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

S = 2!

Yahooooo, Da Sky is twoooo!!!  This was his first B-day in the New Sea Land and meant that we all went on a Tour De Fun. This weekend our days were filled with beachcombing for treasures, playing with friends, a catch-the-frisbee contest, hide-and-seek, agility, flygility, and of course a delicious Da Sky Cake to top it off.

Yes, you can have the cake and eat it too. Have fun and celebrate efurry milestone!

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

Da Sky Flies

I never knew this but da Sky can fly. You learn somethin’ new efurry day. 

I didn’t feel like flying, it’s too hot (above 84° F when we tried this amateur stint, pfff) and the yummies were not too yummy (I think da Sky ate them all), so I said thanks but no thanks. Sometimes you gotta pick and choose. In two days time, I will go to professional agility training. There are bound to be better yummies (shhh, don’t tell da Sky). Hope you get to do something fun this weekend with lots of yummies on the horizon and bright skies.

Da Sky is da limit,

Benji

13 + 3!

Finally, after waiting for a gazillion moons after Ms. Zulu’s 13th B-day, I turned 3 today! That means I’m an adult now, for sure. Does this mean I can vote?! Hmmm, wondering if that would open up some interesting options for me. Anyhowls, time for another B-day pie! I didn’t like the hat much but the pie sure tasted good (P.S. the last part is between you and me because I think we need lots more pie baking practice at headquarters).

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The hat has to go, the pie can stay

You can find out below how much I have grown these past three years. Some may notice that the weight limit for the outdoor bed has been exceeded. I do want to point out that doesn’t mean that I should go on a diet. Athletes like me need to eat lots of carbohydrates so just give me a sturdier bed and keep the yummies coming.


 

Proost (cheers),

Benji

Almost 3

Big drumroll pul-ease: Next week, September 18, I will be 3 years old! I expect lots of yummy treats and an extra toy or two or three or plenty. Anyhowls, my big birthday seems to be a reason to dwell on my puppy photos and has led to my own Instagram account: https://www.instagram.com/dogtor_benji/. I hope the humans know that there is only one account that really counts: it’s my treat account!

Benji

13 = Fabulous!

Ms. Zulu turned 13 today! This is cause for a big celebration with lots of good yummies and pie which Ms. Zulu shared with me. The pie was made with all our favorite ingredients: salmon, carrots, yogurt and, blueberries. Sweet potato was served on the side. I’m looking forward to my B-day. Not sure if I care for the B-day hat, but I do hope there will be more pie.  Zulu.png

Benji

MP-20

You must be thinking by now, what’s up with Benji. Well, lots, just not enough time to write it all down yet. Last Wednesday, was probably the most exciting day of my career so far. I went to the famous MagLab! You know the one where they developed the world’s most powerful superconducting magnet!

I went to the MagLab to talk to 16 SciGirls. They were visiting the Lab to learn about a wide range of science disciplines. I was invited together with a cockatoo and four other dogs to show the girls what therapy animals can do for people. Below you can see a summary of my talk.

DgBenjib.pngThe equations I came up with for the occasion were well received. Before I knew it, my wisdom was spreading like wildfire among the scientists and being shared with the larger public. There is even talk that there might be a Nobel Treat prize in my future. Now I can’t stop thinking about how many yummies in the tummies that would equate to. Maybe I can ask for an advance payment.

Dg. Benji 

 

Happy Howlidays

Guess what we got for Christmas; a DIY seesaw that works! When I saw it installed in the backyard, I had to try it. I approached the beast like you would any unfamiliar animal: with caution and one paw at a time. Once I knew I could trust the thing, I climbed on its back to the top of the world. I can tell you, the view is amazing. Experience has taught me that its great to try new things. It expands your mind and you always end up with lots of delicious yummies in your tummy. I think that’s how I solved the riddle of alternate realities. I discovered that when you climb the seesaw beast fast enough, you come down with a Big Bang. They say that without a Big Bang about 13.7 billion years ago, you and I wouldn’t be woofing to each other now. It’s now my theory that all new Big Bangs create new realities. Next time when I climb the seesaw mountain I need to set my mind on creating a new reality with an endless supply of yummies. That’s definitely food for thought.

We are wishing everyone from here to all the way around the world, happiness and full tummies fur-ever and ever. Hugs and a gazillion doggie kisses from the ZAB team.

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Happy Howlidays

Hi!

Yep, we’re still alive. Although sometimes I wonder as my tummy always seems to be in need of more yummies. This time of the year is busier than ever with lots of trips and whatnot. Yesterday we went sailing again on the sailing Follower. The humans went too. They come in handy. After all, V.I.D.s shouldn’t have to lift a paw. I’m still waiting for the helicopter to haul us doggies on board. Even a lift-boy would do. I heard that’s what they do with the big V.I.P. sailors. Not sure why that hasn’t happened yet for us special agents.

Benji a.k.a. Mr. B or 0011

Cool Hot Summer Fun: 7

As you know, I love agility training. However, sometimes it’s raining or just too hot to do any agility training outside. That’s when the Ultra-Movable-Agility aka UMA set comes in handy. What you need? One human and one chair. You could even use a table. Really that’s all. How? Here it comes:

1. Under
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Instructions: put the human on a chair, look at one or both leg(s) and think “extend”. Crawl under the leg(s). Done! It’s that easy. The same can be done with a chair and even a table. So you really don’t need the human but I think that it is way more fun with one. They are also good for yummies in the tummy.

2. Over 
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Instructions: put the human on a chair, look at the leg(s) and think “extend”. Jump over the leg(s). Again, the same can be done with a chair or table. Whatever takes your fancy.

3. Up
armsc.jpgInstructions: Put the human in a stand. Make sure you grab a sturdy human and not a wobbly one. Pick an arm. Look at it and think “extend”. Jump up on said arm. This can also be done with a chair or even kitchen counter. Personally, I like the latter the best but I can’t even take a peek before the doggie police starts to bark.

Sorry for the not so clear illustration here. We experienced some technical difficulties. Something to do with not having enough arm to take the photograph. At least you can see how careful I’m about not digging any of my nails in the arm. After all, it’s very important to be gentle with your agility equipment. Sometimes I am “up in arms” too. That’s when I jump up high on my human and she wraps her arms around me. Oh, and before I forget, always get official approval with stamps and an inifinite number of carbon copies for any of these exercises. Especially if you want to be(come) a therapy dog.

Have fun,

Benji

Cool Hot Summer Fun: 1

It’s getting really hot again here in Florida. It can get so hot that we can barely think when we are walking or exercising outside. I know it’s a good excuse to get out of obedience training… Of course, us canines still have to be exercised outdoors so we are always thinking of cool things that we can do without getting a heat stroke. And I’m not kidding here, heat strokes are a potential problem in the summer, see Pet MD.

We will try to think of 10+ things to stay cool this summer. Feel free to add your own ideas. Hey, we could even make a guest post out of it. The first one in the series has to do with???? Yes, you guessed it right, something EDIBLE: a cool snack for whenever the need is high. How cool is that?!

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Testing: Take 1

So what is a cool snack? Frozen veggies are one example. Just cut some carrots or other edible veggies and throw them uncooked in the freezer. Now that summer is in full swing, I will start taking them on my secret missions. Why? Well, for several reasons: 1) It doesn’t leave a mess on floors and human parts like some doggie treats do; 2) especially carrots always seem to be available in the fridge; 3) it’s dirt cheap (this should be listed as number one as this seems important to headquarters, not sure why because my treat account keeps growing); 4) it’s super easy to make, and I know this because I always supervise the cutting process to ensure that nothing gets wasted; 5) it’s literally and figuratively speaking a cool snack; 6) it’s crunchy; and, 7) Ms. Zulu and I love ’em and that should obviously be the most important reason!

Of course, we had to test the frozen treats before I can take them on an actual mission. Both Ms. Zulu and I happily volunteered. I am sad to report that the first take was successful, so no other experiments are to be expected. On another note, I was able to convince M that we should also take some of our fruit filled ice cubes* with us in the field. The cubes can sit in a cooler in the car while I’m busy so that I have a refreshing snack afterward. I’m hoping the ice cubes need more testing.

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Stay cool this summer, don’t forget to bring plenty of fresh water with plain ice cubes wherever you go, and please tell everyone not to leave any pets unattended in the car for any period of time,

Benji

* 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. Again, always make sure you only use fruits and veggies that are safe for your pet to eat. 

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 🙂 .

The Forbidden Fruit

The forbidden fruit is oh so tempting. This is the first year our apple tree is producing apples. The name of the apples is promising: Joy Apples. Last year I was too small to help myself to the Fuyu Persimmons; believe me, I tried.  The apple tree will be so much easier as I have grown and the apple tree is still a youngin. Supposedly the apples will even get bigger. I am not sure if I want to wait to see that theory come to fruition. I can wait a little bit but hey where is the joy in waiting much longer?

Have a great weekend, and may the rewards be big for those who wait,

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

My Sis

Upon special request, here a picture of my big sis. Since she often has to stay home while I go on my secret missions, she gets to bicycle more with M. M says she still runs like a five-year-old although she will be twelve in August and had an ACL repair more than a year ago.

Here, on the photo below, Ms. Zulu is trying to catch her breath on one of those outings. Like me, she loves to run. “Edible treats are not necessary, the run is my reward”, she says. Can you believe that? I can’t imagine a life without treats.

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Happy Monday guys and girls;
Treat yourself to something nice today,
You deserve it!

Benji

Oops

sunday.JPGSunday was an oopsy kind of day. What happened? Well, it started out with one of my favorite activities: agility training. I was happily running from one obstacle to the next with Mach 3+ speed until we got to the tunnel. That tunnel was waayyy too small for me. Treats were inside the tunnel but pretty much in the middle. So I ran from one side to the other to get to the treats all the while trying not to get stuck in that tiny obstacle. Next thing I know the trainer is teasing me to enter the tunnel by swinging a great looking furry feathery thing in front of me. The thing looked like a cross between a rabbit and a squirrel. I decided to catch it and run away so I could check it out. Supposedly, that was not the idea and I was offered a tiny treat in exchange for the thing. That didn’t seem fair so I took the treat and swallowed the crossbreed as well. It turned out to be non-edible. Oops. You should have seen the look on the trainer’s and M’s face when they registered what had happened. All I can say is hey, I’m part retriever. I heard from my retriever fur-iends that you ain’t a retriever if you don’t have at least one foreign object in your stomach.

Anyhowls, out of thin air a brown bottle that said “hydrogen peroxide solution” showed up and before I could say “no sirree”, a tablespoon of said stuff was put in my throat. Yikes, that didn’t taste good. But like any good soldier, I swallowed that too.  M and the trainer were waiting for something, not sure what, but when it didn’t come the vet was consulted and I was spoonfed more of the stuff. I can tell you the second time was less fun and the third time it was just gross. And then all of a sudden I was down on my stomach and throwing up everything. Yes, that meant my breakfast, treats, and prize! M and the trainer were dancing and partying when that happened. And I was thinking “hey I am not having so much fun right here; can you pul-lease stop the racket”.

Once at home all was well; meaning no more liquidity stuff was put in my mouth. Ms. Zulu checked me out and we are now back to my regular meals and treat schedule. I even played some with my stuffed friends. This was after they had barely survived an unannounced security check. They all had to line up and were threatened with scissors or even the dump. This was not the first time either. Everyone that looks raggedy has to surrender in those instances. That’s just wrong. I thought it didn’t matter what my friends looked like but somehow it does. I like them all and care for them. Especially the shabby ones; I nibble passionately on their tattered parts. I don’t even hesitate to do heart surgery on them when needed. Lately, they have been quite healthy so there have not been any recent surgery attempts.

Have a great week, stay out of trouble and I will try to do the same,

Benji

Home Alone: Take 1

Friday afternoon I was home alone with Ms. Zulu, outside my crate for the first time. I have been left to my own devices before; just not for hours an hour while M was on one of her shopping sprees trips miles away.  I tried to tell her earlier that it was okay to leave me under the supervision of Ms. Zulu as we had worked our way up to this point slowly but surely, but M can be a bit hard headed so it took a while before my message arrived at its final destination. We definitely need faster delivery services.

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Welcome back!

Once M got home, there was a gigantic inspection with papers from here to the moon that all had to be signed and submitted in at least quadruplicate to authorities of suspicious origin and stature: 1) yes, all doors that were supposed to be closed were still closed, 2) no (additional) holes in the backyard,  3) all treats that were left on the kitchen counter are untouched (note to myself, for next time: “check kitchen counter for unattended edible items”), 4) plants are all in their pots, 5) no personal items M.I.A. or tormented, 6) no open-heart surgery performed on any of my stuffed friends (hmmm, that’s an idea…), and 6) didn’t we look sweet when we greeted you at the door!? Okay I admit, I added the last one. Anyhowls if you ask me, we are ready for Take 2!

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Yummies left unattended

Hope you got some nice plans for the weekend. Ms. Zulu and I are going to help out in the yard. We are now both gardening experts as you will see soon enough on Resa’s blog. Resa invited us to talk about vegetables and growing a garden for Kid’s Month. She will show you some beautiful murals too. Gotta run, M needs help unloading the car and that could equate to yummies in the tummies.

Hugs,

Benji

 

Celebrations!

Lots of celebrations today. First of all, it’s St. Patrick’s Day. It’s hard to miss with all that green everywhere. On top of that, we posted our 100th post yesterday AND we now have 200+ followers. Imagine that! Ms. Zulu and I are expecting lots of treats to celebrate all of this big time.

Wishing you a happy St. Patrick’s Day
With lots of international flavors and enrichment

The ZAB team

Waving Magic

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Me, pondering…

M(om) wants me to wave my magic tail. Apparently, all kinds of dirt is being stirred up in the human world. So much even, that we hardly watch the news anymore. While I really love to help stir up dirt, I am not sure if I can help unstir it. M assured me that since I have acquired the title Dogtor Who (thanks Q) and am in the possession of a magic blue harness and red bow tie, anything is possible. Hmmm…, if anything is possible I should be able to get yummies out of this too. I have to ponder this over. After all, Doctor Who needs a whole episode to unscrew the world.  Maybe I can get some help from Ms. Zulu. She is very wise. Yes, that is what I will do. I will ask Ms. Zulu’s help; she can be my assistant. But first a nap.

B