What’s in a tail wag…

Author: Kim  //  Category: Ashas, Isabella, Pompeii, Sasha

I was watching Isabella the other day as she fretted about in her usual flurry upon her mom’s arrival.  As her tail flew back and forth in frantic chaos, it made me realize how different tail wags can be from dog to dog. Ashas has the rotary version of a tail wag, a circular motion of happiness telling the world he is ready to party! Sasha’s tail wag was perfectly timed and balanced, a metranome of tail wags, if you will, stating her approval of just about everything in the world! She was such a happy and well adjusted little girl!

Then there is Isabella’s crooked wizard’s wand of a tail wagging in its haphazard frenzy which exudes her conflicting OCD/NOCD (obsessive compulsive dissorder/no clear direction) attitude about most things. I imagine her thought process to be one of optimistic/pessimistic indecision… she wants to like new experiences but she’s so scared of something bad that she can’t make up her mind how to react and so a frenzy usually wins.

Then there’s the feline tail wag… Hardly worth calling a wag, Pompeii has a gentle swirling motion forming beautuful symmetrical figure eights to an fro, clearly announcing the power position she sees herself in… Make no mistake, this self-appointed head of the household must appear regal and in command at all times!

So just what does a tail wag say?

Well, I’ve not seen much on the subject of tail wags related to cat tails (the feline kind, not the flowering plant kind) but everything I’ve ever read says quite a lot from a dog’s point of view! Dogs (along with those people who have a keen dog sense) know how to tell when approaching another dog if they are friendly, happy, angry, ready to bite the head of the world off, etc.

What a useful function, in fact… Imagine if people had tails we could wag!

Maybe I’d be able to tell before I approach the counter if the check-out clerk is having a bad day! Then I could simply get in a different line and avoid having my groceries thrown so feverishly into my grocery bags, almost as if her bad day will get better just by putting my watermelon in the same bag as my bread!

Speaking of things that don't belong, who put the cat in with my vitamin water???

Of course I could also determine that the clerk in my line with the extremely friendly tail wag will no doubt make a 5 minute checkout last 20 minutes while she fills me in on her last dinner party at which the mother-in-law was in attendance and completely embarrased her in front of all her friends by complaining about how the mashed potatoes tasted like instant when in fact they were homemade and blended in the mixer for a smoother creamier mashed potato…

I can haz mashed potatoes?

And best of all, what about the waiter who is miffed at the table ahead of me because they left no tip on their $96 service for eight… I could decide right away from the lack of wag thereof that I prefer patio seating and politley ask to move before anyone gets hurt! So much good to come from a tail wag!

Back to reality, nothing beats a tailwag for the sheer entertainment factor! Who doesn’t love watching a happy pup’s tail bebopping with excitement as they prance about! And watching our pets do the infamous tailwag chase never get’s old… we should be able to somehow harness some energy from this, like windmills, as they fuel their spinning with determination for the catch! My question is why don’t they ever get dizzy?

Of course, we must not forget the interactive usefulness of the tailwag between species… For example, Pompeii seriously thinks Ashas’ tail is a toy which is attached to her buddy and lies readily available for her personal amusement, even when Ashas may disagree.

The huntress spies her prey, she slowly moves in, then with precision she makes her move!!!

So there you have it, random thoughts about tailwags…

How does your tail wag?

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Doggie Paddle…

Author: Kim  //  Category: Adventures, Ashas, Isabella

Summertime is now over, the chill of fall is well in the air and winter is fast approaching.  Sadly, we didn’t find out until the end of summer that apparently our guys have an interest in swimming!  They’re dachshunds which rarely, and even then, barely like baths so who would’ve thought ours would or could swim?!?

It all started last summer (’10) when Tristian bought Isabella a little wading pool to which she has religiously responded with the proverbial dachshund “You’ve got to be kidding” look when presented with any opportunity to use it. Ashas was still pretty young when we got it and for some reason which escapes me now, we didn’t even really try to get him interested.  Mind you the water here in the pacific northwest comes out of the faucet colder than ice water, even in the dead heat of summer, so I suspect I was paranoid about him getting sick exposed to such cold water while so young?

At any rate, fast forward to this summer (’11) when we pulled the little blue puppy pool back out and Ashas showed slightly more interest than Peanut had ever shown.  In fact, the first time it came out he jumped into it himself!  Promising! For about a split second… true to dachshund form, he has proven to mostly just snoop around it, using it as a giant water bowl. If it’s a really hot day he will tolerate a quick dip to run around in a circle and let you splash of the water on his back for a cool down…

If you live anywhere near Seattle, you’ve heard of Marymoor Park.  They have one of, if not the largest off-leash Dog Park in the state of WA.  We started going there this summer to let the pups run some energy off and make new friends.  Actually, we used to go there with Sasha and Isabella before Sasha got sick but we had to stop due to her illness to avoid exposing her to anything with her weakened immune system.  Because of that, it had been a couple of years since going. The park has a beautiful river going through the off-leash area with access for dogs to enjoy the water.  All of our trips through the park and along the trails never resulted in water play for us, we have been happy to just enjoy the sights from the sidelines…we have doxies and everyone knows (most) doxies don’t do water…

Or so we thought…

A few weeks ago we met several friends and their fur-kids at the park for a puppy play-date!  Upon encountering the water area, one of my friends, Linda, who has a sweet larger dog named Roxie, decided to go in the river to let Roxie swim.  Then, another friend of ours, decided to take their miniature poodle in for an experimental swim.  Next thing we know, Ashas was looking like he was going to jump in so Tristian got in with him. Well, one thing led to another and within minutes, we were ALL in the river with our pups, Isabella included!  It was such a hoot!!!

Roxie is a pro at swimming!

This is our friend Coco!

Isabella's splashing up a storm!

That's one wet puppy!!!

This is Panda, takin' it easy!

Coco is a natural swimmer!

Little Abby is covered with ringlets when she gets wet! Too cute...

Abby is gonna get her bow wet!

Ashas is ready to go back in for more fun!

Tristian and I decided the next day to go back for some more fun in the water since they had liked swimming but to make the fun safer and less stressful for us we would invest in life jackets. They did well enough swimming but their short legs tired out pretty quickly so having the floatation of the life vests made for an easier swim!

We can’t wait until next summer… until then swim lessons are on hold. In the meantime, enjoy some clips of Ashas and Isabella doin’ the dog paddle!

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Author: Kim  //  Category: Ashas, Isabella, Pompeii

Well, it’s official! Ashas and Pompeii are total BFFs!

They have formed a strong bond in the short time since we adopted her a month ago. I’m still convinced they all think she is just another dachshund, be it one that has a unique talent of purring! As I mentioned in my last post, by day three they were all showing signs of being good pals and it’s been such a joy to watch all three of these guys grow closer but Ashas and Pompeii are truly besties!

Most of their days are spent playing together wrestling, chasing and teasing each other!

When they’re not getting into trouble together, they’re usually snuggled together napping… one important trait that comes naturally for any purring dachshund!

Pompeii has been great for both pups! Even Isabella enjoys relaxing with her nearby!

Mind you, Pompeii does like to torement Isabella, begging for her to play! Typically it’s when Isabella is trying to sleep and has no patience for being awakened. We all know how some Doxies need their beauty rest!

I think Isabella is a little jealous at times when Ashas and Pompeii are going at the speed of light around the house. She tries to get in the action but she often gets left in the dust. Remember when you were a teenager with your two best friends at the amusement park? When it comes time to ride the roller coaster one person always has to sit alone… that’s Isabella in this three muskateers act, usually in the backseat watching all the fun.

And fun there is…the kind of fun based on love only best friends know…

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