Saturday, April 27, 2013

Back To 4 Paws

This past Thursday, Pebbles left the College of Wooster for good. We drove down to spend some time in Cincinnati, and then back up to Xenia to take Pebbles into the next stage of her life. After spending 5 months with Pebbles, she really has come a long way. Our first day with Pebbles doesn't even compare to our last. She used to travel from trash can to trash can, her nose overpowering any command that we tried to give her. 5 months later, it was a different story. While Pebbles still had her moments of weakness when there was a jar of peanut butter on the kitchen counter, she's a different dog. We couldn't be happier with the progress that she's made and can't wait to hear about the amazing things we know she's going to do someday.

We've had some ups and downs with Pebbles over the past few months, but this experience was truly an amazing one. All professors and faculty have been incredibly understanding about the work that we've been doing with Pebbles. Anytime Pebbles has been out around campus, whether it's in class, the library, Lowry, or somewhere else, we've had nothing but great responses. We just want to thank everyone that has helped us with this program and the great success that we have had.

One really awesome thing that we got to see at the facility in Xenia was Pebbles's brother, Chex. We couldn't believe how big he was! When we walked in, no one there believed that it was actually her because she's so small! We had no idea that Pebbles was so small for her litter, but she looks like the runt compared to her siblings. It's nice to know that Pebbles gets to hang out with her siblings while she's back at 4 Paws.

Pebbles has finished the chapter of her training with fostering. Now she'll move on into more specific training for her service, which hopefully will be search and rescue. Where Pebbles ends up depends on her strengths and weaknesses. If she is able to make it through her training and pass her test, then she'll be able to move on to help someone who could really use her. If she is able to pass her test, she'll have a graduation ceremony that we can go to and see how far she's come. We would love nothing more than to see her one last time to send her off to help someone.

As for next year, we're happy to report that there will be three 4 Paws dogs in training on campus in the fall! We've been able to expand and get people excited about what we're doing, which is exactly what we hoped for when starting this program last year. We'll be living in Kennedy Apartments. The school has had talk about gating off an area for the dogs to be able to socialize with one another and to do obedience work in, so we're really crossing our fingers that they can make it happen!

Also, keep a look at for fundraising for 4 Paws next semester because we can't wait to get something organized! We can't wait to get started on another semester with another dog. Thanks for all of the support!

And of course, we've included some pictures of Pebbles at the bottom!

Just a quick nom.

Colleen and Pebbles!

C'mon...she's got a pretty cute face.

Just playing in the backyard

Maddie and Pebbles!

Just a small amount of slobber...

A quick sniff.

Back at 4 Paws!



Monday, April 22, 2013

The Dog Diaper Days Are Over

So if you haven't heard the good news, Pebbles is officially diaper free--and couldn't be more excited about it. After about three weeks of a diapered life, Pebbles seems like she's back to her crazy, lovable self. She unfortunately hasn't been able to be out and about due to her diaper-situation, but hopefully she'll be around campus for the next few days! Today is also one month away from Pebbles's first birthday! This really wouldn't matter if we got to celebrate her actual birthday with her, but since she goes back to 4 Paws For Ability in Xenia, OH this Thursday, this is the big birthday benchmark that we get to celebrate with the cutest 11 month old pup in town. She got a special treat for the big day: a raw-hide free, all natural chew, made from vegetables and her favorite food of all time (besides maybe hot dogs), peanut butter. Needless to say, food is pretty much the best treat she could ever get. With the exception of all the drooling and slobber, it's tons of fun to watch Pebbles get so excited for her special surprise.

This blog post is short and sweet, because not too much has been going on in the life of Pebz since she's just been hanging out at home for a while now. We've been playing lots of hide and seek, working on obedience skills, and relaxing in front of the fan. The warm up in temperature has really gotten to her! She's been panting like crazy lately, but she loves to sit in front of the fan and wind down.

We only have a few days left with Pebbles, but if you see her around campus tomorrow or Wednesday be sure to say hi because she won't be at the Woo for very much longer! And be sure to check out of videos and pictures below of good times with the Pebz these past few weeks.

Pebbles has decided that bubbles are a fun time. Check it out!

For us, Wooster really means two things. Find out what they are here.

A 4 Paws For Wooster blog post just isn't complete without some candids of Pebbles. So here they are...

Obviously, the diapered life didn't suit Pebbles very well.

But she does love the magical fan

Waiting patiently for play time, as always.

Just texting all of her friends. You know.

Happy (Almost) Birthday to the Pebz!


Thursday, April 4, 2013

Spring Breaking...And All That Good Stuff

Sorry it's been so long since we've done a post! Things have been busy as ever around Morris House and in the life of Pebbles. For her spring break, Pebbles got to go back to Cincinnati with Maddie again. Her dachshund, Joy, wasn't too happy about it, but Pebbles LOVED having another dog around to play with. Or....try to play with. Spring break in Cincinnati didn't involve anything too exciting. Maddie and Pebbles ran around town, went to the mall, visited parks, played with Maddie's little cousins, and took nice, long walks. She also was washed for the first time at a Laundro-Mutt, aka a laundromat for dogs. Self-served dog wash means no putting Pebbles in a big tub that's too small for her, having plenty of room to get her really clean, and being able to blow-dry her coat at the end. Maddie loved it, but Pebbles wasn't too much of a fan. Then again, she's not a fan of much when it comes to cleaning her. With the exception of some minor hiccups, like jumping up onto counters (and not just her front paws, but her whole body), playing a little too rough with Joy, and having an extreme obsession with stealing Maddie's pillow and running away, Pebbles was great over break. It was relaxing for both of them, which is obviously a good thing.

Over Easter weekend Pebbles got some one on one time with Taylor and her parents (Wooster alums...who met and fell in love at Wooster, of course). Maddie and Colleen both went home for the weekend, so it was just Taylor and the Pebz holding down the fort. Taylor's parents hadn't met Pebbles before, so it was lots of fun for all of them to get that much time to hang out together.

If you haven't seen Pebbles out and about on campus lately, that's because she hasn't been! Pebbles just went into heat, which means hanging around the house for a while. It also means that she has to wear a diaper when she's out of her kennel, which she is pretty much hating. We try to get her out of her little diaper depression with Milk Bones, peanut butter, and hot dogs, but nothing seems to be working too well. All that we can really do for her is use happy voices and give her lots of love...and treats. But don't worry! She will be out and about again soon!

We also just nailed down an official date for when Pebbles will be going back to the 4 Paws For Ability facility in Xenia, OH, where she was born--Thursday April 25. When she goes back, she'll start the next part of her journey, which will lead to specialized training and hopefully end with the placement of her with someone who needs her. It's crazy to think about our time with her winding down, but we are still enjoying it while we can! So make sure you see Pebbles before she leaves because we know that she's going to miss all the friends that she has made here!

And of course, we have some pictures of her for you guys too...

Just lounging around the house. Typical afternoon for Pebz.

Enjoying one of the few days we had nice weather in Cincy!

A clean dog is a happy dog? Not so much...

So ready for spring!

If that's not self control, I don't know what is.

Diaper Depression.



Sunday, March 3, 2013

Pebbles Goes To The Zoo!!!

So today was probably one of Pebbles's biggest adventures yet--a road trip to the Cleveland Zoo! When we first got there, we were immediately greeted by Guest Services at the zoo because they give a representative to walk around the zoo with those who have a service dog. Our guide was so amazing! She loved Pebbles and was able to answer all of the questions we had. It was like having our own personal tour of the whole zoo, which was pretty awesome. We were a bit skeptical when we first found out that someone from the zoo had to walk around with the service dog, but we couldn't have had a better guide to show us everything.

We started off with the African elephants, which probably ended up being one of the coolest animals to watch Pebbles see for the first time. She didn't quite understand the giant beast in front of her, but she was so interested in figuring it out. It was a great start, but Pebbles didn't love all the other animals quite as much as the elephants. She seemed to have a real problem with leopards, cheetahs, wolves, and above all else, monkeys. With the monkeys especially, regardless of how small and non-threatening they seem to humans, Pebbles pretty much hated them. Ironically, they all seemed totally fascinated by her. Every monkey that we passed would stop right in front of the glass to try to figure out why some random animal got to walk around outside with all the people while they were enclosed behind glass. One group of small primates even gathered up all together and followed us as we walked along the glass panel of their enclosure. There were probably at least 10 of them all pressed up against the glass trying to get a look at Pebbles.

But, not all of the animals other than the elephants at the zoo were bad for Pebbles. She didn't seem to have any sort of issues with the tiger, lion, polar bear, and she really enjoyed the fish too. Not only did Pebbles get a lot of interaction time with other animals, but she saw tons of children at the zoo too, which is always good for her, especially considering her tendency to be nervous around them. Overall, she was great with all the kids she saw at the zoo, and although she was still definitely displaying some nervousness, she let them pet her and say hi. All the kids really liked her too...except for the one little girl who burst into tears at the mere sight of her. Fortunately her little brother calmly explained to us that his sister is afraid of dogs.

We had a great time at the zoo, but that's not all we did this week! Pebbles also went to the conference finals for track this weekend to help support the fighting Scots! She made quite a few heads turn from the parents, fans, and athletes from other schools who didn't know anything about our program on campus. It's been a really busy week for the pup, and there's just a few more days left until she goes back to Cincinnati with Maddie from spring break! We hope that we can have more fun adventures like this with Pebz in the future!

Now check out all of our cool pictures from the zoo and more!

Pebbles loves to share her toys....sometimes....

That line across her face isn't from the flash...that would be a line of dust from sniffing under the couch. Her nose just doesn't let anything stand in it's way.

Go Scots!

Just sniffing around in the greenhouse at the zoo. Lots of smells there!

Hanging out with her new bestie.

And these little rascals were the ones who bunched up around the glass to get a look at Pebbles.

The Cleveland Zoo was awesome! Who needs the real rainforest when there's one right in Ohio??

A long day at the zoo means a sleepy puppy on the drive home!


Sunday, February 24, 2013

Long Time No Post!

It's been a while since our last blog post! We've been so busy with Pebbles, classes, gross weather, and all kinds of stuff that we just haven't gotten around to writing up a new post. Pebbles has been busy as ever these past two weeks. We've had a lot of big sports games for Wooster and Pebbles loves to go out and support the Scots! She went to two basketball games and had a great time cheering on our team. Check out our picture below of Pebbles repping some Scot-wear!

Pebbles has pretty much become a regular member of Maddie's Language Development in Children class on Wednesdays. She has been known to distract the class just a little bit, but you can't blame a sleeping dog. She has a tendency to make loud, monster-like noises when she changes positions to get comfortable to take a little nap. For some reason, that always has to happen when the professor stops talking and is waiting for the students to answer a question. To break the tension, Pebbles steps in with her trademark sounds. Other than that little hiccup, she's getting better and better at staying calm in class. When she first went to class, it was a struggle to get her to settle in and sit in one spot for the entire time. The more and more she gets used to being in class, the faster she is able to calm down and relax throughout the whole class period.

More adventures in the life of Pebbles are dealing with this crazy weather. This past Friday, the ice was out of control. While Pebbles tried really hard not to let the ice affect her running across the drive-way, it definitely did. She attempted to run across the ice, but took a little bit of a tumble, not being used to this new ice-covered surface. But, ever persistent, that didn't stop her from getting right back up and pulling Taylor across the ice as well. While Taylor and Maddie both took some falls later on that day, luckily they were not Pebbles related.

We're continuing to work with Pebbles about getting used to being around children, because she still shows a little bit of nervousness. So if you know anyone who would want their kids to hang out with Pebbles, let us know! We're taking it all day by day and seeing her improve from week to week is greatly rewarding. Hope everyone has a wonderful week!!



Don't forget to look through our pictures of the cutest dog in Wooster!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

A Week in the Life of Pebbles

This week Pebbles has been a busy pup. She took trips to Panera, the Wooster track meet, class, meetings and even a sorority house for a little stress relief. Pebbles has been loving the falling snow, but she is definitely not liking her winter booties. Without them she hates walking in the cold snow and salt, but with them she looks like a baby deer learning how to walk. I guess she'll learn to love them eventually...

As Pebbles makes more visits to the Student Center, we are realizing she is making more friends than us! She is being featured on Wooster tours and is recognized everywhere she goes. Due to Pebbles' popularity, she has been asked to make an appearence at an informational session for program houses. She seems quite excited. She has also been making more trips up to lunch and dinner with us. This has been a bit of a struggle lately because all Pebbles wants to do is eat the crumbs on the ground. It's a challenge, but shes working on her self-control.

It has been a tough past couple weeks in the greek world, so to offer some comfort, Pebbles visited a sorority for a late night petting session. At Panara she behaved very well and sat quietly like a good puppy. She has gotten very good at hide and seek and has started to outsmart us when we hide treats. It's been two months since Pebbles has stepped a paw on the Wooster campus and she has made great improvements.

Here's a video of Pebbles trying to master her new walk in boots!

Make sure you check out our pictures below too!

Loving all the snow!

Sometimes we play dress up instead of doing our homework...

Always the diva.

When Pebbles gets hungry, she always manages to let us know.


Sunday, January 20, 2013

Back To The Woo!

Pebbles has officially been back on campus for a week! After a long month in Cincinnati with Maddie, she's happy to be back in Morris House. Since coming back to campus, we've realized how her time in Cincinnati changed her. It seems that most of her changes in behavior have come from spending time with Maddie's two dogs at home. While Pebbles loved having other dogs around to interact with, it's hard to say the same for Noel and Joy. Then again, it would be difficult to deal with a 55 pound puppy trying to swat her giant paws at you when you're a 13 year old dachshund. I can't say that I blame them for not being thrilled with Pebbles's time there.

With the exception of desperately trying to make friends with little to no success, Pebbles had a great time in Cincinnati. Maddie and her were able to walk in lots of different parks all over Cincinnati, go to lots of stores (other than Walmart, which seems to be the main option that Wooster offers), spend time with another 4 Paws For Abilities dog in training (Maddie's aunt's dog named Digory), and have her first experience at a mall. She did really well on the whole with everywhere she went, which was pretty impressive considering it was the holiday shopping season. She gets a little bit better every day, and it's a ton of fun to watch her improve.

As for the 'fun' little habits that Pebbles picked up from Maddie's dogs at home, we're working hard to stop them in their tracks. Most notably, she has decided to start jumping up onto kitchen counters to see what she can find and tries to chase after squirrels. While they might not seem like that big of a deal, those behaviors are the kinds of things that if they aren't dealt with and stopped immediately, they can be the difference between a dog in training going on to help someone or failing their training and then simply becoming someone's pet. So right now, we're keeping an eye on those behaviors and correcting her immediately when any of them occur.

Overall, Maddie had an awesome break with Pebbles, but is definitely happy to be back on campus and have two other people to share all of the responsibility with. Heidi and Rachel and both studying abroad this semester, and we all (including Pebbles) miss them so much! So it's just Taylor, Colleen, and Maddie that will be around campus with Pebbles this semester. We're hoping to get Pebbles into upstairs Lowry pretty soon too! So if you see us around, don't hesitate to talk to us!

-TCMP (the H and R are temporarily taken out)