Golden Retriever Versus the Balloon

Today Bender was being his angelic little self – bounding from the windowsill, to the couch, to his bed, throwing his rawhide around the house like there was no way it could scratch our floors, and whining as he did these things. It’s my fault. I didn’t walk him and Leo has been gone all day. So he’s been bored. But I’ve got a lot of work on my plate this week, plus the six inches of snow outside really makes me want to hunker down under a comforter and avoid the outdoors. So I kept telling myself I’d walk him soon, or that he’d finally fall asleep.

As Bender ran inside for the millionth time, the heat came on and the balloons we have leftover from a birthday moved. It was slight but it caught his eye and gave me an idea. Bender was terrified of balloons when he was a puppy. I figured I should see if he was clinging to the fear now that he is older and wiser.

ballons adn bender

“Bender weighs his options now that the dreaded balloons have captured his food dish…in the end he decides the threat is too great and, embarrassingly, retreats” – September 2013

I cut one down and tied it to his collar. He was still terrified. I had just gotten it double knotted when he took off at a run out the dog door, balloon hot on his tail. After realizing that the balloon would not give up its chase Bender summoned his courage and decided to face his fears. The next twenty minutes were priceless.

Bender the golden retriever jumps for the balloon Bender the golden retriever gives the balloon a dirty look Bender the golden retriever stares longingly at the balloon the balloon attempts to cross the fence and Bender hops up to chase it IMG_20140128_112548 IMG_20140128_112601 IMG_20140128_112604 IMG_20140128_112607 IMG_20140128_112617 IMG_20140128_112623 IMG_20140128_112643

Merry Christmas!! Or Feliz Navidad?

It’s Bender’s first Christmas and he couldn’t be more excited. Actually I don’t think he knows how awesome 12/25 is going to be, but when he unwraps the giant comfy dog bed and HUGE rawhide I got him he’ll know what’s up. He certainly is very interested in the world’s largest dog toy/many-branched-stick that we brought inside, wrapped in lights and hung smaller chew toys from.

Anyway, I think this video will help boost his Christmas spirit. Leo, Bender’s BFF was not too happy to join the dance crew (you can see it in eyes, especially at 0:10 – so grumpy!) but he obliged because he loves Bender so. Gilly, Bender’s sister, makes her guitar debut and Uncle Captain and Grandma Bailey can be seen cutting a rug together as backup dancers. Happy Holidays!

Puppy Love

There have been a few times that I knew I loved Bender. Before I even met him I was having nightmares about losing him.

Bender on my leg on his car ride home

Car ride home

The day I did finally meet him I could have cried tears of joy…or pain due to the whole hair chewing situation….or sadness due to the watching him beg to go inside and then pee and poop on the rug situation…hard to say. But it makes my heart hurt looking at his little face.

Then there was the time he devoured a corn cob and I rushed to the internet to see if he’d be ok. Turns out that was a mistake, the internet is a horrifying place. It decidedly told me he wouldn’t survive the night. I called my mom in tears and inspected way more poop than any person should have to.

Bender snuggled into a blanket

What a love

But today I think I discovered real love. We put Bender in his crate around 10:30. He cried yelped, whined, howled, barked, and bayed till eleven. Then woke up again half an hour past midnight. He sleeps in his crate in the living room, which he hated at first but has been getting way better at. He wasn’t having it.

Heart aching from the previous half hour stint of howling, and already having decided that starting tomorrow night he sleeps in our room, end of story, I lept up to get him and take him out.

I’m not one to wake up early but for this guy I’m out of bed in seconds all hours of the night and morning. So I think a lot of that is love. Heartaches, tears, internet searches, early rising, poop inspection.

But I think the real telltale sign came after I let him back in. I took him downstairs to the basement and slept on the couch next to him so all three of us could get some sleep.

Just as I was dozing off he let one rip. I’m not talking one of those infamous silent but deadly dog farts. This was so loud I woke with start, and so did he. I sat for 2 or 3 excruciating seconds. You know what I mean. Where you sit and hope that it’s going to be one of those innocuous farts. The occasional acceptable bowel situation that’s alarmingly loud but odorless instead of silent but deadly.

It wasn’t one of those.

Bender, golden retriever puppy, cuddled into a blanket and farting away

Sleepy fart machine

Holy shit. It was horrifying.

It didn’t end there. He fired off audible stink bombs for at least twenty minutes. These farts are the kind that make you cry. It hurts to breathe. I cowered under the blanket one hand on his head one covering my nose.

So I think that’s love.

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