“I’ve Never Had Chihuahua”

Those were the chilling words I heard at a restaurant last weekend.  It was new place, and the Husband, the Daughter 1, and I were trying it out.  A patron at the table next to us uttered those words, and her voice carried.  We double-checked the menu to be sure we shouldn’t run from the place screaming. The Daughter eavesdropped for a few moments and then nodded her head in understanding.  “They’re talking about the kinds of dogs they’ve owned.”

Owned, not eaten.  Good to know.

He loves his presents. He even greets us at the door with a toy in his mouth.

I didn’t know it at the time, but it was the weekend of National Dog Day.  This post is a couple of days late, but it’s a tribute to my own crazy dogs.

We got our Portuguese Water Dog when he was 3 months old and the Daughter was 3 years old. He’s 11 now. His breeder told me that he was the most laid back PWD that she’d ever seen in all her years of breeding and showing. He is a fabulous dog.

Now before you go out and look for one for yourself, Portuguese Water Dogs are not easy dogs unless you train them and work them.  They will counter surf (if the muzzle can reach it, it’s snack time), they can be willful, and they must be groomed regularly. Positive feedback obedience training is the best.  Believe me, I did both kinds of obedience.  The choke collar training didn’t work–I don’t care how recommended the trainer is. I also trained with him in agility for several years (that’s a story for another time).

He LOVES snow and catching snowballs.

Things I love about my Portuguese Water Dog:

  • He loves to hug.  He leans against my leg and sighs.  Sweet dog.
  • He’s a clock.  He knows when it’s 7 AM (breakfast), 5 PM (dinner), and 8 PM (treats).  Any other time on the clock is fair game for T-R-E-A-T-S.
  • He can spell.  We had to stop spelling words, such as “treats,” “walk,” and “bath.”  Now we just make up words and use sign language (but only if he isn’t looking).
  • He has rat radar.  If a rodent tries to live near our house, he lets us know.  He can’t stand them.  He tore up a bush in the front flower bed to expose a nest. *shivers* The Husband sends him out on recon missions from time to time to be sure we’re rat free.
She’s really an Ewok in disguise!

The other little dog is Sidney.  I told you all about her in a previous post.  She is a mutt (I refuse to call a poodle mix a designer dog) and a rescue, which is what National Dog Day is all about.  Here are things that I love about this 12-year-old canine:

  • She’s just the right size for Daughter 2 to take on a walk.
  • She’s smart in one way:  She has picked up every begging habit that the big dog has.  Other than that, she’s not very bright.  Cuteness makes up for that.
  • She’s a clothes horse.  Can you say, “Dress up time”?
In case she gets cold…
  • She loves attention.  She is always nearby.  We just have to watch that we don’t step on her.
  • She herds her owner (Daughter 1) when it’s time for food or walking.
  • She is the big dog’s minion.

So that’s my tribute to the dogs in my life.  Did you do anything special for your dogs on National Dog Day? I’d love to hear stories about your dogs (or other pets.)  🙂

6 comments on… ““I’ve Never Had Chihuahua””

    • My daughter would have changed her name to Ewok if she hadn’t been so old. Not that she answers well to Sidney though. 🙂

  1. Great post, Diana…when read from the vantage point of a dogless household, LOL. Seriously, we had many pets we loved over the years, but now, just taking care of ourselves leaves me with too little energy to take care of a dog. So I can enjoy watching the escapades of current dog owners…from a distance.

    • Tommie, sometimes I look at dogless owners and wonder at the freedom you have–usually I have that thought when we plan for trips. Can’t imagine our family without them right now.

  2. Oh, the fond memories I have of all my dogs when I was a kid. From the three collies that my dad named Ricky 1, Ricky 2, and (not much originality, Dad), Ricky 3, to the years my folks bred golden retrievers. Our family always included a lovable 4-legged sibling.

    The last dog My family owned was Shadow Dog, from a golden retriever mother who got a little frisky with a black lab. Shadow had the disposition and look of a golden, except that her coat was black. She was beautiful. The most thoughtful, polite, friendly, loyal, loving dog I’ve ever met.

    There are many stories to choose from. One summer, we headed to the mountains to spend time with family on their ranch. They had a big, collie who loved to catch and retrieve pine cones. Shadow never caught on to the whole retrieve-thing, and she would watch the collie with an air of surprise and disdain. Sometimes, she’d chase him, as if to say, haven’t you had enough?! Finally, she’d reached her limit. As the collie came loping back slobbering over a caught pine cone, Shadow came barreling straight towards him at a 90 degree angle. Without slowing for a second, she plowed right into him, knocking him flat! That was the end of throwing pine cones – at least for that day.

    Thanks for the tribute to the wonderful additions to our families, big and small, current, past, and future!

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