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May 27, 2012

New Things to Come

I know that I have been absent from this blog for quite a while.  Fear not, however, as I will be posting some new stuff in the near future.  I have, however, disabled comments entirely, as all I get is spam.  If you want to comment, please send it directly to my email rfgriffiths@1160main.com .  Thanks for your patience.

May 18, 2011

Dinner Thieves!

Filed under: AireTails — admin @ 12:19 am

Last Saturday, we were taking Ruby and Otis for their last walk of the night.  There were some people sitting on a retaining wall near a local restaurant, chatting.  Ruby and Otis noticed them and figured that they needed to be introduced. 

We walked up to the people, and Ruby and Otis introduced themselved, tails-a-wagging. After the initial greeting, we started talking with them about Ruby and Otis, and I looked down, and Ruby was sniffing one lady’s purse.  I got her nose out of it, and she went back to the attention of the guests.  A few moments later, Otis started sniffing the purse.  I got his nose out of it, and he went back to the attention of the guests. A few minutes turned into almost twenty, and while we were chatting we forgot to keep an eye on Ruby and Otis.

Next thing we know, they BOTH had their noses working their way into this lady’s purse. As we’re pulling them out of the purse, we’re apologizing for them being so nosey.  As Otis’ nose comes out, out falls a styrofoam leftover container that contained the lady’s remaining Shrimp Scampi and pasta. We’re not sure if they got any, but Otis may have slurped a noodle or two!

We apologized again, this time for our Aire-thieves stealing their leftovers.  They all laughed and the one lady told her husband that he’ll have to find something else for lunch tomorrow. We got them away from the spilled noodles and got them to sit.  Ruby then decided to lay down and kind of stretched her left paw towards one of the noodles, put it on top of it, and started dragging the noodle toward her! We both caught her, however, and the noodle never made it close enough for her to eat it.  But we all laughed at her determination to have that noodle! 

We apologized again, and went on our way, telling Ruby and Otis how embarrassing their behavior was.  They seemed completely oblivious to our talk, and were probably happy that they provided such great  entertainment for the nice people.

March 25, 2011

Sunday Meet & Greet: A Different Take

Filed under: AireTails — admin @ 2:15 am

Last Sunday, we did the first “Official” meet and greet between Joe, Ruby and Otis.  It went fairly well.  We now know for sure that neither Ruby nor Otis view Joe as a food item.  That’s a relief, but I kind of figured that anyway.

We blocked off the kitchen, and put Joe in there. Then one at a time, we brought (first) Otis, then Ruby into the kitchen on a leash.  Joe hissed and spit and growled, but they were able to meet and sniff each other. The entire time, Airedale Tails were wagging like crazy.  They found a new “toy” so to speak.

Joe wasn’t as crazy about the whole situation, but it enabled us to comfortably give Joe the run of the house along with Ruby and Otis.

Now, Ruby has a new entertainment venue – CatTV. She spends alot of her time throughout the day camped out in front of “Joe’s room” AKA the executive suite for those who have stayed here. Joe knows she can’t get in there, under the child gate, so sometimes he’ll strut by in plain view, just to mess with her. She’ll just lay there, nose under the child gate, and watch him … hoping …

Last night, we think Joe lost his mind. We were in the living room, relaxing and watching TV. Ruby was at my feet and Otis was over by my sweetheart, and Joe came downstairs.  Not only that, but he came into the living room.  I said “Hi Joe Kitty” and he started to walk toward me.  All was well, ’till Joe meowed. That got Ruby’s attention, and she SCRAMBLED to her feet and started to chase Joe.  Otis, not to be outdone, also scrambled to his feet and followed suit, singing all the way.

I think I caught the ignosecond instant in Joe’s eyes when he suddenly realized that this was NOT a good idea and that he needed to get the hell out of Dodge!

All in all, it was QUITE a hiarious sight, one large cat and two large Airedales trying to get traction on an oak floor! Joe won the heat and made it safely back to his room, probably before either Ruby or Otis topped the first landing.

March 13, 2011

Doggie Day-Care

Filed under: AireTails — admin @ 4:01 am

So, we took Ruby and Otis to doggie day-care today while bowling, in an effort to keep them pretty much socialized with other dogs.  This was their second visit, and they were supposed to be evaluated on how well they played with others.

We know from their foster mom that if there are any probems getting aong with others, it isn’t their fault, its’ the other dog, as they spent pretty much a whole month in group play with up to 150 other dogs. Being biased as I am, I already know this.  Our two sweeties are angels!

Well, they didn’t get evaluated.  The facility apologized, saying that it was a mis-communication from the front desk to the back.  Oh well. Sigh … that was the MAIN reason for us taking them there.  No, I REALLY DO enjoy shelling out 32 bucks to have them sit in a kennel in a strange place while my sweetheart and I go bowling, when they could have been home in comfort.  GRRRR.

But I digress.

They did get some individual play with the staff.  They are BEAT. They were dragging on their evening walk. They are seeping right now. I even came in the living room with a plate of CHICKEN and they didn’t so much as lift their heads to see what was happening. Nope, no audience while I ate. 

At one point they were both sleeping with their heads on one of their front legs. At the same time, they BOTH switched position into the familiar ‘Airedale Sprawl, with front and back legs outstretched. That’s how they are now. 

I would post pictures, but as soon as I go upstairs to get the camera, they will follow. My crackberry doesn’t take good pictures in low lighting. Nor does my sweetheart’s iPhone. So, hopefully I have painted a good enough word picture for you.

FTR, comments are welcome. I will moderate them,  but I will deal with the spam … for now.

March 6, 2011

Airedale as Part Cat?

Filed under: AireTails — admin @ 2:33 pm

Some people maintain that Airedales, because of their independent nature, are part cat. I think I can shed some light on the subject with a little story.

Yesterday, we took Ruby and Otis to day-care. We did this for a couple of reasons, but mainly to keep them socialized. Apparently, they had a good time, but were VERY happy to see us at the end of the day. And they were TIRED!!! They were very quiet on the ride home. 

We got them home, gave them dinner, then took them out for their evening walk. We got them inside, and dried them off (it was raining) and came in to the living room.  Otis put himself right where he usually does, right at, and partially on, my feet.

I reached down and started petting him. As I reached his neck, just behind his ears he started making a very low noise.  I had my sweetheart mute the TV and listen.  Yep, he was PURRING! As I would rub around the top of his neck, and down by his jaw, he would PURR! He wasn’t growling, and it definitely wasn’t the “eargasm” moan he lets out when you hit the right spot rubbing his ears.  This was definitely PURRING.

So there you have it, folks, definitive anecdotal proof that Airedales are part cat!

February 22, 2011

The Video Camera

Filed under: AireTails — admin @ 3:23 am

Several times over the past few weeks, we have seen Ruby and Otis fighting over a toy.  There was the beaver bottle toy. there was the glow in the dark ball.  There was the bowling pin tennis ball thingy. There was the tug toy.

Try as I might, I can’t seem to be able to get them on camera.  No, they’re not FIGHTING fighting.  They’re playing dog style.  The latest episode was over the beaver bottle toy again.  This time, however, was different. It wasn’t the usual where Ruby growls and nips and such, and Otis sings.  This was LITERALLY rolling on the ground, jaw to jaw gutter brawling. 

They weren’t being vicious … they were just being lazy.  We were cracking up laughing at them as they were playing away. Then I remembered the video camera.  As soon as I grabbed it and turned it on, however, they stopped.  I have a total of 4, count-em 4 videos, each between 1 1/2 and 2 minutes. They are all the same… Ruby and Otis peacefully playing with their own toys. So the videos are almost like canasta night at the retirement home instead of WWE Smackdown! 

As soon as I get a Smackdown video, I’ll post it.  Trust me, it’ll be worth the wait. 

Now, if I could only figure out how to make the camera not make noise when I turn it on…

February 20, 2011

The Treat

Filed under: AireTails — admin @ 7:48 pm

Preface:  We encourage good behavior of our Airedales by giving them a treat after they poop outside.

We were walking them the other morning, and Otis pooped.  After we cleaned it up, I gave Otis a treat for being a good dog and doing his business outside.  Ruby, seeing that Otis got a treat, came over to me and sat pretty, expecting a treat also.  I told her that Otis got the treat for pooping, and that she didn’t so she didn’t get a treat. We started walking again.

We didn’t get more than 20 feet, and Ruby went over to the grass and squatted. I waited, and waited, and FINALLY, she squeezed out these THREE LITTLE TURDS!  I cleaned them up, and she came over to me and sat pretty for her treat.  I gave her her treat, and told her she was a good girl.  She took the treat and started trotting on her way again, happy that she had successfully outsmarted her human, yet again!

The Play Date (Lots of Pictures)

Filed under: AireTails — admin @ 7:38 pm

One of the things we were looking forward to was a play date with our neighbor’s dogs.  They have two Border Collies, a Bearded Collie, and a fenced yard.  It’s even better than a dog park because we know the other dogs.

Last Sunday was the date. Ruby and Otis met Teez, Finn, and Pie.  Teez is about 2, Finn is, I believe, 7, and Pie, the Bearded Collie, is ancient.

This was the first time we got to see Teez and Finn in action. My impression of Border Collies (based on this experience) is that they are a black and white blur of motion, punctuated by freeze-frame poses (these usually include a ball at your feet) and staccato, ear-piercing tenor barks. They have boundless energy, and will play ball with you until you pass out, and maybe even longer.

I’m not sure what Ruby and Otis thought of them, other than they were fun to play with, but oftentimes, Otis would come back to stand by one of us, in hopes that they would forget he was there.  I am thinking that the Border Collies felt that these two new additions to the herd needed to be herded and kept in line. Finn did just that, circling all of us and yelling at Ruby and/or Otis anytime they stepped out of his imaginary magic circle.

Teez was another story.  Teez isn’t neutered yet, and thought that the Airedales were brought over for his … ummm … pleasure. He initially went for Ruby, but she told him in no uncertain terms that she wasn’t in that kind of mood. He then spent alot of time trying to mount Otis, which is probably why Otis kept coming back over to us. Otis is such an easy-going guy, that he would just try and walk away.  Teez, undeterred, would try again. Oh, to be a teenager again!

They all romped and played for quite a while.  Finn kept trying to keep us in his corral.  Our hostess said he’s a bit OC.  They gave us plenty of photo-ops.  Ruby decided to go over to the wire fence and bark.  Don’t know what she was barking at, but she apparently did.  Then she heard some sort of commotion behind the back fence and that’s where she played “Guard Dog Ruby”!

We gave them a couple of water breaks, but after a while, they seemed like they had had enough, so inside we went. 

We started talking about introducing Ruby and Otis to cats, and our hostess volunteered one of hers, so she brought him in.  Otis wanted to sniff this thing soooooo much, and, while she was holding the cat, he did so. He just kept shoving his gigantic nose into the poor cat, who had enough early on, and just started PUMMELING poor Otis.  Well, Otis was undeterred by the street-fighter style pummeling and just kept sniffing. We were all laughing so hard that it was difficult to pull the dapper Otis away.  The cat apparently didn’t feel too threatened, however, as the claws never came out, despite all of the hissing and such! Kudos to the cat for such restraint.

Our hostess took the cat to safety and apologized profusely to it for the nose assault!

We then took them home and they crashed for the evening.  The next morning, it was evident that they were STILL beat. We took them for their morning walk, then they came back, ate, and crashed again!  All in all, it was fun for all.  We can’t wait to do it again.  Hopefully, we can get them in better shape so that they can keep up with the Border Collies!

February 10, 2011

We Learned a New Trick

Filed under: AireTails — admin @ 3:33 am

Our cuties are VERY curious, especially when it comes to watching us in the kitchen preparing food.  I think an Airedale’s SECOND favorite thing to do is to watch humans prepare food, especially if they tend to be careless and accidentally DROP something.  I have no doubt that some have even resorted to “accidentally” tripping their humans so that they would drop something, rather than fall.

Ours like to be ALL UP IN THE BUSINESS.  For the first few days, it was not uncommon to be flanked by two big noses right at the counter while I prepared some food. When it came to the refrigerator, Ruby was VERY nosy, and anytime the door opened, her nose was RIGHT THERE trying to see what was in the magic food box.

Well, one day, my sweetheart was preparing lunch, and Ruby and Otis were right there beside her, literally, watching her every move, their noses working overtime to try and discern what it was she was making.

That was when they taught her a new trick … “Get Out” … She pointed to the living room and said (firmly) “Get Out”… and they did.  They both immediately left the kitchen and perched themselves at the threshold.  I am sure that they were thinking that they got stuck with the dumbest of humans, since they’ve been working on teaching us this trick since they got here, but they sat there patiently waiting and took pride in the new trick we had learned!

She had them show me how to do the trick when I got home. 

Otis and Ruby taking pride in their work

Otis and Ruby taking pride in their work

They still watched me, as much as they could, but they stayed RIGHT at the doorway!

What's he doing???

What's he doing???

 

They are such wonderful and caring Airedales to share this trick with us and have the patience to teach it to us!

February 6, 2011

Sunday Meet and Greet

Filed under: AireTails — admin @ 6:25 pm

We took Ruby and Otis on a nice long walk this morning, about 2 1/2 miles.  They seemed to enjoy all the smells along the way.  As we were passing the local Episcopal church, they just started letting out.

Of course, Ruby and Otis wanted to see what was behind the doors, and lo and behold, it was PEOPLE! The first people who came out said “What a beautiful Airedale … Oh, there’s TWO of them … they’re just adorable!”

Our babies were on their best behavior and stayed calm while all of the parishoners came up and said hello to them.  One man, probably in his 80’s, told me that his father brought back two Airedales from a city in England on the River Aire!  Another said that they used to have an Airedale, and they are the best dogs! One woman told Ruby and Otis that they hit the lottery when they got us as their humans!  All the while, Otis stood by my side, and Ruby sat like a perfect lady as each person came up to them and said hi to them.  We were SO PROUD of our puppies!

Anyway, the long walk and all of the excitement of meeting all of those people was just too much for them.  After they got home and got a drink of water, This is what they did:

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