Running Wild

Rhodesian Ridgeback, Lure Coursing, Marking Our Territory

Dogs are wonderfully domesticated pets. My two easily adapt to life in a modern metropolitan city.  But inside every dog is a primal switch.  If you’ve ever seen it flipped – in a bloodhound following a scent, a bird dog pointing like an arrow, or a cattle dog herding – you know how incredible it is to watch that instinct at work.

Largely due to Penny’s reputation, we haven’t had any lions in the Chicago area recently. Thankfully there is another way for my guys to embrace their inner hunter. Lure coursing is a dog sport where sighthounds chase a mechanically operated “bunny” around a set course. We attended a coursing trial in Indiana over the weekend, and as expected, Penny ran wild. (I have some video of her run I’ll share in a future post.) Since he’s only six-months old (allegedly) Zero only ran a short-course. He chased the lure, but he also chased a butterfly and pretty much anything else that moved. He had quite the time galavanting across the field.

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Testing The Waters

Rhodesian Ridgeback, montrose dog beach, chicago, marking our territory, puppy

Rhodesian Ridgeback, montrose dog beach, chicago, marking our territory, puppy

Many Ridgebacks are water averse, but I suspect Penny Mayhem has some dolphin/Lochness Monster/kraken somewhere in her pedigree. Long before any sane dog tests the frigid water of Lake Michigan after the winter ice clears, Penny is diving in head first. In my quest to teach Zero to swim, Penny’s reckless enthusiasm for the lake has been a huge help.  At first, Zero would hastily brake anytime the water got near his toes. But he always kept on eye on his sister’s splashing.

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[VIDEO] Head Tilt Compilation

The Rhodesian Ridgeback Taxi service has to hustle to go pick my dad and brother up from the airport this morning. We’re hosting the whole family for my brother’s law school graduation so in the scramble didn’t have a ton of time to make a video. I’m going to let Zero’s cuteness cover my tracks and we’ll catch up with everyone next week. Have a good weekend!

[VIDEO] Six Month Lookback?

Ever make a video about a six-month lookback, then record the voiceover about it, then decide to double check how old your dog actually is and realize he’s actually closer to five months than six months?

Yeah, me neither…

Zero is growing so fast that he even fooled me! Hooray for getting an extra month with my “puppy.”

Littermate Syndrome

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, chicago, marking our territory

Littermate syndrome is most commonly known as a behavioral issue that can develop if you bring home two puppies from the same litter. However, we are currently dealing with a rarer form of problem wherein people believe your three-year-old dog and your six-month-old dog must be littermates. It’s quite the understandable misunderstanding. For one thing, Penny and Zero are pretty much the exact same size now.

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The Delusions of a Man Unwilling to Admit The Size of His Puppy

Zero is only six months old. Aw, such a puppy! He’s lived with us for only four months. Aw, such a short amount of time! Not even enough time for Chicago to change seasons, so it’s nice to know I still have plenty of time to enjoy my little baby puppy. I took a few photos yesterday to capture these precious moments while he’s still not much bigger than the day we brought him home. Look, you can barely tell which of these photos was taken which day.

Rhodesian Ridgeback, Puppy, Marking Our Territory, Zero

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[VIDEO] Surviving Puppy Teething

Penny’s teething was an especially tumultuous time for an especially tumultuous pup.  We survived, not unscathed, minus a few pieces of future, and are wiser from the experience. This time around with Zero we’ve used our experience, Penny’s relentlessness, and a bit of creativity to help get us all through with a few less (emotional/financial/literal) scars!

The Fear Period

Rhodesian Ridgeback, Chicago, Puppy, Montrose Dog Beach, Marking Our Territory

I spent my last day with Eko racing across the beach while the wind and water raced around us.

It was a Thursday, just after a storm, and I had to catch a flight to a friend’s wedding a few hours later. Eko, Penny and I had the entire beach to ourselves. Most run from storms, but the beach, my dogs and my soul are most alive when we face them.

Eko’s death was a storm I could not run from and did not have the strength to face. Since that day I’ve worked to rebuild the confidence Eko gave me. The confidence to not only stand against any wind, but to run joyfully into it. Adding Zero to our family was one of the most important parts of that process, and with each trip we take to the dog beach I recover a little more of the resolve I once had.  The bond we build with Zero is forged with the strength of Eko’s love.

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