Monthly Archives: April 2012

Thanks & Puppy Medals

When I started this blog, I did it more for a way to look back and have documentation of Capone being a part of our lives.  And honestly, at the beginning it just felt like I was writing more for myself or even more-so, TO myself. As the months have gone by, it’s been so nice to be getting feedback and great comments about Capone and how much people enjoy hearing my stories about him. I hit 1,000 views the other day and I was pleasantly surprised at the fact that I’ve gotten that many people on my page 🙂 So a big thanks to everyone who has taken the time to give us a little visit!

Today Capone turned 7 months (all 80+ pounds of him) and we got a really awesome package in the mail! As some of you remember, we took some Puppy 1 classes a few months ago (here is a picture from that post, look how little he looked!!) at our fave doggy hangout spot A Dog’s Life, that included registration as an AKC S.T.A.R Puppy. Well, we mailed in the paperwork and look what we got!

Capone tried to help open the other parts of the package but all he managed to do was bump my hand and make the shot blurry 🙂

This is what he was after…

Woohoo! Capone’s first medal 🙂

Now that we have the basic puppy training classes under our belt, I’m hoping to get Capone into some more challenging (but fun) training classes, agility classes and finally get him into the AKC Canine Good Citizen program. I’m hoping to one day have Capone be a therapy dog to take him to convalescent homes or to rehabilitation facilities so that he can make someones day a little more goofy 🙂

Now that the weather is getting nicer, it’ll be easier to take him to different places and have him experience more surroundings. Speaking of the weather getting nicer, is anyone else shedding like crazy??

Of course, I don’t mind Capone’s dog hair since its grey and practically blends in with everything (except for his favorite blanket/girlfriend). So as of lately when we brush him, which ends up now being around every other day, we get a halo of hair that surrounds him when he lays down to get brushed! I can make a little toy hamster out of all the hair that I collect after his brushing/massage sessions. I actually use his grooming tool to pick up the hair after I’m done since it almost acts like a magnet on the carpet. That’s why in the picture you see a lot of carpet fluff 🙂

I’m so glad he likes it so much and in fact “reminds” us of it by dropping his Kong Zoom Groom in our laps. Its made out of this really tough rubber that is very durable. He’s used it as a chew toy since we got it the first week we got Capone. He probably sees it as his massage time rather than being just grooming time.

This is what we use.  As you can see he enjoys every minute of it and gives us his best “good boy” sit to get his massages 🙂

Eventually he lays down and almost falls asleep while we do it!

Which works for me because then I get to clean his ears..

And my.. what big ears you have!

We can’t forget the teeth either…

After all of that, Capone is happy to get some snuggles from his favorite little boy 🙂

Until next time and hope everyone had a wonderful Earth Day 🙂

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Categories: All About Capone, Dane Info, Fun Stuff | 11 Comments

When The Humans Are Away…

The Danes will play!! Well.. technically I wasn’t “away”… just really sick! In fact, we all have been sick! Its been about 5 days now and I feel like we just keep recycling a cold between my children and I. Thank goodness I haven’t gotten anyone else sick! I even made Josh go stay at a friend’s house this weekend so that he wouldn’t catch anything. He has a really big conference this week and the last thing I wanted him to do was miss it. We unfortunately missed our Great Dane meetup date last Sunday (It even was a meetup that I setup to host!), which I felt terrible about, but there’s no way I could show up with two sick kids, a sick host and an 80 pound puppy. The thought just broke me out in a cold sweat. So poor Capone has been stuck at home with snotty humans around that just don’t want to play!

I’ve had to come up with some creative ways to keep him entertained while not causing myself or the kids to pass out and I’m SO glad that I bought this pet game a few weeks back..

Capone LOVES it.. well he loves it because Logan always helps him “find” the hidden treats. It’s called the Dog Smart Interactive Treat Game and its made by the Nina Ottoson Company. She has a really large line of great interactive dog games and I know once Capone has outgrown this game mentally, we can move to more challenging ones. There are some that even lock and make it quite difficult so its hours of mental stimulation that not only helps young dogs but keeps older dogs brains still sharp and active. I haven’t gotten around to taking a video of him playing with this because half of the time I’m wrestling Logan out of the way of Capone’s paws so forget having a steady camera shot!

We also got Capone a new squeaky toy. It’s a plush, stuffless snake with squeaky sections going down the body with a little rattle at the end of it. I did get a video of him having a zoomies attack to it..

As you can see in the video, he’s still pretty active and definitely has his moments of crazyness.. but for the most part, he has started to actually calm down. Who knows if he was lethargic because we were pretty out of it in the past few days but things have settled down alot with him.

Absolutely loves hugs from the kids

And snuggles are his favorite

And while he loves his bed…

His favorite resting area is my lap 🙂

And now that the weather is getting so nice, you can’t forget how much he loves to sunbathe!

Poor thing.. once we get over this awful cold, it will be back to normal!

Until next time, everyone keep their hands washed and hand sanitizers with you everywhere!

 Hugs, Val & Capone

Categories: All About Capone, Fun Stuff | 6 Comments

The Great Outdoors Part 2

Our trip to Shingle Springs last weekend was fantastic! We had a great first day ( If you missed the post, here it is) which consisted of us exploring the entire property with the kids and Capone trying to find a middle ground with their Golden Retriever, Shayna. After playing a few rounds of musical beds that night, we tucked them into bed in the laundry room. Boy, did Capone howl! He got up twice that night and I don’t know if he heard a racoon outside, or some deer but something had him spooked! It’s never been a problem to get him to go to bed but I’m sure it was hard to fall asleep in a room that was unfamiliar with a dog that wasnt too thrilled to share her bedroom. EVERYONE need coffee in the morning 🙂

My FIL (Father-in-law)’s birthday was that day and even though we got a bit rained out, we still had a wonderful time! Unfortunately, my forgetful self forgot to bring my camera charger and it died on me that same day. So no pictures of the party 😦 I did use my Iphone camera for the rest of the weekend but it was charging for the entire event. Boo on me!! I did catch this very cute picture of Lo and Josh enjoying a little fire after the party.

Shayna and Capone spent most of the party in the garage and boy where they happy to be out of it when the guests left. We thought it would be best not to have an 80 pound puppy bulldozing everyone over. It would have been way too overwhelming for him so we put them to bed and promised to make it up to them with a nice walk in the morning. No interruptions, thank goodness, but when we got up in the morning and let him out to do his business we heard him barking and barking. Thinking it was just some deer he was curious about, I went to go check on him because it’s not really like him to just bark incessantly. Look what I found..

He was on top of the walkway at the top of the fountain!! At first I thought he was just barking because he was proud of himself and wanted us to see his cool trick but as we got closer we realized the goof boy was STUCK!!

HELP! How do I get off this thing??

So I panicked thinking he was going to jump or fall back off the wall a-la-Humpty Dumpty style and called Josh. Here is a video of the whole ordeal of the rescue.


Needless to say, Capone did NOT go on the walkway again after that. I think he felt a little embarrassed about it because he followed me around like a shadow for a few hours and would not let me out of his sight. After lunch, he ventured off again and I found my 15th frog of the entire trip. He was beautiful!

I would have taken him home with me but Josh would have killed me. He would have kept us up with the croaking. Boy are they loud!!

The sunset that evening was gorgeous and Capone looked amazing in it 🙂

My MIL’s sister lives down the street and she has alpacas!! So we got up in the morning and went to go visit. Lily is a big fan of them and it was so cute seeing her take a crack at some country chores…

Like feeding the alpacas…

And feeding the chickens..

And collecting freshly laid eggs 🙂

Speaking of eggs.. can you believe I’ve never dyed Easter eggs? That’s what we did when we got back! Easter was that following Sunday so my In-laws wanted to share a little bit of the tradition with the kids since we were leaving that following afternoon.

Ready to dye her creations

Tada!! I think they came out great!

So this whole time, we hadn’t been bothered by Capone at all who is usually practically under my armpit the whole time to investigate what we’re doing especially if its something to do with food but lo and behold he was missing. After a brief check on the usual places he often layed down I peeked into the guest room where we had set up an air mattress on the floor and look who made himself comfy!!

 Caught red-handed! I felt bad kicking him out of the bed but honestly he is not allowed on any furniture so he reluctantly climbed off and went to go and steal Shayna’s bed instead.

He even missed the wildlife right outside the window as he snoozed! Here are the deer checking out my MIL’s garden..

See him behind the fence?

So the coolest thing happened too! Disclaimer: If you are squeamish when it comes to animal parts and organs stop reading 🙂

The day I got to Shingle Springs, I put an ad in Craigslist asking people for raw unwanted meat to feed Capone. As some of you know, we feed Capone a raw diet and I’m always on the lookout for fresh variety to give to him. Sure enough, I got an email the day before we were leaving that a woman was going to slaughter a pig and I was welcome to have the organs for Capone! SO that morning I headed out to the location and pick up a very heavy bag of “yummies” for the dog. I got the lungs, kidneys, spleen and liver. For free!! It was about 4 days of food for him. What a score!

I’d never seen pig lungs before and they were so light and spongy! It was fascinating!

Here I was making serving sized baggy proportions. Good thing I brought my food scale with me!

Check out the size of that liver!!! Holy smokes!!

After my butchering session, we cleaned up, packed all the last-minute stuff and said our goodbyes. By this time, Shayna and Capone were best buds and we made sure to share our last pig ear with her, which she was very grateful for 🙂 Josh had left earlier the previous day and when we finally got home this was waiting for me in the kitchen!

Our week was so much fun but we were all happy to be home..

Especially Capone 🙂

Until next time!

Categories: All About Capone, Fun Stuff, Raw Diet | 6 Comments

Hope everyone had a wonderful Easter!!

Woof Woof,

Capone 😛

Categories: All About Capone | 2 Comments

The Great Outdoors! Part 1

Last week we decided to go visit my in-laws in Shingle Springs, CA. Its located about an hour or so from South Lake Tahoe and it’s absolutely gorgeous! Everytime I go up there its always, literally, a breath of fresh air for me. I consider myself a very city type girl but deep down I know the country life would suit me just fine, if not even better. I mean who wouldn’t want to be on acres of land with deer on your lawn every morning? Its fantastic! We went up there for Christmas and haven’t been back so we went up to celebrate my father-in-laws birthday and spend some time enjoying the country a bit 🙂

They have a Golden Retriever named Shayna that was a little annoyed with Capone back in December (she didn’t fancy all the puppy play) so we were hoping they would get along a lot better now that Capone had put on 20 pounds or so.  We kept our fingers and paws crossed!

The kids and Capone were very happy to get out of the car after the three-hour trip. Thank goodness for the DVD player in my car because I would be hearing a lot of “are we there yet’s”. Needless to say, after two Disney movies, we were all excited to have finally arrived. Of course, no drive would be completely without the almost accidental running over of the wild turkeys that roam the area! I mean, seriously, who crosses traffic right as soon as a car is coming?? Crazy birds!! Nothing a couple good car honks didn’t fix, though

As soon as we got out of the car, Capone was zoomin’ all over Shayna who of course gave us the stink eye as if to say “Really? Him, again?” Hee hee, poor Shayna.

So excited to see Shayna

Giving him a “what on earth are you doing” look 🙂

She wanted to come back into the house…

So Capone went off to explore around the property.

Pretty girl

Still too excited about Shayna to go too far, so he came back after 5 min. and joined her to come back inside.

After setting up the pack and play crib, inflatable toddler mattress and unpacking most of our clothes, we were ready to go outside and enjoy some of the sunshine before the expected storm was going to roll in. My Father-in-laws birthday party was the next day so rain was not welcome, however, we all still had a great time! Speaking of unpacking, this is the first time we used Lily and Logan’s official suitcases that I bought for them at Target. Can you believe they were on sale for a little under $15? Aren’t they cute? Yay for Target! Logan also spent about half the day rolling his around our house so it doubles as a toy 🙂

Aside from their beautiful home, my in-laws (herein referred to as my MIL/FIL for typing efficiency purposes) property includes a really cute cottage in the back of the property, a rustic old barn, a fountain with a koi pond, a garden, a wine cellar and a shed.  Which of course, both kids wanted to explore every section of.. so off we went to explore!

Some of the beautiful flowers we found

All of a sudden, something caught Capone’s attention and he had to stop and really pay attention to find out where it was coming from!

It was the koi fish coming up to breathe

Trying to get a better look at them

 Some of these fish were really big!

My IL’s front part of the house has a really long driveway that Logan is a fan of walking but now that he’s gotten better at walking, his main goal was to run as fast as he could down the incline. Much to my dismay, lots of spills and falls happened, but everytime he would pick himself back up and try again. I think this bothered Shayna because after a while, she started to kind of corral him to prevent it.

I found the cutest little frog!

Who was patient enough to let Capone sniff him for a good 2 minutes.

We also got a tour of their new upgraded garden with adequate fencing. The deer are notorious for eating any crop they plant so it has to have some pretty high fences so the deer can’t jump over it and grab a Scooby snack in the middle of the night!

It’s still too cold to plant anything but my FIL showed Lily her little flower bed that we would plant with whatever she wanted to grow this summer. Lily wants to plant flowers, tomatoes and squash.

Here he is showing her his restored antique swing bench. I loved the sky blue paint job on it! Very retro.

Oh and check out the red door, it was off their old barn that they decided to paint red. Super cute!

Quality assurance Lily testing it out!

Checking out the flower beds

 

Lily’s favorite tree on the property

After a long day of just walking the property and exploring, everyone settled in for the night. Capone and Shayna settled their differences (once he calmed down) and enjoyed a good snuggle. Poor thing was being squished by Capone as you can see in the picture since he’s practically laying on her back legs. She didn’t seem to mind it tho.

It was cute seeing Shayna’s fur on Capone and vice versa. After running around all day, both of them were pretty dirty!

Knowing we were going to stay for a few days it was nice to see them sharing space and enjoying each other’s company. It’s always nerve-wracking wondering if dogs are going to get along especially since Capone is obviously much bigger than her.

So we took this as a good sign..

Until he decided to steal her bed! Even though his very comfy bed and blanket were right next to him. Silly boy!

To be continued… 🙂

Categories: Fun Stuff, Outings | 9 Comments

Capone’s New Bed!

Hello blog world! We’ve been gone for a week to visit my in-laws near the Lake Tahoe, Ca area (I’ll blog about that in a few days once I’ve uploaded the pictures) so I’ve been MIA from posting! I was getting withdrawals so now that everything is nicely unpacked and the kids are in bed I can share what’s new 🙂

Capone got a new bed! If you remember, this is what his old crate looked like. Silly us, thought that he would last in this crate for a while. But it only took 3 months for him to outgrow it! Josh and I thought about buying the largest crate available but since Capone is out of his chewing phase and has never destroyed anything related to the sofas and carpets, we thought we would try and just get him a large comfy bed. I even tested it out about a week and a half ago, we took down his crate and I went errand running to see how he would do without it. I told him to be a good boy (put some large ride-on toys on the sofa to deter him from being a couch potato) and came back to a very undisturbed house with a sleepy boy lounging in the sun. Did I also mention that I didn’t want a huge ugly crate in the living room? Of course, if we NEEDED to we would get the monstrous crate but I have confidence that Capone is past the crate necessity months.

So I happily started researching the biggest comfiest bed I could find him. I found a website that makes eco-friendly dog beds from recycled materials and I was SO happy that they made XXXL beds! http://www.dogbedsforless.com is the site and I ordered a 58x 50 inch bed that comes with a suede cover that overlaps a waterproof lining and inside has 100% recycled chunks of memory foam. The site also carries other replacement covers including a denim cover we’ll be buying once the weather really changes to keep him nice and cool! The price was relatively inexpensive ( $92) and it accommodates pets up to 180 pounds.  Most of the reviews are Dane owners so that was a selling point! Poor Capone gets used to a bed and then WOosh.. it gets switched on him, so we’re thinking long-term with this bed this time and hopefully it lasts for quite a while!

Here are pictures of the product…

Doesnt that Dane look comfy?

So after a few days, it showed up on our door! I was so excited that I forgot to take a picture of us opening it. Needless to say it was VERY vacuum packed and once I made the first cut of the package it started to swell up like a balloon! Capone didn’t know what to think of it and was very scared so we opened it while we gave him a little snack outside so that he wouldn’t be afraid of it and not even want to lay on it! Once I got the very comfy suede cover on it and put it in the same spot as his other bed we let him in.

Its half the size of our sofa!

Sniffin out the new bed

He needed a little encouragement from Josh!

I’m still not sure!!

Finally settling down

I’ll pretend that I like it, okay?

5 minutes go by and he’s still on the bed.. so far so good!

Even though for the first 30 minutes he was kind of apprehensive about the new fluffy big thing that was in place of his old dog bed, he finally settled down and just rested. I thought everything was going well until bedtime came around and Capone kept pacing and pacing, moving from location to location trying to get comfy. I knew something was up, so I went to the car and got his old memory foam bed and put it on top of the new bed to test my theory. And voila..

Sometimes you just need a little piece of what you know to move on with something new. Nite nite everyone!

Categories: All About Capone, Dane Info | 8 Comments

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