Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Thunderstorms, Lightning, and Shakes, oh my!

Jazz has issues with three loud noises - thunderstorms, fireworks, and guns.  We've been working on de-sensitizing her on this, but the biggest problem arises due to the inability to predict thunderstorms and hunters.  Fireworks are relatively easy to prepare for - usually the 4th of July & New Year's Eve.  It's easy to dose Jazz with melatonin on those days.  Hunting is easier than thunderstorms and I make sure she's dosed on opening & closing weekends.  Living in the South means unpredictable thunderstorms.  It also means you can have a little bit of thunder everyday. 
Last night, we had a loud thunderstorm come through.  Jazz crawled up into my bed, just trembling.  With most dogs, I'd recommend never to cuddle as it only reinforces the behaviour you are trying to get rid of - but with Jazz, it's different.  In about 3 minutes, she'd stopped trembling completely.  The thunder was still rolling on and about - she was calmly curled up next to me and didn't jump once.  She had no melatonin in her whatsoever.  2.5 years ago - Jazz would have trembled at every roll of thunder and kept trembling for an hour or so after.  Now, she trembles at the start - I equate to a human jumping at being startled, but then she calms down.  She calms quicker if I am home, but as long as there is a human in the house - she's good.  Luckily for her, she is very rarely left alone.
She slept the entire night curled up next to me - a rarity of sorts.  She tends to start off adjacent to me and move to the foot of the bed or onto her ottoman.  While my desensitization to loud stimuli isn't complete, we have definitely made improvements!

Friday, June 25, 2010


Jazz is relatively easy to groom.  Every two weeks, we go to PetSmart to get her nails ground.  Jazz doesn't walk on much asphalt or concrete to naturally file them down.  In fact, when we lived on a road where we could walk on it, Jazz walked in the grass.  She would walk on the road if there was mud or water on the side of the road, but then quickly get back off the road.


Shedding is pretty easy.  We vacuum a lot.  When it is her time to molt, we use the Furminator.  We get enough hair to create another dog.  One has to be careful with the Furminator because it is easy to over-brush and thin the hair too much.  The moment I finish vacuuming, additional dust balls of hair show up – I don't know where they hide until after I finish vacuuming, but they are really good at it.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Summer is here!

Well, summer is here - but that doesn't change much when it comes to schedules. The Queen sleeps in a little more during the week. I wish that I was independently wealthy and could be home more. Our electric bill rises dramatically to keep the indoors at the temperature that Jazz likes. Other than that, time keeps marching on and we keep chugging along.

We had a great trip to NC and a wonderful visit with friends. Jazz's photo shoot with Angie Wheeler was awesome! The pics were wonderful and I am still trying to figure out which ones to print. I hear there are plans for a forum NY meetup ( soon - already trying to figure out how I can meet as many forum members as possible and see a bit of the area. It's been a long time since I was in NY.