Friday, March 31, 2006

Day 90 - Thursday (On/Off):
Finster's stop command is coming along well. I am also starting to train him to only come onto the deck or off the deck on command. So, the way that works is I will walk on to the deck and not let him up until I say "On". If I am leaving the deck he has to stay on it until I say "Off". I don't want him to think he has free reign of the deck. Not sure if this will come in handy or not, maybe for a party or something.

Today for lunch Finster and I went to the park to play with Oscar. They romped around a bit, and went into the water a bit. Finster still hasn't tried swimming yet. He goes up to his chest and then stops. He seems to enjoy going in though, to get a drink he goes in a bit instead of just staying on the shore. A few times Finster got annoyed with Oscar because Oscar was just too fast for him. He barked at him a few times out of frustration, which didn't do too much for him.

In the afternoon the boys went for a walk with us. Finster was lagging behind, the lazy bum. He is probably the laziest dog/puppy I've ever seen. He managed to poop in front of an office again, which sucked this time because I didn't have any bags. I just picked it up with my bare hand and took it to the trash (lol, just kidding, I'm not that crazy). I actually just left it until after work when I went back with the proper equipment.

After the walk I went to my new office and painted until 630. I left Finster alone in our old office for 3 hours and he was fine, likely just slept the whole time.

After work we just hung out in the basement. Nothing too exciting.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

2 interesting articles for today First and Second.

Day 89 - Wednesday (Rabbit guts):
Finster is starting to get bored with the morning game of fetch. He played today for about 10 minutes and then just stopped getting the ball. I guess I should switch it up a little bit so he doesn't get bored with the schedule.

For lunch we went to the Kings bend park. We basically just walked around for an hour. We went up by the power station and there was a bunch of rabbit fur and guts on one of the tree stumps. I let Finster sniff the fur until I noticed that there were still body bits in there. I dragged him away and continued walking. While we were out I saw a mockingbird on a tree. This little guy got Finster's (and my) attention and we listened to it switch up the song for about 5 minutes, ahh, spring. The nice weather brought out tons of stay-at-home moms with there toddlers. Finster gawked at all the kiddy commotion. He doesn't have much interest in playing with them, he just wants to watch them.

At 4 the boys, Finster and I took our first spring walk. Before we went out we went to the other 1/2 of our office to check out the construction. Apparently Finster really had to go (he drank a ton of pond water for lunch) because he started peeing on the floor! Luckily they hadn't laid any carpet yet. I took him out to pee and then cleaned it up. Finster did great on the leash. I even let him go for a while and he just followed us.

After work I ran with him outside for about 15 minutes and then we went to the sis-in-laws birthday party and Finster went to his crate from 630 to 1015.

The party was cool, Sabres won and Sparky only bit 2 people the whole night :) Somehow Butch alluded his bite, probably because he was all makey outy with him all night.

Finster made it without any accidents, but he was happy to see us. We played with him until 1115 and then I went to bed, woot.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Day 88 - Tuesday (Spite):
This morning was pretty typical. We worked a bit more on the "stop" command. Finster is starting to get it.

For lunch we went to the laundromat and to the Henrietta park. We walked around a bit and Finster got a nice big compliment. There was another couple walking 2 dogs, one was a collie. The lady walking the collie asked how I got my dog to walk loose on the leash :) Her dog was pulling her all over.

After work was over we walked over to another co-workers office and CA told Finster to sit/stay out in the hall and he listened to him :) It was pretty cool. Finster listens quite well to CA, mainly because CA doesn't take any crap from him.

When I got home I went up to get the mail as usual, except this time Sedona was in her yard barking her head off at us. I had Finster sit/stay in the middle of the driveway, and he did stay! I didn't think he would handle the temptation of playing with Sedona but he managed.

Now for the bad stuff. Finster pee'd on his carpet remnant during dinner. This was purely out of spite. There's no way that he couldn't hold it. Then later in the night E and I were upstairs working on some store stuff and E heard the bell ring. I took off to let him out but he didn't wait for me; he was peeing right at the door. Again, out of spite.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Day 87 - Monday (Day off, for Finster):
This morning Finster was quite stiff from yesterday's events. He wasn't too active for the morning fetch. Erica got to "watch" Finster for today :)

A quick summary of Erica's day goes something like this:
Sat on deck with Finster, he was bored, ate some egg shells, got yelled at a bit, got muddy in the woods, ate some coal, smushed some flowers, burned his ear on the chimenea and spent some time in crate.

If she wants to expand the summary she can.

In the evening I had a bit of a headache so I laid down with the puppy as he ate his bone.

Today's link a crazy web cam of a bald eagle, cool stuff.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Day 86 - Sunday (The deadly carry):
This morning Finster woke at 8 (a record 9 hours of sleep). I let him out and then went back to bed :). When I finally got my lazy butt out of bed we played outside for a while. When we were done I had Finster "carry" his Frisbee back into the house. I never thought about it, but when he is carrying the Frisbee he can't see where he is going :) Therefore, he missed the last step (or 2) and did a nose dive. This was pretty funny, mainly because he didn't hurt himself.

Today was quite a busy day...

At 11 we went to Clarissa's Country Cupboard, a store in Byron to check out some fixtures that they were selling for the store. They didn't have anything in our price range (cheap as free) so we left with a few dollars worth of candles.

From there we went to my inlaw's for some lunch. I put Finster on his leash and tied him to a screw in stake that I bought. This didn't go over too well, he barked pretty much nonstop. After about 15 minutes of barking I went out and put him in his crate. Funny how he prefers being in a 30" x 50" box to being outdoors with about a 6' diameter circle to run in. Once he was in his crate he was fine. He started barking again when Erin showed up with Sparky.

After lunch we went outside for a walk with Finster, Sparky, and the family. There were no fights or outlashes this time. Sparky maintained a tolerable distance from Finster by running away whenever Finster annoyed him. Finster would follow like an annoying young brother that just won't go away.

After the walk we went to Grandma's and Finster got crated. After Grandma's I took Finster out and walked around with Erin and Sparky. Finster was following Sparks around again and Sparky took off across the field back to Grandma's house. Finster didn't follow for too long because he came running back alone. Erin, Finster and I went looking for Sparky who ended up down by Grandma's neighbors house.

Then we went to my sister's house to get my hair cut. When we got there the first words out of the kid's mouths was "where's Finster?" So I got him out of the car. From that moment on, for another 2 hours Finster and Cocoa fought and played with each other. I didn't think Finster had it in him to go for 2 hours! They would play for about 20 minutes and then chill for 5, then play for 20, chill for 5... It was quite the spectacle. Finster ended up losing another tooth playing with Cocoa and I actually found it (yes, I kept it). He has lost both of his bottom I teeth, he looks like an old man. By the end, neither one of them could walk straight, it was great!

From 630 to 8 Finster was in the car sleeping as Erich and I went to a little party for my aunt.

When we got home we lounged around in pajamas and Finster chewed on a few bones lazily. Finster was being so lazy at one point he decided to pee on his blanket instead of go to the door. He got a bit of an earfull for that one. It's weird, he has pee'd on his blanket before. He scratches at the blanket and when he does that it means one of two things. 1.) I'm about to pee on this blanket 2.) I'm making this blanket more agreeable for sleeping on. In this occasion it was 1 :(

Here is my link for the day, global warming is really scaring me lately.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Day 85 - Saturday (Weekends Fly):
Today Finster and I stayed home and chilled. In the morning we went over to see the neighbor's old 15 year old blind and deaf dog. This dog is actually still in good shape for a 15 year old. She can still walk, which is quite an accomplishment. Finster was quite the gentleman with her. I think he knew she was old. He tried to get her to play but didn't force it. He jumped around her a bit and barked but didn't jump on her.

Finster also discovered the wonderful world of bugs today. He was introduced to his first fly! This was quite the spectacle. The best part was him barking at the fly, how retarded did that look. He eventually got the courage up to eat the little bugger, the fly didn't look that healthy anyways.

In the afternoon Finster and I went to the library to get the 5th Harry Potter book. I'm on the 4th now and it's the best one yet! After the library we walked around town, mainly to work on the leash walking. Finster also found a mini football that we played fetch with.

After the park we went home. As we were pulling in the driveway Don and Sedona were walking by. They waited as Finster and I got out of the car. Don asked if we wanted to walk with them and we did. This was quite a challenge. Finster was trying to show off for his girlfriend or something because he was pulling like a bull moose about 60% of the time. We walked for about 3/4 of a mile and then let them make out at the neighbors house. They did their usual love dance until Finster could barely stand.

At 4ish I went to the store to go do some shopping. I left Finster in his crate because I didn't think it would take too long. We went to "the store that must not be named" and bought a bunch of stuff for the expansion into the upstairs. We are adding used books to the store in one of the upstairs rooms, and making a meeting room in another room. After we put all the stuff we bought into the store we went to leave and Erica's car wouldn't start. It wouldn't even make a noise when she turned the key. I tried jumping it but no luck, it didn't help at all actually. After a call to the parents I tried jostling the terminals in case there was a bad connection. Well there was, except the bad connection was the post corroding right off the battery. So, I called AAA to get it towed. They came and messed around with the battery while I tried starting again. Well it fired right up as the AAA guy held the battery post on, brave man. I drove it to AutoZone and they installed a new battery for me for free :). We didn't get home until 740, so Finster was in his crate for 4 hours and there were no accidents! He did have to pee like a thoroughbred race horse though.

The rest of the evening was spent playing with Finster, reading and working on the store website.

The new command that I'm trying to teach Finster is "stop". This is supposed to allow me to stop him as he is about to run into the road.

Dood, your shirts on backwards, and inside out! Who dresses you? Posted by Picasa

Finster's idea of sharing with Oscar. Posted by Picasa

Mmm Basketball. Posted by Picasa

Flippin cute dog. Us at the park. Posted by Picasa

Friday, March 24, 2006

This post deserves its own entry. This is one of my most favorite videos of all time! It was posted on another blog that I watch. It's "Rabbit in your headlights" by UNKLE. The singer is Thom Yorke, also the lead singer of one of my favorite bands, Radiohead. If you start watching this video you must not stop until you finish, I guarantee you won't be disappointed, the ending is phenomenal!

Day 84 - Friday (Kids day):
Today Finster was quite antsy in his crate. By 10 I had to take him outside to go pee. He didn't sleep all morning for some reason.

For lunch we just walked around the office park. Denise was coming in with Ava and Tina brought in Sara, so I wanted to be there for that event. Finster still got in a good 30 minute walk. I did straight leash walking because he needs some practice again. He started out a little rough but then got back into the groove. We walked over to one of the housing complexes next to our office park. Man, talk about cookie cutter houses. These suckers were all 90% the same. They were almost stacked on top of each other. Here is our route for the day (my favorite feature ever, I wonder how long they save the routes for).

After the walk I put Finster in his crate until the party arrived. He quickly fell asleep. After they were there for a while Ron's daughter said she wanted to play with the "puppy". So we went over and got Finster out. The two of them had a blast. Sara would scream every time Finster moved his head. It was quite cute. She fed him food and he sat like 90% of the time.

After a while I put him back in his crate. He slept again until 430 or so. It was great.

When we got home Sedona was out so I took him over to his girlfriend. I walked him over on his leash and then took him off when we got into their yard. Sedona has an invisible fence so she just waited for Finster to get to her. Finster wasted no time, he sprinted right up to her and they started going at it (no, not it it). They played energetically for about 30 minutes. They do this funny thing where Finster chews on Sedona's neck as she is running. Sedona runs with her head cocked back chewing on Finster. I can't believe they haven't run into anything yet besides me. Finster was certainly the dominant dog. At the end he was standing with his head and tail tall and Sedona was licking his face. At one point he was so tired he went to chase Sedona and his front legs gave out on him and he went to the ground. At that point I took him home, mission accomplished.

The rest of the night consisted of lounging and me reading my Bill Bryson book, "the lost continent" in the basement. At around 1030 I went upstairs while Finster was chewing on his new bone. After I was upstairs for about 15 minutes I went down to check on him. Finster apparently likes books too because he was eating my Bill Bryson book. I simply stood over him and stared him down; I think he got the point. I hate to discourage reading, but he shouldn't take the phrase "devouring books" literally.

After this I went back upstairs and then realized it was 11 so I put Finster to bed.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Day 83 - Thursday (Jennifer Donnelly):
This morning was great except for the lack of milk, and therefore the lack of a finely tuned balanced breakfast consisting of cereal ornamented with a fine, almost ripe, banana, and drowned in ice cold 1% milk. The morning consisted of playing with Finster for 30 minutes outside, and a 10 minute walk at 1030.

For lunch my black pal and I went to the canal park for a stroll along the bank of the Erie Canal. Here is our route, it looks like we walked about 2 miles for lunch. Throughout the walk I did some leash training, and some no-leash walking. Finster is great off the leash, he only lets me get around 20 feet ahead of him before he stops sniffing and runs to catch up. He's great about staying with me. He didn't do too great on the leash this time though. He kept running ahead. When he gets to the end of the slack in the leash I give him a tug and say heel. If he doesn't slow down I completely stop for about 5 seconds. Then start walking again. This usually works well, but today we went through this routine about 20 times.

After the long walk Finster was quite tired out, he slept the whole afternoon until around 5. I let him out of his crate and to the bathroom at 5, after which, he wandered around my office sniffing stuff.

After work we went to the Richmond Memorial Library, in Batavia, for the Jennifer Donnelly book signing. We were there from 7-(almost)9. Finster got to sit in the car for this. He likely slept the time away.

When we got home he was energetic and ready to play. We played with him until bedtime around 1130.

Nothing new any exciting in the training/tricks department.

Day 82 - Wednesday (The carry):
Skip to lunch... For lunch we went to the park to play with Oscar. They had a pretty good time again! I think the romance is dying off though. For about 25% of the time Finster was eating goose poop while Oscar was chasing the tennis ball we were throwing. They wrestled for a while though. Check out more scoop on the event at Oscar's blog. It was flippin' cold out there with the wind.

Finster has become a high quality litter-picker-upper. He loves picking up trash. Whenever he does I tell him to "carry" and we walk to a trash can and toss it out. We might as well help out the environment in the process. After work I gave Finster my lunch bag to "carry" out to the car for me and he pulled it off without a hitch! I was quite the proud papa, and CA was quite the proud uncle.

After work we went to the store to fix some lights. Finster followed me around and kept his teeth off pretty much everything. He is getting really good in the store. It's funny, when we go upstairs he always stops at the top step because he thinks he isn't allowed up like at home. Must be he thinks the top stair is as far as he can go everywhere. At one point I put him on the carpet in a sit stay and he stayed there for about 10 minutes while I fixed a candle light.

We also walked over to the accountant to pick up our taxes. I took Finster in and the receptionist commented 'he's a well mannered dog' because he wasn't jumping up on her. Just as she finished saying that, he jumped up :) ahh well, but I guess it was only once.

When we got home Finster fell asleep on his blanket and I played a little WOW.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Day 81 - Tuesday (Finster unleashed):

Here's the new videos that I uploaded:
Finster Vs. Cordless drill
Finster hikes his food bowl

Today I forgot to bring Finster's leash to work, I'll get back to that later. This morning was chilly outside but I went outside to play fetch with Finster anyways. On the way to the car to go to work I gave Finster his first real "carry" task. I gave him my winter hat to carry for me. He pulled it off flawlessly! No killing and he dropped it on command, it was so cool. When we got to work I had him carry the hat in to work for me, and again he pulled it off. I think he actually enjoys it too, he walks with purpose like he is finally earning his keep. It's also nice because it keeps him occupied, when he has something in his mouth he just follows me, he doesn't sniff or get distracted.

At around 11 I took Finster out to pee quick, because I didn't have his leash we didn't go for a walk.

At 1230 we went to the park to play with Oscar. He was there and the two had a blast playing together. I found a basketball and they both took turns carrying it around. They also did some fetching and some water drinking, Finster's favorite pastime.

Finster was nice and tired out so he slept until around 430. I took him outside to pee again and did a quick little (leashless) walk behind the buildings.

After work, I had Finster carry my hat out to the car for me. I started out with my lunch bag but that was too much temptation for him. He attacked it was much vigor :)

When we got home Sedona was outside barking at us. I went up and got the mail and had Finster sit/stay in the driveway. He didn't move! It was great. I could tell that he wanted to go play with Sedona but he resisted somehow; he obviously didn't want to go that bad.

The evening was quite slow. Finster slept a bunch while E and I did some store stuff and other crap.

I think I'm going to go play with the puppy now actually...

Monday, March 20, 2006

Day 80 - Monday (Why would you tear down a playground?):
Finster is doing great with the sleeping. I slept until 705 today and Finster was still laying down when I went down there. It's great! The morning went pretty well. Finster started getting antsy again at around 1030. I took him for a quick walk. He wasn't great on the leash today. He kept stopping to smell the flowers.

At lunch I had to run some errands. I dropped off his laundry and then stopped at Wegman's to get some lunch food. Then we went to the Veterans Memorial Park in henrietta. They are actually tearing down the nice playground there that Finster and I play on! I have no idea why they would tear it down. It's the 4th picture on the park link. At the park Finster and I went for a nice long walk. During the walk I saw another black lab playing fetch with his owner. I went over to them and asked if his dog was good with other dogs. The owner said sure so I let Finster go sniff him. The other dog didn't really like Finster too much. He went after him a bit and told Finster that he rather not play. So Finster and I took a hike.

After lunch Finster slept until 4 when Ron, Ca and I went for a little walk. This went well actually, Finster did great on the leash with other people with us. He used to suck at this.

After work I dropped E's car off at Monroe, it needs some brake work; front pads and rotors. One of these days I'll learn me some car stuff. I also took Finster over to play with Sedona. They went nuts as usual. They were playing keep away with Sedona's orange plastic tube. At one point Finster had it and laid down to chew on it. He wouldn't give it up. Sedona was jumping around him and when she got close he growled at her, it was pretty funny.

One note, I think Finster's teeth are loosening up because when he chews on stuff they bleed. Sedona's owner said that Sedona lost her teeth around 5 months.

The rest of the night E and I played with Finster while listening to the webcast of the crappy sabres game. Such a good night.

Day 79 - Sunday (The day in the car):
This morning we went to The Father's House church with Erin and Finster. Well, Finster stayed in the car. This church is pretty cool, and I think we've finally found a nice alternative church. The morning (pre-church) was spent playing with Finster and cleaning out mine and Erica's car in preparation for the Rochester Library book sale. On the way to church Finster enjoyed playing in the back seat with his aunt Erin. He enjoys having some company in the back seat.

After church we went to the Rochester Library for the book sale. We are buying lots of books for our book store in preparation of opening a used book section. Finster sat patiently in the car for the hour and a half that we were in there. When we got back I took Finster out for a quick walk/pee.

After the sale we went to B+Ds house to see the baby. Finster spent some time in the crate and out while we were there. He didn't really pay much attention to the baby except when she cried. Finster enjoyed playing with the door stop. He growled and barked at that thing until it relented. I was also able to capture him on video doing my favorite thing; getting his back leg while laying on his back. I'll be posting those videos eventually.

After we left b+ds we just went home a chilled out.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Day 78 - Saturday (the suck):
Today sucked for the both of us. I let Finster out at 7 and then went back to bed until 830. Then we played until around 10. Then I had to go into work :( Finster went with me, of course. I left him out of his crate for a decent chunk of the time. He slept for most of the time. I wasn't able to take him for any long walks because I was busy the whole time. I ended up leaving at 5! We went home and the straight to the store to paint (Erica did the painting, I watched). At the store Finster and I walked to Wendy's to get some grub. Finster sat on the entrance rug the whole time that we ate. He came up twice, but that's not bad for the 10 minutes that it took us to eat, and the fact that he didn't get much exercise today.

After dinner we went upstairs and Finster went to his crate for a while.

When we went home we played with Finster for the night and let him run loose in the basement.

Day 77 - Friday (The urination ladder):
Finster starting barking again at 630 so I ignored him until 7 when I got up. This ignoring stuff is fun. In the past week I have graduated Finster to the back seat of the car. He was sitting in front until he got comfortable riding in the car. After he was comfortable I didn't want to put him in back because I like petting him while driving. But, he is getting too big for the front seat, and the airbag could hurt him if it deploys.

For lunch we went to the park again. Oscar wasn't there so we just walked to the other side of the pond. There Finster found an old beat up soccer ball. The interior ball was coming out and the threads were showing underneath. We played with this for the whole 40 minutes we were there. I attached it to the leash and swung it around. Loads of fun for both of us.

The afternoon breezed by. Finster slept straight through until 515! So we didn't go on an afternoon walk.

At around 930 Erica and I went to watch some Seinfeld and so I left Finster downstairs. He was into a bone and going at it so I figured he would be occupied for the show. About 1/2 through I noticed Finster was on the stairs. I just ignored him. After he went back down I checked on him and sure enough, he peed on the stairs AGAIN!

After the peeing incident I put Finster in his crate for the night.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Day 76 - Thursday (Night with grandma):

This morning was pretty typical. Finster started barking at 630am. I grew a pair and just let him bark. It worked, he eventually stopped barking and I went down at around 7 and there were no accidents. So, the barking wasn't the emergency that he made it out to be.

Nothing too exciting for the morning.

For lunch I went to the hospital to see my Grandma but she was on her way to XRays so I didn't get to see her. I also went there to meet up with my parents to drop off Finster. He is going to spend the afternoon/night with my mom/dad, so we will await my moms comments :).

Interesting website of the day I'm not a huge fan of their music, but check on the lyrics of their new single. You have to give it to them, they are not backing down; good for them!

We went to Toronto to see Jenny Lewis. It was a great show, but she only played for about an hour. The openers were Whispertown 2000 and Jonathan Rice. Neither of the openers were very impressive but Jenny can belt.

When we came back to pick up Finster, at around 2am, he was sleeping in his crate near the front door. Boy was he happy to see us. Wagging his tail just wasn't enough, he was wagging his whole body :) it was quite adorable.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Oscar licking Finster's ear, mm ear wax. Posted by Picasa

Day 75 - Wednesday (Bling bling):
6am this morning and I'm emotionless. At this point I could care less. I just slept through the ordeal and then went back to bed.

The morning went well, Finster slept straight through to 11, then through to 1230. For lunch we went to the Kings bend park for some playing with Oscar. Oscar wasn't available so we walked down to Monroe ave. Actually, here is our route for today. Yep, that is pretty cool, you're right.

We found a cool little path that allows us to walk away from the tracks so that Oscar doesn't have to worry about Finster getting hit by a train. On the way back Finster found a nice dead mouse that he grabbed and started chewing on. I took it away from him as soon as possible.

Finster slept until 330 and then again until 5. All around, it was a pretty cool day. No barking, no problems.

When we got home Sedona was out in the neighbors yard, so we went over to play. Finster and Sedona played for about an hour. They chewed and chased each other, usual dog stuff.

We also got Finster's meds from the vet. We are going to give him some Proin to stop his continence, if that's what the problem is, fingers crossed.

Finster was tired out after his play time so he pretty much relaxed.

Oh ya, the title doesn't really mean anything, I just thought it was a cool title.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Day 74 - Tuesday (Brr cold):
The temperature dropped today, :(. Finster slept through the night again. I got up at 7 and fed him his egg with some dog food. We played fetch in the basement and then I got bored of that (he's getting too big for fetch in the basement) so we went outside to throw the ball. For breakfast I left Finster off his runner and out of his crate. At one point he was being quiet in the basement so I snuck down and checked on him. He was sitting in front of the table looking up; I think he was trying to decide whether to try his luck at surfing or not. Well, I'm happy to report that he made the right decision and got rewarded with a tasty carrot, his favorite. I love watching his eyes light up when he's munching on one.

Introducing my new thingy for the day: " Interesting article for the day " I'll post an article that I found interesting in my morning readings.

For lunch I had some errands to run. I dropped Finster's shirts, blanket and bed off at the laundromat and then we headed to the park. It was a horrid lunch break! The wind was gusting at probably 50 mph! Finster got nervous a few times but enjoyed chasing stuff that was blowing away. It also started snowing pretty hard; this was a great 30 minutes!

Finster managed to get out 2 barks today :( He barked once in his crate in the morning, and then once outside his crate in the afternoon. This was weird, I let him out because we were going to go for our 330 walk but before we left someone came over for some work stuff. Finster didn't like this too much so he barked; naturally I beat the snot out of him. He's lucky that it wasn't the Korean guy (Jong), he's looking for an excuse to eat Finster. :)

After work we went to PetSmart to pick up some odor neutralizer, and I took Finster in with me. He enjoy this thoroughly! Luckily the floor is nice and slippery so dogs can't get any traction. I dragged him around the store for about 10 minutes and then we left. Loose leash walking went out the door for about 75% of the time, there were just too many distractions to sniff.

When we finally got home we played while E made dinner. Finster was great during dinner; no accidents, no surfing, no interruptions! After dinner I was up and down the stairs between playing with Finster and helping E with the store. At one point Finster was on the top step waiting for me. When I came to the stairs I noticed that he peed on the stairs! Argg. Of course the pee went between the stairs and down onto the boxes below. So I spent 30 minutes picking that up and throwing out the boxes he hit, we needed to throw some out anyways. This is probably due to the fact that Finster drank 1 liter of water in about 45 seconds before dinner. I hooked up his bells on the door again so he can tell me when he has to go out.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Day 73 - Monday (Home with mom):
Today Finster was at home with mom again. He slept until 700 again until I went to let him out, wootage. We played fetch outside today because it was super warm again (50s!).

Erica stayed at home with Finster today so I'll let her report on his day (don't hold your breath, she barely ever reads this). I'll post her comments to me though. She said that we have a pretty retarded dog. She raked some of the stones up outside while Finster barked and attacked the rake. Sounds like they had a good time. E said she laughed so hard at the retard that she wasn't raking very fast :) I like it when they have a good time together. She spent over an hour with him outside this morning.

When I got home at 6 the lighting was wonderful so I grabbed my camera and headed for our woods out back (see pictures). Finster joined Erica and me for a little walk in the flooded woods. Finster was in water up over his knees. He didn't mind too much, but when he walked raised his paws really high like he was annoyed that his feet were getting wet. :) I'm sure he'll get over that. We also walked around the yard with our puppy. I love the weather, it's so nice to get out of the basement, and I can tell that Finster is loving it too.

For dinner Finster pee'd on his little blanket. He went to the door to be let out (I think) but since I couldn't see him (I was upstairs eating) he got annoyed and just pee'd on his blanket. It's still no excuse, he can hold it for hours, so he could have held it for another 20 minutes. He was just being a brat.

Finster has found a great source of drinking water. He now goes to the door whenever he is thirsty (read all the time) and he just goes out and drinks from random mud puddles. It's difficult not giving him water before bed when there is a fresh source of water at every step.

At one point I went upstairs to be with the wife a bit. After about 3 minutes Finster came to the top of the stairs and whined a little. I ignored him, so he went downstairs to pee. Any suggestions on this one? So, now it seems that if I don't give him attention then he pees to get it.

The love dance. Posted by Picasa

The faceoff, meet Sadie. Posted by Picasa


Do my pictures look dark to you guys? On my work computer they look a little dark, but at home (on my laptop) they look nice.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Day 72 - Sunday (2 pals):
Today was a good doggy day. The morning was pretty typical. Finster slept until 730 again, and then back to sleep until 930. Then we played and such until 12 when we went to the in-laws.

Finster got crated in the garage while we ate lunch and go out around 115. Then we went to the neighbors to play with Sadie, their English Shepard 4.5 month old puppy. (Pictures to come) Man, those two exhausted each other. It was great! They tackled, chewed, growled, barked, urinated, rolled and bled together for about an hour. (Sadie's teeth were bleeding after a while, don't know why). After this doggy party we tore them apart and went to my nieces birthday party.

At the party Finster stayed in his crate for about and hour or so. Then we took him out to play with Cocoa, his aunt. This wasn't as spirited because Finster was still pretty tired out from Sadie. He was still going after her though. Cocoa had tons of energy because she had been crated for a bunch longer.

Finster slept on the ride home :) When we got home Erica had the great idea to get out the chiminea! So we had a nice fire on our deck! Finster enjoyed the fire; he chewed on a rawhide for a while and then crashed. He, like his mama, loves the fire :)

After the fire we went inside and watched The march of the penguins. Finster got to join us on the entry way linoleum again. He only put his paws on the carpet once this time! He's a quick learner. I gave him a chew-eez, so he was busy with that most of the time. He also slept for a while.

After playing with Oscar on Friday Posted by Picasa

What a baby face :) Posted by Picasa

More sit/stay photopraphy, it's all in the eyes! Posted by Picasa

Bluebird on our box. I love my 200mm f/4L Posted by Picasa

Finster playing with Oscar on Friday, or the devil chasing an angel :) Posted by Picasa

Sit/stay photography, so stoic! Posted by Picasa

Day 71 - Saturday (The poor puppy):
This morning Finster had another good sleep day. He slept until 730 when I went down to let him out. The he went back in his crate until 9 so I could get some more sleep. At 9 I took him out and played with him. We did the usual fetch with trick reviewing. We did all of our playing outside because the weather was so nice. There were blue birds fighting and birds chirping, it was great! While I was eating breakfast I put Finster on the runner. He was being too quiet so I went down to check on him. He was standing an a chair and getting at stuff on the table. This has gone beyond surfing, this is more like skiing (I'm sorry, that's the best I could do). The funny thing is that he didn't jump down when I came down the stairs. Maybe he doesn't know it's bad yet. I gave him a bunch of water bottle sprays to the face which got his attention fast, maybe now he knows.

The vet called back and told me that he wants to try to get Finster's protein levels up. For this I have to start giving him raw egg whites with his dog food, yummy. He also wants to try out some Pro-en which tightens up his urethra which might stop his dripping problem. They still aren't sure what is causing it. We are going to go in for another blood test in 3 weeks.

After lunch we went over to the store. There were customers there so we went for a walk around the town again. We walked for about 45 minutes and then back to the store. I had Finster lay/stay while E and I ate some lunch. Then we went upstairs to do some more work. I left Finster out of his crate until he pee'd on the carpet (that we were tearing out) then I took him outside and crated him. I'm not sure why he did this, I suppose this means he isn't totally house trained yet. I think part of the problem is that he doesn't really know what door to stand next to to get out.

Finster was in his crate, except for a few quick pee breaks, until 6. Then we took him to my parents house where he sat in his crate from 7-9 as we went to a comedy show at my parents church. When we got back I let him and my parents dogs out. They played a bit but the other dogs are still reserved around Finster. Eventually my parents got home with my nieces.

Bri and Em love playing with Finster. I think it amazes them that he listens to their commands. I let them feed him as he went through their commands. They were doing sit, shake, lay down and roll over. I also had them do sit/stay, which Finster obeyed. They loved telling him to "come" after he was doing the sit/stay. He gets so excited when released. At around 1030 we went home.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Day 70 - Friday (Boring night):
WOOT AGAIN! Finster slept straight through to 7am again! I love it! This morning it was so nice outside that we did our morning fetch outside. Finster got to stretch his legs running after some tennis balls. I also did some sit/stays outside. He did ok outside. He jumped up like 3 times when I put him in the yard and went onto the deck. If I stayed in the grass he was fine but as soon as I went to the deck he got excited and came running. He finally got it right so that we could go onto something else (I've read that you should never end on a failure).

At 10am Finster woke up from his morning nap and started getting antsy again. He whined for the whole 30 minutes before I let him out. He should be able to hold it for 2 hours, he's just being a big baby. The morning walk was quite interesting. About 1/4 of the way through Finster plopped down on some grass and just laid there. He didn't want to get up! I think he likes the warmth and the nice grass (57 today!), just wait until summer buddy.

Finster slept again until noon and then he got antsy to get out of the crate again. I think I've been spoiling him by letting him out to lumber around the office too much, now he expects it. I held off until 1230 but he barked once :(. At 1230 we went to the park to play with Oscar.
As we were walking over to Ivan and Oscar Finster started getting excited and pulling on the leash. So, I had him sit and had him wait for Oscar to come to Finster. He actually stayed until Oscar got there, must be he didn't want to approach Oscar, because I doubt he was staying because I told him to :). They played quite well, they are getting to be good friends. Oscar was a bit tired out but they still had fun. Finster almost went into the water, but just waded up to his knees (about 4 inches). He enjoyed lopping up all the water though. Finster pretty much just chased Oscar around (you can read the story from Oscar's point of view). We had to leave early because it started raining and the wind picked up. Finster got soaked and smelled like a wet dog, I love that smell.

When we got back to the office Finster crashed and slept straight through to 4. He would have slept longer but I woke him up because he had dribbled more than usual and I didn't want him to roll in it. I took him out for a walk at 4 and he flopped down in the grass again ;).

I called the vet this morning and he said they are still trying to figure out what's wrong with Finster. He said that he called Purina (I'm feeding Finster Purina One) to talk to them about it. He is going to run some analysis to make sure that Finster's diet is good. He mentioned something about a pancreatic problem, and still possibly a kidney problem. Neither one of which sound good. He also said that it could be nothing at all, maybe he will just grow out of it, which is what we are all hoping for.

In the evening we came home and I tried tiring Finster out because we were going to a "no dogs" party. We were gone from 7 to 12 so Finster's evening sucked. When we got home I played with Finster for a while so he got some exercise.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Day 69 - Thursday (The surfing dude):
Woot, I woke up to the sound of my ALARM today! Generally I hate that sound, but now it means that Finster didn't wake me up! Woot. The play session went well. We worked on "carry" a bit more with the same results. Attacking the lunchbag like it insulted his mother but carrying the stick like it's his job. Then I went up to eat and shower. When I came back down to a nice quiet dog he had surfed the chew-eez beef basted rawhides, his antibiotics and some other crap. He was quietly munching on his 2nd rawhide. Looks like stuff on the table has to be moved out of his reach now.

For lunch we tried to go to the Canal Park but it is still closed. Why close it? So then I tried to go to the Tinker park but that park didn't allow dogs. So, I just pulled over and walked through some massive housing developments. Not very exciting, but Finster found some serious mud and was a mess.

After work we just went home, nothing too exciting. Finster and I played for a bit while E made some dinner. During dinner Finster did a bit more surfing. This time he collected a nice tasty camera bag with a delicious plastic battery holder and some plastic CF card holders. Luckily, there wasn't a battery or camera in the bag. Needless to say the bag got destroyed, but I'm sure it tasted great!

This prompted me to finally clean off the table. After dinner I went down and actually caught Mr. Finster surfing. I sprayed him with his "bad boy" water bottle and that gave him a clue that he isn't supposed to be doing that. We will see how effective the spraying was in the long term.

The rest of the evening was pretty boring. I read for a bit (A lost continent by Bill Bryson) as Finster played with his suspended rope. Then E came down and we showcased Finster's skills. He "carry"'d pretty well. He only attacked my lunch bag once! E was also impressed with the quick rollovers.

FYI: I finished the first and second Harry Potters and now Finster and I are on to the third one, Prisoner of azkaban. The first two were very fun and exciting, they remind me a lot of the Tom Sawyer/Huck Finn books, which are favorites of mine.

Day 68 - Wednesday (Training - 2nd run):
Early to bed, early to rise. Finster went to bed early on Tuesday and therefore woke barking at 610 this morning. This is better than waking at 630 because at that point there is no point trying to go back to sleep.

For lunch we went to the Kings bend park again to play with Oscar ( Oscar was no where to be found so we took a nice long walk on the railroad tracks (see pictures). When we were about to turn back after about 30 minutes of walking I noticed a train coming. I pulled Finster off the tracks and watched as it passed, about 30 feet from us. Finster took it pretty calmly, he fidgeted a bit, but nothing too serious. We continued to walk back to the park, and when we got back to within 100 yards of it I saw another train coming around the bend. This time Finster was about 100 feet behind me, so he was between me and the train. I gave him a nice loud, worried "come" and boy did that dog sprint to me. He must have heard the inflection in my voice and reacted to it. Those commands do come in handy. So we watched the 2nd train pass and then went back to the car. Finster took the 2nd train like a champ. When we were getting into the car I saw Oscar playing on the bank of the pond. Oh well, maybe next time.

After work Finster and I went straight to the store to work on the Yates Gallery a bit more. When we got there E shoo'd us away because there was a customer inside. So Finster and I went and walked up and down main street. Finster loose leash walked like a champion dog! He stopped and waited when I was looking at a window display, or at a light, and he didn't pull at all (or at least not much). When we were walking past the coffee shop there was a guy standing outside. Finster of course edged towards him. The guy backed up and asked "does he bite?" It's funny when people ask me that. Would anyone ever say "Ya, he does, you better watch out". I said "no" and the guy petted Finster as he told me about his choc. lab, who, according to this guy, is very energetic. That seems to be the way choc. labs are, I've never met a calm one.

When we went back to the store I had Finster sit/stay on the entry carpet while E and I talked for about 10 minutes. He only got up like twice, so I put him back into place both times. Then we went upstairs for some work. I let him sniff around the Yates room for a while and then put him in the corner and tried to get him to stay there. This worked for about 2 minutes at a time, but he always got distracted by something (generally Erica! she's a sucker for puppy eyes).

When we got home I started trying to teach him a new trick. I want him to carry stuff for me on the "carry" command. To accomplish this I simply say "carry", put something in his mouth and walk. If he drops it before I give him the "drop" command then he gets no treat. If he carrys until I tell him to drop it then he gets one, pretty simple. He can carry his stick great, but the item I actually want him to carry, my lunch bag, he attacks and shakes like it's a live duck. He will get it eventually.

At 1030 E and I went up to watch Seinfeld. We put Finster on the entryway linoleum again and he stayed the whole time without me having to tell him.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

What the crap, I just posted Wednesday but for some reason it all got erased... I'm not going to write it all again tonight. I'll do it tomorrow, wtc. Posted by Picasa

Finsta chillin on da trax Posted by Picasa

Look to the cookie, look to the dogs. Oscar and Finster showing that interracial relationships are possible. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Day 66 - Tuesday (Table surfing pays off):
I was waiting for this day to happen. Finster woke me up at 645 (only 10 minutes early). I took him out and played with him for the usual 30 minutes. Then I went and ate breakfast. When I finished my breakfast I put him on his runner and showered. The vet said I could give him 2 liters of water now so I gave him more water than usual. Before I started brushing my teeth Finster started barking. So, I went down and let him out, but no pee, that jerk. So I tied him back up and went back up to finish the grooming. Finster continued to bark. Eventually he stopped, which I thought meant he just gave up. When I went down to get his stuff together and leave I saw him having a field day with the remaining portion of today's food, an additional 2 cups. So this morning he got 5 cups of food instead of the normal 3 cups, fatty. So he waddled outside and into the car. Today should be interesting, I wonder if he can hold all that food down.

Well today has been interesting so far. At around 10 Finster started getting whiny again. I presume from all the food he ate this morning. I wasn't in my office for the first bark that I heard. He managed to get 2 off before I made it back to my office. He settled down for a few minutes then I took him out at 1015 for his morning stroll. He was totally bluffing, he didn't pooh at all. He got put back in his crate when we got back at 1030. Then he started whining again at around 1130. I took him out at around 1145 to play with Chris and Ed. At noon we went to the park.

At the park Finster got to play with Oscar again! This time neither of them had leashes on. They had a blast tiring each other out. They were going at each other pretty hard. Finster was trying to bite Oscar's neck and Oscar was trying to hump Finster. It was all fun and games until Oscar got tired out and laid on his back. Finster didn't have enough so he kept at it, at which point Oscar started growling a bit to get Finster off. At this sign I pulled Finster off and we calmed both dogs down so that no one got their feelings hurt. After the playing Finster finally dropped the monster load that was his huge breakfast. Maybe I'll post pictures tonight of this joyous event.

I was lazy tonight so I didn't post any new pictures. Finster did however get his bath. What a mess he was. He can accumulate a lot of dirt and junk in a month. Now he is all shiny and smells good. He didn't fuss at all but he is getting too big for the sink downstairs; summer can't come fast enough with some hose baths. After the bath he had tons of energy and bounced everywhere, killing his duck and attacking his rope.

He actually went to his crate at 1030, apparently he was ready for bed. I put him in and went to play some WOW!

Home brewed joke of the day:

Q: If Finster was a button on a dvd play which would he be?

A: The pause button.

For the morons that don't get it, think paws.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Day 65 - Monday (Back to work, the bark that echoed through time):
Well maybe the title is a little dramatic. Finster came to work with me as E had to run a bunch of errands for the store. The morning was very typical until around 10. At 950 I took Finster out real quick for a pee because I had a meeting from 10-12. Finster started getting antsy at around 1015 for some reason. He was whining and pacing in his crate. My boss was also in on the meeting via conference call (thank God for mute). After about 15 minutes of pacing and whining Finster let out a nice loud bark :(. So I took him out and beat the snot out of him... Just kidding. I actually just told him no and he calmed down. Luckily the meeting only lasted until around 1045, phew. I took him out and he did actually have to pooh, so at least he had a reason for whining. After he walked a bit he went back in and slept until 1220.

For lunch I went to the laundromat to do some of the dogs laundry. His urine ridden bedding isn't allowed in our washing machine. After I dropped of the pee we went to a new park with a big play ground. We played in that for about 15 minutes and then two ladies came over with their little dog. One of them happened to work with dogs and horses; she knew a ton about nutrition. She recommended using Wayne's Nutro dog food, or the cheapest food you can find with the least amount of corn in it. Corn should be at most the 5th ingredient in the mix. Corn is a huge source of energy, so if you have a hyperactive dog then look for low corn food. She said that Finster had a great temperament, so I probably wouldn't notice much of a difference. It's something that I will certainly look into though. Finster played with their dog and drank from a puddle for the whole 30 minute conversation. They had a little 10 year old something or other (smallish dog). Finster followed that dog around the whole time. It was quite cute. He barked and jumped in circles around the little dog trying to get it to play, but the little guy just ignored Finster. Finster still had a good time though.

Good afternoon.

Once home the schedule went as planned. We played until dinner. I gave Finster the rest of his food and about a 1/2 liter of water. Then we got a phone call from Bill saying that it's ok to come up to Rochester to see the new baby. So we crated Finster, fingers crossed because I knew he would have to hold it after drinking all that water.

The baby was a little cuty!

When we got home Finster messed his crate up. Pee everywhere, poor little guy didn't make it. I cleaned him up and played with him for a while more so that he got some enjoyment out of the night.

Day 64 - Sunday (Crated):
Today was a busy day for us humans. We had plans to go to Rochester for a brunch party with Bill -n- Denise for a pre-birthing feast at 2. We also planned on doing a bit of shoe shopping before hand. So we left at 1230. The morning was spent tiring Finster out so that he slept in his crate from 1230-430. We did the usual morning fetch and then I took him over to Sedona's house (the neighbor's dog). Sedona is a big chocolate lab that has uber energy. She chews whole trees down and runs and barks constantly. The first time I took Finster over there he was a bit small and she trampled him. This time was somewhat different. They played for a while chasing each other, barking and biting each other and wrestling. Finster eventually got bored and just wanted to sniff around their house and bushes and such. Sedona followed him around barking at him. Every 2 minutes Finster would get sick of her yapping and chase her for a while. It was pretty funny, she wanted to play more because of all of her energy, but Finster was ready to collapse :). After about 45 minutes of playing I brought him back over. I put him on the runner while I showered. He fell asleep immediately. Before we left I crated him.

The brunch was great! We got back around 430 and Finster was fine, no accidents in his crate. I took him pee and then back in the car to go to the store. Finster went back into his crate while E and I worked on the "Yates" room until around 545. Then we left to go to the church play at 7. I dropped Finster off at my parents house to play with their dogs. At this point he was ready to play again after being crated from 12-6ish :) Mom, do you want to report here?

When we got back from the play/visiting with in-laws at 10pm Finster was terrorizing Tilly and getting attacked by little Fred. It's quite a funny relationship they have. My mom left Finster out to play the whole time so he got some good play time in there. My mom said that he ate a bunch of Fred's food so I was a bit nervous. He digested it fine so all is well. We got home after 11 and he went to his crate for the night.

Day 63 - Saturday (Vet again):
Today we had a vet appointment at 1145 to get Finster's final shot and get some blood work done for the leaking problem. Before the appointment we went to the store to work for a while, well, I worked, Finster watched. We got to the vet on time and then waited until around 1215 in the waiting room. There was another dog in there that Finster barked at a bit. We let them sniff each other a bit too until they wanted to play, then we separated them again. Finster weighed 43 pounds. The vet said that he needs to be fed more, so I upped his portions to 5 cups a day. He said that he gets a lot of exercise so he is burning off the food pretty well. As Finster was falling asleep on the floor he got his 3rd and final vaccination shot and the vet took the blood sample. Finster didn't flinch throughout the whole ordeal. The results came back from the blood test as 2/3s pointing towards a kidney problem but the 3rd test was negative on the kidney problem. The vet is somewhat baffled. He said that Finster's protein level is low but his phosphorus level is high. He said he had to do some more research to see what he can find.

After the vet appointment I dropped Finster off at the store to stay with E for the rest of the day/night as I went to Bristol for some snowboarding.

When I got home Finster was pretty excited to see me, as was E :). The two of them had a gay ole time. The report was that Finster didn't like coming down the stairs at the store, they are quite narrow and slippery for furry paws.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Day 62 - Friday (Headache):
Finster woke me up at 6 this morning. During the morning game of fetch Finster ran head first into the support pole in the basement, it didn't really phase him though. The ball got between his legs and as he was turning he kicked it into the pole, well his head followed and wham. He took this better than the time he tried running through the window at work. I'm not sure if I told you this story.
We here in the hallway talking with the boys and when we were done I started walking back to my office, I took the door and Finster took the window, and for some reason he was in a hurry. This dazed him for about 5 seconds. He just sat down in confusion as to why that crazy opening put a dent in his head.

For lunch we went to the park to walk around and see if any other dogs were there for him to play with. There weren't so we settled for walking along the train tracks. It's cool to get out and walk in different areas, too bad it was windy and around 15 degrees out, brr. I tried to get Finster to go down the slide with me but he just stood at the top and barked at me, silly dog. Pretty good work day, nice and low key.

Nightime was rather boring.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Day 61 - (Thursday - Good stays):
This morning Finster woke up 4 minutes early again, now this I can live with :). We did the morning fetch routine and then practiced some more sit/stays. He is getting really good with these. This morning I had him sit/stay and then squeaked his ball and tossed it, threw some food and then ran to the other side of the basement. When I came back he was still sitting on his carpet. I'm running out of ideas. The first time I threw the ball he jumped up to chase it. I put him back down and tried again and he stayed. I'm running out of tricks for this dog :) Any suggestions? He does a full rotation on the roll over now. I still have to work on the "leave it" when food is dropped. He does pretty good with leave it when he's about to pick up something he isn't supposed to, but he still gets food.

For lunch Finster and I went to BestBuy with sis-in-law to get a flashy new digital camera. She ended up with a FujiFilm F460, pretty sweet little bitty. After that we did a little walk around the office park and then back to the crate/office. I gave him his dollar tree rawhide, he loves them. Yesterday he finished one off in about an hour. This one is bigger so it should take longer. He doesn't seem to have any problem digesting them that's for sure.

On our afternoon walk Ed and Chris joined us. Finster dropped another load in front of an office, I think he just enjoys embarrassing me as I pick it up in front of the world to see. Anyways, before I started this walk I came up with a cheesy Finster joke. If you read this blog you may have to put up with these from time to time.
Q: If Finster lived in another country what would it be called?
A: Uri Nation (get it, because of his dripping problem)
Ok, lets forget that happened and move on...

The evening was pretty boring for Finster. After work we went to Batavia to the library book sale. We are going to start carrying used books at the store. So Finster was in the car from 515 to 715 without complaint. Then we went inside and played until dinner. After dinner I sat in the basement and worked on some software for the store for easily entering used books into the store inventory database. Finster, for some reason, found this boring and slept through most of it.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Day 60 - (Wednesday - another snoozer):
Finster woke up at 650 today! Woot, I only lost 5 minutes of sleep. That's really all I have to report on. The rest of the day went off without a hitch and as scheduled. Finster is becoming one of the most well read dogs in the world. He and I are currently listening to Harry Potter and the sorcerer's stone. We just finished Confessions of an ugly step sister, and before that The bean tree. I'll keep this up to date on the books we read (books on tape in the car for those of you who don't know).

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