Lucy’s Christmas Travels

Phew, what a week this has been for everyone! It was a wonderful week, though, and one that left Lucy exhausted!

The Saturday before Christmas we traveled to my parents’ house in Northern New Jersey where Lucy was spoiled with attention and gifts (and breakfast bacon!).

"Helping" water the tree

“Helping” water the tree

Christmas night we went to my Aunt’s house where Lucy spent dinner in her cage and was NOT happy about it…

Oh, if looks could kill

Oh, if looks could kill

From there we hit the road for South Jersey where Marty’s family lives and where more spoiling (and fattening) of Lucy continued. She finally got free range of the couch (not allowed on couches at my parents’), kids to play with, her very own stocking and she met her boyfriend, Diesel. Lucy did notplay hard to get and literally chased Diesel in circles for nearly five hours. I don’t think her technique worked.

Note that Diesel isn't exactly in hot pursuit

Note that Diesel isn’t exactly in hot pursuit

In fact, Diesel spent at least 20 minutes sitting still as a statue by the front door afraid to move for fear that Lucy would pick up her pursuit of him.

"If I don't move, maybe she won't see me"

“If I don’t move, maybe she won’t see me”

Fortunately she finally gave into her exhaustion and collapsed right in the middle of the floor in the midst of our post-Christmas brunch.

So, so tired

So, so tired

She was an absolute trooper the whole week, though, despite the interruptions to her schedule and massive amounts of time spent in the car. Now we have a few more days at home with her before we return to the “real world” and work!

Why a Bulldog?

Of all the questions I get about Lucy – does she like kids? Is she friendly? How much does she weigh? – the most common question I get is “why did you pick a bulldog?”

There are a lot of reasons I chose a dog that alternates between this:

Sleepy dog and her toys

Sleepy dog and her toys

And this:

DSC_0104

Hoppy!

Growing up I alternated between wanting a St. Bernard (?) and a corgi. I guess I kind of compromised? I got a dog that’s slightly bigger than a corgi (and much cuter!) with the “big dog” personality of a St. Bernard.

I can’t lie, I fell in love with bulldogs a few years ago because of their insane cuteness. However, I didn’t give much thought to actually getting one as I was still moving around a lot, didn’t have the money to buy and maintain a dog and quite frankly, was still too selfish with my time to want to share it with a dog.

A year or so ago, however, I went from not being interested in a dog to needing one ASAP. So, I began my research and was ecstatic to find that a bulldog would actually be perfect for my lifestyle. Bulldogs don’t need a lot of exercise; I am very into exercise but with my hectic schedule, it wouldn’t be fair to keep an energetic dog inside while I worked the occasional late night.

Because they don’t need a lot of exercise, bulldogs are great apartment dogs – another perfect fit! Marty and I live in an apartment that has a large side yard and just enough room indoors to give our dog room to play but she wouldn’t ever feel like she needed more room.

A couch, a blanket and some floor space and she's a happy camper

A couch, a blanket and some floor space and she’s a happy camper

Finally, bulldogs are people dogs. They typically love people and with our jobs, that’s a bonus. We both work in college athletics and it’s awesome to be able to bring Lucy to games and events and not have her freak out or be impossible to control. Plain and simple, she loves being around people and we can pretty much take her anywhere.

Yes, she requires a lot of work and maintenance but with a face like this, it’s worth it 10 times over!

Squishy face

Squishy face

 

A Day Late

Marty, Lucy and I had our Christmas celebration tonight as we leave tomorrow morning for New Jersey. We gave Lucy her stocking first to distract her while we opened our own gifts.

Here she is inspecting her very first stocking:

Anxiously awaiting her first toy from the magical (and slightly scary) stocking

Anxiously awaiting her first toy from the magical (and apparently slightly scary) stocking

We gave Lucy a bunch of toys and a box of dog cookies that I cannot find. I’ll probably find them in April. Anyway, we took each toy out one-by-one and Lucy apparently thought the end of the world was tomorrow as she started hoarding her gifts…

Lucy trying to save her snowman, a ball, another ball and a bone from the end of the world

Lucy trying to save her snowman, a ball, another ball and a bone from the end of the world

Of course it took her less than five minutes to get the squeaker out of the blue bone and the snowman won’t last past the night, but tis the season of giving and Lucy got!

Lucy’s Latest Obsession

Ever since the day Lucy destroyed three toys, I’ve decided soft, fluffy, cuddly toys are not for her (or my bank account). She loves her soft, fuzzy toys but she literally loves them to death.

So, I’ve been sticking with the non-stuffed variety of toys. However, even those toys she destroys, although it takes 24 hours, not 24 minutes. I got her a knotted rope that she managed to un-knot within two hours and then proceeded to chew the ends so much they started to fray. So far she has one ball and her kong that she has not destroyed. Well, the other day I stopped in Petsmart to try to yet again find the perfect toy Lucy couldn’t destroy.

I don’t think I found it – I’m pretty sure she’ll destroy this one in time – but boy this is as obsessed as I’ve seen her with a toy since her pink elephant.

Behold, the ball/bone…the bonall? The ballone?

Multi-tasking at its finest; protecting her toy and watching TV!

Multi-tasking at its finest; protecting her toy and watching TV!

 

Total focus

Total focus

And even at rest she is with her toy…and making sure no one touches it!

"Mine!"

“Mine!”

Unfortunately she chews it so hard the little plastic pieces are slowly chipping off and sticking to the couch and “her” blanket (another thing I’ve lost to this dog, along with personal space on the couch and clean, non-slobbery clothes). Which is what makes me think this toy won’t last forever. There’s also only so long I’m willing to sit in my little (little!) square of the couch with little plastic specs of her toy under my ass.

My Dad

I’ve alluded to this in the past few posts, but one of the (many) things that Lucy is scared of is my dad, which remains one of the strangest things ever.

To give some context, my parents are dog people and Lucy has spent extended time with them both here at my apartment and at their house in New Jersey. In fact, less than one month after we first brought Lucy home she spent more than a few days and nights with my parents while I attended a wedding in North Carolina.

Below are a few pictures from Lucy’s time with my parents that weekend…

Lucy playing outside

Lucy playing outside

Getting her daily dose of fiber via woodchips

Getting her daily dose of fiber via woodchips

Doesn’t exactly look like a dog who had a miserable few days, does she? And yet for some reason, at best she remains wary of my dad and at the worst she is petrified of him.

Whenever he comes home from work, she literally cowers under the coffee table. She won’t go near him; sometimes she’ll creep up and plant herself a few feet in front of him but goes no further. This goes on for at least the first 20 minutes after my dad gets home. Sloooowly she sort of starts to warm up and finally becomes quite friendly when my dad busts out the food.

"Hi best buddy, I see you have food."

“Hi best buddy, I see you have food.”

Once the food is out she becomes glued to my dad and then even after the food goes away, she stays by his side (normally laying on his feet farting). The funny thing is though that every single time he comes home we go through this “warming up” phase. I don’t get it. My dad (like me…) isn’t exactly a warm and fuzzy kind of guy but he likes Lucy and likes having her around and she gets all the attention when she spends time there.

Who knows, just add this to the list of reasons Lucy isn’t quite “normal.”

Nekkid Dog – An Update

So I sort of owe an update on Lucy’s collar and bowl situation. Last time I wrote about this subject, Lucy was only eating her food with her collar off and even that was a lengthy process; it took a lot of cajoling to get her near her bowl and at least half the time she’d only eat on the floor in the middle of the living room, refusing to eat in the kitchen.

Well, we’re still sort of at that same spot. Hence, nekkid (naked) dog…

A naked, collar-less Lucy post-breakfast.

A naked, collar-less Lucy post-breakfast.

Every time we feed Lucy we have to take her collar off or she pretty much won’t go near her bowl. Then she runs “naked” around the apartment after her meals. Is it a pain? Yeah. Not the biggest deal, but for an intimidating-looking dog, she sure scares easily. Although I have to admit she looks awful cute running around without her collar; for some reason it makes her look more like a puppy.

Let’s just hope she “grows a pair” and stops being scared of her own food bowl (and our TV stand, and large boxes, and my dad…).

Happy Nine Months!

Lucy celebrated the eve of her nine-month birthday by doing this:

Not much of a partier

Not much of a partier

Cuddling up with her new snowman toy that she promptly destroyed in 15 hours. Seriously.

It’s hard to believe we’ve had her for just about seven months. I was looking through her “puppy” photos (she’s still technically a puppy!) from when we first got her and she was so tiny! And cute, which my dad believes has worn off as she gotten older. I disagree wholeheartedly, but she’s definitely not the tiny thing we brought home. I can’t lift her into my arms to cuddle her and can barely lift her into the car.

Her personality has also made itself known – i.e. refusing to go for walks, bringing us toys the minute we walk in the door, using her “three-hop” technique to vault herself onto the couch, etc.

Just three short months until I guess she’s no longer a puppy? 😦

I’m Totally “That” Person

I am “that” person who dresses their dog in holiday collars, gets her dog her own stocking (and gifts!) and…takes her to see Santa. I’m embarrassed for myself.

In my defense, our local mall offers pet photos with Santa on Mondays at 6 p.m. during the month of December. I’m free on Monday, Marty is free on Monday and Lucy has no say.

So on Monday evening, Lucy will don her sparkly collar and go visit Santa.

Hope Lucy's sparkly holiday collar impresses Santa.

Hope Lucy’s sparkly holiday collar impresses Santa.

I don’t have high hopes that we’ll actually make it all the way to Santa. Lucy is still scared of everything – loud noises, people carrying large objects, my dad. So I’m not optimistic she’ll trot right up to a big fat guy dressed in red velvet with a massive beard covering his face and gloves on his hands. At least she’ll enjoy the car ride, though.

Hopefully she'll be just as captivated by Santa.

Hopefully she’ll be just as captivated by Santa.

Snuggles

Lucy has become very snuggly lately. Don’t get me wrong, she still has her fits of craziness as demonstrated by the picture below where she did laps around my parents’ house with a four-foot stick.

She found the biggest stick possible and took it for a lap around the entire house.

Maybe it’s the colder weather or maybe she’s calming down a bit, but whatever the reason, she has been a bit more inclined to snuggle on the couch rather than practically trying to sit on our heads while we try to sit like normal human beings on the couch. Apparently just sitting was overrated; according to Lucy, one must constantly make one’s presence known by hopping from lap to lap and never sitting still for more than five seconds.

In particular, she has become VERY attached to this blanket.

It seems like every morning when I come downstairs, she either has her head buried in the blanket or she’s wedged herself as far back into the corner of the cushions as she can get.

Every morning she is either cuddling with her blanket or has wedged herself as far into the couch cushions as possible.

Squished

The only pitfall to her snuggliness? She doesn’t move around on the couch as often meaning when she drools (which is always), the drool spot is concentrated  just gets wetter and wetter. FYI, always look where you’re about to sit on my couch when you visit 🙂