Just Pee in the Cup Already!

Sweet EmmaLou, Golden Destroyer has had some health issues of late.  The most annoying one (for all of us) is a stomach problem — she has issues with digesting her food and she burps louder and longer than a longshoreman.  Poor Em!

She willingly went to the vet’s because she likes it there.  I don’t like it at my doctor’s office, but I’m not a dog.  Anyway, the vet is aware of the issue; Em’s been on meds prior to this visit.  But, the problem returns.  He suggests obtaining a blood sample, giving her her annual shots (which were due), refilling her heartworm and flea prevention meds, and oh, here’s a plastic tray…please get a sample of her urine.

Excuse me?

This morning bright (well, actually it was dark) and early, the whole family goes out to the backyard to obtain a pee sample from EmmaLou.  I was on leash and flashlight duty; Devoted Spouse had the little (and I do mean little) plastic tray at the ready.  Em sniffs around, squats down, I yell at Devoted Spouse, “NOW!”, he slides the tray under her and EmmaLou jumps straight up in the air taking her precious pee with her.

Take Two:  “C’mon sweetie puppy girl…pee in the cup.”  Yes, dogs can get a hateful look on their faces.  Finally she squatted again and we repeated the above exercise.  It didn’t work the second time, either.

Devoted Spouse took EmmaLou out on her morning walk, where she peed like someone who’s had their bladder stopped up for a month.  Peed all up and down the street.  Did we get a sample?  No…forgot the tray.

While running errands, I stopped in the vet’s office.  They laughed and laughed but finally agreed I could bring her up late in the day and THEY would try the little plastic tray trick.

EmmaLou and I, meanwhile, have decided we should never speak of this barbaric intrusion into her personal life again.  Sigh…

What’s New With EmmaLou?

Today is Talk About EmmaLou day.  I need to catch ya’ll up – she’s been a busy little Destroyer.

I have very good hearing (I’m sorry, what’dya say?) – no, I do.  The funny thing about that is hearing things in the background while I’m trying to do something else is very distracting to me…to the point I must use ear plugs.  You know…those odd little orange foam things you stick in your ears (particularly if you shoot guns and I do, but never inside — oh nevermind).  Anyway…little orange foam thingies stuck gently in my ears keep me from having to listen to the nonstop sirens, screaming, obscenities, and the gawdawful theme song as Devoted Spouse watches yet another marathon of Cops in the family room while I am trying to read out in the living room. (whew – long sentence)  Now, most people buy these ear plugs by the pair — Devoted Spouse buys them for me by the jar.  Really.

EmmaLou, Golden Destroyer loves the color orange.  And she loves the texture of foam.  You see where this is going?

I like to keep a pair of foam ear plugs lying on my table next to my comfy chair.  They tend to disappear as you-know-who snuffles around for something to scarf down.  Later as I return to my comfy chair and casually glance at my table looking for either a book, a Kleenex, a stray cookie (don’t ask) or my SmartPhone…I notice there is one orange foam ear plug there…not the usual two.  I go on a hunt because sometimes they do fall on the floor and roll under the chair.  Mostly I just see EmmaLou at a distance…with her jaw working furiously in the hopes of chewing up the foam ear plug and swallowing it before I can get to her and jam my hand and half my arm down her Golden throat (I’ll show you Retriever).  Unfortunately, she usually wins the battle and I come away with scraped hands from sharp doggie teeth.

In the past week, she has eaten 3, yes 3, sets of ear plugs.  This is getting old.  The number of ear plugs in the jar have been greatly diminished.

She graduated from ear plugs to her dog bed a few evenings ago — the same dog bed as shown in the pic up above – yes, it’s a very nice dog bed and was not cheap.  In the midst of ogling Chris O’Donnell on  NCIS LA the other night, and not wishing to be pulled away, I happened to look over and see EmmaLou gnawing on the corner of her bed.  Ack Ack.  STOP – NOW – I threw a pillow at her.  She thought we had started a new game – she loves it when I toss things in her general direction.  All I was trying to do was stop the chewing.  Fortunately a commercial came on.  I got off the couch, went to the dog bed, and yep, big piece chewed off edge of bed.  Anger ensued (on my part…EmmaLou thought we were still playing a new game).

When I am angry with EmmaLou I frown and give her the “STARE”.  She doesn’t like to be stared at straight in the eyes.  I usually do this nose to nose with her.  It lets her know I am not happy with her behavior without harming her in any way coz ya’ll know I would never hurt my precious puppy.  Discipline?  yes.  Harm?  no.  Then when the “STARE” is done I totally ignore her and that is a terrible punishment for a Golden Retriever.  She gets the message loud and clear.  After about a half hour of this, I let her back in my good graces, give her lots of belly scritches and we pretty much start this cycle all over again.

She is such a handful.  But she’s mine and I’ve been trying to keep her from chewing so much by allowing her more time on Twitter.  Positive reinforcement you know.  I hear she’s been acting up on Twitter, too.  sigh…

Oh…the ear plugs?  They no longer reside on the table anymore.  I’ve learned my lesson much to EmmaLou’s dismay.

It’s Ketchup Time!

Whoa –  that is some big ketchup.  Actually I’m not discussing condom condiments today kids.  It’s time to paste together the dribs and drabs of stuff on my mind — junk I haven’t written about – just random thoughts.  We need to ketchup, ok?

I told ya’ll about EmmaLou, Golden Destroyer, chomping away on one of my Christmas tree ornaments.  She’s been pretty good since then so I went to the mall on my annual family ornament hunting and gathering and here is what has now been added to the tree for EmmaLou for 2009:

I didn’t realize the face looked that sad when I bought it; I was just so happy to find anything that resembled a Golden Destroyer still left at the store.  EmmaLou seemed happy when I brought it home and found its perfect place on the tree.  That could have been due in part to the dog treats I had with me.  Nah – she was excited about her newest ornament.

Next item:  Can we please stop with the Tiger jokes and move forward now?  It’s getting quite tedious.  I don’t understand why golf is such an exciting sport anyway.  You hit a ball with a piece of metal and then walk your a$$ off to find it and whack it again.  Repeat.  The only thing I remember about golfing that I enjoyed was drinking at the club house after it was over.  That and driving the carts – but I got in trouble for being reckless.  My golfing days are soooo over. Oh yeah…I enjoyed the movie Caddy Shack.  Golf…not so much.  Movie…oh yeah.  Tiger?  Over it.

Here’s something interesting I heard the other day.  A Spanish grammar book has been released.  Why is that interesting?  I dunno – maybe because it is 4,000 pages in two volumes and took 11 years to compile?  Yeah, that makes it noteworthy.  Finally, my dreams have been realized — I can now be prepared for proper subject+verb when I visit Puerto Rico so that I correctly ask the question, “Adonde tu vas?” (where are you going?) as opposed to what I might have mistakenly asked, “Adonde vas tu?” (where are going you?).  I took 7 years of Spanish during my middle and high school days and what sticks out in my mind most was my high school Spanish teacher, Senor Julca (may he probably RIP by now) who kept inviting me to la playa (the beach) which always freaked me out – crap on a crutch he even wrote something to that effect in one of my yearbooks.  Ick.  I remember my first year Spanish dialog – Hola Isabel, como esta?  Estoy bien, gracias, y tu?  Bien, gracias.  Oye quien es ese chico?  Es un amigo mio…okay okay enough – I could do the entire dialog for cryin’ out loud.  I’m forever grateful that if I ever visit Spain, I can ask anyone there, “Donde esta el bano por favor?”  (Where is the bathroom, please?)  The useless bits of worthless crap we keep in our brains is frightening.  If I could just dump some of this stuff I would have room for the more important stuff like that string theory thingie I’m working on.

While we’re playing ketchup…I hope you visited my friend Doggonedmysteries like I requested because I understand she is getting seriously close to her goal of 50,000 hits on her blog by the end of December.  And that goal means her husband owes her dinner out.  So go visit again.  Please.  Help a sistah out!  Besides, maybe she’ll acknowledge me in one of her books or use my name for a character.  Or at least send me an autographed copy.  Snicker, giggle.

Okay it is time to acknowledge another bloggy friend and that’s our buddy Delaney from whom I received a package in the mail not too long ago.  Now my brain wasn’t firing on all cylinders and as I looked at the package I kept wondering if I had BookMooched something from her but thought not.  So I finally gave up and ripped open the package to find this:

Talk about shock and awe!  This is the most gorgeous knitted cap I have ever seen – and it fits perfectly!  I would have added a pic w/me wearing it, but thought you should see the cap in its beauty – not my ugly mug under it!  Awhile back I did a post on wanting to learn how to knit — apparently for some bizarre reason known only to the universe, Delaney was inspired by my simple words to learn to knit and look at her go!  This pic does not do justice to the cap – it is absolutely beautiful, so soft,  and in a special stitch I could never master; holey moley, I can’t even cast on.  Anyway, to Delaney – thank you so much sweetie – what a beautiful surprise from a dear, dear bloggy friend!  Sniffle, sniffle.

I think that’s enough for ketchup day.  I mayo missed something, but lettuce continue l8r…

Another 12-Step Program for EmmaLou, Golden Destroyer

Yes it’s beginning to look like Christmas – oh we don’t have the snow but we do have the tree.  And, yes, I have it up and fully decorated.  No, you may not see it yet.  That is for Friday’s post so  you will have to be patient a little longer.

Today’s story does, however, involve the tree.  You see, I have learned from past Christmas seasons that the one thing more important than any other in this house is to keep the tree secured and safe from the stealing paws of EmmaLou, Golden Destroyer.  She has in the past stolen and chomped on many ornaments, even destroying some old family treasures, much to my displeasure.

I learned several years ago to put baby gates up to protect the tree from her midnight raids.  We put up the tree in a corner of our dining room so a gate goes across the dining room entrance to the kitchen, and another gate is set up among chairs going from the dining room into the living room.  Sounds confusing and it doesn’t look very nice, but it serves the purpose.

So there I was this afternoon sitting on the couch watching a DVR of Dollhouse and having a wonderful time while Devoted Spouse was in the living room reading.  What is that noise I hear?  It sounds suspiciously like chewing…chewing on some type of wood…there is loud crunching involved.  Nah…we have baby gates.  Devoted Spouse must be eating Trail Mix and he’s just being overly loud about it.

I continued watching Dollhouse when that little alarming bell in the far reaches of my brain went off.  What if one of the baby gates wasn’t up?  Could that sound be EmmaLou eating one of my ornaments?

Yup.  I raced into the dining room to find that the baby gate had been moved.  There EmmaLou was on the floor by the tree and she had one of my ornaments, a cluster of wooden cherries, complete with wiring, in her jaws and she was thoroughly enjoying chewing.  I pried her jaws apart – no easy feat – and managed to get my hand in her mouth — yes I got a few war wounds.  Giving up those wooden cherries was not on her agenda.  I finally pried the entire cluster from her mouth, plus the two she had pried off the original cluster.  She continued chewing and swallowed.  I examined what was left of the ornament and I don’t think she really ate anything dangerous, she might have gotten a wood chip or two, but the wires were still intact.  This is what she tried unsuccessfully to consume:

wooden cluster of cherries

I was livid.  She thought it was a new game and started racing around the house to stuff into her mouth as many toys as possible so I could pry them loose also.  Grrrr…

Crisis averted narrowly.  Devoted Spouse and I reminded each other of the danger to her of the Christmas tree and we both vowed to make sure those gates are up and EmmaLou is nowhere close to that tree unsupervised ever again.

She knew she had done wrong – I ignored her for several hours and to EmmaLou that is a fate worse than death.  It is her usual punishment when she has been a bad dog.  That, and a mugshot to add to the books.  Oh, and I signed her up for a new 12-step program:

I'm addicted. I'm going on Oprah to admit it to the world

It has been a nerve-wracking experience — my fingers are raw from having her bite me as she continued to chew the wooden cherries and I’m on my last dog stunt nerve.  EmmaLou has been warned that there is a Puppy Farm and they have a room waiting for her if she tries this stunt again.  If she attends her OEA meetings and makes amends, I may forgive this incident.  Given her past history, I’m not hopeful; once an ornament eater, always an ornament eater.