Thursday, May 26, 2011

Toby the Springer Spaniel

Toby the Springer Spaniel
One of the most enjoyable things about house sitting are the animals.  Some are pets, some are farm, all are fun.  Ok, maybe scraping the chicken poop off the roosts is not fun, but the chickens surely are!  Here in Sacramento, we are enjoying the company of Toby, a two year old Springer Spaniel.  I think the name comes from the dogs ability to spring straight up from a sitting position to even with ones nose.  Toby is the perfect example.
Sleeping in a sunny spot in the garden.

When home owners leave, pets are usually upset with the change.  Sometimes a little treat with their food makes all the difference.  So it is with Toby.  He has gotten used to us being here. He eats his food with no problem, comes when called, and has decided our bed is not the place he will get to sleep.  When we go for his daily walk, he is very good, until he spies a squirrel, a cat, a dog, or a leaf drops on him.  Then he literally, springs into action.  I think my right arm is now two inches longer than the left!  When this happens, a firm "No" followed by the "Sit" command soon has him calmed down, for the most part.
Watching for squirrels!

One of Toby's favorite pastimes is keeping the squirrels out of the backyard, as well as off the highline wires that run across it.  I've seen him sneak out until he is under the highline wire with the squirrel on it, jump and bark really loudly, eliciting a startle response in the squirrel, to the point the poor thing nearly looses it's balance!  I'm not sure Toby would know what to do with a squirrel if it fell into the yard.

Today he goes to Doggy Daycare, where he will spend the day playing with other dogs.  He has a regular two day a week schedule.  We continue it for him, since our main job is normality for him.

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