Just whose bed is it anyway?

The "bed of honor"

The “bed of honor”

With 3 dogs needless to say we have several dog beds around the house; 2 in the kitchen with a crate that Gypsy feels belongs to her exclusively, 2 in the living room in addition to the couch which Phoenix feels is his while Gypsy sleeps under the dining room table (we have an open floor plan and the dining room is just off the living room forming an “L”) as well as 3 dog beds in the bedroom.  Gypsy and Phoenix like to sleep under the bed while Fiona likes to sleep on our bed (one side or the other OR across the foot of the bed warming both sides for our feet).

Despite all the available places to sleep there is always a competition to see who can claim the bed between Fred’s chair and mine in the living room.  Fiona thinks this is her place, Gypsy thinks she should have priority and occasionally Phoenix gets in the act to claim the spot too.

Last evening I had to chuckle to myself as Gypsy was laying on the bed, Fiona then faked her out acting like she wanted out, when Gypsy got up Fiona doubled back so she could lay down on the dog bed.  Later Phoenix got off the couch to get a drink of water, Fiona followed him into the kitchen AND he doubled back to claim the “bed of honor”.   We don’t know what the attraction of this dog bed is but it sure is the place to be in our dogs opinion.

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Who’s been sitting in my chair?/Lap time

So, I was traveling for work earlier this week (YES, I FINALLY GOT A JOB AFTER 8 MONTHS OF UNEMPLOYMENT!!!!!) which meant Fred was home alone with the dogs.

Normally Phoenix will lay on the couch, the floor or a dog bed but Saturday evening while I was sitting on the LaZ-Boy he came over to me and started nudging my knee.  Since the dogs had just finished dinner I presumed Phoenix was trying to tell me he needed to go out.  So Fred took all 3 dogs out, Fiona went into the brush between our house and the neighbors, Gypsy wanted to walk further back on the property (now that we are down to 4 inches of snow from the 12 inches we had on Tuesday, spring-like temperatures on Saturday—the winter solstice—and again today, Sunday) and Phoenix just stood on the step of the porch.  A bit later I got up to go to the bedroom to change into my lounging PJs; when I came back the LaZ-Boy was occupied!  Phoenix had climbed up and made himself comfortable, head on the armrest, legs tucked under him and eyes starting to droop closed as he started to doze off to sleep.  Apparently he didn’t want outside but wanted me to get up so he could sleep on the chair.  I chuckled and Fred came back to the livingroom wondering what was so comical, told him he had to see it to understand.  When Fred looked Phoenix opened his eyes and wagged his tail.  In my absence Phoenix decided he would sit where I normally do and wasn’t ready to relinquish the chair back to me.

Fiona, on the other hand, missed me as well.  BUT Fiona will “share” the chair with me, meaning she likes to lay on my legs while I sit in the chair—her lap time.  Friday evening she was on my lap for the majority of the evening, same thing Saturday morning which is not normal.  Usually she will climb up for a short period then decide it’s time to lay on her dog bed—not this weekend, she was into some SERIOUS lap time.

You may wonder what Gypsy did; well, she just wanted belly rubs and for me to pay constant attention to her when I first got home.  She did do some snuggling when I went to bed on Friday because, you know, she is our “snuggle puppy.IMG_0034

Our daily constitutional

We walk daily, 1-2 miles depending on which direction we turn at the road.  Yesterday was a 2 mile walk, we didn’t think it would be that long but the weather (temperature and wind) were favorable to a nice stroll so rather than turn around after 1/2 mile we continued down the road.  Not that we were given much of a choice, when we reached the spot that we thought we would turn around the dogs kept going straight.  When we stopped and said “time to turn around” no one paid any attention, Fiona looked up at both of us and whined a little so we relented and kept going.  A couple of houses down the road one of their dogs ran out to the road and barked at us, we had seen this golden before just never saw her run (she is missing her front “passenger side” leg).  She stayed on her property and once we passed she turned around and went back to the house.  On our return trip past the same house we heard a bark, this time it was the black lab that resides there.  He made a bit of a fuss (his owner was outside with him, I think he was making a show for the owner’s benefit.)  Phoenix wanted to cross the street and say “hi” but I think he wanted to say hi to the owner not the dog.  One thing you need to know if Phoenix thinks he is the welcoming committee for the neighborhood; he feels he needs to meet any and everyone he sees on our walks.  Being part hound, Phoenix also bays, not just barks.  He has started baying at other pooches he sees walking when we are out for our exercise, then he keeps looking back over his shoulder at them until they are out of his line of sight.

As if seeing the neighbor dogs wasn’t enough, when we got home the chickens were over visiting.  Luckily we have learned to listen for the rooster to determine where he is from where we hear the crowing so nobody was let off their leash although Gypsy would have LOVED to get and give some exercise by chasing them.  Once again it is sunny out today and the forecast is for fairly mild temperatures, needless to say the chickens are out of their coop and this means the pooches will be happy because they get to watch them again.

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Just short postscript to the chickens being out today, Gypsy wanted out (it’s been a while so I thought she might need to “pottie”.  She ran up the back hill into the woods, not thinking anything of it (she chases squirrels up trees) until I saw chickens start running back toward their own yard.  Don’t worry, she was a VERY good girl and came back when I called rather than chase after the chickens.

Sun’s out, neighbor is home—must mean CHICKENPALOOZA!

I wondered why suddenly all 3 dogs wanted out.  Luckily we now do a quick check of the yard before letting Fiona and Gypsy out loose because we are having a “chickenpalooza” day, perhaps one of the last of the year since once the snow flies I don’t think they will be able to make it over to our yard.

Anyway, it isn’t easy to see the chickens now that the leaves are down when they are in the woods but boy can the pooches see them.

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Gypsy was staring at something in the yard so I followed her line of sight and there they were, in the woods, just behind the garden plot.  Once out Phoenix spotted them and it didn’t take long for Fiona to see them either.  The 3 of them watched as the birds made their way to the compost pile, did some scratching then worked their way back toward their own yard so everybody came in.  Just a few minutes later there was clucking on the side of the house so Gypsy ran over to the side window to jump up and look out because now the chickens were near our cars under the lilac bush, coming up to the outside water bowl (we’re nice neighbors, it is so convenient for them that there is a water bowl they can drink from) before going back into the yard to scratch for bugs.  Really, it is sort of fun having the chickens come over to visit/look for bugs.  The dogs LOVE to watch them and they haven’t had many ticks/fleas this year because of the chickens.  Over this summer the chickens have been over so often all we have to do is say “Palooza” and Phoenix comes from where ever he is to look.

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Well, now there is clucking in front of the house so let “Chickenpalooza” continue!

Getting to know….Mr. Phoenix Huber Dog

Yes, that is his formal name:  Mr. Phoenix Huber Dog.  He’s a lover.  Never known a dog to purr but he does.  When he nuzzles under your chin you start hearing “ummmm, ummmm, ummmm” with a sort of purring along with it.  As you know from the first post on this blog Phoenix is the only male dog we have had and he is definitely MY dog.  He favors me over my husband until it comes time to handing out treats, then it’s all my hubby.

Phoenix is also known as “Houdini Dog” for his ability to escape from a dog crate.  The door was still latched but he was outside of the crate.  When we both worked we would put up a baby gate to keep the dogs from getting into the living room and despite the gate being propped up with furniture (on the side opposite the room where the dogs were) Phoenix figured out how to get out and into the living room (which is why we then attempted to crating him).

Phoenix LOVES to look out the picture window and keep tabs on his front yard.  He puts his paws on the back of the couch and just looks and looks.  When he gets excited about an animal out there if the animal moves a bit out of his line of vision he will jump up on the back of the couch on all four paws so he can still watch whatever is out there.  This past year our neighbors got some chickens, they are free-range so they wander into our yard on a regular basis when they are out of their pen.  Phoenix is mesmerized by them.  The first time the chickens spent a considerable amount of time in our yard we called it “chickenpalooza”.  Now when they come over and are circling the house all we have to say is “Palooza time” and he comes running from wherever he is to look outside to watch them, rather comical.  During the summer we spend time in our gazebo and he REALLY enjoys that when the chickens come over because he has a 360 degree view of them.  Even when he is out on his rope and they come over he doesn’t chase after them, just watches—-Phoenix the chicken stalker

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He’s my boy and I know I will be heartbroken when his short time with us is over but until then we enjoy his antics.

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Perfuming (if you could call it that!)

This was going to be about Phoenix and his personality BUT after dinner was ready last night, when settling in to watch shows off the DVR someone walked past and boy were they aromatic.

First of all, we live in the woods.  Front of the property is clear but behind the house is wooded as well as next door.  Needless to say this means we have wildlife frequenting the property….deer, fox, turkey, rabbits, squirrels, skunk, etc….which also means we have “gourmet deer poop”–apparently VERY yummy, “rabbit raisins”—can be scarfed down easily and when we go on walks “road apples”—a term I learned living in the Midwest for horse droppings on the side of the road (we also live in horse farm country).

Second, being a hound, Phoenix cannot be let out off a lead because he would follow his nose (a couple of years ago we thought we would need to cancel a trip back to IN for a wedding because he went missing  –  still don’t know how but THAT personality trait will be relayed in another post so stay tuned).  I jumped in the car and my husband started walking the route we normally take the dogs.  Found Phoenix taking himself for a walk, didn’t run from my hubby; Phoenix was just walking down the side of the road checking out the smells as if on a leash!

ANYWAY, back to the perfuming story….

Gypsy laid down on the dogbed between my husband and me (sniff, sniff) he checks the bottom of his boots thinking he stepped in dog poop, nope clean.  But you can still smell.  Now is was already dark and he took all 3 pooches out (Phoenix on his rope); however, he (my hubby not Phoenix) didn’t pay attention to where Fiona and Gypsy went.  SOOOO we determined Gypsy must of “perfumed” herself in deer poop (for those without pooches, a drop and roll in a spot where the human eye cannot see the scat but the dogs sure can).  Off to the bathroom to run water in the tub.  Gypsy is led into the bathroom and the bathing process begins after coercing her into the tub.  Done with the bath, water drained, bathroom put back together (because everything has to be removed since wet dog likes to jump out of tub and shake, shake, shake).  Phoenix comes out of the bedroom, looking like “please don’t tell me it’s my turn”.  Fiona, lapdog that she is, comes over to me once I am back sitting in the EZ-chair  and wants up on my lap.  She starts to put her feet on my lap and, sniff, sniff, IT WASN’T GYPSY WHO PERFUMED!!!!!!  Poor baby dog had a bath she didn’t really need!  Back to the bathroom for the whole process again.

Have to admit, never a dull moment at our house.

P.S.  Once again Phoenix comes out of the bedroom after Fiona is done with her bath with that look “please not me next” on his face.  And no, he wasn’t subjected to a bath….I was too tired for a third.

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