All legs

Steve and I departed for our adventure in the Amazon on Adagio’s 6-month birthday (May 12). We got home June 5, a week short of his 7-month milestone. We were groggy from our long flight that night, but when I looked at Adagio the next morning, I thought, “Where did our puppy go?”

IMG_2992.jpgThis boy seemed to be all legs. He still loved curling up in his cozy bed, but he spilled out of it. Steve speculated that for Adagio it must be unnerving to feel the world around him shrinking. IMG_2972.jpg

We were happy with the reports from his puppy-sitters (two different sets of them). It sounded like he had a good time, as did they. Among other things, he got to meet the new arrival in the home of our CCI puppy-class teacher, Kay Moore.

Meet Levi, much hairier than Adagio. Blonder too.

We’re sure Adagio would NOT have enjoyed the long plane and riverboat passages we took. But we did chance upon one sight we’re sure he would have appreciated. We’ve never seen anything like it before in the course of our travels. In the tiny Colombian town of Leticia, which lies near the point where Colombia, Peru, and Brazil come together, we passed this public feeding station for the local street dogs:IMG_2036.jpg

We have no idea who stocks it — the town or some dog-loving local philanthropists (though I would bet it’s the latter.) We were impressed by how politely and calmly the fellow above ate for a few minutes… then ambled on. A minute or two later, this skinny girl strolled up and helped herself to some mouthfuls. But not all of it. IMG_2038.jpg

I’m pretty sure Adagio wouldn’t show such restraint. He looks not only lanky but skinny. He has a lot more growing to do, and it’s nice to be back watching him work on that.







Cape Fear

Cape_fear_91 2.jpgWe’ve had several puppies who haven’t liked their halters, and a few who have seemed unenthusiastic about being “dressed” in their capes. But never has anyone developed the reaction that Adagio began displaying last week.

Presented with his cape, he turned tail and ran from us. We responded by offering him unusual and tasty treats, but they didn’t tempt him. Even a bowlful of dogfood, for which he normally is ravenous, wouldn’t persuade him to approach us and submit. In this video, you see me trying to tempt him both with his lunch and selected morsels of fat trimmed from the previous evening’s pork roast:

<p><a href=”″>My Movie 1</a> from <a href=”″>Jeannette De Wyze</a> on <a href=””>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

No dice. He wasn’t going for it. And yet, once dressed, he seemed perfectly content to trot along on walks. It was baffling.


We finally decided to routinely dress him in the cape for every meal, even if we had to apply duress to get it on him. After just a few days, this seems to be working. He doesn’t look thrilled about getting caped up, but at least he’s no longer bolting.

Instead, he’s discovered other forms of mischief. Sunday we found him gleefully tossing around rocks that he obviously had snatched from inside the hearth of our living room fireplace. (Happily, it was cold.) The next morning, I found him with a roll of toilet paper from my office bathroom; he was having his way with it.


In the puppy world, these are pretty minor infractions, not too worrisome (assuming he knocks them off.) More discouraging was a raft of peeing accidents in the house, after more than two weeks of perfect toileting behavior.


When he peed no less than FIVE times on his walk around the block with Steve yesterday, we began to worry. Does he have an infection? Some more serious kidney problem (like his half-sister Beverly)?

We collected a jar of pee this morning, and Steve will take Adagio in to see the vet later this afternoon. We have our fingers crossed that this will be just another passing idiosyncrasy. Like the cape terror.



Beverly, growing

Eleven days ago, Beverly reached her seven-month birthday… an event I completely failed to notice. It’s true that she’s the 11th dog I’ve raised since puppyhood in my adult life, and as with human children, the landmarks are more likely to be overlooked, the farther you get from the first ones. However, I feel bad because with Beverly, I had hoped to document her growth in a way I’d never done before.

My idea was to position her in the same place every single day and take a picture. After 18 months, I imagined I could stitch together all the images and have an awesome montage. Something like this (if you click the forward-arrow buttons really fast):

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It (sort of) worked for the first 10 days, although Steve and I quickly were amazed by the challenge of getting Beverly into the same position every day. Then I started forgetting to do it. When I realized yesterday that her seven-month birthday had slipped by without my notice, it occurred to me that I had not captured the daily photo… for months.

Here’s what she looked like a few minutes ago:


compared to these earlier moments:

I’ll try really, really hard to remember her first birthday on April 9. But as for that montage, it may have to wait for the next puppy.

Dogfood Strike?

Kyndall seems very perky this morning. Steve commented that maybe she was happy she finally had gotten us to feed her something better than Eukanuba Large-Breed Dogfood. “She’s probably thinking, ‘It’s taken me a year and a half to train them, but thank God they’ve finally come around,'”he theorized.

It’s true that she refused to even glance at the cup of dogfood I put in her bowl. So I fed her all the plain yogurt I had left (only a half cup or so), and she lapped that up eagerly.

040916 yogurt cup
I also gave her the remains of the strawberry yogurt cup I bought for my breakfast. She seemed to appreciate every molecule of it. 

I plan to go out soon and buy some cottage cheese for her (I can’t cook her plain rice until we get home tomorrow.) But clearly, I need to consult with the puppy experts at CCI in Oceanside about how to deal with this new wrinkle. Is it illness? Or culinary fastidiousness? I’ve heard from the folks who are raising Kyndall’s sister, Kimono, who report that “Kimono eats far more leisurely than any Lab we’ve ever known. It’s like she chews each individual kibble several times, instead of just inhaling the whole bowl as our Lab is want to do. At the same time, I can leave her in the car with a ziploc full of dog food in easy reach, which I could never do with the labs.”

Steve insists Kyndall just wants to be fed something more befitting a true Princess. Like live rabbits.

040916 rabbits
The place we’re staying is overrun with them. Kyndall finds them RIVETING!