pet them.

Also, Candace passed her cosmetology practical test yesterday and I told her I would take her for lunch and we would celebrate with a mimosa. After she arrived, I went to put on my boots and Flower jumped on the couch and began pawing at me. Some people might not realize what that symbolizes, but after looking back at notes from last January, it’s significant.

Candy, freshly-groomed, on the way to the park

When I put my boots on, Dottie, Flower and Nigel think it means one thing: We are going for a walk! A year ago, that would not have been a reason to get excited — except for Nigel. That would have been a reason to run and hide. Now, however, I had to tell them I was sorry and promise them a walk when I returned.

Dottie and Candy catching up on a walk

What happened when Candace and I returned was another glimpse of their progression. I brought the orange juice and champagne to the table for our celebration. About ten minutes later, Flower, Nigel and Dottie came to see what was going on. A year ago, the girls would have stayed in their corner. A few months ago, they would have possibly come and sat by me, but they would have otherwise been unsociable shih tzus.

Flower gets lovin' from Candace.

Now, however, Candace stooped to pet Flower and Flower moved closer to be petted. A little later, Dottie followed her lead.

After Candace left, all the shih tzus started roaming around the living room and staring at me. The snow kept me from taking them yesterday, but I didn’t want to disappoint them again, so I got down the harness box. Flower flew down from the couch, her tail wagging, and Dottie wandered over. I never know what Candy is going to do, but even she wandered towards the door and waited for me to put her harness on her.

Nigel and Candy explore an unfamiliar backyard.

Once outside, the shih tzus sniffed their way along the cul de sac and then towards the open area behind Wal-Mart, Dottie and Candy trailing their leashes behind them, and me holding on to Nigel and Flower’s. We ended up having to take a different route, though. We started going east, but school had let out early, and a handful of teenagers were throwing snowballs at each other. Flower and Dottie trotted along, Candy raced towards them barking (odd behavior for her!), but Dottie stopped in her tracks as if to say “Danger!”

I finally gave up and turned them around. Instead, we walked along the main road, beyond where we usually turn to go home. The condo complex on the next block is getting a new fence, so the fence has been tour down. Nigel, Flower and Candy wandered through the backyards, fascinated by new territory, until I turned them around to go home.

With all the progress, I do have one thing to work on. I try to feed the shih tzus equally, and although Nigel and Candy stay thin, Dottie and Flower are definitely looking a little “plump.” John has taken to calling them his little “Fat Girls” (after the “Fat Boys” in the recent version of Alice in Wonderland. So, our big goal for this new year is to slim down our little angels!

Related Posts:

Shih Tzu Week 46: May 10 (Day 316) – May 16 (Day 322), 2012

Shih Tzu Day 316: May 10


Flower gives Sandy the googly eyes.Today is my birthday. I had a coupon for a free lunch at Roby Tuesday’s, so we picked up Mom and went there. Nigel is very friendly to Sandy, of course, but the female shih tzus are still mainly remaining at Shih Tzu Central when we are home. Sandy tried to pet Flower and her eyes got big. Sandy laughed and said, “You have to be really careful when she gets the googly eyes!”

Shih Tzu Day 317: May 11


We went to lunch at Tokyo Joe’s as Sandy’s present to us. The female shih tzus are getting better around Sandy. They will at least walk around and Flower and Dottie will come up to the couch and sit by me, even if she is on the couch.

Shih Tzu Day 318: May 12


Huddle time at Shih Tzu Central.We invited the children and grandchildren over for a BBQ. Candace came alone, but Leticia brought the four girls and Gabe and Crystal brought Samuel. Leticia also brought her friend, Chris, and her little boy. The female shih tzus either stayed in the corner or outside. Flower was the best around the children. She came up to get treats from them without much coaxing.

Shih Tzu Day 319: May 13


I bought a french fry cutter from Harbor Freight, because I am hoping to use it to make uniform sweet potato treats. John mounted it on some wood in the kitchen. Sweet potatoes are a lot harder than normal potatoes, so they need some preparation. We tried boiling them slightly and microwaving them a little, and both ways worked. I do have to cut the ends to make them as square as possible. It’s a little difficult to push down the handle, but I think it will work.

Shih Tzu Date 320: May 14, 2012


Sandy threatened to take Nigel back to Florida with her.I took Sandy to the airport to get her there by 10 a.m. We had such a great vacation together. John and I are sad to see her go, but I think the female shih tzus are happy to have the house to themselves again. She fell in love with Nigel, of course, and she got a big kick out of Flower. She gave me a gift card from Bed, Bath and Beyond. I used it to get another gadget, an apple peeler/corer. You put the apple on it and turn it and it cores the apple.

Shih Tzu Day 321: May 15


John and I took a five-mile bike ride this morning. Flower came to sit with me on the couch when we got back. She gazed at me adoringly when I pet her. She is such a cutie.

I have been leaving the back door open so the shih tzus can come in and out, but I am getting tired of flies coming in. I finally bought a Magic Mesh screen door to try, although it didn’t have great ratings. I need to have John install it over the weekend, but for now, I did tack it up so it works partially. They can’t figure out how to go through it though, so I folded it up and pinned it for them to go beneath it. That works, but the flies go beneath it too.

I can tell that the three youngest dogs are bored. Again, I know I have to see if I can get them walking. Soon!

I gave the dogs all jicama. They all ate it except for Candy.

Dottie was sitting by me this afternoon but jumped down, giving Flower the opportunity to take her place. Dottie growled at her, but Flower just ignored her. They seem a little more ornery since Sandy left. Candy has come up to the couch several times, pawing and shaking her head. I never know what she wants. I think it’s food, but I did get down on the floor to play with them. I put my face near Candy and she licked my mouth quickly. Flower tried to climb up my head.

Flower has a lot of energy. She was rolling around on the couch, and then started playing with some potholders and socks I hadn’t put away.

Shih Tzu Day 322: May 16


The shih tzus love the homemade apple and chicken treats.I am happy to say that if I was starving I could eat my shih tzus’ dog food or treats! That’s because they are made with all people food and no preservatives or “natural flavorings” of which I don’t know their origin. I made them their Sadie Shih Tzu food today. I bought all fresh ingredients, so I didn’t use any frozen veggies. This time I used ground beef and ground turkey. I bought a box of apples from Costco to use for that, John’s lunch, and the shih tzus’ chicken and apple treats. I also bought a box of sweet potatoes for that and their sweet potato and chicken treats. However, I realized later that I forgot to use the sweet potatoes. I was too busy blanching all the fresh vegetables instead of using frozen. I did freeze some squash and carrots for next time. I put them on a cookie sheet in the freezer first, so they would get hard enough to seal in a bag with the vacuum sealer.

Related Posts:

Shih Tzu Week 45: May 3 (Day 309) – May 9 (Day 315), 2012

Shih Tzu Day 309: May 3, 2012


Flower is pawing the air and giving me her come hither look. She definitely loves attention. She went back over to her couch, so she could stare at me from there.

Shih Tzu Day 310: May 4, 2012


The dogs seem so bored. I need to practice walking them, because I know they need that exercise. At least Nigel and Candy and Flower play together sometimes.

Shih Tzu Day 311: May 5, 2012


Nigel and Candy in werewolf mode.It doesn’t seem like I got much done today. Keeping up with the dogs grooming sometimes seems overwhelming. We really need to make sure their paws are groomed, trimming their nails and getting the fur out from between the pads, and get them walking!

Shih Tzu Day 312: May 6, 2012


I have been having trouble keeping Flower’s attention when it’s breakfast time. She keeps leaving her food bowl in the mornings, to fend off cats or squirrels from the back of the yard. This morning, instead of guarding her bowl, I went ahead and let Candy eat the rest of it. She needs more food anyway, and maybe Flower will learn not to run away so often.

Shih Tzu Day 313: May 7


Bath time for Flower before my sister arrived.I am very happy with the chicken jerky I have been making them. It makes me feel good to know exactly what they are getting. On my latest batch of jerky, I marinated them in lemon/lime juice and olive oil, and then sprinkled them with fresh sage, paprika, and rosemary. I read that dogs don’t really like citrus, but they were a bit hit. I also made more apple and chicken treats and chicken and sweet potato treats. They like all of them. Buying the dehydrator is one of the best purchases I’ve ever made.

Shih Tzu Day 314: May 8


My sister Sandy arrives today from Florida for a weeklong visit. We have been concerned because she has severe pet allergies. She’s like me, too, in that she can’t handle a lot of smells. I washed doggy beds and blankets this morning. I used to clean them more regularly, since they tended to have messes on them from accidents, but these days, that doesn’t happen, so I forget. Hurray for that!

John is on vacation. We have been steam cleaning the carpets with pet/allergen formula. We even tackled the carpet downstairs in the exercise room, which hasn’t been steam cleaned for years, since we hired someone to come in and do it. Flower followed me downstairs. I kept one eye on her, waiting to pounce if she tried to squat to pee. She sniffed a little, but then ran back up the stairs.

Shih Tzu Day 315: May 9


Flower and Dottie after bath.We went to breakfast this morning with Mom and Sandy. Mom treated us for my birthday at Gunther Toody’s. Sandy is trying very hard to make friends with the shih tzus. The female shih tzus growled at her and barked when she came downstairs this morning.

Related Posts: