Friday, April 26, 2013

Going for a Bus Ride

By Fred
Cheryl is still out of town. Without her, the dogs and I wander aimlessly around the house, drifting like stupid sleepy rubber ducks in a bathtub. I try to be a bright and fun person for them but it's no use--they're not buying it. Sigh.

At least we had a fun puppy meeting last night at the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority, which generously offered up its personnel and a really big bus for the evening. The driver stopped several times to let us practice getting on and off. Very nice people at the PSTA.

A newspaper photographer joined us on the bus to take pictures.

In these two photos, the photographer is lying face down in the aisle between the bus seats, taking pictures of the three or four new young puppies in our group. One of the puppies licks her in the face.

We should see a story in the Tampa Bay Times (I think) soon, and it will be interesting to see how it is written. Yes, the dogs are getting a good exposure on the bus ride, and this helps prepare them for future training and work...

...but what is the real story about these photos? What is it about little puppies, in particular?

Coach has his big head sticking up between the bus seats and resting on my knee. He's smiling.

Coach was pretty good, except that he (at least his head) was almost too big to fit into the tiny area between the seats. I hope that he gets to make a career of it, to help people on and off the bus. I'll have to admit that last night he was not particularly helpful to me. (smiley face here)

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Coach, Right About

By Fred
Cheryl is still in Phoenix with her mom, so Coach, Willow and I are on our own. Thursday night Coach and I attended a class with puppy trainer Jennifer J., who has been working with Cheryl and me (trying to work with us) ever since our shaky start with Bingo four years ago.

The issue with Coach is not so much what as why (as in why should I sit down just now). I'd like to believe that my love and praise are always enough for him, but sometimes the potential of a little tasty reward will sharpen his senses and concentration.

In this video we are practicing right about without a leash. Not the best video, but I am busy today working on a fence, not making videos...

OK, he was mostly hoping to get the treat in my hand. I am still his hero.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Corporate Coach

By Fred
Coach had a good taste of corporate life yesterday when he accompanied me to see a client. Not much different than my desk at home, except here I have my pants on.

A picture of Coach with his head on my lap. (I'm wearing pants.)

He was a very good boy for about an hour and then he got antsy, trying to chew on his leash. It's his way of saying that he's bored. Well that's too bad. Not everyone can be a secret agent or rock star--some of us having boring jobs and we just have to be patient. Maybe someday (I'm still using telepathy to communicate with him) you will get to guide a very exciting person...

So I quietly unhooked his leash and put it on my lap. That did the trick (luckily). He poked up his head to look around, then took a nap for the rest of the meeting.

Good news from Scottsdale that Cheryl's mom is recovering well from surgery. Here's a picture of Coach looking for Cheryl to come home. Her car is out there, so where is she???

Monday, April 15, 2013

A Treat for Willow

Cheryl's mom, Patsy, is having surgery today. She is very good at spoiling Willow, so today Willow is getting a Patsy holiday. Treats and more treats.

Get well soon, Patsy.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Post-Op Coach

By Fred
Our little Coach got fixed on Monday, and not because he was broken...

My all-time favorite dog, Matt, was never fixed, but then he would have made a terrible guide dog. He once dropped a piece of fried chicken because I told him to. There were times, though, when the scent of a female in the air transformed him into a different animal, and he would not obey me, not at all. So I understand why the fixing is necessary.

What I don't understand is how Coach can have such a perfect indifference to the event, even after we make him wear this inverted plastic dunce cap all day. His disposition is sweeter than ever, and I do not believe it's a sudden hormonal thing--his is just a chronically sweet little dog, the same as ever.
In this photo Coach is wearing a cone to keep him from licking. He is looking up innocently at the camera, and all you can see is his head in the center of a big plastic cone.

His perpetual good nature is starting wear thin on me. I am perfectly prepared to show him some understanding and sympathy, male to male, if only he would quit grinning.
Coach has a little smile in this photo.

But no, he couldn't be happier about his liberated appendages or his silly neck cone.
Coach is almost laughing.

Maybe there is a lesson here, but I don't want to learn it.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Coach's Belated Birthday Party

Coach had is first birthday over spring break while we were in Santa Fe.  But I wanted to celebrate at school when we came back from spring break so that we could have his sponsor Austin and his namesake Coach Ciao come and celebrate with him.

So, I ordered a lovely birthday cake from Publix (who makes great cakes!) and picked it up today.

Coach says, "Where's my Cake?"
Coach was a bit excited about the cake because he had heard it had dog bones in it.  Nope.  It was a cake for people, not for dogs.  After his dietary indiscretion, I wasn't taking any chances with his system.  He wasn't even getting a frosty paws!

Publix did a great job on the cake, decorating it with paw prints and dog bones.
It was chocolate cake and it looked delicious.  It had little chocolate paw prints on it and was also decorated in little white dog bones.

Coach sits next to his birthday cake.
I do think that Coach would have liked a piece of cake, but after his stint being sick, I don't think I can ever take him feeling ill again.  He was the most pitiful sick puppy ever!  It made you want to cry.  Thank goodness he is totally recovered.

Coach's sponsor Austin came by wish Coach a happy birthday and check on his progress.
We were very happy when Coach's sponsor Austin was able to stop by for some cake.  Austin and his walkathon team raised enough money this year to name another puppy as well! Keep your fingers crossed that it stays in Tampa Bay.  We'll let you know what they decide to name the puppy!

Coach Ciao says, "Happy birthday" to Coach.
We had to go find Coach's namesake Coach Ciao.  Coach Ciao is very shy and retiring and doesn't like the limelight.  He does like Coach though.

Ms. Mosny comes to visit and wish Coach birthday cheer.
One of Coach's favorite people, Ms. Mosny, stopped by to wish him a happy birthday.  She will often puppy sit him if I have a meeting with the headmaster.

Coach's good friend Ms. Timothy came by to say hello.
Coach has been over to Mrs. Timothy's house and met her cat and two dog and knows her son Kelland VERY well. They are all on the family list.

All of his favorite students came to visit as well.
And then his regular crew came to say hello and eat some cake.  All in all it was a good day to be king and he was a pretty mellow fellow monarch today.