Play With Your Dog!!

Wednesdays are Detention Center nights! Joy,Joy! One of my favorite events! These are pretty special guys at this place. They’re learning all the right ways to take care of a dog and train us by being nice to us. I like that part. The being nice to us means lots of petting and brushing and treats! Usually we spend time playing games and doing training exercises. But tonight the boys made tug toys! Braided fleece tug toys!

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And it would be nice if all these toys were for me! But all of these toys will be going to one of our local animal shelters. When a dog is adopted it will get to go to its new home with a nice, soft, boingy tug toy. Isn’t that nice of these boys?!

Now we might not have gotten to bring the toys home with us, but we did get to try some of them out. We had to make sure they could pass the real dog test. More JOY!

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And of course all the toys passed!

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You do know that you should be playing with your dogs?! Playing with your dog is a JOYful activity! For you and your dog!

I’d like to share a couple of books with you that might get your creative playfulness jumping.

The 1st book is Play With Your Dog by Pat Miller. Published by Dogwise Publishing in 2008. Ms Miller is a renowned trainer who has written many books about training. In this book she talks about dogs and play. She believes that playing with your dog helps to build a strong relationship between the two of your. Play also helps to develop social skills and provides mental and physical exercise. Play With Your Dog has chapters on what play is to a dog, body language dogs use when playing, types of play — dog/dog play and human/dog play. Ms Miller talks about children playing with dogs and how NOT to play with a dog. There are quite a few references at the end. All in all, this is a very fine book!

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The 2nd book is See Spot Sit by one of the Mom Person’s favorite, favorite writers Carol Lea Benjamin. Published by Skyhorse Publishing in 2008. This is kind of a picture book dog training manual. The subtitle is 101 Illustrated Tips for Training the Dog You Love. Now doesn’t that sound fine?!  The chapters include — How to Have a Happy Dog, Good Manners Last a Lifetime, The ABCs of Dog Training, PLAY it Safe, and Good Times, Fun, and Games. The book is full of happy illustrations that make this a fun book to read for anyone.

So I think you should check these books out and go have some fun with your dog!!

And here are some links if you want to make your own tug toys!

How to Weave a Braided Tug Toy from HGTV
Michael Rosen
Richmondpetlovers.com

The Goat Lady

My Mom Person wants to be The Goat Lady. Around our town she is known as The Dog Lady. She likes that well enough, but she wants to be The Goat Lady.

We have this book by a really lovely artist, Jane Bregoli. The book is called The Goat Lady. Appropriate. My Mom Person keeps this book prominently displayed because she LOVES the lady on the cover. This is what she aspires to. Not Grace Kelly or Princess Diana or any princess or even fabulous dog trainer Carol Lea Benjamin. She wants to be this goat lady. I think it is the look of contentment on the lady’s face.

The book was published in 2004 by Tilbury House, Publishers and is about a real person. Her name is Noelie Houle and you can watch a real video of her here.

The story is about two children and their mother ( the author and artist) who move into a new neighborhood near a rundown old farm. They like to watch the frisky goats that fill the farmyard.  After a while the kids become friends with the owner, Mrs Houle, and start helping her take care of the goats and do other chores. Mrs. Houle milks her goats every day and sells the milk to local people. She also gives goats to an organization called the Heifer Project that helps poor people in far away countries. The children get their mom to paint some portraits of Mrs Houle and she paints so many that she decides to have an art show in the local town hall. Then all the neighbors who have previously complained about the rundown farm and the unruly animals, get to know Mrs Houle and see how wonderful she really is.

This book is about tolerance and helping your neighbors and being a part of your own little community. It’s about not judging ” a book by its cover.” It’s about being happy with what you have and being resourceful. It’s about goats and about how animals provide support and understanding for their humans. It is a great book on many levels.

We have goats here. We don’t milk our goats — they are fiber goats — Angoras. The Mom Person loves those goats. Me, not so much. Sometimes they try to chase me and butt me. It’s taken me awhile to figure them out. We spend a lot of time out in the pasture with the goats. The Mom Person likes to just sit and watch them. And I like to watch her. She is The Goat Lady. But she’s also The Dog Lady. And that’s what’s important to me.

I hope you have animals to look after you. And I think everyone needs to get to know their neighbors. Do you have any neighbors that you wonder about? This is kind of the season for doing good things. Maybe you have a neighbor or friend who could use some help? Think about it!

If you would like to know more about Noelie Houle’s white goats you can check this out. And if you would like to find out more about Angora goats, you can check here.

Then check out The Goat Lady. And The Heifer Project. You’ll be glad you did!

And here is a little video of some musical goats. I don’t know what kind of goats these are but they are pretty cute!