Samstag, 28. August 2010

Weeks twelve to fourteen - getting better and causing laughter

The weeks passed by like a speed train and Orion by now was a part of my life that I don't want to miss. He had turned out to be less complicates than everybody expected and I think he felt at home.

We visited the annoying little maltese terrier named Snowy that Orion loved to hate and whenever Snowy was around and Orion was not allowed to have him as a nutricious snack the large dog got nervous. When Orion is nervous the food won't stay inside him and he got diarrhea. That made him lose a little weight but we are on the way to gain weight again.

Orin got used to having 2-3 play-sessions per day where he ran after the tennis ball for 15-20 minutes per session. His limping is gone and he is more social than I ever expected him to get. The vet even mentioned that he got more muscular than he was when I got him.

And he makes people smile when they see him. Once they even laughed: We were on one of our walks behind Votivkirche and 2 couples sat on a bench in the park. Orion went right there sniffing and then marked his territory - as male dogs do. Nothing special if he would not have done it right behind one young man. The other 3 started laughing and the one who nearly got pissed (off course Orion missfired) jumped up like bitten by a tarantula. With a broad grin I commented "The dog is rather old, so he missed" what finally made the young man laugh too.

By now we are well known in the nearby parks and dog-zones and Orion rarely attacks other dogs. The only thing he still dislikes are thunderstorms and this is also the only time he is allowed in bed.

Montag, 9. August 2010

Week eleven - back to daily routine

The week started with 3 days off and I had time to give Orion several longer walks per day and to offer him a lot of movement while playing with the tennis ball.

We went to the vet and discovered the Orion had lost weight. So I decided to raise the ammount of food he gets from 500gto 600g per day (the recommended ammount is 420g). After a while I'll check if he gained weight again or if the extra gramms are just a waste of food.

Thursday night at about 1Am Orion git very nervous and started walking around the bedroom. As I woke up I saw lightning at the sky but could not hear thunder, so the thunderstorm was far away. As it got nearer Orion got more and more nervous. Once you could hear thunder, he tried to climb into the bed and you could see fear in his eyes. He was allowed to use Ine's side of the bed (as she was not there this side was empty) and as soon as he was near me he calmed down. I am sure he enjoyed sleeping in our bed but he knows that these were exceptional circumstances and so far he never tried to get into bed again. Let's see how he reacts to the next thunderstorm.

The last two days I worked on early shift starting at 6 AM and returning home at 4PM. Pascal took care of at least one walk with Orion as I walked Orion the first time at 5 AM.

On Friday Ine Mischa and Snowy (he'll be with Ine until September) visited us and Snowy and Orion showed that they'd probably never be friends. They growled at each other but as long as Snowy was on the bed (he sleeps a lot there) everything was fine.

The situation escalated on Sunday when we returned from a walk with the three dogs. Orion's muzzle was already stored and I was about to take his harness off when he grabbed snowy again and started shaking his head. I managed to make him open his mouth and let Snowy go. The little one ran away and it took a while to calm him down again. Luckily even the third attack did hot leave more than a few red scratches on his skin but he was not hurt at all.
Orion had to spend a while tied to the living room wearing harness and muzzle and after this we tried to keep him from getting near Snowy.

Week ten - back to work on night shift

Holidays were over and I had to return to work again. It was probably the shift Orion liked most. Night shift, when I start working at 10 PM and return from work at 6 AM. Pascal and Brian spent the week with their mother and unlike usual I had to stay at my place because Snowy was at Ine's place.

We did the last walk at 9PM and the first at 7AM and between 8 and 11 AM I slept a little to walk my dog at 12 again.

Orion went on demanding to play and I did so as often as I could though I got weaker and weaker because of the lack of sleep.

On Saturday the boys returned to my place and on Sunday we made a trip to Lower Austria. Near Gaming you can find the Ötscher Tormäuer.
We went there and along a cold and cristyl clear river Brian and his girlfriend, Pascal, Ine, Mischa, Snowy Orion and I enjoyed a walk in the forest (the dogs even had a bath in the river).

Week nine - holiday with the kids

Ine had to start working again and I had another week off work with my kids.

We decided to care for Mischa as our time allowed it. Brian, my older son, wanted to stay with his girlfriend, so I spent the week with Pascal, the younger one.

We spent a lot of time in the local parks and dog zones and went to the Lobau with Mischa and Orion where the two dogs spent a lot of time swimming and having fun returning sticks we trew into the water.

On Sunday Ine Mischa Orion Snowy and I went to Kahlenberg though the weather was not the best. When Snowy tried to steal Orion's tennis ball, Orion grabbed him again and held him to the ground for a while.

The little white maltese terrier cried in fear and for about one hour he was shaking and refused to walk, o Ine had to carry him under her jacket. Orion once again had stated the he did not like the fluffy white thing that sounded like a purring cat when growling.

Orion enjoyed a lot of playing and started to ask for it by coming to me no matter what I did and if I did not react to his whining, he barked until I dressed him and grabbed the toy to go to the nearest park.

Week seven and eight - holidays in Carinthia

We went to carinthia with the boot filled with bags and suitcases, wine for Ine's parents and two dogs on the rear seats. Orion used most of the space and Mischa looked as miserable as he could. They survived the trip and as soon as we arrived in Carinthia we put up the pool and Orion had a bath even before the pool was completely filled.

My parents got detailed instructions about feeding and walking Orion and we went to bed early because the next day it would be a little more than 300 km to drive. Berlin is about 1.000 km away from Klagenfurt. Orion and Mischa slept in the same room we did and I was a little nervous because I'd be without Orion for the first time after 6 weeks of enjoying his company.

The next day we left for Berlin and I was sure Orion would have a great time enjoying a garden and two retired dog-lovers who'd care for him.

Two weeks later when we returned I got an overwhealming welcome. Orion looked great all his food was used up and he had enjoyed 4 walks per day in the forests surrounding the little village. After a night with two dogs in the room we packed the pool and the dogs and went back to Vienna again.

By the end of the day we picked up my boys from their grandmother's place and Snowy.

A guest dog that Orion already had met 3 weeks ago. This meeting was on the street at "neutral ground" and went well.

But things should change dramatically when Snowy entered Ine's flat (I had to attend a meeting). Orion picked up Snowy, the maltese terrier and shook him growling.

The little white dog cried in fear but luckily was not hurt. From that moment on, Orion growled at the little one whenever he got near him.

Week six - preparing for the holidays

Ine and I planned to go to Norway again this year.

Last year we used our bikes, this year it should be the car and the dogs should be with us.

Unfortunately Orion was not allowed to enter Norway because his rabies shot was not done in time. We already introduced Orion to my parents and they agreed in keeping him while we were away. Mischa who has got the shots in time was allowed to come.

We had tried to get a special permission for Orion but the local authorities did not make any exceptions.

All this took long enough that we did not get a sleeping compartment at the train to Hamburg, so we decided to go by car all the way. As soon as I spread this Information among my friends we were offered to stay over night around Berlin on the way up and down with some friends. As we had to face about 2.000 km one way we knew we would not make it in one go and were glad not to spend extra money for a night at a hotel.

Orion got a dog-pool so he'd be able to have a bath in my parents garden, his food was weighed and packed in prtions so my mum could just pour a bag per meal into the bowl. His medication was ground and portioned as well, so feeding would be an easy job and Orion would get the appropriate ammount of food and medicine.

Mischa's rabies antibodies were proven and he got his deworming tablets. By the end of the week we finished packing and were ready for the first part.

The trip to Carinthia to leave Orion with my parents.