Good day.

Hi all!  I just have another quick share tonight.  Lexi went on a long walk with Daddy and Zev earlier today at the seawall, and Daddy reports that Lexi was very good!  She even walked past another dog without too much of a fuss – John was able to keep her attention on Zev and she walked along right behind him.  This is perfect, as he calmly walks past other dogs and just goes about his own business.  I think with some more time she will really catch on and feed off his energy.  He is such a good boy.

The four of us went on another, shorter walk in the afternoon and Lexi was great.  We didn’t see any other dogs, but we did see some people and we worked on getting Lexi to stay calm and keep her focus on us until we allow her to do otherwise (she gets really excited to meet people, as well as dogs!).  It was really cute, she kept looking back at John and I throughout the walk, as if to check in and get feedback from us.  She was given lots of praise!  Lexi showed a lot of progress today and I think John and I both did a good job of giving her clear and consistent direction, which she definitely needs.  We are definitely getting there!

Otherwise, all is well and we have no changes to report.  Lexi is handling her meds very well and her paws seem to heal up more and more every day.  It is awesome to see her bounce back from these dreaded allergy flare-ups.  The world is looking very bright for this beautiful girl!

Daddy and his kids

Daddy and his kids

Lexi makes a great co-pilot!

Lexi makes a great co-pilot!

life is good.

life is good.

That’s it for us tonight.  Hugs and kisses from Lexi and Zev!

Results already?

Hi all!  So Lexi is about to take her 3rd dose of cyclosporine, her big-gun allergy med prescribed by Dr. Tapp, the canine dermatologist she saw a few months ago.  Lexi has been on this med previously and it has shown good results, so we are now getting it back into her system after about a month and half off it.  So far she has shown no side effects, which is awesome, but we are still keeping a watchful eye over her.  We are also being especially careful to give it to her on an empty stomach, as advised.  Perhaps we are just imagining it (we were quite eager to get her back on this med), but it seems like it is already having a positive effect after only a few days.  I have read that it usually takes several weeks for the medicine to have an effect, but perhaps because she has taken it consistently before, the effects will now be seen quickly.  Several of the hot spots she had developed are much less irritated and the skin on her belly is clearing up from the red blotches that were there.  Regardless of whether or not the cyclosporine is the result of this relief, we are happy that she is making progress and are excited to see her continue to kick these icky allergies to the curb!

Big hugs and kisses from Lexi and Zev!

Rain, rain, go away!

Hi everyone!  I hope you all stay warm and dry throughout the rest of this wet, icky weekend.  We are all cuddled up on the couches after a busy day.  Lexi and I took a trip up to Dogs In Harmony this afternoon to visit our friend Denise and collect a bunch of “stuff” Lexi had amassed there!  Lexi’s wonderful Auntie Kim generously left us several cans of pumpkin and an adorable pair of “short-sleeve” jammies, perfect for spring time!  They are made by the same company as her sock monkey jammies and we love them!  They have super cute monkeys on them :).  Unfortunately, they were a bit too small in the chest area and I could only get one of Lexi’s front legs in!  We took some new measurements when we got home and sent them to Kim, so she will have the jammies re-made in a bigger size.  I hope it isn’t too much trouble for her!  We really appreciate such a sweet gift for Miss Lexi and they will definitely be put to use !  We have some awesome friends!

We also had presents waiting for us from Lexi’s former foster mom and forever friend, Laurelin.  She left us Lexi’s swamp cooler (a really cool piece of dog clothing!), a bag of her Merrick grain-free kibble, and, drumroll please, HER MEDS! YIPPEE!  Handsome Dan’s Rescue graciously placed an order for 60 days worth of cyclosporine to get Lexi started and it arrived this week to Laurelin’s home.  Today (Saturday) she will start back on it.  It must be given on an empty stomach, either 1 hour before a meal or 2 hours afterwards, so we plan to give Lexi her daily dose around 8 o’clock tonight.  I am really hoping she doesn’t experience any side effects, the most common of which is stomach upset.  Fingers crossed that her tummy agrees with the cyclosporine so that it can begin to combat her allergies again and give her relief!

We also grabbed another 10-pound box of THK Thrive and a smaller box of THK Keen for Zev.  Tomorrow we will begin mixing small amounts of dehydrated food into Zev’s kibble to ensure that he likes it and his tummy agrees with it.  He has had a few spoonfuls-worth of Keen from sample packets, but that was a few weeks ago, so we will basically start the process over.

Lexi and Zev are both doing well together.  They have had a few scuffles surrounding toys so we are being extra careful about leaving antlers and toys out and monitoring their time with said toys.  They have been playing very well together and walking well together.  One of the issues we are working through is keeping Lexi relaxed and focused on John or I when she is on a walk and encounters another dog, leashed or unleashed.  We encountered an unleashed dog on a fairly busy walking trail the other day and John had to ask the owners to leash him.  We had both Zev and Lexi with us and the dog was coming toward them.  It did not appear aggressive at all, but Lexi was yapping and whining at him excitedly and it would not have been a good situation if the dog approached our two.  The owners responded that they hardly ever leashed him but grabbed onto his collar as they passed by us.  Mind you, this is not an “off-leash” area, and John and I were both pretty perturbed.  The couple and the dog were very friendly, but their dog approaching ours while they were probably 20 or so feet behind him could have led to an even more stressful situation and certainly was no help in our efforts to train Lexi.  Needless to say, I really wish people would leash their dogs.  I will quit ranting, but I could go on and on about leashing, as I’m sure many of you could as well.

Anyway…when she and Zev are walking together in a quiet area she is great, but seeing other dogs on leash gets her very excited.  She gets excited about seeing people as well, but that has proven much less of an issue and we are able to settle her before allowing people to meet her.  Laurelin and Heather (HDR’s founder and head trainer) have explained that this is an issue Lexi had been working through in foster care and would probably require more work with still.  When we encounter another dog we try to use our “sit” and “look” commands to keep Lexi’s attention on us rather than the passing dog, assisted by treats, of course.  I have also been trying to solidify her “look” command in several situations throughout the day so that she will eventually be very responsive when I give the command.  We are also using Zev as a tool in these situations because he is almost always calm and nonchalant, and often that energy will help calm Lexi down.  We will figure out what works for John, Lexi, and I and implement this plan consistently.  Many of our walking areas become very crowded in the summertime (thanks to an influx of tourists), so this is definitely something we want to work on very hard with Lexi to make our walks as enjoyable and pleasant as possible.

Otherwise, not much else is new in our lives.  Once Lexi has been back on the cyclosporine for a few weeks I plan to bring her in for a follow-up appointment with Dr. Tapp, the dermatologist she first saw a few months ago.

So, that’s it for now.  I have just a few pictures to share today.  Enjoy!

she rested her head on my shoulder and I couldn't resist giving that brown nose some kisses!

she rested her head on my shoulder and I couldn’t resist giving that brown nose some kisses!

Lexi modeling her Ruffwear swamp cooler!  We can't wait for summertime so we can use it!

Lexi modeling her Ruffwear swamp cooler! We can’t wait for summertime so we can use it!

Lexi and our bounty from DiH today!

Lexi and our bounty from DiH today!

"there's something here for me, right?"

“there’s something here for me, right?”

That’s it for us tonight.  Paws crossed that Lexi takes her medicine well.  The adventures continue tomorrow!  Much love from Lexi and Zev.

Quick Share

Hi all!  I just have a picture I want to share.  It is one of my favorites of Lexi so far.  I have already shared it on my Facebook page, but I wanted to share it with all of my blog followers as well.

Daddy (John) and Lexi

Daddy (John) and Lexi

Lexi crawled right up into John’s lap and smooshed faces with him.  I just HAD to get a picture!  Anyway, that’s my random share for tonight.  Goodnight friends!  Hugs and kisses from Lexi and Zev!

One Month!!

Happy one month annidoptaversary, Lexi!!  I can’t believe it has been a month already since Lexi officially joined our family.  On the other hand, it feels like she has been with us much longer because she has fit in so perfectly.  We have had our struggles, but we have also experienced an immense amount of joy in the past month.  I have some super cute pictures to share from the past few days.

best of friends!

best of friends!

Zev stole one of Lexi's toys from the toy bin!

Zev stole one of Lexi’s toys from the toy bin!

investigating the toy bin...

investigating the toy bin…

Zev playing with the mini Sadie's

Zev playing with the mini Sadie’s

IMG_2577

just hangin' out

just hangin’ out

typical...

typical…

antlers are the BEST!

antlers are the BEST!

some more cuddling

some more cuddling

Zev decided to accompany us to Gramma and Grampa's house on bath day to supervise and get some extra butt rubs

Zev decided to accompany us to Gramma and Grampa’s house on bath day to supervise and get some extra butt rubs

smooshie face!

smooshie face!

sleepy

sleepy

cuddles with daddy

cuddles with daddy

real men love and snuggle their bully dogs <3

real men love and snuggle their bully dogs ❤

That’s it for us tonight.  Goodnight friends!  Hugs and kisses from Lexi and Zev!

Great week!

Hi all!  The four of us had a pretty nice week.  I had a short work week, only 3 days, so I got to spend a lot of time with the Moose and Little (I’m not quite sure why I started calling Lexi, Little…it probably evolved from “Little Princess” or “Little Miss” and she is just so little (compared to Zev, of course) and stinkin’ cute!).  We went on a few nice walks, enjoyed Valentine’s Day together, and spent some time napping (duh!).  Lexi is doing very well.  Allergies are always an issue and she gets a few hives, mostly on her shoulders, but we have a healthy stock of Benadryl to help keep her comfortable until her cyclosporine arrives.  Her paws still need careful, daily care but she has not appeared to be sore on them for several days now.  Her paws are also tolerating walks of a longer duration, with very little bleeding/cracking as a result.  One step at a time!

All in all, we are really happy with how she is doing and how she has adjusted to life with us and Zev after almost a month.  It definitely takes more time and effort to keep her healthy and comfortable compared to Zev, and most other dogs as well, but she is worth every second of the time spent on her.  She is probably the happiest, sweetest girl I have ever had the pleasure of knowing and she is such a good patient, despite the crummy treatment she received in the “former” life.  All she asks is for some kisses and butt scratches in return for being such a good girl!  I can’t help but smile as she eagerly gives me kisses and nuzzles me as I am putting her boots on to go outside, or “the face” she gives me when I walk into the room with her paw wipes and spray at the end of the night.  She is not a big fan of her paw cleaning routine but she sits for me like a good girl and just gazes at John with a pathetic look on her face.  Our little girl is definitely spoiled, and she deserves every treat, kiss, hug, and word of praise given to her.

goofball

goofball

sometimes she sleeps on her back like a person...and snores really, really loudly.

sometimes she sleeps on her back like a person…and snores really, really loudly.

Zev decided it was time for some cuddling...

Zev decided it was time for some cuddling…

...and then he decided he needed a pillow.

…and then he decided he needed a pillow.

Zev and Lexi are SO cute together.  Everywhere Zev goes, Lexi goes.  Everything Zev sniffs, Lexi sniffs.  She LOVES him.  And he loves her, too, even though he is a grumpy old man on occasion 😉

the kids at the seawall in Narragansett.

the kids at the seawall in Narragansett.

This week Zev also showed Lexi one of his favorite places to walk, the seawall in Narragansett.  We are there almost every day in the summer and Zev loves to soak up attention and butt scratches from tourists and locals alike.  It was pretty quite on the day that we went, just a few joggers, construction workers, and other people walking their dogs.  Lexi met a nice construction worker who gave both her and Zev many compliments on their good looks and charm.  We advised him on how to approach Lexi properly and with a calm energy and they hit it off immediately.  He was clearly dog-savvy and talked with us for a few minutes about rescuing dogs.  Zev then showed Lexi that if you walk up to a new friend and quickly spin around, resting your bum on his or her leg, they will give you butt scratches, which are obviously the best thing ever.  She caught on quickly!  Lexi was a little less mannerly about seeing/walking past other leashed dogs, and that is something we will continue to work on.  Although, on our walk tonight she did a good job with John and sat pretty quietly while another leashed dog went about his business nearby.  We will continue to work on directing her attention away from the other dog and toward us and Zev instead.  She is a work in progress, for sure, but we are confident that with time, patience, consistency, and Zev as a role model she will become an even greater girl than she already is!

being all cute and cuddly

being all cute and cuddly

Zev wanted a close-up.

Zev wanted a close-up.

Lexi enjoying her Valentine's Day antler!

Lexi enjoying her Valentine’s Day antler!

that is one happy girl!

that is one happy girl!

Zev had a nice heart-shaped bakery cookie that was devoured in about 10 seconds.  He wishes he had a few more.

Zev had a nice heart-shaped bakery cookie that was devoured in about 10 seconds. He wishes he had a few more.

kisses from Mom!

kisses from Mom!

photobomb!

photobomb!

rocking some hot pink socks!

rocking some hot pink socks!

Well, that’s it for us tonight.  We have a pretty busy weekend ahead but it should be a good one.  We hope you all have a great weekend!  Hugs and kisses from Lexi and Zev!

Relaxing night

Hi all!  The dogs and I are having a relaxing night on the couch.  I don’t have much to say today.  Lexi and Zev have been playing more and more and have been really great together.  They snuggle together all night in the bed and have really evolved into great friends.  It makes my heart so happy to know that we were able to find the perfect friend for Zev, and of course that we are able to give Lexi a great forever home and a big brother to love.  Nothing makes me happier than just hanging out with these two goons.

Zev tries to get Lexi to play with his ball with him, but I don't think she quite gets it yet...

Zev tries to get Lexi to play with his ball with him, but I don’t think she quite gets it yet…

just hangin' out

just hangin’ out

hi cutie!!

hi cutie!!

i love this girl. so much.

i love this girl. so much.

That’s about it for me tonight – I am going to get the dogs ready for bed and do some cuddling!  Goodnight everyone!  Hugs and kisses from the Moose and Lexi girl 🙂