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Monthly Archives: July 2016

18 week update

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Time is flying by!  Hard to believe Voodoo is already 4 months old. He is now 18″ tall at 18 weeks. He’s grown 2″ in the past 2 weeks! He can now take treats from my fingers while in heel position without having to get his front feet off the ground, or me having to bend.
And he can keep up with Dazzle when he runs!

Catching treats is going well too. But it’s hard to hold the camera and toss the treats correctly 🙂
He likes to tear up paper, so I have been “tossing” bits of paper, which float nicely, although sometime erratically and he’s been catching those more often than not.

He now has his big boy teeth in the front, which looks odd with the baby teeth next to them 🙂  I tried to get a photo, but he’s not a fan of my holding his lips back while I stick a phone in his face. LOL Doesn’t help that it takes awhile to focus and take the photo.  I might have to try with my real camera, which would be faster and might catch more than a black blur or a nice photo of the background.

I took him to the park with his new GPS collar and he did great on the short walk along the trail. Dazzle also got to go along and really enjoyed it!  Voodoo really watches him and likes to do what his “big brother” does. “Whatcha sniffin?”… “Whatcha peeing on?”… “We’re moving on, okay, wait for me!”  Dazzle wasn’t minding being left behind for awhile, but I think he’s over that now and would like to go more places again. And now that Voodoo has better leash manners, I can try taking both on errands when I don’t have to be busy with other things.

GPS collar

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Forgot to mention that Voodoo now has a snazzy new tracking device collar that I just activated. If he decides to go “walk about” while off leash, I can use my phone to see his location on a map or satellite view of the area. Kind of like insurance- you hope to never need it, but having it gives a bit of peace of mind. He’s scratched at it a few times while I was getting him used to it, but he isn’t really bothered by it. Just hoping no one thinks it’s a shock collar.  He will mostly just be wearing it when I know he’s going to be off leash.

For anyone interested, it’s a Whistle brand. I got it for half price through a facebook promo and the GPS service is $6.99 – $9.99/mo. depending on the plan you pick. There was a glitch in the facebook promo and I got a second unit for free for Dazzle! Which is why I got them when I did (before I even got Voodoo). They fixed the glitch in the sale quickly, but still honored the purchases made during the glitch. It was supposed to be buy one and get one half off, which I was considering. But because of the glitch, one was half price and when I put the second one in my cart it came up free! Couldn’t pass up THAT deal when I saw it! I haven’t activated the monthly plan for Dazzle’s yet.

7-28-16 GPS Collar sm

First hotel stay

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From 7-29-16

He did great at his first hotel stay!  I’m sure it helped that he had his ‘hotel pro’ brother there. He liked that he could get on the hotel bed himself. My bed at home is higher, which helps me get in and out, but he’s not able to jump on it himself-yet. His first night was after getting up at 7am and spending most of the day at the trial while I Judged. But since he spent most of that time sleeping in his crate, he and Dazzle were ready to play when we arrived at the hotel room. Thankfully they play quietly and I was done Judging by 3pm, so we got to the hotel fairly early.

After they played for awhile, then napped for awhile, I took them to Bob Evans to try Voodoo’s first sit-down meal in a restaurant. When the waitress says (at the end of the meal) “I didn’t know you had dogs under there!”  I’d say that was a success! But they take up a LOT of space. Not an issue when I’m by myself, but there wasn’t any leg room under the booth for anyone else.

Back at the hotel, they played a bit more and we went out for a potty walk where they found what seemed to be an entire colony of mice in the grass strip by the road. They both had a blast following trails and sticking their noses into the holes and breathing deeply for about a half hour. No mice were seen, but their scent trails were everywhere! we would have stayed there longer, but even though it was dark, it was still about 85 degrees with high enough humidity to feel like a sauna.

Back in the room, he went into his crate and slept silently till morning. Since I was only back up Judging that day, I didn’t have to get up at the crack of dawn and it was nice to have a relaxed morning.

The boys relaxing at the hotel:

7-24-16 relaxing at the hotel 1 sm

Pretty snazzy for a Super 8!

7-24-16 relaxing at the hotel sm

Checking facebook for messages from his fans7-24-16 checking for msg sm

He may no longer fit on my desk at home, but when he got in my lap and saw the uncluttered, open expanse of “desk” he went right on up and sprawled out! Bonus: it was right in front of the A/C unit.

7-24-16 ready to supervise sm7-24-16 ready to supervise1 sm

This is how he spent most of the time at the trial- sprawled in the crate, belly up. Thankfully he was quiet and relaxed, even when I was running Dazzle in the ring!

7-24-16 barn hunt relaxing sm

Saturday evening a group of us went out to dinner. I debated taking both dogs, but in the end I decided it would be better to just take Voodoo, so Dazzle stayed in his crate at the dog club (building was locked and A/C on). I only stayed at dinner about an hour and a half. For the first part, Voodoo was figidity. Then he settled down and took a short nap. Then he was ready to go and do something else (bored). But by then, we were done eating and ready to go back and get Dazzle and head to the hotel for the night. The restaurant was packed and busy. But overall he did really well with it! 7-23-16 relaxing at the restaurant1 sm7-23-16 relaxing at the restaurant sm

Only issue was that when I got Dazzle, I forgot to get Voodoo’s folding crate! It was about 9:30 pm when I realized I didn’t have a crate for him to sleep in!  So, he also experienced his first night sleeping loose.  I did my best to “puppy proof” the room by tucking up all visible wires, picking up the trash can, closing the toilet, etc. and then just had to hope for the best.  After I went to bed and turned off the lights (about midnight) he started on the bed with me and Dazzle. But I could tell he was hot by the amount of flipping and flopping and complaint moaning  he was doing.  So then he went to the floor and tried several different places there (next to the bed, under the luggage rack, under the desk, under the chair, near the bathroom, etc.) but there apparently wasn’t a good spot on the floor either.  He tried a few different positions on the chair in the room, but that also wasn’t right for Goldilocks. So I got up and gave him a bully stick. He moved around the floor as he worked on that till about 2am when he finally got comfortable and sleepy. He jumped on the bed, dug around a bit, flopped down, let out a big sigh and finally went to sleep!  He was still in that spot when I got up in the morning. And he was relaxed and stretching out on the bed as I got dressed to take him out. So a big success! But he still sleeps in his crate at home 🙂




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I feel like a slacker.  Compared to what I did with Dazzle when he was a pup, I haven’t done as much with Voodoo. But I haven’t NEEDED to do as much training! With Dazzle, he was non-stop energy.  Self-control and impulse control was NOT his strong suit 🙂 So the multiple training sessions per day were to save both our sanity.

Voodoo however, is much more laid back and has excellent self control and impulse control. We have worked on it, but he learns fast and he just has a much different temperament from a Malinois. Which is REALLY pleasant, I must say 🙂 But because he does have such a nice ability to settle and/or self-entertain I haven’t felt the need to be keeping him occupied 24/7. So we do little training sessions here and there whenever the need or desire arises, but I haven’t set up the camera to capture it. Most of what we are working on has been building the foundation behaviors, some of which I did capture and post.

The newest behavior I have been trying to teach him is to catch treats/toys that are tossed to him. He is making improvements, but I think his biggest stumbling block at the moment is just his age and lack of mouth/eye coordination. I’m sure in a few weeks he will be a catching maniac 🙂 He’s doing excellent in puppy class, way ahead of everyone, but it’s a great way for me to work on obedience behaviors in a highly distracting environment. And he gets a bit of time to play with the other pups. He and Dazzle are still playing like crazy and that helps keep him occupied and exercised.

Photo of the 4′ high barrier I put around the table with the cat food to keep Voodoo from another unplanned snack time.The cat can go in/out through the gate near the middle of the photo.  That is held open and kept from closing with a couple double ended snaps (not in the photo). While she’s not afraid of the dogs, she does like her new little safe haven 🙂

7-18-16 cat food barrier sm

A few photos of our session with bubbles. In the first photo, I hadn’t planned for him to jump, but the bubble floated upwards and of course that was the one he wanted.  I cringed as I took it, but he landed safely and I got a great photo. He wasn’t so happy with the taste of them when he did catch them (shown in the last photo where he’s making a face after catching one). The session was cut short when I leaned down to get a better angle and dumped most of the bubble solution. 😦

7-19-16 Bubbles 4 sm7-19-16 Bubbles 3 sm7-19-16 Bubbles 1 Sm

He is LOVING nail trim time with the remote control treat dispenser! He can’t wait to get up there with it to have his nails dremeled. Still doing pretty rapid fire treats as I file, but very gradually increasing the time between treats being dispensed when I hit the button.

7-25-16 nail trim sm

This photo of him under the Jog-a-dog is the last photo I think I’ll get of him under that machine.  He went under a couple days ago and rolled over and got himself stuck under the lower part and started screaming because “the machine wouldn’t let him out”. He wasn’t hurt, just freaked out. He hasn’t squeezed under since then.

7-19-16 last photo under jog a dog sm

Last two photos are just for fun.  I was at my desk and heard him come in and sit next to me.  I looked down and he was patiently holding the big, heavy Galileo bone and waiting for me to trade it for a treat (which I did after I got the photo) 🙂  And the last one was where I finally captured a half way decent shot showing how he likes to wrap his front feet around the tug toy. This allows him to hang his full weight on it. I’m sure that will be fun when he’s 60 lbs! And sometimes he’s able to grab higher on the toy by quickly switching his grip to the part above his paws.

7-27-16 found this sm

7-27-16 paws sm


Loosing teeth

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My little boy is growing up!  He’s starting to lose his puppy teeth (probably swallowed them).

7-20-16 lost teeth sm

He still has a puppy look, but not as much as just 6 weeks ago!

7-20-16 growing up

16 week size

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He is now 17″ at the whithers and weighs 29.4lbs. Although some of that is the cat food he got into that was making him look pregnant (after the photo below was taken).  We now have a 4′ tall x-pen barrier around the table that holds the cat’s food and litter box, which also gives her a place to escape his attention.  And he is smoking us (& himself) out of various rooms! Hopefully by tomorrow it will have all passed through.

7-16-16 Sixteen weeks old 5x7 sm

Creation Museum

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From 7-17-16

We had a great day at the Creation Museum today. Lots to see! Couldn’t get good photos inside due to the lighting and the heights of the interesting things in relation to Voodoo, but we loved the garden and petting zoo! As far as I can tell, you don’t have to pay anything to wander through the beautiful and extensive gardens or to visit the petting zoo. So I recommend visiting the garden if you’re in the area. The museum wasn’t worth the price of admission in my opinion. But it had several things that made it a worthy socialization experience, including his first movie.

This video shows some of his interactions with things like the petting zoo animals, zip line riders, and the peacocks that were stalking us.

This short clip is his reaction to an animatronic dinosaur:

And we got the BEST compliment! The Security Officer said he was so much better behaved than most of the Service Dogs they see!  This short, mostly boring, clip shows his progress with loose leash walking:

Some photos from the trip:

The gardens really are beautiful and worth the visit

7-17-16 Creation Museum Garden Sm

Happy puppy  (okay, hot puppy, but looks like a big grin)

7-17-16 Tongue out Sm

These peacocks stalked us all over the garden!  When they first saw Voodoo, they came strutting up toward us with so much confidence that I worried they might attack!  But they stopped short and when we moved on, they proceeded to follow us.

7-17-16 Bird friends Sm

“Are you following me?”

7-17-16 Bird friends2 SM

I had Voodoo on this stump to get his photo and I look over and see two of the birds literally peeking around the bushes.  I laughed out loud, but couldn’t get the camera on them fast enough to capture the moment.

7-17-16 Following us SM

This is the photo I was working on when the peacocks started peeping. 🙂 Voodoo was hot and didn’t want to sit on the stump, but he humored me and then we went and sat in the shade to watch the peacocks watching us.

7-17-16 hot puppy SM

I paused to read a sign and he flopped down in the decorative grass. Oops!

7-17-16 Cool grass SM

Jungle puppy. Look at his excellent stay! It’s getting much better.

7-17-16 Jungle puppy Sm

The petting zoo animals were completely fascinated by him! And the staff loved him. These guys followed him all around their pen as we walked by. But I didn’t let him get close except for this photo.

7-17-16 Llamas SM

This Zonkey (Zebra x Donkey) and Zorse (Zebra x Horse) were agitated by Voodoo so we only stayed long enough to get a quick photo and I didn’t let Voodoo get any closer.

7-17-16 Zonkey and Zorse SM

When we stopped to rest, he zonked out 🙂  He’s learning to take advantage of that when he can on our outings.

7-17-16 Very tired pup SM

He got to attend his first movie. It was 25 min. long and included lighting effects, 3 big screens, various noises, and a water mist at one point, and he slept through it all. He did try to stretch and fell off the walker in the dark, but he just curled up on the floor and went right back to sleep 🙂  I’m sure the walking around the garden helped with that.

7-17-16 First movie SM

They have an amazing bug collection! I loved this room, with the many cases of bugs of all types and colors and sizes. Many looked like little jewels they were so colorful. Others were really unique looking. These are massive, as you can tell by my hand that I used as a size reference.

7-17-16 BIG beetles Sm

Several cases of beautiful moths and butterflies too.

7-17-16 Butterflies and moths Sm




16 weeks old!

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From 7-17-16

16 weeks old today! Photo taken in Devou park, KY. Had to wait for a wedding party to finish and then get him in there before several other people moved in to sit on the benches. I would have preferred his weight be shifted a bit more forward, but considering I only got a few shots to get this done, I’m really pleased I got a shot this nice! Enlisted a stranger to get his attention off me 🙂

7-16-16 Sixteen weeks old 5x7 sm

Gun Range

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From 7-12-16

Took Voodoo to the nearest outdoor gun range today to ensure he continues to do well with gun shots (so he can do gun dog sports). I parked a few streets away and we walked up and down the street for a bit (parallel to the range) with the shots at a distance. There were more people shooting as we did this, so the shots were frequent. Then I moved my vehicle a bit closer and walked to the range entrance from there as the shooting died down a bit. We didn’t get any closer than the entrance because the shots were quite loud there and when they got a bit louder, I realized (right before we left) that they were now shooting TOWARD us! Just bird shot, so it couldn’t reach us, but still a bit unnerving to have 3 guys pointing their shotguns your direction and I could hear the shot falling through the trees across the driveway.

There were some nearby construction noises on the other side of the road, including nail guns. And we were right next to the road where light traffic was whizzing by. He had no issues with any of it. We had to walk along the narrow country road to get to the range, so when I first parked, I was off on a side road and we walked toward the main road so he could see/hear the vehicles before we had to walk right next to them (no shoulder to walk on, since it was either a ditch or a hill).

I purposely didn’t work on anything that required rapid fire treats because I wanted to see what his body language was when he wasn’t focused on treats. That way I could ensure that if he got nervous, we could get out of there quickly. But he was happy to pull me toward the gun range to follow a scent and (not on video) he got bored with walking back and forth so he laid down and chewed on a stick for awhile (till I realized we had become “down range”).

Sorry if this video makes anyone dizzy. It’s really hard to get video when he’s walking right next to me!

Water play and cousins

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From 7-11-16

I took Voodoo to the park to play in some moving water.  I took along his life vest, but he didn’t need it.  I had his bumper toy attached to the end of a lunge whip so I could move it around and most importantly, get it back if he decided not to retrieve from the water 🙂  But he did GREAT!  I started in the shallow water and gradually built him up to deeper and deeper retrieves. Also moved the toy around for him to chase in and out of the water at a variety of depths. When I was tired, I sat on the pavement ledge and tossed a stick into the water for him to get, which he did several times. SO happy with how his retrieve is progressing! Especially since a few weeks ago it seemed like he didn’t see any point in multiple retrieves. I’d get one, maybe two short throws and then he would ignore the thrown item. So we worked on it in short sessions and I did everything I could to make it as fun and rewarding as possible and now he loves to retrieve!

After the water session, I went to my Sister-in-law’s house for dinner and took Voodoo along to play with her two 8 month old mixed breed puppies. They are about the same size as Voodoo right now, but they haven’t had as much opportunity to play with other dogs.  They were a bit over whelmed by him at first, so we moved outside and they had some really good play sessions. But then they got over confident and started getting too assertive so we stopped the play. Might try again once Voodoo is a bit bigger 🙂