Can cats and dogs get along?

The quick answer is absolutely.  You simply have to do a search on Google and you’ll get photographs and Youtube videos by the bundle that will be offered as easy proof.  Such happy companions, cuddling together on the couch.  And I too have had cats and dogs that have got along, played together, slept together, or at the very least said hello with a rollover.

But here I have to be honest.  I have had some cats and dogs that hated each other.  Often this was caused by an error in judgement either by the cat or the dog.

We had this beautiful black and white cat, one of those tuxedo cats.  He was the friendliest cat I had ever had…with people that is.  He had a personality flaw that the other animals tolerated but found obnoxious:  he was a teaser.  Blackie (that was his rather unoriginal name) would find something that irritated the other animal and do it over and over.  With his cat-sister, it was to cut her off.  He would come from behind at a trot and run ahead of her and make a quick left or right in front of her.  She often had to stop abruptly to avoid walking into him.  I could see that this habit of his irked her, but I could not see a way to stop him from doing it.

He used to love to sit on the chair directly in front of the busiest entrance in the house so he could keep track of those coming in and out of the backyard.  Whenever my sheltie passed by Blackie on his prestigious chair, Blackie would give the sheltie a paw to the butt end.  The sheltie put up with this. After all, the cat wasn’t taking out his claws; he was just taping him.  Then one evening, when my sheltie was suffering from a sore leg, Blackie gave him the usual tap as my sheltie limped by.  All hell broke lose.  My sheltie barked and growled directly in Blackie’s face, exactly three times.  Blackie backed away, sliding backwards off the chair through the hole below the low rail on the backrest and ending up under the table looking both aghast and astonished.  After that they were mortal enemies.

And then there was the dog I adopted from the shelter.  Immediately on his arrival at his forever home, he chased my cat up a tree.  That ended any chances of the two of them becoming buddies.  Even though I gave the dog a lecture, he chased the cat several more times before finally realizing that the cat belonged on the property.  After that, he only chased strange cats, but it didn’t matter, the damage had been done.  Whenever he got close to the cat, the cat hissed at him, and it sounded as if he was blowing up balloons so the dog was well-warned.

Not long ago I had to move my mother into a nursing home and I took her cats into my home.  I asked Memie how she felt about my dog Sadie and this is the answer I got.

Memie on meeting Sadie

 

 

Do dogs notice birds?

I know my dogs notice squirrels.  They certainly pay attention when there is a chipmunk in the yard!  Oh yeah.

But do they notice birds?  Well mine certainly does.  She spends long periods of time watching them fly back and forth to our feeder as if she believes if she studies them long enough, she can learn to fly.

Now there is one bird that likes to tease my dog.  And my dog has a hard time figuring out where it is, because this is one of the fastest and smallest birds in our yard.

There it is…oops… I swear it was there.Hummingbird

 

Rag Dog

It has been a while since I featured a dog on this blog.

I saw a dog the other day who made me look at him twice, thrice and one more time.  The first time I saw someone with dreads, I’m embarrassed and a bit ashamed, I looked at the person the same way.  Bob Marlee wore dreads.  I’m a big fan of his music.

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This dog looks as if he wears his fur in rags – the kind of rags my mom used to use to curl my hair a long long time ago.

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This is the Bergamasco Sheepdog.  And according to the AKC (https://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/bergamasco-sheepdog/), he is independent, intelligent and sociable.

His height is between 22 and 23.5 inches and the female can weigh as little as 57 pounds, while the male can weigh up to 84 pounds.

Life expectancy is 13-15 years.

This dog comes in black and grey as well as the above brown.  I had to know how you would groom this coat so here is a video.

 

By the way this dog breeds is over 2000 years old, and originates from the Italian Alps.

 

 

Mutts

I have been taking a lot of rides in the country lately.  I live in the city and so this is a vacation from all the noise and buzz.  I have noticed that most country dogs are mutts.

This one was barking and chasing the car until I stopped and took out the camera.  Then he became totally silent.

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This next dog was sleeping right in the middle of the road.  When I stopped to admonish him, he took serious offense and started howling.

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This next dog followed me all the way from his house to a dock on a river.  He knew his way around though because once he got tired of me, he left and trotted back home.

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Whatever number of breeds comes together to create a dog, the result is always a distinct personality.

Fat Cat

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A Mourning Dove in my back yard.

 

Have you ever seen a fat bird?  No, probably not.  But fat cats and dogs are, unfortunately, not an uncommon sight.   I have to admit that my dogs are not on the thin side.  I try to cut back on their regular meals but then the treats are slipped in here and there and now the veterinarian is giving me the evil eye.  “He had lost weight,” he says,  “What happened?”  Well…

One reason is that we tend to equate feeding with love.  “Good doggy,” I say and offer up a tasty morsel.  Of course, if they are in the car with me, I have to reward them for being so well-behaved.   (There’s a bag of treats in the glove compartment.) And I always keep a pocket full of treats in case I need to call them back to me in a hurry.  I snap the clicker a couple of times, and they come running for their treat.  Such good dogs.   Then if I want to put them in their “special room” while we eat or sit with our human visitors, they need a treat for enticement. And so it goes.

Thank goodness they like to run after the ball or I just don’t know what they would look like.

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What Work Me?

My dogs are supposed to be working dogs.  I know what that is suppose to mean:  that they are intelligent and energetic.

I invite you to watch this youtube video if you don’t believe me.  This is not my video but I found it quite informative and entertaining.

Now, consider my dogs.  Last fall we were driving with them in the car in the backseat. They were both fast asleep when I shouted, “Sheep, sheep, look guys some sheep.”

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But the word meant nothing to them and when I opened the door to show them the sheep, neither one of them seemed to recognize that there was something out there of any interest to them.

Bunch of city slickers, I told them. They just yawned and went back to sleep.

 

 

 

DOGS WITH TWO DIFFERENT EYE COLOUR

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I took a picture of this dog because I found he had such beautiful colouring.  It wasn’t until I got home and loaded the picture into my computer that I realized he had one blue eye and one brown.  This condition is known as Heterochromia iridis.

Melanin is the substance that gives our skin colour.  In dogs (and people) with eyes that are a two different colours, there is an excess or deficiency of melanin mostly due to genetics, though it may develop over time.  The dogs breeds that are most likely to have one blue eye are Australian sheepdogs, Siberian huskies, American foxhounds, Alaskan malamutes and shih tzus.

Heterochromia iridis is not exclusive to dogs and can be seen in other animals and even people.  Jane Seymour, Mila Kunis, Keifer Sutherland, Demi Moore, and Alice Eve all have this condition. David Bowie’s eyes were of two colours but it was due to an injury.

 

The Long Winter of 2017-18

It has been a long time since I have blogged.

I envy this skater as, unfortunately, my arthritic knee has kept me inside all winter.  There is no negotiating the ice surface for those of us with osteoarthritis.  One slip and it could change your life.  I do miss skating though I never was very good at it.

Lucky for me my dogs love winter and they do not need for me to stand precariously on blades to enjoy it with them.

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