Sunday, April 28, 2013

Barbie's new Career in food reviews starts at Lush

This weekend we visited a cute little cafe called Lush at 144 Scarborough Beach Road in Mt Hawthorn. We chose Lush because it was on a list of 'dog friendly' cafes I found on Facebook. Mt Hawthorn is quite a built up little down centre, and when we first drove past the cafe we only saw a couple of tables out the front, but when we stopped we found a little alleyway that led around back to the courtyard.

photo borrowed from the Lush website
When we entered there were a few concrete steps to get up to the courtyard level. Barbie hesitated, but I got her to come up the steps, then she was barked at by two small white fluffies under the nearest table. Barbie took it in her stride and we sat as far as possible away from the fluffies.

As per usual I heard a lot of people in the cafe whisper 'it's a greyhound'. It seems to happen whenever we go somewhere new.

The courtyard is enclosed by walls. They have garden beds along each wall, but the one on our side of the courtyard was very narrow and there wasn't anything growing in it but dirt. The rest of the area was paved. There was a big shade sail over the top to keep the area nice and cool.

Barbie did not want to lie down on the pavers. Fair enough, we learned our first lesson, always bring along a blankie or bed. She decided to lie in the dirt garden bed and it took a little bit of manoeuvring on her part as it was so small.  She was very well behaved and I just kept her leash under my chair leg.

From a human perspective the food was great. We ordered the breakfast stack, and I got a coffee. The stack was much better than the one I get sometimes at Milk'd in Maylands as the bread on the bottom was edible. At Maylands it's often toasted to the point that it is hard as a rock. The coffee was good and the service was efficient. Prices were reasonable for Perth. The chairs were comfortable, and surprisingly, because the paving was fairly steeply sloped, the table was not wobbly!

I saved a little bit of bacon for Barbie and gave it to her at the end as a reward for being such a good girl.

Overall human score: 8/10

Barbie says:

The courtyard of this cafe was shady and cool, but the waitress humans tried their best to ignore me and they certainly didn't offer to bring a water bowl or anything like that. As there was no lawn, and the humans forgot to bring my bed, I had to make myself comfortable in a very small patch of sand, but once I was comfortable there it was OK. The humans lose points here for not bringing my bed!

It was a huge positive to be tucked away in a nice quiet courtyard away from traffic and in the shade.

I didn't like the rude little doggies much. I did not react when they said rude things to me, but I wonder what would happen if I carried on like that in public.

Overall dog score: 7/10

Tip for improvement: it would have been nice if the waitresses offered me a water bowl. I couldn't use the communal one as that was too close to the rude doggies.

If any of our local readers has a dog-friendly cafe or pub they would like us to review, let us know! After we have done a few we will make a reviews page so you can find them all in one place when your humans are planning breakfast.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Wordless Wednesday - Mittens says your stuff is my stuff

Too bad if you want to use this bag today, it's mine and it's comfortable, so go away and let me sleep! 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Cheeky Mouse and the Vertical Blinds

Learning to be a house dog isn't always easy for a bouncy young dog like Mouse, and she likes to test the boundaries.

She was outside one day last week while I was getting ready for work, and I heard her bark. She was standing at the sliding door which leads into the lounge room, right next to where I was sitting. There were a few drops of rain about and she was demanding that I let her in. I ignored her, and she found a hole in the flyscreen to stick her nose through!

Then there was the morning when I went outside to check up on them and found Mouse with a bra that she had pulled off the washing line. She had not damaged it but she had decided she wanted to keep it for herself.

A couple of nights ago, I had the doors all opened up in the house to let some breeze through, and the vertical blinds were flapping about. This obviously peaked her interest. She grabbed one of them and tried to carry it away. She released it as soon as I told her off though.

Mischievous little minx she is!

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Mouse's Spey and recovery - the first day

Mouse went to the Vet yesterday and came home minus her reproductive organs. I am a big supporter of speying pets - it eliminates a lot of health risks, like mammary cancer in females, and prevents accidental litters coming into the world. 

They did it keyhole style so she only has two stitches in one fairly small incision, and another small incision with no stitches. It is much nicer to look at than the big zipper-scar that Barbie had when we got her. It is also less worrying that she is going to somehow burst herself open the first time she jumps in the air.

Turns out we didn't have to worry about Mouse jumping though. She is quite the sensitive little lass and was struggling to get on and off the couch last night as she was obviously feeling some pain. 

She showed a bit of a tendency to lick her stitches so I put a yard muzzle on her when I put her in her crate to sleep, and she seemed comfortable enough. The muzzle doesn't have a poop guard but she would have to press pretty hard to make her teeth reach her stitches, and I knew she wasn't going to do that. 

She is better this morning and can get on and off the couch by herself but she definitely isn't going to be running or jumping around. This recovery period is going to be easier to handle than I thought. The last female dog that I had speyed was a little Blue Heeler x Border Collie with very little sense in her head and it was very hard to keep her quiet. I think Miss Mouse will take things slowly. 

Here is a cute video of Mouse which encapsulates how happy she is finally having couches and beds to sleep on.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Foster Dogs doing the Job...

Mouse is a very smart little cookie. In fact, she is here right now helping me to write this blog entry.

It is hard to believe, I know, but not everyone here loves Mouse. Mittens smacked her across the nose and made it bleed all over the tiles in the kitchen. Mouse would like you all to know that she was just playing with Mittens and trying to make friends, but that Mittens was just being unreasonable and mean. Her nose is OK now, since she is young and fit and has super healing powers. 

Whilst we are still working on leash manners I have successfully trained her to sit!

Who said Greyhounds can't sit again?

She also goes into her crate on command though she much prefers the couch. She has not had any toileting accidents since that day right at the start when she peed on the dog bed.

She has worn out her grace period with Miss Barbie now and gets growled at if she does any trampling or invading of personal space. Barbie still lets Mouse do things she would not allow another dog to do.

Now I know my blog followers will be sad to hear this, but Mouse will not be here for much longer. One of the families that came to meet her on the weekend decided that she is the one for them. Perhaps her new forever family will send me some photos for the blog so that you can still get your fix of beautiful white Greyhound. 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Wordless Wednesday - Mouse hiding from the light

Monday, April 15, 2013

Adventures in the world of Mouse

We took Mouse to Pet Lover's Cafe yesterday to have a look at martingales. They didn't really have anything small enough so we just bought a couple of cat bowls and a bag of treats for the dogs. As it was a short drive, I decided that we should take the Honda Civic and let Mouse sit on the back seat for the first time. Until now I have been driving her around in the cargo area of my X-Trail, behind a cargo barrier.

It took a little while to convince her to jump in the back when we were heading out. I sat in the back with her to make sure she didn't stress out or try to climb into the front. She took a little while to figure out that the seats were nice to lie down on. She curled up next to me and even figured out that the arm rests make a good chin rest (something that Bender and Barbie know very well).

When we got to Guildford she happily jumped out of the car. She seemed to recognise the area, and we had been here two weeks before. She got some adoring pats from passersby. We went to the shop, and she kept trying to get us to buy a massive smoked leg bone. I think it may have been an elephant's leg, it was so huge. It was the type of bone Bender broke his tooth on so our answer was no.

She got back into the car no worries and settled down after a couple of minutes. We got home and she was firmly ensconced on the seat. She was not budging. I tried to get her out of the car and she simply flopped her head down onto the seat. In the end I had to push her out! I guess she likes car seats a little
too much.

The other strange thing she did today was stand in the hallway and bark at .... the toilet. I went to investigate the noise and found that Mittens had just awoken from a deep sleep in her basket in the laundry. Frou was in the lounge room with us and Bumblebee had just gone to his forever home. Mouse was still standing in the hallway, staring at the toilet. I inspected the toilet-room and could find nothing, not even a bug. I have no idea what she was barking at. Perhaps we have ghosts that only Mouse can see?

Friday, April 12, 2013

Good News for Bumblebee!

After almost three months, Bumblebee has finally found his forever home. CJ Animal Rescue did the home visit last night and it was all good. They are going to pick him up tomorrow and deliver him to his new family.

The best bit about it is that he is going to people I know - my friend's parents! Hopefully that means I will get some photos and updates about how he is settling in at his new digs.

We might have good news for Mouse too soon, although she doesn't get speyed until next Friday, so she will be with us for another couple of weeks.

Mouse and Bender are actually bonding, it's very cute to see how she puts up with him. I took this video of them playing tug-o-war last night.

It is going to be very quiet around here when we go back to the default of only 4 animals! I won't be fostering any more until at least July after these guys go as I will be going on a holiday. There will probably be more Greyhounds, though we shall see what comes!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Wordless Wednesday - Foster Harmony

Monday, April 8, 2013

Barbie's Moves

With Mouse around, Barbie has a ready made playmate. Mouse was a bit scared at the park at first, but she is very good with other dogs and soon came out of her shell. On their first trip to the park they had a high speed collision, and Barbie acted like she had a broken leg for a while. Mouse carried on as if nothing had happened. She is a little toughie. They were a bit more careful running together after that, but there was no bad blood between them.

Before Mouse came along, Barbie had to hope for other dogs to play with in the dog park. This video is from a few weeks ago when Barbie found this lovely friend to play with. I can't remember her name but she was very sweet and kept coming to me for cuddles.

Barbie and Mouse have their moments, they are not always best mates, especially when my affections are concerned. I think Mouse does look to Barbie for direction in the house and Barbie has been extra-tolerant of Mouse and her exuberant nature.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Bender's an old lumpy man

Bender had three lumps examined by the Vet this evening. She took a fine needle aspiration of two of them and concluded they were fatty lipomas which we need to keep an eye on. The lump under his collar is a wart-like growth and they will only take it out if it turns black or gets irritated. It's probably a good thing that Bender isn't often walked using his collar - we have a harness for him.

They did the lump check for free as well, which I think is a sign of an awesome Vet. I have been briefed to keep an eye on them and make sure they don't change. She also said that if he suddenly sprouts more lumps then bring him back as well.

He now weighs 30 kilograms, and the Vet said that was a good weight for him because he still has a waist. She wasn't concerned about him not eating as much as he used to as now that he is getting older he is moderating his weight himself. 

All in all, good news! 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Mouse's Non-Adoption Photos

Mouse pulls her lips right back when she is yawning. I haven't really noticed whilst hanging out with her, but these photos are evidence that she sometimes pulls very scary faces!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Mouse in her first weekend of domesticity!

Mouse has been here for four days now and she has already provided a lot of entertainment.

She is doing pretty well with the cats, Froufrou has decided that Mouse is definitely cat safe. Mittens is pretty mean to Mouse still, and Bumblebee does not like her at all.

Like a lot of Greyhounds who come straight out of a racing kennel, Mouse likes to collect things and put them on her bed.

She stole my sock right out of my hand while I was trying to put my shoes on.

She stole my PJ pants off the back of a chair and gingerly carried them to her crate.

She stole quite a few of Bender's toys and buried them in her bed so that he wouldn't come and take them when she wasn't looking.

We took her out for a walk in Guildford and when she was a bit overwhelmed, she stopped and plopped her little butt down on the pavement. She met a pug but I think she was a little bit scared of him.

She was really good at the cafe where we stopped for breakfast. The people sitting next to us admired her, and even saved a bit of bacon for her. She didn't eat it though, as she wasn't really sure what it was.

The house was full of new experiences for her, like a big, flashing thing in the lounge room with big talking humans on it. She watches TV actively every now and then.

She was scared of the ceiling fan when it was first turned on, but settled down after 15 minutes of intermittent staring.

She was scared of the vacuum cleaner for about 2 minutes before she decided it was fine and curled up on the couch with Bender and Barbie.

photo by Bender's favorite person, Kim P 
We took all three dogs on a couple of outings, they all came along to my friend's wedding rehearsal. The Greyhounds were very well behaved, but Bender did get a bit overexcited when he recognised one of his favorite people, who was going to be photographing this big day.

photo also by Kim P
I had the Greyhounds, and so we lined up in our positions to practice for the Big Day. Mouse saw her opportunity to cosy up with the bride and get some attention. 

photo by Kim P
Mouse needs a lot more leash time as at times she is like walking a trout down the street. She settles down and walks in a straight line if she has Barbie with her, as Barbie is such a good calming influence.

photo by Kim P
I have to go back to work today, and so things will change a little bit and Mouse will get to adjust to the regular, hum drum, life of dogs of a 9 - 5 worker. Hopefully she is so tired after these last 4 days that she doesn't mind. 

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