Monday, December 26, 2011

First Christmas

Well, we don't have kids, but THANK GOD we have the Ricardo's!!

Watching them unwrap their gifts was super fun.  They had a blast, and as a result, so did we!
Lucy and Ricky loved playing with their new toys...but loved playing with each other even more!
"Is there more?"
Exhausted from all the hoopla!
Although Cousin Villy didn't get as many toys as the Ricardos, he did get a HUGE steak for dinner!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Just One Thing

I ran across this video today, and since it brought me to tears, and awakened me to the idea that being "just one person"  and doing "just one thing" can make a huge, positive impact, I thought I should post it here on the Puppy Tracks blog...

Monday, December 19, 2011

Our Holiday Guest

The Ricardo's have been very busy entertaining lately!  Their friend, Jasper, came for a weeklong visit.

It's been interesting to watch them work a few issues out.  When Jasper first got here, Ricky was just so excited he couldn't stop kissing him in the face.  Jasper did not like all that kissing though, and had to rough Ricky up a little to make him understand that was not cool with him.  Ricky seems to finally understand.  Also, there seems to be a few jealousy issues every now and then, because 3 is a tricky number when it comes to relationships!  Someone eventually feels either left out, or ganged up on.

I know Jasper is having fun, but I also know he misses Ashley.  He's used to being a one-woman dog, but this week he's been challenged to share time, space, and treats. But he's also gotten a good bit of one on one time, lots of loving, and tons of fun playtime!

Jasper's been a sweet guest, and the Ricardo's have been pretty fabulous host and hostess! I am so proud of all of them.

Here's a little video montage I made for Ashley of the 3 of them playing together this morning. 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

It Feels Like Christmas Morning!

Mrs. Claus made an early visit to the Ricardo's this year...

Our friend Ashley, came over with stockings for Lucy and Ricky filled to the hilt with toys and treats.  She even wrapped each gift individually with tissue paper so the puppies could unwrap their own presents!

Santa must have been reading the blog and known that the Ricardo's have been really good this year.  I think it is so cool that Santa keeps up with all things important!  :)

It's their first Christmas...  Although they may think Christmas has already come and gone after all these great gifts, little do they know, there's even more to come next Sunday morning!  I cannot wait...

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Trying To Make it a Blue Christmas

Oops.  An unattended puppy is probably never a good idea.

I was otherwise occupied in my studio, and all the sudden, I heard Ricky chewing on something, which I figured was a hoof.  So I ignored it for a few minutes but then realize, "Hey!  I didn't get any hooves out for the Ricardo's today!"

And then I looked over at Ricky.  A blue marker had been chewed into pieces. 
And if I still had any doubt about who was the culprit of this little crime, there were stains on his paws that gave him away.
I stopped my other project, and sang "Blue Christmas" to him.  It seemed like the best thing to do.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Sticks and Stones

 Lucy and Ricky love our backyard.  They love playing frisbee, and fetching balls.  They love to play chase.  They love running after the squirrels.  And they love hanging out in the Tropicana (their swanky dog run, which you'll see soon!).

And once they get a little tired, they love to find sticks to chew on.  They usually argue a little over who gets which stick.  But eventually, they either share one, or find a couple so they can each have their own.

There is never a dull moment around here...

Monday, November 28, 2011

Lucy and Ricky are Thankful for Their Turkey

Lucy and Ricky earn lots of treats when they are working on tricks, so I try to give them healthy snacks.  But at the same time, I try to make sure what they eat is yummy and exciting enough that even with distractions around, they stay focused.

So I go about every other week to the pet store and buy them the most "natural" snacks I can find.  But they're processed, packaged food after all.  So they aren't super healthy, and they tend to be a little expensive.

However, one of their favorite snacks is turkey or chicken breast that I get from the deli. 

I get a quarter inch slice, and then I take it home and cube it up into little bit sized pieces.

Since there's not a lot of preservatives in it, compared to the packages dog treats at the pet store, I only buy a little at a time, and go back pretty often for me.  But it's worth it~  This whole bag only cost me about $2 which is a lot less expensive than anything decent I've found at the pet store!

Here's a picture of Lucy patiently waiting, as I cut up her turkey this week.  I'm pretty sure if I accidentally dropped some food on the floor she would've been happy to clean it up for me!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

One Thing Lucy and Ricky Are Both Thankful For

We are thankful that we have straight, healthy teeth.
And that we don't need braces.
Like this dog we saw the other day in a car next to us!
He also seemed to have a tongue problem...  

Friday, November 11, 2011

Tricks that Don't Look Like Tricks

My girl is 9 months old tomorrow.  What a good girl she's growing up to be.  She came with the name Sunny before I renamed her Lucy.  Oh, but she is still my little Sunshine.  Every single day!

And she already knows lots of tricks.  But lots of them don't look like "tricks".  They're commonly just classified as good manners.  But it's taken lots of training and effort to make it look so natural for both Lucy and Ricky!

Here's an example.
This is a picture of Lucy in her crate.  Notice the door is wide open.  Lucy won't come out of her crate until either Fermin or I give her her release word, which happens to be "Free".  In other words, she waits to be invited out.  No jumping around, howling or pawing at the door.  Just good, calm behavior that gets rewarded often.

In a previous post, I wrote about Lucy and Ricky's door manners.  That's another example of something we've worked hard on, but doesn't really qualify as a trick.

But the Ricardos also know lots of party tricks.  And they love learning knew ones-- I just have trouble sometimes thinking them up!  But I'm going to get back to working on that a little more.

I'll try to remember to video them doing some of those tricks people seem to like to see- like weaving thru my legs, and giving me high fives.  But those tricks are no more impressive than the Ricardo's good manners.  They're just tricks that don't look like tricks.
and with a big smile on her face!

Thursday, November 10, 2011


The Ricardo's first canine friend was Jasper.  Although we don't see him all that much, boy! is it exciting when we do.  Lucy and Ricky both just love him so much, and look up to him!  They use have to look up a lot more though.  He seemed like a giant back when they were little puppies.

But over time, they've been gaining on him.

Ricky seems nearly as big as Jasper now.  Lucy's just a such a little girl compared to those boys!
But now, they can actually play together without the fear of anyone getting run over too much.  Today, the biggest problem was how much Ricky was kissing Jasper!  And just hanging all over him!

Lucy was acting like a little worm and kept crawling under Jasper and flipping over on her belly.

It was very hard to get much video of their playtime-- Just too much action!  But it was a couple of hours of exhausting fun!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

9 months

My boy, Ricky, was born nine months ago.  And I got him 7 months ago.

And it's one of those weird time things... The time with him has zoomed by (because it's been so much fun!), and at the same time, I can't believe I've only known and loved him for 7 months.  (All this hold true for Lucy, too- but she doesn't turn 9 months old for four more days so this particular blog post isn't about her.)

Ricky is one of kind.  He's the sweetest lover boy I've ever come across.  As much as I love, love, LOVE him, I feel like he loves me just as much.  And that is a whole lotta love!

And to think that I was hesitant about getting a boy dog!  What in the world was I thinking?  I got caught up in worrying that a boy dog might raise his leg and mark all over everything.  But those concerns have proven to be completely wrong so far...Ricky doesn't mark, and he doesn't even raise his leg when he pees!  Like I said, Ricky's a lover, not a marker!  ;)

The video below was taken of Ricky when his little friend, Henry was in town for a visit.  Altho Ricky no longer looks as puppy like as he did months ago, he still plays like one!  Also, Ricky loves to fetch so when Abby and Ben got out their soccer ball to kick around, Ricky did his best to get in the game. 

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Host and Hostess With the Mostest

We got to check in on our little tootsie roll friend, Opie, while her family was away earlier this week.  Opie always stays at her own house, and we go for walks, and sometimes the Ricardos go over to her yard to play.

But I decided to mix things up a little this time.

Opie came over to the Ricardo's turf.  She was even invited in for a drink at the Tropicana- although she declined.  The Ricardos tried their best to be a great host and hostess and you will see...  Ricky tried to show Opie a good time, but he came on a little too strong.  Lucy, then offered to give her a little more space.  We'll continue to work on how to best entertain our guests.  

Friday, October 21, 2011

Our Cousin Villy

This past weekend, Lucy and Ricky's cousin, Deville came to stay with us while my brother made a quick trip to Austin.
Deville weighs over 150 pounds, so he's at least 4 times the Ricardos size. And maybe because of that, Lucy felt like she had to be extra sassy at first!  She barked and charged at Deville, while he just calmly stood there panting.  He brought a rope toy from his home to play with, but she took it from him, and ran off to the bushes with it.

Ricky stayed in my lap a little more than usual.  But that was certainly okay with me!

But soon enough, they both warmed up to Deville, because, really-- how could you not? 

When Lucy and Ricky got a little rough with each other, Deville played peacemaker, just by walking near them.

Then, they would lay down and take a rest, while he monitored.

When it was time for Deville to go home with my brother, he sat on my porch, refusing to come out to the truck, because he wasn't ready to leave the Ricardos.  They all had so much fun!

But finally, my brother got some treats for Deville and lured him into the truck. As you can see, Deville's tongue is a pretty good indication of how tired he and the pups were after their time together!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Door Manners

"May we come in, please?"
From a very young age, Lucy and Ricky have practiced polite door manners.  They sit before they come in, and even more importantly, they wait until they are invited in.  They come inside this way, and it's also the drill for going outside.  Except when they go outside, they also have a little bell that hangs from the door what they ring.

They are both such little charmers!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Don't Talk To Strangers

Even if they're this cute?!

Ricky and I were out for our walk yesterday morning.  Ricky is so great at walking on a loose leash now, that I like to challenge him with distractions.  So I decided walk him by playground of our neighborhood school during recess.

3 kids saw Ricky, and I heard one of them say, "Perrito!!"  Which means something like, "extremely handsome puppy" in Spanish.  They ran towards us, and poked their little fingers through the chain link to give Ricky a pet.  The kids were really polite, didn't do anything to scare him, and he was happy to meet them. Yay Ricky.

But then I heard a lady's voice yelling, "Hector!  Come and see Ms. Schyler."  And I wondered, "Uh oh.  Is Ms. Schyler the principal?  And what in the world has Hector done?"

Well, it turns out, this lady just refers to herself in the third person.  Because as she approached the kids, she said, "Hector, is that gum in your mouth?  No?  Don't lie to Ms. Schyler." 

Then she went on to ask him more questions...

"Hasn't Mr. Schyler told you that you can't play way over here?"

I felt like Ms. Arista really should intervene!  Poor Hector was getting pummeled with all sorts of questions all because a little puppy happened to walk by the playground and caught his eye.  (Also, two other kids eyes, but for some reason, Ms. Schyler wasn't directing her line of questioning at them.)

But, we just kept on walking.  I was afraid we might get in trouble too. 

Long ago, sort of a life time ago, I was a 1st grade teacher.  I know how exhausting certain kids can be.  But walking over to pet a cute dog?  Chewing a piece of gum on the playground?  Is that really such a bad thing?

Apparently, Ms. Schyler things so.
Sorry, Hector!  :~|

Monday, October 3, 2011

Saturday In The Park

Months ago, when the Ricardos were still pretty little puppies, I had declared that we were giving up on Dog Park.  At least until they got bigger.  One dog in particular picked on Lucy so much, and no one (the dog owner) was getting the dog off of Lucy but me, and I just decided on that day: "No more."

But recently, Ricky has started to think he can drag Lucy around like a rag doll.  He seems very timid when he sees other dogs when we're out on our walks.  Maybe because Lucy is the one dog that he feels comfortable around, he tries to dominate her at home.  Lucy doesn't like it though.  And neither do Fermin and I!

So, Fermin came up with the idea to take them up to dog park this weekend.  We thought getting them around lots of other dogs might be just the thing to help Ricky with this little problem.
The car ride- to the park!
They both did great.  We took them to the "Little Dog Park" as opposed to the "Big Dog Park" right next door.  Just outside the gate to the Little Dog Park, it says "All dogs must be 30 lbs or less. NO EXCEPTIONS." Technically, I think the Ricardos might just be about a pound over the limit, but no one had a scale, and I was pretty sure we wouldn't be challenged.
See? They fit right in with the 30 lbers!
The Ricardos had so much fun!  And made lots of new friends.  Ricky did seem to be a little dependent on Lucy, and if she ever got very far from him, he was would look around until he spotted her, and then run to her. 

Little Ricki and Ricky Ricardo
We even saw a puppy Australian Shepherd that I called Little Ricky.  But I found out she was a girl...  Little Ricki Lee Jones!

After about 45 minutes, we had to get going.  Lucy and Ricky had such a great time, but were exhausted!
The car ride home!
We actually went back the very next day!  We met another Aussie puppy named Dottie, and another Aussie named ZOE!  Zoe is 8 and is great at catching the frisbee... So I got to get some tips on that.  Because I think the Ricardos will be perfect for that sport!  They already love retrieving balls.

The dog park is back on our rotation of fun field trips. 

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Ricky's First Summersault

Lucy and Ricky are super smart.  Already, they've willingly learned lots of tricks I've taught them.   Every now and then, they show me one they thought of that never even occurred to me!  Here's one of Ricky exhibiting one of his latest and greatest, with the help of his lovely assistant, the fabulous Ms. Lucy!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Saturday, September 10, 2011


The Ricardos have kept me busy this last week, so I had a bit of a delay in editing this little video I took of them right after Lucy got her stitches out.

I know it seems a little crazy that they didn't see each other for 2 whole weeks due to their spaying and neutering surgeries, but our vet advised me to keep them from running hard and jumping.  If you could see how excited they usually are when they're together, you might understand why the separation was necessary.

Also, I tend to keep them separated quite a bit for training purposes anyway.  They both love one on one time with me, and they both (thankfully!) like their crates.  So being apart isn't as terrible as it might be for some dogs that are used to always being together. 

I just wanted Lucy and Ricky to be safe, and I figured keeping them apart while they healed up was the best way to do that.  So I beg of you, please don't report me to the SPCA!

Off Leash!

This morning, Ricky let me know that he was ready to go buy a new leash.
I left him alone with his leash on for all of about 2 minutes, and then round only one bit of it still attached to him.  I guess it's his way of telling me he'd rather just run free!

But, since he still needs work on his recall, and since there is a leash law, he had to borrow Lucy's little pink leash this morning...
It takes a REAL man to wear pink!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011


 Since puppies are only allowed on the patio area at Starbucks, Lucy and I went through the drive thru today because it was just way too hot to sit outside. 

Neither of us realized what a treat she was in for! The guy at the window saw her and asked if she wanted a "Whipped Puppy" or something like that.  I said no, because I just didn't really know what he said and it sounded weird.  But then he said, "Are you sure?  She looks like she'd really like it."  So then I asked him what it was and he told me it was just whipped cream. 

Oh yum.

If I'd had my camera in the car, I would've had to snap fast to get a picture of Lucy eating it out of the lid.  And then, licking it off her paws and anywhere it seemed it might have possibly dropped in the seat.

Anyway, the guy was right.  This was a whipping Lucy loved receiving!

We love Starbucks.
My tea paled in comparison to her whipped cream!

Friday, August 26, 2011

On The Mend

Ricky got his stitches out, his lampshade off, and is as good as new.
The second bit of good news is that Lucy's spaying surgery went off without a hitch and she doesn't have to wear the lampshade at all!  She just has to take it a little easy the next week.  Which means, probably no playtime with Mr. Ricardo.
One sexist thing I encountered at the vet's office:
The vet techs (which are both men) had made several comments about "poor Ricky" seeming sad after his surgery because he was "missing something". (At first, I thought they meant he was missing me  since he had to stay there overnight, but then realized they meant he was missing his testicles!)  Lucy on the other hand?... neither of those same two guys seemed to sympathize with her for having her ovaries and uterus removed.  Lucy's surgery was more invasive than Ricky's, but Ricky got all the sympathy.  Just sayin'...

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

In and Out

Mr. Ricardo gets his stitches out today, which means he also gets freedom from the lampshade collar and that is going to make him a very happy boy.  Although he's been uncomfortable, he hasn't complained.  Well, not vocally anyway.  He has actually chewed his way out of 2 of those stupid collars!
Still handsome, even in the lampshade!
As soon as Ricky gets the stitches out, Lucy will go in for her spaying.  Unlike Ricky, Lucy is very vocal.  And if she's unhappy, they're going to know about it up there at the vet's office!  I'm pretty sure just spending the night away from home is going turn her upside down.  Hopefully, Lucy won't need to wear the collar after her surgery.  But if she does, I know Ricky will be more than happy to hand it down to his little sis!
"I do not want to wear that collar!"

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Not a Walk in the Park

Ricky recently turned six months old.  My little boy is growing up fast.  Which is great.  But, it also means that it was time for the operation.  :(  My boy will never be a daddy.  He would've made a great one.  Of that, I am sure.

I felt a little sad as we got into the car the other morning.  I'm pretty sure Ricky thought we were on our way to the park.  Or to pick out a new toy at the pet store.  I'm positive, he had no idea I was taking him to the vet to get him neutered!
"Are we going to the park?"
Back at home, we all missed him that day, and night!  Lucy walked into his room a couple of times and I'm sure she wondered where he went.

The vets office called me soon after surgery to let me know Ricky was doing fine.  But they called about ten minutes later to tell me that although he was doing fine, he was also already trying to bite at the stitches and that he would need to keep the lamp shade collar on to prevent that from happening.

So I picked him up the next morning...
"That was totally not the park!"
But Little Ricky is not one to complain.  Although I know that stupid collar is uncomfortable and hot, he hasn't cried once.  And I realize, for all he knows, that is his new life.  He has no idea that thing will be off by this time next week.

So I give him lots of kisses, scratch his tummy, and tell him how much I love him.  He's just so good natured, that for him, that is enough to keep him happy for now!

Here's some video clips of him today-  Sorry about the bad lighting, but it gets better after the very beginning...