Monday, October 26, 2009

Always Make Me Smile!

I must say one of my favorite things about the bulldog breed is they can always make me smile. Here's just a few snapshots of'll see he has quite a fetish for tables or climbing on things. Bulldogs do the darndest things. Gotta love them!

And, I couldn't find one of my favorites of Otto sunbathing on the top of the patio table! But I'm sure he'll present another photo opportunity.

We love you Otto! :)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

It's a Sleepover!

A slumber party with bully friend, Vivi!!!! Oh, how fun!

"Mommy, I'm so excited Vivi is here!"

"C'mon Vivi, lets play!"

"What's gotta go potty?
I'm just a puppy and don't mind using the carpet...but I'll show you
outside since you're a lady and all."

"Follow me!" "I'll see if I can figure this gate thing out. Hey, Quest help us out!"

"Here you go...uh-oh Vivi, you'd better be very, very careful or you'll get your white feet very, very dirty!"

"Okay, got that business done.... ohhhh, lets check out the toys with Otto."

"Oh yea, sleepovers are fun!!"

Bully playtime MUST be way better than Momma Jen's playtime with Mickey Mouse!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Yesterday was obedience training day for Henry and I. Hahaha...probably really should read training day for me! Henry is a quick learner and it is so, so, so fun! We are working towards our first obedience title..CD for Companion Dog. (What do they do for a's a link, Companion Dog Title) He's doing a great job! Me, I still have plenty of work to do.

It was while we were doing our sit-stays (duration 3 minutes) and the instructor likes to challenge the dogs and sometimes will walk by with a treat or a toy, providing distractions that hopefully don't entice your dog to move from their sit. Hmmm, we are not always successful. Well, yesterday, she brought out the tennis ball. I knew we were in trouble!!! Henry will do most anything for a tennis ball fetch! It only took her one bounce of the ball and Henry was off!!! I think there was only one thing going through his head, "Gotta get that ball!" So she says, "You gotta get that boy in flyball."

Funny how some things work...I have been reading more and more sites regarding flyball. I know Tollers can do very well in this team sport and what a fantastic outlet for the higher drive breeds. So, Henry and I are going to receive 1-1 training from our instructor next week to start training some flyball basics...our instructor is on a flyball team and said they're always looking for new dogs! :-) Jumping hurdles and fetching a tennis ball...Henry will think he's gone to heaven!

If you want to learn more, here's a link to the NAFA (North American Flyball Association). I'll keep you posted on our progress!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Internet Scams

I had no intention of posting a bit on bulldog puppy scams but have been prompted to because of some very disturbing news.

Just this week, a reputable Minnesota bulldog breeder and friend of mine recently fell victim to at least one bulldog puppy purchase scam--hopefully there were not more out there. Someone fraudulently used her website and name to sell non-existent puppies. The person doing the scam would claim to be her puppy "agent," and they'd accept payment, promise airline delivery and then disappear after they received their money--and no puppy delivered. All without my friend, the honest breeder, ever knowing they were directing people to her website and falsely advertising puppies using her name. Not to mention the very disappointed individuals waiting at the airport expecting a new, healthy puppy to add to their family.

So just buyer beware! I know I have a "before buying" page but please, when looking for a new puppy, or if you know someone who may be looking for a puppy (of any breed), share with them a couple of things: 1) avoid shipping a puppy if possible--there are generally many reputable breeders within driving distance, 2) contact the breed's parent club or local club for referrals, 3) visit the home/kennel in which you will be purchasing the puppy, and 4) never ever purchase a puppy through a third party whether they call themselves a broker, agent or pet store! They want only one thing...your money! There's many more things to add but these are a few important things to consider before even starting your search.

As far as bulldogs...there is no such thing as a miniature bulldog or a rare bulldog. Don't pay extra for this false advertising!

An Average Four Paw Morning blog is due for an update and I'm struggling..."what to write." Okay, well, I can't seem to come up with anything too creative so I'll just share our average morning.

Otto is in his favorite chair enjoying his nap, snoring softly which is wonderful bully music. Bill calls it his hammock as you can see in photo below. What a silly boy! Maisy is camped out on the couch, although her and Apple had a very fun time earlier playing tug of war with one of my new socks. Naughty girls.

And speaking of naughty, there's Apple. She is just over 3 months of age and will chew on everything and anything! Beware if your feet happen to be on the floor as that is a prime target! We've had some potty training successes as she has kept her puppy area dry through the last several nights. Maybe she is starting to understand the housetraining thing. We do have less accidents but I can't leave her out of my sight for a moment. Thank goodness for doggie gates.

Quest, well, he is not within eye sight so must be getting a nap in somewhere. I see more and more confusion with him but he is managing okay for such an old boy. Such a sweetheart.

Henry is with Katy at her home...ahhh, one less doggie underfoot. He, of course, brings a lot of retriever energy and needs a good daily walk. We inhabit a neighborhood with many, many squirrels so daily walks are an absolute delight for him! I'm sure he'll be here for a visit later this afternoon and we'll need to work in some obedience and retriever training. But I will enjoy the calmness of Quest and my bully pack until he arrives.

Apple and I will venture out shortly to the pet store to pick up some doggie treats. However, the real reason for the outing will be to continue the puppy socialization...exposing Apple to different things, people and surroundings. She is very outgoing and greets everyone with a bully jiggle and will crawl into anyone's lap...she is a playful cuddle bug!

Then it'll be time to bake some cookies for tomorrow's St. Paul Minneapolis Bulldog Club meeting and Halloween Parade. FUN! Hopefully costumes still fit or off we are to the store again.

Okay, so it's not all too exciting but the sun is out and every four paw creature is content, so life is good!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Playtime At Our House

"Hey mom, I sees a toy I really want!"

"Yep, I'z want it! Pleaze get it for me!"

"Big broder Henry may be faster n' smarter...but we'z got that thing called bulldog tenacity. Lets git it!"

"Oh almost got'it mom!"

"Go mom!"

"Dang, so close...big broder, you just wait til next time. We's bulldogs are pretty stubborn!"

Monday, October 12, 2009

Senior Canines

I mention frequently our bulldogs and our Toller but I don't always share a lot about our aging field Springer Spaniel, Quest. I think it's his time to have a bit of the spotlight. :)

Quest came to us at age 4 from a professional field trainer in Minnesota. He excelled in hunting and worked like a hunting machine in the field. But, he also had a very soft temperament which made him a field trial washout. That was to be our gain! Bill researched long and hard to find just that right hunting companion, and he most certainly succeeded. We brought him home and he quickly adapted to life as a house companion and he brought many hours of hunting enjoyment and companionship. He came to work with me many days and definitely had the temperament for therapy work at the long-term care center where I worked. The residents loved him! Our all time favorite family activity was to take him to the Black Hills camping and for many miles of hiking. Great memories! He has enriched our lives in so many brings tears to my eyes.

Quest is now retired from hunting and is beginning to age rapidly in his senior years. He is nearly 15 years of age and it's beginning to take its toll. Only this summer has he really started to show signs of arthritis in his joints, hearing loss and canine dementia. He receives his daily aspirin for his pain and also clomicalm for his endless pacing. Both help him to relax, settle down and just give his old body some needed rest. He is my constant companion...where I go, he goes. A loyal canine through and through!

With his age, his pacing and canine neurosis, the younger dogs quickly see him as the weak link. We keep a close eye on him and the others making sure they give him the respect he deserves as the elder dog. He is a true example of man's best friend!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Say It's Not So -- SNOW! is just way too early! But the dogs think it's the best! Another new experience for Apple and she had so much fun. Playtime in the snow! Hmmm, it just doesn't have the same excitement for me...I don't ski, sled or do snow sports of any kind. But I guess have to suck it up as it is Minnesota, land of 10,000 frozen lakes...

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

I'm a bull-iever!

Go Vikings! Yep, it's my favorite sports season and what a way great start. A Brett Favre win over the Packers. Sweet! So I just had to get the bullies into the action. After all that's what being a bulldog is all about...having your humans dress you up in many humiliating ways. Naw, they love every minute of it, especially if there's a treat in it for them.

Apple looks pretty fetching in her purple and gold...lets hope she doesn't outgrow it before the big St. Paul Minneapolis Bulldog Club's bully parade. My Viking's Bull-iever!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Cold Days, Warm Bullies

Usually one would think that heat and bulldogs don't go together. Hmmm, try telling Otto that! With the rains and the chilly weather it was a perfect time to enjoy the fireplace. Oh, how that is Otto's favorite! He immediately plunks himself down right in front and stays there even when he's hot to the touch. We all move away long before he does. Give him a fire to roast by and he is one happy boy! I cannot help but think of the song, "Chestnuts roasting by the open fire..." Enjoy Otto!