Kory’s feeding protocol, Mercy’s new home

I continued Kory’s feeding protocol with breakfast this morning. He got a little antsy as breakfast was late this morning, did all his bathroom duties without prompting, and went back into his ex-pen on his own.

At breakfast Kory went into the basement with the other dogs and assumed a down position where I tied him last evening. I didn’t ask for a down and he wasn’t tied to the door, he just laid down on his own.

It could be that he saw Blue and Red in their downs (they’ve been doing downs for meals for a couple of years because of their propensity for getting underfoot during feeding, and nipping at the other dogs’ faces as bowls hit the floor …. grrrr ….) and mimicked them.

Anyway, I filled the bowls with Kory lying down quietly, then put him on lead and tied him to the door as I started placing bowls on the floor.

When everyone else was eating I walked to Kory with his food bowl and my clicker. He was dancing with anticipation and I was pleased to see his nose hit the bowl and not come out until the job was done.

I left the basement door open and shooed dogs out as they finished. Kory continued eating.

When he was finished I pointed to the door and he exited quietly, not bothering the dogs who were standing just outside observing the “stay out” command I’d given earlier.

When he got into the yard he wandered about just like a mature dog, not acting submissive or engaging the old dogs at all.

When I called all dogs into the small mud yard he trotted in with the pack. I truly believe this weekend has been a good experience for him, enabling him to become a solid member of the pack instead of an occasional, annoying visitor.

Bud arrives home late tonight and, by the time he gets here, I’ll have fed dinner.  Tonight I’m going to try to omit the leash in the dinner protocol.  We’ll see how well that works ….

In other news … I received pictures from the rescue organization that placed Mercy (now Mandy) with a nice family. I’m so delighted I didn’t adopt that sweet 3-legged girl — now she has two kids, a huge back yard, lots of friends both human and canine, and all the attention she deserves.

If you haven’t tried fostering you should. Just remember the foster mom’s mantra, “you’re going to make someone a great dog!”

In other news … this is reunion season and I received an invitation to reunite with the great group of women who worked in the office at Fenton Art Glass Company. I worked in the office when I was in high school (after school from the time I was 16), joined the sales department in my 20s, and left in 1999 to join Bud in Ostrander.

Fenton Art Glass Company, like many small, skilled, manufacturers, has seen their exclusive designs knocked off by factories in foreign countries. They’re attempting to provide some on-going support to the community by maintaining a small artists’ shop so visitors may still see the handmade glass process up close.

When I worked at Fenton there were 400-600 employees. Now there are about 150. This reunion will be bittersweet.

Additionally, my high school class is having 3 little reunion luncheons every year and the next one is in early September. We’ve created links to each other using facebook and have set our privacy settings to “no one.” <g>

I’m off to teach the advanced (4-hour) workshop!   I’ve got the fall ’09 registration handouts printed and ready so folks can start planning their year.

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