A Day of Rest

I know Sunday is supposed to be a day of rest but I’m taking one today. I had such a busy week. Sunday morning I had agility training, Monday I had a play date, Tuesday I went a whole day to the doggie entertainment center,  Wednesday I had to puppy sit Adonis, then went straight to a training session in the park…. on Thursday I could rest some, while on Friday we went to the river and supervised boat launches. Of course, we had my regular on-site SIS training sessions as well. I’m getting out of breath just thinking about it.

So, today I am practicing mindful body, mind, and soul. I read that resting for a day benefits all three. We call it Zuluism in our house.

I love sleeping on my bed. I now have a Molly Mutt headrest that I truly enjoy. My bed is a Brindle soft memory foam bed. I did not pick it because of its name. It just seemed like a good bed and I’m very happy with it. I still like Ms. Zulu’s bed the best, it’s a PetFusion bed with a headrest on three sides, but that’s hers so I don’t get to use it much.

Take a break and replenish your body, mind, and soul,

Benji

Emergency (S)care

Boy oh Boy, what a week I had. On Tuesday I was brought to the ER. I was a bit suspicious because this time I was dressed in my regular outfit instead of my usual Dogtor attire. And we seemed to be more in a hurry. The ER also looked and smelled different from the one I normally visit as a Dogtor. There were other dogs, yet I could find not a single one in a Dogtor’s uniform.

As we approached the front door it became rapidly clear to me that this time I would be the one on the table. A vet assistant examined me and before I could woof anything they took an X-ray. A diagnosis was made and everything, and I mean everything! that I had acquired with quite some effort on my part that evening, was confiscated. Out came my newly acquired treasures: my treats, my dinner, and some chewy bones. Turned out that the bones on my twister food game were not edible! I ask you, who makes bones that are not edible?!  I definitely need some guidance here.

After a lot of waiting, we were finally allowed to leave the building. M and I went first. Q came out a bit later. He looked a lot lighter compared to when we first arrived. He walked straighter too. Maybe heavy wallets are just not good for you. Isn’t there a saying you humans use: “money doesn’t make you happy”? I would like to add: “and pets do”. First, because we are a lotta fun. And second, we know a thing or two to help you burn some of that inedible junk. I guess I was able to do some of my Dogtoring even without my magic uniform. Who knew?

I had to be watched for 48 hours to make sure that there were no remaining plastic pieces inside of me scratching or obstructing any passages. Initially, the ER vet thought that I could have some pelvic bone issues as well, but after checking with my own vet the next day this turned out to be a non-issue. We were happy to hear this news as headquarter staff had worried a bit that this would impact my secret mission work and agility fun. It’s now 48 hours later and there are no signs of lingering inedible matters either so we should be in the clear on both fronts. Phew, that was a close call.

Of course, to celebrate the great news and because certain people still feel guilty about the oops ordeal (yes, keep that up), we had doggie ice cream. According to my kitchen staff, it’s really easy to make: Fill an icecube tray with some edible*! stuff such as a bit of peanut butter, banana, or blueberries. Pour water on the goodies, let it freeze, and voila you got doggie ice cream. Ms. Zulu and I love it especially when we get a bit of yogurt (more is always nice) on top. The blueberry ice cream may leave a mess on your floors so we tend to eat that one outside. Yum!

Stay cool and remember “every cloud has a silver lining”,

Benji

*Here are some other recipes you can try. Make sure all ingredients are safe for your quadrupeds 🙂 .

I passed!

Saturday morning, I took THE animal therapy exam and I passed!  My tail is wagging! HM was a bit nervous but I liked it. There were lots of people waiting in line to pet me. I had to perform  20 different tasks ranging from basic commands to walking through a crowd with obstacles. And again, there was food on the floor that I was supposed to ignore.  Such a waste. At least at the end, I got a big treat. AND I now have my own badge saying that I am a therapy animal. Me Benji, the shelter dog!  They said that I was the youngest in my group who passed the test. BTW, I chose to wear my Ruffwear harness; it seems to be my lucky charm. Since I wore it during the exam, I will wear it on every visit, so it will be my new uniform. 

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After the test, we celebrated the occasion with, you guessed it, more treats. Now it is up to HM to do some shadow visits to test the waters and see what sort of facility works best for us as a team. We can choose from a long list of assisted living facilities, senior centers, youth centers, a hospital, libraries, and even a courthouse. Once we know what type of setting we like, we can try a short visit to one of these facilities together.  But first, I will take a well-deserved nap. 

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I Mock You Not

This week, we had a mock exam to practice for the real animal therapy exam. I tried my new Sense-ation harness (photo on the right). The jury is still out on whether I will use my Ruffwear front range harness or the new one during the real exam. I always feel proud when I wear the Ruffwear harness. It’s very comfortable and I have worn it since I was first allowed to go on big trips. Besides, the trainer told me that I look smart with the Ruffwear harness. On the other hand, the new harness is supposed to help me be more responsive. To be honest, I did not know that there was a problem. OK, sometimes I am a tad bit enthusiastic. But hey, there are so many fun things to explore in the real world. 

For the first part of the exam, I had to stand still to be petted and examined. That was tough, especially when HM made the mistake of dangling a treat in front of me. I thought we could play, but not this time, she said. The exercise “leave it” was easy. All I had to do was walk past a bowl with food, without touching it. Just in case, I was keeping an eye on the food (you would too).  The exam also included a part where I was petted by a crowd of people. All I saw were legs and lots of hands reaching down for me. That was a bit confusing; I looked up but could not figure out which hands and legs belonged to who. They need to number those things. In the end, the mock exam was rewarding; I got lots of treats and even applause. Maybe I will bow next time.