Tuesday, April 2, 2013

SkinnyScoop Top 25 Pet Blog Winner & Desmond Update

Lots going on here today!

We got some super-cool news yesterday that I had to check twice, it being April Fools' Day and all: We're #1 in the most recent SkinnyScoop Top 25 Pet Blogs vote!

Thank you so much to everyone who nominated us and voted. It is much appreciated!

A whole bunch of our favorite pet bloggers also made the list. You should absolutely check it out if you haven't already.

Yesterday was also Desmond's Gotcha Day. Mr. Wonky Legs has been with us for two years! I didn't do anything special to celebrate, but don't worry--he gets plenty of treats and toys anyway.

OK, so that contest win was not an April Fools' Joke, but do you know what was? This awesomeness from Old Navy that I shared on the LWD FB page:
(from the Old Navy Facebook page)
Could you not just eat that puppy right up? I mean, he is definitely going to stretch out that shirt (which is just not practical at all), but I might be willing to carry him around in my arms so I could hug him and squeeze him and smush our faces together randomly throughout the day. Though I still am of the stance that that's about as far as I'd go with a puppy--I can spend a few hours with one, but I could not possibly raise one. Granted, maybe had we been the ones to raise Desmond, he would not be the hot mess he is today.

And speaking again of Desmond, here's the latest.

Over the weekend, we had a little...issue...in which his reactivity and our inability to leave him alone in the apartment, combined with the stress of dealing with the house, pushed me to a breaking point where someone was going to be defenestrated from a moving car--I just wasn't sure if it was going to be me or him.

I rarely lose my temper with him, because I understand that he doesn't understand, and that he needs help he isn't fully getting (we had to postpone our behavior appointment; we're going next week). But there were odd days, even before the displacement and subsequent handcuffed-together scenario, when we would have terrible, awful walks that would leave me in tears and declaring, "I am never walking this dog again!"

So the extra layer of frustration and stress from our current living situation is making me--as I have noted here previously--unable to reach into the depths of my patience like I used to. And it sucks.

I don't want to scream at Desmond. I know that nothing good can really come from that. But I did--a lot--and then I felt awful, but I also was still mad at him for the rest of the day. The maturest of responses, I know.
Desmond helping us pack up and remove our remaining belongings
And then I gave the same speech I give every few weeks now, regarding not understanding what to do with him anymore and feeling like I'm going to bang my head into the wall if I have to be stuck in this apartment for even one more minute. I ranted about how it's not fair that he can't just be a normal dog and how the thought of having to do this for another 3 or 4 months makes me feel like there is not enough wine in the world. And then I felt like a selfish, stupid, petty jerkface.

But a couple ideas did come from this.

We may, every so often, send him to daycare two days a week instead of one. At $50 a day, I have a very hard time justifying that second day, but if it saves some of my sanity and is good for him anyway, it could be money well spent.

The crate. We need to move faster with it. If we can get this dog good and crate trained, we will be free at last. (And the fact that I'm even using the words "free at last" in reference to my dog makes me really sad.)

I was being super extra crazy cautious, because he's so freakin sensitive and can hardly deal with one of us leaving the room for five minutes. (If Joey leaves the apartment to take out the garbage, Desmond spends his entire absence throwing a hissy fit at the door.) So we know that when it comes down to closing that crate door and leaving, there's going to be an issue. And that may be the case no matter how much prep we do, but I always remember that training theory: when you think you're going slow enough, slow down.

We spent a month just letting him decide when to go in there or not (lots of treats were involved), but now we're going to start making moves with the door. We'll see how it goes.

Desmond helping us take donations over for the Paying it Forward event, which is a free flea market for any hurricane-victim residents in the 11518 zip code who have a FEMA ID. How nice of him to donate his old doggie gate that was useless because he just climbed over it.

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