Coming up on 3 Months

Here we are coming up on 3 months with the BodMeister and we must say that we are not too surprised with how things are coming out.

bodio_1Bodi is fitting in to our family just about as perfectly as he possibly can, he is different from Tucker in so many ways, and exactly the same in ways that would surprise you.

He still goes full-bore at everything he does, dives in with both… uh… make that four feet, and makes every day an adventure. We take him for walks and once he gets off leash he hunts, and hunts, and hunts… Birds, Bunnies, Lizards, Butterflies, you name it and he hunts it, but now he actually hears us when we call him back, even when hunting.

Bodi and Tucker are becoming great friends, they cover each others backs when they are out with other dogs, each one makes sure to see that everything is ok when the other gets in trouble. They sleep next to each other, actually touching at times. Bodi waits for Tucker to finish his dinner before he slides in and cleans his bowl up. Bodi lets Tucker pick up a toy before, yes actually before he grabs it out of Tuckers mouth. He lets us help Tuck up on the bed before he jumps up and stakes out his spot.

We can leave both Tucker and Bodi alone when we leave the house now, Tucker crashes out on the sofa and Bodi grabs his spot on the window seat just so he can keep an eye on everything and be the first one to see us when we come home.

Our nephew came up from San Diego and Tucker, remembering Taylor was as excited as can be, and Bodi took to him like a long lost friend, tackling him and licking his face just to make sure that he doesn’t forget what Bodi love is all about. Our niece came over to take care of both of the boys while Nancy and I were out of town, and other than a little barking at first, just to let her know that he noticed her, Bodi was as happy as could be and took her out to watch him while he did his thing out there. Bodi believes that he is a great guard dog, and we let him keep an eye on things in the neighborhood, just for kicks.

The truth is, we love this guy (still has about 8 pounds to come off before we can call him, little guy), he hugs us, he licks our faces, he follows us around and makes sure that he is a part of everything we do. We love everything about him, we wouldn’t trade a bit of his “quirks” away, we love how much he has fit into our lives, and we make sure to let him know how much we love him too.

The Case of the Missing Shoe…

Bodi and shoe… “Okay Bodi… where’s my other shoe?”… That’s what you hear around our house… quite often!

The little guy loves to take our shoes and “relocate” them in different areas throughout the house.

I know this is not right for me to say this… but it really is cute! Luckily, he doesn’t chew them or destroy them. He just picks them up at random… whenever they happen to “be in his path”. I’m sure he feels compelled to grab hold, and teach them a lesson for being in his way. But, like I said, he doesn’t want to “hurt” them… only remove them from their normal place.

So how do we break this funky, little habit he has? Mmmm… not sure yet. We keep telling him, “No… those are not toys… nothing for you to play with”. Does it work? Eh… sometimes. Only for a day or two, and then come to find, that yet another shoe is missing!

We have learned that Bodi really isn’t good at hiding things though (lucky for us)! Just the other day… I found Jim’s “other” slipper, lying next to Bodi, while he lay asleep on the window seat in the sunbeam, in the living room. He lays there, looking so cute and innocent… how could one possibly get mad at him?

I guess it is just one of the “quirky” little things that our new, four legged kid has brought to the table (not literally, luckily)! All in all… he’s a great addition to this household! And we love him very much! Even right now, at this very moment… while I am sitting here at my desk… with only one shoe on. Where, oh where could that other shoe be?! “Bodi”!!!

Vizsla’s and The Trails

Tucker looking for forgivnessShortly after we got Tucker, and finished all of the shots, we started taking him out for walks on the trails, he has always gotten a big kick out of being out away from everything and just doing his little hunting thing.

Of course now that we have Bodi we have taken to getting him out on the trails as well, and he is loving every minute of it.

Today I took the two boys out to the trails that used to be our old stomping grounds with Tucker and they both had a great time. It’s a long trail with some great hunting brush, the stuff that Bodi lives for, but with some good strolling sections that Tucker has taken to enjoying more and more.

Out with TuckerWhen we first got Bodi he was a little crazy about hunting, been cooped up to long in a backyard and his listening wasn’t really on par with what we expected, when he got in the hunt he blocked everything else out and just went nuts. Now that we have had a chance to work with him and show that we expect him to pay attention, things have become much better. We still let him get his hunting instincts going, but now he pays attention to where we are and will cut the hunt off to catch up with the pack as it keeps moving.

Bodi posing in the snowThere really is nothing like watching sporting dogs (which I believe to be the most beautiful dogs in the world – no bias here) as they move through open country or cruise through the brush, hunting through the woods, sliding across the snow – the sleek movement and easy gate – the way they prance… there isn’t anything that can beat that in all the world of canines.

So after a good walk today I am sitting here writing my post… as the two little guys are crashed out on the sofa behind me, of course making it tough for me to sit back and relax, but, hey – what can you say, they run the house, and always have.

Tucker’s Got Wood

Me and Tucker in front of WoodieLast year we took Tucker with us to the Wooden Boat show up at Lake Arrowhead, we had planned on just going there for the day, but as it turned out – we were so beat from the day in the sun and getting up early to get there that we found a place that allowed us to have Tucker there and just stayed the night – made it a 2 day affair, instead of trying to squeeze it into 1 day.

Tucker was, as usual, in heaven spending the day out with us. We had never taken him to Arrowhead and he had a great time socializing with all of the people and the other dogs that were there.

We took him to the waters edge and laughed as he stepped out on the rocks and into the water. It’s surprising how big the waves can get there with the boats going around, even though they are keeping to a fairly low speed around the docks. We got him out into the hills and the trees a little as well, so he got a bit of everything a good dog loves.

Nancy and Tucker at waters edgeThe (for us) biggest laugh of the day came when we took Tucker out onto the dock when we were going to see the boats. He was fine, came strolling out without a care in the world… Until he realized that the dock was moving up and down with the waves, and all four paws went out as far as they could as his stomach hit the dock. I could barely move him from where he was to try to get him back on solid ground. Since it was a fairly busy show – everyone got a good laugh out of the show that Tucker put on, although many of them felt sorry for him once they saw the fear in his eyes. Back on the solid ground he was right back to being his happy -go-lucky self and the life of the party, but for a few short minutes I am sure that he was wondering what had happened to his world.

Tucker has this thing about sand that we have always played off of, and we love dearly.  He doesn’t ever dig in the yard, never tries to dig anything in the house, has really never even harmed anything in the house, but if you get him into a sandbox, playground with sand, or the beach, and he goes nuts, he dances around in out, digging and kicking the sand up in the air, we laugh at him and try to egg him on, but he doesn’t need any coaxing, he just loves to get in there and play. Luckily this hasn’t caused any other problems with him at home, so we let him go for it. As you could probably imagine, there is plenty of sand up at Arrowhead, whether at the waters edge, or in the playgrounds around the area Tucker tried his best to hit all of them… and we tried our best to laugh every time – someone has to.

Me and Tucker by the waterThe place we stayed at was a beautiful 2 story with a kitchen, so Tucker had the run of the place while we were there, up the stairs, onto the bed, back downstairs and onto the sofa, making sure to never get too far out of our site. Since we weren’t planning on staying the night we really didn’t bring enough food for Tuck, but he didn’t seem to mind eating what we were having, although we kept his intake of Pizza to a minimum.

As you can see from the pics, Tuck was at just about his heaviest at this time – for him 75 lbs. is pretty heavy, our vet got on our case about letting him get this big, especially at his age, so we have worked with him to get his weight down to 60 lbs. which seems to be pretty good for him, possibly just a little too low, but he is really looking good now – unlike how he did in these pics, when if he sat down he actually had a tummy, which is something Tucker never had before, or since, and no cracks about my tummy, I’m working on that too.

The Hunting Gene…

Tucker inherited the hunting gene from his Father, a champion from the Russet Leather line… Wait a minute, I have watched Tucker hunt and I can tell you without a doubt that Tucker has suppressed the hunting gene as far away as he possibly can.

tuckpresWe took Tucker out on a hunting trial when he was but a wee young lad, and he found 2 Chuckers within… ohhh… 45 seconds, and the judge failed him, because he wasn’t crazy enough about hunting the birds, he actually paid attention to where we were in the field, he tried to stay within eyesight, all the things that we had worked so hard with him on, all the things that made him a great walking dog at the time, and an incredible walking dog now – those were the things that they failed him on, the judge stated “Whenever I let my Vizsla out of his crate he is frantic to go after the birds, he doesn’t think of anything else!”, what a wonderful way to make sure that your dog is only allowed in your life when you are hunting in the field, and choose to use him for hunting on that day.

Tucker is a fantastic hunter – if you roast up some fowl – he’s all over it, can pick it up from 100 yards away and is frantic, but still under control, otherwise, he will be laying out chewing on his toy and birds will land all around him, no reaction – unless it is a game bird, then he’s up and pointing, but still not frantic.

bodhuntNow Bodi, oh man, he has a sniffer too die for, has hunting instinct that blows you away, and is always ready to hunt bird or bunny, night or day, whether you are ready or not. Taking Bodi out to the trails and letting him off leash is an exercise in frustration as he bolts off and goes after some creature…

AND I WOULDN’T HAVE HIM ANY OTHER WAY!

The beauty of watching him pick up a scent and lock into point, seeing him shaking with excitement at the thought of going after something new, watching him breath in all of the scents while trying to decipher the location, watching in horror as he dives head first into a bush without knowing what exactly is on the other side, how could anyone not love that, how could anyone not be fascinated by the idea that this is all in his blood, part of his DNA.

Bodi is getting better all of the time in dialing things down just a notch, he is trying to listen when we call him… he waits until the very last second, and then comes when he know that the next call is going to get him in trouble. Bodi is Beauty and the Beast all rolled up in one little bundle of excitement.

bodkissTucker is, as we always like to say… Ferdinand the Bull, he knows what hunting is, he knows which birds are the ones that he is supposed to point at, he understands the excitement of finding a game bird, and he would rather stop and smell the flowers, chew on some grass, and hunt down any piece of cheese within 100 yards, and kill it good.

The Hunting Gene runs fast and deep in both Tucker and Bodi and just hits the surface in incredibly different ways, it’s funny, fascinating and beautiful to watch them both, and Nancy and I wouldn’t change either one of them for anything.

So all you birds, and beasts… Watch out for Bodi, and all you Tillamook and treats… Watch out for Tucker, they are both out hunting, and you are in danger of being caught at any moment.

Another “NEVER GOING TO ALLOW THAT” Gets Broken

It’s been 1 month that we have had Bodi in our lives, and to tell you the truth we couldn’t be happier, he is a little monster at times, but for the most part he is everything that you could want in a – hyperactive, high energy, excited, committed, completely over-the-top, jump in with all 4 paws, kind of dog.

Of course, when we got Bodi we made some solemn decisions about how he would be inserted into our lives so that we, and Tucker of course, wouldn’t have to be “inconvenienced” and so that he would be put back on the “straight and narrow” on his diet and training, etc…

  • No human food – lasted about 2 days
  • No getting on the furniture – lasted about 2 hours
  • Only riding in the car in his crate – second trip he was flying solo
  • No getting on the bed – lasted about 2 1/2 weeks

And the big one…

  • No sleeping on the bed, he was going to sleep in his crate every night, this was so that Tucker could still have his one place that he could count on being his.

Bodi Sleeping in BedBodi has always come on up and gotten into his crate, with a little coaxing. He would never refuse, but even though he follows us around everywhere that we go – normally – whenever we would shut things off and say that it was bedtime, he would casually climb up on the sofa and curl up into a ball, ignoring all of our calls and pretending to be asleep. We would have to come down and grab ahold of his collar to get him off of the sofa and headed up to the crate, whereas he would calmly climb on in and go to sleep.

Nancy and I had talked for days about when we might give him a chance to sleep on the bed for the night and had decided that last night we would give it a try and see how things went. Tucker still keeps Bodi at a slight bit of an “arms” length, so we were concerned about that. When we got ready for bed, Bodi did his usual and climbed up on the sofa to pretend he didn’t know we were going to bed. This time when I came down to get him he rolled over on his back and stuck his legs in the air so that it would be a little more difficult to take him to bed, damn kids nowadays, the things they learn from TV that makes it so difficult to control them. I flipped Bodi off of the sofa and sent him towards the bedroom (where his crate is) expecting to tell him to hop up on the bed. He slithered into the bedroom and sulking, he dropped into the crate to go to sleep, no telling him to get out and on the bed would move him, and not wanting to make this a “punishment” thing where I force him out, I left the crate door open and  just got ready for bed.

I pulled the covers back, sat down and as I went to lay back I felt something warm and furry where my pillow was supposed to be, Bodi, figuring things out, had jumped as fast and quiet as he could up onto the bed and was as happy as he could be. As I moved him and laid back, he was licking my face and neck (with his trademark nibbles) as hard and fast as he could. We already knew this about him from sleeping on the sofa, but we were still amazed at how quickly and completely Bodi sleeps, once he goes to sleep he pretty much is dead weight for the duration, so we had no problems with him sleeping on the bed, unless expecting him to move to make you more comfortable is considered a problem…

So, the morale of this long ass story… We have an extremely good, happy dog with whom we are gladly breaking all of our rules with, to the growth and benefit of all of us.

What can we say… As Bodi’s name says… God Bless The King, King Tucker and King Bodi that is.

Tucker visits the vet today…

tuckbaby2*** Update *** All is good on the Tuck-man, vet thinks he may have strained something, but x-rays look “extremely good” and we just have to control his excitement around other dogs for a couple of weeks…

Tucker is at the vet today, getting x-rays on his hips and back legs. We discovered a couple of weeks ago that he was limping a little bit. We took him to the vet and they checked him out. We thought that maybe he pulled a muscle or something. But as time went on, it did not get any better.

So, we took him back to our vet and now he is there having x-rays taken. It is a little unnerving for me (mom) as they have to anestisized him in order to do the x-rays… yikes! And the fact that he is an older dog (11), makes me even more nervous. But we have a wonderful veterinarian, with whom we have put our trust in taking care of our animals for almost 18 years.

I will let you all know when Tucker is back home and we have the results of the x-rays.

Thanks for tuning in!

Snow Day!!!

tandbsnowToday we took Tuck & Bodi out to play in the snow.

We took Tucker last year for the first time, and he loved it, playing for hours, chasing and eating snow, slipping through the crust to freeze his stomach, all the fun in a winter wonderland.

So we wanted to make sure to take Bodi this year, we aren’t sure whether he had been to the snow before, but we knew he would have a blast either way.

We found a perfect place up in the mountains that was far enough from the road that we didn’t have to worry too much, and it was down in a valley allowing us to keep an eye on the two boys. As they hit the snow, it all came back to Tucker and he was having a blast, running around and dancing in the deeper stuff. Bodi took a second to take a look and became the hunter that he is, looking under every fallen log, digging wherever he picked up the slightest scent, running to every vantage point to see if anything would show its face and let him chase it.

bodisnow2Tuck & Bodester both were having a blast chasing every snowball that they kicked up with their feet to kill and eat and the one time that I laid down to make a snow angel (hey, everyone has to be a kid every once in awhile) Bodi climbed on top to claim his prize. Even in the snow Bodi dives in with all of his body and soul, licking your face and neck with his entire tongue and throwing in the little nibbles every once in a while… The kind that hurts even more when his face is cold and you are freezing!

Tucker, as usual, is the more careful and subtle of the two, coming up close to rub against your body and lick your hands, but always trying to be just that little bit careful. He is slowing down a little, not quite as strong with his playing, age is playing it’s mean spirited games on him all the time, but we are determined to get him out to as many fun things as we possibly can, and keeping the extreme fun loving and powerful personality of Bodi at hands reach so as to not overpower Tuck’s enjoyment.

The Good Dog Blog

Welcome to the journey of discovery that we have embarked upon…

Way back in the year nineteen-hundred and ninety-seven, we opened our life and hearts to the sporting breed dog, known as the Vizsla. And… as we welcomed “Tucker” into our home, he became a major fixture in our landscape… and we would not have it any other way.

This blog is not just about reflection and the incredible life we have with Tucker… but also about the journey of adding a second Vizsla to our little world and opening up our hearts to take in an adopted dog by the name of Bodi.

UPDATE: 6/15/10 – As time goes by, life changes… We have now welcomed Oliver to our little menagerie, Tucker has moved on to the Rainbow Bridge, Bodi has mellowed into a simply incredible companion, and we continue moving back and forth through the little minefields that are created for our pleasure…

We would like to welcome you all aboard and enjoy the journey with us!