Monthly Archives: December 2008

Seattle weather sucks

The weather here sucks 10 months out of the year. My tolerance of the crap here is nil. Zip. Zero. I hate this place.

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Snow

September and October were really, really nice this year. I was grateful, because I desperately needed some sun and warmth. The rains returned in November, but it didn’t get cold. Not really. Most years the ski resorts open at Thanksgiving, give or take a weekend. This year, though, there wasn’t any snow to be seen at Thanksgiving… or the next weekend… or the next. Very unusual.

Then came mid-December. Last Friday night we got a couple of inches of typical, heavy, wet snow… but it was accompanied by a sharp drop in temperature. Saturday night we got another six inches or so of dry powder. That was just up here at our house, though. Oh, there were bits in other places — especially during the second snow — but not the accumulation we saw. The roads were crap though, so we stayed snug at home.

Temps stayed below freezing until yesterday afternoon, so the snow stuck around. The roads were gradually plowed, so they got better, though as of yesterday, they were still bad between our house and Duvall.

Temps dropped again last night, and it got worse — not only did everything freeze, but we got more snow. I can’t tell how much more, because it’s on top of the snow that was there. Several inches of more powder. This snow, though, covered the region — even downtown Seattle — so it’s much worse.

I feel like we’re buried up here. I’m terrified we’re going to lose power. Not only would it be terribly cold if that happened, but I have no idea how we’d water the horses. We can’t drive to town and pick up more water this time.

I want to move to Arizona — and I don’t mean Flagstaff. I want sun, warm, and no snow. Ever.

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General critter update

The household is settling quite a bit, and Miss Pflouff is gaining more freedom. I set up an x-pen at the base of the basement stairs to keep her downstairs, but more and more I’m leaving that open now. We have a dog door, and she is using it reliably to go outside, both to potty and to play. She’s sleeping through the night most nights now. If she needs to go out, she’ll whine and sit up. Otherwise, she’ll toddle into her crate, crash immediately, and emerge sometime around 7:15.

Aslan is adjusting well, though part of that is careful observation on my part. If I give them new bones or new toys, I separate the dogs, and I’m careful to remove the bones/toys prior to feeding or sending Pflouff out to potty. I’m also careful with space, because that can be one of Aslan’s triggers. I’ve found that he’s better in the morning, but by evening, he’s starting to get tired of her. (You’d think he was a crotchety old dog!) I give him a break then and close her in the basement with me.

The three dogs have been playing together really well. Pax, as much as I love him, lets puppies treat him like a chew toy. He’s way too permissive, so I have to intervene and redirect. Pflouff is far more respectful of Aslan. He’s AWESOME with her when they play, but when enough is enough, he draws a strict line — and she doesn’t push it. Good!

All three dogs are sleeping the whole night in the bedroom. Pflouff sleeps in a giant crate next to my bed. Pax and Aslan sleep on the bed. (Both can come and go as they wish, though in reality, it’s only Aslan who does so.) Aslan has been completely fine with my moving Pflouff in and out of the room during potty breaks.

Pflouff’s crate is WAY too big, and it’s really in the way. I’d like to get rid of it, but that poses a different problem. There is NO WAY we can let a third dog of that size on the bed. So we have to phase the crate out in a way that she chooses to sleep in the bedroom without getting on the bed. And, we have to do all this without Aslan getting protective. Eventual goal is for her to be able to sleep anywhere she wants (except on the bed), just like Pax and Aslan do.

Other update… The reason you haven’t seen more pictures of her is that she broke my camera. I ordered a new one today though, so eventually there will be more Pflouff pictures.

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Puppy class #3

We went to our third puppy class last night. Miss Pflouff was awesome for the first half hour. I was using these new treats we picked up at Sam’s, and she loved them. The class had a couple of new people, so it started off slowly, but we were in our corner just flying through various behaviors. She was amazing.

Of course, it didn’t last forever. At about the thirty minute mark, she pretty much stopped cold. The treats were tiny, so I don’t think she filled up, but they may have been sitting heavy on her tummy. She went from focused maniac to unfocused, distracted puppy. 🙂

The class worked on name recognition, polite greetings, sit/down, stay, and drop it, and we had a couple of puppy play sessions. I’m getting less comfortable with her play style. First of all, except for the Labradoodle, she’s the only large puppy in this class. The others are young puppies of tiny breeds — definitely not animals you want overwhelmed by a pup used to playing with Aslan and Pax! When she’s home, she very much has to keep up with the big dogs, and that makes it hard for her when she’s around little dogs.

I very much like being able to close the panels in our “area,” at puppy class, but at the same time, I’ve realized I’m using it as a crutch. Rather than teach her to focus in a distracting situation, I’m just closing her in her area. That won’t do her any favors when she attends a different class. I haven’t been training her “on the road” either, which compounds the issue.

SO. We’ve got three weeks left in this class. I’m going to make a point of getting her out of the house a minimum of twice a week OTHER than puppy class, so she can learn to focus in more distracting situations. (This would be easier if we lived somewhere sunny.) And in class, I’m going to start opening the screen more. I don’t want her to be overwhelmed in her next class.

Speaking of, I’m planning to sign her up for Beginning Obedience at The DogWorks in Monroe. Class starts in early January, right after this one ends.

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Christmas photos with Santa

We went to Sam’s to get raw food. The Santa photos are just a fortuitous serendipity.

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