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February 16, 2015

House Arrest

Where is Penny’s favorite place in the world? The beach, of course! Penny is happiest flying up and down the shoreline at full speed Regardless of season and regardless of weather, we head to the beach at bare minimum three times a week. The pups,
Where is Penny’s favorite place in the world?Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, chicago, montrose dog beach

The beach, of course!

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, chicago, montrose dog beach

Penny is happiest flying up and down the shoreline at full speed

Regardless of season and regardless of weather, we head to the beach at bare minimum three times a week. The pups, especially Penny, need that playtime to stay happy. Like Michael Jordan, Penny plays best with her tongue out.

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, chicago, montrose dog beach Air Penny

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, chicago, montrose dog beach

Can’t help but smile when I see that smile

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, chicago, montrose dog beach

Nothing can keep this girl from the beach, nothing, I tell you!

Except, well, Penny is temporarily banned from the beach. And surprisingly, it’s not on account of her ridiculous romping. Following recommendations from my family vet in NJ and our vet here in Chicago, we decided to wait to spay Penny until after her first heat cycle. Both vets agreed delaying the procedure is best for Penny’s long term health prospects.

Our choice comes with a set of challenges and important responsibilities but I’m confident we’re up to the task. At the top of that list is our responsibility to Penny and the community to keep Penny closely supervised and on-leash at all times outside the apartment. Eko and I are the only guys Penny needs in her life.

Penny went into heat over the weekend, so for the time being that means we’re on house arrest with absolutely no visits to the beach or any parks.

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, chicago, montrose dog beach

“Wait…no beach??”

Given how much energy Penny has, this self-imposed exile from off-leash play could get…interesting. But, we’ll be back out there in no time. Until then, I’d prefer my apartment stay in one piece so I’m off to pick up some toys and games to keep Penny entertained. Wish us luck! Eko and I may earn some gray hairs from this adventure.

Comments for House Arrest

  1. Whoa, now THAT’S a challenge! Good luck keeping your sweet girl busy! I think it’s great that you’re going through all this for Penny’s best interest. You get extra Daddy stars for that. 😉

  2. Thanks for being a responsible pet parent, Will! You’ll all make it through and Penny will be all the healthier for it!
    Oh, and good luck keeping her entertained! LOL

  3. wow.. what a timing Penny :o) I cross my paws, I’m sure you can handle that. We managed an intact husky and a terrier in heat once. After that adventure we were no longer the same, but we solved that challenge.

  4. Kismet says:

    You are cutting off ALL of Penny’s fun.

  5. Ahhh the trials (and tribulations) of living with WOMEN!! 🙂

  6. dashlilly says:

    oh my word… keep an eye on the sofa! If she gets stir cray enough… the other corner could be the victim. Good luck!

  7. Victoria says:

    My vet told me it was best to spay before the first heat so Muff got spayed at 6months – i think the vets all have their own opinion but it would be nice if they all agreed on the important things – good luck keeping her happy and tuckered out inside -that will be a challenge for sure

  8. When Nikki came into heat she wore one of those doggie diapers with a sanitary pad inside.This caused howls laughter from everyone that saw her but she wore it with great panache and didn’t mind at all.It kept her somewhat protected in “public” as long as I kept a strict eye on her.It also kept my house clean as the whole process was quite a mess.Like Penny she was spayed after her first heat so I never had to go through that again thank goodness.

  9. KDKH says:

    You may have to bribe her with a new space heater! Good luck; you guys are going to need it. When I was a teen (in the dark ages before everyone learned that spaying and neutering was always appropriate) my cat frequently went into heat. When the yowling got too much for anyone to handle, the parents sprayed Chloraseptic on her hoo-ha. Normally used to numb a sore throat, it instead numbed the discomfort she felt. We’d finally get a few hours of peace. I don’t recall our dogs being vocal during their heat, but then we only had one that was spayed after her first heat; all the others were before. And those mastiffs were uncommonly mellow.

  10. coastingnz says:

    Don’t envy you – we’ve had something similar with Ziggy as he has had a sore shoulder so been on limited exercise. He did go through a bit of depression but lots of cuddles and some lead walking helped with that. Good luck – and Penny you’ll be back out there soon enough and it will make you appreciate it all the more. PS hope you are feeling much better now Will.

  11. T&S says:

    We spayed our female too, only her ovaries were removed in laparoscopic surgery, everything went great, heeling time is much much shorter, a week without heavier activity. Our female didnt feel any pain when she jumped the next day (she had only three small stiches), didnt bother her at all the whole recommended heeling time.
    I recommend it to you too because Penny is very active, just like our female.
    I dont know the price of laparoscopic surgery in USA, we paid here about 250 USD, standard surgery is about 150 USD, so it wasnt a big difference.

    Btw is Eko neutered? (I am just curious because we have un-neutered alpha-male 🙂 so I would like to know how does Eko behave with another males. You are not obligated to answer 🙂 our male only likes companion of playful un-neutered males and neutered males, and we trained him to avoid others with bad intentions 🙂 )

    Good luck with finding interesting games for Penny 🙂

  12. Emmadog says:

    Oh Penny! I’ve been there before. Because I was thinking of having pups, I had to endure the torture 3 times, but I was almost 18months the first time and I only went into heat once a year. Mom says I was a real mean dog during those times too. You will be happy to be spayed, but those two weeks of staying quiet will be killers for you too! Hope you survive house arrest!

  13. Thomas Walker says:

    Hi guys. Love the day to day of living with Ridgebacks! I have 6, 3 males and 3 females. We had a litter of 11 pups last year. And everyday when I read your post I can’t help but smile because you describe their silly, loving, cuddling, naughty, personality so well.

    When they go on heat the length of time varies. But she will only stand for a male for about 3 day. Before that she will chase the males away. And she can only fall pregnant during those 3 days. So you can take her out, because sometimes it can last a few weeks. But when you see her start to stand and move her tail over. Then resort to house arrest. Our vet said that spaying before the 3 heat cycle reduces the chances of breast and ovarian cancer by 50%. And breast cancer is very common in dogs.

    After penny has finished her heat cycle don’t be surprised if she starts to act a bit weird. My girl used to make nests outside and then she used to pretend that one of her fluffy toys was her pup. Looking after it and if I touched it she would get really upset and cry, and come and take it away from me and love it.

    Just about a previous comment about neutered males and unneutered males. Our breading male was only neutered at 7 years old. He was not the dominant male, the older neutered great dane was. And we kept 2 male pups from our litter, they are 8 months old 1 is neutered and the other is not. There is not much different between the 2. but I put that down to personality. I think to get a dominant dog(male or female), it comes down to how much they want the top dog spot, and when they get brought into the pack. An example is: if you have a stable pack, with a dominant dog, and you bring a pup into that pack. Only if that pup has a super high need to be pack leader, then you could have a few issues. But generally they are really good pack animals and they work really well with hierarchy. But if you don’t have a stable pack and a dog does not established a dominant position, that can cause big problems with dogs who actually don’t want to be dominant fighting for that position.

    Sorry for the long post. Love your work! Keep it up!

  14. You mean we aren’t going to see Penny in the cone of shame yet??

  15. Like one of the other comments, we suffered through 3 because we intended to breed. Neeka’s mild hip dysphasia put an end to that. Those were some tough times. I’ve never had three weeks last so long. Khoi, on the other hand, goes in when he turns one. We’re under contract with the breeder and he has limited registration, so no need to keep him intact. Three months, two weeks and four days. Can you tell I can’t wait?
    Good luck with the next few weeks! At least you’re only dealing with a one time thing.

  16. Shalini says:

    Sweet Penny 🙂 <3 she'll get through it in no time. I love that last picture 🙂

  17. Good luck with corralling your little girl. It can be quite the nuisance but I agree with letting them have one cycle and then being spayed. Keeping the boys away from her for the next 10-14 days should prove entertaining-looking forward to those posts 🙂

  18. T&S says:

    Thanks for your answering my question about Eko. Seems they go for personality of other dog.

    I advise you to check pros and cons of both surgerys.
    I have chosen lap-surgery after spending hours and hours on internet and talking to vet on University clinic where the surgery was done. It s less invasive, her recovery was short (she was tired and sleeping when we brought her home after surgery, but next day she was ready to play) there is no fear of incontinency after surgery because uterus remains intact, and no fear of pyrometra because after surgery there is no ovaries to produce hormones.
    Our friends american buldog female had standard surgery, a month recovery and problems with stiches because she tried to play and run.

  19. 😮 My little boy brain says that this is terrible. I feel bad for you and Eko. Emily, well she knows all about it. Good luck, boys! <3, a very sympathetic Noodle

  20. fozziemum says:

    Oh dear what fun…..I have never had the worry both boys were neutered at 6 months..Dinnermintz however was a sick foster when we first got her…she came on heat and started flirting and getting quite amorous with Forrest…yes..gimnger cat with a hankering for a big lab dog! as soon as she was well we had her spayed..she still adores Forrest….go figure…hugs Fozziemum x

  21. You are such a diligent dad. Bravo Will ! Penny looks so cute in that last pic! Here’s hoping time fly’s by for all concerned.

  22. Alisa says:

    Aw, poor Penny! Let us know how it goes. I am dreading Roo’s first heat as Samson is still intact. We are also planning on spaying after the first heat. We saw our breeder manage two in heat females and an intact male so we will manage but it won’t be easy! Are you putting doggie underwear on her?

  23. oh no Penny you poor girl, you best speed things up cuz if your like glory your in house arrest for a couple of weeks.

  24. Wow, sounds like a challenge! You’re braver than whee are 😛

  25. Poor Penny! No beach. Yikes! Time to eat the couch….

    Love and licks,
    Cupcake

  26. Kathryn says:

    Good luck guys – all of you will need patience and some form of stress relief (wine/beer to take edge off for humans :))

    I rescued my male RR at 18 mos, and he’d been intack until that time. He was magnificent looking and I do believe filled out so well because he was intact.

    My female cat (the runt) went in to heat at 6 mos and it was intense! She would go nuts over my boyfriend LOL (she still does to this day). Thankfully once spayed she calmed down. Coincidently, when I first got her and her sister at 11 wks, it was this one that went crazy for my RR.

    I sure do wish you a speedy heat cycle 🙂

  27. cafall says:

    Good luck with that! When Harlow went into heat, she just about broke us with her puppy energy (that would not be contained). 🙂

    Monty and Harlow

  28. Oh this is a challenge. Back in the day, we bred our pup Maxine, so we had to go through a few heat cycles. I used to do early, early morning walks with her – well armed to keep away any stray males, but we just couldn’t keep her cooped up. Lots of fetch helped too. Good luck.

  29. My favourite place is the beach like Penny, but way too cold right now in Toronto. Kilo the Rescue Pug is on self-imposed house arrest. He gets a bit crazy between naps so lots of games and training to keep him busy. Good luck with poor Penny. X Susie & Kilo

  30. That picture of Penny getting the bad news about the beach is priceless! I’m looking forward to reading about your experience with Penny, no doubt more than you’re looking forward to living it. 😉 We’ve always spayed our dogs before their first cycles. But we’re expecting a puppy from a breeder who asks that the dogs be allowed to go through one cycle. The more I’ve read, the more I totally understand her request and of course will honor it if we get a female. But I have absolutely no idea what to expect!

  31. […] have no idea what to expect. We’ve been reading back through the posts our friends at Marking Our Territory shared when Penny was under house arrest. Sharing is caring, as they say, and we cannot thank Mr. Will enough for his insights into […]

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