Sunday, June 30, 2013

Lazy Sunday

This is my Coco at bed time.  Notice how she has 2 beds.  Sometimes she sleeps in the little one.  Sometimes she sleeps in the big one (usually depending on the weather.)  Some days, like today, she sleeps on both at once. This pretty much sums up Coco's day.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

The Best Dog Shampoo

antibacterial soap, vinegar, and dish soap=clean doggy!
After a muddy day at the dog park, Coco needed a bath like you wouldn't believe!  Here is a recipe I found on a dog forum.  If you Google it, you can find a different variations.  This shampoo is great because it cuts the wet dog smell that we all so loathe and leaves her the fur smooth.  I always get compliments on her coat, which I attribute mostly to feeding Fromm Family Foods, but this shampoo certainly adds to it.

Here is the recipe I use:

Equal parts Dawn liquid dish soap, white vinegar, antibacterial hand soap, and a little warm water.  Shake the concoction in a container and you are on your way to clean, happy, silky puppy!

Note:  I have added a few drops of essential oil to help with the vinegar smell, but most times, it doesn't bother me any.



Friday, June 28, 2013

Summer's Here!

I love summer.  Love everything about it, even the Florida heat.  I've been wanting to take Coco to the beach, but haven't gotten to it.  I'm going to make it a priority, though, because she loves the water so much, I'm sure she'd love it.

When we go to the dark park, she is always flopping in the little kiddie pool they have (and peeing in it).  I love how much she loves life!

Can you believe how happy she looks?
Coco enjoying the luxuries of the dog park.

Look how dirty the water is!

I don't think she liked the other dogs in her space.

Not in the pool, went for the mud instead.

Even with no water, she still wants to be in the pool.

She always takes a good nap when we get home.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Name More Fitting

According to, Max and Bella top the list of most popular dog names for 2013.  Coco? Number 16.  We had a hard time choosing Coco's name.  My ideas for good names didn't really match what Bill had in mind.  We should have looked at a list like this.  So simple.

When we were naming Coco, I wanted to pick something cute and unique.  Something precious.  Bill wanted a normal dog name.  (After all, this is the guy who named his childhood dog Spike. I thought for sure we were going to have a Fido.)  My first choice was Lady Godiva, followed by Brownie.  I also liked Princess Blueberry, but Bill quickly nixed that.  He said it was stupid; I thought it was charming. I wondered if that would be what it was like if we were naming our child.

But naming a dog isn't much like naming your child. You don't have to worry about the nicknames that the other dogs will call her at the dog park.  Or, about feeling guilty if she doesn't feel like the name you've chosen.  We don't have any personality traits linked with dog names like we do for our own names.  There is no societal connotation associated with Princess Blueberry.

Looking back, after knowing Coco for more than 2 years, I can think of more appropriate names that would have fit her as an individual: Flip Flop (because her little ears flip flop when we walks), Rowdy (since she is filled with nothing but energy), or even Dyson (due to her ability to suck up and eat everything in sight).

But instead we have our lovable, snuggly, mischievous, and incredible good-natured Coco. She doesn't seem to mind her name.
Coco assisting Mommy in treat baking.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Weekend Sleepover

This is cousin Madam Star.  She is a 10 year old Basset Hound with a big voice and an affinity for her Uncle Bill.  This past weekend Madam stayed with us.  Coco was overjoyed to have a visitor, and one that didn't seem to leave at that.  Madam Star, on the other hand, seemed like she couldn't be bothered with young Coco.  I'm pretty certain this is just an act; secretly she adores Coco.

It amazes me how different these two are.  Both dogs, both raised by responsible pet parents, but their personalities are opposite.  Madam Star revels in a good nap.  No, not naps, marathon sleeping events.  She stayed in this chair for 5 hours and did not move.  5 hours!  I counted!  She barely stirred, though at one point she was barking in her sleep.  This concerned Coco greatly.  Coco, however, likes her naps but they never last that long, and can be interrupted at any point.  If there is an armadillo, squirrel, or heaven forbid, a cat within a 2 miles radius, Coco's little ears perk up and she tears off into the direction of the "prey."  I know Madam has a better sense of smell than she, but Starsky has no interest in chasing varmint.  Is that the difference in the breeds?  A retriever vs. a hound?

Or is it something a little more human than that?  Madam Star's mommy, Jules, is one of the most laid back people I know.  She is rarely in a hurry and has no sense of competition whatsoever.  Is this where Madam has learned the art of nonchalance?  Do our pets really take on our personalities?

If so, what does that say about me?

Monday, June 24, 2013

Coco's Favorite Toys: A Mommy's Reivew

People often ask me about dog toys, seeing as how Coco can destroy one in a matter of minutes.  She makes an art out of removing a squeaker. I am always happy to give out some recommendations, after all, I'd hate for people to have to spend the money that we have in ill fated dog toys.

Coco and I are providing a list of our favorite toys.  These are toys that I know will stand up to her Herculean playing and ones that she actually enjoys playing with.

1.  West Paw Design's Hurley

Coco can play with this all day long.  And I am confident in the quality of West Paw.  I don't think I can say enough about what this company is doing.  Their Zogoflex toys are, by far, the BEST toys I have come across.  Other toys are durable, but Coco doesn't seem to like them as she does West Paw's products.

2.  West Paw Design's Jive

This bouncy durable ball can keep Coco's attention for hours!  As long as someone is willing to throw it, she is willing to fetch it.

3.  West Paw Design's Bumi

Do you see a pattern here?  This S-shape toy is good when Coco wants a little solo play.  She takes hold and shakes it silly.  Again, I love it because I know it will hold up.  If it doesn't, they'll replace it.

4.  Petstages Kooky Chicken

I recommend this with caution.  The feet and beak come off fairly easily.  Not as easily as others, but in about a month, Coco can amputate the poor bird.  That being said, Coco loves this toy. I have to watch her and take the pieces away once she's conquered it.  Luckily, she's not big on eating the detached pieces.  If she were choosing, I think this would be her favorite.  Around here we call it Turkey Lurkey.

5. Ruff Dawg's Stick 

This rubber stick has held up for a couple of years now.  And she loves it.  She will play fetch with it, toss it up in the air for herself, or just sit and have a good chew.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

She's a Genius!

We have a rule in our house: only two bodies in the bed at one time.  Bill hates to share the bed with Coco when I'm there.  But if I'm gone, he lures her into the bed with his high pitched cooing.  A sound that only Coco could love.  She eagerly hops up on our king bed, whole body wagging with glee.

But this is what amazes me: she knows the rules.  She knows that if one of us isn't in the bed, the empty spot is fair game.  When we are both in the bed, she doesn't even test her luck and try to get up there. How does this happen?  It is like she can count.

This is just one of the examples I have of how smart she is.  When we go for a walk, she know exactly how many treats I have hidden in my hand.  When I say, "take your ball to Daddy"  she does. They say that mix breeds are smarter than pure breeds.  We whole-heatedly believe this, and we have a genius on our hands.

Although my co-worker thinks her 20 month old son is a cross between Michael Jackson and Picasso, obviously he's not. He seems stunningly average to me.  I'm positive this is how crazy I seem. Every time she shows me a video of him dancing to Yo Gaba Gaba, I want to disillusion her.  But I don't.  It must come with the territory of loving another.