It has now been 1 week since we brought home the Ru. He is doing famously and seems to be happy as ever. He might even have grown! Whadda ya think?
I can’t help but be proud of him for the last week. He doesn’t pee in the house anymore (well ok sometimes but he always tries to go outside first), he has learned his name (SO EXCITING), and he is the healthiest pup on he block (pure conjecture, but he is doing great). He has also started to embody many of the characteristics of his breed. He loves to sleep on his back, feet in the air, like a Pyrenees. He drools like a Newfy already. When he drinks his water its like he gives up half way through the last gulp and just lets it dribble down his chest and make a little trail through the house. Like a trail of breadcrumbs to help find Ru, but instead of breadcrumbs its a slippery, slimy trail of viscous dog drool. We hit another big landmark just this morning. He started doing something that reminds me the most of the Dude. It has been really hot in the Bay Area the last couple days and when pyrenees, the Dude in particular, get too hot they like to dig a little hole to lie in to cool off. Dude did this constantly in the grossest part of our backyard at that house we all lived in on SE 74th and Powell. We fondly called them Dude-holes. This morning Ru ran around outside, got pretty warm and dug his first Dude Hole!
Ru has stopped fighting with Fido, or rather Fido has stopped fighting back when little man tries to rumble. Rubeus is still trying to build the relationship by endlessly following Fido through the house, biting his side whenever possible and standing 3 feet away and barking whenever Fido has a meal. Fido has been patient but uninterested. He often looks at us like he is trying to say “What is this tiny dog? When is it leaving?” Fido has been having a lot of alone time in the front yard to cope.
We have also started his trailer training:
We have been taking him on ~10 mile rides every morning for the last 4 days. It seems that his love for the tail wagon ebbs and flows. The first ride (on the day we brought him home, I believe) we just took him around the block twice. He started to cry on the second lap and we brought him back to safety and gave him a cookie. Next we started riding on the rail to trail bike path near my parent’s place in Walnut Creek. It’s called the Iron Horse Trail and it goes through Walnut Creek and out both sides providing a good bit of relatively mellow practice riding for schmooby (one of our pet’s pet names of course) to get used to the trailer. The first ride we took on this trail was a learning experience all around. Ru didn’t like the bumps (still doesn’t) or going more than 7 mph (still doesn’t) so he started to look for a way out. At this point we had only ever taken the trailer around the block so we weren’t familiar with all the possible escape routes. As Joey pulled the trailer, I rode behind to try to calm down the nugget. He was digging at the bottom of the trailer pretty good and then all of a sudden, POP, little Rubeus head sticking out of the back of the trailer right over the parking break. “JOEY WE NEED TO STOP RIGHT NOW” We shoved him back in, pet him, pontificated on the many virtues of his character and hoped he wouldn’t try it again. We started back to it, and low and behold, 30 seconds down the road out pops his little head. Then to my horror, out pops his front little legs! “JOEY OH GOD STOP NOW” With no harm done to Ru (his feet weren’t long enough to touch the ground until we stopped and he could leverage) we placated the beast and tried to think of solutions. We were still a couple miles from home and wanted to take him back as safely/quickly as possible. I took some deep cleansing breaths, and my wonderful, engineer-brained partner Joey found the solution. We were fastening the back of the trailer wrong. Its a two step process and we were doing 2-1 instead of 1-2 but hey, counting is hard.
We are slowly increasing the length of the rides we take him on, trying to introduce more road riding and generally getting him acclimated to scenarios we’ll be living for the next few months. Sometimes he loves it, sometimes he hates it, and sometimes he’s asleep, c’est la vie.
The human trip planning is also going well. We have been gearing up, and all the big parts have been acquired. We have our bikes, the trailer, our panniers, and all that other outdoor gear we already had anyway. We fill our days with Ru rides, online shopping for bike shorts, cooking elaborate dinners, trying to train the tiny canine, swimming in my parents’ pool, telling Fido how patient he is and re-reading the Harry Potter books. We have ordered some maps and are beginning to plan specifics.
Now that we have the fluff button with us, long haul training is not as much a priority for Joey and me. We know that we will not be able to do the mileage we planned before the love bug was in the picture, we will probably do about 50-60 miles a day on average. So now we are focussing on making sure our relationship with the hound is strong and steady enough go keep him happy and safe on the road. Not to say we aren’t doing anything to prepare. Joey has found some siiiiick mountain bike trails with and entrance right of the rail to trail we ride on. I am doing pilates from that crazy tiny woman on the internet and bench pressing the pup whenever he chews on the rug fringe.
Stay tuned for more info on the gear we are taking and the route we are hoping to follow.
Our projected leave date is May 10th. LET THE COUNTDOWN BEGIN