Wonderful Wednesday Personal Blog
It is official. She can now get on the couch by herself. For weeks she'd put her front feet on the seat and try to climb onto the sofa. But her legs just weren't long enough. She solved that problem today by getting a running start and landing on the couch with a bang..
Beneath the window in the little alcove to one side of the living room, is a loveseat. It is behind the main couch, and has two cute pillows on it.
As I sat on the sofa, busy at the computer, ears tuned to the normal noises of a very active puppy chasing her toys through the room, it was a fairly normal morning. And then--things changed. Padding puppy feet, but they were quieter. I turned and saw Freki bounding happily from one end of the love seat to the other, flipping the pillows with her nose. She was having a marvelous time.
She saw me.
"Freki, what are you doing?" I wasn't upset, just bemused by her latest activity.
She slid down onto the cushions.
She is completely still.
"Are you sure?" I crossed the room and sat beside her. She laid her head on a pillow.
"So, you can get on the couch by yourself, now?"
She nibbled on the pillow.
She leaped from the couch, scattering pillows in her wake, off on another adventure.
Freki came into our lives a little over 6 weeks ago. She was short- just Ben's height. Cuddly- except for her razor-sharp baby teeth. Had to be coaxed to eat instead of grabbing a bite and dashing off to see what else was happening in the house. Couldn't climb steps- or go down them. Was stand-offish to Ben and Dixie. Ran from the vacuum cleaner.
What a difference those six weeks have made!
Yesterday, she walked over Ben. Granted he was lying down, but his legs aren't that long, and, well it just doesn't make that much difference. (Sorry, Ben). She used to teeter-totter across his back and finally lurch over him. Now she steps right over.
The other day, I caught her on the dryer. It sits next to the 3 steps down into the garage, and she had her back feet on the second step, the rest of her body on top of the dryer. She also steals items off the patio table in the same manner. She steps her front feet from the porch to the top of the table, takes what she wants, and leaps back to the porch. Or the patio. Or the yard. Steps are definitely not a problem.
She wrestles the water hose, drags it across the yard, shaking it as though it were a monster to be killed. Once skeptical of its power, it is now fully in her control.
The vacuum, mop and broom are no longer fearful beasts. They are foes to be conquered, scolded, postured before. She drags the wooden-handled enemies across the floor, ears pinned back, front feet prancing proudly as she once again defies the odds and bests the foul things.
We do need those things, however, as evidenced by this scene that greeted me too early on a Saturday morning. Yet another potted plant massacred and presented as spoils of war. In the past week or so, she has changed the landscape of the back yard. Salvaged plants have been relocated and end of summer for the annuals arrived a bit early this year.
The swimming pool is a great joy. Though greeted with much enthusiasm the first day it arrived, she completely lost interest in it for a couple of weeks. She has since made up for that lapse in behavior and we have towels at the back door for wiping wet feet and bellies and faces.
Her color is also changing. We knew it would. Take a look at the photos below and you can see how her face is turning brown. There is also a definite sprinkling of brown hairs along her back, and her belly is almost completely brown.
So, here is a short gallery of photos of Freki on day one, and six weeks later. Enjoy!
It is wonderful how much Ben and Freki have bonded in the past weeks. He is much too gentle with her, though I realize that sounds odd. He may grab her leg in his teeth, but he scarcely bites down and the least whine from her is enough for him to release her.
Not so, Freki. She pulls no punches and rules him with all the arrogance of an alpha-puppy. They play when she says so, he drinks when she allows it (we are working on this uncharitable behavior), and whatever toy he has, she wants it- and often gets it.
In Ben's defense, he is toughening up, denying her when it really doesn't suit him, and pushing back when she plays too rough.
She adores him.
Dixie is another story. Freki cannot understand why she cannot rule Dixie. But there is no way she would take a toy away from the tough old gal, or roll her across the floor, or make her do anything she does not want to. Dixie is completely immune to Freki's charm and has no interest in joining in her boisterous bullying.
So, there you have it. Three dogs, three different perspectives. Take a peek at the slideshow clip below to see what I mean.
This past week I purchased a bObsweep Pethair model auto vacuum. It is great. The German Shepherd has been affectionately nicknamed the German Shedder by those who own them, but I am not sure they can beat the Corgis, pound-for-pound, in summertime shedding. In fact, I propose the nickname 'Welsh Shedder' for these short, double-coated dogs. For a solid 5 months this summer, they blew their winter coat, and if Ben shook his head, hair poofed off of him much like blowing on a dandylion. Clearly, housekeeping is a problem. So, we purchased bOb.
I was a bit concerned how the dogs would take to this mechanical marvel. They each responded true to form. After the initial response to attempt to herd the thing, they settled in to see what would happen next.
Dixie merely watches bOb as he rumbles slowly around the floor and simply stares him down when he bumps into her. bOb maneuvers around her.
Ben holds his ground until the very last second. But he gives way and bOb only veers slightly in his appointed rounds.
Freki takes the position between my feet, reasoning, if it won't eat Mom, she is safe.
But that was only for round one. By round two, all three dogs completely ignored my little vacuuming buddy. Except, Freki does like to bark at it- tail wagging, feet dancing, it is another world for her to conquer.
Freki's new moniker is 'Ninja Dog'. Two names for the two sides of this rambunctious puppy.
Imagine, if you will, a sweet, loveable puppy (ignore for the moment the wet paws that just came out of the water bowl and left prints on my slacks, necessitating another change of clothes, and the kitchen floor that will have to be mopped again). She is so helpful, so willing to please. And, believe it or not, devious.
Are you aware a person should not use the bathroom without close supervision by a GSD? Clearly, I have been sadly neglected in the past. But Freki is correcting this lack in my life. Such a sweet girl.
And, did you know vacuuming and mopping must be attended by a brave, selfless puppy who will throw herself bodily at the dangerous objects, threatening them with instant destruction if they attempt to harm her owner? (Yes, hiding in the tub is a thing of the past) I had no idea these every day cleaning tools were so dangerous. Many thanks to my brave girl.
She is also quite the antidote for memory loss. I must confess to the occasional 'why am I in this room?' lapse, but I am quickly tightening those brain muscles and powers of observation, complements of Freki, the Ninja Dog.
At any given moment, Freki will be at the very least in my peripheral vision, playing with an approved toy (meaning, one we gave her, not one she chose for herself), pouncing on Ben, or attempting to annoy Dixie. Then, without warning, she becomes- Ninja Dog.
On silent, padded feet, she slips away- never mind she sounded like 10 puppies only moments earlier. Ears now tuned to the sudden absence of sound, I whirl, confirming my suspicion. Ninja Dog has left the room. In an instant I catalogue the contents of the room and discover-- something is missing.
Is it a house shoe (memo- check closet doors) or a towel from the stack of laundry on its way to the washer? A quick check finds Freki's bed piled with goodies. One of dad's house shoes (though she can carry both at once), a hand towel, one of my gardening shoes and a pine cone. When did that come into the house????
Ninja Dog has struck again.
This past weekend we joined a group of friends at the lake for a bit of pickin', a bit of fun, and a lot of food. It took some packing to get Ben and Freki ready- water, bucket, towels, blanket, crate, treats, poop bags, chew toys, spare leash- but it was worth it.
Poor puppy was worn out by the end of the day, but had fun meeting a lot of people who petted her, and barking at several dogs which ignored her.
We continue to encourage Freki's interaction with everyone. She enjoys being around people, but is still unsure about strange dogs. Her 'alert' and 'let's play' wind up being a lot alike, and even dogs that want to play are a bit tentative. Of course, a barking puppy coming at you with front feet flying is a bit disconcerting even if her tail is wagging.
She also swam in the lake. Twice. Yes, she is a water-baby, and the waves only bothered her for a short time before she plunged into the water. She was on leash and didn't get very far, but loved every minute, paddling like a pro. Ben waded chest-deep in the water and enjoyed it, too, but I am still unsure of the physics of those short legs in deep water, though I have seen other corgis swim.
Cleaning out the cooler was also a lot of fun. The sound of the freezer door opening sends her hightailing it to the kitchen for an ice cube, so how much more fun to play in a whole cooler of ice?
She is a busy girl. Plays hard, naps hard. And gets into mischief. Today she found the toilet paper roll. (Permit me an eye roll, here) She has learned to climb onto the couch unassisted. (Sorry, Ben, your safe place isn't so safe anymore) Housebreaking is going better since she learned she gets to go outside when she rings the bell on the back door. She does a hilarious dance at meal-time, complete with running commentary. She has also learned to look out the front window. She watches for dad coming home, me watering the flowers, and talks about it. The dishwasher seems to be a wonderful way for Freki to taste-test our meals and she is not convinced she should not climb in if the door is open. And she rides well in the car- front seat or back.
She naturally prefers the front.
This is where I talk about things in my life outside of writing. Mostly gardening and dogs.
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