The Chair

Jun 2013Comments Off

Ernie will often hop up on the chair and wait for me to come visit. He perches on the end or up on the arm and it is super cute so today I decided I wanted to get a picture of him doing it. I dragged the chair outside so the light would be brighter and as is always the way, nothing went as planned.  Here are my thoughts/actual conversation with the dogs as I tried to get the picture I envisioned.

Maggie can you wait for me to actually get the chair in place before you hop up? No? OK.  Plan B, take cute pictures of you in the chair.

Chair 1 The Chair

Errrr. Could everyone get out of the way?  I’m trying to get pictures of Maggie.

Chair 2 The Chair

Hey Maggie!  Wake up.  You are getting your picture taken but I still need everyone else to move.

Chair 3 The Chair

Oh Hi Ramone.  You are looking particularly handsome today but I’m trying to get pictures of dogs (or rather Ernie) in the chair today.

Chair 4 The Chair

Yay.  Finally got Ernie in the chair. Hey Ernie – could you look at me? Please?  Just for  a sec?  You know like you usually do when you want me to come visit?

Chair 5 The Chair

Over here.  Hey Ernie. Shelby, do you have to go there right now? I’m trying to get Ernie to pose for me.

Chair 6 The Chair

Apollo and Luna.  Hey kids.  Could you come over here?  I’m trying to get a shot of Ernie.  Oh wait this could be cute.  Could you all look over here please?  Sigh…

Chair 7 The Chair

At this point I went inside, showed Amanda my pictures of everyone BUT Ernie and she pointed out all the messy gravel under the chair.  So I went back out and swept…  OK.  I’m ready now.  :)

Oh Charlie.  Is it your turn now?  Apollo, what are you doing back there? Could you grab the ball while you are there?  It is kind of distracting in the picture. Ramone, could you maybe try sitting somewhere else so I could just get one dog at a time?

Chair 8 The Chair

Hey Shelby.  Why don’t you get on the chair.  No one else seems to be around.  Ummmm…. That isn’t quite what I intended but OK.

Chair 9 The Chair

Mya and Shelby – do you have to play right there, right now?

Chair 10 The Chair

Yes I’m talking to you.  I’m trying to take a picture of Ernie in the chair remember?

Chair 11 The Chair

Yes Ramone, I know you are better than Ernie at this but you don’t normally sit in the chair so it just isn’t “you”.

Chair 12 The Chair

Thanks for showing him how it is done, you handsome dog you.

Chair 13 The Chair

Yes Charlie you can have a turn too.  Charlie if you want your picture taken you need to look at the camera.  Ernie now what are you doing?  I’ve given up on getting a picture of you in the chair. It’s Charlie’s turn now.

Chair 14 The Chair

OK Ernie you are in the chair.  Great. Could you give me a nice smile now?  Why are you giving me such a deadly glare? What did I do wrong?

Chair 15 The Chair

Oh that’s better.  But could you look over here?  Ernie!  Hey Ernie!  You hoo!

Chair 16 The Chair

Wait. I didn’t get the picture.  Where are you going?

Chair 17 The Chair

Alright Kahlua you can have a turn too but you aren’t any better at this than Ernie. Could you look at me?  Please?  Just for a moment?

Chair 18 The Chair

Maggie you are supposed to be ON the chair not next to it.

Chair 19 The Chair

Thanks Apollo for being such a good sport. You look nice and relaxed up there.  OK.  Now let’s clear everyone else out of the way…

Chair 20 The Chair

What are you two doing under there??

Chair 21 The Chair

I couldn’t have set this up if I tried.  Now if you could all look at me please….

Chair 22 The Chair

Yes Charlie you can have a turn.  And hey.  You are pretty good at this. First try and everything.  Monty what are you doing there?

Chair 23 The Chair

Alright Monty.  You can have a turn too although you really don’t seem comfortable standing on the chair.  Hey.  Are you just using this as a chance to see onto the street better?  Hey Monty!  I’m over here.  Smile for me…

Monty 1 The Chair

I’m sorry this is taking so long Luna.  Is your head getting too heavy?  Why don’t you just stop and rest a minute.

Chair 241 The Chair

AND finally Amanda suggested I lock everyone else inside and just take Ernie out.  Seriously.  Why didn’t I think of that earlier!!!!

This is it!  This is the moment I wanted to capture, albeit on a cleaner chair. icon smile The Chair  Thanks everyone for all your “help”.

Chair 251 The Chair


May 2013Comments Off

Some completely random photos from last week….

Avery and Rosco playing chase.

Random 12 Randomness

Finn – take a quick breather between wrestling matches.

Random 11 Randomness

A very smiley Echo.

Random 10 Randomness

Apollo and Avery playing tug.

Random 9 Randomness

Avery playing keep away with Charlie.

Random 8 Randomness

Kahlua and Rosco just hanging out.

Random 7 Randomness

Ramone always has a smile on his face.

Random 6 Randomness

Luna was asking Brodie what he had for breakfast.  :)

Random 5 Randomness

Alfie sporting the windblown look.

Random 4 Randomness

Taylor and Charlie playing tug.

Random 3 Randomness

Monty and Alerya keeping an eye on things outside.

Random 2 Randomness

Alyera just “chilllin”.

Random 1 Randomness

And Tails

Apr 2013Comments Off

Tails 4 And Tails

Tails 3 And Tails

Tails 2 And Tails

Tails 1 And Tails


Apr 2013Comments Off

It was fun to wait and see who would poke their head out the door.

Heads 4 Heads

Heads 3 Heads

Heads 2 Heads

Heads 1 Heads

The Quiet Moments

Apr 2013Comments Off

Daycare is filled with running, wrestling and fetching. It is also filled with snuggles, pats and naps.  I like the quiet moments.  Not only are the dogs relaxed, but we get to let our guard down.  Keeping a constant vigilance on 30 active dogs can be exhausting.  Some days I’m not sure who goes home more tired – me or the dogs.  I just wished I burned as many calories a day watching as they do playing.

Marley 1 The Quiet Moments


While it may be hard to imagine when you are watching the dogs run and play, it is not complete chaos. We do have a few rules for the dogs.  One of those rules is that they aren’t allowed to  be a “Third Wheel”. A “Third Wheel” is basically a third dog that wants to get in on the play that two dog have already started.

Play between dogs is best when it is just 2 at a time.  If you watch 2 dogs wrestle, you’ll start to see their game has natural ebbs and flows. They will wrestle for a bit and then take a break.  Often that break lasts only a second and the dogs just pause briefly. Other times, it last a little longer and one dog might even get up and have a drink before coming back to the game.  These breaks are the dogs’ way of making sure that the play doesn’t keep getting more and more excited.  Essentially, it keeps their game of play fighting as just that, a game.

Third Wheel 1 2 Daycare Rules   Third Wheeling

One of the problems with a “Third Wheel” is that they tend to jump in during the breaks. So while one dog in the original pair is taking a break, the other dog is now busy wrestling with someone else so they don’t get any down time.  Eventually the dog that is constantly wrestling is going to have himself quite worked up, or the opposite might start to happen, and the dog might start to feel overwhelmed.  Either way, it isn’t a good situation.

The other problem with Third Wheeling is that it can take the balanced play of two dogs and bump it up over the edge of fun and into the “not so fun” category.  So in the case of the image below, Chuck and Rex are wrestling and Sako has tried to jump in to play with Rex at the same time.  In this case, Rex didn’t seem to notice or mind and I stopped Sako right after I saw it start to happen so that it stayed that way. If I’d been paying better attention, I would have noticed him coming up on the two of them and called him away and distracted him before he even had a chance to nibble on Rex’s back leg.

Third Wheel 1 Daycare Rules   Third Wheeling

Poor Sako. He is getting picked on in this blog post, but he isn’t alone in his third wheeling activities. It is something we are CONSTANTLY watching for and CONSTANTLY stopping.  Two dogs playing can be quite exciting to the other dogs and you can’t blame them for wanting in on the fun. The key is to direct them towards another dog that is also in the mood to play or to distract them until the wrestling match is over and then they can take on the “winner” in the next bout.

Third Wheel 1 3 Daycare Rules   Third Wheeling

The Whole Picture

Apr 2013Comments Off

If any of you have ever been to any seminars on dog behaviour or ever done any reading on the subject, you’ll know that it is important to look at the whole picture when it comes to trying to interpret body language.  It is easy to say that a dog is angry or about to bite when you can see all their teeth like Gertie is displaying.

Gertie 1 The Whole Picture

But at the moment this image was taken, nothing could be further from the truth.  Gertie was having an absolute blast playing with Sako.  This is what she looks like when she is having fun, not when she is angry.

Gertie 1 3 The Whole Picture

If she was angry, her nose would have been all wrinkled up, her eyes would have been hard, her body would have been stiff and there probably would have been some noise backing it all up. She also wouldn’t have looked like gumby just a few seconds later.

Gertie 1 2 The Whole Picture

Oh and if this had been a fight in the making, the daycare employee wouldn’t have been just sitting there watching with a smile on their face.  :)

And We Are Back

Apr 2013Comments Off

I lost my blogging mojo there for a while.  Not completely sure why, but mainly because Facebook just makes it so darn quick and easy to share stuff, it is kind of hard to beat.

But the other day I was reading through some older posts and I realized that I really miss the blog.  It is a great chronological history for Paws on the Run and by reading through I can remember dogs that have come and gone and what things have changed over the years.  So I’m going to try and blog more. It definitely won’t be daily, but hopefully it will be at least weekly.  I’m not going to put any pressure on myself as that just kind of sucks the fun right out of it and it has to be fun, as I don’t have time to blog while I’m at work, so it is all done “on the side” so to speak.

Blog 1 And We Are Back

Ideally what I hope to do is bring my camera to work at least once a week and take enough photos for more than one blog post. So if you see some of the same dogs in the pictures in consecutive blog posts, you know why.  Every time I take my camera to work, I end up with a few hours of “extra” work (downloading, culling, editing, etc.) so it isn’t something I can do daily.

Blog 2 And We Are Back

We try and feature everyone’s dog but there are certain times and days that makes taking pictures more difficult.  I generally take the photos and Amanda helps out a lot but there are times we aren’t  there.  So for example if your dog comes Tuesday mornings, odds are, they aren’t featured on facebook very often and they will rarely be featured on the blog because I don’t work Tuesday mornings on a regular basis.  Some days are “wilder” than others and keeping an eye on things and taking photos isn’t always possible so the camera tends to come out during the quieter times and some days there aren’t any quieter times.  LOL.

Blog 3 And We Are Back

So I’m sorry if you don’t see your dog on the blog very often or other dogs seem to show up more than most.  It isn’t favouritism, it’s just timing.  Featuring every dog is something I stress about ALL THE TIME and I’ve decided I just need to let it go, or it’ll suck the fun right back out of things again. For example, you’ll notice that the blog posts that come up this week will all feature large dogs. That is because they were all taken within a 30 minute period on a single day and I happened to be hanging out with the big rowdy kids during that period. Some of them weren’t doing much doing those 30 minutes, some were playing too far away for decent pictures and others were wrestling constantly 6 feet away from me.  If I’d had the camera out an hour earlier or an hour later, I would have had photos of different dogs. I never know who or what I’m going to get.  I try and not make the camera = fun time or they all start to lose their minds with excitement when they see it.  Been there, done that. icon smile And We Are Back So if your dog is resting while I’m taking pictures, I’m not going to tell him it’s party time.

Blog 1 2 And We Are Back

That being said, I’ll try and bring my camera on different days each week and try and try and switch up taking photos in the mornings or afternoons. icon smile And We Are Back

Despite their size difference Tonka and Chuck are GREAT friends.  They love to wrestle and Chuck often lets Tonka believe he has the strength to get him to the ground and pin him there.  :)

ChuckTonka 1 Bulldog vs. Mastiff

ChuckTonka 2 Bulldog vs. Mastiff

ChuckTonka 3 Bulldog vs. Mastiff

ChuckTonka 4 Bulldog vs. Mastiff

ChuckTonka 5 Bulldog vs. Mastiff

ChuckTonka 6 Bulldog vs. Mastiff

ChuckTonka 7 Bulldog vs. Mastiff

ChuckTonka 8 Bulldog vs. Mastiff

Big Sister vs. Little Brother

Oct 2012Comments Off

Muoi 1 Big Sister vs. Little Brother

Muoi (the husky) and Hunter (the dachshund) are siblings that LOVE each other.  We keep a very close eye on dogs playing when their sizes are so different, but in the case of siblings, they usually have already worked out their “rules”.

Muoi 2 Big Sister vs. Little Brother

This play session probably lasted a solid 5 to 10 minutes and not a single yelp, growl or yip was heard out of either of them.  As a rule, silent play, is very good play!  It means that it is balanced and that neither dog is feeling at all overwhelmed or intimidated.  That isn’t to say that some noise during play is bad (some dogs constantly make noises and some games (like the “bitey face” game always involves noise) but silent play is almost always good.

Muoi 3 Big Sister vs. Little Brother

At the other end of the spectrum, if you’ve ever witnessed a dog fight, you’ll probably remember the loud noises that accompanied it.  Escalating noise between two dogs playing is usually a sign that the play is moving beyond fun and rambunctious and is always a sign for us to step in and give the dogs a short break, if they don’t initiate the break themselves.  Often even just a few seconds of rest can make a huge difference.

Muoi 4 Big Sister vs. Little Brother

If you are interested in learning more about dog behaviour during play, here is a great article about what to look for.  We couldn’t agree more with what she has to say about “Third Wheels”!

Muoi 5 Big Sister vs. Little Brother

And just because I had lots of photos of these two, I figured I might as well post them.  Enjoy!

Muoi 6 Big Sister vs. Little Brother

Muoi 7 Big Sister vs. Little Brother

Muoi 8 Big Sister vs. Little Brother

Muoi 9 Big Sister vs. Little Brother

Muoi 10 Big Sister vs. Little Brother

Muoi 11 Big Sister vs. Little Brother