All Trained!

Those Bark Buster people came for another Spanish Inquisition this weekend.  Since I had two weeks to think about this, I hatched up a great plan to avoid their evil ways.  No, I did not try the injury ploy this time – who likes the lampshade anyway?  Nor did I try the pout.  And I really am sick of just powering through whatever they have to offer and getting the dreaded squirt bottle.  So… this time, after waking up the house around 5 AM, leaving part of a dead squirrel on the couch for Mom, and spending the entire day chewing on everything and everyone, I did this when the trainers came:


Yep.  For almost an entire hour I did nothing but look cute – you can see I even relaxed my tail.  The only time I moved is when they gave my parents some particularly bad advice about how to help me with table manners; one glare and then I was back to my cuteness.  The trainers even had Dad try to taunt me with the drop cloth; usually when the cloth comes out (to bring leaves from the back yard to the front) I attack said cloth with a vengeance; take that!  Ha!  Not when the trainers are here.  No way no how.  I completely ignored it flapping in my face.  Take that, people!

But do not worry – as soon as they were gone I was back to my usual stinker self. 🙂  We used to have some great logs nicely stacked for our fire pit…


In this case, I showed my listening skills but also my independence by taking the wood “outside” like Dad requested.

I also supervised yard work, watched Michigan football on TV, and drank from my bowl.

What a fun weekend.



Now… those of you familiar with Octobers in the Midwest would assume I am referring to “sweater weather.”  Not a bad guess my friends…but totally WRONG!  I have regrown my full coat after my summer “hot spots” so I have no need for any additional outerwear – especially since this October has been unseasonably warm (have I shared yet with you my thoughts on global climate change?).

If it wasn’t evident to you, my kind readers, this is Sammy speaking.   Yeah I am old and in some ways kind of feeble, and I AIN’T DEAD YET!!!!

Anyhow, today we had a great morning.  First off, we got to sleep in some (EDITOR NOTE: parents did not feel this so much) after getting up early on Saturday to (run Tempi 2 miles) and get to Michigan in time for lunch with our Danish relatives and our grandparents.   Quick aside:  It was really cool that the Danes got to experience a Michigan football tailgate party – unfortunately Tempi and I were not allowed to go with them despite my Dad’s promise that their friends there would meet Tempi.   But all of that was yesterday.  Today, we got up, Mom went to recharge Khaleesi (our car), and then we had breakfast.   Which was great but Tempi is still trying to learn proper table manners.  I was, of course, a perfect gentleman sitting close enough that they wouldn’t forget me on the off chance (hehehe) that they have some treats or leftovers for a well behaved dog.   If that wasn’t cool enough, my FAVORITE aunt Elaine arrived for the meal!  Boy, if that isn’t a surprise I don’t know what is.  She took FarFar’s chair at the end of the table since he wasn’t in it…apparently trying to be the honorable host.  (BTW – that is my father’s father – FarFar – they are Danish, after all).   Then things got even better.   My favorite aunt and her husband Estaban showed up!  PARTY TIME!  They must all have realized that I was in town!  What a family.

After breakfast/brunch (at this point) we got the car all ready for our return to Illinois.   Everyone came out and gave us hugs and kisses and there was a lot of talk about the Danes coming back soon.  I was so confused as  I had seen them many times over the last few weeks  – in fact they baby sat Tempi a few weeks ago!   If I understood the conversation correctly it might be a WHOLE year (which I think means many moons) until I see them again :(.

But, getting back to my original point, I would not be around to see them, if it weren’t for my Mother’s behavioral observation and quick response.  TGIMM  (That would be THANK GOD ITS MY MOM – and her PhD in behavioral neuroscience).

Why do I say that you ask?  Well, after getting on the freeway after recharging the car, we got our treats.  On this occasion, it was StarMarks!  And because they lost one of the holders (by they I mean Tempi hid it in the floor well) I didn’t have to do anything but eat the treat!  Sounds awesome, right?!  Well it turns out that for an old guy like me nothing is safe.   As so often happened in our life this year, a simple situation turned awkwardly wrong.  In this case, it was the treat getting caught in my throat and preventing me from breathing.  This caused me to start to turn blue again…and white… (Aside: This happened last June as told by my sis Montana).  Of course we were driving down the  freeway at the time (Dad at the helm) and once Mom noticed my distress she called out (quite fervently): “PULL OVER HE IS CHOKING.”  Dad did a quick glance at me and immediately pulled over and slammed on the brakes – after checking traffic of course.  As soon as the car came to a complete stop, he jumped out and ran around to the back seat and opened the door.  Fortunately for me, Mom in the interim, lunged into the back seat, stuffed her hand down my throat and extracted the foreign object from my throat!   Of course, since I was in distress, she first had to pry my jaws apart as my tongue was white, my eyes rolled back in my head, and I was taking an awkward last gasp header into the floor as my legs kicked wildly spilling my water bowl all over the back of the car.

From my respective, I thought my damn lyrnx had closed up again.  What would happen if they had to tie up the other side of my throat?  I already hack up a lung every other time I take a drink of water – what would happen if they shave the other side of my neck?  Would I not be able to eat kielbasa again?  That would really cramp my football weekends.

Fortunately, as I said, mom got her hand down my throat and extracted the foretold foreign object from my throat thus shunting any additional thoughts of mortality/college entrance from my mind.  My Mom said it was lucky she spent so much of my life prying open my jaws to remove banisters, rabbits, birds, kitchen tables, steaks, and other objects from my mouth; when she saw my jaws were clenched it was not very hard for her to pry them open.  AND, Tempi is so happy that for the first weekend in a long time the scratches on Mom’s hand are not from Tempi.  They are from me… it is hard to get a hand down my throat unscathed, apparently…

One question came to a number of my relatives at this point in time: “Is Sammy a cat?  He apparently has nine lives.”  To quote one of our presidential candidates:  “Not true.”  or “No”.   of “Lies.”  No matter your political slant, I AM NOT A CAT!!!!  And to be clear, I said CAT…Not a Pussy.

After all that was done, Tempi was a saint for the rest of the drive – actually taking some time to take a nap.  I took the opportunity to relax in the far back of Khaleesi!  And of course flashing my historic and way charming smile all the time!  As Montana taught me… IT IS GREAT TO BE ALIVE!!







Lesson 2

Boy what a week I’ve had.  First off, we had the Bark Busters return and teach my parents additional “training tools.”  I call it abuse….just to be clear – and I think the attached video is proof of my stance on the matter.

Aside from that, they (the parents) left us alone with our pet-sitters to attend a wedding.  As I learned later they dared go into Badger country (Wisconsin) during football season…and this was when the dreaded Buckeyes were visiting the state!   That aside, we had an interesting and safe time with our babysitter and our parents arrived home late Saturday to enjoy an unseasonably warm weekend with Sammy and me.

If I understood correctly, this weekend is FUN time in Michigan (Football and Danish relatives abound)…but the following week it is yet another visit from the…as I think of them – Spanish Inquisition!

I just hope they don’t bring the comfy chair (or the soft cushions- sounds horrible)!




The Gods Must Be CRAZY

As you may recall, I have a new worst enemy.  In the past few weeks I took my revenge when I had the chance.  For instance, this past weekend, one of the squirt bottles was left on the table outside while my parents were doing yard work.  The perfect chance for me to show the darn thing who is boss.

Sammy came to inspect my work.  He gave me one of those “you are so busted” looks but I noticed his patented grin emerging on his face as he turned away from me:

He had a point though… when Dad came back I was severely reprimanded for:

  1. Being on the table
  2. Chewing the water bottle

The latter made no sense to me because:

  1. It was still functional (which I must admit was not my intention)
  2. They just got a crap load of these bottles from Amazo

I showed my disgust:

Then today, it seems this whole squirting me with water took on a whole new dimension.  Now the gods above saw fit to spray me from above – liberally – when our pet sitter came by around lunch…AND I DID NOTHING WRONG!

This prevented me from going outside, from taking my lunch bathroom break, and convinced me once again that those gods are loco.


ps- despite the inhospitable climate outside I was able to keep my crate pee free.

pps- tomorrow is our second training session.  I’ll let you know what new tortures they come up with 🙂

Final word:  I do know the difference between being sprayed and a regular rainfall and this was definitely those people up above spraying me.  I just have to figure out a way to get my teeth on them, knock them to the ground, and look down on  them from atop Mount Olympus – just like I have done with those squirt bottles!

European Style

5102015.   That is October 5th, 2015 if you put it in the order European’s write the date.  What is special about this date other than in this style it is a Palindrome?

IT WAS THE DAY OF MY BIRTH!!!!  Happy Birthday to me.  How did we celebrate?  Well it wasn’t too impressive I must say as Sammy and I got to eat outside.


Dad said not to worry that I’d have more of a celebration this weekend when my mother is home.

Interestingly, Montana’s birthday was also a palindrome but only if you wrote it out American sytle: 1102011 (January 1oth, 2011).

I think this is further proof that I am in the right household.  I also think it is kind of coincidental that my dad’s aunt and uncle from Denmark were with us until today.  Did they bring the format for my birthday with them?  I am pretty sure they brought the good weather since it was gray and rainy for the past week or so but as soon as they arrived so did the sun!

We had a great time with them despite the continued presence of the squirt bottle 😦

My Danish Uncle even had some great shoes that I took outside while he took a nap this afternoon.  What a joker he can be!  Leaving his shoes on the floor right there were I could grab them.

Now they are on the train to Ann Arbor to hang out with my Michigan family.  I hope they tell my grandmother how good I was the whole time they were here!


By the way, on Monday I got my staples out!


While at the vets we found out I am up to 48 pounds – +6 since last time.  This made my parents question whether I am really a year old.  Could it be that today is not my birthday?!?  I certainly don’t remember… and to be quite honest I feel everyday is worth celebrating that I was born and that I should be treated as such.  Either way, the fact that I appeared to grow since they got me about 6 weeks ago made them use the old Google trick which is where they found this information:


Fifth Stage: 17 – 40 Weeks (much less than 1 year)

Congratulations you’re raising a teenager!

The fifth stage of puppy development is pretty close to the human ‘teenage’ years and you’ll see a lot more of the ‘bratty’ attitudes you’ve probably already been dealing with.

puppy chewing ona boot

This stage can be pretty demanding and more than a little challenging. Your pup will want to break the rules, test the limits (and your patience) and generally act as though he’s forgotten every lesson you ever taught him.

PLUS, he’ll be in the middle of teething as well. Yikes!

But don’t worry, this is perfectly normal and you don’t have a juvenile delinquent on your hands.. yet anyway. If you’ve followed the advice above during the earlier stages of puppy growth you can relax 🙂

Rest assured that as long as you continue to set (and enforce with love) the ‘house rules’ and keep your routine and reactions consistent, your pup will come through this rocky period and emerge as an older, and hopefully wiser, version of that little 8 week old furball.

But, if you haven’t done the groundwork yet – then you’ve got some work ahead of you and you’d better start right now!

Continue to be patient and consistent with him. Some strong-willed pups may try to ‘show you who’s boss’, but it’s important to make sure that you stay in charge.

In terms of physical puppy development, your pup will likely look like a teenager as well… long limbs, slender, maybe a bit awkward and ungainly. All normal and you may find his appetite will fluctuate as he goes through growth spurts.

During this period your pup should lose his last baby teeth (the front ‘fangs’ or upper canines) and will have a full set of adult teeth.

BOY!  If that doesn’t sound like me.  Am I often seen tripping, stumbling, sliding around the house and backyard?  Did I just steal two banana’s off the kitchen counter?  Does everything go into my mouth to be chewed on?  You betcha!

Maybe I’ll have another birthday celebration soon 😉