All Posts (6268)

Sort by

Second Opinion

Hopefully this post will find all of you in good health! However, if any of my friends on DK have any serious health problems and/or are contemplating serious (and possibly life changing) surgery, I strongly recommend that you get a second medical opinion before proceeding with that plan of care.

I had serious back problems. My back hurt me so badly that I could not sit up, I had to eat my meals lying down and a car ride was excruciating in the pain that it caused me.

The first orthopedic surgeon that I saw stated that she could operate but warned me that I would always be in pain and would not recover a normal range of motion.

My wife (who is a registered nurse who taught nursing at the college level) researched physicians and we decided on another one for that, all important, second opinion. That doctor specialized in minimally invasive back surgery. I had to wait for an initial appointment and wait longer for the surgery. Which is a good sign, I wouldn't want a doctor whose schedule was so free that he could see me the next day.

Anyway, on the day of my surgery, I could not sit up for the half hour trip to the hospital. My pain was so severe that I had to lie down on the back seat of our car. I was operated on in the early afternoon and the next day walked out of the hospital with just minimal pain and not needing any brace. The pain soon receded and I was absolutely fine. Here is a picture of me not too long after the surgery after I had caught this 40 pound roosterfish. That fish is one of the hardest fighting species in Pacific waters,,,

What prompted me to write this post is that a dog rescue friend was suffering from bone cancer which was centered in her leg. She received radiation and chemotherapy and a local doctor gave her the bad news that he would also have to remove her leg to save her life. My wife recommended that she get a second opinion at the University of California, Los Angeles Medical Center which has a wonderful reputation for cancer treatment.

They told her that: #1 the original doctor ordered the radiation and chemotherapy in the reverse order to which it should have been administered and that they could try to remove the cancer from the leg without amputation.

Anyway, she had the surgery there and it was successful. It appears that they were able top remove all the cancer and have given her a glowing prognosis for full recovery.

Always remember that half the doctors out there probably graduated in the bottom half of their medical school class. Get a second opinion for any serious health issue.

Read more…

Another Reminder About Xylitol

Hey everyone, long time no see! I just wanted to write because we recently experienced a really big scare in the family and I thought it would be worth posting a reminder.

My sister's 2 year old Maltipoo almost died this last week, after getting into gum inside of her purse while they were asleep. He ate around 15 pieces of the gum - it was Ice Breakers and the first ingredient is xylitol. They rushed him to the emergency vet when they found out what he'd done - and they kept him for a day flushing out his system, and trying to get as much out as possible. One of his liver enzymes was over 1000, which is liver failure (I believe a normal value is between 50-120). Eventually they were told to take him home and prepare for him to die. According to the vet, as a 12lb dog the 15 pieces he ate should have killed him and he was lucky to have made it as far as he did. They said there was really nothing else they could do but wait. They prescribed him honey to manage his blood sugar levels but beyond that they were told that they should prepare themselves for him not to make it.

I am so relieved and happy to say that he's still going, and the vet says the prognosis is much more hopeful given that he's made it a whole week now. She said there is a good chance he will be fine now and his liver will eventually recover. But it's been a very scary time and he's been very sick. Poor guy. :-(

It's just a good reminder to be extra cautious - even if gum is hidden away you just never know when they might be able to get into it. I believe that xylitol is now an ingredient in a few peanut butter brands as well - none of the mainstream brands that I know of. I believe the brands are lesser known, in the healthy or low calorie genre of peanut butter. So read the labels!

Let's just hug our pups and double down on being vigilant! 

Read more…

Chase Crossed the Rainbow Bridge Today

I haven't been super active on DK in recent years, but I know that some of the older members will remember my dog Chase. He was helped over the rainbow bridge today after a sudden illness. 

He was the dog that was sent here to teach me. We had a difficult relationship in the early years, a combination of his anxiety and reactivity and my inexperience. Over time people came into my life to teach me and as I learned more about behavioural problems in dogs and came to understand him more, we developed a wonderful relationship. The last few years of building trust culminated in recently attending a Barn Hunt workshop where his behaviour was impeccable. I'm going to miss my crazy little Chase-dog. Run free little man.


Read more…

Fireworks and Doodles, Oh My!

I hate fireworks. I am not going to beat around the bush and start by saying I only hate some fireworks, maybe just the loud boom ones. No, I hate them all. As a kid I used to watch them and later when I had kids, we would drive somewhere in horrible traffic so we could watch an hour’s worth of flashes only to have to try and get back home before dawn in the bumper to bumper traffic. It was never my favorite experience and knowing me, I probably offered bribes to my children to make it more worth their while to stay home than to go.


Now that I have dogs that fear fireworks, I really hate them. We live at the lake and had I known that lake living means neighbors shoot off fireworks for days….last 4th of July it went on for five days….I really don’t think we would have moved here. My daughter tells me I am getting old when I complain. Keep in mind, she is also the same daughter who has no problem saying, “mom, that’s not a good look for you,” on almost every Skype call. I have tried explaining that in order for me to look better on Skype, I would have to have ten foot arms and the ability to use them to hold the monitor a good distance away from my face.  All she ever says is,  “maybe dad can hold the monitor in another room.” Even my grandson now says, “Meemaw, show me your creepy face,” sometimes when we Skype. I make a big production of screwing my face up in all kinds of different poses, but I suspect with parents like his it won’t be long until he says, “No, Meemaw, make your regular face!”


I am fine being called old, but watching my dogs suffer during all the loud booms makes me sad and mad. This year I decided to get some medicine for Fudge to take the edge off of her anxiety, but realized after one night, that the vet needs to tweak the dosage because Fudge was stoned. And by stoned, I mean out of her mind. I had to bring her in from outside because she kept getting herself stuck under a washtub I have on our patio for growing vegetables. She was convinced something was just outside her reach under our fence and seemed to think pawing the space in front of her would make her imaginary prey appear.   Fudge also had the munchies. She is a dog that eats like a bird, but that night, she ate her food down so quickly that of course it made a reappearance later in the evening. She kept prowling around the counter where her treats were kept and I was afraid at any time she was going to jump right up on the counter to find something that satisfied her cravings more than kibble. Fudge also kept licking and sniffing Vern, something she never does, and walked right over a sleeping Vern several times when walking around the living room. If you fail to see something as large as Vern in your path, there is a problem. I didn’t know if there was some kind of “fifty shades of Fudge” thing happening or she really didn’t see him, but I knew right then Fudge would never get the same dose of medicine again. The next morning, after finding her licking the bed sheets and making a mental note to self to change all the bed sheets, I called the vet to adjust her medicines.


We have had almost nine days straight of fireworks and loud booms and we still have to get through the weekend. This means we have had nine days straight of trying to move freely around our house without a dog underfoot. Nine days straight of going to the bathroom with two dogs crowding into your space and making even getting to the sink a trek. Nine days straight of trying to find Fudge’s hiding place in the house and telling Vern he is a brave boy. Nine days straight of second-guessing whether we can go out for a bite to eat or if we should just stay home. Nine days straight of cursing our neighbors and dreaming of a quieter place to live. I can honestly say the 4th of July is now my least favorite holiday ever. My worst memory ever of a 4th of July incident at my sister’s party when some guy asked our daughter, Hayley, if he could use her fork when she was finished, has now been replaced by the loud booms of this holiday making it sound like we are under attack. I swear if someone really were attacking our house, I am pretty sure I could single handedly take them down just imaging they are the ones making my life miserable this week. I am not usually a violent person, but I have been shouting things like, “I hope someone sticks a firecracker down their pants and their horsetail blows off!” and “I’d like to stick a roman candle up their nose!” Nose has also been replaced with other body parts on several occasions. Can you tell I have been researching names of fireworks to see if they are all legal in our area?


Around here, it seems like this holiday is THE one. Two restaurants that we visited this week had closed signs when we got there saying they were closed for the entire week. A niece sent me a quote from someone she knew and I will clean it up just a bit, but it essentially said, “When did a one day holiday become an excuse for drunk people to shoot off fireworks for an entire month?” The answer is I don’t know, but I have had enough fireworks in my life this week to last me my lifetime.

Read more…

I'll start by saying that Belle, who turned 3 in June, has never had a problem with the booming noises (thunder, fireworks, even guns) that periodically plague our neighborhood.  She first came home in August, so by her first 4th of July here, she was already a year old.  I had been reading Doggy Dan's training advice, and convinced a number of (somewhat dubious) dog-owning friends to gather with us and their puppies in a large living room supplied with lots of antlers, Himalayan chews, bully sticks, raw veggies and some treats. We kept the dogs busy, and whenever the noise of fireworks sounded, we reacted with quiet enjoyment: "That was a good one;" "Oh I really loved that one;" "What fun;" smile, smile, smile, soft ha, ha, has .... We sounded like idiots, but the dogs remained relaxed and happy.  Ever since then, Belle has ignored most booming noises, although if one is really close and loud, she looks at me and I give her a big smile and announce how much I enjoyed the noise.  

Until yesterday.  We had suffered through several days of unrelenting heat, so we weren't in a good mood to start with. Belle was calm despite the incessant fireworks all morning, which stopped only when the storm started.  Then violent thunder and lightening went on for hours and despite the soothing dog music from You Tube, Belle huddled under our favorite arm chair.  She must have been bursting, but absolutely refused to go outside to potty during the short breaks in the tumult. It was still thundering and lightening in the distance when the evening fireworks began. WHO sets off or watches fireworks when lightening can be seen in the area??? It wasn't even the Fourth yet.  The fireworks seemed to stop around 10:00 pm so I convinced Belle to accompany me outside to her potty spot. Of course, just when she squatted, pop, pop, POP ..... She ran dripping pee up the steps, across the brick patio to the door, then straight to her crate in the bedroom and shoved her head under her doodle snuggle puppy.  I turned on the white noise machine and sat next to the crate, and Belle eventually fell asleep.  July 3rd was finally over.

Enter July 4th:  In an effort to avoid the heat and more fireworks, I took Belle for a walk at 6::50 am on the path between the Canal and the Delaware River.  Belle peed 5 times.  We were ambling toward home at 7:38 am when the first fireworks sounded. Belle towed me up the hill toward home.  I haven't run that fast since Junior High.  Belle ignored all the toys and treats I tried to distract her with, and inserted her little self under the arm chair again. Every time I thought the fireworks had stopped until the evening's scheduled shows, booms renewed from another direction (actually, I think some of the booms were backfires from the pickup trucks racing for some unfathomable reason up and down the hills near our house).  Rather than leave Belle home alone all afternoon, I decided to forego the barbecue with the "no-dogs-allowed" part of the family. 

I pulled the arm chair next to the computer and Belle climbed into my lap.  I was really bored with the You Tube doggy music, so I tried to interest Belle in some funny dog videos.  I thought the one of the golden retriever on her back bicycling with her rear legs in time with the exercise class on the beach was pretty funny, but Belle wasn't amused. I tried singing to her, but after I finished my repertoire of uplifting union songs (go ILGWU) and was on the 3rd go round of "How Much Is that Doggy in the Window," Roxie the Cat appeared for the first time since breakfast on the 3rd and scratched my arm.  So, enough singing.

By mid-afternoon, the booms had slowed to about 3 or 4 an hour and Belle consented to eat a few ice cubes with kibble and carrots frozen inside. She adamantly refused to go outside, but made herself comfortable on the arm chair with her backside on my lap and her head on my shoulder.  I wish I had told the groomer to cut her hair even shorter, as it was very hot.  Belle snuggled and I read my book about the marathoner who rescued a dog in the Gobi Dessert. Then, at around 4:00 pm, the fireworks gradually increased until, about 8:00, the main events began. I tried using the Doggy Dan "Oh what terrific fireworks, ha, ha" gambit, but after the past 20 hours of never-ending fireworks and really imposing thunder and lightening, Belle was clearly beyond that.  When I refused to let her crawl beneath my shirt, she returned to her refuge under the skirts of the arm chair.  When things seemed to have calmed down at about 11:00, I carried Belle to her potty spot then back in the house and directly into her crate and the embrace of her snuggle puppy.  Belle fell asleep to more white noise while I sat on the floor next to the crate, and finally, July 4th was over til next year.  I, however, can't sleep, worrying about how Belle will react the next time we have a spate of booming noises.  

Read more…

Hi we're new here :) come say hi!

Hi everyone! We are looking to connect with some doodles in the Eastern Washington area! Our boy Griffey loves friends and loves meeting new people and new doods! We are also looking for some advice regarding good doodle groomers and where we can find them...our city isnt offering much.  Griffey is the best dog.  He is a lover of life and just the sweetest boy.  Tell us about your doodle! 

Read more…

Floor Cleaner For Judy's Birthday

NOT REALLY FOR HER BIRTHDAY The purchase just happened to coincide closely to her birthday...

AND I REALLY DIDN'T BUY IT FOR HER Although she will benefit from the purchase...

All of our floors are ceramic tile - our rescue dogs are not always house trained so dog proof floors are pretty necessary. We want our home spiffy clean despite our dogs...

We use a Hoover Floormate to clean the floors which does a pretty darn good job dispensing the cleaner, scrubbing the tile and picking up the dirty water.  We have been using Floormates for years and couldn't maintain our home without one...

The one area in which the Floormate drops the ball is in cleaning the grout between the tiles. We use a regular old scrub brush do accomplish this...

I asked at the Hoover repair shop if there was some better way to clean the grout and they suggested using a Koblenz Floor Scrubber in conjunction with the Hoover Floormate. The Koblenz dispenses the cleaning fluid and does a better job scrubbing while the Floormate picks up the dirty water. We could use a wet-dry vac for this purpose but the Floormate is really easier to use and we always have the Floormate set up and ready for accidents anyway!

I ordered one and I love it. My wife doesn't like using it and would rather continue to use the long handled scrub brush If one of her friends had suggested this, she would have loved it but.....

So I will be doing all the floor scrubbing - THAT'S REALLY HER BIRTHDAY PRESENT - Besides a nice dinner out that is!

Read more…

The Northern Virginia doodle group was formed some time ago, and many of the dogs are now 14-15 years old.  Some may have gone to Rainbow Bridge.  There has been no activity in the group so I am reaching out to our newer members in case they are from Northwen Virginia area and asking them to please join the group so we can the  use it to stay in touch and not interrupt the whole Doodlekisses.

I am hoping to find some support from another doodle owner to ease me into grooming Dinah myself.  Thank you all, In Advance

dinah's mom

Read more…

Goodbye Luna.

This past Friday we said goodbye to our beautiful Luna after a 2 month battle with Lymphoma.  

We are heartbroken but we knew it was time to let her go.  Since Thursday morning she had been unable to keep food/water down and she was listless, restless and very sleepy.  In the last few weeks her tumors made a "comeback" and overwhelmed the Prednisone she had been taking to buy us a little more time with her.  We are so thankful that we had these last few months to enjoy her and mentally process the fact that we were losing her. 

We are trying not to focus on her last few days but instead on the happy, beautiful life that she had led in her 7.5 years.  She was a very special, gentle, kind girl and we were so lucky to have her.

As a little tribute to her, here is a little photo journey through some of her life from puppyhood until her last few months.

8 weeks old - First day home

We were young and naive and we had bought Luna from a backyard breeder.  She grew up on a little hobby farm in the country with her 10 brothers and sisters.  She was the leader of the little puppy "pack" and when we picked her out she was leading her siblings on digging adventures.  She "chose" DH and wouldn't leave his shoelaces alone - we knew she was ours. :)  The night we picked her out we were on the long drive home and there was a full moon - we decided her name would be "Luna".3356637136?profile=original

15 weeks - Where is the "doodle"?

We were pretty confused at first when we brought Luna home and she didn't seem to be getting "shaggy" as we had expected from a goldendoodle.  That's how we found Doodlekisses - searching for why my doodle didn't look like a poodle at all!  In hindsight we are glad she didn't "doodle out" - less grooming and we could always see her expressive eyes. :)


7 months - "Bubbles"

Luna had an intense love for sticking her nose into puddles (including muddy ones!) and blowing bubbles, earning her the nickname "Bubbles" when she was a puppy.  The nickname stuck around for her whole life and was I ever glad she didn't have a beard to clean up every time she found a really muddy puddle!


1 year old - energy to burn!

Luna sure loved to run free. :)  This is the giant dog park (it's more of a wilderness trail) near our house that we took Luna to frequently.  It was one of her favorite places in the world.


Snow snorkeling

We live in Canada and with 5-6 month long winters Luna learned quickly to love the snow.  Her favorite snow activity was for someone to throw a ball (or snowball) into the deep snow and she would go digging for it.  Even if there was no ball she was just content to shove her head in the snow and "snorkel" around!


Love in the eyes

Luna always had the most expressive eyes.  It was like she was staring straight into your soul.  This is one of my favorite pictures of her from when she was just 1.5 years old.  Already so gentle, loving and calm.



Luna was definitely a snuggler, especially when you lay down on the couch.  This was always her "spot" anytime someone put their feet up.  It didn't matter that she was no longer a small puppy and didn't really "fit" anymore. :)

She also slept with us in our bed at night starting at about 2 years old... and usually right between our pillows.  I often woke up with a little doodle nose (or frito feet!) in my face in the middle of the night.


A new addition

When our daughter was born Luna was okay with her at first, they had a bit of a falling out when DD learned to crawl (and pull!) but they quickly sorted that out and became the best of friends.  Our daughter is now 4.5 years old and has never known life without Luna.  She misses her doggie and talks about wanting to pet her and hug her, but she knows Luna was very sick and couldn't stay.


Our Luna

So now we fast forward to the last few months.  Until the end, Luna was so happy, gentle and content, doing her favorite things like sunbathing and going for walks.  Walking around the house now I miss the little things:  her little face on my pillow at night, brushing her super soft hair with my hand as we walk up the stairs together, her enthusiastic greetings (always with a toy in her mouth and a triumphant "RooRoo!").  There are so many things I miss about her, but so many great memories full of love.  Goodbye, sweet girl.


Read more…

With sad heartbreaking news our sweet beautiful intelligent silly best friend passed away from bloat 2 months shy of her 11th birthday.  She was the love of our life and moving on has been so hard.  I haven't posted in years on DK and just now have figured out how to get back to posting.  I did inform some of the people I know here through Facebook.  Graciedoodle was in the best of health, perfect athletic weight and very agile.  We have known about bloat since the day we brought her home so always took the necessary precautions against playing or activities after eating or drinking.  Our vet told us it can happen in older deep chested dogs due to the lenghtening of muscles and ligaments the stomach can get sloppy and sway around more.  Just a quick movement as jumping up on the bed or turning wrong can cause bloat (hard to believe it is that easy).  Gracie died in my arms at 3 am on the way to the ER.  

We now are waiting for a new little girl to be born any day.  I know it is soon but when you both are in your 70s you need to not spend time "thinking about it".  We loved Graciedoodle so much and need to keep loving a beautiful Doodle girl.

WE WERE THREE HEARTS BEATING AS ONE!!  3356637384?profile=original

Read more…

Surviving Week One

Week One

So 2 puppies are definitely A LOT more work than 1 puppy, but so far we are still very happy we decided to get 2.


  • They play with each other
  • Each have their own personality
  • Less fighting between the kids for puppy time
  • Hubby and I can each have a puppy
  • Cheyenne is becoming "alpha", sort of.  They have learned to give her space


  • Our trainer became suddenly less available
  • Negative trainers
  • Sometimes when they play it gets rough
  • More expensive

The first night went so well I was surprised.  We kenneled Daytona and Denver together, they cried for under 15 minutes and slept until 6 am.  I took a few days off work so I could be at home with them and start increasing kennel time during the day.  They played for a few hours and then they zonked out and spent an hour or so in the kennel.

The Vet

We made the fun trip to the vet (after calling to let them know there are now 2 puppies) to make sure everything was ok.  Of course everything was good and they got a canine flu shot and heart worm meds.  The car ride went pretty well being it was just me, they slept in the foot area in front of the passenger seat.

The vet's first question was have you ever had litter mates before (no, but yes to 2 puppies at once).  She told me that we should seriously consider separating them as much as possible for feedings, walks, training, play time and especially kennel time.  She said all of this is so each dog will develop their own personality and learn commands.  She said that we will hear many negative things about litter mates, but that she herself has litter mates and it can be done, if done right.


Trainers and Breeders

On Day 2, the trainer didn't show up.  I had scheduled puppy kindergarten at least a week or 2 before because we will also need to board our dogs in July and I wanted to have the trainer meet the dog.  My other thought had been to send the pup to a board and train program so that training continues with all our July travel (about 2 weeks away, but over multiple weekends/a few weekdays), so a 4 week board and train program was planned with this trainer.  I had left him a message on Sunday that we ended up with 2 dogs and never heard back.  When I called on day 2, he had forgotten to add the appointment to his calendar and said he didn't receive my message.

I told him the story and he asked if he could offer some advice, I said sure.  He told me to immediately give a dog back.  He then went on to tell me that we have a bad breeder because she let us buy 2.  He also then told me he would be unable to take 2 dogs to board and train in July (very possible since I added a dog).

We have used this breeder before and recommended her to friends (one of whom is getting a puppy from her next month).  We believe she is a great breeder (he even said when he breeds the biggest complement is a returning client or a recommendation, both of which we have done with our breeder, Wildwood Goldendoodles).

Frankly I was completely unhappy with his attitude towards litter mates and said I would chat with the hubby and get back to him.  I was also not happy he missed our appointment and then said July was no longer available (which didn't sit well with me).  On the bright side all 3 dogs sit in my lap!


Board and Train Part 1

So I began a search for a new board and train program for July.  This became a wake up call as to what we are actually going up against.  Here's the issues I ran into

  • Bad attitudes towards litter mates
  • I learned there is something called "litter mate syndrome" and research began
  • Many trainers want to board and train only 1 dog at a time
  • We are 7 weeks away from July and some don't have availablility
  • Many are training right from their homes
  • Many will not accept a dog under 7 or even 5 months of age
  • They are expensive!

The search continues into week 2...

Training has begun

Starting day 1 I had bells attached to doors and planned to bell train, which is a first for us.  When we brought home 2 pups, I realized that there was no way I could follow them around the house all day.  So I sectioned off the living room and kitchen where we spend most of our time with couches for the first few days and ordered baby gates.  Amazon was becoming my friend VERY quickly!  See a full list at the bottom of this post.

We are working on potty training by ringing the bell each time they go out, they seem to go outside, but also inside just as often.  We are very happy a few years ago we bought a Big Green Machine carpet cleaner...

We are having to separate them when they get to rough when playing.  This can be quite the challenge when you are letting both out at the same time in the same area.  Sometimes playtime goes well!


Everyone is putting their fingers around their mouths when they nip (how did I forget puppies did this?  Hubby says "puppy amnesia"), or a quick tap under their chins.  With Dakota we had tapped her nose and that resulted in her bowing her head when you went to pet her and we want to avoid this.

So far they tire out pretty quickly, which is giving us breaks!

Daytona sleeping on the hearth:


Denver with a snuggle puppy:


Stuff I Bought (so far...)

2 25' cable ties

2 ground anchors

2 baby gates (couches needed to be moved back AND they can get under them)

Bells (24 pack of bridal bells worked tied to old ribbon)

Training treats

Toys, lots of toys!

2 Collars

A second kennel

2 packs of 2-packs washable puppy pads, might get a third since I use these in the kennel)

Puppy chow

Pics of the mats and Snuggle Puppy



Read more…

Surprise we came home with litter mates

How did this happen?

I'll start at the beginning With Cheyenne (dachshund) and Dakota (Golden doodle).

Just over 13 years ago we decided we wanted a dog.  Being that we were getting married in a few months (and had an 11 month old) we tried to compromise on a breed.  I wanted a small dog (smaller poo!) and hubby wanted a golden doodle.  We compromised and got a dachshund and a golden doodle.  We got Cheyenne (dachshund) Friday evening and Dakota (golden doodle on Sat morning).  They were about 5 days apart in age.  We kept them separate for a few months, but Cheyenne cried less when they were kenneled together, so for 12 plus years they shared a kennel.  Dakota passed away at home 8 days after being diagnosed with lung cancer.  Cheyenne has been ok, but we all miss Dakota greatly.


So we thought another "big" dog was the answer and decided we would adopt.  So we brought home a yellow lab in November.  Maya was 3 years old and almost impossible for us to control.  With our 3 kids (10,11 and 14) we couldn't keep her because they couldn't handle her.  She also would get very wound up and step on Cheyenne to the point were Cheyenne growled whenever she came near.  She was adopted again in Feb to another family with no other dogs and older kids.


So I had the idea that we should call up Dakota's breeder and see if she still breeds dogs and if by some chance she has a dog with the same lineage as Dakota.  She is still breeding golden doodles AND she had 2 females left for a May 6th 2018 pick up (I called in early April).  I said I would talk to the hubby and see what he thought.  Hubby was happy to hear this news and said how do we pick between the 2?  I called her back the next day and there was only 1 girl left so I sent a deposit.  The kids and hubby were all excited.

We talked about names and everyone wanted to honor Dakota and keep the city/state thing going.  I tossed out the name Daytona (we all visited there last year) and 4/5 were on board right away.  Our oldest came around after she got to pick the middle name (Savannah).

As the month passed we started to buy some puppy things and count down the days until we would be on our way to pick up Daytona.  I chatted with a co worker who has 2 dogs and he told me stories about them being together and how fun it was to see them play together.  I went home and told the hubby we should get 2, he looked at me like I was crazy, and the topic was dropped.

Pick up day!

The day finally arrived and we set out on our 3 hour trek to pick up Daytona.  When we arrived the previous people were still deciding between the last 2 females so we chatted with the breeder.  I told her I had a snuggle puppy with me and wanted to get some scents on it before we left and she said we could have the last boy play with it a bit.  Soon after it was time to meet our new puppy, so she grabbed Daytona and her brother and brought them to the play area for us to check out Daytona and for him to get his scent on the snuggle puppy.

The boy's personality was immediately a velcro dog.  He laid at our feet and he reminded us all of Dakota.  Daytona was playedful and looks a lot like Dakota did as a pup.  We mentioned to the breeder how sweet the boy was and she told us his story.

He was the last boy (7 total in the litter, 4 were girls) and that his deposit had fell through.  She said an older couple were going to buy him and earlier that week the man had called and said his wife was going into the hospital and he wasn't sure when they could get the puppy.  On Friday he called and said the diagnosis wasn't good and that they decided with her illness they could no longer make the time commitment to a new puppy.  This story hit home for Josh and I.  His mom passed just over 3 years ago from cancer and a month long stay in a hospital, my dad had a stroke, was hospitalized for 4 month and passed just over 2 years ago.  I looked at hubby through our sunglasses and we both just nodded. We had silently agreed that we would like the boy too.  I asked the breeder if we could buy him as well and she said yes.


We then finished up the sale and started the 3 hour ride home.  In the first 20 minutes everyone agreed on a name, Denver.


Read more…

I have a Labra-something?-doodle

I recently got a Wisdom Panel done on Orwell because I've always been suspicious that he has something else in him other than lab and poodle. As I suspected, Orwell's mother is not a pure lab and poodle cross. 

Here are his results:3356636712?profile=original

So, Orwell is 12.5% a mix of something. They couldn't pinpoint the breeds, but the most likely is a toy dog mix, then a sporting mix, and then a herding mix. I'm having a hard time believing the toy portion of him because he is quite tall at 27". I want to test his mother now to figure out exactly what is there. She was a rescue labradoodle, but it turns out that her labrador side is not pure. 

Read more…

The Evolution of Maggie

Maggie’s a different dog than any I’ve known before. It’s been 9 weeks that she’s been here, and we coexist peacefully. She’s doing perfectly on her potty training when I’m home. Going to work is still a major work in progress, and I haven’t found the perfect solution, but we’re working on it.

She’s still not very affectionate. Everyone has an opinion, and I think that the truth lies somewhere within all the wisdom I’ve received. She went to see the groomer last week and she did really well. She feels like Maggie doesn’t seem afraid so much as just empty. She said that most dogs see all attention as positive, but Maggie seems to see all attention as negative. If that’s the case Maggie must think I’m a terribly difficult person to live with. So much attention.

She encouraged me to look for her button. The thing that turns her on. And I’ve been thinking about it. She’s not highly food motivated. She doesn’t get excited about toys. She really doesn’t get excited about attention. She enjoys Katie’s company. But Katie is a people dog. She plays with Maggie, but then she comes back to play with me. The only that that really seems to turn Maggie on is going places. When I get the leash out she turns into a different dog. All happy wagging tail.

She loves to go in the car, even though we mostly go to boring places like the car wash. The weather hasn’t been very cooperative for the dog park yet this year. But if I go to get something out of the back of the car Maggie jumps in and doesn’t want to come out again. And when we’re in the car she will rest her head against my shoulder. So I’m going to try to focus on getting her out into the world and expand her experiences. Dog training class starts tonight! I really hope that she has a good time. I don’t care if she learns anything, I just want her to have a positive experience. She walks nicely on leash, so sometimes we go to Petsmart and just wander around for a little bit. I have a list of stores that are supposed to be dog friendly, but I’ve always been afraid that someone is pulling my leg and we will get kicked out.

The groomer also said that she’s not completely indifferent to me. She said that she looked for me when I left her. And she does generally follow me around the house - at a safe distance. I’m working on not being needy. It’s hard for me. I think the more she plays hard to get the more I want to try to get her. It’s counterintuitive to me to give her space.

I admit there are times when it’s really hard. Those dark moments when it feels like all of the work and none of the reward. And there is a fleeting moment when I want to give up. But I refuse to be just one more person who has let this sweet girl down. I just saw a facebook post from my dog trainer today saying that his rescue is just starting to play with toys after 13 months. She stops when anyone tries to play with her, and she won’t do it if anyone is watching, but they are still seeing her grow. Maggie is a work in progress. I don’t know where we’ll end up. But I do know that 9 weeks isn’t long enough to make an assessment on her future. I still wish I had a crystal ball to see what the future holds. Maggie’s my girl. I just hope that I’m doing the best things for her. She’s a good girl. She deserves a good life.

Read more…

Meet Chewy!


We recently welcomed a new addition, his name is Chewbacca (Chewy). He's a F1B medium Goldendoodle. He joins our female Mojo who is a F1 standard Goldendoodle. We also had Sebastian, who was Mojo's littermate, but he passed away on 1/26 due to osteosarcoma. His spirit still lives on. 

Chewy came on Friday 2/23. Yesterday was his first day home alone with just Mojo. It didn't go well as Mojo was in another room so Chewy felt alone and howled for most of the day, lol. 

Today, we took a different approach. We had Mojo stay in the same room as Chewy and it's made a huge difference. Chewy is so much more calm today knowing she is there with him. 

Here is Chewy resting in his crate and learning to sleep on his back just like Sebastian used to. We have put up Arlo cameras around the house, so you'll see lots of funny things they do when nobody is around (he'll get free reign once he gets potty trained).

Read more…

RIP Zola the Goldendoodle 2014-2018

We lost our 3 year old goldendoodle Zola due to Epilepsy.  She was such an amazing puppy and brought us so much joy.  She loved toys, the dog park and her 5 year old sister Luna.  Our house feels so empty and our hearts are shattered.  3356636820?profile=original

Read more…


Healthy Paws Pet Insurance and Foundation.