4 months

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Going on Eleven Months

34 inches tall, 110 pounds of puppy. Fingal has a wonderful, sweet disposition, but he's a TEENAGER! He smells it and acts it. Walking him and Taz can be pleasant or a trial, depending on how frisky he is. When he starts leaping in circles, there's nothing to do but turn around and go home. I'll take photos as soon as he will stand still. He's into eating paper. Three Library books and several of mine. I accidentally ordered two copies of Phil Rickman's new book, The Bones of Avalon, (see Bibliomania) which was fortunate, because he ate one copy before I read it. As a friend said, I have a very literary dog. He has been bawled out enough to greet me at the front door looking guilty when he's devoured something while I'm away. He looks so pitiful. "I know I did wrong but that (book, magazine,  roll of paper towels, cardboard box) was just lying there.

He makes me laugh many times a day. He's worth the effort. I keep remembering how totally awful Taz was at this age, and assuring myself he's not as bad as she was. He hasn't carried a sofa cushion outside.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Eight Months

Fingal now makes Taz look dainty. Everything about him is heavier. I haven't had him weighed but I'm guessing 100 pounds. He is still pure puppy, pawing, jumping chewing everything. He carries cushions around. He plays with his toys, more than Taz ever did, throwing them up in the air, catching them. Every day he makes me laugh at his goofy behavior.

The interaction between the two is interesting. This morning he did something Taz didn't like and she let him know who's boss. A few minutes later  they were licking each other's paws and mouths. The nice thing about deerhounds is that know the value of naps. Morning and afternoon they settle down for a few hours. Right now Fingal, who has been active since 7 or so, is sprawling on his pillow next to my bed, and Taz is on hers. Earlier when I was at the computer, Fingal came to say hello after drinking, spattering me with water.

His gait is an adult's now. Where Taz moves fluidly along as she runs, Final has a high stepping "guy" gait.
 He is still puppy-sweet, coming in in the morning to bury his head at my side as I read the newspaper. Then he chews up a box of Kleenex. Argh!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Seven Months Old

Fingal will hit his seventh month day after tomorrow. Little by little he's looking less puppy & giving more idea of what he'll look like as an adult. He's still got the deerhound pup face looking at him headon, but sideways, you get the idea. He's just been weighed & measured: 95 pounds & 31 1/2 inches tall.
He is so affectionate, still coming in for a cuddle.
Yesterday he climbed on my bed for about the 5th time. I've let him know it's off limits, but this time I really yelled at him. He then lay flat on the floor and bent his head down, rolling his eyes up at me. I started laughing, he looked so pitiful, and sat down and hugged him.
Taz is doing a good job training him, and they play well together, galloping up and down the back porch, sounding like a herd of ponies.
He whines a LOT, and sometimes I have no idea why. Does he miss his litter? Does he have a pain? Anyway I took him to the vet Thursday, and Lark  could find nothing wrong.
Except of course for that overbite which has to be take care of quickly. I'll have to go all the way to Shoreline to the orthodontic vet, and of course, this is NOT covered by insurance. When I got him  I was told there would be a problem, so it isn't a surprise. Anyway, I wouldn't trade him. He makes me smile too often every day.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Growing Up and Up and Up

Fingal is now nearly seven months old, still hasn't quite grown into his feet and tail, and is as tall as Taz. He's still sweet natured, needing a lot of cuddling, but I'm going to have to work more with him now. He knows four hand signals, obeys most times, but when he gets excited, all bets are off.
He responds to two sounds: the steamer on the espresso machine, and the refrigerator's ice machine. He studies the way I get ice from the fridge door and waits for me to give him a piece. I suspect he will soon figure out he can push the lever with his nose, open his mouth, and serve himself. The steamer is another matter. He and Taz wait patiently, looking from me to the milk container. They watch we I add milk to the coffee, then I give them  what remains in the jug, cooled a bit of course.
Fingal, like the two deerhound males I had before him, likes to drag articles of my clothing to his bed. He doesn't chew them. So, as Taz taught me to put my shoes away, Fingal is teaching me another lesson on being tidy.
Am I glad I gave in and took him? You bet I am. In spite of being exasperated with him (he whines a lot) at times, I smile whenever he come up to me.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Upside Downside

Fingal went to his first obedience class yesterday and on the whole did quite well. We worked on  "Go to bed and down", "Sit" , 'Watch Me","Leave It", "Let's Go", walking nicely on leash and come when called.I had already taught him to sit, and he caught on to the others quite well. Except the leash bit. He pulled constantly, trying to see everything, get to the other dogs, wanting the treats the trainers gave to all the dogs. That one is going to take a while. But I've had Taz trained at Canine Potentials and think highly of Carol Ganaway, so I'm sure he'll do well.
The real problem is house breaking him. He drinks copious amounts of water and though I let him outside a lot, praise him when he urinates outside, he comes in, walks around and pees. While strolling around!My wood floors have never been so clean, but the bedroom carpet's a mess, even after it has been cleaned.
Otherwise, for a puppy his age, he's great. He still comes up to be cuddled, and he's really laid back.
His coat is changing, getting thick and kind of curly and he loves it when I rub it, massaging him.
I will grit my teeth, talk softly (I'm really proud of myself-haven't yelled at him, even when I step in a puddle) and know he'll turn into a fine adult.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


Fingal is now 29 inches tall & at a guess, over 60 pounds. This can be a problem because of his enthusiatic greeting of guests, and his wish to climb in their laps.Luckily, on Sunday he begins behavior classes. Right now he sits on command, and comes, as long as I tell him in a "happy voice." A stern one sends him fleeing. He's still not totally housebroken, but he's getting better. Taz and he went to Pampered Pooch daycare yesterday, where they can run, play in a pond and generally be part of a pack. Taz's buddy Kona and Fingal picked on a little Lab, and got a time out, but otherwise Vicky tells me he's really sweet. We'll see what Sunday brings.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Fingal at five months

His first snow. He ate quite a bit. He has grown about two inches, and has learned a few commands. He's cutting teeth so nothing's safe. I'm giving him all sorts of things to chew on, and trying to keep any paper away from him.

Taz is helping raise him, and I don't interfere when she's taking care of things. He's still a delight, goofy and good tempered.. He developed a fullgrown, adult bark, which confused Taz. The first time he barked to come in, she went running past him when I opened the door, looking for the guilty   dog.
When I watch dvd's,Taz lies on the couch, Fingal at my feet. He keeps trying to climb on furniture, so I've resorted to the spray bottle, which  he caught onto very quickly. Smart puppy.

My worries about raising a puppy are gone. I spend so much time laughing at him, I wouldn't have missed this for the world. He seems pretty mellow most of the time, and comes up to me to be cuddled, hiding his face against me.

Now, if only he could get the idea about getting outside in time! It's funny to watch him. He begins his peeping whine. He stares at me.
 I say, "Okay, let's go outside."
But until the whines get louder, he won't move.
Especially at night, when he's curled up on his bed, he doesn't want to move. A couple of times I've had to tip him off the bed, to get him headed for the back door. During the day, he does go to the door when things get urgent. He can last about two hours, then all bets are off. I have begun to time meetings and appointments by Fingal's pee schedule.