So much has happened since the last Klondike newsletter I’m not sure I’ll be able to fit it all in, but here are some highlights.
Klondike OWNED the AKC Canine Good Citizen test yesterday. Passed on the first try. BAM!!!!
This is us just after passing. The woman on the right is Ellisa, the AKC evaluator.
This is Klondike and I at the start of the course. Notice how Klondike carefully went mud swimming before the test so his socks would match Ellisa’s.
This is the slack leash walk. It’s not quite a formal dog-show heel, but Klondike had to stay on a totally slack leash even as we stopped and did left and right turns.
I call this test section Zombie Village. In ZV the dog is led through a simulated crowd. The dog can show interest in the people around him (or living dead, as the case may be) but not aggression or jumping.
The foreground lady with the hat (above) stomped around, the walking pole lady behind her slapped her poles with each step, suitcase lady made noise as she loudly dragged her suit case. Klondike confirmed that there were no dangerous predators in the crowd or, even more importantly, people with snacks, and then just completely ignored everyone.
For the sharp eyed: The dog in the shot above is Tulia, but everything else is identical to Klondike’s run.
Having passed the test, Kondike is now demanding to be called Citizen Klon. An honor he’s well earned.
And in all seriousness… it’s very strange but it feels like Klondike knows he’s done something important. He seems just a little more interested in following me around the house, was waiting for me (for the first time ever) in front of the shower, during his walk seemed especially happy and pleased with himself.
Pretty sure I’m not imagining this. I think it’s passing the test, our reaction to the passing and just time – it generally takes 2-3 months for a dog to feel comfortable in a new home, and we adopted KB on 7/19 so we’re just past that two month mark.
Yes, it’s true. Those of you who know Citizen Klon know that he’s silent except for the thump-thump of his tail wagging on wood, the occasional surfacing whale exhalation noise and a very rare Scooby Doo type high pitched anticipation noise.
All that changed September 16, 2014 at about 1:00am. We heard two, very pleasant, sharp barks. Mieko and I rushed out of bed to Klondike’s basket and then did a quick check of the house but found nothing out of the ordinary. Our best guess is that he was having a dream. But it’s nice to know that he can bark and it’s a skill we hope he’ll learn to use at least a little more.
The Great Rebellion & Partial Cure
Late August saw Klondike sometimes refusing to go on walks, at least resisting at the start of the walk. And often thumping his tail while doing so.
We figured it was Klon being a little child who had just learned to say “No” and was testing it out. And that was some of it. But it also turned out he had worms and Giardia, a common stomach parasite and probably wasn’t feeling like long walks.
Happily Dr. Beth Phimister and her team from the Kensington Vet Hospital got on the case, nuked the parasites but good, and while the rebellion didn’t entirely go away it improved about 75%.
Pawalkers Deals With The 25% Remaining Rebellion
We asked the excellent Chris Mathews from Pawalkers to take KlonBeast to Point Isabelle Dog Park a few times a week. This was partially to give KB (now Citizen KB) some extra dog park experiences, partially to allow him to be part of a semi-regular pack of other dogs.
He seems to like Chris. He jumps into the Pawalker car with no problem. He comes back from his Pawalker excursions happy. But he’s lost off leash privileges from Chris because he won’t listen to her commands at the park and he makes a production of resisting walking from the house to her car. Hopefully, he’ll figure out the error of his ways.
Citizen K Swims!
Since we first adopted him, KlonBeast was interested in the water, and the Point Isabel Dog Park is on the shoreline so he’s frequently exposed to it. He’s wadded into the water. He’d climbed down rocks to get near the water numerous times. But he never actually went swimming. All that changed September 14 at 12:40PM. KB went swimming, and since then every trip to Point Isabel has included two dips in the water, each 2-4 minutes, followed by shaking and some sprinting around like an excited puppy.
Citizen Klondike Seeks Theoretical Underpinnings
Dr. Doug James, noted Berkeley Botanist, was kind enough to put together a one-on-one seminar for Klondike on animal-dangerous plants in the South Berkeley/Swartz Backyard area. Above Dr. James speaks with Klondike during a breakout session.
And that, my friends, is a very brief summary of recent Klondike events.
Bill, Mieko, Good Citizen Klondike