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1999 Dog News,
- and Dog Advice, Dog Park Dogs, Saline Dog Park, and About Laser.
Dec. 21 - Laser was boarded at a minimum security dog jail, a neighborhood house down the street. It was much better than a cell in a high security dog jail (the kennel).
Dec. 8 - Took Laser for a walk up Peach Mountain, a majestic, glittering snow capped peak piercing the sky like the Matterhorn just north of Dexter.
Dec. 3 - Anne found a house down the street that boards dogs. We took Laser for an interview, to see if his character was acceptable. He was interviewed by a two-person, two dog panel. One of the dogs wasn't very friendly, but Laser passed anyway.
Dec. 1 - Anne bought sensitive skin dog food for Laser, as he had itchy paws. Maybe next time we'll buy sensitive nose dog food, as the new stuff gave Laser a breathtaking gas problem.
Dog Park again
Nov. 16 - took Laser to the dog park. A woman was trying to get her large fuzzy dog to return to her car. The dog lay down, then leisurely got up and trotted back into the woods. We took Laser for a walk around the lake, and encountered the same fuzzy dog trotting behind a woman. "Is this dog yours?" she asked. Later, we saw a dog search party thrashing through the undergrowth miles away. This dog was going to be in trouble when it was caught.
Rascal is taller than Arnie
Arnie and Laser
Nov. 11 - Laser started campaigning for the dog park early in the afternoon. He was quite agitated by the time we set off.
Nov. 10 - Took Laser for a stomp through the leaves at Hidden Lake Gardens. We suddenly realized that Laser was gone, missing, out of sight, and no longer around. We retraced our steps, and soon met up with a woman coming along the same path. Yes - she had seen a brown dog - it had followed her for a few moments and then ran off. We walked on a few more minutes, and Laser ran around a corner looking pleased to see us again. We had a dog-human reunion.
We also started to paint the hallway. Laser grappled unsuccessfully with the bizarre paradigm that dogs can't always help. The white spot on the end of Laser's tail got bigger due to accidental dog painting.
Nov. 6 - Laser refused to believe that trying to read a tremendously turgid tedious tome was more interesting than playing with the dog. He was right.
Nov. 5 - It was cold and dark at the Dog Park by the time we arrived. However, darkness didn't slow down the dogs, except through increased frequency of collisions. A Great Dane was lumbering about in the gloom, occasionally leaning heavily against people, part of a dog game of "human tipping".
Nov. 3 - Visited the Saline dog park, and Laser watched a swan cruise sedately by on the Saline River. A real lab mix would have leapt into the water in pursuit. However, Laser just stood on the bank and looked bemused. Why didn't the swan come onto dry land where it could be chased properly? Later, we took Laser for a walk in the woods, but heard shots in the distance, and decided that Laser looks enough like a deer to warrant turning back.
Nov. 2 - Laser was impatient after more than a week since the last Dog Park visit. At the first mention of the words "dog park", he started racing around the house dementedly.
October 29 - Laser came back from the kennel wounded. His nose was scraped. Next time we'll pay the extra $5 for non-wounding.
October 26 - Took Laser to another kennel, this one really close and strongly recommended. Unfortunately, the pens were as small and miserable as all the others. The idea of providing kennels with runs hasn't permeated here from Ohio.
October 21 - Laser checked into a dog spa and had an oatmeal bath.
September 30 - Dog delight as we made two (2) trips to the dog park. The weather was perfect for running. Some none-furry creatures at the dog park were a bit chilly after the sun went down.
September 25 - Laser came down with a bad case of uncontained wiggles.
September 24 - Extreme cold and rain deprives Laser of a decent length walk.
September 23 - A group of people were videoing dogs at the Dog Park. Apparently, they were from the Department of Canine Sociology at University of Michigan, recording data for important papers to be submitted to the Journal of Dogs Running Around. Maybe someone will get a Ph.D. in Laser Interactions.
September 22 - Laser visited the Bishop Lake Dog Area, near Brighton. A boat was making laps of the lake, and Laser sprang back from the water's edge as ripples approached.
September 21 - A high energy evening at the Dog Park, with lots of running around and barking. Martin was told off by a beagle. He (the beagle) said "Bawooo", meaning "You are too close to the beagle, please step back."
September 11 - A number of people ended up at the dog park, mainly to escape from the day's news.
September 8 - Laser went on a Dog Date at the Saline dog park with a lab. The lab kept wanting Laser to go into the water, but Laser declined.
September 7 - Laser visited Rascal's house, with much excited racing about. Laser thinks the house is fine, and much better than an apartment.
August 16 - A dog disaster as Laser is taken to a new kennel. It sounded OK on the phone, but he was very agitated when he saw it, or more accurately, smelled it. Laser slipped his leash in the car, and made a break for it as the car door was opened. There would have been no catching him if he had escaped.
August 8 - The temperature outside is 96, and for Laser this corresponds to a dog heat index of 100. Dog heat index takes account of temperature and furriness. For a really fuzzy dog, like a golden retriever, the dog heat index would be over 110.
August 5 - A late evening stroll at the Dog Park, but where were all the other dogs?
August 3 - A caniscentric evening, with a trip to the Dog Park, and then to the Dog-o-Mat.
July 25 - A cooler evening leads to turbocharged dogs at the dog park. It was night of the fast, brown colored dogs, so Laser was right at home. Several bipeds appeared in summer clothing, having forgotten what it feels like to be chilly outside. They were soon reminded. The poodle was now coming back, having been fitted with a personal electrocution system.
July 23 - a second dogmobile appears in the driveway, but Laser prefers the old one. It's given reliable service to the nearby parks, so why risk changing.
July 16 - An agitated Laser is picked up from the kennel and dog torturing facility.
July 12 - A dog disaster as Laser is dropped off at the kennel, and the accompanying biped arranges a schedule of dog torture, including blood tests, nose sprays, and toenail clipping.
July 8 - Laser visited Mill Pond dog park in Saline, and met a couple of retrievers. They almost persuaded him to go swimming, but Laser doesn't like to get his belly wet so he just waded in the shallows. Laser rated this dog park at 3 paws out of four, with the comment "could be bigger". The shade, benches, and water access are nice features.
July 6 - Tonight's Dog Park entertainment was watching a poodle running off into the distance, pursued by annoyed bipeds. Two retrievers squared off over ownership of a soggy, well chewed tennis ball.
July 5 - A competitive intelligence company (2wrongs.com) performed extensive data mining on Laser's web site overnight. It might distort their reports to laser technology companies. "Forget developing a line of blue diode lasers, you have to get yourself a dog park." "Save hotel bills by making your employees stay at a kennel." "Promote team spirit by running around and mouthing each other." "Reward high performing employees with rawhide sticks." "Retrievers make bad CEOs, they're more interested in fetching balls than maximizing shareholder return."
July 2 - Laser received a fancy pen from a marketing company, with "Laser Lab" printed multiple times along the side. Too bad he can't write.
July 1 - Laser learns Saline (the neighboring town) has a real, legal dog park. A visit is planned. Stay tuned for updates on this exciting development in Washtenaw county.
June 30 - Laser felt neglected so he emptied Anne's purse and carried the contents to his dog bed for chewing. Bad dog.
June 30 - Media celebrity Raven was at the dog park this evening. He declined to sign autographs.
June 28 - Ann Arbor is cracking down on dogs. It was on the front page of the Ann Arbor News complete with photos of two of Laser's partners in off-leash crime. Apparently, dogs cause erosion. (No, Laser does not understand that either.) The newspaper found someone to argue that dogs don't need off leash time - probably someone that owns small ratty dogs.
June 26 - Another visit to the dog park. Slight skeeter abatement meant that we were able to walk in the adjoining woods without being devoured by mosquitoes. We still had our own personal swarms though.
June 25 - Laser visited the Dog-o-mat again, and about time as he was becoming highly malodorous, even for a dog. They couldn't find his frequent dog washing card, maybe they had recategorized them all under "Malodorous Canines". Laser is still skittish around garden hoses, probably remembering pre-Dog-o-Mat days when he was at risk of a good hosing on a warm day.
June 24 - A disappointing lack of action at the dog park, with fuzzies and non-fuzzies alike sitting around under a tree. At home, Laser helped plant a vegetable garden, by randomly scrabbling in the dirt, stomping on plants, getting in the way, and dementedly running around at high speed.
June 22 - Laser met his first cat at close proximity, going nose-to-nose for a couple of seconds. Laser then went into his play bow (front paws out and head down), but the cat disdained to play.
June 19 - Laser received unsolicited fan mail from Illinois, but didn't feel any urgency to get off his dog bed to do something interesting for his web site.
June 17 - Laser tried hard to get a couple of older beagles to play with him, but was unsuccessful. He could get them to bark (a lot), but he couldn't get them to run around.
June 15 - Very warm and humid, so we can get away with giving Laser a short walk.
June 14 - The Dog Park is closed today. Decided against telling Laser. All he would hear would be "Dog Park", and then there'd be bouncing around.
June 13 - Met someone who had just been fined $200 for letting a dog off leash. Fortunately, she had managed to leash a second dog before the Dog Police caught up, or there would have been a second fine. Ann Arbor is very liberal, except when it is rule-bound and oppressive.
May 8 - Driven out of the house by roofers, we took Laser to both Gallup Park along the Huron River, and the Dog Park.
April 21 - Laser was walking along a bench at the edge of the deck, making his way behind a biped, when he fell into a mud patch below with a loud thump. There was slight human-dog contact a second earlier - but the biped strenuously denied accusations that the dog was pushed.
April 20 - More Dog Park pictures:
Elsa in repose
A mystery breed
An excellent sit
(must be a treat involved)
April 19 - Laser becomes a TechnoDog by being the only dog at the park with his URL on a dog tag.
April 5 - At the Dog Park, Rascal was trotting around like dog nobility after wrestling a Great Dane into submission.
April 2 - The Dog Park season has really started with the beginning of Daylight Savings Time.
April 4 - Laser approves of our new living room layout. The coffee table has been pushed to one side, and the dog bed is now the center and focal point of the room.
March 25 - Took Laser out to the Dog Park in snow and wind - no-one was mad enough to be out there but us. Howling winds were blowing snow off the trees - Laser wanted to go on but we weren't convinced.
March 24 - Drove out to Chelsea, with the idea of walking the dog in a park nearby. However, strong icy winds with horizontal blown snow made us leave Laser sitting in the car while we had lunch. Then, we left Laser outside while we visited a hardware store. This was not a satisfactory trip out for Laser.
March 23 - Laser has a new trick at the Dog Park, crouching low in the grass to stalk the herds of wild labrador.
March 18 - visited the Dog Show at the Cobo Center, Detroit. We liked the Dog Agility, where dogs leapt fences, ran over teeter-totters, and ran through tubes, all against the clock. There was a beginners section, with dogs that would stop to look around, leap the same fence several times because it was fun, leave the arena to say hello to onlookers, and in one case, stop halfway along the course for urgent dog business. We saw some unhappy dogs being hair sprayed.
March 17 - St. Patrick's Day - we thought about dyeing Laser green.
March 16 - tried running with the dog in the morning. Laser thought this was very strange - head-tiltingly odd.
Feb 28 - Laser sprung from Dog Jail and taken straight to the Dog Park. The bipeds are quickly forgiven.
Feb 23 - Laser is taken to the kennel he doesn't like again. He's not very impressed.
Feb 22 - We have to put Laser in a kennel this coming weekend, but don't expect any trouble in February. Only it's Spring Break and most Ann Arbor kennels are booked solid. We have a choice, take Laser to a distant kennel that has been recommended, or to a close kennel that we know he doesn't like.
Feb 18 - Laser spent the weekend (2 nights) at a new kennel. It was clean, but the bill was 48 dollars. I expect the dog to be returned with a gold-plated collar for that kind of money.
Feb 13 - A representative from Dunn and Bradstreet, an accountancy firm, called and asked to speak to Laser Lab. Anne explained that he was a dog, and the web site was a dog's web site. "So it's non-revenue generating then?" asked the rep.
Feb 4 - A sleeping Laser was roused by the phase "Dog Park", so of course we had to go.
Feb 3 - Laser shunned by the Labs at the Dog Park. He was ruled "too bouncy" to walk with.
Feb 2 - Groundhog Day, Laser sees his shadow indicating six more weeks of freezing dog walking.
Jan 31 - Laser demands a "Dry Clean Only" tag after his experience at the Dog-O-Mat.
Jan 29 - Since setting up his web site, Laser T. Dog has started receiving business service mailings addressed to "Laser Lab". Today, he qualified for a discount at a local office supplies store.
Jan 27 - one of Anne's friends suggested we go on a date on Saturday night, somewhere that involves dressing up. So we put on our thick clothes and went to the Dog Park. Laser interfered once too often in a retriever's ball fetching duties, and was barked at vigorously. Laser fails to embrace the retriever paradigm, and feels that dogs should just run around with each other. If the human wanted the ball, it wouldn't have been thrown away.
Jan 21 - Disaster as Laser shrinks at the Dog-o-Mat. The water must have been too warm.
Jan 11 - Scandal surrounds the Dog Park as allegations surface that the dog wrestling sessions, long believed to be authentic dog play, are in fact faked. One observer, who wished to remain anonymous, said "It looked like Rascal was biting Laser's ear, but in fact there was no mouth-ear contact at all. The dogs were just pretending to fight." The Dog Wrestling Federation (DWF) denied these accusations, then claimed that even if it was staged, people enjoyed it.
Jan 8 - A very harassing walk for both Laser and biped. Laser has four-paw drive, and so wanted to make much faster progress than the biped, who was afraid of being pulled over on the icy surface.
Jan 7 - Laser engaged in dog wrestling with Rascal at the Dog Park. It was more entertaining than most stuff on TV, and we think its time for a new dog-based cable channel to start up.
Jan 6 - Laser visits the Dog Park for the first time this millennium. We can define a Dog Activity Ratio (D.A.R.) as being the ratio of the distance a dog covers to the distance the accompanying human covers. Today, D.A.R. was very high, about 15.
Jan 1, 2001 - Laser fell asleep while having his belly rubbed. He remained on his back with his front paws in the air for a minute or so.
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