Oldest child.

When my sister was born, I was miserable.  In fact, she had to stay in the hospital for a few days so when my parents came home without her I claimed a huge victory.  When she eventually did arrive, I pushed her bassinet out onto the front porch and shut the front door.  True story.

Thus far, Melvin is handling oldest child syndrome much better than I did!  I mean sure, he has a general look of disgust on his face, and every time Jake snorts I see the hairs on Melvin’s back twitch.  But all in all, Melvin has been a flippen rock star!!!  Of course, his new brother is still on the other side of a baby gate so…

Speaking of the gate.  How in the world do people live the double life that is necessary to acclimate two dogs into a household.  I give Melvin a treat and then go into the mudroom to bond with Jake.  I snuggle with Melvin on the couch but can feel Jake burning a hole into my skull watching us. Is this why parents of multiple 2-legged children get nannies?

It took a few days weeks months for me to love my sister. It was that life changing love that gave me divine purpose. Melvin and Jake may or may not ever feel that for one another, but for now, I’m just happy that we are — so far, so good!

Also, Jake had a vet appointment (for a much-needed bath and ‘butt area grooming’) and the following was said to me:  “at first we were surprised how many nipples he had, then we thought perhaps one was a hernia but as it turns out, he just has a really, really pronounced belly button’.

Dogs have belly buttons, this I did not know.

Introducing, Jake!

Meet Jake!  Jake is a 5-year-old French Bulldog who is super adorable and funny as hell.  It seems he may not have been to the vet very often in his previous life. He has Ehrlichiosis (tick born infection), so that is something I’ll be discussing with the vet at his wellness appointment this Saturday. Other than that, he makes ridiculously loud noises that shake the house.  Jake has been his name for his whole life.  I was hoping to not know his name so I could use one of the  many names that comes to mind when I look at him,   but I do know and when I call “Jake”, he comes running. His name, is Jake.

You will recall that Melvin and Jake met a few weeks back and that it went well enough for me to want to adopt Jake.  The re-meet was not what I would call joyous, but it was fine. We are doing the separation approach for a few weeks, especially since I have to travel for work this week.  So for now, Jake is in the mudroom during the day and in my room in a soft crate at night, while Melvin of course has full house access. Melvin is sure to alert Jake of his run of the house by passing by the mudroom several times a day to say ‘ha, ha’.   The boys see each other through a baby gate and they have been doing fantastic with this set up.  When Melvin does drive-bys. they both get an A+ for acknowledging but not reacting.

They have also successfully been on walks together so that is also a huge step in the right direction. During their first meeting a while back, walking together was something they did splendidly so  while I could walk them both separately, I was hoping to have them reconnect on that activity and it seems to be working out for now.

Next week we will move to separation mode when I’m at work and tie down for Jake when I’m home.  Baby. Steps. Indeed.

And here is big brother.  He doesn’t understand what all the fuss is about. Everyone knows, big dogs are better and cuter AND allowed on the couch.

Why the face?

I have had Melvin for just over four years and have been asked several hundred times about what’s behind the sad face.  I always say, ‘that’s just his face’.  When I first got him, I fell in love with his sad expression.  I had met him, I knew how exuberant and outgoing he was, so I didn’t feel too terrible about enjoying his weepy expression.  In fact, his mopey face, is part of the joy of my every day.

With an itch, itch here and an itch, itch there…

If you ask me what Melvin is allergic to, I will tell you it’s easier to list out the things he is not allergic to.  On the ‘not allergic to list’ would have been his flea & tick collar.  But that item has jumped ships.

Melvin cannot take most oral treatments due to allergies to many fillers found in tablets and chews. This includes heart-worm/flea/tick medication thus we use topical Revolution.  Revolution does a great job at heart-worm protection but only a so, so job at flea & tick prevention, thus we have always supplemented him with a prescription flea & tick collar.  A few weeks ago we found out that the company that has been producing his specific collar no longer makes it.  So we switched. He almost immediately started itching but since it was still fake fall here, he was itchy in general.

Luckily, since I’m addicted to Sirius Republic dog collars and switch out his collar every few weeks, I was quick to see just how red and raw his poor neck was becoming. I ran him over to the vet, they shaved his neck and after some Animax he’s healing nicely.  Tick collar is off and he’s now on two topical treatment for heart-worm, fleas & ticks.  Check. Check.

We are one step away from ‘dog in a bubble’ status.