Monday, October 27, 2014

The Best Helper

Barry is always very helpful. He is right on it when it comes to any task. He's willing to undertake anything.

When we pull the trash out from under the sink his bionic ears hear this and he runs to our aid every time. 

He watches with tail waggling as we tie up the top. 

He walks with us down the hall to the trash shoot sniffing around to make sure nothing unexpected comes up and to make sure there isn't any food or snacks lying around. We don't want to waste.

When we need to get anything from storage Barry is at the ready to walk down the hall with us, basically doing the same thing he does for the trash mission. It's very helpful, so why change a good thing?

When we are making dinner Barry is there, to the rescue of any dropped munchies, keeping our floors spotless. It's the pit bull standard (which, if you don't know, is very high for cleanliness).

He is never in the way. Who needs access to the fridge when making dinner anyway?

When I'm chilly he's there to warm me.

When Husband loses something (because I rarely lose anything), Barry is there to help him search out the item.

When we get a package in the mail Barry is first in line to help open it up. He's excellent at it.

And at the end of the day when we're all ready for bed, after all the help Barry has given us throughout the day, he needs our help to boost him into bed (but not really because he can jump into our bed by himself, he just likes us to lift him in at night). It's the least we can do to repay the favor.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The Protector

About a monthish or two ago Husband went out of town for the weekend. It was just me and Barry. It was awesome. I ate all the stuff I wanted (well, I suppose I pretty much eat whatever I want regardless of if Husband's here or not), and I watched all the shows I wanted to watch. In all honesty I missed him being home but I did love quinoa, avocado, and egg dinners with Netflix constantly running in the background.

I took Barry by myself Friday night, both Saturday and Sunday all four walks, and Monday morning. All in all taking Barry by myself isn't a big deal. The only thing I found I was slightly more hesitant about was our evening walks. Barry has to go to the bathroom so it's not like I could just skip that one. I attempted to take the most well lit, and people-dense routes. In our neighborhood of Chicago it's not super busy. In fact, it's pretty quiet. It's an industrial (warehouses, blue collar, union workers) area with some condos, nice parks, a couple of schools, a 7-11, and some restaurants scattered in. We are just outside of the lively areas. 1 1/2 miles North of us is a lot busier. Just East of us is the financial district, the sky scrapers and white collar workers, that after 7 PM is mostly dead because it's all banks, stock market exchange, offices, etc. So now that you know about our neighborhood, you may understand that there aren't a lot of people dense areas. Especially at night. The people dense areas are North and East of us.

Our evening walks were especially quiet. Once or twice we'd see someone or a group of people but it wasn't a big deal at all. The area we live in isn't dangerous or sketchy or anything like that. It is still Chicago though, and stuff happens in even the very nicest neighborhoods. Just like anywhere you go.

Anyhow, one evening as we were walking back towards home, a guy sitting outside of a bar we were walking by, stopped me to talk about Barry. I was, at first, a little alarmed. It was about 1 AM. Yes, I was up late eating whatever and watching whatever on Netflix. He was very nice. He wasn't rude. I was still very aware of everything just in case. He was very laid back and totally into Barry. He was not a threat at all and I realized this quickly. He was at ease. Unlike another such person walking by who quickly edged himself toward the curb.

Why is he scared of me?
I talked to this nice guy for a few minutes and Barry LOVED him! Barry was all over him and this guy just gushed over Barry. I felt so much better. I realized that even though Barry will pretty much just love on anyone willing to look at him, Barry's looks make those that are maybe not-so-nice perhaps stay away. Barry, to me, is totally the sweetest, and most easily approachable dog ever. But I just wonder if there was someone with ill intentions that they might think twice if they see Barry walking with me. Barry most likely appears to be a very well trained and well behaved pit bull type dog. Could he possibly look like a dog that would attack! if I told him to? Maybe. I don't really know. I don't think he does. Though, I don't know what goes through other people's minds. Someone with any ill intention is probably looking for an easy target. A girl with my stature by herself at 1 AM would be an easy target. Add in Barry walking by my side and that changes the scene a bit and perhaps deters any possible meanies.

I consider myself Barry's protector. But in other ways, without Barry even knowing it, he is my protector. His looks give him a certain stigma. That is just the way it is. I've accepted it. I do what I can to dispel that myth but as an individual I can't do more than what I already do. If you are scared of this guy then edge your way to the curb while we walk on by and enjoy our walk. If you think he's cute and want to pet him then do approach because he welcomes all attention and I love to talk about Barry (I mean, I have a blog all about him, obviously).

Monday, October 6, 2014

The 'Ol Switcheroo *Again*

I'm relieved to say that we've returned to The Honest Kitchen food for Barry. I say relieved because this food (for Barry) is like a miracle drug. I was quite worried when we were still giving Barry bland food (a mixture of rice, pumpkin, and very lean beef) and his poo was still mucousy. I thought this was a sign of something else wrong. Why was the bland food not working as it should? Perhaps he was missing nutrients that made him mucousy? I don't know. We got in the new food and 24 hours later he had a totally normal real poo. It had been a couple of weeks since I'd seen a good one. When we went to the vet after his worst ever episode he was on medicine and everything seemed normal. A couple of days after the medicine was gone we were back to the sticky stuff.

Right now we are using Kindly from The Honest Kitchen. It's a base food, not complete. It has everything except the protein. This has been perfect for us. The price is much better than the complete food (it will take us twice as long to use the base and cost half the price). So far it's amazing. Just like it was before.

We'll have to monitor his weight once again to make sure he isn't losing weight or gaining weight (though a couple extra pounds wouldn't hurt the string bean) but I have a good feeling on this. I'm making one day's worth of food at a time now. Split it in two and follow the guidelines for his activity level and weight. We'll adjust as needed.

I'm hoping that this is it for the dinner time and bathroom time with Barry stories.

As for the Merrick we didn't quite use up, we are donating it to the shelter where we adopted Barry from. The food is excellent and the dogs there deserve some good food.

Happy tummy.