perjantai 5. huhtikuuta 2013

Flowers, Butterflies & Puppies

I just can't get enough of how spring-like it already is here! Today, we found coltsfoots (leskenlehti) for the second time this year and guess what else - a small tortoiseshell (nokkosperhonen)! That's really amazing, considering that the temperature still sinks to about 10 degrees below zero during the night! 

Today, we spent some time training obedience in the parking area of a some kind of "industrial barn" near us, and I guess the battle against the Frolics is nearly over. Luumu has been a bit of a picky eater, and when it comes to training in the middle of all kinds of disturbances (like a new place, people around - not to mention strange dogs around...), the Frolics have been the only treat that would do the trick for Luumu - meaning, only the power of Frolics made him listen and do stuff eagerly, no matter the disturbances. Today, I boiled some chicken's gizzard (kivipiira) and Luumu waited the entire time patiently in front of the stove. In the parking lot, the small pieces of gizzard were tempting, but we'll see their true allurement on Monday, when we have our training lesson with other dogs in a dog hall. I also ordered some Natural Menu kibble that was recommended to us, so we'll see about that too. But I am confident to say definite goodbye to Frolics soon - let's face it: they are not the healthiest thing you can feed your dog with!

Boiled gizzard 
Sticks made of beef stomach.
Works, but not as well as gizzard.
In addition to obedience training, which Luumu by the way rocks at the moment, we have been spending a lot of quality time in the forest, running free and with all sorts of pals. When we are alone in the forest and Luumu is unleashed, he goes really nicely, sniffs around the ground and the bushes and remembers to keep an eye on where I am. But - when we are in the forest with a canine friend, Luumu runs rampantly like he's never been in the forest before! Of course, since the dog culture is so strict here in Finland, I need to be able to see him all the time and he is not allowed to go say hi to possible by-passers. Luckily, here in Vanhalinna where we live, there are not so many daily by-passers... We love our peace and solitude!

Earlier in the week we went to Raisio to see our friends Hamti & Noa again. And if it went nicely last time, this time was almost perfect! Noa is a bit over 4-month-old (five already??) Australian Kelpie pup, and Luumu has had some troubles understanding that he is now the bigger one. Also how to play nicely has been under construction, but we are finally getting there! Luumu has always got along perfectly with bigger dogs - the bigger the better, but with smaller dogs or shy dogs that might even be the same size as him, Luumu has been eager to show who the king of the hill really is. Some videos of Luumu & Noa's new friendship can be seen here and here. Enjoy the pics!

Just sniffing around the same bush like it's no big deal... 

A technical break... 
My God, is that my little baby with all those muscles..? 
Funny how I don't know anything about herding dogs' behaviour,
but despite of his young age, Noa is the perfect instructor. 
Luumu is concentrating on taking in every piece of bitchy odours,
and making sure that the next ones smell him too. 

"I' feel pretty, of so pretty!"
From this angle, they are not so different, after all..? 
Only once they started to act a bit (too) crazy, and Luumu needed to be cooled down in the leash.
Comfortable, as you might imagine.
I have been shouting how nicely he walks in the leash these days -
but as you can see, only when we are alone and when there is no-one in front of us...
The sun was shining so warmly and the boys were behaving so charmingly
that we decided to take some portraits. 
... but getting the two of them in the same picture was really a too big of a challenge...

But challenges are made for overcoming. 
Luumu has this funny-looking habit of rolling in the snow.

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