Training Da Sky

I always knew that I couldn’t influence da weather but do you know that you can train da Sky? It turns out to be pretty easy too. Who would have known?! Sky has had multiple lessons in an unofficial capacity as soon as our vet gave him a clean bill of health. On one of Sky’s trips, he went to agility training with me. He didn’t have to jump through hoops but he sure did get a lot of attention. Nobody took photos of me. I know, how come????! To even things out, I’m throwing in a photo of my first encounter with agility way back in 2016.

Sky even went shopping and came home with a new leash. Unfortunately, no treats whatsoever. I quadruple checked. Sky also had his first puppy pawty with my CCI buddies to welcome Kirby a new nine-week-and-counting CCI pup. I couldn’t go as I had to pawsonally dogtor Q , you know the second in command at headquarters, back to health. Sometimes you have to set your priorities. Stay out of trouble this weekend, I will try to do the same.

Benji

The Cave

The cave has been an integral part of the training curriculum at headquarters. The first photo shows Ms. Zulu when she was still a youngster, about three years old just like I am now.

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Ms. Zulu: 10-10-2008

I had to dig deep in the archives to find this old photo of myself when I was about 2 months old.

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Moi: 11-21-2015

The third photo shows Sky in his first week at headquarters, when he had just discovered the cave.

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Sky: 10-13-2019

The cave is very old; it dates back to many years B.Z. (Before Zulu). It looks like it’s part of a Stonehenge circle which could be true or not. The cave has been explored extensively by all four-legged beings, young and old, who resided at headquarters at some point in time.  Over the years each of us has put our own paw-stamp on it so it means a lot to all of us including the two-legged ones.

Benji

Many Firsts

There is a first for everything. Sky had many firsts since he became my new little brother earlier this month.  He turned 25 weeks for the very first and last time:

He got to travel in the car in style on the back seat albeit with a safety harness on but without a crate. He behaved like a prince with manners with and without my supervision:

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Sky met new friends and hopped on a boat, maybe next time we will take it for a spin:

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And Sky learned first hand that the beach is fun!

Can’t wait to show Sky more exciting stuff!

Benji

 

Pooches in Charge

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Listen up: Commander in Chief barking 

I know, I know, I promised to stay apawlitical in this blog but just couldn’t help myself after yet another year seems to go down the drain. Someone, pul-ease plug that hole! When I heard that the government is still shut down, I said to Sky, “bro, they can’t do that man”. All those people without a treat-check, who is going to pay for their yummies? I certainly would not stand for that. It ain’t right.  So I’m thinking that we need some new blood [where is the bloodhound?] to steer our backyard back in the right, no make that a left, direction.

Ms. Zulu was supposed to run for president but since she got angel wings last year that won’t happen in our reality show. So I will have to take the lead. I’m good at running, I even ran Mach 2+. I know it’s hard to believe but you can read all about it on this blog. It’s in black and white so it has to be true. We even have photos, that’s double poof.

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Mach 2+ record

I’m always about facts anyhowls, contrary to the some-bodies currently in charge. It’s a fact that I love to sniff. It’s a fact that we doggies can analyze different smells way better than the two-legged ones.  It’s a fact that I can smell something fishy from far far away. You can say I’m a real fact tracker. I can sniff out the house – that’s supposed to be crystal clear white- to see if there is something fishy going on there that troubles the waters. If it is, I guarantee you that I will piss on it. And I think I can convince Sky to do the same.

If you vote for me I will guarantee you that I will personally dig some big tunnels under the wall that has been the talk of the backyard. The tunnels might also be helpful to bypass the pesky trade sanctions. I can get some chewers to work on the wall itself too.  I’m sure I can get all my fur-iends to help me with those tasks. Mark my words. Yes, it will be great, it will be Aa-mazing. And no, I won’t bark “I never barked that”.

I am nominating Sky as my running mate. He still has a lot to learn but at his rate, he will soon outrun the major golfers playing in the house that’s not so purely clean. And for those who don’t like imported stuff, they won’t have to be afraid of us. I personally guarantee that Sky and I are both registered as 100% All-American. Take my bark for it.

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Leave it to me; I’m no couch potato

If you vote for Sky and me in November 2020 we promise:

  • Less barking, more digging
  • No barking up the wrong tree
  • Yummies for e-furry body
  • Lots of tunnels
  • More sniffing
  • Plenty of chewing on a bone
  • Sky high jumping
  • Border Collie stamina & higher intelligence

Benji & running mate Sky

WOOOFFF!

 

A New Seed

Well, apparently new seeds were growing last year.  I would like to introduce my new little brother Luke Skywalker de Louisiana a.k.a. SKY. I gave him the Codename 0012.img_9999b

Ain’t he something else?! His shelter name was Luke, we added Skywalker. SKY was moved from an overcrowded Louisiana shelter that was not suited for puppies to North Florida. Hence his last name. He is roughly 5 months old and our vet said that he was probably a mix between a Border Collie and Springer Spaniel.  SKY has aspirations to become a Jedi Master. When my former agility trainer saw his photo she said, “The Force is strong in this one”. So maybe he’s on his way.

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To be honest, I am hoping he can join me on my super-secret missions sometime in the future. With a name like SKY, he should be able to fly, don’t you think? That should come in handy on our Mission Impossibles.

SKY started his tactical training last Friday at headquarters. He has to wait at least a couple of months before he can start any offsite agility training but for now, he can start with the basics at headquarters. It’s a lot of chewing on a bone and sometimes there is a bone of contention but I’ve shown that it can be done. Anyhowls, in the meantime, SKY can prepare for his S.T.A.R. exam. More on all this prep work at a later time. For now, this puppy needs some rest.

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Signing off,

Dg. B, a.k.a. 0011
Commander in Chief
Headquarters

Change

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October 2015

Life is a bit different without my Big Sis. Like a good Zen Master and inventor of Zuluism, she meditated a lot towards the end.  However, no matter how busy she was with her Zen practice, she always made time for her little brother. We rolled in the grass together, went for walks, protected the herd, and had lots of marvelous adventures together. If you want to learn more about those adventures, just follow this link: Ms. Zulu.

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May 2016

Ms. Zulu taught me a lot and I hope that I’m ready to take the lead from here on out. But first, we will take a break and celebrate Christmas. Wishing you all a peaceful and relaxing time together with f(u)riends and f(ur)amily.

Benji

Angel Wings

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Today’s post is one we hoped we wouldn’t have to write for a while. With a heavy heart, I am writing that Ms. Zulu passed away on December 3.  She was 13 years and 3 months old. It was all very sudden as a very aggressive and inoperable cancerous tumor showed up on her doorstep. It rained two solid days until she died. Then, just moments before it was time to walk over the rainbow bridge, the sun broke through the clouds and a beautiful rainbow appeared.

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Ms. Zulu, aka Zoë, was an integral part of our family and everything you could hope for: a best friend, companion, nurse, Zen master, big sister, puppy raiser, playmate, dog rescuer, sailor, canoer, chaser, and so much more. Many beautiful memories were made on our adventures together. We will treasure them all fur-ever in our hearts. R.I.P. big girl; we are missing you big time. Thank you for everything.

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Till we meet again at the Rainbow Bridge,

B & A  

 

Shrinking

Help, my big sister has shrunk! I think we need to give her some power bars. I could do with one or two myself as well, you know as an athlete and such. It should do wonders in combination with a long power nap.

Happy lazy weekend!

Benji

National Dog Day!

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We are celebrating all breeds and mixes every day but especially today because it’s  National Dog Day. Ms. Zulu looks a bit like Battlescar Galactica because she had four masses that needed to be removed surgically.  We are happy to report that she is recovering nicely without any problems.

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Happy Sunny Day,

WOOOFFF!

Ms. Zulu & Benji

 

Tour d’Agility

Finally, we got around to the best part of my life: AGILITY! There were two big events. One far, far away in South Florida. The other one was just across the border in Georgia. We had our own chauffeur/ lift boy/ dog walker/ photographer/ support/ you-name-it guy for both occasions. Even Ms. Zulu went with us in our dog-mobile. The dog-mobile was a bit overloaded but we safely made it to the other end without a scratch.

The first event was a team effort in which teams that consisted of 9 dogs +9 handlers competed with other teams. There were over 450 dogs + their handlers competing so we can honestly say that it was a bit crowded! But we had loads of fun. We even stayed in a real Dogtel. That was a first for both Ms. Zulu and me.

In South Florida, I used my time efficiently. I started strong with running around in circles and greeting all the volunteers in the field. I know you’re not supposed to touch the obstacles so I made sure to stay WAY clear of them. M kept waving at me and I kept waving my tail back at her from a distance. I even barked at the judge, twice.  I learned later that that’s a no-no in agility land. OOPS. In my defense, the judge kept staring at me. That’s just rude man.

The second event was just a bit north of headquarters. It was a lot smaller than the one in South Florida. Probably around 50 dogs and their handlers were competing individually. By this time, I knew not to bark at the judge. My new Superdog collar seemed to give me superpower (unfortunately I was not allowed to take my S-SD so I had to make do). I flew over jumps and crawled through dark pesky tunnels. There were some out of control garbage cans while I was running my last run but I gave it the Superdog eye and got back on track. It was one satisfying happy day. Once at home Ms. Zulu and I were able to recharge without any problems.

 Benji

Practice, Practice, Practice

One of my fans asked me what I’ve been up to lately.  Well, besides going to therapy events I’ve been practicing my agility jumps a lot since practice makes pur-fect. One of these days we’re hoping to be ready for a formal agility event. I’m now up to 23 inches. I’m supposed to jump 24. That’s only one more inch to go!

Ms. Zulu would like to practice too but the humans are afraid that she hurts herself. Unfortunately, her response time is not what it was. She seems to be happy to supervise so maybe it’s all for the best. Tonight we plan to join our CCI buddies on an outing. Let’s hope the weatherman is wrong again and the outing won’t be canceled due to rain.

Have a fun-tastic week,

Benji and team

We’re Back!

IMG_4332b.JPGWe are back home! What a holiday: there was lot’s of play and almost no work. We are replenishing our batteries so we can get back into full swing before you know it.

IMG_4333b.JPGPractice your Zzzzzs and you will always be ready for anything,

Benji

Yahooo!!!

Today is National Dog Day in the U.S. So, get out your best stuff and honor all pets! Or volunteer at a local shelter… or…. if you have space for another fur-iend you can adopt one like me or my sister! What we did on National Dog Day? M volunteered at the local library and enrolled us in the R.E.A.D. program. I told M that I’m not able to read yet. She said that didn’t matter as long as I know how to listen attentively. Come to think of it, I haven’t been to a library either. Let’s hope it doesn’t have any weird doors that take you to a whole nother dimension. I wonder how many treats I will get out of this gig. What Ms. Zulu and I did today? We ran around in circles and had fun doing it!

Enjoy,

Benji

You’ve Got Mail: 4

As a real retriever, I got the mail yesterday.  Ms. Zulu helped me as she herded me to the mailbox like a true herding dog. We forgot to empty the mailbox on Saturday. When we finally got around it on Sunday, we found this beautiful card from Kosmo and his mom in faraway Finland! If we would have known what was in the mailbox, we would have run with Mach 2+ speed.

Kosmo and mom wrote that the photo on the postcard is from their area. Isn’t that something? Can you imagine living in such a beautiful place? Kosmo and his mom are very lucky. If you want to read more about life in Finland, follow the blog Photofinland by Rantasalot.  Kosmo’s mom writes it and it’s wagnificent.

P.S. I hope to report tomorrow on what we saw when we admired the postcard. You won’t believe us.

Happy Tails,

Benji

They Didn’t Listen

I tried to tell M that the sprinkler bath (see Cool Hot Summer Fun 3A and B) wasn’t such a good idea. The day after we had living proof. The upper Dogs were so upset that it started raining cats and dogs. At least we were able to get home from the veterinarian’s office without floating away fur-ever.

The vet visit went fine, thanks for asking. We only needed some routine injections; no big deal. Although I did get the new H3N2 Dog Flu vaccine because I’m out and about so much. For more information on the virus, check this NPR link. And if you’re afraid that us animals can make you sick, no worries just look at this NY Times article. They report that animals help improve your immune system. Isn’t that great?!

At home, Ms. Zulu and I watched the rain and thunder for a bit and then decided to just crawl back in bed and sleep for a long, long time.

Some days it’s better to just go back to bed and dream about playing in the field,

Benji

MP-8 and Mail

On Tuesday we had another Mission Possible made possible by Dogtors without Borders. Yeah, I know it’s a shame that Ms. Zulu can never join me on these trips, but she probably likes her naps at home better anyway.

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Waiting for the mail person to pick up the mail

There was lots of stuff going in and around the ER this time. Ambulances were driving up, people were wheeled in with all kind of devices, even on brancards. I hadn’t seen the brancards before. They were impressive I have to say. The nurses were quite busy and could use some of my reversed Reiki afterward. The carrots and other yummies kept me on my feet. I was thankful for the sweet teenager who kept feeding them to me.

Once I got home I got to take a nap. Next, I wrote two posts about my adventures for my blog, and a postcard for Kosmo my pal in faraway Finland. Kosmo’s mom always has interesting stories to tell about Finland. Can’t wait until the postcard gets delivered. Wondering how long it will take this time. I looked it up on Google Maps and it tells me that it takes about 16 hours to fly to Finland from here…  That’s a mighty long time!

Have a great week guys and girls, remember to take lots of naps,

Benji

The Forbidden = Unforbidden

I have some good news to report on this exciting Monday. After gazillion years months of endless waiting, the forbidden fruit became unforbidden.  One apple just happened to fall down with its rosy cheeks up. I didn’t see it fall and no I didn’t touch it. I know, I know. In hindsight, I should have, could have waited at the bottom of the tree and gobbled it up right there as we all know that an apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

We supposedly live in a democratic household so after we had looked at the apple on the kitchen countertop for ages days my kitchen staff split the apple into four equal parts. All seeds and the core were removed as those are very bad for us canines.

There is a second apple that keeps staring at me from the kitchen countertop. That one didn’t fall down but had to be harvested to save a fragile looking tree limb from breaking.  The limb had three apples on it and just couldn’t support those. I would have taken all three apples, but hey my opinion doesn’t seem to count most of the time sometimes. Calling headquarters a semi-democratic institution would probably be more accurate.  They are trying their best but some seem to be more equal than others. One can always hope though that one day we’ll all be the same.

If you’re wondering what else we canines can eat besides apples, here is a list of some of the human goodies that canines can eat.

Bon chew,

Benji

Gone with the Wind: 2

After the yummies-out-of-the-tummy affair earlier in the week we now seem to be back on track. High Ten to the staff at the ER and my own vet! So finally I can show you more of the stuff we did when Adonis was here. Of course, we had to have a slumber party. We put our lounge beds close together and discovered that with a new friend there is lots to woof about. I was especially curious to find out if puppies interests nowadays are different from the ones I had as a pup. There doesn’t seem to be much to report on that front yet.

I assume my generation is still pretty up to snuff. Like many of my peers, I have attended school and still do. I also have play dates, doggie TV & music, sailing & canoeing outings, agility fun, secret missionseducational toys, as well as pie and ice cream. And now you know we even have slumber parties. This is a bit different from when Ms. Zulu was growing up. Her puppy years are way behind her so it isn’t odd that she can’t remember everything. I do know that she has been around quite a bit; she has told me some unbelievable stories of her outings long gone. Still, Ms. Zulu is pretty sure that she didn’t have slumber parties with doggie music and TV.

We tried to watch Capone’s graduation ceremony on the day it was aired but unfortunately, the link was not working. We checked the link today and now it is up and running. It can be found here. BTW, do you remember Keane? He was the first CCI puppy who stayed at headquarters. He graduated the same day as Capone and you can also see him on TV. Two famous dogs who crossed my path; pretty amazing isn’t it?!

Happy Weekend; be sure to make time for play and slumber parties,

Benji. 

Dogtors with Borders

As promised, here is the new addition to my uniform. Ms. Zulu assisted me while I posed for the first time with the new scarf. So this time it was Dogtors with Borders. Yes, Ms. Zulu is at least 50% Border Collie as far as we can tell. If you would like to know more about my Dogtors without Borders work then go to my resume page. We updated it recently.
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As you can see Ms. Zulu and I took our job very seriously and we were very focused throughout the photo session. This may or may not have anything to do with the treats in front of us. You be the judge.

OK, gotta run, I have a farewell party to attend to say goodbye to my best buddy Capone and hello to a new CCI friend in training. Yeah, Capone is leaving us in 1.5 weeks to start professional service dog training in South Florida. We will miss him for sure. I (well maybe one of my dedicated assistants) will try to capture some nice photos so you can see Capone one more time and to introduce the new CCI puppy. I’m sure you will get to see more of the newbie because when Capone is traveling to South Florida we get to babysit the new 9-week old pup for four days. That oughta be fun.

And remember, be dedicated and thou shall be rewarded,

Benji