Friday, February 24, 2006

What a Joy

Last night after his obedience class Gunther curled up in the back of my PT Cruiser and slept all the way home. (about 20 minutes) Actually he "crashed." The minute I closed the door he laid down. It was so cute. I'm always amazed at how compact he can get. LOL. But, I realized how close Gunther and I are getting, especially since we are going through his training. Ever since the day I brought him home, Gunther has been with me, except on the trips to TN. We have been close from day one. I've worked a lot with him before he started Basics, but taking this class is bringing us on the same page even more. And that's good for me in many ways, but especially since I miss so much the relationship I had with my German Shepherd. I could just look at him and he knew what to do.

We have worked on the basic commands, and he is doing pretty good. Last night when we worked on the Come command, he did come, but instead of the sit at my feet facing me he jumped up and put his paws on my shoulders the first time. Ok, it was cute to me, not quiet what I was looking for. Did I reward him for doing it with a kiss on his nose and rubbing his neck a little. Oh hell yes. I'm not perfect. LOL. But, after a while he did start to get the idea. Greg, the instructor, took the Gun-Man and showed me what I was doing wrong with the lead, and Gunther again did not sit in front of him, this time, he went to a sit at Greg's left side, like he is suppose to do when he Heel's . Gun and I have been doing that Sit Command since September that's all he knows, learning a new Sit will be fun. It's always been a fascinating thing for me to see an animal, in this case a dog, think and remember what it's suppose to be doing. Gunther tries really hard for me when we work and when he gets it he is so proud.

Dogs are amazing animals. ( I have cats too, and they have their amazing times, LOL) What a dog can bring into your life is such a gift. Not only is there the unconditional love and trust, but they help you realize things about yourself. I know that not everyone understands that, but I wish they could. They are missing out on such a joy.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Just for fun

For those of you who know me, you know that I'm an avid hand knitter. I even teach knitting at a local yarn shop and teach privately. Well I recently completed a fairly technical pattern on a scarf for my son, GT. Also if you know me, you know that GT HATES having his picture took. I mean would rather do just about anything than have his picture took, so to avoid a disturbance in the family I used this photo to display the finished scarf. LOL.

Gunther was more than happy to get out in the backyard and do a little modeling for me. LOL.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Sometimes I forget

You know, like humans, animals have bad days. Today was Gunther's day. It really was so unusual because Gunther is really easy going and follows commands really well. But not today. There were a lot of other factors that lead to his "bad day", like everyone in the house wasn't feeling good so we didn't take him for his walks and we didn't take him out to play. Now when you have a giant breed puppy, that is a bundle of energy the exercise and play time is crucial. Not only is it training, but it's bonding, it's fun and it's a release for all his energy. I had also given him a few 100% natural treats. (which for him turned out to be more of a natural laxative.) Even at his obedience class tonight, though he did well, I could see in his eyes he wasn't himself. And he had a couple of accidents, which he NEVER does. So I seen today another side of my puppy. Another reminder that his 90 pound body just hides a little puppy inside. Who like a lot of us acts up when we don't feel good, who has good days and bad ones. Let's hope tomorrow is better for him.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

We're Back

Over the past weekend we took a little trip to my mom's to celebrate her birthday. We had a good time, but I couldn't wait to get back to Gunther. LOL.

As we were driving home I was thinking about what all a pet, whether dog, cat, gold fish, etc brings into a persons life and the difference between what a pet meant to me when I was younger vs. now. I wonder how many dogs and cats or exotic animals are in rescues because it just wasn't the right time for that person to have the responsibilities that the animal brought. Having a pet is a two way street, it's not just about the human; training and working with the dog, but for me it's also about what that animal (pet) brings out in us. I know that when I was younger I would not have appreciated or understood a Great Dane's puppy-hood like I do know. As in everything in life there are seasons. I totally enjoyed the season of my life where I had my German Shepherds, the work, the training, the intensity. For some reason I always got Shepherds that were "little adults." They seemed to have skipped puppy hood and were always working. Now this season of the Great Dane is softer, gentle, relaxed and playful. Taking time to be with this puppy and working with him is so relaxing for me and almost therapeutic. I hope I have brought to Gunther's life as much as he has brought into mine.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

6 Months Old Today

This picture was taken this morning when we got back from the vet. He weighs 87 pounds and is about 28 inches at the shoulders.

He has a good time at the vets and enjoyed getting on the scales because by then all the vet tech's had come in to love on him. LOL.

Gunther is such a great dog. There isn't a day that goes by that I am not grateful that we have him in the our lives and home. Seeing the world through a puppy's eyes is pretty interesting. Gunther has a way of making everyone laugh, and I have not taken him anywhere yet, where people did not want to pet on him and give him lots of attention. The first words out of most peoples mouths is, "how beautiful he is" followed by " how old is he?" then "he's gonna get huge isn't he?" LOL.

He's smart, funny, clownish, lovable, a little sneaky, and quirky and we love him to pieces.