Well happy of happy days, Theo finally took a break from wanting to play fetch. Unfortunately, it was because he had turned into a zombie and shifted all that intense energy into trying to eat my brains. It's ok though. I distracted him with one of my neighbors who never picks up his dog's poop and was able to get away.
Happy Halloween, everyone, from julo and Zombie Officer Theo!
Officer Theo says: Remember folks, keep all that delicious chocolate candy well away from my furkind. Safety first!
I know it's not Halloween yet, but I just have to say, I think I found the picture of Theo I want to submit for the costume contest on mycorgi.com: I took it at the Corgi meetup we had this month. We had our own costume contest (Theo was robbed of the win). I know it doesn't show a lot of the costume...but look at that facial expression! It's Officer Theo all the way!
What do you think? I'll be uploading the rest to my flickr account shortly, so you can judge the rest for yourself.
I'm signed up and ready to go! I am officially participating in the NaBloPoMo, which for people who don't speak acronym (I'm an engineer, so that's kind of a prerequisite) is the National Blog Posting Month. That means for the month of November I have committed myself to making a blog post everyday. Phew! I hope no one is expecting Pulitzer worthy work here, but you can expect lots of pictures of Theo. I'm pulling a bunch off the camera this weekend so I'm ready!
If anyone else is interested in doing this with me (I know Lynn and Ivy are already awesome participating), I think we could have a lot of fun! I had an idea that for some of the days maybe we could all coordinate with a theme or do something similar. That way we'll not only be inspired to post, but it'll be fun reading everyone's blog to see what they do. For example, one of the days we can all post a picture of our dog sleeping, so that day all our blogs will be filled with pictures of sleeping dogs. Sometime like that.
Here is my page on the site (it looks mysteriously like mycorgi.com!), so if you join up, let's be friends!
If you're interested in doing a coordinated effort, let me know and I'll try and organize something! Happy posting to anyone participating!
I had the good luck and great pleasure of meeting Philip the Corgi and his owner at this month's Corgi meetup. Turns out Philip and Theo kind of love each other. Well ok, Philip seems to love just about anyone, even Cardis who go for his jugular, but Theo loved playing with him and Theo hasn't been much into playing with other dogs ever since he started his fetch obsession. So I was so happy to see them get along famously. If you want to catch a glimpse of Philip in all his adorableness, check out this video. It's seriously cute.
He had that sweet, playful attitude when I saw him at the meetup. He's really a great pup. You're a lucky one Philip's owner!
If anyone has a cute videos of their dog they think would make a good video of the week, you can always feel free to email me (firstname.lastname@example.org)!
So who checked out the Dogs 101 episode on Corgis last weekend? I can't believe they do 5 different breeds in one episode...and of course the Corgis were last. Overall I really enjoyed it, but I would have loved to see a good 20-25 minutes devoted to talking about the breed, since it's so hard to gloss over what their personality in really like. I mean, Corgis have big personalities! Just one lady and her 3 dogs playing frisbee aren't going to show that necessarily. I thought it was funny when the narrator said that Corgis are eager to please but also very independent. To me those things are a bit mutually exclusive. I know the only time Theo is eager about pleasing me is when I have a nice big treat in my hand. I would have put it a little differently...emphasizing rather that they are well mannered and obedient (for the most part).
I liked that they talked about Corgis being good at agility, but I would have loved to hear mention of herding! Anyone who has been to a Corgi meetup knows that these dogs run, bark, and herd! Anything to be bossy. I'm also curious who has Corgis that aren't good with young kids. I know the sterotype is that they nips heels and herd, but Theo was always really great with kids. And even if we had a dog that wasn't as great, they are definitely trainable. But I guess since they have to sum up the breed in just 10 minutes I understand that they have to just choose whether they're good with young children or not.
Alright, so that's my opinion, what's yours?
PS: I'm thinking of trying NaBloPoMo next month. Think I could do a dog/Corgi/Theo related post everyday for a month? I'm scared...
In a book I just read, that's what they refer to it as. When your dog rolls around in the grass or on the ground, happily rubbing his face all over something with a look of ecstacy on their face? It's pate they're rubbing in. What is pate? Decomposition. For some reason that I will never understand dogs like to rub the smell of rotting anything all over their fur. It's the most disgusting thing ever, which is why I was none too happy when Husband found Theo in the yard yesterday, rubbing himself all over a decomposing lizard. I'll spare you the details...but sufficed to say Theo will be getting no snuggles from me for a long while. Gross.
Wow, thanks to everyone that voted on the first round! Some of them were really close. I've posted new polls with the winners. Have fun voting on round 2! Here the list of all the pictures that were liked best in the first round:
Theo the Ball of Sleep Baby Theo Stare Pensive Theo Theo Takes a Sick Day Theo Chews a Tribble Theo Breathing the Ocean Air Theo on a Bench Theo the Goofball Theo at the Beach Theo Smiling at Me
You know, I think these are the ones I would have chosen too. Oh, and I've added one new poll. I want it to come out even for the next round, and it just so happens that there are two pictures I took at the dog park last week that I think would be good additions to the poll. Here they are!
Theo Smiling Nice at the Park
Theo's Kisses This one might be too blurry when it's larger. :(
Or DVRs or VCRs or...whatever came before VCRs (betamax?). Anyway, tomorrow (Saturday) night Animal Planet is airing an episode of Dogs 101 that will feature non other than my favorite type of furball, the PWC! I'll call this the video of the week: homework required. ;)
Here are the details: Here is the website for more information. From their schedule it looks like it airs at 8pm e/p, and then again at 11:00pm, and then again at 3:00am, so if your Tivo throws up all over itself and somehow can't manage to record the show (like mine often does), there are several other chances to watch!
It looks like this episode will also feature the Jack Russell Terrier, the Vizsla, and the German Shepherd. So, wait, we don't get a full 60 minutes devoted just to Corgis? I know I could talk about Corgis for 60 minutes, easily (in fact I often do!). But I would be grateful for just 10 minutes of airtime. Corgis are definitely lacking on the silver screen if you ask me. I'm curious what aspects of the breed they'll focus on.
And as much as I would love to take credit for being so considerate as to alert you all to this wonderful program, the thought didn't actually cross my mind until a wonderfully nice woman from Animal Planet emailed me and asked if I would mind spreading the word. She also asked me to tell everyone that "in case folks don't get a chance to catch the show - we'll have a special corgi clip on the Animal Planet website that will go up sometime over the weekend."
So there you have it. Will you be checking out Dogs 101 tomorrow night? I know I want to...cross your fingers for my Tivo to decide to function tomorrow!
Rather than posting 20 photos and having everyone choose one, I think we should do this in rounds. I'm going to post a bunch of polls on the right hand column of the blog (that means you'll actually have to open up the page to my blog you Google Reader users! ;p), where I'll ask you to choose between just two pictures. Whichever of those pictures win will be pitted against each other in the next round and so on until we have just one. I'll only be keeping the polls open a couple of days, so make sure check in to vote!
So here is the key. All the pictures below will get a name (the name will be above the photo), so when you're checking out the polls, refer back here to find the picture. Have fun!
Theo the Ball of Sleep
Baby Theo closeup
Theo's Corgi Tail
Baby Theo Stare
Theo Taking a Sick Day
Ears Back Happy Trot Theo
Theo Chews a Tribble
Theo the Tagful Wonder
Theo the Superhero
Theo Breathing in the Ocean Air
Theo on Vacation
Theo on a Bench
Theo the Goofball
Theo in the Water
Theo at the Beach
Theo Smiling At Me
Theo at the Dog Park
Also, if you think there's an awesome Theo picture out there that I'm missing, let me know anytime! Thanks everyone so much for your help!
OMG, OMG, OMG! It's that time of year again! Mycorgi.com calendar photo submission! That's right, Theo could be the star of his very own month, available for purchase! I'm a little excited if you couldn't tell.
Now my question is, what picture do I pick?! We only get one submission, which is understandable, but still totally bogus. Don't they know I'm indecisive?! Don't they know trying to whittle it down to just one picture is going to give me nightmares? How can I narrow the hundreds of pictures I have of Theo down to just one? I need your help. Yes, you! Which picture of Theo is your favorite? Because you all regulary peruse my Flickr pictures and pick our your favorites, right? Oh...you don't? Shoot. Well on the off chance that a certain picture of Theo sticks out in your mind, let me know. I would appreciate it. If not, I'll be posting again soon with some of my favs to see what y'all think.
The last week or so I've seen a couple walking around my neighborhood around the same time I walk Theo in the evenings. Theo took an instant liking to them, and they loved him right back. Whenever we see them, they always stop to say hello to Theo and chat for a bit. I think they like each other so much because they have something in common: they're Welsh! That's right, the couple is originally from Wales, and they have a fantastic Welsh accent. They're not from Pembroke, but I don't think Theo begrudges them that.
I'll have to show them the "Real Corgis Speak Welsh" line of gocco cards that Ivy has sent me. I'll bet they would get a kick out of it.
Yesterday I was talking to the woman who owns the place I take Theo for doggy daycare. I was telling her about Theo's recent obsession with playing fetch and how I need to find a way to channel it so he's not wanting to play every second of the day. "He needs to play flyball." Genius!
Flyball, if you don't remember my video post, is a team sport like a relay race. The dogs go one at a time down a course with hurdles, hit a pedal that launches a ball into the air, catch the ball in their mouth and run back down the course with it. Sounds perfect for a dog that likes to play fetch!
Unfortunately, since it's a team sport, it's not like agility where I can find a class anywhere. So how do I teach him flyball and how do I find a team? I asked the woman just that and she said that next time she meets with her team (next Sunday I think) she'll let me know and I can come and check it out. Awesome!
I hope, I hope, I hope this works out because Theo is driving me crazy lately. I think part of it is stress because Husband has been working really late all week, but he will not do anything but play fetch. He won't play with any other toy. He won't play with me at all except to play fetch. No matter how much excercise I give him he always has energy for more fetch. When I let him outside to go do his business, he goes straight for where I keep the tennis balls. It's on his mind 24/7. Hopefully between flyball, agility, and herding I can find something to better channel all that herding energy!
My new craft and cooking blog, Hell on Needles, is now up, check it out! I haven't had much time for crafts and with my fancy new kitchen now somewhat useable I've been cooking and baking up a storm! That it'll be for kitchen focused for the first few posts, but my Thanksgiving felted pumpkins will make an appearance soon I hope! And who knows, a certin Corgi we all know may pop up from time to time. He is my favorite model, after all.
The look is still a work in progress. I'm open to any and all suggestions on how to better beautify any of my blogs.
How did it take me this long to realize? Theo is a Corgi. Corgis are herding dogs. They need to feel like they have a job to do. I've read in more placed than I can count that if you don't give a Corgi a job to do they'll make one up for themselves. Theo plays fetch obsessively. I'll play fetch with him in the house, then take him outside and he'll want to play more fetch. Then when we go back in the house he'll want to play even more fetch. It's so obvious to me now...
It's his job!!!
Fetching a toy or ball is Theo's job. I guess in his crazy dog mind fetching a tribble for hours on end is the equivalent of my pushing papers all day. When he talks shop with the pugs at the dog park he tells them all about the time he managed to retrieve the tribble from a very tight space without needing his person's interference, or the many times he's caught the ball outside, mid-bounce, and managed to avoid plowing into the wall aftwards.
As far as jobs go, I guess I shouldn't complain. Usually when they say Corgis give themselves a job, it's usually followed by "and you won't like what it is". I'm not thrilled that Theo's job involves me constantly throwing a drool soaked toy, but it's much better than tearing the stuffing out of his bed, or eating the towels in his crate, or chewing on the walls. If fetch is Theo's job, then I'll be sure to try and give him a Christmas bonus.
Last night I was hanging out in the office, typing away on my laptop, when I noticed Theo was being awfully quiet. Usually after we play a thrilling game of fetch he starts in on trying to decimate his antler chew. I can hear him chewing and scraping all night, except at that point last night when it was quiet. Too quiet. I turned around to see Theo flat back on the floor with his mouth around the end of the antler chew. He wasn't asleep. He was just lying there, apparently too overtaken with exhaustion to scrape his teeth against the chew one more time. But there it was, still in his mouth! It was so cute, I immediately pulled out the camera so I could get a picture and share the cuteness with you all. But as soon as I turned on the camera, the chew dropped out of his mouth as he tilted his head up to look at me. Darn, I need a stealthier camera!
I ran into Casey on our walk tonight, a corgi in my neighborhood, a real old dude. His owner is really friendly and talkative, so we always get into some fun discussions about the furkids while the dogs sniff each other (no head jumping for Theo with Casey...he's a no nonsense kind of dog). I was telling him about Officer Theo and how he got the name, and what a coincidence! They call Casey the "Referee" for just about the same reasons. Corgis will be corgis I suppose.
Speaking of Halloween (What? That was a legitimate transition.), any Corgi owners out there notice the MyCorgi costume contest? You may remember Bryson and Picasso won last year with their adorable Two Amigos costume. This year I'm going to give Ivy a run for her money this year with Officer Theo! We'll be having a photo shoot this weekend, I think. Two locations, three costume changes.
I've mentioned on my non-dog blog (haha, can't read it anymore unless you ask!) that I mostly keep up with Facebook because there is a person or two I could possibly stand re-connecting with. Ok, who am I kidding...I am a total gossip whore and I want to know what 10 years has done to the people I used to know! Not to mention it's the only way I hear what's going on with my sister sometimes (What? My phone magicaclly doesn't work sometimes...).
Well just a few minutes ago a girl I was friendly with in high school sent me a message asking if I wrote a dog blog and if Theo was going to be Officer Theo for Halloween. Ha! No way! Of all the billions of people on these crazy interwebs, my little blog has reached someone who knows me from way back when. Oh what a small world it is.
Well now that I know she reads the blog, and I know she might be reading this, I guess I better say some nice things about her. We weren't super close friends, but she was always really nice and a joy to have in my classes. She was also super smart from what I remember...I don't remember much, but if I have zero bad memories of her, then she must have been pretty awesome because I always remember the bad stuff.
So yes, Facebook friend, you know the owner of the "famous Theo", though I don't know how famous that is. Personally, I think he's so adorable and awesome that he should be the most famous dog since Moose the Jack Russell Terrier (i.e. Eddie from Frasier and whatever his name was in the Mask)...but you know, I'm a little biased.
Update: Oh I've just been informed that we've actually been going to school together since junior high. Whoops! Who can even remember that far back? I barely remember the name of my junior high school, let alone who went there.
You know what I'm loving about my new training class? Everything we're learning is new. I've done four classes (Puppy Kindergarten, Puppy Elementary, and Basic Beginner's twice) so far, but they were all really teaching the same basic obedience (sit, down, stay, etc.). With the fourth class it started to feel really stale. But with this new class I'm learning so many great new things! In just two weeks we've learned "heel" and the different positions to sit (front, heel, and round). Theo has already learned on our walks that when I stop it means he should immediately sit, and I think the most useful thing I've learned is the emergency down.
The emergency down is just what it sounds like. When I say down in a serious and firm tone (and maybe even a little panicked?), Theo should stop whatever he's doing and drop to the ground. I have to use a different tone than his normal downs because it's really supposed to convey a sense of urgency. I just learned it last week and I've already, unfortunately, had reason to use it twice.
I took Theo to the dog park last Saturday. The "All Dog" pen can get a bit rowdy, so I usually stick to the "Small Dog" pen, but this time the "Small Dog" pen and the "Big Dog" pen were both totally empty, so the "All Dog" pen was really the only option. All the dogs were friendly and playing nicely until two dogs started trying to play with the same toy. Naturally, a fight broke out. One dog started chomping down on the other poor, scared dog, who despite all his squirming and crying, couldn't break free of the chompy dog.
I tell you, a fight at the dog park is like when a fight would break out in high school. No matter where on campus you were, you always knew when there was a fight because you would see people flocking. In this case all the dogs in the dog park swarmed the fighting dogs, and all the owners flocked the flock, trying to make sure their dog didn't get caught up in the mess (not to mention trying to break the fighting dogs apart).
Naturally, Officer Theo was on the case. No such rowdiness was allowed on his watch, so he decided to get right in the dogs' faces and try to break up the fight (read: he barked a lot in their faces). Thankfully they were too busy fighting with each other to be bothered by Theo, but I just about had a heart attack. I tried calling him to me, he couldn't hear me over the ruckus. I tried getting to him so I could pull him away, but the group kept moving and it was no good. I then remembered the emergency down. Again, since he couldn't hear me, it didn't do much good, but right about then the dog's owners were able to break to two dogs apart (with a bit of blood and some torn skin on the poor scared dog). Officer Theo, apparently highly indignant at the chompy dog's behavior, decided that he was going to follow him and give him a piece of his mind (read: he barked in his face more). Afraid that Theo would be chompy dog's next victim, I gave my emergency down another go, and this time it worked! He didn't stay down for very long, but it was long enough for me to run over and help chompy's owner get his leash on so she could get him out of the pen.
Not happy with my results, we spent some time practicing before I let him go and play again. Again, I'm glad I did because the next day I had cause to use it again, though thankfully the circumstances were much less serious.
We met a Boxer in our walk Sunday evening. There's a small park in our complex where I usually let Theo run off leash to help get some of his energy out (Shhh! Don't tell my HOA!). The Boxer's owner apparently had the same idea because she was already off her leash. After I asked if it was alright if I let Theo off leash as well, the two played for a bit. But Theo didn't seem to really like playing with her much. She was being a little rougher than he liked, and at one point he squealed because of something she did (he was fine, just overpowered), and I could sense the situation could escalate because Theo was feeling threatened. As soon as he squealed I said "DOWN!" and just like that Theo was slumped on the ground in a down. Amazing! Better still the Boxer, seeing Theo stop to lay down, followed suit and laid down herself! In an instant the play/almost fight was broken up and they were laying quietly on the ground.
The emergency down is definitely something I would recommend teaching your dog. I'm actually surprised we didn't learn it as part of basic obedience, though I suppose it's because of time constraints. We can only learn so much each week.
Aside: I told my trainer this story last night and she just about fell over laughing at the thought of Officer Theo trying to tell two fighting dogs what's what. She knows Corgis, so she could picture it real well.
Also, by the time we left everyone at the dog park was calling him Officer Theo too. It's catchy!
The great thing about having a dog is how sensitive they can be to your emotions. When I'm sad Theo doesn't try and "fix it" like a man would. He doesn't hover and suffocate me like a woman might. He's just there, and mellow, and extra sweet. I had a pretty rough day today. I ended up just leaving work in the middle of the day because I don't think staying would have been conducive to my staying employed. I left Theo at doggy daycare so he could have his usual exercise and play. But when I picked him up this afternoon, boy was it a pick me up I desperately needed.
Rather than his usual impatient, whimpering self on the car ride home, he was quiet and mellow. He laid right down and was cool with my softly petting him the whole drive home. It was just what I needed. It reminds me of the time I was sick for a whole week a few months ago and Theo was so comforting to me then too.
Theo might be the biggest pain in my arse (bigger than Husband, and that's saying something), but part of what makes Corgis so fun is how they can be such trouble makers one minute, and do something that completely warms you heart the next. Man, I'm such a sucker.
I generally don't like change. It makes me confused, disoriented, and stressed. But once I finally embrace change, I embrace it all the way. So today I was thinking about my display name. JuLo is kind of an inside joke with my family. I used it when I started blogging with them, and never really thought about updating it when I started my own blogs. But it is a kind of weird name, right? So I've been thinking about changing it...but to what? Check out my poll and let me know what you think of my new ideas. Even better, let me know if you can think of an awesome one on your own and I just may pick it!
Update: Ok, you guys need to leave a comment telling me what the name is if you think of your own! LOL!