Sunday, February 22, 2015

Bath Time

8 year old Jessie gets a bath today...
although he wasn't thrilled about it, he certainly did well and he seems to like the after-effect of having a nice, unmatted coat!
Jessie's coat was very dirty and so we had to give him two baths to try and get the stink and stain out.
Poor Jessie lived much of his life chained up and finally ended up making his way to GHF.
Jessie needs to have his teeth cleaned, to be neutered and to get some good nutrition in him, but we hope that with time (and with spring!) his spirits will brighten up quickly!
His bath today with special shampoo and conditioner are all part of the process!

Knuckle Bone Time!

With all the cold (yep, still cold) weather we got last week, the dogs were dished out some nice, juicy knuckle bones to help combat the winter boredom!

Both Kobey and Drew enjoy munching on their knuckle bones on their kuranda beds...

Friday, February 13, 2015

More indoor activities

With this crazy cold weather we've been having (wind-chills of -30 I heard on the radio yesterday... eek) it becomes very difficult to give BCs the stimulation they need... I know my own dogs certainly have cabin fever...

any suggestions from the audience? We just posted a link for some great puzzle toys but there are other DIY ways to combat the winter blues!

Check out this homemade treat puzzle concept: treat puzzle with toilet paper rolls

And here are some other (pretty basic) indoor activities for you and your dog: indoor games

And yet another quick peek at an article on having herding dogs, but no sheep: dog, no sheep

During the winter time we have many nice volunteers that sign up for stretches of time to come and stay (usually about a week). They come to help take care of the dogs in the mornings (when it's the most hectic, everyone wants their food and has to pee!) and also to help assist the day caretaker by playing with dogs, etc.

The volunteers are SUCH an unbelievably great resource to have, and many are actually surprised at what we usually have them do most while they're here: just sitting with the dogs and keeping them company. Just sitting with the dogs (not playing with them, etc) may seem counterintuitive, however, it is one of the most important activities we can do with the dogs. It helps in so many different ways: calming them, reassuring them, making them feel more at home, etc.

Sitting with the dogs is one of the best winter activities we can have the volunteers do!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Puzzle toys to battle winter boredom!

Not only is it cold outside but the mounds of snow are unbelievably tall! Many of the dogs don't want to plow through the huge snow piles, and we certainly don't want them to get hurt doing so...

unfortunately, this means that the dogs get stuck inside more. The staff has to come up with new ideas constantly to challenge their minds so they don't become frustrated.

For example, today the staff talked about challenging Banner (see the GHF website) mentally since he is a quite complex BC, always ahead of the game and CONSTANTLY interpreting his environment... thinking and making sense of his world.

Treat puzzles are a great way to challenge dogs mentally... indoors! This link has a few that seem like good ones, complex enough for the intellectual BCs!

Doggie Puzzle Toys