Last weekend the 4 foxes we went camping at Goldstream with two other couples. Camping is a lot of work to get there and get home, but once at the campsite it is generally a good time. This trip was no exception. The only downside to this trip was my lack of sleep due to Heart. She doesn’t like camping, and the only way to keep her somewhat quiet in the morning is to let her sleep in the tent with us. Sadly she is not the kind of dog that likes to sleep in, and since Sue is training for a ride in June, I offered to get up with Heart. 6:15 the first morning, but 5 am the next. Yikes. Thankfully there is a Tim Hortons close by to grab a coffee while the rest of the camping crew slept a little longer.
Yesterday I took the kids to Highrock Park to go “rock climbing”. This just means letting them scramble over any rocks they want to, but it really is an easy way to convince them to go up to the park. The goal was to get Heart out for some exercise.
We had a good time up there, and I think I got some nice pictures. Of course while I was taking pictures and watching the kids, Heart disappeared on me. I soon learned she had made her way down to the field where other dog owners congregate and retrieve.
After collecting Heart we started making our way back home. Once we got out of the park, the rain started and poured for a few minutes. Good timing!
By now we all know Heart is a garbage hound. She is normally pretty loud when walking around in the house, unless we are upstairs and she has access to the kitchen. In this case she can be super stealthy and not make a sound.
A few days ago she came upstairs and was skulking around. She had a guilty look on her face and she was acting very submissive (tail tucked, bum close to the ground, ears down).
He mouth had that “I’m hiding something” shape to it too, and when I took a closer look I found the heel of a loaf of bread. Darn dog.
Of course I took a picture before I forced her to drop it (which is a pretty difficult task). I just don’t get her sometimes. She knows it is wrong to go in the garbage, she does it anyway, and then the slinks around the house bringing attention to herself and showing us what she has done.
I’m thinking I might submit this picture to Dog Shaming, one of my favorite websites these days.
Over the past two years we have had Heart, she has been getting more daring with her destructiveness. At first I blamed it on us not cleaning up enough before going out. Then I thought it was perhaps due to her not getting enough exercise. That thinking has all changed though.
One day Heart had spent the entire day with me while I worked from home, then I took her for a walk. Near the end of the day, in the 45 minutes I was out of the house to pick up the kids, she went on a rampage.
Another day I know the house was dogged down, but she still got into a basket and a bin of toys. The bin she figured out how to get the lid off. The basket she somehow pulled out from under a low shelf and wrecked a pair of Sue’s riding glasses.
We had finally had enough. We started crate training her. At first it was small steps. We had the assembled crate in our living room and she ate meals in there. For the first meal in the crate, it was hard to convince her to go in, but she eventually did. Now she eagerly heads in.
We did the meals in the crate for a couple weeks, then one afternoon I saw Heart sniffing around the house looking for treats. She even went in the crate looking for one. I gave her lots of praise for that.
We decided to step up the training a bit, but first we had to get something comfy in the crate for her. The kids and I went to Bosley’s and managed to find a bed that was cushy, and fit in her crate perfectly.
It seems to be working. One night I was sitting in front of the tv after the kids had fallen asleep and noticed Heart wasn’t on her bed. I checked all her usual spots in the house to flake out, but she was nowhere to be found. I even checked the office in the basement, but nope. Sure enough she had made her way into the crate on her own and had curled up.
Since that night I have seen Heart in the crate many times, she has even slept in there all night instead of on the couch like she usually does.
The next step is to leave Heart locked in the crate while we leave the house for short periods, gradually making our time out f the house longer. A long process for sure, but hopefully this will eventually curb her destructiveness.
After a nice sleepin and another lazy morning we took Heart for a walk at Colquitz. This is a great place for the kids to go since they can run, walk, ride bikes, or even ride scooters there. And Heart gets a walk too.
Today was lots of fun. Amy was on her bike and Elliot was running after her. Heart mostly kept pace with the kids. Sue and I got to enjoy our coffee and tea and got to walk hand in hand for a bit. We took several breaks around the park which allowed Heart to stop and sniff everything. The sun even tried to come out. At one point Amy was down to her skort and a t-shirt. It’s November and the kids can still wear a t-shirt?
A few pics from today.
I went out for a cold ride today. Victoria was supposed to get snow last night, and at our house we did get some (less than an inch). I had been hoping for a snow ride, but that didn’t pan out. The closer I got to the dump, the less snow there was on the ground.
Still, it was a great ride. Cold, but not too slippery. Crunchy. I love the sound of my tires creaking through snow, or crashing through icy puddles.
I had Heart with me, and she had a great time too. On Shock Treatment, the first trail from the parking lot, she was going full tilt. She was in front of me, and would sprint as fast as she could until I was out of sight. We call it a puppy run (where she runs with her bum a little closer to the ground than normal, and is running full tilt). As soon as I rounded a corner, I could see she was waiting for me in the middle of the trail, and when she saw me she would turn and sprint away as fast as possible. Very funny.
I had my Bullit out today to give myself more of a workout in an effort to keep warm. That worked very well. I even managed to work out the kinks in the recent work that was done on my drivetrain. They adjusted, but I found it was still skipping gears at very inopportune times.
My final trail of the day was Who’s Yer Daddy. This is a fairly technical DH trail, but it is a lot of fun. I was 3/4 of the way down when I landed a jump in a bad spot, I felt my rear wheel slam hard into a rock. A couple corners later I felt something was off in the rear end, and sure enough I had pinch flatted.
I got out the tool kit and began trying to take the muddy, wet, snowy tire off the rim. What a pain that was. DH rims had sidewalls that are a little taller than normal rims to try and keep the tire seated better. I also had wire beads on the rear tire. It took me a long time to get the tire off.
Back at the car I went to hose off my bike, but couldn’t as the hose was frozen solid! Nice. The dog dish was a block of ice too (not that Heart would have had a drink anyway).
Fall will always be my favorite time of year to ride, but rides like this are truly spectacular. If I had enough of them they may make me change my mind.