Home sweet home and Fergie’s ribbons

Posted by houndrat on Friday Oct 3, 2008 Under dogs, family life, husbands, mommies, Ridgebacks

Okay, so things are FINALLY settling down to normal here after my 5 day stint at the Ridgeback National Specialty in Gettysburg, PA, which involved me leaving my almost one year-old and 4.5 year-old home alone with my cleanliness-challenged husband.? Although I have to say, I was completely shocked in a good way? when I arrived home and? our house was not only still standing, but actually didn’t resemble a recent bomb site on the inside.? And nary a broken glass to be seen.? Honestly, I’m left sort of wondering when the bulldozer came and how long it was here, but that’s okay.? I mean, I don’t really care what means achieved these ends, as long as? they don’t? involve me wading knee-high through daddy-was-home-alone-with-the-kids carnage.

At any rate, I’ll try to write some about my adventures this weekend, but for now, here’s a photo of me and the Ferganator in our hotel room, with all the awards she helped win.? As it turns out, Fergie apparently is good for something other than destroying random objects around the house.? Although saying she was? “good” at the show would probably be a bit of an overstatement—just ask my aunt.

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Dog shows, Dog discussion groups and Dog wackos

Posted by houndrat on Wednesday Apr 30, 2008 Under dogs

Whenever I start talking about dog shows, my husband has two words for me:? “dog wackos”.? In fact, hubby? has always? maintained that he married a “semi-normal dog wacko”.? ? Whatever that means.

Being the sweet, demure kind of girl I am, I usually just smile and nod my? head obediently.? Yeah, right.? Okay, so maybe I argue a bit.? Or a lot.? I tell him raising show dogs? is a hobby,? just? like any other hobby.? Only a little more time consuming.? And labor intensive.? And maybe a tad more annoying (like when Fergie eats your son’s big wheel seat).?

But there are perks.? I mean, fishing might be enjoyable (if you? find? parking your fanny on? the seat of a? stinky old boat for long stretches of time, twiddling your thumbs? and day-dreaming about Moby Dick “enjoyable”), but it’s not like you’re going to cuddle up with your fishing rod at night.? (And if you are, we don’t need to know about it.? Can I just say—ouch?)? ? How about? kickin’ back on your couch, watching a little American Idol with your golf clubs?? Not so snuggalicious.? And honestly—who takes their Wii to the park for a game of Frisbee? (Of course, having Ridgebacks, the game of Frisbee involves me throwing said Frisbee, then chasing the fleeing dog with said Frisbee dangling from? her mouth.? Hmmm….maybe the Wii would be a better choice.)

Hubby’s? side?? Well, believe it or not, his main beef isn’t with the actual dog shows (although he thinks they’re lame), or the amount of money spent on dog showing (which he thinks is certifiable), or even how we treat our dogs like children (he’ll happily change a diaper, but pick up? dog poops?? Ha!).?

No, his big complaint is simple.? ? According to him, what? makes dog show enthusiasts “wackos” is their inability to shut up.? He says they never stop talking about their dogs.? Ever.? And I’ve finally decided he may have a point.

See, apparently,? it’s not? normal to continue discussing the minutiae of your hobby ad nauseum once your hobby session has ended.? And us dog folks?? Well, we? simply don’t work that way.? We talk.? We discuss.? We converse.? In fact, we over-analyze every aspect of every? Ridgeback we know, from the color of their nose (black or liver) to their ears (too short or too long), to the tip of their tails (kink or no kink?).? And I guess having daily phone conversations with your mom (and aunt), where 80% of the content revolves around this Ridgeback’s lure coursing run, or what that Ridgeback ate for breakfast, just isn’t normal.

But, even knowing all that, I was still ready? to argue the point.? Until today.? Because today, I finally realized that my husband was? right all along.? I am a dog wacko.? And here’s why.

See, I belong to a couple of Ridgeback discussion groups.? What do we talk about on these lists?? Yep, you guessed it—Ridgebacks (and, of course, sometimes ducks—but that’s an ill-advised and touchy subject).? ? Sometimes, the topics get a little hot.? But this past month?? Well, to say that things have gotten ugly would be like saying that crocodiles have teeth.? ?

? Not that a little list drama is a new occurrence–not even close.? Because if there’s one thing dog folks have in common besides the obvious, it’s their love of a good argument.?

But lately, it’s gotten out of hand.? Why?? To be honest, I’m not really sure.? I mean, as far as I know, nobody’s dead, nobody’s dog died, and nobody’s passing around genital crabs (although, I admit, that would make an interesting twist).? In a nutshell, I guess it all stems over disagreements about breeding practices and proper board and committee procedures.? I know, I know—it sounds about as exciting as a good toilet cleaning.? And yet the drama continues.

And this is how I know I am now, officially, a dog wacko.? Because even though this? issue has next to nothing to do with me, I find myself? fanatically reading every post, like? my body is being possessed by aliens.? ? Aliens that like to read a lot? of crap about Ridgebacks.? ? And not only reading—I’m posting.? Posting, I tell you!? ? ? Why?? Because I just can’t seem to help myself. It’s like? a terrible, terrible sickness—-some kind of compulsive Tourette’s of the computer syndrome.? Only without the swearing.? In fact, in one post I likened it to the? horrified fascination you feel when viewing road kill.? The more you want to look away, the more you look.

Honestly, though, it’s a little more exciting than it sounds.? There’s drama.? There’s threats.? There’s bad humor (mainly mine).? There’s lawyers and? name-calling and hound dogs, oh my!? And I guess since I gave up soap operas a long, long time ago, this is what I’m stuck with.

Besides, its not as if I have anything more compelling, like, say, rising gas prices (hubby commutes over 50 miles EACH WAY to work), rising food prices (yes, my family enjoys eating), and falling house prices (don’t even ask) to worry about.

So, yes, husband, I admit it—I’m a 100%, certifiable, dog wacko now.? But you’re stuck with me anyway.

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