Monday, January 19, 2015

Journal Entry - January 19th, 2015

Bella played ball with me yesterday.

It wasn't exactly fetch. Sometimes she brought the ball back. More often she picked it up and played with it by herself - swatting and stomping on it with her feet, pushing it with her nose, tossing it in the air allowing for a second catch, and chasing it again when it rolled down the hill.

But she got excited when I did get hold of it, jumping up and down, and watching and waiting in anticipation of it being thrown again.

She is almost 7 year old and I think she has finally figured out that ball is a great game made better when played by two.

It was delightful.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Happy Christmas, everyone.

From everyone here at Bringing up Bella, we wish you the happiest of holidays
and all the best in the new year.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Wordless Wednesday 135 - Photo shoot first peek

You didn't expect her to be quiet, now did you? Oh no, not my little blabbermouth.

Photo credit: Amanda Jones Photography compliments of Petplan Pet Insurance

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Not especially wordless Wednesday 134 - "Say cheese!"

Bella had a special surprise last Saturday - her very own photo shoot with acclaimed pet photographer Amanda Jones.

Awaiting instruction...

We were thrilled, Bella had a blast and I'll be writing more about the experience soon. I cannot WAIT to see the photos!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Bending the rules

Hi there.

So back in August, I mentioned Casa de Bella was going on vacation. We had a blast - probably the best vacation we've had in ages. Bella may not have entirely agreed with that assessment but she still had a grand time.

We spent a week near Camden, Maine in a small town called Hope. We rented a house on a pond and, while my hopes of getting Bella in the water did not materialize, at least I enjoyed everything the pond had to offer. From late summer swimming to kayaking and listening to the loons, I was delighted with our choice of locations.

Jan doesn't swim. And apparently neither does Bella. To be fair, there was no easy access to the water, she would have had to jump in to join me. (And believe me, we tried to get her to do that.) Just something to note for next time.

I'm sorry, you want me to do what?
Neither was Bella fond of the crate. Read: She wasn't going in there again for love nor money and all the super-duper best high-value treats in all the land were not going to sway her opinion. (I should note, we had been crate-training Bella again since February.)

So, after consulting with a few dear friends, we opted to keep her "contained" rather than actually "crated" and hope that our little ploy was not discovered. She tolerated that considerably better.

Of course, we also decided to adjust our itinerary to accommodate the crazy dog.

"I get to come! I get to come! Yay me!"

We took her hiking in the mornings to tire her out so she wouldn't be as stressed on the few afternoons we left her behind.

Bella is a good dog and, short of an absolute necessity due to illness, I know she would never do any damage in the house. But she does prefer to fend for herself when frightened and her favorite method is to run. She can't do that if she's in a crate.

Hiking Mount Battie, Camden, Maine
I'm not sure what this will mean for our future adventures as it seems everyone and every place requires dogs be crated when left alone. But because of her abject fear of other dogs, we can't always take her with us either. And kenneling her is simply out of the question.

I guess we'll keep looking and trying. And if we have to bend a rule here and there, well then, so be it. We've worked long and hard to overcome Bella's fears. No 1-week vacation is worth undoing all that.

So tell me, what would you have done? Have you ever "bent" the rules to help your dog?