B = 5!

No way; yes way! Can you believe it? I’m all grown up now and am sooo ready to tackle the world. I still play, especially with Sky because he needs it. Bsides, it keeps me young at heart.

My birthday weekend was filled with agility fun. I did purr-etty well if I do say so myself. Da Sky had a bit of the zoomies. I guess he doesn’t know yet that he gets to play more if he goes snail pace with the human. A couple of weeks later Da Sky seemed to have morphed into an eye-on-the-ball Speedy Gonzales at our first ever flygility show. My little brother and I both won ribbons and kibble, so we can honestly say that we are earning our keep.

What else is new? Well, we are still house hunting. It’s not an easy task. For some reason, people seem to like big houses with tiny yards. We like a big yard with a not so big house. After all, we need to practice our agility and flygility moves. Apparently we can’t do it inside. Believe me, Sky has tried.

Keep moving and stay agile

Benji

The Big Escape: 5

Well, we figured it out; we’re in the New Sea Land. I’m told there is water all around the land. I have seen some of it but not all, so who knows. It’s hilly too, maybe I will become a Hilly Billy. My hindquarters are getting pretty strong. The humans are a bit slow here, we need to find them some skates and then we can pull them more easily up the hill. I bet it would be loads of fun on the downward leg too.

By tomorrow we have been in lockdown for three weeks. It’s been pretty strict here; no outdoor activities other than some exercise in the hood and we can only get essential items. That reminds me, we need to order food for Da Sky and me. We are getting home-cooked meals too, but it’s best to err on the side of caution and build in some redundancy. Besides, we have started alternative backyard agility training so we need the extra calories. I was happy to see that treats are still on the menu. All that extra pulling of the slow humans uphill eats up our reserves too.

Alternative Backyard Agility

Stay safe, stay home,

Benji

The Big Escape: 4

Get this, just a couple of days after we got the key to our new headquarters, we were locked down. Have you ever heard of anything like that? That’s one weird key man. The container with our stuff didn’t get here before the lockdown so it will be delayed big time. We managed to buy some essentials before stores got closed for the lockdown but that’s it for now. On the bright side, this means that the house is pretty empty, so it’s basically one big playground for Da Sky and me. You can say that the humans are now in the dog house, WOL.

Luckily, Q managed to fix the yard with some supplies he found before lockdown, so that we can roam around without too much bossy-vision. At first, we thought we would have to wait a long time before we could practice agility but then we got a bit creative and found a new hobby: alternative-backyard-agility. What it is? It’s agility with whatever you can find in your backyard. It can be steps, discarded wood, benches, humans, even your buddy that you use to jump on, over, or weave through. It’s fun and M says it will prevent our brains from getting all mushy.

BTW, have you figured out where we are yet? Please tell me you as soon as you find out because I would like to know.

Benji 

 

The Big Escape: 3

So you’re asking where we are. Well, let me tell you, they drive on the scary side of the road. Da Sky was also promised to see a lot of sheep but so far we have counted only five. Sky was especially disappointed as he was not allowed to chase herd them. The cows here are something else too. They look a bit like Sky on steroids. Furthermore, it’s hilly and sometimes you can see the sea.

We did manage to find new headquarters but it was not an easy nut to crack. Talk about COVID-19 and lockdown didn’t help either. We needed a place where Da Sky and I were allowed (yeah not sure what the problem was there) with a sizable yard for us, where we can walk a bit in the hood, and a place that’s decent enough to stay at for a while. It seemed that the first requirement was pretty much incompatible with the last. Cats were fine in most places and sometimes one tiny skinny dog, not more than a couple of inches of the ground. Sounded like unfair profiling to me. Then there were those places that the humans pretty much ran away from. One of them had a basement that looked like a scene out of a Stephen King novel. If you would poke around a bit you would expect to find a corpse lying somewhere in a dark yucky corner. YIKES!

At long last, after many days of driving and sniffing, we decided to sniff out places where pets were not allowed and threw my and Sky’s resume in the mix. My career as a Dogtor should count for something, right? And it did, together with the AKC CGC, trick, and jump titles, we found a place that we can call home for a year.

Benji

The Big Escape: 2

The road trip from Crawfordville, Florida to LA in California was just the beginning of the big escape. After spending two nights in LA, we had to face the big air-monster.  Luckily we had practised months in advance for that big step. We had listened to the growling sounds from the monster on the computer -with comfort food and chew toys- while we got in and out of what turned out to be our sleeping quarters in the big monster.  Da Sky saw it all as one big game, but I knew that we were heading towards something fishy.  Of course, I was right; the ocean on the west coast does smell fishy.  Always trust your instinct guys and girls.

For the trip across the Big Blue, our sleeping quarters were lined with M’s sweaters and our own bedding. Da Sky’s kennel even had his name on it. I think M should have taken one of my blankets with her because it turned out that she was more nervous in the big air-monster than Da Sky and me. Especially when we all got in the plane and there was a 1.5-hour delay because of a mechanical issue… M hardly slept while we did manage to get some Zen in. Maybe she should have taken her own sleeping quarters and practised sleeping in it too.

When Da Sky’s and my sleeping quarters got opened and we got out it was like we stepped in an alternate reality. Instead of being nighttime, it was morning, and instead of winter, it was summer. My sense of orientation was off too, I didn’t seem to know where south or north was anymore. So weird! As if the world stood on its head. We didn’t see M nor Q on the other side. Luckily the people in the kennel were we stayed for 10 days were super nice and they sent messages back and forth between us and headquarters.  While we were getting pampered, M and Q were trying hard to find new temp headquarters in this new strange world. And then finally, after 10 days, we all got reunited. Even Puffy, our mascot, was waiting for us on the other end.

Benji

The Big Escape: 1

Hey guys and girls, here an update from Da Sky and myself; I know you all have been waiting like furever.  You probably thought that we disappeared from the face of the earth just like Amelia Earhart way back but no we’re still here although it seems to be in an alternate reality. More on that later. After helping pack a gazillion boxes in February we finally got ready for the big trip and headed out west with M and a VIP chauffeur we hired for this furry special occasion. In about eight days, we drove 3200+ miles through eight states, learned that snow is wet and cold [YIKES!], sauntered in desolated deserts, visited friends, made new friends, and made sure that our drivers didn’t get lost in the big cities.  All that helping makes you tired so Da Sky and I always hit the snooze button as soon as our dog-mobiel started moving. We arrived in LA just in time before COVID-19 entered the scene.

More coming soon,

Benji

On the Move

Some exciting news from headquarters this Christmas. There is lots of movement, talk about moving, and moving parts to manage. Stuff is being donated or sold -yes, Da Sky and I are very closely guarding our stuff –  and boxes are being filled.  Da Sky and I even had to practise sitting in a big box for a gazillion days couple of hours. No, no, we are not left behind since we are considered priceless. Pew, that’s a relief.

The word is that we will move overseas but we won’t travel by boat. Why not travel by boat over the sea? Yeah, that beats me too. Traveling by boat would have been my first choice since I got my captain’s license way back and Da Sky is a fine first mate. Instead, we will travel by car and then in an air-monster. The car will be easy peasy. We will even have a VIP chauffeur flown in for us from Europe Still, I’m not too sure about the air-monster. You-all know that Da Sky can fly and  I’m famous for breaking the sound barrier but we are no rocket stars. I guess that’s about to change. Where we’re going? That seems to be all hush-hush and top-secret. All I know is that we haven’t been there yet, they have lots of sheep to chase look at, and it’s far, far away.

While the moving parts are moving, Sky and I are trying to fit in a couple of things one more time. I finished my last secret mission and I got my AKC Novice JWW (Jumpers with Weaves) title (with three first places). My little brother got his first Q and a second-place at his first AKC agility event ever.  Pretty good heh?! He had barely turned 15 months, the minimum age to enter. We also said our goodbyes to Apalachicola. We missed Miss Martha but were able to sail one more time on the big float a.k.a. The Follower. I was told that the big float won’t be able to follow us overseas. Yep, that’s another mystery to me. I would think that we can slow down soon but knowing headquarters that might be wishful thinking. If I don’t see you before the end of the year:

Happy Howli-Days and Smooth Sailing from all of us!

P.S. Don’t eat all Santa’s cookies and if you do make sure you shred the evidence.

Benji 

 

 

 

B = 4 !

Yes, yes, the math is absolutamente correct: B = 4! That’s roughly 30+  years in human years! That means I have voting rights AND I will never ever have to go to school again, right?!   OK, let’s vote for B-day cake with treats efury day AND play all day.  How is this different from my current life? Hmm, hmm…Maybe I should plead the fifth.

Anyhowls, for the big occasion we took some pics. Why the long faces you ask? Well, I would like to see yours if you had to sit on an empty tummy in front of yummies for endless days! Luckily we didn’t pass out before we could scoop the barely visible yummies in our tummies. We do know that it’s healthier to exercise a bit after eating so  we played some on the way to bed and then took a well deserved nap to dream of endless summer days with lots of squirrels to chase.

 

Make sure you get some zzz-s in before the end of the day,

Benji

Sky = 1!

Sky turned one this month! That was cause for a big celebration! He hasn’t been with us for that long but we can’t imagine life without him. He is certainly one bundle of joy! Of course, we had to make a slideshow of his monthly photos to show you how he has grown!

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Jan 2019 – August 2019

Click here for Benji’s first year in pictures

 

Happy National Mutt Day!

Do you know what day it is? It’s National Mutt Day! We hope that means more shelter animals are getting adopted and more cake for Mutts like us!

Have a fury fun kind of day!
Benji and Sky

Winnings

How was your weekend? We had a busy one. We traveled to an agility event in the pooch mobile. I won two first places in Novice Jumpers; M is very proud. Okay, I’ll admit, maybe I’m a bit too. The blue and green ribbons I won do look good on my chest, don’t you think? Since I had two qualifying runs, I could pick out a toy too. I choose one for Da Sky because he cheered me on. He likes balls and tug toys so I got the perfect toy, a combination of the two so that we can play together. After all, you gotta remember to play hard after you work hard. But, if possible skip the hard work and go straight to the play hard part.

Well, I better go. I got some Zuluism* to catch up on. I didn’t really have time for it over the weekend. And you know what they say if you don’t have time for that then you have to do more of it.

Hope you have a pawriffic week with loads of fun intermingled with Zuluism,

Benji

Mugshots

I know, I know, we haven’t been in touch for a while but we’re still here and not in jail yet although the heading might tell you otherwise. Life has been fun with the little guy. He is turning into a big champ who is up for anything that keeps him moving! Agility, dock diving, you name it and he is in. He even got invited to herd some sheep AND he is allowed to come back! We can honestly say that he has a few tricks up his sleeve. That’s what led us to sit for the Trick Dog Exam in May. I’m happy to report that we are now officially two tricksters. That should keep us out of jail at least for a little while.

Just one more month and Da Sky will be one! I hope there will be a big partay with a mighty birthday cake. I’m definitely counting down for that one!

Benji

Limitless Sky

And it’s March; how did that happen?! We had several outings. The one that jumps out is Sky’s first sailing lesson.

I remember my first sailing lesson, eons ago. Beginnings can be a bit rough but Sky was like a rock according to the trainers I pawsonally hired for him. Pretty soon he will be ready to be my first mate. Can’t wait to go sailing with him and head for the skies.

Come sail away come sail away
Come sail away with me

Benji

The Beast

Conquering the heart of The Beast has become part of our tactical training. Sky seemed ready for this so M took him to The Beast Park. The Beast looked older. There is some wear and tear on him. I think he needs some pampering from a real Dogtor.

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Is this the one?!

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He is purretty big!

To win your adversaries heart you say goodbye with a kiss. Sky didn’t have to do that yet; that’s for his next lesson.

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Moi in 2017: Till we meet again!

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

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

MP-22+

I almost forgot to tell you about another successful mission I fulfilled at the library just before the holidays started. It must have been Mission Possible (MP) 22+ (we may have forgotten to post a couple of missions).

This time, four boys, three girls, and one teacher R.E.A.D. to me. Parents are always there too so there wasn’t a dull moment. I seem to have more repeat customers these days.  The teacher has read to me several times in hopes of starting the R.E.A.D. program at her school. For some reason, there is some resistance at her school. Can’t figure that one out; who would not want a real Dogtor at school?! Anyhowls, the nice teacher read to me from a nice book with lots of large pictures. I love those. This time we read a book about Christmas. I was a tad bit distracted as we had moved to another office. This is the third one. A new office means new sounds and distractions to get used to. Even though it’s a small library I can guarantee you that there is lots going on even on a Saturday. I guess everybody wanted to get books for the holidays.

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Hope you’re ready for a new year,
sit tight, we’re counting down,
Benji

Sea Legs

To deter the post Holidays crash, we went sailing yesterday. For a moment I was worried that I had misplaced my sea legs. Luckily I remembered the guidance of my big Sis Ms. Zulu and I found them. Ms. Zulu always seemed to know what to do; no job was ever too big for her. I have some very big shoes to fill, even though Ms. Zulu’s paws were tiny.

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Ms. Zulu, January 2015

With Ms. Zulu shepherding the heavens, I’m now sole captain of the mighty ship in the here and now. Just as Ms. Zulu taught me, I let my nose lead the way.  My staff is good at adjusting the sails when needed. Wished we could do that so easily back on land. Life is different on the water. Everything is so quiet; just the wind, birds, the occasional dolphin, and fresh air. All that salt air makes you dead tired so once I got home, I ate dinner and took a mighty nap.

Don’t despair if you can’t find your sea legs right away in rough seas,

Let your nose take the lead and you will get there in the end,

Benji