Posted by: fireweaver | November 29, 2008

puppy playdate

this afternoon, Xy-Xy¹, Chris and i rolled up north of baltimore² to visit Beth & George, our greyhound-devotee people, for our dogs’ playdate.  though she’d had no issue chasing around with the blocky lab 2 nights ago, this time Xyla was rather intimidated by the three hulking hounds towering over her.  she kept playing a very short burst of chase, then dashing up the back stairs to the deck, and sticking her head out between the railing slats to peer down on us.  “it’s like she thinks it’s home base, and the others can’t get her up there,” Beth said. once inside, things eventually settled down, though she felt the need to go on near-constant patrols of the perimeter of the ground floor of the house (with, of course, her fave meaningless darts up & back down the stairs, same as she does at my house).  probably because there were so many new things:  not only did she have the other dogs to sniff out, but there’s also a parrot and 3 cats in there, a smorgasbord of sniffing.

i’ve had issues with picking out toys for her.  my childhood dogs didn’t have a lot in the way of dog-specific toys; more like the occasional bone or rawhide or tennis ball.  Sheba didn’t like anything she couldn’t actually consume, and she was frightened of squeaker toys, so none there either.  Xy has loved her sheepie, and demolished a nylabone of the flexible sort, but i’m never sure what to get her.  on our last trip to petsmart/co³, i brought her along to pick out her own, but she was hopelessly distracted by the puppy obedience class going on in the center of the store.  one i quickly vetoed was a rather heavy black rubber tire with dog prints molded onto the walls – it smelled like rubber, and i couldn’t come up with any huge redeeming thing about it.  but yesterday, after my brief stint at work, we headed off to the dog park in my neighborhood while Chris woke up & got ready to go off to our errands, and lo! there was that same rubber tire, much chewed, laying in the grass like a free toy trial.  i threw it, she chased the hell out of it, finishing off the vile critter with one of her very cat-like killing pounces.  and then today, she had 3 dogs’ worth of toys to test drive while we were eating dinner or bowling the wii.  a soft stuffed ghost that made a long “ooooooohhhh” sound when chomped on was a fave, as was a stone-hard natural bone devoid of any meat/marrow/flavoring/noisemakers.  she was gung-ho for everything, basically, meaning my next trip to the pet store should involve less second-guessing.

bonus samples: when picking up a bag of dog food for her, i was nearly overwhelmed by the prodigious array of food products available.  considering i’m a researcher and not a private practitioner, i just don’t keep up with all the new things available.  the most novel of which, imho, was something called “whole meals” that’s basically a hard, crunchy exterior in the shape of a bone cross-section, filled with a moist food.  it’s mostly filler by-product crap, but the shape & texture are a cool idea, i.e., 8 points for concept, 4 for execution.  our guys, had some at the house from when their elderly hound had lost some of his appetite due to his cancer (filler by-product crap is of course delicious), and were more than happy to pass along the unused portion – after cutting them down on the bandsaw (these faux-bones are *hard*).  she got a chunk to gnaw on for the ride home, since we were a couple hours late for her regular dinner, and she did indeed love them.  not good for everyday feeding, probably (1.  filler crap, 2.  crazy expensive), but super for snacking.


¹yes, of course there are nicknames already.  if not Xy-Xy, it’s even shorter to just one letter-sound, Z-Z.  yes, i am one of those people.  barf.  Chris calls her chompernax.

²”we should have them down for dinner soon, too,” says Chris, “only they live in france!!!”

³same store, really.  even the logo colors are the same red & blue.



  1. Food suggestions: Tons of good luck with Innova Evo, and it is my preferred food of choice or however you want to phrase that. Unfortunately it’s a bitch and a half to come by down here (ferrets highly enjoy the Innova Evo as well, my awesome vet recommended it, hating Solid Gold).

    Since then we mostly use Wellness dog food (turned onto that by some rescue friends of mine) which has cut down on the giant mountains of poo that look like they belong in stables. More digestible and all, without as much junk in the food for the dogs. Unfortunately Remington is allergic to like, everything, and we’ve just made it to Eukanuba Lamb & Rice as far as his non-reactivity. I want to use Wellness Lamb & Rice, but again, specialty foods are a bitch to come by down here. Hopefully in NC I’ll have better luck.

    But in order: Evo then Wellness is my current preference, with how the dogs react to it (physically, of course, I don’t let them pick which one they think tastes the best or anything).

    You, of course, know there are tons of awesome websites for pet food, and if you are interested in either Wellness or Innova, they have petstore finders that you can use to find a place that offers good stuff.

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